A Complete Breakdown Of Donald Trump’s 36th Unpresidented Week As POTUS

36th Weekend (September 23–24)

President Donald Trump boards Air Force One at Morristown Municipal airport, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017, in Morristown, N.J. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

President Donald Trump boards Air Force One at Morristown Municipal airport, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017, in Morristown, N.J. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Every week, for the last 36 weeks, I’ve sat down to write Unpresidented. And every week, I think President Trump can stoop no lower…Then I check his Twitter feed and I’m quickly reminded that the depths in which Donald Trump is willing to stoop is only limited by the molten iron core of the Earth.

In his unjust attacks on San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz and his threats to North Korean Despot Kim Jong-un, President Donald Trump proved that common human decency and national security are not as important to him as his sweet sweet ego.

I could write a dissertation about how Donald Trump is ill-equipped to lead sheep, let alone a nation or about how none of this is normal and we must not lower the bar to accommodate Trump’s ineptitude. But I’ve done that before and won’t reiterate that now. No. I’m going to highlight the things Donald Trump doesn’t want us to be focusing on.

This was the week Special Counsel Robert Mueller began interviewing White House staff as part of the Trump-Russia investigation. The week the Graham-Cassidy bill died. The week six of Trump’s closest current and former aides were outed as using private email accounts to conduct government work. The week Senator Luther Strange lost his Alabama primary even after President Trump’s endorsement. This was the week the full extent of Donald Trump’s fragile ego was exposed.

The rise and fall of Donald Trump will be a tale of an ego run rampant. From businessman to con man. Reality TV star to demagogue. From President to pariah. Donald Trump’s ego helped to propel him to prominence and is now torpedoing him into international disgrace.

Here’s a complete breakdown of Donald Trump’s 36th week as POTUS:

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#TakeAKnee

Several New England Patriots players kneel during the national anthem before an NFL football game against the Houston Texans, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

Several New England Patriots players kneel during the national anthem before an NFL football game against the Houston Texans, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

We’ll start this off with Friday night, aka, the night President Trump went off the rails. President Trump held a rally in Alabama that was supposed to be an endorsement of Senator Luther Strange, but instead, he once again proved how little he thinks of this country, its values, and its people. As news of John McCain’s announced opposition to the Graham-Cassidy bill dominated the headlines, many speculated that the rally was going to be unhinged. No one was prepared for how unhinged he would get. Aside from complaining about the Trump-Russia investigation, saying “You’ve got to speak to Jeff Sessions,” when the crowd shouted “lock her up!” and attacking Kim Jong-un, Trump turned to the NFL.

Not only did he idiotically call the NFL’s new concussion rules “soft” days after now-deceased NFL player Aaron Hernandez was found to have had severe CTE, President Trump took aim at Americans’ who were protesting racial injustice. The man who called neo-Nazis “very fine people” days after a white supremacist terrorist attack, angrily called a black athlete who chooses to exercise their First Amendment rights a “son of a bitch.”

Our take was clear.

This understandably bled into the weekend, as #TakeAKnee and #TakeTheKnee trended on Saturday and Sunday. This protest that started as Colin Kaepernick kneeling in resistance to police brutality, had morphed into an all-inclusive movement that opposed the President and his agenda. President Trump decided he had not pissed enough people off, so he went on to go after NBA Champion Stephen Curry.

This continued a pattern. Trump went from attacking Jemele Hill, to Colin Kaepernick, and now Stephen Curry — All black. Lebron James stood by his NBA colleague.

As Twitter continued to erupt, Trump doubled down.

Trump also threw in some casual threats of Nuclear Holocaust.

Going into Sunday, while Trump took to Twitter, more than 200 players took knees while their fellow players, owners, and coaches stood with their arms linked in solidarity.

Meanwhile…

  • President Trump signed a new travel ban:

“The new presidential order keeps restrictions on five of those six countries — Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen — lifts restrictions on visitors from the Sudan and adds new restrictions on visitors and immigrants from Chad, North Korea and Venezuela.”

36th Week (September 25–29)

Monday, September 25

The No That Broke The Elephant’s Back

Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., center, listens as Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., left, speaks, accompanied by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., on Capitol Hill, Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017 in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., center, listens as Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., left, speaks, accompanied by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., on Capitol Hill, Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017 in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Graham-Cassidy’s future was up in the air. This was a donor-pressured full repeal of Obamacare and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA), and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) were trying to ram this bill through before the September 30th reconciliation deadline so they could still pass it with 50 votes (+ 1 VP Mike Pence tie-breaker vote). The bill removed cost control measures so states could overprice preexisting conditions, cut subsidies for low and middle-income families, and would’ve ended the Medicaid expansion. They wanted to push this dangerous bill through before a comprehensive analysis from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) was released. As of Friday, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) and John McCain (R-AZ) were hard nos, with speculation surrounding Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AL).

Over the weekend, Graham and Cassidy modified the bill, resorting to bribes:

But, on Monday, that changed when the CBO released a preliminary report that found millions would lose insurance (didn’t have time to create a specific estimate). Shortly after the report was released, Collins released a statement announcing her opposition to the bill.

With 3 GOP Senators opposed, the bill was all but dead. Although Graham and Cassidy still debated Senator Bernie Sanders (VT) and Senator Amy Klobuchar (MN) on Monday night, by Tuesday, McConnell had pulled the bill. There next focus: tax reform.

Meanwhile…

  • Amid criticism that he hadn’t tweeted much about Puerto Rico, President Trump sent out a tweetstorm blaming Puerto Rico’s debt and infrastructure for the devastation they are experiencing.

  • The New York Times reported that at least six of President Trump’s former and current aides have used private email accounts to conduct government work. Hillary Clinton called it “the height of hypocrisy.” Rightfully so.

  • North Korea’s Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho called Trump’s tweet aimed at North Korea, a declaration of war. Yong-ho went on to state that they would not hesitate to shoot down American warplanes even if they weren’t in North Korean airspace

  • Right before joining the Trump campaign, Steve Bannon was reportedly trying to get a mole to infiltrate Facebook so that Breitbart could see how they conducted their hiring
  • CNN reported that the Trump administration has been withholding documents from congressional investigators in the Trump-Russia probe
  • LeBron James spoke out against the President once more

  • Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones knelt with his team before the anthem. There were still boos nonetheless. So what is the opposition to those who kneel really about? It’s clearly not the flag or the national anthem

  • As many conservative pundits continued to call these NFL players and other black celebrities who were taking knees “ungrateful” I had a question…

Tuesday, September 26

Mueller Moves

Special Counsel Robert Mueller departs the Capitol after a closed-door meeting with members of the Senate Judiciary Committee about Russian meddling in the election and possible connection to the Trump campaign — June 21, 2017 (AP)

Special Counsel Robert Mueller departs the Capitol after a closed-door meeting with members of the Senate Judiciary Committee about Russian meddling in the election and possible connection to the Trump campaign — June 21, 2017 (AP)

Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s moves in the Trump-Russia investigation are directly correlated with Trump’s heightened unhinged behavior. In early September, Mueller requested documents and interviews from current and former White House staff in relation to the Trump-Russia investigation. And on Tuesday, it was reported that Mueller would begin conducting some of these interviews this week.

Mueller told the White House that he will most likely interview six former and current Trump administration advisers, which include Communications Director Hope Hicks, former Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, former Press Secretary Sean Spicer, White House Counsel Don McGahn, Communications Adviser Josh Raffel, and Associate Counsel James Burnham. Hicks, Priebus, Spicer, and McGahn have all lawyered up.

The New York Times dropped a report that shows to the extent Mueller stepped up his investigation into the activity of the White House. According to White House Officials, Mueller has sought documents regarding 13 areas of interest. The requests were pertaining to the firing of James Comey, Trump’s Oval Office Meeting with Russians, Trump’s Air Force One crafted statement about the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting with Russian operatives, and documents related to former campaign adviser Carter Page, former Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort, and former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

Mueller has teamed up with the IRS’ Criminal Investigations unit, which has 2,500 agents who focus on financial crimes like tax evasion and money laundering. On Tuesday, we learned that this unit has already handed over records related to Paul Manafort and Michael Flynn. And according to ABC News, Mueller is probing the fact that “Three Americans with significant Russian business connections contributed almost $2 million to political funds controlled by Donald Trump.”

Meanwhile…

  • In a hearing with the House Intelligence Committee, Trump campaign adviser Roger Stone denied colluding with Russia and that he had any prior knowledge of incoming emails to be released by Wikileaks. Interesting, given the fact:

Stone admitted to speaking to Guccifer 2.0, the online persona believed to be a front for Russian intelligence officials and behind the hacks on the DNC

In October, Roger Stone boasted about being in regular contact with Wikileaks Founder Julian Assange, through “mutual friends.” This boast appeared to be validated by his eerie knowledge of upcoming Wikileaks concerning Clinton Campaign Chairman John Podesta’s emails. Several months before it occurred, Stone tweeted about an October surprise involving Podesta that would disrupt Clinton’s campaign

  • President Trump plans to cut refugee admissions to 45,000 next year, the lowest level in more than a decade
  • Chuck Rosenberg, the head of the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), submitted his resignation stating that he is convinced President Trump has little respect for the law
  • The Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) new efforts to collect social media information and “search results” (???) from ALL immigrants, including naturalized citizens already living here, has startled many

  • Trump discovered how big oceans are…

Wednesday, September 27

From Tax Cuts To Tax Cuts

President Donald Trump shakes hands with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), center. Also in the room are from left, Vice President Mike Pence, SenateMajority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX), House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI)., and Senior adviser to President Donald Trump Jared Kushner — June 6, 2017 (AP)

President Donald Trump shakes hands with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), center. Also in the room are from left, Vice President Mike Pence, SenateMajority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX), House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI)., and Senior adviser to President Donald Trump Jared Kushner — June 6, 2017 (AP)

Many have argued that the Obamacare repeal effort has long been a thinly veiled attempt by the GOP to obtain tax cuts for their donors. Now, the GOP has finally moved on to openly doing just that. President Trump and Republican lawmakers announced their tax plan which would reduce the number of tax brackets down to three. Reducing the highest bracket to 35% and raising the lowest to 12%. It would also eliminate the estate tax. The plan did not detail how they would accommodate these changes without increasing the national deficit dramatically.

As people argued this plan was drafted to benefit the rich and President Trump himself, later in the week The New York Times released an analysis that found not only would this bill overwhelmingly help the wealthiest Americans, but “President Trump could cut his tax bills by more than $1.1 billion, including saving tens of millions of dollars in a single year, under his proposed tax changes.”

Meanwhile…

  • After Roy Moore beat Senator Luther Strange by taking nearly 55% of the vote on Tuesday night, President Trump deleted his tweets in support of him. That raises the question of whether or not Trump is violating the Presidential Records Act of 1978, which mandates the preservation of all presidents records. The Roy Moore victory, due to his extremist views, is further proof of how delusional the Republican base has become
  • The story of Mueller’s probe into Russian Facebook ads has developed over the last few weeks. Mueller obtained a warrant for the Facebook accounts linked to Russian entities. A warrant of this nature is no joke. It means that Mueller may believe he can indict these foreign entities on election law violations. Facebook has told Congressional investigators and Robert Mueller, that a Russian “troll farm” bought $100,000 worth of Facebook advertising (3,000 ads) starting in the Summer of 2015 and throughout the 2016 election, spreading divisive political posts, including posts that sought to sow racial divides, damage Hillary Clinton, and prop up Donald Trump. On Tuesday it was also reported that both Bernie Sanders and former Green Party Candidate Jill Stein had benefitted from these ads. Mueller and congressional investigators are reviewing these posts. Trump vented on Twitter, exposing the extent of his paranoia.

  • The Senate Intelligence Committee has asked Facebook, Google, and Twitter to testify in public hearings on November 1st
  • President Trump’s patience with HHS Secretary Tom Price’s use of $400,000 worth of private flights seemed to be thinning. Not because he cared about government waste of course, but because the optics were terrible to his base

Thursday, September 28

But Her Emails

Son-in-law (Senior White House Adviser) Jared Kushner and daughter (Senior White House Adviser) Ivanka Trump (AP)

Son-in-law (Senior White House Adviser) Jared Kushner and daughter (Senior White House Adviser) Ivanka Trump (AP)

As I mentioned earlier in the week, it was revealed that Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, former Chief Strategist Steve Bannon, former Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, Chief Economic Adviser Gary Cohn, and Senior White House Adviser Stephen Miller all used private email accounts to conduct government work. Given the fact that throughout Donald Trump’s entire campaign he railed against Hillary Clinton for doing the very same thing and called on her to go to jail for it, is shockingly hypocritical. The White House launched an internal probe into this. As we learned on Thursday, the use of these private email accounts will pose more problems than just bad optics.

It turns out, much like every meeting with Russian operatives he had in 2016, Jared Kushner did not disclose his private email account to the Senate Intelligence Committee in their private hearing in July. Chairman Senator Richard Burr (R-NC), and Vice Chair Senator Mark Warner (D-VA) learned of the existence of the account from the media…According to CNN, they were not happy:

CNN has also learned that the chair and vice chair of the committee were so unhappy that they learned about the existence of his personal email account via news reports that they wrote him a letter via his attorney Thursday instructing him to double-check that he has turned over every relevant document to the committee including those from his “‘personal email account’ described to the news media, as well as all other email accounts, messaging apps, or similar communications channels you may have used, or that may contain information relevant to our inquiry.”

This is important because, as we know, Kushner has a problem with the truth and his wrongdoings are always exposed by the media before he discloses them. The Senate Intelligence Committee may believe they will unearth more undisclosed contacts that would be relevant to the Trump-Russia investigation.

Meanwhile…

  • After a lot of pressure, President Trump finally waived the Jones Act, a 1920 law that requires goods shipped between U.S. ports to be transported by U.S. vessels operated primarily by Americans. Trump was initially slow to waive it, citing shipping concerns…There was no hesitation for any of the other recent natural disasters. This further fed the criticism that he viewed Puerto Ricans as less than other U.S. citizens
  • Axios reported that behind closed doors, President Trump is skeptical about his tax plan. This news came as Gary Cohn said he “can’t guarantee” that taxes won’t go up for the middle class
  • In briefings to the Senate and House Intelligence Committees, Twitter told congressional investigators that they found 200 accounts linked to Russia’s efforts to influence the 2016 election and outlined the measures they took to try and limit it. Senator Mark Warner said the briefing was “very disappointing”

“Showed an enormous lack of understanding from the Twitter team of how serious this issue is, the threat it poses to democratic institutions and again begs many more questions than they offered,” Mr. Warner said, adding, “Their response was frankly inadequate on every level.”

Friday, September 29

Trump Treats Puerto Ricans Like Second Class Citizens

Marlene Ojeda carries her son Esaid Marrero through the Rio San Lorenzo de Morovis, after the bridge that crosses the river was swept away by Hurricane Maria, in Morovis, Puerto Rico, Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2017 (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

Marlene Ojeda carries her son Esaid Marrero through the Rio San Lorenzo de Morovis, after the bridge that crosses the river was swept away by Hurricane Maria, in Morovis, Puerto Rico, Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2017 (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

On Friday, Elaine Duke, the acting secretary of Homeland Security called the recovery of Hurricane Maria a “good news story.” This received appropriate backlash given the fact that the aid efforts have been slow and people are suffering. As President Trump took to Twitter praising his own efforts in Puerto Rico, San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz pleaded for help.

On Saturday, President Trump responded with a disgraceful tweestorm.

Not only did he say Puerto Ricans “want everything to be done for them,” he said Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz has “such poor leadership.” Meanwhile, she was working to save lives.

Like my brilliant colleague Remy Anne said:

Unfortunately, this isn’t surprising. We’ve seen Donald Trump prove time and time again that he is both weak of character and devoid of virtuous reason — especially when it comes to people of color. His response to the plight in Puerto Rico is yet another notch in the ever-growing bedpost of his immorality — one more moment where he has cemented himself on the wrong side of history.

Trump Lets Puerto Ricans Know That He Views Them As Second Class Citizens

Meanwhile…

  • Special Counsel Robert Mueller interviewed his first White House staffer, Lt. Gen. Keith Kellogg. Kellogg is the Chief of Staff for the the National Security Council and was questioned about Michael Flynn
  • After pressure mounted, Tom Price was forced to resign his post as HHS Secretary
  • The Justice Department continued their pursuit of the private information of anti-Trump activists

  • After spending all day on Saturday Tweeting about the NFL and Puerto Rico, Trump went a step further in insulting them, calling Puerto Ricans criticizing him “politically motivated ingrates”

And then….he undermined his Secretary of State on North Korea.

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Unpresidented // Donald Trump / Government / Journalism / Politics