Dianne Feinstein

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Dianne Feinstein

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Dianne Feinstein is a Democratic member of the United States Senate, representing California. She was originally elected to the Senate in 1992.

In the 111th Congress, Senator Feinstein assumed the Chairmanship of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, where she oversees the nation’s 16 intelligence agencies – the first female Senator to hold that position.

Senator Feinstein is a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee and the Senate Appropriations Committee, where she chairs the Subcommittee on Energy and Water. Senator Feinstein also serves on the Senate Rules and Administration Committee, which she chaired during the 110th Congress. In that capacity, Senator Feinstein was the first woman to chair the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies, and presided over the Inauguration of President Barack Obama on January 20, 2009.[1]

Early life

Dianne Feinstein was born in San Francisco, California, on June 22, 1933, to a Jewish physician father, Leon Goldman, and a Catholic Russian-American mother, Betty Rosenburg Goldman.

Feinstein had a tumultuous childhood. Her mother a former model, was prone to violent, alcohol-fueled rages, frequently directed at Feinstein and her two younger sisters, Lynn Goldman and Yvonne Goldman. “The smallest thing could set her off,” Feinstein later recalled. “You could not reason with her.” The burden of managing Betty’s eruptions fell to Dianne and her father, Leon Goldman, a gifted physician who was the first Jewish chair of surgery at the medical school at UCSF. Feinstein attended the Convent of the Sacred Heart, an exclusive and highly regimented Catholic school for girls, where she learned discipline and developed an interest in acting.[2]

Feinstein was introduced to politics by an uncle who began taking her to San Francisco Board of Supervisors (city council) meetings when she was sixteen. She recalled later that this was the main factor in her decision to pursue a career in public service. After graduating from San Francisco's Sacred Heart High School, she attended Stanford University. She studied history and political science and was also active in student government. She received her bachelor's degree in 1955.

In 1956 Feinstein married Jack K. Berman, a man who would eventually become a San Francisco superior court judge. The couple had one daughter. Combining marriage and family with a career, Feinstein was employed by a public affairs group that was interested in criminal justice. She went on to work for California's Industrial Welfare Commission and was appointed in 1962 to a four-year term on the state's Women's Board of Paroles. When her first marriage ended in divorce, she withdrew from public life for a time but came back as a member of San Francisco's Mayor's Commission on Crime.[3]

Before her career in the Senate, Feinstein was the President of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, elected in 1969 for 2.5 terms, and the Mayor of San Francisco, beginning in 1978 for 8 years. She is a San Francisco native. .[4]

Stanford

Coming to Stanford

Feinstein describes her arrival at Stanford in the fall of 1951 as “a wonderful release” because “I was on my own, could make my own decisions and didn’t have to ask for approval.” She lived in Roble and threw herself into social activities — at the expense of academics, like legions of Stanford freshmen before and since. “I had the potential to be a very good student. I was not a very good student.” A poor grade in freshman general biology dissuaded her from following her father into medicine. Instead, she gravitated toward courses in American history and politics. She recalls a seminal course in American political thought taught by a visiting professor. “The final was all essay, so I could write my heart out, and I got an A+. I decided that if these thoughts are rewarded, maybe I ought to try to pursue a field where I obviously have some talent.”

From her first months at Stanford, Feinstein sought ways to make her mark. She put herself forward for a position as a freshman representative on the Associated Students’ executive committee and ran for secretary of the Associated Women Students.[5]

Yugoslavia/Politics

By the start of her senior year, Feinstein had become politically active. She’d been overseas for the first time, traveling to the territories of then-Yugoslavia on a student trip led by Stanford historians Wayne Vucinich, and Dr. John H. Trueman. With a half-dozen other students, she established Stanford’s first chapter of Young Democrats, a sign of her political awakening and growing independence from her staunch Republican father. “He used to say, ‘Dianne and five Democrats are holed up in some place having a meeting,’ ” Feinstein says. “We did have a little organization — there weren’t many of us, and we couldn’t meet on campus, which was kind of a disincentive to any kind of political organization. But that’s when I chose to be a Democrat, based on my readings in history and that class in American political thought. And that’s really how Stanford had an influence on me.”[6]

ASSU VP

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In 1954 Dianne Goldman stood for, and won, the position of ASSU vive - president. After a record turnout, she won 63 percent of the vote.

Left to right are ASSU vice-presidential candidates Dianne Goldman, Ann Irvine, and Maureen Maxwell.

Supporting Red editors

In a vigorous verbal session, Stanford Excom sustained last week's decision to endorse a movement to bring Soviet student newspaper editors to this country for "guided tours." By a vote of 8 to 5, Excom members defeated a motion to rescind their former decision. In favor of the motion to rescind were Jack Tracy, Sally Beel, Carol Gevurtz, Roberta Clark, and Jim Flanagan.

Opposed to the motion were Sam Palmer, Jon Cosovich, Don Peck, Dave Brownwood, Dianne Goldman, Betty Bigelow, Bob Bowden, and Steve Voykovich. In his re-introduction of the subject, Pete Bing pointed out that, at the National Students Association summer conference, a subcommittee voted down a resolution which favored bringing the Russian student, editors to the United States.

This resolution had been brought to the plenary floor of the convention as a minority resolution, and defeated by a vote of 235 to (50. Both Bing and Bob Gable suggested that Stanford write to the State Department and ask for their reasons for delaying entrance permits.

Speaking in favor of endorsing the movement, Sam Palmer asserted that "nothing can be lost in allowing them to tome over." He was supported by both Dianne Goldman and Don Peck, who claimed that it was important to show' Russia that the United States is not an Iron Curtain country- that we arc willing to let Communists enter. "The visitors can't help but leant, see, and talk," stated Pat King. "They will get impressions and memories of the United States that nothing will be able to erase, even | though they might be unable to write about these facts once they return to Russia." Steve Voykovich asserted that such a visit would bo harmless to the United States, and underlined the need for co-existence in the world of today. He felt that bringing in the Russian visitors would be a step in the right direction. A later motion by Dianne Goldman requesting Bing to write the State Department for further information on the matter was defeated.[7]

Goldman hosted Soviet journalists visiting campus on an exchange program and was a frequent speaker at events held by the Stanford Political Union, a group that convened policy discussions with prominent public officials. During one forum on California’s regulation of alcohol sales, she delivered the student rebuttal to remarks made by a conservative state legislator named Caspar Weinberger, who would later become the U.S. secretary of defense.[8]

Seven Russian journalists visited the Stanford campus in October 1955 as part of their month-long tour of the United States. Arriving in New York on Oct. 17 the delegation visited that city, Chicago and Cleveland. According to Boris Nikolaevich Kanpov-Polevoy, secretary of the governing board of the Union of Soviet Writers and spokesman for the group, the purpose of journalists' visit is to "see in America everything worth seeing—the best of things."[9]

Political ambitions

A few months before graduating Stanford in 1955, Feinstein applied for a fellowship with the Coro Foundation, a public policy internship program for recent college graduates. In her application, she wrote, “My future plans center around public affairs in that I plan to run for political office on a local and possibly national level.”[10]

Marriages

In 1956, she married Jack K. Berman (died 2002), a colleague in the San Francisco District Attorney's office. Feinstein and Berman divorced three years later. Their daughter, Katherine Feinstein Mariano (b. 1957), is a Superior Court judge in San Francisco.

In 1962, shortly after beginning her career in politics, Feinstein married neurosurgeon Bertram Feinstein; her second husband died of colon cancer in 1978.

In 1980, Feinstein married Richard C. Blum, an investment banker.

Young radical Democrats

When Phillip Burton returned to San Francisco in 1947 he worked for Time Oil in Richmond. There he met a young Democratic activist and former Communist Party USA member named Bert Coffey, a close associate of George Miller, Jr. a young California Assemblyman. This group of young Democratic insurgents joined up with Joe Holsinger, Yori Wada, Jack K. Berman, a liberal lawyer and the first husband of Dianne Goldman (Dianne Feinstein), and Dr. Carlton Goodlett, a black physician, publisher and longtime Communist Party USA activist. Burton and Goodlett worked closely together in the NAACP and the Young Democrats.[11]

Willie Brown's Housing protest

Future San Francisco Mayor and long time Communist Party USA ally Willie Brown came into the public eye through a well planned incident.

Willie and Blanche Brown needed a home closer to his law office.Blanche was now the wife of an attorney, and she wanted a fitting place to raise a family. Toward the end of May 1961, she visited the Forest Knolls housing development on the western slope of Mount Sutro, overlooking the Pacific Ocean. The homes were listed at $23,950 to $33,950, probably well beyond the Browns' financial reach.

Blanche and a friend, Dorothy Lincoln, looked at a model at Forest Knolls. She remembered that she and her friend stayed for more than three hours. "There was a house that was open, so just on a lark we said, well, let's go in and see. Let's go see the house. And as we went in, everybody ran out. They literally ran out of the house. They ran to the garage. We used the telephone and we called Willie, and he said just stay there and wait and see what happens. So we stayed there and we stayed there and finally they sent a black caretaker to close up the house. They said they were not going to show it anymore."

The events catapulting Brown into a public figure may not have started precisely the way his wife remembered thirty years after the fact. A now-defunct liberal news magazine, Frontier , reported at the time that Willie Brown visited the housing tract before his wife, and brought with him a photographer from Carlton Goodlett's Sun-Reporter , an indication that his motives extended beyond just house hunting. Frontier and the article's author, Stephen L. Sanger, had closer access to the NAACP at the time than many of the mainstream news organizations, and his report therefore cannot be discounted.

Willie Brown later portrayed what happened next as a spontaneous protest. The Associated Press called it "impromptu," but there was nothing impromptu about it.The next step was well-planned, brilliantly executed political theater. Brown turned a private humiliation into a public display that captured the imagination of an entire city. It was the first inkling that Brown's political talents were far greater than those of his mentor, Terry Francois, and could meet greater challenges than the stifling branch politics of the NAACP.

That Sunday, the Brown family went to church. Then the twenty-seven-year-old Willie Brown led his wife and two baby daughters to the housing development. They were accompanied by Terry Francois and a few other friends. The local newspapers were alerted well ahead of their arrival, and reporters were waiting when they got there. The sales representatives again disappeared, so the Browns and their friends sat down in the garage. They kept the development sales office closed for the day, and Forest Knolls was the butt of stories in the newspapers. A newspaper photograph taken that day shows Brown in a neatly creased suit leading his children by the hand to the housing development. They were the picture of a professional, middle-class family. How could anyone object to having them live next door? The photograph was a developer's nightmare and campaign manager's dream.

The tract was developed by Carl and Fred Gellert, whose Standard Building Company was the largest housing developer in the city.

In the days ahead the protest escalated, with Negroes taking turns being snubbed at the Forest Knolls development. Jazz pianist Oscar Peterson showed up and marched on the picket line. Whites also joined the protest, and it became a cause célèbre in San Francisco's liberal circles. Among those who joined Willie Brown's picket line was Dianne Berman, the wife of a prominent attorney. "My stroller bumped up against the heels of the man in front of me in the line, and it was Terry Francois," she recalled. Years later, as Dianne Feinstein, she became mayor of San Francisco and then a United States senator from California. She liked to tell the story that the bumping of the carriage was her first introduction to Francois and, through him, to Willie Brown.[10] Throughout her career Feinstein enjoyed a mutually beneficial political friendship with Willie Brown, and it began on the Forest Knolls picket line.

There would be no police with dogs and firehoses moving on Willie Brown and his friends. Some of the city's most prominent citizens joined the protest. The future mayor, Feinstein, was the daughter of an illustrious surgeon, and her husband was in line to be a judge.[12]

South African divestment

Dec. 20 1973 the San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously approves a non-binding resolution urging the S.F. Retirement System Board to divest, proposed by Supervisors Quentin Kopp, Dianne Feinstein and Terry Francois.[13]

Appoints known socialist

Jan. 9 1979: San Francisco Mayor Dianne Feinstein appointed well know Democratic Socialist Organizing Committee member Harry Britt to succeed slain supervisor Harvey Milk. In accepting the appointment, Britt said he considers himself the "third openly gay supervisor" from District 5 -- following Milk and Milk's aide Anne Kronenberg, a 25-year-old lesbian. Britt had wanted Feinstein to appoint Kronenberg, but Feinstein said she was concerned about Kronenberg's youth.[14]

Blum controversy

Controversy has ensued over Blum's companies, Perini Corporation and URS Corporation, for making a profit from the Iraq War. Both companies had contracts with the Department of Defense from 1997 through the end of 2005, with Feinstein's knowledge. Feinstein lobbied Pentagon officials in public hearings, trying to get them to support certain defense projects. Some of these already were or subsequently became URS or Perini contracts. From 2001 to 2005, URS earned $792 million from military construction and environmental cleanup projects approved by the Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee. Perini earned $759 million from such Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee projects[15]

Blum Cuba connection

Califormia Senator Dianne Feinstein has links to Fidel Castro's Cuba.

Feinstein is married to investment banker Richard C. Blum.

ASTAR Airlines was fined in 2004 for making payments to a Cuban government entity for DHL Airlines, of which Blum is s a 33% owner.

Blum was a board member during the ASTAR payment-to-Cuba time frame.

Although this information was revealed in the Washington Tariff & Trade Letter, Vol. 24, No 14, on April 5, 2004, it never made the news.

Indeed, ASTAR Air Cargo was fined $28,073 for making payments to a Cuban government entity.[16]

Committees

  • Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence
  • Senate Committee on Appropriations
  • Chairman of the Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies
  • Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies
  • Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies
  • Subcommittee on Defense
  • Subcommittee on Energy and Water
  • Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies
  • Senate Committee on the Judiciary
  • Subcommittee on Administrative Oversight and the Courts
  • Subcommittee on Crime and Drugs
  • Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees and Border Security
  • Subcommittee on The Constitution
  • Subcommittee on Terrorism and Homeland Security
  • Senate Committee on Rules and Administration[17]

Supporting communist Youth Festival

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In 1985, while serving as mayor of San Francisco, Dianne Feinstein issued a proclamation in support of that year's World Festival of Youth and Students, in Moscow.

The event was organized by the Soviet front World Federation of Democratic Youth, and was supported locally by the Communist Party USA and similar groups.

Promoting Soviet trade

The president of a U.S.-Soviet trade council meeting in Moscow December 1985, contended December 9 that Washington's efforts to alter policies in Moscow through trade restrictions should give way to a more positive approach.

"Many of us are asking whether we have used the stick long enough and whether we should start to use the carrot. After all, 10 years [of restrictions] have not got us much," said President James Giffen of the nongovernmental U.S.-U.S.S.R. Trade and Economic Council at a press conference.

A large and high-powered contingent of U.S. businessmen is here for the meeting that both Americans and Soviets are calling the first major spinoff of last month's summit meeting. Secretary of Commerce Malcolm Baldrige accompanied 450 American businessmen and officials.

"I can only think that the Geneva summit had something to do with" the increased interest, said Giffen, adding that at the last meeting, in 1982, only 250 Americans attended.

Echoing the same theme, the Communist Party newspaper Pravda made a direct link between the summit and improved trade relations, which, it said, create the "material fabric . . . for building up an atmosphere of trust."

The trade council has been critical of various official U.S. restrictions placed on Soviet trade, which its spokesmen say have only hurt American business in an increasingly competitive market.

Total trade between the two countries jumped dramatically last year to $3.2 billion, but the upsurge was due to shipments of American grain. In nonagricultural areas, trade has fallen off since the deterioriation of relations in the late 1970s. General Electric, IBM and Du Pont are among companies represented at the meeting.

A chartered Boeing 747 jet that arrived yesterday with the businessmen and Baldrige also brought San Francisco Mayor Dianne Feinstein and former ambassador Robert Strauss.

According to trade council officials, the number of businessmen interested in the meeting increased markedly after President Reagan met with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in Geneva last month. Baldrige's attendance was not confirmed until after Geneva, they said.

Giffen said it was likely that American companies would participate in new Soviet energy projects -- in the Barents Sea among other sites -- in exchange for energy exports, serving to rectify the current trade imbalance in favor of the United States.

Giffen noted that the Soviets still doubt the reliability of American traders since, in the Soviet view, the 1985 U.S. export act did not foreclose the kind of trade embargoes that have been applied in the past.[18]

Meeting Soviet delegation

Daily World, January 30, 1987

On January 27, 1987, Soviet Consul General Valentin Kamenev presented San Francisco mayor Dianne Feinstein with a Soviet streetcar "a streetcar named desire". Also present were Vitali Vertsov, trolley car chief in the Soviet city of Orel, and Viktor Zhelezny, deputy chief of public transport Russian Republic.

Ross men defend Feinstein

In 1983, Fred Ross, Sr. joined his son, Fred Ross, Jr., and trained organizers to defeat the unfair Recall election of San Francisco Mayor Dianne Feinstein who had been targeted because of her support for tough gun control regulation in the aftermath of the assassination of Mayor George Moscone and Harvey Milk. Fred Ross Sr.’s house meeting method was instrumental in recruiting the hundreds of volunteers who turned out to defeat the Recall by an 80% margin.[19]

DSA endorsement

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Democratic Socialists of America endorsed Feinstein in her 1990 bid for the California Governorship.

"Crack" cocaine investigation

In September 1996, the Justice Department and a key House committee began separate investigations into possible CIA connections to a Bay Area drug ring that helped ignite the "crack" cocaine epidemic of the 1980s, widening the federal government's inquiry into the matter.

"The integrity of our justice system is at stake," said U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D- Calif., who announced the Justice Department probe of information uncovered in a Mercury News series, "Dark Alliance."

"It is completely unacceptable for the United States to have been involved in any way with the trafficking of drugs over our borders."

The Justice Department investigators will cooperate with the CIA's inspector general, who also has launched on a full investigation into allegations that have enraged the Congressional Black Caucus and lighted up switchboards at talk radio stations nationwide for weeks.

Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Los Angeles, also released a letter from House Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., stating that the House intelligence committee would look into the matter, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The investigations stem from the Mercury News' three-part series, which detailed how a Bay Area drug ring sold tons of cocaine to the street gangs of South-Central Los Angeles and funneled millions in drug profits to the CIA-backed Contras, who were at war with Nicaragua's left-wing Sandinista government.

Traced to dealers The series traced the crack cocaine explosion to two Nicaraguan cocaine dealers, Danilo Blandon and Norwin Meneses, who were civilian leaders of the Frente Democratica Nicaraguense (FDN), an anti-communist commando group formed and run by the CIA during the 1980s.

Blandon, who is now an undercover informant for the Drug Enforcement Administration, admitted in federal court recently that his biggest customer was a South-Central crack dealer named "Freeway" Rick Ross, who turned Blandon's cocaine into crack and distributed it to the Crips and Bloods street gangs. Blandon told the DEA in 1995 that at the height of his business with Ross, he was providing 100 kilograms of cocaine a week to the gangs.

Feinstein said Michael Bromwich, the Justice Department's inspector general, will look into the DEA informant's testimony.

Ex-federal prosecutor Bromwich is a former federal prosecutor who worked in the narcotics unit for New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani when he was a U.S. attorney. Bromwich also was associate counsel from 1987 to 1989 for the independent counsel investigating the Iran-Contra scandal.

"While I am fully aware that these events occurred during the Reagan and Bush administrations, it is unconscionable to let the implication stand that the United States helped introduce the crack cocaine epidemic into the streets of our cities," Feinstein said in a letter to Attorney General Janet Reno, seeking the probe.

"The implications are far too deep and the connections far too strong," Feinstein wrote, adding later: "I urge you to dispel these notions by getting to the bottom of these allegations. We must be honest about our past to ensure that our work to stop the flow of drugs in the future may continue without the tarnish of corruption these charges have brought."

CIA Director John Deutch ordered the spy agency's inspector general to investigate the report after Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., and Rep. Maxine Waters called for a probe.

In 1985 and 1986, the Sandinista Government made a variety of claims that CIA or the Contras were connected to drug trafficking:

In 1985 Nicaraguan Foreign Minister D'Escoto had complained to the Costa Rican Foreign Minister that Eden Pastora was building airfields which were to be used for narcotics trafficking to support his group.[20]

EMILY's List

Feinstein has been supported by EMILY's List during her campaigning.

NUCLEAR AGE PEACE FOUNDATION

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Transition and new potential were the key words for our Washington, DC operation in 2008.The Foundation decided to concentrate its resources in a new, flexible approach to impacting government policy and legislation – emphasizing rapid responses to issues as they arise.

In 2009, the key to our success will be fresh access to key policymakers provided by experienced Washington consultants, which we have engaged to help us with Congressional and Executive Branch outreach.

We also plan to continue to grow our Turn the Tide Campaign (see opposite page) so thatindividual voices can directly influence the decision-making process in the U.S. capital.

In May 2008, the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation and the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability presented Senator Dianne Feinstein with an award for introducing the Nuclear Policy and Posture Review Act of 2007 (S. 1914), which requires nuclear policy and posture reviews that consider international nuclear disarmament obligations. The bill also calls for public input and declassified versions of the reports. Left to right: Nickolas Roth (Nuclear Age Peace Foundation), Senator Dianne Feinstein, Marie Rietmann (Women’s Action for New Directions), Paul Kawika Martin (Peace Action), Alfred Meyer (Alliance for Nuclear Accountability).

Brookings Institution

Feinstein and her husband, Richard C. Blum, contributed between $500,000 and $999,999 to the Brookings Institution, between July 1, 2008–June 30, 2009.[21]

Supported by Council for a Livable World

Dianne Feinstein is very close to the Council for a Livable World.

Electoral support

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The Council for a Livable World, founded in 1962 by long-time socialist activist and alleged Soviet agent, Leo Szilard, is a non-profit advocacy organization that seeks to "reduce the danger of nuclear weapons and increase national security", primarily through supporting progressive, congressional candidates who support their policies. The Council supported Dianne Feinstein in his successful Senate run as candidate for California.[22]

Drinan Award

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The Father Robert F. Drinan National Peace and Human Rights Award was established in 2006. The award is annually presented by the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation and Council for a Livable World to individuals who exemplify the late Father Drinan's commitment |to peace and human justice".

The award broadly focuses on U.S. politics, political science, physical science, biology, peace studies, and peace and human rights activism.

Council for a Livable World Peace PAC Chair and former Rep. Patricia Schroeder (D-CO) introduced the Council’s first honoree, Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), a "leader and expert on nuclear weapons issues who is also dedicated to bringing our troops home from Iraq".

Sen. Feinstein spoke of the difficulties of fighting eight years of Bush Administration proposals for a succession of new nuclear weapons programs inspired by a terribly misguided Nuclear Posture Review. She mentioned fighting the Robust Nuclear Earth Penetrator (nuclear bunker buster), the Advanced Concept Initiative and the Reliable Replacement Warhead – but winning every year. Feinstein said she is committed to ensuring that the United States does not open the door to greater nuclear proliferation, the central mission of Council for a Livable World.[24]

CLW Gratitude for Leadership on Nuclear Funding Program

June 27, 2013 the Senate Appropriations Committee marked-up the FY 2014 Energy and Waters Appropriations bill. Because of the efforts and leadership of Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) the committee passed a bill that increases funding to prevent nuclear terrorism while scaling back wasteful spending on the life extension program for the B61 nuclear gravity bomb.

“We applaud Sen. Feinstein for her leadership in preventing nuclear terrorism and curtailing wasteful spending on an unnecessary and unrealistic life extension program,” said Kingston Reif, director of non-proliferation programs at Council for a Livable World. “Her bill is a victory for U.S. national security and the more responsible stewardship of defense dollars, We hope that the Senate funding levels are included in the final appropriations bill.”

The President’s FY 2014 budget request for the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) slashed funding for successful anti-nuclear terrorism and nonproliferation programs including the Global Threat Reduction Initiative, which have removed dangerous nuclear materials from ten countries. While cutting cost-effective non-proliferation programs, the request for the B61 refurbishment rose by forty-five percent above FY2013 appropriations. Two years ago, NNSA estimated the program would cost $4 billion and start in 2017. Today, its estimate has ballooned to over $10 billion and the first refurbished bomb will not be produced until 2020 at the earliest.

“By reversing more than $120 million in core nuclear and radiological terrorism prevention program cuts, the Senate bill would ensure that these activities remain on an accelerated track to secure dangerous weapons usable materials,” said John Isaacs, executive director of Council for a Livable World. “It also sends a signal that future administration budget requests must adequately fund these programs.”[25]

Honoring Harry Bridges

Harry Bridges was once a secret member of the central Committee of the Communist Party USA.

And, as founder and president of the International Longshoremen's and Warehousemen's Union, he worked within the capitalist system that he said he despised to help make West Coast longshoremen among the best paid workers in the world.

On February 9 1986, the 84-year-old Bridges, was honored at a testimonial dinner at the Los Angeles Hilton in "a celebration of a life, a movement, an epoch." The sponsors included Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley, San Francisco Mayor Dianne Feinstein and more than 150 other political, labor, business and education leaders.[26]

Harry Bridges Plaza

The Committee for Harry Bridges Plaza is a 501(c)3 non-profit that first began in 1998 as an ad hoc group of citizens dedicated to the belief that the ideals and deeds of Harry Bridges and the working men and women of 1934 should occupy a prominent position in San Francisco’s civic history and never be forgotten.

To that end the Committee took on a two-part plan: First, to have the plaza then under construction in front of the Ferry Building between the north- and south-bound lanes of the Embarcadero named after Harry Bridges, and second, to erect a monument of Harry on the site. The idea quickly gained the enthusiastic support of organized labor, past and present mayors of San Francisco, the Board of Supervisors, the Port Commission, and from elected state and federal representatives. Harry Bridges Plaza officially came into existence on July 27, 1999.

The official christening fell on July 28, 2001, Harry’s 100th birthday. The Committee worked with the Mayor of San Francisco and the Governor of California to proclaim the date “Harry Bridges Day.” In celebration, tributes to Harry were read into the Congressional Record by Senator Barbara Boxer and Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi.[27]

Endorsers of the project included Senator Dianne Feinstein, Senator Daniel Inouye, Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi Congresswoman Jackie Speier.[28]

On July 30 2001, a ribbon cutting ceremony for the dedication of Harry Bridges Plaza in San Francisco. Mayor Willie Brown led the event. Joining him on the platform were Rep. Nancy Pelosi, County supervisor Adam Peskin, Port Commission vice chairman and former ILWU president Brian McWilliams and Bridges' widow Nikki Bridges Flynn.

Messages came from Gov. Gray Davis, Senator Dianne Feinstein and Assemblyman Kevin Shelley.[29]

Sacramento Progressive Alliance endorsement

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The more than 5,000 strong Sacramento Progressive Alliance endorsed Dianne Feinstein in 2010.

Staffer travels to Cuba

Feinstein staffer Eric Alan Jacobstein traveled to Havana, 6/11/2012 to 6/16/2012 to participate in a Washington Office on Latin America fact-finding trip to Cuba; he attended briefings, met with Cuban government officials, NGO representatives and members of the media; toured various sites around Cuba. WOLA spent $1977 on the visit. [30]

Phillip Burton Awards Committee

In 2013, the Honorary Phillip Burton Awards Committee, of the Immigrant Legal Resource Center, consisted of;

  • Jeff Adachi, San Francisco Public Defender
  • The Honorable David Campos, San Francisco Board of Supervisors
  • The Honorable David Chiu, President of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors
  • Carmen Chu, San Francisco Assessor-Recorder
  • The Honorable Malia Cohen, San Francisco Board of Supervisors
  • The Honorable Anna Eshoo, US Representative for California
  • The Honorable Mark Farrell, San Francisco Board of Supervisors
  • The Honorable Dianne Feinstein, US Senator for California
  • The Honorable Barbara Lee, US Representative for California
  • The Honorable Zoe Lofgren, US Representative for California
  • The Honorable Eric Mar, San Francisco Board of Supervisors
  • The Honorable George Miller, US Representative for California
  • The Honorable Nancy Pelosi, Democratic Leader of the US House of Representatives
  • The Honorable Jackie Speier, US Representative for California
  • The Honorable Katy Tang, San Francisco Board of Supervisors
  • The Honorable Scott Wiener, San Francisco Board of Supervisors
  • The Honorable Norman Yee, San Francisco Board of Supervisors[31]

Trade with Russia

Ending nearly 40 years of trade restrictions with Russia, the Senate voted December 2012 to approve a bill that will allow U.S. companies to expand business ties with the world's ninth-largest economy and its 140 million consumers.

The bill to grant permanent normal trade relations to Russia, which passed 92-4, now goes to President Obama, who said that he'll sign it.

Businesses lobbied hard for the legislation, saying it would allow them to cash in after Russia formally joined the World Trade Organization on Aug. 22.

With passage of the bill, Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., chairman of the Senate Finance Committee and a top advocate of the legislation, predicted they will at least double within five years.

Sen. John Kerry, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said all U.S. businesses will benefit because Russia now will be forced to lower its tariffs and allow more imports after joining the WTO.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said the trade deal "includes only concessions by Russia," since the United States is a member of the WTO.[32]

Fred Ross award campaign

In early 2013, mainly Democratic Socialists of America aligned activists, together with many elected officials across the United States came together to urge President Barack Obama to award posthumously the Presidential Medal of Freedom to the legendary organizer, Fred Ross, Sr.. The Saul Alinsky trained radical was the first to organize people through house meetings, a mentor to both Cesar Chavez and DSAer Dolores Huerta, and a pioneer in Latino voter outreach since 1949 when he helped elect Communist Party USA affiliate Ed Roybal as Los Angeles’s first Latino council member, "Ross’ influence on social change movements remains strong two decades after his death in 1992".

Congressional endorsers of the proposal included Dianne Feinstein.[33]

PDA contact

In 2013 Progressive Democrats of America assigned activists to deliver their material to almost every US Congressman and Senator, Shirley Golub was assigned as the contact for Senator Feinstein.[34]

JStreet endorsement, 2012

In 2012, the the JStreet PAC endorsed seven Senatorial candidates, all of whom emerged victorious. The Senate slate, which has more than doubled in size since 2010, included pro-Israel leaders Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Sen. Dianne Feinstein (CA), Sen. Maria Cantwell (WA) and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (RI). The PAC also backed winning candidates in some of the most competitive Senate races in the country, raising more than $100,000 each for Sen. Sherrod Brown (OH), Rep. Tammy Baldwin (WI), Governor Tim Kaine (VA) and Rep. Martin Heinrich (NM).[35]

JStreet endorsement, 2014

The socialist infiltrated, anti-Israel "two state solution" JStreet PAC endorsed several "off cycle" Senators in 2014, including Dianne Feinstein. [36]

2016

JStreet endorsed Feinstein in 2016.

Feinstein earned a reputation as an authority on international affairs. Recently, she has been a leading voice on the need to prioritize diplomacy to resolve the threat of a nuclear armed Iran. Feinstein is a committed supporter of a two-state solution and strong friend of the pro-Israel, pro-peace movement.[37]

Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act of 2015

S 299, the Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act of 2015, principal sponsors are Sens. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., and Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.[38]

By May 20, it had accumulated 33 co-sponsors, including 26 Democrats - Sheldon Whitehouse, Tom Udall, Dick Durbin, Thomas Carper, Amy Klobuchar, Barbara Boxer, Jack Reed, Debbie Stabenow, Jeff Merkley, Chris Murphy, Benjamin Cardin, Chris Coons, Dianne Feinstein, Jeanne Shaheen, Sherrod Brown, Mazie Hirono, Brian Schatz, Tammy Baldwin, Ed Markey, Heidi Heitkamp, Jon Tester, Claire McCaskill, Ron Wyden, Tim Kaine, Al Franken, Elizabeth Warren, Michael Bennet, Martin Heinrich . [39]

"Sec. 306"

Washington, DC – The Iranian-American Bar Association (IABA) launched its Unity Campaign on November 21 2002 with a presentation called "Impact of Pending Immigration Laws and Opportunities for Civic Engagement," a first in an expected series of events aimed at bringing together Iranian-Americans as a formidable, influential force on civic life, as well as facilitating educational panel discussions between Iranian-Americans and non-Iranian Americans.

IABA had invited two other prominent Iranian-American groups to speak at the event as a show of unity, the President of the Iranian American Political Action Committee (IAPAC) Mr. Hassan Nemazee and the President of the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) Trita Parsi.

One of the key topics of the evening was the broad language of Section 306 of the Enhanced Border Security and Visa Entry Reform Act. The Act, signed into law by President Bush earlier this year, was created in direct response to the tragic events of September 11th in order to secure US borders, improve visa entry systems, and thwart future terrorist attacks.

However, Sec. 306 assumes that nationals seeking nonimmigrant visas from countries listed as state-sponsors of international terrorism all pose as a security threat to the U.S. unless determined otherwise by the Secretary of State. The Department currently lists Iran as one of the state-sponsored terrorist nations.

Another debated topic was Section 811 of the Gekas Bill, legislation that would ban all visas to Iranians.

"The political influence of Iranian-Americans is virtually non-existent," Babak Hoghooghi, IABA President, said.

One of the major supporters of Sec. 306 was Senator Dianne Feinstein (D) from California, a state populated with close to a million "highly successful and politically inactive" Iranian-Americans, Hoghooghi said.[40]

The "Jihad" Caucus

In May 2015, a group of 14 U.S. senators, led by Illinois Senator Dick Durbin and Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar, wrote a letter to President Obama urging him to allow 65,000 Syrians into the United States as refugees. This would require a dramatic expansion of the refugee program, and virtually guarantee that a sizable number of ISIS fighters would slip in among them. Frank Gaffney's Center for Security Policy called these Senators the "Jihad Caucus" because practically speaking, Jihad is what this request will bring.

The 14 senators demanding this massive influx of Syrians were: Dick Durbin, Amy Klobuchar, Al Franken, Patrick Leahy, Dianne Feinstein, Patty Murray, Robert Menendez, Sheldon Whitehouse, Jeanne Shaheen, Chris Coons, Tim Kaine, Ed Markey, Sherrod Brown, and Mazie Hirono.

These same 14 had sent another letter in April Demanding action on the Syrians.[41]

CAIR

“Through their continued efforts to educate and introduce Americans to positive aspects of the Muslim community, CAIR-LA provides an important link and resource for the Los Angeles region. Their unwavering dedication to increasing awareness and acceptance is truly praiseworthy.” - Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) (November 2011) .[42]

China ties

Dianne Feinstein has long ties to the People's Republic of China, and its friends.

Air connection

Scheduled passenger airline service between China and the United States was restored January 8, 1981, after a 32-year hiatus when a Boeing 747 with 139 Chinese passengers arrived exactly on time at San Francisco International Airport.

Mayor Dianne Feinstein and Consul General Hu Ding-yi held a ribboncutting ceremony, which included a cake, decorated with CAAC Welcome to San Francisco, and two bottles of champagne. Mayor Feinstein described the landing as an historic and exciting occasion. Consul General Hu said he was delighted and excited and predicted more travel between China and the United States.[43]

Shanghai sister city

In November 1986 San Francisco mayor Dianne Feinstein was in Shanghai to strengthen sister-city ties begun six years previously. [44]

F.B.I. Warn Of Donations From China

Senator Dianne Feinstein of California said March 10, 1997 that the Federal Bureau of Investigation had warned her that the Chinese Government might try to funnel illegalcontributions to her campaign and other Congressional campaigns, but she said the information had not influenced her position or her vote on any issue.

Ms. Feinstein, a Democrat, said that while "the information was vague and nonspecific," she had concluded that she should "be very cautious" in dealing with Asian-American contributors.

At a news conference at Dulles International Airport in suburban Washington, after she had arrived on a flight from San Francisco, the Senator said she had been frustrated because the information from the F.B.I. had been too sketchy to be useful in identifying contributors who might have funneled Chinese money into her campaign.

"Was I briefed?" Ms. Feinstein asked. "Yes. Was it a specific briefing? No. It was a classified briefing. The substance of it was that there were some credible sources that presented the F.B.I. with the view that the Chinese may try and funnel contributions to various candidates. That was it. There were no specifics. How would this happen?

When would it be done? Where would it be done?" To such questions, she said, she received no answers.

Senator Feinstein's statements came after The Washington Post reported today that the F.B.I. had warned six members of Congress that they had been selected by China to receive campaign contributions funneled through foreign corporations. Ms. Feinstein said she did not know the names of the five others.

The Senator said she had "no reason to believe" that the Chinese Government had actually contributed to her campaign. "None whatsoever," she said.

The disclosures are the latest development in a furor over campaign contributions by Asian-Americans and companies based in Asia. For many years, Ms. Feinstein has tried to promote friendship and trade with China, and she has countered critics of the Chinese human rights record by emphasizing what she described in a Senate speech last year as "major improvements in human rights" there.

Republican Congressional leaders said today that they would try to find out what, if anything, the White House had known about Chinese attempts to buy influence in American politics. Leon Panetta, the former White House chief of staff, said today that neither he nor the President had been warned by the F.B.I.

Senator John McCain, an Arizona Republican who has introduced legislation to overhaul the financing of campaigns, said the reports about China's effort to buy influence in America would be investigated. "It gives another new twist to this ongoing scandal," he said. "This has to be investigated."

Mr. McCain has prodded Attorney General Janet Reno to seek the appointment of an independent counsel to investigate Democratic fund-raising activities.

Senator Feinstein was re-elected in 1994, but she said she had still been trying to pay campaign debts last year. She said that on Friday, she had returned six contributions from people with connections to the Lippo Bank, an arm of the Lippo Group, a conglomerate based in Indonesia that has investments and business operations throughout Asia. The contributions, made in 1994, totaled $12,000, she said. Four of the contributions were made by Lippo Bank employees; two were made by wives of bank employees.

Ms. Feinstein said she had returned the contributions "only because they became controversial," not because she believed them to be illegal. Federal law prohibits contributions to an election campaign from a foreign government, but Ms. Feinstein said she did not know whether Lippo had connections with the Government of China. "I don't believe anybody knows that," she said. "I don't know what connection Lippo has with the Government of China."

Ms. Feinstein's husband, Richard Blum, has extensive investments in China. Her financial disclosure statement shows, for example, that his money-management firm has financial interests in Shanghai Pacific, Golden China and other partnerships that invest in China.

But Ms. Feinstein said that her husband's investments had not influenced her position on foreign policy and trade with China. "We have built a firewall," she said.

"That firewall has stood us in good stead."

President Clinton attended a fund-raising dinner at Senator Feinstein's home in California on June 9, 1996. Among those on the guest list were John Huang, a top fund-raiser for the Democratic National Committee who had been a Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce. Mr. Huang was a senior American executive for the Riady family's Lippo Group, a $12 billion conglomerate, before he joined the Clinton Administration in July 1994. He is now the subject of a Justice Department investigation into possibly illegal contributions to the Democratic Party from foreign sources.

Also at the dinner was Xiaoming Dai, the chairman of Asia Securities International, an investment company, based in Hong Kong, with an office in Beijing. Lippo had acontrolling stake in Asia Securities but sold it in 1994. A recent annual report from Asia Securities contains a photograph of Mr. Dai with Stephen T. Riady, chairman of Lippo Ltd., who runs the Hong Kong operations of the Lippo group.

Ms. Feinstein said that she had recently adopted a policy of not taking campaign contributions from permanent resident aliens, even though they are allowed to make such contributions. "We have changed our procedures and are not accepting contributions from anyone who is not a citizen," she said.

Ms. Feinstein said that she now asks all contributors to certify that they are United States citizens and that the money they contribute to her campaign is their own. "This was not thought to be necessary before," she said. "I don't know what else to do, frankly."

Ms. Feinstein said that on Monday she would call the Director of the F.B.I., Louis J. Freeh, and ask him for more information about possible Chinese efforts to buy influence with her.

"If there is credible evidence," she said, "tell me what it is. Enable me to protect myself. That's the job of the F.B.I." At the meeting last June, she said, none of the F.B.I. agents "told me where or when or how or what to look for."[45]

WTO enabler

In 1988, things were not looking good for a deal to allow China to join the World Trade Organization. A highly touted visit to Washington by Chinese Prime Minister Zhu Rongji that many expected would cinch an agreement ended in failure. Prospects got gloomier when U.S. bombs accidentally leveled the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, in May.

But in this game of high-powered negotiations that ultimately led Monday to a trade deal, the Clinton administration had an ace in the hole: Sen. Dianne Feinstein.

The California Democrat had a 14-year personal relationship with Chinese President Jiang Zemin, dating back to the days when Feinstein was mayor of San Francisco an Jiang was mayor of its Chinese sister city, Shanghai. So last August, the White House dispatched Feinstein on yet another trip to China. She carried to Jiang a handwritten note from President Clinton, urging him to resume talks.

"Senator Feinstein played a critical role in paving the way for this critical trade agreement," said White House press officer Elizabeth Newman.

Feinstein's role in the WTO deal might not be over. As one of the strongest advocates in Congress of economic ties with China, Feinstein could play an important role inhelping persuade senators to grant China the permanent "normal trade relations"status that is critical to the deal. Prospects for approval look promising as key Republican leaders have lined up behind the president. But many in Congress had concerns, among them Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, and Rep. Tom Campbell.

Feinstein said in an interview November 1999 that she felt the only way China would enter into WTO negotiations again was with the backing of Jiang.

"Other than him saying go ahead with it, it wasn't going to happen, in my view,"

Feinstein said, offering her services as an intermediary to Clinton and national security adviser Sandy Berger. "I said I'd be prepared to do it if they felt it would be helpful, and they said they did think it would be helpful and please do it."

On Aug. 16, in the Chinese coastal city of Dalian, Feinstein delivered the note to her old friend and met with him for three hours in hopes of getting WTO negotiations back on track.

Feinstein had visited Jiang several times in China over the years. He once invited her and her husband to see Mao Tse-tung's bedroom in his old residence, the first foreigners to do so. Feinstein had entertained Jiang in San Francisco, dancing with him as he sang "When We Were Young."

On that day last August, she found Jiang receptive and particularly pleased that Clinton had taken the time to personally write a note to him.

"I think he listened, and we had substantial discussions on the subject," she said. Jiang mentioned that he was concerned that when premier Zhu had come to Washington bearing a proposal that some in his government felt was too favorable to the United States, it was not only rebuffed but publicly denounced, Feinstein said.

"I was successful in getting the Chinese interested in beginning to resume negotiations on the subject," she said. But Feinstein said the credit for the agreement goes to U.S. negotiators.

Feinstein expected approval of the new trade status, which would remove the annual congressional review that many believe continues to put pressure on China to reform its economy and human rights record.

As with many in Congress, several Bay Area representatives were waiting to be briefed on details of the deal before making a final decision.

Rep. Anna Eshoo, D-Palo Alto, has been supportive of China's membership in the WTO and urged people in Silicon Valley to "weigh in and explain to skeptical members of Congress how this agreement will have a positive effect." But Rep. Pete Stark, D- Fremont, said he knows enough about China's history to realize the WTO deal is a bad idea. "China's not ready to enter into civilized relations with anyone," he said.

Nancy Pelosi, one of the most ardent China critics in Congress, said she's also concerned about the deal. "Once they get permanent (normal trade relations status), all leverage from the U.S. on behalf of business is over because they have what they want permanently," Pelosi said. "They have violated their agreements in terms of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, they have violated their agreements in terms of trade, they have violated their agreements on international covenants on human rights. Why is that we think they are then going to honor their commitments they make for WTO?"

Feinstein said China's entry into the WTO would be good for the U.S. economy. "I think the American economy is much better off with China as a member of the WTO than it is with China outside of the WTO, doing whatever it wants whenever it wants to do it," Feinstein said. "I think the key to world trade is everybody playing by the same rules."

The deal is specifically good for California, she said.

"We're the largest exporting state in the nation. To be able to have fair terms and overall reduced tariffs, reduced market restrictions to our products, this is important.

And it's important to do it now," she said. As China's economy grows and its people have more money to spend, they'll want to buy foreign goods, Feinstein said.

California traditionally has looked to Asia for its export markets, she said, which was one reason why San Francisco formed the sister-city arrangement with Shanghai in 1979, the first such agreement between Chinese and American communities.

And that deal, which brought mayors Feinstein and Jiang together, in a way, helped make the WTO agreement possible.[46]

Conflict of interest?

Veering sharply from the positive tone he had set to date, Republican U.S. Senate candidate Tom Campbell unleashed an aggressive attack on his Democratic opponentMay 2000, charging Sen. Dianne Feinstein with concealing information that could show she stands to profit from an upcoming Senate vote on China trade.

Campbell charged that Feinstein had failed to adequately disclose her husband's business interests in China.

Feinstein's campaign responded that Campbell was simply wrong. The senator has properly reported all of husband Richard Blum's business interests, her campaign said, asserting that none of them any longer involved "mainland China." The campaign said Blum does have an interest in one company doing business in Hong Kong, which became part of China almost three years ago.

At a news conference that was better attended than any other Campbell had held during his campaign so far, the Silicon Valley congressman charged that the financial disclosure report Feinstein filed with the Senate in 1999 "is grossly and curiously incomplete regarding the value of her China investments."

Campbell said Feinstein had failed to list the value of 14 partnerships in which Blum, a millionaire investment banker, holds interests. References in the report to companies such as "Golden Asia," "Golden China" and "Shanghai Pacific Partners," Campbell said, suggest "a strong possibility" that Blum has interests in China.

"Do you or your family have any holdings in China? Is a Chinese agency a partner in any investments? Do they stand to benefit from China's entry into the World Trade Organization?" Campbell asked. He offered no evidence of Chinese investments by Blum or potential benefits from actions Feinstein can take as a senator, saying it was impossible to know because of inadequate disclosures.

But Kam Kuwata, Feinstein's campaign manager, said Campbell was wrong on all counts and his error was rooted in a fundamental misreading of the report. "I guess it's an honest mistake," Kuwata said. "He didn't read the instructions on the report."

Campbell based part of his claim on blank spaces next to 14 partnerships where the value is supposed to be disclosed. But, rather than reporting the value of the partnerships, Feinstein, in fact, listed the individual assets belonging to each partnership and reported the values of each of those assets.

Kuwata said that as of last year, Blum had one investment in mainland China -- an iron factory -- but that he no longer owned that asset. Blum also still has an

investment in Hong Kong, but Kuwata said he did not have details on it.

"Right now, that report is a year old. They have divested of any holdings in mainland China," Kuwata said. He also said the Senate ethics committee reviews the disclosure report every year and did not indicate it was in any way inadequate.

"Instead of running around making these nonsense statements that aren't true, he should be in Washington representing the people of San Jose," Kuwata said. "He missed 40-some-odd votes over the last several days."

Feinstein's report for 1999 was due to be filed with the ethics committee May 15, but the committee withholds such reports from public disclosure for about a month. With a critical vote on trade relations with China potentially reaching the Senate before then, Campbell said, Feinstein should release the report now. Kuwata said Feinstein would "abide by the rules of the Senate, not Tom Campbell."[47]

Newbridge connection

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, is married to the owner of Newbridge Capital Corp., Richard C. Blum, who has made many millions in very lucrative deals with the Chinese government.[48]

Forsaking Taiwan

In 2009 some key Cabinet picks boded ill for Taiwan in its struggle fornindependence from Red China. Obama's intelligence czar, for one, doesn't think the key island democracy is worth protecting.

In fact, Adm. Dennis Blair regards Taiwan much like the Chinese Communists regard it -- as a nuisance. His exact words are more colorful.

At a late 1999 Capitol Hill meeting, Blair told staffers that Taiwan had become "the turd in the punch bowl" of U.S.-Chinese relations, as Bill Gertz reported in his bookn"The China Threat."

If Taiwan were to declare itself an independent nation, Blair asserted, "I don't think we should support them at all."

The remark was viewed by at least one Senate aide who attended the closed-door meeting as a clear sign that the Clinton administration had aligned itself with the communist regime in China against democratic Taiwan, an alignment that seems tonbe repeating itself with this administration.

Blair, as U.S. Pacific Command chief, had made frequent visits to Beijing to meet with top Chinese military leaders as part of Clinton's "engagement" policy with Beijing. And

just two years ago, he wrote that "China is on a positive trajectory," despite amassing hundreds of missiles across the strait from Taiwan.

He also argued that "the U.S. should offer to involve China in bilateral and multilateral military operations for the common good."

Astonishingly, none of this was raised in an hours-long hearing on Blair's nomination as President Obama's national intelligence director, a post that will oversee a budget of nearly $50 billion across 16 intelligence agencies. In fact, Taiwan never once came up, while China was mentioned just twice, and only in passing.

It's not as if Blair's negative remarks were a secret. Sen. Kit Bond, R-Mo., asked Blair about them in written questions he submitted to the nominee outside the public hearings. (In his answers, Blair copped to the "turd" comment, but said he was referring not to Taiwan but to some unspecified action by a former Taiwanese government official.)

Why would senators have to keep such important questions private, when the fate of Taiwan could hang in the balance -- along with possibly Japan and South Korea, and potentially the entire Pacific island chain stretching to Hawaii?

Answer: Because Sen. Dianne Feinstein is chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, which unanimously approved Blair as Obama's top intel adviser. She and her billionaire husband, who does brisk business in Beijing, are notorious China boosters. Not surprisingly, she praised Blair throughout his nomination hearing. [49]

Pro-China

In 2000, U.S. lawmakers publicly accused the China Ocean Shipping Co. of being a front for espionage and blocked plans to expand its Long Beach, Calif., port terminal over fears that Chinese spies would use it to snoop on the United States.

By 2009, Congress was seeing the state-owned Chinese behemoth in a far kinder light. Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) authored a resolution applauding the company for employing thousands of Americans and helping keep the waters of Alaska clean. Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-Mass.) hailed the firm on the House floor, calling its chief executive "a people's ambassador" to the United States after it rescued Boston's port -- and thousands of jobs -- when a European shipping line moved out.

The congressional about-face illustrates a dramatic increase in China's influence on Capitol Hill, where for years its lobbying muscle never matched its ballooning importance in world affairs. Members of Congress, lobbyists and other observers said

"There was originally this kind of anti-communist view of China," said Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), who in 1979 became the first U.S. mayor to visit China when she ran San Francisco. "That's changing. . . . China is a socialist country but one that is increasingly becoming capitalistic."

Feinstein said the views of her colleagues have become more sophisticated with time.

They know that China holds a massive amount of U.S. debt and that it imports a lot of goods -- $11 billion worth from her state alone last year. "I have never seen a country change as fast in 30 years as China has done," she said.[50]

Committee of 100 conference

2006: Fifteen Annual Conference: San Francisco, CA

Noted speakers included Senator Dianne Feinstein, Washington lobbyist Thomas Hale Boggs, Jr., former U.S. Trade Rep. Charlene Barshefsky, one of China’s foremost “America” experts Wang Jisi, and New York Times columnist and author Thomas Friedman.[51]

Senators Inouye and Feinstein Exchange Candid Views with C-100 Delegation

6a00e5520895f5883301761681d55f970c-500wi.jpg

Committee of 100 Members Delegation at Senate Luncheon hosted by Senator Daniel Inouye, with his wife Irene Hirano-Inouye and Senator Dianne Feinstein.

July 2012 Senator Daniel Inouye hosted a luncheon for the C-100 Washington delegation at the U.S. Capitol. In his brief and candid remarks, he recounted the historical experiences of the many Japanese Americans who faced discrimination and reflected on how similar prejudices are resurfacing against Chinese Americans in response to American angst over China's far-reaching economic power.

He affirmed the Committee's efforts to mitigate anti-China sentiment in the United States by educating the American public on China issues and fostering people-to-people diplomacy between both countries.

Despite her full schedule, Senator Dianne Feinstein took a rare moment to join the luncheon and speak about U.S.-China relations. The senator's insightful outlook based on her myriad interactions with the top echelons of China's leadership underscored the importance of strengthening trust in bilateral relations.[52]

Senate New Democrat Coalition members

The following Senators currently belong or belonged to the Senate New Democrat Coalition.[53][54][55]

"Hate speech" resolution

On April 4, 2017, the US Senate passed Senate Resolution 118, "Condemning hate crime and any other form of racism, religious or ethnic bias, discrimination, incitement to violence, or animus targeting a minority in the United States". The resolution was drafted by a Muslim organization, EmgageUSA (formerly EmergeUSA) and the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC). On April 6, 2017, EmgageUSA wrote the following on their Facebook page:

"Thanks to the hard work of Senator Marco Rubio, Senator Dianne Feinstein, Senator Susan Collins and Senator Kamala Harris we have achieved the approval of Senate Resolution 118, an anti-hate crimes bill drafted by Emerge-USA. It is days like this that Americans are reminded of this country's founding principles: equal opportunity, freedom, justice. We are proud to help support the protection of these rights #amoreperfectunion #theamericandream".

Senate Resolution 118 calls on...

"...Federal law enforcement officials, working with State and local officials... to expeditiously investigate all credible reports of hate crimes and incidents and threats against minorities in the United States and to hold the perpetrators of those crimes, incidents, or threats accountable and bring the perpetrators to justice; encourages the Department of Justice and other Federal agencies to work to improve the reporting of hate crimes; and... encourages the development of an interagency task force led by the Attorney General to collaborate on the development of effective strategies and efforts to detect and deter hate crime in order to protect minority communities..."

The resolution refers to hate crimes against Muslims, Jews, African-Americans, Hindus, and Sikhs and was sponsored by Senator Kamala Harris and co-sponsored by Senator Marco Rubio, Senator Dianne Feinstein, and Senator Susan Collins.[56]

The original drafter of the resolution was Wa'el Alzayat of EmergeUSA.[57]

AAPI Mobilization to demand a CLEAN DREAM ACT

South Asian Americans Leading Together November 27, 2017.

On Nov 15 and 16, SAALT along with NCAPA, AAJC, APALA, NAKASEC and other national partners rallied on Capitol Hill to press for the passage of a clean, bicameral Dream Act and Temporary Protected Status (TPS). Over 120 Asian American and Pacific Islander undocumented youth and allies, including two young South Asian DREAMers brought in by SAALT, hosted a press conference, rally, and individual meetings with House and Senate leadership. This included Representative Judy Chu, Representative Luis Gutierrez Representative Ro Khanna, Senator Dick Durbin, and Senator Dianne Feinstein, among many others. The young leaders demanded a clean DREAM Act that doesn’t compromise the future of other immigrants or negatively impact our immigration system.

Attending the rally were Al Green, Tulsi Gabbard, Judy Chu, Pramila Jayapal, and Raja Krishnamoorthi. [58]

External links

References

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  3. Dianne Feinstein Biography, Encyclopedia of World Biograghy
  4. About Feinstein
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  33. Momentum Builds for Honoring Legendary Organizer Fred Ross, by Randy Shaw, 2013-03-05
  34. PDA May 2013 Educate Congress Digest Letter drops (191 in total – 105 in April )
  35. Street Blog, JStreetPAC Scores Big in 2012 Election NOVEMBER 7TH, 2012
  36. J Street The political home for pro-Israel, pro-peace Americans
  37. JStreetPAC 2016 Endorsees
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  40. /December 1, 2002 IABA, NIAC and IAPAC Hold Unity Campaign
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  52. C-100 Senators Daniel Inouye and Dianne Feinstein Exchange Candid Views with C-100 Delegation
  53. NDN: Senate New Democrat Coalition Members (August 2000)
  54. NDN: Senate New Democrat Coalition Members (July 2001)
  55. NDN: Senate New Democrat Coalition Members (August 2002)
  56. The Gatestone Institute, U.S. Trying to Criminalize Free Speech - Again by Judith Bergman June 20, 2017
  57. American News, Senate passes anti-hate speech resolution drafted by Muslim group, 4.14.2017
  58. SAALT Facebook, um AAPI Mobilization to demand a CLEAN DREAM ACTSouth Asian Americans Leading Together added 19 new photos to the album: AAPI Mobilization to demand a CLEAN DREAM ACT — with Raja Krishnamoorthi - Congressman, IL-8 and 3 others at United States Capitol. November 27, 2017