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New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio criticized for his absence during the city's partial blackout Saturday night: 'You have to be on site'

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio criticized for his absence during the city's partial blackout Saturday night: 'You have to be on site'Governor Andrew Cuomo and other New Yorkers were annoyed de Blasio was campaigning for his long-shot presidential campaign, and not in the city.



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Trump and Bill Clinton Worry About Creepy Jeffrey Epstein Connection in ‘Our Cartoon President’

Trump and Bill Clinton Worry About Creepy Jeffrey Epstein Connection in ‘Our Cartoon President’ShowtimePresident Donald Trump and former President Bill Clinton have each had very little to say about their respective connections to alleged sex trafficker and pedophile Jeffrey Epstein. But their cartoon personas are being a bit more forthcoming. In a hastily assembled cold open clip from this coming Sunday’s episode of the Stephen Colbert-produced Our Cartoon President on Showtime, Trump begins by addressing the nation about his ties to Epstein.“Sure, I told New York Magazine in 2002 that Epstein is a ‘terrific guy,’” Trump says, citing a real quote. “But that was before I found out that I said, later in the same sentence, that ‘he likes beautiful women…on the younger side.’” Then, cartoon Bill Clinton joins him. “Hey, everybody it’s me, America’s cold sore,” he says. “Every few years I pop up to remind you of your bad choices in the ‘90s.” Jeffrey Epstein Investigated for Child TraffickingREVEALED: We Found Billionaire Pedophile Jeffrey Epstein’s Secret CharityBoth men acknowledge that they may have been passengers on Epstein’s infamous private jet. “But so was Kevin Spacey,” Trump says. “The only reason I was on that jet 26, I mean, four times, was it was the best deal on Kayak.com,” Clinton adds. “You know, Bill and I may disagree on health care and criminal justice,” Trump says—as Clinton chimes in with “barely”—“but we are unified against these all but undeniable accusations.” “In the end, aren’t we all just Americans accused of the most ghastly crime imaginable?” Clinton asks before the two presidents embrace in solidarity. “I can’t believe we almost let Hillary tear us apart,” Trump concludes.Even if Saturday Night Live wasn’t on summer hiatus right now, it’s hard to imagine that show producing anything that cuts as deep as this. Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.



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Spokesman: Bill Clinton 'knows nothing' about 'terrible crimes' alleged against Epstein

Spokesman: Bill Clinton 'knows nothing' about 'terrible crimes' alleged against EpsteinBillionaire financier Jeffrey Epstein has previously been tied to former President Bill Clinton and President Donald Trump.



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Hong Kong leader declares extradition bill 'dead,' but protesters persist

Hong Kong leader declares extradition bill 'dead,' but protesters persistHong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam declared an extradition bill 'dead' after pressure. Yet protesters remain resolute in their demands.



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Hong Kong Leader Carrie Lam Says Extradition Bill Is ‘Dead’ as Unrest Continues

Hong Kong Leader Carrie Lam Says Extradition Bill Is ‘Dead’ as Unrest Continues(Bloomberg) — Hong Kong protest leaders vowed to return to the streets after the city’s leader declared her controversial extradition bill “dead,” suggesting her latest effort to resolve a weeks-long political crisis had backfired.Demonstrators issued new calls for people to join their rallies despite Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s acknowledgment Tuesday that the legislation, which would for the first time allow extraditions to China, wouldn’t get passed. Although it’s the closest she’s come to admitting defeat after an unprecedented wave of unrest — including the ransacking of the city legislature last week — she stopped short of agreeing to protesters’ demand to withdraw the bill.“The bill is dead,” Lam told reporters Tuesday in Hong Kong. “Our work on the extradition bill amendment is a complete failure.”Lam’s refusal to formally retract the proposal left open the possibility that the government could revive it with 12 days’ notice and provided a new rallying point for a protest movement that has persisted through repeat marches, extreme heat and tear gas volleys from police. Opponents of the bill planned another rally Sunday in East New Territories district of Sha Tin, in an attempt to show support far from the city center.“She’s only putting oil on the fire,” Civic Party lawmaker Kwok Ka-ki told reporters Tuesday. “We will anticipate more outcry, more people coming out to the streets to demand for democracy in Hong Kong.”Earlier: Beijing’s Message to Hong Kong: Get in Line or Face IrrelevanceThe legislation has helped unify the former British colony’s once-fractured opposition, drawing hundreds of thousands into the streets and illustrating a source of domestic weakness for Chinese President Xi Jinping in the middle of a growing strategic struggle with the U.S. Lam’s attempts to quiet the unrest — first “pausing” efforts to pass the legislation, then apologizing — have only fueled more protests.Besides demanding the complete withdrawal of the bill, opponents want Lam to resign and drop charges against demonstrators arrested during police clashes. Protesters mustered one of the largest marches ever in city’s Kowloon district Sunday, even after the decision by some protesters to break into and vandalize the Legislative Council chamber drew widespread condemnation.The turmoil has raised new questions about Hong Kong’s long-term viability, almost halfway through China’s 50-year promise to preserve capitalist markets and personal freedoms established by the British. Lam and her backers in Beijing so far appeared determined to hang on, or risk emboldening an opposition bent on slowing their agenda and securing a direct election for chief executive.“Stepping down is not an easy thing,” Lam said, in response to a question about whether she planned to resign. “I still have the enthusiasm and responsibility to serve the public. I hope the public can give my team and myself a chance and space to implement a new administration style.”Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said Beijing had “nothing new to add” since backing Lam’s June 15 decision to suspend efforts to pass the legislation. “The Chinese central government already expressed our support, understanding and respect,” Geng said.Extradition ConcernsThe legislation would let Hong Kong enter one-time deals to transfer criminal suspects to various jurisdictions, including mainland China. The measure fanned worries among the business community and the city’s democracy advocates about the erosion of the “one country, two systems” framework set up before Hong Kong’s return to China.Hong Kong’s dollar fell back into the weak half of its trading band as traders predicted the city’s recent liquidity squeeze is nearing its end, though there was no indication Lam’s remarks had impacted the move. The currency was down 0.15% at 7.8113 per dollar as of 4:14 p.m. local time.Leaders of student groups that have participated in recent protests also rejected an offer from Lam for public talks to reconcile their differences, saying any such meeting must focus on their core demands. Some activists pointed out that four of the five student leaders who Lam met with during a previous bout of mass protests in 2014, when she was the city’s No. 2 official, were later prosecuted for their roles.“Carrie Lam’s invitation for dialogue is a trap,” said Jimmy Sham, a leader of the Civil Human Rights Front, which has organized the biggest recent protests. “Carrie Lam said she has repeatedly reflected on her work and apologized, but a key thing she hasn’t reflected on is that there’s no one in Hong Kong who trusts her, and she hasn’t contemplated why nobody has faith in her.”Lam has failed to heal divisions in the former British colony two years after taking over from her unpopular former boss, Leung Chun-ying, who was forced to forego seeking a second term due to widespread discontent. While Lam may have underestimated the opposition to her extradition bill, her task was complicated by the requirement to serve two masters — Hong Kong and Beijing — without a public vote to provide a mandate.Billy Gung, a 27-year-old accountant who has attended the largest recent protests, said the extradition bill was a piece of the bigger political problem. “Even if the extradition law is dead, there will be other bills in the future that favor Beijing and are not in the interest of Hong Kong,” Gung said.\–With assistance from Bruce Grant, Fion Li, Will Davies and Sharon Chen.To contact the reporters on this story: Natalie Lung in Hong Kong at flung6@bloomberg.net;Carol Zhong in Hong Kong at yzhong71@bloomberg.net;Kari Lindberg in Hong Kong at klindberg13@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Brendan Scott at bscott66@bloomberg.net, Karen LeighFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.



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Seeking unity, Pelosi calls for bill to protect migrant kids

Seeking unity, Pelosi calls for bill to protect migrant kidsLawmakers must pass legislation easing “abhorrent conditions” facing children held at the southern border, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Monday as she tried taking the offensive on an issue that badly split Democrats and has raised questions about their unity on other issues. Pelosi, D-Calif., tried rallying Democrats against a common foe — Republicans led by President Donald Trump — less than two weeks after a $ 4.6 billion border bill drove a bitter rift into her party. Although the measure passed Congress easily and became law, many House progressives and Hispanics voted “no” because they said the measure lacked real controls on how the government must handle children, while the party’s moderates and senators said the measure was the best compromise they could craft with the GOP-run Senate.



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Bill Clinton: I Flew With Jeffrey Epstein but Knew ‘Nothing’ About ‘Terrible Crimes’

Bill Clinton: I Flew With Jeffrey Epstein but Knew ‘Nothing’ About ‘Terrible Crimes’Leah Millis/ReutersFormer President Bill Clinton said Monday he knew nothing about Jeffrey Epstein’s “terrible crimes” and tried to downplay the time he spent on the billionaire’s private plane.In a statement issued hours after Epstein was arraigned on a sex-trafficking indictment, Clinton said he took “a total of four trips” with the financier in 2002 and 2003—to Europe, Asia and Africa.It’s not clear how many flights were involved in each trip or how that number would square with flight logs that reportedly show Clinton on 26 flights on Epstein’s plane between 2001 and 2003. Gawker reported in 2015 that the logs also appear to show Clinton on a 2002 domestic flight between Miami and Westchester County, with Epstein also on board.Everything You Need to Know About the Jeffrey Epstein CaseIn his statement, Clinton said the trips included stops in connection with the Clinton Foundation and that he was accompanied by staff, foundation supporters and Secret Service agents on “every leg of every trip.”“President Clinton knows nothing about the terrible crimes Jeffrey Epstein pleaded guilty to in Florida some years ago, or those with which he has been recently charged in New York,” the statement said.The statement said Clinton made “one brief visit” to Epstein’s apartment in New York—alongside a “staff member and his security detail”—in 2002. The two men also met at Clinton’s Harlem office “around the same time” as the apartment visit, the statement said.“He‘s not spoken to Epstein in well over a decade, and has never been to Little St. James Island, Epstein’s ranch in New Mexico, or his residence in Florida,” the statement read.The statement did not mention Clinton’s financial ties to Epstein. As The Daily Beast reported, a former charity of Epstein’s, the C.O.U.Q. Foundation, donated $ 25,000 to Bill and Hillary Clinton’s charity in 2006 and was recently listed among past and present donors on the Clinton Foundation’s website.Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.



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Hong Kong leader says extradition bill is dead, but critics unconvinced

Hong Kong leader says extradition bill is dead, but critics unconvincedHong Kong leader Carrie Lam said on Tuesday the extradition bill that sparked the Chinese-ruled city’s biggest crisis in decades is dead and that government work on the legislation had been a “total failure”, but critics accused her of playing with words. The bill, which would allow people in Hong Kong to be sent to mainland China to face trial in courts controlled by the Communist Party, sparked huge and at times violent street protests and plunged the former British colony into turmoil. In mid-June, Lam responded to protests that drew hundreds of thousands of people on to the streets by suspending the bill, but that did not stop demonstrations that shut government offices and brought parts of the financial center to a standstill.



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Jeffrey Epstein, a onetime associate of Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, is in legal trouble: Here's what we know

Jeffrey Epstein, a onetime associate of Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, is in legal trouble: Here's what we knowHere are answers to five questions about the case against Jeffrey Epstein, who was arrested Saturday on sex-trafficking charges.



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French lawmakers vote to target online hate speech in draft bill

French lawmakers vote to target online hate speech in draft billSocial media giants such as Facebook and Twitter would be required to remove any hateful content within 24 hours under a draft bill approved by France’s National Assembly on Friday. President Emmanuel Macron wants to make France a leader in regulating U.S. tech giants and containing the spread of illicit content and false information on the most-used platforms.



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