US Politics in Trump era Public date: 02.10.2020 20:59:01

Publisher: NYTimes

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2 Nov 2017

Republican Plan Delivers Permanent Corporate Tax Cut

“Contrary to their assertions, the Republicans are picking winners and losers,” Jerry Howard, chief executive of the National Association of  Homebuilders, said in an interview. “They are picking rich Americans and  corporations over small businesses and the middle class.”
“Contrary to their assertions, the Republicans are picking winners and losers,” Jerry Howard,...

Publisher: ThinkProgress

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1 Nov 2017

Hidden bombshell in Papadopoulos’ plea indicates Trump’s role may soon take center stage

Until Monday, there was no evidence that Trump knew about any campaign contacts with Russians or their intermediaries. But tucked away in the guilty plea of George Papadopoulos is a piece of information that undermines Trump’s February statement and draws him more directly into the scandal. According to Papadopoulos, when he attended a March 31, 2016 campaign national security meeting he told the small group, which included President Trump, that he had ongoing communications with Russians that would allow him to facilitate a meeting between Trump and Vladimir Putin.
Until Monday, there was no evidence that Trump knew about any campaign contacts with Russians or their intermediaries....

Publisher: NYTimes

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1 Nov 2017

Trump, Citing Attack in New York, Calls for End to Visa Program

President Trump touched off a sharply partisan debate over some of the  most divisive issues in American life on Wednesday as he cited this  week’s terrorist attack in New York to advance his agenda on immigration and national security while assailing Democrats for endangering the country.
President Trump touched off a sharply partisan debate over some of the  most divisive issues in American life...
31 Oct 2017

As Russia case unfolds, Trump and Republicans go to battle with Clinton and Democrats

Trump issued four tweets over 24 minutes, attacking the Mueller probe  as unfair and citing various Clinton controversies that he said  warranted investigation. “Instead they look at phony Trump/Russia, ‘collusion,’ which doesn’t exist,” the president said. “The Dems are using this terrible (and bad for our country) Witch Hunt for evil politics, but the R’s are now fighting back like never before. There is so much GUILT by Democrats/Clinton, and now the facts are pouring out. DO SOMETHING!”
Trump issued four tweets over 24 minutes, attacking the Mueller probe  as unfair and citing various...

Publisher: Vox

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31 Oct 2017

Paul Manafort’s central role in the Trump-Russia investigation, explained

Trump’s former campaign chair, Paul Manafort, is facing charges in Mueller’s investigation. But though Manafort’s history of pro-Russia consulting work and experience with international skullduggery have long made him a prime suspect for potential collusion, Monday’s indictment does not actually have anything to do with the question of Russian interference in the 2016 campaign.Instead, it largely relates to matters predating Manafort’s involvement in Trump’s campaign. It’s about whether Manafort and Gates appropriately disclosed about a decade of foreign work, and whether they were was involved in illegal money laundering.
Trump’s former campaign chair, Paul Manafort, is facing charges in Mueller’s investigation. But though Manafort’s...
30 Oct 2017

Ex-Trump campaign aide pleads guilty to lying to agents in Russia inquiry

A former campaign aide to Donald Trump, George Papadopoulos, who sought to secure a meeting between the future US president and Vladimir Putin has pleaded guilty to lying to federal agents working for special counsel Robert Mueller as part of his investigation into possible coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia.
A former campaign aide to Donald Trump, George Papadopoulos, who sought to secure a meeting between the...

Publisher: Mother Jones

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28 Oct 2017

Trump Just Screwed the Millions of Americans Addicted to Opioids

On Thursday, President Trump declared the nation’s opioid epidemic a public health emergency. “We can be the  generation that ends the opioid epidemic,” he said. “We can do it.” The announcement came more than two months after the president first promised to declare a national emergency, which is distinct from a public health emergency. 
On Thursday, President Trump declared the nation’s opioid epidemic a public health emergency. “We can be...

Publisher: The Intercept

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28 Oct 2017

Trump’s IRS Chief Snuck Through With a Unanimous Vote in a Private Room Just off the Senate Floor

President Donald Trump on Thursday named former Ernst & Young LLP executive David Kautter to serve as the  interim head of the Internal Revenue Service after the current chief, John Koskinen, finishes his term on November 12. During his three decades of work at Ernst & Young, Kautter served  as the director of national tax practices at a time when his firm  was engaged in a massive effort to assist wealthy clients with tax  avoidance schemes.
President Donald Trump on Thursday named former Ernst & Young LLP executive David Kautter to serve as the...

Publisher: NYTimes

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27 Oct 2017

Betsy DeVos’s Schedule Shows Focus on Religious and Nontraditional Schools

For years, Betsy DeVos traveled the country — and opened her checkbook — as she worked as a conservative advocate to promote the expansion of  voucher programs that allow parents to use taxpayer funds to send their children to private and religious schools. A detailed look at the first six months of Ms. DeVos’s tenure as the  secretary of education —based on a 326-page calendar tracking her daily meetings — demonstrates that she continues to focus on those programs  as well as on charter schools.
For years, Betsy DeVos traveled the country — and opened her checkbook — as she worked as a conservative...
27 Oct 2017

Congressional Democrats Are Crushing The GOP In 2018 Midterm Fundraising

Congressional Democrats are whipping their GOP counterparts in  fundraising heading into the 2018 elections, a key sign that a wave election may be building.In both the Senate and House, Democrats are pulling money hand-over-fist in many of their most important races, according to campaign finance reports recently filed with the Federal Election Commission. Many Republicans are struggling to keep up — including some key incumbents in both chambers.
Congressional Democrats are whipping their GOP counterparts in  fundraising heading into the 2018 elections, a key...
26 Oct 2017

Revealed: How Twitter pushed RT to spend big on 2016 US election

The RT and Twitter teams held a number of direct negotiations, during which we brainstormed potential media strategy ahead of American elections in 2016. The first meeting dates back to as early as April 2016, and involved senior marketing and news partnerships managers from Twitter.
The RT and Twitter teams held a number of direct negotiations, during which we...
25 Oct 2017

Democrats Are Letting the Climate Crisis Go To Waste

What should be a sparkling  opportunity to push forward an ambitious agenda on climate — to condemn Republicans for not just ignoring but fueling a crisis with increasingly  human and economic consequences — is going quite literally up in smoke.  Even the most dogged climate champions in Congress are doing something Republicans would never dream of: letting a crisis go to waste.
What should be a sparkling  opportunity to push forward an ambitious agenda on climate —...
25 Oct 2017

Republican Jeff Flake, a Fierce Trump Critic, Will Not Seek Re-Election for Senate

Mr. Flake made his announcement in an extraordinary, 17-minute speech on the Senate floor, in which he challenged not only the president but also his party’s leadership. He deplored “the casual undermining of our democratic ideals, the personal attacks, the threats against principles, freedom and institutions, the flagrant disregard for truth and decency” that he said has become so prevalent in American politics.
Mr. Flake made his announcement in an extraordinary, 17-minute speech on the Senate floor, in...
25 Oct 2017

Russia’s Favored Outlet Is an Online News Giant. YouTube Helped.

As the presidential election heated up in the spring of 2016, RT consistently featured negative stories about Mrs. Clinton, according to United States intelligence officials. That included claims of corruption at her family foundation and ties to Islamic extremism, frequent coverage of emails stolen by Russian operatives from Mrs. Clinton’s campaign chairman, and accusations that she was in poor physical and mental health.
As the presidential election heated up in the spring of 2016, RT consistently featured negative stories about Mrs....
25 Oct 2017

Treasury Department Launches Attack on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Ahead of Vote

With the window to gut a critical consumer protection regulation rapidly closing, the Treasury Department on Monday launched an unusual attack on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s arbitration rule, relying  heavily on a discredited industry theory that claims that trial lawyers  routinely bully corporations into class-action settlements. 
With the window to gut a critical consumer protection regulation rapidly closing, the Treasury Department...
24 Oct 2017

Civil Rights Groups Sue Ben Carson for Delaying Anti-Segregation Housing Reform

Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson has halted a federal policy aimed at ending housing segregation. The rule would have allowed for millions of low-income families to afford rent in neighborhoods with better economic and educational opportunities.
Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson has halted a federal policy aimed at ending housing...

Publisher: NYTimes

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23 Oct 2017

E.P.A. Cancels Talk on Climate Change by Agency Scientists

Organizers of a Monday conference on the Narragansett Bay were told three E.P.A. scientists would not be allowed to present their work. Scientists involved in the program said that much of the discussion at the event centers on climate change. Many said they were surprised by the E.P.A.’s last-minute cancellation, particularly since the agency helps to fund the Narragansett Bay Estuary Program, which is hosting the conference. The scientists who have been barred from speaking contributed substantial material to a 400-page report to be issued on Monday.
Organizers of a Monday conference on the Narragansett Bay were told three E.P.A. scientists would not be allowed to...
23 Oct 2017

It Didn’t Just Start Now: John Kelly Has Always Been a Hard-Right Bully

Any examination of Kelly’s past public remarks makes clear he is not a sober professional, calculating that he must degrade himself in public so he can remain in place to rein in Trump’s worst instincts behind the scenes. Rather, Kelly honestly shares those instincts: He’s proudly  ignorant, he’s a liar, and he’s a shameless bully and demagogue.
Any examination of Kelly’s past public remarks makes clear he is not a sober professional, calculating that he must...
22 Oct 2017

DeVos rescinds 72 guidance documents outlining rights for disabled students

The Education Department has rescinded 72 policy documents that outline the rights of students with disabilities as part of the Trump administration’s effort to eliminate regulations it deems superfluous.
The Education Department has rescinded 72 policy documents that outline the rights of students with...
21 Oct 2017

ACA enrollment schedule may lock millions into unwanted health plans

Millions of Americans with insurance through the Affordable Care Act could find themselves locked into health plans they do not want for the coming year because of the Trump administration’s schedule for the enrollment season that starts in less than two weeks.
Millions of Americans with insurance through the Affordable Care Act could find themselves locked...

Publisher: NYTimes

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21 Oct 2017

After Video Refutes Kelly’s Charges, Congresswoman Raises Issue of Race

Mr. Kelly, escalating a feud between Mr. Trump and Ms. Wilson, had cast the congresswoman on Thursday as a publicity-seeking opportunist. However, the video, released by The Sun Sentinel, a newspaper in South Florida, showed that during her nine-minute speech, Ms. Wilson never took credit for getting the money for the building, only for helping pass legislation naming the building after two fallen federal agents.
Mr. Kelly, escalating a feud between Mr. Trump and Ms. Wilson, had cast the congresswoman on Thursday as...
21 Oct 2017

CIA director distorts intelligence community’s findings on Russian interference

CIA Director Mike Pompeo declared Thursday that U.S. intelligence agencies determined that Russia’s interference in the 2016 American presidential election did not alter the outcome, a statement that distorted spy agency findings. His comment suggested — falsely — that a report released by U.S. intelligence agencies in January had ruled out any impact that could be attributed to a covert Russian interference campaign that involved leaks of tens of thousands of stolen emails, the flooding of social media sites with false claims and the purchase of ads on Facebook.
CIA Director Mike Pompeo declared Thursday that U.S. intelligence agencies determined that Russia’s...
21 Oct 2017

Senate approves budget in crucial step forward for Republican tax cuts

The Senate approved the Republican-backed budget Thursday night, a major step forward for the GOP effort to enact tax cuts. The budget’s passage will allow the GOP to use a procedural maneuver to pass tax legislation through the Senate with 50 or more votes, removing the need for support from Democratic senators.
The Senate approved the Republican-backed budget Thursday night, a major step forward for the GOP effort to...

Publisher: NYTimes

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21 Oct 2017

Why Has the E.P.A. Shifted on Toxic Chemicals? An Industry Insider Helps Call the Shots

The E.P.A.’s abrupt new direction on legacy chemicals is part of a broad initiative by the Trump administration to change the way the federal government evaluates health and environmental risks associated with  hazardous chemicals, making it more aligned with the industry’s wishes.
The E.P.A.’s abrupt new direction on legacy chemicals is part of a broad initiative by the...
18 Oct 2017

Trump Has Killed More Civilians with Illegal Drone Strikes in 9 Months Than Obama Did in 8 Years

Former President Obama earned the nickname of “Drone King” when he dramatically escalated the use of drone strikes, while also downplaying the number of innocent civilians who became “collateral damage.” In the two years that his administration devoted to publicly spending millions of taxpayer dollars to fight the Islamic State group, the  estimated civilian death toll ranged from 2,300 to 3,400, according to Airwars, an organization tracking deaths in the war against ISIS.President Trump has been in office for just 9 months, and he has already surpassed Obama’s murderous record with estimated numbers as high as 4,500 civilian deaths.
Former President Obama earned the nickname of “Drone King” when he dramatically escalated the use of...
17 Oct 2017

Inside the ‘adult day-care center’: How aides try to control and coerce Trump

During the campaign, when President Trump’s advisers wanted him to stop talking about a certain issue — such as when he attacked a Gold Star military family — they sometimes presented him with polls demonstrating how the controversy was harming his candidacy.  During the transition, when aides needed Trump to decide on a looming issue or appointment, they often limited him to a shortlist of two or three options and urged him to choose one.
During the campaign, when President Trump’s advisers wanted him to stop talking about a certain issue —...

Publisher: The Intercept

Author:

17 Oct 2017

Koch Brothers’ Internal Strategy Memo on Selling Tax Cuts: Ignore The Deficit

The billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch spent much of the eight years of the Obama presidency stoking fears about the budget deficit. Now that Republicans control all levers of power in Washington and the Koch brothers are poised to reap a windfall of billions of dollars through tax cuts, they have a new message: Don’t worry about the deficit.
The billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch spent much of the eight years of the Obama presidency...
17 Oct 2017

Top Trump Official John Kelly Ordered ICE to Portray Immigrants as Criminals to Justify Raids

A directive to immigration officials across the country to try to portray undocumented immigrants swept up in mass raids as criminals  came directly from then-Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly, The Intercept has learned. The redacted emails, obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request by students at Vanderbilt University Law School, show that while hundreds of undocumented immigrants were rounded up across the country, DHS officials tried — and largely failed — to engineer a narrative that would substantiate the administration’s claims that the raids were motivated by public safety concerns.
A directive to immigration officials across the country to try to portray undocumented immigrants swept up in mass...

Publisher: Forbes

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16 Oct 2017

Trump receives subpoena for all documents realting to secual assaults

After a fairly quiet post-election period in this regard, President Trump is again facing a legal fight over claims that he sexually assaulted women in his prior life as a private citizen and business figure. According to Buzzfeed, the subpoena was issued in March, but was only entered into the court file last month. The White House has been reached out to for comment, which will be included here when and if available.
After a fairly quiet post-election period in this regard, President Trump is again facing a legal fight over claims that...
14 Oct 2017

Iran nuclear deal: EU condemns Donald Trump’s decision to decertify agreement

The Iran nuclear deal  is working well and continues to prevent the country from developing  atomic weapons, the European Union's foreign policy chief has said.Federica Mogherini made the comments after Donald Trump announced he had chosen not to re-certify the agreement. Ms Mogherini said no one country could terminate the deal, which was signed onto by Britain, France, Germany, Russia, China and the European Union. Instead, she called for a "collective process" to preserve the historic accord.
The Iran nuclear deal  is working well and continues to prevent the country from developing  atomic...
14 Oct 2017

Republicans in Congress are about to give Trump even more power

For 100 years the Senate has allowed home-state senators to play a central role in approving nominees for federal judgeships in their states. For a judicial nomination to move forward, both senators from a nominee’s state must return a “blue slip” that signals their agreement that that nominee should receive a hearing in the Judiciary Committee. 
For 100 years the Senate has allowed home-state senators to play a central role in approving nominees for federal...

Publisher: ThinkProgress

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14 Oct 2017

This is the pro-Trump propaganda being quietly broadcast on local stations across the country

On an otherwise regular morning in mid-August, viewers in Providence, Rhode Island were treated to a segment called Behind the Headlines with Mark Hyman, which immediately followed the local weather report. Hyman’s segment, which runs daily between a minute and a half and two minutes long, is one of several must-run “news” segments that spread misinformation, echo Trump administration talking points, and function as nationalist and right-wing propaganda.
On an otherwise regular morning in mid-August, viewers in Providence, Rhode Island were treated to a segment called...
14 Oct 2017

Trump threatens to rip up Iran nuclear deal unless US and allies fix ‘serious flaws’

Donald Trump  has threatened to terminate the 2015 Iran nuclear deal if Congress and US allies fail to amend the agreement in significant ways. In a vituperative speech on Friday that began by listing Iran’s alleged crimes over the decades, Trump announced he would not continue to certify the agreement to Congress, but stopped short of immediately cancelling US participation in the deal.
Donald Trump  has threatened to terminate the 2015 Iran nuclear deal if Congress and US allies...

Publisher: ThinkProgress

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14 Oct 2017

Trump’s pick to run White House environmental office says more CO2 is good for humanity

President Donald Trump nominated Kathleen Hartnett White, a fringe player in the climate debate who promotes the idea that increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is good for humanity, to lead the White House Council on Environmental Quality on Thursday. Hartnett White, a senior fellow and director of the Armstrong Center for Energy and the Environment at the fossil-fuel funded Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF), has questioned the scientific consensus that human activities are the major driver of catastrophic climate change. She has described efforts to combat climate change as primarily an attack on the fossil fuel industry.
President Donald Trump nominated Kathleen Hartnett White, a fringe player in the climate debate who promotes the...

Publisher: The Intercept

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13 Oct 2017

The Airport Bomber From Last Week You Never Heard About

It’s strange how some things really catch on and go viral and others don’t. These days, nothing quite makes a story blow up — no pun intended — like the president’s fixation with it. That’s why it’s so peculiar that what sure looks like an attempted terrorist attack was narrowly thwarted at an American airport this past Friday without so much as peep from Donald Trump about it. No tweets. No nicknames for the alleged would-be-terrorist. Nothing. You’ll see why in a minute.
It’s strange how some things really catch on and go viral and others don’t. These days, nothing quite makes...
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13 Oct 2017

Trump Just Blew Off a Deadline for Implementing Russian Sanctions He Approved

The White House has blown by an October 1 deadline for beginning to implement new sanctions targeting Russia, drawing concern in Congress that President Donald Trump is planning to ignore parts of a bill he grudgingly signed in August.
The White House has blown by an October 1 deadline for beginning to implement new sanctions targeting Russia, drawing...
13 Oct 2017

Trump signs order to eliminate ACA insurance rules, undermine marketplaces

President Trump signed an executive order on Thursday intended to circumvent the Affordable Care Act by making it easier for individuals and small business to buy different types of health plans with lower  prices but also fewer benefits and protections.
President Trump signed an executive order on Thursday intended to circumvent the Affordable Care Act by...
13 Oct 2017

Trump threatens to abandon Puerto Rico recovery effort

President Trump served notice Thursday that he may pull back federal relief workers from Puerto Rico, effectively threatening to abandon the U.S. territory amid a staggering humanitarian crisis in the aftermath of  Hurricane Maria. Declaring the U.S. territory's electrical grid  and infrastructure to have been a “disaster before hurricanes,” Trump wrote Thursday that it will be up to Congress how much federal money to appropriate to the island for its recovery efforts and that recovery workers will not stay “forever.”
President Trump served notice Thursday that he may pull back federal relief workers from Puerto Rico,...
13 Oct 2017

US withdraws from Unesco over ‘anti-Israel bias’

The United States has withdrawn from Unesco over what it claims is the organisation’s “continuing anti-Israel bias” – a move that has just been followed by Israel itself.  The US State Department recently announced its intention to withdraw from the UN’s cultural, scientific and educational organisation and become a permanent observer instead.
The United States has withdrawn from Unesco over what it claims is the organisation’s “continuing...

Publisher: NYTimes

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12 Oct 2017

Trump Threatens NBC Over Nuclear Weapons Report

President Trump threatened on Wednesday to use the federal government’s power to license television airwaves to target NBC in response to a report by the network’s news division that he contemplated a dramatic increase in the nation’s nuclear arsenal.
President Trump threatened on Wednesday to use the federal government’s power to license television airwaves...

Publisher: NYTimes

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12 Oct 2017

Trump’s Tough Talk on Nafta Raising Fears of Pact’s Demise

In recent weeks, the Trump administration has sparred with American businesses that support Nafta and pushed for significant changes that negotiators from Mexico and Canada say are nonstarters. All the while, the president has continued threatening to withdraw the United States  from the trade agreement, which he has maligned as the worst in history.
In recent weeks, the Trump administration has sparred with American businesses that support Nafta and pushed for...
12 Oct 2017

‘He threw a fit’: Trump’s anger over Iran deal forced aides to scramble for a compromise

President Trump was livid. Why, he asked his advisers in mid-July, should he go along with what he considered the failed Obama-era policy toward Iran and prop up an international nuclear deal he saw as disastrous? He was incensed by the arguments of Secretary of State Rex ­Tillerson, Defense  Secretary Jim Mattis and others that the landmark 2015 deal, while flawed, offered stability and other benefits.
President Trump was livid. Why, he asked his advisers in mid-July, should he go along with what he considered the...
11 Oct 2017

‘You Better Learn Our Lesson’

The regretful Republicans of Kansas have a message for the tax-cutting Republicans of Congress: Don’t follow our lead. If states are, as Justice Louis Brandeis famously called them, the laboratories of democracy, then Kansas’s experiment in conservative tax reform set off an explosion of red ink. Steep cuts for businesses and individuals failed to produce a promised economic boom, and busted the state’s budget instead. Now, the GOP legislators that oversaw—and ultimately cancelled—that fiscal study are increasingly worried that Washington will ignore its central finding.
The regretful Republicans of Kansas have a message for the tax-cutting Republicans of Congress: Don’t follow our lead....
11 Oct 2017

The radical ideology of this Trump nominee makes even the most conservative SCOTUS justices uneasy

Justice Don Willett is charming. Best known outside legal circles for his Twitter feed, @JusticeWillett, the Texas Supreme Court justice — and now a Trump nominee to a federal appeals court — tweets largely apolitical commentary about Calvin and Hobbes, his children, and Oxford commas. This would all be well and good, if not for one other factor. This charming, intelligent, knowledgeable man also wants to dismantle much of the last 80 years of American law.
Justice Don Willett is charming. Best known outside legal circles for his Twitter feed, @JusticeWillett, the Texas...

Publisher: NYTimes

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10 Oct 2017

E.P.A. Announces Repeal of Major Obama-Era Carbon Emissions Rule

The Trump administration announced on Monday that it would take formal steps to repeal President Barack Obama’s signature policy to curb greenhouse gas emissions from power plants, setting up a bitter fight  over the future of America’s efforts to tackle global warming.
The Trump administration announced on Monday that it would take formal steps to repeal President...
9 Oct 2017

Gary Cohn Is Giving Goldman Sachs Everything It Ever Wanted From the Trump Administration

Candidate Trump promised to create millions of new jobs, vowing to be “the greatest jobs president that God ever created. At Goldman Sachs, Gary Cohn nearly wrecked the economy. As Trump's top economic adviser, he's dismantling the rules put in place after the financial crisis. ”
Candidate Trump promised to create millions of new jobs, vowing to be “the greatest jobs president that God ever...
8 Oct 2017

The Trump-Russia dossier: why its findings grow more significant by the day

Originally commissioned by a private firm as opposition research by Donald Trump’s Republican and then Democratic opponents, the dossier cite a range of unnamed sources, in Russia and the US, who describe the Kremlin’s cultivation over many years of the man who now occupies the Oval Office – and the systematic collusion of Trump’s associates with Moscow to help get him there.
Originally commissioned by a private firm as opposition research by Donald Trump’s Republican and...
7 Oct 2017

Here’s How the Russian State Media Has Been Covering Trump’s Russia Scandal

On Wednesday September 20, the Washington Post published yet another evening bombshell about the Trump-Russia investigation. The Post found that while serving as Donald Trump’s campaign chairman, Paul Manafort  offered to provide regular “private briefings” on the presidential campaign to Oleg Deripaska, a Russian billionaire who is closely linked to Vladimir Putin.
On Wednesday September 20, the Washington Post published yet another evening bombshell about the Trump-Russia...
7 Oct 2017

The Jared bubble

You can’t say ‘hit job’ in here.”  I was six months into my tenure as the editor of the New York Observer, and I was schooling my publisher, Jared Kushner, on why ordering up a slam of someone who had crossed his family in business didn’t pass the journalistic smell test.
You can’t say ‘hit job’ in here.”  I was six months into my tenure as the...
7 Oct 2017

These are the Facebook posts Russia used to undermine Hillary Clinton’s campaign

By meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, Moscow appears to have initially aimed to plant Donald Trump in the White House. But as signs toward the end of the campaign pointed to Trump’s defeat, actors in Russia were primarily trying to hamstring Hillary Clinton’s perceived ascension to the presidency.
By meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, Moscow appears to have initially aimed to plant Donald Trump in the...
7 Oct 2017

Trump’s decision on Iran nuclear deal could cause major breach with allies in Europe

More than any other issue that has threatened transatlantic cohesion  this year, President Trump’s decision to decertify Iranian compliance  with the nuclear deal could start a chain of events that would sharply divide the United States from its closest traditional allies in the world.
More than any other issue that has threatened transatlantic cohesion  this year, President Trump’s...
6 Oct 2017

As ACA enrollment nears, administration keeps cutting federal support of the law

For months, officials in Republican-controlled Iowa had sought federal permission to revitalize their ailing health-insurance  marketplace. Then President Trump read about the request in a newspaper story and called the federal director weighing the application. Trump’s message was clear, according to individuals who spoke on the condition  of anonymity to discuss private conversations: Tell Iowa no.
For months, officials in Republican-controlled Iowa had sought federal permission to revitalize...

Publisher: NYTimes

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6 Oct 2017

Trump Calls Meeting With Military Leaders ‘the Calm Before the Storm’

President Trump said late Thursday that a meeting with his military leaders was “the calm before the storm,” but what he meant by his ominous comment remained unclear. When pressed for more details, the president said, “you’ll find out,” a declaration that comes amid more turmoil in his own cabinet and several foreign policy challenges around the world.
President Trump said late Thursday that a meeting with his military leaders was “the calm before the storm,” but...
5 Oct 2017

Internal Emails Show ICE Agents Struggling to Substantiate Trump’s Lies About Immigrants

As hundreds of undocumented immigrants were rounded up across the country last February in the first mass raids of the Trump  administration, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials went out  of their way to portray the people they detained as hardened criminals, instructing field offices to highlight the worst cases for the media and attempting to distract attention from the dozens of individuals who were apprehended despite having no criminal background at all.
As hundreds of undocumented immigrants were rounded up across the country last February in the first mass raids of...
5 Oct 2017

Manafort’s Son-In-Law Accuses Him Of Misleading Court In Bankruptcy Legal Tussle

Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his son-in-law are  engaged in an ugly legal battle that escalated last week with the son-in-law, Jeffrey Yohai, alleging that Manafort was part of a conspiracy to mislead a federal bankruptcy court.
Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his son-in-law are  engaged in an ugly legal battle that...

Publisher: NYTimes

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5 Oct 2017

Rex Tillerson, Trump’s Secretary of State, ‘Never Considered Leaving’ the Job

Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson  insisted on Wednesday that he has never considered resigning, despite what associates have described as deep frustration. But he did not deny a report that he has grown so disenchanted with President Trump that he once referred to him as a “moron.”
Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson  insisted on Wednesday that he has never considered resigning,...

Publisher: NYTimes

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5 Oct 2017

Trump Takes a First Step Toward Scrapping Obama’s Global Warming Policy

The Trump administration will repeal the Clean Power Plan, the  centerpiece of President Obama’s effort to fight climate change, and will ask the public to recommend ways it could be replaced, according to  an internal E.P.A. document.
The Trump administration will repeal the Clean Power Plan, the  centerpiece of President Obama’s effort to fight...

Publisher: NYTimes

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3 Oct 2017

E.P.A. Chief’s Calendar: A Stream of Industry Meetings and Trips Home

Since taking office in February, Mr. Trump’s E.P.A. chief has held back-to-back meetings, briefing sessions and speaking engagements almost daily with top corporate executives and lobbyists from all the major economic sectors that he regulates — and almost no meetings with  environmental groups or consumer or public health advocates, according to a 320-page accounting of his daily schedule from February through May, the most detailed look yet at what Mr. Pruitt has been up to since he took over the agency.
Since taking office in February, Mr. Trump’s E.P.A. chief has held...

Publisher: NYTimes

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3 Oct 2017

Facebook’s Russia-Linked Ads Came in Many Disguises

The Russians who posed as Americans on Facebook last year tried on quite an array of disguises. There was “Defend the 2nd,” a Facebook page for gun-rights supporters, festooned with firearms and tough rhetoric. There was a rainbow-hued page for gay rights activists, “LGBT United.” There was even a Facebook group for animal lovers with memes of adorable puppies that spread across the site with the help of paid ads.
The Russians who posed as Americans on Facebook last year tried on quite an array of disguises. There was “Defend...
3 Oct 2017

Trump’s company had more contact with Russia during campaign, according to documents turned over to investigators

In one case, Trump’s personal attorney and a business associate exchanged emails weeks before the Republican National Convention about the lawyer possibly traveling to an economic conference in Russia that would be attended by top Russian financial and government leaders, including President Vladi­mir Putin, according to people familiar with the correspondence.
In one case, Trump’s personal attorney and a business associate exchanged emails weeks before the Republican...
2 Oct 2017

Trump’s Treasury Department Deleted Research That Contradicts Republicans on Tax Reform

In an interview on Fox News  last month, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin made a sales pitch for the  GOP’s tax reform plan—specifically, its plan to cut corporate taxes.  “Most economists believe that over 70 percent of corporate taxes are  paid for by the workers,” he said. His implication, in laymen’s terms: Regular workers would get 70 percent of the benefit of corporate tax cuts. Five years ago, the Obama-era Treasury department found the exact opposite
In an interview on Fox News  last month, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin made a sales pitch for the  GOP’s...
2 Oct 2017

Don McGahn almost resigned over concerns about Trump-Kushner meetings

West Wing staffers were concerned that White House counsel Don McGahn would quit earlier this summer because of his frustration over meetings between President Donald Trump and his senior and adviser and son-in-law, Jared Kushner, The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday. Given their proximity to the Russia probe, McGahn was reportedly concerned that the frequency with which Trump and Kushner met could be seen as an attempt to coordinate their stories, three officials familiar with the matter told The Journal. 
West Wing staffers were concerned that White House counsel Don McGahn would quit earlier this summer because of his...
2 Oct 2017

Trump lays blame on Puerto Ricans for slow hurricane response

U.S. President Donald Trump on Saturday placed blame squarely on Puerto Ricans for the slow recovery from Hurricane Maria after critics and the mayor of San Juan complained his administration's response to the U.S. territory's plight was insufficient.
U.S. President Donald Trump on Saturday placed blame squarely on Puerto Ricans for the slow recovery from Hurricane...
2 Oct 2017

Trump says Tillerson is ‘wasting his time’ trying to pursue negotiations with North Korea

President Trump signaled Sunday that he does not believe that attempts at direct communications with North Korea are worth the effort despite escalating tensions between Washington and Pyongyang. A day after Secretary of State Rex Tillerson suggested that the United  States maintains “lines of communications” with Kim Jong Un's regime, Trump wrote on Twitter that Tillerson is “wasting his time trying to negotiate with Little Rocket Man” — his nickname for Kim.
President Trump signaled Sunday that he does not believe that attempts at direct communications with North Korea are...

Publisher: Market Place

Author:

30 Sep 2017

Elaine Chao, champion of Trump’s infrastructure plan, chose to keep stock in a building company

U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao, a leader in the Trump administration's effort to inject $1 trillion into America's crumbling infrastructure, chose to hold on to more than $300,000 of deferred stock awards in a transportation construction company after resigning from its board when she was confirmed to the Cabinet position.
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao, a leader in the Trump administration's effort to...

Publisher: NYTimes

Author:

30 Sep 2017

Health Secretary Tom Price Resigns After Drawing Ire for Chartered Flights

Tom Price, the health and human services secretary, resigned under pressure on Friday after racking up at least $400,000 in travel bills for chartered flights and undermining President Trump’s promise to drain the swamp of a corrupt and entitled capital.
Tom Price, the health and human services secretary, resigned under pressure on Friday after racking up at least $400,000...

Publisher: ThinkProgress

Author:

30 Sep 2017

Perry proposes law to force Americans to buy dirtier, costlier power

To make his case, Perry has fabricated an economic threat to U.S. grid reliability from cheap renewables and then proposed a rule to account for the imaginary reliability benefit of other electricity sources — all the while ignoring the actual health and environmental costs of carbon pollution from burning coal that aren’t priced in to the market yet.
To make his case, Perry has fabricated an economic threat to U.S. grid reliability from cheap renewables and then...

Publisher: Daily Kos

Author:

30 Sep 2017

Rachel Maddow Says Trump Did A Fundraiser On NFL Controversy While Puerto Rico Drowned

Rachel Maddow joined Jimmy Fallon Thursday night on his show  and she said that Donald Trump’s NFL tweeting madness was done to make money — despite the humanitarian crisis brewing in Puerto Rico.
Rachel Maddow joined Jimmy Fallon Thursday night on his show  and she said that Donald Trump’s NFL tweeting...

Publisher: LA Times

Author:

30 Sep 2017

Supreme Court poised to deal a sharp blow to unions for teachers and public employees

The Supreme Court  is poised to deal a sharp blow to the unions that represent millions of teachers and other public employees, announcing Thursday it will consider striking down the mandatory fees that support collective bargaining. The justices will hear the case of Mark Janus, an Illinois state employee who objects to paying fees to the union, which represents 35,000 state workers.
The Supreme Court  is poised to deal a sharp blow to the unions that represent millions of teachers and other...
30 Sep 2017

These Numbers Show Just How Bad Trump Has Been for Immigrants

Between January and July of this year, Immigration and Customs Enforcement arrests of undocumented immigrants with no criminal history skyrocketed by more than 200 percent, according to a Reuters analysis—jumping from 1,411 arrests in January to a whopping 4,399 in July. Arrests of immigrants with criminal records have also increased but by a much smaller margin of 17 percent.
Between January and July of this year, Immigration and Customs Enforcement...
30 Sep 2017

VA chief took in Wimbledon, river cruise on European work trip; wife’s expenses covered by taxpayers

Shulkin and his wife spent about half their time sightseeing on his 10-day visit for meetings with Danish and British officials. The federal government paid for the flights for Shulkin and his wife, Merle Bari, and provided a per-diem reimbursement for their meals and other expenses, VA said Friday. An agency spokesman did not respond to questions about why Bari qualified for the reimbursements and taxpayer-funded airfare, other than to say she was traveling on “approved invitational orders” and had “temporary duty” travel expenses.
Shulkin and his wife spent about half their time sightseeing on his 10-day visit for meetings with Danish and British...
29 Sep 2017

It was candidate Trump’s best trick. Now it’s stalling President Trump’s agenda.

Refusing to sweat the details made the Republican difficult to attack, but it’s making it hard for him to govern. “It’s the chickens coming home to roost,” said Douglas Holtz-Eakin, a former Congressional Budget Office director who advised Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) during his 2008 presidential run. “This operating style I don’t think serves the process very well, and I think he got trapped into it by not being specific enough on the campaign.”
Refusing to sweat the details made the Republican difficult to attack, but it’s making it hard for him to govern....
29 Sep 2017

Judiciary Committee Approves Trump Pick for DOJ Crime Chief

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved President Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the Justice Department’s criminal division on Thursday, despite concerns from Democrats. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., said Thursday that he was concerned that Benczkowski, a former Republican Judiciary Committee staffer, joining the criminal division could compromise the wall between Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation and Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who served on the committee while in the Senate and has recused himself from the Mueller investigation.
The Senate Judiciary Committee approved President Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the Justice Department’s criminal...
29 Sep 2017

North Korea-US war now ‘a real possibility’, warns influential Rusi think tank

The disturbing analysis, written by Rusi director general Malcolm Chalmers, says a war could be triggered by either Washington or Pyongyang, but it warns there is a growing risk action could be taken by Donald Trump to “resolve” the issue “sooner rather than later”. “War is now a real possibility,” the report states. “With North Korea making rapid progress in its missile and nuclear programmes, time is not on diplomacy's side.”
The disturbing analysis, written by Rusi director general Malcolm Chalmers, says a war could be triggered by either...
29 Sep 2017

White House tries to defend Trump’s claim that he pays more under his tax plan. It’s a train wreck.

During a White House briefing on Thursday, chief White House economic adviser Gary Cohn tried to defend President Trump’s claim that his tax plan will not benefit him. It did not go well. “Based on what we know, what little we know about [Trump’s] finances, he’d get a big cut on the AMT [Alternative Minimum Tax], I think he’d save something like $31 million. On pass-through income, he’d save $16.5 million, he’d obviously save a lot not paying the estate tax, his heirs would — so how can you say that this is not a plan that would help him?” a reporter asked.
During a White House briefing on Thursday, chief White House economic adviser Gary Cohn tried to defend President...
29 Sep 2017

Yet Another Major Russia Story Falls Apart. Is Skepticism Permissible Yet?

Last Friday, most major media outlets touted a major story about Russian attempts to hack into U.S. voting systems, based exclusively on claims made by the Department of Homeland Security. “Russians attempted  to hack elections systems in 21 states in the run-up to last year’s presidential election, officials said Friday,” began the USA Today story, similar to how most other outlets presented this extraordinary claim.
Last Friday, most major media outlets touted a major story about Russian attempts to hack into U.S....
28 Sep 2017

‘Height of hypocrisy’: Clinton calls out Trump team over private email reports

At least six senior Trump administration  figures are reported to have used private email accounts for official White House business, prompting Hillary Clinton to describe criticism of her own private server use as “the height of hypocrisy”.Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner, admitted through his lawyer on Sunday that he had used private emails in the administration’s early days.
At least six senior Trump administration  figures are reported to have used private email accounts...

Publisher: NYTimes

Author:

28 Sep 2017

With Tax Cuts on the Table, Once-Mighty Deficit Hawks Hardly Chirp

A new tax cut is emerging to rival those of the Bush years, and the deficit hawks have hardly peeped. “It’s  a great talking point when you have an administration that’s  Democrat-led,” said Representative Mark Walker, Republican of North Carolina and the chairman of the Republican Study Committee, a group of about 150 conservative House members. “It’s a little different now that Republicans have both houses and the administration.”
A new tax cut is emerging to rival those of the Bush years, and the deficit hawks have hardly peeped. “It’s  a...
27 Sep 2017

The DOJ’s new anti-gay legal posture just got shut down in federal court.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit had a burning question for Donald Trump’s Department of Justice on Tuesday: What are you doing in our courthouse? By the end of the day, the answer still wasn’t clear. Something else was, though: The DOJ’s new anti-gay legal posture is not going to be received with open arms by the federal judiciary.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit had a burning question for Donald Trump’s Department of Justice on...
27 Sep 2017

The ugliest line in Trump’s NFL attack.

Donald Trump’s frothing critique of Colin Kaepernick and the players, coaches, and teammates who have come to his side has garnered many revelatory reactions. Some of these responses tell us more about ourselves as Americans than do Trump’s initial description of any athlete who chooses to protest systemic  racism and police brutality as being a “son of a bitch.”
Donald Trump’s frothing critique of Colin Kaepernick and the players, coaches, and teammates who...
26 Sep 2017

How the Pentagon Paid for NFL Displays of Patriotism

A key component is missing from the current controversial discussion surrounding football players and the national anthem. In the recent days  of argument over whether NFL players have the right to protest racial inequality and systemic injustice in the United States, few have brought up the fact that less than a decade ago, professional football players didn’t even appear on the field during the national anthem.
A key component is missing from the current controversial discussion surrounding football players and the national...

Publisher: Al Jazeera

Author:

23 Sep 2017

‘Trump looking to loosen Obama limits on drone strikes’

The New York Times, citing unnamed officials, reported on Thursday that Trump's top national security advisers have proposed relaxing two rules from administration of Barack Obama, the former US president.  The officials said the targets of kill missions by the military and the CIA would be expanded to include foot-soldier fighters with no  special skills or leadership roles. 
The New York Times, citing unnamed officials, reported on Thursday that Trump's top national...

Publisher: The Intercept

Author:

23 Sep 2017

How Exxon Mobil May Soon Have Greater Sway Over Science Used in EPA Policies

The list of potential candidates for the EPA's scientific advisory boards includes many oil and gas industry representatives and consultants. While industry has always had a voice on those panels, comments from the Trump administration and the potential new appointees suggest the balance may soon change in favor of greater power for regulated companies, particularly the oil and gas industries.
The list of potential candidates for the EPA's scientific advisory boards includes many oil and gas industry...
22 Sep 2017

Brute isolation: Trump and the art of unraveling the Iran deal

At the UN pulpit, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani delivered a measured,  elegant, cultured and at the same time scathing speech thoroughly debunking Trump’s assertions with actual facts. The overall theme was “the path of moderation.” A particular pearl: “Moderation is   the synergy of ideas and not the dance of swords.” The contrast with the bellicose, Manichean Trump Doctrine was stark.
At the UN pulpit, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani delivered a measured, ...
22 Sep 2017

Did Trump Just Make Iran More Popular?

Trump’s tough talk and sophomoric antics may have had the opposite effect of what he intended, however. Across the board, the world’s other major powers, most of America’s closest allies, and the vast majority of governments at the United Nations this week made clear that they favor the deal. They are siding with Iran this time.
Trump’s tough talk and sophomoric antics may have had the opposite effect of what he...

Publisher: NYTimes

Author:

22 Sep 2017

Skadden, Big New York Law Firm, Faces Questions on Work With Manafort

Five years ago, Paul Manafort arranged for a prominent New York-based law firm to draft a report that was used by allies of his client, Viktor Yanukovych, the Russia-aligned president of  Ukraine, to justify the jailing of a political rival. And now the report is coming back to haunt it.
Five years ago, Paul Manafort arranged for a prominent New York-based law firm to draft a report that...

Publisher: Vox

Author:

21 Sep 2017

Blue states face steep cuts under Graham-Cassidy. Red states reap the rewards.

The latest Obamacare repeal plan, known as Graham-Cassidy after the senators who proposed it, fundamentally does two big things: It cuts federal funding for health insurance, versus Obamacare, and takes money  from the states that best implemented the Affordable Care Act and gives it to the states that obstructed the law.
The latest Obamacare repeal plan, known as Graham-Cassidy after the senators who proposed...
21 Sep 2017

Donald Trump Used the United Nations to Threaten a Massive Violation of International Law

The United States has never cared much about international  law. But most U.S. presidents had at least made an effort to pretend that they  did. Based on President Donald Trump’s speech Tuesday to the United Nations General Assembly, this is yet another American tradition that he’s discarding. Trump’s overturning of this American norm came during his blusterous threats against North Korea:
The United States has never cared much about international  law. But most U.S. presidents had at...
21 Sep 2017

Mueller Seeks White House Documents Related to Trump’s Actions as President

Robert  S. Mueller III, the special counsel, has asked the White House for documents about some of President Trump’s most scrutinized actions since taking office, including the firing of his national security adviser and F.B.I. director, according to White House officials. Mr.  Mueller is also interested in an Oval Office meeting Mr. Trump had with  Russian officials in which he said the dismissal of the F.B.I. director   had relieved “great pressure” on him.
Robert  S. Mueller III, the special counsel, has asked the White House for documents about some of President...

Publisher: NYTimes

Author:

21 Sep 2017

Tillerson says Iran is not meeting ‘expectations’ of nuclear deal

A rift between the Trump administration and Europe, over whether to stick to a nuclear agreement with Iran, deepened considerably on Wednesday after a meeting on the deal’s implementation at the United Nations in New York. The US secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, emerged from the meeting conceding that Iran was abiding by the letter of the 2015 deal, but he still insisted Tehran was not fulfilling the “expectations” of the agreement.
A rift between the Trump administration and Europe, over whether to stick to a nuclear agreement with Iran,...
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