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Member since: Sun Aug 17, 2014, 06:29 PM
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CNN commentator lobbied for Norfolk Southern; the network didn't tell its audience during East

CNN commentator lobbied for Norfolk Southern; the network didn’t tell its audience during East Palestine discussion

CNN’s State of the Union and host Dana Bash held a Sunday roundtable discussion about the East Palestine, Ohio, train derailment featuring CNN political commentator David Urban, who said that “there's plenty of blame to go around on this” and pivoted to criticizing the Biden administration. CNN never disclosed or asked Urban about his work for Norfolk Southern, which paid him and his then-lobbying firm over a million dollars.

Urban was until 2020 the president of the lobbying firm American Continental Group, where he lobbied for Norfolk Southern on “transportation issues related to railways” starting in 2009, according to federal disclosure forms. He and his firm collected at least $1,140,000, according to a calculation of federal data by ProPublica.


During the segment, Bash said that the Trump administration rolled back regulations, to which Urban replied: “There's plenty of blame to go around on this, on these kind -- when these kinds of things happen. But what's important is what we do moving forward, right, to take care of the people in these towns and communities.” He then went on to criticize the Biden administration for allegedly “sloughing off” the crisis.


CNN has continued to employ Urban despite a dizzying array of ethical problems. For example:

Urban urged a military strike against Iran without any disclosure that he worked for defense contractors.

Urban praised then-Defense Secretary Mark Esper without the network disclosing that he personally lobbied the Defense Department on behalf of defense contractors.

Urban repeatedly attacked environmental protections without disclosing he lobbied for fossil fuel-related clients including Norfolk Southern, which transports coal.

Urban repeatedly pushed for the passage of a trade agreement on-air after he was hired to lobby for it. The network didn’t disclose the conflict of interest.

Urban touted a lobbying client’s opposition to a tax bill without any disclosure that they paid him.



Sen. Fetterman checks himself into hospital for clinical depression

Sen. John Fetterman (D-Pa.), who suffered a near-fatal stroke last year, checked himself into the hospital on Wednesday night to receive treatment for clinical depression, his office said on Thursday.

In a statement, Fetterman’s chief of staff, Adam Jentleson, said the senator voluntarily admitted himself into Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Washington to receive treatment for clinical depression on the recommendation of the attending physician of Congress, Brian P. Monahan, who on Monday evaluated the senator.

On Wednesday, “Dr. Monahan recommended inpatient care at Walter Reed,” Jentleson said.

“John agreed, and he is receiving treatment on a voluntary basis,” Jentleson said. “After examining John, the doctors at Walter Reed told us that John is getting the care he needs, and will soon be back to himself.”


I hope he is feeling better soon.

ICYMI: Trump headed to trial in April in NYC rape and defamation case

It made my day to read that the judge didn't grant his delay:

Donald Trump is headed to trial in New York City this spring in writer E. Jean Carroll’s lawsuit alleging he raped her and then defamed her by saying she was lying about the sexual assault, a judge ruled Tuesday.

Manhattan Federal Court Judge Lewis Kaplan set an April 25 trial date hours after Trump’s lawyers asked him to push the case back to June.

Kaplan said he is yet to resolve whether the trial will consolidate the two suits Carroll has against Trump.

Carroll filed the first lawsuit against Trump, which includes defamation claims, in Manhattan Supreme Court in 2019 when he called her a liar after she accused him of rape.


Alec Baldwin wants 'Rust' prosecutor dismissed as she's a Republican lawmaker: 'Unconstitutional'

Alec Baldwin wants the special prosecutor in his involuntary manslaughter case removed. In Tuesday's new filing, the actor claims Andrea Reeb's status as a Republican lawmaker in the New Mexico House of Representatives is "unconstitutional" — and one legal expert says he has a point. Baldwin was formally charged last week in the fatal shooting of Rust cinematographer, Halyna Hutchins.


According to the filing obtained by Yahoo Entertainment, Baldwin — who is known for his liberal views — avoided claiming politics are at play behind the decision to file criminal charges. The motion to disqualify, filed by his attorney Luke Nikas, lays out a constitutional argument.

"Under Section 1 of Article III of the New Mexico Constitution, however, a sitting member of the Legislature may not 'exercise any powers properly belonging' to either the executive or judicial branch," the document reads. "As a special prosecutor, Representative Reeb is vested by statute with 'all the powers and duties' of a District Attorney, who is considered to be a member of either the judicial or executive branch of the New Mexico government... Representative Reeb is therefore exercising either the executive power or the judicial power, and her continued service as a special prosecutor is unconstitutional."

Reeb, who was appointed by the District Attorney to the case, previously said Baldwin, Rust armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed and first assistant director, David Halls are responsible for Hutchins's death.

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