Redacted Mueller Report released

A redacted but more detailed version of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report was finally released.

One section is damning as it does not exonerate him from obstruction of justice — the charge at the heart of Presidents Nixon’s and Clinton’s impeachment processes. The Mueller team found multiple instances where Donald Trump tried to stifle a legitimate investigation into his own conduct. Very often the only thing that saved him were advisers who wouldn’t do what he wanted done.

Much of the news we have been reading was accurate, not fake — about the Trump Tower project, about the contacts between campaign officials and individuals connected with Russia, and about the President’s efforts to fire Mueller.

In the report:

  • Mueller concludes that Russian operatives did interfere in the 2016 presidential campaign by hacking into the computers of Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and releasing stolen emails to WikiLeaks, as well as by disparaging Clinton and promoting Trump in an organized social media campaign.
  • The report also makes note of “numerous links between the Russian government and the Trump campaign.”
  • Mueller wrote his investigation “did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.”
  • Russian government operatives and business leaders continued to try to woo the Trump team following the election.
  • Mueller wrote that written answers Trump provided his team were deemed “inadequate,” but prosecutors decided not to press him further, which would have meant issuing a subpoena and likely starting a long legal battle if the president refused to grant a formal interview.
  • Investigators were unable to get “a complete picture of the activities undertaken by subjects of the investigation,” Mueller wrote. A number of reasons were cited for this, including people refusing to give information that would incriminate themselves, witnesses providing “false or incomplete” testimony, and other witnesses deleting emails or otherwise not retaining relevant communications.

Multiple Trump aides and advisors refused to do requests from Trump that they knew would be illegal or cause further problems. This includes requests to fire Mueller or find ways to slow the investigation down.

Mueller added that Trump “does not have immunity after he leaves office” and that his team “conducted a thorough factual investigation in order to preserve the evidence when memories were fresh and documentary materials were available.” The wording raises the remote specter of possible future criminal exposure for Trump when he is no longer in the White House. It isn’t the only criminal inquiry looming over him.

Attorney General William Barr and the Department of Justice demonstrated that they couldn’t be independent with Barr’s biased interpretation of the report according to some.

The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Jerrold Nadler, issued a subpoena for the unredacted report as Congress escalates its investigation of Trump.

Mueller’s report provides fresh evidence of Trump’s interference in the Russia investigation and challenges lawmakers to respond.

Trump, taking a public victory lap, declaring at a White House event that he was having “a good day” after the report was released. Did he read a good comic book in the washroom again?

Some of Trump’s allies on Capitol Hill were satisfied, without reading the report, that Trump came out a clear winner — exonerated because he was not prosecuted.

Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani said “the report itself is nothing more than an attempt to rehash old allegations” and insisted that “the results of the investigation are a total victory for the president.” Unsure what report he read. Did he get his law degree out of a cracker jack box?

“We’re accepting apologies today, too,” White House adviser Kellyanne “The Witch” Conway told reporters, adding that Trump watched Barr, talked to his lawyers and was in “a great mood.”

Trump went after Muslim Rep. Ilhan Omar when Trump retweet of a video that purports to show the Minnesota Democrat being dismissive of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. The text shown was placed out of context. Democrats have criticized Trump over the tweet, with some accusing him of trying to incite violence. Security was added to Omar and her staff.

The White House defended Trump, saying that he has a duty to highlight Omar’s history of making comments that others find offensive and that he wished no “ill will” upon the first-term lawmaker. But the retweet was later pulled particularly after there were threats against Omar’s life [one individual in New York was arrested already].

In the video she said “some people did something” [instead of using a word like terrorists]. But President George W. Bush also used the word “people” just days after 9/11.

“The bigger question is why aren’t Democrats doing the same thing? It’s absolutely abhorrent the comments that she continues to make and has made and they look the other way,” said White House press secretary Sarah “Simpleton” Sanders. Omar has made some comments about Israel and Jews in the past but have stopped making them. Unsure what Sanders means by “continues” as if it is still happening.

When the fire in the cathedral in Paris was raging, Trump had commented that they should use water bombers to put out the fire. Diplomatically [something Trump knows little about], in a tweet, French fire security authorities said by using a water bomber [or equivalent], the water would cause further infrastructure damage with the force of the water. But what do they know….

It took a bit over 2 years for Trump to veto his first legislation and under a month to veto his second when he did so by vetoing legislation to end the US involvement in the war in Yemen.

The European Union has threatened tariffs on US goods including cheese, ketchup and fish because of a long-running dispute over aircraft subsidies. The bloc released a list of American products worth around $20 billion that could be targeted over US subsidies given to Boeing. Not good for Heinz-Kraft.

Sanders said that she doesn’t think congressional Democrats are “smart enough” to review Trump’s tax returns should they succeed in obtaining the documents. “My guess is most of them don’t do their own taxes, and I certainly don’t trust them to look through the decades of success that the President has and determine anything,” she said. So is she saying most Republicans do their own taxes?

Canada and Japan has formally joined a German-French coalition aimed at saving the international world order from destruction by various world dictators and autocrats — and Trump.

Trump already managed to pull in $30 million in his first 90 days of this year for his campaign re-election. For the Democrats [remember that there are at least 15 candidates]. Bernie Sanders has pulled in $18 million after 41 days and Kamala Harris has pulled in $12 million.

At least 3 FBI web sites were hacked recently and downloaded the contents of each web server. The hackers then put the data up for download on their own website. The spreadsheets contained about 4,000 unique records after duplicates were removed, including member names, a mix of personal and government email addresses, job titles, phone numbers and their postal addresses.

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Immigration battle heats up even after more administration departures

There hasn’t been too many going through the revolving door in the past little while but it changed when Kirstjen Nielsen, the secretary of Homeland Security, was [from what it looks like was] fired by Trump. She came to the White House recently supposedly to discuss immigration and border issues and walked out without a job. Right away, Donald Trump name Kevin McAleenan, the current US Customs and Border Protection Commissioner, to replace her. So that shows that she didn’t resign but was forced out.

The departure comes just days after Trump suddenly withdrew the nomination of Ron Vitiello for Immigration and Customs Enforcement director, blindsiding the Department of Homeland Security. Nielsen was unaware what was happening until after the nomination had been pulled. Trump was not pleased with Nielsen’s performance the past few weeks. But is he ever happy when things don’t go his way?

United States Secret Service director Randolph “Tex” Alles is being removed from his position. Trump instructed his acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, to fire Alles. Alles remains in his position as of now but has been asked to leave. Secret Service officials have been caught by surprise with the news. White House press secretary Sarah “Simpleton” Sanders said that Trump has picked James M. Murray, a career USSS official, to replace Alles.

Alles was under recently fired Secretary of Homeland Security, Kirstjen Nielsen. Also under DoHS, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services director Francis Cissna and Office of the General Counsel’s John Mitnick are expected to be gone soon.

The Trump administration pressured the Department of Homeland Security to release immigrants detained at the southern border into so-called sanctuary cities in part to retaliate against Democrats who oppose Trump’s plans for a border wall. Trump personally pushed former Homeland Security Secretary Nielsen to follow through on the plan. Nielsen resisted and the DHS legal team eventually produced an analysis that killed the plan.

Already, fellow Republicans aren’t happy and legal experts are saying the dumping of immigrants in sanctuary cities is illegal.

Trump told reporters that his administration is not looking to resume the separation of parents and children at the US-Mexico border, denying reports that it is something he has been pushing for. Trump had had been pushing then-Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen to enforce a stricter and more widespread “zero-tolerance” immigration policy. [Except when he denies these issue, they are generally true.]

Trump wanted families separated even if they came in at a legal port of entry and were legal asylum seekers and he wanted families separated even if they were apprehended within the US. He thinks the separations work to deter migrants from coming.

Trump also blamed the policy on the Obama administration. “President Obama separated children. I was the one who that changed it,” he claimed falsely. Under President Barack Obama, the Justice Department was given broad discretion on who should face criminal charges, and federal prosecutors rarely went after families.

In April 2018, then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the Justice Department would prosecute 100% of illegal border-crossers in a policy known as “zero-tolerance.” Adults went to jails and awaited criminal proceedings while children were sent to detention centers run by the Department of Health and Human Services, and some were eventually placed in foster care. This specific change is what led to the widespread separation of parents and children.

Another option is the “binary choice” proposal where it puts that decision of separation in the hands of parents. What do you think the parents would want to do if had a choice?

Trump whined again about having the worst immigration laws. He then blames the Democrats but he had 2 years of a Republican controlled Congress. So why didn’t he do it then when he theoretically could pass a new law?

Trump called the asylum program “a scam,” alleging that lawyers coach tough, violent men through the process. “Some of the roughest people you’ve ever seen, people that look like they should be fighting for the Ultimate Fighting Championship… They read a little page given by lawyers that are all over the place.”

Attorney General William Barr told lawmakers that he will be looking to the “genesis” of the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into potential ties between members of Trump’s presidential campaign and the Russian government began in 2016, saying, “I think spying on a political campaign is a big deal” but declining to elaborate on his concerns.

Democrats are worried that Barr is bending to the Trump’s demands and have called on Barr to release an unredacted version of the special counsel’s confidential report on the Russia investigation to Congress.
Trump said that Barr was doing a “great job” and “getting started on going back to the origins on where exactly this all started because it was an illegal witch hunt. …. This was an attempted coup, this was an attempted take-down of a president.” Does he know the definition of a coup?

Federal investigators in New York have “gathered more evidence than previously known” from individuals in the President’s “inner circle,” related to the hush-money payments made to two women who claim they had affairs with Trump. Investigators “learned of calls” between Keith Schiller, Trump’s longtime bodyguard, and David Pecker, the head of American Media Inc., the company that publishes the National Enquirer.

Trump still doesn’t want to release his tax returns. “There is no law, as you know, I got elected last time with the same issue and while I’m under audit, I won’t do it. If I’m not under audit, I would do it, I have no problem with it, but while I’m under audit, I would not give my taxes,” Trump said. That is one long audit!

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell sent a very clear message to Trump: Stop picking problematic nominees and asking the Senate to confirm them. He is picking candidates that wouldn’t be easy to confirm even with a Republican majority in the senate.

Trump’s older sister, federal appellate Judge Maryanne Trump Barry, has retired — halting an investigation into whether she broke judicial conduct rules by committing tax fraud. The investigation started last fall indicating that the Trump family had participated in tax schemes to maximize Trump, Barry and their siblings’ inheritances. An inactive judge for over two years, Barry no longer faces the judicial misconduct charge as the statute only applies to active judges.

When Julian Assange was arrested by London [UK] police from the Ecuadorian embassy, Trump told reporters he knows “nothing about WikiLeaks” and it’s not his “thing.” Yet during the campaign trail at rallies when the mountain of information came out from WikiLeaks, Trump praised WikiLeaks saying even that “I love WikiLeaks” among other positive comments.

Multiple Republicans, including Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr, Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham, and Sen. Roy Blunt were scratching their heads at Trump’s comments how he didn’t know much about WikiLeaks now but made those comments about 30 months ago.

Near Calexico, California, a section of the fencing between Mexico and the US was recently replaced. This section was in the works to be replaced almost a decade ago. And yet there was a plaque that was added to the fence which said that “This plaque was installed on October 26, 2018 to commemorate the completion of the first section of President Trump’s border wall.” But as mentioned, it was a replacement wall and not part of a new wall that didn’t previously exist.

Trump created a brand new attack on trade with Europe, including threats by the US trade office of tariffs on $11 billion US worth of European goods. Just like going after Canada, Mexico, China and others with the same phrase, Trump tweeted “The EU has taken advantage of the U.S. on trade for many years. It will soon stop!” The EU is expected to retaliate.

Aircraft subsidies are just an excuse for the US to launch an attack on another of its longtime trade partners in hopes of winning the kinds of advantages it sees itself getting in its deal with China. Others says he is trying to get on Boeing’s good side especially after the slew of canceled orders because of the 737 Max 8 issue.

Trump canceled a deal that made it easier for Cuban baseball players to compete professionally in the US. It allowed Cuban players to play in the US without detecting and then state-run Cuban Baseball Federation would get a fee. The White House argued that the Cuban Baseball Federation is part of the Cuban government, which caused the deal to be nullified as trade with Cuba is banned. The deal was made just 4 months ago.

Mount Vernon president and CEO Doug Bradburn, who led the tour, according to Politico, has told several people that French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife were far more knowledgeable about the history of Washington’s compound than Trump seemed to be.

Trump reportedly learned about the first US president’s real estate empire. But Trump didn’t seem too impressed. “If he was smart, he would’ve put his name on it,” Trump said of Mount Vernon. “You’ve got to put your name on stuff or no one remembers you.” Bradburn reminded Trump that Washington had succeeded in getting the nation’s capital named after him.

Twitter is considering labeling tweets that violate its rules but should remain on the platform because they’re in the public interest. This include tweets from politicians and other figures that may be offensive but are important for public debate. Twitter has come under fire from some critics who say Trump’s tweets often violate its rules against bullying, dehumanization and threatening harm.

Jessikka Aro, a Finnish investigative journalist with a history of breaking stories on Russian propaganda efforts, had been slated to receive a prestigious award in Washington a little while back along with several other women selected by the State Department for their courage in the face of great risks overseas. The State Department said it was a miscommunication and that she had been “incorrectly notified” of her award. But internal communications show that the State Department and US embassy officials in Finland had been in talks with Aro for several months.

Trump knows how to pick them. Stephen Moore, Trump’s pick for a seat on the Federal Reserve Board, owes $75,000 in taxes and penalties to the IRS. It was for unpaid taxes, penalties, interest and other costs in 2014. Moore has previously gone after the Feds in comments and is fairly close to Trump.

A former driver for Trump’s family has been in the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement for eight months. The man, a Romanian immigrant green card holder, who came to the United States legally in 2011 and worked for Trump’s golf club in Jupiter, Florida, was arrested in June 2018 by ICE after the agency called him to their office “to discuss his ‘inadmissibility'” to the United States following a 2013 trip he took to Romania. During the 2016 election, the man picked up campaign staff members and dignitaries at the airport adding that he had to receive security clearances from the Secret Service.

Last year, companies announced 98,563 retail job cuts, the highest total since 2009. Primary reason is more online shopping. But what was lost, package pickers and drivers have increased. Just this week, Payless shoes announced it would close 2,500 stores in the US and Canada and lay off 16,000 workers.

Of blocking borders and flip flopping

Donald Trump threatened on several occasions last year to close the US-Mexico border, including at one point saying the US would close the border “permanently.” Of course there is always threats but the border never closes and the immigrants continue to come in.

Trump was “100 per cent” ready to shut all, or part, of the US border with Mexico to gain leverage in his ongoing fight with Congress over immigration and his dream of a wall. A few hours later, during an evening speech at the National Republican Congressional Committee’s annual spring dinner, he suggested that his threats are working so well that he won’t be able to carry through with the plan.

He said that [with no proof] “And they’ve apprehended over 1,000 people at the southern border, their southern border. And they’re bringing them back to their countries.” The following morning, he was on Twitter demanding immediate measures from the House and Senate. “If no action, Border, or large sections of Border, will close. This is a National Emergency!” Did the 1,000 people exist? I’d say no.

In the meantime, nobody it seems wants the border closed. Not even fellow Republicans. Among the statistics: 500,000 people legally cross the border each day in Texas alone, $726 million US is the estimated losses to US businesses and farmers, per day, if the border is closed and 1 million manufacturing jobs that would be at risk. Auto parts, produce and fruits are exported to the US from Mexico.

Trump changed his mind again on closing the border with Mexico. Initially he said “We’re going to give them a one-year warning, and if the drugs don’t stop or (are) largely stopped, we’re going to put tariffs on Mexico and products, in particular, the cars … and if that doesn’t stop the drugs, we close the border.” This he said to reporters. But later he said “I don’t think we’ll ever have to close the border because the penalty of tariffs on cars coming into the United States from Mexico, at 25%, will be massive.”

When asked if his comments suggested that his new auto tariffs mean the southern border will remain open for at least a year, Trump responded: “No, I didn’t say that.” But he did when he spoke to reporters. Previously he said he would give Mexico one week to increase apprehensions of migrants from Central America from coming toward the US — and threatened a border closure as a consequence.

“Congress has to meet quickly and make a deal. I could do it in 45 minutes. We need to get rid of chain migration,” Trump said. “We need to get rid of catch and release and visa lottery. And we have to do something about asylum. And to be honest with you, we have to get rid of judges.”

Trump has been running the country for about 27 months now. Why hasn’t he proposed anything to the Republicans to fix these problems instead of continuously whining about it. As well “get rid of judges” – we will assume he means immigration judges and not judges in general.

Trump announced the US would be cutting funding to El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, blaming them for migrant caravans that have come to the southern border recently and saying the cuts were because “they haven’t done a thing for us.” The three countries get close to $1.3 billion in aid.

“It’s something that I’m sure we’ll be looking into and studying,” Kevin Hassett, the chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers when asked about the economic impact of closing the border crossings with Mexico because Trump has claimed Mexico hasn’t done enough to stop the flow of illegal immigrants into the US through Mexico.

Acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney said that when it comes to the contacts members of Trump’s campaign team had with Russians during the 2016 election, “the issue is not whether it’s ethical.” Then he said “the voters are going to decide about the ethics and morality of the people they vote for on either side.” Ummmm. If it is possibly illegal it is not the voters who should decide.

Shocker. Some of Special counsel Robert Mueller’s team said Attorney General William Barr left out some parts of the report that wouldn’t look good for Trump.

Republicans criticized efforts by House Democrats to obtain Trump’s tax returns with House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy warning that the request “sets a dangerous standard of having the federal government used as a political weapon” and dismissing the move as “a waste of time.” Laughingly, McCarthy argued that Democrats have not accepted Trump’s victory in the last presidential election and are trying to “use the power of government” for political retaliation.

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal formally requested Trump’s tax returns from the IRS. Trump said that he wouldn’t be inclined to provide his tax returns to Congress until he was no longer under audit. Damn that’s one long audit! Is he still being audited from 2016 and before?

Trump has already hinted that he is willing to go to the Supreme Court to block Congress in accessing his tax returns. Exactly what is he hiding? There is obviously something damaging [and not some excuse like a privacy issue]. And if the Supreme Court doesn’t side with him will he still withhold the information?

Trump said that Republicans are working on a new health care plan but won’t introduce it until after the 2020 election. Trump’s statements come a week after his administration announced that it now agreed with a judge’s ruling that the entire Affordable Care Act should be scrapped. The opinion was a dramatic reversal from the administration’s previous stance that only portions of the act could not be defended.

Trump’s latest move allows him to wait on the issue as legal challenges against the health care law, also known as Obamacare, make their way through the federal court system. If it’s ultimately overturned, Trump can claim he made good on a campaign promise in time for his 2020 re-election campaign. If it’s upheld, he can rail against a “liberal” court system.

So not killing ObamaCare is another failed campaign promise. No matter how he spins it, he never replaced it.

“Everybody agrees that ObamaCare doesn’t work. Premiums & deductibles are far too high – Really bad HealthCare! Even the Dems want to replace it, but with Medicare for all, which would cause 180 million Americans to lose their beloved private health insurance,” Trump tweeted. Except the Democrats aren’t in a rush to replace it and ObamaCare works for 20+ million who would be left off any plan under Trump’s plans.

According to Center on Budget & Policy Priorities, one part of Trump’s healthcare plan would increase the out-of-pocket limit by 2.5% more than it would have otherwise – $8,200 per person or $16,400 per family.

A White House staff member has told House investigators that senior officials have overruled concerns raised about 25 individuals whose security clearances were initially denied over a range of disqualifying issues.

Jared Kushner goes on Fox News for an interview. He is asked about the whistle-blower who said maybe 25 people including him and Ivanka sidestepped the security process. He rambles on about collusion [his father-in-law would be proud], answering various questions from investigations, etc. – but never answers the interviewer’s questions. Sounds like a politician.

While having a chat with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg [who’s from Germany], Trump claimed [for the third time] that his father was born in Germany when he was actually born in New York. In fact, his paternal grand-father was]. Years ago, Trump denied his father was German.

Trump pushed in February for his nomination of the Internal Revenue Service’s chief counsel [Michael Desmond], to be fast-tracked in the Senate, even before the chamber held confirmation hearings on Trump’s pending nominee for attorney general. The Senate eventually confirmed Desmond in late February. Trump may need Desmond to block attempts by the Democrats to release his taxes.

Trump said that he’s recommending his friend Herman Cain, a former pizza executive of Godfather’s Pizza, who dropped his bid for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination amid sexual harassment allegations, for a seat on the Federal Reserve Board. From 1992 to 1996, he served as a director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. Possibly a reason to hire him is because Cain is black.

A long-time sportswriter, Rick Reilly, who claims in a new book that Trump frequently cheats at golf likened Trump’s habit to a way of “showing you that he’s better than you.” Reilly even allegedly Trump cheating against professional players. I guess Reilly won’t be playing golf with Trump anymore!

According to Reilly, Trump hit two balls in the water when he played professional golfer Tiger Woods and then claimed to have almost tied with him, kicked sportscaster Mike Tirico’s ball into a bunker when the two played, and claims to have a 2.8 handicap despite professionals such as Dustin Johnson assessing him to be a 9 or 10.

Trump’s caddies also allegedly know to accommodate his penchant, Reilly said — “He kicks the ball out of the rough so many times, the caddies call him ‘Pele,'” after the famous soccer player.

“If you have a windmill anywhere near your house, congratulations, your house just went down 75% in value…. And they say the noise causes cancer.” Last month it was 65% and he uses the word “they” which is his code word for no one. The fastest-growing occupation in the US in 2017 was wind turbine technician, although it’s still a small part of the economy. More than 105,000 Americans are employed in the wind industry across all 50 states.

Former Fox News contributor Morgan Ortagus, the expected pick to become the next State Department spokesperson, repeatedly criticized Trump during the 2016 Republican presidential primary. Ortagus publicly lambasted then-candidate Trump over what she called his “isolationist foreign policy approach,” and blasted behavior she qualified as “disgusting” and “not serious.”

The House passed a resolution calling for the end of any US military support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen, sending the proposal to the White House where it is expected to be vetoed by Trump. The Senate passed the resolution and made clear their votes were also aimed at expressing their frustrations with Trump’s continued support for Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Even though 18 women have accused Trump of sexual misconduct, Trump is making fun at recent claims against former Vice President Joe Biden on the same.

During an interview Trump kept on saying “oringes” – that was even list on White House web site transcript.

Trump publicly bragged about pressuring Canada to accept his terms for a new North American free-trade agreement after he said the negotiators were “not at all nice” during the talks, but he “made them nice.” In previous speeches and tweets, he called Canada “very spoiled”.

Former Republican Sen. Jeff Flake, a foe of Trump, would prefer a Democrat win the 2020 election than have Trump serve a second term, saying that “four years is difficult enough to unravel some of the damage” done internationally by the administration.

Former first lady Barbara Bush didn’t consider herself a Republican after rump took office, according to a forthcoming book by author Susan Page wrote in an excerpt adapted from her new book, “The Matriarch: Barbara Bush and the Making of an American Dynasty.”

Now Trump thinks Mueller is great after he is “exonerated”

“So after a long look, after a long investigation, after so many people have been so badly hurt, after not looking at the other side where a lot of bad things, a lot of horrible things happened, a lot of very bad things happened for our country, it was just announced there was no collusion with Russia — the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard. There was no collusion with Russia. There was no obstruction and none whatsoever,” Donald Trump said after a summary of the Special counsel Robert Mueller report was released by Attorney General William Barr.

[I’m sure you noticed that Trump’s vocabulary is limited. He quite often says “bad” and “beautiful”.]

However House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement that “The fact that Special Counsel Mueller’s report does not exonerate the president on a charge as serious as obstruction of justice demonstrates how urgent it is that the full report and underlying documentation be made public without any further delay. …. And most obviously, for the president to say he is completely exonerated directly contradicts the words of Mr. Mueller and is not to be taken with any degree of credibility.”

As vindictive he is, Trump is already claiming he will go after those who falsely accused him of collusion, obstruction, etc. Of course he has threatened previously and it was his own justice department that investigated him and those around him.

Mueller did not make the decision himself on whether to prosecute Trump on obstruction, the attorney general wrote. Instead, Mueller left it up to Barr and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

Not surprising those pro-Trump and anti-Trump went to their corners and started to crank out comments statements, tweets and interviews about the outcome.

Mueller’s summary accuse House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff, a California Democrat, of having “abused your position to knowingly promote false information.” 9 Republicans on the committee have signed a letter calling on Schiff to resign. Seriously?

“We should not be used as a platform to spread false information and bizarre conspiracies,” said Rep. Devin Nunes, the committee’s top Republican. “With McCarthyism, we had Russia chasing after Russian communists. Now we have Schiff chasing after Russian collusion and those who would collude,” Republican Mike Turner said.

Every politician has knowingly spread false information. Look at Trump and then Trump himself tweeted that Schiff should resign from Congress.

Trump is all so nice and kind for Mueller saying what he did was honorably. This after about 2 years of Trump whining that the investigation was a witch hunt, there was no collusion, Mueller is a Democrat [no he’s a Republican], illegal, blah, blah, blah.

But during an interview, Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani said he disagrees with Trump that Robert Mueller acted “honorably.”

Justice Department notified the Fifth Circuit US Court of Appeals that it is supporting a complete invalidation of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). It now believes not only that three provisions of that statute are unconstitutional, but that, as a result, the entire law, including dozens of provisions having nothing to do with the offending sections, should be thrown out as well.

The move was apparently ordered by the White House over the objections of Barr, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, and White House Counsel Pat Cipollone. White House staff, counsel, and top lawyers do not believe the decision to be justified.

Trump repeated his threat to close down the border between the United States and Mexico, but this time he noted he would act next week if Mexico doesn’t step up. “If Mexico doesn’t immediately stop ALL illegal immigration coming into the United States throug (sic) our Southern Border, I will be CLOSING the Border, or large sections of the Border, next week,” he tweeted.

“We have the weakest, most pathetic laws,” Trump said, threatening to close the border if two current caravans of migrants cross into the US. And who’s fault is that? He has had a majority of Republicans in the house and Senate and couldn’t do anything.

“Believe it or not, they were begging us to build in San Diego, begging us to build a wall. And we’re just in the process of completing a major stretch of many miles of wall,” said Trump in a recent interview. I’d like to know exactly who begged for a wall that was never built. All that has been done in his nearly 2.25 years is fix walls and fences.

Of course how many other times has he threatened to do something and not do it? Just about every time.

Unsure where this comes up from all of a sudden [but do we ever?], but Trump went after Puerto Rico’s fiscal management and the size of its disaster relief in the wake of damaging storms last week. Complaining that the government didn’t use their finances properly [i.e. too much in Puerto Rico – a territory that isn’t pro-Trump – and Florida and Texas that are either pro-Trump or close to it] and claimed Puerto Rico used $90 billion which seemed quite inflated.

Not surprising, the House failed to override Trump’s veto after both chambers of Congress sought to overturn his national emergency declaration to build more border wall. Both chambers of Congress had passed a resolution to overturn Trump’s national emergency declaration to fund more border wall.

But even White House spokesman/flunky Hogan Gidley said “Democrats continue to ignore the reality that our porous southern border is a magnet for illegal immigration, child smugglers, human traffickers, drug cartels, gangs and many other criminals. This national security and humanitarian crisis endangers every American and cannot be described as anything other than a National Emergency.”

A federal district court judge blocked another Trump administration effort to undermine Obamacare where the Labor Department was rule designed to make it easier for small businesses to band together and buy health insurance in so-called association health plans — one of the Trump administration’s initiatives to weaken Obamacare by offering alternatives to the exchanges. This was after a federal district court judge blocked the Trump administration’s efforts to allow states to impose work requirements on Medicaid recipients.

After Republican lawmakers failed to dismantle Obamacare in 2017, the Trump administration took matters into its own hands. It has been issuing a series of rules and guidance that aim to undercut the landmark health reform law. Trump now says that his administration will roll out a new health care plan this year. But that will need the Democrat led House. Good luck there. 20+ million Americans could lose almost all health care access.

When Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos wanted to cut all Special Olympics funding – $17.6 million, some weren’t happy. But could it be saved? Sure. Each trip that Trump takes to his Mar-A-Lago resort costs #3.4 million alone [that’s the trip including, flight, fuel, security – but not his time there]. So if Trump cuts out 5 trips, the Special Olympics can keep their funding. [Trump has spent 25% of his term at one of his resorts, BTW.]

Now DeVos told senators that she was not personally involved in the decision to propose eliminating funding for the Special Olympics, but continued to defend the cut included in her department’s budget. Sources said the cuts were ordered by the White House budget office. She has no say?

Later Trump said “I’ve been to the Special Olympics. I think it’s incredible and I just authorized a funding. I heard about it this morning. I have overridden my people. We’re funding the Special Olympics.”

DeVos then said after “I am pleased and grateful the President and I see eye-to-eye on this issue and that he has decided to fund our Special Olympics grant.” Huh? Is she running her department or is there another Secretary of Education?

George Conway, a conservative lawyer and the husband of White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said in an op-ed “If the charge were unfitness for office, the verdict would already be in: guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.”

In another rally in Michigan, Trump said:

  • “After three years of lies and smears and slander, the Russia hoax is finally dead. The collusion delusion is over.” – Yes with 7 pleaded guilty, 5 prison sentences, 199 charges, etc.
  • “The Special Counsel completed its report and found no collusion and no obstruction.” – You know the answer to this.
  • “Total exoneration. Complete vindication.” – And this.
  • “The Russia witch hunt was a plan by those who lost the election to try and illegally regain power by framing innocent Americans, many of them.” – Yes the 7 who pleaded guilty.
  • “They did it all because they refused to accept the results of one of the greatest presidential elections, probably number one, in our history.” – As all elections are ranked according to which are the greatest.
  • He also is still rambling further on how he beat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election – close to 2.5 years ago. You think he’ll be saying the same thing while in prison?
  • “It’s faster and it’s less expensive and it’s also much more beautiful.” – Yes. $25 million for a “barrier” [see below].
  • “It’s like I attacked so violently Pocahontas. And I knocked her out of the race I guess and I said why did I do that for? It’s too early.” – A sitting President just bragged about how he “attacked so violently” Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren. As well, she is still in the race. How did he knock her out of the race again?

After a prosecutor unexpectedly dropped all charges against the “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett, who was accused of staging an assault on himself — leading Chicago police to investigate it as a possible hate crime. “FBI & DOJ to review the outrageous Jussie Smollett case in Chicago,” Trump tweeted. “It is an embarrassment to our nation!” Hope he declares it a national emergency.

Mueller report released but how much will be shown

So the big news this week was Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation has been completed. The biggest question is whether on not all, most or small parts of the final report will be released to the public. The report was sent to Attorney General William Barr who will be looking at it this weekend. I’m sure it make interesting late night reading.

In a series of many tweets over the weekend Trump said “I am not happy that it [Lordstown, Ohio plant] is closed when everything else in our Country is BOOMING. I asked her [GM’s CEO] to sell it or do something quickly. She blamed the UAW Union – I don’t care, I just want it open!

A GM statement shot back saying “To be clear, under the terms of the UAW-GM National Agreement, the ultimate future of the unallocated plants will be resolved between GM and the UAW [United Auto Workers].”

Trump had a big Twitter storm, venting out at just about everyone – mostly the usual “victims”. But of all the comments he made, he didn’t mention anything about the deaths of t50 people in New Zealand just a couple of days earlier.

“I don’t think anybody can say the President is anti-Muslim,” acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney said when confronted with evidence like Trump’s demand to ban all Muslim immigration during the 2016 campaign and a remark that “Islam hates us.”

But even on “Fox News Sunday” Mulvaney said: “The President is not a white supremacist. I’m not sure how many times we have to say that.” He did not explain why Trump has often had a chance to vigorously condemn white supremacists and has not done so. Mulvaney also dodged when asked whether Trump would give a speech condemning white supremacy.

Trump managed to find time to watch NBC’s “Saturday Night Live,” which he notably hosted twice in the past. He took to Twitter during his weekend Twitter storm to say “… how do the Networks get away with these total Republican hit jobs without retribution? Likewise for many other shows? Very unfair and should be looked into. This is the real Collusion!”. The episode he watched was a repeat from 4 weeks prior. Again. Does he know what collusion means?

[In 1969, the liberal-leaning CBS comedy show “The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour” mocked then-President Richard Nixon to the point where the comedic duo made it onto Nixon’s “enemies list.” Nixon then used his well-placed allies in the ranks of CBS executives, including CBS programming chief Robert D. Wood, to get the show canceled.]

Investigators in the Southern District of New York obtained a search warrant to access Michael Cohen’s Gmail account in February 2018. Google turned over some documents, but the tech giant “declined to produce data that it stored on computer servers located outside of the United States,” according to an affidavit submitted to the court by an FBI agent working on Cohen’s case.

Weeks later, Trump signed the CLOUD Act into law, which gave US law enforcement more legal pathways to pursue data stories overseas. The provision was tucked into the $1.3 trillion spending bill Trump signed to avoid a federal government shutdown. So Trump’s own approval may hurt him in the long run.

“I don’t mind. I mean, frankly, I told the House, ‘If you want, let them see it,'” Trump said when asked whether the American public had the right to see the fruits of the Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report. This is an about change.

But, scratching your head time, he still says the investigation is “illegal” even though multiple court rulings said it isn’t.

Trump say recently that he “inherited a mess” with the Middle East but “doing very well”. But the Palestinians and Israel are no closer to any deal – maybe farther apart than in 2026, neither is the war raging in Yemen. ISIS is mostly defeated but the US primarily were in the sky – not on the ground. Meanwhile Bashar Assad is still leader in Syria.

Trump touted the humanitarian aid the US had sent to Venezuela and called on the country’s military to end its support for leader Nicolas Maduro by saying the US has been “really very happy to feed thousands and thousands of starving Venezuelans.” But I’m sure he won’t allow them to cross the border!

Expect Trump to pass out pardons like it was Halloween candy in order to protect those near him from testifying against him and use pardons to get them out of jail after sentencing as a reward. But Trump has completely bypassed the Department of Justice Office of the Pardon Attorney which is set up to handle petitions for pardons, utilizing established procedures, standards and rules. So no advice of the DOJ’s career professionals, including the prosecutors and agents who investigated and prosecuted these crimes.

All Americans should be thinking seriously now about Trump’s mental condition and psychological state, including and especially the media, Congress-and the Vice President and Cabinet,” George Conway wrote. He is the husband of Trump’s top White House counselor Kellyanne “The witch” Conway and while he’s a Republican, he dislikes Trump. She responded by saying “No, I don’t share those concerns.”

“A total loser!” Trump wrote, while retweeting a claim by his 2020 campaign manager Brad Parscale that Conway was sore because Trump refused to give him an administration job he wanted.

“George Conway, often referred to as Mr. Kellyanne Conway by those who know him, is VERY jealous of his wife’s success & angry that I, with her help, didn’t give him the job he so desperately wanted,” Trump tweeted, referring to a post at the Justice Department. Conway decided [for family reasons] not to take the job – he wasn’t denied the job as it was offered.

Trump continued, “I barely know him but just take a look, a stone cold LOSER & husband from hell!” Conway, a conservative lawyer, withdrew from consideration for the role early in Trump’s presidency. Seems he know much about him if he can describe him and his marriage. Surely they spoke at various gatherings that involved Conway’s wife.

Conway later replied “You seem determined to prove my point. Good for you! #NarcissisticPersonalityDisorder.” Later he wrote “You. Are. Nuts.”

Trump took aim at late Sen. John McCain for his vote against the GOP Senate majority during the Republican attempt to repeal Obamacare in 2017. McCain, who died last year, was the third Republican to vote against the bill to replace the Affordable Care Act, former President Obama’s signature legislative accomplishment, in 2017. “Spreading the fake and totally discredited Dossier ‘is unfortunately a very dark stain against John McCain,'” Trump said.

Trump referred to McCain as being “last in his class” at the US Naval Academy. Well, he wasn’t and at least McCain was in the military. Trump dodged the military with fake medical issues [lacking a soul could be one of them].

“No one will ever love you the way they loved my father,” Meghan McCain tweeted after. “I wish I had been given more Saturday’s with him. Maybe spend yours with your family instead of on twitter obsessing over mine?”

Cindy McCain, the widow of McCain, posted a hateful message [on Twitter] she received from a stranger the same day Trump disparaged her late husband. Republican Sen. Johnny Isakson is planning to deliver a “whipping” against Trump in response to the Trump’s recent attacks.

And the feud between Trump and the McCain family continues when Trump bemoaned how he “didn’t get a thank you” for approving McCain’s funeral in August.

Bridget McCain, who has kept her life private, broke her silence by tweeting “@realDonaldTrump Everyone doesn’t have to agree with my dad or like him, but I do ask you to be decent and respectful.”

She then added “@realDonaldTrump Even if you were invited to my dad’s funeral, you would have only wanted to be there for the credit and not for any condolences … Unfortunately, you could not be counted on to be courteous, as you are a child in the most important role the world knows.”

House Oversight Chairman Elijah Cummings said his committee has obtained new information that several senior White House officials have used personal email and messaging accounts [i.e. WhatsApp] to conduct government business. This includes but is not limited to Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump. Also included are former administration staffers Steve Bannon and K.T. McFarland. These may be in violation of the Presidential Records Act.

It has been a sort of unwritten rule for not to visit or host a foreign country leader within 2 weeks of that country’s election. Trump went against the rule as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is visiting the US. Trump actually denied he knew there was an election!

Maybe to try and boost Netanyahu who’s slipping in the polls, Trump overturned another longstanding US policy regarding the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, announcing “it is time” for the US to “fully recognize Israel’s Sovereignty” over the region. This should add some tension in the Middle East.

Ummm. In an interview with the Christian Broadcast Network, asked Pompeo “could it be that President Trump right now has been sort of raised for such a time as this, just like Queen Esther, to help save the Jewish people from the Iranian menace?” Esther is the main heroine of the Jewish holiday of Purim, which was celebrated this week. “As a Christian, I certainly believe that’s possible,” Pompeo said and added that he is “confident that the Lord is at work here.”

“It was announced today by the U.S. Treasury that additional large scale Sanctions would be added to those already existing Sanctions on North Korea. I have today ordered the withdrawal of those additional Sanctions!” Trump tweeted which triggered rampant confusion among his own aides and administration officials.

Another crony sentenced

After his former 2016 campaign chairman Paul Manafort was sentenced to just 47 months after the prosecution asked for 19 to 25 years, Donald Trump spinned it differently tweeted “Both the Judge and the lawyer in the Paul Manafort case stated loudly and for the world to hear that there was NO COLLUSION with Russia” as the conviction was for bank and tax fraud and not for colluding with Russia.

However, on the counts that Manafort wasn’t found guilty, it was only because a single individual held out on guilty on those counts. [One could say that the individual could be a Trump supporter who knew the consequences if found guilty on the Russian related charges.] But the less than four-year term shocked many legal observers and sparked looks of astonishment among prosecutors. The judge only said that collusion wasn’t an issue for him to consider in the case. He did not assess whether it happens or not.

A judge in Washington, who has been less well disposed toward Manafort, will sentence him next week in a separate case, in which he has been accused of lying to Mueller and breaching a plea deal.

“They should be ashamed of their horrendous treatment of Paul Manafort who they pressured relentlessly because, unlike Michael Cohen, he wouldn’t lie for them,” said Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani in a statement. Except, Manafort is accused of lying in the other court case.

Even Manafort’s lawyer said outside court: “There is absolutely no evidence that Paul Manafort was involved in any collusion with any government official from Russia.” Seems for them Russian collusion is way more important than tax fraud.

Trump went on a two hour rambling speech – sometimes swearing – at the Conservative Political Action Conference rambling about the usual: collusion, witch hunt, presidential harassment, Green New Deal, Hillary Clinton’s Emails, etc. Would you want to hear the same ramblings over and over again?

At CPAC, Trump says he’ll be signing an executive order requiring colleges and universities to support free speech. “If they want our dollars and we give them by the billions,” Trump said, “they’ve got to allow people to speak.” We’ll see if it backfires when those speaking go against him. If so, what he does after. This was because a conservative activist was punched on the campus of the University of California Berkeley last month.

Trump also said that all of the territory of the ISIS caliphate in Syria has been taken back, despite previously saying something similar just days ago. “As of today or tomorrow, we will have 100% of the caliphate defeated.”

During a stopover in Alaska on the way back from Vietnam, Trump said 100% of the caliphate had been taken. An official of the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces disputed that statement, saying that the fight is ongoing and that they were surprised by Trump’s statement.

Trump said as well that he was being “sarcastic” when he asked Russia to find Hillary Clinton’s emails. If so, why does he keep on bringing it up? 28 months later, he still thinks the Democrats will null and void his election win and talks about Clinton’s emails. And yet, there is no way to erase his 28 months in office. He is [like it or not] the 45th president. Yes. It’s a form of fear mongering and definitely lying.

Trump claimed he fired former FBI Director James Comey in 2017 claiming “the good news is that this is going to be so bipartisan, everyone’s going to love it” since the Democrats were angry at Comey because of his investigation right before the election.

Trump said regarding possible obstruction from the firing of Comey “If you use your rights, if you use your power, if you use Article Two, it is called obstruction. But only for Trump, for nobody else.” So there are laws that don’t apply to him.

Trump reacted to a House vote on a resolution condemning anti-Semitism, saying, without evidence, that the Democratic party is “anti-Jewish”. The House of Representatives passed a resolution broadly condemning hate and intolerance, including anti-Semitism and anti-Muslim discrimination, in the wake of controversy over Democratic freshman Rep. Ilhan Omar.

The vote was 407-23. Twenty-three Republicans voted against the measure, and all Democrats – including Omar – who voted in support of the resolution. But it seems like it is the Republicans who are against the resolution broadly condemning hate and intolerance, including anti-Semitism and anti-Muslim discrimination.

A photo published in the Miami Herald shows the founder and one-time owner of a spa, Li Yang, implicated in a human-trafficking ring attended Trump’s Super Bowl watch party at his West Palm Beach country club in February. Yang snapped a blurry selfie with a smiling Trump, who turned in his chair to look over his right shoulder for the photo.

Nineteen days later, Trump’s long-time friend and New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft was charged with soliciting prostitution at the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in nearby Jupiter, which Yang had founded more than a decade earlier. None of the spas are registered to Yang or her family. They were sold 6 years ago and the current owner was charged with racketeering and running a house of prostitution and has pleaded not guilty.

Trump had pressured his then-chief of staff John Kelly and White House counsel Don McGahn to grant his daughter and senior adviser Ivanka Trump a security clearance against their recommendations. While Trump has the legal authority to grant clearances, most instances are left up to the White House personnel security office, which determines whether a staffer should be granted one after the FBI has conducted a background check.

But after concerns were raised by the personnel office, Trump pushed Kelly and McGahn to make the decision on his daughter and son-in-law’s clearances so it did not appear as if he was tainting the process to favor his family, sources told CNN. After both refused, Trump granted them their security clearances.

Trump pressured Gary Cohn, the former director of the National Economic Council, to tell the Justice Department to block AT&T’s Time Warner deal. At the heart of the theories is Trump’s public dislike of CNN, which was a division of Time Warner, and his close relationship with Fox News. Justice Department filed its lawsuit to block the deal.

While Trump openly criticized the AT&T-Time Warner deal, he publicly congratulated Murdoch for selling most of 21st Century Fox to Disney even before the deal had received regulatory approval. Rupert Murdoch is a close friend of Trump and the Murdoch family will make more than two billion dollars.

“FEMA has been told directly by me to give the A Plus treatment to the Great State of Alabama and the wonderful people who have been so devastated by the Tornadoes,” Trump tweeted. But some are questioning whether he is biased towards areas of the country that were hit by disasters but in areas that favor Trump over the Democrats. He was less than positive to the devastations in California [pull funding] and Puerto Rico [blame local leaders for slow relief efforts].

“When the Republicans had the Majority they never acted with such hatred and scorn! The Dems are trying to win an election in 2020 that they know they cannot legitimately win!” tweeted Trump. So he is already suggesting that Democrats cannot beat him fairly — raising the specter that if he loses next November, he will suggest that the election was not legitimate.

In the unemployment and employment section:

The White House is expected to announce that Trump will nominate Kelley Eckels Currie to serve as an ambassador-at-large for global women’s issues. That position, established under President Barack Obama’s administration, had been vacant since Trump took office. Currie currently serves as the representative to the United Nations Economic and Social Council.

Lynne Patton, a long time Trump family associate who made a controversial appearance at last week’s House hearing with Michael Cohen, says she has the President’s blessing to follow in his footsteps as a reality TV star, even as she serves as a high-ranking federal housing official. She will appear on a still-developing show about black Republicans.

The latest to jump the trump ship is White House deputy chief of staff and de facto communications director Bill Shine, who has stepped down to join the Trump campaign. He is the sixth to have the job in just over 2 years. But scuttlebutt said that Trump had questioned Shine’s judgment on a number of issues in recent months, from the midterm election to the government shutdown.

Shine had been slated to travel with Trump to Vietnam for the second North Korea summit but unexpectedly dropped off the trip two days before. Shine was wandering the halls of the Conservative Political Action Conference. Asked why he was there, he declined to answer. Dropping from communications director to a senior adviser is interesting.

In addition, Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson has resigned and plans to return to academia in the weeks ahead. Wilson had long been skeptical of Trump’s plans for a separate branch of the military devoted to space as much of the new organization would be formed from pre-existing Air Force units.

Trump did hire Kayleigh McEnany as national press secretary. She is an American political commentator and writer. She is also a former CNN contributor and a former national Spokesperson for the Republican National Committee.

The US National Security Agency (NSA) has ended the controversial phone call record surveillance program exposed by Edward Snowden. The program was launched under the USA Patriot Act of 2001, originally to permit the collection of call records from telecommunications providers to search for patterns of connections between persons of interest.

Even Trump 2020 campaign press secretary Kayleigh McEnany got into the act by saying “These desperate Democrats know they cannot beat President Trump in 2020, so instead they have embarked on a disgraceful witch hunt with one singular aim: topple the will of the American people and seize the power that they have zero chance at winning legitimately.”

White House press secretary Sarah “Simpleton” Sanders said “They continue to be a group totally taken by small radical leftist fringe of their party and they’re completely controlled by it, they know that’s not enough to beat this President so they’re going to look for other ways to do that.”

Trump doesn’t like to lose even when he wins when three weeks after winning the 2016 election [but lost the popular vote] he said “In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally.” It wasn’t considered a landslide.

Trump said he does not hold North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un responsible for American student Otto Warmbier’s death. He did however later said what he was “misinterpreted” but says he now hold North Korea responsible.

If Trump thought his so called Presidential Harassment is bad now, he hasn’t seen anything yet. Investigations into many of Trump’s cronies, former cronies and even family members are starting to take shape.

Trump tweeted “Presidential Harassment by “crazed” Democrats at the highest level in the history of our Country. Likewise, the most vicious and corrupt Mainstream Media that any president has ever had to endure – Yet the most successful first two years for any.” Considering that Trump invented the phrase “Presidential Harassment” how can you compare it against any level? And how do you measure it?

Trump’s former lawyer and fixer, Michael Cohen, is suing the Trump Organization, saying it failed to fulfill its contractual obligations to indemnify him or pay his attorneys’ fees relating to his work after he began cooperating with federal investigators. In his complaint, Cohen says his legal bills for the criminal investigations he faced totaled $1.9 million.

Trump claims now that Cohen wanted a pardon from Trump in person if convicted even though Cohen said under oath that he didn’t. So that could be a perjury charge. Problem is that it also sets up Trump that he would have to testify what Cohen had said – which could open up things.

The New York State Department of Financial Services has opened an inquiry into the Trump Organization’s insurance practices, sending a subpoena to the company’s long-time insurance broker.

GOP leaders and key committee chairmen are making clear that they believe there is no reason to probe whether Trump broke the law in engaging in a scheme to hide payments made to two women to keep their stories quiet in the days running up to the 2016 elections.

The US gained 20,000 more jobs but way less than the past few months. Trump touted growing wages, low unemployment and the stock market. On the stock market, Trump said, “Certainly since my election it’s up, getting close to 50%.” These statements are [of course] untrue as the stock market took a big tumble late last year and early this year and is slowly recovering.

It hasn’t reached its October 2017 peak and has tumbled since late February again. Dow Jones was at around 20,000 at the inauguration day and stands at around 25,000 at this time. [In comparison, with President Obama he started with about 8,200 and finished at around 20,000.]

Trump leaves Hanoi empty handed while Cohen blasts him

Donald Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen will present to a House panel a check to support his testimony. It is dated August 1, 2017 for the amount of $35,000. While the image does not show what the payment was for, Cohen will say in his testimony the check was signed by Trump and was part of the reimbursement for “illegal hush money I paid on his behalf.”

Cohen testified that Trump was aware of long-time adviser Roger Stone’s efforts to reach out to WikiLeaks in advance of its release of damaging information about Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

“Mr. Stone told Mr. Trump that he had just gotten off the phone with Julian Assange and that Mr. Assange told Mr. Stone that, within a couple of days, there would be a massive dump of emails that would damage Hillary Clinton’s campaign,” Cohen said, according to his prepared testimony. Trump responded, according to Cohen: “Wouldn’t that be great.”

Cohen’s allegations, if true, would amount to the first time anyone with direct knowledge has said that the President had advance knowledge of the WikiLeaks dump of Clinton emails.

“Michael Cohen was one of many lawyers who represented me (unfortunately),” he wrote from his hotel in Hanoi. “He is lying in order to reduce his prison time.” Trump also said that Cohen “did bad things unrelated to Trump.” If you know your lawyer has done illegal activities elsewhere why would you continue to retain him? There has been no mention of anything illegal other than what he did for Trump.

Trump wasn’t too thrilled when Cohen’s testimony was scheduled during his summit calling it a “terrible thing”. But would there be a difference if he was back in Washington other than maybe tweeting that Cohen is a liar, no collusion, witch hunt, etc.

“I find it ironic, President Trump, that you are in Vietnam right now,” Cohen told Congress. Trump obtained medical deferments to avoid serving in the Vietnam War claiming he had bone spurs.

The New York state Supreme Court in Manhattan has disbarred Cohen after Cohen pleaded guilty last year to multiple felony charges, according to a decision. In New York, conviction of a federal felony triggers disbarment if the offense would constitute a felony under state law.

In his testimony, Cohen said:

  • He wouldn’t take a pardon even if offered.
  • Trump lied about his wealth to look richer to Forbes magazine [ranked 766] and less wealthy for tax authorities.
  • Trump said that black people “would never vote for him because they were too stupid” and “only black people could live that way.”
  • Trump may have been aware in advance of a 2016 meeting set up by Donald Trump Jr. and Russians at Trump Tower — something that Trump and his eldest son have long denied. Cohen will tell Congress that he witnessed Trump Jr., in June 2016, tell his father: “The meeting is all set.” Cohen acknowledges not knowing for sure that Trump’s son’s comments were in reference to the meeting with Russians.
  • Trump had told him [Cohen] that the Trump Jr. “had the worst judgment of anyone in the world.”
  • Trump Jr. “would never set up any meeting of any significance alone — and certainly not without checking with his father.”
  • Asked: You called Trump a cheat. What would you call yourself? Cohen: A fool.
  • Asked: How many times did Mr. Trump ask you to threaten an individual or entity on his behalf? 500 times? Cohen: Probably, over the 10 years.
  • Cohen hired someone to rig two online polls for Trump. He said Trump knew about it and directed him to do so. Both attempts failed to help.

After North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un insisted all US sanctions be lifted on his country, there was no joint agreement. Trump left the summit early saying said Kim offered to take some steps toward dismantling his nuclear arsenal but not enough to warrant ending the debilitating sanctions regime on the country. This after he said Presidents before him couldn’t make a deal – he didn’t either.

Trump said he walked away from his second summit with dictator Un because Kim demanded the US lift all of its sanctions, a claim that North Korea’s delegation called a rare news conference in the middle of the night to deny. They insisted Kim had asked only for partial sanctions relief [United Nations Security Council sanctions imposed since March 2016] in exchange for shutting down the North’s main nuclear complex.

During an expanded session with aides, Trump and Kim discussed the prospect of opening a US office in Pyongyang, North Korea’s capital.

Here’s a shocker. Just before Trump and dictator Un were to meet in Vietnam for their second summit, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that North Korea remains a threat. In January, the Pentagon’s Missile Defense Review stated that North Korea remains an “extraordinary threat” to the United States.

So another contradiction in the administration as this contradicts Trump tweet in June 2017 after the first summit when Trump tweeted “There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea.” Trump has never changed his mind since. When Pompeo was asked about what Trump had said, Pompeo try to spin it such that Trump meant to say that there is still a threat but not like what it used to be. [His tweet clearly says otherwise.]

Pompeo also said that core sanctions from the U.N. Security Council resolution on North Korea will be removed only after it fully denuclearizes but North Korea is moving its nuclear and ballistic weapons to hide them from potential US military strikes, according to a confidential UN report.

Trump tweeted that he has a “Great relationship with Chairman Kim!!” Yes. How did Un execute a defector? With a flamethrower. He imprisons, tortures and kills those accused of “political crimes.”

Chefs were still struggling to get a menu approved for the first dinner because officials from both the US and North Korea kept adjusting the menu to make it “super simple.”

Some administration staff are worried that Trump may finalize a deal with Un but may give too much in return. Trump could agree to ending the Korean War, an attractive prospect for someone intent on winning a Nobel Peace Prize. South Korea would have to agree. Luckily this didn’t happen.

Trump also tweeted that “without nuclear weapons” North Korea “could fast become one of the great economic powers anywhere in the World… Because of its location and people (and him), it has more potential for rapid growth than any other nation!” True. North Korea has an estimated 150,000 to 200,000 people in labor camps – many for “re-education” – manufacture items and no pay to the workers.

Even before leaving Washington, Trump was giving off some hints that Americans shouldn’t expect too many positive changes from the summit. Of course if there is a [real] deal or progress, I’m sure he will take all the credit.

Dictator for life Un arrived in Hanoi at least a day before Trump and has been given a huge welcome by Vietnam. With Trump and his huge ego, I’m surprised he didn’t want to get to Hanoi before Un did.

Trump tweeted “So funny to watch people who have failed for years, they got NOTHING, telling me how to negotiate with North Korea. But thanks anyway!” This coming from a man with 4 bankruptcies.

Trump said he does not hold Un responsible for Otto Warmbier’s death after Kim denied knowledge of the American student’s maltreatment. “He tells me that he didn’t know about it and I will take him at his word.” This continues Trump’s “friendship” with Un just like his “friendship” with Vladimir Poutine. Warmbier died days after returning to the US from over a year in a North Korean prison that caused brain damage.

The family of Warmbier rebuked Trump for siding with dictator Un, who denied knowledge of their son’s maltreatment during his imprisonment.

Trump ordered then-chief of staff John Kelly to grant Jared Kushner — Trump’s son-in-law and adviser — the clearance the day after the White House Counsel’s Office urged against it. White House officials had previously said that Kushner’s security clearance was handled “in the regular process” without pressure from anyone in the administration.

Trump wants to waste taxpayer’s money by holding a second parade which he is already calling it “one of the biggest gatherings in the history of Washington, D.C.”. He treated it” will be held at the Lincoln Memorial. Major fireworks display, entertainment and an address by your favorite President, me!” In his first two years, he played golf on July 4th.

A major 4th of July parade already takes place in the nation’s capital each year. The parade, called America’s National Independence Day Parade, goes through the heart of downtown Washington.

The House passed a resolution to overturn his emergency declaration to unlock money for wall construction at the US southern border. The vote was 245-182. Thirteen Republicans voted with Democrats to pass the measure. The Senate has 18 days to vote on the resolution. At least 3 GOP senators have signaled they will vote for the resolution.

In 2016 and prior, when there was a crisis in the world where two US allies got into an argument that escalated with a possible outcome of a military conflict, the US would come in and help stabilize the situation. In 2019, India and Pakistan have a bit of a conflict. Where is the US? Where is Trump ordering Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to the area in order to defuse the situation?

[Not saying he would, but the US could actually profit in this if there is a conflict. Both countries would need new arms and hardware to replace what was used or destroyed. After all, Trump is/was supposedly a businessman.]

Two of Trump’s closest allies on the House Judiciary Committee referred Cohen to the Justice Department for possible criminal prosecution, claiming to have evidence that Cohen “committed perjury and knowingly made false statements” to lawmakers during his day-long testimony. These include that he did not seek a job in the Trump White House, his denial of committing bank fraud, as well as his assertion that the did not have any reportable contracts with foreign entities.

A staffer on Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign says he kissed her without her consent at a small gathering of supporters before a Florida rally, an interaction that she alleges in a new lawsuit still causes her anguish. The staffer said she turned her head and the unwanted kiss landed on the side of her mouth, which she called “super-creepy and inappropriate.”

“This never happened and is directly contradicted by multiple highly credible eye witness accounts,” wrote White House press secretary Sarah “Simpleton” Sanders in a statement. Of course, what else would she says? It happened?

In [of course] a tweet, Trump accused filmmaker Spike Lee of making a “racist hit on your President, who has done more for African Americans…. than almost any other Pres!” Then he said it would “Be nice if Spike Lee could read his notes, or better yet not have to use notes at all.” But it is unclear exactly what part of Lee’s speech Trump interpreted as “racist.” Did Trump watch the right awards show.

Trump announced that because of “substantial progress in our trade talks with China on important structural issues including intellectual property protection, technology transfer, agriculture, services, currency, and many other issues” tariffs imposed by the United States on certain Chinese goods from 10 percent to 25 percent has been delayed.

Trump tweeted “Since my election as President the Dow Jones is up 43% and the NASDAQ Composite almost 50%…. We are bringing back America faster than anyone thought possible!” Except the [real] presidents prior to him had higher increases. And “back” from where? Hell? [This was mentioned in a previous blog.]

Since the Trump administration announced it would end its practice of separating families apprehended at the southern border last June under its “zero tolerance” immigration policy, at least 245 children have been separated from their parents, according to a new court filing. The administration said the basis for the separation in the majority of cases was “criminality, prosecution, gang affiliation or other law enforcement purpose.”

The Department of Health and Human Services received more than 4,500 complaints of sexual abuse against unaccompanied minors from 2014-2018, according to internal agency documents. In addition,1,303 complaints were reported to the Justice Department during that same time frame, according to the documents.

Trump supposedly tweeted “I want 5G, and even 6G, technology in the United States as soon as possible. It is far more powerful, faster, and smarter than the current standard.” Hello? We still don’t have 5G widely available. Or maybe the genius thought 5G was already fully deployed. 6G specifications may not even be finalized if it even exists.

There was a Trump look-a-like in Hanoi. He’s Canadian and his first name is Donald. Better skin complexion though.