Sen. Mark Warner made headlines Tuesday when he declared that he is not, in fact, a Belieber — and he’s in favor of deporting the eponymous pop star for running into trouble with the law.
The Democrat from Virginia told FM 99 that he wants to add his name to a whitehouse.gov petition that calls for the deportation of the Canadian singer Justin Bieber, who was arrested for driving under the influence last month. “As a dad with three daughters, is there some place I can sign?” Warner said.
At the time of this writing, the petition is nearing 250,000 signatures, well over the 100,000 threshold that prompts a formal response from the White House. Press secretary Jay Carney said last week that such a response will come “relatively soon.”
Social media quickly lit up with the cries of hundreds following Warner’s remarks: some of them, for whom the song “Baby” is not real music, in support of Warner; others, mostly teenage admirers, in defense of the singer. And then, it got real — Senate race-real.
The campaign for Ed Gillespie, the former White House aide who is challenging Warner for his seat this year, slammed the incumbent Thursday in a note titled, “Senator Warner, It’s Time To Get Serious.”
“Virginians are losing jobs, losing hours at work, losing wages, and at risk of being dropped from the health care plans they like. Since Ed entered the race for Senate, Mark Warner hasn’t found time to talk about the Affordable Care Act and its disastrous consequences on Twitter,” the message read. “But what is Mark Warner worried about today? You won’t believe it. Justin Bieber.”
The post included a tweet from Warner that read “It’s true. I’m not a #Belieber.”
Last week, Bieber made it into a press briefing by the White House press secretary. This week, he’s become a talking point in a congressional campaign. Whether he can swing any voters remains to be seen.
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"North Korea said on Friday it might test a hydrogen bomb over the Pacific Ocean after President Donald Trump vowed to destroy the reclusive country, with leader Kim Jong Un promising to make Trump pay dearly for his threats. Kim did not specify what action he would take against the United States or Trump, whom he called a 'mentally deranged U.S. dotard' in the latest bout of insults the two leaders have traded in recent weeks."
President Trump this afternoon announced another round of sanctions on North Korea, calling the regime "a continuing threat." The executive order, which Trump relayed to Congress, bans any ship or plane that has visited North Korea from visiting the United States within 180 days. The order also authorizes sanctions on any financial institution doing business with North Korea, and permits the secretaries of State and the Treasury to sanction any person involved in trading with North Korea, operating a port there, or involved in a variety of industries there.
In response to a reporter's question, President Trump said "he’ll be looking to impose further financial penalties on North Korea over its nuclear and ballistic tests. ... The U.N. has passed two resolutions recently aimed at squeezing the North Korean economy by cutting off oil, labor and exports to the nation." Meanwhile, the Guardian reports that South Korea's unification ministry is sending an $8m aid package aimed at infants and pregnant women in North Korea. The "humanitarian gesture [is] at odds with calls by Japan and the US for unwavering economic and diplomatic pressure on Pyongyang."
President Trump on Tuesday night met with UN Secretary Guterres and President of the General Assembly Miroslav Lajcak. In both cases, as per releases from the White House, Trump pressed them on the need to reform the UN bureaucracy.