Midday open thread: White House visitor logs freed; Americans own 42% of world's civilian-owned guns

Today’s comic by Ruben Bolling is Trump’s ‘Immigrant Crime Stories Round Up’ warns of dangerous new gang

Survey shows rising public support for dumping coal: The survey conducted by the National Surveys on Energy and Environment shows a big move from just last year. In 2016, 50 percent of Americans opposed phasing out coal. Asked again in the Fall 2017 about a coal plant phase-out, the percentage in support rose to 48 percent while those in opposition had shrunk to 34 percent. The percentage of Americans who say they strongly support a coal phase-out increased 11 percentage points from 18 percent in 2016 to 29 percent in 2017; the number who strongly oppose the policy fell 11 points, from 31 percent in 2016 to 20 percent in 2017. In contrast to 2016 when there wasn’t majority support for a phase-out in any political party, in 2017, 56 percent of Democrats did. Republican support for a phase-out grew from 23 percent in 2013 to 30 percent in 2017.  Among surveyed independents, 54 percent say they would support a phase-out. 

Arizona GOP Senate candidate Kelli Ward endorsed by non-existent publication: It’s not the first time somebody did that:

On Wednesday, far-right Arizona U.S. Senate candidate Kelli Ward, who is running for the seat being vacated by Sen. Jeff Flake, became the latest Republican politician linked to a fake website when Politico reported that she had promoted an endorsement from something called the Arizona Monitor. There is no reputable publication of that name. […]

While the identity of the people behind the Monitor still remains a mystery, the practice of creating publications designed to hype candidates and causes is a well-established one in Republican politics. Long before the discussions of fake news and Russian bots seeped into the national dialogue, GOP election consultants were setting up fake websites designed to look like legitimate journalistic outfits, industry promotion groups masquerading as think tanks and fictitious social media profiles designed to look like real people.


Fracking has interfered with love life of a songbird species:

Rapid growth in shale gas development through fracking has hindered the reproductive success of songbirds, according to a new study.

A team of researchers mapped Louisiana waterbrush territories and monitored nests along 14 streams in northwestern West Virginia from 2009 to 2011 and 2013 to 2015.

Their report, published Tuesday in the journal The Condor: Ornithological Applications, shows that the nesting success of the waterthrush, which nests along forested streams, declined at sites impacted by fracking development.

Americans own two-fifths of the civilian-owned guns in the world. 16 additional charts and maps can be found at the link:

Meanwhile, Foxaganda pushes idea that armed guards would have prevented the slayings at Parkland. Ignoring the fact that Parkland always has an armed guard on duty. Informed of that, Sean Hannity said: “I mean, a school this big that has 3,200 students and multiple buildings, it seems to me you need a few people in each building, retired military, retired police, and I would think, over time, that families — we’re not talking about all that much money.” Law enforcement thinks otherwise. Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel told reporters during a news conference Wednesday, “If a person is predisposed to commit such a horrific act … there not a lot law enforcement or any entity can do about it.”

On Cheddar TV today: Kelly Macias, staff writer for Daily Kos, explains why she believes Congress won’t do anything about guns after the latest mass shooting in Florida and shares her thoughts on the resignation of a special assistant to President Trump after past marijuana use.

Salvadoran woman sentenced to 30 years for homicide after stillbirth is freed:

Teodora del Carmen Vásquez, one of the dozens of Salvadoran women who have been arrested after experiencing stillbirths or other obstetric complications, was freed from prison on February 15 after originally being sentenced to 30 years behind bars.

“Of course this is an occasion for great joy for her family and great satisfaction for us and the many organizations and individuals who have worked for her release,” said Sara Garcia, coordinator of the feminist group Agrupación Ciudadana por la Despenalización del Aborto. “But it is not enough.” Garcia noted that although Vásquez’s sentencing was commuted to 10 years and seven months, “She is still considered guilty. We will continue exploring legal avenues to make sure that she is found innocent.”

On today’s Kagro in the Morning show, Greg Dworkin is on hand to round up headlines, but we’re once again doing the show under the cloud of a mass shooting. And yes, they’re getting worse. Also getting worse: the food-in-a-box “idea,” White House security clearances, and cabinet corruption.

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