Eric Conn Is So Dumb It’s Almost Painful

Wondering how I know the Republican Party of Kentucky is in worse shape than the Kentucky Democratic Party? Tres Watson is dumb enough to make statements about conflicts of interest. Publicly. To mainstream media outlets. Probably a bit upset about people within the Office of the Attorney General allegedly probing the revelation that he and the Personnel Secretary were scheming to go through personnel files of Democratic holdovers from the Beshear Administration. [H-L]

This is why tiny racist, Rand Paul, is truly a monstrous little shit. It’s a real shame the Kentucky Democratic Party doesn’t have the guts to hit him deeply and personally – to really go after him in a nasty way. Because he deserves it. Really, his entire family and all of his enablers deserve it. From Jim Milliman to his DUI-getting spokesdrunk, Kelsey Cooper. He doesn’t believe Republican efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act go far enough. That means he wants to harm Kentuckians more than the rest of the feckless New Republicans. [HuffPo]

Hold on to your wig, Jimbo, cause it’s coming! A decade too late. But it’s still coming and you’re going to hate it. The it of which I speak: Karma. Mismanagement and excessive spending may have cost the University of Louisville Foundation as much as $100 million — dwarfing the $20 million limit in insurance coverage on its officers and directors. The size of the loss may prompt the university to go after the personal assets of former President James Ramsey and others, according to legal and insurance experts. [C-J/AKN]

Under intensifying fire over its handling of the Russia investigations, the White House is shaking up its legal team, bringing on board a veteran Washington criminal defense lawyer just as another high-profile attorney bows out of representing a senior official who is in investigators’ cross hairs. [Yahoo]

Pointing to years of documented pollution from a Central Kentucky coal-fired power plant, environmental groups are suing Kentucky Utilities. The lawsuit was filed Wednesday in federal court in Lexington. [WFPL]

The Russian lawyer who met with Donald Trump Jr. and others on the Trump team after a promise of compromising material on Hillary Clinton was accompanied by a Russian-American lobbyist — a former Soviet counterintelligence officer who is suspected by some U.S. officials of having ongoing ties to Russian intelligence, NBC News has learned. [NBC News]

Boyd Circuit Judge David Hagerman on Tuesday ruled against a former Ashland police officer who had challenged the city’s decision to fire him. Larry J. Smith, Jr. was terminated by the city commission in February. The vote was 3-0, as Commissioner Marshall Steen was absent and Commissioner Amanda Clark, whose husband is an Ashland police sergeant, abstained. [Ashland Independent]

Almost two weeks before Donald Trump Jr. published screengrabs of purported emails indicating that he arranged to meet with a Russian lawyer, President Trump’s re-election campaign paid $50,000 in legal fees to the attorney now representing the president’s son amid ongoing Russia probes. [ABC News]

“There’s not enough Bourbon in Kentucky.” That’s how Kentucky’s Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes responded to a request from President Donald Trump’s election fraud commission to turn over personal information about Kentucky’s registered voters. [Ronnie Ellis]

From 2003 to 2012, the last year for which statistics are available, the number of babies born dependent on drugs grew nearly fivefold in the United States. Opioids are the main culprit, and states like Kentucky are particularly hard-hit: 15 of every 1,000 infants here are born dependent on opioids. [NY Times]

Way to go, New Republicans. Of 9,461 children under the age of 18 living in Whitley County along Kentucky’s southeastern border, 7,029 are enrolled in Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program or CHIP. [More Ronnie Ellis]

Donald Trump Jr. is seeking to write off as a nonevent his meeting last year with a Russian lawyer who was said to have damaging information about Hillary Clinton. “It was such a nothing,” he told Fox News’s Sean Hannity on Tuesday. “There was nothing to tell.” But everything we know about the meeting — from whom it involved to how it was set up to how it unfolded — is in line with what intelligence analysts would expect an overture in a Russian influence operation to look like. [WaPo]

This dumb ass didn’t even have enough sense to change his hairline or pick up a lacefront wig. That is dumb. Just dumb. He’s apparently dumb enough to get killed before he can be arrested and thrown behind bars. Hopefully anyone who wants that con artist dead will allow the feds to get him so he can suffer in jail for the rest of his days. [H-L]

Republicans eager to justify the severe Medicaid cuts in their Obamacare repeal proposals have offered up a number of arguments. They say Medicaid doesn’t contribute to better health, or that it doesn’t offer value to its beneficiaries. They also say the proposed cuts would affect only able-bodied adults, sparing groups like low-income children that Medicaid has traditionally served. [HuffPo]

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Jim Ramsey’s Out But Still Sinking UofL

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Williamstown officials are expecting a lawsuit from the Biblical amusement park Ark Encounter over a new safety tax created to raise money for emergency services, the Grant County News reported. The Williamstown City Council went into executive session Monday to discuss pending litigation, the newspaper said. Answers in Genesis, the parent company that owns Ark Encounter and the Creation Museum, had requested an exemption from the tax. But on June 29, Williamstown city attorney Jeff Shipp wrote a letter to AIG rejecting the request, asserting that Ark Encounter is a for-profit entity. [Linda Blackford]

The U.S. Senate will delay its consideration of healthcare legislation while Arizona Republican Senator John McCain recuperates from surgery, Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell said on Saturday. [HuffPo]

Federal authorities charged more than 400 people in what Attorney General Jeff Sessions called the largest health care fraud takedown operation in U.S. history. [C-J/AKN]

Republicans are the reason there are no consequences for the Russian attack on the United States. People like Brett Guthrie and Andy Barr. [The Hill]

Flatwoods councilman Kent “Pick” Picklesimer, a longtime public servant who helped coordinate the Summer Motion festival for several years, died on July 7 after a battle with an aggressive form of cancer. He was 76. [Ashland Independent]

Months after an online video of a United Airlines passenger being dragged from a plane went viral and sparked global outrage, Chicago aviation officials on Wednesday said future airport disturbances will be handled by city police, not aviation security officers. The forced removal of a passenger on April 9 to make room for airline employees trying to fly to Louisville was “completely unacceptable,” Chicago Department of Aviation Commissioner Ginger Evans said in a 12-page report. [Reuters]

A Richmond man who was facing illegal gambling charges in San Diego, Calif., was sentenced Monday to three years’ probation and a fine of $7,000. [Richmond Register]

Some Medicare beneficiaries are being prescribed opioids by 10 or more doctors, or are filling prescriptions for more than 1,000 pills a month. Hundreds of doctors appear to be prescribing indiscriminately, says the inspector general of Health and Human Services. [ProPublica]

The tow-truck operator who sued the Barren County sheriff is asking the Kentucky Court of Appeals to reverse the dismissal of that lawsuit. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Janet L. Yellen, the Federal Reserve chairwoman, delivered an upbeat message on the state of the American economy to Congress on Wednesday, highlighting the strength of job growth and indicating that the Fed remained on course to begin reducing its bond holdings in the fall. Ms. Yellen added, however, that the Fed was paying close attention to the recent weakness of inflation. While emphasizing that she expected prices to start rising more quickly, she said persistent weakness could lead the Fed to raise interest rates more slowly. [NY Times]

The University of Louisville’s accrediting body now says U of L may have violated two more accreditation standards, bringing the total possible violations to nine. [WFPL]

Of course Republicans are working furiously to further harm the economy and education in the United States. [WaPo]

Louisville’s Metro Council is basically ignoring Spectrum’s nightmare service but Lexington is taking action. [H-L]

Late Wednesday night, Republicans on the House Rules Committee quietly OK’d an amendment to the 2018 national defense authorization bill that would deny medically necessary health care to transgender people in the military. [HuffPo]

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The UofL Dam Has Finally Broken

Have you read about Matt Bevin’s latest education embarrassment? He’s appointed someone with quite the scandalous educational past. Because he has absolutely no sense at all. [Page One]

Where is the Kentucky Democratic Party? Dead, bloated, about to pop as it floats down the Kentucky River surrounded by a froth of turds and old milk jugs. Dr. Michael Winkler, a radiologist and associate professor at the University of Kentucky Medical School, took time off Wednesday afternoon from reading patients’ charts to join about 100 people protesting Vice President Mike Pence as he called for a new federal health care law. [H-L]

Bigots always run from reality. Mike Pence quickly moved to distance himself from Donald Trump Jr. this week after a series of bombshell reports found the president’s eldest son had met in June 2016 with a Russian lawyer in an effort to obtain damaging intel on presidential rival Hillary Clinton. Pence’s spokesman Marc Lotter sought Wednesday to increase that separation during an interview on Fox News but refused, repeatedly, to say if the vice president had met with any Russians himself during the presidential campaign. [HuffPo]

Hold on to your wig, Jim Ramsey, cause you’re about to feel the burn. Karma’s a real bitch. The Kentucky Attorney General’s office has informed the University of Louisville that it is investigating the disclosures in the forensic audit of the university’s foundation. [C-J/AKN]

Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee sent a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Wednesday asking why the Department of Justice settled a major money-laundering case involving a real-estate company owned by the son of a powerful Russian government official whose lawyer met with Donald Trump Jr. last year. [Business Insider]

A $200,000 grant has been awarded for the environmental clean-up of the former Parker Seal plant in Berea. The Brownfields Program grant was secured from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) by the Kentucky River Foothills Development Council Inc. (KRFDC) in partnership with Fahe in Berea. [Richmond Register]

Democrats say they have little reason to believe that Republicans are serious about doing tax reform on a bipartisan basis, saying they have yet to put meaningful action behind their words. [The Hill]

Mike Pence came here Wednesday “to turn up the heat on Congress” to pass a Republican-backed bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. He was largely preaching to the choir, however. A group of about 150 invited guests, nearly all of whom are Republicans and Republican office holders, including Gov. Matt Bevin and Kentucky Congressmen Andy Barr of Lexington and Brett Guthrie of Bowling Green, were at the gathering. [Ronnie Ellis]

But we’ve got no funds for health care or keeping people alive? Jeff Sessions said on Wednesday the Justice Department plans to hire 300 additional assistant U.S. attorneys to help fight a recent national increase in crime, including a focus on transnational gangs such as MS-13. [Reuters]

An open house was held at the Morehead Public Defenders office last Friday at their new location on US 60 West. Remarks were made by several staff members as well as legislators and judges. [The Morehead News]

Following the revelation that Donald Trump Jr. met with a Russian lawyer connected with the Russian government, defenders of the president’s eldest son have offered a familiar argument: Hillary Clinton’s actions were more egregious. [NY Times]

Ron Bowman drives the Barren County Reads and Feeds bus. When he makes a stop and honks the horn, children run toward the vehicle from all directions. [Glasgow Daily Times]

It was June 7, 2016, and Donald Trump stood on the stage at his Westchester County, N.Y., golf club to launch his general-election race against Hillary Clinton with a big promise. [WaPo]

In a high-stakes bid for conservative support, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has agreed to demands from Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas to allow insurers to sell low-cost, skimpier plans as part of a new but still-reeling health care bill being released Thursday, two GOP aides said. [H-L]

U.S. intelligence officials heard Russian officials discussing associates of Donald Trump in early 2015, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday. [HuffPo]

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Republicans Just Want To Kill Everything

Senate Republicans remain at an impasse over the bill to replace former President Barack Obama’s health care law, but it’s too early to call the GOP proposal dead, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul said Monday. [HuffPo]

In many universes, it would be strange for Rob Goldstone, a British publicist and globetrotting eager beaver whose life could easily be mistaken for extended performance art, to be at the center of a massive political scandal involving the president of the United States. [HuffPo]

Matt Bevin can’t even spell “pension” or “tax reform” without having a bout of the gay panic. He also believes the earth is 6,000-years-old. [C-J/AKN]

A “biological annihilation” of wildlife in recent decades means a sixth mass extinction in Earth’s history is under way and is more severe than previously feared, according to research. [The Guardian]

When Republican Gov. Charlie Baker recently groused in a letter to senators that the GOP health care bill reining in Medicaid spending hurts “our lowest income” residents, he echoed a concern of many other governors. [Richmond Register]

The head of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement unit in charge of deportations has directed his officers to take action against all undocumented immigrants they may cross paths with, regardless of criminal histories. The guidance appears to go beyond the Trump administration’s publicly stated aims, and some advocates say may explain a marked increase in immigration arrests. [ProPublica]

An Ashland missionary on Sunday evening called for collaborative action to combat the scourge of addiction in the region, which has led to an explosion of drug overdoses in recent years, including at least 24 overdose fatalities in Boyd County alone in 2017. [Ashland Independent]

It’s a real shame Mitch McConnell will never be poor enough to have to rely upon Medicaid. He’s publicly claiming his health care legislation would not harm anyone on Medicaid. He’s lying. People could die because of his lies and his actions. [WaPo]

Dan Olsen has been named forest supervisor of the Daniel Boone National Forest in Kentucky. Olsen had been serving as the acting forest supervisor and assumes the permanent position in Winchester immediately. [The Morehead News]

Trump’s advisers recruited two businessmen who profited from military contracting to devise alternatives to the Pentagon’s plan to send thousands of additional troops to Afghanistan, reflecting the Trump administration’s struggle to define its strategy for dealing with a war now 16 years old. [NY Times]

Members of the Metcalfe County Fiscal Court learned Tuesday that financing for the construction of the new Metcalfe County Government Center has been approved. [Glasgow Daily Times]

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions will unveil this week a major crackdown on healthcare fraud involving opioid treatment programs, Bloomberg News reported on Wednesday, citing two people familiar with the matter. Republicans will do everything they can to make the opioid crisis worse. [Reuters]

In the six months since Charter Communications replaced Time Warner as the local cable provider, its Spectrum subsidiary has united Lexington’s people. Everybody hates Spectrum. [H-L]

What was that, again, Republicans? What was that about it being about history and not racism? A few dozen Ku Klux Klan members and supporters shouted “white power” at a rally on Saturday in Charlottesville, Virginia where they protested against a city council decision to remove a statute honoring Confederate General Robert E. Lee. [HuffPo]

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Republican Treason Sure Is Tons Of Fun

Mitch McConnell has had nearly a decade to come up with a health care alternative and he’s still yet to do so. Still. NEARLY A DECADE! [H-L]

Donald Trump’s son, son-in law, and campaign chairman met secretly in June 2016 with a woman they’d been told was a Russian government attorney who could provide documents that, as part of “Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump,” would “incriminate” Hillary Clinton, according to emails released by Donald Trump Jr. on Twitter Tuesday morning. [HuffPo]

OH MY GOD! Oh my god. Oh my god. Move all liquids away from whatever screen you’re reading this on before clicking. Oh. My. God. You’ll wet yourself. [C-J/AKN]

The bombshell New York Times report from Sunday afternoon might not the smoking gun in the Trump-Russia 2016 story, but it sure looks close to one. According to the Times, President Trump’s oldest son, Donald Trump Jr., met with a Kremlin-connected lawyer in June 2016 after being promised damaging information on Hillary Clinton — “the first public indication that at least some in the campaign were willing to accept Russian help.” To put this June 9, 2016 meeting into perspective, here’s a handy timeline of what happened before and after the meeting. [NBC News]

Kentucky ended the 2017 fiscal year on June 30 with a $138.5 million shortfall in its General Fund. [Ronnie Ellis]

The Donald Trump-Russia timeline sure is interesting. [TPM]

This is a hidden gem in Eastern Kentucky. You don’t have to know what a carabiner is or the advantages of passive vs. active protection to climb or descend from rocks at Carter Caves State Resort Park. [Ashland Independent]

Schaaaaaaadenfreeeeeeude! The revelation of these emails immediately sent shockwaves through the White House. “This is sum of all fears stuff. It’s what we’ve all been dreading,” said one White House official who is now exploring the possibility of retaining an attorney, a step described as purely precautionary. [TDB]

Deterrent. That’s the word Rowan County Sheriff Matt Sparks to describe the reasoning behind seizing a 59-acre property in a remote area in the southwestern part of the county. [The Morehead News]

The June 3, 2016, email sent to Donald Trump Jr. could hardly have been more explicit: One of his father’s former Russian business partners had been contacted by a senior Russian government official and was offering to provide the Trump campaign with dirt on Hillary Clinton. The documents “would incriminate Hillary and her dealings with Russia and would be very useful to your father,” read the email, written by a trusted intermediary, who added, “This is obviously very high level and sensitive information but is part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump.” [NY Times]

Come on, wealthy folks, help make this happen. The Bounty of the Barrens Farmers Market is a big step closer to having a permanent home, but plenty remains to be done before it becomes a reality, not the least of which is raising an estimated $600,000-plus. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Donald Trump Jr. agreed to take a meeting during the 2016 presidential campaign with a woman he was told was a “Russian government lawyer” who could provide damaging information about Hillary Clinton as part of “Russia and its government’s support” for his father’s presidential campaign, according to emails tweeted by the president’s son on Tuesday. [WaPo]

A contractor paid bribes and kickbacks to St. Joseph Hospital’s executive director of facilities, who was responsible for assigning general contracting work, a federal indictment said. As part of the scheme, contractor Rocky Williams of Jessamine County bought a motorcycle, an all-terrain vehicle, vacations, golf club memberships and furniture for James Newton of Lexington, according to court records. Neither man works at or for St. Joseph now. [H-L]

Donald Trump Jr. released images of an email exchange Tuesday that show he was contacted in June 2016 about a meeting with a Kremlin-linked lawyer. At that meeting, he was told, he could obtain “some official documents and information that would incriminate” former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. [HuffPo]

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Homophobia Harms Kentucky’s Economy

Could adding small units on lots with houses solve Lexington’s infill woes? Hell yes. Absolutely. Make tiny houses a thing! Even if they’re just accessory dwelling units. Get with the times, Kentucky. [H-L]

When the 10 members of Donald Trump’s Presidential Advisory Commission On Election Integrity met each other for the first time during a June 28 conference call, Mike Pence and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach (R), the panel’s leaders, made it clear they wanted the committee’s work to be unbiased. [HuffPo]

Bigots like Matt Bevin and Jeff Hoover need to get it through their gay-panicked heads that economic disasters like this will continue to occur as long as they push homophobia as their official platform. The Omni Louisville Hotel would have hosted the two conventions that reportedly pulled out of negotiations as a result of California’s state-funded travel ban, the company’s general manager said Saturday. [C-J/AKN]

The number of opioid prescriptions written in the United States has declined in recent years, according to newly released federal data, but the number of people who have fallen victim to fatal overdoses from prescription painkillers or heroin continues to rise. [The Hill]

Facebook users searching for the City of Ashland’s page won’t be able to find it, and the account will likely remain dormant until after a public information officer is hired. [Ashland Independent]

The U.S. Department of Energy said on Friday it is helping U.S. firms defend against a hacking campaign that targeted power companies including at least one nuclear plant, saying the attacks have not impacted electricity generation or the grid. [Reuters]

As a young boy, Alan Barnett’s parents gave him a metal detector. A toy, really. It beeped on anything from gum wrappers to pennies. One day as he was walking past a baseball field near his home, he saw a man with a metal detector, digging in the ground. [Richmond Register]

As Republicans in Congress work to roll back the Affordable Care Act, they and some states are proposing major changes to the Medicaid program. Researchers say these changes would cost millions their health coverage. [ProPublica]

Kelly McKinney, 29, of Glasgow, held a megaphone on the public sidewalk in front of the Barren River Plaza shopping center midday on Thursday and chanted along with a group of area residents. [Glasgow Daily Times]

After a prolonged recovery that culminated in two years of record sales, the American auto industry is slowing down, with fewer buyers in dealer showrooms and fewer workers on the factory floor. [NY Times]

Warren County has been selected to receive $46,857 in federal funds through the Department of Homeland Security/Federal Emergency Management Agency under the Emergency Food and Shelter National Board Program to supplement emergency food and shelter programs in the county. [BGDN]

Iraq’s prime minister showed up Sunday in the city of Mosul to declare victory in the nine-month battle for control of the Islamic State’s former capital in Iraq, signaling the near-end of the most grueling campaign against the extremist group to date and dealing a near-fatal blow to the survival of its self-declared caliphate. [WaPo]

The head of Duke University’s physician practice plan will take over the University of Kentucky’s sprawling billion-dollar health enterprise, officials announced Friday morning. [H-L]

The final statement from Group of 20 leaders on Saturday exposed a divide between the United States and other G20 members on the Paris accord aimed at combating climate change. [HuffPo]

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Will Ramsey Ever Be Held Accountable?

Education will never, ever matter in Kentucky and corrupt fools like this will always remain in control. Unless you stop voting for the lowest common denominator. Vic Adams, president of Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College, recently hired Texas community college dean Joel Michaelis as chief academic officer for its five campuses. [H-L]

On a solemn afternoon in December 2012, President Barack Obama broke down in tears in the Oval Office. It was the first time many of his aides had seen him cry. That morning, 20 students had been killed in a mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, and like the rest of the nation, the president was shaken by the news. [HuffPo]

Karma’s a real bitch, Jim Ramsey. I was right about your crew in 2008 when I broke the Felner mess wide open. When you and your Democratic Party pals thought it’d be a good idea to retaliate, I knew I was right. And whattya know? Everything’s coming to light now. You’ll never be held accountable because you’re wealthy but at least you’ll die (not now, obviously – I mean when you kick the bucket years from now from natural causes) tainted and your family will forever be tarnished with your blood money. Same goes for your circle of supporters. Glad to see you assholes getting a healthy dose of Karma. [C-J/AKN]

Experts say the plan is certain to produce thousands of false positives that could distort the understanding of the potential for fraud, especially given the limited data states have agreed to turn over. [ProPublica]

Of course Matt Bevin’s band of merry idiots, Derrick Ramsey included, think they know what’s best in education again. [Ronnie Ellis]

Canada will issue an apology and compensation to former Guantanamo Bay detainee Omar Khadr for abuses he suffered while in prison, reports say. Canadian-born Khadr, 30, was convicted in 2010 by a US military commission of killing a US soldier in Afghanistan. [BBC]

The last meeting of the Glasgow Electric Plant Board’s board of directors occurred simultaneously with the final of three meetings of a community advisory council that was developing recommendations the utility should use for future electric-rate designs and educating the public about them. [Glasgow Daily Times]

A few Sundays ago, federal immigration agents walked through the doors of handsome houses here in the Detroit suburbs, brushing past tearful children, stunned wives and statuettes of the Virgin Mary in search of men whose time was up. If the Trump administration prevails, more than 100 of these men may soon be deported, like the tens of thousands of other people rounded up this year as part of a national clampdown on illegal immigration. [NY Times]

The Ashland Board of City Commissioners on Wednesday agreed to direct up to $4.5 million to business developers who plan to turn the Ashland Plaza Hotel into a Marriott-brand hotel. [Ashland Independent]

U.S. private employers hired fewer workers than expected in June and applications for unemployment benefits last week increased for a third straight week, pointing to some loss of momentum in job growth as the labor market nears full employment. [Reuters]

During an hour-long WFPL News special on Wednesday, city officials discussed public safety and surging violence in Louisville. [WFPL]

Nineteen Democratic state attorneys general are suing Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos over rescinded student loan regulations. [The Hill]

Developers signed a lease Wednesday that will allow work to start on the parking lot and boat ramp for the first new commercial marina on Lake Cumberland in decades, according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. [H-L]

Even as controversy continues over President Dumpster Fire’s tweet of a video showing him beating up a personified version of CNN, a poll released Tuesday shows the cable news outlet edging him in trust among most Americans. [HuffPo]

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