Mornings on the Mall 02.09.18

Brian Kilmeade, Steve Kastenbaum in South Korea, Harlan Hill and Kevin Corke joined WMAL on Friday!

Mornings on the Mall

Friday, February 9, 2018

Hosts: Mary Walter and Vince Coglianese

Executive Producer: Heather Hunter

5am – A/B/C Government Shuts Down After Rand Paul Blocks Budget Vote

5am – D/E     ROB PORTER NEWS:

  • White House spokesman Raj Shah: “It’s important to remember that Rob Porter has repeatedly denied the allegations and done so publicly. That doesn’t change how serious and disturbing these allegations are. They’re upsetting.”
  • Raj Shah: Chief of staff John Kelly became “fully aware” of the allegations against Rob Porter yesterday
  • Raj Shah tells Cecilia Vega, “The chief of staff does not get detailed updates about what may or may not have been alleged” during background check process…. Rob porter was terminated yesterday … He offered his resignation and it was accepted.”
  • Raj Shah says John Kelly “had not seen images” prior to initial statement defending Rob Porter, but does not say whether Kelly knew of domestic violence allegations.
  • Raj Shah on Trump’s reaction to Rob Porter abuse allegations: “He was surprised by it, disheartened by it, and he was saddened”
  • Raj Shah: Hope Hicks did “recuse herself from some matters” regarding White House response to Rob Porter allegations
  • Raj Shah: “I think it’s fair to say that we all could have done better over the last few days in dealing with this situation.”

6am – A         Congress votes to end brief government shutdown. WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. House of Representatives joined the Senate early on Friday morning in approving a bill to end an overnight federal shutdown, sparing Republicans further embarrassment and averting serious interruption of the government’s business.  The stopgap funding and budget measure, approved by a 240-186 House vote, will go next to President Donald Trump. The White House said in a statement that he will sign it into law, which would extend government funding through March 23.

6am – B         RAJ SHAH / OMAROSA

  • White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah makes briefing debut
  • Deputy White Press Secretary Raj Shah was asked about former White House staffer Omarosa. He didn’t skip a beat.  Shah responds to Omarosa’s comments on Pres. Trump’s tweets: “Omarosa was fired three times on The Apprentice, and this is the fourth time we’ve let her go.”
  • Omarosa talks Trump on CBS Big Brother: The public should be “worried”

6am – C         Eric Holder Considering Run For the Presidency. The only cabinet member in U.S. history to be held in contempt of Congress. (Daily Wire) — Former Attorney General Eric Holder, the only cabinet member in U.S. history to be held in contempt of Congress, is contemplating a run for the presidency in 2020. Holder, asked the question of a prospective presidential run by reporters at a media breakfast sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor, responded, “You know, I’ll see. I’m focused on NDRC at this point. I think I’ll make a decision by the end of the year about whether there’s another chapter.” Holder, who is currently supervising Barack Obama’s National Democratic Redistricting Committee (NDRC), said he plans to canvas the country about changing House district lines in roughly 20 states.

6am – D         Democratic Sen. Mark Warner texted with Russian oligarch lobbyist in effort to contact dossier author Christopher Steel. (By Ed Henry | Fox News) — EXCLUSIVE – Sen. Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee who has been leading a congressional investigation into President Trump’s alleged ties to Russia, had extensive contact last year with a lobbyist for a Russian oligarch who was offering Warner access to former British spy and dossier author Christopher Steele, according to text messages obtained exclusively by Fox News. “We have so much to discuss u need to be careful but we can help our country,” Warner texted the lobbyist, Adam Waldman, on March 22, 2017. “I’m in,” Waldman, whose firm has ties to Hillary Clinton, texted back to Warner. Steele famously put together the anti-Trump dossier of unverified information that was used by FBI and Justice Department officials in October 2016 to get a warrant to conduct surveillance of former Trump adviser Carter Page. Despite the efforts, Steele has not agreed to an interview with the committee. Secrecy seemed very important to Warner as the conversation with Waldman heated up March 29, when the lobbyist revealed that Steele wanted a bipartisan letter from Warner and the committee’s chairman, North Carolina Republican Sen. Richard Burr, inviting him to talk to the Senate intelligence panel. Throughout the text exchanges, Warner seemed particularly intent on connecting directly with Steele without anyone else on the Senate Intelligence Committee being in the loop — at least initially. In one text to the lobbyist, Warner wrote that he would “rather not have a paper trail” of his messages.

6am – E         Proposed Journalist Protection Act Would Make Assault Of Reporter A Federal Crime. (Forbes) — Decrying what he called “a toxic atmosphere” created by President Trump’s administration, a Democratic congressman from California today introduced the Journalist Protection Act. The proposal would make it a federal crime to assault a journalist in the process of gathering news. Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., said in a release that Trump’s labeling the press “a stain on America” and “an enemy of the American people” has encouraged people to find violence against journalists more acceptable. “President Donald Trump’s campaign and administration have created a toxic atmosphere,” Swalwell said. “It’s not just about labeling reports of his constant falsehoods as #FakeNews – it’s his casting of media personalities and outlets as anti-American targets, and encouraging people to engage in violence.” The Protection Act, co-sponsored by 12 members of the House of Representatives, all Democrats, would provide a penalty of up to three years in prison causing “bodily injury” to a journalist. The criminal code definition of “bodily injury” includes a cut, abrasion or bruise, or the infliction of physical pain. Causing “serious bodily injury” to a journalist could get someone up to six years in prison.

6am – F         COMEY NEWS:

  • James Comey Moves Up Memoir Release Date Amid ‘Intense Scrutiny’ At FBI. (Daily Caller) — Former FBI Director James Comey’s memoir will be released sooner than previously planned, Flatiron Books announced Wednesday. Comey’s memoir, “A Higher Loyalty,” will now be released April 17 instead of the original publishing date, May 1.  The publisher said the date change has to do with the FBI being “under intense scrutiny
  • We’ll have LANNY DAVIS in studio on WEDNESDAY about his new book ” Lanny Davis discussed his book, “The Unmaking of the President 2016: How FBI Director James Comey Cost Hillary Clinton the Presidency”
  • James Comey @Comey Feb 6:  I’ve heard people have missed my photo tweets. 🙂  I took this yesterday during a long, peaceful walk by the Potomac on a break from putting finishing touches on my book. I’m looking forward to its release and joining the discussion about ethical leadership.
  • James Comey @Comey Feb 3: Got to dress up for a family event tonight and was proud to wear my FBI cufflinks.
  • James Comey @Comey Feb 2: That’s it? Dishonest and misleading memo wrecked the House intel committee, destroyed trust with Intelligence Community, damaged relationship with FISA court, and inexcusably exposed classified investigation of an American citizen. For what? DOJ & FBI must keep doing their jobs.
  • James Comey @Comey Feb 1: All should appreciate the FBI speaking up. I wish more of our leaders would. But take heart: American history shows that, in the long run, weasels and liars never hold the field, so long as good people stand up. Not a lot of schools or streets named for Joe McCarthy.
  • James Comey @Comey Jan 29: Special Agent Andrew McCabe stood tall over the last 8 months, when small people were trying to tear down an institution we all depend on. He served with distinction for two decades. I wish Andy well. I also wish continued strength for the rest of the FBI.  America needs you.

7am – A/B/C  INTERVIEW – BRIAN KILMEADE – host of Fox & Friends and author of new book “Andrew Jackson and the Miracle of New Orleans: The Battle That Shaped America’s Destiny” – discussed new book, book signing tonight, the short government shutdown and more.

  • BOOK SIGNING: Meet Brian and get a copy of his new book “Andrew Jackson and the Miracle of New Orleans: The Battle That Shaped America’s Destiny”: Friday, February 9. Barnes & Noble, 20427 Exchange St. Ashburn, VA 20147 @ 5:00PM

7am – D         INTERVIEW – STEVE KASTENBAUM – correspondent in South Korea – reported on the opening ceremonies at the Olympics on Friday.

7am – E         House Votes To Roll Back Obama-era Menu Calorie Count Rules. WASHINGTON — The way restaurants and other food establishments in the United States label calorie counts on their menus could look different starting this spring, and while some politicians and industry groups are applauding this potential change, some public health experts are raising concerns. Currently, under the Affordable Care Act, food establishments have until May 7 to comply with requirements to add calorie information labels to the food items they serve and offer, according to the US Food and Drug Administration. Those requirements apply to chain restaurants or food establishments that have 20 or more locations, and vending machine operators who own or operate 20 or more machines. On Tuesday, the House passed legislation that would amend exactly how those restaurants and retail food businesses are to provide the calorie count information to their customers. Instead of listing the total calories contained in a menu item when it is offered for sale, such as a shared appetizer, businesses would be allowed to provide just the calories per serving in that “multiserving” menu item, without disclosing total calories.

8am – A         INTERVIEW — HARLAN HILL – was on thr Advisory Board of Donald Trump for President, founder of the Democrats for Trump (a coalition of moderate Democrats supporting the election of Donald J. Trump) and currently Managing Partner of Logan Circle Group

  • ABOUT:
  • TOPIC: Thoughts on Mayor Bowser and DC government bashing on President Trump’s idea about the military parade. And Bowser deleting a tweet bashing on Democrats for Trump supporters as treasonous
  • ORIGINAL TWEET: Mark Segraves @SegravesNBC4: On @realDonaldTrump proposed military parade, a spokeswoman for DC @MayorBowser says: “We’re tracking media reports about the proposed parade and will have more to say when formal outreach begins. In the meantime, we do know that just like the wall, he will have to pay for it.” 10:15 AM · Feb 7, 2018
  • HARLAN RESPONDS: Harlan Z. Hill @Harlan: Instead of just being a troll, maybe @MayorBowser should do something about all the homeless people she steps over on the way to Louis Vuitton
  • BOWSER RESPONDS AND THEN DELETES THIS TWEET: @MayorBowser Replying to @Harlan: We appreciate the feedback. How Big were those Democrats for Trump meetings? That’s treasonous.

8am – B         Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg Says ‘Pence Rule’ Should Apply to Men as Well as Women. Facebook Chief Operating Officer (COO) Sheryl Sandberg says that male executives who follow “Pence rule,” and refuse to dine alone with female colleagues, should avoid eating with male colleagues as well. The rule is named for Vice President Mike Pence, who in 2002 said he will not attend events where alcohol is being served without his wife by his side, and will not have dinner alone with a woman other than his wife. Pence was mocked when the “rule” first emerged. But in the wake of the #metoo movement, men throughout the workforce are beginning to see his point. According to, “nearly half of male managers say they’re uncomfortable participating in a work activity such as mentoring or socializing with women, according to a survey conducted this year by LeanIn.Org and SurveyMonkey” in response to sexual harassment allegations. also noted that “[a] higher percentage of male managers is also uncomfortable working with a women or mentoring them.” Sandberg responded by demanding that men who follow the “Pence rule” apply it to everybody. “If you insist on following it, adopt a revised version,” she wrote in a Facebook post Tuesday. “Don’t want to have dinner alone with a female colleague? Fine. But make access equal: no dinners alone with anyone. Breakfast or lunches for all. Or group dinners only, nothing one-on-one. Whatever you choose, treat women and men equally.”

8am – C         Chuck Schumer Totally Predicted the Tide Pod Phenomenon Way Back in 2012. (Time) — It appears that Sen. Chuck Schumer may have predicted the so-called Tide Pod Challenge that is currently sweeping the Internet way back in 2012. According to a report from the New York Daily News, the Senate Democratic leader held a September 2012 press conference to warn of the risks associated with the colorful appearance of the detergent capsules. “The incidents are skyrocketing,” he said. “These pods were supposed to make household chores easier, not tempt our children to swallow harmful chemicals. I saw one on my staffer’s desk and I wanted to eat it.”

8am – D         NTERVIEW — KEVIN CORKE – White House Correspondent for Fox News Channel – discussed the latest White House news.

  • Trump signs massive budget deal after Congress votes to reopen government
  • White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah made briefing debut
  • White House spokesman Raj Shah on Rob Porter: “It’s important to remember that Rob Porter has repeatedly denied the allegations and done so publicly. That doesn’t change how serious and disturbing these allegations are. They’re upsetting.”
  • Raj Shah: Chief of staff John Kelly became “fully aware” of the allegations against Rob Porter yesterday
  • Deputy White Press Secretary Raj Shah was asked about former White House staffer Omarosa. He didn’t skip a beat.  Shah responds to Omarosa’s comments on Pres. Trump’s tweets: “Omarosa was fired three times on The Apprentice, and this is the fourth time we’ve let her go.”
  • Pence is in South Korea. 2018 Winter Olympic guests include Ivanka Trump, Pence, others. Vice President Pence and second lady Karen Pence will lead the U.S. delegation to the Winter Olympics. Pence’s presence at the games is meant to reinforce strong U.S. presence on the Korean Peninsula and send a clear message of “American resolve” to the North Korean regime, a White House official told Fox News. President Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, who serves as an unpaid White House adviser, will lead the U.S. delegation to the closing ceremony at the Olympics, according to the White House. She is also expected to attend some sporting events while in Pyeongchang, The Hill reported.


  • STUDENT CLAIMS SPIRIT FORCED HER TO FLUSH EMOTIONAL SUPPORT HAMSTER: Before Belen Aldecosea flew home from from college to South Florida, she twice called Spirit Airlines to ensure she could bring along a special guest: Pebbles, her pet dwarf hamster. No problem, the airline told her. But when Aldecosea arrived at the Baltimore airport, Spirit refused to allow the tiny animal on the flight. With her only friends hours away at campus, Aldecosea was stuck. She says an airline representative suggested flushing Pebbles down an airport toilet, a step that Spirit denies. Panicked and needing to return home promptly to deal with a medical issue, Aldecosea unsuccessfully tried renting a car and agonized for hours before doing the unthinkable. She flushed Pebbles.
  • The student who tried to fly with a hamster deserves no sympathy. (Washington Examiner/by Tom Rogan) — I have absolutely no sympathy for the student who says Spirit Airlines told her to flush her pet hamster down a Baltimore airport toilet. Speaking to the Miami Herald, 21-year-old Belen Aldecosea says her hamster, Pebbles, was denied entry onto her flight at Baltimore airport. Aldecosea alleges that a Spirit Airlines employee then told her to flush Pebbles down the toilet. The lemming that she is, Aldecosea then did so. “She was scared. I was scared,” the devoted pet owner told the Herald, “It was horrifying trying to put her in the toilet, I was emotional. I was crying. I sat there for a good 10 minutes crying in the stall.” Zero sympathy. First off, what kind of moron tries to bring a hamster on a plane in the first place? The answer, of course, is the same kind of person who attempts to take a peacock onto a plane. That said, Aldecosea’s choice to drown her pet in a toilet speaks very gravely of her own conduct. Indeed, it patently falls under Maryland criminal law’s prohibition against inflicting “unnecessary suffering or pain on an animal.” Instead, the Herald notes that Aldecosea is now considering a lawsuit against Spirit for “the conflicting instructions that wound up pressuring her into making an anguished decision with a pet certified by her doctor as an emotional support animal.”


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