FOX NEWS FIRST: Trump, lawmakers to discuss gun measures; FISA abuse allegations to be investigated

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Developing now, Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2018

  • President Trump and a bipartisan group of lawmakers will discuss potential new gun measures following the Parkland, Fla., massacre
  • Attorney General Jeff Sessions says the Justice Department’s inspector general will investigate FISA abuse allegations following dueling congressional memos
  • The Supreme Court rules that detained immigrants are not entitled to automatic bond hearings
  • Special Counsel Robert Mueller moves to drop charges against former Trump campaign associate Rick Gates in wake of his guilty plea in Russia probe
  • ICE officials arrest more than 150 people in Northern California raids, despite Oakland mayor's warning to residents
  • EXCLUSIVE: Satellite photos obtained by Fox News show Iran has built a new base in Syria
  • The Rev. Billy Graham will lie in honor in the Capitol Rotunda Wednesday and Thursday

THE LEAD STORY - SEEKING PROGRESS ON GUNS AND SCHOOL SAFETY AT TRUMP MEETING: President Trump is scheduled to meet with a bipartisan group of lawmakers at the White House on Wednesday to discuss potential new gun measures following the Feb. 14 school shooting massacre in Parkland, Fla. ... But the key question is whether there will be any real progress. GOP leaders did not promise votes on the matter and stopped short of offering solutions, beyond a pending bill aimed at increasing participation in the existing federal background check system. While the proposed bill uses new incentives and penalties to encourage better compliance with current law, it does not expand the pool of gun buyers required to undergo background checks. 

Republican leaders, who have majority control of the House and Senate, seem skittish on new legislation because of potential blowback from NRA supporters and Second Amendment stalwarts. Trump has supported strengthening background checks and raising the age to purchase some rifles from 18 to 21 - a measure met with resistance from the NRA. 

GOVERNMENT SPYING UNDER INVESTIGATION: Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Tuesday the inspector general of the Department of Justice will probe allegations of government surveillance abuse, in light of the memos released on Capitol Hill about FBI and DOJ efforts to obtain FISA warrants to surveil a Trump campaign adviser ... “We believe the Department of Justice must adhere to the high standards in the FISA court,” Sessions said during a news conference Tuesday. “Yes it will be investigated. And I think that's just the appropriate thing the inspector general will take that as one of the matters he'll deal with.” Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee released a memo in February detailing the DOJ and FBI’s surveillance of Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, saying an infamous, unverified dossier funded by Democrats "formed an essential part" of the application to spy on him. Democrats released a rebuttal memo last weekend.

HIGH COURT RULES ON DETAINED IMMIGRANTS: A sharply divided Supreme Court has concluded that certain immigrants or asylum seekers do not have an automatic right to periodic custody or bail hearings ... At issue was whether aliens requesting admission to the U.S. who are subject to mandatory federal detention must be afforded court status hearings, with the possibility of release into the country, if the detention lasts more than six months. That could include: lawful permanent residents charged with a crime; those detained at the border seeking entry who might lack valid documentation; or those claiming fear of persecution if they return to their home country. The key plaintiff was Alejandro Rodriguez, held for more than three years without any bond hearing. 

In the 5-3 majority ruling (Justice Elena Kagan recused), Justice Samuel Alito said the government’s authority was clear: “Detention during those proceedings gives immigration officials time to determine an alien’s status without running the risk of the alien’s either absconding or engaging in criminal activity before a final decision can be made.” The decision comes as the Trump administration looks to shore up rules governing those seeking permanent entry into the country. 

MORE PRESSURE ON MANAFORT?: Special Counsel Robert Mueller moved Tuesday to dismiss nearly two-dozen charges against former Trump campaign associate Rick Gates, in the wake of his guilty plea last week ... Mueller’s team filed a motion to drop 22 tax and bank fraud charges against Gates. The filing was tied to Gates’ agreement last week to plead guilty to conspiracy to defraud the United States and lying to the FBI. The filing indicates Gates' cooperation with Mueller's team could be yielding good information -- as it pursues charges against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort. Gates has intimate knowledge of Manafort’s years of political consulting work in Ukraine, as well as other events that have sparked the interest of federal investigators. The development also comes amid a report that Mueller's team is asking witnesses about Trump's business dealings with Russia before he decided to launch his presidential campaign in 2015.

OAKLAND VS. RAIDERS: Federal immigration officials have arrested more than 150 individuals in violation of federal U.S. immigration law in Northern California this week despite the Oakland mayor warning of an impending raid ... U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) made the arrests in the San Francisco Bay Area starting Sunday as part of “targeted immigration enforcement operations,” the agency told Fox News. Roughly half of those arrested by deportation officers have convictions for assault and battery, crimes against children, weapons charges and DUI, according to the agency. ICE highlighted the arrest of one fugitive of the federal agency in particular, who officials stated is a documented gang member.

FOX NEWS EXCLUSIVE: Iran has built another permanent military base outside Syria’s capital city complete with hangars used to store missiles capable of hitting all of Israel, according to Western intelligence sources ... Exclusive satellite images from ImageSat International obtained by Fox News show what is believed to be the new Iranian-built base, eight miles northwest of Damascus, operated by the Quds Force — the special operations arm of Tehran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).  The photos show two new white hangars, each roughly 30 yards by 20 yards, used to store short- and medium-range missiles.

RARE HONOR FOR 'AMERICA'S PASTOR': There are few distinctions in Congress as high as the one afforded the late Rev. Billy Graham at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday and Thursday. "America's Pastor" will “lie in honor” in the Capitol Rotunda ... Graham joins other honorees, including U.S. Capitol Police Officers Jacob Chestnut and John Gibson, who were killed in a 1998 shootout at the Capitol, and civil rights icon Rosa Parks. There is little which distinguishes someone from “lying in honor” rather than  “in state.” The pomp and circumstance is much the same. But it formally is one level below “state.” The Capitol Rotunda is considered to be the most “holy” place in the American political experience. 

 

AS SEEN ON FOX NEWS

NEW ID CARD FOR ILLEGALS?: "When you let illegal aliens use this card... when in fact you are not required to show proof of citizenship to register to vote in Illinois, you're abetting voter fraud and you know it.– Tucker Carlson, on "Tucker Carlson Tonight" grilling a Chicago alderman over a new ID card for illegal immigrants. WATCH

SYSTEMATIC FAILURE: "This is one huge, massive, giant bureaucratic failure after another in this case." –  Sean Hannity, on "Hannity," ripping Broward County, Fla., Sheriff Scott Israel for refusing to take responsibility for his department's shortcomings in the Parkland massacre. WATCH

 

PARKLAND MASSACRE

Fox News Editor's Note: The CNN town hall 'scripted' question story.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott aims to spend $500M on law enforcement, mental health counseling.

Schools across U.S. are banning backpacks after Parkland shooting

THE SWAMP

Pelosi the 'most right-wing'? Only in San Francisco.

Obama makes in-person pitch for presidential center.

Comey swipes at Trump: 'Lordy, this time there will be a tape.'

ACROSS THE NATION

Report: Denver mayor accused of sexual harassment by former member of security team.

Texas girl stabs newborn to death minutes after giving birth, police say.

Letter opened at Virginia's Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall triggers hazmat situation; 11 feel ill.

MINDING YOUR BUSINESS

Trump tax cuts to lift wages this year: Fed Chair Jerome Powell.

Starbucks' Howard Schultz: Trump's tax cuts 'robbing from the future of young people.'

Stocks slide as specter of four rate hikes looms.

Papa John's, NFL end sponsorship deal.


FOX NEWS OPINION

Marc Thiessen: When Delta, United and others protest the NRA, they are boycotting upstanding Americans.

Stop discriminating against military veterans with service dogs.

John Stossel: The Oscars ignore great performances by political actors. That’s why there’s the 'Stosscars.'

HOLLYWOOD SQUARED

ABC orders talk show from Alec Baldwin despite MSNBC disaster.

Jimmy Kimmel won't talk Hollywood's perv problem at the Oscars, but Trump is fair game.

Ryan Seacrest responds to sex allegations, ABC star calls on him to skip Oscars.

DID YOU HEAR ABOUT THIS?

Amelia Earhart's stolen car found in LA neighborhood.

Tattoo addict inks entire body including eyeballs, inside mouth.

Discovery of giant hand axes suggest a prehistoric 'Game of Thrones' scenario in ancient Europe.

 

STAY TUNED

On Fox News:

Fox & Friends, 6 a.m. ET: President Trump is accomplishing his agenda, but will the mainstream media give him credit? Plus, outrage over San Diego State University's new course, "Trump: Impeachment, Removal or Conviction?" And meet the Ohio mayor who is resisting calls to remove Bible verse from city hall.

The Story with Martha MacCallum, 7 p.m. ET: Beth Schmidt, who lost her son to a drug overdose, shares her personal story in the fight against the nation's growing opioid epidemic.

Tucker Carlson Tonight, 8 p.m. ET: Former Reagan economic adviser Art Laffer explains why Democrats are leaving their blue states and moving into red states.

On Fox Business:

Mornings with Maria, 6 a.m. ET: Guests include: Werner Baumann, Bayer CEO;  Kyle Kashuv, Florida school shooting survivor; Rep. Andy Barr; Haley Barbour, former RNC chair. 

Varney & Co., 9 a.m. ET: Jack Ablin, chief investment officer - Cresset Wealth Advisors; Tim Hentschel: CEO of HotelPlanner.com; David Bossie, former Trump campaign deputy director; Clay Tippins, Georgia gubernatorial candidate.

Making Money with Charles Payne, 6 p.m. ET: Bill Miller, Miller Value Partners chairman and chief investment officer; Jeremy Siegel, University of Pennsylvania Wharton School professor. 

On Fox News Radio:

The Fox News Rundown podcastOn Monday, the Supreme Court rejected an appeal from the Trump administration to decide the legality of the president's plan to end the Obama-era DACA program, ultimately extending the March 5th deadline. Ali Noorani, executive director of the National Immigration Forum, discusses the program's potential fate. Multiple companies are cutting ties with the NRA in the wake of the school shooting in Parkland, Fla. Fox Business Network's Gerri Willis and Fox News' Steve Harrigan explain. Plus, commentary by author Frank Miniter.

Want the Fox News Rundown sent straight to your mobile device? Subscribe through Apple PodcastsGoogle Play, and Stitcher.

The Brian Kilmeade Show, 9 a.m. ET: Ark. Gov. Asa Hutchison and "Duck Dynasty's" Phil Robertson take on the gun control debate in wake of the Parkland, Fla., massacre; RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel on Trump's 2020 campaign move; country music star Craig Morgan discusses his new reality TV show, "Morgan Family Strong."

 

#OnThisDay

1993: A gunbattle erupts at a religious compound near Waco, Texas, when Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agents try to arrest Branch Davidian leader David Koresh on weapons charges; four agents and six Davidians are killed as a 51-day standoff begins.

1953: Scientists James D. Watson and Francis H.C. Crick announce they have discovered the double-helix structure of DNA.

1784: John Wesley, the co-founder of Methodism, charters the first Methodist Church in the United States in Leesburg, Va.

Fox News First is compiled by Fox News' Bryan Robinson. Thank you for joining us! Enjoy your day! We'll see you in your inbox first thing Thursday morning.