Townhall.com Staff - Watch LIVE: Ivanka Addresses RNC, Trump to Accept Nomination
Posted: 7/21/2016 7:30:00 PM EST

Tonight is the night the Republican National Convention has building up to – GOP nominee Donald Trump will take the stage and officially accept his party’s nomination for president. Yet, eyes will also be on his daughter Ivanka Trump, who will be introducing her dad and presumably make the case for why he is the best option for female voters this November. 

Thursday's theme is "Make America One Again." 

Matt Vespa - Fight Club: Young Turks, Alex Jones, And Roger Stone Almost Come To Blows At Republican Convention
Posted: 7/21/2016 6:52:00 PM EST

Cleveland, OHIO– A physical altercation almost occurred in the press area of the Quicken Loans Arena between The Young Turks’ Cenk Uygur, Info Wars' Alex Jones, and ex-Trump adviser Roger Stone. The confrontation occurred near the Townhall booth on radio row. Witnesses told Townhall that Jones and Stone were going around looking for trouble.

It appears that part of Uygur and Stone’s intense exchange revolved around the latter’s alleged role in the prostitution scandal that embroiled former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer in 2008, one that eventually led to his resignation. The allegation that Uygur is referring to stems from the governor liking to be intimate with escorts while wearing socks. Jones appears to be coaxing Stone to get on The Young Turks’ stage during their livestream on YouTube, but was rebuffed by Ugyur who said that this isn’t his [Jones] "f**king show.”

Townhall's Leigh Wolf was there to capture the event [WARNING: some strong language]:

We'll keep you updated if new developments arise.

Matt Vespa - Humana To Leave Vast Majority Of Obamacare Markets After Massive Losses
Posted: 7/21/2016 6:30:00 PM EST

After accruing $1 billion in losses, Humana, one of the largest health care providers in the country, has made the decision to eventually leave the vast majority of the Obamacare markets (via The Hill):

Humana, one of the nation’s top health insurers, is pulling out of ObamaCare plans in all but a handful of states after a year of nearly $1 billion in losses.

The company plans to exit nearly half of its Obamacare markets next year, the company announced during an earnings report Thursday. It will take part in “no more” than 11 state marketplaces, down from 19 states this year, the company said.

Humana’s decision to exit “substantially all” of the state exchanges comes the same day that the Obama administration announced it would step in to block a multi-billion dollar merger between Humana and Aetna. Both are among the so-called “big five” of the nation’s major health insurers.

Guy has written extensively about the shaky financial foundations health care providers have found themselves in under the new health care. Since the beginning of the year, the stories about massive losses and possible withdrawals from the Obamacare markets, UnitedHealth said they’d be removing themselves from most of the markets by 2017. Blue Cross and Blue Shield is another.

Out of the 23 Obamacare co-ops that were established only seven remain, virtually all of them under threat of folding by the end of this year. As for the exchanges, billions of taxpayer dollars have been wasted in that venture as well. In all, it’s not working, folks.

Joe Pappalardo - Panic: 5 'New' GOP Platform Points That Terrify Hillary
Posted: 7/21/2016 5:00:00 PM EST

Hillary Clinton's campaign website published an article Tuesday that listed five "disturbing things" the Republican Party "just voted" into their platform. The piece asserted these policies were a step backward for society.

"The Republican National Convention is underway in Cleveland," wrote Kat Kane, Senior Writer and Creative Strategist at Hillary for America. "And the party just approved a platform so backward and divisive, you’d think it was written by Donald Trump himself."

The five "new" points the website presents in the piece, however, are neither unconstitutional nor deviant from the GOP platform. They are listed here in bold.

1. Restricting women’s rights and health care

Kane writes that Republicans seek to appoint "Supreme Court justices who will undermine women’s constitutional rights." She cites the party's goal to overturn the Roe decision. This was a principle of the party in the last election.

"They didn't stop there," the article went on to say. "The GOP platform also calls for defunding Planned Parenthood, an organization that provides millions of Americans with critical health services like cancer screenings, well-woman exams, and, yes, safe and legal abortion."

The difference between the 2012 and the 2016 GOP abortion platforms lies in the mention of Planned Parenthood. This year the platform states:

We oppose the use of public funds to perform or promote abortion or to fund organizations, like Planned Parenthood, so long as they provide or refer for elective abortions or sell fetal body parts rather than provide healthcare.

The 2012 platform promoted the withdrawal of federal funding from all abortion providers, but did not mention Planned Parenthood in passing. Hillary Clinton's website fails to mention that the new statement only seeks to remove funding if the organization continues to abort and sell fetuses. 

2. Allowing parents to force so-called “conversion therapy” on their LGBT children

Here is the statement which triggered Hillary for America's response:

We support the right of parents to determine the proper medical treatment and therapy for their minor children.

This statement is too broad to prevent "conversion therapy," but it does not specify that such a practice is safe or legal for LGBT children nor does it condone it. The GOP platform simply does not address this issue. 

The 2016 Democratic Party Platform does not mention gay conversion therapy either. It vaguely addresses LGBT discrimination, and mentions school bullying and youth homelessness. Conversion therapy is currently legal in 45 states, but the Democratic platform does not explicitly mention any legal action against it.

3. Building Trump’s wall

Trump's wall is an effort to stop illegal immigration. 

Illegal activities are not allowed by the government. It is in the government's best interests to take action to prevent illegal activities. The writer argues that this "cynical and divisive" plan won't fix the problem. However no alternatives are provided by Kane or the Democrats' platform. No evidence is presented by the writer to show how the wall won't be effective.

The Democrats' statement on immigration never uses the word "illegal." However, it finishes with a direct statement on Republican Presidential Nominee Donald Trump:

Finally, Democrats will not stand for the divisive and derogatory language of Donald Trump. His offensive comments about immigrants and other communities have no place in our society. This kind of rhetoric must be rejected.

Kane also writes:

Trump’s dehumanizing rhetoric also found its way into Republican lexicon: The GOP platform refers to undocumented immigrants as “illegal aliens.”

While the GOP's new definition does not follow current AP style, it is not a false claim. Immigrants who enter the country illegally, with none or incorrect documents are illegal aliens. "Alien" is a synonym for a foreign individual. 

Calling this a result of "Trump's dehumanizing rhetoric," is misleading. The AP only recently banned the use of the terms "illegal" and "illegal alien." The news organization used to include "illegal immigrant." in its stylebook. The AP does not condone the use of the term "undocumented immigrants."

4. Denying marriage rights for LGBT couples

The GOP seeks to overturn the Supreme Court's decision on gay marriage. This would remove the national standard, but not restrict states' decisions on the issue. While this platform point may be countercultural now that gay marriage has been legalized, it has been a GOP principle for years.

The GOP's new platform advocates against judicial overreach, and asks that Congress, states, and voters be able to decide on this issue. It does not seek to directly deny marriage rights for LGBT couples.

5. Attacking “non-traditional” families

Kane writes that the new Republican platform seeks to attack families that aren't "traditional." The GOP does not mention how it will attack "non-traditional" family structures, and it provides evidence to support its claim that the government should promote the "traditional" family structure.

Here is the GOP's statement:

Children raised in a two-parent household tend to be physically and emotionally healthier, more likely to do well in school, less likely to use drugs and alcohol, engage in crime or become pregnant outside of marriage. We oppose policies and laws that create a financial incentive for or encourage cohabitation. Moreover, marriage remains the greatest antidote to child poverty. The 40 percent of children who now are born outside of marriage are five times more likely to live in poverty than youngsters born and raised by a mother and father in the home. Nearly three-quarters of the $450 billion government annually spends on welfare goes to single-parent households. This is what it takes for a governmental village to raise a child, and the village is doing a tragically poor job of it

"The Republican Party platform is alarming—and telling," writes Kane. "And it shows exactly what a Trump presidency would look like."

The party platform still supports unborn children rights, legal immigration, and traditional family structures. This is not a radical change.

Guy Benson - Video: Previewing Trump's High-Stakes Speech
Posted: 7/21/2016 4:50:00 PM EST

As a highly unusual and drama-filled Republican National Convention draws to a close tonight, a massive audience is expected to tune in for the main event: Donald Trump's much anticipated acceptance speech. What does he need to accomplish this evening, and how can he put the negativity and dysfunction in the rearview mirror? I analyzed those questions with GOP strategist Tony Sayeh and anchor Martha MacCallum on Fox News this afternoon, via Right Sightings:

Here is the schedule of tonight's program.

Matt Vespa - BREAKING: Roger Ailes Is Out At Fox News
Posted: 7/21/2016 4:22:00 PM EST

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Fox News Roger Ailes has resigned from the network, a position he’s held since 1996. Executive chairman and founder of News Corporation Rupert Murdoch will step in as interim Acting CEO of Fox News and Fox Business.

“Roger Ailes has made a remarkable contribution to our company and our country,” said Murdoch. “Roger shared my vision of a great and independent television organization and executed it brilliantly over 20 great years.”

Additionally, Murdoch said, “It is always difficult to create a channel or a publication from the ground up and against seemingly entrenched monopolies. To lead a flourishing news channel, and to build Fox Business, Roger has defied the odds.”

With Ailes standing down, he will serve as a consultant for parent company 21st Century Fox, according to a letter he wrote to Murdoch obtained by Drudge:

Dear Rupert,

With your support, I am proud that we have built Fox News and Fox Business Channels into powerful and lucrative news organizations that inform our audience and reward our shareholders. I take particular pride in the role that I have played advancing the careers of the many women I have promoted to executive and on-air positions. Many of these talented journalists have deservedly become household names known for their intelligence and strength, whether reporting the news, fair and balanced, and offering exciting opinions on our opinion programs. . Fox News has become Number 1 in all of cable because I consistently identified and promoted the most talented men and women in television, and they performed at the highest levels.

Having spent 20 years building this historic business, I will not allow my presence to become a distraction from the work that must be done every day to ensure that Fox News and Fox Business continue to lead our industry. I am confident that everyone at Fox News and Fox Business will continue as the standard setters that they are, and that the businesses are well positioned for even greater success in the future.

I am proud of our accomplishments and look forward to continuing to work with you as a consultant in building 21st Century Fox

All the best,

Roger.

Lachlan and James Murdoch released a statement of their own about Ailes resignation:

We join our father in recognizing Roger's remarkable contributions to our company. Our talented Fox News and Fox Business colleagues, up and down the organization and on both sides of the camera, have built something that continues to redefine the cable news experience for millions of viewers. We are enormously proud of their accomplishments. For them, as well as for our colleagues across our entire organization, we continue our commitment to maintaining a work environment based on trust and respect. We take seriously our responsibility to uphold these traditional, long-standing values of our company.

Ailes’ departures comes after former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson made allegations of sexual harassment against the CEO. Yesterday Cortney touched upon reports that Ailes had harassed host Megyn Kelly, though these weren't verified.

Christine Rousselle - Michael Moore Thinks Donald Trump Will Win
Posted: 7/21/2016 4:05:00 PM EST

Liberal filmmaker Michael Moore thinks that Donald Trump could very well win the election this fall. Moore thinks that Trump's appeal with blue-collar, rust-belt Americans could be enough to push him over the electoral hump.

Appearing on a special episode of HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher, Moore called himself a "buzzkill" and said that while the rhetoric at the RNC may seem absurd to him and his fellow guests on the show, he thinks it will resonate well with many Americans and could propel Trump to victory.

(Language warning)

It might have sounded crazy to us, but to millions and millions of Americans, this was music to their ears. And I think one of the things I’ve been concerned about this week, is that we’ve been sitting in, as you refer to it, the bubble. We’ve been sitting in our bubble, having a good laugh at this, as you said, sh-t show.

But the truth is is that this plays to a lot of people that he has to win to become the next president. I’m sorry I have to be the buzzkill here so early on, but I think Trump is going to win.

Moore also compared the Trump campaign to the surprise "Brexit" win in the United Kingdom. He said that middle America and the middle of the U.K. (who went hard for Brexit) were not all that dissimilar.

While Moore faced a barrage of boos, Maher stepped in to defend him and remind the audience that complacency would result in the Democrats losing the election.

This is certainly interesting. Michael Moore is the last person who I'd expect to say anything complementary about how the Trump campaign is going, but this election is certainly an odd one.

Leah Barkoukis - 'You're on Fire, Stupid!': Protester Ignites As He Burns American Flag Outside GOP Convention
Posted: 7/21/2016 4:00:00 PM EST

Cleveland police arrested at least 17 people on Wednesday outside the GOP convention after chaos broke out when protesters started to burn the American flag.

Police quickly moved in with fire extinguishers to put the blaze out. It’s a good thing, too, because the man lighting the flag ended up catching on fire himself.

One police officer can be seen on the video of the protest below (~2:22 mark) yelling, “You’re on fire! You’re on fire, stupid!” 

Carl Dix, a representative of Revolutionary Communist Party, the group protesting, said they organized and wanted to burn the flag as a “political statement about the crimes of the American empire. There’s nothing great about America.”

Justin Holcomb  - Watch: Mutiny Erupts as Texas Delegates Jump Ship and Fight Over Ted Cruz's Betrayal
Posted: 7/21/2016 4:00:00 PM EST

As everyone else in the country has settled down and shifted their efforts towards defeating Hillary Clinton in November, Ted Cruz has caused turmoil in the Texas delegation after his remarks Wednesday night at the Republican convention.  

Reporters from ABC News caught the action as it unfolded.  

"He signed a pledge and he didn't follow his word.. He will never be president and I will campaign against him because all he was doing was helping Hillary Clinton, and he's a liar," a Cruz delegate said as he stormed out of the breakfast meeting on Thursday morning.  

Another Texas representative defended Cruz by comparing the situation to a marriage.  

"If the guy that you're gonna marry goes out and does these things that is an abomination to your vows that you're going to take, then you have a right to reject that person and not marry him."

A young gentleman who was defended Trump said, "People have talked about my family and I didn't cry about it... I get over it, I'm tough."

"You're a coward," another man responded.  

"I'm a Texan," the young man stated.

Katie Pavlich - Ivanka Trump Called Her Dad From School Everyday on a Payphone and He Always Answered
Posted: 7/21/2016 3:30:00 PM EST
Cleveland, OH -

It's the final day of the 2016 RNC convention and Ivanka Trump, daughter of GOP nominee Donald Trump, is getting ready to take the stage tonight and present her father to the nation in a way nobody else can. 

During an interview with Fox News' Ainsley Earhart Thursday morning, Ivanka previewed her remarks and discussed her relationship with her father growing up and as a young executive in his company. 

"It's an unbelievable opportunity for me to be able to present to this country my father as I know him both a capacity obviously as a great personal mentor to me and an amazing father," she said. "We speak candidly to one another, we offer our opinions to each other solicited or otherwise and do so privately. We share our thoughts and feelings with him. He's incredibly respectful. More often than not we agree but when we disagree he hears us out and ultimately draws his own conclusion."

Ivanka was asked about rules she had growing up and how she came to be who she is today. She described the accessibility of her father, even in his busiest years, and how she used to call him collect from a payphone everyday at school. He always answered.

"No tattoos, no piercings outside of the ears, there were a lot of rules," Ivanka described about growing up in the Trump household. "But I think more than everything he really tried to lead us by example. He was a disciplinarian but I could get around it often (laughs). Once in awhile I'd find my way through."

Ivanka also sat down for a lengthier interview with Sean Hannity last night.

Ivanka will be speaking live at the RNC convention tonight around 9:45 ET. You can watch live at Townhall.com. To see the full Thursday convention schedule, click here.

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