Trump Fires Back at Meryl Streep Over Her Comments at Golden Globes

Donald Trump fired back at actress Meryl Streep on Twitter over her comments about him at the Golden Globes Sunday night, referring to her as “over-rated” and a “Hillary flunky” and complaining that, although she doesn’t know him, she attacked him.

Mr. Trump said much the same thing to the Times on Monday, adding, “And remember, Meryl Streep introduced Hillary Clinton at her convention (the Democratic National Convention), and a lot of these people supported Hillary.”

Streep, who was presented with the Cecil B. DeMille Award at Sunday night’s ceremony, took the president-elect to task during her acceptance speech over his remarks during the presidential campaign about a disabled New York Times reporter.

The actress called it “the one performance this year that stunned me sank its hooks into my heart.”

“It kind of broke my heart when I saw it, and I can’t get it out of my head, because it wasn’t in a movie. It was real life,” Streep said. “And this instinct — to humiliate — when it’s modeled by someone in the public platform, by someone powerful, it filters down into everybody’s life, because it kind of gives permission for other people to do the same thing.”

During the campaign, Mr. Trump had criticized Kovaleski for backing away from a 2001 story that suggested Arab-Americans in Jersey City may have celebrated the 9/11 the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center.  Mr. Trump hunched his shoulders and moved his arms in apparent imitation of the reporter, saying “the poor guy. You ought to see this guy. ‘Oh, I don’t know what I said! Ah, I don’t remember”’

Mr. Trump has denied repeatedly that he was mocking Kovaleski for his disability.

(h/t CBS News)

Trump Goes on Hours-Long Tweetstorm Over Russian Hacking

Twitter

President-elect Donald Trump said Saturday that the only reason the hacking of the Democratic National Committee is discussed is because Democrats are “totally embarrassed” about their election loss, and he urged friendlier relations with Russia.

“Only reason the hacking of the poorly defended DNC is discussed is that the loss by the Dems was so big that they are totally embarrassed!” Trump said as part of a Saturday morning tweetstorm.

His comments came a day after the declassification of a US intelligence report that concluded Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, ordered a campaign to influence the US election and hurt Hillary Clinton’s chances of winning.

Trump pointed to “gross negligence” by the DNC as the reason the hacking took place.

He also denied suggestions that the Russian hacking could have affected the election results, saying “there was absolutely no evidence that hacking affected the election results” because voting machines weren’t “touched.”

The US intelligence community’s report concluded that Russia — led by Putin — developed a “clear preference for President-elect Trump. But it did not assess the impact that Russian activities had on the election outcome, as Business Insider’s Pamela Engel reported.

The president-elect further touched on his relationship with Russia, saying that only “stupid people” and “fools” would think that having a good relationship with Russia is “bad.”

“When I am President, Russia will respect us far more than they do now, and both countries will, perhaps, work together to solve some fo the many great and pressing problems and issues of the WORLD!” he tweeted.

Here are the tweets:

(h/t Business Insider)

Trump Still Questions Intelligence on Russia Hacking After Briefing

President-elect Donald Trump said he had a “constructive” meeting with intelligence officials on Friday, but still had questions about assertions that Russia hacked Democrats during last year’s election in order to defeat Hillary Clinton.

Claiming that Russia, China and other countries and organizations are always launching cyber-attacks against the United States — “including the Democratic National Committee” — Trump said in a written statement that “there was absolutely no effect on the outcome of the election including the fact that there was no tampering whatsoever with voting machines.”

He added: “There were attempts to hack the Republican National Committee, but the RNC had strong hacking defenses and the hackers were unsuccessful.”

The intelligence community outlined its findings in a declassified report issued a few hours after the Trump briefing.

Among them: “We assess Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the U.S. presidential election. Russia’s goals were to undermine public faith in the U.S. democratic process, denigrate Secretary Clinton, and harm her electability and potential presidency. We further assess Putin and the Russian Government developed a clear preference for President-elect Trump.”

A statement from the office of the Director of National Intelligence said that investigators “did not make an assessment of the impact that Russian activities had on the outcome of the 2016 election, and DHS assesses that the types of systems the Russian actors targeted or compromised were not involved in vote tallying.”

While criticizing aspects of the Russia investigation just hours before a special briefing, Trump said in his statement, “I have tremendous respect for the work and service done by the men and women of this (intelligence) community to our great nation.”

Saying all Americans need to “aggressively combat and stop cyber-attacks,” Trump said that as president he would appoint a team to develop a new defense plan.

“The methods, tools and tactics we use to keep America safe should not be a public discussion that will benefit those who seek to do us harm,” the president-elect added. “Two weeks from today I will take the oath of office and America’s safety and security will be my number one priority.”

Brian Fallon, a spokesman for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton during the 2016 campaign, said on Twitter: “Why. Can’t. He. Just. Say. He. Accepts. The. Conclusion. Of. The. Intel. Agencies? It is seriously weird he won’t just admit Russia did it.”

Vice President-elect Mike Pence, who also attended the briefing, called it “a constructive and respectful dialogue.” He said Trump has pledged “aggressive action in the early days of our new administration to combat cyber attacks and protect the security of the American people from this type of intrusion in the future.”

Before the meeting, Trump continued to attack what he called an over-emphasis on claims that the Russians hacked Democratic Party officials in an election operation authorized by Putin.

“China, relatively recently, hacked 20 million government names,” Trump told The New York Times. “How come nobody even talks about that? This is a political witch hunt.”

Before his high-profile briefing at Trump Tower, the president-elect also announced he has asked Congress to investigate what he believes to be the leak of a secret intelligence report on the Russians to the news media. He tweeted: “I am asking the chairs of the House and Senate committees to investigate top secret intelligence shared with NBC prior to me seeing it.”

The president-elect had a nearly two-hour briefing that included Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, CIA Director John Brennan and FBI Director James Comey, all of whom have cited evidence pointing to a Russian plan to hack Democrats backing Clinton, perhaps in an effort to aid Trump.

Trump and aides have questioned the government’s position that the Russians engineered the hacking in order to undermine Clinton, a conclusion officials reaffirmed during a Senate hearing Thursday.

Changing rhetoric

In recent days, the president-elect has also softened his rhetoric about the intelligence agencies.

“The media lies to make it look like I am against ‘Intelligence’ when in fact I am a big fan!” Trump said during a Thursday tweet storm.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest said the White House did not leak the report that Trump cited — and said he found it ironic that the president-elect was complaining about the disclosure. Just days ago, Earnest noted, Trump tweeted his approval of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, who has published classified information in addition to the Democratic emails that surfaced during the election.

Trump’s situational disapproval of leaks, Earnest said, “leads me to believe that his concerns are something other than protecting classified information.”

Lawmakers have criticized Trump for seeming to defend the Russians.

“I think it’s dangerous,” Vice President Biden told PBS NewsHour. “For a President not to have confidence in, not to be prepared to listen to the myriad of intelligence agencies from defense intelligence, to the CIA, et cetera, is absolutely mindless. It’s just mindless.”

DNC Chairwoman Donna Brazile, meanwhile, pointed out that, “for the first time ever,” Trump “is not disputing the fact that Russia was behind the targeted attack on the DNC and the Clinton campaign.”

(h/t USA Today)

Reality

In a written statement Trump said that “there was absolutely no effect on the outcome of the election,” however Trump is lying. The report never waded into the territory of if there was an effect, just that the Putin-ordered hack and ensuing propaganda from Russia existed.

Despite Promise, Trump Divulges No New Election Hacking Details

The day that Donald Trump promised to reveal what no one else knew about the hacking of the Democratic Party has come and gone.

On New Year’s Eve, Trump said that he knows “things that other people don’t know, and so they cannot be sure of the situation.”

Pressed by a reporter for details, Trump said, “you’ll find out Tuesday or Wednesday.”

But as the day came to a close, Trump hadn’t revealed any more details about the hacking of his campaign opponents, admitting only – in a tweet – that “somebody hacked the DNC,” and alleging the party had weak cyber defenses.

On Tuesday, however, Trump continued to taunt the U.S. intelligence community about its assessment that Russia was behind the cyber-attacks, tweeting: “The ‘Intelligence’ briefing on so-called ‘Russian hacking’ was delayed until Friday, perhaps more time needed to build a case. Very strange!”

But there was no delay, according to U.S. officials, the briefing was always scheduled for Friday.

But while insulting U.S. intelligence, Trump has been embracing Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, who is considered by many to be an enemy of America and who appeared for an extended interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity on Tuesday night.

Referring to the source who leaked stolen emails from the Democratic National Committee to his website, Assange said, the “source is not the Russian government and it is not a state party.”

The appearance and subsequent Tweets from Trump showed an alliance that just a few years ago would have seemed unthinkable.

On Fox News six years ago, Trump attacked Wikileaks for publishing U.S. secrets, saying “I think it’s disgraceful…I think there should be like death penalty or something.”

Regardless, U.S. officials said that Assange doesn’t know what he’s talking about.

“There’s no way that Assange would have any idea who was behind dropping this information off,” said Matt Olsen, a former director of the National Counterterrorism Center and an ABC News contributor. “The Russian intelligence services are clearly capable of hiding their tracks.”

And with only about two weeks until Trump becomes commander in chief, the nation’s top Democrat is warning Trump that he could face payback once in office.

“You take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you,” said. Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York. “Even for a practical, supposedly hard-nosed businessman, he’s being really dumb to do this.”

Trump claims his briefing on Russian cyberattacks was delayed, but US intelligence officer says otherwise

President-elect Donald Trump mocked US intelligence officials on Tuesday in a tweet claiming his briefing on Russian cyberattacks was delayed, and once again cast doubt on their claims that Russia interfered with the presidential election.

“The ‘Intelligence’ briefing on so-called ‘Russian hacking’ was delayed until Friday, perhaps more time needed to build a case. Very strange!” Trump said on Twitter.

However, a senior US intelligence official immediately refuted Trump’s claim, saying the briefing with the heads of the NSA, CIA, DNI and the FBI was “always” scheduled for Friday, NBC News reported.

Last week, Trump said he agreed to meet with intelligence officials about Russia’s involvement in the hacks, although he added it was “time to move on.”

He also claimed he would reveal insider information about the cyberattacks on Tuesday or Wednesday, although a member of Trump’s team told CNN Trump would not be following through.

Lawmakers slammed Trump’s Tuesday night tweet.

“Really wish we saw more PEOTUS respect for our intelligence professionals,” Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia said on Twitter. “Proves the need for Congress to give the American people a timely bipartisan probe.”

Incoming Senate Democratic minority leader, Chuck Schumer, also weighed in — calling Trump’s comments “really dumb” during an interview with MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow.

“Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you,” Schumer continued.

The FBI, CIA, and the Director of National Intelligence concluded in December that Russia interfered with the election in part to help Trump secure the presidency, with Russian president Vladimir Putin possibly being personally involved.

As punishment, President Barack Obama announced last week a new round of sanctions against Russia, including the removal of 35 intelligence Russian officials from the US. Trump has consistently questioned the allegations against Russia.

Tuesday’s tweet was another example of Trump’s dismissive attitude toward the intelligence agencies he’ll soon be working with. Last month, the president-elect brushed off concerns he wasn’t attending his traditional daily intelligence and national security briefings.

“I get it when I need it,” Trump said.

“I’m, like, a smart person. I don’t have to be told the same thing in the same words every single day for the next eight years,” he added. “I don’t need that. But I do say, ‘If something should change, let us know.'”

(h/t Business Insider)

 

Trump’s Tweet That ObamaCare Doesn’t Work Is Full Of Shit

Trump sent out an early morning tweet blasting the Affordable Care Act, also known as ObamaCare, by pointing out the increases in average prices from last year using one state as an example:

People must remember that ObamaCare just doesn’t work, and it is not affordable – 116% increases (Arizona). Bill Clinton called it “CRAZY”

However Trump used a state that decided not to fully implement ObamaCare, by neglecting to set up its own state-run insurance marketplace, which lead to higher rates. So this isn’t because of the design of ObamaCare, but how some mostly Republican states refused to fully implement it.

For comparison, states who fully implemented ObamaCare, such as California, saw only a 2% or less increase in rates, while Massachusetts and Indiana’s implementation was done so well they will actually see a drop in prices this year. States that were adversarial to a full implementation of Obamacare, like Arizona and Pennsylvania, will see the biggest price hikes, driving up the national average to a 22% increase nationally.

So don’t blame Obama for a massive price hike, but your state’s Republican governor.

But what Trump is also neglecting is that most Obamacare participants won’t feel the full price hike or anything near it, even in his cherry-picked state of Arizona.

Nationally, 85% of those enrolled receive a tax credit, which is based on the price of the second-lowest cost silver plan and an enrollee’s income. These subsidies put a limit on how much you have to pay.

Enrollees can also use their subsidies to buy lower-priced bronze or silver plans. That will allow more than three-fourths of current enrollees to pick a plan for $100 or less a month on the federal Healthcare.gov exchange.

 

On Twitter, Trump Defends Foundation, Ignores Legal Controversy Surrounding It

President-elect Donald Trump took to Twitter on Monday night to defend the charitable foundation he has pledged to close, saying the media had not given him enough credit for his generosity and ignoring the legal issues that ensnared the organization in controversy.

The Donald J. Trump Foundation has come under intense scrutiny this year after reports in The Washington Post detailing its practices, including cases in which Trump apparently used the charity’s money to settle lawsuits involving his for-profit businesses.

New York’s attorney general is investigating the charity, and a spokeswoman for that office said on Saturday that the foundation could not officially shut down until that probe is over. Among the issues at hand is whether Trump violated a “self-dealing” provision that says nonprofit leaders cannot use their charity’s funds to help themselves, their relatives or their businesses.

“I gave millions of dollars to DJT Foundation, raised or recieved millions more, ALL of which is given to charity, and media won’t report!” Trump said in one Monday night tweet.

“The DJT Foundation, unlike most foundations, never paid fees, rent, salaries or any expenses. 100% of money goes to wonderful charities!” the president-elect said in another.

Trump and his companies gave about $6 million to his foundation since its launch in 1987, according to tax filings. The most recent tax filings go up to the end of 2015.

Other people have collectively given about $9.5 million. The biggest outside donors were Vince and Linda McMahon, two pro-wrestling moguls, who gave the Trump Foundation $5 million between 2007 and 2009. Trump recently nominated Linda McMahon to head the Small Business Administration.

Trump himself gave nothing to his foundation between 2009 and 2014, according to filings. His businesses contributed in 2015 for the first time in several years.

Experts on charities say it’s rare for the founder of a private, name-branded foundation to give nothing to his own foundation while relying entirely on donations from others. That anomaly allowed Trump to take advantage of the idea that the money in the foundation was his.

Trump’s donations to his foundation are also small, by the standards of billionaires’ philanthropy.

Filmmaker George Lucas, for instance, who is tied with Trump at 324th place in Forbes’s list of the world’s billionaires, donated $925 million to his family foundation in 2012. In 2014, Lucas’s foundation gave out $55 million in donations to museums, hospitals, artistic groups and environmental charities.

While much of the Trump foundation’s money has gone to charity, there are some high-profile exceptions.

In 2013, the Trump foundation gave a $25,000 gift to a campaign committee backing Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi (R) even though nonprofits like the charity are not allowed to give political gifts.

That gift was made as Bondi’s office was considering whether to investigate fraud allegations against Trump University. A consultant who worked on Bondi’s reelection effort has said that Bondi was not aware of the allegations when she solicited the donation from Trump. Ultimately, Bondi’s office did not pursue the fraud allegations.

Trump also reported using foundation money to buy items for himself, which runs afoul of federal tax law.

The Trump Foundation spent $30,000 to buy two large portraits of Trump himself, including one that was hung up in the sports bar at a Trump-owned resort. Trump also appears to have used $258,000 of his foundation’s money — legally earmarked for charitable purposes — to settle lawsuits involving two of his for-profit clubs.

The office of New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman (D) announced its investigation of the Trump Foundation after reports in The Post described such apparent cases of self-dealing that date back to 2007.

Trump’s foundation has admitted in IRS tax filings for 2015 that it violated a prohibition against “self-dealing” that says nonprofit leaders cannot use their charity’s funds to help themselves, their relatives or their businesses.

In these tax filings, the charity checked “yes” in response to a question asking whether it had transferred any income or assets to “a disqualified person” — a description that could have meant Trump, a relative or a Trump-owned business.

Trump has not said what exactly he did to violate the rule, or what he has paid the IRS in penalty taxes as a result. The IRS has not commented when asked whether it was investigating the Trump Foundation.

The New York attorney general’s investigation is unlikely to lead to any kind of criminal charge. Instead, Trump may be required to repay his foundation the money it spent to help him, and he may have to personally pay penalty taxes worth 10 percent or more of the value of the self-dealing transactions.

Trump’s tweet was correct in that his foundation has low overhead. It has no paid staff, and only a five-member board. It also has spent almost nothing on legal fees, raising the question of whether the organization was aware of the legal problems it created.

Trump Takes False Credit for ‘$1 Trillion’ Holiday Shopping Boom

Twitter

President-elect Donald Trump is taking credit for a surge in US holiday spending that he says has exceeded $1 trillion.

But Americans haven’t spent close to that amount, according to the National Retail Federation.

Holiday spending is instead on track to reach a combined $656 billion in November and December, according to the NRF.

In a tweet Monday evening, Trump said the world was “gloomy” before he won the presidential election and “there was no hope.”

“Now the market is up nearly 10% and Christmas spending is over a trillion dollars!” he tweeted.

The Trump campaign didn’t provide a source for the $1 trillion figure, but it appears to come from a Deloitte study that was released in September, more than six weeks before Trump won the election.

The study forecast that holiday spending would exceed $1 trillion in the three months from November to the end of January, representing a 3.6% to 4% increase over last year’s.

There’s no evidence that spending has already hit that level.

Despite Trump’s tweet, the NRF says it’s sticking to its estimate of $656 billion in spending for the holiday period ending in December and said that projection would “either be met or exceeded.”

“We can’t compare our forecast with theirs since ours is only for November and December — it’s like comparing apples with oranges,” NRF spokeswoman Ana Smith said Tuesday of the Deloitte study.

Reality

One’s heart would need to be two sizes too small to take sole credit for Christmas.

Trump Claims NBC ‘Purposely’ Misquoted Nuclear Comments

President-elect Donald Trump claimed Saturday that NBC News “purposely” misquoted his call for an expansion of the U.S. nuclear program last week, despite reports to the contrary.

Trump on Thursday said the United States “must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes.” Saturday he accused NBC of intentionally leaving out the latter, more measure portion of his statements.

“.@NBCNews purposely left out this part of my nuclear qoute: ‘until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes.’ Dishonest!” the president-elect tweeted Saturday afternoon.

Trump did not specify when NBC supposedly left out a portion of his comments.

NBC News’ initial report covering Trump’s comments on nuclear expansion, however, cited his comments in full. And the Thursday broadcast of NBC’s “Nightly News with Lester Holt” displayed his comments in their entirety.

Trump’s claim of dishonesty in media coverage has been a calling card of his ascendance to the White House. Since winning the presidency, Trump has repeatedly attacked the media, broadly accusing them of inciting violence against him, singling out individual reporters and blasting the news media as “crooked.”

(h/t Politico)

Reality

Just by watching the NBC report shows Trump was intentionally lying.

Media

http://www.nbcnews.com/widget/video-embed/840644675837

Trump Again Asks Why Russian Hacking Wasn’t Addressed Before The Election, Even Though It Was

President-elect Donald Trump on Thursday asked once again why Russia hacking the U.S. election wasn’t brought up before Nov. 8 ― even though it was.

In a tweet, Trump wondered why the White House didn’t “complain” about the hacking until after he defeated former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

The president-elect asked a similar question Monday morning while pushing a false claim that it’s hard to catch hackers in the act.

But the White House ― and many others, including intelligence officials, Clinton and even Trump himself ― did bring up the Russian hacking before the election.

Here’s part of a New York Times report from July 26:

American intelligence agencies have told the White House they now have “high confidence” that the Russian government was behind the theft of emails and documents from the Democratic National Committee, according to federal officials who have been briefed on the evidence.

But intelligence officials have cautioned that they are uncertain whether the electronic break-in at the committee’s computer systems was intended as fairly routine cyberespionage — of the kind the United States also conducts around the world — or as part of an effort to manipulate the 2016 presidential election.

The emails were released by WikiLeaks, whose founder, Julian Assange, has made it clear that he hoped to harm Hillary Clinton’s chances of winning the presidency. It is unclear how the documents made their way to the group. But a large sampling was published before the WikiLeaks release by several news organizations and someone who called himself “Guccifer 2.0,” who investigators now believe was an agent of the G.R.U., Russia’s military intelligence service.

In an interview with Time magazine published Dec. 7, Trump discussed the U.S. intelligence community’s findings about Russia stealing emails from the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton campaign, saying he thought U.S. officials’ findings were politically motivated.

The CIA conducted a secret assessment of the U.S. election and concluded that Russia intervened in an effort to help Trump win the presidency, The Washington Post reported Dec. 9. White House spokesman Josh Earnest said there’s “ample evidence” Trump was “obviously aware” Russia was involved in helping him win.

Trump told Fox News in an interview that aired Sunday that he thinks the hacking claims are “ridiculous.”

“I think it’s just another excuse. I don’t believe it,” Trump said.

Back in July, Trump said he hoped Russia would hack into Clinton’s emails.

“Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” he said at a press conference.

(h/t Huffington Post)

 

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