USA Freedom Kids Now Suing Trump Campaign

The USA Freedom Kids, the musical group of preteens who went viral following their performance of Freedom's Call at a Donald Trump rally in January, are now suing the campaign alleging they were promised things that never materialized.

Jeff Popick, the father of one of the group members, says that the campaign promised them the chance to perform at events as well as a table to sell pre-orders of the group's album, which is due to be released in September. None of these things happened.

From the Washington Post:

"This is not a billion-dollar lawsuit," Popick said. "I'm doing this because I think they have to do the right thing. And if this means having to go through the court system to enforce them doing the right thing, then that's what I have to do. I'm not looking to do battle with the Trump campaign, but I have to show my girls that this is the right thing."

Popick is quick to explain that the agreement was not written down, but, instead, involves a series of promises from various agents of the Trump campaign which he says were then broken.

Yikes.

Texas Judge Drops Charges Against Planned Parenthood Investigators

The Center for Medical Progress is the pro-life group behind the Planned Parenthood videos released last summer that showed employees negotiating the sale of fetal body parts. Instead of seeking punishment for the pro-abortion organization, a Texas grand jury chose to indict the two investigators behind the videos, arguing they broke the law by tampering with a governmental record, using fake identities, and were guilty of a misdemeanor charge of attempting to buy aborted baby organs.

On Tuesday, however, a Texas judge dismissed all charges.

CMP President David Daleiden responded to the welcome decision.

“The dismissal of the bogus, politically motivated charges against CMP project lead David Daleiden and investigator Sandra Merritt is a resounding vindication of the First Amendment rights of all citizen journalists, and also a clear warning to any of Planned Parenthood's political cronies who would attack whistleblowers to protect Planned Parenthood from scrutiny," he said in a statement. "Planned Parenthood tried to collude with public officials to manipulate the legal process to their own benefit, and they failed. A year after the release of the undercover videos, the ongoing nationwide investigation of Planned Parenthood by the House Select Investigative Panel makes clear that Planned Parenthood is the guilty party in the harvesting and trafficking of baby body parts for profit.”

Hopefully this is one step closer toward the pro-life community holding the real culprit accountable.

Viewers Remind Michelle Obama of One Word When She Says Hillary Has Never Quit on Anything

First Lady Michelle Obama offered a strong endorsement of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton Monday night at the Democratic National Convention, noting she is "truly qualified" to be president. Yet, it was one line in particular that had viewers shaking their heads.

"But here’s the thing - what I admire most about Hillary is that she never buckles under pressure," Mrs. Obama said. "She never takes the easy way out.  And Hillary Clinton has never quit on anything in her life."

Social media users were quick to remind the First Lady about the deadliest scandal of Clinton's career.

The Benghazi Select Committee's efforts have revealed that former Secretary of State Clinton and her team were wasting precious time debating attire while our soldiers were willing and ready to save their comrades at the U.S. embassy.

I wonder if the families of the victims of the Benghazi attack would call Clinton a fighter.

A&E’s ‘Born This Way’ Will Shatter Your Preconceived Notions About Down Syndrome

A&E’s “Born This Way” reality show follows the lives of 10 young adults as they deal with everyday challenges such as family drama, new roommates, and the complications that come with dating and marriage.

They just all happen to have Down syndrome.

“Born This Way,” airing its second season Tuesday night, proves that these young adults are more than their disorder. That, said Sandra McElwee, one of the moms featured on the show, was the parents’ and producers’ most important goal.

“The biggest limitations Sean experiences is other people’s perceptions,” McElwee explained in an interview with Townhall. “In the beginning, that’s his biggest disability.”

Sean had always been an independent thinker, she noted. Before joining the show, he even liked referring to himself as a “ladies man.” Yet, McElwee says her son has gained even more confidence from being a reality TV star.

“Pretty much everywhere he goes he’s recognized now,” McElwee said. “We were just on vacation out of the country and he was recognized several times. He just thinks that’s the way it should be. He has no fear. He can stand up in front of hundreds of people and speak with no problem whatsoever.”

That doesn’t mean McElwee wasn’t hesitant at first for her son to join the cast.

“I’d seen enough reality shows to see how they can turn them into a train wreck and it can be just one big drama and they can twist things around and create sentences that didn’t actually happen,” she said. “But I had this feeling that this show could be a game changer for people with Down syndrome.”

The majority of the population, McElwee added, don’t know anyone with Down syndrome. Now they know seven -soon to be 10 - people with Down syndrome they’d never known before.

“Knowing people and knowing their lives and seeing they’re just like everyone else takes away from the fear and when you take away the fear it opens up doors,” she said.

In watching the show, you find that the parents have opportunities to celebrate unique milestones in their children’s lives.

“When Sean was 3 years old, we were at a festival and there was a children’s singing and dancing group performing and he looked at me and pointed to himself and pointed toward the stage and said, ‘Me do that.’ And that was his first 3-word sentence and I thought, wow, we’ve got a 3-word sentence out I better support his dreams. So I signed him up for the group. Most parents would’ve said, I’m not going to sign my kid up for a singing group when he can’t even sing. But I decided to support his dreams. He’s just really been very vocal about what he wants to do and we support him.”

Down syndrome, these parents insist, “is going to play a minor part in their lives.”

Watch the trailer for “Born This Way’s” season two, airing on A&E Tuesday night at 10 p.m. ET.

Susan Sarandon Did Not Have A Fun Night Last Night

Actress Susan Sarandon is a passionate supporter of Bernie Sanders, and even went as far as to say she'd potentially vote for Donald Trump instead of Hillary Clinton.

Sarandon attended the DNC on Monday in Philadelphia, and a gif of her looking rather morose at the prospect of Clinton's nomination went viral on Monday night.

Sarandon herself confirmed that it was, not a pleasant time:

Sarandon was also spotted weeping during Sanders' speech.

Trump Addresses the Veterans of Foreign Wars: Message to the VA Officials, You're Fired!

Republican nominee Donald Trump made it clear during a speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars on Tuesday, that under his administration, heads would roll and government workers would be held accountable for failures in the Department of Veterans affairs.  

Trump started his speech by saying our most basic commitment to veterans is healthcare.  

He criticized Hilary Clinton for downplaying the many problems with the VA.  

He then went after government officials by saying that he will remove and discipline those who fail to do their job.

Lessons: As US Debates Refugee Policy, Germany Suffers Three Attacks in Three Days

Some commentators are scratching their heads over how Donald Trump could have earned a polling bump out of Cleveland, in light of its various mishaps and controversies (which the Democrats are working to match and surpass) -- and especially after such a dark and foreboding acceptance speech. The reason we predicted he'd get that bounce is because the public mood is dark. We see that reality reflected in national polling week after week. And we see its roots and causes playing out in headlines across the globe. In Germany over this past weekend alone, there were three terrible attacks -- two of which were carried out by Syrian refugees:

(1) Machete Attack Against Pregnant Woman:

A 21-year-old Syrian refugee was arrested on Sunday after killing a pregnant woman with a machete in Germany, the fourth violent assault on civilians in western Europe in 10 days, though police said it did not appear linked to terrorism. The incident, however, may add to public unease surrounding Chancellor Angela Merkel's open-door refugee policy that has seen over a million migrants enter Germany over the past year, many fleeing war in Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq. German police said they arrested the machete-wielding Syrian asylum-seeker after he killed a woman and injured two other people in the southwestern city of Reutlingen near Stuttgart...A 21-year-old Syrian refugee was arrested on Sunday after killing a pregnant woman with a machete in Germany, the fourth violent assault on civilians in western Europe in 10 days, though police said it did not appear linked to terrorism. The incident, however, may add to public unease surrounding Chancellor Angela Merkel's open-door refugee policy that has seen over a million migrants enter Germany over the past year, many fleeing war in Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq. German police said they arrested the machete-wielding Syrian asylum-seeker after he killed a woman and injured two other people in the southwestern city of Reutlingen near Stuttgart...The Islamic State militant group claimed responsibility for both a July 18 ax attack by a 17-year-old refugee that injured five people near Nuremburg in southern Germany, and a July 14 attack in which a Tunisian man drove a truck into Bastille Day holiday crowds in the French city of Nice, killing 84 people.

(2) Bombing Targeting Music Festival:

The Syrian suicide bomber who injured 15 people in a Sunday night attack on a music festival in Ansbach, Germany, left behind a video pledging allegiance to ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, Bavarian Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann said Monday. The ISIS-affiliated media group Amaq claimed the attacker was an ISIS "soldier" in a statement the group's supporters posted online Monday, but there is no evidence he was in contact with ISIS or directed to carry out an attack. In the video left on a mobile phone, the 27-year-old Syrian announced his threat to carry out an attack "as an act of revenge against Germans, because they obstruct Islam," Herrmann told a press conference. The man said the attack would be committed in the name of Allah as retaliation for the killing of Muslims. The bomber, who has not been named, was killed.

(3) Mass Shooting at Shopping Mall:

German police arrested a 16-year-old Afghan boy in Munich on Sunday after police found contradictions in statements the youth made to police earlier about his relationship with an 18-year-old German-Iranian, Ali David Sonboly, who shot and killed nine people in the city on Friday. “There is a suspicion that the 16-year-old is a possible tacit accomplice to [Friday’s] attack,” police said in a statement Sunday, reported by broadcaster Deutsche Welle. “We suspect that this boy aged 16 years could have been aware of the act.” The Afghan youth reportedly went to police voluntarily on Friday after the shooting by Sonboly. But police later came to believe that the Afghan boy may have been involved in posting a message on Facebook that the shooter used to lure victims to a shopping and cinema complex, thus giving rise to suspicions that he knew about the planned attack but failed to report it.

Germany has extremely restrictive gun laws, which have resulted in a flourishing black market awash in illegal firearms.  In any case, here at the DNC, Democrats are celebrating Hillary Clinton's proposal to massively increase the influx of Syrian refugees into the United States. With German Chancellor Angela Merkel under intense fire over the repercussions of her refugee policy, Clinton's party seems intent on framing (very widespread) public skepticism about refugee screening as backwards bigotry. It's true that the US government's vetting process is both improved and more robust than it is elsewhere. But do deliberately missed red flags like this, which contributed to the San Bernardino terrorist attack, inspire confidence? And are Americans supposed to be reassured by public statements from security officials like these?

The Obama administration is fighting a growing national backlash against accepting Syrian refugees, saying the government’s exhaustive screening process and security checks for new arrivals mean they can be safely brought to American soil. Several high-level administration officials have warned in recent months just how challenging this can be. While they say U.S. security measures are much better than in the past, vetting Syrian refugees poses a quandary: How do you screen people from a war-torn country that has few criminal and terrorist databases to check? “I don’t, obviously, put it past the likes of ISIL to infiltrate operatives among these refugees, so that’s a huge concern of ours,” Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said at a security industry conference in September, using another name for the Islamic State. He added that the government has “a pretty aggressive program” for screening refugees but that he is less confident about European nations. FBI Director James Comey added in congressional testimony last month that “a number of people who were of serious concern” slipped through the screening of Iraq War refugees, including two arrested on terrorism-related charges. “There’s no doubt that was the product of a less than excellent vetting,” he said...“If we don’t know much about somebody, there won’t be anything in our data,” he said. “I can’t sit here and offer anybody an absolute assurance that there’s no risk associated with this.”

Americans ought to demand a thoughtful and rational debate on these policies, with less demagoguery on both sides. The rhetoric in Cleveland and Philadelphia suggests that we're unlikely to get it.  And with leadership like this from the Demagogue-in-Chief, is that any surprise?

UPDATE - Two additional notes, via Leah and Cortney: A priest has been brutally murdered in a French church by ISIS terrorists, the latest Islamist horror on Western soil.  And in many hours of rhetoric last night, Democrats saw fit to mention the terror army (of the Obama/Clinton foreign policy's partial creation) zero times.

Here is The DNC Schedule For Tuesday

The following 2016 Democrat Convention speaker agenda has been provided by the Democratic National Committee and is subject to change. The convention, being held in Philadelphia, starts Monday and concludes Thursday. Below is the agenda for Tuesday, July 26, 2016.

***
Program hours: 4:00 PM Start Time

Location: Wells Fargo Arena

Kate Burdick

Kate, originally from Philadelphia, PA,  is a staff attorney at the Juvenile Law Center in Philadelphia.

Anton Moore

Anton, from Philadelphia, PA, founded and runs a nonprofit community group that strives to bring awareness and educate youth on gun violence.

Dustin Parsons

Dustin, from Little Rock, Arkansas,  is currently a fifth grade teacher at an elementary school in his home state.

Students from Eagle Academy

As a senator, Hillary Clinton supported the creation of the Eagle Academy to educate at-risk youth in New York City. Eagle Academy was featured in the ad Came Through during the New York primary.

 Joe Sweeney

Joe, of New York, NY,  was a detective with the NYPD on September 11, 2001. When the towers were hit, he rushed down to the World Trade Center and began digging through the rubble for survivors.

Lauren Manning

Lauren was a former executive and partner at Cantor Fitzgerald. She is one of the most catastrophically wounded survivors of 9/11. Lauren battled single digit odds of survival, spending more than six months in the hospital and fought recovering through the next decade from an 82.5% total body burn. Lauren asked then Senator Hillary Clinton to support the injured and she has remained unflagging in her commitment and dedication.

Ryan Moore

Ryan, originally from South Sioux City, NE, has spondyloepiphyseal Dysplasia dwarfism and has known Hillary Clinton since 1994 when his family came to Washington, DC for an event to advocate for health care reform. Brian Moore, Ryan’s father, lost his job when his employer was unwilling to cover treatment for Ryan’s health condition. Ryan has stayed in contact with Hillary ever since.

President Bill Clinton

Mothers of the Movement

The DNC Is Adopting Abortion Positions Most Americans Disagree With

The Democratic National Committee is about to adopt its most radical pro-abortion platform ever. Thanks to a platform committee that pushed the party to the left, the Democratic platform includes language that opposes the Hyde Amendment, a common sense piece of legislation that prohibits the government from forcing taxpayers to pay for abortions. The DNC’s decision to challenge the Hyde Amendment is so extreme that even members of the party are calling it “crazy.”

Hillary Clinton is apparently fine with the platform position, even promising supporters at a Planned Parenthood event that she will repeal Hyde as president.

That’s why the results of a new Knights of Columbus Marist poll is so important. In a survey of 1,000 adults, voters made clear that they do not support the DNC’s new agenda.

Though 51 percent of Americans say they are pro-choice, about 8 in 10 Americans support substantial restrictions on abortion (78 percent), and would limit it to, at most, the first three months of pregnancy. This number includes 62 percent of those who identify as pro-choice, 85 percent of African Americans and 84 percent of Latinos.

Taxpayer funding for abortion is opposed by 62 percent of Americans. This includes 65 percent of African Americans, 61 percent of Latinos, and 45 percent of those who say they are pro-choice, as well as 84 percent of Republicans, 61 percent of Independents and 44 percent of Democrats.

The majority of Americans, in other words, would be appalled to read the fine print of the DNC platform. It is the Republican Party's job to magnify it.

If the platform wasn’t already an indication of how radical the Democratic Party has become, its speaker schedule for this week's convention will relieve any doubts. Among the headliners are Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards and NARAL President Ilyse Hogue.

The Crucible: Journalists Endure 'Chaos' And Logistical Hell Navigating Through Democratic Convention

Well, if there’s anything that journalists liked about the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, it’s that it was not a logistical nightmare. In Philadelphia, it appears as if the conditions are nothing short of abysmal. We have media tents that are like ovens in the sweltering heat, coupled with few locations to find food and water. Oh, and speaking of water—the Wells Fargo Center is charging $4.50 a bottle, according to The Hill. The publication also said that other journalists and media members covering the convention described the whole situation as chaotic. To make matters worse, the media tents needed to be evacuated twice due to severe storms and lightning:

Just outside the convention center by the media tents, a handful of food trucks sizzled on the pavement, with no other food spots nearby. Inside the tents, water has only been made available by media outlets for their own staff.

Peeved reporters and editors have taken to Twitter to complain about the event’s disorganization, with some pining for their experience at last week’s Republican National Convention in Cleveland.

Criticism reverberated beyond the arena, as convention-goers fought traffic-clogged streets to traverse the city. The seven-mile trip between the Wells Fargo Center and media-sponsored events downtown easily took 60 to 90 minutes in a car.

Uber offered up free iced coffee and snacks to customers who waited for rides in an air-conditioned tent – but only after they walked across two steamy parking lots, and then waited in long lines.

Megan Liberman, editor-in-chief of Yahoo News, described the day as “chaos.”

“To be totally objective and nonpartisan: the logistics at DNC are appalling. Squalid hotels, sweltering workspace, no directions. Chaos,” Liberman tweeted.

“Walking thru hot media tents, or walking the mile from Uber drop off to hot media tents, one hears longing for CLE,” Washington Post reporter Philip Rucker tweeted.

Our own Guy Benson is in Philadelphia covering the convention and agreed with The New York Times’ Maggie Haberman that Cleveland was better logistically. Well, welcome to the suck, folks—and I’m not just saying that because you have to cover what Democrats say for the week. In all seriousness, it sounds like a total disaster down there.

'Horror': ISIS Terrorists Slit Elderly Priest's Throat in Attack on French Church

Update: Hollande said ISIS is behind the attack, telling reporters it was carried out  "by two terrorists in the name of Daesh." 

BREAKING: French president suggests Islamic State group is behind church attack that left priest dead.

— The Associated Press (@AP) July 26, 2016

Update: The Vatican speaks out:

Pope Francis has condemned in the strongest terms the attack on a Roman Catholic church in northern France that left a priest dead and a worshipper critically wounded.

Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, said in a statement Tuesday that the attack hits particularly hard "because this horrific violence took place in a church, a sacred place in which the love of God is announced, and the barbaric murder of a priest and the involvement of the faithful."

Lombardi called the attack "more terrible news, that adds to a series of violence in these days that have left us upset, creating immense pain and worry."

The pope, he said, has expressed "pain and horror for this absurd violence, with the strongest condemnation for every form of hatred and prayer for those affected."

The Vatican expressed its closeness to the Roman Catholic Church in France and the Archdiocese of Rouen, as well as to the affected communities and the people of France.

Original Post: Two attackers seized five hostages in a church in the Normandy city of Rouen, killing a priest, 86-year-old Father Jacques Hamel, and seriously injuring at least one other person on Tuesday. 

A police source told Reuters it appeared the priest’s throat was slit, although Interior Ministry spokesman Pierre-Henry Brandet would not confirm this.

The two attackers stormed the church in Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray during a service at around 10am local time (9am BST), taking the priest, two nuns and several members of the congregation hostage.

The crisis continued for around an hour before the armed men were shot dead by police when they emerged in a courtyard outside the church.

Police said officers "neutralised" both attackers an operation near Rouen, Normandy, on Tuesday morning and a terror investigation has been launched.

"At one point, the two assailants came out of the church and that's when they were killed by the BRI elite force," Brandet told France Info radio, referring to the elite French police unit.

Prime Minister Manuel Valls called the attack "barbaric" on Twitter and said it was a blow to the whole of France and all Catholics.

"Horror. Everything is being done to trigger a war of religions," former conservative PM Jean-Pierre Raffarin tweeted.

It was only 12 days ago that 84 people were killed in Nice when a terrorist plowed his truck through a crowded street during Bastille Day.

Crisis Averted: Philadelphia Removed Mississippi Flag Ahead of DNC. I'm Sure you Can Guess Why

Attendees of the Democratic National Convention were spared being triggered by the collection of state flags that dot Philadelphia’s broad street. Apparently, some progressives took umbrage over the Mississippi flag being displayed on the street due to its confederate emblem prior to the start of the convention.

Fox5 reported that police arrived and told the crowd of 50 or so demonstrators that they couldn’t climb the lamppost to remove the flag, the crowd then heckled the officers—telling them to think for themselves. Funny since that’s not what police officers do—they ensure that people are obeying the law.

But fear not, my delicate social justice warriors—the city will remove the flags. So, no more crying; no more trigger warnings—and there’s no need to run to a safe space to shield yourself from an inanimate piece of cloth representing the flag of Mississippi residents and fellow Americans. The enemy is now gone.

Sanders Is Going To Do Everything He Can To Ensure A Unified Democratic Government Come November

Sen. Bernie Sanders shook the Wells Fargo Center to its core with his address at the Democratic National Convention. It took him a few minutes for the die-hard Bernie supporters and fellow attendees to calm down to allow him to deliver his remarks.

He thanked his supporters; the 8 million people who gave an average of $27 in individual contributions to his campaign; the 13 million who voted for the “political revolution; and the 1,800+ delegates who were attending the convention. He said that he was very much looking forward to the roll call vote Tuesday night.

Sanders then acknowledged the elephant in the room, which is that he lost to Clinton. He said that he knows people are disappointed, but added, “I think it’s fair to say that no one is more disappointed than I am.” With that said, he said that he hopes his followers take enormous pride in the historical accomplishments that had achieved. He said that they started a revolution to transform America. The struggle for socioeconomic equality continues after this convention, and he looks forward to being part of that struggle.

The disheveled Democratic socialist said that this election is not, and has never been, about Clinton, Trump, or himself. This election is not political gossip, the polls, campaign strategy, or all of the things the media spends so much time discussing, which drew immense applause.

This election is about, and must be about, the needs of the American people and the future we create for our children and our grandchildren; ending the 40-year decline of our middle class; the 47 million men, women, and children live in poverty; changing course so that this generation doesn’t end up with a lower standard of living than their parents; and ending the gross level of wealth inequality we have today–the latter of which Sanders described as immoral. He also said that it’s not acceptable, or sustainable, that the top one percent owns as much wealth as the bottom 90 percent.

Yet, it wasn’t all doom and gloom. He added that progress has been made on a variety of issues but much more progress needs to be done. This election is about which candidate understands the real problems and will offer real solutions, according to Sanders. It’s not about bombast; fear mongering, and divisiveness–a swipe at Trump.

He declared that based on her ideas, Hillary Clinton must become the next president of the United States. Why? Because she understands that the minimum wage must be raised to a living wage. She has justices who will overturn Citizens United and protect a woman’s reproductive health choices.

Sanders invoked the importance of the Supreme Court during this portion of his address, telling those on the fence that one only has to think about the justices Donald Trump would nominate should he win in November to get them out to the voting booths. That was mixed in with slamming Trump over the minimum wage and offering huge tax breaks to people who don’t need them (aka the job creating and investing class). In a bit of hyperbole, Sanders said that Citizens United was one of the worst decisions made by the Supreme Court. I still think Dred Scott takes the cake in that category. A ruling defining free speech is nowhere near as bad as one that lurched the nation closer to civil war.

The Vermont senator also bashed Trump on wanting to cut Medicaid to low-income Americans, along with repealing Obamacare that only shows the GOP’s contempt for working Americans. Clinton, the darling of Wall Street, would add a public option for Americans to choose from in a health care exchange. We also need to pass criminal justice and comprehensive immigration reform.

In all, because Clinton believes all of these things, Sanders promised to do everything he can to ensure that come January 2017 we have a Democratic president, Senate, and House to enact portions of the party’s platform, which is decidedly more left wing. And now the games begin.

DNC Monday: FLOTUS Steals the Show, Then Rumpled Socialist Basks in Adulation

PHILADELPHIA  --  A few thoughts on tonight's primetime DNC program:

(1) Al Franken and Sarah Silverman were painfully bad, flailing as they tried to "stretch" ahead of an underwhelming performance by Paul Simon.  These people are comedians by trade?

(2) Anastasia Somoza and Cheryl Lankford offered impactful testimonies against Donald Trump. The former is a disability rights activist, who appeared immediately after a short video presentation depicting Republicans and conservative commentators laying into Trump for mocking a disabled reporter.  The latter is an Iraq War widow who was swindled out of thousands of dollars at Trump University.  Her affecting story was showcased heading into the peak of primetime, not accidentally. Her story, and stories like it, will be employed relentlessly in Democratic attack ads through November.

(3) Sen. Cory Booker was shouty and unfocused. He started off talking about how we must all love and support each other, pivoted into conventional attacks against Donald Trump, then closed with a stirring historical ode to America -- which finally pulled some energy out of the largely lethargic crowd.

(4) First Lady Michelle Obama gave by far the best address of the night. It was as well-crafted and well-received as any speech delivered at either party's gathering thus far. She electrified the room, earning loud and sustained applause. Someone on Twitter joked that Mrs. Obama could probably have snatched the nomination away from Hillary Clinton tonight, if only she'd asked for it. Instead, she issued a powerful case against Donald Trump without ever naming him. She took the high road, using clear subtext to slice into the GOP nominee. She also made an urgent call for party unity, indirectly repudiating the "Bernie or Bust" crowd by praising Hillary's approach and attitude after losing a tough primary fight.   Neither message was delivered with a two-by-four, but rather a dagger and a smile.  Setting aside political differences and some galling hypocrisy, this was an A-plus political performance.

(5) Sen. Elizabeth Warren's speech was a letdown, energy-wise.  She lit into Donald Trump and the Republican Congress in a typically shrill and partisan manner, but the audience -- perhaps still dazzled by the First Lady -- didn't eat it up. The text itself was uninspiring and her delivery was flat. A dull note from an unlikable radical.

(6) Sen. Bernie Sanders had his moment, soaking in a five-minute standing ovation from a packed house. He reveled in the adulation, boasted about his campaign, and thanked his supporters. When the Vermont Senator finally got around to making the case for Hillary, he was met mostly by cheers, with audible boos mixed in. The DNC leak's revelations are still raw here, after all; plus, Mrs. Clinton is the human embodiment of the rigged, privileged, establishment system Sanders has bashed throughout this cycle. A number of his delegates were in tears. He went on to outline his reckless, harmful, unaffordable agenda, assuring wary supporters that Hillary is more friend than foe in achieving his desired Statist ends. He invoked "the revolution," and insisted that his insurgent campaign only marked the beginning of transforming America into a full-blown, Left-wing welfare state -- bragging that the party's new platform is the most extreme document they've ever produced. The soul of the Democratic Party is now firmly with Barack Obama, Liz Warren, and Bernie Sanders. Not the Clintons.  

Two final thoughts: First, I may be wrong, and may be proven so very soon, but I suspect that the divisions in this building will be less vociferous and disruptive over the remainder of the week. The visceral anger and frustration has been vented, and Bernie made an impassioned case for (most of) his most ardent backers to back off moving forward.  Second, despite their profound wrongness on almost everything, Democrats nailed their stagecraft.  They exploited the key 9:30 to 11pm hours to drive home core messages, building toward the big event (Bernie's speech, in tonight's case).  The place was packed and loud for the televised pageant's crucial final hour.  The RNC unforgivably squandered the 10pm hour twice last week.  Imagine how much bigger Trump's polling bounce might have been if his campaign had designed a competent program.  Compare and contrast:

Michelle Obama Reminded All Of Us How She And Barack Won The Presidency

In Philadelphia, we were reminded how the Obamas won the presidency–twice. And we’re reminded why people called Michelle the closer. Love her or hate her, Mrs. Obama delivered a rousing speech at the Democratic National Convention that doled out not so thinly veiled attacks against Donald Trump and some intransigent factions of the party that are still supporting Sanders.

Obama said that it’s not really about political parties this year, but who will have the power to shape the futures of our children for the next four or eight years of their lives.

She said, of course, that in this election, there is only one person who I trust, and who is qualified: Hillary Clinton.

In a dig towards the Sanders crowd, she said that when her husband defeated Clinton in the 2008 primaries, Clinton was not angry or disillusioned. She didn’t pack up and go home because she knew there was too much at stake. There were moments when Clinton could’ve left the administration. The workload, the media criticisms of her looks, or how she laughs were intense and constant, but Obama noted that Clinton doesn’t buckle under pressure. She has never quit on anything in her life.

Obama said that she wants someone who can persevere, like Clinton, and will take this job seriously, who doesn’t think that all of this can be boiled down to 140 characters. When you have the nuclear codes at your fingertips, you can’t have a thin skin, and you need to be measured and well informed. I’m going to let you guess whom she’s referring to with that line.

Michelle added that she wanted a president with a record of service, who will fight to give everyone a chance at building a better life, and who thinks that everyone in this country matters. Obama said that she knows that’s the kind of president Hillary Clinton will be, which is why she’s with her. She added how Clinton knows that it’s about leaving something better for your kids.

Additionally, Obama mentioned how Clinton’s run for president has shown her daughters, and many others, that it’s possible for a woman to be elected president. Touching upon similar remarks she gave at the commencement ceremony at the City University of New York, the First Lady added that should Hillary become president, she would break a glass ceiling which is indicative of the American Dream—of people fighting for their rights and carving out better futures for their children that drove America forward. It’s that drive that led to Mrs. Obama addressing the DNC tonight–and waking up in the residence of the most powerful political figure in the world that was built by slaves, that was never envisioned originally to be occupied by a black man.

She closed her remarks by saying that Democrats need to pour every last ounce of energy to elect Hillary, so let’s get to work.

Missing Topic From DNC Day One: ISIS

Over 60 speeches were made Monday night at the Democratic National Convention, yet one key topic was MIA: the rise of ISIS.

The Republican National Committee pointed out the unforgivable omission on Twitter.

With the devastating amount of terror attacks authored by ISIS in recent months, you would think the Democrats would at least address it and how they plan to confront and combat the terror cell.  

Americans will be voting for our commander in chief in November - you better believe national security will be on their minds.

The Ironic Line in Elizabeth Warren’s Speech

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), one of America’s most beloved progressives, addressed the Democratic National Convention on Monday night, in what turned out to be an awkward evening of pro-Bernie Sanders supporters jeering at speaker after speaker. An hour or so before Warren took the stage, comedian Sarah Silverman and Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) got booed off the stage for chiding the disruptive attendees. “To the Bernie or Bust people, you’re being ridiculous,” Silverman said.

First Lady Michelle Obama offered temporary relief by offering a positive speech about how far America has come in providing the opportunities for African Americans and women to run for president. Her remarks were met with limited boos.

They returned when Warren stepped up to the podium.

Of course, the crowd was totally with her when she railed on GOP nominee Donald Trump. “What kind of a man” cheats students, cheats investors, etc. she asked.

She had an answer: “A man who must never be president of the United States.”

She lost the audience when she backed up that remark by noting “Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine are going to make it happen." Some of her former fans even shouted "We trusted you!"

Warren also offered what she says is a clear contrast between Democrats and Republicans on key issues. For instance, "while Democrats proposed raising minimum wage, Republicans said no." 

“This November, the American people are coming for you,” she told the GOP.

That’s when she offered a bit of irony.

“There is a huge difference between people fighting for a level playing field and the people fighting to keep the system rigged,” she said.

If Warren wants to talk about rigged systems, she should comb through the new Wikileaks emails exposing the DNC’s bias against the Sanders campaign. The correspondence between DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz and her staff proves that there was open hostility to Sanders, suggesting no one was going to stop them from making sure Hillary Clinton is the Democratic nominee. 

Of course, that wasn't the only ironic line in Warren's speech.

FLOP: Pro-Sanders Sarah Silverman Rips Bernie Supporters, 'You're Being Ridiculous'

So, prior to Paul Simon being introduced to sing Bridge Over Troubled Water, Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) and comedian Sarah Silverman did a comedy bit that was contrived, too long, too awkward, and kept the deep divisions between the Bernie and Clinton camps fresh.

Silverman delivered a brief but predictable address about how she’s proud that Hillary Clinton will take on Citizens United decision on campaign finance if elected president. She then said that she would happily vote for Clinton come November. She also tried to get the convention to come together with chants of unity. That was torpedoed when she tore into her fellow Bernie-ites, calling them ridiculous for refusing to get behind Hillary.

Even CNN’s Van Jones said that was an awkward moment, which should be filed in the “AwkwardDotCom file.” 

DNC Saves Its Loudest Applause for Daughter of Illegal Immigrant

Karla Ortiz, the 11-year-old daughter of an illegal immigrant, was offered the podium at the Democratic National Convention Monday night. She relayed how when she was younger she would come home and wonder why her parents were always crying. She didn't understand it was because they feared deportation. Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and her policies, Karla suggested, would help relieve her and her parents’ anxieties.

"She wants me to have the worries of an 11 year-old, not the weight of the world on my shoulders,” she said.

She got a loud, warm applause for her remarks. Some in the audience were even crying.

You may remember Karla from a Hillary Clinton ad earlier this year called "Brave." In the video, she is seen telling the Democratic candidate how scared she was that her parents were going to be deported, which prompts Clinton to beckon her over and asks her to be brave and let her do the worrying.

Karla’s mom Francisca also addressed the crowd and likewise got arena wide applause.

Some viewers, however, were not exactly thrilled.

Following Ortiz’s remarks, the DNC aired an aired called “Trump: In His Own Words,” highlighting some of the Republican nominee’s most controversial remarks about illegal immigrants. 

'60 Minutes' Edits Out Hillary’s Response to the DNC Email Scandal

Hillary Clinton’s response to the DNC email leak didn’t make it to air on 60 Minutes this Sunday.

The unaired clip, posted on the CBS News website, shows repeated denials by Clinton that she knew anything about the DNC being biased in her favor—one of the main takeaways from the released emails. By the same token, however, she also refused to say that it would be “improper” for the DNC to favor one candidate over another, saying that she did not know enough about it to comment.

Interviewer Scott Pelley first asked about the controversial plan to question Bernie Sanders' religion, as expressed in an email by DNC CFO Brad Marshall. Though Hillary Clinton pleaded ignorance, she was quick to disavow the comment.

“I didn’t know anything about it, and I haven’t read any of those [emails], but I am adamantly opposed to anyone bringing religion into our political process,” she stated.

Pelley continued to press her on the larger point of how the DNC seemed to have its “thumb on the scale” for Clinton.

“Again, I don’t know anything about these emails—I haven’t followed it—but I’m very proud of the campaign that I ran,” Clinton said.

She gave a similar response when asked whether, in her view, it would have been “improper” for the DNC to favor one candidate over another.

“Again, I don’t have any information about this, so I can’t answer specifically,” she said. “I can’t speak to what people who were not working for me, who were saying whatever they were saying—I can’t speak to that, I can only speak to my campaign.”

 Vice presidential candidate Tim Kaine stepped in to defend Clinton from the scandal.

 “You’re not going to find anybody at the DNC or the RNC or any political organization who is a complete agnostic, who doesn’t have an opinion about a candidate,” he said. “But there’s a difference between having an opinion about somebody… and trying to alter the outcome.”

The 60 Minutes appearance was Clinton and Kaine’s first joint interview and Clinton’s first interview since news broke of the leaked DNC emails. Some have expressed disapproval that Hillary’s response to the scandal was left out of the 60 Minutes broadcast.  

Michael Warren of The Weekly Standard called the editing decision "odd." 

"Why did Clinton's suspect answers to the biggest political story of the moment not make it into CBS's TV broadcast?" he asked.

Journalist Stephen Hayes criticized the decision along similar lines: “The biggest news of the interview gets left on the cutting room floor? Really?” he tweeted.

In response to criticism, a spokesman told The Weekly Standard: "The material in question was broadcast on THE CBS EVENING NEWS before 60 MINUTES last night; then on 60MinutesOvertime.com; CBSN, and CBS Radio," wrote the spokesman. 

"It's out there, far and wide."

The Surge Continues: Almost 7,000 Syrian Refugees Have Entered U.S. Since October

After a lull in refugee arrivals this month, the State Department has admitted nearly 1,700, and is closing in on its goal. 

The U.S. has admitted 6,909 Syrian refugees since October, and has just over two months left to reach President Obama's promise of 10,000 by September 30. 

This total was not reached by July's numbers alone, however. The Refugee Processing Center made edits to June's totals Monday, bumping the numbers from 2,381 to 2,406.

The refugee admission process accelerated in May and set records in June, but until July 11, only 43 had been admitted this month. Since then the refugees came in at over 150 a day.

Over half of the refugees are under 21 years of age, and over half are male. 30 percent are over the age of 30, yet men between the ages of 21 and 30 continue to be noticeably absent from the immigrant population. 

The number of men between the ages of 31 and 40 is greater than the 21-30 category and also exceeds the 14-20 age group. Men in the 31-40 group are also joined by nearly equal numbers of women, a condition not found in any of the other age categories. 

Nearly 92 percent of the refugees identified themselves as Arabs and seven percent were listed as Kurds.  Only 0.51 percent of the current fiscal year population is not Muslim.

A New Study Predicts Zika Will Be A Bigger Beast Than Anyone Thought

The Zika virus could affect up to 2 million women in Latin America and the Caribbean, according to a new study. The projection comes a few weeks after Senate Democrats blocked funding intended to combat the disease.

The study was done by Nature Microbiology and published Monday. The mosquito-transmitted disease can cause microcephaly and other severe birth defects in babies born to women with Zika, scientists found last fall. Since then, Latin American countries have seen a massive increase in Zika-infected pregnant women.

“The model also predicts that Brazil will have three times more infections than any other affected country, due to its size and suitability for transmission,” Reuters reported.

More than 1,600 cases of microcephaly have been confirmed in Brazilian babies, but the new study predicted that is, unfortunately, just the beginning. As many as 2.06 million women of childbearing age and 117.1 million people could contract Zika in the next two or three years, resulting in “tens of thousands” of babies with birth defects.

Meanwhile, the United States is fighting a battle within its borders as the number of cases of Zika rise: up to 1,306 cases as of mid-July, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “None of those has been the result of local spread by mosquitoes,” CNN reported.

American mosquitos may not be safe from Zika for very long: the Florida Department of Health announced on July 21 that it was investigating the possibility of a non-travel-related case in the state (meaning the mosquito with the virus came from Florida itself). Gov. Rick Scott declared a public health emergency in February, and the number of pregnant women with Zika in the state is up to 43.

What is being done to combat this grave health crisis? Thanks to the Senate Democrats, not much. As Townhall reported in June, the Senate failed to pass a $1.1 billion bill before it went on summer recess because it included restrictions for birth control.

Planned Parenthood amazingly did not understand how the funding could save lives, arguing, according to Politico, that "a vote against this bill will be seen as a vote for women’s health care."

Texas Sen. John Cornyn, the Republican whip, argued that responsibility for the lack of action lies squarely on the Democrats’ shoulders.

“The first TV picture of an American woman bearing a child with a birth defect caused by this virus will be on [Democrats],”Cornyn told Politico. “I wouldn’t want to be in their position.”

Despite the lack of Congressional funding, President Obama did say on July 20 that the CDC would send more than $5.6 million to Florida to help with the state’s recent outbreak.

Smart Power: Obama Administration Admits Iran is Harboring top Al Qaeda Leaders

Iran aiding international terrorist groups -- including Al Qaeda -- is literally the opposite of new news. This is what they do. The regime in Tehran has been designated by the US government as the world's top state sponsor of terror for years, a dubious distinction that has not changed since the dangerous nuclear deal was agreed to last year. The State Department has affirmed that Iran's support for terrorism is "undiminished," and President Obama has admitted that a portion of the many billions in sanctions relief now flowing to Iran will be redirected to terrorists. He's already been proven correct. About his own deal.  Which may explain why he has lightly chided the regime for flouting "the spirit" of the deal. They sure are:

Just so we're crystal clear, the Obama administration has slapped sanctions on high-ranking Al Qaeda officials being harbored by the the rogue, criminal, radical, illegitimate regime upon whom the Obama administration has just bestowed an internationally-blessed nuclear program.  Consider the implications of that sentence.  As you mull that over, don't forget the secret provision of the deal that was just uncovered this week.  Also, because it's been manifestly untrue for quite some time, can we finally bury the falsehood that radical Shiites and radical Sunnis can't or don't team up for evil?  The Weekly Standard's Stephen Hayes sought comment from the White House about this development, and he received this truly surreal response:

This is not the first time the Obama administration has targeted the Iran-al Qaeda relationship. The Treasury and State Departments publicly accused the Iranian regime of allowing al Qaeda to operate inside Iran at least 10 times between July 2011 and August 2014. Testifying before Congress in February 2012, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper described the relationship as a "marriage of convenience." There is considerably more evidence of Iran's support for al Qaeda in the collection of documents captured during the raid of Osama bin Laden's compound on Abbottabad, Pakistan, in 2011. Senior U.S. intelligence officials have told The Weekly Standard that the document collection includes letters describing the nature of the relationship between Iran and al Qaeda and specific ways in which Iran has aided al Qaeda's network and operations. The Weekly Standard contacted the Obama administration official who last week dismissed Iran-al Qaeda cooperation to see if the new designations changed his view that claims of Iranian support for al Qaeda are "baseless conspiracy theories." He replied: "Al Qaeda has long used Iran as a transit and facilitation point between South Asia and the Middle East, sometimes with the knowledge of some Iranian authorities. At the same time, the Iranian government has imprisoned some al Qaeda operatives, and we believe today's action provides another opportunity for Iran to take action against al Qaeda."

"Another opportunity for Iran."  Unbelievable. Here's Hayes, flabbergasted:

Think about that for a moment. The Obama administration accuses Iran of harboring senior al Qaeda operatives and sanctions those operatives in an effort to prevent them from hurting America and its interests. But rather than scold Iran for continuing to provide safe haven to terrorists devoted to killing Americans, the administration spins the move as an "opportunity" for Iran. An opportunity? Why would the Iranian regime need the U.S. government to provide an "opportunity" to take action against the very terrorists it has been supporting for more than a decade? This is illogical, insulting, and dangerous. But it is consistent with the kind of irresponsible whitewashing of the radical regime that has become a trademark of the Obama administration's approach to Iran. The Obama administration provided Iran with billions of dollars through the nuclear deal despite having evidence in its possession that the country was providing safe haven to senior al Qaeda terrorists and despite acknowledging, publicly, that some of those funds would be used for terror. The administration kept secret crucial details of the agreement from Congress, concessions that the Iranians are now citing, convincingly, as evidence that they fleeced the United States and its partners.

Parting thought: Would this  qualify as a violation of more than just "the spirit" of the agreement?

Top Iranian leaders have instructed the country’s atomic energy organization to prepare for the reopening of multiple nuclear sites that had been shuttered as part of last summer’s nuclear agreement. Ali Larijani, the leader of Iran’s parliament, requested this week that the Iranian Atomic Energy Organization prepare a plan to reopen nuclear enrichment facilitates that had been shutdown as part of the effort to limit Tehran’s research into nuclear weapons technology, according to comments carried in Iran’s state-controlled media. Iranian leaders are displeased with a recent United Nations report chastising the Islamic Republic for violating international agreements prohibiting the country’s work on ballistic missiles. The U.N. described these repeated test launches as not consistent with international accords. Iranian leaders dismissed the report as “biased.”

They're upset that the international community has noticed their numerous banned missile tests, even as key stakeholders avert their eyes from other Iranian acts of treachery.  And lest you forget, Hillary Clinton helped launch the nuclear talks with Tehran and endorsed the "strong" resulting deal. Smart power.

UPDATE - More anti-American provocation:

Awful: Man Stabs Over 40 People, Kills At Least 15 Near Tokyo

Details are scarce, but there appears to have been a horrific mass attack in Tokyo, Japan, where a 20-year-old man wielding a knife has stabbed over 40 people at a disabled persons facility, killing at least 15.

The Washington Post added that such attacks are rare in Japan, though the suspect has turned himself into authorities. The facility was located in Sagamihara, which is west of the capital.

We’ll keep you updated.

DNC Starts Up, But Seems To Be Missing Something

The Democratic National Convention is underway, but it looks like it started off without a very important song. Any event especially a presidential party convention should start off with the national anthem, but it seems that the Democrats have other priorities.

They had no problem starting off with a church choir singing "Battle Hymn of The Republic" designed to pander to minorities voters. 

Next there was a Boyz II Men performance.

It would take them quite some time to eventually get around to the national anthem, but does it really surprise anyone that it took the Democrats this long.