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Trump: Republicans pressure Garland as intrigue escalates over FBI search for Mar-a-Lago (analysis)

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Trump: Republicans Pressure Garland As Intrigue Escalates Over Fbi Search For Mar-A-Lago (Analysis)
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Then on Sunday, several senior Republicans launched a new defense of the ex-president, questioning whether Mar-a-Lago’s material was actually highly sensitive, citing the president’s powers to declassify top-secret information.

Turner’s bet continued to raise questions about whether the Justice Department had gone too far in the extraordinary decision to obtain a search warrant to enter the property of a former president. But it was also just the latest attempt by the GOP to defend Trump, still a hugely powerful force in the party, which ignored key questions such as why a former president had to keep highly sensitive documents.

The GOP’s new approach followed increasingly desperate and baseless claims by Trump, conservative lawmakers and media pundits that the FBI was nothing more than a political enforcement arm. armed for President Joe Biden, that the office could have planted documents during the search to discredit Trump or whatever they had to ask to get the material back. Each of these attacks seemed aimed at distracting Americans from yet more evidence of Trump’s aberrant behavior.

The Republican counterattack also ignores the fact that a federal judge had to agree there was probable cause that a crime had been committed before authorizing the search warrant at Trump’s home.

Previously sealed court documents released on Friday said prosecutors were investigating possible violations of the Espionage Act, Obstruction of Justice and Criminal Handling of Government Records.

“I don’t understand what the purpose was”

While appearing on CNN, Turner sought to overlap his responsibility to show gravity as one of the members of Congress charged with key responsibilities in overseeing the intelligence community with political imperatives within the GOP to defend Trump.

He did not repeat the savage claims about the FBI’s politicization that were pulled from the hip by Republicans who had little knowledge of Trump’s residence material. But Turner has also sought to increase pressure on Attorney General Merrick Garland, who promised last week that the Justice Department would not be deterred from ensuring the rule of law applies to everyone, even former presidents. .

Mar-A-Lago - And Its Owner - Have Long Been Of Concern To Us Intelligence

“Attorney General Garland has to provide these documents… Let’s see them,” Turner told CNN’s Brianna Keilar of the evidence used by the Justice Department to justify a search of Trump’s home. “And then we can tell you what our response is and what our judgment is as to whether or not this is a genuine national security threat or whether or not this is an abuse of power on the part of Attorney General Garland.”

Turner wondered if the documents taken from Mar-a-Lago were really still classified, despite their descriptions on a receipt left for Trump by the FBI that suggested they were.

“The receipt shows that this material was marked as such. It does not mean that it currently is,” Turner said.

Republican Sen. Mike Rounds of South Dakota also suggested the Justice Department could clarify some issues regarding the search by releasing an affidavit used to substantiate the search, which remains sealed.

“I think it would be good for the Department of Justice to release some of the information about the extraordinary steps, or the steps they took to try to cooperate with the former president,” Rounds said on “Meet the Press. from NBC.

“I also think it will call into question an unspoken constitutional question, which is whether or not a president can declassify or classify certain items,” Rounds said.

Presidents have substantial powers to declassify information. But ex-presidents don’t. And there is so far no clear evidence of a process undertaken by Trump to officially declassify the documents while in office. And even if the material had been declassified, possible lax storage arrangements at his residence could have posed a threat to national security. Furthermore, none of the three laws cited in the criminal warrant depend solely on whether the information was deemed unclassified, which may render the point of declassification somewhat irrelevant anyway.

It is also unclear why a former president needed such information.

“What was the motivation for hoarding them, moving them to Mar-a-Lago?” James Clapper, former Director of National Intelligence, said on CNN’s “Newsroom” on Saturday. “I don’t understand what the purpose was. I mean, you know, the imagination can run wild here as to what the potential purpose or motivations could have been.”

New potential legal exposure for Trump’s team

The question of why the Justice Department thought it was justified in sending the FBI to Mar-a-Lago is perhaps the most important outstanding question – and could be clarified by new reports on the Trump’s legal team.

Two sources familiar with the matter said one of Trump’s attorneys claimed in June that there was no longer any classified information stored at the residence. The National Archives, which is responsible for collecting and sorting presidential material, previously said that at least 15 boxes of White House files were recovered from Mar-a-Lago, some of which were classified, ahead of the batch that was removed last week.

Trump's attorney claims no classified documents are at Mar-a-Lago in signed letter to Justice Department Trump's Attorney Claims No Classified Documents Are At Mar-A-Lago In Signed Letter To Justice Department

The letter signed by the lawyer raised the question of how many people could be exposed to legal action if the information collected from the station last week was indeed classified. And that might help explain why obstruction of justice is one of the possible criminal offenses mentioned in the search warrant.

“I don’t know if whoever sent that letter had personal knowledge of the actual scenario,” said Carrie Cordero, a former senior Justice Department official who is now CNN’s legal and national security analyst.

“But I think it indicates that there are more people than the former president who potentially have legal exposure here.”

The political impact of research increases

A week after the FBI operation, the political repercussions are only growing. Republicans’ outburst of fury and savage claims that Biden was leading a police state reaffirmed that the horror of the U.S. Capitol insurrection has done nothing to hold back Trump supporters, including some GOP leaders. The conservative backlash has led to threats against the judge handling the case and FBI agents, suggesting violence still simmers beneath the surface in a country deeply and dangerously divided.

The past week has also shown Trump’s trademark ability to tarnish government institutions designed to bolster the rule of law and counter the power of presidents (and ex-presidents) who resent following the rules. His conduct is often so free that attempts by power centers like the Justice Department to hold him accountable lead them into treacherous political waters that cause Trump to make wild claims about a plot against him. This sense of victimhood is one of the key ingredients to his grip on the Republican Party and will certainly become central to his growing clash with the Justice Department.

The Fbi Is Investigating

And the events of the past week — and the willingness of much of the Republican Party to come to Trump’s defense, even at the risk of inciting violence — have provided a glimpse of the national trauma that could arise if Trump was charged in this investigation. or in other criminal investigations into his conduct. This includes several investigations related to his attempt to overturn the 2020 election and halt the peaceful transfer of power based on his voter fraud lies, which have been dismissed by multiple courts.

As the legal issues widen, the political impact of the search of Trump’s residence also worsens. Immediately after what was an unprecedented move against an ex-president, Trump provoked a backlash that supercharged his likely 2024 presidential effort. And the wave of Republican outrage convinced potential rivals for the GOP nomination, like Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and former Vice President Mike Pence, to support him and criticize the FBI research.

Yet Trump’s return to the headlines has reminded many Americans of the angst and polarization that has alienated the broader national electorate and cost them the 2020 election. extraordinary series of criminal, civil and congressional investigations hanging over the former president’s head that would be catastrophic for any normal political candidate.

The Trump controversy has also had another political effect: It has overshadowed Biden’s best week as president so far, which was capped by the passage of his landmark climate and health care package.

But Biden’s success won’t be judged on the past week alone. The real test of his momentum will come in the midterm elections in November that Democrats have feared. But the juxtaposition between Biden’s progress — who has now given vulnerable Democrats more to campaign for during this August hiatus — and Trump’s escalating legal troubles promises to become an early point of comparison in their eventual rematch. of 2024 at the White House.

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Magic aim to start building Sports + Entertainment District by early 2023

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Magic Aim To Start Building Sports + Entertainment District By Early 2023
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For the Orlando Magic, the last month — and especially since training camp started last week — has been about breaking in the team’s new state-of-the-art 130,000-square-foot AdventHealth Training Center.

Although the Magic are getting settled in their new training facility, they’re still keeping their attention on a bigger project that’s been in the works for nearly a decade.

Orlando Magic CEO Alex Martins recently told the Orlando Sentinel that the organization is planning to start construction on the long-awaited $500-million-plus downtown Sports + Entertainment District by the end of March 2023.

He added that the project is expected to be a “two-year build process” and be completed “sometime in 2025″ but wasn’t sure when exactly it’d be done.

Pat Gallagher, director of the Sports + Entertainment District, told GrowthSpotter in early September that the team would be releasing more information about the project within the next few months.

“We’re still very much on track and certainly believe that we should be in the ground by the end of the first quarter next year, starting some construction,” Martins said. “Our development partner is working on finalizing all the financing as we speak. They hope to get through that this calendar year. Provided the market stays and doesn’t get much worse, hopefully, we’ll be able to get into the ground by the end of the first quarter [of 2023].”

The Sports + Entertainment District will be a mixed-use district on the 8.4 acres north of Amway Center and east of the team’s training facility, which also has an orthopedic and sports medicine clinic run by AdventHealth.

The project will include several amenities, including a hotel tower, restaurants, meeting and retail space, a parking garage and 420,000 square feet of office space.

The team’s business staff, which has been working out of leased 23,000-square-foot space in downtown’s CNL Building II next to City Hall after leaving their longtime offices in Maitland’s RDV Sportsplex last year, will move into the Sports + Entertainment District office space once completed.

The Magic are bringing on a yet-to-be-announced development partner for the Sports + Entertainment District.

“The pandemic actually caused us to have the need to change development partners, so we went through that process over the course of the last year,” Martins said. “They’re very excited about it and believe in the vision the development will come together and the pieces within it.

“It’s very much the same we’ve talked about: the hotel, office, music venue and sports and entertainment-related retail. The vision and plan very much remain the same. We’ve got a development partner that believes in that vision and that it can be very successful.”

This article first appeared on OrlandoSentinel.com. Email Khobi Price at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter at @khobi_price.

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Column: As Wrigley Field prepares to close its doors for the season, the Chicago Cubs look ahead to better days — again

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Column: As Wrigley Field Prepares To Close Its Doors For The Season, The Chicago Cubs Look Ahead To Better Days — Again
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After the end of the 2014 Chicago Cubs season, Theo Epstein spoke optimistically about the upcoming offseason.

It was time to get serious.

“Knowing the money will be there changes the lens in which you view every transaction,” said Epstein, then the president of baseball operations.

The Cubs had cleared about $41 million off the payroll after their third straight last-place finish in the National League Central, and Epstein and business operations president Crane Kenney were addressing a group of season ticket holders at the Oriental Theater.

The Cubs wound up spending smartly that offseason, bringing in starter Jon Lester on a six-year, $155 million deal that turned out to be arguably the best signing in team history. They turned the corner in the rebuild in 2015, making it to the National League Championship Series and winning the World Series one year later.

Once again the Cubs are voicing optimism and promising to spend money in the offseason, though this time it’s Jed Hoyer making the big decisions. Whether the Cubs are close to turning the corner in the rebuild that can’t be called a rebuild is a question that can’t be answered until we see what moves Hoyer makes and whether the current group can build on its strong finish in 2022.

Manager David Ross said before Saturday’s 2-1 win against the Cincinnati Reds that he was excited about the team’s growth and work ethic, though he cautioned they’re still a ways off from where they need to be.

“Those are good signs,” he said. “We’ll continue to grow. We’ve got a long way to go to get better, to competing for a World Series, but these guys are on a mission to do that.”

The Cubs extended their winning streak to six games and have taken 10 of their last 11. Seiya Suzuki’s solo home run in the seventh was the winning blast, and Adbert Alzolay and Wade Miley combined for five hitless innings of relief.

The Cubs end their home schedule Sunday at Wrigley Field, which likely will be the last chance for fans to say one final goodbye to catcher Willson Contreras, the only remaining active player from the 2016 champions.

The Cubs held a tribute during Saturday’s game for Jason Heyward, another member of the ‘16 champs who was told last month that he’ll be let go after the season. After a highlight package of Heyward aired on the video boards, the outfielder stepped out of the dugout to a standing ovation and flashed his World Series ring.

Most of the 2016 Cubs have had their farewells, and after this season the only one left will be pitcher Kyle Hendricks. Heyward said Thursday that when he signed in 2015, some former teammates told him: “It’s the goat, brother. You ain’t gonna beat the goat.”

But that team ended the Billy Goat curse, and now there are no more mythical obstacles preventing the Cubs from replicating that success. It’s all on Hoyer and Chairman Tom Ricketts.

This has not been a season to celebrate on the North Side despite the uplifting ending. The Cubs’ play at Wrigley has been particularly uninspiring with a 36-44 home record.

A few moments in 2022 will be remembered years from now, though for some in the left-field bleachers the season’s biggest highlight was watching Epstein posing for pictures while sprawled out in the basket, a final goodbye to Chicago before he packed up and moved his family out East.

The Cubs are 1-70 when trailing entering the ninth inning, a tragic number that needs no analysis. Their one comeback win came on Aug. 20 at Wrigley, when Nick Madrigal singled home the tying run in the ninth and Contreras had a walk-off RBI single in the 11th. Maybe Marquee Sports Network can play it on a loop all winter.

In truth, this was the kind of season most Cubs fans were accustomed to before Epstein signed Lester eight years ago, thus raising the hopes for a championship and sustained success. They got it right — except for the sustained part.

Hoyer and Ricketts have said the money will be there for future success, and for the sake of Cubs fans, let’s hope they spend it wisely.

And the Cubs aren’t done hyping the future. They brought some of their top prospects to Chicago this weekend to get acclimated to the organization, including Class-A outfielder Owen Caissie, acquired in the Yu Darvish deal with the San Diego Padres that signaled the beginning of the end of the winning era.

“My biggest takeaway is everyone seems happy here,” Caissie, 20, said. “Like when I’m walking down the street, everyone has a smile on their face. It’s pretty cool.”

Heyward basically said the same thing about Chicago on his way out.

“The sports city here, obviously I know it’s been tough on the winning side those last few years, “ he said. “But either way, Chicago doesn’t take that stuff for granted, and to me that’s been something that has been awesome to be a part of. Just taking walks, going around the city. As a professional, as someone who is a ballplayer in the city, people embrace that, they respect that and they respect their space.

“They want you to enjoy what they’re enjoying, and that is something that’s really cool and unique about the city.”

One more game at Wrigley, with Marcus Stroman taking the ball Sunday in his final start before the three-game, season-ending series in Cincinnati.

The ballpark will close for the winter, and the neighborhood bars and restaurants will try to find ways to make some money until opening day returns in April.

It’s going to be a long winter for Cubs fans, but they’ll keep on keeping on.

They know the drill.

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Ian leaves dozens dead as focus turns to rescue, recovery

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Ian Leaves Dozens Dead As Focus Turns To Rescue, Recovery
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FORT MYERS, Fla. — Dozens of Florida residents left their flooded and splintered homes by boat and by air on Saturday as rescuers continued to search for survivors in the wake of Hurricane Ian, while authorities in South Carolina and North Carolina began taking stock of their losses.

The death toll from the storm, one of the strongest hurricanes by wind speed to ever hit the U.S., grew to nearly three dozen, with deaths reported from Cuba, Florida and North Carolina. The storm weakened Saturday as it rolled into the mid-Atlantic, but not before it washed out bridges and piers, hurdled massive boats into buildings onshore and sheared roofs off homes, leaving hundreds of thousands without power.

At least 35 people were confirmed dead, including 28 people in Florida mostly from drowning but others from Ian’s tragic aftereffects. An elderly couple died after their oxygen machines shut off when they lost power, authorities said.

As of Saturday, more than 1,000 people had been rescued from flooded areas along Florida’s southwestern coast alone, Daniel Hokanson, a four-star general and head of the National Guard, told The Associated Press while airborne to Florida.

Chris Schnapp was at the Port Sanibel Marina in Fort Myers on Saturday, waiting to see whether her 83-year-old mother-in-law had been evacuated from Sanibel Island. A pontoon boat had just arrived with a load of passengers from the island — with suitcases and animals in tow — but Schnapp’s mother-in-law was not among them.

“She stayed on the island. My brother-in-law and sister-in-law own two businesses over there. They evacuated. She did not want to go,” Schnapp said. Now, she said, she wasn’t sure if her mother-in-law was still on the island or had been taken to a shelter somewhere.

On Pine Island, the largest barrier island off Florida’s Gulf Coast, houses were reduced to splinters and boats littered roadways as a volunteer group went door-to-door Saturday, asking residents if they wanted to be evacuated. Helen Koch blew her husband a kiss and mouthed the words “I love you” as she sat inside a rescue helicopter that was lifting her and seven of the couple’s 17 dogs to safety.

River flooding posed a major challenge at times to rescue and supply delivery efforts. The Myakka River washed over a stretch of Interstate 75, forcing a traffic-snarling highway closure for a while Saturday on the key corridor linking Tampa to the north with the hard-hit southwest Florida region that straddles Port Charlotte and Fort Myers. Later Saturday, state officials said, water levels had receded enough that I-75 could be fully reopened. However, they said monitors were out keeping close watch on constantly changing river levels.

While rising waters in Florida’s southwest rivers have crested or are near cresting, the levels aren’t expected to drop significantly for days, said National Weather Service meteorologist Tyler Fleming in Tampa.

Elsewhere, South Carolina’s Pawleys Island — a beach community roughly 75 miles (115 kilometers) up the coast from Charleston — was among the places hardest hit. Power remained knocked out to at least half of the island Saturday.

Eddie Wilder, who has been coming to Pawleys Island for more than six decades, said Friday’s storm was “insane to watch.” He said waves as high as 25 feet (7.6 meters) washed away the local pier — an iconic landmark — near his home.

“We watched it hit the pier and saw the pier disappear,” said Wilder, whose house 30 feet (9 meters) above the ocean stayed dry inside. “We watched it crumble and and watched it float by with an American flag.”

The Pawleys pier was one of at least four along South Carolina’s coast destroyed by battering winds and rain. Parts of the pier, including barnacle-covered pylons, littered the beach. The intracoastal waterway was strewn with the remnants of several boat houses knocked off their pilings.

John Joseph, whose father built the family’s beige beach house in 1962, said Saturday he was elated to return from Georgetown — which took a direct hit. He found his Pawleys Island home entirely intact.

“Thank God these walls are still here, and we feel very blessed that this is the worst thing,” he said of the sand that swept under his home. “What happened in Florida — gosh, God bless us. If we’d had a Category 4, I wouldn’t be here.“

In North Carolina, the storm claimed four lives and mostly downed trees and power lines, leaving over 280,000 people statewide without power Saturday morning, officials said. Two of the deaths were from storm-related vehicle crashes while officials said a man also drowned when his truck plunged into a swamp, and another man was killed by carbon monoxide poisoning from a generator in a garage.

In southwest Florida, authorities and volunteers were still assessing the damage as shocked residents tried to make sense of the disaster.

“I want to sit in the corner and cry. I don’t know what else to do,” Stevie Scuderi said, mud clinging to her purple sandles as she shuffled through her mostly destroyed apartment in Fort Myers.

On Saturday, a long line of people waited outside an auto parts store in Port Charlotte, where a sign read, “We have generators now.” Hundreds of cars were lined up outside a gas station, and some people walked, carrying gas cans to their nearby cars.

At Port Sanibel Marina in Fort Myers, charter boat captain Ryan Kane inspected damage to two boats Saturday. The storm surge pushed several boats and a dock onshore. He said the boat he owns was totaled so he couldn’t use it to help rescue people. Now, he said, it would be a long time before he’d be chartering fishing clients again.

“There’s a hole in the hull. It took water in the motors. It took water in everything,” he said, adding: “You know boats are supposed to be in the water, not in parking lots.”

___

Kinnard reported from Pawleys Island, South Carolina; Associated Press contributors include Freida Frisaro in Miami; Brendan Farrington in Tallahassee, Florida; Gerald Herbert in Pine Island, Florida; Mike Pesoli in Lehigh Acres, Florida; and Sarah Rankin in Richmond, Virginia.

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Julius Randle embraces playing faster and without the ball

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Julius Randle Embraces Playing Faster And Without The Ball
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The Knicks have been slow under Tom Thibodeau. Very slow.

Their offense was dead-last in pace during the coach’s first campaign, then moved up just one spot to 29th last season.

With the first week of training camp in the books, the Knicks have been vague about specific goals with one exception: playing faster.’

“It’s just the way the game is going,” Julius Randle said. “There are so many more possessions, high-scoring games. So, it’s just the way the league is going and an adjustment that everybody has to make.”

Randle buying into a quicker pace is important toward that endeavor. The power forward spent much of the last two seasons operating with the ball while leading the team, by far, in isolations. So it was an encouraging sign that Randle said he dropped weight in the summer to get up and down the floor.

“I want to be able to adjust and play faster, play on and off the ball,” Randle said. “For me, being in shape is always number one, so I take pride in that and every year I try to go back and look at how and adjust how I can be better and play faster and quicker basketball. Be efficient.

On paper, the Knicks’ starting lineup isn’t constructed for a run-and-gun style. That’s more the vibe of the reserves with Obi Toppin, Derrick Rose, Immanuel Quickley and Quentin Grimes.

But Thibodeau asserted Saturday that Randle is adept in transition and playing off the ball. He witnessed it as an opposing coach when Randle was in New Orleans alongside Anthony Davis and Los Angeles alongside either D’Angelo Russell or Brandon Ingram.

“Having coached against him, one of the things I worried about was him running the floor,” Thibodeau said. “So if we can get him down the floor and catch small guys on him, catch the defense before it’s set — that’s a big advantage for us. Playing off the ball and catching it on the run and driving it through the elbow. Those are things that he’s done well in the past and I want him to get back to that.”

Of course, this will require an adjustment from Randle. It’s one thing to finish a lay-up in transition, it’s another to run around without the ball in the half-court. Egos tend to get involved when a player is asked to relinquish the control of the offense.

But that’s the reality as Randle enters his fourth season with the Knicks. He’ll finally have a reliable playmaker as the starting point guard in Jalen Brunson. RJ Barrett’s evolution calls for more opportunities.

Randle can succeed as the secondary option in motion.

“Because of the strength of the club, we can use him in different ways,” Thibodeau said. “He doesn’t always have to have the ball. He can play off the ball.”

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Ravens sign CB Kevon Seymour off practice squad, elevate OT David Sharpe, OLB Brandon Copeland

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Ravens Sign Cb Kevon Seymour Off Practice Squad, Elevate Ot David Sharpe, Olb Brandon Copeland
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The Ravens signed cornerback Kevon Seymour off their practice squad Saturday and elevated two other players ahead of Sunday’s game against the Buffalo Bills.

Seymour, a dependable special teams contributor, played in nine games last year, making two starts. He’s yet to appear in a game this season. No Ravens cornerbacks were on Friday’s injury report, but the team has rotated its reserves early this season because of injuries and inconsistency.

Offensive tackle David Sharpe and outside linebacker Brandon Copeland (Gilman) are expected to play Sunday after practice squad promotions. Sharpe, who played in three games last season, helps the Ravens’ depth out wide, where Ronnie Stanley (ankle) and Patrick Mekari (ankle) are dealing with injuries. Stanley is questionable for Week 4, while Mekari is doubtful.

Copeland signed with the Ravens’ practice squad last week and had a sack late in the win against the New England Patriots. With Justin Houston (groin) doubtful for Sunday’s game and new signing Jason Pierre-Paul still ramping up, Copeland could be in line for significant action.

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Ramesh Ponnuru: The moral case for higher interest rates

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Ramesh Ponnuru: The Moral Case For Higher Interest Rates
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Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s efforts to cool down the economy are causing progressive criticism to heat up. He has been accused of wanting a “brutal” recession, trying to “throw millions of Americans out of work” and using “dangerous” rhetoric. And those are the comments of just one senator, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts.

The criticism of the Fed’s interest-rate increases sometimes veers into demagoguery, just as did former President Donald Trump’s attacks on Powell when the Fed raised rates. But the progressives’ question deserves an answer: How can tightening monetary policy be morally justified even though it is expected to have a negative effect on employment?

What makes the question difficult is that the costs of inflation, while serious, are diffuse, while the costs associated with unemployment are highly concentrated. The costs of being unemployed are personal and often severe. They can include broken families, compromised mental health and reduced long-term prospects.

At the same time, the human toll of unemployment can’t be the argument-ender that Warren and like-minded observers want it to be. If it were, that would mean that tighter policy is never justified. That can’t be right.

Some progressives also have a simple-minded view of the relationship between unemployment and inflation. During the current bout of high inflation, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has repeatedly said that she was told in the 1980s, when she came to Congress, that inflation rises whenever unemployment falls.

She may have been told that; it reflected the conventional wisdom of a prior era. The early 1980s saw a severe recession largely caused by an effort to tame inflation. But her claim that inflation rises as unemployment falls has proven false during her own career. Unemployment fell from 1992 to 1998, and again from 2011 to 2020, without an increase in inflation.

Over the long run, tolerating high inflation does not seem to increase employment, and low inflation does not threaten it. Keeping inflation low is therefore a sensible long-term goal. The question today is this: What should the central bank do when a low-inflation regime has been won at great cost — that early-1980s recession — but is now in danger of ending?

One option, which Warren’s rhetoric pushes toward, would be to accept the current level of inflation on the grounds that bringing it down would weaken the labor market. But accepting current inflation may in practice amount to accepting higher inflation. Market expectations of inflation over the next five to 10 years are at present only slightly higher than the Fed’s 2% annual target.

Throw in the towel, and those expectations could rise — and become self-fulfilling. Then the Fed would face a worse version of its current choice: Either accept that inflation will drift even higher or clamp down on it at the cost of unemployment. Letting inflation drift higher, flinching from the fight because of the risk of higher unemployment, and then being forced to act is more or less how the U.S. got that severe recession in the early 1980s.

The remaining options are about degrees of tightening: a lot or a little, fast or slow. The fact that expectations are under control suggests that it might still be possible to restore low inflation without a large increase in unemployment. That’s an argument for moving fast. So is the fact that the unemployment rate is still relatively low. Judging from their projections, Fed policymakers think they can get inflation under control while unemployment peaks at 4.4% — which is lower than it was in any month of the Reagan or Obama presidencies.

The Fed may find its resolve tested if inflation begins to subside. It may be tempted to quit tightening when inflation drops to 3%, rather than inflict the additional pain needed to get back to the 2% target. If inflation is relatively predictable and stable, a 3% average might not impose much higher costs than a 2% one. But the Fed would not be making this choice in a vacuum. It would, in that case, be abandoning its initial target under duress, which is bound to make its future commitments less credible.

Recent statements by Powell have acknowledged the cost of restoring price stability but noted that, without it, “the economy does not work for anyone.” The alternative to taking the requisite action now, he has explained, is risking higher inflation and then a more severe recession. The critics are mistaken: He should keep tightening monetary policy, and with a clear conscience.

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