CBS Face The Nation Interview Leaves Viewers Asking “Who’s Lying?”

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Former Defense Secretary Mark Esper appeared on CBS’ Face The Nation (05/15/22) to discuss his new book “A Sacred Oath”, which chronicles his time in the Trump administration. During his interview however, there was an interesting, even awkward exchange about the infamous Lafayette Square incident, that left viewers wondering whether he, or former Attorney General William Barr, or both, were lying to the public about the incident. Specifically, Esper told host Margaret Brennan that former President Trump did indeed request 10,000 active duty troops to deal with the BLM protesters at Lafayette Square even though at his earlier appearance on the same show, with the same host, former AG Barr had called such claims “completely false.”

How can two senior officials of the Trump administration(SecDef & AG), who were both present at a seminal moment in the administration(Lafayette Square protests), end up with a polar opposite recollections of the same event? Who’s lying?

Host Margaret Brennan(video at 3:50): “You(Esper) talk about, and have spoken quite a lot this past week about the events in Lafayette Square, and it’s an important bit of the public record. You were in the Oval Office with the President, and he spoke about a very specific number, 10,000 of active duty troops potentially being sent into the streets of Washington DC. I want to play a clip for you here, because I asked the then Attorney General Bill Barr about exactly that..[plays clip with AG Barr, where he calls such claims ‘completely false’]…”

Margaret Brennan: “Why do you seem to have different recollections?”

Mark Esper: “I don’t know. I wrote about this in my book that Bill Barr and I have different recollections. Of course if you go through my story you’ll understand that the President calls into the Pentagon earlier that morning and talks about 10,000 troops. That’s when I’m first made aware of this request. Look, I don’t know why we have different recollections. I think in all these cases people hear or see different things, but I’m 110% confident of what the President was seeking that morning.”

Reasonable people will agree that these two dramatically different accounts of the same Lafayette Square event cannot both be true. Someone is clearly lying here. Who is it?

Bottom line folks, this new phenomenon of Washington insiders sitting on information of great public interest, only to release them after lucrative book deals, is getting out of control. Both Esper and Barr have written books about their experiences in the Trump administration, and have presumably been rewarded handsomely for the books. The public however is still left hanging on the question as to whether Trump requested active duty troops to deal with the Lafayette Square protests. What public good do these “bombshell” books serve?

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ECB President Christine Lagarde Blames Less Focus On Job Retention During COVID For High U.S. Inflation

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European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde appeared for an interview on CBS’ Face The Nation(04/24/22) to discuss the current global inflation brought about by covid and the Russsia-Ukraine war. During her interview, President Lagarde made an interesting observation, telling host Margaret Brennan that inflation is higher in the U.S. because unlike Europe, the U.S. focused more on issuing covid stimulus/relief checks than on job retention. Europe’s primary focus during covid was on job retention. She said the resultant labor shortage in the U.S. is driving up wages, which are in turn, driving up costs. Hmm, interesting.

Host Margaret Brennan(video at 4:53):“In this country there’s a lot of debate around how much the government is to blame versus the central bankers for the inflation that we are experiencing. The U.S. spent $6 trillion on covid relief, $2 trillion of it on President Biden’s watch last Spring when the economy was already recovering. Do you think some of this spending in the U.S. exacerbated inflation, because Europe didn’t spend like this?”

President Lagarde:“We in Europe spent less in stimulus, and I think we spent differently. We spent pretty much half as much as what the U.S. government spent on stimulus, and heating up the economy. But we also spent differently because I think the focus was predominantly on keeping the jobs, not necessarily sending the checks, and as a result of that, people who managed to keep their jobs alive, while not necessarily going to work because covid stopped everybody from going to work at some point in time, they had their job. So when covid was over, they went back to their job. So, I think that the labor market that you have currently in the U.S., which is incredibly tense, where you have a lot of jobs that are not filled, where you have plenty of vacancies, we don’t have that in Europe at the moment, and the current situation you have on the labor market here in the U.S. is clearly contributing to possible strong inflation and second round effect, where prices go up, wages go up, short supply of labor, wages continue to go up, and that feeds back into prices. That’s one of the differences between our two economies.”

There’s no other way to interpret ECB President Lagarde’s remarks other than(I’ll be happy to stand corrected of course), the current strong inflation in the U.S. is largely driven by the fact that the government did not do enough to help people keep their jobs during covid. In other words, even though a lot of people could not physically go to work during covid, more should have been done to make sure their jobs would still be there for them after the pandemic–propping up their employers to keep them afloat. According to President Lagarde, this is precisely what Europe focused on–propping up the employers, and is the reason Europe is not seeing the high levels of inflation as the U.S.

For the record, this does not mean Europe did not hand out covid stimulus/relief checks to workers like the U.S. did. What President Lagarde is saying is that the primary focus in Europe was job retention. It’s also worth pointing out for the sake of fairness, that the entire U.S. covid response, and the resultant high inflation, cannot be pinned solely on the Biden administration. Reasonable people will agree that the Trump admin is equally to blame.

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Elie Mystal Says If Rep Marjorie Taylor Green Wasn’t A White Republican She’d Be Charged With Perjury

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Elie Mystal on MSNBC’s Cross Connection Show(04/23/22)

Elie Mystal, Justice Correspondent for The Nation and Author of the New York Times bestselling book “Allow Me To Retort: A Black Guy’s Guide To The Constitution”, appeared on MSNBC’s Cross Connection show on 04/23/22. Mystal dropped a bombshell on the show, telling host Tiffany Cross that the only reason Rep Marjorie Taylor Greene(R-GA) has not been charged with perjury for her highly evasive court deposition on 04/22/22, was because she is a White Republican woman. He added that if Reps Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, or Ayana Pressley(all women of color), had engaged in similar conduct, they would have been hit with perjury charges before they validated their parking. Whoa!!

Host Tiffany Cross(video at 1:06):“She[MTG]was clearly involved and I’m just curious your thoughts on what repercussions this case might have on other pro-insurrectionists who are currently in office, or currently running for office?”

Elie Mystal: “Well, I don’t think there are going to be repercussions because she is a White Republican woman, quite frankly. Black people cannot get away with this. The evasiveness that we saw at her hearing yesterday, where she all but perjured herself versus the tape that you just played, Black people cannot get away with that. Everybody at home knows that. Everybody at home knows that if[Reps]Rashida Tlaib, if Ilhan Omar, if Ayanna Presley had tried what Marjorie Taylor Greene tried yesterday, they would have caught a perjury charge before they validated their parking…At the end of the day, what Marjorie Taylor Greene did was perjury and if she was a non-White person, she would be at least been investigated for that. In fact, if she was just a Democrat, she would be at least investigated for that. You know how I know that? Because I’m old enough to remember when Republicans impeached Bill Clinton for less. The evasiveness that Bill Clinton did in his deposition was less than what we all saw Marjorie Taylor Greene do yesterday…Republicans, and White people get away with this all the time.”

There is no other way to interpret Elie Mystal’s remarks other than race and class, even in 2022, are still major factors when it comes to how our criminal justice system makes decisions about who to prosecute and who not to. According to Elie Mystal, White Republicans like Marjorie Taylor Greene are the biggest beneficiaries of such decisions because they are almost always let off the hook for conduct that Blacks and Browns would almost certainly be prosecuted for–a sad state of affairs indeed.

Bottom line folks, it’s not a lot to ask that “equal justice under law” mean exactly that–equal justice under law. It doesn’t take a genius to realize, given her numerous public utterances, that Rep Marjorie Taylor Greene serially lied under oath on Friday 04/22/22.

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Elie Mystal: The “Chief Architect” Of The Assault On Voting Rights Is Chief Justice John Roberts

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The Nation’s Justice Correspondent, Elie Mystal, dropped a major bombshell on MSNBC’s American Voices (01/16/22), when he slammed U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts as the “chief architect” of the assault on voting rights. Unlike many mainstream media pundits who engage in incendiary rhetoric just for ratings, Elie Mystal backed up his bombshell assertion with very good examples that would make any reasonable person either agree with him, or at the very least, find his assertion quite plausible. The fact that Elie Mystal’s bombshell claims pass the plausibility test, should compel Chief Justice Roberts to address them, for the sake of the Supreme Court’s integrity.

Elie Mystal specifically said: “The chief architect of this assault on our voting rights is not Mitch McConnell, it’s not ot David Duke, it’s not whatever boogey man you think is hiding under the closet. The chief architect is Chief Justice John Roberts. It is he who has been an enemy of voting rights and racial equality from his very first job out of law school, which was to oppose the 1982 amendments to the Voting Rights Act. It is John Roberts who authored Shelby County v Holder in 2013 which eviscerated section 5 of Voting Rights Act which is basically why we are here right now, it is John Roberts who authored Rucho in 2020 which swung wide the doors towards gerrymandering, and it is John Roberts who provided the crucial 5th vote in last year’s Brnovich decision which eviscerated section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. This is all being done by Federalist Society conservatives that have been put on the Supreme Court, and until we stop them, until we do something about the court–you want to pass your Freedom to Vote Act, I think that’s a great bill, we should pass it, I think we should have passed HR1, but always remember that John Roberts and his conservative cronies are waiting at the Supreme Court level to strike down whatever laws we put forward. As long as you let Republicans control the Supreme Court, you cannot have a fair and equal just society.”

It’s worth pointing out here too, that Elie Mystal is not only decrying Chief Justice Roberts’ questionable history on voting rights, but crucially, also making the point that minorities are doomed going forward, with him at the helm of the Supreme Court. This naturally raises the question as to whether Chief Justice Roberts is the right person to lead the high court.

Bottom line folks, these are questions that the mainstream media needs to take up with Chief Justice Roberts. At a time when voting rights are a red hot topic, and minorities are increasingly concerned about Republicans infringing upon their right to vote, the public deserves to know whether the Roberts Supreme Court will be a neutral arbiter in the fight for voting rights, as it should be.

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Sunday Dem Newsmakers

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A listing of the Democratic movers and shakers who appear on the various Sunday political shows to discuss the Dem agenda. Your one-stop shop for keeping up with the weekly goings-on within the Democratic Party.

Senator Amy Klobuchar(D-MN), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, appeared on NBC’s Meet The Press(12/5/21) to discuss Mississippi’s abortion law currently in the hands of the U.S. Supreme Court

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont(D-CT) appeared on CBS’ Face The Nation(12/5/21) to discuss the new Omicron case in his state, and the rising delta variant cases

Senator Chris Murphy(D-CT) appeared on CNNSOTU(12/5/21) to discuss gun reform following the recent high school shooting in Michigan, Russia’s moves on Ukraine, and other Dem agenda issues

Rep Ilhan Omar(D-MN) appeared on CNNSOTU(12/5/21) to discuss the racist/bigoted attacks against her by childish Republican Rep Lauren Boebert(CO)

Senator Amy Klobuchar(D-MN) appeared on ABC’s This Week(11/28/21) to discuss the path forward for the Build Back Better Act in the Senate, the new Omicron variant, and other Dem agenda items

Rep Adam Schiff(D-CA) appeared on CNNSOTU(11/28/21) to discuss the progress being made by the January 6th Committee

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand(D-NY) appeared on CBS’ Face The Nation(11/21/21) to discuss the path forward for the build back better act in the Senate and other Dem agenda issues, including a topic near and dear to her–military sexual assaults

Brian Deese, Director of National Economic Council and one of President Biden’s top economic advisers, appeared on Fox News Sunday to discuss inflation, build back better and other economic issues confronting the Biden admin

Beto O’Rourke appeared on CNNSOTU(11/21/21) to discuss his decision to run for Governor of Texas and other issues confronting the Lone Star State.

House Intel Chair Adam Schiff(D-CA) appeared on NBC’s Meet The Press(11/14/21) to discuss the developments in the January 6th Committee’s investigation, including Bannon’s indictment and the possible future indictments for other Trumpers

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen sat down for an interview with Face The Nation’s Margaret Brennan(aired 11/14/21) to discuss the current buzzword–inflation–, supply chain issues, and other economic issues confronting the Biden administration

Rep Karen Bass(D-CA) appeared on CNNSOTU(11/14/21) to discuss the ridiculously high gas prices in Los Angeles–inflation–, Biden’s build back better plan, racial justice and a host of other Dem agenda issues. Rep Bass is apparently interested in becoming Mayor of Los Angeles

President Biden’s top economic adviser Brian Deese appeared on CNNSOTU(11/14/21) to discuss the new buzzword–inflation–and what effect, if any, it will have on the passage of Biden’s Build Back Better plan

Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm appeared on CNNSOTU (11/7/21) to discuss the recently passed infrastructure bill and what lies ahead for the passage of President Biden’s Build Back Better plan

President Biden’s Senior Adviser Cedric Richmond appeared on Fox News Sunday (11/7/21) to discuss the recently passed infrastructure bill, build back better, and other issues facing the Biden admin

Centrist/Moderate Democrat Josh Gottheimer(NJ) appeared on CNNSOTU (11/7/21) to give the Centrist/Moderate Dem view of Biden’s Build Back Better plan. Rep Gottheimer and other Centrist Dems are insisting on a CBO score before passing Biden’s build back better plan

Senator Mark Warner (D-VA), who’s also a former VA Governor, appeared on CNNSOTU (11/7/21) to dissect the recent hotly contested VA Governor race, where Democrat Terry McAuliffe lost to Republican Glenn Youngkin

The Mayor-Elect of New York City, Eric Adams, appeared on CNNSOTU (11/7/21) to discuss his interesting win, and the direction he intends to take New York City

Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA) appeared on CBS’ Face The Nation (11/7/21) to discuss the recent hotly contested VA Governor race where Democrat Terry McAuliffe lost to Republican Glenn Youngkin

White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain appeared on NBC’s Meet The Press (11/7/21) to discuss the recently passed infrastructure bill, build back better, and other issues confronting Biden’s White House

Newly reelected New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy(D) appeared on NBC’s Meet The Press (11/7/21) to discuss his hard-fought win over Republican Jack Ciattarelli

U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken appeared on CNNSOTU (10/31/21) to discuss President Biden’s overseas trip to the G20 Summit, COP26 Summit, Afghanistan and other foreign affairs issues

Senate Budget Committee Chairman Bernie Sanders(I-VT) appeared on CNNSOTU (10/31/21) to discuss the ongoing budget negotiations, build back better….

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg appeared on Fox News Sunday to discuss Build Back Better and some of it’s provisions including Paid Family Leave and other transport issues

Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm appeared on NBC’s Meet The Press (10/31/21) to discuss Build Back Better and other energy-related issues

Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo appeared on CBS’ Face The Nation(10/31/21) to discuss Build Back Better, Inflation and other issues pertinent to her commerce portfolio

Progressive Democrat Ro Khana(CA) appeared on CBS’ Face The Nation(10/31/21) to discuss the ongoing budget negotiations, Build Back Better, and other issues near and dear to Progressives

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) appeared on CNNSOTU (10/24/21) to talk about Build Back Better, Voting Rights, and a whole host of other Dem agenda issues

Rep Bennie Thompson(D-MS) appeared on CBS’ Face The Nation(10/24/21) to discuss the progress being made by the January 6th Committee in finding out what led to the DC insurrection

Rep Ro Khanna(D-CA) appeared on Fox News Sunday(10/24/21) to discuss Build Back Better and other Progressive Dem agenda issues

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen appeared on CNNSOTU(10/24/21) to discuss inflation, supply chain disruptions, and a host of other issues affecting the U.S. economy

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky appeared on Fox News Sunday(10/24/21) to discuss booster shots and all other issues covid

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Shontel Brown Credits Endorsements By Hillary Clinton And Whip Clyburn For OH-11 Primary Win

Shontel Brown was on MSNBC’s Politics Nation (08/07/2021), where she credited her recent win in the OH-11 Democratic primary to endorsements from powerful establishment Democrats Hillary Clinton and House Majority Whip James Clyburn. Polls leading up to the 08/03/2021 Democratic primary had Progressive firebrand Nina Turner, backed by Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Bernie Sanders and other leading Progressives, leading Brown in the race. This is why Brown’s primary win was considered by many, an upset.

Shontel Brown told host Al Sharpton:“If all politics is local, I’m as local as it gets…We knew that this was a local race. Having the support of local city council members, school board members, precinct committee folks, that was our path to victory. But I will say, getting the attention and the support of someone like Hillary Clinton certainly reshaped the narrative and got a lot of national support, and after that the ball just started rolling. Whip [James] Clyburn also endorsed my candidacy, the CBC endorsed my candidacy. Right after that, the AFT and the Teamsters came on board…”

Brown then went on to tout her winning political record, even before the high-powered endorsements, telling host Sharpton:“Let the record reflect, we always saw a path to victory, and I say this as calmly and respectfully as I can. I never got into this race with the expectation to do anything other than winning. I have six wins under my belt and Lord willing, on November, this will be my seventh. Anyone who knows me, seven is a number that I strongly believe in as a child of faith. It represents perfection, completion in God. And so I believed from the very beginning that this was my race…”

During the interview, Brown repeatedly avoided delving into the Progressive versus establishment Democrats divide which characterized her primary race, instead reiterating that voters are primarily interested in a candidate who can deliver results, not their political label.

For the record, Yours Truly was already sold on Shontel Brown as a solid Dem candidate, but after hearing her nailing it on the deep spiritual significance of the number seven, she instantly became one of my favorite Democrats, and hopefully in November, one of my favorite House Democrats.

Bottom line folks, as Shontel Brown correctly pointed out, too much is often made of the divide between Progressives and establishment Democrats, when at the end of the day, voters just want capable, even-keeled candidates who can deliver results. After watching Brown’s interview with CNN’s Erin Burnett right after her win, and this one on MSNBC, it is difficult to still consider her win an upset. Yours Truly will leave it at that so as not to ruffle feathers, but I suspect you get the drift.

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Sec Pompeo Says Iraqis Are Not Protesting Soleimani’s Killing

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo today appeared on CBS’ Face The Nation show and made the shocking assertion that Iraqi’s are not protesting the recent U.S. killing of a top Iranian military general Qassim Soleimani in their country (Iraq).

What’s even more startling about Sec Pompeo’s assertion is the fact that just today, the Iraqi parliament voted for a resolution to remove U.S. forces from Iraq as a result of Soleimani’s killing, a point which host Margaret Brennan correctly emphasized. Reasonable people will agree that the very fact that the Iraqi parliament was considering removing U.S. troops from their country is a sign of significant displeasure/protest against the U.S.

Specifically, Sec Pompeo told host Margaret Brennan when asked about the Iraqi parliament vote to kick out U.S. troops. “Make no mistake about it. The Iraqi people too are protesting, but not against America. What you are seeing on TV is happening at the direction of [Iran]..” To host Margaret Brennan’s credit, she did not blindly accept Sec Pompeo’s ridiculous assertion that the Iraqi’s are not protesting against the U.S. or that the vote in the Iraqi parliament was at the direction of Iran.

Bottom line folks, the Trump administration has never taken seriously the public’s demands that it tells them the truth about issues of great public concern. The administration’s blatant disregard for the truth is coming back to bite them as it now confronts the serious Iran crisis. The public has come to a point where they no longer believe anything the administration says–including the justification for Soleimani’s strike. It certainly doesn’t help when Sec Pompeo shows up on a leading Sunday political show and makes a demonstrably false assertion. Hopefully for everybody’s sake, the Trump administration will change course and level with the public about the Iran crisis. This is serious business.

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Ivanka Noncommittal On DHS’ Family Separation Policy

Ivanka Trump appeared today on CBS’ Face the Nation where host Margaret Brennan asked her a direct question as to whether she was “personally engaged” in ensuring migrant families that were separated as a result of DHS’ zero tolerance policy(aka family separation policy) are reunited in a timely manner. Ivanka surprisingly gave a very generalized, even noncommittal answer that left one with the impression that she has never been personally involved in the issue as many including Yours Truly, had assumed.

Host Margaret Brennan said, “You were vocal in your opposition to the family separation policy when it came to immigration in the U.S. border. You said that was a low point for you. We[CBS] went and looked and Homeland Security[DHS] says there are still around 900 children who remain separated from their families. Is that something you continue to remain engaged on when it comes to immigration?” Any reasonable person reading this would conclude that this was a specific question as to whether Ivanka was personally/actively involved with the migrant family reunifications and not a general question about Trump administration’s immigration policy. Ivanka however treated it as a general question and cleverly dodged dealing with the issue at hand–her specific role in resolving the family separation crisis.

Specifically Ivanka replied, “Well immigration is not part of my portfolio obviously. I think everyone should be engaged, and the full force of the U.S. government is committed to this effort, to border security, to protecting the most vulnerable. That includes those being trafficked across our border which this president has committed to countering and combating human trafficking in an incredibly comprehensive aggressive way. So the full United States government has been focused on this issue starting with the president.”

It also bears pointing out that Ivanka takes a lot of heat on social media related to the family separation policy every time she shares pictures of her children. One would think such sustained public pressure would have moved her by now into taking a more active role in resolving the migrant family separation crisis, or at least creating a public impression that she has.

Bottom line even though immigration is not in Ivanka’s portfolio as she correctly pointed out in her Face the Nation interview, the child separation policy in particular, is a topic she cannot be seen to be noncommittal about if she expects the public to take her seriously in her other women empowerment campaigns. Reasonable people will agree that as a champion for women empowerment, Ivanka has a duty to get involved and actively push her father’s administration towards a timely resolution of the migrant family separation crisis. Ivanka herself has expressed frustration with the child separation policy so she has no excuse for looking the other way. Simply put, do something about the migrant family separation crisis Ivanka, it is the moral thing to do.

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Russia Was In A Position To Delete Or Change Voter Data

CBS Face The Nation‘s host Margaret Brennan made a bombshell revelation today when reading from a bipartisan Senate Intelligence Committee report she said, “Russia likely targeted election infrastructure in all 50 states. The first known breach was in July 2016 in Illinois where Russian cyber actors scanned state election systems. They were in a position to delete or change voter data. The report does say some progress has been made but the threat is imperfectly understood…”

This mirrors the recent troubling revelation made by Rep Jackie Speier (D-CA) who said Russia likely tampered with our voting machines in 2016 in ways we may never know.

The idea that Russia tampered with our voting machines in 2016 is still largely treated by the mainstream media as some wild conspiracy theory yet time and again we get evidence showing that it is anything but a conspiracy–the latest being this bipartisan Senate Intelligence Committee report. The question as to what exactly Russia did in 2016 is one House Democrats and the mainstream media should still be digging into even though the Mueller investigation is now over

Bottom line, if we are going to successfully defend ourselves against another foreign attack on our voting infrastructure in 2020, we need to fully understand what Russia did in 2016 so that we know where our vulnerabilities lie. As it currently stands, the stance taken by House Democrats and the mainstream media is that we need to move on now that Mueller probe is over. Yours Truly strongly disagrees and believes that instead of “moving on”, now is the time we need hunker down and dig deeper into the Mueller findings for clues at to what exactly Russia did in 2016 and ways to stop them in 2020. This issue has to be front and center of mainstream media coverage as we head into 2020.

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