A Complete Breakdown Of America’s 61st Week With Donald Trump As POTUS
The excitement in the air was palpable. You could feel the winds of change and see the dawn of a new era. It was hard not to be inspired while brushing shoulders with America’s future leaders on stage, and in the crowd, as they bravely marched for what they believe in.
18-year-old Emma Gonzalez silenced the most powerful country’s capital for six minutes and twenty seconds.
11-year-old Naomi Wadler became a voice for the “African-American girls whose stories don’t make the front page of every national newspaper.”
9-year-old Yolanda King (Martin Luther King Jr.’s granddaughter) painted her dream of a great generation.
Countless young people registered to vote.
The March For Our Lives was powerful, intersectional, and downright historic. The march was focused on gun control with a major emphasis placed on voting. One thing was for certain: if these organizers keep this up heading into the midterms, we could see historic youth turnout and the effects will go far beyond gun reform. Needless to say, the Republican Party should be very worried.
Meanwhile, in Trump world, there were legal team shakeups as the Mueller investigation continued to consume the president. And in perhaps the most consequential foreign policy appointment of this presidency, Trump selected John Bolton as national security adviser.
In other news, Donald Trump congratulated Vladimir Putin — a hostile authoritarian leader who interfered in American democracy — for his unfair election win, slapped tariffs on China, and the DOJ indicted 9 Iranians.
As all this was occurring, Cambridge Analytica was exposed for committing potentially illegal acts, and Facebook was under fire for mishandling user’s data.
In spite of a week that felt like business as usual, the March For Our Lives brought with it a glimmer of hope. Although some of these kids may be too young to cast a ballot, they have proven they aren’t too young to lead.
As you may have noticed, I switched up this week’s headline a bit. As I’ve said before, with each passing week Unpresidented becomes less about the shenanigans of Donald Trump and more about the resilience of the American people. And by the end of this week, Donald Trump seemed even smaller.
Here’s a complete breakdown of Donald Trump’s 61st week as POTUS:
61st Weekend (March 17–18)
“Trump’s About To Fire Mueller” Round 1,000
After a week rattled by the undignified firings of Rex Tillerson and Andrew McCabe and reports of President Trump feeling empowered, many people began to speculate who Trump had his sights on next. Trump’s lawyer John Dowd gave a not so subtle signal as to what his boss might be thinking.
Over the weekend, Trump’s lawyer John Dowd told The Daily Beast reporter Betsy Woodruff that it’s time for Deputy Attorney Rod Rosenstein to shut down the Russia probe.
John Dowd has called for the end of Mueller's probe It's now clear @realDonaldTrump no longer believes he'll be exonerated Mueller's subpoena into the Trump Org may have triggered him Either Trump ends the investigation or the investigation ends him https://t.co/Fg3RYASG4j
Our analysis was later confirmed. Trump was triggered by the Trump Organization subpoena.
Trump was livid this week over the Times report that Mueller had subpoenaed his corporate records, one person close to the White House tells NYT. https://t.co/h4xKh1aNyj
Soon to be in mine and @nytmike's story, Trump's lawyers recently received a list of questions from Mueller's team that the special counsel would seek answers to in an interview. Adds to the portrait of what took place today.
This precluded a series of tweets where President Trump explicitly attacked Mueller for the first time on Twitter.
By the end of the weekend, as backlash mounted over the comments and fear that Trump may move to fire Mueller, GOP Senator Lindsay Graham had a stern response.
If President Trump fired Robert Mueller, "that would be the beginning of the end of his presidency, because we are a rule of law nation," says GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham #CNNSOTU https://t.co/YGW17KN74f
Whether or not @LindseyGrahamSC will stand by this statement when the time comes is unclear. But what I can say is it's incredibly important for Trump to hear this kind of pushback from Senate Republicans while he is essentially trial ballooning the prospect of firing Mueller. https://t.co/uoZ6SeXKhr
WOW. Trey GOWDY addresses Trump's lawyer this AM: "if you have an innocent client Mr. Dowd, act like it.
By Sunday night, John Dowd — who had already tried to walk back his initial statement and say he was speaking for himself — released this statement.
New statement from President Trump's lawyer Ty Cobb says "the president is not considering or discussing the firing of" Robert Mueller
And then, The Daily Beast reported this…
Multiple aides and Trump confidants tell The Daily Beast that this weekend will not be the last time Trump attacks Mueller-that he's determined to more directly confront the Russia probe, even if it means exacerbating his legal standing. https://t.co/wmbXGccXLV
I’m of a different opinion than many people on Twitter. I personally think the next step will be some kind of “review” of Rosenstein’s role. The administration didn’t even move to fire McCabe until after the IG probe. But still, anything can happen — especially if a wild new indictment comes along and scares Trump (Probably hacking — fancy bear, Cozy Bear, Wikileaks and potentially American co-conspirators/Roger Stone perjury — will be next up on Mueller’s list).
Who knows? It’s 2018. The only thing I’ll predict with 100% certainty is that Donald Trump will continue to become gradually more unhinged with each passing day. One could make a fortune betting on that.
- Reuters reported:
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ testimony that he opposed a proposal for President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign team to meet with Russians has been contradicted by three people who told Reuters they have spoken about the matter to investigators with Special Counsel Robert Mueller or congressional committees.
- The Associated Press dropped a damning exclusive on Jared Kushner:
When the Kushner Cos. bought three apartment buildings in a gentrifying neighborhood of Queens in 2015, most of the tenants were protected by special rules that prevent developers from pushing them out, raising rents and turning a tidy profit.
But that’s exactly what the company then run by Jared Kushner did, and with remarkable speed. Two years later, it sold all three buildings for $60 million, nearly 50 percent more than it paid.
Now a clue has emerged as to how President Donald Trump’s son-in-law’s firm was able to move so fast: The Kushner Cos. routinely filed false paperwork with the city declaring it had zero rent-regulated tenants in dozens of buildings it owned across the city when, in fact, it had hundreds.
- On Friday, Cambridge Analytica, the data firm that worked with the Trump’s 2016 campaign, was exposed. After a professor claimed to be running a survey for academic purposes, close to 300,000 people gave permission to access their Facebook data, and apparently all their friends’ data. Cambridge Analytica allegedly then acquired what would be 50 million Facebook users’ data from that professor.
DEVELOPING: Facebook is suspending Trump-affiliated political research firm Cambridge Analytica. Story to come.
Over the weekend, there was more.
Cambridge Analytica presented Russian oil company Lukoil (which is now on the US sanctions list and has been used as a vehicle of government influence) with election disruption strategies. Read these 👇👇👇 @nytimes: https://t.co/jl2xqipZeX @guardian: https://t.co/u4ULt8fiBn
The same year they met with Lukoil, they surveyed Americans about Russia. @nytimes: "Cambridge Analytica also included extensive questions about Russia's president, Vladimir V. Putin, in surveys it was carrying out in American focus groups in 2014" Why? https://t.co/z73FVrbYCQ
This was far from the end of the story…
61st Week (March 19–24)
Monday, March 19
Data Firm Or Dirty Trick Operation?
After the news of Cambridge Analytica’s alleged Facebook data collection, their reported outreach to Wikileaks, and meetings with a Russian oil company, it seemed it was impossible to get any more bad press. Well…
EXCLUSIVE: Trump's election consultants secretly filmed offering to use Ukrainian sex workers to entrap politicians. https://t.co/Swdr4jL0NA #CambridgeAnalyticaUncovered
Must watch Cambridge Analytica CEO Alexander Nix admits that they have entrapped and bribed politicians Needless to say, this is illegal in the US & the UK Important note: This is the Data firm that helped Trump's campaign, is funded by the Mercers, & Bannon was the former VP https://t.co/CrVTFsoBDq
I highly suggest you watch for yourself.
Under fire for his connections to a voter-targeting firm that used data taken from 50 million Facebook users without their knowledge, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz insisted Tuesday that he was unaware of any impropriety.
The Cruz presidential campaign touted its collaboration with Cambridge Analytica as a sign of a cutting edge run for the White House, allowing the Texan to carefully identify likely supporters. The firm shifted allegiance to Donald Trump once the Texan dropped out of the GOP primaries.
Wow. Britain's Information Officer announces she is seeking a warranting to raid Cambridge Analytica and seize servers
This was far from the end of the story. There was more to come the following day. But, as expected, the House Intelligence Committee saw it as the end of the story.
Rep. Mike Conaway said tonight he has no plans to call Alexander Nix or any other Cambridge Analytica officials back to HPSCI to testify, reiterating that the Russia investigation has ended. Said it's Nunes' call, per @jeremyherb
Dereliction of duty https://t.co/0Yj8gcCDDi
- Donald Trump started his morning off with what we’ve come to expect from this president: Claims that an investigation — which has yielded indictments of 13 Russians, plea agreements from 3 of Trump’s associates, and just had sanctions based on it — is a WITCH HUNT.
A total WITCH HUNT with massive conflicts of interest!
@realDonaldTrump Donald Trump-the president with the most conflicts of interest in history, who refused to divest from his business, and is vulnerable to foreign countries playing to his business interests-falsely claims the Russia investigation has conflicts of interest https://t.co/rPU31eVOAX
- The Washington Post reported:
President Trump’s attorneys have provided the special counsel’s office with written descriptions that chronicle key moments under investigation in hopes of curtailing the scope of a presidential interview, according to two people familiar with the situation.
Trump’s legal team recently shared the documents in an effort to limit any session between the president and special counsel Robert S. Mueller III to a few select topics, the people said. The lawyers are worried that Trump, who has a penchant for making erroneous claims, would be vulnerable in an hours-long interview.
- President Trump hired Joseph E. diGenova, a lawyer who has made several appearances on Fox News spouting false “deep state” conspiracy theories about how the Trump-Russia investigation began as a covert op to exonerate Hillary Clinton and launch a “coup d’etat” against Trump. The status of this hiring would prove to be uncertain by the end of the week.
SCOOP: Trump close to hiring longtime Washington lawyer Joe diGenova to bolster his legal team. diGenova has pushed theories on television recently that Trump was framed by F.B.I. and Justice Department officials. w/@maggieNYT https://t.co/WyfDu0O5Gy
@realDonaldTrump Donald Trump-the president with the most conflicts of interest in history, who refused to divest from his business, and is vulnerable to foreign countries playing to his business interests-falsely claims the Russia investigation has conflicts of interest https://t.co/rPU31eVOAX
- Trump ended his day the same way he started it: With a false tweet.
The Democrats do not want to help DACA. Would be so easy to make a deal!
@realDonaldTrump President Trump-who rescinded DACA in the first place and subsequently shot down multiple bipartisan legislative efforts to protect Dreamers-falsely claims that Democrats are to blame for the lack of a deal on DACA https://t.co/P2MYTuTkjV
- Speculation surrounding another shakeup of Trump’s legal team was sparked by a New York Times report.
Dowd wants to quit. Trump's talking about firing Cobb. Another lawyer – who says FBI made up evidence against Trump – was hired today and more new lawyers may be on the way. w/@maggieNYT https://t.co/ctooDFGU5h
First they told him the probe was going to end by Thanksgiving Then they assured him he'd be exonerated It was only a matter of time until Trump realized his lawyers have been lying to him-Unfortunately, we're there Now he'll rely on himself…which means unhinged waters ahead https://t.co/7w1ySpK2fj
Tuesday, March 20
DO NOT CONGRATULATE
During an oval office press briefing with Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, President Trump told reporters that he spoke to President Vladimir Putin and congratulated him on his election “victory.” A victory which was deemed “controlled” and unfair by election watchdogs.
President Trump: "I had a call with President Putin and congratulated him on the victory … We'll probably be meeting in the not-too-distant future to discuss the arms race, which is getting out of control." https://t.co/JGk9V2biwX
As if the congratulations wasn’t bad enough, President Trump made some glaring omissions in his call with Putin.
As the Senate Intelligence Committee briefed reporters on recommendations to prevent future Russian election hacking, Trump tells reporters that he congratulated Putin for winning re-election. No mention of the 21 people Russia poisoned in the UK or Russian election meddling. https://t.co/klkQKWN7X9
Senator John McCain (R-AZ) responded.
McCain: "An American president does not lead the Free World by congratulating dictators on winning sham elections.
Later in the day, it was reported that President Trump ignored the advice of his advisers ahead of this call.
Trump did not follow specific warnings from his national security advisers when he congratulated Putin on his reelection, including a section in his briefing materials in all-capital letters stating "DO NOT CONGRATULATE," officials familiar tell WaPo. https://t.co/AaTcJ5m7DI
Ahead of his call with Putin, Trump received explicit warnings from his national security advisers saying "DO NOT CONGRATULATE" His aides also gave him talking points condemning Russia for the UK poisoning He ignored both POTUS acts like he's compromised Plain and simple https://t.co/kQ8mN7eCWw
President Trump’s supporters, as well as some reporters, correctly pointed out that President Obama called to congratulate Putin after his 2012 election win. But of course, they omitted some crucial context.
People tweeting "Obama congratulated Putin too!" 🤔 Let's put that in context That was in 2012, before Russia: -Annexed Crimea -Enabled Assad to commit human rights abuses -Interfered in 2016 election -Aired animation of missiles headed to Florida -Poisoned 21 people in the UK
The following day, President Trump chimed in.
I called President Putin of Russia to congratulate him on his election victory (in past, Obama called him also). The Fake News Media is crazed because they wanted me to excoriate him. They are wrong! Getting along with Russia (and others) is a good thing, not a bad thing…….
Whataboutism without context-Typical Trump Obama called Putin in 2012, before Russia -Annexed Crimea -Enabled Assad to commit human rights abuses -Hacked US infrastructure -Interfered in the 2016 election -Aired animation of missiles headed to Florida -Poisoned 21 people in UK https://t.co/6l88UFsVEl
Donald Trump doesn't shy away from confrontation. He's attacked everyone from gold star families to America's own allies… But never Vladimir Putin. If you objectively examine his conduct over the years, it's incredibly difficult to argue that Trump isn't compromised by Russia
And if you don’t want to take our word for it, take the word of Former CIA Director John Brennan.
Ex-CIA Dir. John Brennan: "I think he is afraid of the Russian president. They may have something on him personally… the fact that he has had this fawning attitude toward Mr. Putin… I think continues to say to me that he does have something to fear." https://t.co/WKf6nwSfXq
How could Trump be compromised you ask? 👇🇷🇺👇💰👇 https://t.co/sqV866xJ9d
I know. Dire stuff. So here’s a meme.
DO NOT CONGRATULATE
- The Senate Intelligence Committee made recommendations to protect the integrity of the vote heading into the midterms.
- Channel 4 News dropped yet another bombshell.
EXCLUSIVE: Cambridge Analytica bosses say they "ran all the digital campaign" for Donald Trump – including potentially illegal activities. https://t.co/YzCJIPZser #CambridgeAnalyticaUSA
Channel 4 News reported:
In a different meeting, Mr Turnbull described how the company created the “Defeat Crooked Hilary” brand of attack ads, that were funded by the Make America Number 1 super-PAC and watched more than 30 million times during the campaign.
Coordination between an official election campaign and any outside groups is illegal under US election law. Cambridge Analytica deny wrongdoing, insisting a strict firewall separated out their activity and that they were transparent about their work on political campaigns and PACs.
Last week-we learned Cambridge Analytica wrongfully harvested data from 50 million Facebook accounts to target American voters Yesterday-Video shows CEO Alexander Nix admitting to entrapping & bribing politicians Now-They may have broken election law while working w/ Trump camp https://t.co/Z37rvBrr5I
After this report, Alexander Nix was suspended as CEO.
Bribing politicians. Planting fake news. The allegations against Cambridge Analytica, and those discussed by now-suspended CEO Alexander Nix, paint a damning picture: It appears their data product is overhyped and their main service may be dirty tricks.https://t.co/ZcScqa6u25
Oh, and there’s this.
Conservative strategist Stephen K. Bannon oversaw Cambridge Analytica's collection of Facebook data, according to former employee https://t.co/RnFlh6YG3G
- As news of the Federal Trade Commission’s investigation into Facebook rattled their stock, CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg did not attend an all-hands meeting about this ongoing Cambridge Analytica scandal.
- The New York Times reported:
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos will go before a House panel on Tuesday to defend her agency’s budget, including a sweeping overhaul of the Education Department that has strained relations within her agency and with Congress — and defies the White House’s budget office.
In recent weeks, Ms. DeVos has clashed fiercely with department staff members over the plan, which they say she tried to withhold from Congress as she imposed on the department what they call an illegal collective bargaining agreement.
- A day after Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant signed a law banning abortions after 15 weeks, District Judge Carlton Reeves temporarily blocked it.
- NBC News reported:
Adult film actress Stormy Daniels underwent a polygraph exam in 2011 about her relationship with Donald Trump, and the examiner found there was a more than 99 percent probability she told the truth when she said they had unprotected sex in 2006, according to a copy of the report obtained by NBC News Tuesday.
Daniels, whose legal name is Stephanie Clifford, took the lie detector test at the request of a magazine that interviewed her in 2011, but didn’t publish the content at the time.
- Karen McDougal has decided to tell her story once more, this time with a reveal of The National Enquirer’s role. The New York Times reported:
A former Playboy model who claimed she had an affair with Donald J. Trump sued on Tuesday to be released from a 2016 legal agreement restricting her ability to speak, becoming the second woman this month to challenge Trump allies’ efforts during the presidential campaign to bury stories about extramarital relationships.
The model, Karen McDougal, is suing The National Enquirer’s parent company, which paid her $150,000 and whose chief executive is a friend of President Trump’s. The other woman, the adult entertainment star Stephanie Clifford, better known as Stormy Daniels, was paid $130,000 to stay quiet by the president’s personal lawyer, Michael D. Cohen. She filed a lawsuit earlier this month.
- In more women will take down President Trump news, “New York Supreme Court Judge Jennifer G. Schecter — citing court precedent that ultimately led to the impeachment of President Bill Clinton in 1998 — said that ‘a sitting president is not immune from being sued in federal court for unofficial acts.’” So, this allows Summer Zervos to move forward with her defamation lawsuit regarding alleged sexual harassment on the part of Donald Trump when she was an “Apprentice” contestant.
- A Fox News Contributor and retired Lt. Col. made quite the exit…
Fox News is assaulting our constitutional order and the rule of law… Fox has degenerated…to a mere propaganda machine for a destructive and ethically ruinous administration"-retired Lt. Col. Ralph Peters' statement as he resigns from @FoxNews PREACH https://t.co/zT5UP0wBaw
Wednesday, March 21
Remember this March 2017 exchange between then-Senator Al. Franken (D-MN) and Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL)?
As news breaks of Jeff Sessions' campaign-related talks w/ Kislyak…Here is his sworn testimony claiming he had no communications w/ Russians https://t.co/3A1qHY5OJp
Yeah, me too. After it was revealed that Attorney General Jeff Sessions did indeed meet with then-Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak on multiple occasions during the 2016 election, many speculated that Sessions might be susceptible to perjury charges. Well, it appears that the FBI felt it was worth looking into.
ABC News reported:
Nearly a year before Attorney General Jeff Sessions fired senior FBI official Andrew McCabe for what Sessions called a “lack of candor,” McCabe oversaw a federal criminal investigation into whether Sessions lacked candor when testifying before Congress about contacts with Russian operatives, sources familiar with the matter told ABC News.
One source told ABC News that Sessions was not aware of the investigation when he decided to fire McCabe last Friday less than 48 hours before McCabe, a former FBI deputy director, was due to retire from government and obtain a full pension, but an attorney representing Sessions declined to confirm that.
Last year, several top Republican and Democratic lawmakers were informed of the probe during a closed-door briefing with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and McCabe, ABC News was told.
By then, Sessions had recused himself from the FBI’s probe of Russia’s meddling in the 2016 presidential election, giving Rosenstein oversight of the growing effort.
Within weeks, Rosenstein appointed special counsel Robert Mueller to take over the investigation and related inquiries, including the Sessions matter.
Two months ago, Sessions was interviewed by Mueller’s team, and the federal inquiry related to his candor during his confirmation process has since been shuttered, according to a lawyer representing Sessions.
“The Special Counsel’s office has informed me that after interviewing the attorney general and conducting additional investigation, the attorney general is not under investigation for false statements or perjury in his confirmation hearing testimony and related written submissions to Congress,” attorney Chuck Cooper told ABC News on Wednesday.
According to the sources, McCabe authorized the criminal inquiry after a top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vermont, and then-Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., wrote a letter in March 2017 to the FBI urging agents to investigate “all contacts” Sessions may have had with Russians, and “whether any laws were broken in the course of those contacts or in any subsequent discussion of whether they occurred.”
Although the article indicates that Sessions was not aware of this investigation before he fired Andrew McCabe less than 30 hours before he was set to retire, it does raise some questions.
- CNN reported more details about the topics Mueller has been discussing with Trump’s lawyers:
Special counsel Robert Mueller’s team has so far discussed with President Donald Trump’s lawyers four main topics they want to talk about with the President.
According to two sources, the areas that the special counsel investigators have indicated they want to pursue with Trump are the President’s role in crafting a statement aboard Air Force One that miscast Donald Trump Jr.’s campaign June 2016 meeting with Russians in Trump Tower, the circumstances surrounding that Trump Tower meeting as well as the firings of FBI Director James Comey and national security adviser Michael Flynn.
- According to CNN, “President Donald Trump was infuriated after it quickly leaked that he had been directly instructed by his national security advisers in briefing materials not to congratulate Russian President Vladimir Putin on his recent election victory during their call Tuesday morning, a source familiar with the President’s thinking said.”
- The Guardian kept the Cambridge Analytica news coming.
BREAKING: Cambridge Analytica story worked with hackers who stole emails from two current heads of state. My latest. https://t.co/0MnUaHNCW3
- More info about the Austin bomber was revealed after he blew himself up.
Mark Anthony Conditt blogged about hating homosexuals, opposing abortion, and ironically, being against Islamic terrorists. https://t.co/xtGUJvXnSr
- Mark Zuckerberg finally spoke out about the need to protect Facebook user’s data and tried to explain what happened in regards to Cambridge Analytica.
- Attorney General Jeff Sessions executed on his boss’ wishes by instructing federal prosecutors to seek the death penalty in drug-related cases “whenever necessary.”
- As we got closer to the March For Our Lives, it was clear that these kids have successfully reshaped public opinion.
A NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll found that for the first time since at least 2000, Americans hold a net unfavorable view of the NRA." @Emma4Change @cameron_kasky @davidhogg111 @JaclynCorin @Sarahchadwickk This is because of you. It's working. https://t.co/sH3ZQPOf9L
Thursday, March 22
The Nuclear Stache
I am pleased to announce that, effective 4/9/18, @AmbJohnBolton will be my new National Security Advisor. I am very thankful for the service of General H.R. McMaster who has done an outstanding job & will always remain my friend. There will be an official contact handover on 4/9.
Thursday brought with it a flurry of breaking news stories, but by far the most consequential was the ousting of National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster and Trump’s choice of John Bolton to replace him.
Bolton is a known warmonger who has a history of wanting war with Iran and North Korea.
@realDonaldTrump @AmbJohnBolton In one of the most dangerous moves of his presidency, Donald Trump announces neoconservative extremist John Bolton will replace National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster. Buckle up. https://t.co/dljYTEk7NQ
A quick montage of his greatest hits.
Bolton in a WSJ op-ed last month: "It is perfectly legitimate for the United States to respond to the current 'necessity' posed by North Korea's nuclear weapons by striking first.
Just reminder that China has explicitly stated they will intervene on North Korea's behalf if the U.S. conducts a preemptive strike. https://t.co/Dj9PhXz8PO
The ousting of H.R. McMaster, btw, is yet another example of the White House’s complete lack of credibility.
The White House has denied for weeks that McMaster was on his way out. After we reported in late February that his departure would happen soon, I was told by White House officials that it was an unsubstantiated rumor, a disgrace to reporting, etc, etc. Yet here we are.
With Mike Pompeo at the State Department (awaiting a likely confirmation), we will likely see the death of the Iran Deal shortly, and increased tensions in the region exacerbated by nuclear proliferation.
The Rantt team stands by what we believe is the best way to prevent his hiring.
- John Dowd, Trump’s lawyer who earlier this week called for the firing of Mueller, resigned.
BREAKING: John Dowd, top Trump lawyer for special counsel investigation, tells @NBCNews that he is resigning – https://t.co/XN9soITpq0 "I love the president and wish him very well," Dowd tells @kwelkernbc.
Well, looks like we won’t get any more moments like these.
Here's a photo of Ty Cobb & John Dowd casually & loudly discussing details of Russia investigation at @BLTSteakDC while I sat at next table.
But most importantly, this, along with the hiring earlier this week and the direct attacks on Mueller, mark a shift in Trump’s strategy.
Trump's legal team shakeup mirrors his Cabinet shakeup. Trump doesn't want to hear dissenting advice-he only wants to hear from people who echo his ridiculous ideas. We're about to see an even more unhinged Trump, as his worst impulses are not only enabled, but amplified.
- And amid this day of shakeups, it was reported that Trump considered firing John Kelly this month and then operating without a Chief of Staff. And we think the White House is chaotic now?
- The Daily Beast reported a bombshell confirming what we’ve long suspected: The identity of Guccifer 2.0, whom Roger Stone admitted to being in communication with, is a GRU intelligence officer.
But on one occasion, The Daily Beast has learned, Guccifer failed to activate the VPN client before logging on. As a result, he left a real, Moscow-based Internet Protocol address in the server logs of an American social media company, according to a source familiar with the government’s Guccifer investigation. Twitter and WordPress were Guccifer 2.0’s favored outlets. Neither company would comment for this story, and Guccifer did not respond to a direct message on Twitter.
Working off the IP address, U.S. investigators identified Guccifer 2.0 as a particular GRU officer working out of the agency’s headquarters on Grizodubovoy Street in Moscow. (The Daily Beast’s sources did not disclose which particular officer worked as Guccifer.)
- CNN reported:
Donald Trump once tried to offer Karen McDougal money after they had been intimate, the former Playboy model told Anderson Cooper Thursday in an exclusive interview on CNN.
“After we had been intimate, he tried to pay me, and I actually didn’t know how to take that,” she said of their first alleged sexual encounter.
When Cooper asked if Trump tried to hand her money, McDougal said, “He did.”
“I don’t even know how to describe the look on my face,” she said. “It must have been so sad.”
- President Trump signed new tariffs, tanking the Dow. Bloomberg reported:
The trade conflict between China and the U.S. escalated, with Beijing announcing its first retaliation against metals levies hours after President Donald Trump outlined fresh tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese imports and pledged there’s more on the way.
On Friday, China unveiled tariffs on $3 billion of U.S. imports in response to steel and aluminum duties ordered by Trump earlier this month. The White House then declared a temporary exemption for the European Union and other nations on those levies, making the focus on China clear. Though Beijing’s actions so far are seen by analysts as measured, there may be more to come.
- Oh, and how could I forget the playground back and forth between Joe Biden and Donald Trump.
Former Vice President Joe Biden said he would take President Trump "behind the gym" and "beat the hell out of him" if they were in high school over the President's crude comments about women https://t.co/LAeLLQn1vY
Crazy Joe Biden is trying to act like a tough guy. Actually, he is weak, both mentally and physically, and yet he threatens me, for the second time, with physical assault. He doesn't know me, but he would go down fast and hard, crying all the way. Don't threaten people Joe!
- The march was coming.
Friday, March 23
The Omnibus Bill
On Friday, President Trump tweeted this:
I am considering a VETO of the Omnibus Spending Bill based on the fact that the 800,000 plus DACA recipients have been totally abandoned by the Democrats (not even mentioned in Bill) and the BORDER WALL, which is desperately needed for our National Defense, is not fully funded.
This came as a surprise to many. Apparently even his White House staff and members of the Republican leadership. This tweet came a day after…
OMB Director Mulvaney yesterday: "Let's cut right to the chase: Is the president going to sign the bill? The answer is yes." https://t.co/YV2zs6NDmn
Of course, Trump signed the bill anyway. But not without complaining first.
President Trump, hours after threatening to veto a $1.3 trillion spending bill and throwing the capital into turmoil, signed it into law on Friday, yielding to advisers and Republican leaders who urged him against manufacturing a government shutdown crisis.
Even as he signed the bill, the president seethed about being forced to swallow legislation that broadly repudiated an agenda that once foresaw the reshaping of the federal government into his “America First” image.
“There are a lot of things that I’m unhappy about in this bill,” Mr. Trump said during a hastily called event at the White House, where the president placed his hand on a foot-high copy of the 2,232-page bill he said he had just signed. “There are a lot of things that we shouldn’t have had in this bill. But we were, in a sense, forced — if we want to build our military — we were forced to have. There are some things that we should have in the bill.”
- Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced new indictments against Iran for state-sponsored hacking campaigns.
DOJ announces charges against 9 Iranians in what federal officials say was one of the largest state-sponsored computer hacking campaigns ever prosecuted by American authorities. https://t.co/jH7Q1r8imA
- Although John Bolton’s ties to Cambridge Analytica have been previously reported, The New York Times shined additional light on it.
John Bolton's political committee was one of the earliest customers of Cambridge Analytica, which it hired specifically to develop psychological profiles of voters with data harvested from Facebook profiles, according to former Cambridge employees https://t.co/IGEfMOlBpy
Bolton bragged about his PAC's use of "advanced psychographic data modeling" at CPAC last year. "We will continue to expand our activities in 2018 in order to achieve a filibuster-proof national security majority in the Senate." https://t.co/Ai4Nilm0aW https://t.co/seElPKVT9x
- Politico reported:
President Donald Trump’s decision to abruptly fire national security adviser H.R. McMaster surprised senior White House aides who had been preparing a single statement announcing the departure of multiple top Trump officials, according to two senior administration officials.
White House chief of staff John Kelly and other top aides were waiting for inspector general reports that they believed would deliver devastating verdicts on Veteran Affairs Secretary David Shulkin and Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson, who have both been accused of racking up extravagant expenses. They were also debating whether several senior White House aides, including McMaster, should go with them.
Saturday, March 24
The March For Our Lives
The March For Our Lives was an event for the history books. In a protest of massive proportions, young people from around the U.S. gathered on Pennsylvania Avenue with one message: enough is enough.
The first speaker was Cameron Kasky, who knocked it out of the park. And the choice for the second speaker showed how brilliant and aware of the issues these kids are: It was a black kid from Chicago.
Everyone needs to hear this Chicago native explain how city, state, and federal governments are enabling gun violence #MarchForOurLives https://t.co/n3cagOwS12
Every speaker was incredible.
I represent the African-American women who are victims of gun violence, who are simply statistics instead of vibrant, beautiful girls full of potential." -Naomi Wadler, 11 #MarchforOurLives https://t.co/r8ZjbLxR1J
I'm going to start off by putting this price tag right here as a reminder for you guys to know how much Marco Rubio took for every student's life in Florida," Parkland survivor David Hogg says at #MarchForOurLives. https://t.co/i54QSygI4C
We are survivors. Let me say for you: We are survivors. We are survivors of a cruel and silent nation. A nation where freedom, justice, equality and purpose is upheld," says Chicago student D'Angelo McDade https://t.co/jujbxM0M4i #MarchForOurLives https://t.co/R3kL4fzHi5
55 years ago, Martin Luther King Jr. gave his "I Have A Dream" speech Today, his granddaughter Yolanda King gave the equivalent of a "We Have A Dream" speech "We…are going to be…a great generation!" #MarchForOurLives https://t.co/AyborpxSmG
The D.C march had hundreds of thousands in attendance, including the Rantt team. We had a blast registering voters.
900 voter registration forms ready to go Let's do this @theAWParty 👊 #MarchForOurLives
Nearly 1 million people gathered. Thousands registered to vote. Countless young leaders began their journeys. The #MarchForOurLives was paradigm shifting. We registered voters and met so many inspiring young people. This movement is the start of something truly historic.
Oh, how could I forget. D.C. was only the beginning. It swept the country and the world.
This movement is far from over.
SO what date in the next couple of weeks should we have a town hall in every congressional district? If you would please Comment your suggestion of the date with reasoning below thanks