Secretary Pompeo’s Participation in the Australia – U.S. Ministerial Consultations

28 Jul

Office of the Spokesperson

The below is attributable to Principal Deputy Spokesperson Cale Brown:‎

Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo hosted Secretary of Defense Mark Esper, Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne, and Australian Defence Minister Linda Reynolds today at the Department of State in Washington, D.C for the 30th Australia – United States Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN).  The Secretaries and Ministers exchanged views on wide-ranging topics, building on Australian Prime Minister Morrison’s historic official visit to Washington in September 2019.  Even during these unprecedented times, the Secretaries and Ministers reaffirmed our unbreakable shared commitment to freedom and democracy.

 

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Peru’s Independence Day

28 Jul

Michael R. Pompeo, Secretary of State

On behalf of the United States and the American people, I send best wishes to the people of Peru as you celebrate your Independence Day.

Our strong partnership is rooted in a long history of shared values of democracy, economic cooperation, and security promotion.  We welcome Peru’s leadership in supporting a peaceful return to democracy in Venezuela and your offering of a safe haven to the Venezuelan migrants and refugees in Peru.  We also thank Peru for its vital cooperation in responding to the shared challenge of COVID-19 and for helping to repatriate thousands of U.S. citizens.  The United States and Peru will continue to work together to further our mutual goals of promoting economic prosperity, combating illicit transnational crime, defending human rights, and advancing security cooperation.

The United States wishes the people of Peru a happy Independence Day.

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WATCH: DNC RELEASES NEW TV AD IN WI: ‘This Is Not a Test’

28 Jul

The DNC War Room released a new television ad in Wisconsin today, “This Is Not a Test,” to call out Donald Trump for gambling with children’s health and safety. Trump is trying to force schools to fully reopen before they’re able to do so safely, despite coronavirus cases surging across the country, because he thinks it will help with his reelection.

The ad will run in the Milwaukee media market starting on Tuesday, targeted on cable networks to reach parents with school age children and teachers as part of a six figure buy.

WATCH HERE:

Experts, scientists, teachers, and parents know that Trump can’t be trusted to decide when schools should reopen. It’s Trump’s fault that the outbreak got this bad in the first place. Trump should focus on getting the virus under control, and stop trying to force schools to reopen before they’re able to do so safely.

“Donald Trump has put Wisconsin families in an impossible position. Parents shouldn’t have to stay up at night worried that the president of the United States is compromising their kids’ safety. Children shouldn’t be exposed to a deadly virus, or risk passing the virus to their parents, grandparents, and loved ones. Trump will do anything to help his reelection chances. He can’t be trusted to make this life-or-death decision for our children. It’s time for a leader who will protect Wisconsin’s kids, and give families and teachers the support they deserve. It’s time for Joe Biden,” said DNC Chair Tom Perez.

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Public Designation of Former Officials of the Illegitimate Maduro Regime Due to Involvement in Significant Corruption

28 Jul

Michael R. Pompeo, Secretary of State

Today, I am announcing the designation of former Venezuelan Minister of Electric Power and President of Corpoelec, Luis Alfredo Motta Dominguez, and former Venezuelan Deputy Minister of Finance, Investment, and Strategic Alliances for the Ministry of Electric Power and Director of Procurement of Corpoelec, Eustiquio Jose Lugo Gomez.  They have been designated for accepting monetary benefits, including bribes and kickbacks, in exchange for awarding lucrative supply equipment contracts for Venezuela’s state-owned electricity company, Corpoelec, and for misappropriating public funds for their own self-enrichment.  In June 2019, the Department of the Treasury, in coordination with the Department of State, sanctioned Lugo and Motta for undermining democracy in Venezuela under EO 13692.

The designations announced today are made under Section 7031(c) of the Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, 2020 (Div. G, P.L. 116-94).  Under Section 7031(c), once the Secretary of State designates officials of foreign governments, along with their immediate family members, for their involvement, directly or indirectly, in significant corruption, those individuals are indefinitely ineligible for entry into the United States.  In addition to Lugo and Motta, the Department is publicly designating the following family members of Lugo’s immediate family:  Karina Isabel Carpio Bejarano, Luis Alfredo Motto Carpio, and Nakary Marialy Motto Carpio; and the following members of Motta’s immediate family: Yomaira Isabela Lugo de Lugo, Virginia Del Valle Lugo Lugo, Victor Jesus Lugo Lugo, and Jose Lugo Lugo.

This designation reaffirms the U.S. commitment to combating corruption in Venezuela.  The United States continues to stand with Interim President Juan Guaido, the democratically elected National Assembly, and the people of Venezuela in their fight against corruption and for the peaceful restoration of democracy and economic stability.  The Department will continue to use these authorities to promote accountability for corrupt actors in this region and globally.  For more information, please contact INL-PAPD@state.gov.

 

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In The Battlegrounds: As Biden Unveils Racial Equity Agenda, Democrats Slam Trump’s Failures For Communities Of Color

28 Jul

Today, as Joe Biden unveiled his plan to advance racial equity as part of the United States’ economic recovery, Democrats across the battleground states slammed Donald Trump’s broken promises and disastrous record with communities of color. See for yourself:

In Arizona:

Arizona State Representative Dr. Gerae Peten, Founder and Executive Committee Member of the West Valley NAACP: “In 2016, Donald Trump asked voters of color what we had to lose under a Trump presidency. After four years, we’ve learned the answer the hard way … Trump’s disastrous record has been deeply felt across Black, Latinx, Native, and AAPI communities, from skyrocketing unemployment and cratering small business ownership to rising housing costs and higher coronavirus death rates. Today, Arizona’s communities of color are paying the price for Trump’s incompetent and ineffective pandemic response with our lives and livelihoods. It’s disgraceful.” 

In Georgia:

Democratic Party of Georgia Chair and state Senator Nikema Williams:

“At every level, Donald Trump’s failed leadership has made life harder for Black Americans and people of color. While Trump used his economic policies to enrich big banks and corporate cronies, Black and brown Georgians were left out, and our racial wealth gap has grown. Now, as the coronavirus pandemic devastates vulnerable communities across our state, his response has made this crisis only worse. To close the racial wealth gap, we need a real leader who will fight for every family’s future like it is their own — that’s Joe Biden.”

In Maine:

Maine Democratic Party Chair Kathleen Marra: “During his presidency, Donald Trump hasn’t just failed to address racial disparities, he’s actively made them worse with economic policies tilted in favor of corporations and wealthy investors … Tragically, Trump has failed to respond as the pandemic has disproportionately impacted communities of color both in health and economic outcomes. Joe Biden is making racial equity a centerpiece of his economic recovery plan, and our choice this November couldn’t be clearer.”

In Nevada:

Nevada Assembly Speaker Jason Frierson: “Time and again, Donald Trump has failed the Black community, especially now. As coronavirus cases surge and the economy craters, Trump has stuck his head in the sand while Black Americans are being disproportionately harmed. Trump’s failed pandemic response has inflamed longstanding economic and health disparities while fueling inequality.” 

Nevada Assemblyman Edgar Flores: “From day one, Donald Trump’s rhetoric has demonized the Latino community, while his anti-immigrant agenda has terrorized our families. Now, as a direct result of his failed pandemic response, Latinos are bearing the brunt of the coronavirus crisis as our communities, businesses, and priorities get left behind. The Latino community deserves a leader who will bind us together instead of driving us apart, and fight to build a better future for the next generation. That leader is Joe Biden.”  

Nevada State Democratic Party Chair William McCurdy II: “Trump turned his back on communities of color, especially as we confront the catastrophic fallout of his failed pandemic response. Nevada’s diversity is its great strength, and our Black, Latino, Native American, and AAPI communities deserve far better than Donald Trump’s record of broken promises.” 

In New Hampshire:

New Hampshire Democratic Party Chair Ray Buckley: “Donald Trump’s chaotic and failed mismanagement of the coronavirus pandemic has resulted in an unprecedented public health and economic disaster that is hurting communities of color the most … For months, Granite Staters were losing their jobs and were getting sick while Trump downplayed the severity of the coronavirus, spread false information about ‘treatments’, refused to take responsibility, and refused to handle this crisis.”

In North Carolina:

North Carolina Senate Democratic Leader Dan Blue: “Four years ago, Donald Trump asked African American North Carolinians what we have to lose by voting for him. We knew the answer then and we know it now — we have everything to lose by supporting Donald Trump. Trump has spent his presidency supporting big businesses and wealthy investors over communities of color; undercutting affordable housing opportunities and undermining efforts to reduce racial disparities in education.”

Ohio:

Ohio Legislative Black Caucus President Stephanie Howse: “The coronavirus pandemic and its disproportionate impact on Black Ohioans is Exhibit A for why we have been saying that racism is a public health crisis. Donald Trump has done nothing to address the concerns of Black Ohioans; in fact, his reckless and chaotic response to the coronavirus crisis has led to thousands of needless deaths, particularly in African-American communities.”

Ohio Democratic Party Vice Chair Rhine McLin: “Our country cannot take four more years of Trump, and Black Ohioans definitely cannot take another four years of Trump’s hate-filled Twitter rants and tacit support for white supremacy. We’ve had enough. It’s time to put Joe Biden in the White House.”

In Pennsylvania: 

State Senator Sharif Street: “Four years ago, Donald Trump tried to sell himself to Black Americans by asking us ‘What the hell do you have to lose?’ It turns out we’ve lost a whole lot under the Donald Trump presidency … We’ve watched Donald Trump go after our health care, undermine civil rights protections, and in recent months, fail to address the COVID-19 pandemic which is disproportionately killing Black and Brown Americans.”

In Texas: 

Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson: “Throughout his presidency, Donald Trump has waged war on communities of color and rolled back hard-won protections that generations before us fought and died for. So it’s no surprise that as coronavirus cases surge across Texas, Trump is parachuting in for a photo op while Black Americans and Latinos bear the burden of his failed pandemic response. Communities of color in Texas and across the country don’t need any more cheap political stunts, we need leadership in the White House that will fight racial disparities and inequality head on. That’s why we’ll reject Trump’s empty promises and elect Joe Biden in November.”

In Virginia:

Virginia Legislative Black Caucus Chair Lamont Bagby: “The president’s dog whistles to racists, proliferation of structural inequity, and blatant lies have cost Black and Brown Virginians immensely during his administration. This election is about more than returning to the status quo. It is about fixing harm and making tangible progress. Donald Trump has only divided America further, and fanned the flames of racism. Joe Biden will commit to investing in our communities and make racial justice a key component of his policy agenda.”

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DNC on Trump Rejecting Health Experts and Promoting Dubious Doctor During Coronavirus Briefing

28 Jul

In response to Trump doubling down on his recommendation of hydroxychloroquine as a coronavirus treatment despite his own FDA warning against its use and saying a doctor who pushes absurd medical conspiracy theories is “spectacular,” DNC War Room senior spokesperson and advisor Lily Adams released the following statement:

“Trump spent today’s coronavirus briefing promoting snake oil doctors and unsafe, unproven treatments because he is incapable of acting decisively to get the coronavirus under control as we near 150,000 deaths, cases spike nationwide, and millions of Americans remain unemployed. There’s no new tone – this is who Trump is and always will be: a conspiracy theorist content to gamble with the lives of others. We need a president who listens to real medical experts and can be trusted to make decisions that will keep Americans safe.”

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In House Judiciary Hearing, Barr Makes Clear He Only Serves Trump

28 Jul

During today’s House Judiciary Committee hearing, it was clear that Attorney General Barr has corrupted our justice system and is only interested in protecting and defending Trump’s worst behavior.

Barr said that he didn’t think systemic racism existed in police departments.

BARR: “I don’t agree that there is systemic racism in police departments.”

Barr struggled to say definitively that it was not appropriate for a president to solicit or accept foreign assistance in an election.

REP. CICILLINE: “Is it ever appropriate, sir, for the president to solicit or accept foreign assistance in an election?”

BARR: “It depends what kind of assistance.”

Barr, who’s voted by mail himself, falsely claimed repeatedly that mail-in voting substantially increases the risk of fraud.

BARR: “If you have wholesale mail-in voting it substantially increases the risk of fraud.”

CNN’s Jeremy Herb: “Scanlon pressed Barr on claims of fraud and mail-in voting. Asked if he had any evidence of widespread fraud, Barr said: ‘No I don’t, but I have common sense.’”

Barr struggled to answer questions on the use of tear gas against peaceful protesters and falsely said it was not used in Lafayette Park.

MSNBC’s Garrate Haake: “Barr continues to deny the use of tear gas at Lafayette Park on June 1, even as a US National Guard major is testifying in a different House hearing that there was, and that he picked up the shells on the street that day.”

New Yorker’s Elizabeth Vargas: “Attorney General Bill Barr struggles to answer whether peaceful protesters deserve to ‘tear gassed and beaten to point of broken bones’, while showing video of a navy vet experiencing just that.”

Barr could not provide any other example where DOJ had recommended a more lenient sentence than the guidelines set out for a defendant like Roger Stone.

New York Times: “Representative Ted Deutch, Democrat of Florida, later asked Mr. Barr repeatedly if he would point to any other case where the department had recommended a more lenient punishment than the guidelines set out for a defendant like Mr. Stone, who had threatened a judge and a witness. Mr. Barr did not answer directly, insisting that ‘the judge agreed with me’ and gave Mr. Stone a lighter sentence.”

The post In House Judiciary Hearing, Barr Makes Clear He Only Serves Trump appeared first on Democrats.

WATCH: DNC RELEASES NEW TV AD IN MI: ‘This Is Not a Test’

28 Jul

The DNC War Room released a new television ad in Michigan today, “This Is Not a Test,” to call out Donald Trump for gambling with children’s health and safety. Trump is trying to force schools to fully reopen before they’re able to do so safely, despite coronavirus cases surging across the country, because he thinks it will help with his reelection.

The ad will run in the Detroit media market starting on Tuesday, targeted on cable networks to reach parents with school age children and teachers as part of a six figure buy.

WATCH HERE:

Experts, scientists, teachers, and parents know that Trump can’t be trusted to decide when schools should reopen. It’s Trump’s fault that the outbreak got this bad in the first place. Trump should focus on getting the virus under control, and stop trying to force schools to reopen before they’re able to do so safely.

“Donald Trump has put Michigan families in an impossible position. Parents shouldn’t have to stay up at night worried that the president of the United States is compromising their kids’ safety. Children shouldn’t be exposed to a deadly virus, or risk passing the virus to their parents, grandparents, and loved ones. Trump will do anything to help his reelection chances. He can’t be trusted to make this life-or-death decision for our children. It’s time for a leader who will protect Michigan’s kids, and give families and teachers the support they deserve. It’s time for Joe Biden,” said DNC Chair Tom Perez.

The post WATCH: DNC RELEASES NEW TV AD IN MI: ‘This Is Not a Test’ appeared first on Democrats.

Trump Wants More States To Reopen As Coronavirus Surges — He’s Clearly Learned Nothing

28 Jul

Trump thinks more states should reopen, even as Dr. Fauci warns that there will be further death and suffering if we don’t get the virus under control. Trump’s initial push to unsafely reopen states led to a surge in new cases and hospitalizations and once again brought our economy to a halt. Trump still hasn’t learned anything about how to lead us out of this crisis.

Trump said yesterday that more states should be opening up, even though the coronavirus is surging.

TRUMP: “I really do believe a lot of the governors should be opening up states that they’re not opening.”

Dr. Fauci also said yesterday that we are going to have further suffering and death if we don’t contain the coronavirus.

FAUCI: “If you look at the deaths as they’re occurring right now — about 1,000 per day — unless we get our arms around this and get it suppressed, we are going to have further suffering and further death.”

Hospitalizations are surging in Florida, including among children, just weeks before schools are being forced to reopen.

CNN: “Child hospitalizations from Covid-19 surge 23% in Florida as schools statewide must reopen”

The economic recovery has stalled after Trump’s failed response led to a surge in cases and forced states and businesses to shut down again.

CBS News: “The economic recovery that began in May is sputtering. Recent data show Americans cutting their spending and many businesses re-closing their doors as the number of COVID-19 cases in the U.S. crosses 4 million, raising concerns about another slowdown in growth.”

Even Trump’s own allies say he has failed to confront the pandemic with a clear strategy and consistent leadership.

Washington Post: “But both allies and opponents agree he has failed at the one task that could help him achieve all of his goals — confronting the pandemic with a clear strategy and consistent leadership.”

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In Late Night Tweet Tirade, Trump Again Promotes Debunked Coronavirus Conspiracies

28 Jul

As COVID-19 cases continue to spike across the country and we approach 150,000 deaths, Trump spent his Monday night showing off his apparent “new tone” by tweeting fringe coronavirus conspiracies, promoting dangerous misinformation about the virus, and undermining the nation’s top infectious disease expert.

Late Monday night, Trump tweeted multiple versions of a viral video making dubious claims about hydroxychloroquine that also undermined Dr. Fauci.

Overnight, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube removed the videos Trump retweeted for promoting false information.

CNN: “’We’ve removed this video for sharing false information about cures and treatments for COVID-19,’ a Facebook spokesperson told CNN, adding that the platform is ‘showing messages in News Feed to people who have reacted to, commented on or shared harmful COVID-19-related misinformation that we have removed, connecting them to myths debunked by the WHO.’”

CNN: “Twitter worked to scrub the video late Monday night after Trump shared versions of the video that amassed hundreds of thousands of views. ‘We’re taking action in line with our Covid misinfo policy,’ a Twitter spokesperson told CNN.”

CNN: “The video was also removed by YouTube, where it had been viewed more than 40,000 times. Users attempting to access the video late Monday were greeted with a message that said it had been removed for ‘violating YouTube’s Community Guidelines.’”

Dr. Fauci again pushed back on Trump’s promotion of an unproven drug while warning that the White House was painting an inaccurate picture of ongoing challenges with testing and PPE.

NBC News: “Fauci reiterated that the ‘overwhelming prevailing clinical trials’ that have looked at the efficacy of Hydroxychloroquine have indicated that it’s ‘not effective’ in treating the coronavirus.”

ABC News: “Fauci was pressed to explain why, months after COVID-19 first reached U.S. soil, the U.S. government is still struggling to provide adequate testing for Americans and sufficient personal protective gear for essential workers. ‘We keep hearing when we go to these task force meetings that these [issues] are being corrected,’ Fauci said. ‘But yet when you go into the trenches, you still hear about that.’”

Trump and his advisors have routinely pushed hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for coronavirus, despite various studies finding that the drug does not treat or prevent coronavirus. 

Washington Post: “Multiple studies have disputed claims that antimalarial and antiviral drugs like hydroxychloroquine, azithromycin, and chloroquine can help treat or even prevent the coronavirus. Last month, the FDA revoked an emergency approval that allowed doctors to prescribe hydroxychloroquine to covid-19 patients even though the treatment was untested.”

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