Here’s Every Action Trump Took In His Fourth Unpresidented Week As POTUS
Donald Trump’s fourth week in office was another wild one. Behind all of the attacks on the media and compulsive lying, Trump and his administration were making moves. President Trump stepped up immigration raids, signed some bills that help big oil and harm the environment, and responded to the North Korean missile test openly at Mar-a-Lago in front of civilian resort guests.
I know what you all are thinking. That press conference though. Yes, that press conference was a microcosm of everything that makes Donald Trump unfit for the office of the presidency. But was it the most important story of the week? No.
Despite everything else that occurred, the most important story by far was the Russia-Trump story. Former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn resigned after it was revealed he spoke about lifting US sanctions with Russian ambassador Kislyak and something that has been widely suspected and reported for quite some time was confirmed: High-level Trump campaign advisors were in constant communication with Russian operatives throughout the course of the US election. The case for collusion keeps getting stronger.
It was quite the week. Let’s dive in.
Here is every action President Trump, and his administration, took during his fourth week as President of the United States while the cloud of Russia continues to hover over the oval office:
Fourth Weekend (Feb 11–12)
- Michael Flynn was under fire after reports revealed he discussed lifting US sanctions on Russia with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak on December 29, and also had contacts with him prior to the election. This past weekend, the walls began to close in on him
- President Trump hosted Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at Mar-a-Lago when the unexpected happened: On Saturday night, North Korea executed on a missile test. Trump and his aides proceeded to coordinate their response to this sensitive international provocation in open view at an unsecured dinner table in Mar-a-Lago. This all occurred in clear view of resort guests. Pictures of the episode popped up on Facebook. Later in the week, Press Secretary Sean Spicer said these discussions occurred in a SCIF (Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility). This was clearly not the case:
- The Trump administration began large scale immigration raids last week, arresting hundreds of people in multiple states. Immigration officials confirmed that raids took place in Atlanta, Chicago, New York, the Los Angeles area, North Carolina and South Carolina. During the weekend, it was reported that immigration activists said the raids expanded past those states, and that fear of being deported without a criminal record is alarming immigrant communities. Trump took to Twitter to defend these raids:
The crackdown on illegal criminals is merely the keeping of my campaign promise. Gang members, drug dealers & others are being removed!
- During an interview Sunday on ABC’s This Week, White House senior policy advisor Stephen Miller defended Trump’s voter fraud conspiracy theories with no evidence to back it up. Trump praised him on Twitter:
Congratulations Stephen Miller- on representing me this morning on the various Sunday morning shows. Great job!
Fourth Week (Feb 13–17)
Monday Feb 13
- US President Donald Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met for the first time
- Michael Flynn resigned his post as National Security Advisor after reports that he might be subject to blackmail by the Russians. The White House said he was fired after an “eroding of trust” based on the fact that he lied to Vice President Mike Pence about the content of the call. This was far from the end of the story
Tuesday Feb 14
- President Trump started his Tuesday showing that his concerns lie more with how the details surrounding Michael Flynn’s call became public rather than the call itself:
The real story here is why are there so many illegal leaks coming out of Washington? Will these leaks be happening as I deal on N.Korea etc?
- The Washington Post reported that Vice President Mike Pence didn’t learn that Michael Flynn had deceived him until February 9th, two full weeks after the White House was briefed on the matter. The New York Times reported that F.B.I. agents interviewed Michael Flynn about the calls in the first days of the Trump administration. The fact that Trump knew about that call for weeks bolsters the argument that the Michael Flynn resignation was only forced because the details of the call were made public
- President Trump signed a bill that blocked a Securities and Exchange Commission regulation that was going to require oil, gas and mining companies to disclose the details of the payments they make to foreign governments. This was a regulation that was meant to expose payments made to corrupt governments who hoard the wealth obtained from their oil rich lands
- In the evening, The New York Times and CNN reported that there was constant communication between high level advisors in Trump’s campaign (Paul Manafort, Carter Page, Roger Stone, and Michael Flynn) and Russian officials throughout the course of the election, and that those communications have been intercepted by U.S. officials
Wednesday Feb 15
- President Trump continued his attacks on the media and denial that the Russia story has any truth to it:
- House Republicans fell in line and asked the Department of Justice inspector general to investigate the leaks that led to the resignation of retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, not Michael Flynn himself
- The CEO of fast food chain Hardee’s Andrew Puzder withdrew his nomination to lead the Labor Department as his support on Capitol Hill waned after domestic abuse allegations resurfaced
Thursday Feb 16
- President Trump sent out some early morning tweets on the same topic he did the previous morning:
- President Trump then held his now infamous press conference. In a press conference that was supposed to be for the purpose of announcing his nomination of Alexander Acosta as labor secretary, it went a little off topic. Trump was unhinged and visibly distraught as he attacked the media, threatened to blow up the Russian ship that’s off the east coast of the US right now, and made an odd statement about how “the leaks are real” but “the news is fake” regarding Russia. He also said he did not direct Michael Flynn’s phone call but would have done so
The leaks are real but the news is fake”: Trump’s wild press conference https://t.co/MQvvuNF9P6 https://t.co/U2OiwLDXQd
The nine most insane moments from Donald Trump’s reality-challenged press conference
- President Donald Trump signed a bill rolling back a regulation to protect streams from mining pollution
- The Washington Post reported that Michael Flynn lied to the FBI regarding his call with Russian Ambassador Kislyak. The fact he’s not being charged with perjury right now gives credence to the claims that Michael Flynn may strike a deal with the FBI and testify regarding the investigation of the Trump campaign’s collusion with Russia
- After the Trump administration refused his request to pick his own team, Retired Vice Admiral Robert Harward rejected President Trump’s offer to serve as national security advisor. Harward reportedly called the offer a “shit sandwich”
Friday Feb 17
- Reports surfaced that “An internal Department of Homeland Security memo from last month proposed calling up as many as 100,000 National Guard troops to round up undocumented immigrants”
- Climate change denier and serial suer of the EPA Scott Pruitt was confirmed as the head of the EPA
- CNN reports “Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has reassigned a majority of the staff meant to work most closely with the top US diplomat in what career officials at the State Department fear is the start of a major reorganization”
- The New York Times reports that, “House Republican leaders presented their rank-and-file members with the outlines of their plan to replace the Affordable Care Act, leaning heavily on tax credits to finance individual insurance purchases and sharply reducing federal payments to the 31 states that have expanded Medicaid eligibility.”
- FBI Director James Comey held a closed door briefing with the Senate Intelligence Committee regarding the investigation into Russia’s interference in the US election. The Senators in attendance left stone-faced and silent
- Trump then made his most outrageous attack on the media yet:
The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @NBCNews, @ABC, @CBS, @CNN) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People!
Forgive me if I editorialize here. Calling the press the enemy of the American people is un-American, not to mention a page straight out of the authoritarian playbook. President Donald Trump’s campaign to corrode trust in the press and spread disinformation continues to rise in intensity as the weeks drag on. It’s important to note that these attacks seem to ramp up whenever news reports are in the works concerning him and his Russia ties.
In his fourth week in office Trump showed that he is cracking under the pressure, as evidence the Trump campaign colluded with Russia mounts. Trump’s attacks on the intelligence community are backfiring as the leaks continue. The Trump administration is revving up immigration raids and the GOP is advancing their agenda as Trump grabs the attention of the media.
With all that is going on, one thing is for sure: We must continue to remain vigilant.
Catch up on the rest of Trump’s first month below: