FOX NEWS FIRST: Trump slams OPEC over gas prices; porn star lawyer eyes 2020 presidential run

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Developing now, Thursday, July 5, 2018

· President Trump pointed criticism at the OPEC oil cartel on Twitter Wednesday, saying it was "doing little to help" high gas prices in the U.S.

· President Trump praised the U.S. military on Wednesday for keeping America "safe, strong, proud, mighty and free" and thanked members for putting their lives on the line

· Michael Avenatti, the attorney for adult film star Stormy Daniels, set off Independence Day fireworks on Twitter Wednesday when he declared that he would run for president in 2020, citing certain stipulations

· A woman was escorted down from the Statue of Liberty on Wednesday after she scaled the bottom part of the national monument in protest of U.S. immigration policy, sparking a nearly four-hour standoff with authorities.

· A British couple hospitalized in critical condition were exposed to the same nerve agent that nearly killed former Russia spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in March, Police said Wednesday

THE LEAD STORY - ‘REDUCE PRICING NOW’: President Trump aimed criticism at the OPEC oil cartel on Twitter Wednesday, saying it was "doing little to help" high gas prices in the U.S."If anything, they are driving prices higher as the United States defends many of their members for very little $’s," Trump claimed in a tweet on Wednesday. "This must be a two way street. REDUCE PRICING NOW!" Last month, OPEC's 15 member states agreed to pump one million barrels more crude oil daily, a move that should help contain the recent rise in global energy prices. However, there has been little discernible effect on American gas prices.

 

· Trump says Saudi Arabia has agreed to increase oil production

· These states have the highest gas prices

· UK reportedly tells Trump he cannot meet with Brexit architect Nigel Farage

HONORING THE MILITARY: President Donald Trump on Wednesday praised U.S. service members for keeping America "safe, strong, proud, mighty and free" and used the Independence Day holiday to thank them for being willing to put their lives on the line in defense of the nation … "Two hundred and 42 years ago on July 4, 1776, America's founders adopted the Declaration of independence and changed the course of human history," said Trump, addressing hundreds of military families attending a White House picnic from a balcony overlooking the South Lawn of the White House. "But our freedom exists only because there are brave Americans willing to give their lives, to defend it and defend our great country," added Trump, who was accompanied by his wife, Melania. "America's liberty has been earned through the blood, sweat and sacrifice of American patriots."

· WATCH: President Trump: Happy Fourth of July

· STOSSEL: The Fourth of July is not about barbecues, fireworks or even patriotism. It's about this…

PORN STAR LAWYER FOR PRESIDENT? – Michael Avenatti, the attorney for adult film star Stormy Daniels, set off Independence Day fireworks on Twitter Wednesday when he declared that he would run for president in 2020 if President Trump seeks re-election and if Avenatti believes no other candidate can win … Avenatti tweeted Wednesday morning that "only a street fighter has a chance at displacing the 'King.' Otherwise, this country and its principles will be in pieces and non-recognizable."

The tweet accompanied a photograph of the New York Daily News front page featuring Trump in clown makeup and wearing a broken crown. In response, Brian Krassenstein -- a somewhat notorious member of so-called "#Resistance Twitter" -- asked Avenatti, "When are you announcing your 2020 run? Avenatti answered: "IF (big) he seeks re-election, I will run, but only if I think that there is no other candidate in the race that has a REAL chance at beating him. We can't relive 2016. I love this country, our values and our people too much to sit by while they are destroyed." Both tweets were accompanied by the hashtags "#FightClub" and "#Basta", the Italian word meaning enough.

· Judge tosses suit alleging Trump campaign conspired with Russians in hack: report

· Findings that Russia meddled to help Trump beat Clinton were 'accurate and on point': Senate intel panel

· Nunes slams Schiff over threat to hold GOP 'accountable' for probing alleged surveillance of Trump campaign

CLIMBER CAUGHT: A woman was escorted down from the Statue of Liberty on Wednesday after she scaled the bottom part of the national monument in protest of U.S. immigration policy, sparking a nearly four-hour standoff with authorities … The woman, identified as Therese Okoumou, appeared to be sitting near the feet of Lady Liberty — roughly 25 feet above the monument's observation point. She was apprehended by police Wednesday, hours after she ascended the monument on Independence Day. Video taken by news helicopters showed two New York Police Department officers, attached to tethers, climb up to the base around 6:15 p.m. — the time of the park's closing — and apprehend the woman. The park was shut down hours before closing time and was evacuated as a precaution, a National Park Service official told Fox News.

· Raw Video: Protestor caught climbing the Statue of Liberty

· 'Heat Dome' brings death, misery to US for Fourth of July

UK COUPLE POISONED: A British couple hospitalized in critical condition were exposed to the same nerve agent that nearly killed former Russia spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in March, London's Metropolitan Police said Wednesday … Authorities did not say whether the couple, identified by multiple media outlets as 45-year-old Charlie Rowley and 44-year-old Dawn Sturgess, were exposed to the same batch of Novichok that poisoned Sergei and Yulia Skripal. Samples from both patients had been sent to the Porton Down defense research laboratory for testing. Metropolitan Police spokesman Neil Basu said the agency's counterterrorism officers were leading the investigation. "The possibility that these two investigations might be linked is clearly a line of enquiry for us," said Basu, who added that there was "nothing" in the couple's background to suggest that they were targeted for poisoning.

No one else has reported similar symptoms to the victims. Wiltshire Police declared a "major incident" earlier Wednesday, four days after the couple were found unconscious at a home in Amesbury. Amesbury is eight miles from Salisbury, where the Skripals were found unconscious March 4.

AS SEEN ON FOX NEWS

EX-DEMOCRAT SAYS PARTY HAS ‘NO FUTURE’: “I think what they don’t understand is that their party has no future. It’s over … People are leaving the left by tens of thousands.” -- Brandon Straka, creator of the "#WalkAway Campaign," on “The Ingraham Angle,” explaining why he chose to leave the Democratic party. WATCH

WHO’S TO BLAME?: "One side is more guilty than the other." -- Conservative radio host David Webb, on “The Story with Martha MacCallum,” debating former Clinton aide Mo Elleithee over the continued incivility in politics. WATCH

#PROUDAMERICAN

Marine vet gets smart home (and independence) from Gary Sinise Foundation.

Mike Kerrigan: July Fourth: What I learned from a friend who runs toward the sound of guns.

Farming nonprofit helps vets with PTSD reintegrate into civilian life.

On this Fourth of July, 14,000 immigrants become US citizens.

TRENDING

Black Oregon lawmaker says constituent called cops on her for canvassing neighborhood.

California couple finds time capsule message during home renovation.

Woman plays accidental matchmaker on airplane, shares live updates as romance unfolds.

THE SWAMP

Supreme Court's Janus ruling will end cash cow for liberal activists: experts.

Porn star lawyer says he'll run against Trump.

Dershowitz unloads on NY socialist Dem, Martha's Vineyard liberals.

ACROSS THE NATION

Texas mother arrested for allegedly selling young children.

Alabama woman fatally shot by ex-husband had twice asked judge to take his guns away.

Ohio 12-year-old's mowing business takes off after neighbor calls police.

MINDING YOUR BUSINESS

June jobs report preview: What could spook the markets?

Netflix testing higher-priced ‘Ultra’ subscription plan: report.

Truck driver shortage: Are 18-year-olds the solution?

FOX NEWS OPINION

Judge Andrew Napolitano: The values underlying Independence Day.

Harry J. Kazianis: Pompeo's 'Mission: Impossible' -- Is North Korea serious about giving up its nukes? We'll find out soon enough. 

Ana Quintana: Many questions surround Mexico's president-elect and his relationship with the US.

HOLLYWOOD SQUARED

'My Big Fat Greek Wedding' star Nia Vardalos and Ian Gomez announce split after 25 years together.

David Foster's daughter, Erin, calls Katharine McPhee 'mommy' following engagement news.

Eric Church's younger brother, Brandon, dead at 36.

DID YOU HEAR ABOUT THIS?

'Unhinged racist' caught on video 'verbally attacking' passengers.

Maine teenager recovers from BB gun shot to head moments after priest reads last rites. 

No. 2-ranked Caroline Wozniacki eliminated from Wimbledon tennis. tournament in stunning upset.

STAY TUNED

On FOX News: 

FOX & Friends, 6 a.m. ET: Erik Callender, "The Reptile Guy" demos his new fleet of 3D printed toys; Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton speaks out on the ethics complaint they’re filing against Rep. Maxine Waters; The Wes Cook band performs their patriotic song ‘censored’ by Facebook

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#OnThisDay

1947: Larry Doby made his debut with the Cleveland Indians, becoming the first black player in the American League three months after Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in the National League.

1811: Venezuela became the first South American country to declare independence from Spain.

1687: Isaac Newton first published his Principia Mathematica, a three-volume work setting out his mathematical principles of natural philosophy.

Fox News First is compiled by Fox News' Benjamin Brown