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Tag: donald trump

Trump Urges DOJ, FBI to Expedite Investigation of George Floyd’s Death at Hands of Police

George Floyd’s arrest before he died.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

President Trump said Wednesday that he’s urged the FBI and Justice Department to expedite the investigation of an unarmed black man who died while in custody in Minneapolis.

“At my request, the FBI and the Department of Justice are already well into an investigation as to the very sad and tragic death in Minnesota of George Floyd,” Trump tweeted.

“I have asked for this investigation to be expedited and greatly appreciate all of the work done by local law enforcement. My heart goes out to George’s family and friends. Justice will be served!”

The four officers involved in the incident have been fired.

Protests escalated into violence over the past two days as demonstrators demanded justice for Floyd.

Trump Withdraws Nomination of Chuck Canterbury to Lead ATF Amid GOP Opposition

Kenneth “Chuck” Canterbury via Twitter.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

President Trump formally withdrew his nomination of Kenneth “Chuck” Canterbury to lead the ATF on Tuesday amid opposition from Republicans.

Trump nominated Canterbury, the former national president of the National Fraternal Order of Police, in June 2019 to replace Thomas Brandon, who was retiring.

Trump notified Congress that he was withdrawing the nomination, The Hill reports.

The ATF has been without a permanent director since 2015.

During a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in July, Republicans expressed concerns that Canterbury wasn’t supportive enough of gun rights. A vote to confirm Canterbury in September was postponed.

The latest development is part of a long history of powerful gun rights groups like the NRA blocking confirmation of ATF directors out of fear they’ll be too aggressive about enforcing the nation’s gun laws.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders Rips ex-FBI Director James Comey

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Sarah Huckabee Sanders

Sarah Huckabee Sanders, former press secretary for President Donald Trump, ripped into ex-FBI Director James Comey in a tweet on Thursday.


Sanders has been active in fundraising for Trump for the 2020 election. Since his firing, Comey has been very anti-Trump and made it clear he’ll vote against him.

Secret Service Agents Ordered to Wear Masks around President Trump

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Secret Service agents who are likely to come into close contact with President Trump have been ordered to wear masks.

ABC News reports that stricter measures have been put in place after two aides at the White House have tested positive for COVID-19.

“Any meetings the president goes to, people will maintain maximum social distancing measures,” one administration official told ABC News.

The Secret Service would not comment on the matter.

Trump is routinely observed not wearing a mask while coming into close contact with people.

There also were talks about separating Trump and Vice President Mike Pence, but it appears that will not happen and the pair will continue to attending meetings together.

Justice Department Moves to Drop Criminal Case Against Michael Flynn, Drawing Criticism

Former National Security Adviser Michael T. Flynn

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The Justice Department dropped its criminal case against Michael Flynn, President Trump’s former national security adviser, citing documents detailing how FBI officials planned to handle a January 2017 interview with Flynn.

The decision to recommend that a judge dismiss the case drew immediate criticism from legal experts and Democrats, who raised serious questions about the motivations of the DOJ and Attorney General William Barr.

Flynn pleaded guilty in 2017 to lying to the FBI about his contacts with a Russian diplomat and even cooperated with special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into ties between Russia and the 2016 Trump campaign.

In documents filed Thursday in federal court in Washington D.C., the Justice Department said, “The Government has concluded that the interview of Mr. Flynn was untethered to, and unjustified by, the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into Mr. Flynn,” NBC News reports.

“The Government is not persuaded that the January 24, 2017 interview was conducted with a legitimate investigative basis and therefore does not believe Mr. Flynn’s statements were material even if untrue,” the filing said.

The decision follows the release of an internal review into the handling of the case. Flynn’s lawyers claimed the review shows Flynn had been entrapped into lying when FBI agents interviewed him.

Trump applauded the DOJ’s recommendation.

“I didn’t know that was happening at this moment. I felt it was going to happen just by watching and seeing like everybody else does,” Trump told reporters in the Oval Office.

“He was an innocent man,” he said of Flynn. “He is a great gentleman.”

The move was “outrageous,” chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., said.

“The evidence against General Flynn is overwhelming. He pleaded guilty to lying to investigators. And now a politicized and thoroughly corrupt Department of Justice is going to let the President’s crony simply walk away,” Nadler said in a statement.

Former U.S. Attorney Barbara McQuade, who responded to the DOJ’s actions by saying “This is not justice,” urged Justice Department lawyers not to resign.

“DOJ lawyers of integrity will be tempted to resign over today’s motion to dismiss the Flynn case,” McQuade tweeted. “My advice is to please stay. We need you instead of those who might replace you.”

The recommendation still needs to be approved by Judge Emmet Sullivan.

Trump Insists Newly Released FBI Documents Prove Michael Flynn Was Mistreated

Former National Security Adviser Michael T. Flynn

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

President Trump insisted Thursday that newly released FBI notes “exonerated” Michael Flynn, reviving his conspiracy theories that federal authorities had schemed to bring down his national security adviser.

Trump seized on documents detailing how FBI officials planned to handle a January 2017 interview with Flynn, who was serving at Trump’s national security adviser at the time.

The documents indicated the FBI was preparing to close the case before top bureau officials made a last-minute reversal, The Washington Post reports. The documents don’t show why the reversal occurred.

Although Flynn eventually pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his contacts with a Russian diplomat, Trump said the documents prove Flynn was treated unfairly.

“Look at what they did to the guy,” Trump told reporters Thursday. “What they did to this man, they tormented him.”

Trump later indicated he would “certainly consider” rehiring Flynn.

Legal experts say Flynn’s lawyers will have a tough time convincing a judge that he was entrapped.

“It is not a close call,” Chuck Rosenberg, a former U.S. attorney who also served as FBI Director James Comey’s chief of staff, told The Washington Post. “In this situation, Flynn had three options: tell the truth, lie or refuse to talk. The FBI did not plant a lie, urge him to repeat the lie, record him in the lie, and then prosecute him for lying. That might be entrapment. Here, Flynn was predisposed to lie, chose to talk, and then lied. That’s not entrapment.”

Secret Service Racks Up $33,000 Protecting Mnuchin at Trump’s Washington D.C. Hotel

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The Secret Service racked up a $33,000 bill at President Trump’s hotel in Washington D.C. while guarding Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin for 137 nights.

The Secret Service was charged $242 a night at the Trump International Hotel, the maximum amount allowed for federal agencies to spend on lodging, The Washington Post reports.

Mnuchin was staying in a luxury suite for several months before moving to a house. The Secret Service stayed in a room next to Mnuchin’s to screen his visitors and packages at taxpayers’ expense.

This is one of dozens of instances in which the Secret Service spent money at Trump’s businesses.

A Treasury Department spokesman said Mnuchin “was not aware of what the U.S. Secret Service paid for the adjoining room.”

Barr Directs Prosecutors to Take Legal Actions Against ‘Overbearing’ Restrictions Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

Attorney General William Barr

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Attorney General William Barr is directing federal prosecutors “to be on the lookout” for state and local stay-at-home orders that may be too restrictive.

“These kinds of restrictions have been necessary in order to stop the spread of a deadly disease — but there is no denying that they have imposed tremendous burdens on the daily lives of all Americans,” Barr said in a memo titled, “Blanacing Public Safety with the Preservation of Civil Rights,” issued Monday. “If a state or local ordinance crosses the line from an appropriate exercise of authority to stop the spread of COVID-19 into an overbearing infringement of constitutional and statutory protections, the Department of Justice may have an obligation to address that overreach in federal court.”

In the memo, acknowledged that restrictions may be necesssary to curb the spread of the coronavirus, “but there is no denying that they have imposed tremendous burdens on the daily lives of all Americans.”

At his daily news conference, Trump defended Barr’s actions.

“He wants to see people get back to work,” Trump said. “He does not want people to be held up when there is no reason for doing it.”

Read the full memo here.