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By Jane C. Timm

Democrats have gained 40 House seats, as NBC News on Thursday declared TJ Cox the apparent winner in California’s 21 District.

Incumbent Republican Rep. David Valadao conceded on Thursday afternoon, following weeks of ballot counting in the tight race. With 100 percent of ballots tallied, Cox had 50.4 percent of the vote; Valadao trailed by 862 votes, according to NBC News.

Cox declared victory on Nov. 28th, when he lead by more than 500 votes.

NBC had called the race for Valadao, but retracted that call as the count tightened after Election Day.

The gain brings House Democrats’ total seats to 235, with Republicans occupying 200 seats.

The California seat was an early target for the Democratic Congressional Campaign committee; Hillary Clinton won the southern-central California district by more than 15 points in 2016.

Democrats also won the House with the largest margin of victory in a midterms election for either party, according to NBC News election data.

The Democrats’ national margin of victory in House contests smashed the previous midterms record of 8.7 million votes in 1974, won just months after President Richard Nixon resigned from office in disgrace amid the Watergate scandal.

This year, Democrats topped Republicans by 9.5 million votes, winning 53.4 percent of votes cast compared to 44.9 percent for the GOP.



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Trump picks Gen. Mark Milley as next top military adviser

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By Associated Press

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump announced Saturday that he’s picked a battle-hardened commander who oversaw troops in Iraq and Afghanistan to be the nation’s next top military adviser.

If confirmed by the Senate, Gen. Mark Milley, who has been chief of the Army since August 2015, would succeed Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Dunford’s term doesn’t end until Oct. 1. Trump said the date of transition is yet to be determined.

Trump tweeted the announcement, saying “I am pleased to announce my nomination of four-star General Mark Milley, Chief of Staff of the United States Army – as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, replacing General Joe Dunford, who will be retiring. I am thankful to both of these incredible men for their service to our Country!”

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Roger Stone associate Jerome Corsi sues Mueller, Justice, CIA, FBI, NSA for $350 million

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By Alex Johnson

The conservative writer and conspiracy theorist Jerome Corsi filed a lawsuit on Sunday accusing special counsel Robert Mueller of blackmailing him to lie about President Donald Trump in the investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election.

The suit, which seeks $350 million in actual and punitive damages in U.S. District Court in Washington, was filed six days after Corsi entered a formal complaint with the Justice Department alleging prosecutorial misconduct by Mueller.

Corsi, 72, the former Washington bureau chief of the conspiracy website InfoWars, accuses Mueller’s office of having illegally leaked secret information from the grand jury investigating Russian election interference.

The suit also accuses the special counsel’s office of having threatened him with prison unless he agreed to testify falsely that he served as a liaison between WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and the Republican political strategist Roger Stone, who was an adviser to Trump’s presidential campaign.

NBC News reported last month that Corsi sent an email alerting Stone that WikiLeaks planned to release damaging information about emails stolen from John Podesta, who was chairman of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign — two months before WikiLeaks actually did so.

And it accuses the FBI, the CIA and the National Security Agency — all of whom are named as co-respondents — of having placed Corsi under illegal surveillance “at the direction of Mueller and his partisan Democrat, leftist, and ethically and legally conflicted prosecutorial staff.”

The goal, the suit alleges, was to bring about a “‘legal coup d’etat,’ negating the will of the American voters who elected Donald J. Trump on November 6, 2016.”

The suit repeats Corsi’s contention that he never had any direct knowledge of WikiLeaks’ plans, arguing that he simply deduced the coming email dump using his talents as a journalist.

Stone has said he had no communication with Corsi about Podesta’s emails until after WikiLeaks published them.

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Trump says John Kelly to leave chief of staff role by year end

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By Kalhan Rosenblatt

President Donald Trump announced on Saturday that his chief of staff John Kelly would be leaving the position by the end of the year.

Trump made the announcement on the White House South Lawn before departing for the Navy vs. Army football game.

“John Kelly will be leaving at the end of the year. We will announce who will be taking John’s place,” Trump said, adding that there might be an interim chief of staff. “I appreciate his service very much.”

Kelly’s departure has been expected, according to sources within the White House.



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