Wednesday, January 31, 2007 

More on Maria Haley's Shady Business...

No wonder the Democrats are so excited about Maria Haley leading the Economic Development Department. She is a loyal, albeit shady fundraiser. It would be interesting to see how much money Beebe raised from the Asian and Phillipine community. We wonder if Beebe is rewarding her for more shady fundraising?

Check out this article that sums up her shady practices pretty well...The part about Haley is underlined for your convenience:

Investor's Business Daily
August 4, 1999

By Paul Sperry, Investor's Business

President Clinton's appointee to a critical seat on the board of the Export-Import Bank has close ties to a crooked fund-raiser linked to China.

China is Ex-Im Bank's second-largest customer.

During the Clinton years, the bank has given more than $ 5.5 billion in loans to China to help it buy U.S. technology and equipment for power plants and other projects. The loans were OK'd despite proof that China sold nuclear-related equipment to Pakistan and other countries that worry U.S. security experts.

The White House hopes the Senate will quickly confirm D. Vanessa Weaver to fill one of three vacant seats on Ex-Im's five-member board. The lack of quorum is holding up $ 2.3 billion in loans.As a Clinton aide, Weaver often was in touch with Democratic Party fund- raiser Jian-Nan ''John'' Huang when he worked at the Commerce Department.

In May, Huang agreed to plead guilty to a fund-raising felony charge in exchange for his help in an ongoing Justice Department probe of 1996 campaign finance fraud. He has yet to enter a guilty plea.

Weaver and Huang exchanged at least 26 phone calls over a 17-month period in 1994 and 1995, records show.

Weaver also reached out to Huang in October 1996 when he hid from U.S. marshals for a week to avoid testifying in a lawsuit brought by Judicial Watch Inc. The public-interest law firm claims that Huang was involved in an illegal scheme at Commerce to sell seats on trade trips for Democratic donations.

''She (Weaver) called my wife in California,'' Huang testified after authorities finally caught up with him. ''As a courtesy, I returned her call to her home.''

Huang explained that Weaver and he are just ''good friends.'' Asked about her again in another Judicial Watch deposition in April, Huang took the Fifth.

Weaver, deputy White House director of presidential personnel, declined repeated requests for an interview.

The Senate Banking Committee canceled a Friday hearing on Weaver and other appointees. It hasn't reset a date. The Senate breaks for a month starting next week.

Chairman Phil Gramm, R-Texas, isn't likely to quiz Weaver, a former computer consultant, about her ties to Huang. ''I don't expect it to be anything that Sen. Gramm brings up,'' spokeswoman Christi Harlan said.

Ignoring the issue would be a mistake, one Hill investigator says.

''We're going to reward someone who's all over John Huang's call-back slips,'' he said.
The connection doesn't stop there, he says.

As often as three times a week, Huang would leave his Commerce office carrying a folder or briefcase and walk across the street to the Willard Hotel. There he'd visit the Washington office of Stephens Inc., an Arkansas-based brokerage.

Weaver's father, Vernon Weaver, headed the branch. A fellow Arkansan, he and Clinton go back more than 20 years.

The elder Weaver let Huang use an empty Stephens office to pick up overnight packages, make phone calls and fax documents.

His secretary, Paula Greene, testified before the Senate in 1997 that Weaver gave her strict orders to hide the setup. For instance, she says Weaver told her not to leave detailed phone messages for Huang when she called to alert him to a package or fax.

Phone records show Vernon Weaver made at least 27 calls to Huang from July 1994 to November 1995. Over that same period, Vanessa Weaver made at least 23 calls to Huang - two on the same day as her father.

The congressional investigator, who wished to go unnamed, suspects Vanessa Weaver was a White House ''go- between'' for her father and Huang. Her White House office is just across 15th St. from the Willard Hotel and the Commerce building.

Records show that at least 16 faxes sent in 1994 and 1995 from the Stephens office went to Lippo Group units in Jakarta, Indonesia; Hong Kong; and Los Angeles. Huang worked for the foreign conglomerate before joining Commerce. Lippo has partnered with Stephens on deals for more than a decade.
The government official appeared to still be conducting business with his old firm - a possible breach of federal conflict rules.

But there's a more troubling aspect to his Willard activities.

Several months before Huang joined Commerce, China Resources Holding Co., a front for Chinese military intelligence, bought a large stake in a Lippo unit called Hongkong Chinese Bank.

That made Lippo equal partners with Beijing's communist regime.

''Huang himself may possibly have had a direct financial relationship with the (Chinese) government,'' said the final report of the so-called Thompson committee, headed by Sen. Fred Thompson, R-Tenn., which probed foreign fund-raising in the 1996 Clinton-Gore campaign.
The CIA briefed China- born Huang (who got a security clearance without a full background check) at least 37 times at Commerce. He got hundreds of classified documents on topics such as U.S.-China technology transfers.

Several of the faxes sent from the Stephens office correspond with Huang's CIA briefings.
For instance, the CIA briefed Huang at 9 a.m. on Oct. 5, 1994. Later that day, at 5:49 p.m., a fax was sent from the Stephens office to a Lippo office in Hong Kong.

Huang enjoyed unusual access to the White House. He visited at least 94 times and met with Clinton there at least 15 times.

At a Sept. 13, 1995, Oval Office meeting, Clinton decided to move Huang to the Democratic National Committee.

Phone logs show a pickup in calls from Vanessa Weaver's White House office to Huang starting on Sept. 15, 1995 - suggesting that ''she may have had some kind of campaign- financing role,'' the congressional source said.

The DNC gave Huang back roughly half - $ 1.6 million - of the money he raised in 1996. It can't say if the funds were obtained legally from U.S. sources.

Judicial Watch Chairman Larry Klayman cautions the Senate against rubber-stamping Weaver for the Ex-Im Bank post.

''What does she know about Chinagate?'' he said. ''Before she is confirmed, the Senate should do a full investigation.''

Ex-Im Bank spokesman Ken Murphy says the administration is eager to fill the $ 118,400 spot left open by Maria Haley, who rejoined the White House personnel office last month.

Haley was hoping for another term. But some senators reportedly objected, citing bad press over her meetings with key figures in the administration's fund-raising scandal.

One of them was Huang.

''Crony A is being replaced by Crony B,'' the Hill investigator quipped, referring to Weaver taking Haley's slot.

In 1994, Huang, then at Commerce, paid a visit to Haley at the Ex-Im Bank. He brought along his old Lippo boss, James Riady. While at the DNC, Huang called Haley at least five times.
Between 1994 and 1996, Ex-Im Bank gave up to $ 900,000 in export insurance to Lippo.

Haley repaid the visit, joining Huang on a Commerce trade trip to China in August 1994.

Huang and Haley go way back. They worked on deals when Haley was then- Gov. Clinton's trade contact at the Arkansas Industrial Development Commission.

In rushing to replace Haley with Weaver, the White House teed off a Democrat on the banking panel who had someone other than Weaver in mind - someone outside the administration and Arkansas network.

Sen. Jack Reed, D- R.I., was so angry, he objected to Friday's hearing and got it canceled.

''We have been dealing with the folks at the White House on this'' since February, said Greg McCarthy, a spokesman for Reed. ''They told us that (Reed's) nominee looked very good.''
Reed found out last Wednesday from a news report that the White House had snuck Weaver into the lineup.


Beebe: Official or Campaign Newsletter

Mike Beebe has a history of mixing campaign activities and official business. And although Beebe doesn't have another race until 2010, he is already blurring the line between campaign activity and official business. Just today we received an email from "Mike Beebe for Governor" asking us to help join his team by signing up for what equates to a campaign newsletter, the Capitol Dispatch.

If you will notice, the solicitation is paid for by Mike Beebe for Governor. However, the obvious campaign newsletter, appears to be funded by the taxpayers and can only be signed up for on his official website:

Its one thing to provide an official newsletter, but its another to provide a taxpayer funded campaign newsletter. With Mike Beebe's history of campaigning from his official office, he should come clean and end this shady practice. What's next, phone banks at the Mansion?

Tuesday, January 30, 2007 

More Beebe Patronage...

Well good ol Mike Beebe is at it again. First we find out that Beebe has named the drunk driving Cliff Hoofman to the State Highway Commission. Then we learn that Beebe intends to name the shady-business-dealing-donorgate-participating Maria Haley to the Economic Development Department. Then today we read that Beebe now intends to name his chief obstructionist in the Oklahoma-EPA Water Quality Debate of 2006 to be his head of Environmental Quality?

Remember this issue while Beebe was running for Governor? Well it appears he is going to name his former Deputy Attorney General for Public Protection to be his head of Enviroment Quality? How does the person who played a major role in keeping Arkansas from developing Phosphorus Quality Standards in the water become the head of Environmental Quality? This makes no sense to us...

Oh wait, sure it does...

Arkansas Stalls Pact on Water
December 16, 2003

Arkansas officials said Monday they aren't ready to agree to Oklahoma's tougher water quality standards just yet.

Officials from both states and the federal Environmental Protection Agency will meet in Dallas today to discuss Oklahoma's standards and its new phosphorus limit of 0.037 milligrams per liter of water.

Richard Greene, the EPA's regional administrator, expressed optimism that Arkansas would agree to a framework that tells Arkansas how it must get to the new 0.037 limit."

The last draft of the agreement appeared to us to be awfully close," Greene said. "I have been optimistic all along. It seems to us that we appear very near agreement."

A resolution at today's meeting in Dallas is unlikely, said Randy Young, director of the Arkansas Soil and Water Conservation Commission. Young and Marcus Devine, director of the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality, said they won't agree to the terms of the latest agreement. Young declined to say why he won't sign.

"It will be better for Oklahoma and the EPA to hear it from me rather than read it in the newspaper," Young said. The disagreement between Oklahoma and Arkansas started in 2001, when Oklahoma first talked of tougher water quality standards for six of the state's scenic rivers. Four of those streams, including the Illinois River, start their course westward from Arkansas.

Arkansas officials balked at Oklahoma's numeric phosphorus limit, which was approved by former Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating in May 2002.

A U.S. Supreme Court decision in 1992 involving Oklahoma and Fayetteville gives downstream states the right to require upstream states to meet water quality standards at the state line.With Keating's signature, Oklahoma forwarded its water quality standards to the EPA on Nov. 1, 2002. The EPA said it would make a decision regarding the standards within 60 to 90 days.

They remain unapproved.

"We are continuing to work with both Arkansas and Oklahoma to work a framework to ultimately achieve the phosphorus level for the scenic rivers in Oklahoma," said Dave Bary, an EPA spokesman. "It couldn't be achieved in that 60- or 90-day time."

A natural substance, phosphorus is found in poultry litter, commercial fertilizers and treated sewage. At high levels, phosphorus causes algae to bloom, depletes oxygen and can kill fish and other aquatic life.

Samples taken in Oklahoma and Arkansas show the Illinois River carries phosphorus exceeding 0.037 milligrams per liter. "The longer we wait, the further south the river goes," said Ed Fite, director of the Oklahoma Scenic Rivers Commission. "The longer we wait, the harder is it to reverse any degradation."

Thus far, talks between Arkansas and Oklahoma officials have failed to produce a consensus, with Arkansas officials saying Oklahoma's standard can't be achieved.

Arkansas Attorney General Mike Beebe last week told Greene the Oklahoma standards "could have catastrophic consequences for agriculture, industries and cities in Northwest Arkansas." In the six-page letter, Beebe describes the Oklahoma's water standards as submitted to the EPA as "not based upon sound science."

Beebe in the Dec. 9 letter said Oklahoma should have performed an economic analysis regarding the impact of the water quality standards.

Charlie Price, a spokesman for Oklahoma Attorney General Drew Edmondson, said Arkansas should sign.

"We don't see any obstacles to them signing," Price said.

Kelly Hunter Burch, the environmental protection unit chief for the Oklahoma attorney general's office, and Teresa Marks, Arkansas deputy attorney general in charge of the public protection division, will attend today's meeting in Dallas, spokesmen said.

Arkansas has taken some steps to better the rivers. Bentonville, Fayetteville, Rogers, Siloam Springs and Springdale have promised to limit the phosphorus in treated sewage that's discharged into rivers to one milligram per liter. Arkansas has approved three new laws regarding farming practices and how poultry litter is spread on farm fields. Arkansas officials also have joined hands with Oklahoma officials as they try to figure ways to use excess poultry litter produced in Northwest Arkansas and eastern Oklahoma differently. They are looking into such things as burning litter to produce heat for chicken houses, and ways to cost-effectively transport litter to areas where it could be used as fertilizer without jeopardizing streams.

Monday, January 29, 2007 

The Truth About Maria L. Haley's Past...

Apparently if you are a loyal Democrat you can do anything and still be appointed to serve in Mike Beebe's administration. First Beebe names the drunk driving Cliff Hoofman to the State Highway Commission.

Now Beebe is naming Maria Haley to run the Economic Development Department. We have to ask, is she going to bring in shady dollars to the state? Or will she just help donors get jobs in the Administration or shady business deals in Arkansas now? For those who don't remember Ms. Haley, here is an article that should refresh your minds. Developing...

Los Angeles Times
March 1, 1997,

WASHINGTON - The Democratic National Committee announced Friday that it will return an additional $ 1.5 million in questionable or improper donations, doubling to nearly $ 3 million the campaign money given back so far.

More than half of the refunded contributions were solicited by John Huang, the former Democratic fund-raiser from Glendale, Calif., who specialized in the Asian American community and is now at the center of the growing campaign finance controversy.

Without providing details, the committee returned $ 366,000 in donations from Johnny Chien Chuen Chung, the gregarious Taiwanese American entrepreneur from Torrance who visited the White House at least 49 times, often accompanied by Chinese guests.

The release of a three-month audit of Democratic finances, which found 77 more donors who had given unacceptable donations, is certain to focus increased scrutiny on the Democrats' fund-raising practices during last year's presidential election. The Justice Department, the Federal Election Commission and several congressional committees have launched investigations into illegal donations from foreigners to the party.

The committee's action also could put pressure on other Republican and Democratic leaders who have accepted donations from the same contributors whose money is now being rejected by the Democratic Party.

Among those who collected such donations were the Clinton-Gore campaign; 1996 GOP presidential nominee Bob Dole; Sen. Fred Thompson (R-Tenn.), who chairs the Senate committee investigating campaign finance irregularities; Rep. Robert T. Matsui (D-Sacramento) and Rep. Howard L. Berman (D-Mission Hills), according to an analysis of federal election records by the independent Campaign Study Group.

"It is up to others to do what they will with these donations," said Democratic Party spokeswoman Amy Weiss Tobe. "We're only cleaning up our own house, not dictating to others what they should do."

Document Raises Reward Questions

Meanwhile, congressional investigators received a document found in the files of a former top White House aide that suggests that President Clinton's fund-raisers sought to reward campaign donors with presidential appointments to advisory boards and commissions.

Discovery of the memo, which was supplied to the House Committee on Government Reform and Oversight by former White House Deputy Chief of Staff Harold M. Ickes, comes on the heels of the disclosure earlier this week that Clinton personally proposed inviting potential big-money donors to stay overnight at the White House.

Along with disclosing the newly refunded donations, Democratic officials said they were taking corrective actions by adopting tough screening procedures to ensure that the DNC thoroughly examines future donations from illegal or questionable sources.

Even though Steven Grossman, national chairman of the DNC, hailed the new provisions as "the most rigorous ever adopted," party officials have acknowledged that similar safeguards were disregarded when the committee raised $ 120 million last year to help finance the president's reelection.

At the White House, Press Secretary Mike McCurry praised the DNC's action.

"The president and the White House believe that they are doing the appropriate thing to correct any mistakes that they have identified and to return contributions they should not have accepted," McCurry said.

Before Friday's announcement, the DNC had returned $ 1.5 million to 16 donors last year in the wake of reports in The Times and other newspapers of illegal or questionable donations by foreign-linked donors.

In all, $ 2.2 million--or about three-quarters of the $ 3 million refunded--was solicited or donated by Huang, Chung and Yah Lin "Charlie" Trie, a former Little Rock, Ark., restaurant owner and personal friend of the president.

Trie has played a role in some of the most embarrassing elements of the current controversy surrounding Democratic fund-raising. He raised more than $ 600,000 in contributions to the president's legal defense fund that were returned because their origin could not be firmly established. And he was responsible for bringing Chinese arms dealer Wang Jun to the White House for a political coffee with Clinton.

Probe Angers Some Asian Americans

Altogether, the Democrats have given back $ 645,000 in donations solicited by Trie, including $ 207,000 contributed by Trie, his company and his wife.

Also returned is $ 64,050 collected from a fund-raiser attended by Vice President Al Gore at the Hsi Lai Buddhist Temple in Hacienda Heights, Calif., an event that the committee said should not have occurred at a place of worship. Of the total of $ 166,750 raised at the temple, the Democrats now have returned $ 74,050.

Colorado Gov. Roy Romer, the party's new general chairman, sought Friday to soothe the anger expressed by many Los Angeles-area Asian Americans who were questioned about their qualifications to contribute to the Democrats as part of the fund-raising audit. Many Asian Americans said they were insulted and felt stigmatized by the party's inquiries.

"I'm concerned about the way some of those interviews were conducted," Romer said. "We very much want to heal any of the pain and wounds that have been caused."

Other donors whose contributions the Democrats will send back lashed out at the committee.

The attorney for Chung complained that the national committee has not communicated with his client since questions first surfaced about his donations last year.

"There has been very little in the way of substantive investigation and little or no due diligence by anyone representing the DNC in this matter," said Santa Monica attorney Brian A. Sun. "We're being improperly tarred on the basis of conclusions hastily and erroneously made."

The Times reported in November that Chung enjoyed extraordinary access to the president, First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton and numerous administration officials from 1994 to 1996 while donating $ 366,000 to the Democrats. A struggling fax machine dealer, Chung escorted dozens of Chinese guests during his visits to the White House. These included the head of a Chinese brewery who toted bottles of beer around the White House and Chinese government officials who watched Clinton deliver a weekly radio address from the Oval Office.

Donor's Business Deals Perturb White House

Documents released two weeks ago show that Chung continued to meet with the Clintons despite warnings from national security officials that he was using his lofty connections to strike questionable business deals overseas.

White House officials were so perturbed by Chung that McCurry recently vowed: "You're not going to see him around here any time soon."

DNC General Counsel Joseph Sandler said the committee made repeated efforts to retrieve information from Chung and his attorney but received little cooperation.

Asked why Chung's money was returned, party officials attending a news conference Friday offered vague explanations, saying that he had provided "insufficient" and "diversionary" information.

Hours after the DNC's announcement, the attorney for Kansas City businessman Farhad Azima sent a letter to the party asking for "immediate clarification" for returning $ 143,741 in cash and in-kind contributions.

The letter complained that besides a courtesy call Friday morning, Azima's attorney had received no explanation and assumed that the money was being returned because of "misleading and inaccurate news reports" about Azima's past.

Although his companies have run up against federal regulators over the years, the Iranian-born Azima is perhaps best known because his name surfaced during the Iran-Contra scandal of the Reagan administration. Allegations arose that one of his jets was used to smuggle arms into his native country--a charge that he vigorously disputes, saying that he had absolutely no knowledge about such a flight, if one took place.

Through his Washington attorney, Azima said: "I must say that I am personally disappointed in many of the circumstances that have arisen by simply undertaking my constitutional right to support the president and the party."

The Democrats said they were returning $ 50,000 to Empire Sanitary Landfill of Taylor, Pa. The trash-hauling company's two principal owners, Carmen Danella and Renato Mariani, were indicted last year by a federal grand jury in Philadelphia on tax-fraud charges.

Danella later died of cancer, and charges against Mariani were dropped after another executive agreed to plead guilty to a misdemeanor tax offense. A company official said Friday that he knew nothing about the returned donation but that new owners had taken over the firm.

Records show that the landfill firm and its employees also contributed $ 50,000 to Dole's presidential campaign in 1995.

In a related development Friday, internal documents released by the Export-Import Bank of the United States showed that Maria L. Haley, a presidential appointee to the bank's governing board, provided names of prospective contributors to the DNC.

On one occasion, Haley, who was born in the Philippines, provided the names of Filipino Americans who could be solicited by the committee to attend a fund-raiser honoring Clinton at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.

"I recall sometime in the summer getting a call from the DNC to let me know that the president would be celebrating his birthday in New York and could I provide a list of Philippine Americans in New York who should be invited," Haley said last month in a memo to a bank spokesman.

Haley continued: "I gave about half a dozen names, among them Loida Lewis. I have gotten similar calls the last four years whenever there is a presidential function and the organizers need diversity."

Lewis contributed $ 5,000 to the Democrats on Nov. 12, 1996, according to federal election records. Haley could not be reached for comment Friday. In her memo, addressed to bank spokesman David Carter, Haley insisted that she had not participated in campaign fund-raising.

"I have never talked to anyone regarding money because I am VERY aware that it is illegal in my position," wrote Haley, who also served in Clinton's administration when he was governor of Arkansas.

Mystery Surrounds Origins of Memo

In the memo from Ickes' files, appointments to boards and commissions are just one item on a 10-point list of rewards that were to be offered to contributors in an effort "to reach our very aggressive goal of $ 40 million" for the 1996 election.

The memo was addressed to a DNC employee, Martha Phipps, but the name of the author and the date it was written are not known.

Sources said it was faxed to Ickes from the office of the chairman of the Democratic Party. Ickes, who resigned in January, found it among files he took from the White House when he left.

Robert S. Bennett, Ickes' attorney, said the memo and other documents supplied to the committee by his client "simply reflect long-established practices of both political parties because of the tremendous demands placed upon them to finance campaigns."

Times staff writers Sara Fritz, Robert L. Jackson, Elizabeth Shogren and David Willman in Washington and William C. Rempel in Los Angeles contributed to this story.

Reaching an 'Aggressive Goal'

Among the papers turned over to Congress by former White House Deputy Chief of Staff Harold M. Ickes was an unsigned memo that recommends 10 donor perks. The memo suggests that the perks would be helpful in reaching the Democratic National Committee's "very aggressive goal of $ 40 million this year." It was addressed to Martha Phipps, deputy chief of staff to former Democratic Party Chairman David Wilhelm.

Sunday, January 28, 2007 

The Truth About Hill-Billery's Scripted Screenplay...

Hillary Clinton's campaign for President is less than a month old and we are already seeing her true colors coming out. It is clear that Hillary's spin doctors are going to control her message and public appearances at every turn. It is very obvious that they want to keep her from answering any questions at all.
Just the other day, Senator Clinton's campaign issued a press release promising 3 live web "conversations" on "important issues." Her exploratory committee website stated:

"Senator Clinton Will Answer Americans' Questions On Important Issues Like The Iraq War, Health Care, And Energy Independence Three Nights In A Row..."

"You Can Ask Hillary Your Questions And Watch Her Answers In Our Live Webcast."
However, these conversations turned out to be a short, well scripted and clearly pre-screened question and answer session.

In fact the Washington Post's Anne Kornblut called this "a carefully controlled setting where inquiries about affordable tuition and health care counted among the tougher topics, she reminisced, in response to a question about Hurricane Katrina, about walking the streets of New Orleans on visits when she and her husband lived in Arkansas."
Clearly the American people are going to see what we have known all along. Hillary Clinton only cares about power and her lifelong dream to become President will be calculated and scripted as her life has been for the last 20 years...

Friday, January 19, 2007 

Mike Beebe: Champion of Public Safety

From Wonkette Blog:

Mike Beebe: Champion of Public Safety

Beebe, Governor of Arkansas, is determined to make our job as easy as possible.

Governor Beebe has named former state senator Cliff Hoofman to the state Highway Commission.

In 1999, Hoofman was stopped by the police for driving erratically. He had a blood-alcohol content of 0.24 percent, more than twice the legal limit.

Beebe says he knows no one more committed to highways than Hoofman, and that the former senator was a logical choice for the appointment.

Good one, Beebe! What’s next, Robert Byrd as head of the Senate Appropriations Committee? Ha!

Beebe Names Hoofman to Highway Commission [KATV]

Wednesday, January 17, 2007 

Democrats Putting Illegal Immigrants First...

A house committee blocked legislation that would require state agencies to hire hard working Arkansans rather than illegal immigrants with government contracts.

According to the Arkansas News Bureau, House Bill 1024 by Rep. Rick Green, R-Van Buren, would prohibit state agencies from entering into or renewing a public contract with a contractor "who knows or should know" that it or a subcontractor employs an illegal immigrant.

Would someone please explain to me why the legislature believes its good to use taxpayer dollars to support illegal immigration? Regardless as to whether or not these immigrants cut in line and promote illegal activity, now the Democrats want to use taxpayer dollars to pay them to work?

Doesn't this just promote more illegal immigration? When will the Democrats put Arkansans first like they claim?

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