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Tag: President Obama

Secret Service Kept Busy Monitoring President Obama’s New Twitter Account

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

President Obama’s decision to join Twitter unleashed a torrent of hateful, even threatening tweets that have already caught the attention of the Secret Service.

Not only that, the White House is archiving every response to @POTUS, the Washington Post reports. 

So the newspaper kindly reminds readers to be wise when tweeting to the president of the United States.

“Just seconds after posting something online it has likely been disseminated to dozens of people and definitely been archived by an unknowable number of automated systems,” the programmer Pehr Hovey wrote in his master’s thesis on deleted tweets in 2010. “Though a delete button may provide solace to those having second thoughts, in reality it is a façade.”

Liberal Think Tank: ATF Should Merge with FBI to Reduce Firearms Crime

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The ATF is not equipped to handle gun violence and should be merged with the FBI to reduce firearms crime, according to a liberal think tank with strong ties to President Obama, the Washington Post reports. 

The Center of American Progress provided a 182-page report that argued the ATF is hamstrung by inadequate resources, poor management and burdensome restrictions.

“We do not make the core recommendation of this report lightly and recognize that . . . this type of agency restructuring would be challenging and time-consuming,” said Arkadi Gerney, one of the report’s co-authors. “But the problem of gun violence in the United States warrants this kind of large-scale rethinking. With 33 people murdered with guns in the United States every day, it is time to think big about how best to fulfill the ATF’s mission to enforce gun laws and regulate the gun industry.”

The group argues the ATF should be folded into the FBI, an idea promoted by Republicans in years past.

A Justice Department spokesman’s said the agency  “supports ATF in its current form and believes Congress should fully fund the president’s budget request that will enhance ATF’s ability to carry out their important mission.”

The NRA blamed the Obama administration on problems in the ATF.

“The Obama administration has only contributed to ATF’s dysfunction by politicizing the agency to implement its gun-control agenda,” said NRA spokeswoman Jennifer Baker. “Regardless of where ATF is located, the reality is that nothing will change until we have a president who respects the Second Amendment.”

 

Secret Service Agent on Obama Detail Who Was Under Investigation is Resigning

secret service photo

 
By Carol D. Leonnig
Washington Post

WASHINGTON — A top member of President Obama’s Secret Service detail under investigation for his conduct during a White House bomb threat probe notified the agency this week that he plans to retire, according to officials familiar with his decision.

The decision by Marc Connolly came ahead of the public release of a report concluding that he and a colleague were “more likely than not” impaired by alcohol on the night of March 4 as they drove into a temporary barricade and directly beside a suspicious package that was under investigation as a possible bomb, the investigative report says.

The findings are scheduled to be the subject of a congressional hearing Thursday.

To read more click here. 

Senate Confirms Sally Yates As No. 2 at Justice Department

Sally Yates

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Anger over President Obama’s executive actions on immigration wasn’t enough to prevent the Senate confirmation of a new deputy attorney general on Wednesday.

Sally Yates, known for cracking down on crime in Georgia, was confirmed to the No. 2 position in the Justice Department with by a 84-12 vote in the Senate, Politico.com reports.

Some Republicans tried to prevent the confirmation on the grounds that the president’s executive actions on immigration were unconscionable. But Lynch gained strong support from the GOP.

“She is an experienced and dedicated prosecutor with a well-deserved reputation for fairness, integrity, toughness. She is a confirmed leader in this crucial position,” the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Patrick Leahy, of Vermont, said.

Yates replaces James Coles, who resigned at the beginning of the year.

NSA Blasted for Unlawfully Collecting Data on Every American’s Phone Calls

Edward Snowden has been outside of the U.S. since leaking the NSA data, making the same claim that the surveillance was illegal.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

In a crushing defeat to the President Obama administration, a federal appeals court has unanimously ruled Thursday that the NSA violated the law by collecting data on all U.S. telephone calls.

The U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the surveillance program was “an unprecedented contradiction of the privacy expectations of all Americans,” The Los Angeles Times reports.

The court ruled in sharply worded language that the NSA had no right to spy on Americans who were not targets of counter-terrorism efforts.

Now Congress must decide how to reform the bulk collection of phone data.

“This is a huge step for individual Americans’ rights,” said Sen. Ron Wyden, (D-Ore.), an outspoken opponent of the program. “This dragnet surveillance program violates the law and tramples on Americans’ privacy rights without making our country any safer.”

The decision also at least partially vindicates Edward Snowden, who has fled U.S. prosecution after revealing the illegal records.

Sniper Rifle Stolen from FBI Agent’s Car in Utah Just Days Before President Obama Visits

Pres. Obama at state of the union/white house photo

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Just days before President Obama was to visit Utah, an FBI agent’s sniper rifle was stolen from his car in Salt Lake City hotel, International Business Times reports. 

Police said the rifle was stolen from the agent’s parked car, where it was stored and properly locked down in a hard case.

“The rifle had been secured properly,” Salt Lake City Police Detective Dennis McGowan told KSTU-TV. “A couple of padlocks, chains, it was attached to a truck safe. There are all kinds of ways the weapon was secure. Yet someone was able to forcefully take the weapon.”

The Secret Service was made aware of the theft.

The agent’s window was broken.

“I observed the rear right passenger window was shattered and the window frame was pulled out, hanging from the door,” the police report states, according to KSTU-TV. “[The agent] stated his FBI issued sniper rifle was missing, which was in a hard rifle case along with some gear bags, backpacks, clothing and tools.” The stolen FBI rifle has yet to be found.

“We have not recovered the weapon, and we have not identified the person who has taken it yet,” McGowan told KSTU-TV.

 

Another Secret Service Embarrassment: Child Breaches White House Fence

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

In the latest embarrassment for the embattled Secret Service, a 4-year-old managed to breach the White House fence in broad daylight Sunday, forcing a lockdown.

The Weekly Standard reports that an unidentified child climbed under the fence.

“4 year old child climbed under temporary bike rack along PA Ave. Child was fine and was safely reunited with parents,” Secret Service spokesman Brian Leary told the White House pool reporter.

Here’s an earlier pool report detailing the incident:

“Pool loaded the vans at 12:38 pm and motorcade is rolling at 12:51 pm to an undisclosed location.

“As the pool was initially gathering at the north doors of the Palm Room, security agents suddenly rushed to the north lawn with their weapons drawn and pool was told to get back inside. It turned out to be a non-incident, in which an individual jumped over the small bike fence outside the White House gate. After a few moments, pool was able to gather again. Your pooler has reached out to Secret Service for more details.”

Then came the update: “Update on brief security scramble at the White House prior to departure: It was just a child.”

Judge Declines to Lift Hold on President Obama’s Immigration Plans

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

President Obama’s plan to shield millions of immigrants from deportation received another setback Tuesday after a judge refused to lift a temporary hold on the executive action.

The Associated Press reports that U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen in Brownsville declined the administration’s request to lift the preliminary injunction issued on Feb. 16.

Without the injunction lifted, the administration is barred from implementing its new immigration policies.

The Justice Department also has appealed the court’s original hold on the actions, and arguments could begin as early as April 17.