Schwarzenegger Under Investigation; Trump Denies; Bill Clinton Helps

Sunday, 29 May 2011 02:23 PM

By Special From Newsmax's Most Informed Sources

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Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):
1. Bill Clinton to Rep. Ryan: Give Me a Call
2. Trump Denies New Claim on Obama's Birth Certificate
3. Lawsuit Aims to End Tax-Funded Political Campaigns
4. Ahmadinejad: Europe Is Stealing Iran's Rain
5. Electoral College Under Attack in California
6. Venezuela Oil Chief Tells U.S.: 'Go to Hell'
7. We Heard: Schwarzenegger, Unwanted Babies
 

1. Bill Clinton to Rep. Ryan: Give Me a Call

Former President Bill Clinton offered a helping hand to Republican Rep. Paul Ryan a day after a GOP election loss that Democrats are attributing to opposition to Ryan's Medicare reform plan.

The Democratic candidate prevailed in Tuesday's special election in New York to fill a House seat in a solidly Republican district.

On Wednesday, Clinton met up with Ryan, chairman of the House Budget Committee, backstage at a forum on the national debt held by the New York-based Peter G. Peterson Foundation, ABC News reported.

"I told them before you got here, I said I'm glad we won this race in New York," Clinton told Ryan.

But he added, "I hope Democrats don't use this as an excuse to do nothing."

Ryan responded, "My guess is it's going to sink into paralysis. I mean, we knew we were putting ourselves out there. You gotta start this. You gotta get this thing moving."

Clinton told Ryan that if he wants to talk about Medicare reform and deficit reduction, "Give me a call." Ryan said he would.

In his speech at the forum, Clinton said the Democratic victory in New York "was about Medicare," referring to Ryan's proposal, passed by the House this year, to transform Medicare for those under age 55.

"You shouldn't draw the conclusion that the New York race means that nobody can do anything to solve the Medicare crisis. I just don't agree with that. I think you should draw the conclusion that the people made a judgment that this proposal is not the right one.

"I agree with that, but I'm afraid that the Democrats will draw the conclusion that because Congressman Ryan's proposal, I think, is not the best one, that we shouldn't do anything and I completely disagree with that."

Ryan told ABC News, "The Democrats are going to run these attack ads at us regardless."

Also on Wednesday, Ryan appeared on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" and called Democrats' attempts to "distort" his plan "Mediscare."

Editor's Note:



2. Trump Denies New Claim on Obama's Birth Certificate

When President Barack Obama finally released his birth certificate a month ago, Donald Trump's computer expert told his employer it was not legitimate, according to an author who has written a book on the birth certificate issue.

The claim comes from Jerome Corsi, author of "Where's the Birth Certificate? The Case That Barack Obama Is Not Eligible to Be President."

Corsi said that during a phone call last week, the billionaire said his own computer expert assessed the certificate following the April 27 release and found it to be a computer-generated artifact.

But Trump dismissed the assertion in a press statement.

"I am proud of the fact that I was able to get President Obama to release his birth certificate," Trump said.

"President Clinton couldn't do it, Senator McCain couldn't do it — no one else could do it! Frankly, many people were surprised that it took so long for this to happen. Is his birth certificate legitimate? I hope it is for the good of the country, but that's for experts to determine — not me.

"I have not read the book written by Jerry Corsi nor did we discuss whether or not the birth certificate was computer-generated or in any way fabricated. I merely asked him how his book was doing and wished him good luck."

Editor's Note:



3. Lawsuit Aims to End Tax-Funded Political Campaigns

The Supreme Court is expected to hand down a ruling that could have a serious impact on the states' ability to use taxpayer funds to support political campaigns.

In 1998, Arizona voters approved the Clean Elections Act in an effort to fight political corruption. With the measure, candidates who choose to participate and collect a specific number of donations are eligible to receive public funds.

If they are outspent by opponents who choose not to participate, the participating candidates receive matching funds — taxpayer money to equalize spending by the candidates.

The Goldwater Institute filed a legal challenge to the bill in August 2008. It maintains that in effect, the state government is using public money to dilute the political speech of one group and promote the political speech of another.

The Center for Competitive Politics (CCP) filed a brief supporting the lawsuit. The CCP asserts in its newsletter that offering "matching funds" for political opponents "creates a state intrusion into the political process that chills the speech of citizen-funded campaigns and independent groups."

The CCP points to abuses spurred by the matching funds provision, including tax-funded candidates running "fake campaigns" and spending their allotments on alcohol and parties.

A federal judge struck down the matching funds provision in January 2010, but the U.S. Court of Appeals reversed that decision in April 2010, sending it to the Supreme Court.

The high court struck down a similar provision in 2008, leading observers to believe it will strike down the Arizona provision as well.

"The Justices of the Supreme Court appeared to be appropriately skeptical of the argument that the state can decide to give funding advantages to favored candidates who participate in the 'clean elections' program but not others," said CCP President Sean Parnell.

The court heard oral arguments in the case, McComish v. Bennett, on March 28.

The CCP reports: "It is very likely that Arizona's matching funds trigger will be struck down as unconstitutional. This decision may not only strike a blow to those who attempt to limit political speech in Arizona, but also to states around the country with similar unconstitutional programs."

Editor's Note:



4. Ahmadinejad: Europe Is Stealing Iran's Rain

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad charged that European countries are using high-tech equipment to deprive his drought-plagued nation of much-needed rain.

"Western countries have designed plans to cause drought in certain areas of the world, including Iran," Ahmadinejad said in a recent speech inaugurating a dam in the city of Arak.

"According to reports on climate, whose accuracy has been verified, European countries are using special equipment to force clouds to dump" their rain on Europe.

Ahmadinejad also referred to an article by an unnamed "Western politician" that he said predicted "droughts in some regions spanning from Turkey and Iran to east of Asia" for the next 30 years, The Telegraph reported.

Those regions "include countries whose culture and civilization frighten the West," he added.

Moments after Ahmadinejad spoke, it began to rain.

The Telegraph noted, "Iranian leaders claim on a daily basis that Western countries, led by arch-foe United States, devise 'plots' to undermine the Islamic Republic and to impede its economic and scientific development."

Editor's Note:



5. Electoral College Under Attack in California

The California Assembly has passed a bill that would award all the state's Electoral College votes in a presidential election to the candidate who wins the popular vote nationwide rather than to the state's popular-vote winner.

The idea is to avoid elections in which the popular-vote winner loses the race because the rival candidate has more electoral votes, as occurred in 2000 when Al Gore won the popular vote but lost to George W. Bush.

The bill "will help to put California on a more balanced playing field with other states, so that we can attract national attention to issues that are unique to our state," state Sen. Mimi Walters told California's Capitol Weekly.

"California is too large and our issues are too important to be ignored at the expense of those in battleground states."

Presidential candidates regard California as a solidly blue state, with support for the Democratic candidate a foregone conclusion, and therefore curtail their campaigning there. The bill would make California's contribution to the overall popular vote significant in the national outcome.

A number of other states have joined a compact to authorize the change. The measure needs a total of 270 electoral votes by all the states to become law. Thus far, states with a total of 77 electoral votes have decided to join the compact, and many states are waiting for the outcome in California, with its 55 electoral votes.

The California bill now faces the state Senate. According to Capitol Weekly, California Gov. Jerry Brown has not taken a position on the measure.

Editor's Note:



6. Venezuela Oil Chief Tells U.S.: 'Go to Hell'

The head of Venezuela's state oil company said the United States can "go to hell" after it imposed economic sanctions on the firm for its ties to Iran.

"The imperialists can go to hell. Their sanctions mean nothing to us," Rafael Ramirez, head of Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) and the country's energy and petroleum minister, said Wednesday.

"No one is going to impose this kind of action against us. We do what best serves the people of Venezuela and what best serves the interests of the Venezuelan state."

The United States this past week imposed sanctions on PDVSA and six other companies it accused of supplying gasoline and petroleum products to Iran, AFP reported.

By applying pressure on Iran's energy sector, the United States hopes to slow its nuclear enrichment program, allegedly aimed at developing nuclear weapons.

Venezuela had earlier expressed its "utmost rejection" of the "hostile" American sanctions.

Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro said he would determine the "appropriate reprisal" to the American move.

Venezuela exports about 1 million barrels of oil a day to the United States.

Editor's Note:



7. We Heard…

THAT California's attorney general will reportedly launch a criminal inquiry into allegations that Arnold Schwarzenegger misused taxpayer funds to hide clandestine liaisons with women during his tenure as governor.

According to RadarOnline, a veteran hotel security officer claims he witnessed Schwarzenegger using California Highway Patrol officers and vehicles to sneak scantily-clad women in and out of his suite at the Sacramento Hyatt Regency.

The former governor also faces troubles on the financial front. Schwarzenegger and his wife Maria Shriver appear headed for divorce following revelations that Arnold fathered a child with his housekeeper, and the New York Post reported that Shriver "could walk away with way more than the $100 million slice of Tiger Woods' fortune that the golf great's ex-wife Elin Nordegren took home in their split last year."

THAT New York officials are proposing a new addition to the state's high school curriculum: lessons on how to properly dispose of an unwanted baby.

The officials want students to be taught in public schools about "safe haven laws" — parents do not face charges if they bring a newborn to a hospital, police station or fire station.

Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes, State Sen. Eric Adams and State Assemblyman Hakim Jeffries are proposing the legislation requiring the change to the public high school health curriculum, NBC News reported.

The move comes after two young mothers recently abandoned newborns in New York City. One was tossed eight floors down a Brooklyn housing project trash chute, but survived. The other was found in the trash at a Queens hospital and did not survive.

Both mothers have been arrested.

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