DML Morning Briefing Mon. Dec. 14:
By Team DML
Today is December 14 and I am Dennis Michael Lynch.
1 – Electoral College votes on Monday, and President Trump speaks out on what Barr should have done
Fox News reports: Presidential electors from all 50 states and Washington, D.C. will meet on Monday to officially cast their ballots for president and vice president of the United States.
The meetings will happen after weeks of failed legal challenges by President Trump’s campaign and his allies, culminating in the Supreme Court on Friday swatting down a lawsuit from Texas that aimed to essentially nullify the presidential elections in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Georgia and Michigan.
Electors will meet “in their respective states,” according to the Constitution. In practice, the electors usually meet in their state capitol buildings and cast their votes in a ceremony overseen by the state’s secretary of state.
Meetings will happen between 10 a.m. EST and 7 p.m. EST, with the largest bulk of state meetings between 11 a.m. EST and 1 p.m. EST.
President Trump said in an interview on Sunday that Attorney General William Barr should have spoken out during the campaign season, acknowledging that Hunter Biden was under investigation – just as Bob Mueller did when BuzzFeed put out a “phony” article.
DML: The candle of hope is about to be placed into a wind storm.
2 – US Treasury breached by hackers backed by foreign government
Reuters reports: Hackers believed to be working for Russia have been monitoring internal email traffic at the U.S. Treasury and Commerce departments, according to people familiar with the matter, adding they feared the hacks uncovered so far may be the tip of the iceberg.
The hack is so serious it led to a National Security Council meeting at the White House on Saturday, said one of the people familiar with the matter.
The U.S. government has not publicly identified who might be behind the hacking, but three of the people familiar with the investigation said Russia is currently believed to be responsible for the attack. Two of the people said that the breaches are connected to a broad campaign that also involved the recently disclosed hack on FireEye, a major U.S. cybersecurity company with government and commercial contracts.
The cyber spies are believed to have gotten in by surreptitiously tampering with updates released by IT company SolarWinds, which serves government customers across the executive branch, the military, and the intelligence services, according to two people familiar with the matter. The trick – often referred to as a “supply chain attack” – works by hiding malicious code in the body of legitimate software updates provided to targets by third parties.
In a statement released late Sunday, the Austin, Texas-based company said that updates to its monitoring software released between March and June of this year may have been subverted by what it described as a “highly-sophisticated, targeted and manual supply chain attack by a nation state.”
DML: And the FBI and DHS claim this election wasn’t rigged or hacked, nope, nothing to see here. Bullsh*t.
3 – Leaked Chinese Communist Party records show CCP members employed in senior, specialist and advisory positions
Fox News reports: In a coordinated effort lasting more than a decade, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) used a recruitment agency to infiltrate British, Australian, and U.S. consulates in Shanghai.
A new report from The Australian said leaked membership records revealed information regarding almost two million CCP members, leading to the discovery that 10 consulates in the Eastern city have Communist Party workers.
The members are serving as senior political and government affairs specialists, economic advisers, clerks, and executive assistants, according to the paper. In addition, the breach also exposed CCP members at companies like airline giant Boeing and COVID-19 vaccine-maker Pfizer.
Some of the 92 million CCP operatives were found at American universities over the summer, following the July closure of Houston’s Chinese consulate.
The U.S. government uncovered an intelligence operation to collect scientific research in fields such as biomedicine and artificial intelligence.
In September, acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf announced the revocation of more than 1,000 visas mostly held by graduate students and researchers after a string of federal charges were brought against students at schools like Harvard University, Boston University, Emory University, and the University of California San Francisco.
DML: United States of China is not far off because we elect complete idiots.
4 – Judge orders California sheriff to release more than 1,800 inmates to combat spread of coronavirus
Washington Examiner reports: A judge has ordered Orange County, California, to reduce its jail population by 50% to combat the spread of the coronavirus, which could mean 1,800 criminals will be back on the streets.
“We are evaluating the order, its impacts and our options for appeal,” Orange County Sheriff Don Barnes said in a statement. “If the order stands, it will result in the release of more than 1,800 inmates.
The Friday ruling by the Orange County Superior Court was made in response to a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union with the stated goal of trying to “protect medically vulnerable people and people with disabilities detained at the Orange County Jail,” according to CBS 2 News Los Angeles.
The judge ruled that Barnes’s “deliberate indifference to the substantial risk of serious harm from COVID-19 infection to … medically vulnerable people in [his] custody violates their rights.”
“Many of these inmates are in pre-trial status for, or have been convicted of, violent crimes and will be released back into the community,” Barnes said. “This order puts our community at substantial risk and does not take into account the impact on the victims of these crimes.”
DML: TRANSLATION: Sorry Mr. Smith, Mrs. Jones and little Johnny, but in our attempt to keep inmates safe from the sniffles we must put your lives, property and money at risk.
5 – Couple kicked off plane when 2-year-old refused to wear mask
Fox News reports: A Colorado mother who said she and her family were kicked off a United Airlines flight after her 2-year-old daughter refused to keep a mask on told “Fox & Friends Weekend” on Sunday that “the experience was absolutely traumatizing” and “very humiliating.”
Eliz Orban took cell video on Friday of a crew member speaking with her husband as he was trying to keep the mask on their daughter. The video, which Orban posted on Twitter, shows her husband telling the crew member that he was holding the mask on his daughter’s face. As of Sunday afternoon, the tweet got more than 22,000 likes and more than 10,000 retweets.
“We are premier members with United, so we’ve flown many times, even during the pandemic we’ve flown with our 2-year-old,” Orban said on Sunday.
“We’ve just flown two months ago because all of our family lives on the East Coast, so this is the only way for them to see their granddaughter,” she continued. “And this time was just extremely different.”
DML: I am so tired of this sh*t. I am going to be very angry this morning during my podcast. Be prepared.