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Tag: Democrats

Democrats to Special Counsel Mueller: We Have Evidence Michael Flynn Broke Law

Former National Security Adviser Michael T. Flynn

Former National Security Adviser Michael T. Flynn

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Democrats say they have evidence that President Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn broke the law by failing to disclose a trip that involved a potential business deal between the Saudi government and a Russian nuclear power agency.

House Democrats provided details in a letter to special counsel Robert Mueller, who is investigating wether Trump campaign aides colluded with Russia to win the White House.

Rep. Elijah Commungs, D-Md., and Eliot Engel, D-New York, sent the letter, which was not signed by any Republicans.

CNN reported:

Democrats sought information from three American companies in June after Newsweek reported that Flynn traveled to the Middle East in the summer of 2015 to broker a $100 billion deal between the companies, Saudi Arabia and Russia’s nuclear power agency. In response, officials from the US companies provided statements to the Democrats, confirming Flynn’s trip in 2015.

When Flynn returned to the US several months later and reapplied for his security clearance, he never disclosed the trip or the contacts he had with foreign nationals as part of the trip, the Democrats say.

Democrats Back Measure to Prevent Secret Service from Paying Trump Businesses

secret serviceBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Democrats are trying to prevent President Trump from using the Secret Service to pay his businesses.

Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., said Wednesday he plans to introduce an amendment to an appropriations bill, the USA Today reports. 

“None of the funds made available by this Act to the United States Secret Service may be used to purchase, rent, or otherwise acquire goods or services, including hotel rooms, office space, or golf carts, from entities that are owned or operated by the President or the immediate family of the President,” the amendment reads.

The amendment follows news that Trump’s large family and frequent travels have drained the Secret Service budget.

“The immense honor and responsibility of serving as president of the United States should never be exploited for profit or personal gain,” Schiff said. “That the Trump Organization is profiting off the Secret Service is an abuse of taxpayer money and an improper method of enrichment.”

House Democrats: Give FBI Director Authority to Reject Security Clearance for White House Staff

Jared Kushner

Jared Kushner

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI director would have the authority to reject security clearance for White House staff it there is a national security risk under a measure introduced by a group of House Democrats.

More than 20 Democrats have expressed support for the bill, called the Security Clearance Review Act, the Hill reports

The measure is in response to serious questions raised about the security clearance of President Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner, who is accused of colluding with Russian officials to interfere with the presidential election.

Donald Trump’s refusal to hold his senior staff accountable for their deceptions on Russia have sadly made this legislation necessary,” said Rep. Don Beyer, D-Va., who co-sponsored the bill. “Despite all we have learned about his secret meetings with Russians, Jared Kushner apparently continues to hold his clearance.”

Democratic Groups Urge Delay on FBI Director Vote Until Trump Comes Clean on Mueller

Christopher Wray at confirmation hearing.

Christopher Wray at confirmation hearing.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A group of Democratic groups is urging the Senate to oppose the confirmation of Christopher Wray as FBI director until President Trump can assure lawmakers that he won’t fire special counsel Robert Mueller.

A letter addressed to key members of the Senate suggests President Trump “seems intent on thwarting special counsel’s investigation” into Russia’s interference with the 2016 presidential campaign.

“Before moving to confirm a new Trump-selected FBI Director, the Senate should be assured that President Trump and his White House will respect the independence of the FBI’s law enforcement function from White House interference,” according to the letter, signed by nine groups, including Citizens of Responsibility and Ethics, Common Cause and MoveOn.org.

It’s unclear whether the letter will have any impact. Wray has bi-partisan support after pledging independence during his confirmation hearing, and lawmakers are expected to approve the confirmation within a month.

Trump: ‘Everyone’ at G-20 Is Talking about DNC’s Handling of Cyberattacks

President Trump

President Trump

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

At the G-20 summit in Germany, President Trump claimed “everyone here is talking about” how Democrats handled cyberattacks during last year’s presidential election. 

It’s unclear why leaders of the world’s wealthiest and developing countries would be caught up in old election news at a gathering designed to promote international financial stability. What’s more likely is that Trump is trying to divert attention away from a very active investigation into whether his campaign conspired with Russia to meddle in the election. 

In a tweet Friday morning, Trump claimed “everyone is talking about why John Podesta refused to give the DNC server to the FBI and the CIA. Disgraceful!”

On Thursday, Trump used the international stage to slam America’s intelligence agencies, the Democratic National Committee, the media, Russia and former President Obama.

How Trump’s Boorish Temperament Is Exposing Him to More Scrutiny

donald trump rallyBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

If President Trump thought firing FBI Director James Comey would rein in the bureau’s robust federal investigation of ties between Russia and Trump’s campaign, the billionaire-turned-political newcomer made a terrible, potentially fateful miscalculation.

Trump’s brazen decision Tuesday to terminate the man who was leading the growing investigation prompted a far-reaching call for an independent special counsel to examine whether the president’s campaign conspired with Russia to interfere with the 2016 election. Some also are questioning whether Comey’s firing constitutes obstruction of justice since he was looking into potential crimes committed by the president and some of his inner circle.

Former FBI Director James Comey

Former FBI Director James Comey

After drawing fierce criticism from both sides of the aisle, Democrats on Wednesday called for an independent special counsel to investigate the allegations. Then on Thursday, 20 attorneys general from across the country urged the Justice Department to appoint a special counsel.

Despite the reaction, Trump continues to take to Twitter and TV to blame the investigation on “fake news” and Democrats who “fabricated” the allegations “as an excuse for losing the election.”

Trump’s Bold Choice to Fire Comey May Lead to a Special Prosecutor

Donald Trump, via Wikipedia

Donald Trump, via Wikipedia

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

After Donald Trump boldly fired the FBI director in the middle of an investigation into his presidential campaign’s ties to Russia, Democrats said the only way to assure a fair investigation is to appoint a special prosecutor.

Democrats compared Trump’s actions to President Richard Nixon, who tried to obstruct a federal investigation into his inner circle before resigning in 1974.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said the investigation must be led by someone independent of Trump, CNN reports

“This investigation must be run as far away as possible from this White House,” Schumer said.

Sen. Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the Senate intelligence committee, said he wants to hear what Comey knows about the investigation.

“I still want him to come and testify, even as former FBI director,” Warner said in an interview on CNN’s “Erin Burnett OutFront.”

Sen. Ed Markey, a Massachusetts Democrat, expressed an urgency to appoint a special prosecutor.

“We are careening ever closer to a Constitutional crisis, and this development only underscores why we must appoint a special prosecutor to fully investigate any dealings the Trump campaign or administration had with Russia,” said Sen. Ed Markey, a Massachusetts Democrat, in a statement.

Homeland Security Secretary Kelly Considers Body Cams for Border Patrol Agents

Body cams, via Wikipedia

Body cams, via Wikipedia

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

As complaints continue about President Trump’s toughened immigration policies, Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly said Tuesday that he will consider body cameras for Border Patrol and ICE agents, the San Antonio Express-News reports.

Kelly met with Congressional Hispanic Caucus members and said he would investigate credible charges of civil rights violations.

In a meeting three weeks ago with Democratic lawmakers, Kelly insisted the agency lacked enough money to buy body cameras.

“We believe that this would increase transparency and would make sure that ICE agents are doing their jobs properly, that Border Patrol agents are doing their job properly,” said U.S. Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-San Antonio, who has led the push for the body cameras. “He (Kelly) said he is committed to that, and hopefully that will become ‘part of our job.’”

Castro called out Kelly’s claims that the agency doesn’t have enough money for body cams, noting that Trump’s budget calls for an infusion of $2.8 billion for discretionary spending at Homeland Security.

“There are tremendous safety and accountability benefits to having video records of law enforcement activity – both for the officers and for the public,” Castro wrote.