Archive for the ‘Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ category

Exclusive – Jeff Sessions Orders Look into ‘DOJ Slush Fund’ Payments to Leftists

August 4, 2017

Exclusive – Jeff Sessions Orders Look into ‘DOJ Slush Fund’ Payments to Leftists, BreitbartIan Mason, August 4, 2017

An internal Department of Justice memorandum obtained by Breitbart News Friday indicates Attorney General Jeff Sessions is trying to get to the bottom of the DOJ “slush fund” for left-wing groups he dismantled in June.

The memo asks all components of the DOJ to recount the last ten years of payments made to non-governmental organizations as third parties in settlements and provide that information to Associate Attorney General Rachel Brand, the number three Justice official. These “cy pres” payments were a long-standing policy of having mostly corporate defendants, for example in a civil rights suit, agree to pay into charities as part of their settlement with the government to avoid further prosecution.

In recent years, especially during the Obama administration, the practice increasingly funneled funds to left-wing “community organizing” groups such as the now renamed National Council of La Raza, or “The Race,” a Latino racial advocacy group that supports mass illegal immigration. Congressional Republicans and conservative groups decried the payments for years, often characterizing the system as a “slush fund” for leftists but, since they were made under the auspices of the Department of Justice using broad, decades-old legislation, it was difficult to rein in.

Attorney General Sessions, however, put a stop to the payments unilaterally in June, issuing a department-wide memo prohibiting all payments to third parties in settlements not under three narrow exceptions, for example, genuine victim compensation. The announcement was widely heralded as a victory by conservatives.

The new memo, dated July 28, goes further, commanding DOJ attorneys to look back into the history of these settlements and report back every payment that would not meet the new standards laid down in June. Payments agreed to but not yet paid out are also to be identified. Every component is to be reported to Associate Attorney General Brand by the end of the month.

The exact long-term intent of this data collection effort could not be inferred from the memo, but the assembled information will give a much clearer picture of this practice that estimates claim may have given left-wing activists hundreds of millions of dollars wrenched from the hands of American corporations.

 

Jeff Sessions warns government leakers: You ‘will be prosecuted’

August 4, 2017

Jeff Sessions warns government leakers: You ‘will be prosecuted’, Washington ExaminerKelly Cohen, August 4, 2017

(How about those who publish the leaked material? — DM)

Attorney General Jeff Sessions unveiled a new Department of Justice crackdown on leaks. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Friday that the Justice Department is ramping up steps to investigate and prosecute government leakers, a day after transcripts of President Trump’s calls with two foreign leaders were leaked to the Washington Post.

“Criminals who would illegally use their access to our most sensitive information to endanger our national security are in fact being investigated, and will be prosecuted,” he said in a press conference.

Sessions stressed that his department doesn’t confirm or deny specific investigations, but made it clear there are many more leak investigations ongoing today than there were less than a year ago.

“Since January, the department has more than triple the number of active leak investigations compared to the number pending at the end of the last administration,” he said. “And we’ve already charged four people with unlawfully disclosing classified material or with concealing contacts with federal officers.”

Sessions also stressed repeatedly that a way to solve the problem is to change the culture in government, which routinely leaks classified information.

“This culture of leaking must stop,” he said.

Sessions was joined by Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and National Counterintelligence and Security Center Director William Evanina from the Justice Department headquarters on Friday in Washington.

Trump, who has criticized Sessions in recent weeks, said he wanted Sessions to crack down on the leaks that have plagued his administration since he took office. The attorney general told Fox News’ Tucker Carlson last week that he has “not been happy with the past prosecutions and investigations of criminal leaks.”

The Washington Post released the transcripts of Trump’s calls in late January with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto and Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and noted the transcripts had notes indicating the National Security Council had classified them. The full transcripts, the Post said, were “produced by White House staff” and based on records kept by White House notetakers.

AG Sessions To Announce Investigations into leaks – Trump Admin – America’s Newsroom

July 31, 2017

AG Sessions To Announce Investigations into leaks – Trump Admin – America’s Newsroom via YouTube, July 31, 2017

(Also a bit on Debbie Wasserman-Schultz and Imran Awan. — DM)

The Washington Post Swings and Misses at Jeff Sessions

July 22, 2017

The Washington Post Swings and Misses at Jeff Sessions, Power LinePaul Mirengoff, July 21, 2017

The Post’s sources clearly are out to get Sessions. It’s anyone’s guess whether they are accurately characterizing what the ambassador told his government and the reliability of what he told it.

In any event, the Post and its sources have failed to identify any contradiction between Sessions’s statements about his interaction with the ambassador and what the ambassador supposedly told the Russians about the interaction.

*************************************

The Washington Post claims that Attorney General Sessions’ statements about what he discussed with the Russian ambassador are at odds with reports by the ambassador to his government about what he and Sessions discussed. The Post relies on, you guessed it, “current and former U.S. officials.”

But the Post fails to describe a contradiction between what Sessions has said and what the Russian ambassador supposedly reported. Here are the only statements by Sessions cited by the Post and its sources as problematic:

I never had meetings with Russian operatives or Russian intermediaries about the Trump campaign.

I don’t recall any discussion of the campaign in any significant way.

I never met with or had any conversation with any Russians or foreign officials concerning any type of interference with any campaign or election in the United States.

Here is the Post’s description of what the Russian ambassador told the government:

A former official said that the intelligence indicates that Sessions and Kislyak had “substantive” discussions on matters including Trump’s positions on Russia-related issues and prospects for U.S.-Russia relations in a Trump administration.

Maybe. But even someone with average skill in reading and logic would understand that this description is not inconsistent with Sessions’ denial that he did not discuss the campaign with the ambassador.

It stands to reason that Sessions might discuss Russia-related issues with the Russian ambassador. And Russia-related issues are also campaign-related issues in the sense that Russia was an issue in the campaign.

But what Sessions denied was that he discussed the campaign and any interference by Russia with it. The denial was important because, at the time Sessions made it, the issue Washington fixated on was whether Team Trump sought or knew about Russian help for the candidate, or coordinated with Russia regarding the campaign.

The Post’s piece, by Adam Entous, Ellen Nakashima, and Greg Miller, is dishonest. It finds a contradiction where none exists by glossing over the distinction between discussing a “campaign-related issue” — which is any substantive issue raised by any candidate during the campaign season — and discussing the campaign.

Discussing hacking or “opposition research” research with the Russian ambassador would constitute discussing the campaign. Telling the ambassador how the campaign is going or what its strategy is would constituted discussing the campaign. Telling the ambassador — as President Obama told the Russian president — that the candidate would be more flexible with Russia after the campaign would probably be a borderline case.

Simply discussing Russia policy — past, present, or future — is not discussing the campaign.

There is also the question of whether the Russian ambassador was telling his government the truth. The Post admits that “the Russian ambassador could have mischaracterized or exaggerated the nature of his interactions” with Sessions. It notes: “Russian and other foreign diplomats in Washington and elsewhere have been known, at times, to report false or misleading information to bolster their standing with their superiors or to confuse U.S. intelligence agencies.”

The Post adds, however, that the Russian ambassador “has a reputation for accurately relaying details about his interactions with officials in Washington.” Maybe. But I’m not inclined to take the word of the “deep state” on this. I suspect there are “current and former officials” who would grant the Russian ambassador sainthood if it meant embarrassing the Trump administration.

The Post’s sources clearly are out to get Sessions. It’s anyone’s guess whether they are accurately characterizing what the ambassador told his government and the reliability of what he told it.

In any event, the Post and its sources have failed to identify any contradiction between Sessions’s statements about his interaction with the ambassador and what the ambassador supposedly told the Russians about the interaction.

Mueller Expands His Probe Again

July 21, 2017

Mueller Expands His Probe Again, Front Page MagazineMatthew Vadum, July 21, 2017

(Don’t worry, something sexy may emerge from the FBI’s investigation into the connections between the  “Trump Dossier” and President Trump’s Vast Russian conspiracy. Please see, FBI relies on discredited dossier in Russia investigation. — DM)

Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III is yet again expanding the scope of his off-the-rails investigation into the Left’s wacky Russian electoral collusion conspiracy theory by examining financial transactions even vaguely related to Russia involving President Trump’s businesses and those of his associates, Bloomberg News reports.

Honest observers recognize that with the election of Donald Trump, the longtime Russophiles of the morally flexible Left flipped on their traditional friends in Moscow faster than you can say Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact or Operation Barbarossa. Ignoring its own history of rampant seditious collaboration with Russia, the Left has now managed to convince many that any past or present connection a Republican has or had to Russia, however trivial, is somehow now retroactively evidence of treason against the United States.

There is still no evidence that Trump covered up a crime, or even that there was an underlying crime to be concealed but that hasn’t stopped the Left’s witch-hunt from growing and the goalposts from being shifted.

Remember that it was just a month ago as the bizarre collusion allegations got stuck in the mud that Mueller expanded his investigation to include allegations that Trump tried to obstruct justice by firing FBI Director James B. Comey on May 9. The claim is that Trump did this to end Comey’s investigation into National Security Advisor Mike Flynn’s ties to Russia. Of course, as Harvard Law professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz has pointed out repeatedly, the president has authority under the Constitution to fire the FBI director for any reason or no reason at all. Comey himself has freely acknowledged he served at the pleasure of the president.

That said, “FBI investigators and others are looking at Russian purchases of apartments in Trump buildings, Trump’s involvement in a controversial SoHo development in New York with Russian associates, the 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Moscow and Trump’s sale of a Florida mansion to a Russian oligarch in 2008,” Bloomberg reported an anonymous source saying.

The report continues, elaborating that:

Mueller’s team is looking at the Trump SoHo hotel condominium development, which was a licensing deal with Bayrock Capital LLC. In 2010, the former finance director of Bayrock filed a lawsuit claiming the firm structured transactions in fraudulent ways to evade taxes. Bayrock was a key source of capital for Trump projects, including Trump SoHo.

The 2013 Miss Universe pageant is of interest because a prominent Moscow developer, Aras Agalarov, paid $20 million to bring the beauty spectacle there. About a third of that sum went to Trump in the form of a licensing fee, according to Forbes magazine. At the event, Trump met Herman Gref, chief executive of Russia’s biggest bank, Sberbank PJSC. Agalarov’s son, Emin, helped broker a meeting last year between Donald Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer [i.e. Natalia Veselnitskaya] who was said to have damaging information about Hillary Clinton and her campaign.

Another significant financial transaction involved a Palm Beach, Florida, estate Trump purchased in 2004 for $41 million, after its previous owner lost it in bankruptcy. In March of 2008, after the real-estate bubble had begun losing air, Russian fertilizer magnate Dmitry Rybolovlev bought the property for $95 million.

As part of their investigation, Mueller’s team has issued subpoenas to banks and filed requests for bank records to foreign lenders under mutual legal-assistance treaties, according to two of the people familiar with the matter.

In addition, a federal money-laundering probe of Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort has reportedly been subsumed into the larger investigation headed by Mueller. Mueller’s office is also reportedly looking at Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross’s tenure as vice chairman of the Bank of Cyprus and at presidential advisor and son-in-law Jared Kushner’s efforts to obtain financing for his family’s real estate investments.

Newt Gingrich said yesterday that Mueller “has so many conflicts of interest it’s almost an absurdity,” but all of this seems above-board to Bloomberg.

“The Justice Department’s May 17 order to Mueller,” the media outlet reports, “instructs him to investigate ‘any links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign’ as well as ‘any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation,’ suggesting a relatively broad mandate.”

Trump lawyer John Dowd disagrees. He said examining the president’s business dealings should be out-of-bounds for Mueller.

“Those transactions are in my view well beyond the mandate of the Special counsel; are unrelated to the election of 2016 or any alleged collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia and most importantly, are well beyond any Statute of Limitation imposed by the United States Code,” he told Bloomberg in an email.

Meanwhile, the Left is digging in its heels.

In a defamatory, overheated column, the buffoonish purveyor of partisan drivel Jonathan Chait claims:

New reports in the Washington Post and New York Times are clear signals that Trump is contemplating steps – firing Mueller or issuing mass pardons – that would seem to go beyond the pale. Except Trump’s entire career is beyond the pale, and in his time on the political stage, the unthinkable has become thinkable with regularity.

Chait pontificates that:

Trump’s actions are best understood in the context of the overwhelming likelihood he, his family members, and at least some of his associates are guilty of serious crimes. The investigation might not produce proof of criminal collusion with Russia’s illegal hacking of Democratic emails. (Though reasonable grounds for suspicion already exists in abundance.)

Except there is no “overwhelming likelihood” that Trump, his family members, or associates are “guilty of serious crimes,” at least not based on publicly available evidence. Chait is engaging in pure speculation precisely because there is no proof of wrongdoing.

Chait shrieks that Trump’s New York Times interview this week and other news reports citing unidentified sources are proof that the president is a threat to the republic. “The ominous threats emanating from the White House are an administration mobilizing for war against the rule of law,” he wrote.

But what did Trump actually tell the Old Gray Lady?

“I have done nothing wrong,” he said. “A special counsel should never have been appointed in this case.”

One interviewer asked the president, “Last thing, if Mueller was looking at your finances and your family finances, unrelated to Russia, is that a red line?” Another then chimed in with, “Would that be a breach of what his actual charge is?”

Trump responded, probably correctly, with “I would say yeah. I would say yes.”

“Would you fire Mueller if he went outside of certain parameters of what his charge is?” an interviewer asked.

“I can’t answer that question because I don’t think it’s going to happen,” Trump replied.

It is horrifying to Chait that Trump is daring to defend himself in an interview.

Then there is that anonymously-sourced Washington Post article that claims Trump is considering firing Mueller and issuing mass-pardons – kind of like when Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) unilaterally re-enfranchised felons by the hundreds of thousands to help Hillary Clinton during the last election cycle – in order to put himself and those close to him above the law.

It’s the kind of juicy, implausible story that the “Democracy Dies in Darkness” crowd has been known for since Trump was elected. The claim that the president’s legal team is examining the backgrounds of Team Mueller – as these attorneys are perfectly entitled to do – is much more plausible, though, according to Chait, such actions mark Trump as a budding dictator.

As left-wingers like Chait see it, the president isn’t allowed to defend himself from scurrilous, malicious allegations when he’s a Republican.

Confusing matters is the fact that the straight-shooting president delivered an extraordinarily unusual public flogging of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, upbraiding him behind enemy lines in the New York Times interview. Trump said it was a mistake for Sessions to recuse himself from the Russia probe and that he may not have nominated him for the post if he had known beforehand that the attorney general would make the recusal decision.

It is true that with the benefit of hindsight, Sessions’ recusal, hailed at the time by the media and the rest of the Left as a noble, unifying gesture after a very, very nasty, hard-fought election, now looks boneheaded. Sessions is a good man and an outstanding public servant but he may have been in too much of a hurry to be liked by the Washington swamp. Appointing a special counsel calmed the Left down only briefly. Appeasing the radicals of today’s Democratic Party doesn’t work.

Although the unusual rebuke of Sessions may suggest the former Alabama senator’s days at the Justice Department may be numbered, White House Deputy Press

Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said yesterday the president “still has confidence” in Sessions despite the high-profile criticism.

“As he said yesterday, he was disappointed in Attorney General Sessions’ decision to recuse himself, but clearly he has confidence in him or he would not be the attorney general,” she said. Sessions said at a presser the same day that he planned to stay at his post for as long as “appropriate.”

The public relations debacle that was the Times interview was barely noticed by much of the mainstream media as news that the far-from-humbled-sociopath O.J. Simpson was paroled in Nevada sucked up much of the available media oxygen.

Some observers think Trump is setting the stage for firing Mueller, or at least finding a way to clip his wings a bit.

In a post at NRO titled, “Yeah, Trump Is Probably Going to Fire Robert Mueller,” Rich Lowry called Trump’s comments “a wholly gratuitous slap” at Sessions. “The 3-D-chess theory of the interview would be that Trump is trying to force Sessions out in favor of a non-recused attorney general who can rein in Mueller,” he wrote.

President Trump is right to be concerned. Mueller’s investigation increasingly resembles a massive anti-Trump fishing expedition.

The problem here is the special counsel system, Charles Krauthammer told Tucker Carlson on Fox News Channel last night. “Their mandates are essentially unlimited.”

He’s right. Independent prosecutors just keep digging until somebody stops them. Justice is rarely achieved, or even sought. Their purpose is to vex and harass for political purposes, so in that sense, Special Counsel Mueller is right on-track.

And Mueller is the Washington swamp’s best hope to oust the 45th president.

DeSantis: House Intel Committee Has Brought in Some ‘Big Names’ to Answer Questions About Leaks

July 16, 2017

DeSantis: House Intel Committee Has Brought in Some ‘Big Names’ to Answer Questions About Leaks, PJ Media, Debra Heine, July 16, 2617

House Judiciary Committee member Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) said that the House Intelligence Committee has already brought in some “big names” — “more than the press knows” — to answer questions about leaks of classified information to reporters.

When asked by Hugh Hewitt on MSNBC Saturday morning whether the committee was planning to call up Obama’s former “foreign policy guru,” Ben Rhodes, DeSantis said that he’s spoken to the committee’s chairman, Trey Gowdy of South Carolina, about Rhodes but that he would defer to Gowdy to identify people of interest in the leak investigation.

DeSantis, a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, the House Judiciary Committee, and the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, said in an interview with the Washington Free Beacon last week that President Trump needs to purge Obama holdovers still working in the federal government.

DeSantis told the Beacon that “the holdovers and their allies outside the White House are responsible for an unprecedented series of national security leaks aimed at damaging the Trump administration’s national security apparatus.”

He singled out Obama’s chief propagandist, Ben Rhodes, as the person responsible for most of the leaks and called on Congress to press Attorney General Jeff Sessions and others to make sure they are looking into the situation.

DeSantis told Hewitt that he has drafted a letter to send to Sessions, asking that he investigate the leaks.

So I’ve prepared a letter. We’re going to be sending that next week, I imagine I’ll have a number of my colleagues joining it, asking the Justice Department to look into all these things, but then report back to us whether they are doing it or not, because, Hugh, you know, you’re very knowledgeable in national security.

We have certain intelligence authorities that are coming up for review this year. And if you don’t have anyone, say, being prosecuted for the Michael Flynn leaks, that was FISA material, then you’re not going to be able to do things like reauthorize 702 of the FISA statute, which is due by the end of the year. So I think if there’s no action being taken, I think it actually has a big effect on what we’re able to do in Congress.

And I’m somebody, I want to empower our intelligence agencies. I think it’s very important. But it’s very difficult to make that case to the American people if that information is then being used for domestic political warfare.

Asked if he would call Rhodes in to testify, DeSantis replied:

I’ve talked to Chairman Gowdy about it, and remember, they are doing things on the Intelligence Committee, and they’re doing a lot more than what the press knows in terms of some of the people that they have brought in. And they’ve brought in some pretty big names that I’m not authorized to say. So I want to defer to his judgment about whether that would be more appropriate in terms of the leak investigation that they’re doing on the Intelligence Committee. But I would like to bring him in to talk to him about it, because I want to figure out how all this information was getting out from the FISA intercept on…

DeSantis differentiated between the leaks that are coming from Obama holdovers in the Trump administration and standard “whistleblower” leaks.  These leaks, he argued, are an attack on the president.

“It’s not just people are leaking because they think something was wrong with the government and they want some sunlight,” DeSantis explained. “But this is concerted leaks designed to attack the sitting president. So I think the character of the leaks are different, and I think Comey’s leaks are part of that bushel.”

He cited as an example how conversations Trump has had with a foreign leaders have gone through the National Security Council and somehow ended up on the front page of the newspaper.

“And so we’ve gotten lot of information saying look, there’s only so many places that would come from,” the congressman said. “And the Obama holdover working with Rhodes, that’s a place we’ve been encouraged to look. So I want to look at that, because I think that it’s distorted the president’s ability to simply conduct foreign relations if there’s going to be selective leaking of his conversations with foreign leaders in ways that are damaging to him or at least purporting to damage him. That’s not the way we want our government to function.”

To answer his final question, Hewitt called on DeSantis to use his “prosecutorial chops”:

“If you had to guess who was going to get indicted, if anyone – Donald Trump Jr., James Comey or Ben Rhodes — what would your guess be?” he asked.

DeSantis answered: “I want to know what are in those Comey memos and see whether there’s classified information. I mean, I don’t think Donald Trump Jr. is going to get indicted. I think he had a meeting. I don’t think a criminal offense was committed. In terms of the political judgment, I think that’s fair to criticize. But I don’t think that there was a crime committed there.”

He forgot to mention Rhodes.

 

ABC News: Christians Who Believe In The First Amendment Are A ‘Hate Group’

July 14, 2017

ABC News: Christians Who Believe In The First Amendment Are A ‘Hate Group’, The Federalist, July 13, 2017

ABC News’ Pete Madden and Erin Galloway smeared Christians who believe the Bill of Rights secures religious liberty as a “hate group,” in an article this week headlined, “Jeff Sessions addresses ‘anti-LGBT hate group,’ but DOJ won’t release his remarks.” The lede of the story made it clear this was not just the work of a rogue headline writer but the failure of the reporters themselves:

Attorney General Jeff Sessions delivered a speech to an alleged hate group at an event closed to reporters on Tuesday night, but the Department of Justice is refusing to reveal what he said.

First, a note that you can — and should — read the prepared remarks of the Attorney General here at The Federalist.

Who is this “hate group”? Alliance Defending Freedom is not a hate group at all, but a civil liberties organization that battles for religious liberty. And they’re not a fringe group either. They just weeks ago won their most recent Supreme Court victory — Trinity Lutheran v. Comer — 7-2. It was their fifth Supreme Court victory in seven years, during which time they’ve had no losses at the high court.

And the group is ranked among the top law firms in the country for its successes at the Supreme Court.

Most recently the non-profit law firm found out that the Supreme Court agreed to hear another one of their cases dealing with artistic freedom and religious liberty.

To characterize such an accomplished civil rights group as a ‘hate group’ is unacceptable and inexcusable. It boggles the mind why ABC News, in the midst of cratering credibility, would disparage Christian efforts in favor of religious liberty in such a mendacious way.

How in the world did this happen?

Well, for some reason ABC News chose to wholly adopt the Southern Poverty Law Center’s framing for the significance of the attorney general’s speech to the group. Check it out:

Here’s why reporters such as Pete Madden and Erin Galloway should be wary before slightly rewriting SPLC press releases and passing off the work as their own. SPLC previously had a reservoir of credibility based on a history of good work exposing legitimately nefarious individuals and groups. In recent years, however, that reservoir has all but dried up as SPLC has gone after reasonable groups it merely disagrees with politically but labels as hate groups. It engages in this campaign while ignoring serious problems on the left.

SPLC has the gall to list the Family Research Council as a “hate group,” for instance, even after an SPLC follower used an SPLC “hate map” to locate the Family Research Council offices in Washington, D.C., and commit an act of terrorism and attempted mass murder against the group. Thankfully, the SPLC-inspired terrorist was stopped by the security guard he shot when he arrived. Read all about that incident here.

The most recent attempted assassination by a left-wing terrorist was also a follower of SPLC. As Jeryl Bier wrote in the Wall Street Journal, “The Insidious Influence of the SPLC: Its branding of ‘hate groups’ and individuals is biased, sometimes false—and feeds polarization.”

Last week the SPLC found itself in the awkward position of disavowing the man who opened fire on Republican members of Congress during baseball practice. “We’re aware that the SPLC was among hundreds of groups that the man identified as the shooter ‘liked’ on Facebook,” SPLC president Richard Cohen said in a statement. “I want to be as clear as I can possibly be: The SPLC condemns all forms of violence.”

It’s not just Christians who SPLC targets. SPLC also faces legal action for placing British Muslim author and counter-extremism activist Maajid Nawaz on an anti-Muslim “hate list.”

The Southern Poverty Law Center has put my name on a list that calls me an ‘anti-Muslim extremist’. I am the only Muslim on the list. This list has smeared my name and possibly put me in physical danger. This is a message to those who think they can throw around damning labels like ‘Islamophobe’ ‘racist’ and ‘Nazi’ without any evidence and simply get away with it.

You can read more about Nawaz’s plight here at The Atlantic.

ABC News can certainly quote the Southern Poverty Law Center’s extreme views, but it shouldn’t build a story around the wholesale acceptance of their flawed premises. That turns journalism into anti-religious propaganda on behalf of a partisan group. Media outlets do not want to be perceived as enemies of average Americans. They should avoid giving people reason to view them as just that.