National Touch League To Return To Coffs Harbour

first_imgCoffs Harbour has won the right after an extremely competitive tender process which included multiple tenders from across New South Wales. The event returns to Coffs Harbour, with the city previously having hosted the NTL event from 1997 through to 2008. Further information can be obtained from the Media Release. While you are in Coffs Harbour for the 2013 X-Blades National Touch League, there are plenty of things to see and do away from the fields. To find out more about Coffs Harbour’s attractions, please visit the following websites:www.destinationnsw.com.au www.coffscoast.com.au Related Files2013_and_2014_ntl_announcement-pdflast_img read more

Senate President Extends Condolences to Earthquake and Hurricane Victims

first_img President of the Senate, Hon. Tom Tavares-Finson, has extended condolences to the Governments and citizens of regional countries that have been severely impacted by recent natural disasters. President of the Senate, Hon. Tom Tavares-Finson, has extended condolences to the Governments and citizens of regional countries that have been severely impacted by recent natural disasters.“Since we (Senate) last met, the Caribbean, and in particular our brethren in Dominica, have suffered tremendously (from) Hurricane Maria…(while) our brethren in Cuba (were affected by Hurricane Irma). Indeed, (other) Caribbean (states have) not fared so well because the Dominican Republic, Haiti and Puerto Rico have also suffered tremendous damage,” he said.Senator Tavares-Finson noted that the Government has reached out to the administrations and people of the affected territories, pointing out that “we are, of course, particularly concerned (about) Dominica and Prime Minister (Roosevelt) Skerrit, who is a friend of Jamaica.”“While we count our blessings, our neighbours have not been so lucky and, of course, we make mention of the Mexican earthquake and (acknowledge) that the damage and loss of lives could have been much more serious had the Mexicans not taken the threat of earthquakes very seriously, and practised regular earthquake drills (among other disaster preparedness measures),” he added.In this regard, the Senate President urged Jamaicans to be more proactive in their awareness of the potential danger and threats posed by hurricanes, earthquakes and other extreme natural occurrences, and in their overall approach to disaster preparedness.“We in Jamaica sort of skip along thinking that (these incidents) can’t happen here, ignoring our history (in the process). We certainly need to begin to look more closely at our disaster preparedness (and not) ignore it and (behave) as if nothing can happen,” he emphasized.Meanwhile, Government Senator Don Wehby, said the private sector was coordinating relief efforts for the affected countries and urged members not involved to support the endeavour. Senator Tavares-Finson noted that the Government has reached out to the administrations and people of the affected territories, pointing out that “we are, of course, particularly concerned (about) Dominica and Prime Minister (Roosevelt) Skerrit, who is a friend of Jamaica.” “Since we (Senate) last met, the Caribbean, and in particular our brethren in Dominica, have suffered tremendously (from) Hurricane Maria…(while) our brethren in Cuba (were affected by Hurricane Irma). Indeed, (other) Caribbean (states have) not fared so well because the Dominican Republic, Haiti and Puerto Rico have also suffered tremendous damage,” Senator Tavares-Finson said. Story Highlightslast_img read more

Gloria Estefan Pays For Boys Cerebral Palsy Treatment

first_imgGloria Estefan is funding treatment for a young boy with Cerebral Palsy.The boy’s family wanted to start an amazing new treatment program at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, but the $36,000 fee was going to be a struggle. The singer found out about the plight of 8-year-old Nico Fernandez when a fan tweeted her.“I clicked the link and I saw that Nico’s mom had been doing everything in her power to get him to the institute,” Estefan told PEOPLE. “I knew there was a deadline because she was trying to get him into a summer program.”Nico’s mother had started a GoFundMe page to try and raise the money for the treatment.“I told her to keep the money that had been raised on GoFundMe to help with her other important expenses,” said Estefan.To find out more about Gloria Estefan’s mission to help Nico, click here.last_img read more

Air Transat Thomas Cook sign sevenyear seasonal aircraftsharing deal

first_imgTourism firm Transat A.T. Inc (TSX:TRZ) and Thomas Cook Group Airlines say they have signed a deal to share aircraft on a seasonal basis.The companies say the seven-year partnership will allow both to utilize their fleet of planes more efficiently as their flight destinations shift with the seasons.Air Transat uses smaller aircraft in the winter to fly to the Caribbean, Mexico and Florida and larger aircraft in the summer for transatlantic flights.Meanwhile, Thomas Cook uses smaller aircraft in the summer for Mediterranean travel and larger aircraft in the winter for destinations such as Cuba.Under the agreement announced Monday, every winter Thomas Cook will make available some narrow-body Airbus planes for Air Transat and receive at least one wide-body Airbus plane in return.last_img read more

Bartering community Bunz faces questions about ethos with cryptocurrency plan

first_imgTORONTO – Bunz, the Canadian online bartering community known for promoting a cash-free economy, is not abandoning its ethos with plans to launch its own cryptocurrency, company CEO Sascha Mojtahedi said Monday in the wake of some user revolt.Founded in Toronto in 2013 by Emily Bitze, Bunz began as a Facebook group that encouraged users to trade their unwanted goods rather than seeking cash. Because users’ wish lists didn’t always align neatly, booze, transit tokens and — somewhat controversially — gift cards became commonly requested in trades.On Monday, Bunz announced it was launching BTZ, a digital currency for the community that can also be used at participating retailers. Mojtahedi said BTZ is not yet an actual cryptocurrency but the plan is to eventually convert it into one. New and existing users of the Bunz app will get 1,000 units of BTZ, which the company says has a current value of about three coffees.“Because it’s a bartering community we’ve had a number of issues around value disparity … the divisibility of goods and all these problems can be solved by a cryptocurrency,” Mojtahedi said.“I think this just gives our community more flexibilty.”The initial reaction to the announcement on social media leaned negative, with Facebook user Melissa Neill writing “So much for subverting capitalism” and Ray Wilkes posting “RIP Bunz spirit & integrity.”“Develop something to help poor people get around the financial constraints of capitalism. Capitalize the hell out of it. Develop your own currency for it (but don’t call it money lol). Stand back and watch something that was once beautiful die a protracted, awkward death,” Wilkes added.Mojtahedi said the launch of BTZ should not be seen as Bunz heading in a new corporate direction, even though the company has secured funding from institutional investors.“I actually see it as doubling down rather than diverging from the ethos Bunz represents,” he said.Khatereh Vesal, a self-professed “crypto nerd and Bunz nerd,” said she has no issues with the use of cryptocurrencies on Bunz, but objected to the fact that the company’s announcement claimed BTZ was an actual cryptocurrency.“It’s like they just kind of decided this was a neat idea — and it might be, as a loyalty points program kind of thing — but we have to be very careful what we’re calling it because it’s not technically on a blockchain yet and it’s not really even an initial coin offering yet,” Vesal said, adding she wished the company had more information for users lined up before making its announcement.Mojtahedi said Bunz wanted “to create something that people could interact with” and “learn from the data and the information and the (user) behaviours” before converting BTZ into a cryptocurrency. He added that it’s not yet determined whether there would be a mining element to the cryptocurrency as is the case with Bitcoin.“I think we’re looking at a number of different solutions around mining that are pretty different than the way the market approaches it currently,” Mojtahedi said.While the local businesses that are now accepting BTZ have essentially set a baseline value for the currency — one Toronto cafe is charging 300 BTZ for a latte while a bar is asking 600 BTZ for a pint of beer or order of fries — Mojtahedi said he doesn’t want to interfere in setting its value. He also wants to avoid speculation in the currency.“We’re not offering any inference of the foreign exchange value because we don’t know, we’re really just starting. We’ve established a value with our shops and we think it’s an opportunity to learn from the community themselves rather than trying to peg some value to this currency,” he said.Jean-Paul Lam, an associate professor of economics at the University of Waterloo, has used Bunz as an example when teaching students about concepts around money as a medium of exchange and bartering.“Any type of barter system creates problems with finding partners and you have to spend a huge amount of time to find the right partner and find an exchange that would be satisfying to both parties. So I can understand why they are trying to introduce that medium of exchange that is standardized,” Lam said.“But at the same time, it completely defeats the purpose of what it was in the first place, which was a cashless society that would exchange goods for goods.”last_img read more

Toronto stock index ends down despite commodity gains US markets mixed

first_imgCanada’s main stock index gave up early gains to close lower Tuesday, while U.S. stocks were mixed and the loonie remained flat.The Toronto Stock Exchange ended lower despite strong gains in commodities, which showed strength after copper rose from a price floor, said Dominique Barker, Portfolio Manager, CIBC Asset Management.“One thing that has been consistent all day has been commodities, so we’ve had commodity prices up off the bottom, particularly copper.”The September copper contract closed up six cents at US$2.81 a pound. Efforts by the Chinese government to spur economic activity is probably a key contributor to the rise, said Barker.“I think that’s driven by some news out of China yesterday with their announcement to reduce taxes and increase infrastructure spending. So we’re seeing a read-through on to the energy stocks, equities in Canada, as well as copper stocks in Canada.”The S&P/TSX global base metals index was up 3.62 per cent as big copper names like Souther Copper, Lundin Mining, First Quantum Minerals all saw substantial gains.Overall, the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index closed down 30.71 points at 16,390.13 as losses in health, industrials and consumer staples weighed on the market.In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average closed up 197.65 points at 25,241.94. The S&P 500 index closed up 13.42 points at 2,820.40 and the Nasdaq composite index was down 1.11 points at 7,840.77.Gains in some U.S. markets came as many big-name companies showed strong earnings, said Barker.“Some of the reports that came out today were very supportive of a strong economy. There were beats and raises by Eli Lilly, Lockheed Martin, 3M, Google and Verizon. All announced earnings that beat expectations.”The Canadian dollar averaged 76.01 cents US, unchanged from Monday.The September crude contract closed up 63 cents at US$68.52 per barrel and the September natural gas contract was up two cents at US$2.72 per mmBTU. The August gold contract ended down 10 cents at US$1,225.50 an ounce.Canadian National Railway Co. announced after market close that it had increased its earnings outlook and capital program for the year, following a quarter that saw its net income increase 27 per cent in the last quarter compared with last year.The railway closed down 61 cents or 0.54 per cent at $112 after the company said earlier in the day that it had made interim CEO Jean-Jacques Ruest its permanent chief executive.last_img read more

Wildfire Service downgrades status of three wildfires in Northeast BC

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — The BC Wildfire Service has downgraded the status of three wildfires burning in Northeast B.C.Fire Information Officer Amanda Reynolds says that while the activity of the Tommy Lake Fire remains intense, fire activity on three other large fires has diminished to the point where the Service no longer considers them wildfires of note. According to Reynolds, the wildfire burning southeast of the Muskwa River near Fort Nelson has not experienced much fire activity in the past week. That fire currently sits at 4,793 hectares, and is not currently threatening any properties since it is located roughly 80 kilometres southwest of Fort Nelson. However, Reynolds said that crews may be looking at a modified response to that fire if it starts to see more fire activity. Closer to Fort St. John, both the Milligan Hills and Kahta Creek Fires have also been downgraded from wildfires of note. The Kahta Creek Fire, which has burned roughly 1,700 hectares near Buckinghorse River, has seen dramatically reduced fire activity over the weekend, especially after the fire saw 10 mm of rain fall late last week. There are currently 55 firefighters and 3 helicopters battling that fire, and Reynolds said that firefighters have been patrolling the fire’s perimeter to ensure that it doesn’t scorch a larger area. The fire is currently being held, meaning it does not appear to be spreading.Fire crews have also increased containment on the Milligan Hills Fire, which is 700 hectares in area. The 60 firefighters, 2 helicopters, and 3 pieces of heavy machinery have managed to build a fire guard and contain 35 percent of the fire, which is 10 kilometres from Milligan Hills Provincial Park. Reynolds said that the fire’s status has also been updated to “Being Held” which indicates that sufficient suppression action has been taken that the fire is not likely to spread beyond existing or predetermined boundaries.Despite this, Reynolds said that crews will continue to monitor these fires to try and ensure they don’t flare up once again.last_img read more

Delhi govt started work of laying pipelines says CM

first_imgNEW DELHI: The Delhi government started work of laying pipelines across Delhi and work on the construction of 10,000 streets and roads are also in progress, asserted Delhi Chief Minister and AAP national convenor Arvind Kejriwal from a rally at Wazirpur of Chandni Chowk constituency. Accusing the Centre ofcreating hurdles for Delhi’s development, the AAP leader said he faced several obstructions at various stages to get clearances from the Centre. He said the people of Delhi pay Rs 1.5 lakh crore worth Income Tax and receive only Rs 325 crore from the Centre. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murder”Why should we pay so much and get so less in return? What have Delhiites done to the central government to deserve this? The situation is similar to the time before India got independence. First Britishers looted us, now the central government is looting us,” the chief minister said. “Just for political enmity, PM Modi stopped the development work for the common man of Delhi. Last time you voted for him, but this time do not vote for him, otherwise he would not let me work for development,” he said. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchingsWhile addressing the gathering, CM Arvind Kejriwal said,

”Four years ago, you elected and gave a huge responsibility to a humble man like me. I am forever grateful for this favour. We will never forget it. We are ready to sacrifice our lives for the people of Delhi. For the past 70 years, no party has done as much work as Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi.” He added, “In the past four years we have done so much, but the Modi government has left no stone unturned in creating hurdles in our work. We want to make schools, hospitals, mohalla clinics, install CCTV’s but they are the ones who are stopping us.” Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said full statehood for Delhi will ensure that children scoring even 60 per cent marks get admission in colleges in Delhi. Meanwhile, a big number of women participated in the ‘Jhadu Chalao, Gundagardi Bhagao’ March that was launched in Kalkaji Vidhan Sabha in presence of AAP South Delhi Candidate Raghav Chadha and Kalkaji MLA Avtar Singh. Such marches will be held through all legislative assemblies over the coming month. Raghav Chadha said, “South Delhi is plagued with politics of muscle and money power and so we have been ruled by goons and ruffians for a long time. Now you have a chance to weed out the politics of Intimidation and instead send a decent and sensitive person to the Parliament. This is your opportunity to vote for someone who is not abusive, makes women feel comfortable and safe and has the sensibility and sensitivity to serve the people right.”last_img read more

Rs 1 crore unaccounted cash seized in Kolkata 3 held

first_imgKolkata: Kolkata Police seized unaccounted cash worth more than Rs. one crore and arrested three persons in two separate raids in the city, a senior officer said on Wednesday. “Two persons named Kunal Kumar (29) and Rahul Kumar (27), both residents of Bihar, were arrested with unaccounted cash worth Rs 65 lakh from central Kolkata’s Mir Bhahar Road and Strand Road crossing at around 2.30 p.m. on Tuesday,” Joint Commissioner of Police (crime) Praveen Tripathi told IANS. In another incident, a Kolkata resident named Mohan Agarwal (29) was arrested with unaccounted cash worth Rs 35.5 lakh from Strand Road, the officer said. Cases have been registered against the three accused in the Burrabazar Police Station under charges of theft (IPC 379) and various sections of the CrPC.last_img read more

Football Cornerback Damon Arnette injured during Ohio StateMichigan State game

Ohio State redshirt sophomore cornerback Damon Arnette (3) waits to defend against a Penn State offensive drive in the second quarter in the game against Penn State on Oct. 28. Ohio State won 39-38. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo EditorOhio State lost another player during its game against Michigan State as redshirt sophomore cornerback Damon Arnette was injured and helped off the field with about a minute left in Saturday afternoon’s game. He was able to walk off the field with assistance, but was carted from the sideline to the locker room. He did not return before the end of the first half.The injury took place on the first play of Michigan State’s final drive in the first half. Arnette had intercepted a pass from Michigan State quarterback Brian Lewerke on the last play of the previous drive. Arnette had also registered a tackle during the game.Though Ohio State was up 35-0 at the time of the injury, the Buckeyes were been down three starters. Linebackers Dante Booker and Jerome Baker missed the game with undisclosed injuries and defensive end Dre’Mont Jones was ejected from the game on the previous drive on a targeting call. Jones’ targeting call negated a would-be Arnette interception. read more

Ignazio Abate rues AC Milans Europa League exit

first_imgAC Milan defender Ignazio Abate believes they should have qualified for the Europa League knockout stages after their 3-1 defeat to OlympiacosGennaro Gattuso’s side headed into Athens on Thursday night needing to not lose by more than two goals to Olympiacos.After a goalless first-half, Pape Abou Cisse’s header handed Olympiacos the lead before a Cristian Zapata own goal doubled their advantage.But the Colombian defender soon redeemed himself to Milan by scoring a critical header just 110 seconds later.However, Abate’s foul enabled Konstantinos Fortounis to score a late penalty for Olympiacos to secure a 3-1 win.Serie A, Gian Piero GasperiniGasperini reveals why he rejected Inter Manuel R. Medina – September 14, 2019 Atalanta manager, Gian Piero Gasperini, has revealed why he rejected Internazionale Milan’s job proposal over the summer transfer window.The result enabled the Greek side to leapfrog Milan into second-place in Group F on goal difference.“We had started strong and were well set out on the field. The regret is that we went behind, as we should not have conceded the opening goal,” Abate told Sky Sport Italia, via Football-Italia.“Once we got it back on track, they got that penalty. Incidents went against us. We could’ve done better and more importantly reached this final game with qualification already secured, because we had the quality to do that.“We need to take another step up. Now we must concentrate on Serie A, as we can finish in the top four and qualify for the Champions League.”Milan will next travel to Bologna on Tuesday in a Serie A match, where they will hope to retain their spot in the top-four in the standings.last_img read more

AGDC Continues Answering Questions For Environmental Review On LNG Project

first_imgThe AGDC has signed non-binding agreements to explore future deals with potential customers and possible financial partners in China, South Korea, Japan and Vietnam, with more information about Chinese interest expected later in 2018. According to spending details presented to the Board of Directors, a significant portion of 2017 spending has gone toward project marketing, development, and outreach- making up roughly $5.2 million. While the AGDC fills in data gaps and provides details on project construction plans and operations, the state has been waiting for FERC to decide when it has enough information to issue a timeline for the project’s environmental review. The LNG project proposal is an 807 mile north-to-south pipeline from the North Slope oil and gas field to the liquefaction plant and marine terminal on the Kenai Peninsula, in Nikiski. Governor Bill Walker: “We have things in motion now that we’ve never had before. It’s great that we have the AGDC in existence.” The Environmental Impact Statement is said to the “largest and most complex of any that federal regulators have prepared for a LNG export project.”center_img Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享The Alaska Gasline Development Corporation (AGDC) is continuing to work through the more than 1,000 data requests submitted to the state by federal regulators. The AGDC has stated that they anticipate to have the remaining data requests submitted with detailed answers by January 1, 2018, and February 1, 2018. The AGDC filed an application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commision (FERC) 8 months ago for the proposed Alaska LNG (liquefied natural gas) Project. Story as aired: Audio PlayerJennifer-on-AGDC-continues-to-answer-questions-.mp3VmJennifer-on-AGDC-continues-to-answer-questions-.mp300:00RPdlast_img read more

WATCH Strong Winds Cause Hangar To Collapse At Hobby Airport

first_img Share Strong winds overnight caused a hangar at Hobby airport to collapse, just before midnight.No injuries were reported, according to officials.Senior AccuWeather Meteorologist Joe Lundberg said strong wind gusts can cause this type of damage.“There was a wind gust reported at the Hobby Airport at 60 miles per hour.” Lundberg said. “And that can cause some damage. It can flip over some small vehicles. Certainly, it can cause a lot of tree branches to come down. And certainly some damage, all sorts of little things can happen, with those kind of wind gusts.” Strong winds collapse hangar at Hobby Airport overnight https://t.co/BusaMVd17H pic.twitter.com/PxCp1acKOD— KHOU 11 News Houston (@KHOU) April 4, 2018Lundberg said the front had a history of producing severe weather toward north and northwest; with some hail in parts of central Texas, and strong winds in northeast Texas and parts of Louisiana, as well. Houston Airport System spokesman Bill Begley said the collapse caused millions of dollars of damage, and eight planes were damaged.Begley added it was a private hangar, and the overnight incident did not impact commercial flight schedules at Hobby Airport.last_img read more

After 2 Painful Years Elijah Cummings Will Be More Powerful

first_imgBy BEN TERRIS, The Washington PostWASHINGTON (AP) — When the word of the Lord came to Elijah, it arrived on a slip of paper tucked in a stranger’s bra.In 2017, Congressman Elijah E. Cummings had been laid up in a Johns Hopkins hospital bed for two months, crippled by pain after a difficult recovery from a heart valve replacement, when an interloper came bursting through the door, calling his name.“She reaches into her bosom and pulls out a note,” Cummings said recently. “She says, ‘The Lord has been waking me all night. … It was so important I thought I’d write it down. It says: He don’t mean you no harm, he’s just trying to get your attention. He wants you to know he ain’t finished with you yet.’”In this Nov. 15, 2018 photo, U.S. Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, D-Md., poses in his office on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Cummings endured two painful years. Soon he’ll be more powerful than ever. He is the soon-to-be chairman of the House Committee on Oversight. (Salwan Georges/The Washington Post via AP)Cummings, 67, recalled this story in an interview from his district office in Baltimore. His head: freshly shaved. His eyes: puffy. His large hands: swollen by gout. He wore big-platformed Velcro sneakers, which he had been shuffling around in all day with the help of a walker.If God was trying to get his attention, he wasn’t being subtle about it.This month, Democrats triumphed in elections across the country, winning back the House of Representatives. In doing so, Cummings returns to Congress hobbled physically but more powerful than ever. Armed with a gavel and subpoenas, he is the soon-to-be chairman of the House Committee on Oversight.For Cummings, this is the culmination of two years riddled with painful moments, some beyond his control and others that he walked into himself. He’d tried to work with President Trump only to have it blow up in his face. He’d been ignored by his Republican colleagues on the committee time and again. And he just couldn’t seem to stay out of the hospital.With a healthy heart, and in control, Cummings has limitless possible targets: hush money paid to a porn star on Trump’s behalf, citizenship questions on the census, security clearances revoked from the president’s critics, and dozens of other oh-yeah-remember-thats that slipped out of the churning news cycle unanswered.The difficulty won’t be finding things to look into. It will be figuring out what’s worth looking into. Cummings knows by now the risks that come with opening wounds voluntarily. After he recovered from heart surgery, he checked back into the hospital for another procedure — this time on his knee. But something went wrong. The knee got infected, and Cummings spent another three months at Hopkins.He emerged more aware than ever that there’s only a finite amount of time in this world.It will be up to him to make the best use of it.“Elijah Cummings was in my office,” Donald Trump told the New York Times in April of 2017.“And he said, ‘You will go down as one of the great presidents in the history of our country.’”It’s a prophecy that Cummings said he never actually offered, and one that, if he does his job well as Oversight Committee chairman, will almost certainly not come true.But early in Trump’s presidency, while many Democrats were angst-ridden, Cummings believed there was an opportunity for some good to come of it. He attended the inauguration and chatted with the president at the luncheon afterward about the need to lower prescription drug prices, an issue he’d long championed.“These drug companies are getting away with murder,” Cummings said the president told him.“We’ve got to do something about this.”Later, Cummings accepted an invitation to the Oval Office to discuss a bill he co-authored that would do just that, and he was heartened by Trump’s continued enthusiasm.As Cummings recalls, he offered the president advice: If you stop working to divide the country and work on issues that can unite them, then you could go down in history as a great president.He honestly believed it.The president had his base locked up no matter what, if Trump really believed shooting someone on Fifth Avenue wouldn’t make them stray, so then what would the risk be to work with Democrats? He used to be a Democrat, a little voice kept reminding Cummings.“Perhaps if I knew then what I know now, I wouldn’t have had a lot of hope,” Cummings said.“He is a man who quite often calls the truth a lie and calls a lie the truth.”A week after their meeting, Trump called Cummings to let him know he hadn’t forgotten about the issue and still planned to take action on it. Cummings never heard from Trump again.Does Cummings’s belief that he could work with Trump make him unbelievably naive or a man of unshakable faith?Cummings grew up in Baltimore the son of two former sharecroppers from South Carolina who moved to Baltimore and became preachers. He didn’t learn to dance until prom because his parents thought it was a sin. He still doesn’t know how to play cards.And it was his parents who drove him into public service, his own form of ministry. He rarely gives a speech without mentioning his mother and how she used to soak her feet in epsom salts, singing her prayers, each night after cleaning houses. When his father died of a heart attack, shortly after giving a sermon at a women’s detention center, Cummings arrived at the morgue to sort through his belongings. He found in his father’s wallet a note that Cummings had written him years earlier, folded and refolded so many times over the years that it had holes in the paper.“Did you know that you’re my hero, and everything I’d like to be,” the note said, quoting the song made popular by Bette Midler. “I can fly higher than an eagle because you are the wind beneath my wings.”Cummings’s spirituality can border on hokey like that, certainly earnest in a way that most politicians are not.At an election night watch party this year, he quoted a Garth Brooks song (“This ain’t comin’ from no prophet, just an ordinary man”). His eyes well up when he talks about his favorite musical, “The Lion King.” He meditates before each committee hearing, he said, picturing himself running down a long road, people in need of his help alongside him.There have been stumbles. Early in Cummings’s political career, he faced financial strains. According to a 1999 Baltimore Sun article, he owed more than $30,000 to the IRS (which he paid), and five times creditors took him to court to get him to pay $24,000 in overdue debts.Cummings told the paper he lacked money partially because of a major surgery that drained his bank account and because he helped support three children: a daughter he had with his then-estranged wife and two children he had with other women.“I have a moral conscience that is real central,” Cummings told the Sun then. “I didn’t ask the federal government or anyone else to do me any favors.”He remarried in 2008 (his second wife, Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, a policy consultant, withdrew a bid for Maryland governor while Elijah was in the hospital). He has lived in the same inner-city house for three decades and, before serving 22 years in Congress, spent 14 years in the Maryland House of Delegates.He learned his moral code in the pews and, perhaps equally important for someone going into politics, he learned the art of public speaking there, too. The first testimony he remembers giving in front of the congregation was thanking God for the integration of a local pool, which came after numerous marches where he was beaten by segregationists. He couldn’t have been more than 9.He used to run home from Sunday church service to lie on the floor and listen to Martin Luther King Jr.’s speeches on his transistor radio. He’s been thinking a lot about one of them.It was on the “interruptions of life.”“What he was saying was, don’t let yourself get distracted because you may never get back to what you were doing,” Cummings said. After two years of Twitter tantrums from the president, wild news conferences, attacks on the media, and other smokescreens, the lesson, Cummings said, is clear.“Trump, apparently was listening to Martin Luther King,” he said.The president, he said, certainly knows the power of a good distraction.Another excerpt from the Book of Elijah:“We’re in a storm,” he said from his office atop Capitol Hill. “And it’s a rough one. It’s not a question of whether the storm will end but when it will end. How much of our democracy will be saved?”Cummings had just finished his first Oversight Committee hearing since election night, one of his last as ranking member. For six years, he has sat beside the chairman, just out of reach of real power. He’s had his microphone cut off by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.). He was told he could not put a woman on a panel about contraceptives. In the past two years, he has had 64 subpoena requests ignored by Chairman Trey Gowdy of South Carolina.The storm has been raging. But now Cummings can do something about it,“I’m going to try and make people realize that in order to live the life they are living,” he said, “they need to have democracy, and it’s being threatened.”He’s no longer asking for answers; he’s demanding. Of course, that doesn’t mean the Trump administration will comply. Its officials have been known to be difficult, sometimes even with fellow Republicans.“I sent letters and subpoenas to the Trump administration and got no response,” Jason Chaffetz, the Oversight Committee’s Republican former chairman told The Post this month. “I was stymied every step of the way. What makes you think Elijah Cummings will get a response?”Cummings admits this is a concern.He also knows that his best bet to get anything done is to be focused, not to, as he told George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s “This Week,” hand out subpoenas “like somebody’s handing out candy on Halloween.”Cummings has been on the other side of high-profile hearings that felt to him like a sham.There was Operation Fast and Furious, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms andExplosives program that tried to track illegal weapons sales. He was the ranking member of the Select Committee on Benghazi, a Republican-led effort to investigate the 2012 attack on the U.S. Consulate in Libya.Those investigations were derided by Democrats as politically motivated and, of course,Republicans will say the same about anything Cummings decides to investigateCummings says he wants to be judicious, but is that possible? How do you not try to peek at Trump’s tax returns, or figure out who exactly has been staying at Trump International Hotel in Washington, or determine how former Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt was able to get away with buying so many first-class airline tickets on taxpayers’ dime?“I can’t imagine anyone better qualified and more passionate about oversight than Elijah,” Gowdy said in an interview.But, even if Cummings is open and transparent and does everything by the book, there’s at least one Republican who won’t see it that way.“If the Democrats think they are going to waste Taxpayer Money investigating us at the House level, then we will likewise be forced to consider investigating them for all of the leaks of Classified information, and much else, at the Senate level,” Trump tweeted recently. “Two can play that game!”Is it possible that Democrats are getting carried away? Can Cummings really be the hero they need to stand up to Trump? After all, Cummings may want to maintain the moral high ground, but is that even possible in a fight with the president? Is it the best way to win — to bring a Bible to a knife fight?Leana Wen, the new president of Planned Parenthood, said it’s not for her to say, necessarily, but she knows a fighter when she sees one. She worked with Cummings during her time as the Baltimore health commissioner. She loved him so much she named her first child after him.“When he was in the hospital, I tried not to think … about what could happen,” she said. “As a physician, I know a lot about the worst-case scenarios because I’ve seen it.”The day she saw him for the first time out of the hospital, he looked and tired. She told him it was good to see him.“He said, ‘It’s good to be seen and not viewed, if you know what I mean,’” she recalled. “To me, that meant he was back.”Cummings tends to downplay his time in the hospital. It was just a little shortness of breath. Then a simple heart procedure that should have him home within three days. Then a gout flare-up and rehabilitation to gain back muscles lost from weeks unable to move.Yes, it was excruciatingly painful, he’ll say. But, no, he never really thought his life was in danger. He was always itching to get back.“If he were to slow down too much,” his younger brother James Cummings said, “it would probably kill him.”In that case, the next two years may be the healthiest of Elijah Cummings’s life.___Information from: The Washington Post, http://www.washingtonpost.comlast_img read more