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Teen wearing 'MAGA' hat in controversial viral video speaks out in new interview

The teen seen wearing a "Make America Great Again" hat in a controversial viral video recorded last weekend outside the Lincoln Memorial told his side of the story in a "Today" show interview.

>> Watch the full interview here

The polarizing video showed Nick Sandmann, a junior at Covington Catholic High School in Park Hills, Kentucky, grinning and standing inches away from Vietnam veteran and former Native Youth Alliance director Nathan Phillips on Friday during the Indigenous Peoples March. Phillips can be seen drumming and chanting in the clip.

In an interview that aired Wednesday morning, Sandmann told "Today" host Savannah Guthrie that the incident occurred after members of another group, the Hebrew Israelites, called his school group "homophobic, racist, derogatory" names.

>> Teen wearing MAGA hat in protest video issues statement

"Our school was slandered by the African-Americans who had called us all sorts of things," Sandmann said.

The Hebrew Israelites, however, claimed that the Catholic students started the dispute, "Today" reported. But Sandmann said his group had been yelling school spirit chants.

"Did anyone shout any insults back or any racial slurs at the group?" Guthrie asked Sandmann.

>> Trump says Catholic students ‘treated unfairly’ after encounter at National Mall

"We're a Catholic school, and it's not tolerated," Sandmann replied. "They don't tolerate racism, and none of my classmates are racist people."

As the boys and Hebrew Israelites continued to clash, Phillips and other Native Americans stood between the two groups. Soon, Sandmann and Phillips were standing face-to-face. 

When asked what he had been thinking at the time, Sandmann said he just "wanted the situation to die down."

"I just wish he would've walked away," he said.

>> Actress Alyssa Milano calls red Trump MAGA hats ‘the new white hoods’

Although Phillips said he heard students yelling, "Build the wall," Sandmann denied the claim.

"I never heard anyone say, 'Build the wall,' and I don't think I've seen it in any videos," Sandmann said.

When Guthrie asked Sandmann why he didn't walk away, Sandmann said that in retrospect, he wishes he had.

"I didn't want to be disrespectful to Mr. Phillips and walk away if he was trying to talk to me," he said.

Sandmann said that contrary to what critics have said, he was not smirking at or taunting Phillips.

>> Read more trending news 

"I see it as a smile saying that this is the best you're going to get out of me," he told Guthrie. "You won't get any further reaction of aggression."

Sandmann said he has the "utmost respect" for Phillips.

"It’s another person that freely used his First Amendment right, and I want to thank him for his military service, as well," Sandmann said, adding that he'd "certainly like to speak" with Phillips.

Sandmann said he has received both supportive and negative messages in wake of the incident.

"People have threatened our lives," he said.

Read more here.

'Fox & Friends' apologizes for mistakenly airing Ruth Bader Ginsburg obituary graphic

"Fox & Friends" has apologized for mistakenly airing an apparent obituary graphic for Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

According to USA Today, the image of Ginsburg, overlaid with her name and the dates 1933-2019, aired Monday morning before co-host Ainsley Earhardt introduced an unrelated report featuring a college professor.

>> See the moment here

The show's hosts later addressed the issue.

>> Read more trending news 

"We need to apologize," said co-host Steve Doocy. "At the beginning of Ainsley's interview with the professor, a technical error in the control room triggered a graphic of Ruth Bader Ginsburg with a date on it. We don't want to make it seem anything other than that was a mistake. That was an accident. We believe she is still at home recovering from surgery."

Earhardt echoed the sentiment, saying, “We apologize. Big mistake.”

>> Watch the apology here

In a statement, Fox News told USA Today that the incident was "a technical error that emanated from the graphics team."

Ginsburg, 85, had cancer surgery in December and has missed some court arguments as she recovers at home, The Associated Press reported Jan. 11.

Read more here.

Trump tweets late Hall of Fame support for Curt Schilling

President Donald Trump made a late push for former major league pitcher Curt Schilling to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, tweeting Sunday night that the right-hander had a “Great record, especially when under pressure and when it mattered most.”

>> Read more trending news 

The endorsement came three weeks too late, however, as ballots for the Hall of Fame were due Dec. 31, Sports Illustrated reported. 

The results of the votes will be announced Tuesday, and the new members will be inducted July 21 in Cooperstown, New York.

Schilling, 52, is an outspoken conservative and Trump supporter. He appeared in four World Series, winning with the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2001 and the Boston Red Sox in 2004 and 2007. He also appeared in the 1993 World Series with the Philadelphia Phillies.Schilling had a 162-111 record during his 20-year major league career, but was 11-2 during the postseason and won four of five World Series decisions. He is considered an outside shot to earn election to Cooperstown this year, according to Baseball Hall of Fame Vote Tracker. 

Schilling has appeared on the Hall of Fame ballot every year since 2013 but has only received a high of 52.3 percent support, Sports Illustrated reported.

Lady Gaga slams Trump over shutdown, Pence over LGBTQ rights

Lady Gaga isn't holding back when it comes to her feelings about the partial government shutdown and LGBTQ rights.

>> Bon Jovi's restaurant to serve free meal to federal workers furloughed during shutdown

According to Billboard, the award-winning singer and actress got political during a weekend show in Las Vegas, blasting President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence. 

>> Watch the moment here (WARNING: Linked video contains profanity.)

"If the [expletive] president of the United States could please put our government back. ... There are people who live paycheck to paycheck and need their money," she said to cheers from the audience.

Gaga also slammed Pence and his wife, Karen Pence.

>> Read more trending news 

"To Mike Pence, who thinks it's acceptable that his wife works at a school that bans LGBTQ: You are wrong," she said, calling him "the worst representation of what it means to be a Christian."

Gaga was referring to reports that the second lady was hired by Immanuel Christian School in Virginia, where students can be expelled or denied admission for “condoning sexual immorality, homosexual activity or bi-sexual activity,” according to the Washington Post.

Read more here.

Who is Kamala Harris? 5 things to know

Sen. Kamala Harris, D-California, announced Monday that she is running for president in 2020.

>> Read more trending news 

Here are some things to know about Harris.

She’s a California native.

Born Oct. 20, 1964, in Oakland, California, Harris is the daughter of Donald Harris, a Stanford University economics professor who immigrated from Jamaica, and Shyamala Gopalan Harris, who was a cancer scientist and the daughter of an Indian diplomat. She has a sister named Maya who is a public policy advocate.

She’s an HBCU grad.

Harris studied political science and economics at Howard University, a historically black university. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1986 and got her law degree from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law.

>>Read: HBCUs: Born in the North but most needed in the South

She’s an attorney.

Although she hasn’t practiced since she’s been in office as a senator, Harris was deputy district attorney in Oakland, California, from 1990 to 1998. While there, she specialized in prosecuting sexual assault cases involving children.

From 2004 to 2011, she was the 27th district attorney of San Francisco. She  made history in 2010 when she was elected attorney general of California, becoming the first female and first African-American to have the position. She ran again in 2014 and was re-elected.

She’s an author.

Harris wrote “Smart on Crime: A Career Prosecutor's Plan to Make Us Safer” in 2009. The book examines myths in the criminal justice system and solutions to improve approaches to fighting crime. Her memoir, “The Truths We Hold: An American Journey,” will be released in 2019.

She’s a stepmother of two.

Harris married Doug Emhoff, a lawyer, in 2014, making her stepmother to his children from a previous marriage, Ella and Cole Emhoff.

Bon Jovi's restaurant to serve free meal to federal workers furloughed during shutdown

As many federal workers go without paychecks during the partial government shutdown, rock star Jon Bon Jovi is stepping up to help.

>> ‘SNL’ takes on government shutdown with 'Deal or No Deal' parody

According to WNBC, the "Livin' on a Prayer" singer and his wife, Dorothea Hurley, own JBJ Soul Kitchen, a nonprofit New Jersey restaurant whose customers usually volunteer or make a donation in exchange for meals. But thanks to a partnership with the Murphy Family Foundation, furloughed federal employees can eat for free from noon to 2 p.m. Monday at the restaurant's Red Bank location. 

>> Trump offers deal to end shutdown in Saturday speech

"In line with our mission, federal workers are encouraged to join us for a delicious meal and to learn about additional support and resources available in our community," the restaurant said in a Facebook post Saturday.

>> See the post here

>> Need something to lift your spirits? Read more uplifting news 

In a statement, Bon Jovi and Hurley said they wanted to "create a place of support and resources for furloughed federal workers, many of whom are our friends and neighbors," WNBC reported.

>> Read more trending news 

The couple also said they are "thrilled" to be working on the project with New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy and his wife, Tammy, who run the Murphy Family Foundation.

Read more here.

'SNL' takes on government shutdown with 'Deal or No Deal' parody

The government shutdown got the game show treatment as "Saturday Night Live" returned to TV screens this weekend.

>> Government shutdown: Senate to take up Trump plan this week

Saturday's episode, hosted by actress Rachel Brosnahan, didn't waste any time tackling the issue, pitting Alec Baldwin's Donald Trump against parodies of Democratic leaders in a "Deal or No Deal" spoof.

>> Watch the sketch here

"We decided to do this in the only format you can understand – a TV game show with women holding briefcases," Kenan Thompson, playing Steve Harvey, told Baldwin's Trump as the game began. 

>> Trump offers deal to end shutdown in Saturday speech

The fake Trump opened with an offer to extend Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals and "release the kids from cages so they can be free-range kids" in exchange for $5 billion toward a border wall. But House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (Kate McKinnon) wasn't having it.

"OK, $1 billion and you say, 'Nancy's my mommy,'" she countered, opening a briefcase bearing the same words. 

Baldwin's Trump refused, then called on Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (Alex Moffat).

>> Read more trending news 

"My offer is whatever you want," Moffat's Schumer said before changing his offer to, "$15 and a pastrami on rye."

Baldwin's Trump also turned to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (Beck Bennett) and Democratic U.S. Reps. Maxine Waters (Leslie Jones) and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (Melissa Villaseñor) before accepting a deal from a Clemson football player (Pete Davidson) with a box of fast food.

"Hamberders," it read – a reference to a spelling mistake in one of Trump's tweets.

Read more here.

Rudy Giuliani claims he 'never said there was no collusion' between Trump campaign, Russia

In a Wednesday interview with CNN's Chris Cuomo, Rudy Giuliani claimed he has never said "nobody" involved with President Donald Trump's 2016 campaign colluded with Russia – just that Trump himself did not.

>> Watch the clip here

>> Jamie Dupree: Pelosi suggests delay for Trump State of the Union due to shutdown

"I never said there was no collusion between the campaign or between people in the campaign," said Giuliani, Trump's personal attorney. "I have no idea."

"Yes, you did," Cuomo interjected.

>> Jamie Dupree: Mueller not involved in ‘witch hunt’ over Russia probe, Barr says

"No, I did not," Giuliani said. "I said the president of the United States. There is not a single bit of evidence the president of the United States committed the only crime you could commit here – conspired with the Russians to hack the DNC."

>> Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani: 'Collusion is not a crime'

"First of all, crime is not the bar of accountability for a president," Cuomo replied. "It's about what you knew, what was right and what was wrong, and what did you deceive about. Those are the major considerations."

>> Read more trending news 

"The president did not collude with the Russians," Giuliani said, claiming that Trump never said "nobody" in his campaign colluded with Russia.

"He said he didn't," Giuliani said.

"He actually did say that, Rudy," Cuomo said.

According to the Washington Post, Trump frequently has denied that his campaign colluded with Russia.

"The Trump campaign did nothing wrong – no collusion," Trump tweeted in February 2018

>> See the tweet here

Six months later, he tweeted: "Russian Collusion with the Trump Campaign, one of the most successful in history, is a TOTAL HOAX."

>> See the tweet here

Additionally, Trump wrote in December that "Democrats can't find a Smocking Gun (sic) tying the Trump campaign to Russia after James Comey's testimony." 

>> Read it here

Giuliani appeared to back similar statements in a July interview with Fox News' Guy Benson, the Post reported.

"Is it still the position of you and your client that there was no collusion with the Russians whatsoever on behalf of the Trump campaign?" Benson asked Giuliani.

"Correct," he said, according to the Post.

Read more here.

Michael Strahan offers Clemson Tigers 'proper meal' after Trump dinner

Just a day after the Clemson Tigers dined on fast food at the White House, former NFL star and "Good Morning America" host Michael Strahan offered to give the college football champs a "proper meal."

>> Trump serves fast-food smorgasbord to Clemson Tigers during White House celebration

"I would like to invite the Clemson Tiger football team here for a great meal," Strahan said during Tuesday's broadcast. "Come out here, everybody. Whoever can make it, we'll hook you up with lobster. ... Whatever you want, we're gonna take care of you."

>> Read more trending news 

Co-host Sara Haines suggested they add caviar to the menu.

"Per egg is a lot of money," she said. "Are you paying? We don't have a lot of money."

"It's out of my pocket," Strahan replied. "I've got you guys." 

>> Watch the clip here

Earlier that morning, President Donald Trump tweeted that he served the football team fast food "because of the shutdown" and personally paid for the spread.

>> Check out a video from the dinner below

Georgia church gives members affected by government shutdown nearly $300 each

The partial government shutdown continues and many federal workers haven't been paid in weeks, so a Georgia church stepped in to help its members who have been impacted.

>> Watch the news report here

>> On WSBTV.com: Government shutdown becomes longest in U.S. history

Church members at New Birth Missionary Baptist Church were able to raise enough money to give fellow members affected by the government shutdown nearly $300 each in cash.

Pastor Dr. Jamal Bryant, who joined the church in December as the new senior pastor, said he felt he and his congregation had a responsibility to help those in need. He said 30 people went to the altar Sunday, Jan. 6, seeking aid.

>> On WSBTV.com: Jamal Bryant named as new senior pastor of New Birth

“When the government shuts down is when the church needs to be wide open,” Bryant said. "When I originally brought them down, I was just going to pray for them."

But the pastor said God spoke to him and asked him to do more.

>> Read more trending news 

"I ain't waiting on the Democrats or the Republicans," Bryant said.

The pastor asked members to dig in their pockets and give to those not getting paid.

"I was absolutely blown away. I've only been in here a month. I had no idea that compassion was this high in Atlanta," Bryant said.

>> Jamie Dupree: Coast Guard misses paychecks as partial shutdown reaches Day 25

Now the pastor is looking at other ways to help those affected by the shutdown.

"Whether or not we can do potluck dinners for families to be able to come – gift cards to grocery stores," Bryant said.

>> Need something to lift your spirits? Read more uplifting news 

He said there are more people in need based on the comments he got from those who missed the service.

"You can't imagine how many people said, 'Oh, I missed last Sunday. Are y'all going to do it again?'" Bryant said.

Bryant said his team is looking at ways to help members on an ongoing basis until the shutdown ends. He said it's the church's job to help those in need.

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