Andrew Kreig

December 2019 News

 

 

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Editor’s Choice: Scroll below for our monthly blend of mainstream and alternative December 2019 news and views

Note: Excerpts are from the authors’ words except for subheads and occasional “Editor’s notes” such as this. 

Dec. 4

Impeachment Daily Indexdjt handwave file

 

Impeachment Coverage Noted Above

washington post logoWashington Post, Professors testify that Trump’s conduct is grounds for removal, John Wagner and Felicia Sonmez, Dec. 4, 2019.  Probe moves to new phase with House Judiciary hearing. A 41-member panel with a history of partisan brawls is hearing from four constitutional experts on the historical underpinnings of impeachment in what could be a chaotic proceeding.

ny times logoNew York Times, Live Updates: Trump Committed Impeachable Offenses, 3 Scholars Say, Michael D. Shear, Dec. 4, 2019. The House Judiciary Committee is debating whether to draft and approve articles of impeachment. Lawmakers are hearing from legal scholars about the constitutional basis for impeachment. Stay here for live video and updates.

U.S. House logoBut an expert invited by Republicans argued that the case so far is “slipshod” and premature, during the first formal impeachment hearing in the Judiciary Committee. The panel kicked off what is likely to be a sharply partisan brawl over whether to draft and approve articles of impeachment against President Trump.…

November 2019 News

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Nov. 3

U.S. News Headlines

Trump Probes / Impeachment Index 

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Trump Probes (Noted Above)

washington post logoWashington Post, Opinion: President Trump may have violated criminal provisions of the Hatch Act, Gary Stein (a lawyer in New York and a former federal prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York), Nov. 3, 2019 (print ed.). It’s a felony to order federal government workers to further a partisan political campaign.

Legal analysis of the Ukraine controversy has so far focused on whether President Trump’s July 25 call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky involved extortion, bribery or solicitation of an illegal campaign contribution from a foreign source. But as the House investigation has proceeded, a more straightforward legal case has emerged: The president, and possibly other officials, may have violated the Hatch Act’s civil and criminal prohibitions on the use of executive branch powers for partisan ends.…

October 2019 News

 

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Editor’s Choice: Scroll below for our monthly blend of mainstream and alternative September 2019 news and views

October Update

Oct. 2

Impeachment Daily Indexdjt handwave file

U.S. 2020 Politics

bernie sanders gage skidmore

Roll Call, Bernie Sanders cancels campaign schedule after heart procedure, Niels Lesniewski, Oct. 2, 2019. Spokesman says presidential candidate (shown in a Gage Skidmore file photo) had stents installed after doctors found blockage in artery.

Sen. Bernie Sanders is recovering after having heart stents installed, canceling his presidential campaign events until further notice. Jeff Weaver, a senior adviser to the Democratic presidential campaign of the Vermont independent, made the announcement of the medical procedure. “During a campaign event yesterday evening, Sen. Sanders experienced some chest discomfort. Following medical evaluation and testing he was found to have a blockage in one artery and two stents were successfully inserted. Sen. Sanders is conversing and in good spirits. He will be resting up over the next few days,” Weaver said. “We are canceling his events and appearances until further notice, and we will continue to provide appropriate updates.”

Sanders was among the 10 Democratic presidential hopefuls scheduled to appear at a candidate forum in Las Vegas on Wednesday.…

September 2019 News

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Editor’s Choice: Scroll below for our monthly blend of mainstream and alternative September 2019 news and views

Note: Excerpts are from the authors’ words except for subheads and occasional “Editor’s notes” such as this.

 Sept. 4

UK Democracy Crisis

united kingdom flagwashington post logoWashington Post, House of Commons passes bill seeking to avert no-deal Brexit in blow to Johnson, Kevin Sullivan and Karla Adam​, Sept. 4, 2019. The legislation — which won’t be final until the House of Lords votes later this week — would effectively delay Brexit an additional three months. Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s motion to call a general election is also expected to fail Wednesday.

Inside DC

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Washington attorney Gregory Craig, center, holds a brief news conference surrounded by his lawyers on Sept. 4 following his acquittal on a false statement charge in the federal district court in Washington, DC (Justice Integrity Project photo).

washington post logoWashington Post, Gregory Craig found not guilty of lying to investigators probing work to aid Ukraine president, Spencer S. Hsu, Sept. 4, 2019. A federal jury found Gregory B. Craig not guilty of lying to the Justice Department, acquitting the Democratic former White House counsel on Wednesday of concealing media contacts in 2012 related to his work for the Ukrainian government.

greg craig smiling cropped headshot 9 4 19 IMG 6685Jurors deliberated less than a day before vindicating Craig, 74, right (shown in a Justice Integrity Project photo at a press conference after the verdict), a former top legal adviser to Barack Obama and Bill Clinton.

Craig’s defense urged them to weigh his towering reputation in Washington and decades in government and private practice before passing judgment after a three-week trial.

The acquittal marks a high-profile setback for a Justice Department crackdown on foreign lobbying in the United States, exposing flaws in a difficult prosecution that was handed off among several offices before Craig’s April indictment.…

Aug. 2019 Reporting

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Editor’s Choice: Scroll below for our monthly blend of mainstream and alternative August 2019 news and views

Note: Excerpts are from the authors’ words except for subheads and occasional “Editor’s notes” such as this. 

Aug. 3

White Rage Texas Mall Rampage

Breaking

patrick crusius el paso shooter

A man shown above and identified as Patrick Crusius, 21, is alleged to have killed multiple people on Aug. 3 in El Paso, Texas. The radical conservative, pro-Trump and white nationalist website 4 Chan released what has been described as the shooter’s manifesto, in which he vows to kill immigrants.

washington post logoWashington Post, Multiple people killed in shooting at El Paso mall, Hannah Knowles, Morgan Krakow and Michael S. Rosenwald, Aug. 3, 2019. At least 19 people were killed and 40 injured in a shooting at a Walmart and neighboring stores in El Paso on Saturday afternoon, sending shoppers racing for cover in a chaotic scene that prompted a massive police and medical response, local authorities and government officials said.

At least 23 are still being treated in hospitals, authorities said. Authorities identified a man in custody as Patrick Crusius, 21, according to two law enforcement officials familiar with the inquiry, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation.

One official said that the specific number of people killed and wounded was subject to change, noting that some of the victims were critically wounded.

Authorities are also investigating a manifesto that includes remarks attacking immigrants and is sympathetic to the Christchurch attacker accused of killing 49 people in mass shootings at two New Zealand mosques this year, according to the two officials. Authorities have not confirmed that the manifesto is from the same attacker but continue to investigate it.

• Photos: The scene after the El Paso shooting

Trump Drops Spy Nominee

ny times logoNew York Times, Trump Drops Spy Chief Pick After Bipartisan Pushback, Charlie Savage, Julian E.…

July 2019 News Reports

 

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Editor’s Choice: Scroll below for our monthly blend of mainstream and alternative July 2019 news and views

Note: Excerpts are from the authors’ words except for subheads and occasional “Editor’s notes” such as this. 

July 3

U.S. Border Scandalsborder inspector general report june 10 2019 scene in Mcallen

This photo shows caged immigrants at a U.S. detention facility on June 10 in McAllen, Texas (Homeland Security Inspector General’s report).

ny times logoNew York Times, Squalid Conditions at Border Centers Detailed in Government Watchdog Report, Zolan Kanno-Youngs, July 3, 2019 (print ed.). Overcrowded conditions are more widespread at migrant centers along the southern border than initially revealed, a new report said. ICE logo

The disturbing findings include standing-room-only cells, children without showers and hot meals, and detainees clamoring desperately for release.

Trump Edicts

ny times logoNew York Times, Justice Dept. Will Look to Add Citizenship Question to Census, Alan Rappeport, Maggie Haberman and Michael Wines, July 3, 2019. Justice Department officials reversed course and said they were hunting for a way to restore the citizenship question on orders of President Trump. A day earlier, the officials said that the census forms were being printed without the question. A day after pledging us census bureauthat the 2020 census would not ask respondents about their citizenship, the Justice Department reversed course on Wednesday and said it was hunting for a way to restore the question on orders from President Trump.

Officials told a federal judge in Maryland that they thought there would be a way to still add the question, despite printing deadlines, and that they would ask the Supreme Court to send the case to district court with instructions to remedy the situation.

President Trump had been frustrated with Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross for mishandling the White House’s effort to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census, according to an administration official, and said on Wednesday that he was “absolutely moving forward” with plans to add it despite a Supreme Court decision last week rejecting the move.…

June 2019 News Reports

 

 

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Editor’s Choice: Scroll below for our monthly blend of mainstream and alternative June 2019 news and views

Note: Excerpts are from the authors’ words except for subheads and occasional “Editor’s notes” such as this. 

June 3

Swamp Watch

ny times logoelaine chao oNew York Times, A ‘Bridge’ to China, and Her Family’s Business, in the Trump Cabinet, Michael Forsythe, Eric Lipton, Keith Bradsher and Sui-Lee Wee, June 3, 2019 (print ed.). Elaine Chao, right, the transportation secretary, has repeatedly used her connections in China to boost the profile of her family’s shipping company. Her proximity to Foremost Group has raised ethics questions, as the firm benefits from policies in China that are roiling the White House.

In China, the Chaos are no ordinary family. They run an American shipping company with deep ties to the economic and political elite in China, where most of the company’s business is centered.

The email arrived in Washington before dawn. An official at the American Embassy in Beijing was urgently seeking advice from the State Department about transportation dept logoan “ethics question.”

Ms. Chao’s office had made a series of unorthodox requests related to her first scheduled visit to China as a Trump cabinet member, according to people with knowledge of the email. Among them: asking federal officials to help coordinate travel arrangements for at least one family member and include relatives china flag Smallin meetings with government officials.

The trip was abruptly canceled by Ms. Chao after the ethics question was referred to officials in the State and Transportation Departments and, separately, after The New York Times and others made inquiries about her itinerary and companions.

ny times logogeorge h w bush mitch mcconnell 1991 elaine chaoNew York Times, The Chao family has deep ties to the world’s two largest economies. Here are five takeaways, Michael Forsythe and Eric Lipton, June 3, 2019 (print ed.). The family of Elaine Chao, the transportation secretary and wife of Mitch McConnell, the Senate majority leader (shown together in a 1991 photo with President George H.…

May 2019 News Reports

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Editor’s Choice: Scroll below for our monthly blend of mainstream and alternative May 2019 news and views

Note: Excerpts are from the authors’ words except for subheads and occasional “Editor’s notes” such as this. 

May 4

U.S. Justice & Constitutional Crisis william barr image by donkehotey dmca

Attorney General William P. Barr (Image by Donkehotey via dmca)

washington post logoWashington Post, Trump finds in Barr the attorney general — and shield — he long sought, Matt Zapotosky, Josh Dawsey, Tom Hamburger and Ashley Parker, May 4, 2019 (print ed.). For a time, President Trump was reluctant to select William P. Barr as his attorney general. The veteran Justice Department official from the George H.W. Bush administration was not a longtime Trump loyalist, and the president wondered whether one of his own political allies might serve better as a shield, people familiar with the matter said.

But Trump was ultimately persuaded — in part because his lawyers and advisers told him Barr was a strong supporter of presidential power and unafraid of taking on critics. This week, the president has been thrilled with his choice, particularly after Barr sparred so vigorously with Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday that some were left wondering whether he viewed himself as the president’s defense attorney, according to people familiar with the matter, who like others spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.

In Barr’s first three months in the job, his actions have served to protect Trump, though his motive is up for debate. Barr’s defenders note that the attorney general has long advocated strengthening the power of the executive branch, and the attorney general has told other lawyers that he is more interested in protecting the presidency than the man in the job.

jerrold nadler o SmallBut critics say that Barr has emerged as the partisan champion Trump always wanted — one willing to defend the president’s most questionable conduct, put a Trumpian spin on the results of special counsel Robert S.…

April 2019 News Reports

Editor’s Choice: Scroll below for our monthly blend of mainstream and alternative April 2019 news and views

Note: Excerpts are from the authors’ words except for subheads and occasional “Editor’s notes” such as this. 

April 3

Trump Probes

washington post logoWashington Post, House Democrats seek six years of Trump’s tax returns, setting stage for fight, Erica Werner, Damian Paletta and Josh Dawsey, April 3, 2019. ​”This request is about policy, not politics,” the Ways and Means Committee chairman said. The president has said he does not plan to hand over his tax returns to Congress — and that he irs logowould fight it to the Supreme Court, according to two administration officials.

The chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee asked the IRS on Wednesday for six years of President Trump’s personal and business tax richard neal oreturns, a request with which the president immediately said he was not inclined to comply.

The committee chair’s letter to the Internal Revenue Service — and Trump’s immediate and public response — set up what is likely to become an intense and drawn-out court fight as Democrats push to see tax records they think can shed light on numerous aspects of Trump’s business dealings and Trump resists their demands. The Ways and Means chairman’s request was expected but nonetheless represented a significant escalation in House Democrats’ wide-ranging probes of Trump and his administration.

The IRS was given until April 10 to respond. The panel’s chairman was able to make the request because of a 1924 law that gives the chairmen of the House Ways and Means Committee and the Senate Finance Committee broad powers to request and receive the tax returns of any American.

“Congress, as a coequal branch of government, has a duty to conduct oversight of departments and officials,” Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard E.

March 2019 News Reports

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Editor’s Choice: Scroll below for our monthly blend of mainstream and alternative March 2019 news and views

Note: Excerpts are from the authors’ words except for subheads and occasional “Editor’s notes” such as this. 

March 2

Trump Banking Disclosures Near?

Palmer Report, Analysis: Maxine Waters makes stunning revelation about Donald Trump’s international finances, Bill Palmer, March 2, 2019. Donald Trump spent the past two years hurling one dishonest, vicious, and outright racist insult at Congresswoman Maxine Waters after another. That didn’t work out too well for Trump, as she’s now Chairwoman Maxine Waters, and she maxine watershappens to be in charge of a House committee that has the power to dig deep into Trump’s international finances. Waters just revealed that she’s got him by the you-know-what.

Maxine Waters (shown in a file photo) appeared on the Chris Hayes show on MSNBC on Friday night and announced that her staffers are now working directly with Deutsche Bank, with regard to the series of suspicious loans that the bank has made to Donald Trump over the years.

While Deutsche Bank has made previous claims to the media that it was cooperating with investigators, this is the first time one of the investigators has publicly confirmed that the bank’s cooperation is for real. So what does this mean?

bill palmer report logo headerBack in early 2017, a major British newspaper reported that U.S. and UK regulators had busted Deutsche Bank for laundering billions of dollars of Russian money into the hands of clients in a handful of cities including New York City. Palmer Report pointed out at the time that this lined up rather conveniently with the “loans” that Deutsche Bank kept floating to New York City resident Donald Trump, even after he became a poor credit risk – and much of the money deutsche bank logonever was repaid.…

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