CA Republicans Demand Gas Tax Suspension While Dems Investigate High Gas Prices

‘It is a sad commentary on the impact of a one-party rule’

Friday marked 100 days of diddling by California’s supermajority party to provide relief at the pump for the state’s drivers from the record high gas prices. Rather than actually authorizing a gas tax holiday at the pump, Legislative Democrats want it to appear they care and are doing something. So they are going to “investigate” the state’s highest-in-the-nation gas prices.

As of Sunday June 19, 2022, AAA reports the Average Gas Price in California is $6.401, while the national average is $4.983. The highest gas price in California is in Mono County at $7.212.

With California’s excessive petroleum industry regulations, highest-in-the-nation gas taxes, and special “summer blend,” expect to see that average of $6.401 per gallon of gas get much higher this summer – some predict over $10.00 per gallon. These are just averages – some counties in California already have over $10.00 a gallon gas.

Friday, Senate Republicans issued a press statement acknowledging that they have been calling for gas tax relief for months, and said keeping the pressure on is paying off.

“Running for cover, Assembly Democrats are now calling for an investigation as to why gas prices are so high. Been there, done that. Governor Newsom made the same move in 2019, and nothing has changed, except for the price of gas.”

“In a political move, Democrats are joining Republicans in calling for a pause in the scheduled July 1 gas tax increase. These are the same Democrats who failed earlier this year to suspend this increase when presented with the opportunity. Senate Republicans proposed this idea last year, again in January, May, and this week. Welcome aboard.”

“Democrats are feeling the heat. Californians are rightfully mad that the Democrat supermajority has done nothing but talk about alleviating the pain at the pump for 100 days. Republicans began calling for a pause in the gas tax increase almost a year ago and have not let up,” Senate Republican Leader Scott Wilk (R-Santa Clarita) said. “While I am glad to see some of my colleagues come around, it is a sad commentary on the impact of a one-party rule. This could have done at any point this year; they just chose not to.”

Notably, Senate Republicans last July 2021 called for a ‘Gas Tax Holiday’ to include a full suspension on state gas tax collection for the 2021-2022, to be backfilled by the State’s general fund… to no avail.

Democrats issued a press release Sunday announcing a press conference Monday at noon, to launch their investigation into rising gas prices in California:

“Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon (D-Lakewood), along with Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin (D-Thousand Oaks) and Assemblymember Cottie Petrie-Norris (D-Laguna Beach), will hold a press conference announcing legislative action to investigate rising gas prices in California.”

 The Globe has a suggestion for these Democrats: Watch the news. Pay close attention to the White House Executive Orders and directives. It’s been 18-months since President Joe Biden killed the Keystone Pipeline along with 70,000 oil and gas jobs under the guise of “climate change.”

“New drilling leases on federal lands were brought to a halt by Biden’s illegal executive order, and Biden unilaterally revoked the cross-border permit for the Keystone XL Pipeline to transport oil from the Canadian Tar Sands to Gulf Refineries,”  the Federalist reported.

As for California’s highest-in-the-nation gas, nearly one year ago, the Globe reported on the escalating gas prices, when the national average was $3.131 per gallon, and California’s average was $4.31 for regular grade gas – even higher than Hawaii’s gas prices. California’s medium unleaded gas was selling for $4.50 per gallon on average. Gas in Mono County was $5.13 per gallon.

And we found an expert to explain why California’s gas is so costly:

“David Blackmon, a Senior Contributor to Forbes explains that California is a state that is rich in underground oil resources, but over the past two decades, the state government of California has pursued a policy agenda designed to inhibit drilling and production within its borders as part of an overall program to try to ratchet down emissions via command-and-control regulations. In more recent years, the state government has implemented emissions regulations that far exceed current federal regulation and implemented mandates requiring a rapid phasing-out of gas-powered cars and replacing them with electric vehicles (EVs).”

Here is a breakdown of the California taxes and fees on California gas:

Taxes:
Federal Excise Tax: 18 cents per gallon
State Excise Tax: 51 cents per gallon (this will be increased to 53.9 July 1)
Sales Tax (estimated): 10 cents per gallon

Fees:
Low Carbon Gas Programs: 22 cents per gallon
Greenhouse Gas Programs: 15 cents per gallon
Underground Tank Storage: 2 cents per gallon

Click here to read the full article in the California Globe

Democrats’ Fate Lies In The Nation’s Political Battlefield: Orange County

Orange County is at the center of the political universe again, the battleground where upward of $35 million — or about 10 times what’s typically spent on Bay Area House campaigns — will shower each of two key races that will help determine whether Democrats keep control of Congress.

But a lot has changed since 2020, when Republican Reps. Michelle Steel and Young Kim made history by being the first GOP Korean American women to ever serve in Congress. Or 2018, when Democrats flipped four GOP seats here to help take the House. Now, Steel’s race is rated a “toss-up,” while Kim is seen as having a slightly better chance of holding her seat.

For starters, both must introduce themselves to a new crop of voters after California’s redistricting commission redrew the state’s political boundaries. Plus, a number of outside factors could reshape their races, from abortion to Donald Trump to COVID to a battle to win over Asian voters that is among the most intense — and complex — in the country.

In Steel’s race, much of that struggle will be fought in Little Saigon, a hub of more than 200,000 Vietnamese residents that stretches over parts of Orange County, about 10 miles southwest of Anaheim. It’s one of the largest such enclaves in the country.

Instead of running in the more conservative, coastal district where she won in 2020, Steel is now running in the 45th Congressional District, where Democrats have a 5-point registration advantage.

But Steel’s campaign is confident, largely because Little Saigon boosts her district’s Asian American slice of the electorate to 35%. Vietnamese voters were an integral part of the coalition that helped carry Steel to victory in 2020 over incumbent Democrat Harley Rouda, who is white, said Fred Whitaker, chair of the Orange County Republican Party.

“That’s why Michelle Steel moved over (to run in that district), because that was one of her strongest bases,” Whitaker told me. “The party registration may be a little more Democratic, but the way that they vote is Republican.”

The Republican National Committee took notice and last June opened an office in a strip mall in the heart of the community to try to strengthen its ties there. Since then, the GOP has knocked on 75,000 doors and made 200,000 calls in the Steel’s new turf, according to GOP officials.

Steel visited the storefront recently during a training for volunteers to make calls in Vietnamese. Strung across one wall is a 12-foot-long banner featuring a quote attributed to her: “I live in the best country on Earth and I want future generations to achieve their own American Dreams.”

“We’re going to win,” Steel told the dozen volunteers at the training. “No matter what.”

Long Bui, a professor of global and international studies at UC Irvine, said Vietnamese American businesses and voters “will be key to determining who wins this race.”

Their voting patterns, however, aren’t predictable.

Bui, the author of “Returns of War: South Vietnam and the Price of Refugee Memory,” said there’s “a tendency” to think that older Vietnamese — particularly those who fled the Communist takeover of their homeland after the war ended — vote more conservatively than the younger generation.

Instead, Bui said, “the community often considers personalities and who runs the most savvy, impactful campaign. Issues and charisma matter as much or sometimes more than party affiliation.”

Diedre Tu-La Nguyen, the mayor pro-tem of Garden Grove, which is part of Little Saigon, said the Vietnamese community is still small enough that personal relationships often trump party affiliation. The Vietnam-born Democrat, who fled a refugee camp as a child after the war and is now a cancer researcher, is running for Assembly.

“Vietnamese don’t vote for a party, they vote for people,” Nguyen told me over dinner of sea snails, garlic noodles and grilled shrimp at a Little Saigon restaurant. She said that until she ran for office, many didn’t know she was a Democrat. “You just know who people are in the community by their reputation, by what they’ve done.”

In a sign of how unpredictable voters are here, even Nguyen’s household is split. Nguyen’s husband is a Republican.

Democrat Jay Chen is running for Congress in California's 45th Congressional District.
Democrat Jay Chen is running for Congress in California’s 45th Congressional District.Allison Zaucha/Special to The Chronicle

Steel’s main opponent is Jay Chen, a child of Taiwanese immigrants, U.S. Naval Reserve officer, school board member and owner of a real estate firm.

Chen is a better fit for the new district, which “is more working class,” said Ajay Mohan, executive director of the Orange County Democratic Party. Democrats intend to pound Steel for not supporting the federal Paycheck Protection Plan that provided funding to the small businesses that drive the community.

They say Steel — a fervent Trump supporter who received a 77% rating by the Conservative Political Action Committee scorecard (slightly higher than House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Bakersfield) — is too conservative for the newly drawn district.

Perhaps even more damaging, Chen said, is that she voted against establishing the commission to investigate the Jan. 6 insurrection and against the bipartisan $1.9 trillion American Recovery Plan last year.

Steel said the plan was too pricey and sprawling.

Click here to read the full article at the San Francisco Chronicle

DNC Seeks to Boost California Election Outreach

The Democratic National Committee is giving California and at least five other states grants to organize voter outreach ahead of this year’s elections.

The 2022 elections will determine whether Democrats or Republicans control the United States House of Representatives in 2023. Many experts are predicting a “red wave” this fall that will hand the chamber to Republicans.

The party of the president, now a Democrat, historically falters in midterm elections for Congress. Adding to Democrats’ worries are President Joe Biden’s declining approval rating for his handling of inflation and pandemic policy and the fact that a large number of Democrats are retiring.

The state-level Democratic Parties of California, Texas, Florida, Minnesota, Maryland and Wyoming will get DNC grants — some, like California, will get money to hire organizing directors, a spokesperson for the DNC told The Sacramento Bee. The directors are meant to recruit and funnel volunteers working on voter outreach into targeted districts across the state for local and national elections.

“The DNC is proud to make these latest investments in the California Democratic Party to expand organizing and voter outreach efforts on the ground,” DNC Chairman Jaime Harrison said in a statement sent to The Bee. “The California Democratic Party has built an impressive coordinated effort to keep Democrats in office, and the DNC is committed to continue helping build upon that work to ensure California Democrats win up and down the ballot this November and beyond.”

The DNC announcement comes weeks before California’s primaries on June 7, 2022.

The last time the California Democratic Party received such a grant was in 2018, another midterm election.

Other states will benefit from such a grant in future roll-outs, the spokesperson said.

Prominent election-tracking organizations have re-rated some House races nationwide. For the most part, mostly, they boosted Republicans’ odds in California.

Though experts said redistricting, the once-a-decade process of redrawing legislative boundaries, favored Democrats in California, Republicans could hold onto the same number of districts that they have now. California lost a seat in Congress due to sluggish population growth, dropping its House delegation to 52 representatives. The lost seat is Democratic, surrounding Los Angeles.

California has 10 Republicans in the House. It would be 11, but former Congressman Devin Nunes resigned to lead former President Donald Trump’s social media company.

The House is currently divided by 221 Democrats and 209 Republicans, with five vacancies. Four vacant seats were held by Republicans. With a 222 to 213 split, Republicans need to win just five more seats in 2022 to take the majority.

Click here to read the full article at the Sacramento Bee

Republicans Act On Homelessness Where Democrats Have Failed

The progressive experiment is failing in California. Take a walk around any of the cities controlled by Democrats here and you’ll see dozens of homeless encampments, feces, and heroin needles littering sidewalks and streets.

Despite containing only 12% of the nation’s population, California is home to a whopping 28% of its homeless, and an astronomical 47% of its unsheltered homeless. Since 2018, the state has thrown $17 billion at homelessness and the problem has only continued to grow.

Under more than a decade of complete Democratic control of state government, California’s approach on this issue has been disjointed and scattershot.

Democratic ideas to address homelessness have failed – evidence of that failure is visible to anyone who witnesses the suffering that has taken over our streets. In Gov. Gavin Newsom’s own words, Democrats have been “as dumb as they want to be” when it comes to homelessness.

Still, their “plan” to address homelessness is to simply carry on the same ineffective programs but spend more money. If we continue in their direction, we can only expect to see continued worsening results.

It is time to look at new ideas instead of doubling down on failed ones.

That’s why Legislative Republicans have introduced a comprehensive package of more than a dozen bills to ACT on homelessness, now. These bills prioritize accountability, compassion and treatment. Specifically, they demand accountability from our leaders, focus resources on housing and shelter accessibility, mental health and substance abuse assistance, and provide support for people at risk of becoming homeless.

Our first set of bills will bring accountability to homelessness programs and ensure funding gets to programs that actually keep people off the street and deliver the help they need. Californians cannot afford to continue providing blank checks with no results. Our proposals would require the governor to make an annual report to the Legislature on his homelessness efforts and begin a long-overdue audit of state homelessness spending and outcomes.

California has spent billions on housing efforts for the homeless population – yet those programs have failed. That’s why Legislative Republicans have proposed measures to support programs that help keep people off the streets and help those in the cycle of homelessness grow beyond the shelter walls. The Republican plan will streamline shelter construction, protect faith-based organizations that provide shelter and fund local government efforts to increase shelter capacity.

Ignoring mental health and substance use disorders within the homeless population is the furthest thing from compassionate. Californians in every community of this state see streets littered with needles and walk past those who struggle to grasp reality. Legislative Republicans want to bring real compassion to the homelessness crisis and ensure those who need help will receive it. Among our proposals are bills to provide addiction services for the homeless using opioid settlement funds, provide prompt treatment to people having a mental health crisis and ensure those with severe mental illness are placed into treatment instead of left on our streets.

While every homeless person comes to homelessness in their own way, we know certain groups – former foster youth, veterans, the mentally ill, the addicted, domestic violence victims, and the recently incarcerated – are at far greater risk than the general population. However, California’s prevention programs, to the degree they exist, show little evidence of success or accountability.

Republicans plan to help these populations break the cycle of homelessness, overcome adversity, and find and keep employment within the state. Republican proposals will create incentive and training programs to provide at-risk youth with employment opportunities and establish reentry programs for jail inmates at risk of becoming homeless upon their release.

Homelessness is all around us, and getting worse despite the continued empty promises from Capitol Democrats. Their ‘money solves everything’ approach is failing spectacularly, but they refuse to see it.

Click here to read the full article at the OC Register

California Democrats Refuse to Pass Gas Tax Relief

AB 1638 would have saved Californians 51 cents a gallon for about 6 months

Democrats in the California Legislature refused to pass AB 1638 by Assemblyman Kevin Kiley (R-Granite Bay) which would have suspended the state’s gas tax to provide immediate relief Californians. If passed, it would have saved Californians 51 cents a gallon for about 6 months.

AAA reports the national average for a gallon of gas is $4.316, and California’s average is $5.750. gas in Mono County costs $6.501 per gallon, and Napa County is $5.947.

“Today the Republican and Independent Members of the Assembly voted to save Californians 51 cents per gallon by suspending the gas tax,” Kiley said following the vote. “In addition, 18 members abstained from the vote. Unfortunately, the Supermajority rounded up enough votes to deny struggling Californians this modest measure of relief.”

When asked on Monday about the Republican idea to temporarily halt the whole gas tax, Erin Mellon, Newsom’s communications director wrote, “the Republican’s proposal can be manipulated to help line the pockets of petro-dictators and oil companies who are benefiting from the spike in oil prices across the world. The governor has proposed a tax rebate to provide billions in direct relief to Californians who are suffering from rising gas prices across the country, a direct result of [Russia’s President Vladimir Putin’s] war,” ABC7 reported.

“We have a $65 billion surplus here in California, so we can backfill that money,” said Assembly Republican Leader James Gallagher.

Kiley added, “Our state’s political leadership has never been so out of touch.”

California drivers are still faciing the switch to the summer blend gas, a higher-grade fuel which can add up to 15 cents per gallon to the cost of a fill-up, and lowers your gas mileage. Most Californians already know that for every tank of gas, $10 of the total cost is state-imposed gas taxes, thanks to Senate Bill 1, signed into law by then Gov. Jerry Brown in 2017, which increased the gas tax by 12 cents per gallon, and increased automobile registration fees by more than $175, the Globe reported.

Click here to read the full article at the California Globe

OC’s Davies Proposes ‘Parents Bill Of Rights’ In Assembly

California legislators will soon be taking up two bills related to school vaccinations and other education matters.

One bill, introduced by an Orange County Republican, would create a “California Parents Bill of Rights” that supporters say will give parents more control over their children’s education. Another, introduced by a San Diego Democrat, would allow school administrators easier access to student COVID-19 vaccination records.

Assemblymember Laurie Davies, R-Laguna Niguel, held a news conference Monday to talk about her “Parents Bill of Rights,” which refers to parents having “the right to make health care decisions” and a greater voice on where their children go to school and what they’re taught.

“It is the right of every parent to make decisions they deem best to protect the health and welfare of their children, not Sacramento politicians,” said Davies, pledging to continue to oppose vaccine and face mask mandates.

Davies likely is in for a fight given that Democrats have a supermajority in Sacramento and it’s tough for Republicans to get bills passed unless they gain bipartisan support.

Davies’ bill, AB 1785, reiterates existing laws and rights that parents already have but also stipulates what schools would need to do to keep parents involved and informed about those rights. The proposed legislation, for example, would require a school or district to post information on its website regarding various topics, such as immunization requirements, how to inspect instructional materials and curriculum and how to opt out of sex education. The bill also proposes that schools would need to provide an annual newsletter “about the nature and purpose of clubs and activities offered” on campus.

Mari Barke, president of the Orange County Board of Education, was on hand Monday to praise Davies’ bill and talk about parental choices.  Barke noted that the county board is tasked with considering appeals from students who want to transfer from one district to another but are denied that move from their home districts. The board, run by a conservative majority that favors charter schools, also considers charter school petition appeals after they are denied by their home school districts.

“We do try to honor school choice and parental choice through our overturning of charter school appeals and inter-district transfers,” Barke said. “We don’t feel any child should be constrained by their ZIP code, and we know that parents always make the best decisions for their children, not the districts.”

The Orange County Board of Education has a lawsuit pending against Gov. Gavin Newsom on what board members say is his overreach and abuse of emergency executive powers that have led to pandemic-related mandates.

On Friday, Feb. 4, the same day that Davies introduced AB 1785, Assemblymember Akilah Weber, D-San Diego, introduced AB 1797, which would make it easier for school officials to access and verify students’ COVID-19 vaccine status.

The bill would update the existing California Immunization Registry, which is described as a secure, confidential database managed by the California Department of Public Health. (Currently, school district officials do not have access to verify students’ COVID-19 status.) The bill would also require doctors to report COVID data to the registry and collect race and ethnicity data as well.

Click here to read the full article at OC Register

McCarthy, Foxx Demand Biden Ed Boss Cardona Turn Over Teacher Union Emails

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and House Education Committee ranking member Virginia Foxx sent a letter to Education Secretary Miguel Cardona Wednesday demanding copies of emails between his DOE, the White House and the teachers’ unions.

In the letter, obtained by Fox News, the Congressional Republican leaders blasted federal education officials for “radical spending” during the pandemic and accused them of mishandling school closures and billions of dollars of COVID-19 education relief.

“We noted Congress had already appropriated nearly three times the funding the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said was needed to operate schools successfully,” the Republicans wrote.

“Unfortunately, rather than continuing Congress’s bipartisan approach to addressing COVID-19, Democrats advanced their partisan agenda, approving more than $120 billion in additional funding for schools” in last year’s $1.9 billion American Rescue Plan COVID-19 relief bill.

McCarthy and Foxx wrote that Democrats argued “radical spending was necessary for schools to reopen safely for in-person instruction,” but said the claims were proven false by data that showed only 4 percent of the relief funds were used as the vast majority of US schools reopened in the fall, according to the report.

“Despite Democrats’ claims to the contrary, these funds were not needed to reopen schools,” the lawmakers reportedly wrote. “Because of this, some schools are grasping at any project they can find on which to waste these taxpayer funds, including indoctrinating students and staff with racist and divisive ideologies.”

As they accused the Education Department of misappropriating funds, McCarthy and Foxx also called the Biden administration’s handling of academic disruptions “appalling,” as “one million public school students across the country were impacted by district-wide school closures” as 2022 began.

Click here to read the full article at the NY Post

GOP Leader Says Republicans Could Flip 60 Seats Next Year

Republicans took a victory lap Wednesday following Republican Glenn Youngkin’s stunning win in the Virginia governor’s race, with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) predicting his party could flip more than 60 House seats in next year’s midterm elections.

“If you’re a Democrat and President Biden won your seat by 16 points, you’re in a competitive race next year. You are no longer safe,” McCarthy told reporters while flanked by his leadership team and Virginia Republicans.

“It’ll be more than 70 [Democratic seats] that will be competitive. There’s many that are going to lose their races based upon walking off a cliff from [Speaker] Nancy Pelosi [D-Calif.] pushing them,” he continued. “She may not care if she lose. She lost 63 the last time she was Speaker moving policy that the country didn’t care for. 

“Many believe she won’t stay around” in Congress, McCarthy asserted. Speaking to Democrats, he added, “So she’s not going to be there to defend you.”

Pelosi and the Democrats did lose 63 seats — and the House majority — in the Tea Party wave of 2010, the midterms that came two years after former President Obama won the White House.

Click here to read the full article at thehill.com

Democrats Talk Openly About Challenging Nancy Pelosi’s Leadership


Nancy-Pelois-denied-CommunionHouse Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is facing unprecedented pressure, as frustrated Democrats have begun — for the first time in seven years — to talk about replacing her after a series of disappointments at the ballot box.

Pelosi was hailed as a driving force behind Democrats’ victory in 2006, when the party seized both houses of Congress and set the stage for victory in the 2008 presidential election. She became the first female Speaker of the House, and set about centralizing power in the Speaker’s office, ruling her caucus with unquestioned authority and promoting an unapologetically liberal agenda.

However, Pelosi’s role in the Obamacare debacle of 2009-10 helped provoke the Tea Party wave, sending her party to historic defeat and costing her the Speaker’s gavel. Amazingly, Pelosi did not resign at that point, and dispatched several would-be challengers, most notably Rep. Heath Shuler (D-NC), who later lost his seat to a Republican. She also fended off a challenge by Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH) after 2016. Pelosi has been a prolific fundraiser for the party, even if she has also become a lightning rod for criticism and a useful political foil for Republicans to run against.

Ironically, Pelosi’s power within her caucus only grew as the Democrats lost seats, because most of the losses were in conservative swing districts. That left a core of liberal representatives from major cities, and blue states such as New York, Illinois, and Pelosi’s home state of California. There has been no political constituency in the caucus for an ideological alternative to the left-wing agenda that Pelosi and her coterie have continued to push even in defeat.

The high expectations that Pelosi set for Tuesday’s special election in Georgia may prove to be her undoing. Early in the week, with Jon Ossoff expected to win, Pelosi let it be known that she expected to take back the Speaker’s gavel after 2018. But Republican Karen Handel surged to victory, partly by tying her opponent to Pelosi.

As reality hit home, some Democrats began to break the taboo around challenging their leader. MSNBC analyst Matthew A. Miller tweeted: “No Dem wants to say it publicly, but taking their top bogeyman Pelosi off the table would help too. Fair or not, it’s the truth.”

Now, other critics are beginning to emerge.

“It’s time for some change. I think it’s time for a new generation of leadership,” said Rep. Seth Moulton (D-MA). And Rep Filemon Vela (D-TX) told Politico: “I think you’d have to be an idiot to think we could win the House with Pelosi at the top … Nancy Pelosi is not the only reason that Ossoff lost. But she certainly is one of the reasons.”

But Pelosi also has her defenders — and she will not go easily.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named one of the “most influential” people in news media in 2016. He is the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

This piece was originally published by Breitbart.com/California

Dem-on-Dem spats belie party unity in San Jose

As reported by the San Jose Mercury News:

SAN JOSE — Tired of taking potshots from Bernie Sanders supporters at the California Democratic Party’s convention this weekend, Dana Smith tried to make nice with one antagonist.

“Whoever wins in November, it will be a Democrat,” Smith, a Daly City delegate holding two pro-Hillary Clinton signs, told Clark McCartney, a retired teacher from Riverside County. “Not if she’s indicted first,” he barked.

Even as party bigwigs assure the more than 3,000 Democratic activists gathered at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center that the Republican presidential candidates’ “food fight” will virtually guarantee that a Democrat stays in the White House, some of the rank-and-file don’t seem so sure as they watch the Dem-on-Dem spats on the convention floor.

Indeed, with the traditionally decisive Super Tuesday nominating contests just two days away — and Clinton romping to victory in Saturday’s South Carolina Democratic Primary — many convention-goers appear to have more in common with their Republican counterparts than they might want to admit. …

Click here to read the full story