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December 8, 2022

Trump Vows to Appeal Company’s Tax Fraud Conviction

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY…
1941: U.S. and Britain declare war on Japan, U.S. enters World War II.

Former President Donald Trump’s has vowed to appeal the Trump Organization’s tax fraud conviction, denouncing the verdict as a “political witch hunt.”

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office announced the all-count convictions of the Trump Organization “for engaging in a 15-year scheme to defraud, as well as for conspiracy, criminal tax fraud and falsifying business records.”

Trump issued a statement after the verdict, entitled “Manhattan Witch Hunt!”

“Disappointed with the verdict in Manhattan, but will appeal,” Trump said. “After looking at millions of pages of documents, over many years, much to the detriment of record setting murder and other forms of violent crime that are taking place in New York City, the Government was able to get an employee to ‘plea’ in order for a very reduced sentence.”

In August, former Trump Organization Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg pleaded guilty to 15 counts related to the alleged scheme. Weisselberg was a key witness during the trial, having reportedly pleaded guilty in exchange for a five-month jail sentence.

“This case was about Allen Weisselberg committing tax fraud on his personal tax returns, etc., with he and every witness repeatedly testifying that President Trump and the Trump Family knew nothing about his actions, which he admits were done solely for his own benefit, and with no benefit to the two companies,” Trump’s statement read.

“This case is unprecedented and involved no monetary gain to these two Corporations. It is a continuation of the Greatest Political Witch Hunt in the History of our Country. New York City is a hard place to be ‘Trump,’ as businesses and people flee our once Great City!”

The Trump Organization reportedly faces fines of up to $1.6 million, with a sentencing hearing set for Jan. 13.

While Trump himself didn’t face any charges in this case, New York Attorney General Letitia James filed a separate $250 million civil suit against him in September. James alleges that Trump committed tax fraud and misrepresented company assets.

“Today’s guilty verdict against the Trump Organization shows that we will hold individuals and organizations accountable when they violate our laws to line their pockets,” James tweeted after the verdict. “I commend [Bragg] for this big victory, and I am proud of the role that my office played in securing it.”


Sources: Axios | Newsweek

December 6, 2022

Leaked Emails Reveal Big Tech Helped Snag the 2020 Election

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY…
2006: NASA reveals photographs taken by Mars Global Surveyor suggesting the presence of liquid water on Mars.

Journalist Matt Taibbi published the “Twitter Files,” a bombshell report based on internal documents revealing that the platform has removed posts at the request of outsiders — including Joe Biden’s presidential campaign.

The report, published via a lengthy tweet thread, revealed that “Twitter took extraordinary steps to suppress” the New York Post’s Hunter Biden laptop story.

“Twitter took extraordinary steps to suppress the story, removing links and posting warnings that it may be ‘unsafe,'” Taibbi wrote. “They even blocked its transmission via direct message, a tool hitherto reserved for extreme cases, e.g. child pornography.”

Taibbi noted that the decision to censor the story was made at “the highest levels of the company, but without the knowledge of CEO Jack Dorsey.”

Damning emails and remarks from former Twitter employees showed that “everyone knew” the platform’s suppression of the Post’s story “was f—ked.”

Several Twitter sources reportedly recalled hearing about a “general” warning from federal law enforcement in the summer of 2020 about potential foreign hacks, but Taibbi noted that “there’s no evidence — that I’ve seen — of any government involvement in the laptop story.”

“They just freelanced it,” a former employee told Taibbi about how the decision to censor the story came about. 

“Hacking was the excuse, but within a few hours, pretty much everyone realized that wasn’t going to hold. But no one had the guts to reverse it,” the ex-employee added. 

Internal emails revealed that high-level Twitter executives were puzzled by the decision to suppress the Post’s story.

“I’m struggling to understand the policy basis for marking this as unsafe,” Trenton Kennedy, a communications official wrote in an internal email to colleagues. 

Twitter removed tweets at the request of ‘the Biden team’ and the DNC

Taibbi also revealed company emails responding to a request “from the Biden team” in the run-up to the 2020 election — not long after the platform cracked down on the Post’s story.

One, dated Oct. 24, 2020, said, “More to review from the Biden team,” along with a list of tweets.

In response, someone wrote back, “handled these.”

Another, dated Oct. 24, 2020, said, “An additional report from DNC,” an apparent reference to the Democratic National Committee.

New York Post columnist reveals the FBI’s involvement

New York Post columnist Miranda Devine, who was a major part of breaking the Hunter Biden laptop story, told Sky News Australia that the Twitter Files “left out a crucial part” — the FBI’s involvement.

“They were having weekly meetings in San Francisco with executives from Twitter and Facebook, and they were seeding this lie that there was going to be a hack and leak operation run by the Russians that was going to provide damaging material about what was rumored to be Hunter Biden,” Devine said.

“They knew that the story was going to come out, and therefore Twitter and Facebook censored it within hours of it going live on our website,” she continued.

“The FBI had had the laptop in their own possession since December of 2019 – for almost a year – and they knew it was real and not hacked. They were pre-bunking the story with big tech.”

Devine noted that it’s illegal for the FBI, the federal government “to coerce a private company like Twitter or Facebook to violate the First Amendment.”

Trump addresses the bombshell report

Former President Donald Trump addressed the Twitter Files in a statement posted to Truth Social:

“So, with the revelation of MASSIVE & WIDESPREAD FRAUD & DECEPTION in working closely with Big Tech Companies, the DNC, & the Democrat Party, do you throw the Presidential Election Results of 2020 OUT and declare the RIGHTFUL WINNER, or do you have a NEW ELECTION? A Massive Fraud of this type and magnitude allows for the termination of all rules, regulations, and articles, even those found in the Constitution. Our great “Founders” did not want, and would not condone, False & Fraudulent Elections!”

White House spokesperson Andrew Bates said Trump’s remarks are “anathema to the soul of our nation, and should be universally condemned.”

“You cannot only love America when you win,” Bates told CNN in a statement. “The American Constitution is a sacrosanct document that for over 200 years has guaranteed that freedom and the rule of law prevail in our great country. The Constitution brings the American people together – regardless of party – and elected leaders swear to uphold it. It’s the ultimate monument to all of the Americans who have given their lives to defeat self-serving despots that abused their power and trampled on fundamental rights.”


Sources: Matt Taibbi | New York Post | Sky News | CNN

November 26, 2022

Bill Barr Says “Trump Will Burn Down the GOP”

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY…
1789: 1st national Thanksgiving in America.

Bill Barr, who served as Attorney General during the Trump administration, called for “new leadership” in the Republican Party, warning that former President Donald Trump “will burn down the GOP.”

Barr penned a scathing op-ed for the Substack publication Common Sense, entitled “Bill Barr: Trump Will Burn Down the GOP. Time for New Leadership.”

The former AG noted Trump’s qualities that he had admired, including “the clear and direct way he staked out a position and his willingness to state unpleasant truths that many were afraid to say.”

“Above all, Trump had accurately diagnosed, and given voice to, the deep frustration of many middle-class and working-class Americans who were fed up with the excesses of progressive Democrats; the shameless partisanship of the mainstream media; and the smug condescension of elites who had mismanaged the country, sold them out, and appeared content to preside over the decline of America,” Barr wrote.

However, Barr wrote that Trump “lacks the qualities essential to achieving the kind of unity and broad election victory in 2024 so necessary if we are to right our listing republic. It is time for new leadership.”

Barr cited Trump’s “wrecking-ball style” as president. “He did not temper his disruptiveness and penchant for chaos,” Barr wrote. “He yielded to his impulse for pettiness and pointless nastiness; got drawn into infantile name-calling spats; and, in his press conferences, made everything about himself.”

Barr wrote that “the defining feature of our political landscape continues to be the sharp leftward lurch of the Democratic [P]arty” which “opens up a historic opportunity for the GOP—the opportunity to revive something like the old Reagan coalition: a combination of Republican-leaning, college-educated suburbanites; culturally conservative working-class voters; and even some classical liberals who are repulsed by the left’s authoritarianism.”

Barr concluded his piece with the following:

Trump’s willingness to destroy the party if he does not get his way is not based on principle, but on his own supreme narcissism. His egoism makes him unable to think of a political party as anything but an extension of himself—a cult of personality.

Trump is due credit for stopping progressives’ momentum and achieving important policy successes during his administration. But he does not have the qualities required to win the kind of broad, durable victory I see as necessary to restore America. It is time for the 45th president to step aside.

Trump hit back at Barr, calling him “a disgrace to the Republican Party” and the United States.

“Weak RINO Bill Barr always caved to the Dems, and is a disgrace to the Republican Party, and our Nation,” Trump wrote in a post on his Truth Social account.

“Sloppy Bill Barr was a weak and ineffective Attorney General who was fired (he didn’t quit!), and now he’s nothing more than a disgruntled former ’employee,'” Trump wrote.


Sources: Mediaite | Common Sense | The Independent

November 24, 2022

Kanye West Says He’s Running For President in 2024

Rapper Kanye West announced that he’s running for president in 2024.

West, who now goes by Ye, also shared that he asked former President Donald Trump to be his running mate.

“First time at Mar-a-Lago Rain and traffic,” Ye tweeted. “Can’t believe I kept President Trump waiting And I had on jeans Yikes What you guys think his response was when I asked him to be my running mate in 2024?”

The rapper’s tweet included a poll with two options for what Twitter users thought Trump’s response was: “That’s very Ye” or “That’s very Nay.”

Ye has been the subject of recent controversy over antisemitic remarks. Trump addressed Ye during a recent interview with podcast host Chris Stigall. The host suggested Ye was a “marked man” after aligning with the former president, and questioned whether the rapper was getting a “fair shake.”

“I was very honored, in a sense, because he said all those great things about me on Tucker Carlson. He made statements, rough statements, on Jewish [people],” Trump said. “You’ve heard them and you know them well, and they’re saying that was the reason. So then you ask, well, would it have been the same thing if he didn’t say all those good things about Trump? You know, you just don’t know.”

West previously ran for president as an independent in 2020. He received roughly 60,000 votes after only being placed on the ballot in 12 states.

Ye has yet to file the paperwork required to be a federal candidate, according to Insider. It is likely that the rapper and fashion designer would face an uphill battle if he does officially enter the 2024 race.

A Morning Consult poll conducted shortly after his antisemitic remarks found that 60% of U.S. adults hold an unfavorable opinion of West — up 10% from a survey conducted in Dec. 2021.


Sources: Insider (1) | Insider (2) | Morning Consult

November 18, 2022

Ivanka Trump Quits Politics as Dad Launches 2024 Campaign

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY…
1978: In Jonestown, Guyana, 918 members of the Peoples Temple are murdered or commit suicide under the leadership of cult leader Jim Jones.

Ivanka Trump, former President Donald Trump’s daughter who served in his White House administration, announced that she doesn’t “plan to be involved in politics.”

“While I will always love and support my father, going forward I will do so outside the political arena,” Ivanka Trump wrote on Instagram. Her statement came the same evening her father announced that he was running for president again.

“This time around, I am choosing to prioritize my young children and the private life we are creating as a family,” she said. “I do not plan to be involved in politics.”

The 41-year-old said she’s “grateful to have had the honor of serving the American people” and “will always be proud of many of our Administration’s accomplishments.”

Ivanka reiterated to Fox News that she’s “extremely close” with her father.

“That hasn’t changed and will never change,” she said. “I’ve had many roles over the years but that of daughter is one of the most elemental and consequential.”

The mother of three described her current situation of living in Miami and working in the private sector as “one of the greatest times of my life.”

“We’re happy where we are right now, and we will continue to support my father — as his kids,” she said.


Sources: Politico | Fox News

November 17, 2022

House Dem Floats Bill to Ban Trump From Office

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY…
1800: Congress holds its 1st session in Washington, D.C., in an incomplete Capitol Building.

A House Democrat is circulating a potential bill that would ban former President Donald Trump from holding office under a subsection of the 14th Amendment.

Rep. David Cicilline (D-R.I.) sent a letter to other House Democrats on Tuesday night previewing a bill to bar Trump from serving in office under the 14th Amendment “for leading an insurrection against the United States.”

“Given the proof – demonstrated through the January 6th Committee Hearings, the 2021 impeachment trial, and other reporting – that Donald Trump engaged in insurrection on January 6th with the intention of overturning the lawful 2020 election results, I have drafted legislation that would prevent Donald Trump from holding public office again under the Fourteenth Amendment,” Cicilline wrote.

The congressman’s letter came the same night Trump announced his decision to run for president in 2024.

Cicilline, who served as an impeachment manager during Trump’s first impeachment, didn’t immediately specify when he plans to introduce the bill. Lawmakers have until noon Thursday to co-sponsor the legislation.

The House first impeached Trump in Dec. 2019 for “abuse of power” and “obstruction of Congress,” but he was ultimately acquitted of both charges by the Senate. Trump’s second impeachment came in Jan. 2021, with the House citing the charge of “incitement of insurrection.” Again, the Senate acquitted him.

Despite Trump’s acquittals, Cicilline argues that he should be banned from holding office under the “Disqualification Clause” outlined in Section 3 of the 14th Amendment. The clause dictates that individuals shouldn’t be allowed “to hold any office” if they “engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof.”

Cicilline said his legislation “details testimony and evidence” from Jan. 6 select committee hearings that demonstrates “how Donald Trump engaged in insurrection against the United States.”

“It specifically details how Donald Trump engaged in insurrection when he helped to plan and encouraged the insurgence on January 6th despite knowing that the election results were lawful; attempted to intimidate state and federal officials when they did not support his false claims and unlawful plans; tried to manipulate Mike Pence into unlawfully refusing to certify the election results, despite Mr. Pence’s and legal advisors’ assertion that he held no such authority; and supported the violent insurrection at the Capitol on January 6th, refusing for hours to denounce or act against the mob and putting thousands of lives in danger,” the congressman wrote.

But Cicilline will be required to detail exactly how the bill would use Section 3 of the 14th Amendment. A report from the Congressional Research Service (CRS) determined that its text is vague.

“It is unclear whether Section 3 is self-executing, which, if it is not, would leave federal and state courts or election authorities without power to determine the eligibility of candidates unless Congress enacts legislation to permit it. Courts have produced mixed results on this question,” the report reads.

“Section 3 does not expressly provide a procedure for its implementation other than Section 5’s general authority of Congress ‘to enforce [the Fourteenth Amendment’ by appropriate legislation.’”

Trump declared his decision to run for president at an event at his Mar-a-Lago resort on Tuesday night. He told attendees that “we always have known that this was not the end. It was only the beginning of our fight to rescue the American dream.”

“In order to make America great and glorious again, I am tonight announcing my candidacy for president of the United States,” he said.


Source: The Hill

November 16, 2022

Civil War Erupts Within the GOP

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY…
1776: American Revolution – British troops capture Fort Washington.

An underwhelming performance in the recent midterm elections has caused a civil war to erupt in the Republican Party at nearly every level, according to Axios.

Members of the GOP are lashing out at each other, revealing a distinct divide that extends beyond the usual policy disagreements.

Last week, former President Donald Trump unloaded on Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), calling him “Ron DeSanctimonious.” Meanwhile, conservative media outlets — including Fox News and the New York Post — declared that DeSantis is the GOP’s best hope in the 2024 presidential election.

Brendan Buck, a former aide to House Speaker Paul Ryan and John Boehner, tweeted: “Let’s suppose for a second there is a real challenge to Trump for the ‘24 nomination. And let’s suppose someone actually does beat him in that primary. What then are the chances Trump wouldn’t entirely sabotage that person in the general election?”

At the Senate level, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and campaign chief Rick Scott (R-FL) publicly blamed each other for the midterm situation.

Josh Holmes, McConnell’s former chief of staff, told the Wall Street Journal that the National Republican Senate Committee (NRSC) “was run basically as a Rick Scott super PAC, where they didn’t want or need to input any Republican senators whatsoever.”

Scott adviser Curt Anderson retorted by saying that “insecure small people never accept responsibility for failure.”

Scott and Sens. Josh Hawley (R-MO), Ted Cruz (R-TX), and Marco Rubio (R-FL) have all called for the GOP leadership elections to be postponed.

“The old party is dead. Time to bury it. Build something new,” Hawley tweeted.

Meanwhile, the House Freedom Caucus members are planning to challenge GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy’s (R-CA) bid for House speaker nomination.

But Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) criticized the efforts to challenge McCarthy, saying that doing so is “risky” and a “bad strategy.”

The rift also extends to the Republican National Committee (RNC), where Ronna McDaniel is seeking re-election. She faces a new potential challenger in Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-N.Y.).


Source: Axios

November 14, 2022

Trump Voters Turn On Former President: “We’re Done with Him”

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY…
1908: Albert Einstein presents his quantum theory of light.

One-time supporters of former President Donald Trump say they’re “done” with the former commander-in-chief, citing most of his picks failing to secure U.S. Senate seats in this year’s midterm elections.

David Urban, a former senior adviser to Trump, told the New York Post that he keeps hearing that it’s time for the former president to step aside.

“If you’re a Republican in Pennsylvania and you look at Donald Trump’s bigfooting of the people in Pennsylvania and the implosion of his candidates in Pennsylvania, you’re pretty upset,” Urban said.

Urban, a Pennsylvania-born strategist currently based in Washington, D.C., said he’s been fielding nonstop phone calls from county chairs and committee members telling him that they’ve had enough with Trump.

“They said, ‘Look, we’re done. We’re done with him. He cost us this election and we’re done,’” Urban said.

The New York Post’s Salena Zito claimed that she’s also been inundated with similar phone calls.

“All day Wednesday my phone lit up with calls and emails from voters who expressed the exact same frustration,” Zito wrote. “One woman said she saw the writing on the wall last weekend when Trump decided to take a swipe at Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis — calling him ‘Ron DeSanctimonious’ — while he campaigned for (Mehmet) Oz and (Doug) Mastriano in Pennsylvania.”

The former Trump supporter, who didn’t want to be named, told Zito she had a “pit-of-my-stomach moment” as she watched Trump tease a big announcement ahead of Tuesday’s midterms.

“It is hard to quit Trump — I voted for him twice enthusiastically,” she said, adding that “at this juncture, I think we have to move forward to a new generation of leaders.”

A Pennsylvania father, who asked to not be identified, echoed the woman’s claims.

“Trump needs to disappear,” he said. “He got us Oz over McCormick in the primary who would have won by at least by five points. In fact, most of the failures in [Tuesday’s] midterms tie back to Trump.”

The man said that he still likes Trump’s policies, but the jab at DeSantis was a bridge too far.

“Then he made the DeSantis comment and we are all done in our family with him. It is becoming very clear it’s about Trump first, not the conservative movement.”

Conservative strategist Dave Myhal, who said he’s donated $10,000 to Trump, voted for him twice, and campaigned to get him elected in Ohio in 2016 and 2020, now says he’s looking forward to other rising members of the GOP.

“The era of Trump is over,” Myhal told the New York Post.

“It is time for Trump to retire. I see golf courses and a rocking chair in his future. We appreciate the time he fought in the war against the woke, but it will be finished by Ron DeSantis, (South Carolina Sen.) Tim Scott, and (Virginia Gov.) Glenn Youngkin.”


Source: New York Post

October 25, 2022

Trump Says Host of “The View” Should Be Fired

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY…
1962: U.S. Ambassador to the UN Adlai Stevenson demands USSR UN rep Zorin answer regarding Cuban missile bases saying, “I am prepared to wait for my answer until hell freezes over.”

Former President Donald Trump said that ABC should fire “The View” co-host Alyssa Farah Griffin, who formerly served as his communications director.

“Alyssa Farah totally misrepresented her true feelings about me and the Trump Administration in order to get her job at ratings disaster CNN, and a seat with the low IQ people at The View,” Trump wrote in a post on Truth Social.

“Look at what she said about me, and that doesn’t include the beautiful letter she sent and other statements she made. They should fire her for misrepresentation or fraud. Release the letter, Alyssa!”

Trump’s post included a series of Farah Griffin’s tweets from December 2020, in which she praised the then-president and said it was “an honor of a lifetime to serve in the Trump Administration.”

Farah Griffin, who started being critical of Trump after Jan. 6, 2021, was hired as a CNN contributor shortly after leaving the Trump administration.

According to The Hill, Farah Griffin has previously refuted the notion that she’s altered her political beliefs to gain notoriety.


Source: The Hill

October 22, 2022

Pence Takes Thinly-Veiled Shots at Trump

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY…
1962: Cuban Missile Crisis – U.S. President John F. Kennedy addresses TV about Russian missile bases in Cuba and imposes a naval blockade on Cuba, beginning the missile crisis.

Former Vice President Mike Pence took several thinly-veiled jabs at former President Donald Trump during a speech this week, according to The Hill.

“Conservatism is bigger than any one moment, any one election, any one person. It’s about ideas,” Pence said.

Pence delivered remarks at The Heritage Foundation in Washington, D.C., wherein he warned conservatives against being “led astray by the siren song of unprincipled populism.”

“Our movement cannot forsake the foundational commitment that we have to security, to limited government, to liberty and to life,” he said. “But nor can we allow our movement to be led astray by the siren song of unprincipled populism that’s unmoored from our oldest traditions and most cherished values.”

“Let me say: This movement and the party that it animates must remain the movement of a strong national defense, limited government and traditional moral values and life,” Pence added.

The former vice president, who is believed to be laying the groundwork for a potential bid in the 2024 presidential election, said that conservatives “must do more than simply criticize and complain.”

“We must unite around a bold and optimistic agenda. And that was how the freedom agenda was born,” Pence said.

When asked on Wednesday if he’d potentially vote for Trump in 2024, Pence said: “Well, there might be somebody else I prefer more.”

“Wh​at I ​can ​tell you ​i​s I have every confidence that the Republican Party is going to sort out leadership, all my focus has been on the midterm elections and it’ll stay that way for the next 20 days,” he said. “But after that, we’ll be thinking about the future — ours and the nation’s — and I’ll keep you posted.”

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