Feb 24, 2017

Trump aide: Islamophobia charge is the "cheapest shot"

Dr. Sebastian Gorka, Deputy Assistant to President Trump, called ISIS "the worst jihadist threat" that the U.S. has ever seen, but encouraged the crowd that "we're going to eradicate" them, because on Jan. 20th, Trump became Commander-in-Chief. Other takeaways from his panel on "WWIII" at CPAC:

  • Saying the administration is promoting Islamophobia "is just the cheapest shot," said Gorka. The White House is trying to protect the country.
  • Trump administration "absolutely" has a long-term plan to fight ISIS, said Gorka, and contrary to some popular belief, it is possible to defeat an ideology.
  • The administration wants to "rebuild all those relationships with those people that want to be our friends... we were founded as a nation to respond AGAINST imperialism... We want to help those people that want to be our friends to fight those wars themselves."
  • Gorka's definition of victory: "We are going to make the black flag of jihad as repugnant around the world as the black, white and red swastika of the Third Reich... the brand of jihad has to be destroyed."

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America's dwindling executions

The Trump administration wants to reboot federal executions, pointing to a 16-year lapse, but Pew Research reports the government has only executed three people since 1963.

The big picture: Nearly all executions in the U.S. are done by states. Even those have been steadily dropping for two decades, per the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) — marking a downward trend for all executions in the country.

Top NSC official may be moved after "Anonymous" rumor fallout

President Trump at the Daytona 500. (Photo: Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Top Trump administration officials are in discussions to reassign deputy national security adviser Victoria Coates to the Department of Energy from the National Security Council, per two sources familiar with the planning.

Why it matters: Coates' working relationship with National Security Adviser Robert O'Brien, who elevated her to the deputy role only months ago, has strained amid an effort by some people inside the administration to tag her as "Anonymous" — a charge she has vehemently denied to colleagues.

Jeff Bezos commits $10 billion for climate change research

Bezos at Amazon Smbhav in New Delhi on Jan. 15. Photo: Sajjad Hussain/AFP via Getty Images

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos announced the launch of his "Earth Fund" on Monday via Instagram to fund climate change research and awareness.

What he's saying: Bezos says he's initially committing $10 billion to fund "scientists, activists, and NGOS" that are working on environmental preservation and protection efforts.