Mornings on the Mall
Wednesday, January 8, 2020
Hosts: Vince Coglianese and Mary Walter
Executive Producer: Heather Hunter
Cal Thomas, Virginia House Republican Leader Todd Gilbert, KT McFarland, Maryland House Minority Leader Leader Nic Kipke, Michael Anton and Virginia State Senator Dave Marsden joined WMAL on Wednesday!
5am – A/B/C IRAN NEWS:
- Iranian forces launched more than a dozen ballistic missiles against two military bases in Iraq, the Pentagon said Tuesday evening, marking the most significant Iranian attack in the growing conflict with the United States. The al-Asad air base in western Iraq, which houses some American troops, was hit by at least six missiles , according to a U.S. defense official familiar with the situation. In a tweet late Tuesday, President Trump proclaimed “All is well!” and vowed to address the nation on the situation Wednesday morning. The strike comes as U.S. officials have defended Trump’s decision to kill Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani, the commander of Iran’s elite Quds Force, in an airstrike in Baghdad last week. Iranian leaders stepped up calls Tuesday for revenge against the United States as Iranian authorities prepared to bury Soleimani in his hometown of Kerman, a southeastern city. Early on Tuesday, authorities were forced to suspend the burial proceedings after a stampede killed dozens of mourners.
- President Trump met with his national security team, including Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Secretary Mark Esper after Iran’s Revolutionary Guard fired than a dozen ballistic missiles on two U.S. facilities in Iraq. One issue being looked into is whether the launch came from Iranian officials or from proxy groups who have worked with the Iranian government. Hours earlier, President Trump warned Iran of consequences for a retaliation.
- The full Senate will receive a closed door briefing on the U.S. strike that killed Iranian military leader Qassen Soleimani from member of the Trump administration on Wednesday. Also expected to be discussed is the Tuesday night Iranian attack on two U.S. bases in Iraq.
- ON HANNITY LAST NIGHT: Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., detailed a conversation he had with President Trump in response to Tuesday’s missile attack by Iran, which targeted U.S. military and coalition forces in Iraq.
- “Let me say tonight if you are watching television in Iran,” Graham said on “Hannity.” “I just got off the phone with the president. Your fate is in your own hands in terms of the regime’s economic viability.”
- ON HANNITY: Sen. Ted Cruz: Iran missiles fired at Iraqi airbases were ‘in a very real sense’ paid for by billions that Obama sent Tehran
5am – D TRUMP, AUSTRALIAN PM MORRISON Swap Love As Fires Burn… TRUMP: We love Australia!
- 24 Australians arrested for deliberately setting fires this season. The country has been ravaged by wildfires this summer. (ABC News) – Two dozen Australians in the state of New South Wales have been arrested since early November for intentionally setting fires as record-large blazes continue to burn across the country. There have been 24 people charged with deliberately setting fires among 183 facing legal action in the state, according to the New South Wales Police Force. In addition to those facing the most serious charges of starting fires intentionally, authorities said another 53 people are facing legal action for not complying with the state’s fire ban and 47 people have faced legal action for discarding a lit cigarette or match on land. Starting a bushfire intentionally and being reckless in causing its spread can result in up to 21 years in prison, authorities said. Legal actions can range “from cautions through to criminal charges,” according to NSW police.
5am – E Justice Department reverses itself on Michael Flynn, asking for up to six months in prison. (Washington Examiner) – The Justice Department asked a federal judge to sentence Michael Flynn to up to six months in prison on Tuesday in a reversal of its previous request that the former national security adviser get no time. The DOJ said Flynn no longer deserved any credit for providing substantial assistance in its investigations or for accepting responsibility for his false statements to the FBI about discussions he had with Russia’s ambassador and his work for Turkey. “The defendant monetized his power and influence over our government, and lied to mask it,” the DOJ said. “When the FBI and DOJ needed information that only the defendant could provide, because of that power and influence, he denied them that information. And so an official tasked with protecting our national security, instead compromised it.” The U.S. attorney’s office for D.C. said the “complete record” showed actions by Flynn which “negate the benefits of much of the defendant’s earlier cooperation,” pointing specifically to Flynn’s “affirmative efforts to undermine the prosecution” of his former business partner, Bijan Rafiekian, under the Foreign Agent Registration Act for lucrative work done for the government of Turkey. Prosecutors also said Flynn’s behavior since his sentencing hearing in 2018, which was delayed until later this month, led prosecutors to believe “through representations by the defendant’s counsel, that the defendant has retreated from his acceptance of responsibility in this case regarding his lies to the FBI.” Prosecutors pressed the judge to ask Flynn “whether he maintains those apparent statements of innocence or whether he disavows them and fully accepts responsibility for his criminal conduct.” Flynn pleaded guilty in 2017 for lying to investigators about his conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak regarding U.S. sanctions and a U.N. Security Council vote. Former FBI Director James Comey admitted he took advantage of the chaos in the early days of the Trump administration when he sent special agent Peter Strzok and another FBI agent to talk to Flynn.
6am – A/B/C Iran launches 15 ballistic missiles into Iraq targeting US, coalition forces, officials say. Iran fired as many as 15 ballistic missiles into Iraq, targeting U.S. military and coalition forces early Wednesday, officials said, in a major retaliation by the rogue regime after the U.S. airstrike that killed Iranian Quds Force Gen. Qassem Soleimani last week. Ten missiles hit Al-Assad Air Base, one missile hit a military base in Erbil and four missiles failed to hit their targets, according to a U.S. military spokesman for Central Command, responsible for American forces in the Middle East. The attacks unfolded in two waves, each about an hour apart. Initial assessments showed “no U.S. casualties,” a U.S. military official in Baghdad told Fox News. President Trump tweeted a response late Tuesday evening: “All is well! Missiles launched from Iran at two military bases located in Iraq. Assessment of casualties & damages taking place now. So far, so good! We have the most powerful and well equipped military anywhere in the world, by far! I will be making a statement tomorrow morning.”
6am – D INTERVIEW – CAL THOMAS – Syndicated columnist – analyzed the missile strikes by Iran and the rising tensions between the U.S. and Iran.
- Trump to make statement Wednesday after Iran retaliates with missile attack in Iraq targeting US, coalition forces. President Trump says he will make a statement Wednesday after Iran fired as many as 15 ballistic missiles into Iraq, targeting U.S. military and coalition forces in a major retaliation by the rogue regime after the U.S. airstrike that killed Iranian Quds Force Gen. Qassem Soleimani last week.
6am – E VIRGINIA GOVERNOR RALPH NORTHAM: we have no intention of calling out the National Guard; we’re not going to cut off people’s electricity; we’re not going to go door-to-door and confiscate individuals’ weapons.”
- Yesterday, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, along with House and Senate leaders, announced joint legislative priorities for the upcoming General Assembly session: ratifying the ERA, expanding affordable housing, passing non-discrimination laws, raising the minimum wage, making voting easier (including making Election Day a state holiday), reforming the criminal justice system, raising the felony larceny threshold, passing “commonsense gun safety measures” (e.g., universal background checks, one-handgun-a-month, a “red-flag” law), etc.
6am – F Judge rules Hunter Biden is dad of child fathered with ex-stripper. (PageSix) – Hunter Biden will be officially recorded as the father on the birth certificate of the 17-month-old he sired with an ex-stripper, the judge in his child-support case ruled on Tuesday. Judge Holly Meyer officially deemed Biden, 49, “the biological and legal father,” of Lunden Alexis Roberts’ baby, who was born in August 2018. “The Arkansas Department of Health shall issue a new or substituted birth certificate listing Lunden Alexis Roberts as the mother and Robert Hunter Biden as the father,” Meyer wrote in her order, filed in Independence County Circuit Court. DNA test results had showed “with near scientific certainty” that Biden fathered the kid, Meyer noted. The son of former Vice President Joe Biden initially denied paternity in the case until a DNA test proved he was the baby’s dad, according to court papers.
7am – A INTERVIEW – TODD GILBERT – Virginia House Republican Leader – previewed what to expect with the new session of the Virginia General Assembly starting Wednesday.
- Va. General Assembly to begin session under Democratic control for first time in 25 years.
- Big changes ahead as Virginia General Assembly session starts. On Wednesday in Richmond, a landmark General Assembly session gavels in that could reshape Virginia, given the first complete Democratic control of the state’s government in decades. Gov. Ralph Northam, House Speaker-designee Eileen Filler-Corn, and incoming Senate Majority Leader Dick Saslaw said Tuesday that priorities will include: anti-discrimination measures; the Equal Rights Amendment; gun laws; abortion rights; affordable housing; a minimum-wage increase; easing voting restrictions; criminal justice reforms; environmental protections; and education funding and access.
7am – B/C INTERVIEW – KT MCFARLAND – Former Deputy National Security Adviser for President Trump and author of upcoming book “Revolution: Trump, Washington and “We the People” (Hardcover – February 25, 2020) – analyzed the missile attack and rising tensions between U.S.-Iran.
- Trump to make statement Wednesday after Iran retaliates with missile attack in Iraq targeting US, coalition forces. President Trump says he will make a statement Wednesday after Iran fired as many as 15 ballistic missiles into Iraq, targeting U.S. military and coalition forces in a major retaliation by the rogue regime after the U.S. airstrike that killed Iranian Quds Force Gen. Qassem Soleimani last week. Ten missiles hit Al-Assad Air Base, one missile hit a military base in Erbil and four missiles failed to hit their targets, according to a U.S. military spokesman for Central Command, responsible for American forces in the Middle East. The attacks unfolded in two waves early Wednesday, each about an hour apart, officials said. Initial assessments showed “no U.S. casualties,” a U.S. military official in Baghdad told Fox News.
7am – D INTERVIEW – Maryland House Minority Leader Leader NIC KIPKE – previewed what’s on the agenda for the new legislative session in Annapolis.
- ‘Dramatic new ballgame’: New political era dawns in Annapolis. (Washington Post) — As Maryland’s lawmakers return to Annapolis on Wednesday for their annual 90-day legislative session, they will greet new presiding officers for the first time in 17 years. Like their predecessors, the new leaders are Democrats. But they bring a different tone, the prospect for more liberal-leaning policies and an undercurrent of uncertainty. For the first time in the four centuries the General Assembly has convened, a black lawmaker will gavel in a legislative session. House Speaker Adrienne A. Jones (D-Baltimore County) replaces Michael E. Busch, known as “Coach,” who died unexpectedly on the final day of the 2019 session and was Maryland’s longest-serving speaker. And for the first time in a generation, the Maryland Senate will be led by someone other than Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. (D-Calvert), who is ailing from cancer and will hand over the gavel Wednesday and become a rank-and-file member of the chamber. Debate will center on how quickly to implement the reforms and — especially — how to pay for them. Both presiding officers have pledged not to raise income, property or sales tax rates this session to cover the costs, and floated the idea of taxing Internet commerce to help generate some of the roughly $325 million needed for the first phase of the plan. Lawmakers will also consider asking voters to legalize sports betting to help pay for the proposals, and they’ll debate whether to restrict sports betting to the state’s existing casinos. Jones said she is compiling a list of underused business tax credits she can eliminate as well. The Republican caucus, which is outnumbered by a veto-proof Democratic majority in both chambers, intends to harness all its influence to beat back any type of tax hike, which House Minority Leader Nicholaus R. Kipke (R-Anne Arundel) called “a non-starter.” Hogan has launched a public campaign against the boosted education spending, calling it tantamount to a $6,000 tax increase on Maryland families, and vowing to oppose any tax increases. He’s proposed his own reforms, emphasizing community control of failing schools and modeled after a program in Massachusetts. At the news conference, the governor said lawmakers should focus on holding local school systems, violent criminals and even themselves more accountable. He noted the recent indictments and resignations of two longtime lawmakers, following several other indictments in the past few years. Hogan proposed tougher ethics laws, increasing penalties for bribery to up to $100,000 and codifying into statute that convicted elected officials would lose their pensions.
7am – E CNN settles lawsuit with Nick Sandmann. COVINGTON, Ky. (FOX19) – CNN agreed Tuesday to settle a lawsuit with Covington Catholic student Nick Sandmann. The amount of the settlement was not made public during a hearing at the federal courthouse in Covington, Kentucky. Sandmann’s lawsuit sought $800 million from CNN, the Washington Post and NBC Universal. Trial dates are still not set for Sandmann’s lawsuit against NBC Universal and the Washington Post. The Washington Post suit sought $250 million. A federal judge let a portion of the suit go forward after The Post filed a motion to dismiss it. Sandmann’s attorney, Lin Wood, said, “This case will be tried not one minute earlier or later than when it is ready.” The lawsuits were filed following an incident in Jan. 2019 in Washington, D.C. involving Covington Catholic High School students. Videos of that incident garnered national attention. The initial video showed the self-identified Sandmann, now a senior at CovCath, and Nathan Phillips, an indigenous man who was participating in the Indigenous Peoples March. Sandmann and his classmates were in D.C. for the March For Life. Wood said the damages were sought due to “emotional distress Nicholas and his family suffered.” He also said the family had to move from their home temporarily and that Nicholas was not permitted to attend school directly after the trip to Washington.
8am – A Trump to make statement Wednesday after Iran retaliates with missile attack in Iraq targeting US, coalition forces. (Fox News) – President Trump says he will make a statement Wednesday after Iran fired as many as 15 ballistic missiles into Iraq, targeting U.S. military and coalition forces in a major retaliation by the rogue regime after the U.S. airstrike that killed Iranian Quds Force Gen. Qassem Soleimani last week. Ten missiles hit Al-Assad Air Base, one missile hit a military base in Erbil and four missiles failed to hit their targets, according to a U.S. military spokesman for Central Command, responsible for American forces in the Middle East. The attacks unfolded in two waves early Wednesday, each about an hour apart, officials said. Initial assessments showed “no U.S. casualties,” a U.S. military official in Baghdad told Fox News. Trump tweeted a response late Tuesday evening: “All is well! Missiles launched from Iran at two military bases located in Iraq. Assessment of casualties & damages taking place now. So far, so good! We have the most powerful and well equipped military anywhere in the world, by far! I will be making a statement tomorrow morning.”
8am – B/C INTERVIEW – MICHAEL ANTON – Lecturer in Politics and Research Fellow at Hillsdale College’s Kirby Center in Washington, D.C. And former National Security Official in the Trump Administration. – analyzed the missile strikes and rising tensions between U.S.-Iran.
8am – D INTERVIEW – SENATOR DAVE MARSDEN – Virginia State Senator, 37th District – joined WMAL’s morning show to respond to listeners unhappy with hot mic comments about gun owner activists. He represents the 37th district in the Senate of Virginia, which is a portion of Fairfax County, since 2010.
- VIRGINIA DEMOCRATS Caught On Hot Mic At Last Week’s Public Hearing In Fairfax Count: “They are like little kids. As long as we don’t reply we’ll get through this.”
- The video shows Eileen Robin Filler-Corn Speaker-designate of the Virginia House of Delegates and Virginia State Senator Dave Marsden talking about “gun nuts” acting “like kids” during a hearing in Fairfax on Saturday.
- Rough Transcript: “Are you going to stick around for the ten o’clock gun nuts? THESE PEOPLE ARE CRAZY. Yeah just like little kids. DO YOU THINK THEY WILL STAY CALM? Yeah, as long as we don’t respond to them. YEAH. We will get through this.”