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Jane Sanders’ daughter runs for Bernie’s old seat, amid college $$ controversy



When Carina Driscoll announced she was running for mayor of Burlington – the local Vermont office her stepfather Bernie Sanders once held – she was determined to be her own candidate.

But the Sanders family ties have loomed large in the race, for better or worse.

On one hand, her campaign hopes to capitalize on the popularity of the state’s independent senator, with one ad calling her “Bernie’s daughter.” But another family connection could prove more problematic.

With the election coming up next month, Driscoll’s candidacy has been hit with controversy over a payment her business once received from the college her mother used to run.

Jane O’Meara Sanders was president of Burlington College from 2004 through 2011 – and from 2009 through 2012, the college paid about $500,000 to Driscoll’s Vermont Woodworking School.

“It speaks to the way she does business,” Carol A. Moore, Jane Sanders’ successor as Burlington College president, told Fox News, when asked if the deal reflects on the Driscoll mayoral race.

She accused Driscoll of gouging the college with a sweetheart deal awarded by her mother.

The college itself also has been in the headlines for months.

A federal grand jury has heard testimony regarding a $10 million loan to the school in 2010, and allegations the college overestimated its ability to pay the money back.

Jane Sanders left with a $200,000 severance. The college closed in 2016 unable to pay its debt.

Reached by phone, Driscoll campaign spokeswoman Elise Greaves told Fox News she would call back, but did not. Greaves didn’t respond to subsequent detailed voicemails about the topic of this story.

Driscoll did not respond to an email inquiry from Fox News sent to an address provided by the Vermont Woodworking School.

Carving Out a Deal?

The details of the partnership between Burlington College and the Vermont Woodworking School were first reported by VTDigger, with links to the college’s 990 forms. Later, other news outlets also reported on the controversial links.

The college paid out $500,000 to Driscoll’s business over the course of the partnership.

This Feb. 22, 2015 photo shows a building on the campus of Burlington College in Burlington, Vt. The college, formerly headed by Jane Sanders, wife of presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, announced Monday, May 16, 2016, it is closing. The school has been struggling under the weight of its $10 million purchase of property and buildings during from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Burlington that it made during her presidency. (AP Photo/Wilson Ring)

Jane O’Meara Sanders was president of Burlington College from 2004 through 2011.


“The partnership and the financial agreements were brought to the board by Jane Sanders and developed by Jane Sanders and Carina Driscoll,” said Moore, who presided over Burlington College’s 2016 demise and is now president of Columbia College in South Carolina. 


Moore said the woodworking school could not have been financially sustainable without Burlington College, because it needed to be able to provide degrees in order to qualify for student financial aid. Driscoll’s woodworking school now has an agreement with Johnson State College.

As for the probe regarding the Burlington College finances, Moore said that when investigators from the FBI and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. talked to her, the woodworking school was “not directly” a topic.

She added, “Their focus was on the bank and loan, but they are looking at the full tenure of Jane Sanders at Burlington College and the financial workings or lack thereof.”

Driscoll’s campaign website touts that she founded the woodworking school in 2007, but the campaign does not mention Burlington College. Driscoll’s campaign site says she and her husband Blake Ewoldsen, along with their friend Bob Fletcher, founded the school.

“Carina had taken up woodworking as a hobby and the three founders identified a need for a school in Vermont, a place where craftsmanship and fine wood furniture-making was both an important part of our heritage and a dying art,” the campaign site says.

‘On My Own’

Driscoll is running as an independent in the March 6 election — with the endorsement from Vermont’s Progressive Party — challenging incumbent Democratic Mayor Miro Weinberger. Also in the contest is independent candidate Infinite Culcleasure.

When announcing her candidacy for mayor in December, Driscoll told Vermont newspaper, Seven Days, “It’s important to me that I enter this campaign on my own.”

Driscoll, who previously served in the Vermont state legislature and on the Burlington City Council, even vented to the paper, “I will never, ever get credit for fully completing anything on my own.”

For his part, Sen. Sanders said upon his stepdaughter’s announcement in December, “Today is Carina’s day, and her words and her ideas should be the focus, not anyone else’s.”

However, Driscoll later posted an ad on social media that says: “I am Bernie’s daughter, and am one of the thousands of people across this country inspired by Bernie to lead during this challenging time.”

Our Revolution, a political group that grew from the Sanders presidential campaign, endorsed her, with a tweet that said Driscoll “will push for more transparent government, protect community assets, and invest in Burlington schools.” The organization’s profile page on the candidate also linked to Driscoll’s fundraising page.

Weinberger has raised more than $80,000 compared to Driscoll’s haul of about $33,000, Vermont Public Radio reported in early February.

Weinberger’s spokeswoman Jordan Redell told Fox News the mayor would not be commenting for this story.

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Fat chance! EU mocked over 2050 green target as Germany falters – hours after UK pledge



GERMANY has been criticised for lagging behind its climate targets after Angela Merkel welcomed new EU emissions laws.

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Five major immigration promises Biden has yet to keep



WASHINGTON — The Biden administration’s recent reversal of its plans to raise the refugee cap sparked outrage not only among immigration advocates but from Democrats who accused the president of breaking his promise. Democratic Sen. Richard Durbin of Illinois said in response to the news on Twitter Friday, “Say it ain’t so, President Joe. This is unacceptable.” Raising the refugee cap is one of at least five promises on immigration made by candidate and President-elect Biden that have not yet been fulfilled as the end of his first 100 days approaches.

Reunite separated migrant families: In the final presidential debate, Biden was asked what he would do to reunite 545 children with their parents after they were separated by the Trump administration in 2017 and 2018. Biden pledged to build a task force to reunite them. While the task force has formed and has pledged to bring back deported parents to reunite with their children, not one of the deported parents has so far been brought back, according to lawyers representing the families. On a call with reporters earlier this month, a senior Department of Homeland Security official said the task force is first working on capturing the “full scope” of those potentially affected by the policy.

Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU’s Immigrants’ Rights Project, which represents the separated families said, “We are beginning to make progress on trying to repair the damage of the Trump administration’s family separation practice but it will be a long process and the key is ultimately whether the Biden administration sticks with it and provides real meaningful relief for these families.”

End detention of migrant families by Immigration and Customs Enforcement: During his presidential campaign, Biden tweeted “Children should be released from ICE detention with their parents immediately.” Asked in March whether he agreed, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said “a detention center is not where a family belongs.” Shortly after, in a court filing, the Biden administration said it would be ending the practice of holding migrant parents and children who are seeking asylum in detention. But then ICE walked it back, with a senior official telling NBC News, “We are not ending family detention. We are not closing the family detention centers.”

Though many families have been released without being detained, due to the limited capacity of border processing facilities, two ICE detention centers for families in South Texas continue to hold nearly 500 parents and children daily. By court order, families are not supposed to be detained for more than 20 days unless they are awaiting deportation. After that, they are typically released as they await their day in immigration court.

Raise the refugee cap: As a candidate, Biden promised to raise the limit on refugees resettled in the U.S. annually from the Trump administration’s historic lows to 125,000. Once in office, the Biden administration said that goal would be realized in the 2022 fiscal year, which begins in October, and it would admit 62,500 this fiscal year.

But last week, the Biden administration said it would keep the current level of refugees — 15,000 per fiscal year, set by the Trump administration — at least until it sets a “final, increased” refugee cap on May 15. White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said on Monday that “the challenge is the ability to process” increased numbers of refugees. And other White House officials blamed the high number of immigrants crossing the southern border.

However, the agencies and personnel used to screen refugees overseas are different from those used to process asylum seekers who have crossed into the U.S. The State Department works with the UN to identify refugees around the world to bring to the U.S., while asylum seekers at the border are processed by the Department of Homeland Security’s U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and unaccompanied minors who cross the border are cared for by Health and Human Services.

Government contractors remove existing Normandy barriers that separate Mexico and the United States, in preparation for a section of Pentagon-funded border wall along the Colorado River in Yuma, Ariz. on Sept. 10, 2019.Matt York / AP

Stop border wall construction: At the beginning of his presidency, Biden paused border wall construction and land acquisition until a a 60-day review of Trump’s border wall could be completed. The review tasked those involved to decide where the money set aside for the wall could be redirected. The 60-day mark passed more than 30 days ago without any results.

Last week, as the review continues, a judge agreed to give the government six acres of land in Hidalgo County, Texas, for the purpose of wall construction despite the Justice Department asking the court to wait until its review was complete. The case is one of more than 200 eminent domain cases started under the Trump administration that still continue today.

A spokesperson for the White House’s Office of Management and Budget said the review has been delayed because there is so much to sort out. “When the administration took office, funds had been diverted from military construction and other appropriated purposes toward building the wall, and wall construction was being challenged in multiple lawsuits by plaintiffs who alleged that the construction was creating serious environmental and safety issues. Under those circumstances, federal agencies are continuing to develop a plan to submit to the President soon,” the spokesperson said.

Children and workers walk at a tent encampment built to house migrant children near Tornillo, Texas, on June 19, 2018.Joe Raedle / Getty Images file

Hold the Trump administration accountable for family separation: As a candidate, Biden called the Trump administration’s practice of separating migrant families “criminal.” During the presidential transition he said, “There will be a thorough, thorough investigation of who is responsible and whether or not the responsibility is criminal and if that has been concluded the [Attorney General] will make that judgment.” But so far, no such review has been launched. In a recent court filing, the Justice Department blocked the release of Trump administration documents that detailed the planning of the “zero tolerance” policy that separated nearly 3,000 migrant families.

The White House declined to comment. DHS and DOJ did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Geoff Bennett and Monica Alba contributed.

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British holidaymakers given major boost as EU outlines plans to reopen borders



BRITONS have been handed a major summer holidays boost after EU bosses announced plans to welcome them to the Continent this summer.

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