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Trump praises Montana congressman who body-slammed reporter

President Donald Trump praised a Montana congressman who assaulted a reporter on the eve of a special election last year, joking Thursday night that “he’s my kind of guy,” the Great Falls Tribune reported.

>> Read more trending news 

Speaking at a rally in Missoula, Trump mentioned Rep. Greg Gianforte, who pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge in June 2017 after he body slammed Ben Jacobs, a reporter for The Guardian, on May 24, 2017, in Bozeman.

"Greg is smart and by the way never wrestle him," Trump joked. “Any guy that can do a body slam, he’s my kind of guy.”

Trump then made a gesture that simulated a body slam.

Olivier Knox, president of the White House Correspondents' Association, criticized the president Friday for praising "a violent assault on a reporter doing his Constitutionally protected job."

“This amounts to the celebration of a crime by someone sworn to uphold our laws and an attack on the First Amendment by someone who has solemnly pledged to defend it,” he said in a statement. “We should never shrug at the president cheerleading for a violent act targeting a free and independent news media.”

The Guardian U.S., which employs Jacobs, issued a statement after Trump’s speech, The New York Times reported.

“The president of the United States tonight applauded the assault on an American journalist who works for the Guardian. To celebrate an attack on a journalist who was simply doing his job is an attack on the First Amendment by someone who has taken an oath to defend it.” John Mulholland, the editor of The Guardian U.S., said in the statement. “In the aftermath of the murder of (Washington Post journalist) Jamal Khashoggi, it runs the risk of inviting other assaults on journalists both here and across the world where they often face far greater threats. We hope decent people will denounce these comments and that the president will see fit to apologize for them.”

The president did not mention Khashoggi during his speech Thursday, CNN reported.

The reporter was last seen entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, on Oct. 2. Turkish media reports claim that an audio recording suggests Khashoggi was tortured and killed before being dismembered, CNN reported.

Hillary Clinton unhurt in Jersey City parking garage crash

Hillary Clinton apparently suffered no injuries when the Secret Service vehicle she was riding in Monday night was involved in a crash, NJ.com reported.

>> Read more trending news 

Clinton, the 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, was traveling to a fundraiser for U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez in Jersey City, where she was the featured speaker. The Secret Service vehicle pulled into a parking garage, made a left turn and hit a concrete crossbeam, The Associated Press reported Wednesday.

In its accident report, Jersey City police said the driver told them she drove into the garage and said the crossbeam was not marked with its height. All passengers refused medical attention, according to the AP.

The former first lady left the vehicle and walked to the fundraiser.

The Secret Service said no injuries were reported; the Jersey City Police Department is investigating, NJ.com reported.

'Kill Trump' tweet leads to Secret Service probe of school employee

A Massachusetts school employee is under investigation by the Secret Service for allegedly threatening President Donald Trump on social media.

>> Watch the news report here

The employee, a Fitchburg Public Schools paraprofessional who works with special-needs students, has also been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of this investigation.

Her husband, a principal at Fitchburg's Longsjo Middle School, spoke only to WFXT about his wife's alleged tweet, which was captured in screen shots and shared multiple times on social media.

At first, the tweet caught the attention of the local police force and subsequently of federal agents.

"People have their preferences, but sometimes you should just keep your 2 cents to yourself, you know?" said Roger Valcourt, a parent.

The tweet, posted Oct, 10 which read, "No just kill Trump," has been generating controversy around town.

Parents were shocked to learn what happened, saying both the principal and his wife are star educators.

After the tweet was reported to Ashburnham police, the Secret Service launched an investigation, telling WFXT that they are aware of the incident and investigate all threats made against the president.

"I don’t know what was going through her head, I guess, but it’s not a good thing to say you want to kill the president," said Alex Clemente, a parent.

Clemente, a veteran who fought in Iraq, says the tweet went too far.

"Even though you don’t like him, you can’t say that," Clemente said.

>> Read more trending news 

The employee's husband told WFXT in an off-camera interview she meant no harm, saying, "It was lapse in judgment, a mistake. It was a bad choice of words that were taken out of context. My wife is not a malicious person, and has an impeccable work record. She’s embarrassed by this situation."

While Craig Chalifoux spoke to WFXT on the record, his wife isn't being identified because she is not facing any charges.

The superintendent told WFXT that the employee has been placed on paid administrative leave, saying, in a statement, this "is being done to protect her interests as well as the interest of the district [and] it will allow the investigation to conclude and minimize any disruption and distraction and protects her safety and security."

Trump tells Warren he’ll honor $1 million bet on her Native ancestry if he ‘can test her personally’

Update 9:45 p.m. EDT Oct. 15: President Donald Trump responded to Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s (D-Mass.) announcement Monday that a DNA analysis proves she has Native American ancestry.

>> Read more trending news 

Trump has often taunted and mocked Warren using the term “Pocahantas” and has accused her of claiming a Native American ancestor to gain an advantage as a law professor. He vowed to contribute $1 million to her favorite charity if DNA analysis actually proved she had native ancestry.

He changed his mind while touring storm-damaged areas in Georgia, telling reporters he initially offered the donation only if she agreed to a DNA test during a debate as the Democrat’s nominee for president.

“I’ll only do it if I can test her personally, and that will not be something I will enjoy doing either,” he said, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported

Also Monday, the Cherokee Nation offered a rare rebuke of Warren.

"Using a DNA test to lay claim to any connection to the Cherokee Nation or any tribal nation, even vaguely, is inappropriate and wrong," the tribe’s secretary of state, Chuck Hoskin Jr., said in a statement, according to OKNews.com.

"It makes a mockery out of DNA tests and its legitimate uses while also dishonoring legitimate tribal governments and their citizens, whose ancestors are well documented and whose heritage is proven,” Hoskin said.

Warren said earlier in the day that when “someone brings up my family story, I’ll use it to lift up the story of Native families and communities.”

She said it’s an opportunity to highlight the work of the National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center (NIWRC).

“I'll use it today to lift up the NIWRC and their amazing work to protect Native women from violence,” she said.

Original story: Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., has released an analysis of her DNA showing that she has Native American ancestry.

An analysis of Warren's DNA sample showed she had a Native American ancestor in her family dating back six to 10 generations, according to WFXTThe release of the analysis comes after President Donald Trump has mocked her repeatedly for her claim that she has Native American blood, and repeatedly questioned her ancestry.

>> Read more trending news 

A Stanford professor, Carlos D. Bustamante, who was awarded a MacArthur genius grant for his work tracking population migration via DNA, performed the analysis of the DNA. His report says the majority of Warren's ancestry is European, but there is strong evidence to suggest that she has a Native American ancestor.

Warren's office also released a video to YouTube, "Elizabeth Warren's family story," which directly addresses the attacks on her heritage by the President and includes interviews with her family. A "Fact Squad" website with links to the DNA report and supporting documents was also launched.

>> Watch the video here

Last month, Warren spoke about her future during a town hall in western Massachusetts on Sept. 30. She said she'll take a "hard look at running for president" after the November elections.

Warren, a frequent critic of President Donald Trump, is running for re-election in November against GOP state Rep. Geoff Diehl, who was co-chairman of Trump's 2016 Massachusetts campaign.

She has been at the center of speculation that she might take on Trump in 2020.

'SNL': Alec Baldwin's Trump returns as 'Saturday Night Live' spoofs Kanye West meeting

You knew the writers at "Saturday Night Live" weren't going to let this one go.

Days after rapper Kanye West's White House visit with President Donald Trump, Alec Baldwin returned to the comedy show for the first time this season in a spoof of Thursday's headline-making meeting.

>> Watch the full sketch here

"I flew here using the power of this hat!" cast member Chris Redd, playing a rambling West, proclaimed, pointing to his "Make America Great Again" cap.

>> Kanye West talks MAGA hat, mental health, Air Force One, more in Trump meeting at White House

"This guy might be cuckoo," Baldwin, as Trump, said to himself in a voice-over. "I've been in a room with Dennis Rodman and Kim Jong Un, and they made a lot more sense than him."

Redd's West, echoing some of Trump's real-life comments, called himself a "stable genius" with a "high IQ" and "the best words."

"Oh, my God, he's black me!" Baldwin's Trump realized in an internal monologue.

>> Read more trending news 

Meanwhile, Kenan Thompson, playing NFL icon Jim Brown, mused to himself: "I played football with a leather helmet, and my brain is still working better than his."

The sketch ended with Baldwin's Trump declaring: "I love you, Kanye. We've a lot more in common than people know. We're both geniuses, we're both married to beautiful women, and we've both definitely been recorded saying the N-word." 

Read more here.

53,000 Georgia voter registrations on hold amid high-profile governor's race

Tens of thousands of Georgia voter applications are on hold in the weeks leading up to a contentious, high-profile midterm election.

>> Watch the news report here

An Associated Press investigation released this week uncovered 53,000 voter registration applications on hold in the Secretary of State’s Office.

The SOS cites discrepancies in the applications versus driver’s license records, and a violation of the “exact match” law. It’s legislation that was passed in 2017.

Essentially, a missing hyphen in a name or the addition of a middle initial in one record and not another could lead to a voter ending up in pending status. The office says those voters can still head to polls on Election Day and resolve their status.

>> What to do if you are turned away from voting

Georgia’s secretary of state is Republican Brian Kemp. His gubernatorial opponent, Democrat Stacey Abrams, has called for Kemp to resign from his position overseeing the elections.

On Thursday morning, Kemp sent a tweet accusing her of “manufactured outrage” tied to a registration project she supports.

In a statement, Kemp said the registrations account for less than 1 percent of the 5.6 million voters who have registered since 2014, and voters can indeed cast their ballots Election Day.

“Not a single voter whose status is pending for failure to verify will get rejected this election cycle,” Kemp said in the statement. “The 26-month period affords any pending applicant plenty of time to participate in a federal election – when expected turnout is highest – so the applicant has the best opportunity to provide the necessary information and move to active status.”

>> 2018 Midterm: House races you should be watching

Abrams’ campaign boiled the issue down to voter suppression, noting that 70 percent of voters on the pending list are minorities. In part of a statement issued by Abigail Collazo, the Abrams for Governor director of strategic communications, said:

“As he has done for years, Brian Kemp is maliciously wielding the power of his office to suppress the vote for political gain and silence the voices of thousands of eligible voters – the majority of them people of color. This isn’t incompetence. It’s malpractice.”

Abdul Rasheed Salaam said the SOS office has an address on file for him that does not match his current address. He said he moved years ago, re-registered, voted in 2016 under his current address, and found a discrepancy Tuesday when he checked his voting status.

>> 2018 Midterm: Senate races you should be watching

He has concerns about the exact match law.

“I’m in a position now where I don’t know if I come here on Election Day to vote that I’ll be able to vote,” he told WSB-TV investigative reporter Nicole Carr.

Catherine Hynes, an Atlanta resident, told Carr that she would be uneasy with either candidate overseeing elections.

“You know, it’s such a divisive time right now,” Hynes said. “I think anything we can do to help each other trust one another is where we need to go.”

Several civil rights organizations are now suing Kemp. The lawsuit, filed in federal court Thursday, asks a judge to overturn the “exact match” law, saying it has a disproportionate impact on African-Americans, Latinos and Asian-Americans who want to become registered voters.

>> Read more trending news 

“It imposes unnecessary and discriminatory burdens on the voter registration process,” according to the lawsuit, filed by the Lawyers Committee on Civil Rights Under Law, which is representing several civil rights organizations in the legal action.

The plaintiffs include the Georgia Coalition for the Peoples’ Agenda, Asian Americans for Advancing Justice, the NAACP of Georgia, the New Georgia Project, the Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials and ProGeorgia.

Pennsylvania GOP candidate vows to 'stomp' foe's face 'with golf spikes'

The Republican candidate for governor in Pennsylvania promised Gov. Tom Wolf in a video that he was “going to stomp all over your face with golf spikes,” CNN reported Saturday.

>> Read more trending news 

In a Facebook video that has since been removed, Scott Wagner is shown jabbing his finger at the camera and addressing Wolf.

."Somewhere yesterday, your people said that I raised a ... white flag," CNN reported Wagner as saying. “Well, Gov. Wolf, let me tell you, between now and November 6, you better put a catcher's mask on your face," he adds. "Because I'm going to stomp all over your face with golf spikes because I'm going to win this for the state of Pennsylvania."

Wolf, a Democrat seeking a second term, leads Wagner in at least five polls.

Andrew Romeo, Wagner’s campaign manager, said in a statement that the candidate's comments “were not to be taken literally," CNN reported.

FBI foils man’s plot to blow himself up on National Mall on Election Day

A New York state man was arrested by federal agents Tuesday, accused of plotting to blow himself up on the National Mall on Election Day. 

Paul M. Rosenfeld, 56, of Tappan, is charged with unlawful manufacture of a destructive device and interstate transportation and receipt of an explosive, according to the FBI. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison. 

A search of Rosenfeld’s home following his arrest turned up a 200-pound bomb that had to be removed by bomb technicians, authorities said. Agents also found a fusing system and empty canisters that once held black powder. 

“As alleged, Paul M. Rosenfeld concocted a twisted plan to draw attention to his political ideology by killing himself on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. -- risking harm to many others in the process,” U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said in a news release. “Rosenfeld’s alleged plan for an Election Day detonation cut against our democratic principles. Thanks to outstanding coordination between local and federal law enforcement, Rosenfeld’s alleged plot was thwarted, and he is now in federal custody.”

Assistant FBI Director-In-Charge William F. Sweeney Jr. credited “the quick action of a concerned citizen and the diligent work of a host of … law enforcement partners and the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force” with thwarting Rosenfeld’s plans.

“I’d like to extend particular thanks to our partners with the Orangetown Police Department, the Rockland County Sheriff’s Office, the Rockland County District Attorney, the New York State Police, the New York City Police Department and the Stony Point Police Department for their respective roles in bring this investigation to a safe conclusion,” Sweeney said

>> Read more trending news

The criminal complaint against Rosenfeld accuses him of sending letters and text messages to an unnamed person in Pennsylvania in August and September, in which he said he planned to build a bomb he would detonate on Nov. 6 in Washington, D.C. NBC News reported that the person Rosenfeld contacted was a reporter. 

Rosenfeld said he wanted the bomb to draw attention to his political belief in sortition, the complaint said. 

According to the Sortition Foundation, sortition is the use of a random selection of people to fill political positions or make up assemblies. The practice has its roots in ancient Greece. 

“An assembly that uses sortition would be composed of people just like you and me: it would be a representative random sample of people, making decisions in an informed, fair and deliberative setting,” the foundation’s website said

The reporter contacted law enforcement authorities and reported what Rosenfeld told him, NBC News said

Read the entire federal criminal complaint against Paul Rosenfeld below. 

The subsequent probe into Rosenfeld’s actions led agents to conduct a traffic stop on Rosenfeld Tuesday, at which time he agreed to an interview with investigators. In that interview, Rosenfeld admitted that he’d ordered a large amount of black powder over the internet and transported the explosive substance from New Jersey to his home in New York, the criminal complaint said. 

He admitted using about 8 pounds of the black powder to build the Election Day bomb and said he “installed certain components in the explosive device to ensure that he was killed in the blast,” the court document said. 

Agents found the bomb intended for the National Mall in the basement of Rosenfeld’s Tappan home. 

“The explosive device is a plywood box that contained what appeared to the agents, based on their training and experience, to be black powder,” the complaint said. 

FBI experts X-rayed the device and determined that engaging the bomb’s firing switch would generate the necessary electrical charge to ignite the black powder inside the box, the document said. 

Rosenfeld said he’d built smaller bombs in the past and conducted test detonations to ensure that the bigger bomb would explode as planned, investigators said. 

Rosenfeld’s family has expressed relief that the alleged plot was uncovered in time, according to the Rockland/Westchester Journal News

“We’re grateful to the FBI for managing to find out about this so no one is harmed,” Rosenfeld’s father, Peter Rosenfeld, told the newspaper

Melania Trump claims she is ‘most bullied person’ in world

First lady Melania Trump claimed in an interview with ABC News that aired Thursday that she was “the most bullied person in the world.”

>> Read more trending news 

Trump’s comments were part of an interview with ABC News reporter Tom Llamas that touched on several topics. The first lady made her comments during her tour in Africa, where she was promoting her “Be Best” program, an initiative that raises awareness about online bullying, ABC News reported.

"I could say I'm the most bullied person on the world," Trump told Llamas, explaining why she wanted to take a stand against cyberbullying, particularly on social media.

"You're really the most bullied person in the world?" Llamas pressed.

"One of them, if you really see what people saying about me," Trump said.

Hurricane Michael: Trump likely to visit Florida, Georgia next week to survey storm damage

President Donald Trump is likely to visit storm-ravaged areas of Florida and Georgia hit by Hurricane Michael early next week, White House officials told reporters aboard Air Force One on Wednesday.

>> Hurricane Michael: Latest updates

The president spoke with Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal and Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey during the flight to receive updates on the storm, which barreled into Florida on Wednesday and pounded parts of south and middle Georgia with rain and wind.

>> On ActionNewsJax.com: Get the latest live updates on Hurricane Michael in Florida here.

>> On WSBTV.com: Get the latest live updates on Hurricane Michael in Georgia here.

The White House said Trump “offered any federal resources necessary and continues to receive regular updates.”

>> Read more trending news 

Read more here.

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