Trump goes off script at opioid summit: ‘I know about rigging the system because I had the system rigged on me’

President Donald Trump alleged on Wednesday that the U.S. justice system had been “rigged” against him.

While speaking at an event on opioid abuse, the president argued that pharmaceutical companies are giving European countries better prices than they give U.S. customers.

Trump vowed to stop the practice and called his promise “a big deal.”

“At long last we’re stopping drug companies in foreign countries from rigging the system,” Trump said before straying from his prepared remarks.

“I know all about the rigging of the system because I had the system rigged on me,” the president said, likely referring to special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.

“I think you know what I’m talking about,” Trump added. “Unfortunately, that will be your soundbite tonight but that’s okay. The system was rigged!”

[Raw Story]

Trump says he would challenge impeachment in Supreme Court

President Trump on Wednesday said that he would attempt to challenge impeachment in the Supreme Court if Democrats carried out such proceedings, though it’s unclear the high court would hear such a case.

“The Mueller Report, despite being written by Angry Democrats and Trump Haters, and with unlimited money behind it ($35,000,000), didn’t lay a glove on me. I DID NOTHING WRONG,” Trump tweeted.

“If the partisan Dems ever tried to Impeach, I would first head to the U.S. Supreme Court. Not only are there no ‘High Crimes and Misdemeanors,’ there are no Crimes by me at all,” he continued.

The president accused Democrats, Hillary Clinton and “dirty cops” of being guilty of criminal activity.

“We waited for Mueller and WON, so now the Dems look to Congress as last hope!” Trump concluded.

The House holds the power to carry out impeachment proceedings, while the Senate is responsible for whether to convict the individual in question. The chief justice of the Supreme Court, currently John Roberts, would preside over the Senate trial.

There is little precedent to support the idea of the Supreme Court weighing in on the merits of impeachment, as a sitting president has not previously challenged impeachment proceedings in the high court.

The Supreme Court ruled in the 1993 case of federal Judge Walter Nixon that whether the Senate properly conducted an impeachment trial was a political question, and therefore nonjusticiable.

Laurence Tribe, a constitutional law professor at Harvard University, rejected the possibility of Trump taking an impeachment to the Supreme Court.

“Not even a SCOTUS filled with Trump appointees would get in the way of the House or Senate, where [Chief Justice] Roberts would preside over Trump’s Impeachment Trial,” tweeted Tribe, an outspoken critic of the president.

The president has been fixated in recent days on pushing back against the specter of impeachment proceedings, while maintaining that he is “not even a little bit” concerned about the possibility of removal from office.

Democratic leaders have largely said they don’t yet support starting the impeachment process, but remained open to the possibility in the wake of special counsel Robert Mueller‘s full report.

In the partly redacted document, investigators did not establish that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russian government during the 2016 election, but did not exonerate Trump on the question of obstruction of justice. 

Investigators instead detailed 10 episodes they reviewed for potential obstruction by the president, with Mueller saying that Congress has the authority to conduct potential obstruction probes.

Talk of whether to carry out impeachment hearings has split Democrats, and discussions have intensified in the aftermath of Mueller’s report.

“I do believe that impeachment is one of the most divisive forces, paths that we could go down to in our country,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Tuesday. “But if the facts, the path of fact-finding takes us there, we have no choice. But we’re not there yet.”

House Democrats have launched a flurry of investigations into the president, seeking to review his finances, potential abuse of power and corruption within the administration.Trump later asserted in a pair of tweets that he had been cooperative with the Mueller investigation, and suggested Congress should focus on legislation instead of seeking additional information from the White House as part of its own probes. “Millions of pages of documents were given to the Mueller Angry Dems, plus I allowed everyone to testify, including W.H. counsel. I didn’t have to do this, but now they want more,” Trump tweeted. “Congress has no time to legislate, they only want to continue the Witch Hunt, which I have already won. They should start looking at The Criminals who are already very well known to all. This was a Rigged System – WE WILL DRAIN THE SWAMP!”

[The Hill]

Trump claims Mexican soldiers ‘probably’ used armed confrontation with US troops as a diversion for drug smugglers

President Donald Trump on Wednesday said that Mexican soldiers “recently pulled guns” on American troops near the southern border, and accused the soldiers of “probably” doing so as a diversionary tactic for drug smugglers.

“Better not happen again! We are now sending ARMED SOLDIERS to the Border,” Trump wrote in a post on Twitter. “Mexico is not doing nearly enough in apprehending & returning!”

The confrontation between Mexican soldiers and U.S. troops happened April 13 on American territory. It was first made public by Newsweek, which reported that Mexican soldiers detained and searched the Americans briefly at gunpoint, thinking they were still in Mexico after mistakenly crossing into the United States.

In a press release issued Wednesday, Mexico’s foreign affairs ministry wrote that the incident was not out of the ordinary. Both governments, it said, were in contact throughout the situation.

“After a brief discussion between the soldiers from the two nations, the Mexican military members departed the area,” a spokesperson for the Pentagon told the outlet. “The U.S. soldiers immediately contacted CBP, who responded quickly. Throughout the incident, the U.S. soldiers followed all established procedures and protocols.”

[CNBC]

Trump questions impeachment talk after stock market hits record high

President Trump on Tuesday lamented that some Democrats are discussing the prospect of impeachment proceedings on the same day that the stock market closed at record highs, suggesting he should be given more credit.

“You mean the Stock Market hit an all-time record high today and they’re actually talking impeachment!?” Trump tweeted. “Will I ever be given credit for anything by the Fake News Media or Radical Liberal Dems? NO COLLUSION!”

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq composite closed at record highs on Tuesday, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 26,656.39, 1.1 percent short of an all-time high.

Trump has regularly taken credit for good news on the stock market, and he has previously questioned how lawmakers could move to impeach “somebody who’s done a great job.”

A pair of high-profile Democrats were asked at the Time 100 Summit on Tuesday about where they stand on launching impeachment proceedings, a topic that has dominated discussions since special counsel Robert Mueller‘s report was released last week.

In the partly redacted document, investigators did not establish that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russian government during the 2016 election, but did not exonerated Trump on the question of obstruction of justice. Investigators instead detailed 10 episodes they reviewed for potential obstruction by the president, with Mueller saying that Congress has authority to conduct potential obstruction probes.

“I do believe that impeachment is one of the most divisive forces, paths that we could go down to in our country,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Tuesday. “But if the facts, the path of fact-finding takes us there, we have no choice. But we’re not there yet.”

Hillary Clinton, Trump’s opponent in the 2016 election, said impeachment proceedings should “be something undertaken in a really serious, diligent way, based on evidence.”

She suggested that Trump would have been indicted for obstruction of justice as a result of Mueller’s probe if he weren’t the sitting president.

J.W. Verret, who served as one of the first 16 members of then-candidate Trump’s pre-transition team, said Tuesday that he believes Mueller’s report amounted to “a referral to Congress to begin impeachment proceedings.”

As Democratic leaders and media pundits weigh the merits of impeachment proceedings, Trump has been openly defiant about the prospect.

He has tweeted about the possibility multiple times in recent days, asserting Monday that he did not commit actions that reach the threshold of “high crimes and misdemeanors” that could lead to impeachment.

Trump told reporters at Monday’s White House Easter Egg Roll that he was “not even a little bit” worried about impeachment. 

[The Hill]

Trump unloads on media in post-Mueller tweets

President Trump unloaded on the news media in a series of tweets Tuesday morning, claiming he faces an unprecedented level of criticism in The New York Times, as well as on CNN and MSNBC.

Trump wrote that the coverage of his presidency shows the “totally insane” media is conspiring with “the Radical Left Democrats” to hurt his chances of reelection.

“In the ‘old days’ if you were President and you had a good economy, you were basically immune from criticism,” Trump wrote. “Remember, ‘It’s the economy stupid.’ Today I have, as President, perhaps the greatest economy in history…and to the Mainstream Media, it means NOTHING. But it will!”

The president’s outburst came as he has groused for days about the coverage of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on the Russia investigation, which did not charge Trump with crimes but painted an unflattering picture of the inner workings of the White House and detailed Moscow’s efforts to help Trump’s 2016 campaign.  

The contents of the full report have muddled Trump’s claim that it was a “complete and total exoneration” and breathed new life into the debate over whether congressional Democrats should impeach him.

Tuesday morning’s tweets did not directly reference the Mueller report, but Trump’s sense of grievance against the media over its coverage ran through them as a common thread.

[The Hill]

Trump retweets hit list suggesting he’s going after Obama, Biden, Brennan, Clapper the Democratic Party and more

On Monday, President Donald Trump retweeted a ‘hit list’ from Tom Fitton, the president of Judicial Watch, a conservative self-styled watchdog group.

Fitton tweeted a list out with Democrats name who believed have abused President Donald Trump.

People on the list included Barack Obama, Joe Biden, and Hillary Clinton.

[Raw Story]

Trump Asks How He Can Be Impeached When the Crimes Were Committed by Democrats

President Donald Trump seems to think that impeachment is out of the question because he is a Republican and it is the Democrats who committed the crimes.

On Easter Sunday, Trump wrote on Twitter: “How do you impeach a Republican President for a crime that was committed by the Democrats? MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!”

It is unclear what exactly prompted his tweet, but impeachment has been a topicwidely talked about on cable news this weekend as some Democrats renew their call for impeachment.

In addition, Laurence Tribe published an op-ed on Sunday in USA Todayclaiming the “time has come” for the sitting president to be impeached.

The Mueller probe — and how much it has been unfair to him —  also seems to be on Trump’s mind this holiday.

Earlier on Easter Sunday, the president took time out of his day to blame the “other side” and complain he had to go through the “worst and most corrupt political Witch Hunt in the history of the United States.”

[Mediaite]

Trump Tweets Mueller Report Is ‘Total Bullshit’ After Saying It Was ‘COMPLETE EXONERATION!’

It’s the day after the actual Mueller Report dropped—albeit with redactions from Attorney General William Barr, who has been exposed as the president’s pet toad. We now know The Barr Letter three weeks ago was comically skewed to the point that the attorney general’s position is untenable. He so misrepresented the contents of the actual report, in a blatant attempt to manipulate public opinion about its findings, that he can no longer reasonably lead a Justice Department that is nominally independent from the White House. He’s supposed to be the nation’s top law-enforcement officer. If he wants to serve as the president’s personal lawyer, he should resign and start spending some more time with Rudy Giuliani.

If you’re interested in a further reminder that Barr’s initial letter—and his behavior over the last three weeks that crescendoed with yesterday’s reprehensible press conference—was an orchestrated scam, look no further than the president it was meant to protect. Donald Trump has always been one to say the quiet parts out loud, and now that Robert Mueller’s actual findings are public, our fearless leader has decided to sweat them just as publicly. You may remember that, after The Barr Letter, Trump embarked on a victory lap in which he declared Mueller had TOTALLY EXONERATED! him. Based on his stylings Friday morning on the Tweet Machine, something done changed.

He never finished the tweet thread. Maybe he had to attend to the actual affairs of state. Or Hannity called. Anyway, “Crazy Mueller Report” seems like one of the more Low Energy branding exercises rolled out by President Business Deals. His heart’s not in it, probably because he is palpably terrified.

There’s also that nice reminder that the president doesn’t trust anyone, especially a lawyer, who takes notes—a sure sign that his business dealings before he took office were Totally Above-Board. To be clear, one of the core guiding principles for the President of the United States is that you should never leave a paper trail. You know, like a mobster. What do you expect from a guy of whom former FBI Director Andrew McCabe said, “It has occurred to me on a number of occasions that, you know, Donald Trump and I know some of the same people,” referring to some of the people McCabe came to “know” in his time at the FBI’s New York bureau, where he spent a decade investigating Russian organized crime.

But the real peach is towards the end there: “some of which are total bullshit & only given to make the other person look good (or me to look bad).”So, if we’re keeping score here, The Mueller Report went from a COMPLETE EXONERATION! to TOTAL BULLSHIT! in a little over three weeks. Or, alternately, it underwent this transfiguration from the time it was being totally misrepresented by William Barr to the time we actually got to see it. Even now, Trump seems to be trying to say it’s both at the same time: The good parts for me are true. The bad parts are fake. Needless to say, nothing in the report has been proven false. In fact, it corroborates the vast majority of mainstream reporting on Russia, all of which Trump screamed was Fake News.

These people are relentlessly truthless, a pack of liars who have no shame in any context. The Goldfish Brain approach to political reporting that’s all too common will not work here. You can’t just look at what they said today. Whenever White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders speaks and the media relays her message, it should come with the disclaimer that she has a proven record of fabricating entire conversations from the White House podium to justify the president firing the FBI director leading an investigation into him. The fabricator’s kryptonite is history and context. The president is trying to lie his way to the end of each day, and he’s hoping you’re not taking notes. Take notes.

[Esquire]

Trump: ‘I could have fired everyone’ on Mueller team if I wanted to

President Trump on Thursday pushed back against questions about whether he may have obstructed the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, asserting that he could have “fired everyone,” including special counsel Robert Mueller, if he had so chosen. 

Trump quoted Fox News host Jesse Watters, who said on “The Five” that Trump “was being framed” and “fought back.”

“I had the right to end the whole Witch Hunt if I wanted,” the president tweeted. “I could have fired everyone, including Mueller, if I wanted. I chose not to. I had the RIGHT to use Executive Privilege. I didn’t!”

The president’s tweet came as he traveled aboard Air Force One to Palm Beach, Fla., where he will spend the weekend at his Mar-a-Lago resort.

A redacted version of Mueller’s full report was released Thursday morning. In it, the special counsel detailed 10 areas where investigators looked at whether Trump may have obstructed justice.

Mueller looked into, among other topics, Trump’s efforts to remove the special counsel, his conduct surrounding the firing of former FBI Director James Comey and his encouragement of former Attorney General Jeff Sessions to take control of the investigation.

The special counsel ultimately did not exonerate or implicate Trump on obstruction charges.

“[I]f we had confidence after a thorough investigation of the facts that the President clearly did not commit obstruction of justice, we would so state. Based on the facts and the applicable legal standards, we are unable to reach that judgment,” the report states.

Attorney General William Barr said he and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein did not find sufficient evidence to prove obstruction of justice on the part of the president. 

Mueller’s report further established there was “no collusion” between the Trump campaign and Russian government, Barr said.

Trump’s tweet marked one of his few public comments in the wake of the report’s release.

The president briefly addressed the report’s findings at an event for wounded military service members, saying that he was “having a good day” and reiterating his stance the report found “no collusion. No obstruction.”

He also tweeted a photo inspired by the hit HBO series “Game of Thrones” showing him staring into a fog behind the statement: “No collusion. No obstruction. For the haters and the radical left Democrats—Game Over.”

Trump did not address reporters as he departed the White House for Florida.

[The Hill]

Trump Coordinates Tweet Seconds After Bill Barr Press Conference Lying About Mueller Report Contents

President Donald Trump shared a “Game of Thrones”-style tweet featuring the words, “game over,” following Attorney General William Barr’s press conference where he repeatedly said that the Mueller report found “no collusion” between the Trump campaign and Russia.

[NBC News]

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