Trump Rages at ‘Criminal’ Pelosi: ‘A Fascist Statement’ to Accuse Me of Cover-Up

President Donald Trump is going after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for accusing the commander-in-chief of participating in a criminal cover-up.

Pelosi made the remark at a news conference on Thursday.

“I believe that he’s been involved in a criminal cover-up,” she said.

Friday on Fox & Friends, Trump — in response to Pelosi — referenced and echoed comments made by conservative radio host Mark Levin earlier in the show.

“I will go with what Mark Levin said ’cause nobody could say it better. It’s a fascist statement, it’s a disgraceful statement,” Trump said. He added, “For her to make a statement like that, it’s outrageous.”

Later in the segment, Trump circled back to Pelosi — this time accusing her of a criminal act for opposing the construction of a southern border wall.

“We won a big lawsuit on the wall, brought by Nancy Pelosi,” Trump said. “This one was brought by Nancy Pelosi. And maybe that’s criminal — that she’s allowing drug dealers and gang members into our country, maybe that’s criminal when you talk about it. Because what’s happening on the border is…we’re getting it straightened out. You know how easy it would be to solve it? If we met 15 minutes with Democrats, you could solve the asylum problems and the loopholes in 15 minutes, and they know it.”

[Mediaite]

Trump asserts executive privilege over subpoenaed census docs

President Trump has asserted executive privilege over congressionally subpoenaed documents on the addition of a citizenship question to the 2020 census, the Department of Justice announced Wednesday.

The announcement comes as the House Oversight and Reform Committee is set to vote on whether to hold Attorney General William Barr and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in contempt for failing to comply with congressional subpoenas for the documents.

“By proceeding with today’s vote, you have abandoned the accommodation process with respect to your requests and subpoenas for documents concerning the secretary’s decision to include a citizenship question on the 2020 census,” Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd wrote in a letter to House Oversight and Reform Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings (D-Md.).

“The executive branch has engaged in good-faith efforts to satisfy the legislative needs of the committee. Moreover, until the committee’s abrupt decision to seek a contempt resolution, the department was prepared to provide a significant number of additional documents responsive to the committee’s April 2, 2019 subpoena.” 

“Unfortunately, rather than allowing the department to complete its document production, you have chosen to go forward with an unnecessary and premature contempt vote.”

Boyd wrote that Trump has asserted executive privilege over some of the subpoenaed documents, including drafts of a letter sent from the Justice Department to Commerce Department officials requesting that the citizenship question be added to the 2020 census.

Cummings blasted the administration over the assertion, saying that he has been asking for the documents at hand for more than a year and questioning why the departments didn’t send their letters until moments before the vote was scheduled to be held.

“This does not appear to be an effort to engage in good faith negotiations or accommodations,” he said.

The chairman said that he would delay the contempt vote until this afternoon to allow members to review the letters on executive privilege.

The announcement came one day after Boyd sent a separate letter to Cummings, warning that executive privilege would be invoked if the House panel moved forward with the contempt votes for Barr and Ross. The Justice Department official also asked Cummings to delay the vote as Trump weighs whether the documents fall under the scope of executive privilege.

“As I indicated in my letter to you yesterday, this protective assertion ensures the president’s ability to make a final decision whether to assert privilege following a full review of these materials,” Boyd wrote Wednesday.

The Commerce Department on Wednesday also sent Cummings a letter notifying him that Trump has asserted executive privilege over some of the documents subpoenaed from that agency.

“The department regrets that you have made this assertion necessary by your insistence upon scheduling a premature contempt vote,” wrote Charles Rathburn, the acting assistant secretary for legislative and intergovernmental affairs at the Commerce Department.

In a letter sent Tuesday night, Cummings offered to delay the contempt vote if the two agencies handed over unredacted copies of certain documents requested by the lawmakers.

Boyd wrote in the letter Wednesday that the “department has explained to the committee on several occasions that these identified documents consist of attorney-client communications, attorney work product, and deliberative communications, and a federal court has already held many of these documents to be privileged in litigation.”

Wednesday’s move is the latest effort by the White House to assert executive privilege over documents sought by Democrats investigating Trump and his administration.

[The Hill]

Trump tests out new ‘no obstruction’ claims: ‘Facts that led to no obstruction’

President Donald Trump ended a day on the golf course Sunday with another attack on Democrats claiming “no collusion and no obstruction,” but with a unique twist.

This time around, Trump claims that the “facts led to no obstruction,” he tweeted. The facts actually led special counsel Robert Mueller to ten examples of obstruction that he handed over to Congress.

“And as set forth in the report, after that investigation, if we had had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so. We did not, however, make a determination as to whether the president did commit a crime,” Mueller said during his press conference in May.

[Raw Story]

Reality

Donald Trump wrote the Democrats should “Go back to work” while on a golf course.

Trump: ‘Foolish’ for GOP to try to stop tariffs on Mexico

President Trump on Tuesday insisted he will follow through with new tariffs on Mexico if it does not do more to curb illegal migration and said it would be “foolish” for congressional Republicans to try and stop him.

“We are going to see if we can do something, but I think it’s more likely that the tariffs go on,” Trump said during a joint press conference with British Prime Minister Theresa May.

Addressing deliberations by Republicans on a measure that could limit his tariff power, Trump said, “I don’t think they will do that. I think if they do, it’s foolish.”

Trump’s proposed tariffs on Mexican imports are scheduled to take effect on Monday. A 5 percent tariff on all goods would be imposed, and it could grow to 25 percent by October unless Trump is satisfied with steps taken by Mexico on immigration.

A team of Mexican diplomats is in Washington this week seeking to convince the administration to back away from the plan, which has also unsettled U.S. businesses. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is scheduled to break off from Trump’s European trip to attend the meetings.

Asked if Mexico has done enough to avoid the tariffs, Trump responded “no, we haven’t started yet” and reaffirmed the tariffs will begin “next week.”

But the president added the two countries would be talking over the coming weeks and months and expressed hope Mexico will “step up and give us security for our nation.”

Trump’s tariffs, which were opposed by some of his closest trade advisers, have also run into resistance on Capitol Hill where Republicans who traditionally support free trade want the president to change course, fearing they could derail efforts to ratify a new North American trade pact.

Some GOP senators have floated the possibility of passing legislation to disapprove of the Mexico tariffs and curtail his ability to unilaterally impose tariffs in the future, but there are differences on how to proceed.

Trump suggested GOP lawmakers would be punished politically for going against him, claiming he has a 94 percent approval rating among Republican voters and pointing out “there’s nothing more important than borders” for his base.

It remains unclear what Mexico might have to do in order to satisfy the president’s concerns.

In announcing the tariffs, Trump tweeted that all illegal immigration would have to “STOP” but administration officials later said there was no specific goal that would need to be met and instead the Mexican government would have to show progress on securing its border with Guatemala, deporting migrants and cracking down on criminal gangs.

Navy says it was asked to ‘minimize visibility’ of USS McCain for Trump visit

The Navy has acknowledged receiving a request to “minimize visibility” of the USS John S. McCain during President Trump‘s visit to Japan earlier this week but said the ship remained in its normal configuration.

“A request was made to the U.S. Navy to minimize the visibility of USS John S. McCain, however, all ships remained in their normal configuration during the President’s visit,” Rear Adm. Charlie Brown, chief of Navy information, told CNN in a statement late Friday. “There were also no intentional efforts to explicitly exclude Sailors assigned to USS John S. McCain.”

The spokesman said that the Navy is “fully cooperating with the review of this matter.” Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said earlier this week that he had directed his chief of staff to look into the incident because he never authorized any “action around the movement of activity regarding that ship.”

Shanahan maintained Friday that the U.S. military would not “become politicized” amid questions over a White House order to keep the USS John S. McCain “out of sight” during Trump’s visit to Japan.

The ship is currently under repair, with one Navy official telling CNN that the White House request was impractical.

“Our business is to run military operations and not to become politicized,” Shanahan told reporters during a news conference in Singapore on Friday when asked if he shared Trump’s assessment that whoever gave the order was “well-meaning.”

“I’ll wait until I get a full explanation of the facts before I’ll pass judgment on the situation, but our job is to run the military. And I would not have moved the ship. I would not have given that direction,” he added.

Trump said Thursday that he “didn’t know anything” about the request to hide the guided missile destroyer during his visit to the Yokosuka Naval Base on Memorial Day. However, he went on to chastise the late Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) over his vote that helped torpedo GOP efforts to repeal ObamaCare in 2017, saying he “was not a big fan of John McCain.”

“But I would never do a thing like that,” he added. “Now, somebody did it because they thought I didn’t like him. And they were well-meaning, I will say.”

[The Hill]

Trump still thinks the courts can prevent impeachment (they can’t)

About a month ago, Donald Trump tried to address the Mueller report by falsely claiming it “didn’t lay a glove on me.” The president quickly added, however, “If the partisan Dems ever tried to Impeach, I would first head to the U.S. Supreme Court.”

That didn’t make any sense, though the Republican doesn’t seem to realize that. Consider this exchange between the president and a reporter this morning during a brief Q&A on the White House South Lawn:

Q: Do you think they’re going to impeach you? Do you think they’re …

TRUMP: I don’t see how. They can, because they’re possibly allowed, although I can’t imagine the courts allowing it. I’ve never gotten into it. I never thought that would even be possible to be using that word. To me, it’s a dirty word, the word ‘impeach.’ It’s a dirty, filthy, disgusting word and it had nothing to do with me.

The president’s etymological feelings notwithstanding, if he thinks “the courts” can block a congressional impeachment process, Trump is likely to be disappointed.

Right off the bat, it’s worth noting that the president, among his many scandals, has been credibly accused of criminal obstruction of justice. Why he thinks federal judges might deem this insufficient grounds for presidential impeachment is unclear.

But even putting that aside, Trump’s assertions are a civics failure, too. As we discussed in April, Congress is responsible for initiating, overseeing, and executing the impeachment process. Lawmakers, and no one else, determine whether a president has committed impeachable acts.

It’s not up to the judiciary to allow or forbid the legislative branch from exercising its legal authority.

When Trump is in a jam, he looks for a fixer. Indeed, he’s spent much of his presidency assuming that everyone from his attorney general to his congressional allies to his White House counsel can simply make his problems go away for him. Now, evidently, he’s making similar assumptions about the courts.

I’m curious as to why. Is the amateur president simply confused again? Is there someone at the White House giving him strange advice? Did Trump hear something along these lines from conservative media?

Whatever the explanation, if Trump plans to sue to make sure impeachment doesn’t happen, he should probably start working on a Plan B.

[MSNBC]

Trump: Dems are getting nothing done in Congress

President Trump in a tweet on Monday repeated his criticism of Democrats, saying they are “getting NOTHING done in Congress.”

“The Dems are getting NOTHING done in Congress! They only want a Do-Over on Mueller!” Trump wrote in a post during his four-day state visit to Japan. 

He also went after renewed calls for his impeachment, calling Democrats “Obstructionists.”

“Impeach for what, having created perhaps the greatest Economy in our Country’s history, rebuilding our Military, taking care of our Vets (Choice), Judges, Best Jobs Numbers Ever, and much more?” Trump wrote. “Dems are Obstructionists!”

Democrats have increasingly called for an impeachment inquiry into the president after his administration defied several congressional subpoenas.

On Sunday, Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.) publicly called upon Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to bring impeachment proceedings the president.

Last week, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) suggested that impeachment proceedings could be a “tool” to get more information from the White House. 

Trump last week walked out of a White House meeting with Democrats on infrastructure, saying he would not work with them until they stopped investigating him.

[The Hill]

Reality

In addition to their investigations, they’ve been passing legislation at a rapid clip. In all, the House has taken up 51 bills, resolutions, and suspensions since January — 49 of which they’ve passed. This includes a slate of bills to attempt to end the longest government shutdown in history, the result of a protracted fight between Trump and Congress over border wall funding.

Meanwhile the Senate has only passed two bills in two months.

Trump: Japanese officials told me Democrats have a ‘death wish’

President Trump took a moment during his visit to Japan to slam Democrats and pass along remarks from Japanese officials.

 “Great fun and meeting with Prime Minister @AbeShinzo,” Trump tweeted Saturday. “Numerous Japanese officials told me that the Democrats would rather see the United States fail than see me or the Republican Party succeed – Death Wish!”

The remark follows increasing tensions between the president and Democrats over the investigations launched against him.

“I think the Democrats are obstructionists,” Trump said in his remarks to reporters on Friday. “They’re hurting our country very, very badly.”

“They’re very unhappy with the Mueller report,” Trump continued. “No collusion, no obstruction. No nothing. They’re very unhappy. They’re angry about it. They have to get over their anger.”

“They want to do a redo,” Trump added. “Like even the fact that they’re asking Bob Mueller to come and testify. He just gave them a 434-page report, which says no collusion, which leads to absolutely no obstruction. He just gave that report. Why does he have to testify? It’s ridiculous.”

[AOL]

Trump Blasts Top Senate Intel Dem Mark Warner: Acts Like He Runs the Committee

While en route to Japan earlier today, President Donald Trump fired off a tweet blasting Senator Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee.

The committee received particular attention over the recent news of Donald Trump Jr. being subpoenaed to testify. They worked out a deal and the president’s son will speak to the committee.

More recently, Warner decried Trump for giving AG Bill Barr declassification authority on documents related to the origins of the Russia probe, saying the attorney general has “already shown that he has no problem selectively releasing information in order to mislead the American people”:

Earlier today, Trump blasted Warner for “acting and talking like he is in total control of the Senate Intelligence Committee”:

It’s unclear what jokester he’s referring to, though he may be mixing up Warner (who texted a Russian lobbyist in an effort to contact Christopher Steele) with House Intelligence Committee chairman Adam Schiffwho was infamously called by Russian pranksters back in 2017.

[Mediaite]

Trump Shares Edited Video of Pelosi, Quotes Fox Analyst Questioning Her Mental Fitness: ‘What’s Going On?’

President Donald Trump took his feud with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to a new level on Thursday night, posting an edited video of the Democrat that called into question her mental fitness.

Trump first tweeted out speculation from Fox News pundit Gregg Jarrett, who claimed that Pelosi was having trouble speaking and asked, “What’s going on?”

Shortly after, Trump tweeted out a clip that aired on the Fox Business Network show Lou Dobbs Tonight in which a series of clips of Pelosi stammering were edited together. To be clear, this is not one of the doctored videos shared elsewhere on social media, which were edited to make the Speaker sound like she was slurring her speech.

“PELOSI STAMMERS THROUGH NEWS CONFERENCE,” Trump wrote.

A Fox spokesperson told Mediaite in a statement: “The FOX Business segment featuring clips from Speaker Pelosi’s speech today did not slow down any aspect of her address”

The entire Fox Business segment, which you can watch above, was held in response to Pelosi’s statement from earlier Thursday that she hoped Trump’s family would stage an intervention.

“I think the name-calling has to stop,” said Fox analyst Ed Rollins at the top of the segment.

After watching the edited clip of Pelosi, Rollins speculated: “We all age a little differently. My sense is she is a very big job I think is getting worn down. She’s always very neat and proper, I think she’s very inarticulate which she’s never been in the past. I think in a certain extent she needs to kind of step in the background and not be in front as much. She shouldn’t be the point person leading the Democrats.”

“Is she speaker in name only now? Being actually controlled and whipped by her own sort of radical branch of the Democratic Party?” Jarrett asked.

[Mediaite]

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