Monday Open Thread | Fmr. DNI Clapper says “our institutions are under assault.”

Washington (CNN)Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said Sunday that he thinks US institutions are under assault from President Donald Trump.

“I think in many ways our institutions are under assault both externally — and that’s the big news here is the Russian interference in our election system — and I think as well our institutions are under assault internally,” Clapper told anchor Jake Tapper on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
Pressed if he meant US institutions were under assault internally from the President, Clapper responded, “Exactly.”
Clapper called on the other branches of the federal government to step up in their roles as a check on the executive.

“The founding fathers, in their genius, created a system of three co-equal branches of government and a built-in system of checks and balances,” Clapper said. “I feel as though that is under assault and is eroding.”
Democrats and several Republicans in Congress have publicly mulled pressing the Department of Justice to appoint a special prosecutor or establishing an independent investigative body that could look into allegations of potential collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign in what the US intelligence community says was Moscow’s efforts to influence the US election.

The Senate must confirm a new FBI director once Trump names a candidate; that FBI director will take a lead role in the Russia investigation.
Utah Republican Sen. Mike Lee advocated on “Fox News Sunday” that Trump appoint Judge Merrick Garland to head the FBI. Josh Holmes, a former aide to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, said later on the program that the Republican leader had just called him to say he would support Garland for FBI’s top spot.

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About SouthernGirl2

A Native Texan who adores baby kittens, loves horses, rodeos, pomegranates, & collect Eagles. Enjoys politics, games shows, & dancing to all types of music. Loves discussing and learning about different cultures. A Phi Theta Kappa lifetime member with a passion for Social & Civil Justice.
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47 Responses to Monday Open Thread | Fmr. DNI Clapper says “our institutions are under assault.”

  1. Liza says:

    Anyone want to guess how this ends?

    I’m at a loss.

    Impeachment? Resignation? Torches and pitchforks? Clogged arteries? 2018?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ametia says:

    #45 needs to BEGONE Fuck letting go of his staff. He goes FIRST

    Like

  3. rikyrah says:

    The curve for unqualified mediocre White Men is REAL.

    What would be happening if 44 or Hillary had done this?

    EXACTLY!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ametia says:

      And this orange POS is getting ready to travel abroad.

      Liked by 1 person

    • eliihass says:

      You’re too kind…

      This is not a ‘learning curve’…nor is it about ‘learning curves’…

      It’s a shame that everyone’s been psychologically conditioned so that the common default response/position is to automatically continue to allow this buffoon the benefit of the doubt by simply assuming ignorance and stupidity – and never attributing any other sinister motives to his continuous and never-ending alarming breaches of what are otherwise traditional structures of our democracy and inherent integrity in them that the US president/commander in chief is at the very barest minimum, required and taken for granted, understands and fiercely protects …

      The idea that the greedy, dubious folk who surround this buffoon…the idea that these folks who willingly aligned themselves with this severely corrupt and tainted buffoon – and are now enjoying the unearned and undeserved and unbelievable power and perks of the highest office in the world… their uncommon and influence and access and involvement at the highest level…

      The idea that these folks who now even if full evidence of treason and other impeachable offenses are laid bare and these folks are smacked in the face with the most damning evidence again and again…would rather self-interestedly stay denying and keep covering up, because they too have now tasted and are never going to give up their new undeserved power and access without a fight – integrity and credibility be damned… and would have to be dragged away along with the buffoon, kicking and screaming too…

      McMaster, Dina Powell etc. and any number of currently willing accessories to treason …should’ve all since lost any semblance of credibility – if they ever really had any – the very moment they voluntarily aligned themselves with/signed on and pledged allegiance and their undying loyalty to this buffoon…signing on simply, as barely acceptable alternatives to the highest positions and White House offices, and the consequent power and perks they would never ever have dreamed of or have been otherwise even marginally considered for, accepted or enjoyed…had there not been the lowest bar set – and anyone who wasn’t seen as outrightly crazy and not terribly corrupt or completely compromised or tarnished, viewed relievedly as a whew, thank God, dodged another bullet choice – no matter how ill-equipped or mediocre, or self-serving and self-interested still…

      As far as these folks and others are concerned, there is no honor or integrity where money, power and insane perks and access and complete control of it at the highest level is at stake..

      These are not honorable people…and these are certainly not patriots…

      These folks are all terribly compromised – motivated entirely for greed, power and self-aggrandizement…and none of them are about to give up any of this new-found unbelievable power, perks and the even cushier lives and existence they now occupy and thoroughly enjoy, and would never ever have imagined in their wildest dreams…

      In what world and in what alternative, alternative, alternative universe would Beauregard Sessions or Dina Powell or Steve Bannon or Rick Perry or Mike Pompeo – or any number of these ridiculous folks be occupying the positions they currently pretend-occupy …?

      And as long as our vain, self-obsessed media keeps mindlessly trivializing and stepping all over important and verifiable evidence and important news of serious breaches of our country’s secrets, institutions and democracy, the longer these folks remain staunchly and immovably in place, become even stronger and even more tethered to their spots…and devise even more ways to keep their new found power and lavish perks…making it even harder and almost impossible to remove them…even if they walked around publicly wearing the most damning evidence of treason…

      What we have instead are all manner of supposed ‘patriots’ who should know and do better, whoring and parading themselves …auditioning for future positions should any open up as in the case of the newly vacant FBI director job…

      Like

  4. rikyrah says:

    The Everloving PHUCK 😬😬😬
    He revealed classified information to the RUSSIANS?!?!

    TRAITOR 😬😬😬

    Goddamn you, Mayo Nation 😠😠😠

    Liked by 2 people

  5. rikyrah says:

    White House staff learns how to manipulate Trump
    05/15/17 04:14 PM
    By Steve Benen

    Barack Obama sat down with the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation recently, as part of the former president receiving the foundation’s Profile in Courage Award, and he was asked about media, echo chambers, and media consumption.

    “The challenge is that the curation, the sorting, the filters that might have helped us distinguish between what’s true and what’s false, have all broken down,” Obama said, “and it puts a greater responsibility on each of us I think to be able to be good consumers of information.”

    And with this in mind, Politico has an amazing report today on the degree to which Donald Trump is not a good consumer of information.

    White House chief of staff Reince Priebus issued a stern warning at a recent senior staff meeting: Quit trying to secretly slip stuff to President Trump.

    Just days earlier, K.T. McFarland, the deputy national security adviser, had given Trump a printout of two Time magazine covers. One, supposedly from the 1970s, warned of a coming ice age; the other, from 2008, about surviving global warming, according to four White House officials familiar with the matter.

    Trump quickly got lathered up about the media’s hypocrisy. But there was a problem. The 1970s cover was fake, part of an Internet hoax that’s circulated for years. Staff chased down the truth and intervened before Trump tweeted or talked publicly about it.

    That’s quite an anecdote. On one of the most pressing, if not the single most critical, issues in the world, an unqualified deputy national security adviser directly provided the sitting president of the United States with bogus information, apparently intended to persuade Trump not to trust (a) climate science; and (b) major news organizations.

    Like

    • eliihass says:

      “…And with this in mind, Politico has an amazing report today on the degree to which Donald Trump is not a good consumer of information…”

      Oy..

      As if even a kindergartner at this point needs an ‘amazing report’ to know this…

      Like

  6. rikyrah says:

    A president cannot ‘hire and fire whoever he wants’
    05/15/17 12:52 PM
    By Steve Benen
    With the White House gripped by scandal, the various Sunday shows were eager to have members of Donald Trump’s team on the air to address a variety of questions. That didn’t happen.

    On Fox News, Chris Wallace told viewers yesterday he extended an invitation to the White House, which said it’d offer guests to discuss the president’s foreign travel, but not Trump’s decision to fire FBI Director James Comey. When the host balked, the White House “put those officials on other shows,” Wallace said.

    And one of those guests was Nikki Haley, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, who had a line at the ready when ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos brought up the president’s scandals and Comey’s firing.

    “What I can tell you is the president is the CEO of the country. He can hire and fire whoever he wants. That’s his right. Whether you agree with it or not, it’s the truth…. [W]e have to remember, [Trump] can hire and fire anybody else that he wants to do.”

    ……………………………

    Moreover, while the president has broad personnel powers, they’re not unlimited. Yes, on paper, Trump had the legal authority to fire the director of the FBI, but a president can’t simply “hire and fire whoever he wants.” Nearly every top position requires Senate confirmation – including the leadership post at the FBI – and a wide variety of other executive-branch positions have civil-service protections that require a good reason before an official is dismissed.

    But more to the point, a president can’t obstruct justice, either.

    Like

  7. rikyrah says:

    It’s not “populism”; it’s racism
    Liberal Librarian
    May 9, 2017

    John Legend wrote a great tweet:
    I would like the media to stop using “populist” as a synonym or euphemism for white nationalist or racist. They’re not the same thing.

    — John Legend (@johnlegend) May 9, 2017

    In a few words he makes a very telling point.

    As we’ve seen a wave of “populism” sweep the West, one thing we haven’t seen is large numbers of people of color join this great wave. One would think that a truly populist movement would incorporate exactly those people most harmed by “neo-liberal” economics and a “global elite” which favors it. However, we don’t see that.

    People of color, by and large, are excluded from these populist movements. (One can argue that Bernie Sanders brings some in, but even there they are exceptions.) What we’ve seen with Brexit, Donald Trump, Marine Le Pen, Geert Wilders, and so on, is that these populist movements are comprised almost entirely of people of European descent. In other words, these movements are movements of white grievance.

    Sure, you’ll have your tokens: Killer Mike, Ben Carson, the black politician which the Front Nationale trotted out for the media this past Sunday. But their presence just reinforces the fact that this is a movement of whites for whites, and any people of color present are just window dressing to obscure that fact.

    What “economic anxiety” is being displayed by the Klansmen and Neo-Nazis “defending” Civil War monuments in New Orleans from being removed? What “economic anxiety” weighed on the mind of English and Welsh voters as they voted to exit a bloc which had brought them peace and prosperity?

    Liked by 3 people

  8. Like

  9. rikyrah says:

    Trump’s son to attend private school in Maryland
    Reuters REUTERS
    15 MAY 2017 AT 12:11 ET

    U.S. S. President Donald Trump’s youngest son, 11-year-old Barron, will attend a private school just outside Washington in the fall, the White House said on Monday.

    His enrollment at Andrew’s Episcopal School in Potomac, Maryland, comes as he prepares to move to the White House with his mother, first lady Melania Trump. When Trump took office on Jan. 20, Barron stayed behind in New York City with his mother to finish out his current school year.

    Melania Trump announced the choice of school in a statement.

    “The mission of St. Andrew’s is ‘to know and inspire each child in an inclusive community dedicated to exceptional teaching, learning, and service,’ all of which appealed to our family,” she said.

    St. Andrew’s, located about 18 miles (30 km) northwest of the White House, or about a 30-minute drive, has 580 students enrolled from preschool through grade 12, according to the school. Annual tuition for upper grades is about $40,000, and all of its students go on to college, its website said.

    Like

  10. rikyrah says:

    Farmworkers get sick after Trump’s EPA reverses Obama and approves poison that damages kids’ brains
    David Edwards DAVID EDWARDS
    15 MAY 2017 AT 10:25 ET

    Doozens of farmworkers were pulled out of the fields last week after they were poisoned by a chemical that was recently approved by President Donald Trump’s administration — even though the previous administration had taken steps to ban it.

    KTEG reported that at least 50 farmworkers were exposed to the pesticide on Friday, causing cabbage harvesting operations to be shut down at Dan Andrews Farms.

    “We started getting an odor, pesticide odor, coming in from the mandarin orchards west of our field,” Dan Andrews supervisor Efron Zavalza told the station.

    Zavalza explained that Vulcan pesticide, which contains a poison called chlorpyrifos, was sprayed on the orchards the night before workers came to work the cabbage fields.

    “I’m not pointing fingers or saying it was done incorrectly. It was just an unfortunate thing the way it was drifted. The wind came and pushed everything east and you know we were caught in the path,” he observed.

    …………….

    According to Mother Jones, the Obama administration had taken steps to effectively ban the use of chlorpyrifos, but that changed after Trump appointed Scott Pruitt to lead the EPA.

    “By reversing the previous Administration’s steps to ban one of the most widely used pesticides in the world, we are returning to using sound science in decision-making – rather than predetermined results,” the agency said in a statement in March

    Like

  11. rikyrah says:

    ‘We are a cautionary tale’: Kansas feels the pain of massive Trump-style tax cuts
    In 2012, Kansas did what Donald Trump wants to do: it introduced huge tax cuts to try to boost growth. Today, the state is out of money – and residents are angry
    by Dominic Rushe in Kansas

    Kansas is broke – but you wouldn’t guess it looking at its shining state capitol in Topeka. The imposing limestone monument, crowned by a shiny copper dome and limned with John Steuart Curry’s luminous murals, has just undergone a $325m facelift. What’s happening inside the state house is a lot less pretty, and may well foreshadow the far uglier battle looming over the future of taxation in the United States.

    Trump under fire over ‘huge tax cut for the rich’
    Read more
    Last month, Donald Trump’s two key economic allies, the treasury secretary. Stephen Mnuchin. and Trump’s chief economic adviser, Gary Cohn, unveiled the outline of Donald Trump’s much-trailed tax plan. The biggest tax cuts “in history” would slash taxes for business, simplify taxes for everyone else, and “pay for themselves” by stimulating economic growth, Trump’s fiscal duo claimed.

    The plan’s similarity to the one that has left Kansas in crisis is “unbelievable”, according to Duane Goossen, the former Kansas secretary of administration.

    The economic spirit behind Trump’s plan is Arthur Laffer – the go-to guru of “supply-side economics” since the Reagan era, and one of the architects of Kansas governor Sam Brownback’s original tax plan.

    The former member of Reagan’s economic policy advisory board is best known for the “Laffer curve”, an illustration of the theory (not his own) that economic activity is tied to taxation, and that lower taxes, up to a point, mean more revenues.

    ……………………………….

    Campaigning for re-election in 2014, Brownback pledged his tax plans would add 100,000 new jobs over four years. By March this year, the state had added just 12,400 private-sector jobs. Kansas isn’t even keeping up with its neighbors. Hiring in Kansas increased by 0.3% in the last year; Missouri’s growth rate over that same period was 1.4%, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

    The prop of the Brownback plan, as with Trump’s, was a huge cut to taxes paid by limited liability companies (LLCs) – and so-called “pass-through” businesses – which meant independent business owners would pay no state tax on the bulk, if not all, of their income. Those businesses would then go out and invest and create new jobs, or so the argument went.

    At the time, Kansas had about 190,000 LLCs. Now it has about 300,000, but so far they have not spurred a new hiring drive in the state. “There is no evidence whatsoever that suggests this plan worked,” said Goossen.

    Like

  12. rikyrah says:

    THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW 5/12/17
    Klobuchar: Investigators ‘will get to the bottom’ of Trump-Russia
    Senator Amy Klobuchar, member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, talks with Rachel Maddow about the pressure Democrats are exerting on the Department of Justice for a special prosecutor in the Trump-Russia investigation.

    Like

  13. rikyrah says:

    Red flags: Dems up 16 points in generic House ballot, per @quinnipiac, and: https://t.co/ZokPzUeEX6 pic.twitter.com/8xI6S8UyB4

    — Joy Reid (@JoyAnnReid) May 15, 2017

    .@Quinnipiac Redder flags from the NBC/WSJ poll: Trump pulling the GOP under w/ not just whites, but seniors & suburbanites-AKA reliable midterm voters: pic.twitter.com/mbxB8bpB9k

    — Joy Reid (@JoyAnnReid) May 15, 2017

    Like

  14. rikyrah says:

    Jack Schlossberg in Conversation with President Obama on Political Courage @JFKLibrary https://t.co/HAzPQIyERw#44ever pic.twitter.com/CvAG6I5PsY

    — meta (@metaquest) May 15, 2017

    Like

  15. rikyrah says:

    THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW 5/12/17
    Financial crimes unit to help Trump-Russia investigation
    Rachel Maddow reports that with the Trump-Russia investigation expanding into Donald Trump’s businesses, the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network has agreed to share important information with investigators.

    Like

  16. rikyrah says:

    * In the new national NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, Donald Trump’s approval rating is down to just 39% — a point Barack Obama never reached in his two terms as president.

    Like

  17. Pay attention….Trump’s speech honoring police is part of Trump and Jeff Sessions plan to UP their attack on Black people.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. rikyrah says:

    Three months in, chaos grips Donald Trump’s White House
    05/15/17 08:00 AM
    By Steve Benen

    In Friday’s White House press briefing, a reporter told Press Secretary Sean Spicer he’d spoken to a former FBI official who was alarmed by Donald Trump threatening former FBI Director James Comey via Twitter. The reporter’s source said the president, in his words, “is simply ‘out of control.’”

    Spicer replied, “That’s, frankly, offensive.” He did not elaborate.

    The response was about as good as any – it wasn’t as if the president’s chief spokesperson could acknowledge from the podium that Trump really is “out of control” – but the reporter’s FBI contact is hardly the only person thinking along these lines. The morning after the president fired the person overseeing the investigation into his campaign, a White House staffer told Politico the White House’s team had slipped into “total and complete chaos – even by our standards.”

    Over the weekend, the Washington Post published a piece that characterized the White House as a dysfunctional mess, led by a president whose stability is in doubt.

    In deciding to abruptly fire FBI Director James B. Comey, President Trump characteristically let himself be guided by his own instincts – fueled by his creeping anger and sense of victimhood about a probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 election that he considers a “witch hunt.”

    The aftermath is a presidency rocked by its most serious self-inflicted crisis yet, exposing dysfunction and distrust within his West Wing and imperiling his agenda. The momentum for the health-care bill that passed the House is gone, and a week scheduled to be devoted to Trump’s preparations for a high-stakes foreign trip was overtaken by distractions and fury.

    Across Washington, Trump’s allies have been buzzing about the staff’s competence as well as the president’s state of mind. One GOP figure close to the White House mused privately about whether Trump was “in the grip of some kind of paranoid delusion.”

    Like

  19. rikyrah says:

    Paul Ryan carries a fig leaf for the emperor with no clothes
    05/15/17 10:00 AM
    By Steve Benen

    In the latest episode of “Saturday Night Live,” there was a great sketch in which “Donald Trump” sat down for an interview with NBC News’ “Lester Holt” – actors, of course, portrayed the real people – only to be interrupted by an overeager young man who wanted to give the president some ice cream.

    The young man was an actor playing House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.).

    It was a brutal reminder that the Republican leader’s willingness to play the role of a pathetic lackey to the White House has reached a point at which Ryan’s reputation has literally become a cultural punch line.

    And while the problem isn’t entirely new, last week brought the issue to the fore in new ways. After Trump fired FBI Director James Comey, for example, and leading lawmakers were sharing their perspective, Ryan remained silent for nearly a full day – before eventually endorsing the president’s abuse. By Friday, the House Speaker seemed eager to walk a fine line in which he was supportive of Trump though not responsible for Trump.

    “I’m focusing on what’s in my control, and that is what is Congress doing to solve people’s problems,” Ryan said at an event in Delavan, Wisconsin, according to CNN. […]

    “I’m working on making sure that we make good on our promises and fix people’s problems,” Ryan said, according to CNN. “That’s what’s in my control, and that’s what I’m focused on.”

    Putting aside the fact that Ryan isn’t fixing anyone’s problems – unless you consider it a “problem” when Americans have access to affordable health care – his line is unsatisfying because it’s wrong.

    ……………………………

    The New Republic’s Brian Beutler had a great piece along these lines:

    Should Ryan rediscover that the House he leads can investigate and appropriate in ways that force the executive branch to surface important information, there would be nothing extraordinary about it. The House has been doing that for centuries. What Ryan has done is surrender his own fundamental powers to Trump, knowing that people he likes and respects are telling reporters that Trump’s presence in the White House terrifies them.

    Republicans know that, one way or another, this could end horrifically. They know they will be complicit if it does. And they’re abetting Trump anyway.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. rikyrah says:

    Powerful NJ Republican congressman wrote to a local bank to tell them an activist bothering him works there: https://t.co/REl4VjuF6T

    — Daniel Dale (@ddale8) May 15, 2017

    this is only way @USRepRodney can stay in office: personally try to suppress the vote https://t.co/Y6J6zpR4Kt

    — Eric Boehlert (@EricBoehlert) May 15, 2017

    Like

  21. rikyrah says:

    Trump puts ‘another victory on the scoreboard’ for Russia
    05/15/17 11:20 AM
    By Steve Benen

    On ABC’s “This Week,” George Stephanopoulos asked James Clapper, the former Director of National Intelligence, if Russia has “succeeded in their basic goal of undermining public faith in the U.S. democratic process?” Clapper said Russians “have to be celebrating with a minimal expenditure of resources and what they have accomplished.”

    But the guest specifically pointed to Donald Trump firing FBI Director James Comey as a key development, not just in the scandal and its effect on U.S. institutions, but also because Comey was overseeing the investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to its allies in Moscow. “The Russians have to consider this as another victory on the scoreboard for them,” Clapper added.
    It’s part of an under-appreciated dynamic. Indeed, the Washington Post had a good piece today on Vladimir Putin’s government reaping unexpected rewards from the new Republican administration.

    Russia has yet to collect much of what it hoped for from the Trump administration, including the lifting of U.S. sanctions and recognition of its annexation of Crimea.

    But the Kremlin has collected a different return on its effort to help elect Trump in last year’s election: chaos in Washington.

    Consider recent developments from Moscow’s perspective. Russia wants strained relations between the United States and its Western allies, and Trump is making that happen. Russia wants to see a marginalized U.S. State Department, and Trump is happy to oblige. Russia wants to see political chaos grip the U.S. capital, and Trump is delivering in a big way.

    Russia didn’t like the counter-espionage investigation Jim Comey was overseeing (and escalating), and soon after Trump fired Comey. Putin asked Trump to welcome Russian officials into the White House last week – including a photographer for a state-run Russian outlet – and Trump did exactly that.

    Russia wants U.S. leaders to raise doubts about the country’s role in attacking the American presidential election last year, and Trump, even now, continues to suggest there’s ambiguity about which country was responsible for the 2016 intervention.

    Like

  22. rikyrah says:

    Trump no longer wants to talk about secret White House recordings
    05/15/17 10:40 AM
    By Steve Benen

    It may prove to be the most consequential of all of Donald Trump’s tweets. On Friday morning, as part of a not-so-veiled threat towards former FBI Director James Comey, the president said Comey “better hope that there are no ‘tapes’ of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!”

    Hours later, the White House would neither confirm nor deny the existence of the president’s secret recordings.

    Trump sat down with Fox News’ Jeanine Pirro late Friday, and when the issue came up, the president was quick to swat it down.

    PIRRO: What about the idea that in a tweet you said there might be tape recordings–

    TRUMP: Well, I can’t talk about. I won’t talk about that.

    That’s very likely the line the White House’s counsel’s office told Trump to take, but it was far too late. The president’s tweet already opened the door that won’t be easily closed.

    The significance of this, of course, is that these recordings – if they exist – can be subpoenaed. This is especially true in regards to recordings related to James Comey’s firing, since the president may have obstructed justice during their chat.

    Like

  23. Liked by 1 person

  24. Like

  25. Liked by 2 people

  26. rikyrah says:

    White House’s source balks at Trump’s dubious Russia assertions
    05/15/17 08:40 AM
    By Steve Benen

    White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters on Friday that Donald Trump believes allegations about collusion between his campaign and Russia “is a hoax.” Spicer added, “It’s been reaffirmed by several people, including [Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck] Grassley and others who have spoken to him.”

    Later in the briefing, Spicer again pointed to the Iowa Republican, saying Chuck Grassley and others have said that on the question of collusion, “there was none.”

    Grassley has been quite loyal to this White House, and he’s voted with Donald Trump’s position this year more than 97% of the time, but when Yahoo News followed up with the senator’s office, Spicer’s claims ran into a little trouble.

    Just hours after White House spokesman Sean Spicer said President Trump had received assurances from a key senator that the idea of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia was a “hoax,” a spokesman for the senator, Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, denied any such conversation.

    “Sen. Grassley has not spoken to President Trump about what he has learned in briefings related to investigations into Russian interference in our elections, and he has never referred to the notion of collusion as a ‘hoax,’” Grassley’s spokesman, Taylor Foy, emailed Yahoo News. Grassley is the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee and together with ranking minority member Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., has been briefed on details of the FBI investigation into Russian meddling in last year’s presidential election.

    Oops.

    Like

  27. Liked by 1 person

  28. rikyrah says:

    It’s Time to Investigate the President for Possible Obstruction of Justice
    by Nancy LeTourneau May 12, 2017 10:03 AM\

    Last night I wrote about the bombshells in the clips released from Trump’s interview with Lester Holt. To recap, the most significant being that the president admitted that, on three separate occasions, he asked the former FBI director if he was under investigation. That alone was jaw-dropping because it points to a possible obstruction of justice.

    When the entire interview was released, it became even more so. Here is the significant exchange:

    He [Rosenstein] made a recommendation, he’s highly respected, very good guy, very smart guy. The Democrats like him, the Republicans like him. He made a recommendation. But regardless of [the] recommendation, I was going to fire Comey. Knowing there was no good time do it!

    And in fact when I decided to just do it I said to myself, I said, “You know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made up story, it’s an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should’ve won.”

    The President of the United States just admitted on national television that, when he made the decision to fire Comey, he was was thinking about the Russia investigation and implied that he wanted to end it.

    Meanwhile, the president isn’t the only one dropping bombshells. Friends of James Comey are starting to talk too. Michael Schmidt reports that a couple of them said that Trump invited Comey to a dinner in which he asked the FBI director for loyalty.

    Like

  29. Liked by 1 person

  30. rikyrah says:

    Brothers in Harm: O’Reilly and Beck Would Make a Gruesome Twosome
    by D.R. Tucker May 14, 2017 11:00 AM

    Former Fox News star Glenn Beck has already proven that it’s hard to keep a bad man down–and now, he wants to revive the career of ex-colleague Bill O’Reilly:

    I would like to say publicly, honestly — and I know you’re not going to get into this, so just shut the fat trap — it’s why I would like for you to work for TheBlaze. Because I could not get the cable coverage by myself because — not powerful enough unless you have a giant corporation behind you, and when you have that, then you’re beholden to somebody. But if we could unite our powers for good as opposed to evil — but that’s another conversation.

    It wouldn’t be that much of a surprise if O’Reilly casts his lot with Beck: as we speak, Billo is groping for continued media relevance, and a move to Beck’s outfit would certainly make headlines. A man with O’Reilly’s ego needs a platform bigger than his own podcast to influence media narratives; TheBlaze isn’t Fox, but it’s presumably good enough for him.

    Like

  31. rikyrah says:

    Comey Threatened Consequences for FBI Agents Who Leaked to Giuliani
    by Nancy LeTourneau May 10, 2017 2:44 PM

    In light of the fact that FBI Director James Comey was just fired, this testimony from him last week could be significant:

    In case you are unable to watch, Comey threatened that there would be “severe consequences” for anyone who leaked information to Rudy Giuliani and others about the investigations into Hillary Clinton’s emails.

    As a reminder, three days before Comey released the infamous letter on October 28th, Giuliani told the hosts at Fox and Friends that the Trump campaign had “a few surprises left” during a discussion about Clinton’s emails. A few days after Comey’s letter, he was back on the program saying:

    “I did nothing to get it out, I had no role in it,” he said. “Did I hear about it? You’re darn right I heard about it, and I can’t even repeat the language that I heard from the former FBI agents.”

    Under questioning by Sen. Leahy, Comey indicated that they were investigating who might have leaked that kind of information to Giuliani. So someone other than Donald Trump had a reason to want to “shut that whole thing down.”

    Giuliani’s ties to the New York Office of the FBI—which seems to be a hotbed of rogue agents— are deep.

    Like

  32. Like

  33. rikyrah says:

    Rival Senate healthcare group seeks to make waves
    BY NATHANIEL WEIXEL – 05/14/17 05:15 PM EDT

    A rival group of Republican senators is seeking leverage to influence the direction of the Senate’s ObamaCare replacement bill.

    The group, led by Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Bill Cassidy (R-La.), has been meeting “a couple times a week,” according to Sen. Shelly Moore Capitol (R-W.Va.).

    Cassidy is a physician and Collins is a former state insurance commissioner. Both have been outspoken opponents of the House-passed American Healthcare Act, and have co-sponsored their own version of an ObamaCare repeal bill called the Patient Freedom Act.

    Cassidy told The Hill he and Collins have been meeting with Senate leaders to talk about their legislation. However, he noted the politics of the Senate mean that every member’s voice matters.

    “When you only have 52 senators, everybody has significant leverage. That tight vote margin means everyone is essential,” Cassidy said.

    The main GOP working group on healthcare includes 13 men backed by Senate leadership who are seeking to bridge the divide between conservatives and centrists.

    What ever legislation emerges from that group is likely to be the bill that comes to the Senate floor.

    But if all of the Senate’s Democrats oppose the measure, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) will only be able to afford two defections.

    That gives the other group leverage.

    “Let’s look at it practically,” Capito told The Hill. “You can only lose two votes on any one issue … so I think a bloc of four or five can be very effective.”

    Health lobbyists have noted many members of the leadership-led group have been fairly measured in their criticisms of the House bill approved earlier this month.

    Collins and Cassidy, in contrast, both seem keen on turning sharply from the House bill.

    Like

  34. rikyrah says:

    Despite what you hear on Twitter today, Republicans don’t give a damn about women

    Trevor LaFauci May 14, 2017
    No, GOP.

    No matter how many “I love mom” twitter messages you post today, you don’t get to proclaim your admiration for a group you clearly hate.

    And hate women you do. You hate them because they threaten the patriarchy that you feel you are entitled to maintaining. You much prefer a world where women are seen and not heard. A world where women have the good sense to maintain the home and raise the children while the men go out and bring home the bacon. A world where women are content to work in entry-level positions where they won’t have to worry about career advancement. A world where advanced degrees for women are unnecessary and are unbecoming of a woman who has the audacity to even appear ambitious. You prefer this world because it makes sense to your antiquated sense of manliness and its intrinsic relationship to one’s power.

    Powerful women scare you. They threaten you because they don’t fit your preconceived notion of how the world works. If a woman can be equally talented as you then that means you actually have to compete with that woman. And if that woman proves to be more talented than you then that means she is actually superior to you and you simply can’t have that. You can’t have that because it goes against everything you’ve come to believe. Because you’ve been conditioned to believe that through hard work, life will work out for you in the way that it should. White privilege is a hell of a drug and the White male patriarchy is that drug on steroids. It gets you all fired up and convinces you that you can do anything. You see the world as your own personal oyster, simply there for the taking.

    Like

  35. rikyrah says:

    These are people who came to work everyday. This is a problem?

    Six-Figure Payouts for Sick Leave Spur Outrage, Calls for Overhaul

    When the president of a Massachusetts community college retired in March, in addition to his pension, he received a one-time $266,060 payment for 1,250 unused sick days earned over his 46-year career.

    In Pennsylvania, a state police major who retired in October netted $142,315 for 242 sick days he never used. And in Florida, 45,000 eligible state workers are due to receive a total $154 million in sick leave payouts.

    Liabilities for public workers’ sick leave haven’t drawn as much attention as hulking pension and health care costs faced by states, but they still add stress to strained state and local budgets. In several states, giant payouts are prompting outrage and calls for changes from taxpayers and lawmakers.

    Colleen Garry, a Democratic representative from Massachusetts, said she would like to see sick day payouts eliminated for public workers earning more than $100,000. “That is just greedy as far as I’m concerned,” Ms. Garry said.

    Public worker advocates, however, say that large payments are generally limited to police and fire officials and top management, with most retirees receiving far more modest sums. “It’s a small retirement benefit,” said Hetty Rosenstein, New Jersey director of the Communications Workers of America, a union representing public workers in the state.

    Like

  36. rikyrah says:

    Oh yeah.. PHUCK OUTTA HERE about Merrick Garland for the FBI Director😠😠😠😠

    Liked by 2 people

  37. rikyrah says:

    He tells no lies-Clapper.

    Liked by 1 person

  38. rikyrah says:

    Morning Everyone😐😐😮

    Like

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