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  • Tulsa police are looking for the suspect in a shooting at a convenience store.  We're told a woman was shot outside of Naifeh's Food Mart at 205 Mohawk Boulevard around 12:30 Tuesday morning.  The victim was taken to the hospital, but police confirmed she later died. Several shell casings were found at the scene.  Numerous witnesses were being questioned by police.  Someone reported several females had been fighting at the same location before the shooting.
  • Work on a new highway intersection in Sand Springs started Monday. The work is happening just north of the Arkansas River along Highway 97. The city says the new intersection will feature a turning lane and traffic control signals. The work is an effort to attract more retail businesses to the area.
  • A loan company files documents to foreclose on Promenade Mall. The Tulsa World reports the real estate and business lending corporation Ready Capital filed for foreclosure last month. Documents claim the mortgage for the mall has not been paid since March. Ready Capital is seeking more than $7.5 million. Promenade Mall has not responded to calls about the report.
  • President Donald Trump and Democratic leaders in Congress agreed on Monday to a two-year budget plan which will increase spending in 2020 and 2021, and allow the national debt to go up for a two year period, while including little in the way of budget savings, continuing a trend of higher government spending and larger deficits under the Trump Administration. 'If this deal passes, President Trump will have increased discretionary spending by as much as 22 percent over his first term, and enshrine trillion-dollar deficits into law,' said Maya MacGuineas, head of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, who labeled the deal a 'total abdication of fiscal responsibility.' The agreement includes only $77.4 billion in budget offsets to pay for an estimated $320 billion in extra spending over two years. While the President tweeted his support, joined by Congressional leaders in both parties, a handful of lawmakers said the deal made no sense, because it guaranteed more deficit spending. With the White House already forecasting deficits above $1 trillion for the next four years, this agreement would do nothing to ease that tide of red ink, which had dropped to $438 billion in 2015 - but has steadily increased over the past three years. 'With more than $22 trillion in debt, we simply cannot afford deals like this one,' said Rep. Mike Johnson (R-LA), the head of the conservative Republican Study Committee. 'It’s not too late to reject the Pelosi-Mnuchin spending deal and strike a better deal for all Americans that cuts spending,' argued Jessica Anderson, a former Trump budget official. But those voices have faded into the wilderness in recent years in the GOP, as deficits have steadily increased under President Trump. “It’s pretty clear that both houses of Congress and both parties have become big spenders, and Congress is no longer concerned about the extent of the budget deficits or the debt they add,” said the Club For Growth, which has seen its influence on Capitol Hill dwindle in recent years.
  • After holding a series of public meetings, the mayor and city officials have a much more detailed proposal for renewing the “Improve Our Tulsa” plan. Now, the city will hold three more public meetings to present those details to the public before scheduling a vote. The program would run for about six and a half years, and totals about $639 million in improvements to infrastructure. About 70% of the money will go to streets; the rest covers a wide range of needs including new police and fire vehicles, snow plows, park improvements, and more. Three meetings have been scheduled: • Thursday, July 25, Girl Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma, 4810 S. 129th East Ave. • Monday, July 29, Memorial High School, 5840 S. Hudson Ave. • Tuesday, July 30, Booker T. Washington High School, 1514 E. Zion St. All the meetings begin at 6:00 p.m.

Washington Insider

  • President Donald Trump and Democratic leaders in Congress agreed on Monday to a two-year budget plan which will increase spending in 2020 and 2021, and allow the national debt to go up for a two year period, while including little in the way of budget savings, continuing a trend of higher government spending and larger deficits under the Trump Administration. 'If this deal passes, President Trump will have increased discretionary spending by as much as 22 percent over his first term, and enshrine trillion-dollar deficits into law,' said Maya MacGuineas, head of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, who labeled the deal a 'total abdication of fiscal responsibility.' The agreement includes only $77.4 billion in budget offsets to pay for an estimated $320 billion in extra spending over two years. While the President tweeted his support, joined by Congressional leaders in both parties, a handful of lawmakers said the deal made no sense, because it guaranteed more deficit spending. With the White House already forecasting deficits above $1 trillion for the next four years, this agreement would do nothing to ease that tide of red ink, which had dropped to $438 billion in 2015 - but has steadily increased over the past three years. 'With more than $22 trillion in debt, we simply cannot afford deals like this one,' said Rep. Mike Johnson (R-LA), the head of the conservative Republican Study Committee. 'It’s not too late to reject the Pelosi-Mnuchin spending deal and strike a better deal for all Americans that cuts spending,' argued Jessica Anderson, a former Trump budget official. But those voices have faded into the wilderness in recent years in the GOP, as deficits have steadily increased under President Trump. “It’s pretty clear that both houses of Congress and both parties have become big spenders, and Congress is no longer concerned about the extent of the budget deficits or the debt they add,” said the Club For Growth, which has seen its influence on Capitol Hill dwindle in recent years.
  • In a dramatic expansion of a process known as 'expedited removal' of illegal immigrants in the United States, the Trump Administration will start applying that everywhere in the United States - to anyone who has been in the U.S. illegally for less than two years - as critics quickly said they would challenge the change in federal court. 'The effect of that change will be to enhance national security and public safety,' the Department of Homeland Security states in a new rule set to go into effect on Tuesday, which the notice says will allow 'DHS to address more effectively and efficiently the large volume of aliens who are present in the United States unlawfully.' Up until this change, expedited removal was only used for illegal immigrants who were detained within 100 miles of the border - now it can be enforced anywhere in the U.S. Under the Immigration and Nationality Act, the Trump Administration argues the Acting Homeland Security Secretary has the 'sole and unreviewable discretion' to change 'the scope of the expedited removal designation,' shifting it from the 100 mile policy to one that applies nationwide. Critics denounced the immigration policy change, with some vowing to challenge the move in court. 'One of the major problems with expedited removal is that the immigration officer making the decision virtually has unchecked authority,' said the American Immigration Council, as the process does not involve an immigration judge or any type of court hearing. 'We will sue to end this policy quickly,' said Omar Jadwat of the American Civil Liberties Union, who charged that deportations could occur with 'less due process than people get in traffic court.' 'This is a massive and dangerous change,' said Aaron Reichlin-Melnick of the American Immigration Council, which is joining in the ACLU legal challenge to the new policy. The announcement marked the second straight week that the Trump Administration had rolled out a new immigration policy - last Monday, the feds announced a new plan to restrict asylum claims by migrants from Central America. Those plans are also facing a legal challenge from the ACLU and other groups.
  • As lawmakers in the House get ready to leave town at the end of this week for a six week summer break, there are all sorts of unfinished legislative issues bubbling around on Capitol Hill, but most of them seem unlikely to get any kind of final resolution before lawmakers go home for an extended recess. 'We're going to devote the whole month of August to our 'For The People agenda,'” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters last week, giving no hint she was ready to shorten the August Recess to deal with issues like the budget or debt limit. On the other side of the coin, some GOP lawmakers were asking for exactly that. 'Congress should not adjourn for August,' said freshmen Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX), as GOP lawmakers have demanded action on legislation to end what Republicans argue are loopholes in U.S. immigration law, which they say make it more difficult to deal with the recent surge along the southern border. Here is a look at what's next in the Congress: 1. A reminder of the legislative schedule. This is not like your work schedule, that's for sure. After this Friday, the House is gone until September 9. That's six work weeks away from Capitol Hill. The Senate will work this week and next week, and then take five weeks away from the Capitol. That means when lawmakers return on September 9, they will have 21 days to come to an agreement to avoid a government shutdown on October 1. As I always tell people about the Congress - you may not want them on the job in the first place - but if they're not having any legislative work days in Washington, D.C., they can't get any work done, period. 2. With no budget deal, government funding bills on hold. While the House has approved 9 of the 12 government spending bills for 2020, the Senate has yet to vote on even one of them, as there's no agreement yet between the White House and Congress how much Uncle Sam should spend in 2020. Talks have been underway involving Treasury Secretary Mnuchin and House Speaker Pelosi, but the magic formula on how much to increase spending next year has not been finalized. Yes - i said, 'on how much to increase spending next year.' There was a report this weekend that the President would seek budget cuts *after* the 2020 elections - but not before. If there's no agreement, it could mean as much as $126 billion in automatic budget cuts, with $71 billion coming from defense, and $55 billion from domestic spending. And yes, those would be 'real' cuts, not reductions in the level of planned increases. 3. In search of a deal on the debt ceiling as well. Along with the budget talks, the White House and Congress are negotiating a deal to raise the nation's debt limit, and avoid a situation where the U.S. defaults on its debts. With the White House now forecasting a deficit in 2019 of more than $1 billion, President Trump turned his fire on the previous administration about the deficit - even though those deficit numbers have increased since the Trump Administration took office. 'President Obama, during his eight years, he created - he doubled the debt,' Mr. Trump said to reporters in the Oval Office. But what the current President left out about his predecessor is that the yearly deficit has gone up every year since the Trump Administration took over - even with the economy expanding at a more rapid pace. If you look at the White House estimates, President Trump has a chance to end up adding more in deficits than President Obama. 4. House to vote on immigration, but not what Trump wants. On the schedule this week in the House is a bill titled, 'Humanitarian Standards for Individuals in Customs and Border Protection Custody Act' - in other words, this is a bill to deal with questions about the care being given to thousands of illegal immigrants who have been taken into custody by the feds in recent months. The 18 page bill deals with medical screening of those detained by the feds, and sets official standards for care when it comes to water, sanitation, hygiene, food, nutrition, and shelter. Not on the floor this week in the House or Senate is a bill to fund the Department of Homeland Security, or any GOP immigration bills. One reminder - while the Republicans and the President have talked a lot about immigration, they don't have an overall immigration plan which would get a majority in either the House or Senate, much like the Republican situation with the Obama health law. 5. Mueller and the Russia investigation take center stage. No one is quite sure what the Wednesday hearings involving former Special Counsel Robert Mueller is going to produce on Wednesday, as he testifies before both the House Judiciary and Intelligence committees. Mueller has made clear he's not going beyond the report that he produced earlier this year - but look for both Democrats and Republicans to try to drag a positive quote for their side out of him during the testimony. Behind the scenes, more and more Democrats are telling reporters that they are for the start of an official impeachment inquiry against the President - but Democratic leaders certainly don't seem to be planning for that. Democrats could use August to do nothing but hold hearings about the President - but instead lawmakers will leave town this Friday for six weeks. 6. Democrats pass big bills - which go nowhere in the Senate. The 2019 change in power in the House has given the Capitol a situation in which the House is approving dozens of bills backed by Democrats, which are then disappearing down a GOP black hole in the Senate. The latest example is the approval last week by the House of an increase in the minimum wage to $15 per hour. While 'Schoolhouse Rock' taught many of us that a bill gets acted on in the House, and then goes through the process in the Senate, that's not really how it works - as the Democrats have approved major legislation on election reforms, the future of illegal immigrant 'Dreamers,' pay equity, minimum wage, climate change, stiffer rules for gun background checks, and more - but none of those bills are expected to get votes in the GOP-led Senate. Democrats can rightly say they have acted on much of their legislative agenda so far - but it's just Dead on Arrival on the other side of the Capitol.  But as you can see from the next two tweets, the two sides portray what's going on much differently. 7. Maybe we get the 'Work! Work! Work! Work!' chant. If the House does leave town on Friday for a six week break, it won't surprise me to see Republicans showcase their frustrations by demanding that the August break be cancelled, in order to have lawmakers stay and work out deals on a host of issues like immigration. Over the years, we've seen this from both parties, where the minority will start the chant of 'Work! Work! Work! Work!' on the House floor. We had a scene in 2008 where Republicans went to the floor of the House - even though the microphones and lights were off - and kept assembling on the floor through the recess, to demonstrate a call for action to address high gas prices. The Democrats did the 'work' chant in 2012.  Could it be repeated on immigration in 2019? Stay tuned.
  • People often talk in life about someone who helped guide them along early in their careers, offering support and encouragement. I just want to take some time to use my blog to acknowledge the help of my most influential college professor, Dr. Charles Burke, who died on Tuesday in St. Augustine, Florida, after a battle with cancer. I met Dr. Burke when I started my junior year at the University of Florida in 1983; he was teaching the introductory radio news class in the Broadcasting department, and would leave a lasting impact on my career. A former TV reporter for ABC, Burke had spent some time in Vietnam working for the network, and getting bounced around in local TV news in Philadelphia, before deciding on an academic route. We hit it off quick.  Neither of us particularly liked where television news was heading, both of us were innately suspicious of people in authority, we loved the immediacy of radio, and thoroughly enjoyed the news business. 'If they ask for your ID, tell them you don't have to show any,' he said as he dispatched me to the county office that held health records on local restaurants, and suggested that I go to the courthouse each week to look through the docket. In college, he also encouraged me to string for stations and networks during my spare time, in order to make a few extra bucks. 'That's where you make your beer money,' he would say with a big smile, as he celebrated my first freelance check from a Chicago radio station in 1984. In class, Dr. Burke would stand at the lectern and grab our attention by pretending to be a news anchor who was just handed a piece of paper from the side, saying, 'This just in.' That phrase is something I often use on Twitter today. In my senior year at college, Dr. Burke encouraged me to try to go back to Washington to find work in radio news, instead of pursuing a more normal course of starting out in a small market and working my way up. To help me out, Dr. Burke wrote a letter to one of his former students at the University of Missouri, who was doing radio news in D.C. for RKO Radio, asking him to meet with me on my Christmas break in 1984. “John is a fine guy and I know he’ll be helpful,” Burke wrote in a December 1984 note about meeting RKO's John Bisney.  “I told him you’re our best and that you’re ready for D.C., given your skills and background,” Burke added. With that letter of introduction - hand written on a yellow legal pad of paper - I called up John Bisney and met him for lunch, launching what would become a lifelong friendship, as just a few years later I was on Capitol Hill, working alongside Bisney in the press gallery. 'What a guy,' Bisney said to me on Friday. Several times over the years, Dr. Burke visited me in Washington - I remember taking him along for an interview with Rep. Newt Gingrich (R-GA), as the two college professors chatted each other up after I finished my questions with the future Speaker. At one point around 2000, the two of us had lost touch, but we caught up after I tracked down his daughter Hilary, who was working as a reporter for Reuters in South America. Able to listen to me on WOKV radio in Jacksonville, Dr. Burke kept tabs on my career, and became a regular attendee at some of my radio station events in Florida over the years, a welcome face in crowd. 'Pleased to see that you still love the game and retain your 'optimism' despite the cynicism of many other journalists and politicos themselves,' he wrote me in a 2012 email after one station event with our listeners. Back in January of this year, I took my kids down to see my father in Florida, and met up with Dr. Burke and his wife Janet for lunch. His cancer was in remission, he told me, with a laugh that would be familiar to all of his past students and friends. But that didn't last long. 'I'm reasonably well, although my 'remission' period was disappointingly brief,' he wrote me in late April, as his cancer had returned. Not even three months later, his wife brought the sad news - that the cancer had won. This just in - Charles Burke had a heck of a life.  And I am the better man for it.
  • A day after distancing himself from a campaign rally crowd which chanted, 'Send her back' about Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), President Donald Trump on Friday had more tough words for Omar from the Oval Office, making it clear he's not backing away from his criticism of a group of minority women Democratic lawmakers in the Congress. 'I'm unhappy when a Congresswoman goes and says, 'I'm going to be the President's nightmare,'' Mr. Trump said on Friday, as he called those attending his North Carolina campaign rally, 'incredible people and incredible patriots.' 'She's lucky to be where she is,' the President said of Omar, who called Mr. Trump a 'fascist' on Thursday. 'The things that she has said are a disgrace to our country,' the President added. Just as the President hasn't backed off his criticism of Omar, who emigrated to the U.S. from Somalia as a child, the freshmen from Minnesota hasn't pulled any punches with Mr. Trump in recent days. 'We have said this President is racist,' Omar told reporters outside the Capitol on Thursday. 'We have said he is fascist.' As Omar arrived back in Minneapolis, a crowd of supporters greeted her at the airport 'When I said I was the president's nightmare, well you're watching it now,” Omar told a cheering crowd. “Because his nightmare is seeing a Somali-immigrant refugee rise to Congress,” she added. Some Republicans have joined the President in going after Omar, especially targeting her positions on Israel. 'When will the Left condemn this rank anti-Semitism and take some responsibility?' said Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO). 'It’s official - Omar is a loon & utterly ignorant of history,' tweeted former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.