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National News

    A major glacier in Greenland is expanding again, after years of shrinking and major ice loss, according to a new NASA study. >> Read more trending news  The Jakobshavn Glacier has been the nation’s fastest-flowing and fastest-thinning glacier for the last 20 years and has now made a surprising reversal. The glacier is now flowing more slowly, thickening and advancing, instead of retreating further inland, the space agency reported.  The glacial study by scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, was published Monday in the journal Nature Geoscience, and is based on data from NASA’s Oceans Melting Greenland, or OMG mission, and other observations. >> Related: What is the Paris climate agreement and why you should care? But researchers cautioned that the glacier is still adding to global sea level rise because it is still losing more ice to the ocean than it gains from snow accumulation, although at a slower rate. They theorized that the slowdown in ice melt was caused by an ocean current that brought much colder water to the glacier’s ocean face in 2016. Water temperatures near the glacier are now colder than they’ve been since 2016, according to NASA. The researchers were shocked by the discovery that the glacier was thickening again. “At first, we didn’t believe it,” Ala Khazendar, with the Jet Propulsion Lab, said. “We had pretty much assumed Jakobshavn would just keep going on as it had over the last 20 years.” Khazendar pointed to the cold water near the glacier for three straight years as one of the reasons it’s growing again. >> Related: 6 signs of climate change and why it’s already here Researchers said they don’t expect that trend to continue. When the climate pattern flips again, the glacier will most likely start accelerating and thinning again, researchers said.
  • Most had never met her, didn't even know her name until they saw it on the news. But moved by the tragic death of a 9-year-old girl whose body was found stuffed into a duffel bag and discarded on a hillside trail — like so much trash, as one mourner put it — people turned out by the hundreds Monday for an at-times joyous, at other times angry and frustrated interfaith service celebrating the life of Trinity Love Jones. They all but filled the pews of spacious St. John Vianney Catholic Church in the Los Angeles suburb of Hacienda Heights, just a couple of miles (3.2 kilometers) from where a park worker had found Trinity's body on March 5. She was dressed in pants with a panda pattern and a pink shirt — her favorite color — that proclaimed, 'Future Princess Hero.' Her mother and her mother's boyfriend have been charged with murder. 'I don't even know them but I just had to come. I have grandchildren her age,' Camille Boswell of the nearby city of Placentia said of Trinity and her family. 'Any time a ... child dies, it hurts.' Following the wishes of Trinity's father, Antonio, she had arrived in a bright blue and white suit and bright blue hat because Trinity liked bright colors. Other mourners wore buttons with her name and photo on them. Many acknowledged they had no idea who she was when her body was found on March 5, but they followed the news daily, stunned that such a thing could happen to an innocent 9-year-old. Hacienda Heights, 20 miles (32.2 kilometers) east of Los Angeles, is in many ways an insular community of 54,000 people, made up of large numbers of white, Latino and Asian residents. It's walled off on two sides by hillsides dotted with large homes that offer stunning views. In the center are rows and rows of neatly kept 1960s-era tract homes. As word of Trinity's death spread across the city through social media, local resident Kara Clark said people felt they had to do something to show their respects to her family and to also make it clear they are fed up with a society gripped by such wanton violence. 'When we first heard what happened to this child my first thought was that it could have been my granddaughter,' she said. 'Enough is enough with all of this stuff that happens in our world — it's awful.' Soon after the service began at noon on a warm, sun-splashed day on the church's outdoor plaza, six pallbearers, including Trinity's father, emerged dressed in matching white suits with pink vests to usher her tiny coffin inside. At the altar was a pink teddy bear and balloon. Behind it was a 9-foot-tall (2.7-meter) photo of Trinity smiling shyly and dressed in a leopard-print outfit. 'It is so fitting that we are underneath this bright sun, because what we celebrate today is the light that Trinity has within, the eternal light that has not been extinguished,' Father Egren Gomez told mourners before leading them into the sanctuary. Before going inside, mourners saw 90 candles lighted in honor of Trinity's life — 10 for each of her nine years — and heard the church's bells toll for 90 seconds. Inside, her life was celebrated with songs and eulogies from a cross-section of religious leaders, including Catholic priest Gomez, Pastor Darnell Hammock of the New Life Community Church of Oakland and Venerable Miao Hsi, a nun from the nearby Hsi Lai Buddhist Temple, near where Trinity's body was found. The fieriest eulogy came from Hammock, who acknowledged that although Trinity's murder had brought people of all faiths together, he realized many would leave wondering why it had happened. 'Why God? Why so soon? Why our baby? Why our niece. Why my student ... 'I got to be honest, church, I too wrestled with these questions as I prepared today,' he said, adding her death reminded him of those of numerous other young people snuffed out before their time. 'I'm here to ask myself, 'When do we change the channel of this alarming episode of young black girls dying?'' he shouted, an exhortation that brought the largely white audience to its feet. But he went on to tell mourners not to pass the chance to work together going forward. 'I want the community here today to embrace this outlook that we are in this together,' he said. Miao Hsi added that Buddhist faith accepts that although Trinity is gone, her spirit lives on in every person she leaves behind. 'We are here to celebrate Miss Trinity's rebirth,' she said. 'May she feel love, joy and peace.
  • A genealogy database used to match a family's DNA with evidence found at a 1973 crime scene has led investigators to identify the long-dead suspect in the strangulation killing of a young married couple, a Montana sheriff said Monday. Linda and Clifford Bernhardt, both 24, were killed at their Billings-area home in a case that would stymie investigators for decades. Investigators now believe they were killed by Cecil Stan Caldwell, a longtime city of Billings employee who was once a co-worker of Linda Bernhardt, Yellowstone County Sheriff Mike Linder said. He did not identify a motive in the killing. Caldwell had no criminal record, and died in 2003 at the age of 59, according to his obituary in the Billings Gazette. Relatives of the victims attended a news conference in which Linder named Caldwell as the suspect. The family issued a statement thanking the sheriff's office for its work, but made no further comment and asked for privacy. Clifford Bernhardt was a concrete worker and Vietnam veteran and his wife worked at a grocery distribution warehouse. They had been married several years and moved into a new house just weeks before they were killed. Linda Bernhardt had been bound and sexually assaulted before her death, and authorities used psychologists to try to build a profile of the suspect, according to reports at the time. Hundreds of interviews were conducted, and police at one point even brought in a psychic in their desperate search for clues to a crime described in a newspaper article as 'the most sensational unsolved murder case in Billings history.' They also enlisted the help of 'The Amazing Kreskin,' when the mentalist visited town, according to a 1980 news report. Scott Goodwin, a volunteer with the cold case unit who helped with the investigation, said he and others involved were unwilling to let it go. 'We were obsessed with it,' Goodwin said. 'These are two young people who didn't deserve what happened to them. They didn't do anything. They came home on a Tuesday night and they were murdered.' All other leads had dried up by 2004, when DNA was discovered on evidence gathered at the crime scene, Linder said. But comparing that DNA against an FBI database of known criminals yielded no results, leaving authorities frustrated yet again. In 2015, the sheriff's cold case unit enlisted a Reston, Virginia, technology company, Parabon NanoLabs, to analyze the DNA by comparing it to genetic samples available through a public genealogy database. That process ultimately narrowed the list of suspects to Caldwell and his brother, who is still alive and living outside the area, said Vince Wallis, a former detective captain with the sheriff's office who now works for the Billings Police Department. After DNA was obtained voluntarily from the brother, it was analyzed by the Montana State Crime Lab to eliminate him as a suspect. That left only Caldwell, Wallis said. Wallis added other circumstantial evidence including 'unspecified behavior' by Caldwell connected the suspect to the crime scene, but he declined to offer additional details. An anonymous donor in 2013 had offered a $100,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the couple's killer. ___ Follow Matthew Brown at https://twitter.com/matthewbrownap
  • Businesses and residents expressed concern Monday about the environmental and economic fallout from a fire at a Houston-area petrochemical storage farm that sent huge plumes into the air for days and prompted the partial closure of one of the busiest commercial waterways in the U.S. Officials said it could be several more days before a section of the Houston Ship Channel reopens. Investigators with Harris County, which includes Houston, said they have delivered a subpoena to Intercontinental Terminals Company — the firm that owns the facility — to preserve any evidence regarding the cause of the blaze. Students returned to class after the fire prompted school closures near the facility. Here's a look at what has happened and what to expect: THE FIRE AND RESPONSE A massive fire started March 17 at the ITC plant in the suburb of Deer Park, southeast of Houston. It left several petrochemical tanks damaged or destroyed and thrust plumes of black smoke into the air and burned on and off for days. It's unclear how the blaze began. On Thursday, residents were warned to stay inside for their own safety because of high levels of benzene in the air. The chemical evaporates quickly and can cause drowsiness, dizziness, rapid heartbeat, and headaches, with worse symptoms at higher levels of exposure. Some of ITC's tanks leaked oil products and a containment area was breached Friday, leading to the mixture reaching the ship channel, said company spokesman Brent Weber. Authorities shut down part of the ship channel Friday to traffic to try and continue the cleanup and contain the spill. U.S. Coast Guard Capt. Kevin Oditt said Monday it could be several more days before that part of the channel reopens. 'The priorities remain ensuring the safety of our on-scene responders as well as mitigating any impact to the waterway or the environment and reopening the Houston Ship Channel,' Oditt said. The San Jacinto River, a waterway leading into the ship channel and located north of ITC's facility, was reopened to barge and tow traffic but only for about three hours on Monday. Oditt said officials have performed several test runs with ships, letting them pass through the affected area to see if they don't interfere with the cleanup and don't get contaminated. Such test runs will help the Coast Guard determine when the channel can be fully opened. EFFECTS ON COMMERCE The Port of Houston is the No. 1 in the U.S. in foreign tonnage and is in the top five in the U.S. in the number of containers it handles. The head of a maritime trade organization representing more than 200 companies at the port said the closure of several miles of the channel has slowed but not stalled commerce. The top products that pass through the ship channel include resins and plastics, chemicals, fabrics, including raw cotton, and steel and metals. Capt. Bill Diehl, president of the Greater Houston Port Bureau, said Monday the port is a manufacturing center for petrochemicals and supporting businesses and that those places are still operating but that products may be slow to come in or out right now. Diehl said the channel is 52 miles long and other sections have remained open. As of Monday afternoon, some ships were being slowly taken through the area that had been closed to make sure they didn't disturb the cleanup. That section, for now, is only open to daylight transits, Diehl said. 'It has an effect on business,' Diehl said, 'but not as much as you'd think.' Diehl said that half of the ships that come into Texas come through the Port of Houston. He said on average they move 55 ships a day. WHAT'S NEXT? ITC is facing legal challenges over the fire and spill. On Monday, seven people who live near the storage facility filed what is believed to be the first civil lawsuit against ITC over the fire. The suit was filed in state district court in Houston. The residents are asking for at least $1 million in damages, accusing ITC of negligence. They allege they suffered a variety of illnesses due to the fire and the release of chemicals into the air, including, bronchitis, pneumonia and itchy, burning eyes. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a lawsuit against ITC on Friday and said the state must hold the company 'accountable for the damage it has done to our environment.' State and other environmental watch dogs also are continuing to test water and air. Water samples from the Houston Ship Channel have been tested, but those results were still not complete Monday, said Jeff Kunze, with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. Over the weekend, benzene levels in the air were very high near the site of the fire, but dropped significantly, according to monitoring by the Environmental Defense Fund. Tests by the nonprofit the Galveston Bay Foundation over a four-day period starting Friday found benzene in 14 water samples taken from the Houston Ship Channel. But only one sample, from Saturday, had levels of benzene considered to be unsafe by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. By Monday, all samples tested were at safe levels, according to the foundation. Adam Adams, the federal onsite coordinator with the EPA, said Monday that air monitoring from his agency as well as several others in the last 24 hours had not found any hazardous conditions that would require warning the public. 'That's very positive,' Adams said. ___ Associated Press writers Jamie Stengle in Dallas and Tammy Webber in Chicago contributed to this report. ___ Follow Juan A. Lozano on Twitter: https://twitter.com/juanlozano70
  • The release of the special counsel's findings in the Russia probe upended the 2020 presidential campaign, all but settling the question of whether President Donald Trump could be knocked from the race by a new revelation in the report and turning the debate over the investigation on its head. The president, who for years has lashed out against a 'political witch hunt' from a place of fear and uncertainty, showed Monday he will now wield the findings with confidence. And his critics in both parties, who toyed with the idea that Trump conspired with a foreign power to win the presidency, were knocked on their heels. The new political reality governing the 2020 campaign, temporarily at least, settled in a day after Attorney General William Barr released his summary of Mueller's conclusions. Barr said Mueller found no evidence that Trump or his associates conspired with Russia. Mueller did not make a determination on whether Trump obstructed justice, but Barr said he reviewed the evidence and found it insufficient to determine criminal wrongdoing. Although the disclosure was nuanced, Trump's response was not. The president and his allies declared complete vindication, signaling they intend to use the report to bludgeon rivals and energize Trump's supporters. Trump's Republican campaign circulated a list of Democrats who have accused Trump of collusion and asked television networks to challenge them on air. Some Trump defenders called on the president's outspoken critics to apologize. 'For more than two years, angry Democrats — disgruntled and unable to accept the results of the 2016 election — falsely claimed to have evidence of crimes that did not exist and launched a political witch hunt,' said Katrina Pierson, a senior adviser to Trump's re-election campaign. 'Democrats have lost the trust of the American people because now Americans know they have been manipulated,' Pierson continued. The 2020 Democratic presidential contenders largely responded by calling for the release of the full report but said little more. None in the crowded Democratic field had embraced Russian collusion or impeachment as a central campaign issue. Yet the possibility that Trump colluded with the Russians or engaged in other criminal behavior has become a constant undercurrent in Democratic politics. Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts told Iowa voters in February that Trump might be in prison by 2020. Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey suggested that Trump might not be the Republican presidential nominee because 'he's got some rocky roads ahead of him.' Such notions got far less likely Sunday. Democrats in Congress say they will push for the release of the full Mueller report. They also will continue investigating Trump's personal and professional life before and after he became president. For some 2020 contenders, a flicker of hope remained that the full Mueller report — and perhaps related evidence — would reveal wrongdoing by the president. But among others, there was a greater sense that the investigation blitz could overshadow their policy promises. With each new high-profile hearing or subpoena battle, the party risks affirming Trump's accusation that Democrats are on a 'witch hunt.' 'It's important that they make it clear to the public that they are fulfilling their responsibility and obligation to provide oversight and accountability and doing it in a way that's in the public interest and not merely a partisan enterprise,' said Democratic pollster Geoff Garin. Mueller's initial findings also mark a setback — in the short term, at least — for those few Republicans considering mounting a primary challenge against Trump. While the president is unlikely to lose a primary election, his team feared that a credible challenge could weaken him politically ahead of the general election. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan and former Ohio Gov. John Kasich are openly contemplating bids. Kasich adviser John Weaver was incredulous that Mueller cleared Trump of collusion. 'When a campaign manager gives a Russian agent polling data, what is that?' Weaver asked, referring to Mueller's allegations that former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort shared Trump campaign polling with a business associate tied to Russian intelligence. 'He doesn't have the Mueller threat any longer,' Weaver continued. 'But politically, I don't see this changing anybody's viewpoint.' Another prospective primary challenger, former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld, sought to downplay the impact of the Mueller report during an appearance in New Hampshire on Monday, but shifted the conversation quickly away from Trump toward his own record. 'The conclusion is, no, the president was not guilty of a criminal conspiracy with Russia in order to obtain his own election,' Weld said with a laugh. 'I'm glad the answer was no instead of yes. It would not have been a great day for the United States if the answer to that had been yes.' It's unclear how long the new political dynamic will last. Political strategists in both parties note that things could change quickly if the full report — or the findings of unrelated criminal investigations — is released. And voters in the Trump era have notoriously short attention spans. 'If you measure things in 24-hour increments, yes, the president's had a good 24 hours,' said political strategist Matthew Dowd. 'I think they're over-celebrating. This is always a problem with the president and his people. They take it five steps too far.' Democrats may find it difficult to walk a fine line as well. The challenge was on display Sunday in Nevada where Democratic contender Beto O'Rourke, who has called for impeachment, was campaigning as the Mueller news was breaking. He didn't have a chance to read the summary before taking the stage. 'The single greatest thing that we can do to meet the threat of Russia is to defeat Donald Trump in November of 2020,' O'Rourke said. 'We'll soon know what's in the Mueller report. But what we know is this president, when he was a candidate for the office, sought to collude with a foreign power that was trying to undermine our democracy.' O'Rourke, through a spokesman, said he would not apologize on Monday when asked by The Associated Press. 'Beto firmly stands behind his comments on President Trump's unprecedented and unacceptable conduct,' O'Rourke spokesman Chris Evans said, citing the president's repeated attempts to downplay Russia's involvement in the 2016 election, among other concerns. ___ Associated Press writers Hunter Woodall in Concord, N.H., and Elana Schor in Washington contributed to this report.
  • A state audit released Monday contradicted former Gov. Bruce Rauner's claim that his administration had done everything federal experts recommended to remedy a deadly 2015 Legionnaires' disease crisis at an Illinois veterans' home. Auditor General Frank Mautino reported that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had recommended in December 2015 that filters be put on every water spigot. Despite Rauner's claim, the audit found that only shower and bathtub heads were outfitted with filters before 2018. The audit sharply criticized the Departments of Public Health and Veterans' Affairs for delays in taking action and notifying nursing staff and the public in August 2015 of the outbreak at the Quincy facility, which ultimately led to the deaths of 13 elderly residents. 'Based on our review of communications between IDPH and the Quincy veterans' home, auditors determined that there was limited communication ...,' Mautino wrote. 'IDPH officials often did not know the seriousness of the problems.' Legionnaires' is a flu-like malady caused by inhaling water vapor infected with Legionella bacteria. Particularly susceptible are the elderly or those with compromised immune systems. The audit determined the average age of those who died was 88, with several in hospice care. The crisis at Quincy became a main point of criticism of Rauner in his last year in office after families of residents filed lawsuits against the state. The audit found that 66 residents and eight employees of the 130-year-old home contracted Legionnaires', including the 13 deaths. Through June 2018, the state spent $9.6 million to fix the problem, including a $5 million water plant reimbursed by the federal government. Ultimately, Rauner decided the whole campus should be rebuilt . He was defeated for re-election in November by Democrat J.B. Pritzker. 'The new administration is committed to working to ensure the Quincy veterans' home sets the standard for what quality care looks like for our veterans,' Veterans' Affairs acting director Linda Chapa LaVia said in a statement. 'The health and safety of our state's heroes is our top priority and we will take all available action to keep our veterans safe as we move forward.'  Rauner repeatedly claimed that the administration had done everything federal experts suggested. But the audit determined that while the CDC recommended filters for all water fixtures in December 2015, only shower and tub heads were outfitted with them before April 2018. Mautino noted that after the confirmation on Aug. 21, 2015, of a second case of Legionnaires' — a red flag that an outbreak was imminent — Public Health officials didn't visit the campus until three days later and nursing staff were not given sufficient instructions on protecting other residents for six days. The audit pinpointed the cause of the initial outbreak to water which sat unused in a disabled boiler for a month in July 2015. When the boiler began operating again, it was not drained. The water in it was heated to 120 degrees before it was released into the water system. But Legionella bacteria can survive in water up to 140 degrees. Mautino made four recommendations for the Veterans' Affairs and Public Health departments, including sufficient and timely instructions to nursing staff and caregivers after a Legionnaires' outbreak is confirmed to protect other residents from water vapor exposure. He said the Veterans' Affairs should develop strict monitoring procedures for residents during outbreaks. Quincy staff said they increased monitoring but had no records to show for the stepped-up activity. Both agencies should improve communication and additionally, ensure that all CDC recommendations are followed. In responses included in the audit, the agencies generally agreed with the recommendations. ___ Online Auditor General's report: http://tinyurl.com/y3v6fbwf ___ Follow Political Writer John O'Connor at https://twitter.com/apoconnor .
  • Authorities and airport officials are trying to track down a prize-winning show dog that was lost at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport moments before she was supposed to fly home.  >> Read more trending news  Gale, a 22-month-old pure-bred American Staffordshire terrier, was in Atlanta with her handlers for an event, WSB-TV reported. The dog was supposed to fly back to Amsterdam after a dog show Saturday. But before she was boarded onto a KLM plane in Atlanta, she vanished, WSB reported.  “When they tried to load my dog’s cage, it was empty and they couldn’t find her,” Gale’s owner, Floris Van Essen, told the news station.  Van Essen said once the handlers got to the gate, they got a call from the terminal notifying them that Gale was gone. The handlers were asked to board the plane while officials searched for the dog, Van Essen told WSB.  “She’s lost,” he said. “She doesn’t understand, she misses us and she’s all alone in a big airport. It’s a terrible ordeal.”  In a statement, KLM confirmed to WSB that “a dog managed to break out of its cage as it was being loaded into the cargo of flight KL-622 from Atlanta to Amsterdam on March 23.” “The dog's owner had been notified. KLM expresses its sincerest regrets and is actively working with the Atlanta airport to search for the dog,” the statement said. 
  • A new report from the Environmental Working Group suggests kale—commonly touted as a healthy superfood—is actually the third “dirtiest” item in your grocery store produce section. >> Read more trending news  For its annual “Dirty Dozen” and “Clean Fifteen” shopper’s guide lists, the watchdog group tested for pesticide contamination using data from the Department of Agriculture’s produce testing analyses of more than 40,900 samples. Pesticides are typically used to protect fruits and vegetables, but growing evidence has revealed associations with cancer risk, fertility and other health concerns, according to the World Health Organization. The popular leafy green ranked third on EWG’s list of 12 “dirty” fruits and vegetables, all produce researchers said contain the highest amounts of pesticide residues. Others on the list include strawberries, nectarines, spinach, apples, peaches, grapes, cherries, tomatoes, pears, celery and potatoes. >> Related: Court says EPA ignored dangers of pesticide linked to brain damage in kids, orders ban The top produce items among its “Clean Fifteen” include avocados, sweet corn, pineapples, frozen sweet peas and onions. In the report, EWG scientists specifically highlighted that nearly 60 percent of kale samples sold in the United States were contaminated with DCPA (or Dacthal), which the Environmental Protection Agency first classified as a possible carcinogen in 1995. “The EPA’s 1995 classification of it as a possible carcinogen noted increases in liver and thyroid tumors,” toxicologist Alexis Temkin wrote in a statement for EWG. “Dacthal can also cause other kinds of harm to the lungs, liver, kidney and thyroid.” >> Related: Bed bugs becoming more resistant to pesticides, experts say According to the EWG, the European Union prohibited all uses of Dacthal back in 2009—the last time kale was on EWG’s “dirty” list—but the pesticide is still used on a variety of American crops, including broccoli, sweet potatoes, eggplant and turnips. In 2016 alone, researchers said about 500,000 pounds of Dacthal were sprayed in the country. But because kale is high in vitamins A and K as well as iron, and the vegetable has been known to help reduce risk of heart disease, researchers recommend that shoppers opt for organically grown kale. >> Related: When to buy organic; when to save your money Ultimately, EWG research analyst Carla Burns said in a news release, “the health benefits of a diet rich in fruits and vegetables outweigh the risks of pesticide exposure.”
  • In the first test of its kind, the Pentagon on Monday carried out a 'salvo' intercept of an unarmed missile soaring over the Pacific, using two interceptor missiles launched from underground silos in southern California. Both interceptors zeroed in on the target — a re-entry vehicle that had been launched 4,000 miles away atop an intercontintental-range missile, the Pentagon said. The first interceptor hit and destroyed the re-entry vehicle, which in an actual attack would contain a warhead. The second interceptor hit a secondary object, as expected, according to a statement by the Pentagon's Missile Defense Agency. The interceptors were launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The target missile was launched from the Reagan Test Site in the Marshall Islands. 'The system worked exactly as it was designed to do,' said Air Force Lt. Gen. Samuel A. Greaves, director of the Missile Defense Agency. He said the test result 'demonstrates that we have a capable, credible deterrent against a very real threat.' Even though the missile defense system has been operating for more than a decade, this was the first time it had attempted a 'salvo' intercept in which more than one interceptor missile is launched at a single target missile. The salvo concept is meant to improve the chances of hitting an incoming missile, which in actual combat could contain decoys and other measures designed to make it difficult for an interceptor to find and hit the target. Laura Grego, a senior scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists, said before Greaves' announcement that a successful intercept did not mean the missile defense system is fully ready to defend the U.S. in combat. She noted that the test was carried out under an unusually thick veil of secrecy. 'Success is better than failure, but because of the secrecy I have no idea how high the bar was set,' she said. 'How realistic was the test? The Pentagon had a very long way to go to demonstrate the system works in a real-world situation.' The Pentagon is putting additional billions of dollars into expanding its arsenal of missile interceptors, which are based mainly at Fort Greely in Alaska. In the 2020 defense budget request sent to Congress earlier this month, the Pentagon asked for $9.4 billion for missile defense, including the system based in Alaska.
  • Gun rights groups are asking the Supreme Court to stop the Trump administration from beginning to enforce its ban on bump stock devices, which allow semi-automatic weapons to fire like machine guns. The groups asked the court Monday to get involved in the issue and keep the government from beginning to enforce the ban for now. The ban set to go into effect Tuesday has put the Trump administration in the unusual position of arguing against gun rights groups. It's unclear how quickly the court will act. President Donald Trump said last year that the government would move to ban bump stocks. The action followed a 2017 shooting in Las Vegas in which a gunman attached bump stocks to assault-style rifles he used to shoot concertgoers. Fifty-eight people were killed.
  • Tulsa’s Crime Prevention Network kicks off a new program Wednesday morning, dubbed “Coffee With Cops.” The inaugural event will feature a chance to speak with TPD Chief Chuck Jordan. CPN is a non-profit which runs programs like Crime Stoppers and Alert Neighbors. Its executive director is former city councilor Karen Gilbert, who was chosen to lead CPN last September. “We’re super excited that (for) our very first ‘Coffee With Cops,’ our special guest will be Police Chief Chuck Jordan. He’s agreed to come out and be here so that people, residents of Tulsa, can come by and have a cup of coffee with him and share their concerns with him,” she told KRMG Monday. “There’s no agenda for the program, all we want is for people to swing by our office and meet and greet with Chuck Jordan.” The event runs from 8:00 to 9:00 a.m. at the CPN office, which is located on the ground floor of Promenade Mall (41st and Yale), at the west end. Gilbert says they plan to make this an ongoing program. The coffee is free, thanks to Chick-Fil-A which is sponsoring the event along with CPN. 
  • Apple is expected to announce Monday that it’s launching a video service that could compete with Netflix, Amazon and cable TV itself. It’s a long-awaited attempt from the iPhone maker, several years after Netflix turned “binge watching” into a worldwide phenomenon. The new video service is expected to have original TV shows and movies that reportedly cost Apple more than $1 billion — far less than Netflix and HBO spend every year. Also expected is a subscription service consisting of news, entertainment and sports bundled from newspapers and magazines. Apple is making the announcements at its Cupertino, California, headquarters during an event likely to be studded with Hollywood celebrities. The iPhone has long been Apple’s marquee product and main money maker, but sales are starting to decline. The company is pushing digital subscriptions as it searches for new growth. Making must-have TV shows and movies that are watchable on any device has propelled Netflix into a force in both Silicon Valley and Hollywood.
  • Special counsel Robert Mueller delivered the results of an investigation into possible collusion in the 2016 presidential election to Attorney General William Barr on Friday, ending a two-year saga that, at times, pitted the president against his own Justice Department.  >> Read more trending news  On Sunday, the Department of Justice delivered a summary to the House Judiciary Committee.  >> Barr: Mueller found no evidence of Trump-Russia conspiracy Update 10:25 p.m. EDT March 24: President Donald Trump was at Mar-a-Lago, his estate in Palm Beach, Florida, when he first learned the details of what Attorney General William Barr said in his summary of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report for Congress, according to the Associated Press. The AP cited White House spokesman Hogan Gidley, who briefed reporters aboard Air Force One as the president was flying back to Washington. “This is very good,” Gidley said the president told him. The president watched TV in his office aboard Air Force One and made phone calls according to CNN, which described the atmosphere during the flight as “jovial.” Update 8:25 p.m. EDT March 24: Vice President Mike Pence weighed in on Attorney General William Barr’s summary of the Mueller report Sunday, issuing a statement calling the report “a total vindication of the President of the United States.” “After two years of investigation, and reckless accusations by many Democrats and members of the media, the Special Counsel has confirmed what President Trump said (all) along; there was no collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 election,” Pence said. “This total vindication of the President of the United States and our campaign should be welcomed by every American who cherishes the truth and the integrity of our elections,” he said. Update 7:45 p.m. EDT March 24: Senate Judiciary Committee ranking member Sen. Dianne Feinstein called Attorney General William Barr’s four-page summary on the Mueller report “inadequate.” Feinstein said in a statement Sunday that Barr’s summary “demonstrates why Congress needs to obtain the full report and underlying evidence.” She also said she’ll call on Barr to release the whole report and underlying material to Congress for proper Congressional oversight of the investigation. Feinstein said Barr was obviously biased in his summary of the report. “Mueller elected to describe the facts, leaving it to Attorney General Barr to decide whether the president committed a crime. However, months ahead of his nomination,  Barr wrote a 19-page memo concluding the president couldn’t commit obstruction, so it’s no surprise he reached the same conclusion now,” she said in the statement. Update 7:00 p.m. EDT March 24: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and New York Sen. Chuck Schumer issued a joint statement on Attorney General William Barr’s summary of special prosecutor Robert Mueller’s report. Pelosi and Schumer said Barr’s letter “raises as many questions as it answers.” The pair are calling for the Justice Department to release the full report. “The fact that Special Counsel Mueller’s report does not exonerate the president on a charge as serious as obstruction of justice demonstrates how urgent it is that the full report and underlying documentation be made public,” Schumer said on social media. The statement calls into question Barr’s ability to be objective about the Mueller report. “Given Mr. Barr’s public record of bias against the Special Counsel’s inquiry, he is not a neutral observer and is not in a position to make objective determinations about the report,” according to Pelosi and Schumer’s statement. “And most obviously, for the president to say he is completely exonerated directly contradicts the words of Mr. Mueller and is not to be taken with any degree of credibility,” the statement said. Update 6:00 p.m. EDT March 24: The Mueller report is divided into two parts, according to the summary Attorney General William Barr sent to Congress Sunday. The first part of the report describes the Mueller team’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and outlines Russia’s attempts to influence the election, including the crimes committed by people associated with the Russian government, Barr said. A primary focus for the Mueller team was whether any Americans, and specifically associates of President Donald Trump, worked with the Russians in interfering with the election, which would be a federal crime. “[T]he investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities,” according to the Mueller report. >> Related: Mueller report: Trump claims 'Complete and Total’ exoneration The second part of the report, according to Barr’s summary, focuses on whether Trump obstructed justice.  The Mueller report leaves “unresolved whether the president’s actions and intent could be viewed as obstruction,” Barr said in his summary. “While the report does not conclude that the president committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him” on obstruction allegations, Barr said. Mueller left a decision on obstruction of justice charges against Trump to the Justice Department. Barr confirmed he and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein decided that Trump’s conduct did not constitute a crime. >> Related: What is in the Mueller report? Update 5:20 p.m. EDT March 24: The Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Rep. Jerry Nadler, responded to President Donald Trump’s statement Sunday afternoon that the Mueller report offered him “complete and total exoneration.” Nadler disputed Trump’s characterization of the report, clarifying what Mueller actually said in the report. “The Special Counsel states that ‘while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him,’” Nadler said Nadler also confirmed his plan to call Attorney General William Barr to testify before the committee. “In light of the very concerning discrepancies and final decision making at the Justice Department following the Special Counsel report, where Mueller did not exonerate the President, we will be calling Attorney General Barr in to testify before (the House Judiciary Committee) in the near future, Nadler said on Twitter. Update 5:10 p.m. EDT March 24: Attorney General William Barr detailed the resources special prosecutor Robert Mueller used during his two-year investigation in his summary of the report to Congress. Barr said the Mueller team “employed 19 lawyers who were assisted by a team of approximately 40 FBI agents, intelligence analysts, forensic accountants, and other professional staff. The Special Counsel issued more than 2,800 subpoenas, executed nearly 500 search warrants, obtained more than 230 orders for communication records, issued almost 50 orders authorizing use of pen registers, made 13 requests to foreign governments for evidence, and interviewed approximately 500 witnesses.” Barr said Mueller’s report also does not recommend any further indictments. Update 4:50 p.m. EDT March 24: President Donald Trump and members of his administration feel vindicated by the Mueller report. Trump just sent his first tweet on the report since Robert Mueller sent it to the Justice Department on Friday. “No Collusion, No Obstruction, Complete and Total EXONERATION. KEEP AMERICA GREAT!,” the president wrote. His press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders issued this statement after Attorney General William Barr sent a summary of Mueller’s report to Congress Sunday afternoon. 'The Special Counsel did not find any collusion and did not find any obstruction. AG Barr and DAG Rosenstein further determined there was no obstruction. The findings of the Department of Justice are a total and complete exoneration of the President of the United States.” Update 4:15 p.m. EDT March 24: The summary included these points: -The investigation by special prosecutor Robert Mueller did not find President Donald Trump or any of his campaign team coordinated with the Russian government to interfere in the 2016 presidential election, according to a summary Attorney General William Barr sent to Congress Sunday. -The probe also did not find sufficient evidence that the president illegally obstructed justice, but the Mueller team stopped short of exonerating the president, according to The Associated Press.  -Barr’s summary said Mueller did not reach any conclusions on the president’s conduct. -Barr also said in the summary that he and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein did not consider constitutional questions relating to criminal charges against a sitting president in reaching their conclusion, the AP reported. UPDATE 3:30 p.m. EDT March 24: Rep. Jerry Nadler said the Department of Justice issued a letter saying it is “determined not to make a traditional prosecutorial judgement” in terms of the findings in the report. Related: What is in the Mueller report? Nadler tweeted quotes from the letter, which can be read in full here. UPDATE March 24 3:10 p.m. EDT: Congress has been told to expect a Mueller report summary with in the hour, The Associated Press reported, according to two unnamed sources familiar with plans from the Justice Department. UPDATE 2:30 p.m. EDT: President Donald Trump has been relatively quiet leading up to the release of the report, according to The Associated Press. Sources not authorized to speak publicly claim Trump is relieved no new indictments have come from the probe. The AP reported that Trump has been in Palm Beach, Florida, over the weekend, golfing and spending time with family. He’s also been less engaged on Twitter, only posting “Good Morning, Have A Great Day!” and “MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!” Sunday morning. UPDATE 9 p.m. EDT March 23:  Attorney General William Barr scoured special counsel Robert Mueller’s confidential report on the Russia investigation with his advisers Saturday, deciding how much Congress and the American public will get to see about the two-year probe into President Donald Trump and Moscow’s efforts to elect him, according to The Associated Press. Barr was on pace to release his first summary of Mueller’s findings on Sunday, people familiar with the process said. UPDATE 1:50 p.m. EDT March 23: Congress will not receive a summary of Mueller’s findings  Saturday, multiple media outlets have reported. The Washington Post cited a “senior Justice Department official” for this information, while Politico tweeted that “two sources familiar with the discussion” confirmed the news. President Trump flew Friday to his Mar-a-Lago resort with senior White House officials and lawyers, The Washington Post reported. Original report: The delivery of the report to Barr officially concludes the probe that has cast a shadow over the Trump administration from its earliest days. >> Read more trending news  Trump, who flew to Florida on Friday, has not yet commented on the report. Press secretary Sarah Sanders said the White House would not be seeing the report -- at least not for now. Barr, in a one-page letter, told Congressional leaders he would be able to advise them of the “principal conclusions” of the report as soon as this weekend. In the letter, Barr confirmed that there was no requests made by Mueller to take a specific action – such as subpoenaing a witness – that was not granted by the DOJ. “There were no such instances during the Special Counsel’s investigation.' Related: Read the letter William Barr sent to members of Congress It is up to Barr how much of the report Congress or the public will be able to see. Trump has said he would not care if the report was released to the public. According to an anonymous DOJ source, there will be no further indictments born out of the investigation, meaning Mueller’s work is done. Related: Who has Robert Mueller already indicted in his investigation? Since the investigation began in May of 2017, Mueller’s team of prosecutors has indicted or accepted plea deals from 35 people. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-California, and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-New York, issued a joint statement, saying “it is imperative for Mr. Barr to make the full report public and provide its underlying documentation and findings to Congress. . . . The American people have a right to the truth.” The Associated Press contributed to this report.
  • As you age, cognitive health is key. According to a new report, there are foods that can keep your brain in tiptop shape at any age. Researchers from the National University of Singapore’s Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine recently completed a study, published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, to determine the association between mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and mushrooms.  MCI is defined as “the stage between the cognitive decline of normal aging and the more serious decline of dementia,” the authors said in a statement. People with MCI may exhibit memory loss and forgetfulness or have trouble with their language, attention and visual perception abilities.  For the assessment, the team examined 600 Chinese adults, over the age of 60, for six years. They tracked their diets, conducted interviews and administered standard neuropsychological tests, which measures a person’s cognitive abilities. >> Related: Sleep deprivation could cause the brain to eat itself After analyzing the results, they found eating mushrooms proved to be beneficial. In fact, those who consume more than two standard portions of mushrooms weekly may have a 50 percent reduced chance of having MCI. A portion was defined as three quarters of a cup of cooked mushrooms. “This correlation is surprising and encouraging. It seems that a commonly available single ingredient could have a dramatic effect on cognitive decline,” co-author Feng Lei said. They noted six mushrooms in the study: golden, oyster, shiitake, white button, dried and canned mushrooms. However, they said other types may also have positive effects. The scientists believe there is a specific compound in all mushroom varieties that reduce the prevalence of MCI.  “We’re very interested in a compound called ergothioneine (ET),” he said. “ET is a unique antioxidant and anti-inflammatory which humans are unable to synthesize on their own. But it can be obtained from dietary sources, one of the main ones being mushrooms.” >> Related: Mushrooms may fight off aging, study says The analysts said other compounds in mushrooms may also be advantageous.  The team now plans to test the effects of the pure compound of ET and other plant-based ingredients. They hope to identify other foods that could be linked with healthy brain aging and reduced risk of age-related conditions. 
  • A long-range rocket launched from the Gaza Strip hit a residential building in central Israel on Monday, injuring at least seven people -- including two infants -- The Times of Israel reported. It was the farthest rocket attack since the 2014 Gaza war, Reuters reported. The rocket landed in the town of Mishmeret, located 50 miles from the Gaza Strip, The Times of Israel reported. Emmanuel Nahshon, the spokesman for Israel’s Foreign Ministry, said the home in Mishmeret was hit by a rocket from Gaza. There was no confirmation from Palestinian spokesmen, Reuters reported. The attack comes 10 days after rockets were fired toward Tel Aviv, according to The Associated Press. 

Washington Insider

  • Without enough votes from Republicans in the Congress, Democrats in the House are expected to fall short on Tuesday in their bid to override President Donald Trump's veto of a plan which would block his national emergency declaration from funneling billions of dollars from the Pentagon to construction of a wall along the southern border with Mexico. While both the House and Senate approved the plan to reverse the President's emergency declaration, neither chamber had enough votes for a veto override, which will allow Mr. Trump to move money around within military construction accounts in the Pentagon, shifting at least $3.6 billion from that funding into a border wall. 'The Republicans in the House voted overwhelmingly in favor of a secure border,' the President said when he vetoed the resolution earlier this month. 'Congress has the freedom to pass this resolution - I have the duty to veto it,' Mr. Trump added. 'Whether we can succeed with the number of votes is not the point,' said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. 'We are establishing the intent of Congress,' as Democrats argue the President is wrongly defying the Legislative Branch, and its spending decisions on the border wall. 'Both Houses of Congress, in a bipartisan way, sent him a bill that said this is how we’ll address border security,' the Speaker told reporters. 'He defied the Constitution with his action.' Still not spelled out by the Trump Administration is what military construction projects would lose money in order to funnel extra money to a border wall. The Pentagon last week gave lawmakers a 21 page document which listed dozens of projects that could lose money - but officials repeatedly emphasized that no decisions had been made on exactly what projects might see their money stripped in order to fund the wall. “I hope they will take that into consideration before the vote to override the President’s veto,” said Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI). But even with questions still unanswered about what home state projects might be scrapped, Democrats have seemingly made no headway in driving a wedge between GOP lawmakers and the White House on the issue, as the Tuesday vote arrives in the House with no expectation that Democrats will come close to the needed two-thirds super majority.
  • A day after Congress was told the Mueller investigation had not found evidence of coordination or conspiracy involving Russia and the Trump campaign during the 2016 elections, a leading GOP Senator vowed to fully investigate the origins of the Trump-Russia investigation, arguing that President Donald Trump may have been the victim of overzealous investigators inside the Justice Department. 'The double standard here has been striking and quite frankly disappointing,' said Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who told reporters at the Capitol on Monday morning that it's time to find out more about how the investigation began during the 2016 campaign, how it meshed with the probe into Hillary Clinton's emails, and whether there had been bias inside the Justice Department and FBI against President Trump. While Graham said he would conduct oversight via the Senate Judiciary Committee, the South Carolina Republican also said he wants a more formal review by the Justice Department, and U.S. Attorney General William Barr. 'What I want to do is see if he'll appoint a Special Counsel,' Graham said, as he argued that President Trump had been unfairly targeted. Graham said he would look at the role of former Attorney General Loretta Lynch - who tried to step back from the Clinton email investigation, which led to the broader involvement of former FBI Director James Comey. 'What was the conflict that made Loretta Lynch so unable to preside over the Clinton email investigation?' Graham asked. While Graham ticked off the boxes of a series of questions which have dominated conservative talk radio over the past two years, the ally of the President made clear he agreed with the Mueller report findings on one very key issue - that the Russians were responsible for the hacking of the Democratic Party in 2016. “It was the Russians - it wasn’t some 300 pound guy sitting on a bed somewhere,” Graham said, making reference to a quote by President Trump, who at times has rejected assertions that Russian Intelligence was responsible for the hacking of emails from Clinton campaign and DNC officials. Graham said he also wanted answers on how the Obama Administration handled the initial developments in the Russia investigation - which came during the 2016 campaign. 'Nobody went to President Trump to tell him, there may be some people in your orbit that are connected to the Russians and working with the Russians,' Graham said at a news conference. At the White House, President Trump kept his comments limited about the Mueller report, saying he would not oppose the release of the details of the report, if that’s what Attorney General Barr wants to do. Asked during an event in the Oval Office whether the Special Counsel had done his job honorably, Mr. Trump responded: 'Yes, he did.' “I wish it could have gone a lot sooner, a lot quicker,” the President added.
  • A day after the outlines of the Special Counsel investigation were delivered to the Congress, the U.S. Supreme Court kept alive one part of the Russia probe, refusing to hear arguments in the so-called 'Mystery Case' involving an unknown foreign company owned by an unidentified foreign government, which is trying to get out of a subpoena for grand jury testimony involving the Mueller investigation. In a simple order issued by the Justices on Monday morning, the Court refused to allow arguments on efforts to block the grand jury subpoena, in a case which has proceeded with dramatic secrecy through the courts over the past few months. 'The petition for a writ of certiorari is denied,' the order stated, in the case officially known as 'In Re Grand Jury Subpoena.' The unidentified company has argued that federal laws don't allow foreign governments or businesses to be ensnared in criminal cases in the U.S. - while the involvement of prosecutors from the Special Counsel's office was finally revealed in recent weeks, it's still not clear what company, what country, or what information is at play in this grand jury subpoena fight. The lack of information about the case has left legal experts grasping for clues - and now with the Mueller investigation wrapping up its work - it’s not clear how long legal battles like this one over testimony will continue in the courts. The unknown company at the center of this dispute has been paying a fine of $50,000 for every day that it does not comply with the grand jury subpoena for information. It’s been estimated those legal penalties topped $2 million in late February, and would continue to mount with today’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court.
  • Armed with his Attorney General's summary of a lengthy report by Special Counsel Robert Mueller into Russian interference in the 2016 elections, President Donald Trump was up early on Monday morning celebrating the findings of that probe, joining GOP lawmakers in Congress in declaring that his campaign had been cleared of any questions of wrongdoing. 'The Special Counsel did not find that the Trump Campaign, or anyone associated with it, conspired or coordinated with the Russian Government in these efforts, despite multiple offers from Russian-affiliated individuals to assist the Trump Campaign,' the President tweeted early on Monday, quoting from a letter sent Sunday by Attorney General William Barr to Congress. The four page letter from Barr - summarizing the findings of the Mueller investigation - found no conspiracy existed between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 election, even as Russian intelligence hacked Democratic Party emails, and 'despite multiple. offers from Russian-affiliated individuals to assist the Trump campaign.' 'But as noted above, the Special Counsel did not find that the Trump campaign, or anyone associated with it, conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in these efforts,' the letter from Barr noted. In Congress, Republican lawmakers gleefully joined the President in heralding the findings, trying their best to undercut any ongoing efforts by Democrats to further dig into the details of the Mueller report - which the Attorney General said he would strive to make as much public as possible in the weeks and months ahead. 'There was NO collusion between Russia and President Donald Trump or his campaign,' said Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK). 'Facts trump the liberal circus, every time,' said Rep. Doug Collins (R-GA). 'Democrats in Congress should follow his lead and allow the President to govern as he was elected by the American people to do,' said Rep. Neal Dunn (R-FL). 'After two years the case is closed.' As for Democrats, they quickly dug into the details of the Barr letter and focused on getting the details of the Mueller report made public, zeroing in on Barr's description that Mueller had made no conclusions about whether President Trump had obstructed during the Russia investigation. 'The Special Counsel states that 'while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him,'' Barr quoted the Mueller findings. 'There must be full transparency in what Special Counsel Mueller uncovered to not exonerate the President from wrongdoing,' said Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY), the head of the House Judiciary Committee, who vowed to press for more documents and hearings about the Mueller investigation. 'Questions remain related to evidence of obstruction of the investigation into Russian election interference,' said Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL). The findings - as related by the Attorney General on Sunday - clearly made any chance of impeachment proceedings against the President in Congress much less of a possibility, both easing the political pressure on Mr. Trump, and at the same time giving him a public boost which his campaign quickly jumped on for supporters. The President was already scheduled to take his message on the road for a campaign rally on Thursday in Michigan.
  • Attorney General William Barr told Congress on Sunday that a sweeping investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller found no evidence of coordination between Russian Intelligence and the Trump Campaign in 2016, as Barr said there was not enough evidence to pursue allegations of obstruction of justice against President Donald Trump, though Mueller left open that question in his report. In a four page letter summarizing the major findings of the Mueller investigation, the Attorney General said, 'the Special Counsel did not find that the Trump campaign, or anyone associated with it, conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in these efforts, despite multiple offers from Russian-affiliated individuals to assist the Trump campaign.' On the question of whether the President obstructed justice by impeding the investigation into the underlying matter, Barr said he and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein had concluded from the Mueller findings that, 'the evidence developed during the Special Counsel's investigation is not sufficient to establish that the President committed an obstruction-of-justice offense.' Republicans said the Barr summary showed the investigation had found nothing which could lead to the President's prosecution or impeachment. 'No collusion and no obstruction,' said Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. 'The cloud hanging over President Trump has been removed by this report.' The White House immediately declared victory as well. “The Special Counsel did not find any collusion and did not find any obstruction,” said Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders in a statement.  “Attorney General Barr and Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein further determined there was no obstruction. The findings of the Department of Justice are a total and complete exoneration of the President of the United States,” Sanders told reporters. While the letter was immediately hailed by Republicans as the end of the investigation, it also left Democrats with some tantalizing tidbits which they are sure to pursue on the obstruction issue, specifically one line cited by the Attorney General in his Sunday letter to the Congress. 'The Special Counsel states that 'while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him,'' the Attorney General wrote, in quoting the Mueller report’s section about the issue of obstruction of justice. 'Special Counsel Mueller clearly and explicitly is not exonerating the President, and we must hear from AG Barr about his decision making and see all the underlying evidence for the American people to know all the facts,' said Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY), the Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. Other Democrats also made clear they want more than just the four page summary written by the Attorney General, as Nadler vowed to bring Attorney General Barr in for hearings. You can read the full four page letter from Attorney General Barr at this link. As for the possibility of the Mueller report being made public, Barr told Congress in his letter that he would still try to err on the side of transparency. “I am mindful of the public interest in this matter. For that reason, my goal and intent is to release as much of the Special Counsel's report as I can consistent with applicable law, regulations, and Departmental policies,” Barr wrote.