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    Many of the defendants who are facing federal charges in connection with the January 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol Building have agreed to plea bargains with federal prosecutors for the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ). But some have opted for jury trials, including Dustin Thompson — who is facing six charges. And a defense attorney for Thompson, NBC News reports, is arguing that former President Donald Trump “authorized” the Capitol invasion by convincing “vulnerable” people like Thompson that the 2020 presidential election was stolen. The charges that Thompson, a 38-year-old Ohio resident, is facing include interrupting an official proceeding and stealing government property, including a coat rack and a bottle of liquor. His co-defendant, Robert Lyon, entered a guilty plea in March. On Tuesday, April 12, NBC News’ Ryan J. Reilly reports, Thompson’s attorney, Samuel Shamansky, “told jurors…. that his client had ‘snatched the coat rack, foolishly,’ and that there was ‘no question’ that his client took part in the ‘horrible’ event on January 6 that interrupted a ‘solemn and sacred proceeding.’” Shamansky told jurors that the “genesis”...
    President Joe Biden and his Democratic allies in Congress suffered a major disappointment when Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, during a December 19 appearance on “Fox News Sunday," announced that he was still a “no” vote on the Build Back Better Act. Countless pundits have been describing Manchin’s announcement as a major blow to Biden’s economic agenda, but in an article published by The Atlantic this week, Never Trump conservative David Frum defends Biden’s record and emphasizes that regardless of what happens with the BBB Act, he has gotten a lot done during his 11 months in the White House. Politics make strange bedfellows. Frum was a speechwriter for President George W. Bush, and he has had his share of disagreements with liberals and progressives over the years. But Frum has been a scathing critic of former President Donald Trump, who he believes has been a total disaster for the Republican Party and the conservative movement — and in 2020’s presidential election, he endorsed Biden. In his Atlantic article, Frum argues that Manchin’s “no” vote on the Build...
    Almost a year after being voted out of office, former President Donald Trump continues to be the target of investigations — from Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr. to the Fulton County's DA's office in Georgia to the U.S. House of Representatives. Los Angeles Times opinion columnist Doyle McManus, in a recent column, argues that Trump has a major incentive for running for president in 2024: trying to "stay out of jail." "Trump remains under the gun," McManus explains. "He's still in search of escape routes. A House committee is examining his attempts to overturn last year's presidential election, including his actions when a mob of his supporters stormed the Capitol on January 6. A prosecutor in Georgia is investigating whether he violated state law against soliciting election fraud when he demanded that officials 'find 11,780 votes' — the number he needed to undo Joe Biden's victory in that state. And prosecutors in New York are looking into allegations that Trump, or at least the closely held family business he runs, committed tax and bank fraud." But despite all...
    White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki and New York Times White House correspondent Michael Shear went back and forth on Thursday over the criticism that President Joe Biden has, to an extent, acted like his predecessor, Donald Trump. “There’ve been a number of issues in the last, say, several weeks in which advocates, allies of the president are describing him as Trump-like, less in terms of his personality in sort of tone and tenor, obviously, but in terms of policy,” said Shear at the briefing. “Even today, representative of the Cuban government describing the frustration with the president continuing to maintain Trump-era policies vis-à-vis Cuba.” In an interview that aired on Thursday, Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla told NBC News’s Andrea Mitchell, “Maybe there is an inertia effect. It’s a pity that President Biden couldn’t implement his own policy toward Cuba. It’s a terrible mistake to continue implementing this kind of cruel sanctions, even sanctions during a pandemic.” Trump reversed most of former President Barack Obama’s policies on Cuba that included relaxing travel and trade restrictions with the Communist island nation....
    Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) told Cheddar News that while she’s glad former President Donald Trump is not on Facebook, she disagrees that the company should have the power to ban him from its social media platforms, and said that large tech companies in general unfairly dominate the market. “I’m glad he’s not on Facebook, I think he poses a real danger. But, Facebook shouldn’t have this type of power. They’re acting like they’re bigger than government.” Sen. @ewarren discusses Facebook’s oversight board upholding the social network’s ban of former President Trump. pic.twitter.com/S2lcbbawhe — Cheddar News ???? (@cheddar) May 5, 2021 Cheddar anchor Kristen Scholer asked Warren whether Trump should be allowed back on Facebook, following the decision by the Facebook Oversight Board to uphold the Trump ban the company implemented in January. “I’m glad that he’s not on Facebook,” said Warren. “I think that he poses a real danger. “But I don’t think that Facebook ought to have this kind of power,” Warren continued. “We need to break up these giant tech companies, and Facebook is one of...
    Washington (CNN)Right-wing lawyer Sidney Powell is claiming in a new court filing that reasonable people wouldn't have believed as fact her assertions of fraud after the 2020 presidential election.The election infrastructure company Dominion Voting Systems sued Powell for defamation after she pushed lawsuits and made appearances in conservative media on behalf of then-President Donald Trump to sow doubt about the 2020 election results. Dominion claims that Powell knew her election fraud accusations were false and hurtful to the company.In a new court filing, Powell's attorneys write that she was sharing her "opinion" and that the public could reach "their own conclusions" about whether votes were changed by election machines. "Given the highly charged and political context of the statements, it is clear that Powell was describing the facts on which she based the lawsuits she filed in support of President Trump," Powell's defense lawyers wrote in a court filing on Monday."Indeed, Plaintiffs themselves characterize the statements at issue as 'wild accusations' and 'outlandish claims.' They are repeatedly labelled 'inherently improbable' and even 'impossible.' Such characterizations of the allegedly defamatory statements...
    Chip Somodevilla/Zuma Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.Donald Trump spent the dying weeks of his presidency vehemently denying the obvious fact that he had lost the 2020 election. In fact, his insistence that his “stolen victory” be his major defense in the impeachment trial against him was one reason why several lawyers decided not to represent him.  But today, in a rambling and disjointed speech, Bruce Castor, who is one of two attorneys representing the former president, admitted that Trump was indeed voted out by “fed up” voters last November. Castor repeated this fact three times, directly contradicting one of the former president’s most-repeated lies. Something tells me a certain someone is not gonna be happy with this performance. Maybe Rudy Giuliani should be standing by. Watch for yourself: “The people… are smart enough to pick a new administration if they don’t like the old one. And they just did.” Donald Trumps own lawyer just refuted the former president, who has refused...
    Former President TrumpDonald TrumpDOJ to seek resignations of most Trump-appointed US attorneys: report Trump attorney withdraws request to not hold impeachment trial on Saturday Kinzinger in op-ed calls on GOP senators to convict Trump in impeachment trial MORE’s attorney Bruce Castor opened his defense on Tuesday by arguing the impeachment trial is explicitly political and an effort by Democrats to ensure they never have to face Trump in an election again. “Let’s understand why we’re really here,” Castor said. “We’re really here because the majority of the House of Representatives does not want to face Donald Trump as a political candidate in the future.” If Trump is convicted in the Senate by a two-thirds majority, it would then only require a bare majority vote to bar him from ever running for office again. Castor accused Democrats of taking the easy way out and of infantilizing ordinary Americans, who he said had already handled the matter by voting Trump out of office. “The American people just spoke and just changed administrations,” Castor said. The president’s attorney had a long wind up,...
    “Bye Propecia!” exclaimed Bill Maher Friday night, adding, “To quote Melania: Thank god that’s over with.” The Real Time host kicked off his late-night monologue with a series of jabs at Donald Trump, the now former president who left the White House after letting COVID run wild all over the country, contracting (and possibly spreading) COVID himself, tearing at the fabric of our democracy by questioning the results of one of the more secure elections in history (which was not very close in the first place), and helping incite a treasonous siege of the Capitol. “Boy, Donald Trump the last couple of months left graciously,” joked Maher. “From not being man enough to admit that he lost the election, to then telling the mob ‘I’m with ya’ and then he runs back into the house, to not attending the inauguration—class all the way, this motherfucker. I’m so glad he did not attend the inauguration, because you know, he’s the ex-husband you don’t want to invite to the wedding because he’ll stand up and yell, ‘She’s a whore!’” But later...
    For at least the sixth time, Joe Biden argued during a television interview on Monday that Americans should not vote for him. 1. A reporter from WKRC in Cincinnati brought up a recent Gallup poll that found 56 percent of respondents say they are better off than they were four years ago. “56% of Americans said that they are better off today than they were 4 years ago under the Obama-Biden administration. Why should they vote for you?” Biden: Well if they think that, they probably shouldn’t pic.twitter.com/upKO1TMMZy — Jewish Deplorable ???????? (@TrumpJew) October 13, 2020 “So why should people who feel that they are better off today, under the Trump administration, vote for you?” Kyle Inskeep asked. “Well, if they think that, they probably shouldn’t. If they think— 54 percent of the American people are better off economically today than they were under our administration? Well, their memory is not very good, quite frankly,” Biden responded. In May, the Young Turks produced a montage of several times Biden snapped at voters, telling them to vote for Bernie Sanders, Donald...
    A judge has thrown out a defamation lawsuit against Fox News after lawyers for the cable news network successfully argued that no “reasonable viewer” would take the claims of Tucker Carlson to be factual. The lawsuit was brought by former Playboy model Karen McDougal, who said she took a $150,000 payoff in order to remain quiet about her alleged affair with Donald Trump. In a suit filed in Manhattan court, she claimed that the Fox News host defamed her by calling the payout “a classic case of extortion,” CBS News reported. But lawyers for the network claimed to U.S. District Court Judge Mary Kay Vyskocil that the remarks were not meant to be taken as fact, and she said the network “persuasively” argued that “any reasonable viewer ‘arrive[s] with an appropriate amount of skepticism’ about the statements” from the opinionated host. Vyskocil said in her decision to throw out the case that his remarks were meant to he “rhetorical hyperbole and opinion commentary” to frame a political debate, and thus could not qualify as defamation. As The Hill noted, McDougal...
    Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance argued an appellate brief on Monday that he should be able to obtain President Donald Trump’s tax returns from a third party—namely, Trump’s finance firm—because news reports indicate that a “criminal tax fraud” investigation is warranted. The brief filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit cited reports from The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, and The New York Times to provide a “snapshot” for the court of the Trump Organization’s “financial improprieties” that “could potentially violate New York law.” These articles addressed anything from Trump’s role in hush money payments Michael Cohen paid out before the 2016 election to allegations that Trump inflated his net worth to lenders and investors. “These reports have identified transactions spanning more than a decade, involving individual and corporate actors who were based in New York County,” the brief said. The potential New York laws that Vance’s office cited: As discussed below, such reports place sufficient notice into the public record to render the SAC’s claims implausible. In particular, if misstatements about business properties, wherever...
    Democratic House Speak Nancy Pelosi said during a Thursday press conference that she doesn’t “think there should be any debates” between President Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden because, she argued, Trump doesn’t deserve to be engaged. “Since you asked about that,” Pelosi said. “I myself — don’t tell anybody I told you, especially don’t tell Joe Biden — I don’t think there should be any debates. I do not think that the president of the United States has comported himself in a way that anybody that has any association with truth, evidence, data, and facts.” “I wouldn’t legitimize a conversation with him, nor a debate in terms of the presidency of the United States,” Pelosi continued. “Now I know that the Biden campaign thinks a different way about this.” She went on to describe Trump’s behavior during the 2016 presidential debates as “disgraceful,” gesturing to the press and saying, “The way he was stalking Hillary Clinton like that, I was disappointed that the press didn’t say, ‘Go back to your station. You’re not here, you don’t own this...
    Late on Thursday, the Trump administration filed its brief with the Supreme Court to challenge the Affordable Care Act (ACA) when the court hears the case this fall. Just before the election. In a pandemic. And they took the protections provided in the law head-on, explicitly arguing that the provision that prevents insurance companies from discriminating against people with preexisting conditions must be tossed, along with the entirety of the law. The brief argues that because Congress essentially repealed the individual mandate requiring people to purchase insurance or pay a fine by zeroing out the amount of that fine, then the whole law is invalid. "The entire ACA thus must fall with the individual mandate," Solicitor General Noel Francisco wrote in the Justice Department’s brief. "The individual mandate is no longer a valid exercise of Congress's legislative authority in light of Congress's elimination of the penalty for noncompliance." Just to make sure it’s clear that the Trump administration wants the entirety of the law gone, they reiterate that: "Once the individual mandate and the guaranteed- issue and community-rating provisions are invalidated, the...
    Former Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday called the protests sparked by George Floyd’s death “a wake-up call for our nation” and vowed to reverse the nation’s “systemic racism with long-overdue concrete changes.” The presumptive Democratic nominee – in a 20-minute speech that was carried live by all three major national cable news networks – slammed President Trump as being “more interested in serving the passions of his base than the needs of the people in his care” and charged that the president “is part of the problem and accelerates it.” UNREST AND RIOTING CONTINUES TO FLARE ACROSS COUNTRY IN WAKE OF FLOYD'S DEATH Biden – who traveled outside of his home state of Delaware for the first time in two and a half months since the coronavirus pandemic shut down much of the country – delivered his address from the Philadelphia City Hall. His speech came one week after protests began flaring in cities across the nation after Floyd – who was handcuffed – died after a white police officer put his knee to Floyd’s neck for more than 8 minutes. Floyd’s...
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