Solar orbiter spacecraft set to launch from Fla.

File – This illustration from NASA shows the Parker Solar Probe spacecraft approaching the sun. (AP Photo)

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UPDATED 1:20 PM PT — Monday, February 3, 2020

A new space craft is set to launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida on a mission to the Sun. According to reports, the European Space Agency (ESA) and NASA teamed up with Airbus to clear the solar orbiter for take off.

A series of tests and final checks over the course of a year were performed on the space craft that now sits on top of a rocket, awaiting its departure. While on its mission, the satellite will take pictures of the suns poles and make detailed observations of solar activity.

“The space trough has a number of new technologies that have been developed just for the purpose of flying close to the Sun,” said Daniel Muller, a solar orbiter project scientist. “We have the specific heat shield design just for solar orbiter that will reach temperatures of over 500 degrees centigrade on the front side and will keep things as cool as just about 50 degrees centigrade on the back side to protect the sensitive electronics.”

The new space craft is scheduled to lift off on February 9, 2020.

RELATED: Retired USAF general warns of ‘great space war,’ says China is building ‘Space Navy’

Original Article

Anti-Trump Republicans launch PAC to defeat him, as president’s campaign mocks ‘pathetic little club’

closeImpeachment polling trending in Trump's favor: Juan WilliamsVideo

Impeachment polling trending in Trump's favor: Juan Williams

Juan Williams weighs in on new national impeachment polling and discusses if democrats should have gone for censure rather than impeachment

A group of prominent anti-Trump Republicans launched a new super PAC on Tuesday aimed at preventing the GOP incumbent’s 2020 re-election and even defeating some of the president’s top congressional allies at the ballot box next November.

“We are Republicans and we want Trump defeated,” is the title of an op-ed in the New York Times announcing the launch of the group, which is called the Lincoln Project.

TRUMP SAYS HE LOOKS 'FORWARD' TO DEBATING EVENTUAL CHALLENGER BUT MIGHT SKIP COMMISSION DEBATES

“Over these next 11 months, our efforts will be dedicated to defeating President Trump and Trumpism at the ballot box and to elect those patriots who will hold the line. We do not undertake this task lightly, nor from ideological preference,” the GOP strategists behind the effort said.

The president’s re-election campaign quickly fired back, with communications director Tim Murtaugh calling the Lincoln Project a “pathetic little club of irrelevant and faux ‘Republicans,’ who are upset that they’ve lost all of their power and influence inside the Republican Party.”

The ringleaders of the group – which includes vocal anti-Trump critic attorney George Conway, husband of White House counselor Kellyanne Conway – said in their op-ed that they've been “broadly conservative … in our politics and outlooks. Our many policy differences with national Democrats remain, but our shared fidelity to the Constitution dictates a common effort.”

George Conway's partners in the new anti-Trump effort include Steve Schmidt, a Republican strategist who worked for then-President George W. Bush, Sen. John McCain and California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger; GOP strategist John Weaver, who worked for then-President George H.W. Bush, McCain, and Ohio Gov. John Kasich; and Republican media consultant Rick Wilson, author of “Everything Trump Touches Dies” who frequently tears into Trump on Twitter and during cable appearances.

Murtaugh, in returning fire, described the super PAC’s leaders as “establishment charlatans, who for years enriched themselves off the backs of the conservative movement, were the very swamp he was referring too. Calling any of these people ‘conservative’ or even referring to them as ‘Republicans’ at this point is an insult to conservatives and Republicans everywhere.”

TRUMP JOB APPROVAL TICKS UP IN NEW FOX NEWS POLL

Pointing to a likely record-high turnout in the 2020 general election, the Lincoln Project’s leaders said that their “efforts are aimed at persuading enough disaffected conservatives, Republicans and Republican-leaning independents in swing states and districts to help ensure a victory in the Electoral College, and congressional majorities that don’t enable or abet Mr. Trump’s violations of the Constitution, even if that means Democratic control of the Senate and an expanded Democratic majority in the House.”

They argue that the president “has neither the moral compass nor the temperament to serve” and say that Trump’s “actions are possible only with the craven acquiescence of congressional Republicans.”

The group told Fox News about five hours after the launch of their op-ed and website that “we have raised a significant amount of money since the op-ed went live this morning.” Former New Hampshire GOP chair Jennifer Horn, who’s serving as an adviser with the Lincoln Project, said that “we’re going to use all the resources that we have available to us to go out to go after President Trump and to also target in particular some of the Senate seats.”

Among those GOP-controlled Senate seats she listed were Arizona, Colorado, and Maine. She said that depending on the fundraising, the group would go up with digital, cable, and broadcast TV ads.

“It’s easy to figure out who our audience is,” Horn shared. “Likeminded disaffected Republicans – independents who are persuadable and lean right.”

Horn said that the group’s energies won’t be directed toward helping either of two remaining long-shot shot presidential primary challengers taking on Trump, who is on the cusp of facing a full House impeachment vote but is likely to be acquitted in the Senate.

One of those two challengers is former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld, who in April declared his bid for the GOP presidential nomination.

Hours after the announcement of the Lincoln Project, Weld told Fox News he shares the same goal as the group.

“It’s the same message. It’s that the president has misbehaved and deserves to be removed,” Weld said.

Original Article

Barr disagrees with Horowitz report on Russia probe launch

closeAttorney General William Barr releases scathing statement on inspector general's FISA reportVideo

Attorney General William Barr releases scathing statement on inspector general's FISA report

Barr says FBI launched intrusive investigation into a presidential campaign on thinnest of suspicions; reaction and analysis from 'Special Report' anchor Bret Baier.

Attorney General William Barr publicly disagreed with the Justice Department’s inspector general, Michael E. Horowitz, on Monday following the release of a long-awaited internal review that concluded the FBI had sufficient reason to launch the extensive Russia probe involving the Trump campaign, although members of the bureau committed some significant errors.

In a statement, Barr shared Trump's views that the initial investigation was invasive and launched on the "thinnest of suspicions."

“The inspector general’s report now makes clear that the FBI launched an intrusive investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign on the thinnest of suspicions that, in my view, were insufficient to justify the steps taken,” Barr said in a statement.

DOJ releases inspector general's findings on FBI surveillanceVideo

DURHAM OBJECTS TO IG FINDINGS ON RUSSIA PROBE ORIGINS IN STUNNING STATEMENT

“It is also clear that, from its inception, the evidence produced by the investigation was consistently exculpatory,” he continued. “Nevertheless, the investigation and surveillance was pushed forward for the duration of the campaign and deep into President Trump’s administration.”

Trump spent the majority of the investigation blasting the FBI and accusing bureau leaders of conspiring to ruin his presidency. Former FBI bosses James Comey and Andrew McCabe did not act with political bias, the IG found.

U.S. Attorney John H. Durham, whom Barr appointed to run a separate investigation into the origins of the Russia probe, backed his attorney general.

“Based on the evidence collected to date, and while our investigation is ongoing, last month we advised the Inspector General that we do not agree with some of the report’s conclusions as to predication and how the FBI case was opened,” Durham said in a statement.

DOJ releases Inspector General's report, no political biasVideo

The IG found no intentional misconduct or bias surrounding the probe's launch or efforts to seek a highly controversial Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant to monitor former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page in the early months of the Russia investigation.

Barr disagreed, saying the FBI misled the FISA court in a “rush to obtain and maintain FISA surveillance of Trump campaign associates.”

He continued, “FBI officials misled the FISA court, omitted critical exculpatory facts from their filings, and suppressed or ignored information negating the reliability of their principal source.”

The report faulted the FBI over errors in the application process. The IG investigation found at least 17 “significant inaccuracies and omissions” in the Page applications and said a new audit into the FISA process would take place.

COMEY CLAIMS VINDICATION AFTER HOROWITZ FISA REPORT: 'SO IT WAS ALL LIES'

President Trump says findings from DOJ inspector general's report are far worse than imaginedVideo

Horowitz and investigators were critical of the FBI's handling of the case, including for failing to share information that could have contradicted allegations in the FISA applications.

“[T]he Crossfire Hurricane team failed to inform department officials of significant information that was available to the team at the time that the FISA applications were drafted and filed,” the report said.

Barr said the FISA report showed a clear abuse of the surveillance process.

“While most of the misconduct identified by the inspector general was committed in 2016 and 2017 by a small group of now-former FBI officials, the malfeasance and misfeasance detailed in the inspector general’s report reflects a clear abuse of the FISA process,” the attorney general added.

Andy McCarthy analyzes IG Report findingsVideo

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“FBI officials misled the FISA court, omitted critical exculpatory facts from their filings, and suppressed or ignored information negating the reliability of their principal source,” he added. “The inspector general found the explanations given for these actions unsatisfactory.”

The release of the IG report came as Democrats have been leading an impeachment inquiry into Trump's dealings with Ukraine.

Fox News' Alex Pappas, Ronn Blitzer and Brooke Singman contributed to this report.

Original Article