MINNEAPOLIS: Democrat Amy Klobuchar today joined the 2020 White House race, adding a pragmatic voice from the heartland state of Minnesota to an ever-growing field of contenders hoping to unseat Trump.
In a speech that was almost a point-by-point rejection of the president’s policies and of the country’s toxic divides, she told supporters, “We are tired of the shutdowns and the showdowns, of the gridlock and the grandstanding.” “Enough is enough. Our nation must be governed not from chaos but from the opportunity.” Klobuchar, the 58-year-old granddaughter of an iron miner, made the announcement before a heavily bundled-up crowd under gray and snowy skies in a park along the Mississippi River, as volunteers passed out hand warmers. In a year when many Democrats say their top priority in a candidate is an ability to defeat Trump, Klobuchar’s words seemed – time after time, issue by issue — to target the president.
She said that if elected she would return to the international climate treaty on “Day One”; she promised more stringent gun laws and set a target of universal health care; and she said America must support its troops, diplomats and intelligence officers. “They deserve better than foreign policy by tweet,” she said. Klobuchar has been visibly building a national profile. Crucially, she has proven popular even in the more Republican-friendly rural parts of her state. She won re-election in November by a resounding 24-point margin, carrying 1,200 precincts won by Trump in 2016.
A former prosecutor with an unpretentious demeanor, she referred again and again in her speech to her roots in a region that prides itself on an ethic of honesty and hard work. But at odds with that image, her own work ethic has emerged as a focus of criticism in recent days. Several former aides have been quoted saying she is difficult to work for, with bouts of “explosive rage” leading to exceptionally high staff turnover. Her defenders say she is simply someone who demands excellence, and that the allegations against her would not be made against a man.
India divertig attention from Spy’s case?
ISLAMABAD: Minister for Water Resources Faisal Vawda has termed the Indian threat to stop the flow of water from eastern rivers to Pakistan a “failed attempt”, just like the Pulwama incident, to divert attention from its failure in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case in International Court of Justice (ICJ).
In his reaction over India’s threat to stop Pakistan’s water, he said India could not blame Pakistan for its failure in the International Court of Justice to prove spy Kulbhushan innocent. As per Indus Water Treaty, India could not stop Pakistan’s water, he added, says a press statement here on Friday.
Describing the threat hilarious and void, he said the Indian government was preparing the ground to seek public support in next election by hurling allegation against Pakistan. “India must keep it in mind that it is a New Pakistan,” Vawda said adding that valiant Armed Forces of Pakistan would give a befitting response if India launched any misadventure. He said India would get nothing from its war hysteria except embarrassment among the comity of the nations.
Brexit: 9th MP leaves Labour in a week!
LONDON: The Labour party contingency of Britain’s parliament lost more blood Friday, with a ninth MP leaving Labour in less than a week, blasting alleged anti-Semitism in the party leadership.
Ian Austin, representing Dudley North in the West Midlands, chose the local paper Express and Star to make his announcement, in a guest op-ed slamming the party as “broken.” Citing the alleged anti-Semitism in the party, Austin said he was “appalled at the offense and distress [leader] Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour party have caused to Jewish people.”
“I always tell them the truth and I could never ask local people to make Jeremy Corbyn prime minister,” he said. “It is terrible that a culture of extremism, antisemitism, and intolerance is driving out good MPs and decent people who have committed their life to mainstream politics,” he wrote. He said that he had not spoken to the new Independent Group, now made up of eight Labour MPs and three former Conservative MPs.
“The hard left is now in charge of the party, they’re going to get rid of lots of decent mainstream MPs and I just can’t see how it can return to the mainstream party that won elections and changed the country for the better,” Austin said. He added, “I think the Labour party is broken and clearly things have to change but that’s not what today is about, and I’ve not talked to them about that.”
A Labour spokesman said the party “regrets” Austin quitting, adding, “He was elected as a Labour MP and so the democratic thing is to resign his seat and let the people of Dudley decide who should represent them.” Earlier this week, amid the continuing chaos over Brexit, a group of seven MPs resigned from Labour and said they would stay in parliament as independent lawmakers, followed soon thereafter by an eighth. Three Conservative MPs also resigned their party this week to join the Independent Group.
China, Laos to promote people-to-people ties
VIENTIANE: A visiting Chinese delegation has reached agreements with its Lao counterpart to promote the people-to-people exchanges during talks.
At the invitation of the Lao Committee for Peace and Solidarity, Gao Yunlong, vice chairman of the 13th National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, visited Laos from Wednesday to Friday.
During his visit, Gao held working-level talks with Somphan Phengkhammy, the deputy president of Lao National Assembly and president of the Lao Committee for Peace and Solidarity. Both sides agreed to treasure traditional friendship, to promote people-to-people communication and jointly build a community of shared future.
Gao also met the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party (LPRP) politburo member and National Assembly President Pany Yathotou, LPRP politburo member and President of Lao Front for National Development Saysomphone Phomvihane, and Sounthone Xayachack, head of the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party (LPRP) Central Committee’s Commission for external relations.