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A jury found decorated Navy SEAL Edward “Eddie” Gallagher not guilty Tuesday on almost all charges he was facing, including murder and attempted murder, in the killing of a teenage Islamic State member in Iraq.

Gallagher was accused of stabbing to death a 15-year-old ISIS fighter in 2017 and posing with the corpse for photos.

As he awaited the charges to be read, Gallagher, 40, bounced lightly on his feet, appearing nervous, but dissolved into joyful tears once the verdict came through, tightly embracing his wife, Andrea, who has publicly championed him throughout the case as they both cried. Also seated in the gallery were Gallagher’s attorneys, brother and parents, all of whom he hugged.

Navy SEAL Edward Gallagher, seen in an undated photo, was found not guilty of murder and attempted murder. (Edward Gallagher via AP, File)

“I’m happy and I’m thankful,” Gallagher told reporters after the verdict as he joked with his legal team that “it’s Independence Day,” his freedom coming days before the July 4th holiday.

“Suffice to say, huge victory, huge weight off the Gallaghers, huge victory for justice,” Gallagher’s attorney Marc Mukasey said adding that his client cried “tears of joy, emotion, freedom, absolute euphoria and proud of the process.”

“I was feeling like we’re finally vindicated after being terrorized by the government that my husband fought for for 20 years,” Andrea Gallagher said. She also said she intends to “continue to fight for the war heroes of this country” and hopes to see Naval Special Warfare Group 1 Commodore Capt. Matthew D. Rosenbloom resign, among other things.

He faced seven criminal charges in all. Six of the most serious charges included premeditated murder, willfully discharging a firearm to endanger human life, retaliation against members of his platoon for reporting his alleged actions, obstruction of justice and the attempted murders of two noncombatants. On all of those charges, the jury in San Diego found him not guilty.

Jurors did find him guilty of the seventh charge, posing for a photo with a casualty, considered the least egregious of the crimes, which carries a maximum prison sentence of four months.

“We have a sentencing to do, but the maximum sentence of what they’re about to sentence him on is much less than the time that they’ve already had him in the brig,” defense attorney Tim Parlatore said. “So he is going home.”

Gallagher served nine months in prison awaiting trial but was released ahead of trial proceedings at the end of May as the judge attempted to rectify alleged prosecutorial misconduct which included the unauthorized tracking of the defense’s emails.

Nearly a dozen members of Gallagher’s platoon testified against him, revealing that nearly all the platoon members posed for photos with the dead prisoner and witnessed Gallagher read his reenlistment oath near the body, actions prosecutors said proved that Gallagher was “proud” of his actions.

Perhaps the biggest bombshell in the case occurred on June 20 when Gallagher’s colleague, Special Operator 1st Class Corey Scott, admitted to asphyxiating the ISIS fighter back in 2017, contrary to the testimony of at least seven other SEALs who said Gallagher stabbed the ISIS fighter after medics administered treatment to him, ultimately resulting in the teenager’s death.

Gallagher, who served 19 years in the Navy and earned a Bronze Star with V for Valor twice, a Meritorious Unit Commendation and a trio of Navy and Marine Corps Achievement medals, has been publicly championed by his wife and even President Trump, who previously got Gallagher removed from the brig and transferred to better custody conditions at a Navy hospital before trial.

Fox News’ Dan Gallo in San Diego and Samuel Chamberlin contributed to this report.

Author: Vandana Rambaran

Source: Fox News: Navy SEAL Edward Gallagher found not guilty on murder and attempted murder charges

Joe Biden suggests he will repeal Trump’s tax cuts if elected

Joe Biden speaks at the South Carolina Democratic Convention.

Former Vice President and current presidential candidate Joe Biden promised Saturday that on “Day One” of a Biden presidency he would repeal President Trump’s 2017 tax cuts and close $500 billion on tax loopholes.

Speaking at the South Carolina Democratic Party Convention, Biden said that “Income inequities are at an all-time high and made worse by Trump’s tax cuts and enormous giveaways to the top one-tenth of the 1 percent … and it’s time we start to reward work over wealth.”

Outlining his policy proposals in this visit to the early primary state, Biden said the GOP-backed tax cuts, which have been heavily criticized in some quarters as beneficial only to the rich, have no socially redeeming value. He vowed to “put that money to good use.”

Biden promised that, among other things, residual funds from the tax break would be put toward initiatives such as green energy research and development, two-year college tuition grants and a public-option health insurance plan.

The 2020 hopeful also proposed an $8,000-per-child credit for child care. In addition, he promised to increase Title I funding for schools with high numbers of low-income students, and to allocate between $15 billion and $45 billion to expand universal pre-K, raise teachers’ pay, fully fund special education and double the number of school psychologists, guidance counselors and nurses to support public school systems.

Biden also reiterated his plan to implement a public health care option like Medicare, which would guarantee that low-income individuals have health coverage.

Biden continues to lead the polls in a field of some two-dozen Democratic contenders.

Author: Vandana Rambaran

Source: Fox News: Biden vows to repeal Trump tax cuts on ‘Day One’ if he captures White House

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, broke from his party’s ideology Thursday and signed a bill that would prohibit women from having an abortion once a baby’s heartbeat is detected, in almost all cases.

Edwards urged his party colleagues to do so as well, tweeting a statement on Wednesday saying “I call on the overwhelming bipartisan majority of legislators who voted for it to join me in continuing to build a better Louisiana that cares for the least among us and provides more opportunity for everyone.”

The fetal heartbeat abortion ban applies to pregnancies as early as six weeks, before some woman even know they are pregnant and include exceptions only for “medically futile” instances where the mother’s health is at risk or the baby is stillborn. The bill necessitates an ultrasound to confirm pregnancy and does not include exceptions for women who were victims of rape and incest.

Many fellow Democrats lashed out at Edwards, with 2020 presidential candidate Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., accusing the governor of “turning his back on Louisiana women by signing this shameful bill.”

The bill’s passage makes Louisiana the fifth state, after Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, and Ohio, to pass a fetal heartbeat act in its state, which challenges the constitutional right to an abortion guaranteed by the Supreme Court’s 1973 ruling in Roe v. Wade.

Republican Gov. Kay Ivey signed an Alabama abortion bill into law earlier in May that makes performing abortions at any stage of pregnancy, with no exceptions except health risks to the mother, a felony crime punishable by up to life imprisonment.

In Lousiana, doctors and medical providers who perform an abortion could face up to two years in prison and lose their medical license.

Although many of the states legislations have been challenged in court because of its constitutional conflict, state lawmakers hope that the controversy will facilitate Supreme Court justices in overturning Roe v. Wade.

The Louisiana law will not go into effect until Mississippi’s similar legislation is upheld by a federal court, but so far, it faces legal challenges as a federal judge blocked the Mississippi law by injunction on Friday.

Author: Vandana Rambaran

Source: Fox News: Louisiana’s governor, a Democrat, signs ‘heartbeat’ abortion bill into law

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