Day by day with Donald Trump
Friday June 16 — President Trumpsky acknowledged for the first time that is the subject of an investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
Thursday June 15 — President Trumpky is being investigated for potential obstruction of justice, Vice President Mike Penceky has lawyered up, and first son-in-law Jared Kushner is apparently being looked at for financial irregularities involving — you guessed it — Russians.
Also this week, the United States of Stalin Senate made it tougher for journalists to talk to senators in the Capitol.
Friday May 19 — Day 119 of the Trump Regime — Remember that May 10 meeting between Trumpster and the two Russian officials? The one that where American journalists were excluded but a photographer from Tass was allowed in? Where Trumpster disclosed to the Russians highly classified information that had been given to the United States by Israeli counter-intelligence officials?
Well, what we didn’t know then, but we learned today, Trumpster also discussed his firing of former FBI Director James Comey with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak and foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, “I just fired the head of the FBI,” Trumpster told the Russians. “He was crazy, a real not just. I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off.”
The New York Times got details of from the official record of Trumpster’s meeting with the Russians from one administration official, and confirmed it with a second White Hosue official. Amazing!
In other news, video surfaced of Trumpster buddy and Turkish strongman Tiyap Erdogen sending his goons to beat up peaceful protestors in a public park across the street from the Turkish embassy in Washington. Amazingly, it’s not the first time Erdogan’s goons have attacked Americans. In 2016, bodyguards similarly attacked protestors outside an Erdogan event at the Brookings Institution in Washington. They even roughed up reporters until Brookings threatened to cancel the strongman’s appearance.
The State Department summoned the Turkish ambassador for a chat, but Trumpsky’s White House has had nothing to say about the attack. Little wonder. Trumpksy exhorted crowds at 2016 campaign rallies to rough up protestors, and urged former FBI Director James Comey to jail journalists who publish leaked material. (FYI: It may be illegal for government officials to leak material, but it’s not illegal for newspapers to publish the material. In cases involving national security, newspapers and government officials actually negotiate pre-publication to maintain the secrecy of the most delicate information.
Tuesday May 16 — Day 117 of the Trump Regime — Former FBI director James Comey wrote a memo written just after an Oval Office meeting with President Trumpky that the president had asked him to stop the investigation into Michael Flynn. The memo is the best evidence released thus far that Trumpky was trying to directly influence the investigation into Russian collusion with the Trumpsky administration. The meeting was in February, about a week after Trumpsky’s infamous dinner with Comey, in which the president reportedly ask Comey for his personal allegiance and one day after Flynn resigned as national security advisor. “I hope you can let this go,” the president allegedly said to Comey. The president is reportedly also suggested that Comey prosecute reporters for leaks involving national security.
Saturday May 13 — Day 114 of the Trump Regime — Donaldovich J. Trumpsky gave the commencement address at Liberty University. It was interesting choice for the private, Christian college founded by Moral Majority leader Jerry Falwell to invite the twice-divorced president who has said he enjoys grabbing women by the genitals. It’s another example of a once-fine institution that has abandoned all concern about reputation or values to embrace a president who doesn’t know that “II Corinthians” is spoken as “Second Corinthians.” Trumpsky, a former Democrat, has the power of the presidency, and that’s obviously more important than principles. So, there you have it. Power is more important Christian values.
Friday May 12 — Day 113 of the Trump Regime — Saying he had no continuing income from Russians, Donaldovich J. Trumpsky produced a letter from his lawyers, which he said backed up this contention based on his federal income tax records. Not so fast, detractors said. First, there may not be enough information in his tax forms for anyone to reach that conclusion. Second, that conclusion may rely on a very strict interpretation of “Russian.”
Two months ago, USA Today said it found 10 “Russians” who have been involved in Trump businesses. Not just Russians, but some of them are Russian “mobsters.”
Trump’s Friday statement also contradicts what he and his children have said about connections between himself and Russian investors over the years.
Thursday May 11 — Day 112 of the Trump Regime — The White House saw its efforts to control the narrative on RussiaGate and the firing of James Comey run over by reality. First, the liar-in-chief backtracked on his statement that Comey was fired because of a memo about him by the FBI. He told NBC’s Lester Holt that he would have fired Comey regardless of what the memo had said about him because he was a “showboat” and “grandstander.” Later, Trumpsky mouthpiece Sarah “Lying Sack of Sh*t” Huckabee Sanders told reporters at the daily briefing that Comey had to be fired because he’d lost the confidence of the FBI rank-and-file. However, Andy McCabe, acting FBI director, said on Capitol Hill that Comey did have the overwhelming confidence of FBI agents.
Perceived reality also ran smack into real reality, when it became apparent that Attorney Gen. Jeff Sessions has not really recused himself from the Russia investigation. The White House said Sessions was instrumental in building the case against Comey and recommended that Trump fire him. In short, Trump wanted to get rid of Comey to try to stop the Russia investigation. Sessions helped.
Vanity Fair, meanwhile, reported that there were a number of relevant investigations. One involving whether any crimes committed during the 2016 election and another looking into possible money laundering through properties owned by Trump or his confederates. Preet Bhahara, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, was looking into the money laundering accusations when he was fired by Trumpsky, who had originally asked him to say on as the federal prosecutor for New York City, according to Vanity Fair.
Wednesday May 10 — Day 111 of the Trump Regime — With reports circulating that President Trumpsky fired FBI Director James Comey over allegations of collusion between the Trumpsky 2016 campaign and Russia, the Trumpster welcomed two Russian diplomats at the White House.
Trumpsky hosted Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. Lavrov was in Washington for a long-planned meeting with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson — the White House apparently was unaware of the optics of this meeting a day after Comey was fired. Trumpskyites are publicly claiming that Comey was fired for being too mean to Hillary Clinton, but are privately acknowledging that the president is smoldering over the Russia story. (Too mean to Hillary Clinton? The guy who led campaign audiences in chants of “lock her up” wants us to believe he fired Comey for being too mean to her? C’mon!)
Meanwhile, in West Virginia, a reporter was arrested for asking Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price about details in the health care plan passed by the House last week. The reporter asked Price whether sexual assault was a pre-existing condition. Price didn’t answer, so the reporter repeated the question until handcuffed and led away. Price and White House spinmeister Kellyanne Conway were in West Virginia looking into that state’s effort to combat a high rate of fatal overdoses from opioid drugs. The reporter, who has been a journalist for 30 years, was wearing a press pass and was also wearing a shirt with his employer’s logo. Prior to the passage of Obamacare, insurance companies routinely charged women premiums that were five times or more greater in price than those they charged men. The Trumpcare plan would roll back all of the coverage protections women had gained. The reporter was held for eight hours, then released on $5,000 bond.
Tuesday May 9 — Day 110 of the Trump regime — Exercising his ultimate authority to squash the investigation of Russian meddling in the November election, President Donaldovich J. Trumpsky fired FBI Director James Comey.
Trumpskyites tried to say that Comey was fired due to the flawed investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails. That’s obviously ridiculous, however, because the Clinton email affair has been over for months. On the other hand, the investigation into links between Trumpsky campaign and Russia is just heating up. In addition to getting rid of the peskily scrupulous Comey, the firing sends a message to anyone else that might want to investigate Russia links.
In the few days ahead of his firing, Comey had asked the Justice Department for more money to expand the Russia investigation. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/10/us/politics/comey-russia-investigation-fbi.html?_r=0
On Monday, former Acting Attorney Gen. Sally Yates testified on Capitol Hill that she made two trips to the White House in January to tell White House officials that Michael Flynn had been compromised by Russia and might be subject of blackmail. Flynn had lied to Vice President Mike Pence about his contacts with the Russian ambassador. The Russians knew he’d lied, and could have pressured him for favors in return for keeping that secret. Yates was fired he day after her second visit to the White House.
Nobody disputes that Trumpsky isn’t the duly elected president, but it’s important to know the extent of Russian interference to prevent it from happening in the future. It’s also important to know whether anyone in Trumpksy’s circle aided and abetted Russian espionage involving the election. For example, WikiLeaks, released hacked, stolen documents from the Clinton campaign specifically at times when the Trumpksy campaign was suffering from bad publicity, like the Billy Bush bus audio in which Trumpsky says he likes grabbing women by the pu**y. Also, Trumpsky ally Roger Stone accurately predicted that Clinton staffer Leon Podesta would shortly be a target of WikiLeaks. Miraculous coincidence or collusion?
Here’s another coincidence: On Monday, the day before Comey was fired, Eric Trump denied a media report that his family routinely received financing for their business ventures from Russians. The quote is from golf writer James Dodson, who was invited to meet Trumpsky and his son at Trump’s golf property in Charlotte, N.C., in 2013.
Dodson, who has written a number of books on golf, including Arnold Palmer’s biography, wrote that Trump told him he had $100 million in financing for the Charlotte club. Later, Dodson wrote, he asked Eric Trump where the money had come from, because golf course financing was difficult to get after the 2008 financial meltdown.
“Well, we don’t rely on American banks,” Eric Trump replied. “We have all the funding we need out of Russia. … We’ve got some guys who really, really love golf, and they’re really invested in our programs. We just go there all the time.”
Also Monday, grand jury subpoenas were issued to associates of Flynn as part of the investigation into possible improprieties in payments Flynn received from Turkey and Russia. Flynn belatedly filed as a foreign agent of Turkey. As a former Army three-star general, he is additionally restricted in his post-military career because Flynn is subject to a recall to service if, for example, World War III breaks out.
Monday May 8 — Day 109 of the Trump Regime — A Los Angeles Times analysis of security costs for President Trumpsky, his wife, 11-year-old son, four adult children their spouses, children and beagles at $30 million or more for Trumpsky’s first 100 days in office. The Obamas were estimated to cost taxpayers $12 million a year. http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-trump-costs-20170508-story.html
Saturday May 6 — Day 107 of the Trump Regime — Jared Kushner’s sister, Nicole Meyer, was in Beijing selling American citizenship to anyone willing to invest $500,000 in the first son-in-law’s business interests. The EB-5 government program gives a path to citizenship to anyone who invests a half-million in American development projects. Nicole Meyer was pitching a $150 million New Jersey condo development to about 100 Chinese investors at the Ritz-Carlton in Beijing, leaning heavily on the “star” Kushner family name and Donaldovich Trumpster’s role in deciding EB-5 visas. Jared Kushner is married to Trumpster’s daughter Ivanka.
It is just the latest conflict-of-interest to come to light involving Trumpsky and his family. Others involve the Trumpster’s conversion of the old Post Office down the street from the White House into a luxury hotel, despite a provision in the building’s Government Services Administration’s lease that prohibits government officials from holding the lease. The U.S. Constitution also prohibits the president from taking money from foreign governments, but the hotel hosts paying dignitaries from overseas, so the Trump property is taking the money of foreign governments.
About 10,000 Chinese take advantage of the EB-5 visa provisions each year. The problem with the EB-5 program is that investors often don’t care about the quality of the investment, only the green card that it brings. The EB-5 visa also is controversial because real estate investment is often a key means of laundering illicit foreign money. Ms. Meyer’s appearance at the Ritz-Carlton was hosted by Qiaowa, “a Chinese immigration agency that helps Chinese families move abroad.” She is scheduled to pimp American citizenship in other Chinese cities in the days ahead.
Charles Kushner, founder of the Kushner real estate business and the father of Jared and Nicole, served time in jail for tax evasion, witness tampering and illegal campaign donations.
For an interesting contrast into how the Republicans handled a Democratic businessman-president, here’s a New York Times article about Jimmy Carter and his peanut warehouse and the outraged GOP. GOP = Grand Old Party of Hypocrites.
Friday May 5 — Day 106 of the Trump Regime — President Donaldovich J. Trumpsky has more than three and a-half years left on his first term, but his re-election bid is already under way. The White House complained that the three major broadcast networks and CNN have refused to air a campaign ad that, among other things, brands the three major networks and CNN as “fake news. The ad is being aired on youtube.com and Facebook. CNN said it would not air the ad until the Trump campaign make it less fake by removing the “fake news” graphic, but the campaign declined.
Thursday May 4 — Day 105 of the Trump Regime — The House passed yet another repeal of the Affordable Care Act on a party-line vote of 217-213 Nebraska’s members of Congress — Jeff Fortenberry, Adrian Smith and Don Bacon — all voted for repeal. No Democrats did. The measure must yet be passed by the Senate, which is expected to be less enthusiastic for the bill.
Repeal, if enacted, would:
- Eliminate tax penalties on people who choose not to buy health insurance.
- Repeal ACA taxes on high-income earners, insurers and drug companies.
- Replace federal subsidies that helped people buy health insurance with much lower tax credits of $2,000 to $4,000 depending on the recipient’s age.
- Roll back required coverage for necessary items in health insurance plans like emergency room or maternity care.
- Replace expanded Medicaid in the states with a per-person allotment or a lump sum block grant to the states.
- Allow states to seek waivers to opt out of community rating, which would mean a spike in premiums for people with pre-existing conditions
Repeal was passed before the Congressional Budget Office could release an analysis of its impact and cost. The most recent version of the repeal, which was less drastic, was expected by the CBO to leave 24 million people without health insurance after 10 years. it would take $900 billion away from Medicaid — which would not only hurt the poor, but large numbers of the elderly — but would fuel about $300 billion-a-year in tax cuts for the rrich.
Passage was seen as a victory for the Trump administration, which may finally be delivering on a campaign promise. It’s also seen as a boost for House Speaker Paul Ryan, who finally showed that he could herd cats by rounding up the votes of the Freedom Caucus. Drunk with joy, Ryan adjourned the House for an 11-day vacation. Repubicans then gathered at the White House rose garden to celebrate their cruelty. As the vote concluded, Democrats serenaded Repubicans with the chorus from “Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye.” Want to know what that sounded like? Here ya go, and sorry about the ad. Thanks ABC!
In other news, the House investigation into Russian meddling in the election lurched back to life when the Intelligence Committee held a closed-door meeting with FBI Director James Comey and National Security Agency head Adm. Mike Rogers. Rep. K. Michael Conway of Texas, who leads the investigation, and ranking member Adam Schiff of California said they planned to call more witnesses, including former acting Attorney Gen. Sally Yates. She was supposed to testify at a meeting in March which was suddenly called off when the investigation’s former leader Devon Nunes had to recuse Conway is Nunes’ replacement. The investigation into Russian meddling, while not a defining factor in the November election, is important to ensure that Russia does not undermine American democracy in the future. Russians favored Trump in November. There is no guarantee they will favor Republicans in the future.
Monday May 1 — The U.S. Justice Department showed that giggling at Attorney Gen. Jeff Sessions is no laughing matter during the trial of a 61-year-old woman was arrested after gigging during Session’s confirmation hearing in the Senate. Desiree Fairooz was hauled out of the hearing because she laughed when Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) said Sessions has an “extensive record of treating all Americans equally under the law.” Her lawyers argued that Fairooz’s laugh was unplanned, unintentional and not disruptive to the proceeding. Indeed, Shelby did not interrupt his comments, and the crowd was quiet until Capitol Police started hauling Fairooz out of the room. At that point, Fairooz and two other protestors dressed in white Klu Klux Klan-like robes began shouting anti-Sessions comments. Regardless, a jury found the three guilty after a two-day trial. They will be sentenced in June. They face the possibility of months in jail and hundreds of dollars in fines. The District of Columbia, where the Department of Justice prosecutes both local and federal crimes, reported that DJT received only 4.6 percent of the vote in the November general election. Sessions, a native of Selma, Ala., has been accused of being biased against blacks and sympathetic to the Klu Klux Klan.
Sunday April 30 — Congressional leaders have reportedly reached an agreement to fund the government through September, thus ending the suspense of whether there would be a government shutdown. The agreement, which had not been scheduled for a vote, would increase funding for the military and border security, but includes no money for Trumpsky’s border wall. It would boost spending for the National Institutes of Health, which Trumpsky had slated for budget cuts. It also would appropriate millions for law enforcement agencies in New York, which have been struggling to pay for the insane cost of providing security at Trump Tower for Trumpsky’s wife and youngest son. On Friday, Congress passed a one-week spending measure that was keeping the government funded.
Saturday April 29 — At a campaign-style rally in Harrisburg, Penn., the president’s rhetoric was also campaign-style, as he vilified the news media, Democrats and immigrants. The Trumpster escaped Washington on the same day as the White House Correspondent’s Dinner. He is the first president not to attend the dinner since President Reagan was a no-show in 1981 because he was still recuperating from an assassination attempt.
Also on Saturday, the State Department and National Security Council were caught off guard when the Trumpster invited Rodrigo Duterte, the authoritarian leader of the Philippines, to the White House. Relations between the United States and the Duterte have been strained since Duterte started ordering the shooting of thousands of drug users and dealers — human rights abuses because none of the suspects went through the judicial process before they were shot. During tensions with the Obama administration over the matter, Duterte called President Obama the “son of a whore.”
In yet another interesting intersection of the Trumpster’s business and presidential interests, Duterte appointed the developer of a $150 million, 57-story Trump Tower in Manila, Jose E.B. Antonio, as an envoy to Washington for trade, investment and economic affairs.
Duterte is just the latest authorities strongman that Trump has buddied up to since is inauguration. Trump has hosted Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, who seized power in Egypt in a military coup four years ago, at the White House. He also called Taryip Erdogan of Turkey to congratulate him on the passage of a referendum that would expand his power and erode democracy in Turkey.
Saturday marked the end of the first 100 days of the Trump administration.
Friday April 28 — Poll results show a sharp decrease in the number of Americans who see Russia as unfriendly or an enemy. The biggest decrease came among Republicans, who appear to be losing their grasp on reality as they desperately try to justify the Russia-loving actions of their president. http://www.cnn.com/2017/04/27/politics/donald-trump-russia-syria-north-korea-100-days-poll/
Wednesday April 26 — Hoping that Americans are suffering from collective amnesia, the Trumpster administration unveiled yet another GOP tax plan that cuts taxes on the rich. Like every Republican president since Ronald W. Reagan, Trumpster lied and claimed that giveaways to the rich would spur economic growth that would boost jobs and wages. It hasn’t in the past. It won’t in the future. Who’s dumb enough to fall for this again?
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Gary D. Cohn, director of the National Economic Council, unveiled the “plan” which was nearly devoid of detail and short enough to fit, double-paced with huge margins, on a single sheet of paper. It would:
- Slash the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 15 percent.
- Abolish the estate tax.
- Require American corporations would no pay no taxes on foreign profits, which is yet another repudiation of Trump’s “America First” campaign rhetoric.
- Reduce the number of brackets for individual filers from seven to three, ranging from 10 percent to 35 percent. (Income ranges for each bracket were not released. Current tax brackets range from 10 percent to 39.6 percent.)
- Abolish the alternative minimum tax, which basically ensures that the wealthiest Americans pay some taxes by effectively limiting the deductions and other benefits available to them. In 2005, the alternative minimum required that President Trumpsky pay $31 million in taxes, rather than the $5 million he would have otherwise paid.
Tuesday April 25 — In another failed case of brinksmanship, the Trumpster administration backed away from requiring Democrats to agree to pay for the border wall as part of a deal to keep the government running past April 28, when current funding runs out. “Not today,” said Kellyanne Conway on Fox News. “Building that wall and having it funded remains an important priority to him. We also know that can happen later this year and into next year. ” Trumpsters have acknowledged that Mexico will never pay for a border wall — marking that as yet another campaign lie — but they said Democrats would agree to make the $14 million down-payment. Wrong again, amigos.
Friday April 21 — The president announced that next week he would be unveiling a package of tax cuts that would be the largest tax cuts in American history. The news came as a surprise to Treasury Department officials, who’d said only hours earlier that no such tax plan was in the offing.
The Trumpster apparently is feeling pressured by the upcoming end of his first 100 days in office — a presidential benchmark since the Roosevelt era. He has no real legislative accomplishments, having failed on his promise to repeal Obamacare. Large-scale tax cuts don’t really don’t really work unless Congress first repeals the most popular parts of ObamaCare because repeal would add upwards of a trillion dollars back to the budget. No immediate word on what smoke-and-mirrors the Trumpster administration plans to use to implement further tax cuts for the rich. They may plan a Bush, which is a move that adds the lost revenue to the national debt..
Wednesday April 19 — Wondering what’s happening with the cases U.S. Attorney Preet Bhahara was working on? Wonder no longer. Neither Bhahara nor any of the 92 other U.S. Attorneys fired by the Trumpsky administration have been replaced. Those offices have been vacant a month or more. So much for Attorney Gen. Jeff Session’s tough-on-crime stance …
In other news of the day:
- Congress returns from Spring Break next week, and the Trumpster administration is thinking of taking another stab at health care reform. An effort at tax reform — i.e. more tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy — has stalled, so it’s apparently back to health care. (The Trump administration has no legislative accomplishments to show for its first 100 days.) Also on the agenda is the budget. The federal government runs out of money April 28.
- Fox News announced that Trump buddy and serial sexual harasser Bill O’Reilly would no longer appear on the conservative news network. Here he was a few weeks ago, making fun of U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters’s hair. Men with Homer Simpson hair have no right to criticize anyone else’s hair. Bye Bill. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.
- The president had dinner with Sarah Palin, reality TV star and half-term Alaska governor, and has-been musicians Kid Rock and Ted Nugent.
Tuesday April 18 — Today we learned that it’s not only Trumpsky’s adult children who are traveling like the Romanovs and costing American taxpayers a bundle. It’s also Vice President Mike Pence’s kids. From a CNN email, we got this photo of Pence and children in South Korea. Official visit or family vacation? Taxpayers want to know.
In other news, Attorney Gen. Jeff Sessions appeared to have a senior moment during a telephone interview with nutwing talk show host Mark Levin. Said Sessions: “I really am amazed that a judge sitting on an island in the Pacific can issue an order that stops the president of the United States from what appears to be clearly his statutory and constitutional power.”
Sessions, 70, was referring to federal Judge Derrick K. Watson of Honolulu, who stayed President Trumpster’s “travel ban” — an executive order restricting travel from six Muslim-majority countries — in March on the grounds that it discriminates based on religion.
Sessions apparently has forgotten that the judicial branch is one of three separate and equal branches of the federal government — part of the checks and balances of the American system. Sessions was a member of the U.S. Senate in 2013, when he voted to confirm Watson’s nomination to the federal bench.
Levin, you may recall, was the source behind President Trumpsky’s March 4 lies about former President Obama’s alleged wiretapping of Trump Tower — which never happened. Levin is a noted conspiracy theorist and the lies he made up about the alleged electronic eavesdropping were later picked up by white supremacist web site Brietbart. Trumpsky was subsequently suckered into the lie by one or both sources. The president is, himself, one of the country’s most notorious conspiracy theorist. He said for years that that President Obama was not born in the United States, then said that Obama founded the terrorist group ISIS. HaHaha. He’s such a liar.
Sunday April 16 — The President, spending a golf weekend in Florida, unleashed another Twitter storm, touching on topics ranging from Saturday’s Tax March protests to international relations. It wasn’t until the second tweet that Trumpsky remembered to wish everyone a happy Easter.
Saturday April 15 — The president’s Twitter stream remained thankfully quiet Saturday, as North Korea staged one of its massive parades and then fired what turned out to be a dud of a missile.
President Trumpsky has a habit of sending troublesome tweets on Saturday mornings, while his daughter and son-in-law, both observant Jews, celebrate the Sabbath. His infamous March 4 lying tweets claiming he was bugged by former President Obama were sent on a Saturday morning, for example.
Heads are no doubt rolling in the North Korean capital of Pyongyang after the dud, but it was not immediately known what type of missile was fired or whether it blew up on its own or was destroyed as part of an American program to sabotage North Korean missile launches. The American anti-missile program is about three years old and some of the sabotage is done by hacking, not unlike the way North Korea hacked the Sony Corp. a few years ago.
Among the missiles on display Saturday were North Korea’s first missile that can be fired from a submarine and a long-range intercontinental missile that could be used to hit the 28,000 American troops in South Korea or the thousands more in Japan.
In other news
— The official death toll from the bombing of a cave and tunnel complex used by ISIS militants in Afghanistan was placed at 90, up from the originally reported 36 dead. The Thursday strike came via a 21,000-pound Massive Ordinance Air Blast or MOAB bomb, which is also known as the Mother of All Bombs. It is the largest non-nuclear bomb in the American military arsenal.
— While Trumpsky played golf in Florida, tens of thousands of Americans took to the streets across America for what was called the Tax March, a call for Trumpsky to release his tax returns. Marches in New York and Los Angeles drew about 5,000 people each. There was a march in Palm Beach, Fla., but Trumpsky’s motorcade was routed around it. He is the first president since Richard Nixon not to release his tax returns. (Tax reform was to have been the issue next up in the Trumpsky agenda before Congress, but it has been scrapped. Word is that Congress will revisit health care reform when it returns from Spring Break.)
Friday April 14 — With tensions mounting between the United States and North Korea, the president was spending a long weekend at his club in Palm Beach, Florida — his sixth or seventh trip there in the less than three months he has been president. (It depends on who’s counting.) The president has no official activities on his schedule and top aides did not travel with him.
Saturday is the 105th anniversary of the birth of former dictator Kim Il Sung, the current dictator’s grandfather, and North Korea traditionally schedules military shows of strength around this national holiday, which is known as the Day of the Sun . Reconnaissance shows North Korea may be preparing for an underground nuclear test and the Trump administration warned North Korea against further tests of its missile or nuclear programs. On Friday, Han Song Ryol, vice prime minister of North Korea, told The Associated Press it would launch a pre-emptive strike of its own at any sign of “reckless military aggression.” North Korea does not yet have a missile that can reach the United States so, presumably, any strike would be directed against an American ally, such as South Korea or Japan, both of which are home to American troops. An American aircraft carrier group, led by the USS Carl Vison, was en route to Australia earlier this week when it was directed to turn around and return to the Korean peninsula. Trump administration officials don’t seem to be too worried about North Korea, though. Vice President Mike Pence is making a long-planned trip to South Korea this weekend.
In other news, the White House announced that it would not be making public its visitor logs — a change from Obama White House policy and another sign that the president has no intention of fulfilling his campaign promised to “drain the swamp.” The public will not know which activists or interests groups are meeting with the president until at least five years after the end of the Trumpsky administration ends, when the logs must be released under the Presidential Records Act. Trumpsters said national security mandated that the logs be kept secret, which is hogwash. Even administrations that did not keep the logs secret withheld some names in the interest of national security or — for example — to protect the identity of the playmates of President Obama’s daughters. No tax returns. No visitor logs. Swamp over-flowing.
Thursday April 13 — The Story That Will Not Go Away became even more interesting when the British newspaper The Guardian reported that European spies were telling American spies about ties and possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia more than a year before the November election.
According to The Guardian, spy agencies from England, Germany, Estonia, Poland and Australia began collecting and turning over to U.S. intelligence electronic evidence on people associated with the Trump campaign in late 2015. The surveillance was never directed at people associated with Trump — they were picked up during surveillance of other people, in what is termed “incidental collection.”
“Over several months, different agencies targeting the same people began to see connections that were flagged to intelligence agencies in the U.S.,” the Guardian reported. The paper said American officials were slow to show interest in the Trump-related material, which it indicated was the result of American officials’ inexperience with material collected from Americans. (It has also been noted, however, that no one in Washington expected Trump to become president, so maybe the Russia connections wasn’t seen as a big deal.)
The Guardian said that in August and September 2016, former CIA Director John Brennan began handling the material in his office, and held briefings for top members of the House and Senate. FBI director James Comey wasn’t too interested in the Russia connection until October, when the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court granted wiretaps to monitor two banks believed to be funneling money as part of Russia’s undercover operation to buy influence. Trump’s former foreign policy adviser Carter Page was the subject of a related wiretap. He has not been accused of any crimes.
Also on Thursday, Trumpksy signed legislation designed to allow funding to be cut off to Planned Parenthood. The waning days of the Obama administration saw the adoption of a rule that prohibited state and local governments from restricting federal funding to groups like Planned Parenthood that provide family planning, disease screening and other services and also provide abortions. Federal law has prohibited the use of federal funds to pay for abortion since the Hyde Amendment was first adopted in 1976.
Monday April 11 — Trump campaign adviser Carter Page became the subject of a federal wiretap last year after the FBI presented evidence to the FISA court showing that Page was an agent of the Russian government, according to the Washington Post.
This is the best evidence so far that officials in the Trump campaign were in contact with Russians. The FBI is investigating whether the Trump campaign worked with the Russians to intervene in the presidential election.
Page has not been accused of any crimes. In March 2016, Trump said Page was one of his foreign policy advisers. He is a former Merrill Lynch investment banker in Moscow and investor in a Russian energy company. He is known for praising Russian president Putin and criticizing the sanctions the Obama administration levied against Russia after it annexed part of Ukraine.
FISA warrants are required when the United States wants to eavesdrop on an American citizen. They are handled by high-level officials in the Justice Department and a special FISA court. They last for 90 days, and the one used to wiretap Page was renewed at least once. FISA warrants are not required for the government to wiretap foreign officials, such as Russian diplomats stationed here.
In other, earlier news White House spokesman Sean Spicer stepped in it when he said that not even the terrible Adolf Hitler used gas on German people. Spicer made at least three attempts to clarify what he meant to say, which was that there is no justification for Syria’s use of chemical weapons. Instead, Spicer spent a long afternoon being reminded that Hitler used poison gas in camps to kill millions of people, including Jews, political opponents, people with physical or intellectual disabilities, and homosexuals.
Sunday April 10 — President Trumpsky continues to get good reviews for the missile strike he ordered on a Syrian airfield Thursday night, with many Republicans crowing that the strike showed the world “there’s a new sheriff in town.” Presumably, that’s meant as a dig to former President Obama, whom Republicans continue to bash for not taking stronger action against Syria. (Obama did asks for Congressional approval for action against Syria in September 2013, but Republicans in Congress were too busy planning the Oct. 1, 2013 government shutdown to consider the matter.) Meanwhile in Syria, aircraft continue operating out of the airfield, which didn’t seem terribly damaged by the strike. Makes you wonder if those Tomahawk cruise missiles are worth the $1.4 million the United States pays for each one. Images released by Syria probably don’t show the worst of the damage, but you’d think that 59 — fifty-nine! — would have had more of an effect. Was it a strike or a pin-prick? Assad remains in power and there are still 6 million Syrian refugees straining the goodwill of Europe and neighboring countries.
Also from the Sunday morning shows: Karl Rove told Fox that the duel between Steve Bannon, presidential advisor and anti-Semite, and presidential son-in-law Jared Kushner has resulted in tons and tons of leaks as each seeks to discredit the other. Trump has reportedly told each to find a way to learn to get along with the other. El presidente spent Saturday and Sunday playing golf — the 10th consecutive weekend he has spent at a Trump-branded property. Word is that Trump is working on a new book, Art of the Deal II, which will focus on the ways he spent his presidency promoting his business interests and how he successfully cashed in at taxpayer expense.
Saturday April 8 — The good news is that NBC News has found someone in the Trump administration who isn’t linked to Russia. The bad news is that he’s linked to Hungarian Nazis. Seriously. Truth is stranger than fiction seven days a week when your president is Donald J. Trump.
Friday April 7 — Senate Republicans detonated the nuclear option and confirmed DJT’s nominee Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court. Every other Supreme Court nominee has received more than the traditionally required 60 votes in the Senate, but Gorsuch failed to get the support of enough Democrats to reach that threshold, so Senate Majority Leader and all-around a**hole Mitch McConnell changed the rules to allow Gorsuch to be confirmed with only 50 votes. Legal scholars expect Gorsuch to be the most or the second-most conservative judge ever to serve on the Supreme Court, which was one reason Democrats failed to support him. Another is that McConnell refused to hold hearings on President Obama’s nominee — Republican senators refused to even meet with Obama’s nominee. McConnell said he wouldn’t confirm a nominee from a president in his last year in office but he apparently had no problem confirming a nominee from a president who is (1) under investigation by the FBI and (2) not expected by anyone with a brain to actually serve his entire four-year term. By using the nuclear option, McConnell blew up the last remaining shred of credibility the court had as a nonpartisan, independent or unbiased arbiter of the law.
Thursday April 6 — Inquiring minds were wondering whether The Trumpster’s Thursday night bombing strike against a Syrian airfield signaled the end of the bromance between the president and Russian President Putin or whether Putin arranged for Tuesday’s chemical attack on Syrian civilians to give Trump a reason to stage the bombing, thus diverting attention from his Russia problems. Some 59 Tomahawk missiles were fired from two American naval vessels in the Mediterranean onto the Shayrat airfield in western Syria. Russia is the main supplier of Syria’s military weaponry, and Russia has a number of troops in Syria. It was not immediately known how many aircraft were taken out in the airstrike or whether casualties included any civilians or Russians.
The president announced the airstrike from Florida, where he was spending yet another weekend. Back in Washington, Rep. Devin Nunes, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, recused himself from the investigation of Russian meddling in last year’s election when it was announced that he was under investigation for leaking classified information.
The House investigation ran off the rails two weeks ago when Nunes said he had obtained intelligence information from some otherwise undisclosed “whistle-blower types” and he made an Inspector Clousseau-type trip to the White House, allegedly to inform the president. It turned out that Nunes had gotten the information from officials in the White House, one of whom turned out to be a guy who was once employed by Nunes. He is being investigated by the House Ethics Committee.
Sunday March 26 — We finally got some insight into the bizarre photo-op between President Donaldovich J. Trumpsky and Angela Merkel earlier this month. The Hill is reporting that the White House dummied up a $300 billion “bill” for Germany’s alleged deficiencies in NATO payments and that Trump presented it to the German leader. Merkel, as you may recall, appeared uncomfortable when photographers were allowed into the room to shoot the traditional photos of the president with visiting foreign dignitaries. Merkel extended a hand to America’s Most Boorish President Ever when photogs suggested a shot of the two shaking hands, but the gesture was rebuffed by President Buffoon. Their meeting was shortly after Trumps’ lying tweets about being wiretapped by President Obama, and Trump loutishly suggested that he and Merkel had that in common. (A few years ago, it was leaked that the U.S. listened in to Merkel’s cell phone conversations, and it took some fancy diplomatic footwork to smooth that over. Thanks for bringing up that embarrassing episode, President Idiot! Your KGB handlers must be so proud!!!)
Friday March 31 — A federal judge in Louisville, Ky., ruled that Donald J. Trump incited violence against three protestors who say they were shoved and punched by audience members after Trump said people in the crowd should “get ’em out of here.” The incident occurred during a March 2016 campaign rally in Louisville. Trump’s lawyers said the suit should be dismissed because Trump was merely exercising his right to free speech and that he didn’t intend for his supporters to use force. The judge disagreed and said the suit can go forward. Video of the incident was widely broadcast during the campaign and it was only one of many instances where Trump urged the crowd to turn against protestors and reporters covering the event. At a Las Vegas rally, also in March 2016, Trump said: “I love the old days. You know what they used to do to guys like that (protestors) when they were in a place like this? They’d be carried out on a stretcher, folks.”
Friday March 24 — House Republicans ended their exhaustive (?) 17-day effort to pass a repeal of the Affordable Care Act. Republicans hold enough seats in the House to have passed the legislation without any Democratic votes, but they couldn’t even whip enough GOP votes to pass it, so the TrumpCare health care act was pulled without a vote. Republicans were believed to be 20-something votes short of passage, and probably would have lost more votes if a vote had started — because nobody wants to vote for a bill headed to certain failure. Democrats celebrated.
Thursday March 23 — President Sour J. Grapes told House Republicans to approve the TrumpCare bill on Friday or forget it. Congress was to have voted on the bill Thursday, but it was delayed until Friday because House Republicans did not have enough votes to pass it on Thursday. The president’s edict — pass it or else — apparently means that if it isn’t passed Friday, the Grapes administration would forget about repealing the Affordable Care Act, just as it gave up on its promised Muslim ban when Grapes’ second executive order was stayed by a federal judge. TrumpCare would take health insurance away from 24 million people over the next decade
The Hill reported 36 Republican defections in the House. The White House needed 215 votes to repeal Obamacare, and could only afford 22 nays. In the Senate, the GOP could only afford to lose two votes. Among the nays reported by The Hill was Rep. Jeff Fortenberry of Nebraska.
Monday March 20 — With FBI Director James Comey and NSA chief Mike Rogers on Capitol Hill to dish about ties and possible collusion between Russia and the DJT administration, The Man Who Can’t Quit Lying headed off for the positive reinforcement of a campaign-style rally in Louisville, Ky. Undeterred by the steaming hot bag o’ sh*t that he opened with his lies about being wiretapped, Trump repeated the lie that the Dakota Access and Keystone pipeline will be built with American-made steel. In response to an earlier presidential lie about the steel, the White House admitted on March 2 that both pipelines would be made with foreign steel. Nevertheless, the liar-in-chief said:
Saturday March 18 — Not-a-workaholic Donald J. Trump, frequent critic of what he said were President Obama’s too-expensive vacations, spent the weekend at what he calls his Winter White House in West Palm Beach, Fla. It was Trump’s fifth vacation weekend there since his inauguration.
Friday March 17 — Pro Publica is reporting that Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price was under investigation for corruption when U.S. Attorney Preet Bhahara was fired by the Trump White House. Price was a congressman from Georgia when Trump appointed him secretary of HHS. Pro Publica says Bhahara was investigating Price for violations of the 2012 STOCK Act, which says that members of Congress cannot use nonpublic information for profit. Price was chairman of the powerful House Budget Committee and a member of the Ways and Means panel on health care. It was been widely reported that Price, an orthopedic surgeon by training, made hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of trades in healthcare stocks while he was also writing and voting on legislation affecting the healthcare industry. New presidents traditionally replace U.S. Attorneys with lawyers of their choosing, but Trump had specifically asked Bhahara to remain as U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York. It was a stunner, then, that Bhahara was among the 46 U.S. attorneys who were told March 10 to clean out their desks. Bhahara has a reputation for fighting government corruption.
In other news, President Donald J. McScrooge released his first proposed budget. It would make massive cuts to domestic spending, but would do nothing to ease the deficit because of large proposed increases in the budget for defense, homeland security and veterans affairs. The proposal would eliminate all federal funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (PBS), the National Endowment for the Arts and the Essential Air Service subsidies that help keep commercial airlines flying into small-town airports, including several in Nebraska. The proposed $4.7 billion in cuts that would reduce the Department of Agriculture’s spending by 22 percent would come largely by reducing spending for local service centers that handle everything from farm subsidies to economic development. Other big losers in the Trumpster’s budget proposal are the Environmental Protection Agency (down 31 percent), the State Department (29 percent), Department of Labor (21 percent) and Health and Human Services (18 percent.) The good news (?) is that the budget Congress passes won’t look much like Trumpster’s proposal.
Wednesday March 15 — President Trump escaped the boring task of governing for a few hours to hold a campaign-style rally in Nashville, Tenn., where he gratuitously invoked the Clinton name to bait the crowd into a few minutes of chanting “Lock Her Up.” Would someone please send the president a tweet to let him know that the election ended more than four months ago? He won. He needs to get over her and #DoYourJob.
Saturday March 11 — The Justice Department fired the 46 remaining U.S. attorneys who had not been previously notified that they would not be retained by the Trump administration. It’s common for new administrations to replace U.S. attorneys, especially if they were appointed by a president of the opposing party. Some U.S. attorneys had already been given notice by the Trump administration, even though there may not have been people lined up to replace them. The remaining 46 were told Friday to clean out their desks by the end of the day. Many learned they had been fired not by the Justice Department, but through the news media.
Friday March 10 — It was disclosed that Michael Flynn, recently fired as Donald J Trump’s national security adviser, was paid more than a half-million dollars for lobbying he did on behalf of the government of Turkey at the same time he was working for the Trump campaign. Flynn, who had a long and distinguished career in the Army, left government service as a lieutenant general in 2014 when President Obama fired him from the Defense Intelligence Agency for insubordination. Flynn subsequently started his own lobbying firm, Flynn Intel Group. He apparently did work in Russia — there’s a widely circulated photo of Flynn at a 2015 banquet in Moscow where he is sitting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, and continued his contacts with Russia while working on behalf of the Trump campaign. Trump has said he fired Flynn because he lied about discussing sanctions imposed by President Obama with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak while Obama was still president. News about Flynn’s simultaneous work on behalf of Turkey was not a surprise to the Trump administration, according to USA Today. Spokesman Sean Spicer said they had been advised that Flynn might have to register as a foreign agent of Turkey during the campaign, but staff did not see it as a problem.
Tuesday March 7 — Republicans in Congress unveiled their replacement plan for the Affordable Care Act. It fulfills none of the promises President Trump has made about health care — promises he made as recently as his joint address to Congress on Feb. 28. He has consistently said he would “expand choice, increase access, lower costs and, at the same time, provide better healthcare.”
The replacement plan put forth this week would phase out expanded Medicaid payments to states, end the requirement that all Americans buy health insurance and remove the mandate that businesses with 50 or more employees offer health insurance. It would replace the Affordable Care Act tax credits, which were higher for American with low incomes in areas with high insurance rates, with a flat credit based on age. People would get larger credits as the got older, but the credits would be far less substantial than under the ACA. Early critics include the AARP, American Medical Association, American Hospital Association, Democrats and moderate Republicans. Insurance companies could not ban people with pre-existing conditions, but there would be no limit on the amount they could be charged for coverage.
Monday March 6 — DJT unveiled his new “Muslim ban.’ Although still an offensive measure of dubious merit, the new “Muslim Ban Lite” is greatly diminished from the first draconian version. In its most current form, the ban covers only six Muslim-majority countries. Iraq, where the United States has been fighting a stupid war since the Bush administration, was taken off the list of countries where visa applicants will be subject to “extreme vetting.” Also on Monday, The New York Times traced Trump’s bogus claims that the Obama administration bugged his home to conspiracy theorist and radio host Mark Levin, who made it up. It was further spread by Breitbart, the white-supremacist opinion site that Trump henchman Steve Bannon used to run. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/05/us/politics/trump-twitter-talk-radio-conspiracy-theory.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=b-lede-package-region®ion=top-news&WT.nav=top-news
Watch ABC’s George Stephanopoulos take down White House spokesperson Sarah “Lying sack or sh*t” Huckbee Sanders about Trump’s bugging lies. She is the daughter of former presidential candidate and self-appointed morals cop Mike Huckabee, who apparently forgot to teach his own kids not to lie.
Saturday March 4 — The president once again demonstrated that his grasp on reality is not always 100 percent. In a series of early morning tweets, he accused former President Obama of bugging Trump Tower. He provided no evidence to back up the claim, which is phony on its face because a president cannot authorize wiretaps. (A government could wiretap or bug Trump’s home. If the American government was to bug Trump, for example, it would require a judge to approve the bugging, which would have been requested by prosecutors. We don’t know what the process would be for, say, the Russian government to bug Trump Tower.) Most dismissed Saturday’s tweets as attempts to distract people from either Trump’s policy failures or the continuing revelations about ties to Russia among White House officials.
Saturday February 25 — DJT took his feud with the media to a new level when he announced by tweet his decision not to attend this year’s White House Correspondents Dinner. The dinner is typically held in April.
PBS’ Frontline reported that The Donald decided to run for president after being humiliated by President Obama’s jokes about him during the 2011 correspondent’s dinner.
Friday February 24 — The White House was denying reports that chief of staff Reince Preibus asked the FBI to downplay the relationships between Trump administration officials and Russian President Putin. Access to federal law enforcement and Justice Department officials has traditionally been limited to a handful of top White House staffers since the 1970s, when President Nixon attempted to meddle in the Watergate investigation. One of the three charges in Nixon’s impeachment was that he obstructed justice. http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/23/politics/fbi-refused-white-house-request-to-knock-down-recent-trump-russia-stories/index.html
Later in the day, access to an informal, non-televised White House briefing was denied to reporters from the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, CNN and Politico. https://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2017-02-24/white-house-denies-access-to-briefing-to-times-politico-cnn?cmpid=wsdemand
Wednesday Feb. 22 – Attorney Gen. Jeff Sessions said he supported Trump’s decision to rescind federal guidelines regarding restroom policy for transgendered students in public schools. Sessions said this was an issue that fell under “states’ rights,” which is funny because racists have used the “states’ rights” argument to support such reprehensible practices as slavery and segregation. Sessions’ nomination as attorney general was held up due to his history as a racist and, more recently, for his opposition to expanded civil rights for the LBGT people. Sessions, 70, is a native of Selma, Ala., and a former United States senator from Alabama. He was the first United States Senator to support Trump in his run for president and Sesssions actively campaigned for him.
Saturday February 19 — During his third straight weekend away from Washington, Trump was soothed by an enthusiastic crowd at a campaign-style rally in an airport hangar in Melbourne, Fla. “I want to be among my friends and among the people,” Trump told the cheering crowd. He said he was the victim of false reporting, his White House was running “smoothly” and he “inherited one big mess.” Catherine Lucey and Julie Pace, The Associated Press, Lincoln Journal Star, A3.) Trump was spending the weekend at his private Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach County. Between the president, his wife and children, American taxpayers have spent about as much on the First Family’s travel and security in his first month in office as the Obamas cost taxpayers in an entire year.
Thursday February 9 — The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals blocked enforcement of President Trump’s executive order creating a travel ban that kept people from seven predominantly Muslim countries from entering the country. In response. Trump tweeted: “See you in court, the security of our country is at stake!” (The tweet was in all caps.) (Appeals court upholds block on Trump travel ban. The Los Angeles Times, Omaha World-Herald, A1.) Among those caught up in the ban were Muhammad Ali Jr. and his mother, Khalilah Camancho Ali, who were detained at a Florida airport while returning from an event overseas that involved black history month. Mrs. Ali, the ex-wife of the late boxing legend, and her son were asked if they were Muslims and were held when they acknowledged that they were. Ali Jr. was held for about two hours. His mother was released when she produced a photo she was carrying of herself with the former heavyweight champion of the world — a Muslim and Presidential Medal of Freedom awardee.
Thursday February 2 — During an appearance on MSNBC’s “Hardball,” Trump’s Minister of Propaganda, Kelleyanne Conway, complained that the media did not cover the “Bowling Green Massacre.” Perhaps the media didn’t cover it because there has been no massacre in Bowling Green, Ky. Conway was apparently confused about an incident in which two men from Bowling Green were apprehended abroad for planning terrorist plans. Again, there was no massacre in Bowing Green. More “alternative facts” from the Trump administration. https://youtu.be/g-w16cyQ8wQ
Wednesday February 1 — President Trump told Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto that he would consider sending federal troops into Mexico to fight “bad hombres” The threat came during a phone call intended to smooth Trump’s relationship with Mexico after his bloviating about a border wall and a tax on Mexican goods that would pay for it. The call mended no fences.
Monday, January 30 — The Trump administration took a Nixonian turn when President Trump fired acting U.S. Attorney Gen. Sally Yates for taking the position that the Department of Justice would not enforce Trump’s Muslim ban in court. Trump unleashed chaos onto the nation’s airport on Friday Jan. 28, when he signed an ill-conceived executive order banning all Muslim refugees from seven nations. The ban does not differentiate new Muslim refugees from people who have already been granted permanent resident status in the United States so, having been given no guidelines as to how to enforce the ban, officials began detaining at airports grandmothers who’ve lived here legally for decades and men who’d served as interpreters for American military forces in Iraq. American law prohibits discrimination against immigrants based on their country of origin. The U.S Constitution prohibits the establishment of an official religion, so many believe the Muslim ban is unconstitutional — and that’s why Sally Yates said the Justice Department would not be prosecuting those cases. (President Trump says it’s not a Muslim ban, but it is. He can call an elephant a donut, but the elephant is still an elephant. It will never be a sweet, tasty donut because not everything is what Trump’s Propaganda Minster Kellyanne Conway could call an “alternative fact.”) *** Yates is acting U.S. Attorney because U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions is Trump’s nominee for attorney general. Many of Sessions’ senate colleagues are balking at his confirmation because of his history as a racist, so there has been no vote yet on his nomination.
In other news, felony rioting charges were dropped against four of the six journalists arrested at a violent protest Jan. 20, just blocks from President Trumpsky’s inauguration. They were among 230 people arrested as protestors broke windows and set a limousine on fire. Only one of the six worked for a media organization that could vouch for his credentials — or post bail. The rest were freelancers or bloggers and officials said charges were dropped against the four because they had been determined to be “legitimate journalists.” FYI: The United States has no test or licensing system for journalists. The U. S. Supreme Court has left the definition of journalist deliberately vague to protect the widest possible press freedoms. that Americans enjoy. The two journalists who continued to face charges were Shay Horse and Aaron Cantu.
Saturday, January 29 — Demonstrating his inability to act like an adult, President Trump yelled and hung up on Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull after the two disagreed about an agreement the United States had to take a thousand or so refugees being held in Australia.
Friday, Jan. 28 — As President Trump continued to claim that 3 million people voted fraudulently in the November general election, ABC World News Tonight with David Muir reports that it found four of those voters Trump was talking about. They are presidential daughter Tiffany Trump, who is registered to vote in both New York and Pennsylvania, chief strategist Steve Bannon (registered in New York and Florida), son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner (New York and New Jersey); and spokesman Sean Spicer, who is registered to vote in both Rhode Island and Virginia. Nobody’s gong to come arrest you for being registered in two states – unless you vote in both states. Trump insists that he would have won the popular vote if not for the 3 million people who fraudulently voted while being dead, in the country illegally or were registered in two states. He claims they all voted for Hillary Clinton, but the four cited above probably didn’t.
Saturday Jan. 22 — After likening the CIA to Nazi Germany, Trump attempted to mend fences Saturday with the nation’s spooks by appearing at CIA headquarters and speaking with whatever operatives, agents and others who chose to give up a day off to chat with the commander-in-chief. Saturday isn’t a working day at CIA headquarters, but it was most convenient for Trump.
Day 3 — President Donald J. Trump signed executive orders (1) freezing hiring for federal jobs; (2) banning federal funds from going to foreign groups that facilitate a woman’s right to choose, and (3) withdrawing the United States from the 11-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement. The president said he would negotiate trade rules with countries individually and opposed cooperative, multi-national trade treaties. Negotiating with each country individually? Sounds like a duplicative waste of time since the countries in any given region have so much in common. But he’s the president, so he must know best. Period. (“Period” is a reference to Sean Spicer’s attempt to plant fake news, sayng that President Trump’s inauguration attracted the largest crowd of any inauguration ever. That’s not true.)
Day 1 — Friday January 20, 2016 — The inauguration of Donald J. Trump as the nation’s 45th president. Let the fun begin!