President Trump Pardon Joe Exotic?!? Jokes, 'I'll Take a Look'

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EXOTIC PARDON
C-SPAN

Joe Exotic is officially on the White House's radar now -- thanks to a reporter asking President Trump if he plans to pardon the 'Tiger King' star and convicted felon.

The bizarre exchange went down Wednesday during, of all things, the Coronavirus Taskforce briefing. The reporter asked Trump if he's heard of the popular Netflix series, and, if so, might he consider commuting Joe's 22-year prison sentence.

The reporter told the Prez ... his son, Don Jr., joked during a radio interview he'd lobby POTUS to pardon Joe Exotic for the memes "and just for frankly watching the media reaction to this thing."

It's actually pretty hilarious ... Trump asked which son made that comment before answering in signature fashion, saying, "I know nothing about it." That didn't stop him from also saying he'd look into it. For good measure ... he also asked CNN's Jim Acosta -- a reporter Trump often feuds with -- if he thought a pardon was a good idea.

As you know by now ... Joe Exotic's behind bars after he was found guilty of a murder-for-hire plot targeting his nemesis, Carole Baskin. He's also in the middle of a lawsuit in which he's asking for a new judge .... alleging the original one is homophobic and biased.

Royal Caribbean Sued Stop Stealing From Nurses ... We Want Our Money Back!!!

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5:46 PM PT -- NURSECON just responded to the lawsuit with a feisty statement.

Jeffrey A. Kasky, an adviser to NURSECON, tells TMZ ... "Anybody with a few hundred dollar bills can file a lawsuit, that doesn't mean it has any merit."

Royal Caribbean Cruises is nothing more than a profiteering vessel to steal cash from nurses in a pandemic ... according to a nurse suing over a cruise canceled by COVID-19.

Jessica Mitchell just filed a class-action lawsuit Wednesday against Royal Caribbean Cruises and NURSECON at Sea, accusing the cruise line and floating convention of conning hard-working nurses out of their deposits for an event scrapped by the coronavirus.

According to new legal docs, obtained by TMZ, Mitchell claims the NURSECON founder is plotting to steal the $2,578 cruise fee from each of the 1,500 nurses who were scheduled to attend before the outbreak scuttled everything.

In the docs, Mitchell says the money grab is particularly bad now, because nurses deserve support now more than ever as they battle COVID-19 on the front lines.

The nurses claim the cruise and convention have refused to grant any refunds despite the cancellation, and instead are pocketing the fees which were paid upfront and offering credit for a future convention which some think may not even happen for years.

In the suit, Mitchell claims the cruise and convention are using the pandemic to line their pockets, and she says there's no reason not to give nurses their money back.

As we first reported ... the voyage was axed due to the pandemic, and nurses were up in arms over the cruise allegedly refusing to grant refunds. However, at the time, Royal Caribbean told us, "Royal Caribbean has been extremely flexible with Nursecon and has provided them with the option to offer their guests a refund on their cruise fare plus taxes and fees, or a 125% future cruise credit."

Adding, "Royal Caribbean deeply appreciates the efforts of our nurses, doctors and health-care professionals working on the frontlines during this public health crisis, and we applaud their sacrifices to help protect our communities."

Mitchell wants nurses to get their money back with interest, plus damages.

We reached out to Royal Caribbean for comment ... so far, no word back.

Originally published -- 5:16 PM PT

Playboy Mansion New Look, Who Dis? ... Grotto Drained!!!

The Playboy Mansion doesn't look like your father's dream house anymore ... because it's completely unrecognizable these days, as a massive construction project ramps up.

Ya gotta check out these aerial shots of Hugh Hefner's former masterpiece ... the Playboy Mansion is covered in scaffolding and the roof is hidden under massive tarps.

The beautiful lawns are no more ... instead of lush green scenery, there's mounds and piles of brown dirt.

Perhaps the biggest change going on right now at the Playboy Mansion ... the world-famous grotto is looking like a shell of its former self, because the water's gone and the pool's been drained.

For context, here's a refresher on what the Playboy Mansion used to look like back in its heyday.

The luxury cars are all gone too ... now, the driveway is littered with cars from the construction crew.

As we first reported ... the Mansion is getting a massive facelift under billionaire owner Daren Metropoulos, who bought it from Hugh for $100 million. As part of the sale deal, Heff was allowed to live in the mansion until he died in 2017.

Vanessa Bryant 'Kobe Would Have Been So Proud' ... New Book Becomes NYT Bestseller

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"5 championships. 5 NYT bestsellers. The Mamba strikes again."

Vanessa Bryant is celebrating Kobe's newest accomplishment -- his latest book in the Wizenard Series, "Season One" is a NYT Bestseller.

The book was released last week ... and follows the journey of a young hooper named Reggie, who faces incredible obstacles on his way to becoming a basketball star.

"My husband @kobebryant would have been so proud to see his work continuing on with The #Wizenard Series: Season One." Vanessa said on Wednesday.

Of course, it was a bittersweet day when the newest book was released after Kobe's tragic death, with the author, Wesley King, saying he was "grateful to see the words live on."

Bryant's other projects, "The Mamba Mentality: How I Play," "Training Camp," "The Legacy And The Queen" and "Epoca: The Tree of Ecrof" are all also received the honor of being NYT Bestsellers.

Vanessa had one final message on the accomplishment ... saying, "Thank you for supporting his legacy!!!!"

Meghan & Harry 'Archewell' Site Hijacked ... Goes to Ye's 'Gold Digger'

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Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's potential website for their new foundation is now owned by an Internet troll, who's using a Kanye West hit to send a pretty nasty message.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex announced Tuesday they were planning a new nonprofit called Archewell Foundation, but apparently they didn't lock down at least one potential URL for a website. Instead, a cybersquatter scooped up archewellfoundation.com -- but there's nothing charitable about it now.

The anonymous owner linked it to Kanye's "Gold Digger" music video on YouTube. The troll's intent seems pretty clear ... passing judgment on Meghan's intent in marrying Harry.

It's a low blow ... especially considering Harry and Meghan plan to make their foundation a one-stop shop educational and support site for a variety of charitable groups.

They still have other URL options -- such as a dot org -- so it's not a total lost cause -- but it's a hard lesson for the couple to learn as they venture out on their own without support from the Palace.

The Sussexes will have to step up their media game, especially if they come to Hollywood ... as many expect. You're swimming with sharks now, Harry!!!

Julian Edelman Off the Hook in Car Jumping Case ... Case Dropped

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It's a Passover miracle for Julian Edelman -- the NFL superstar will NOT be prosecuted for drunkenly jumping on a car in Bev Hills back in January, TMZ Sports has learned.

Remember, the former Super Bowl MVP was arrested on January 11 after cops saw the Patriots WR jumping on the hood of a car (we're told a Mercedes) around 9 pm.

Cops say the car was leaving a parking lot -- and had stopped for pedestrian traffic -- when Edelman "slid across the hood" like he was Starsky and Hutch!

According to police, Edelman reeked of booze (duh) and he was busted for vandalism.

He was at dinner earlier in the evening in Bev Hills at Cantina FRIDA, along with Paul Pierce and Danny Amendola.

But that's all over now ... cops say the owner of the vehicle told prosecutors he does NOT want Edelman charged with a crime because "he has been fully compensated for the repair costs to the vehicle."

In other words, Edelman cut the dude a fat ass check and now it's all gooooooood!!!

Officials say the case filing has been formally declined "in the interests of justice."

Tiger Woods Sued By Golf Fan ... Your Caddie Injured Me!!

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Tiger Woods is being sued by a fan who says he tried to take a selfie with the golf superstar ... but claims all he got was a big shove and some serious injuries.

A golf fan named Brian Borruso filed a lawsuit in Florida this week ... where he claims he was a spectator at the Valspar Gold tournament in Palm Harbor, FL in March 2018.

Borruso claims he was on the green at the 13th hole when Tiger hit a ball near where he was standing. As Woods approached his ball, Borruso says he saw the moment as an opportunity to get a selfie with Tiger.

However, as he tried to snap the shot, Borruso says Woods' caddie, Joe LaCava, stepped in and "intentionally shoved" him ... pushing him back into other spectators, and injuring him.

As a result, Borruso's lawsuit claims he "suffered injury and damages" including "bodily and mental injury," "disability, disfigurement, mental anguish, loss of capacity for the enjoyment of life, expenses of hospitalization, medical and nursing care and treatment, loss of ability to earn income, and aggravation of a previously existing condition."

Borruso says his injuries haven't gotten better ... and he is still feeling the effects of the alleged attack.

He never claims Tiger touched him, but cites USGA rules that state a golfer is responsible for his caddies actions ... and because of that, Woods should be held financially responsible.

As for why the fan took over 2 years to file the lawsuit ... his attorney says he waited to get a better understanding of just how serious his injuries were.

There's video of the alleged incident ... where LaCava is seemingly heard telling a fan to "back it up." LaCava is seen extending his arm as Tiger attempts to practice his swing ... but it's difficult to tell if Joe ever makes contact with anyone.

Borruso notes he is seeking over $30k, but the exact figure is unclear.

Linda Tripp Clinton-Lewinsky Whistleblower Dead at 70

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1:54 PM PT -- Linda died Wednesday according to her family. We're told she passed in the morning. There are reports she'd been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer ... although the family has not confirmed that. Linda was 70.

RIP

11:09 AM PT -- Lewinsky just reacted to the news of Linda's illness, saying, "no matter the past, upon hearing that linda tripp is very seriously ill, i hope for her recovery. i can't imagine how difficult this is for her family."

A rep for the Tripp family tells us they are asking for privacy during this difficult time.

Linda Tripp, whose recorded conversations with Monica Lewinsky led to President Clinton's impeachment -- is near death ... according to her daughter.

Allison Tripp Foley said late Tuesday, "My mommy is leaving this earth. I don't know myself if I can survive this heartache." In her FB post, Allison said she is at her mother's bedside, and she asked for prayers for "a painless process for the strongest woman I will ever know in my entire lifetime."

She has not revealed what illness, or medical crisis, 70-year-old Linda is battling. Allison did confirm to TMZ that it is NOT COVID-19.

Tripp is known as a whistleblower for turning over secretly-recorded conversations with Lewinsky to Ken Starr in January 1998. The recordings exposed Lewinsky's sexual relationship with Clinton.

Linda also told Starr about Lewinsky's infamous blue dress. She was working in the Pentagon when she befriended the 22-year-old White House intern and learned about her physical relationship with the POTUS. The rest is history.

Linda and her husband, Dieter Rausch, have 2 children -- Allison and Ryan.

Originally published -- 10:49 AM PT

Robert F. Kennedy Granddaughter Died From Accidental Drowning ... Her Son's Body Found

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1:32 PM PT -- 4/8 -- Gideon's body has finally been found, according to cops, who say the boy's body was found in 25 feet of water about 2,000 feet away from where Maeve's body was found.

11:22 AM PT -- Maeve's cause of death is an accidental drowning, according to officials handling the case. The search for her son Gideon's body continues.

7:25 PM PT -- 4/6 -- Divers found Maeve's body Monday evening about 2.5 miles south of the family home on Chesapeake Bay. Authorities say her body was located in water that was 25-feet deep ... and they plan to continue searching for Gideon on Tuesday.

6:15 AM PT -- 4/4 -- Maeve's husband, David McKean, said Friday it seems clear his wife and son have tragically passed. McKean said, "It is clear that Maeve and Gideon have passed away," adding, "It has been more than 24 hours, and the chances they have survived are impossibly small."

McKean said his family was self-quarantining at Maeve's mother's home on Chesapeake Bay, so they could have some space. He says Gideon and Maeve were playing a game of kickball and the ball went into the water, so they got in a canoe to get the ball. He believes the canoe got pushed by either the tide or the wind, into the bay.

12:22 PM PT -- There were local reports Gov. Hogan confirmed Maeve had passed away, but we got video of his news conference, and he merely offers prayers as the search continues.

ASSISTING IN THE SEARCH

Two members of the Kennedy family are missing after a canoeing accident on the Chesapeake Bay, and after 24 hours, Maryland's Governor says the search continues for them.

Robert F. Kennedy's granddaughter, Maeve Kennedy Townsend McKean, and her 8-year-old son, Gideon, were reported missing Thursday after paddling out near Annapolis, MD ... according to the Washington Post.

The Kennedys are reportedly gathered at a waterfront house and children were playing with a ball in the yard Thursday afternoon when it was kicked into the bay. Maeve and her son hopped in a canoe to track down the ball, but they were unable to paddle back to shore.

Maryland authorities said an overturned canoe matching the description of the Kennedy's had been recovered. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan held a news conference Friday and announced the search for Maeve and Gideon continues.

Maeve's mother is former Maryland Lt. Gov. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend.

The Coast Guard says Maeve and her son were "seen struggling to return to shore in a canoe" before disappearing. Thursday was an extremely windy day on the bay, with gusts of up to 40 MPH in the D.C. area.

Helicopters and boat rescue crews have been searching the area for 24 hours, but still nothing.

Just last summer, another one of RFK's granddaughters, Saiorse Kennedy Hill, died of an accidental overdose while at the family's Hyannis Port compound.

Dating back to John F. Kennedy and RFK's assassinations in the '60s, the family's endured countless tragedies -- including JFK Jr.'s fatal plane crash in 1999, and Michael Kennedy's death in a 1997 skiing accident.

Originally Published -- 11:49 AM PT 4/3

Sen. Bernie Sanders Ends Presidential Campaign ... 'Struggle for Justice Continues'

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ENDING THE CAMPAIGN
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9:28 AM PT -- In a message to his supporters, Bernie promised he'd work with Vice President Biden to help further his campaign ... Biden also posted a message about Bernie.

9:05 AM PT -- President Trump just chimed in on Twitter, of course, saying ... "Bernie Sanders is OUT! Thank you to Elizabeth Warren. If not for her, Bernie would have won almost every state on Super Tuesday!"

Trump adds ... "This ended just like the Democrats & the DNC wanted, same as the Crooked Hillary fiasco. The Bernie people should come to the Republican Party, TRADE!"

Sen. Bernie Sanders just ended his 2020 bid for President ... leaving Joe Biden a wide open path for the Democratic nomination.

Bernie made the inevitable decision Wednesday from his hometown of Burlington, Vermont after telling staffers he was suspending his campaign. The news, of course, makes Biden the presumptive Democratic nominee.

Bernie tweeted, "Today I am suspending my campaign. But, while the campaign ends, the struggle for justice continues on."

The announcement comes about a month after getting walloped in primaries held in 6 states, but most importantly ... it came during a global pandemic that effectively shut down the U.S.

It also comes a day after Wisconsin controversially held its state elections. Sanders said about the decision ... "holding this election amid the coronavirus outbreak is dangerous, disregards the guidance of public health experts, and may very well prove deadly." The campaign refused to promote any "get out to vote" efforts for that reason.

Furthermore, the math just wasn't there for Bernie as he faced insurmountable odds. Bernie would reportedly have had to win more than 55% of delegates to score a delegate majority. That no longer seemed possible as Sanders badly struggled to make his case in Florida (Biden's shellacking him there, polls show) and Georgia (Sanders lost badly there 4 years ago to Hillary Clinton) ... two states holding primaries in the next couple of weeks.

The senator from Vermont -- whose platform resonated with young voters who were all-in on his push for universal healthcare and free college -- had hoped to pick up crucial wins Tuesday to give his campaign a much-needed boost. But, instead, it was Biden who distanced himself ... scoring victories in Missouri, Idaho, Mississippi, and perhaps most importantly, Michigan.

After a resounding win, Biden spoke to supporters and all but talked like he was the presumptive nominee saying, "I want to thank Bernie Sanders and his supporters for their tireless energy and their passion. We share a common goal, and together we'll defeat Donald Trump."

Once left for dead before the South Carolina primary, Biden's all but officially emerged as the Democratic nominee for president.

Originally Published -- 8:54 AM PT

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