Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-04-11 06:11am

The Justice Department has adopted a narrow interpretation of the Emoluments Clause which permits foreign officials to invest in Trump businesses:

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/201 ... es-experts
The Department of Justice has adopted a narrow interpretation of a law meant to bar foreign interests from corrupting federal officials, giving Saudi Arabia, China and other countries leeway to curry favor with Donald Trump via deals with his hotels, condos, trademarks and golf courses, legal and national security experts say.

The so-called foreign emoluments clause was intended to curb presidents and other government officials from accepting gifts and benefits from foreign governments unless Congress consents.

But in a forthcoming article in the Indiana Law Journal, the Washington University Law professor Kathleen Clark reveals justice department filings have recently changed tack. The new interpretation, Clark says, is contained in justice filings responding to recent lawsuits lodged by attorneys generals and members of Congress.

Clark’s article notes that in more than 50 legal opinions over some 150 years justice department lawyers have interpreted the clause in a way that barred any foreign payments or gifts except for ones Congress approved. But filings by the department since June 2017 reveal a new interpretation that “… would permit the president – and all federal officials – to accept unlimited amounts of money from foreign governments, as long as the money comes through commercial transactions with an entity owned by the federal official,” the professor writes.

The justice department stance now closely parallels arguments made in a January 2017 position paper by Trump Organization lawyer Sheri Dillon and several of her law partners. On 11 January 2017, just days before he was sworn in, Dillon said Trump isn’t accepting any payments in his “official capacity” as president, as the income is only related to his private business. “Paying for a hotel room is not a gift or a present, and it has nothing to do with an office,” Dillon said.

That goes against what many experts believe.

“For over a hundred years, the justice department has strictly interpreted the constitution’s anti-corruption emoluments clause to prohibit federal officials from accepting anything of value from foreign governments, absent congressional consent,” Clark told the Guardian.

‘Instead of defending the republic against foreign influence, the department is defending Trump’s ability to receive money from foreign governments.’

‘Instead of defending the republic against foreign influence, the department is defending Trump’s ability to receive money from foreign governments.’

“In 2017, the department reversed course, adopting arguments nearly identical to those put forward by Trump’s private sector lawyers. Instead of defending the republic against foreign influence, the department is defending Trump’s ability to receive money from foreign governments,” Clark added.

A justice department spokesperson declined to comment, but pointed to its filings in the emoluments lawsuits which Clark has noted contain five arguments similar to those used by Trump’s business lawyers. Among the key justice arguments is that the foreign emoluments clause only was intended to prohibit the president accepting gifts and employment compensation from a foreign government, but allows him to benefit from what it calls “commercial transactions”.

Other legal scholars also voice strong qualms about the justice department’s current position on emoluments and criticize the administration’s lax attitude about conflicts involving Trump and his business empire.

“The heart of the matter is that these are clauses meant to guard against undue foreign influence and conflicts of interest,” John Mikhail, a professor at Georgetown Law Center, said.

Two attorneys general from the District of Columbia and Maryland have filed lawsuits arguing the Trump International Hotel in Washington, where numerous foreign and state delegations have stayed or hosted events, has violated the anti corruption clauses. Some 200 members of Congress have also filed a lawsuit alleging that Trump has conflicts of interest in at least 25 countries.

The inspector general at the General Services Administration, which oversees the government-owned Old Post Office building leased by the Trump International Hotel, has faulted the agency for “improperly ignoring (the) emoluments clauses” and for conflicts of interest involving the hotel while Trump is in office.

Former intelligence officials also expressed concerns. “There’s a perception among lobbyists for foreign governments that the White House is for sale,” said Robert Baer, a 21 year CIA veteran with a Middle East background. “It’s a counter intelligence nightmare.”

The Trump Organization did pledge that while Trump was president it would donate any profits from foreign entities to the treasury. To that end it has written checks for $342,000 to the government covering the years 2017 and 2018. But some ethics watchdogs have questioned the methodology for calculating these payments, arguing it doesn’t account for foreign revenues to Trump businesses which overall have had yearly losses.

Further critics note that while Trump opted to let his two sons run his real estate businesses, and pledged he would not be involved with it as long as he was president, he has not been shy about publicly touting his properties including his Scottish golf course.

A chief focus of critics and the emolument lawsuits has been the Trump International Hotel which has become a mini mecca for numerous foreign delegations – including ones from Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Turkey and the Philippines – who have used it for overnight stays and various meetings.

The hotel is leased from the GSA for 60 years and located on Pennsylvania Avenue just a few blocks from the White House. The IG’s report this January said the lease should have been reviewed again with Trump’s election to determine if it was in violation of the emoluments clause.

Critics of Trump’s ongoing ties to the Trump International and his business empire also note that some countries with major political and business problems in Washington have frequented his properties. “It appears that President Trump may be benefiting from foreign use of his properties designed to influence his decisions,” said the former Republican congressman Mickey Edwards.

For instance, a 60-person Malaysian government delegation stayed at Trump International in the fall of 2017 at a time when the justice department was conducting a major corruption investigation of Malaysian officials including the then prime minister, Najib Razak, who had a White House meeting with Trump during their stay, as first reported by radio station WAMU and Reveal.

Meanwhile, lobbyists for Saudi Arabia, which has aggressively courted Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, spent at least $270,000 at his DC hotel after Trump won the election, booking 500 rooms over an estimated three-month period, according to a Washington Post report.

Last March, a Saudi delegation traveling with the country’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman seemed to enjoy a lavish stay at Trump’s New York hotel, which helped to reverse a two-year revenue decline at the property, according to the Washington Post.

These foreign dealings with Trump hotels are exhibit A for many critics of the weak kneed enforcement of the emoluments clause in the Trump era.

“This administration gives off every appearance of turning the White House into a giant cash register,” said Mikhail. “ Rather than drawing bright lines between the Trump Organization and the Trump administration they seem intent on blurring those lines.”

The lawsuits have to wend their way through the courts – which could see tough battles given mixed court rulings thus far. But critics in Congress and outside are raising more questions about emoluments and Trump’s business conflicts as new issues keep arising.

“Congress now must conduct independent oversight so the American people can determine for themselves whether the President is acting in our nation’s best interests or his own,” said congressman Elijah Cummings, the chairman of the House committee on oversight and reform.

Mike Carpenter, who served on the National Security Council in the Obama years, added: “When foreign powers patronize the president’s businesses it creates an enormous national security risk.”

• This article was amended on 10 April 2019. An earlier version said that the Trump Organization had written checks for $342m to the government covering the years 2017 and 2018, when it should have been $342,000.
Barr continues to compete strongly for the title of "most corrupt AG in US history".
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


I am a dual citizen of the US and Canada.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-04-15 03:59pm

Redacted Mueller report will be released Thursday.

Rosenstein is out defending Barr now, which... well, Rosenstein was supporting the investigation, supposedly offered to wear a wire to record Trump, etc. He was on the outs with Trump, supposedly about to leave his post, then it turns out he's staying longer and a few days later the Special Counsel Investigation is over and Barr puts out his summary, and Rosenstein is now backing him to the hilt.

I can't prove anything, but I can't help but think that it smells like Rosenstein caved to keep his job.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


I am a dual citizen of the US and Canada.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-04-15 05:23pm

Representative Ilhan Omar cites increased death threats in the wake of a hostile Trump tweet targeting her:

https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/trump-pel ... -1.5097778
U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced Sunday that she has taken steps to ensure the safety of Rep. Ilhan Omar following President Donald Trump's retweet of a video that purports to show the Minnesota Democrat being dismissive of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

The California Democrat also called on Trump to take down the video. Soon after her public request, the video disappeared as a pinned tweet at the top of Trump's Twitter feed, but it was not deleted.

Pelosi was among Democrats who had criticized Trump over the tweet, with some accusing him of trying to incite violence against the Muslim lawmaker who has already seen one upstate New York man face criminal charges for making death threats against her.

Omar said she's faced increased death threats since Trump retweeted the video. "Violent crimes and other acts of hate by right-wing extremists and white nationalists are on the rise in this country and around the world," she said. "We can no longer ignore that they are being encouraged by the occupant of the highest office in the land."

"We are all Americans."

The White House defended Trump earlier Sunday, saying the president has a duty to highlight Omar's history of making comments that others find offensive and that he wished no "ill will" upon the first-term lawmaker.

On Monday, however, Trump singled out both Omar and Pelosi on Twitter, accusing the representative of controlling the speaker.


Donald J. Trump

@realDonaldTrump
Before Nancy, who has lost all control of Congress and is getting nothing done, decides to defend her leader, Rep. Omar, she should look at the anti-Semitic, anti-Israel and ungrateful U.S. HATE statements Omar has made. She is out of control, except for her control of Nancy!

Pelosi, who was travelling in London, issued a statement saying she had spoken with congressional authorities after Trump's tweet "to ensure that Capitol Police are conducting a security assessment to safeguard Congresswoman Omar, her family and her staff."

"They will continue to monitor and address the threats she faces," the speaker said. She called on Trump to discourage such behaviour.

"The president's words weigh a ton, and his hateful and inflammatory rhetoric creates real danger," Pelosi said. "President Trump must take down his disrespectful and dangerous video."

The video in Trump's initial tweet included a snippet from a recent speech Omar gave to the Council on American-Islamic Relations, in which she described the 2001 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center as "some people did something," along with news footage of the hijacked airplanes hitting the Twin Towers. Trump captioned his tweet with: "WE WILL NEVER FORGET!"

Critics accuse Omar of offering a flippant description of the assailants behind the attack that killed nearly 3,000 people. She later sought to defend herself by tweeting a quote from former U.S. President George W. Bush. Days after 9/11, the Republican president referred to the attackers as "people."

Bush had said, "The people — the people who knocked those buildings down will hear all of us soon."

"Was Bush downplaying the terrorist attack?" Omar asked.

Neither Trump's tweet nor the video included Omar's full quote nor the context of her comments, which were about Muslims feeling that their civil liberties had eroded after the attacks. The tweet continued to lead Trump's Twitter feed on Sunday, with more than nine million views.

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders questioned why Democrats weren't following Trump's example and calling out Omar, too. Democrats who criticized the president over the tweet defended Omar. Some also noted their past disagreements with her.

"Certainly the president is wishing no ill will and certainly not violence towards anyone, but the president is absolutely and should be calling out the congresswoman for her not only one time but history of anti-Semitic comments," Sanders said. "The bigger question is why aren't Democrats doing the same thing? It's absolutely abhorrent the comments that she continues to make and has made and they look the other way."

Omar's full quote, which Democrats argue was taken out of context:

"Here's the truth. For far too long we have lived with the discomfort of being a second-class citizen and, frankly, I'm tired of it, and every single Muslim in this country should be tired of it. Cair (Council on American-Islamic Relations) was founded after 9/11 because they recognized that some people did something and that all of us were starting to lose access to our civil liberties."

Omar later corrected her statement, saying Cair was formed earlier but doubled in size after 9/11.

Omar repeatedly has pushed fellow Democrats into uncomfortable territory with criticism of Israel and the strength of the Jewish state's influence in Washington. She apologized for suggesting that lawmakers support Israel for pay and said she isn't criticizing Jews. But she refused to take back a tweet in which she suggested American supporters of Israel "pledge allegiance" to a foreign country.

Rep. Jerry Nadler, a New York Democrat whose constituents include Manhattan's financial district, which was targeted on Sept. 11, 2001, said he had no issues with Omar's characterization of the attack.

"I have had some problems with some of her other remarks, but not — but not with that one," he said.
No shit. Of course when a race-baiting Islamophobic President with a history of inciting violence tweets to his Klan and Neo-Nazi-riddled base targeting a Muslim Congresswoman by misrepresenting her remarks on 911, of course she gets threats.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


I am a dual citizen of the US and Canada.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-04-16 08:27pm

FOIA case judge may request to see full Mueller report, review redactions:

https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/16/politics ... index.html
(CNN)Federal District Judge Reggie Walton expressed uncertainty about the redactions Attorney General William Barr is making to special counsel Robert Mueller's report and suggested he may want to review the Justice Department's redactions for himself once versions of it are made public.

"Obviously there is a real concern as to whether there is full transparency," Walton said at a Tuesday court hearing in Washington about a request from BuzzFeed News to have the Justice Department release the report quickly under the Freedom of Information Act. "The attorney general has created an environment that has caused a significant part of the American public to be concerned" about the redactions.

The BuzzFeed case is the second legal effort so far to get a federal judge to review the Mueller report. The other came from the Electronic Privacy Information Center in the first lawsuit filed seeking the full report after Mueller announced he had ended the investigation.

Walton said in court Tuesday he could ask to review the highly anticipated document in full confidentially, after the Justice Department releases a redacted version to the public and Congress on Thursday, and then subsequently give it to organizations that requested it under FOIA. That type of review would be a win for those suing for the document because it would bring in a judge to check the executive branch's decision-making on redactions.

"That's something we'll have to work through and something I'll have to think about," Walton said.
A separate judge did this in CNN's court case seeking former FBI Director James Comey's memos about his meetings with President Donald Trump.

Walton is handling both lawsuits over the Mueller report so far, and wants to hear from the Justice Department again on May 2.
He's told the parties in court he's interested in putting the proceedings on a "fast track," he said Tuesday. However, Walton has denied early requests from BuzzFeed and the Electronic Privacy Information Center to speed up the Justice Department's release of the document.

"We don't know exactly what is going to be produced by the government on Thursday. I would hope the government is going to be as transparent as it can be," Walton said.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


I am a dual citizen of the US and Canada.

User avatar
The Romulan Republic
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Joined: 2008-10-15 01:37am

Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-04-17 02:38am

Barr has delivered a ruling for his master that asylum seekers (remember, seeking asylum is not illegal, and asylum seekers are not illegal immigrants) can be held indefinitely without trial:

https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/16/politics ... index.html
(CNN)Attorney General William Barr decided Tuesday that some asylum seekers who have established credible fear and are subject to deportation cannot be released on bond by immigration judges -- a major reversal from a prior ruling that could lead to immigrants being held indefinitely.

The decision means the Department of Homeland Security alone will have the discretion to decide whether to release immigrants who crossed the border illegally and later claimed asylum.

The ruling effectively blocks concerted efforts by immigration lawyers and immigrant rights advocates to push for bond hearings for detained asylum-seekers. The advocates argue that there's no reason for the United States to detain people who are seeking safety and have already cleared hurdles to prove they have a credible case.

While advocates argued that bonds set for detained asylum-seekers were often prohibitively high, a number of crowdfunding efforts in recent months had aimed to help immigrants get money to pay bonds and get out of detention.

Asylum seekers who presented themselves at legal ports of entry were already unable to be released on bond by immigration courts.

On October 12, 2018, the attorney general "directed the Board of Immigration Appeals to refer Matter of M-S- for his review," according to a Justice Department fact sheet.

Barr's ruling could likely affect thousands of migrants apprehended at the border, many of whom are seeking asylum and would be subject to expedited removal.

"Basically if you pass the initial asylum screening you can now be indefinitely detained," said immigration attorney Eileen Blessinger, who called Barr's decision "horrible news."

Omar Jadwat, director of the ACLU's Immigrants' Rights Project, said the organization plans to challenge the decision.

"This is the Trump administration's latest assault on people fleeing persecution and seeking refuge in the United States," Jadwat said in a statement. "Our Constitution does not allow the government to lock up asylum seekers without basic due process. We'll see the administration in court."

Barr's decision marks the first time he's used his position to overrule precedent-setting decisions in immigration court -- a power the US attorney general has because immigration courts are not independent and are part of the Justice Department. His predecessor, former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, used this power to make major overhauls on immigration policies, including a decision that makes it harder for domestic violence victims to win asylum cases.

"It's an extension of the Jeff Sessions campaign to further strip the immigration courts and immigration judges of their authority," said David Leopold, Counsel to DHS Watch and former President of the American Immigration Lawyers Association.

It's a "senseless decision" given the already "overburdened system," said Leopold, adding that the appearance rate in court is "very high" for people who have established a credible fear of persecution.

The ruling takes effect in 90 days.

Barr's decision comes as the administration deploys a range of strategies to deter what officials say is an influx of families crossing the US border and seeking asylum.

In March, there were approximately 92,000 arrests of undocumented migrants for illegal entry on the southern border, up from 37,390 last March, according to Customs and Border Protection. Overall in March, there were more than 103,000 individuals apprehended along the border, or encountered at a port of entry and deemed "inadmissible."
There's another term for holding people indefinitely in concentration camps for the "crime" of being foreign: crimes against humanity.

There's also this little fact about his "summary" of the Mueller report:

https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/16/opinion/ ... index.html
Larry Noble is the former general counsel of the Federal Election Commission (1987-2000). He is currently a CNN contributor and has served as general counsel of the Campaign Legal Center and executive director of the Center for Responsive Politics. Follow him on Twitter @LarryNoble_DC. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author; view more opinion at CNN.

(CNN)As we await Attorney General William Barr's release of his redacted and color-coded version of special counsel Robert Mueller's report, speculation is mainly driven by Barr's March 24 letter and his description of the results of the special counsel's investigation into whether President Donald Trump obstructed justice.

Less detailed attention is being paid to Barr's description of the results of the special counsel's investigation into whether the Trump campaign coordinated with Russian interference in the 2016 election. This includes attempts by the Russian Internet Research Agency "to conduct disinformation and social media operations in the United States designed to sow social discord," as well as "the Russian government's efforts to conduct computer hacking operations designed to gather and disseminate information" to influence the election. Yet, hiding in plain sight is a footnote in which Barr explains that he and Mueller are using a definition of coordination that requires proof of an agreement, which is contrary to the law and Federal Election Commission regulations and, more importantly, has been rejected by the Supreme Court. It is also a definition with which Americans should not feel comfortable.
Regarding the Trump campaign's involvement with these activities, Barr writes: "as the report states '[T]he investigation did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.'1 "

This has become the bottom line regarding what has generically been referred to as the "collusion" issue.

Not so fast. As we have seen when he testifies before Congress, Barr is a person who picks his words carefully, so it pays to look at how Barr qualified the no "coordination" finding in Footnote 1:

"In assessing potential conspiracy charges, the special counsel also considered whether members of the Trump campaign 'coordinated' with Russian election interference activities.

"The special counsel defined 'coordination' as an 'agreement-tacit or express-between the Trump campaign and the Russian government on election interference.'"

Since there are only two footnotes in the letter and this is the only substantive footnote, one can assume Barr thinks the legal definition of "coordination" used is significant. He is right.

The question of whether the Trump campaign interacted with the Russians as they interfered in the 2016 election, and whether that interaction is illegal, is often framed in terms of whether there was "collusion" between the campaign and the Russians. However, "collusion" is not a term of art and has no specific legal meaning in this case. In fact, the word "collusion" never appears in Barr's letter.

Rather, Barr quotes Mueller as looking at whether the Trump campaign "conspired or coordinated with the Russian government." The question of whether the Trump campaign "coordinated" with Russia is central to the question of whether the campaign violated campaign finance law, which prohibits foreign nationals from making political contributions and candidates from accepting such contributions. A contribution is defined as "anything of value" and can include giving money to the campaign or spending money to support a candidate's election in coordination with the campaign. The latter is called an "in-kind" contribution.

Therefore, if the Trump campaign "coordinated" with the Russians in their efforts to help get him elected, the Russians made, and the Trump campaign accepted, a prohibited in-kind contribution from a foreign national. If they did so knowingly and willfully, it is a criminal violation.

The FEC's current regulation, 11 CFR § 109.20(a), provides: "Coordinated means made in cooperation, consultation or concert with, or at the request or suggestion of, a candidate, a candidate's authorized committee, or a political party committee." Coordination can result if a "communication is created, produced, or distributed after one or more substantial discussions" between the campaign and the person paying for the communication, regardless of whether there was any "agreement" about the communication.

The FEC did not reach this definition lightly. The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 ordered the FEC to rewrite its coordination rules and explicitly stated: "The regulations shall not require agreement or formal collaboration to establish coordination." The reason for this was clear and easily explained by the Supreme Court when, in 2003, it upheld this congressional directive in McConnell v. Federal Election Commission. According to the court, "expenditures made after a wink or nod often will be as useful to the candidate as cash." As the court further explained, "[a] supporter easily could comply with a candidate's request or suggestion without first agreeing to do so, and the resulting expenditure would be virtually indistinguishable from [a] simple contribution. ..."

While the FEC coordination regulations are overly complicated and there is a debate about their application to activity on the internet, the FEC, Congress and the Supreme Court have made it clear that it is naïve and unnecessary to define coordination as requiring an agreement. Nevertheless, this is apparently what Mueller and Barr have done.

This is no small matter. Defining coordination as requiring an agreement between the parties creates a massive hole in the wall against foreign corruption of our elections. For example, does Mueller believe that, unless he can prove there was an agreement to do so, it is not illegal for the campaign to provide information to the Russians, such as polling data, to help them target their ads supporting Trump and opposing Hillary Clinton? What if there were meetings between Trump campaign officials and agents of the Russian government where information about the Russian and Trump strategies to get him elected were exchanged, discussed, and its use encouraged, but there is no proof of an agreement as to what specific activity will take place?

Given the footnote 1 flag Barr raised in his letter, we should look carefully at what Mueller's report says about what went on outside of a provable agreement. Regardless of what Mueller may think, discussions and activities involving a "wink or nod" come with the same potential for foreign influence as the Russians just giving the campaign money does.
Basically, Barr (and, so he claims, Mueller himself) used a very narrow definition of coordination which is out of keeping with existing legal precedent and Supreme Court rulings. Granted, this casts some doubt on Mueller's integrity and judgement as well- unless Barr is lying. In either case, it means that even if you accept the Mueller report and the Barr summary, the question of whether coordination occured is still wide open, and that even if there was nothing provable that rose to the level of "conspiracy", campaign finance violations are still completely on the table.

Just wanted to remind everyone that Barr's conclusions are worth less than a piece of used toilet paper. And to remind everyone what kind of man it is who's word the collusion deniers, Trumpers, and Quislings demand that we accept as vindicating Trump and "proving" a Democratic witch hunt.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


I am a dual citizen of the US and Canada.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-04-17 04:10am

Barr has a history of substituting a misleading and incomplete "summary" for documents, as well as defending vast executive powers that are above the law:

https://www.cnn.com/videos/politics/201 ... ye-vpx.cnn

Basically, while serving as DOJ legal council under Bush Sr., Barr wrote an opinion that the FBI could arrest people in foreign countries. Congress asked him to provide his full legal opinion. He gave them a summary, claiming confidentiality, and refused to comply with Congress. After 3 years, after Barr had left and the Clinton administration took over, Congress got the full documentation, which showed that Barr had omitted multiple significant things from his summary, including that his opinion claimed that the President could authorize violations of the UN Charter, that the President and AG could authorize overseas abductions, and that the President can override international law.

Remember: this is the man who we are supposed to trust when he "exonerates" Trump.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


I am a dual citizen of the US and Canada.

User avatar
The Romulan Republic
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Posts: 17911
Joined: 2008-10-15 01:37am

Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-04-23 06:23pm

Well, today was the deadline for Trump's tax returns.

Time to hold the IRS in contempt of Congress, I guess.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


I am a dual citizen of the US and Canada.

User avatar
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Posts: 17911
Joined: 2008-10-15 01:37am

Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-04-26 04:15am

Representative Connolly is threatening Trump officials, including American Himmler Steven Miller, with jail time if they continue refusing to comply with Congressional subpoenas:

https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/25/politics ... index.html
(CNN)Democratic Rep. Gerry Connolly on Thursday threatened jail time for White House officials who are declining to comply with congressional committees' efforts to conduct oversight of President Donald Trump's administration.

Three officials have refused to comply with congressional requests to testify at the administration's urging, ratcheting up the long-brewing battle with House Democrats ready and willing to take their multi-front investigations to the courts.

The House Oversight Committee had asked to hear from senior White House adviser Stephen Miller on immigration, former security official Carl Kline on security clearances and Justice Department Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General John Gore on adding a citizenship question to the US census.

Connolly, who sits on the Oversight Committee, told CNN's Wolf Blitzer on "The Situation Room," "We're going to resist, and if a subpoena is issued and you're told you must testify, we will back that up."

"And we will use any and all power in our command to make sure it's backed up -- whether that's a contempt citation, whether that's going to court and getting that citation enforced, whether it's fines, whether it's possible incarceration," the Virginia Democrat added. "We will go to the max to enforce the constitutional role of the legislative branch of government."

Connolly called the officials' excuses for failing to appear "an assault on the legislative branch" and "the constitutional framework of our government," warning that the legislative branch would become "a pale shadow of what it was intended to be" should the officials' refusals stand.

Connolly said his committee had hoped to learn what Miller "has in his head" given his increasing involvement in the administration's immigration policies, calling him Trump's "immigration whisperer" in light of the Department of Homeland Security's recent leadership changes and the "zero tolerance" policy that resulted in family separations.

"We want to hear from him, what is your thinking, what is it you've been advising the President, and where is it you think you're going to be taking us as a country with these kinds of policies and personnel changes?" he added.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-04-26 07:00pm

Trump tells children of reporters "I like you much more than your parents":

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/pol ... 548481002/

Jesus Fucking Christ, will no one put a gag on that man? :banghead: :banghead: :banghead: Or at least stop subjecting children to his presence. Like, can we put an 18+ rating on the PotUS, please?
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-05-02 07:44am

That filthy fucking whore for fascism who styles himself as the Attorney General has now launched Obstruction of Justice charges against a judge and court official in Massachusetts for not permitting ICE to detain a person after it was determined that they were not the person that ICE was after:

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/201 ... trump.html
It took Attorney General William Barr only one week from the release of the Mueller report to bring obstruction of justice charges against two governmental officials for interfering in a federal investigation. But the charges have nothing to do with the special counsel’s investigation into Russian interference in the election or the possible obstruction of that investigation.

Although the obstruction charges DOJ filed are not related to the Mueller report, they underscore just how far the attorney general bent over backward to spin the report in the president’s favor and how partisan the Department of Justice has become. The disparities between the two cases highlight how the Department of Justice, under Barr’s leadership, has become nothing more than a political arm of the Trump administration, particularly in its handling of possible obstruction charges stemming from the Mueller report.

The indictment against Judge Shelley Richmond Joseph, a Massachusetts district court judge, and Officer Wesley MacGregor, a Massachusetts trial court officer, alleges that the officers interfered with an Immigration and Customs Enforcement proceeding by preventing ICE from arresting an individual who was arrested on state charges and attended an arraignment hearing in state court. During the state court proceeding, Joseph asked an ICE officer to wait outside the courtroom while the court conducted the arraignment hearing. Earlier in the day, the judge had requested more information about one of the state charges in the case (a fugitive charge) after the prosecutor said the state would not seek to detain the defendant on the other charge (a drug charge).

After recalling the case, the judge observed that ICE was in the courthouse. The prosecutor then informed the court that the state did not believe the defendant was the fugitive from Pennsylvania for whom there was an arrest warrant and therefore believed that the fugitive charge was an error, which would mean that the defendant would be free to leave. The defense attorney, however, noted that ICE was convinced otherwise and suggested they would likely take the client into custody. The defense attorney then suggested that “the best thing for us to do is to … release him … and hope that he can avoid ICE.”

At that point, the judge noted the other alternative was to recall the proceedings again the next day and asked “ICE is gonna get him?” before directing the clerk to go off the record. The recording was turned off for 52 seconds, and when it resumed, the prosecutor renewed the claim that the defendant was not the person with a Pennsylvania warrant out for his arrest and moved to dismiss the fugitive charge against him. Because the state had already stated it would not seek to detain the defendant on the drug charges, the defendant was released, and the trial court officer escorted him through the back door.

This evidence provided the basis for Barr’s Department of Justice to indict the state judge and state officer for obstruction of justice and conspiracy to obstruct justice. Yet all of the reasons Barr has previously cited for opposing an obstruction investigation against the president suggest the Department of Justice should not have brought obstruction charges against Joseph and MacGregor either.

For example, in June, Barr wrote a memo as a private citizen arguing that obstruction laws should not “reach facially-lawful actions taken by the President in exercising the discretion vested in him by the Constitution.” Yet that is exactly what the obstruction-of-justice charges against Joseph and MacGregor cover. State judges do not persist with criminal charges that the district attorney has dropped, and state law does not require judges to detain individuals on the drug charges that remained. It was therefore “facially legitimate” and within the “discretion” of the judge not to detain the individual based on the drug charge. The judge also has total control of her courtroom and can decide through which doors to instruct people to come and go. And the state judge’s motive shouldn’t matter to the analysis because under Barr’s theory of obstruction, government officials can’t be charged with obstruction “based solely on his subjective state of mind” for “simply exercising his discretion in a facially lawful way.”

Or take Barr’s statement—given at a bizarre press conference just prior to the release of the Mueller report last week—that the president did not corruptly intend to obstruct the investigation because the president “was frustrated and angered by a sincere belief that the investigation was undermining his presidency.” A similar exculpatory argument could be made on behalf of Joseph and MacGregor. They, too, may have been “frustrated and angered by a sincere belief that” ICE’s investigations and presence in state courthouses undermined the integrity of state court proceedings. Or perhaps they were frustrated and angered by a sincere belief that ICE’s enforcement efforts were the result of the president’s apparent bias and animosity toward the Latino community.

Ultimately, the Justice Department’s indictment of Joseph and MacGregor is a reminder about how aggressively the federal government often reads the federal obstruction statute. For example, the indictment confirms that obstruction does not have to be particularly sophisticated or successful in order to constitute a crime—the trial court officer merely let the defendant out the back door, and the defendant was subsequently apprehended and now faces deportation.

It also demonstrates a contrast in the kind of evidence that often suffices to establish an obstruction-of-justice charge. In the case of Joseph and MacGregor, DOJ has some snippets of a courtroom conversation that indicated the judge wanted to do something she did not want publicly recorded and less than a minute without a recording. In the case of President Donald Trump and his associates, special counsel Robert Mueller compiled dozens of witnesses, contemporaneous notes, 10 separate incidents, 182 pages of a report, multiple instances of officials lying to investigators or not being forthcoming with them, and several damning instances of the president lying in an apparent effort to cover his tracks. All of this led Barr to his four-page summary conclusion that Trump had not committed a crime—a conclusion that flew in the face of Mueller’s findings.

The stark difference between the attorney general’s treatment of the obstruction case against Joseph and MacGregor and the obstruction cases at the heart of the Mueller report serves as a pointed reminder that Barr’s response to the obstruction issues raised by the Mueller report was partisan and unprincipled.
The Department of Injustice is now thoroughly Trump's creature, and has now moved to the "prosecutions of judges who don't rule the way the Fuhrer wants" stage of establishing a dictatorship, attempting to prosecute a judge for a felony on flimsy evidence for not allowing ICE to detain the wrong person (remember, those detained by ICE are not granted the benefit of due process). All while Barr insists that Trump was cleared on obstruction despite Mueller laying out detailed evidence of obstruction.

There is no law any more. Just the edicts of the Fuhrer. Do everything you can to help the Democrats win next year, and vote for the primary candidates who are least inclined to appease or compromise. Because if we lose in 2020, or if we win and Trump refuses to recognize the results, then there will be a simple choice: revolution, or dictatorship.

I do not and will not advocate initiating violence, because that will allow the Trumpers to frame us as the aggressors. But we must be prepared to stand up and speak out, to disobey unjust laws, and if (or when) they attempt to impose their tyranny or retain power by force of arms, we must be prepared to stand our ground, and fight back.

And as of right now, my primary consider in the Democratic Primary is "Which candidate do I feel would be most fit to prosecute a civil war against the Trump regime."
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-05-02 09:19am

The Democratic leadership is hemming and hawing over whether it will look bad to impeach while they are losing the world to fascism. I would say that they deserve to lose, except that the only alternative is the actual fascists.

If there is any one left when this is over, history will look back and damn this entire generation of cowards and traitors.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-05-02 05:55pm

Barr refused to show up for the hearing today. Quoth Rep. Nadler:
We will make one more good faith attempt to negotiate and to get the access to the report that we need, and then, if we don't get that, we will proceed to hold the attorney general in contempt and we'll go from there.
https://twitter.com/kylegriffin1/status ... 7293423617

Rep. Cohen responded to Barr's absence by placing a glass chicken on his empty seat, in full view of the cameras:

https://twitter.com/thehill/status/1123949566171201540
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


I am a dual citizen of the US and Canada.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Gandalf » 2019-05-02 06:04pm

So does anything actually happen if he's held in contempt?
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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-05-02 06:45pm

Gandalf wrote:
2019-05-02 06:04pm
So does anything actually happen if he's held in contempt?
That's the million dollar question.

Here are the options:

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/congre ... es-n999626
WASHINGTON — House Judiciary Committee chairman Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., is threatening to subpoena Attorney General William Barr, who has told the committee he may refuse to appear at a hearing Thursday unless members abandon their plan to have him questioned by staff lawyers.

It's one of many potential subpoena battles brewing between Congress and the Trump administration, which is showing an increasing willingness to stiff-arm congressional oversight committees.

So what practical options does Congress have to enforce its wishes?

No easy ones, as it turns out.

Congress has three methods at its disposal to seek compliance with a subpoena by holding a witness in contempt, according the Congressional Research Service. Each has problems.

Under the doctrine of "inherent contempt," the House or Senate could send members of its security force to arrest and detain the witness. There is precedent for this in U.S. history, but not recent precedent — it hasn't been used since 1935.

In the modern world, the House sergeant-at-arms isn't going to be able to arrest the attorney general, who is protected by an armed FBI security detail. As one former White House official once put it, only half in jest, "They have a lot of guns over there."

The second method involves seeking to hold a witness in criminal contempt under federal criminal statutes 2 U.S.C. §§192 and 194. The statutes make it a crime to fail to comply with a lawful congressional subpoena, and call for the House or Senate to refer a criminal contempt citation to the office of the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia, which can seek an indictment from a grand jury.

The problem with this in the current case: All federal prosecutors, including all 90-plus U.S. attorneys, work for Barr, and would be under no obligation to pursue a contempt charge.

Download the NBC News app for breaking news and politics

That leaves a third option — Congress can seek a civil contempt citation from a judge. The Judiciary Committee, for example, could sue Barr in district court, providing a simple majority of the full House voted to authorize such an action.

"If the individual still refuses to comply, he may be tried by the court in summary proceedings for contempt of court, with sanctions being imposed to coerce their compliance," the Congressional Research Service said in a 2017 paper.

A recent precedent for this happens to involve the House Judiciary Committee, then controlled by Democrats under the George W. Bush administration.

At issue was a congressional investigation into the firing of several U.S. attorneys.

The committee subpoenaed former White House counsel Harriet Miers, and the White House instructed her not to comply, citing executive privilege. It made the same instruction regarding a document subpoena to Josh Bolten, the White House chief of staff.

Both were held in contempt of Congress, and the speaker of the House asked the U.S. attorney in Washington, D.C., to pursue the matter.

But the federal prosecutor declined to do that, citing a Justice Department policy of not prosecuting a White House official for criminal contempt of Congress if that official had invoked executive privilege at the behest of the president.

Congress sued, and a district court judge sided with lawmakers. The Bush administration appealed and President Barack Obama took office while the case was still pending. The new administration settled the case, granting Congress access to some of the documents it sought and allowing sworn testimony from Miers.

By then, a year and a half after Congress issued the subpoena, the oversight issue largely was moot.

Much the same thing happened when the Republican-controlled House Oversight Committee sought to subpoena Attorney General Eric Holder in 2012 over a scandal involving a gun investigation known as Operation Fast and Furious.

This time, the Obama Justice Department refused to prosecute a congressional contempt citation against the attorney general. A court battle dragged on, and it wasn't until January 2016 that a court ordered the Justice Department to produce some documents. The Obama administration appealed, and the case lingered until President Donald Trump took office.

In March of last year, the Trump Justice Department settled the case by agreeing to release some records.

"The Department of Justice under my watch is committed to transparency and the rule of law," then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement.

Now that it's Democrats making the demands, the ardor for transparency at the Justice Department appears to have cooled a bit.
In short, the options are:

1. Have Congressional security under the Sergeant at Arms of the House arrest Barr. This is rejected by the article on, and I still find it hard to believe that I am saying this, the grounds that Barr has more men with guns around him and might resist arrest by force. Note that that does not actually mean it can't be done. It hasn't been done since 1935, but its a legal option, and if Barr attempted to resist arrest by force... well, then they've fired the first shot in the Second American Civil War, and we go from there.

2. Prosecute it through the DOJ. Not going to happen for obvious reasons.

3. Seek a citation via a civil suit. Given that Nadler has already threatened this IIRC, and its the safest option, its probably the most likely one. Its also the weakest option, unfortunately.

There is also one option they could pursue outside conventional legal channels, one which falls entirely within Congress's purview- that being to impeach Barr.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Ziggy Stardust » 2019-05-02 07:16pm

Doubtful, but also unclear. I am finding conflicting information online as to what the different options are.

Apparently there are several different routes that Congress can follow to go through with a contempt charge. One is a rather fascinating vestige of earlier times whereby Congress can apparently directly arrest and detain someone, but this hasn't been invoked since 1935 (when it was used against the deputy postmaster general). Another is to refer the case to the executive branch via the U.S. Attorney, though this de facto refers it directly to the President, so this option is definitely a no go. The third is to bring a civil case through the federal court system, which is most likely what they will do in this case. How this unfolds is unclear to me.

Since 1975, there have been at least 15 contempt resolutions or citations issued (I believe resolutions are issued by a House vote, and citations issued by a House Committee, but are otherwise identical). In 9 of those cases, the issuance of the contempt charge led to the person in question complying in some way (either providing documents in accordance with a subpoena or testifying or what have you), and thus no charges filed. The remaining 6 cases are all quite interesting, and provide conflicting precedent, though #3 is obviously the most salient:

1) In 1982, Anne Gorsuch (the mother of Neil, natch) was cited for contempt. Apparently the President tried to assert executive privilege, but this was rejected by the courts. The documents in question were released and Gorsuch resigned. It's not clear to me whether there was a House vote or not, or how the details of the legal case unfolded.
2) In 1983, Rita Lavelle was indicted for lying to Congress and spent 6 months in prison.
3) In 2012, Obama's Attorney General Eric Holder was found in contempt by a House resolution. Obama asserted executive privilege, and later the DoJ Office of the Inspector General cleared Holder of the charges.
4) In 2014, Lois Lerner was found in contempt by a House resolution. I'm not entirely sure why, but apparently the DoJ just declined to pursue the charge.
5) In 2016, Bryan Pagliano was found in contempt by the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. He was granted immunity by the DoJ in return for cooperating with the prosecutors.
6) Also in 2016, apparently Backpage.com was found in contempt by the Senate Homeland Security Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, but I have absolutely no idea what happened with this and since this is a clear outlier I don't think it informs this situation.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-05-02 07:59pm

Pelosi has explicitly accused Barr of committing a crime:

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/05/02/nancy-p ... crime.html
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says Attorney General William Barr “lied to Congress.”
She says misleading lawmakers would be a “crime” if anyone else did so.
A Justice Department spokeswoman calls Pelosi’s comments “reckless, irresponsible and false.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Thursday accused Attorney General William Barr of committing a crime by lying to Congress about Robert Mueller’s report and Mueller’s issues with how Barr has characterized the special counsel’s findings.

“What is deadly serious about it is the attorney general of the United States of America is not telling the truth to the Congress of the United States. That’s a crime,” the California Democrat told reporters.

Pressed again about the accusation, Pelosi said, “He lied to Congress. If anybody else did that, it would be considered a crime. Nobody is above the law.” Asked whether Barr should go to jail, the speaker responded that “there’s a process involved here.”

In a statement in response, Justice Department spokeswoman Kerri Kupec said Pelosi’s “baseless attack on the Attorney General is reckless, irresponsible and false.”

Pelosi’s comments appeared to reference answers Barr gave during House testimony last month. Lawmakers asked him about reported frustrations Mueller’s team had with a summary the attorney general wrote about the special counsel’s report.

Barr said he was not aware of concerns the Mueller team had about his summary. But news reports revealed this week that Mueller had written a letter to Barr expressing concerns about how the attorney general depicted the “substance” of the report — before the attorney general testified.

Here is the exchange from an April 9 hearing that apparently sparked Pelosi’s accusation.

Rep. Charlie Crist, D-Fla.: “Reports have emerged recently, general, that members of the special counsel’s team are frustrated at some level with the limited information included in your March 24 letter. ... Do you know what they are referencing with that?”

Barr: “No, I don’t. I think I think, I suspect that they probably wanted more put out, but in my view I was not interested in putting out summaries.”

The comment from the highest-ranking Democrat in the country intensifies the party’s criticism of the top U.S. law enforcement official. While Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer have accused Barr of protecting Trump and having a conflict of interest, neither lawmaker has previously gone as far as alleging a crime.

Pelosi has so far resisted calls to impeach the president, which have intensified following the release of Mueller’s redacted report. Schumer, meanwhile, is writing a letter to Barr questioning the attorney general’s views on executive power, particularly his suggestion that a president could end an investigation if they feel they are falsely accused, NBC News reported. The senator wrote that “if these views are truly your views, you do not deserve to be Attorney General.”

Democrats want Mueller to testify publicly and have questioned why the Justice Department decided not to charge the president with obstructing justice by trying to influence Mueller’s investigation. While Mueller’s report declined to say whether Trump obstructed justice, he also noted that the report did not “exonerate” Trump. It also set out a detailed case for Congress to potentially investigate the president for obstruction.

Pelosi’s remarks Thursday follow a House Judiciary Committee hearing that Barr decided not to attend. The panel’s chairman, Democratic Rep. Jerry Nadler of New York, threatened to hold the attorney general in contempt of Congress if he does not give access to Mueller’s full, unredacted report on the Russia probe.

Barr repeatedly defended Trump during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Wednesday. The president has contended Mueller’s investigation fully exonerates him on both questions of whether he obstructed justice and whether his campaign coordinated with Russian efforts to influence the 2016 election. Trump repeatedly described the investigation as a “witch hunt” and has since falsely called the probe a “coup.”

This week’s events have escalated a partisan battle over congressional witnesses who have testified about the investigation and the president’s conduct. Democrats shot down a GOP resolution Wednesday to refer Trump’s former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen to the Justice Department for accusations of lying to Congress in February.

— CNBC’s Kevin Breuninger and Dan Mangan contributed to this report

Subscribe to CNBC on YouTube.
Don't talk the talk if you aren't prepared to walk the walk. If Pelosi believes Barr committed a crime, her constitutional duty is clear: impeach him.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Knife » 2019-05-03 07:19pm

An impeachment is an actual judicial process, which puts it on a different level. Also, Congress controls the DC police.
They say, "the tree of liberty must be watered with the blood of tyrants and patriots." I suppose it never occurred to them that they are the tyrants, not the patriots. Those weapons are not being used to fight some kind of tyranny; they are bringing them to an event where people are getting together to talk. -Mike Wong

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-05-04 12:19am

Well, I phoned both my Congressman and Pelosi's offices today to demand the impeachment of Trump and Barr, and Barr's arrest.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-05-04 01:43am

Knife wrote:
2019-05-03 07:19pm
An impeachment is an actual judicial process, which puts it on a different level. Also, Congress controls the DC police.
Actually, I'm not sure you can call impeachment a judicial process. It resembles one in many ways, but it is by definition not carried out by the judicial branch. Its a legislative process, and while it provides a mechanism for removing a criminal official, most experts also agree that an act can be impeachable without being criminal.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


I am a dual citizen of the US and Canada.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Ralin » 2019-05-04 03:05am

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2019-05-04 01:43am

Actually, I'm not sure you can call impeachment a judicial process. It resembles one in many ways, but it is by definition not carried out by the judicial branch. Its a legislative process, and while it provides a mechanism for removing a criminal official, most experts also agree that an act can be impeachable without being criminal.
Which does tend to undermine claims that impeachment shouldn't be used as a political tool.

One more example of how our government runs on a whole bunch of unwritten handshake agreements.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-05-04 03:07am

Ralin wrote:
2019-05-04 03:05am
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2019-05-04 01:43am

Actually, I'm not sure you can call impeachment a judicial process. It resembles one in many ways, but it is by definition not carried out by the judicial branch. Its a legislative process, and while it provides a mechanism for removing a criminal official, most experts also agree that an act can be impeachable without being criminal.
Which does tend to undermine claims that impeachment shouldn't be used as a political tool.

One more example of how our government runs on a whole bunch of unwritten handshake agreements.
It shouldn't be, any more than any other legislative responsibility vital to the security and survival of the nation should be. It sometimes is, but that is because members of the legislature are being derelict in their duty.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


I am a dual citizen of the US and Canada.

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Knife
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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Knife » 2019-05-04 11:53am

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2019-05-04 01:43am
Knife wrote:
2019-05-03 07:19pm
An impeachment is an actual judicial process, which puts it on a different level. Also, Congress controls the DC police.
Actually, I'm not sure you can call impeachment a judicial process. It resembles one in many ways, but it is by definition not carried out by the judicial branch. Its a legislative process, and while it provides a mechanism for removing a criminal official, most experts also agree that an act can be impeachable without being criminal.
Impeachment is a judicial process with the SCOTUS sitting as judge. Anything the House (prosecutors) want/do is immediately at SCOTUS level and must be ruled on timely. For example, if the House issues a subpoena on XYZ and the target of that subpoena balks, it is immediately at SCOTUS, not any other lower court.

And yes, while the Senate is the Jury and Trumpolini is pretty safe there, the actual trial is between the House and the accused. The Senate only factors in at the end. So if the Dems had balls, they jump in and start digging up info and putting witnesses on the stand on live TV. Yes, the DOJ and the WH might balk and then it immediately goes to SCOTUS. Without totally hamstringing Congress, most of that must go through. If SCOTUS starts hamstringing Congress, GOPers will start getting very nervous since eventually they won't be in power at the WH or the Senate. I have a hard time GOP Senators will sit and watch and do nothing as Trump and a SCOTUS tears all their power away. Won't happen.
They say, "the tree of liberty must be watered with the blood of tyrants and patriots." I suppose it never occurred to them that they are the tyrants, not the patriots. Those weapons are not being used to fight some kind of tyranny; they are bringing them to an event where people are getting together to talk. -Mike Wong

But as far as board culture in general, I do think that young male overaggression is a contributing factor to the general atmosphere of hostility. It's not SOS and the Mess throwing hand grenades all over the forum- Red

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-05-05 10:53am

Actually, if McConnel's actions as toady for Trump are any indication, a lot of Republicans don't care if Trump hamstrings Congress. They don't think they ever will be out of power, because they have committed to making America a Trumpist autocracy by fraud, voter suppression, intimidation, and disregard of the constitution.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


I am a dual citizen of the US and Canada.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Knife » 2019-05-05 01:56pm

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2019-05-05 10:53am
Actually, if McConnel's actions as toady for Trump are any indication, a lot of Republicans don't care if Trump hamstrings Congress. They don't think they ever will be out of power, because they have committed to making America a Trumpist autocracy by fraud, voter suppression, intimidation, and disregard of the constitution.
Well sure, in the back rooms I'm sure they cackle with glee. Start throwing up witness on live TV on some of this shit, and a lot of voters will get nervous and that will make a lot of Senators nervous.
They say, "the tree of liberty must be watered with the blood of tyrants and patriots." I suppose it never occurred to them that they are the tyrants, not the patriots. Those weapons are not being used to fight some kind of tyranny; they are bringing them to an event where people are getting together to talk. -Mike Wong

But as far as board culture in general, I do think that young male overaggression is a contributing factor to the general atmosphere of hostility. It's not SOS and the Mess throwing hand grenades all over the forum- Red

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-05-05 02:17pm

Knife wrote:
2019-05-05 01:56pm
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2019-05-05 10:53am
Actually, if McConnel's actions as toady for Trump are any indication, a lot of Republicans don't care if Trump hamstrings Congress. They don't think they ever will be out of power, because they have committed to making America a Trumpist autocracy by fraud, voter suppression, intimidation, and disregard of the constitution.
Well sure, in the back rooms I'm sure they cackle with glee. Start throwing up witness on live TV on some of this shit, and a lot of voters will get nervous and that will make a lot of Senators nervous.
That's a big plus to impeachment, really. It'll focus the entire nation's attention on it, get wall to wall coverage, ensure that Congress has minimal barriers to their subpoenas, and it will force a public trial, where the evidence will get paraded before the nation, and the Republicans will be given a political Kobayashi Maru of either a) doing their duty, and losing their base, or b) voting to acquit Trump despite the evidence, in the light of day with the eyes of the whole nation (and world) on them.
"Well, Grant, we've had the devil's own day, haven't we?"

"Yes. Lick 'em tomorrow though."

-Generals Sherman and Grant, the Battle of Shiloh.


"They are nearer to me than the other side, in thought and sentiment, though bitterly hostile personally. They are utterly lawless - the unhandiest devils in the world to deal with - but after all their faces are set Zion-wards."- Lincoln on radical Abolitionists.


"You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?"-Terry Pratchett's DEATH.


I am a dual citizen of the US and Canada.

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