IDENTIFIED: California Mass Shooter Huu Can Tran, 72, Took His Life with Handgun During Police Standoff
Connect with us



The gunman who slaughtered 10 people during Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations in Monterey, California was found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in the van he used to flee after his attempt at a second shooting that was thwarted by ‘hero’ patrons.

‘He intended to kill more people,’ Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert Luna said in a news conference. Sunday night.

Luna identified the man as 72-year-old Huu Can Tran and said no other suspects were at large. He added that the motive remained unclear for the attack, which wounded 10 others. Seven people remain hospitalized.

The weapon suspected to have been used in the mass shooting was a magazine-fed semi-automatic assault pistol, which was also found in the van, Luna said.

Earlier Sunday, law enforcement officials swarmed and entered the van after surrounding it for for hours before hearing a gunshot. They found Tran’s body in the driver’s seat slumped over the steering wheel.

The standoff came after 10 people were shot and killed at a ballroom dance studio late Saturday amid Lunar New Years celebrations in the predominantly Asian American community of Monterey Park.

Luna said the shooting at the Star Ballroom Dance Studio in Monterey Park left five women and five men dead and wounded another 10 people. Then 20 to 30 minutes later, the gunman entered the Lai Lai Ballroom in nearby Alhambra.

The suspect entered the Alhambra club with a gun, but people wrestled the weapon away from him before he fled, Luna said.

‘Remember, the suspect went to the Alhambra location after he conducted the shooting and he was disarmed by two community members who I consider to be heroes,’ Luna said on Sunday.

He added: ‘They saved lives. This could’ve been much worse. The weapon that we recovered at that second scene I am describing as a magazine-fed semiautomatic assault pistol. Not an assault rifle, but an assault pistol that had an extended large capacity magazine attached to it.’

Hours earlier, Luna said authorities were looking for a white van after witnesses reported seeing the suspect flee from Alhambra in such a vehicle.

Shortly after 10 p.m. Saturday, officers arrived on the scene of the shooting in response to a call of shots fired and found 10 people wounded outside the dance studio. The 10 wounded individuals were transported to local hospitals where they are in stable to critical condition, according to Luna.

The three-hour standoff ended when police broke into the vehicle and pulled out a mound of bloody sheets on Sunday afternoon.

By midday, police in tactical vehicles and bomb-squad trucks surrounded a white van in a parking lot 22 miles from Alhambra in Torrance, another majority Asian community.

‘We believe there is a person inside of that vehicle. We don’t know their condition, but we’re going to handle that in safest manner that we possibly can and try and identify that person. Could it be our suspect? Possibly,’ Luna said.

As officers during the standoff commanded the van’s occupant to exit the van, they reportedly heard the driver shoot himself.

For many tense moments following, the operation for the SWAT team became getting inside the van.

Eventually, officers smashed their way into the vehicle before before moving on to a second, similar-looking van nearby where they cracked the lock and forced their way in through the back.

The sheriff’s office moments earlier said the man in the first vehicle matched the description of their suspect, of whom they had released a photograph.

  • Don says:

    At least he’s gone and not where Newscum or some ignorant DA can release him like they always do. Justice served.

  • Magdiel says:

    “Magazine-fed semi-automatic assault pistol?” This should say “magazine-fed semi-automatic pistol”. What is a
    Magazine-fed semi-automatic “assault” pistol. If you come to think that way all guns, Knives and other tools that kill people are assault weapons. Democrats have great indoctrination. They even have conservatives saying assault weapons.

  • Magdiel says:


  • Sally says:

    Where is his picture? What was his description?

  • ⬇️ Top Picks for You ⬇️


    James O’Keefe Placed on Leave by Project Veritas Board



    James O’Keefe, the founder and chairman of Project Veritas, has taken a paid leave of absence as the board considers his future with the organization.

    The executive director, Daniel Strack, sent an internal message to employees stating that O’Keefe would be taking “a few weeks of well-deserved PTO.”

    The statement from the organization did not address O’Keefe’s employment status and referred to Project Veritas being “dedicated to continuing the mission to expose corruption, dishonesty, waste, fraud, and other misconduct in both public and private institutions.”

    A board meeting is scheduled for Friday to discuss O’Keefe’s potential removal amid reports of internal turmoil and lawsuits from former employees. reported:

    James O’Keefe, the founder and chairman of Project Veritas, has taken a paid leave from the nonprofit media organization as its board considers whether to remove him from his leadership position, according to current and former employees of the organization.

    An internal message sent to Project Veritas employees by the organization’s executive director, Daniel Strack, said that O’Keefe would be taking “a few weeks of well-deserved PTO.” An image of the message was shared by a source familiar with the organization’s internal operations, and its authenticity was confirmed by a current employee. When reached for comment on his personal cell phone, O’Keefe said nothing in response and did not respond to follow-up calls and text messages.

    Through a Project Veritas spokesman, Strack later released a statement on behalf of the organization. “Like all newsrooms at this stage, the Project Veritas Board of Directors and Management are constantly evaluating what the best path forward is for the organization,” the statement read in part. It did not directly address questions about O’Keefe’s employment status. “There are 65+ employees at Project Veritas dedicated to continuing the mission to expose corruption, dishonesty, waste, fraud, and other misconduct in both public and private institutions,” the statement read. “To our supporters: We hear you, we care about you, and we will never give up.”

    O’Keefe is his organization’s guiding ideological force and onscreen face, but his status as its day-to-day manager has become uncertain amid reports of internal turmoil, and lawsuits from former employees.

    Strack’s internal message to employees made reference to what he called “a distracting time” and said that a board meeting had been held to discuss “the health of the organization” and that while “we have not come up with final solutions yet we have made a few immediate decisions.” The message said two top Project Veritas executives, including the nonprofit’s chief financial officer, had been “reinstated.”

    Multiple sources said that the pair had recently been fired by O’Keefe.

    A meeting of the Project Veritas board is scheduled for Friday, when O’Keefe’s potential removal is set to be discussed. The source said that Project Veritas was currently divided between a group of employees who are perceived to be loyal to O’Keefe, including his communications adviser, R.C. Maxwell, and the board, which has been dissatisfied with what it perceives as O’Keefe’s mismanagement.

    Matthew Tyrmand, a journalist who serves on Project Veritas’ board, said he was about to walk into a meeting and could not talk when reached on his cell phone on Wednesday. When asked specifically if O’Keefe was being ousted, he replied: “I just said I was walking into a meeting and this was not the appropriate time. What don’t you understand about that?” He did not respond to subsequent phone calls.

    Go deeper ( 2 min. read ) ➝


    White House Responds to Report That US Blew Up Nord Stream Pipelines



    Government spokespeople said on Wednesday that a bombshell report claiming that the United States Navy destroyed the Nord Stream pipeline system is “utterly false.”

    The pipelines, which carried natural gas under the Baltic Sea from Russia to Germany, had been the center of geopolitical strife before and after the invasion of Ukraine. Russia nixed shipments through Nord Stream 1 months into the conflict as a retaliatory measure against Western Europe, while Germany blocked the adjacent Nord Stream 2 from initiating shipments days before the war started. Sweden and Denmark reported severe damage to the pipelines in September as natural gas spewed toward the surface of the Baltic Sea.

    Seymour Hersh, an investigative journalist who won a Pulitzer Prize for exposing the clandestine My Lai Massacre during the Vietnam War, said in an article published on Wednesday that Navy divers planted remotely triggered explosives on the Nord Stream pipelines during widely publicized training exercises over the summer. The report, which was based on the testimony of an unnamed source, claimed that President Joe Biden viewed the pipelines as an avenue through which Russian President Vladimir Putin could weaponize his country’s natural gas supply for his territorial ambitions.

    Biden threatened last year that “there will no longer be a Nord Stream 2” if Russia crossed the Ukrainian border and insisted to a journalist that “we will be able” to bring an “end” to the system. The commander-in-chief initially waived sanctions against the Russian-owned company behind Nord Stream 2, although he reimposed sanctions shortly before the invasion started.

    White House spokesperson Adrienne Watson said the notion that the United States destroyed the pipelines was “false and complete fiction,” while CIA spokesperson Tammy Thorp said the claim was “completely and utterly false” when asked for comment by Hersh. Some European officials said Russia may have destroyed its own pipelines; others blamed the United States.

    Top national security officials and military brass had reportedly agreed that the United States should destroy the Nord Stream pipelines, but debated for months over the best method for accomplishing the objective, according to Hersh. Biden administration leadership eventually turned to Navy divers who had been trained at a school in Florida to use explosives while executing assignments such as clearing debris-filled harbors and destroying foreign oil rigs.

    While officials in the Navy suggested assaulting the pipeline with a submarine and officials in the Air Force suggested dropping bombs with delayed remote control fuses, CIA officials emphasized that the action would have to be utterly covert. “This is not kiddie stuff,” the source told Hersh, noting that the attack would constitute “an act of war” if traced to the United States.

    After the Nord Stream pipelines were destroyed last year, Secretary of State Antony Blinken called the phenomenon a “tremendous opportunity” to end European reliance on Russian energy supplies. Even though the pipelines were not pumping natural gas, protesters in Germany had been calling for the energy flow to resume as electricity prices increased more than twentyfold. Crippling the pipelines eliminated the possibility of Germany lifting sanctions in time to import natural gas for the winter.

    Go deeper ( 2 min. read ) ➝


    GOP Rep. Details Own Health Complications from COVID Vaccine During Twitter Hearing



    Rep. Nancy Mace said Wednesday she had “great regrets” about taking the COVID-19 vaccine after experiencing unexplained medical difficulties following her second dose.

    The South Carolina Republican made the revelations during a House Oversight and Accountability hearing focused on Twitter’s censorship of the Hunter Biden laptop story ahead of the 2020 election and Twitter’s collusion with federal agents to suppress free speech.

    Twitter’s former chief legal officer Vijaya Gadde, former deputy general counsel James Baker and former head of trust and safety Yoel Roth faced lawmakers for the first time since Twitter’s new owner, Elon Musk, began releasing a trove of internal “Twitter Files” that showed the platform’s left-wing bent that fueled the censorship of conservative viewpoints.

    Ms. Mace questioned the three witnesses on their decision to flag posts by Jay Bhattacharya, a Stanford doctor who was critical of the government’s response to the pandemic.

    “I, along with many Americans, have long-term effects from COVID,” she said. “Not only was I a long hauler, but I have effects from the vaccine. It wasn’t the first shot, but it was the second shot that I now developed asthma that has never gone away since the second shot. I have tremors in my left hand and I have the occasional heart pain that no doctor can explain.

    “I have great regrets about getting the shot because of the health issues that I now have that I think are never going to go away.”

    She added: “I find it extremely alarming [that] Twitter’s unfettered censorship spread into medical fields and affected many Americans by suppressing expert opinions from doctors and censoring those who disagree with the CDC.”

    The hearing is the first in a series focused on “protecting speech from government interference and social media bias,” according to the committee. It also is the opening salvo in the committee’s probe into President Biden and his family’s long trail of suspicious business dealings.

    Rep. Jamie Raskin of Maryland, the top Democrat on the committee, accused Republicans of pursuing “already debunked and hyperpartisan conspiracy theories about President Biden, his family and the so-called deep state.”

    “Conspiracy theories and disinformation are already at a fever pitch in the new Congress,” he said. “Committee Democrats stand ready to work with our Republican colleagues when they get serious about tackling the problems that affect the American people.”

    Go deeper ( 2 min. read ) ➝


    ABC Producer Dax Tejera’s Cause of Death Revealed



    More details are emerging surrounding the shocking death of up-and-coming ABC News producer Dax Tejera, who died in December at age 37.

    ABC News president Kim Godwin previously wrote in a memo to staff that the “This Week” executive producer had “passed away suddenly of a heart attack,” leaving behind his wife and two young children.

    However, the Daily Mail reported Wednesday that he Tejera had actually “choked on food due to being intoxicated” according to the New York City’s Office of Chief Medical Examiner.

    “The official cause of death was given as: ‘Asphyxia due to obstruction of airway by food bolus complicating acute alcohol intoxication,’” the Daily Mail wrote.

    The inconsistency between ABC News and the medical examiner are accompanied by the disturbing circumstances that surround his death.

    His widow, Veronica Tejera, was arrested hours later and charged with child endangerment when it was revealed the couple left two young children unattended in a hotel room prior to his death.

    The Tejeras were allegedly dining out at a ritzy New York City steakhouse with friends as their two-year-old and five-month-old were by themselves for at least two hours at the nearby Yale Club.

    Yale Club staff reportedly called the police upon learning about the unattended children.

    Veronica Tejera, a senior producer at The Washington Post, admitted it was a “poor decision” to leave their children in the hotel room, insisting they had “two cameras” monitoring them as the couple dined out.

    ABC News has been plagued with controversy in recent weeks, most prominently the ousting of “GMA3” co-hosts TJ Holmes and Amy Robach, who were caught having an extramarital affair.

    Holmes and Robach were initially benched in late December after their steamy romance began making tabloid headlines.

    It has since been reported that Holmes has had multiple flings with younger ABC staffers over the years.

    Last month, Holmes and Robach reached a deal with the Disney-owned network to officially part ways.

    “After several productive conversations with Amy Robach and T.J. Holmes about different options, we all agreed it’s best for everyone that they move on from ABC News. We recognize their talent and commitment over the years and are thankful for their contributions,” an ABC News spokesperson told Fox News Digital.

    The lovebirds are separating from their spouses as a result of the affair.

    Go deeper ( 2 min. read ) ➝


    WHO Warns ‘We Must Prepare’ for Bird Flu Pandemic as H5N1 Avian Strain Jumps to Mammals



    The World Health Organization has warned the world must prepare for a potential human bird flu pandemic — after the strain jumped from birds to mammals.

    Cases of the strain H5N1 have already been reported in otters, mink and foxes, sparking fears the virus is one step closer to sweeping into humans.

    During a virtual briefing today, the WHO’s director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus urged nations to monitor infections in mammals closely.

    He said the risk of the virus jumping to humans was still low, but we ‘cannot assume that will remain the case and we must prepare for any change in the status quo’.

    It comes after the UK reported that its biggest-ever avian influenza outbreak had spilled over to mammals. There was also an outbreak among mink in North West Spain reported last month.

    H5N1 has previously been detected in people, but cases have been sporadic and closely linked to close contact with infected dead or live birds.

    The virus does not infect humans easily or other mammals.

    But reports of infections in mammals have raised concerns that the pathogen could gain mutations that make it easier for the virus to jump to humans, helping it to clear the biggest hurdle that has stopped it from sweeping the world.

    Leading experts previously warned that the spread of bird flu poses a global risk until it is brought under control.

    The US has faced a major outbreak of bird flu this year, with more than 58million poultry affected across nearly every state in the country and 6,100 in wild birds — approaching record levels for the country.

    Experts have warned that outbreaks among mink could lead to a recombination event — when two viruses switch genetic material to make a new hybrid.

    A similar process is thought to have caused the global 2009 swine flu crisis that infected millions across the planet.

    The same biological phenomenon was also seen during the Covid pandemic, such as the so-called Deltacron — a recombination of Delta and Omicron, first detected in France last February.

    For decades, scientists have warned that bird flu is the most likely contender for triggering the next pandemic.

    This could see a deadly strain of bird flu merge with a transmissible seasonal flu.

    The mink outbreak occurred on a farm in Galicia, north-west Spain, in October which housed 52,000 of the animals.

    It was only spotted after a sudden surge in the animals dying. Up to four percent died in one week during the course of the outbreak, which was declared over by mid-November.

    Farm vets swabbed the minks and the samples were analyzed at a Government lab, where they tested positive for H5N1.

    It led to all of the animals being culled, farm workers isolating for 10 days and heightened security measures in farms across the country.

    These included wearing face masks and disposable overalls and showering before leaving the premises.

    Analysis of samples taken, which were published last month in the infectious disease journal Eurosurveillance, show the virus had gained nearly a dozen mutations — most of which had never or rarely been seen before in bird flu strains.

    One was previously seen in the virus behind the 2009 global swine flu pandemic.

    In the UK, a December report showed four samples from the infected otters and foxes ‘show the presence of a mutation which is associated with potential advantages for mammalian infection’.

    The UKHSA warned that the ‘rapid and consistent acquisition of the mutation in mammals may imply this virus has a propensity to cause zoonotic infections’ — meaning it could potentially spread to humans.

    Go deeper ( 2 min. read ) ➝


    Lauren Southern’s Parents Banned by Airbnb Because Their Daughter Is Conservative Activist — Airbnb Responds



    Canadian conservative activist and YouTuber Lauren Southern announced Tuesday that her parents had been banned from vacation rental property company Airbnb for being “closely associated” with their daughter.

    “We’ve removed you from the Airbnb platform because your account is closely associated with a person who isn’t allowed to use Airbnb,” an email from the company to Southern’s parents said. “This means you’ll no longer be able to book reservations on Airbnb.”

    Southern was banned from Airbnb years ago over her Right-wing political views and was denied reinstatement when she tried to appeal.

    “My parents just got banned from AirBnB for being related to me,” Southern captioned the now-viral Twitter post. “They have never booked anything for me. They do not represent me in any way. They aren’t publicly political in any way. How is this sane in any way [Airbnb].”

    As of Wednesday morning, Southern’s post about the ban has received more than 6.8 million views.

    “My parents are some of the sweetest people I know. They were just planning a romantic getaway, they aren’t political activists,” she added. “All I’ve learned is that if governments and corporations can’t shut you up by harming you, they’ll now go for your families.”

    Airbnb told The Daily Wire the banning of Southern’s parents was a “mistake.”

    “We have reinstated their accounts and apologized to them for this mistake,” a spokesperson said.

    The Daily Wire reached out to Southern about the response, and she said she believes Airbnb is “lying” about the ban being a mistake and only backtracked because of the public blowback.

    “I think it’s obvious to everyone that my parents never would’ve been reinstated if Airbnb didn’t start trending last night,” Southern told The Daily Wire.

    “How do you accidentally find a political activist’s parents?” she posed. “How do you accidentally ban them after she was banned 3 years ago? How do you accidentally write an email that specifically highlights they’re being banned for their associations?”

    “I could see someone accidentally being locked out of their account for a glitch that emails them a generic letter, this was no generic letter nor random family. Airbnb are lying,” Southern asserted. “This was no mistake, it only became one when the world was less woke than they thought.”

    Go deeper ( 2 min. read ) ➝


    Bill Gates Seen with Rumored New Girlfriend at Australian Open



    Bill Gates reportedly has been dating Paula Hurd, the widow of late Oracle co-CEO Mark Hurd, for more than a year.

    “They’re inseparable,” a friend of the rumored couple told the Daily Mail Wednesday. “They’ve been together over a year, and she’s always described as a ‘mystery woman,’ but it’s no mystery to their inner circle that they’re in a romantic relationship.”

    Paula’s husband died at the age of 62 in October 2019 after a reported battle with cancer. He had an estimated net worth of $500 million at the time of his death.

    Mark ran computer and printer maker Hewlett-Packard from 2005 to 2010. He left over a sexual harassment scandal and joined Oracle a month later.

    Paula, meanwhile, once worked as a tech executive and is now an event planner and philanthropist.

    Paula, 60, and Gates, 67, run in the same circles and had crossed paths before Mark’s death thanks to their mutual love of tennis. They were photographed sitting in the same box at a tennis match in 2015.

    Just last month, she and the Microsoft co-founder were spotted watching the Men’s Singles Final together at the Australian Open in Melbourne, Australia. They further fueled romance rumors when they were seen taking a walk together around the Aussie city, but at the time she had not been identified.

    Paula and Mark shared two daughters, Kathryn and Kelly.

    Gates, for his part, was married to his now-ex-wife, Melinda Gates, for 27 years. They finalized their divorce in August 2021.

    He and Melinda, 58, share three kids: Jennifer, 26, Rory, 23, and Phoebe, 20.

    Bill, who has a net worth of $106 billion, admitted on the “Today” show in May 2022 that he caused pain” in his marriage to Melinda but declined to discuss “the particulars.”

    Amid his divorce, the business magnate admitted to having an affair with a Microsoft employee more than 20 years prior.

    Go deeper ( 2 min. read ) ➝


    Madonna Responds to Critics Mocking Her ‘Unrecognizable’ Grammys Face



    Madonna responded Tuesday to fans and critics who were surprised by her appearance at the 65th Annual Grammy Awards last weekend.

    Photos of the 64-year-old pop star quickly went viral as social media users said Madonna looked “unrecognizable” at the show. They speculated that she had extensive plastic surgery and other cosmetic procedures, though none of those rumors have been confirmed.

    “Madonna looks good for her age… if her age is 2,700 year old vampire who eats babies and small animals alive,” comedian Tim Young wrote in a popular tweet.

    Now the “Like a Prayer” singer has issued a response to all the questions in a lengthy Instagram post.

    “Instead of focusing on what I said in my speech which was about giving thanks for the fearlessness of artists like Sam and Kim — many people chose to only talk about close-up photos of me taken with a long lens camera By a press photographer that would distort anyone’s face!!” she began, referencing how she introduced singers Sam Smith and Kim Petras preceding their controversial, Satanic-themed performance of their song “Unholy.”

    “Once again I am caught in the glare of ageism and misogyny that permeates the world we live in. A world that refuses to celebrate women pass [sic] the age of 45 And feels the need to punish her If she continues to be strong-willed, hard-working, and adventurous,” Madonna went on.

    She claimed to have “never apologized for any of the creative choices” she’s made during her career, including the way she dresses and looks.

    “I have been degraded by the media since the beginning of my career but I understand that this is all a test and I am happy to do the trailblazing so that all the women behind me can have an easier time in the years to come,” the singer continued.

    Madonna concluded by quoting the Beyoncé song “Break My Soul” and saying, “I look forward to many more years of subversive behavior — pushing boundaries — standing up to the patriarchy — and most of all enjoying my life.”

    Go deeper ( 2 min. read ) ➝


    DeSantis Responds to Trump’s Claims He Groomed High School Children



    Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis responded on Wednesday after former President Donald Trump suggested he was guilty of “grooming” teen girls.

    “I face defamatory stuff every single day I’ve been governor, that’s just the nature of it,” DeSantis said. “I’d also just say this. I spend my time delivering results for the people of Florida and fighting against Joe Biden.”

    “That’s how I spend my time,” DeSantis continued as the audience erupted in cheers. “I don’t spend my time trying to smear other Republicans.”

    Trump promoted a post that showed a grainy photograph of someone alleged to be DeSantis standing next to several women at a party who appear to be roughly the same age.

    “Here is Ron DeSanctimonious grooming high school girls with alcohol as a teacher,” the post claimed.

    Trump promoted the post on his social media channel, writing: “That’s not Ron, is it? He would never do such a thing!”

    The New York Times previously reported that the photo was published by a blog run by a Democrat super PAC and that two former female students said parties that DeSantis attended “took place after” they had graduated.

    Late last month, Trump, in a series of comments to reporters and in social media posts, claimed credit for DeSantis’ success, called him a “globalist” who would be “very disloyal” to mount a 2024 presidential bid, and sought once again to stick DeSantis with the Trumpian moniker “Ron DeSanctimonius.” But the Sunshine State governor appeared unfazed by the attacks.

    Trump has also attacked DeSantis’ response to the coronavirus pandemic even though most Republicans look at Florida as the model for success in promoting freedom and beating back government control over people’s lives.

    “Ron DeSanctimonious” did “FAR WORSE than many other Republican governors, including that he unapologetically shut down Florida,” Trump claimed in one social media post.

    Trump’s harsh treatment of DeSantis on his handling of the pandemic was a dramatic departure from previous remarks. During a press conference on March 31, 2020, Trump called DeSantis a “great governor” who “knows exactly what he’s doing” in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

    DeSantis responded to Trump’s attacks at the end of the month by saying that voters are the ones to render a judgment on how politicians are performing their jobs.

    “I roll out of bed, I have people attacking me from all angles. It’s been happening for many, many years,” DeSantis said, adding that “in a crisis situation like COVID, the good thing about it is when you’re an elected executive, you have to make all kinds of decisions, you’ve got to steer that ship.”

    “And the good thing is, is that the people are able to render a judgment on that, whether they reelect you or not,” DeSantis said. “And I’m happy to say, you know, in my case, not only did we win re-election, we won with the highest percentage of the vote that any Republican governor candidate has in the history of the state of Florida.”

    “We won by the largest raw vote margin, over 1.5 million votes, than any governor candidate has ever had in Florida history. And in fact, we almost doubled the previous record, which I think was like 780,000 vote margin,” DeSantis added. “And so what I would just say is, that verdict has been rendered by the people of the state of Florida.”

    Go deeper ( 3 min. read ) ➝


    Outbursts, Shushing and a Surprise Kiss: The Top 5 Moments from Biden’s SOTU



    President Biden gave his second State of the Union address that acted as a soft launch for his 2024 presidential bid Tuesday night, earning cheers from Democrats for his calls to ban “assault weapons” and codify Roe v. Wade and jeers from Republicans on the border and Social Security.

    Here are the top five moments from the speech.

    1. ‘Liar!’

    Chaos briefly erupted in the House chamber after Biden repeated an old Democratic talking point that has long been debunked by fact-checkers.

    “Some Republicans want Medicare and Social Security to sunset,” Biden claimed.

    “I’m not saying it’s a majority,” he continued as Republican congressional members began to protest. “Anybody who doubts it, contact my office, I’ll give you a copy. I’ll give you a copy of the proposal.”

    “Liar!” Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., shouted.

    Biden backtracked saying, “I’m not saying it’s a majority of you. I don’t even think it’s even a significant — but it’s being proposed by individuals. I’m politely not naming them, but it’s being proposed by some of you.”

    Some Republicans have supported designating all federal programs under the stricter scrutiny of discretionary spending, so that Congress must approve each program on an annual basis. While the designation would mean Medicare and Social Security could face cuts, Republicans have repeatedly said they don’t want to eliminate the programs.

    Even left-leaning outlets have said Biden’s characterizations of the GOP’s plans for Social Security and Medicare are misleading.

    2. ’12 million new jobs’

    Biden repeated the misleading claim about the number of total jobs he’s “created” since he took office in 2021.

    “Two years ago, our economy was reeling,” the president said. “As I stand here tonight, we have created a record 12 million new jobs, more jobs created in two years than any president has ever created in four years.”

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), however, the economy under Biden has only added 2.7 million overall jobs, because the rest had been lost during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    3. ‘Ban assault weapons now’

    Biden renewed his call to ban so-called “assault weapons” during his address, garnering a standing ovation from his party and head shaking from the other side.

    “Ban assault weapons now. Ban them now, once and for all,” he said.

    The president made the declaration after talking about the gunman who allegedly used a handgun to kill 11 people celebrating the Lunar New Year at a ballroom near Los Angeles.

    The gun was reportedly a semi-automatic pistol with a magazine larger than 10 rounds.

    Biden did not elaborate on what type of firearm classified as an “assault weapon.”

    4. The kiss

    First lady Jill Biden and second gentleman Doug Emhoff shared a kiss ahead of Biden’s speech.

    The moment immediately went viral on Twitter.

    5. Biden gaffe:

    Biden opened his speech with a gaffe, incorrectly calling Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer the “minority leader.”

    Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and Vice President Kamala Harris were spotted chatting and laughing in a friendly exchange before the president’s speech.

    Four Supreme Court justices — Clarence Thomas, Sam Alito, Sonia Sotomayor and Neil Gorsuch — opted against attending the speech.

    Go deeper ( 2 min. read ) ➝


    ‘Nonsensical And Random Yelling’: Biden Criticized For Fumbles, Repeated ‘Lies’ In SOTU Speech



    President Joe Biden, during his State of the Union address Tuesday night, sparked some criticism online — both for the content of the speech and his shoddy delivery.

    Biden fumbled his words early on in the address, and often raised his voice, as POTUS typically does when speaking to the public. The president was also called out for apparent “lies” during the speech.

    “I know the lies are coming so fast and so furiously and so incoherently that it’s hard to keep track, but did he just claim his wife is a full-time teacher?” author and commentator Mollie Hemingway tweeted.

    “Is anyone else having trouble understanding exactly what he’s trying to say?” she tweeted. “It’s a weird combo of mumbling and speed-reading. I can’t quite make it out. Also now he’s yelling.”

    The politico added, “I don’t have any strong feelings about this speech because thus far I have been unable to understand much of it. This whole spectacle is really sad and it makes me feel very uncomfortable.”

    “I have no idea what this means on China. It’s totally nonsensical and random yelling by an old man,” radio host Clay Travis said, captioning video of Biden fumbling over his words.

    “MAKE NO MISTAKE! If you try anything to raise the cost of frisizhnjubs I will veto it,” posted Jorge Bonilla, making a similar criticism.

    Columnist Mark Hemingway commented on Biden’s energy, writing, “How many pep pills did they give him?”

    “Biden keeps [saying] ‘let’s finish the job’ as one of the major themes of his speech. I think he’s referring to the continuing controlled demolition of America,” criticized journalist Jordan Schachtel.

    “Joe Biden and the Democrats pretending to be anti- Big Pharma is a stunning and historic example of a government gaslighting its own citizens,” author and host Candace Owens criticized the Left.

    Go deeper ( 2 min. read ) ➝


    Sarah Huckabee Sanders Delivers Scathing SOTU Rebuttal



    Republican Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders delivered a scathing rebuke of “the radical left’s America” during the GOP rebuttal to President Biden’s State of the Union address on Tuesday.

    Sanders, who served as White House press secretary under former President Donald Trump, attacked what she called the Biden administration’s “woke fantasies” and what she called its worship of “false idols” in her blistering remarks.

    “In the radical left’s America, Washington taxes you and lights your hard-earned money on fire, but you get crushed with high gas prices, empty grocery shelves, and our children are taught to hate one another on account of their race, but not to love one another or our great country,” Sanders said Tuesday night.

    “The Biden administration seems more interested in woke fantasies than the hard reality Americans face every day,” Sanders said.

    “Most Americans simply want to live their lives in freedom and peace, but we are under attack in a left-wing culture war we didn’t start and never wanted to fight.”

    “Every day, we are told that we must partake in their rituals, salute their flags and worship their false idols – all while big government colludes with Big Tech to strip away the most American thing there is: your freedom of speech,” she added, an apparent reference to the bombshell Twitter Files reports late last year that detailed the FBI’s successful bid to influence Twitter to censor The Post’s explosive 2020 report on the Hunter Biden laptop.

    She went on to offer a GOP vision of the country with “strong families” and “safe communities.”

    “Republicans believe in an America where strong families thrive is safe communities; where jobs are abundant and paychecks are rising; where the freedom our veterans shed their blood to defend is the birthright of every man, woman and child,” she said.

    Sanders became the youngest governor in the country, at 40, after her November victory over Chris Jones in Arkansas, which offered a youthful contrast to the 80-year-old president who delivered the State of the Union.

    “At 40, I’m the youngest governor in the country. At 80, he’s the oldest president in American history,” Sanders said in her rebuttal.

    Sanders, the daughter of former Arkansas governor and failed presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, said that a “new generation” of Republican leaders is “stepping up” to be “changemakers for the American people.”

    She has so far declined to say whether she will back former President Donald Trump’s 2024 White House bid.

    In her remarks Tuesday night, Sanders made no reference to her ex-boss by name, but she did tell an anecdote about traveling with Trump, 76, and former first lady Melania Trump to Iraq in 2018.

    Sanders recalled troops who had “absolutely no idea that the President and First Lady were about to walk into that room” being excited to see the Trumps visit their US military base in western Iraq the day after Christmas.

    “One of the young soldiers yelled from the back, ‘Mr. President, I reenlisted in the military because of you.’ The President said, ‘and son, I am here because of you,’” Sanders recalled.

    Go deeper ( 2 min. read ) ➝


    Former Top Twitter Exec: We’ve Used ‘Visibility Filtering’ to Suppress Certain Political Content



    Former Twitter executives who worked for the company when the Hunter Biden laptop story was censored on the platform were in the hot seat on Wednesday at a marathon House Oversight and Accountability Committee hearing on “Protecting Speech from Government Interference and Social Media Bias.”

    The committee’s chairman, James Comer, alleged that Big Tech giants such as Twitter are “under the control of people who are hostile to the fundamental American principles of free speech” and have colluded with federal agencies to censor stories embarrassing to President Joe Biden and his family.

    “We owe it to the American people to provide answers about this collusion to censor information about Joe Biden’s involvement in his family’s business schemes,” Comer said at a committee hearing on censorship in America with former executives from Twitter.

    Comer said his investigators had substantiated that there was “coordination between the federal government and Big Tech to restrict protected speech and interfere in the democratic process” that began even before Twitter famously censored New York Post stories in October 2020 about the contents of Hunter Biden’s now infamous laptop.

    “In the months leading up to the laptop story, the FBI advised senior Twitter executives to question the validity of any Hunter Biden story,” he said. “We also know that one of the witnesses before us today participated in an Aspen Institute exercise in September 2020 on a potential ‘hack and dump’ operation relating to Hunter Biden. Other Big Tech companies and reporters attended as well.

    “This exercise prepared them for their future collusion to suppress and delegitimize information contained in Hunter Biden’s laptop about the Biden family’s business schemes.”

    Censorship of such stories in the midst of a presidential election might in earlier generations have been unthinkable but Comer said it was made possible by troubling biases in the leadership of Big Tech companies.

    “Many social media platforms are under the control of people who are hostile to the fundamental American principles of free speech and expression protected in the U.S. Constitution,” he said. “We’ve witnessed Big Tech autocrats wield their unchecked power to suppress the speech of Americans to promote their preferred political opinions. Twitter was once one of these platforms — until Elon Musk purchased the company a few months ago …

    “In the past, Twitter’s employees made censorship decisions on the fly, often not following the company’s own publicly stated policies. It worked hand-in-hand with the FBI to monitor the protected speech of Americans — receiving millions of dollars to do so.”

    James Baker, former deputy general counsel at Twitter, argued that Twitter was not working as a state actor.

    “I think the best reading of the law is that as a private entity, the First Amendment protects Twitter and its content moderation decisions,” he said.

    Baker said he wasn’t aware of unlawful collusion.

    “Moreover, I’m aware of no unlawful collusion with or direction from any government agency or political campaign on how Twitter should have handled the Hunter Biden laptop situation,” he said.

    Ohio GOP Rep. Jim Jordan asked Baker if he ever talked to the FBI about the Hunter Biden laptop.

    “I don’t recall speaking to the FBI at all about the Hunter Biden matter, laptop,” Baker said.

    Vijaya Gadde, former chief legal officer at Twitter, said the company had received inquiries from federal agencies to remove certain content from the platform. She didn’t specify if the laptop story was one of them.

    She acknowledged that Twitter uses labels such as “do not amplify” to ensure the platform does not recommend certain tweets to users for engagement. She elaborated on ways that Twitter filtered content during her time with the company, describing it as visibility filtering.

    “There was an ability of preventing something from appearing in one of the tabs of search results,” she said.

    Tennessee GOP Rep. Tim Burchett wrote on Twitter after his questioning that the labels like “do not amplify” equated to censorship.

    Jordan was able to confirm with Yoel Roth, former head of trust and safety at Twitter, that accounts that have been tagged for content filtering are not informed about it.

    Comer said it was troubling that Twitter was “a private company the federal government used to accomplish what it constitutionally cannot: limit the free exercise of speech.”

    The committee’s ranking member, Maryland Democratic Rep. Jamie Raskin said Twitter had the right as a private company to censor stories like the Hunter Biden laptop New York Post report.

    Roth said that he personally had advocated against taking the Hunter Biden laptop story off of Twitter.

    “Twitter made a mistake,” he said. “I’ll be the first to admit that we didn’t always get it right. Individual content moderation decisions will always be contentious, and reasonable minds can differ about whether a specific choice was right or wrong.”

    Democrats on the panel such as New York Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez argued that the hearing was a distraction.

    “We could be talking about the cost of prescription drugs, abortion rights, civil rights, voting rights, but instead we’re talking about Hunter Biden’s half fake laptop story. I mean, this is an embarrassment, but I’ll go into it,” she said at the hearing.

    Wednesday’s hearing was only part one of the committee’s investigation into political bias at social media platforms.

    Go deeper ( 3 min. read ) ➝


    China’s Spy Balloon Reportedly Part Of Global Surveillance System — Photos From Wreckage Released



    The U.S. intelligence community has reportedly linked the Chinese spy balloon that was shot down late last week to a vast surveillance program being conducted by the Chinese military against numerous foreign nations.

    The Washington Post reported that the balloon surveillance program operates out of the Hainan province in southern China and has targeted military assets in countries that are in Beijing’s crosshairs, including Japan, India, Vietnam, Taiwan, and the Philippines.

    The Chinese military has operated the spy balloon over five continents, the report said. U.S. officials are now alerting military officials in other countries that they have been targeted by Chinese surveillance.

    The Chinese military identified the opportunity to conduct surveillance from balloons that fly above commercial jetliners at an altitude of 60,000 to 80,000 feet. It’s unclear why China conducts the program since they can reportedly collect the same intelligence from their military satellite system, the report said.

    The news comes after the U.S. military used an F-22 Raptor on Saturday to shoot down the spy balloon over the Atlantic Ocean using a single air-to-air AIM-9X Sidewinder missile that was fired at an altitude of approximately 58,000 feet. The decision to shoot down the spy balloon came after President Joe Biden allowed it to fly thousands of miles over the continental U.S. last week.

    The U.S. Navy released photographs Tuesday of the spy balloon as naval forces recovered it off the coast of South Carolina.

    The New York Times reported that the Chinese are most interested in gathering intelligence about U.S. military bases in foreign countries but also wants information about the militaries of said nations.

    Go deeper ( < 1 min. read ) ➝


    Alex Murdaugh Murder Trial Paused After Bomb Threat, Courthouse Evacuated



    The murder trial of disgraced South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh resumed Wednesday afternoon after a bomb threat forced the court to be evacuated.

    The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) said the menacing message was “received by Colleton County courthouse personnel,” immediately halting proceedings.

    The trial restarted around 2:30 p.m. when police gave the all-clear.

    It is not clear what the message said. An unnamed court official told The Post and Courier that the bomb threat was made to Judge Clifton Newman’s chambers.

    SLED said that it was investigating the threat alongside the Colleton County Sheriff’s Office, but has yet to provide more details.

    Upon learning of the threat, Judge Newman addressed the court, saying: “Ladies and gentlemen, we have to evacuate the building at this time so we’ll be in recess until we discover what’s going on.

    Police escorted Murdaugh out of the building and into a car, which drove away, likely to a secure location.

    A unnamed court official told The Post and Courier that bomb threat was made to Judge Newman’s chambers.

    Prosecutors walked back into the courtroom around 2:20 p.m., suggesting police told them it was safe do so, the paper reported.

    Video from the scene showed scores of people evacuating the packed Walterboro courthouse just before 1 p.m.

    Law enforcement put a perimeter around the building as they looked into the threat, Fox News reported.

    Murdaugh, 54, is on trial for the double murder of his wife, Maggie, 52, and son Paul, 22, who were found shot to death near the dog kennel at the family’s hunting lodge on June 7, 2021.

    The fallen lawyer, who is separately accused of 99 financial crimes, has repeatedly insisted he is innocent.

    Go deeper ( < 1 min. read ) ➝


    NASCAR Driver Kyle Busch Arrested In Mexico On Gun Charges, Sentenced To 42 Months In Prison



    NASCAR driver Kyle Busch was recently arrested on weapons charges in Mexico and has since been convicted and sentenced to 3.5 years in prison and a fine.

    Busch made the revelation in a statement posted to social media on Monday, saying that the incident happened back in late January when he was traveling out of the country after being on vacation and forgot that his gun was in his bag.

    “In late January, Samantha and I enjoyed a several day vacation in Mexico. When departing the country, my handgun was flagged during routine screening at the airport,” he said. “I have a valid concealed carry permit from my local authority and adhere to all handgun laws, but I made a mistake by forgetting it was in my bag.”

    “Discovery of the handgun led to my detainment while the situation was resolved,” he continued. “I was not aware of Mexican law and had no intention of bringing a handgun into Mexico. When it was discovered, I fully cooperated with the authorities, accepted the penalties, and returned to North Carolina. I apologize for my mistake and appreciate the respect shown by all parties as we resolved the matter. My family and I consider this issue closed.”

    The Mexico Prosecutor General’s Office issued a statement last week on the issue, saying that it had charged and convicted “Kyle Thomas B” in connection with the incident. Busch’s middle name is Thomas.

    However, shortly after Busch released his statement, the Mexico Prosecutor General’s Office changed the name of the individual charged and convicted to “Kyle ‘N.’”

    “The Public Ministry of the Attorney General of the Republic (FGR) in Quintana Roo, obtained a conviction of three years six months in prison and a fine of 200 units of measurement and update equivalent to the amount of 20 thousand 748 pesos, against a person of foreign nationality,” the statement said. “The sentenced today, Kyle ‘N’, was credited with his full responsibility in the commission of the crime of carrying a firearm without a license and possession of cartridges for the exclusive use of the Armed Forces.”

    “According to the investigation folder, the arrest took place on January 27 of this year, when the man sentenced today was detained by elements of the Quintana Roo National Guard, derived from the direct signaling of private security personnel from the Airport. Cancun International, who are assigned to guard the platform of the FBO terminal for private flights,” the statement continued. “The detainee, who is originally from the State of Nevada, intended to travel to the United States of America, but when passing his luggage through the RX of the platform, a caliber pistol-type firearm was detected inside. 380 with magazine stocked with six useful hollow point cartridges.”

    “Due to the foregoing, the agent of the Federal Public Ministry presented it before the Control Judge, on January 29 of this year, who described the detention as legal, a link to the process and through an abbreviated procedure issued a sentence,” the statement concluded.

    There is no word on how or if Busch will be required to serve any time in prison.

    Go deeper ( 2 min. read ) ➝


    Hunter’s Business Partner Moved 1,850 Boxes of Sensitive Documents From Biden’s WH Office



    The recent reports reveal the involvement of Hunter Biden’s business partner in transferring sensitive papers from Joe Biden’s vice presidential office to the University of Delaware.

    The papers are said to include Obama-Biden presidential transition team papers and White House lawyers raised concerns about their handling.

    Senator Ted Cruz has called for the FBI to examine the 1,850 boxes of Senate records to check for any classified documents.

    Meanwhile, Senator Ron Johnson has requested information about access to these sensitive records, but so far neither the White House nor the National Archives have responded.

    Daily Mail reported:

    Hunter Biden’s business partner was tasked with transferring sensitive papers from Joe Biden’s vice presidential office to the University of Delaware – papers that were sensitive enough to require the involvement of White House lawyers, can reveal.

    The revelation is the latest piece of evidence tying Hunter to the president’s potential mishandling of classified documents.

    Eric Schwerin, Hunter’s Rosemont Seneca partner who handled Joe’s taxes and personal affairs, was in charge of moving an archive of 1,850 boxes of files from the vice president’s DC office that were being donated to the University of Delaware in 2010.

    Those documents, mainly from Biden’s time as a Delaware senator, also included Obama-Biden presidential transition team papers and raised the hackles of White House lawyers.

    In a March 2010 email from Hunter’s laptop, Joe’s deputy counsel Katherine Oyama wrote to Schwerin warning that the ‘Deed of Gift’ document to the university ‘appears to include Obama-Biden transition papers, which the vice president likely does not own.’

    She recommended the inclusion of language about ‘the University’s duty to comply with … classified information procedures’.

    Schwerin forwarded the correspondence to Hunter, saying: ‘FYI – if you want to be in the loop. I sent to Mel who is going to talk to your Dad about this and decide who should work on it between him and Jamie.’

    ‘Mel’ likely refers to attorney Melvyn Monzack, who handled Hunter and Joe’s brother Jim’s taxes and other Biden family affairs.

    Monzack also sent Hunter emails directly about Joe’s gift of sensitive papers to the University of Delaware in October 2010.

    According to the University of Delaware website, ‘more than 1,850 boxes of archival records from the President’s Senate career arrived at the Library on June 6, 2012.’

    A Newark Post report from the time said the records arrived on 33 pallets carried by two trucks, and also included 415 gigabytes of electronic records.

    It is still unclear whether the thousands of papers given to UDel ended up including any classified documents.

    Republican senator Ted Cruz called this week for the FBI to examine the boxes.

    ‘I am right now calling for the Department of Justice, for the FBI, to examine all 1,850 boxes of those Senate records to see how many additional classified documents are in those records,’ Cruz said on his podcast, Verdict with Ted Cruz.

    ‘The answer should be none. But given Biden’s pattern, we should have zero reason to have any confidence that there are not multiple classified documents within those 1,850 boxes of Senate records,’ the senator claimed.

    The revelation follows the growing scandal over several classified files found at Joe’s home, where Hunter lived in 2018 and 2019, at a Washington DC private office which Hunter helped set up, and a search at the president’s Rohobeth Beach home.

    Republican Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson, who led a four-year investigation into Hunter with fellow Senator Chuck Grassley, told government officials had failed to answer his questions about who had access to the classified files.

    ‘Because we now know President Biden has a history of improperly handling classified material, it is incumbent upon him to be transparent about who had access to those documents,’ Johnson said.

    ‘So far, neither the White House or the National Archives have responded to my requests for this information. The American people deserve to know whether Hunter Biden or his business partners had access to these sensitive records.’

    The scandal over Joe’s alleged mishandling of classified documents first broke on January 9, when CBS revealed that the president’s lawyers had found 10 files at the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement in DC on November 2 – six days before the mid-terms.

    Biden’s attorneys notified the Department of Justice, which launched an investigation but kept it secret until after the election.

    Since then, six more files have been found in a garage at Joe’s lakeside mansion in Wilmington, Delaware.

    CNN reported claims from an anonymous source close to the investigation that the documents contained intelligence material relating to Ukraine, Iran and the UK, and that Joe’s personal notebooks from his time as Vice President were also retrieved from the home in case they contained classified information.

    Hunter served on the board of allegedly corrupt Ukrainian gas company Burisma, worked with Russian oligarchs, and had a multi-million-dollar deal with a Chinese government-linked oil company, raising fears that he could have had access to restricted files while dealing with foreign adversaries of the United States.

    It is unclear whether Hunter viewed Joe’s files, but some appear to have been stored in the garage of the family home in Wilmington where Hunter lived for several months in 2018.

    A photo obtained by shows a box labeled ‘Important Doc’s + Photos’, which appears to have been left unsealed on a table in Joe’s mansion.

    Read the full article.

    Go deeper ( 4 min. read ) ➝


    Trump Promotes Claim That DeSantis Was ‘Grooming High School Girls With Alcohol as a Teacher’



    Donald Trump reposted images of a young Ron DeSantis allegedly partying with high school teens and adding his own mocking commentary.

    ‘That’s not Ron, is it? He would never do such a thing!’ Trump wrote on his Truth Social platform.

    The post linked to a Truth Social Account that grabbed a digital image of a young man with a bowl haircut who appears to be DeSantis surrounded by three young women.

    One of them, who has her arm around the now-Florida governor, is smiling and appears to be holding a brown glass bottle.

    To drive home the point, Trump also re-posted a message by a user named Dong-Chan Lee, who wrote that ‘Ron DeSantis was having a “drink” party with his students when he was a high school teacher. Having drinks with underage girls and cuddling with them certainly look pretty gross and ephebophiliaesque,’ a term relating to attraction to adolescents.

    ‘No way?’ wrote Trump on Tuesday.

    Neither post contains evidence that the girls pictured were underage, or establishes that anyone photographed was illegally consuming alcohol.

    Lee describes himself as a ‘paleoconservative’ and Trump supporter.

    The image, which blurs the identity of the people surrounding DeSantis, appears to come from a 2021 blogpost by The post cites a ‘whistleblower’ who said the girls pictured ‘are believed to have graduated in 2002, making them seniors at the time.’

    DeSantis, 44, taught history and government at the Darlington School in Rome, Georgia, during the 2001-2002 year.

    He was fresh out of Yale at the time, and students described him as smart, ‘smug,’ charismatic, and a ‘jock.’

    The New York Times made reference to the blog post in its own article about DeSantis’ time at the school, neither confirming nor knocking down the details of the incident.

    ‘Last year, Hill Reporter, a blog put out by a Democratic super PAC, published a photograph of Mr. DeSantis taken with several female students from Darlington in 2002, one of whom was holding what appeared to be a bottle of beer,’ according to the paper.

    ‘Two former students, both women, remembered him attending at least two parties where alcohol was served, but they said that the parties took place after graduation and that they were not bothered by his presence at the time, although they question it now.

    ‘It was his first job out of Yale, he was cute. We didn’t really think too much about it,’ one of the former students said, according to the Times.

    Trump’s attacks come as DeSantis has been rising in the 2024 polls for the Republican presidential nomination, and days after the Florida governor referenced attacks against him in a press conference.

    ‘I roll out of bed, I have people attacking me from all angles, it’s been happening for many, many years. When you’re an elected executive, you have to make all kinds of decisions. You got to steer that ship,’ he said.

    ‘And the good thing is, is that the people are able to render a judgment on that — whether they re-elect you or not,’ he said.

    ‘And I’m happy to say, you know, in my case, not only did we win re-election, we won with the highest percentage of the vote that any Republican governor candidate has in the history of the state of Florida,’ he said.

    Go deeper ( 3 min. read ) ➝


    Here Are the Guests Invited to Biden’s State of the Union Address



    President Biden is set to deliver his second State of the Union address after a year marked by both triumphs and challenges.

    The president has consistently struggled with poor approval ratings and high inflation numbers in the last year, but also saw a higher number of Democrat victories than expected in the 2022 midterm elections and a number of legislative wins in the past Congress.

    Biden is expected to address the war in Ukraine, as well as his economic agenda and the coronavirus pandemic.

    Here are the guests that lawmakers and the White House have invited to attend the State of the Union:

    • Tyre Nichols’s parents
    • Bono, the lead singer of the rock band U2
    • Paul Pelosi
    • Brandon Tsay, who disarmed suspected killer in Monterey Park shooting
    • Mr. Darrell Woodie, ‘Good Samaritan’ who helped Rep. Greg Steube (R-Fla.)
    • Jeffrey T. Smith, New York Montgomery County sheriff
    • Michael Brown Sr., father of teenager fatally shot by police
    • Massachusetts nursing student Eugénie Ouedraogo
    • Brett Cross, whose son Uziyah García was one of the 19 Uvalde victims
    • Abortion activist Kate Dineen
    • Former NBA star Enes Freedom
    • Air Force Colonel (Ret.) Mark A. Hurley
    • Deanna Branch, a Milwaukee woman who has advocated for awareness about toxic lead pipes
    • Roya Rahmani, Afghanistan’s first female ambassador to the U.S.
    • Michael Weinstock, 9/11 ground zero rescue worker
    • Sterling Brown, professional basketball player
    • Zeneta Everhart, whose son was injured in the mass shooting in Buffalo
    • Utah Gov. Spencer Cox
    • Family members of George Floyd, Eric Garner, Walter Scott, Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, Ronald Greene and others
    • Oksana Markarova, the Ukrainian ambassador to the U.S
    • Texas couple Amanda and Josh Zurawski, abortion advocades
    • Aquilino Gonell, former Capitol Police Sergeant

    Read more information about each guest here.

    Go deeper ( < 1 min. read ) ➝


    Wholesale Egg Prices Have ‘Collapsed.’ Why Consumers May Soon See Relief



    Wholesale egg prices have cratered in recent weeks from record highs, meaning consumers may soon see relief at the grocery store.

    But the dynamics of egg pricing from the wholesale to retail market, in addition to other factors, means that’s not a sure thing in the short term.

    Prices fell to $2.61 per dozen eggs on Monday — a 52% decrease from the peak of around $5.43 on Dec. 19 and a 47% decrease from the beginning of 2023, according to Urner Barry, a market research firm that specializes in the wholesale food industry. Its Midwest Large White Egg price benchmark is a widely cited barometer in the egg industry.

    “Prices have collapsed,” said Angel Rubio, senior analyst at Urner Barry. “That’s a big, big adjustment downward.”

    Historic bird flu outbreak led to soaring egg prices

    In a year characterized by historically high inflation, egg prices were a standout in 2022, rising faster than almost all other consumer items.

    Average retail prices increased nearly 60% in 2022, according to the consumer price index.

    In December, a dozen large Grade A eggs cost consumers $4.25 on average, more than double the $1.79 a year earlier, according to monthly Bureau of Labor Statistics data.

    The deadliest outbreak of bird flu in history hit the U.S. in 2022, killing millions of birds and significantly disrupting egg supply, according to food economists.

    The disease, which is contagious and lethal, affects many types of birds, including egg-laying hens. Cases typically fade by summer, but that didn’t happen in 2022; new outbreaks coincided with peak demand around the winter holiday season.

    “Highly pathogenic avian influenza” ultimately killed about 58 million birds across 47 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The prior record was set in 2015, when 50.5 million birds died.

    Typically, when a case of bird flu is detected, farmers must cull their flocks as a precaution to contain spread of the disease, economists said. It can take months for that farm to start producing and selling eggs again. Meanwhile, buyers must find new suppliers so they can stock shelves — a dynamic that played out nationwide and raised prices.

    One group, Farm Action, asked the Federal Trade Commission to investigate the possibility that a “collusive scheme” among egg suppliers, rather than the bird flu, is what has kept prices elevated, a contention that is largely downplayed by food economists.

    Farmers get a reprieve and consumers show ‘resistance’

    There haven’t been any new bird-flu outbreaks among commercial table-egg laying birds since Dec. 20, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

    A prolonged period without setbacks in egg production has given suppliers a reprieve and the market time to recover, said Brian Moscogiuri, global trade strategist at Eggs Unlimited, one of the largest egg suppliers in the U.S.

    Consumer demand also typically wanes in January and February, further alleviating price pressures, Moscogiuri said.

    The USDA recently cited consumer “resistance to record high prices in grocery outlets across the country” as another reason for the declining and below-average egg demand.

    “Wholesale prices have been declining steadily from their late 2022 highs which has helped support retailer efforts to bring pricing down to a more consumer-acceptable level,” the USDA said Feb. 3.

    Weekly retail egg data from the USDA is spotty, and it’s difficult to see how cratering wholesale prices may be translating in the retail market.

    On average, it takes about four weeks for retail prices to reflect wholesale price trends, Rubio said. That means consumers may start to see some relief in February, he said.

    Retail prices tend to be less volatile than those at the wholesale level. For every 10% decrease or increase in wholesale egg price, consumers can expect retail prices to shift about 2%, on average, Rubio said.

    However, egg demand also generally increases in the weeks preceding Easter, which this year falls on April 9 — making it hard to determine how prices will respond, Rubio said.

    There are other factors that may keep retail egg prices elevated for longer, however.

    Supermarket chains and other egg retailers don’t all peg their shelf prices to movements in wholesale prices, economists said. They may buy eggs from suppliers according to different formulas; some are at least partially tied to the price of corn and soybeans, for example, which are a big cost in raising and feeding chickens, Moscogiuri said.

    While prices for those commodities are down from highs following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in early 2022, they remain historically elevated.

    Some supermarkets may have tried keeping egg prices down so as not to dissuade consumers from buying — and may now try to recoup some of their losses before lowering retail prices, Moscogiuri said.

    “It’s kind of up to the retailer as to how quickly they want to pass prices along,” he said.

    While bird flu hasn’t affected commercial egg-laying flocks since December, there have been confirmed cases among other types of birds — meaning it’s still “a major risk heading into the spring migration,” Moscogiuri said. The first case among egg layers last year was detected Feb. 22.

    Go deeper ( 3 min. read ) ➝

    Trending Today