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Editor Daily Rundown: America Braces For Severe Gas Pains

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AMERICA BRACES FOR SEVERE GAS PAINS… CBS NEWS: U.S. gas prices could soon top $5 a gallon, analysts say

Motorists hoping for some relief at the pump should think again.

Gas prices nationally could reach $5 a gallon on average by as early as June 17, according to Patrick De Haan, an analyst for GasBuddy, which tracks fuel costs across the nation. That’s up from the current national average of $4.62 a gallon, already a record high, according to AAA.

Americans are paying record-high prices for gasoline as the summer travel season arrives — an issue that’s weighing on consumers as they make their vacation plans more than rising COVID-19 rates, according to a new survey from Morning Consult. At a handful of stations in California, fuel now tops the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour.

 

INFLATION TEAM MEETING… Biden Hosts Meeting With Federal Reserve Chair Amid Soaring Inflation

President Joe Biden met Tuesday with Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell at the White House as inflation continues to soar.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen also attended the meeting, according to a pool report. The White House noted ahead of time that the president and Powell would discuss “the state of the American and global economy” as well as “addressing inflation,” which was dubbed Biden’s “top economic priority,” NBC News reported.

“My plan to address inflation starts with the simple proposition: Respect the Fed, respect the Fed’s independence, which I have done and will continue to do,” Biden told reporters at the top of the meeting Tuesday.

 

WHITE HOUSE SUDDENLY CARES ABOUT INFLATION? … WAPO: White House scrambles on inflation after Biden complains to aides

The White House launched a new push Tuesday to contain the political damage caused by inflation after President Biden complained for weeks to aides that his administration was not doing enough to publicly explain the fastest price increases in roughly four decades.

Aiming to demonstrate to the public that it is responding to its concerns, Biden met with Federal Reserve Chair Jerome H. Powell in the Oval Office, wrote an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal about inflation and sent top aides across major networks to push the administration’s economic message.

The flurry of activity comes after Biden has privately grumbled to top White House officials over the administration’s handling of inflation, expressing frustration over the past several months that aides were not doing enough to confront the problem directly, two people familiar with the president’s comments said, speaking on the condition of anonymity to describe private conversations.

 

STEVE MOORE & EJ ANTONI: Biden’s plan to make inflation worse

People are demonstrably poor[er] now compared to January 2021 as their paychecks can’t keep pace with rising prices. For essentials like food, energy, transportation and housing the real inflation rate is well over 20 percent in the CPI numbers.

What is most demoralizing is the Biden inflation prescription laid out in the WSJ. […]

He also calls for higher taxes on the rich, on energy companies, and other businesses. How does this lower prices? If you tax the production of business goods and services you will get less of them – which means higher prices.

Finally, Biden wants more spending on green energy, more on infrastructure spending (we just passed a $1.1 trillion bill for public works), and on one million housing units. Now the government is going to be the nation’s largest landlord?

In other words, Biden is merely making yet another pitch for his multi-trillion dollar Build Back Better plan. It’s called doubling down on his failed progressive policies that lit the forest fire of inflation in the first place.

JOSH KRAUSHAAR: Fmr Obama adviser Steve Rattner, on @Morning_Joe today: “We’re all paying the price for having overstimulated the economy during the pandemic—putting too much money in people’s pockets, which created a lot of inflation. There’s no free lunch here & we’re all paying the price”

 

TREASURY SECRETARY COPS TO IT… JOHN SEXTON: Sec. Yellen: ‘I was wrong’ about inflation (VIDEO)

 

BIDEN WHITE HOUSE ALL OVER THE PLACE ON REGIME CHANGE STATEMENTS… TOM BEVAN: Biden on 3/26: “For God’s sake, this man [Putin] cannot remain in power.” … Biden today: “As much as I disagree with Mr. Putin, and find his actions an outrage, the U.S. will not try to bring about his ouster in Moscow.” (LINK TO NYT OP-ED)

 

FLASHBACK… YESTERDAY… NBC NOW SAYS BIDEN WAS ABSOLUTELY CALLING FOR REGIME CHANGE IN RUSSIA…

The issue came to a head when Biden ad-libbed during a speech in Poland that Russian President Vladimir Putin “cannot remain in power.” Within minutes, Biden’s aides tried to walk back his comments, saying he hadn’t called for Putin’s removal and that U.S. policy was unchanged. Biden was furious that his remarks were being seen as unreliable, arguing that he speaks genuinely and reminding his staff that he’s the one who is president.

 

MORE FROM ‘JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.’ IN NY TIMES: What America Will and Will Not Do in Ukraine

America’s goal is straightforward: We want to see a democratic, independent, sovereign and prosperous Ukraine with the means to deter and defend itself against further aggression. […]

We have moved quickly to send Ukraine a significant amount of weaponry and ammunition so it can fight on the battlefield and be in the strongest possible position at the negotiating table.

That’s why I’ve decided that we will provide the Ukrainians with more advanced rocket systems and munitions that will enable them to more precisely strike key targets on the battlefield in Ukraine. […]

We will continue providing Ukraine with advanced weaponry, including Javelin anti-tank missiles, Stinger antiaircraft missiles, powerful artillery and precision rocket systems, radars, unmanned aerial vehicles, Mi-17 helicopters and ammunition. We will also send billions more in financial assistance, as authorized by Congress. […] And we will help our European allies and others reduce their dependence on Russian fossil fuels, and speed our transition to a clean energy future. […]

Standing by Ukraine in its hour of need is not just the right thing to do. It is in our vital national interests to ensure a peaceful and stable Europe and to make it clear that might does not make right.

 

BIDEN UPS THE ANTE… SENDS MORE ADVANCED ROCKETS TO UKRAINE… WAPO: Biden confirms U.S. is sending advanced rocket systems to Ukraine

President Biden on Tuesday confirmed that his administration is sending medium-range advanced rocket systems to Ukraine, responding to a top request from Ukrainian officials who say the weapons are necessary to curb the advance of Russian forces in the east.

Biden said the more advanced rocket systems and munitions, which can pinpoint an enemy target nearly 50 miles away, will enable Ukraine “to more precisely strike key targets on the battlefield.”

His announcement triggered an angry response in Moscow on Wednesday. “We believe that the United States is deliberately and diligently ‘pouring fuel on the fire,’” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in a news briefing. “Such deliveries do not contribute to … the Ukrainian leadership’s willingness to resume peace talks.” […]

The United States is sending the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, or HIMARS, which will extend Ukraine’s reach in the ongoing artillery war with Russia, a senior administration official said Tuesday. The United States will not provide the longest-range munitions for the system to Ukraine, said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive military matters. The advanced weapons are part of a new $700 million package of military equipment.

 

MORE CONFLICTING REPORTS OUT OF UVALDE, TEXAS… NOW THE DOOR *WASN’T* PROPPED OPEN? …. @SOLLENBERGERRC: The Uvalde elementary school back door wasn’t propped open. “A law enforcement source familiar with the investigation said surveillance video and audio verifies the teacher removed the rock holding the door open and closed it. ‘She slammed it shut.’” (LINK TO SAN ANTONIO EXPRESS NEWS)

 

ANGER AT LOCAL POLICE CHIEF… Walls Are Closing In On Uvalde’s Police Chief As Resident Rage Explodes

Pete Arredondo, the school district police chief of Uvalde, Texas, has become the target of anger and blame for law enforcement’s delayed actions during a May 24 school shooting which left 19 children and two teachers dead.

Texas Department of Public Safety Director Steven McCraw said Arredondo, the commander at the scene, made the “wrong decision” to have officers wait outside the classroom rather than immediately breaching and taking out the gunman in a Friday press conference. […]

Uvalde residents expressed anger at Arredondo, who has served many of his 30 years in law enforcement officer in Uvalde, according to the Associated Press.

“You sign up to respond to those kinds of situations,” Juan Torres, a U.S. Army veteran who knew Arredondo from high school, told the AP. “If you are scared, then don’t be a police officer. Go flip burgers.”

“He dropped the ball maybe because he did not have enough experience. Who knows? People are very angry,” Maria Gonzalez, who used to drive Arredondo and her children to school together, told the AP.

 

ABC NEWS: BREAKING: The Uvalde PD and Uvalde Independent School District police force are no longer cooperating with the Texas Dept. of Public Safety’s investigation into Robb Elementary School shooting, multiple law enforcement sources tell @ABC News. (LINK)

 

ROBERT O’ROURKE FLIPS ON AR-15s AGAIN… FOX: Beto O’Rourke says AR-15 owners shouldn’t ‘be able to keep them’

Texas gubernatorial candidate Beto O’Rourke declared on the campaign trail that owners of semi-automatic rifles like the AR-15 shouldn’t “be able to keep them.”

O’Rourke, the Democratic nominee, said during two different town halls just days before the Uvalde, Texas, mass school shooting that AR-15s have no place in civilian life.

“I think we are fools to believe anything other than that these weapons of war will continued to be used with greater frequency against our fellow Americans,” O’Rourke told a group of veterans during a town hall meeting in Abilene on May 21.

“It’s why I’ve taken the position that I don’t think we should have AR-15s and AK-47s in civilian life,” he said. “They belong on a battlefield.”

 

DEMS IN DISARRAY OVER GUN GRABBING… HILL: Biden, Democrats out of sync in pushing assault weapons ban

President Biden and Vice President Harris are calling for bans on assault rifles and high-capacity magazines, but they’re out of step with members of their own party who don’t want to vote on those hot-button issues and instead want to focus on more modest reforms.

Activists would like to see Biden take executive action to curb gun violence, but the president said over the weekend that he can’t do much by himself, kicking the issue to congressional Democrats as he has other elements of his agenda.

Democratic negotiators in the Senate, however, aren’t talking about a ban on assault-style rifles, like the weapon that a gunman used to kill 21 people at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, or a ban on high-capacity magazines, like the 30-round magazines the shooter took to the school.

 

AFTER BIDEN CONDEMNS 9 MM BULLETS, DOOCY ASKS IF HE’S GOING TO PURSUE BANNING HANDGUNS… Doocy Asks WH Press Secretary If Admin Would Consider Handgun Ban (VIDEO)

Fox News White House correspondent Peter Doocy pressed White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre Tuesday on whether the administration will consider banning handguns.

“Canada is making it impossible to buy, sell, transfer or import handguns anywhere in that country. Would President Biden ever consider a similar restriction on handguns here?” Doocy asked.

“We’ll leave it up to other countries to set their policy on gun ownership,” Jean-Pierre said. “The president has made his position clear that the United States needs to act, as I just laid out. He supports a ban on sales of assault weapons and high-capacity magazines and expanded background checks to keep guns out of dangerous hands. He does not support a ban on the sale of all handguns.”

 

CANADA UPDATE…

 

TRUDOPE PUSHER… AMID OVERDOSE CRISIS, TRUDEAU LEGALIZES DEADLY DRUGS… WAPO: British Columbia to decriminalize small amounts of cocaine, heroin

TORONTO — The possession of small amounts of several illicit drugs, including cocaine and opioids such as fentanyl or heroin, will be temporarily decriminalized in British Columbia, the federal government said Tuesday, in what it cast as a “bold” step to “turn the tide” in the province’s overdose crisis.

Carolyn Bennett, Canada’s minister of mental health and addictions, said Ottawa had granted the provincial government’s request for an exemption from the federal Controlled Drugs and Substances Act for three years, starting Jan. 31, 2023.

As of that date, adults 18 and older in Canada’s westernmost province will be allowed to carry a cumulative total of up to 2.5 grams of some drugs for personal use without being arrested or charged, or having their drugs confiscated. The illicit drugs include opioids, cocaine, methamphetamine and MDMA, also known as ecstasy.

 

KEEAN BEXTE: In three days, Trudeau grounded the unvaxxed in perpetuity, banned handguns across the board, and is set to legalize hard drugs. This man is f*cking insane.

 

BIDEN ADMIN MOVES TO PRESERVE EXTRAORDINARY POWER TO CONTROL PUBLIC BEHAVIOR… REUTERS: U.S. asks court to reverse order lifting airplane mask mandate

WASHINGTON, May 31 (Reuters) – The U.S. Justice Department on Tuesday asked a federal appeals court to overturn a U.S. District Court judge’s April order that declared the government mandate requiring masks on airplanes, buses and in transit hubs unlawful.

Hours after the federal judge in Florida declared the mandate unlawful, the Biden administration said it would no longer enforce it.

The Justice Department told the appeals court that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) order issued in January 2021 was “within” the agency’s legal authority.

 

IT ONLY TOOK UNTIL JUNE 2022 FOR NYT COVID COLUMNIST TO ADMIT MASK MANDATES DON’T WORK… NYT: Why Masks Work, but Mandates Haven’t

The evidence suggests that broad mask mandates have not done much to reduce Covid caseloads over the past two years. […]

In U.S. cities where mask use has been more common, Covid has spread at a similar rate as in mask-resistant cities. Mask mandates in schools also seem to have done little to reduce the spread. Hong Kong, despite almost universal mask-wearing, recently endured one of the world’s worst Covid outbreaks. […]

[T]his approach is not sustainable for years on end. Masks hinder communication, fog glasses and can be uncomfortable. […]

As Jennifer Nuzzo, an epidemiologist at Brown University, told Vox: “Many of the people who are not wearing masks have already had Covid, so they’re like, ‘I’ve been vaccinated, I already had it — how much longer do you want me to do this for?’ And it’s kind of hard to say, ‘No, you absolutely must wear it.’”

 

HILLARY LAWYER WALKS FREE… JURY OF HILLARY DONORS REFUSES TO CONVICT… Durham Case: Jury Finds Michael Sussmann Not Guilty Of Lying To FBI

Former Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann was found not guilty of lying to the FBI by a federal jury on Tuesday.

In 2016, Sussmann presented the FBI with allegations claiming there was a secret communications channel between former President Donald Trump’s organization and a Russian bank. Special Counsel John Durham subsequently charged Sussmann last year with one count of lying to the FBI, and the prosecution argued during the trial that the case could be summed up as “a look, a leak and a lie.”

The federal jury began deliberations on Friday after hearing from an array of witnesses, including current FBI officials. In total, jury deliberations lasted six hours over the course of two days, according to CNN.

 

NY POST EDITORIAL BOARD: Jurors ignored evidence to acquit ex-Clinton lawyer of lying to the shameful FBI

Big surprise: A jury in that liberal bastion of Washington, DC, one that likely included actual donors to Hillary Clinton’s campaign, found her lawyer, Michael Sussmann, not guilty of lying to the FBI.

Sussmann had told FBI general counsel James A. Baker that he wasn’t representing any particular client when he passed along a tip about a supposed Donald Trump “secret server” communicating with the Russians. The story was all bunk, of course, peddled by a lawyer working for Clinton who wanted to create an “October surprise” against Trump.

There are text messages of Sussmann lying to Baker about operating independently, even as he billed the Clinton campaign for his time. Baker testified under oath that Sussmann lied. But we guess it takes more than a paper trail, financial documents and eyewitnesses for a DC jury to believe a Democrat can lie.

 

JUROR TELLS MEDIA SHE DOESN’T THINK IT’S A BIG DEAL TO LIE TO THE FBI… TECHNO FOG…

The acquittal is no surprise. This is a DC jury, after all. In the Roger Stone case, for example, we documented how a juror lied to get on the panel. (That judge didn’t care.) Making matters worse, the Sussmann judge wrongly allowed for a woman to remain on the jury, despite the fact that her daughter and Sussmann’s are on the same high school crew team. One can’t help but think that juror had her own daughter’s interests in mind – the cohesion of the crew team, sparing her of teenage drama, etc. – when she reached a decision.

After the verdict was announced, the jury’s forewoman held court before the media and expressed her displeasure that the Special Counsel prosecute a false statement case: “There are bigger things that affect the nation than a possible lie to the FBI.”

This juror was never impartial – despite her assurance to the judge.

 

YOSSI GESTETNER: Sussmamm sold a lie to the Feds (the Alfa Hoax) and he lied about for whom he works. Both of those are recorded lies. It does not become truths just because a jury of mostly Dems; including a few Clinton donors (and a parent of a Sussmann’s child classmate) decide to let it go.

 

WAPO COLUMNIST SAYS THIS ALL MEANS DURHAM IS LEADING A WITCH HUNT… PHILIP BUMP: What if — and bear with me here — John Durham doesn’t have the goods?

Durham’s probe has become everything that Trump and his allies accused special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s Russia investigation of being: a fishing expedition that’s gone on for an extended period of time without actually surfacing anything that significantly aids the central case. Mueller could point to dozens of indictments and a voluminous exploration of how Russia tried to swing the 2016 election two years into his assignment. Three years into Durham’s, he failed to obtain a conviction on his central line of attack.

 

THIS SHOULD BE GOOD… NYT: Maloney vs. Nadler? New York Must Pick a Side (East or West).

As he sat in the shade of Riverside Park on a sparkling recent weekday morning in Manhattan, Representative Jerrold Nadler tried to make sense of how two powerful allies suddenly found themselves at war.

A court-ordered redrawing of New York’s congressional district lines had combined the East and West Sides of Manhattan into a single district for the first time since World War II, putting Mr. Nadler and Representative Carolyn Maloney, a longtime colleague, on a potentially disastrous collision course in the Aug. 23 Democratic primary. […]

And yet neither Mr. Nadler nor Ms. Maloney has wasted any time working the phones to pressure union leaders, old political allies and wealthy donors — many of whom the two have shared for years — to pick sides.

Allies of Ms. Maloney whispered doubts about Mr. Nadler’s health. (His aides say his health is good.) Mr. Nadler’s associates circulated old news articles about Ms. Maloney’s obsession with pandas, and suggested that Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who is officially neutral in the race, really preferred him.

 

SEGREGATION IS BACK… Washington College Staff Attend Seminar To ‘Interrogate’ ‘Systems Of White Supremacy And Capitalism’

Over 125 college staff members attended a white-people-only seminar on eradicating the systems of white supremacy, according to documents reviewed by the Daily Caller and reported by conservative talk show host Jason Rantz.

The seminar entitled, “White People Working On It,” was hosted by the Washington State Faculty and Staff of Color Conference (FSOCC) on April 21 and 22. It was designed specifically for “white-identifying folks with European ancestry and people who benefit from white privilege,” according to an email sent out to educators statewide by Washington State Board for Community and Technical College’s Policy Associate Jennifer Whetham.

The program promised to “hurt your soul” as educators are brought “face-to-face with [their] own toxicity,” according to an introduction document reviewed by the Daily Caller.

On April 21, the seminar began with a “land and labor acknowledgment” and a “Fireside Chat” titled, “What Does it Mean to Be a White Ally in the Washington State [Community and Technical College] System,” according to a PowerPoint presentation reported by KTTH.

 

RUBIO INTERCEPTS A ‘DRAG QUEEN STORY TIME’ ON US MILITARY BASE… NATE HOCHMAN: This Thursday, a major US Air Force Base in Germany had planned to host a “Drag Queen Story Time” event for young children of service members. But after @marcorubio published a letter slamming the “gross abuse of taxpayer funding,” the event was canceled. (LINK)

 

PRIDE MARCHES ARE BECOMING BLM RALLIES WITH RAINBOW FLAGS… AXIOS: More Pride events banning police from parades

Organizers of LGBTQ Pride marches across the U.S. are telling local police departments they can’t officially march in annual parades. […]

Yearly Pride events typically are times for police to march and network with LGBTQ community members, but police shootings of Black Americans and the historic fact that Stonewall was a riot against overpolicing have organizers reconsidering officer participation.