Election exodus: Canadians invite 4 states to secede from US

In a gesture to ease the pain of Americans unhappy with the presidential election result, a group of Canadians have invited the residents of California, Oregon, Washington and Nevada – where Donald Trump lost to Hillary Clinton – to secede and join Canada.

“Dear California, Oregon, Washington – I’m sure we can work something out if you want to join Canada,” tweeted Chad Harris, a reporter from Kamloops, British Columbia.

“To the west coast of the United States, if you want to you can all become Canadian Provinces, since you voted closer to the experiences we have as Canadian,” Andrew Mercier, from Calgary, wrote on Facebook. “Therefore WA, OR, NV, and CA you are now provinces, also bring all the goodness that you have to us!!!” the Canadian added.

Douglas Cole from Beaverton, Oregon, even wrote an ironic open letter on the subject.

“Dear Canada,
We, the fine people of Washington, Oregon, and California, wish to secede. We offer our people, our land, and our resources to you, Oh Canada. We promise not to fight this, but instead, to fight FOR this. Although, you being…you know…Canadians, we’re confident in a polite transition as we become your fourth territory, Washorefornia.
Or Calorington.
We’re fine with either.
Just please take us.
Pretty please?”

Douglas Cole

Dear Canada,
We, the fine people of Washington, Oregon, and California, wish to secede. We offer our people, our land, and our resources to you, Oh Canada. We promise not to fight this, but instead, to fight FOR this. Although, you being...you know...Canadians, we're confident in a polite transition as we become your fourth territory, Washorefornia.

@_DanielYap Calorington (California, Oregon, Washington) if ever they secede from the US to join Canada or Washorefornia and become a Canadian province.

@keithlowell Can California, Oregon, and Washington become part of Canada?

@AlyssaGibbons95 Canada invited California, Oregon, & Washington to join them? Sweet I've always wanted to be a Canadian

I Like ! When are we Leaving? California, Oregon & Washington say Bye Bye! Nevada U2 :)


@Natebow What if we compromise and all the Coastal states just become part of Canada? America can just keep all the interior ones

READ MORE: Calexit: California mulls becoming own nation in wake of Trump presidency

California, the most populous state of America, could become the ‘Golden Nation’ if an independence referendum gets passed. Emboldened by California’s strong economy and high population, a so-called ‘Calexit’ could gain traction following Trump’s election.

California could become an independent country in 2019 when voters hit the polls again.

The Yes California website states: “We advocate for peaceful secession from the United States by use of an independence referendum to establish a mandate, followed by a nationwide campaign to advocate in support of a constitutional exit from the Union.”

The Yes California Independence Campaign believes that “being a US state is no longer serving California’s best interests. On issues ranging from peace and security to natural resources and the environment, it has become increasingly true that California would be better off as an independent country.”

“In 2016, the United Kingdom voted to leave the international community with their ‘Brexit’ vote. Our ‘Calexit’ referendum is about California joining the international community,” the website concluded.

  • Published in World

TV Stations, the Big Winners in U.S. Elections

Washington, Nov 8 (Prensa Latina) The big TV stations are the main winners in the presidential elections in the United States, with estimated revenues of billions of dollars.

According to the website The Hill, the upset caused by both Democratic Candidate Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump have provided prime material to the big media organizations, whose news coverage resembles a bad but entertaining soap opera.

However, such news coverage has been as rejected as the candidates to the White House, because, according to a joint survey by The Wall Street Journal and NBC, only 19 percent of U.S. adults approve of the coverage.

In addition, one third of U.S. citizens believe in the press, according to a Gallup poll in September, while Republican voters strongly think that their candidate is a victim of prejudices.

Such a fall in credibility contrasts with an increase in TV viewing rates and revenues, as shown by nearly one billion dollars of net profits that CNN will report in 2016, according to The Washington Post.

It is the largest profit reported by CNN in 36 years, while the coverage of the elections by its rival, Fox, exceeded the broadcasts of college American football and the Major Leagues' playoffs.

Last year, Fox made 2.3 billion dollars by concept of advertisements, plus 1.6 billion dollars more in profits by its associated company 21st Century Fox, and according to the firm SNL Kagan, profits will be higher in 2016.

Although the trend is positive among TV stations, the written media, in particular the newspapers, have reduced the number of issues and have lost clients to advertise, therefore money.

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Russia Upset US Banned Its Diplomats from Observing Election

The Russian Foreign Ministry denounced the intimidation attempts against its diplomatic staff in Washington. 

The government of Russia called the United States government's ruling to limit Russian diplomats' access to polling stations to observe the presidential election “unacceptable,” while Washington formally accused the Kremlin of attempting to “interfere” in the U.S. electoral process.

RELATED: WikiLeaks Did Not Receive Clinton Emails from Russia, Assange Says

"The US administration's law enforcement officials stop at nothing to cut off Russian representatives from an opportunity to assess the provisions of holding the upcoming elections," Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov told state-run agency RIA Novosti Tuesday.

Meanwhile, the spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova, published a statement on Facebook denouncing intimidation against her country's diplomatic staff.

“Things went as far as open intimidation of Russian diplomats. The State Department recommended them not to approach the polling stations on their own, and authorities in some states went further and threatened (the diplomats) with criminal prosecution.”

RELATED: ​WikiLeaks Lays Bare Clinton's Collusion With Mainstream Media

Last month the Russian Embassy in Washington said that its diplomats on U.S. soil had been threatened with criminal prosecution if they attempted to monitor the upcoming presidential and congressional elections at polling stations.

U.S. spy agencies have suggested that the Russian government had directed the recent revelations about the emails of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's campaign in an attempt to influence the election. However, these claims have not been proven.

Moscow has denied its involvement in any hacking scandal, and WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange – whose organization released the hacked documents and emails – recently denied any Russian involvement.

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How Hillary Clinton could win 270 electoral votes

Hillary Clinton is the favorite to win Tuesday’s presidential election. But the race has tightened of late in both national and swing state polls, and there’s been increasing chatter suggesting that Clinton’s “firewall” protecting an electoral college majority could be in danger.

The big picture, though, is that Clinton has two broad paths toward reaching 270 electoral votes:

1) Holding her six “firewall” states: Virginia, Colorado, Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and New Hampshire. Those states, combined with the solidly Democratic states, would give her the presidency.

2) If she loses one or more firewall states, she’d likely have to make up for those losses with similarly-sized wins in one or more of the following: Nevada, North Carolina, and Florida — the diverse toss-up state trio.

 

Let’s walk through the math. Clinton starts off with 200 or so likely electoral votes, from the blue states, below:

 Vox

Now, this list of solid Clinton states does include New Mexico, Minnesota, and the statewide Maine contest (its congressional districts award electoral votes separately). The Trump campaign has argued that all of them are competitive, but political observers have greeted those claims with intense skepticism. And in any case, if Clinton is losing those states she probably has much bigger problems elsewhere.

If Clinton does win this batch of blue states, though, she’d need to put together a combination of 70 or more electoral votes in the remaining contests to get to 270. Here’s how she could do it.

 

Clinton’s first shot at winning is through protecting her firewall

Back around August, polls started to indicate have that Clinton’s easiest path to 270 electoral votes could be through winning six states in particular where she’s led the vast majority of polls this year: Virginia, Colorado, Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and New Hampshire.

These states have often been referred to as the “firewall” protecting Clinton’s electoral college majority. If she won them, while holding on to the solid blue states, she’d win 272 electoral votes and therefore the presidency, without even needing to win other swing states like Florida, North Carolina, and Nevada.

 Vox

Yet as election day approaches, the strength of Clinton’s firewall is coming into question.

Analysts generally think that Clinton is still in good shape in Colorado (nine electoral votes) and Virginia (13 electoral votes), two states with sizable nonwhite populations and growing numbers of educated white voters. And high-quality polling in Wisconsin (10 electoral votes) suggests she’s still ahead there too.

Yet she’s gotten more mixed news in the three other firewall states.

In Pennsylvania (20 electoral votes), the biggest and most important firewall state, no recent poll has shown Trump ahead. But Clinton’s lead appears to have shrunk to just a couple of points, on average.

In Michigan (16 electoral votes), the second-biggest firewall state, Clinton’s team has long thought the race wasn’t seriously competitive, and didn’t bother to run ads there until recently. But the newest polls have shown her lead shrinking to the low single digits all of a sudden, and the Clinton campaign is scheduling several last-minute campaign events there to shore up her support.

And in New Hampshire (four electoral votes), Clinton had led every poll since July — until last week, when five new polls all either showed a tie race or Trump taking the lead. Now, another poll just released shows her up 11, but still, it’s not entirely clear whether the Granite State is really still part of the firewall.

Overall, if Clinton holds the firewall, she wins. But if one or more firewall states do end up falling, she’ll have to make up for those losses elsewhere.

Clinton could compensate for some firewall losses by winning more diverse toss-up states

Outside of the firewall are three states that appear from polls to be pure toss-ups — Florida, North Carolina, and Nevada.

This trio of states has tended, over the course of the campaign, to be tighter in the polls than the firewall states. In normal circumstances, that would suggest that they are inherently less pro-Clinton — and so, if the firewall states moved out of her reach, they would move similarly away from her.

Perhaps that would happen. But the demographic aspects of Trump and Clinton’s respective support bases suggest it’s not guaranteed. Trump’s support is heavily concentrated among non-college educated white voters — who are actually a pretty big share of the electorate in several firewall states, like Pennsylvania, Michigan, and New Hampshire. So Democrats have increasingly gotten nervous that those non-college whites could turn out heavily in those states, particularly after reports of lower black voter turnout so far than 2012.

Florida, Nevada, and North Carolina, on the other hand, all have populations that are a third or more nonwhite. In the former two those nonwhite voters are mostly Hispanic, and Hispanic voters appear to have been galvanized in opposition to Trump. North Carolina has a much smaller Hispanic population, but it has a reasonably high amount of college-educated white voters, many of whom have also tended to oppose Trump.

Furthermore, early voting has proceeded apace in this trio of swing states for weeks — and many observers believe the Clinton campaign is better at turning out early voters than the Trump campaign. Indeed, in all three, votes equivalent to more than 60 percent of total 2012 votes have already been cast. So the Clinton campaign’s ground game had much more time to turn out voters compared to Pennsylvania, Michigan, and New Hampshire, where there is no in-person early voting.

The toss-up states Clinton would need to plug up various firewall losses

The firewall states in which Clinton’s prospects appear to be diciest right now are, again, New Hampshire, Michigan, and Pennsylvania. So if she lost one or more of them, she’d probably have to make up for it by winning some combination of the toss-up states (Nevada, Florida, and North Carolina) that’s at least roughly equivalent in electoral votes.

Here are the possible ways that could play out:

1) If Clinton wins only Nevada and its six electoral votes, while losing North Carolina and Florida, she’d only be able to cancel out a loss of New Hampshire’s four electoral votes, so she’d need the whole rest of the firewall to hold strong. (Many observers now expect Clinton to win Nevada despite the tight polls, since early voting seems to have gone well for Democrats there.)

2) If Clinton wins only North Carolina (where 15 electoral votes are at stake), that would probably be a good enough substitute for the loss of Michigan’s 16 electoral votes to give her the presidency. It could also, of course, make up for a New Hampshire loss. But it wouldn’t be sufficient to make up for a loss of both Michigan and New Hampshire, or for the loss of Pennsylvania.

3) Now, if Clinton wins both North Carolina and Nevada, that would give her 21 electoral votes, which would be enough to cancel out the loss of either Pennsylvania, Michigan, or New Hampshire alone, or the loss of Michigan and New Hampshire combined.

4) The easiest way Clinton could help herself is by winning Florida and its yuge haul of 29 electoral votes. That would cancel out the loss of any one firewall state, the loss of New Hampshire and Pennsylvania, or the loss of New Hampshire and Michigan.

5) If Clinton wins Florida and Nevada (35 electoral votes) she’d also be able to cancel out the loss of Michigan and Pennsylvania together, so long as she held on to New Hampshire.

6) Then, if Clinton wins both Florida and North Carolina (a hefty 44 electoral votes) she could survive the loss of Michigan, Pennsylvania, and New Hampshire together (whether or not she won Nevada).

7) Finally, if Clinton won Florida, North Carolina, and Nevada together (50 electoral votes), she could survive some pretty massive losses of firewall states.

This last scenario is what we might call the “full Brownstein”— referring to Atlantic journalist Ron Brownstein, who has long argued that Democratic support is being concentrated among a “coalition of the ascendant” (nonwhites, young voters, and socially liberal college-educated whites), while the party is losing whites without a college education.

 

Indeed, here’s what one version of the “full Brownstein” scenario might look like — in which Clinton loses the firewall states of New Hampshire, Michigan, and Pennsylvania (along with Ohio and Iowa) while making up for it with North Carolina, Florida, and Nevada. It’s certainly not the most likely map based on current polling (which, again, shows Clinton still ahead in Michigan and Pennsylvania), but it would be a tremendously significant map for the future of the Democratic coalition.

The Full Brownstein.
Vox

Of course there are many plausible scenarios where Clinton wins bigger, too. She could hold the firewall and win all three diverse toss-up states. She could also still have a shot at Arizona and Ohio, both of which she continues to contest even though polls indicate they’re leaning toward Trump.

But as far as how Hillary Clinton can get over 270 votes in the first place, the answer seems clear — either she holds her firewall states, or she makes up for firewall state losses with wins among the three diverse swing states.

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Hacking of DNC raises fears of cyber attack on US election

The recent breach of Democratic National Committee data, along with other electronic intrusions, has raised concerns about cyber incidents that could affect the outcome of the US presidential race, or other contests.

The campaign of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton said the hack that targeted the DNC had accessed an analytics data program that it used as well.

Cybersecurity experts see a potential for more hacks and incidents in the coming months which could hurt the integrity of the election campaign.

Bob Hansmann of the Forcepoint, which last year predicted a rise in political cyber intrusions, said a variety of groups might target US political campaigns.

"There are a lot of motivations out there," Hansmann told AFP. "It could be to disrupt, discredit or embarrass a candidate. Or it could be to disrupt the entire political system."

Campaign organizations can be soft targets, Hansmann said, because they have large numbers of employees and volunteers who are on the move, often with their own computers and smartphones with varying degrees of security.

Almost anyone can employ hackers-for-hire to break into networks, steal data or "spoof" a campaign organization to deliver faked emails or social media messages, he said.

Steve Grobman, at Intel Security, said the hack at the DNC "is the latest high-profile reminder that information of tremendous value internally can be used as a devastating weapon if disclosed externally."

Grobman said the DNC breach is "a classic example of a 'hacktivist' event, where the objective of a cyber attack is to steal an organization's sensitive information and disclose it in such a way that the reputational, operational or organizational damage to that organization is maximized."

Russian connection?

The possibility that Russian hackers have been behind the cyber intrusions—as widely suspected by some officials and experts—raises the stakes. Foreign intervention in the election process would be a grave matter.

US officials say the FBI is investigating but has drawn no conclusions. Russia has denied any involvement.

President Barack Obama said Tuesday that "we have provisions in place where, if we see evidence of a malicious attack by a state actor, we can impose, potentially, certain proportional penalties."

But he added that taking such action "requires us to really be able to pin down and know what we're talking about. And so I don't want to get out ahead of the legal evidence and facts that we may have in order to make those kinds of decisions."

Recent breach of Democratic National Committee data, along with other electronic intrusions, has raised concerns about cyber incidents that could affect the outcome of the US presidential race

Security analysts said the US should take action once the source of the threat is known.

This kind of attack "meets the definition of an act of cyber-war, and the US government should respond as such," said Dave Aitel, chief executive of the security firm Immunity Inc. in a blog post on the website Ars Technica.

Bruce Schneier, chief technology officer of the IBM security firm Resilient and a fellow at Harvard's Berkman Center, also warned of the gravity of such attacks.

"This kind of targets the very core of our democratic process," Schneier said in a blog post.

"And it points to the possibility of an even worse problem in November—that our election systems and our voting machines could be vulnerable to a similar attack."

As the close and fiercely disputed 2000 presidential election showed, the results of a single state—like Florida—can determine the national outcome, potentially simplifying hackers' work.

Schneier said interference from abroad cannot go without a response, saying that "if foreign governments learn that they can influence our elections with impunity, this opens the door for future manipulations, both document thefts and dumps like this one that we see and more subtle manipulations that we don't see."

Information as weapon

If the DNC intrusion was indeed a Russian-sponsored hack, "it would be a bold move," said James Lewis, who heads strategic technologies at the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Lewis said the DNC attack bears the hallmarks of a Russian hack, "but they are usually more skillful at hiding their tracks."

It is not surprising to see Russia involved in this type of attack, said Lewis.

The Russians "see themselves in a new conflict where control of information is a tool or even a weapon," he said.

"They feel that Western institutions dominate global perceptions, and they feel there's a need to push back."

The evidence against Russia "is about as close to a smoking gun as can be expected where a sophisticated nation-state is involved," said Susan Hennessey, a national security fellow at the Brookings Institution, on the Lawfare Blog.

"This means, put simply, that actors outside the US are using criminal means to influence the outcome of a US election. That's a problem. The question before us now is how to construct a response to mitigate damage to our democratic institutions."

  • Published in World

Clinton Leads Trump by 1.3 Points Four Days Before Elections

Washington, Nov 4 (Prensa Latina) Just four days before the presidential elections in the United States, the Democratic candidate, Hillary Clinton, maintains a slight lead of 1.3 points over her Republican rival, Donald Trump, according to an average of all the national polls.

The Reuters/Ipsos poll places the former Secretary of State six points above the New York billionaire (45-39), while the CBS News / The New York Times survey gives Clinton three advantage points (47-44) .

The survey by ABC / Washington Post also shows the former First Lady will be the winner with two points lead over Trump (49-47) and the results presented by IBD / TIPP Tracking and Gravis, declare a tie between the candidates 44- 44 and 50-50, respectively.

Only the Rasmussen Report shows Donald Trump as the winner, with three points over his Democratic opponent.

According to the states' breakdown, the Republican magnate leads Arizona by five points, Georgia (1), Utah (6), Texas (9) and Arkansas (20).

Clinton is leading in Pennsylvania (1), Michigan (3), Colorado (6), Florida (3) California (20).

 

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New Poll Shows Tie Between Clinton and Trump

Washington, Nov 2 (Prensa Latina) Less than a week before the US election polls poorly define picture, when one of them speaks today of a tie between Republican, Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton.

According to a survey by Washington Post-ABC News conducted from October 28 to 31 and broadcast on Wednesday, each candidate has the support of 46 percent of likely voters.

A similar study released yesterday gave one-point lead to the billionaire, while since more than a week ago Clinton was ahead with two- digit difference, which shows the ground gained by the tycoon in recent days.

The survey conducted among 1,182 likely voters also showed that 46 percent of respondents considered the Republican more honest and trustworthy, versus 38 percent who chose their opponent; one month ago they appeared tied in that section.

The new numbers are recorded a few days after the FBI Director James Comey, send a letter to the House of Representatives to announce the reopening of the investigation on the use that Clinton made of a private e-mail server.

Such news aroused the rejection of the democratic formation and even supporters of Trump, by considering that they are seeking to influence the outcome of November 8 elections.

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Biden tops Clinton list for U.S. secretary of state: reports

Vice President Joe Biden tops a short list for secretary of state that is being compiled by the transition team of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, two media outlets reported.

Politico on Thursday night cited an unidentified source as saying Clinton and her aides were discussing how to approach Biden about the post, should she win the Nov. 8 presidential election.

Most national opinion polls show Clinton, who served as President Barack Obama's first secretary of state, leading Republican Donald Trump in the race for the White House.

Biden became a respected voice on foreign policy during his 36 years in the U.S. Senate, where he was chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee and at one point served alongside Clinton, when she was a senator from New York.

"He'd be great, and they are spending a lot of time figuring out the best way to try to persuade him to do it if she wins," the source familiar with Clinton's transition planning told Politico.

NBC News later confirmed that Biden was under consideration for the job of top U.S. diplomat.

Biden, of Delaware, had considered running for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2016. He has campaigned vigorously for Clinton in her race against Trump, a New York real estate tycoon and former reality television personality who has never run for office.

The vice president said at a campaign event for Clinton in Pennsylvania this week that he is frequently asked whether he wished he had been debating Trump, who has insulted women, Muslims and immigrants and thumbed his nose at political norms.

"No, I wish we were in high school. I could take him behind the gym. That's what I wish," Biden said, prompting a similarly pugilistic retort from Trump a couple of days later.

In excepts from an interview released from CBS' Sunday program "Face the Nation," Biden made it clear he wanted to continue his public service.

"I'm not going away. I'm, you know, everything from this issue of violence against women, to income inequality, to the cancer moonshot, I'm gonna devote the rest of my life to this."

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