Finishing off a week where we saw the power of diplomacy, Iran has just announced that Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian and three other dual-citizen prisoners have been released.
During the RNC winter meeting yesterday a couple of strong messages have come out. The first is a call to members to start rallying against Donald Trump, while another report talks about longtime Republican politicians upset that their GOP field refers to them as "the establishment." The first one is going to be interesting to watch, in how Trump will respond, while the second will be worth watching the entire field for. Remember, if one of these people end up in the White House, they are going to have to work with the "establishment" Congress.
For being the "smart man", Donald Trump really doesn't seem to keep up on news. He sent that tweet out at 7am eastern today. At 5am eastern, news broke that they were released.
Of course maybe Trump missed the news. The right's #1 online source for news, Drudge, never even reported it. At 8am today his top headlines were all about the capturing of the boat. Now that's all at the bottom of the page, without any word of their release.
After months of dominating the polls in Iowa, a new one out yesterday now has Bernie in the lead by 3 points. While still within the margin of error, this is the first time The Bern has taken the lead in an Iowa poll. We saw a very similar pattern in 2008, when Hillary kept dominating the polls, but as voting time approached the shift went to Obama.
They are doing the press conference right now, but Pennsylvania has charged Bill Cosby with aggravated assault from a sexual assault case in 2004. The prosecutor said new evidence has come to light to merit the charges and Cosby is expected to be arraigned this afternoon.
VoteBuilder, the website used to access the DNC voter database has a very, VERY serious problem. Here is the link to their login page http://votebuilder.com/ . Notice something? It's http, not https, meaning the login is not even encrypted. And sure enough, login and the data views are also not encrypted. If you do add that S to the URL, you are greeted with a big warning that their encryption certificate is invalid.
In a post-Snowden world, all we hear about is web encryption, yet the DNC, who puts so much value into their data files and act like the accessing of a rival campaigns data is the same as robbing Fort Knox, entrusts a company to secure that data without even doing the most basic methods of securing it. This is a negligence at the very least.
It has been a very interesting 24 hours, but now major news outlets are reporting that a deal has been reached between the DNC and Sanders campaign and his access to voter data will be restored in the morning. Interesting enough this was announced not long before the judge was going to hear the case. I've read the complaint and the agreement that the DNC is saying Sanders violated and determined that if it went to court that Sanders would easily win. The big if was rather or not a judge would get into an inner-party fight, which they traditionally don't. It sounds like the DNC saw a losing battle ahead and decided to call it quits.
As threatened this afternoon, the Bernie Sanders campaign has filed lawsuit in federal court to regain access to voter information. A key part in the complaint, which was also used by Debbie Wassermann Schultz today to justify their actions, addressees termination for violations and says:
the non-breaching party sends written notice to the breaching party describing the breach; and the breaching party does not cure the breach to the satisfaction of the non-breaching party within ten (10) calendar days following its receipt of such notice
That right there sounds like a nail in the coffin for any argument the DNC might try to make in court. You can read the full complain here (PDF file)
Following the news of the DNC cutting off Sander's access to voter data, the Sanders campaign has just announced that if their access to the data is not immediately restored, then they will be in federal court this afternoon. To put this into perspective, the data they are now denied access to includes data that the Sanders campaign has collected through their volunteers and has paid NGP-VAN, over $48,000 as of September this year, to store and access.