Tag Archives: Lack

Executive Director of House Dems’ Campaign Arm Resigns amid Backlash over Lack of Diversity

Executive Director of House Dems’ Campaign Arm Resigns amid Backlash over Lack of DiversityThe executive director of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) resigned Monday after Democratic lawmakers and DCCC staffers lashed out publicly at the organization's leadership over their failure to prioritize racial diversity.Allison Jaslow announced her resignation during an emergency meeting that was held on Monday morning in response to calls from staffers and lawmakers for an “immediate restructuring” of the group's senior leadership, Politico reported.Democratic representatives Vicente Gonzalez and Filemon Vela of Texas specifically called for Jaslow's resignation in a statement provided to Politico on Sunday.“The DCCC is now in complete chaos,” Gonzalez and Vela said in their statement. “The single most immediate action that Cheri Bustos can take to restore confidence in the organization and to promote diversity is to appoint a qualified person of color, of which there are many, as executive director at once. We find the silence of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus on this issue to be deafening.”Politico highlighted a longstanding rift within the DCCC last week, publishing a report that quoted staffers and lawmakers complaining about a lack of racial diversity within the group's leadership, and among the vendors hired by the group.DCCC chairwoman Cheri Bustos was forced to return to Washington on Monday to address lawmakers' and staffers' concerns after an emergency meeting on Friday, which Bustos did not attend, and a conference call on Saturday, proved insufficient.Jaslow reportedly wept while assuming blame for the lack of diversity during the Friday meeting while Bustos responded to the complaints by emphasizing her marriage to a Mexican man and her son's engagement to an African-American woman during the Saturday call. She also agreed to hold mandatory diversity training for Committee staff.



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Curtis Flowers: Death row inmate has conviction quashed due to lack of black jurors

Curtis Flowers: Death row inmate has conviction quashed due to lack of black jurorsThe US Supreme Court has quashed the murder conviction of a black man on death row in Mississippi because of a prosecutor’s “relentless” efforts to stop African Americans appearing on the jury at successive trials.Curtis Flowers, 49, has already been tried six times and now could face a seventh trial following the decision by the country’s highest federal court.He has been in jail more than 22 years, ever since his arrest after four people were found shot dead in a furniture store in Winona, Mississippi, in July 1996.The removal of black jurors deprived inmate Mr Flowers of a fair trial, the Supreme Court ruled in a 7-2 decision written by Justice Brett Kavanaugh.A series of trials stretching back more than 20 years shows District Attorney Doug Evans made a “relentless, determined effort to rid the jury of black individuals,” with the goal of an all-white jury in Flowers’ case, Justice Kavanaugh wrote.“The numbers speak loudly,” Justice Kavanaugh said in a summary of his opinion that he read in the courtroom, noting that Mr Evans had removed 41 of the 42 prospective black jurors over the six trials. “We cannot ignore that history.”Mr Flowers was found guilty in his first three trials, but the three convictions were overturned by the Mississippi Supreme Court due to “prosecutorial misconduct”. The fourth and fifth trials ended in mistrials.He was convicted again on the sixth trial in 2010, when the jury was made up of 11 whites and one African American and Mr Evans struck five black prospective jurors – a conviction overturned on Friday.In a dissenting view, Justice Clarence Thomas called Justice Kavanaugh’s opinion “manifestly incorrect” and wrote that Mr Flowers “presented no evidence whatsoever of purposeful race discrimination”.Justice Thomas, the only African American currently on the Supreme Court, said: “The state is perfectly free to convict Curtis Flowers again.”Mr Evans said he remained confident of Mr Flowers guilt but had not yet decided whether the state of Mississippi would order a retrial, according to American Public Media. He denied trying to exclude African Americans from the jury.Mr Flowers’ defence lawyers have argued that witness statements and physical evidence against him are too weak to convict him of the killings of four furniture store workers.“A seventh trial would be unprecedented, and completely unwarranted given both the flimsiness of the evidence against him and the long trail of misconduct that has kept him wrongfully incarcerated all these years,” said Sheri Lynn Johnson, who represented Mr Flowers at the Supreme Court.“We hope that the state of Mississippi will finally disavow Doug Evans’ misconduct, decline to pursue yet another trial and set Mr Flowers free.”In the course of selecting a jury, lawyers can excuse a juror merely because of a suspicion that someone would vote against their client using “peremptory strikes”, but they have been the focus of the complaints about discrimination.The Supreme Court tried to stamp out discrimination in the composition of juries in the Batson v Kentucky decision in 1986, ruling that jurors couldn’t be excused from service because of their race.Additional reporting by AP



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Joe Biden laments lack of personal connection in politics as he pledges to respect space

Joe Biden laments lack of personal connection in politics as he pledges to respect spaceFacing allegations by several women of unwanted touching, former vice president Joe Biden is bemoaning the lack of personal connections in politics.



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Trump claims 'total exoneration' from Mueller summary despite lack of answers on obstruction

Trump claims 'total exoneration' from Mueller summary despite lack of answers on obstructionPresident Donald Trump claimed "complete and total exoneration" despite outstanding questions on obstruction.



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Trump halts new North Korea sanctions despite lack of progress in talks

Trump halts new North Korea sanctions despite lack of progress in talksThe president reverses a decision by the Treasury Department to impose additional sanctions on North Korea.



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Border Patrol Releases Migrants, Citing Lack of Space in Detention Centers

Border Patrol Releases Migrants, Citing Lack of Space in Detention CentersU.S. Customs and Border Patrol on Tuesday released 50 migrants recently detained at the border near Mcallen, Texas due to a lack of space in the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention centers they would otherwise be sent to while awaiting their asylum hearings.CPB officials told the Los Angeles Times that the migrants released Tuesday represent just the first wave of a group of hundreds whom they will be forced to release in the coming days due to a lack of resources.Border Patrol spokesman Carlos Diaz said the 50 migrants were given notices to appear in court and released to local charities after their processing center in McAllen was overwhelmed by the number of migrants arriving each day.“It is a crisis,” an unnamed CPB official told the Times. “It’s not a self-proclaimed crisis.”The unnamed official's assessment of the situation at the border echoes those of President Trump and Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen, who have raised alarms in recent months about the particular challenges posed by the high numbers of Central American families arriving at the border every day.“In February, we saw a 30 percent jump over the previous month, with agents apprehending or encountering nearly 75,000 aliens,” Nielsen told the House Committee on Homeland Security earlier this month. “This is an 80 percent increase over the same time last year. And I can report today that CBP is forecasting the problem will get even worse this spring as the weather warms up.”“Over 60 percent of the current flow are family units and unaccompanied alien children, and 60 percent are non-Mexican,” she added, likely referencing the provision in U.S. immigration law that requires asylum-seekers native to non-contiguous countries be allowed to remain in the U.S. while their asylum applications are adjudicated.



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Stephon Clark shooting: Protests over lack of charges for police who shot dead unarmed black man

Stephon Clark shooting: Protests over lack of charges for police who shot dead unarmed black manAt least 80 protesters have been arrested after they marched through Sacramento to demand two officers face charges for shooting and killing Stephon Clark. Initial reports did not say Mr Clark could be armed, but officers opened fire after mistaking his phone for a gun. The Sacramento county district attorney, Anne Marie Schubert, said the officers did not commit a crime and were justified in using lethal force.



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Stephon Clark case ends with no charges and a disgraceful lack of justice — yet again

Stephon Clark case ends with no charges and a disgraceful lack of justice — yet againDecisions by California prosecutors, attorney general to let cops go is travesty, reinforces distrust. Prosecutors must hold cops accountable.



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Mueller Hammers Manafort's Lack of Remorse as Sentencing Nears

Mueller Hammers Manafort's Lack of Remorse as Sentencing NearsIn their final submission to U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III in Alexandria, prosecutors working for Mueller accused the former chairman of President Donald Trump’s 2016 election campaign of shifting blame to “everyone from the Special Counsel’s Office to his Ukrainian clients.” The filing came in response to Manafort’s bid for leniency. “Manafort suggests, for example, that but for the appointment of the Special Counsel’s Office, he would not have been charged in connection with hiding more than $ 55 million abroad, failing to pay more than $ 6 million in taxes, and defrauding three financial institutions of more than $ 25 million dollars,” prosecutors said. Manafort, 69, faces as long as 24 years in prison after being convicted of bank fraud, tax fraud and failing to disclose offshore bank accounts to U.S. authorities, following a trial last year.



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Conjoined twins die in Yemen due to lack of medical equipment

Conjoined twins die in Yemen due to lack of medical equipmentConjoined twin boys born under blockade in Yemen nearly three weeks ago died on Saturday after attempts to secure a potentially life-saving evacuation failed.  In a statement carried by the Houthi-run Saba news, the health ministry said the twins’ deaths reflected the humanitarian situation Yemen's children are facing as a result of the war. The boys’ plight and the flurry of international media it generated has cast the politics of Yemen’s war and their human cost into stark relief. Abdelkhaleq and Abdelkarim were born in Houthi-controlled Sanaa, at a hospital so woefully underequipped after years of bombardment and blockade by the Saudi-led coalition that doctors could perform an MRI. The twins’ doctors had begged for them to be evacuated to a hospital equipped to give them life-saving treatment.  "They need to travel immediately. They will not be able to survive in Yemen under the social, political and economic circumstances in this country,” said Dr Faisal al-Balbali, the head of the neonatal unit at al-Thawra hospital in Sanaa. But Yemen’s airspace is controlled by the Saudi-led coalition and, following Houthi missile attacks on Saudi Arabia, no civilian flights have taken off from Sanaa since 2015. The only flights permitted in and out are those operated by the United Nations. Despite offers from a Saudi organisation, the King Salman Center for Relief and Humanitarian Works, to provide the needed medical care, no way around the blockade was found. Yemen’s nearly four-year war has seen the country brought to the brink of starvation, its infrastructure destroyed, as Iran-backed Houthi rebels battle the Saudi-led coalition which aims to restore the government of Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who was ousted by the Houthis in 2014. UN-led peace talks re-started in December 2018 and aim to implement a ceasefire and military withdrawal in Red Sea port city Hodeidah, and to reopen Sanaa airport.



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