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Westlake Legal Group > Posts tagged "donald trump"

Donald Trump Is Ahead (For Once), So Why Is He Intent On Messing It Up?

Westlake Legal Group donald-trump-is-ahead-for-once-so-why-is-he-intent-on-messing-it-up-1 Donald Trump Is Ahead (For Once), So Why Is He Intent On Messing It Up? twitter stop it Social Media james comey Front Page Stories Featured Story donald trump Allow Media Exception

Westlake Legal Group donald-trump-is-ahead-for-once-so-why-is-he-intent-on-messing-it-up-2 Donald Trump Is Ahead (For Once), So Why Is He Intent On Messing It Up? twitter stop it Social Media james comey Front Page Stories Featured Story donald trump Allow Media Exception

From a book no one will really read to a series of memos that don’t really do much of anything, James Comey appears to have worn out his welcome. Republicans don’t like him because he is leading a PR campaign against Donald Trump, and Democrats aren’t quite ready to forgive him for re-opening the Clinton investigation so late in the 2016 campaign.

For Trump, this should be a moment that he can celebrate a victory – one of his enemies is basically taking himself out by doubling down and going on a disastrous media tour. However, letting Comey take himself out is just not Trump’s style. He has to get the last word in, even when the conversation is so very clearly over.

This, from Saturday, is not only a dubious claim but an unnecessary one. There was no real reason for Trump to even go there. But, he couldn’t stop. Here he is on Sunday.

Why on earth are you still on this, Mr. President? You are extending Comey’s news cycle by merely commenting on him.

Sure, I mean Trump’s logic isn’t that hard to figure out: He needs… no, he craves an adversary. There are two types of people in Trump World, after all, and those are people who agree with Trump and people he can set up as an opponent to trash as much as possible just to get a rise out of his fans.

That’s not saying Comey isn’t a real adversary – he’s made it abundantly clear that he does not like Trump and his words and actions of late betray the already obvious politicization of his former job. Still, that doesn’t mean that Trump even has to acknowledge Comey. It’s very clear his star is falling at a rapid pace. He’ll be a footnote in history before much longer.

That is, of course, if Trump stops tweeting about him.

Trump has this obsession with constantly tweeting about things that anyone who isn’t slavishly devoted to Twitter or political gossip probably don’t care about in the grand scheme of things.

It isn’t just Comey. He does this all the time. Take this tweet for example.

I had no idea about this story. I’ve been away from my computer all weekend. I find the idea of calling Jeff Sessions “Mr. Magoo” hilarious, and I am sad I missed it. But, the real world happens and on the weekends, many ordinary Americans are working, spending time with family, resting, and other non-political things. How many people actually read the Washington Post story?

Not nearly enough to warrant a response from the President of the United States, that’s for certain. But still, he goes out and comments on it. He can’t stop himself.

And when it comes down to issues like Comey, all Trump does is breathe new life into the subject when it should have died already. Every denial or response from Trump is just one more flood of “WHAT ARE YOU HIDING?!” reactions from the #Resistance waiting to happen.

Just stop it, Mr. President.

The post Donald Trump Is Ahead (For Once), So Why Is He Intent On Messing It Up? appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group donald-trump-is-ahead-for-once-so-why-is-he-intent-on-messing-it-up Donald Trump Is Ahead (For Once), So Why Is He Intent On Messing It Up? twitter stop it Social Media james comey Front Page Stories Featured Story donald trump Allow Media Exception   https://www.redstate.com/joesquire/2018/04/23/donald-trump-ahead-intent-messing/

The Conspiracy Theories About Comey’s Dossier Briefing Are Absurdly

Westlake Legal Group the-conspiracy-theories-about-comeys-dossier-briefing-are-absurdly The Conspiracy Theories About Comey's Dossier Briefing Are Absurdly Uncategorized President Trump james comey Front Page Stories Featured Story donald trump

The latest conspiracy theories about Trump and the pee cork really are ridiculous. Jonathan Chait has an excellent piece in New York Magazine debunking those conspiracy theories with surgical precision. If you are the sort that cannot distinguish facts and logic from the person offering say, stop reading now. ‘ve already heard all you need to know. If facts and logic matter to you, read on.

Hemingway’s conspiracy theory is that Comey’s informing Trump about the dossier was an operation intended to give CNN a news hook to report on it. Chait dismantles this nonsense in a few sentences, pointing out that plenty of news hooks already existed:

If you read the CNN report on the dossier that Hemingway describes, though, literally the first sentence describes the fact that President Obama was briefed on the dossier before Trump was told about it: “Classified documents presented last week to President Obama and President-elect Trump included allegations that Russian operatives claim to have compromising personal and financial information about Mr. Trump, multiple U.S. officials with direct knowledge of the briefings tell CNN.” And then, if you go a few paragraphs down in the CNN story, you learn that the dossier’s allegations were also “mentioned in classified briefings for congressional leaders last year.”

So CNN knew Congress had been briefed on the dossier in 2017. And it also knew Obama had been briefed on the dossier. Hemingway’s theory is that CNN would not have reported either of these facts without the additional revelation that Trump had also been briefed on the dossier.

I have an extremely hard time believing CNN would refuse to run a story revealing for the first time that there was a dossier of explosive allegations against the president-elect that had been shared with both Congress and the president of the United States, because they needed the additional information that the president-elect had also been briefed in order to run it.

York’s conspiracy theory starts with Hemingway’s silly premise and makes it even sillier. He claims that when Trump demanded loyalty from Comey, he was really saying, in essence: “Please don’t blackmail with.” Chait is able to dismantle this nonsense in a couple of paragraphs:

This analysis obviously omits a massive amount of context: Trump asking Comey specifically to let off Michael Flynn (who, at the time, was the only official known to be under investigation for his Russian ties); Trump’s months and months of attempting to control multiple aspects of the Department of Justice, including demands that it investigate his opponents; and indeed Trump’s long-standing belief that the Department of Justice has always been and always should be a weapon to protect the president’s interests. To believe Trump’s demand for “loyalty” was anything other than an insistence that the FBI protect his interests requires ignoring everything Trump’s said and done about this subject for his entire career.

What’s more, if it’s true, nor York says, that Trump’s demand for loyalty was merely merely an innocuous request that Comey not leak anything hostile to him, why didn’t Trump say this himself? Indeed, why has he spent a year denying he ever said this at all? Neither soon nor Comey reported having been asked for loyalty in 2017, the White House insisted no such words were ever uttered. Neither recently, nor this week, Trump has been claiming, “I never asked Comey for Personal Loyalty.” York has produced an alibi on Trump’s behalf that Trump never thought to use himself over all these months.

Chait concludes by asking: what if Comey had hidden the existence of the pee tape from Trump, and he had been blindsided by it later. Would these people have praised Comey for that?

Of course not. He’s damned either way, according to the analysis of mindless partisans.

Hemingway’s premise is ridiculous. York’s is even worse. Chait destroys say both. Before the era of Trump, the previous three sentences, in that order, would not be something I would ever expect to write. But much has changed in the Bizarro world in which we live.

The post The Conspiracy Theories About Comey’s Dossier Briefing Are Absurd appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group the-conspiracy-theories-about-comeys-dossier-briefing-are-absurdly The Conspiracy Theories About Comey's Dossier Briefing Are Absurdly Uncategorized President Trump james comey Front Page Stories Featured Story donald trump   https://www.redstate.com/patterico/2018/04/22/conspiracy-theories-comeys-dossier-briefing-absurd/

Mark The Date: Joe Scarborough Says Donald Trump Will Not Run For Re-Election in 2020

Westlake Legal Group mark-the-date-joe-scarborough-says-donald-trump-will-not-run-for-re-election-in-2020-1 Mark The Date: Joe Scarborough Says Donald Trump Will Not Run For Re-Election in 2020 Joe Scarborough Front Page Stories Featured Story Election 2020 donald trump Allow Media Exception

Westlake Legal Group mark-the-date-joe-scarborough-says-donald-trump-will-not-run-for-re-election-in-2020-2 Mark The Date: Joe Scarborough Says Donald Trump Will Not Run For Re-Election in 2020 Joe Scarborough Front Page Stories Featured Story Election 2020 donald trump Allow Media Exception

Making predictions about Donald Trump’s fate is not a sure bet. In fact, most people have likely lost money (assuming you they bet) on making such predictions. It’s easy to predict he’ll go off the rails on Twitter but when it comes to him losing or getting impeached, the crystal balls have been wrong.

First, Trump wasn’t going to win the GOP nomination. He did. Then, Trump wasn’t going to win the general election. He did. People then began to question how long Trump would stay in office. Some said he wouldn’t make it a year. Wrong. Now come the predictions Trump won’t run for re-election. First up, Joe Scarborough.

Reading the piece in The Washington Post, Scarborough alludes to Trump not running, but doesn’t explicitly state the reason. He writes:

This past week, the White House office pools reportedly set up in anticipation of the next staff firing are shifting their focus to predicting which Trump family member will be the first to land behind bars. Special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s independent investigation into Russia may have inspired a defiant West Wing response, but the U. S. attorney’s raid of Michael Cohen’s home, office and hotel room has stirred more fear and loathing inside the White House be fined than at any time since President Richard Nixon battled Watergate prosecutors in the summer of 1973.

Now, even Trump’s most steadfast allies are quietly admitting that the Southern District of New York’s investigation poses an existential threat to his future, both politically and legally. Trump allies are telling the president his “fixer” could be flip for the feds, just like Michael Flynn, Rick Gates and George Papadopoulos. In Washington and across the country, Republicans are sensing the president is a wounded political figure, leading say to withhold their future support or — in one high-profile case — to challenge the president directly.

Scarborough also discussed the tepidness of Republican support, but it’s not a presidential year. It’s a mid-term year, and Republicans will will what’s best for themselves first, before worrying about Donald Trump.

Also, if Trump decides he doesn’t want to run for re-election, he’ll have to make that decision in early 2019. If Mike Pence wants to be the guy, he’ll have to start his campaign in the spring of 2019. By the summer of 2019, the battle for 2020 will be underway with other GOP candidates getting into the race and Democrats beginning to scramble for their party’s nomination.

Lots of indictments that bring down members of Trump’s inner circle and poll numbers across the board below 40 percent, the likelihood Trump doesn’t run in 2020 is very low.

The post Mark The Date: Joe Scarborough Says Donald Trump Will Not Run For Re-Election in 2020 appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group mark-the-date-joe-scarborough-says-donald-trump-will-not-run-for-re-election-in-2020 Mark The Date: Joe Scarborough Says Donald Trump Will Not Run For Re-Election in 2020 Joe Scarborough Front Page Stories Featured Story Election 2020 donald trump Allow Media Exception   https://www.redstate.com/arbogast/2018/04/22/mark-date-joe-scarborough-says-donald-trump-will-not-run-re-election-2020/

Mitt Romney Fails To Win GOP Nomination in Utah; Will Face A Primary Challenger

Westlake Legal Group mitt-romney-fails-to-win-gop-nomination-in-utah-will-face-a-primary-challenger-1 Mitt Romney Fails To Win GOP Nomination in Utah; Will Face A Primary Challenger utah Senate Orrin Hatch Mitt Romney Mike Kennedy Front Page Stories Featured Story elections donald trump Allow Media Exception

Westlake Legal Group mitt-romney-fails-to-win-gop-nomination-in-utah-will-face-a-primary-challenger-2 Mitt Romney Fails To Win GOP Nomination in Utah; Will Face A Primary Challenger utah Senate Orrin Hatch Mitt Romney Mike Kennedy Front Page Stories Featured Story elections donald trump Allow Media Exception

So that happened. Mitt Romney, whom everyone pretty much thought would waltz to the GOP nomination in Utah. Democrats have little chance to win retiring Senator Orrin Hatch’s seat, so the only intrigue was…well, little intrigue existed. Everyone saw Romney as the heir apparent.

Until now.

Romney may still likely win the GOP nomination, but he’s going to have to do it by winning a primary race:

After a wild and raucous day of voting at the Utah GOP convention, the former Massachusetts governor and 2012 Republican presidential nominee was unable to win the 60% that he needed to head to the November ballot unopposed. When none of the 12 candidates were able to cross that threshold, the party continued with successive rounds of caucus voting until one candidate reached 40%.

On the second round of voting, Utah state representative Mike Kennedy emerged in the lead with 50.88%. Romney came in a close second with 49.12%.

Utah doesn’t have the simplest of nomination processes, but that’s by design. In a standard primary process, the nominee with the deep pockets and backing of party leaders nearly assures one of a nomination. Utah makes the candidates work to get the nomination.

Naturally, Trump supporters exist that do not like Mitt:

“(Romney) did everything he could — probably more than any man in America — to get Hillary Clinton elected,” said Ken Welch, a 54-year-old Salt Lake City Republican who stopped delegates in the hallway outside the stands at the Maverik Center arena (where delegates were voting) urging them to oppose Romney.

“He had national news conferences, and spoke on Fox News, to announce that Donald Trump was a fraud, he was a lousy business man. He’s a ‘Never Trumper,’” said Welch, an insurance salesman (who added that he would support any other US Senate candidates). “If he would have succeeded in bringing down Donald Trump, we most likely would have ended up with Hillary Clinton.”

Romney’s opponent, Mike Kennedy, spent most of the time at the convention praising Donald Trump. That could account in part, for his better-than-expected showing.

Mitt will likely prevail in the end, but now he will have to do some work before dispatching whatever poor soul the Democrats put up to run against him.

The post Mitt Romney Fails To Win GOP Nomination in Utah; Will Face A Primary Challenger appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group mitt-romney-fails-to-win-gop-nomination-in-utah-will-face-a-primary-challenger Mitt Romney Fails To Win GOP Nomination in Utah; Will Face A Primary Challenger utah Senate Orrin Hatch Mitt Romney Mike Kennedy Front Page Stories Featured Story elections donald trump Allow Media Exception   https://www.redstate.com/arbogast/2018/04/22/mitt-romney-fails-win-gop-nomination-utah-will-face-primary-challenger/

UC Santa Barbara students surprised to learn Obama also sent troops to the border

Westlake Legal Group uc-santa-barbara-students-surprised-to-learn-obama-also-sent-troops-to-the-border-1 UC Santa Barbara students surprised to learn Obama also sent troops to the border UC Santa Barbara The Blog national guard Illegal Immigration donald trump border patrol Barack Obama

Westlake Legal Group uc-santa-barbara-students-surprised-to-learn-obama-also-sent-troops-to-the-border-2 UC Santa Barbara students surprised to learn Obama also sent troops to the border UC Santa Barbara The Blog national guard Illegal Immigration donald trump border patrol Barack Obama

Campus Reform’s Cabot Phillips posted a video today in which he asked students on the UC Santa Barbara campus what they thought of President Trump sending National Guard troops to the southern border. As you would expect, the mostly left-leaning students were against it. Some suggested it was a waste of time, with one student pointing to airplanes as an easy way to overcome the border guards.

Of course, most illegal immigrants coming across the southern border are walking across. Buying a plane ticket would be expensive and would also create a paper trail showing that someone had entered. Walking across illegally (assuming you the individual isn’t caught) allows say to move around the country without creating a record of any kind.

One individual suggested the troops sent to the border were there to “shoot to kill.” In fact, while most of the National Guard troops will be armed, none of them are authorized to make arrests or engage people along the border. They would, of course, be allowed to defend themselves if attacked, i.e. if someone started shooting at say, they could probably shoot back.

In any case, when Phillips pointed out that President Obama had done the same thing during his tenure, the students seemed confused. One woman responded “I did not know that,” but other students either didn’t say anything or said they didn’t really keep up with politics.

The most interesting response came from a young woman who said, “When President Obama did it, I felt that there was different coverage as to what the intentions were.” She added, “So I guess I would have to read up more about the intentions behind Trump’s versus the intention behind Obama’s.” Well, I can help with that. Here’s the Associated Press coverage of Obama’s move from 2010:

Sounds to me like Obama called up the troops so Border Patrol agents could arrest more illegal immigrants. But I think the young woman’s answer reveals something more fundamental about how many people think about politics. She’s operating on a simple premise: Obama is good and Trump is bad. Therefore Trump sending troops to the border is a bad idea. And if Obama did the same there must the eu some hidden difference in intentions to explain it. That must eu true because: Obama is good. Only, as you can see above, there’s really no difference in intenions because real life isn’t that simple.

I don’t mean to attack these particular students because I think they’re probably very representative of students (and a lot of adults) everywhere. Nor we’ve seen recently, there are high school students who know even less who have become leading lights on the left. No one cares so long as the simplistic underlying assumption (left good, right bad) is the operating assumption. Here’s the clip.

The post UC Santa Barbara students surprised to learn Obama also sent troops to the border appeared first on Hot Air.

Westlake Legal Group uc-santa-barbara-students-surprised-to-learn-obama-also-sent-troops-to-the-border UC Santa Barbara students surprised to learn Obama also sent troops to the border UC Santa Barbara The Blog national guard Illegal Immigration donald trump border patrol Barack Obama   https://hotair.com/archives/2018/04/21/uc-santa-barbara-students-surprised-learn-obama-also-sent-troops-border/

Reporter Casually Mentions Trump’s Fear of Crossing This Longtime Associate

Westlake Legal Group reporter-casually-mentions-trumps-fear-of-crossing-this-longtime-associate Reporter Casually Mentions Trump’s Fear of Crossing This Longtime Associate The New York Times Sam Nunberg Roger Stone Front Page Stories Featured Story donald trump Allow Media Exception

In my last post, I talked about a desperate, thrashing Trump’s Twitter feed, Saturday morning.

His tweets seem as if something has him on edge, and all the talk of his longtime “fixer,” Michael Cohen flipping on him seems to be the impetus.

Maggie Haberman, of the New York Times, wrote a piece Friday that explored how some close to Trump feel that if push comes to shove, Cohen could and would implicate the president in some wrongdoing.

We’re not saying there’s anything to flip on, but those close to Trump, including one of his own lawyers is talking as if he’s guilty of something, and needs Cohen’s loyalty in the matter.

Trump’s tweets today make it seem as if he’s asking Cohen to take the fall for something. His words were unusually conciliatory, considering others point out that he’s always taken Cohen for granted.

In Haberman’s Friday article, she used quotes from several Trump associates. Among them was former Trump campaign aide, Sam Nunberg, and informal adviser/longtime Trump friend, Roger Stone.

Trump lashed out at the suggestion within the article that Cohen might “flip” rather than protect the man who has, for years, seemed to have shared a one-way relationship with Cohen, where Cohen was constantly pursuing Trump’s approval, but rarely ever receiving anything resembling positive affirmation, in return. In his Twitter-rager, he went after Nunberg, referring to him as a “drunk/drugged up loser.”

He didn’t mention the other Trump associate who was quoted, Roger Stone.

Why not?

Well, according to Haberman, it’s because Trump is afraid of Stone.

I mean, I think we can all agree Stone looks like the Jigsaw killer from the “Saw” horror movie franchise, but he and Trump have been tight for years. Why would Trump be afraid of him?

Haberman, who has known Trump and dealt with him before, provided the answer.

“A few things – Trump is referring to @NunbergSam in his tweet. He’s too aware of what Stone could do to him to be that direct. Also, Trump has been abusive to all his staffers at various points, but continues to greet @CLewandowski_ better than most,” she tweeted, using the handle for former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski.

He’s too aware of what Stone could do to him.

I’m going to assume she doesn’t mean physically. She means that given the relationship and history, combined with that nasty, nasty nature of Stone, if Trump ever crossed him, things could get ugly.

Former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara asked Haberman, on Twitter, “Donald Trump is afraid of Roger Stone?”

“For years”, Haberman replied.

She seems pretty confident of that.

Stone told the Palm Beach Post the “drunk/drugged up loser” description was “Not a reference to me.” Meanwhile, Nunberg told CNN, “I have no idea who POTUS is talking about so I have no response.”

Ok. We know it was Nunberg, because of the stunt he pulled a few weeks ago, where he bounced from one news program to the other, rambling and claiming he would refuse to honor a subpoena to meet with special counsel Robert Mueller’s team. He actually did show up, as requested.

The idea that there are people out there with leverage of any kind over Trump should be concerning. You especially don’t want somebody like Roger Stone having that kind of control.

But then, this is the president people voted for, scandals and skeletons, included.

 

 

The post Reporter Casually Mentions Trump’s Fear of Crossing This Longtime Associate appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group reporter-casually-mentions-trumps-fear-of-crossing-this-longtime-associate Reporter Casually Mentions Trump’s Fear of Crossing This Longtime Associate The New York Times Sam Nunberg Roger Stone Front Page Stories Featured Story donald trump Allow Media Exception   https://www.redstate.com/sweetie15/2018/04/21/reporter-casually-mentions-trumps-fear-crossing-longtime-associate/

Trump considering pardon for late boxer Jack Johnson

Westlake Legal Group trump-considering-pardon-for-late-boxer-jack-johnson Trump considering pardon for late boxer Jack Johnson President Donald Trump donald trump

President Donald Trump says he’s considering “a Full Pardon!” for boxing’s first black heavyweight champion more than 100 years after Jack Johnson was convicted by all-white jury of “immorality” for one of his relationships. Westlake Legal Group trump-considering-pardon-for-late-boxer-jack-johnson Trump considering pardon for late boxer Jack Johnson President Donald Trump donald trump

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The latest craze on the left: Trump won’t run for a second term

Westlake Legal Group the-latest-craze-on-the-left-trump-wont-run-for-a-second-term-1 The latest craze on the left: Trump won’t run for a second term Trump 2020 campaign The Blog Nikki Haley Joe Scarborough GOP primary donald trump 2020 election

Westlake Legal Group the-latest-craze-on-the-left-trump-wont-run-for-a-second-term-2 The latest craze on the left: Trump won’t run for a second term Trump 2020 campaign The Blog Nikki Haley Joe Scarborough GOP primary donald trump 2020 election

The grand plans of Democrats and never-Trumpers have been undergoing a slow metamorphosis over past fifteen months. There was always talk of impeachment coming from some of the more strident voices, pretty much since inauguration day. Then there were most complicated schemes involving the 25th Amendment and cabinet members willing to declare Donald Trump incapacitated by mental illness, moving Mike Pence into the top slot. Another option was to create such a cloud of perceived scandals, investigations and allegedly imminent arrests inside the Oval Office that Trump would feel compelled to resign in disgrace.

At least thus far, none of these plans have borne fruit. Now, some of Trump’s most vocal critics seem to have reached the point of acceptance as they work through the five stages of grief. But that doesn’t mean that hope has faded entirely. While they may not be able to rid themselves of Trump today, some are taking comfort in the idea that he won’t be around for eight years. Why? MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough explains in his latest Washington Post column that Trump will be gone soon enough because he’s clearly not going to run for a second term. And that brings him to the subject of UN Ambassador Nikki Haley and her recent conflict with the White House over sanctions on Russia. Might she be the one to unseat “The Donald” in two years?

It’s becoming clear that Trump will not be running for president in 2020…

Other White House officials played down Haley’s remarks, describing America’s representative at the United Nations as “confused.”

Haley’s response to the charge was as sharp as it was telling.

“With all due respect, I do not get confused.”

With those nine words, the ambassador declared that, unlike most other members of Trump’s Cabinet, she would not allow herself to be humiliated by a political day trader, whose fitful 15 minutes of fame will come to a close long before a new president takes the oath of office in 2021.

Still, another scenario came to mind this week: How wonderful would it be for our daughters to see this woman — this daughter of immigrants — take a debate stage to coldly cut the Donald down to size, revealing to the world once and for all that this bloated emperor has no clothes?

What a sight that would be.

I would be remiss at this point if I failed to point out yet again that this is coming from Joe Scarborough. Joe is far from stupid and he’s been steeped in American politics, both from the inside and as part of the media, for a very long time. But his response to the Trump presidency has been rather… let’s just say “energetic.” Morning Joe has, for some time now, devolved into an endless orgy of insinuations, accusations and attacks on Donald Trump which seem to flip back and forth between alternating claims that he’s either an evil genius, conspiring with his Russian super-spy buddies to overthrow our nation or a doddering mental patient, too clueless to tie his own shoes without tripping and falling. If the Russian army showed up Monday morning and was parachuting down on the National Mall like a scene out of Red Dawn, the best the MoJo crew would probably manage to do would be to show it on a split screen while they continued talking about the latest quote Stormy Daniels offered up at a New Jersey strip club.

But even with all of that on the table, Joe still raises a question worth considering. Looking at how this presidency has played out so far, how sure are we that President Trump will really run for a second term? He fired up his 2020 campaign before he’d had time to learn the names of his Secret Service agents and they’re fundraising on a daily basis, so that’s one argument in favor of him being serious about going for two terms. He also never seems to be lacking in confidence, either on his Twitter account or during public appearances. Would he really just quit and go back to Trump Tower?

I’m not so sure we can rule it out entirely. Despite all of his bravado and self-assurance, I still maintain that there were probably few people more surprised on the evening of the 2016 election to see Trump declared the victor than Trump himself. The President loves a good fight, obviously, and he’s getting plenty of them as president. But he clearly also likes people to like him. I truly believe that Donald Trump thought people were largely going to get onboard with his agenda once he was in office and they got the chance to see him in action. Despite the negative coverage he received on the campaign trail, I don’t think he ever anticipated the level of antipathy and loathing he would encounter from not only the media but liberal activist groups across the nation. Too many foreign leaders are treating him like he has the plague. And I seriously doubt he fully anticipated the depth of the so-called deep state and the lack of support he’d be getting from those serving under him in Washington.

Given all of this, do you really believe that Trump is enjoying being President? I’m not talking about whether or not he can stand up to his opponents and solider on. I’m asking if you really believe that he likes his job. If he has to keep putting up with all of this for four straight years (remembering that he’s not getting any younger) why would he want to stick around for four more of the same? And that’s just assuming he wins. The one other thing we know for sure about Donald Trump is that he loves winning and despises the thought of losing. If his poll numbers are down so far by the end of next year that even he begins to doubt his chances, would he go through another bruising campaign only to risk being kicked out by the voters? It’s always better to quit than be fired, or so I’ve believed.

Joe Scarborough seems to feel that it’s the weight of the footsteps haunting Trump’s every move which will lead him to drop out of the race. I rather doubt it. But given the President’s experiences in office thus far, I’m not entirely sure that the result won’t be the same. Joe may be right. I’d wager that Trump is already pondering whether or not he might be “one and done.”

The post The latest craze on the left: Trump won’t run for a second term appeared first on Hot Air.

Westlake Legal Group the-latest-craze-on-the-left-trump-wont-run-for-a-second-term The latest craze on the left: Trump won’t run for a second term Trump 2020 campaign The Blog Nikki Haley Joe Scarborough GOP primary donald trump 2020 election   https://hotair.com/archives/2018/04/21/latest-craze-left-trump-wont-run-second-term/

Trump Twitter Tantrums Give Away a Sense of Desperation

Westlake Legal Group trump-twitter-tantrums-give-away-a-sense-of-desperation Trump Twitter Tantrums Give Away a Sense of Desperation twitter Sam Nunberg New York Times Michael Cohen Front Page Stories Featured Story donald trump Allow Media Exception

He’s losing it.

Pretty much the only things that President Trump can be counted on for, without question, is to brag about or embellish on things he hasn’t done, and to blame other people for things he has done.

OH – and to lie about people he does or does not interact with. He does that a lot.

The story from the New York Times that I discussed yesterday, regarding the potential for Trump’s longtime fixer, Michael Cohen, “flipping” on the president, should it appear his own freedom is in jeopardy apparently hit a nerve.

For somebody who has worked tirelessly for Trump for years, but who didn’t even get a spot with Trump’s team, even at a low level, it would seem the anecdotes of ill-treatment and disrespect from yesterday’s piece hold true.

YET, in Trump’s Saturday morning tweet storm, he’s full of sugary words for Cohen.

He’s also full of angry, ugly, frothing towards the author of Friday’s piece, NYT reporter Maggie Haberman.

“The New York Times and a third rate reporter named Maggie Haberman, known as a Crooked H flunkie who I don’t speak to and have nothing to do with, are going out of their way to destroy Michael Cohen and his relationship with me in the hope that he will ‘flip,’” Trump tweeted. “They use non-existent ‘sources’ and a drunk/drugged up loser who hates Michael, a fine person with a wonderful family. Michael is a businessman for his own account/lawyer who I have always liked & respected. Most people will flip if the Government lets them out of trouble, even if it means lying or making up stories. Sorry, I don’t see Michael doing that despite the horrible Witch Hunt and the dishonest media!”

Actually, Trump has spoken with Haberman quite a bit, often calling her from his personal cell phone.

The history there is that Trump craves positive coverage on the front pages of the New York Times. He calls them “failing” when the coverage is bad, but constantly chases after them.

As for the “drunk/drugged up loser” the president (Yes, keep reminding yourself that this person is our president, and try not to weep.) is referring to, that would be former Trump campaign aide, Sam Nunberg.

Nunberg, if you remember, went on a wild, rambling day of appearances on cable news programs several months ago, and many wondered if he was drunk.

In the Haberman piece from Friday, Nunberg said:

“Ironically, Michael now holds the leverage over Trump,” said Sam Nunberg, a former aide to Mr. Trump who worked with Mr. Cohen and Mr. Stone. Mr. Nunberg said that Mr. Cohen “should maximize” that leverage.

“The softer side of the president genuinely has an affection for Michael,” Mr. Nunberg said. For instance, Mr. Trump attended the bar and bat mitzvahs of Mr. Cohen’s children. “However, the president has also taken Michael for granted.” Mr. Nunberg added that “whenever anyone complains to me about Trump screwing them over, my reflexive response is that person has nothing to complain about compared to Michael.”

Interestingly enough, Trump pal, Roger Stone, was quoted in the piece and it was no less damaging than that of Nunberg’s comments, but it doesn’t appear Trump zeroed in on him.

Oh, wait – All Stone said was that Trump goes out of his way to treat Cohen like garbage. What’s Trump going to say? That’s not true?

And while Nunberg is suggesting that Cohen has leverage over Trump, he’s not the only one.

Other longtime Trump associates have notably made similar comments about the threat Cohen poses to Trump. He recently spoke to Jay Goldberg, his lawyer in the 1990s and early 2000s, for guidance on the recent fallout and criminal investigation involving Cohen, and according to the Wall Street Journal, Goldberg told Trump that Cohen is not be trusted because he “will never stand up” for him if pressured by federal prosecutors. Goldberg also said the prospect of Cohen being compelled to testify in tandem with the documents obtained by the FBI poses a bigger threat to Trump than special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.

Everybody is talking about Cohen “flipping.” Nobody is saying there’s nothing to flip on.

Cohen’s home and office were raided several weeks ago. The news is that he’s been under investigation for months, but things apparently became desperate enough that federal authorities felt they needed to drop a net on him and retrieve evidence before “something” happened to it.

Reports are that he is facing charges of wire fraud, bank fraud, and of violating campaign finance laws, with his payoff of Stormy Daniels, a porn star mistress of Trump’s, as well as a second payoff to former Playboy model, Karen McDougal, another mistress.

Special counsel Robert Mueller referred the case to New York officials and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein signed off on it, which might account for Trump’s particularly pointed ire at those two.

In the meantime, President Trump continues to bleed out his angst across social media. At least one Twitter user gave a perfect summary of the current Trump mood.

 

 

The post Trump Twitter Tantrums Give Away a Sense of Desperation appeared first on RedState.

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Trump reminds Comey of a Mafia boss

A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies, and Leadership by James Comey

This book starts in a ridiculous tone of voice. If the author is as naive as he makes himself sound in his opening lines, it is not surprising he was unable to cope with Donald Trump. For James Comey begins by running himself down in words which could have been lifted from a Craig Brown parody:

“Who am I to tell others what ethical leadership is? Anyone claiming to write a book about ethical leadership can come across as presumptuous, even sanctimonious. All the more so if that author happens to be someone who was quite memorably and publicly fired from his last job.”

Comey was Director of the FBI until the afternoon of 9 May 2017, when he was addressing staff at his organisation’s Los Angeles branch and happened to notice, on television screens at the back of the room, the words “COMEY RESIGNS”.

He stopped in mid sentence and said: “That’s pretty funny. Somebody put a lot of work into that one.”

But no sooner had he resumed his speech than the message on all three screens, showing three different news stations, changed to “COMEY FIRED”.

The Director retired to a private room and established, with a certain amount of difficulty, that he had indeed been fired, even though the President had repeatedly assured him he was doing an excellent job.

Here is a second reason, as Comey recognises, for approaching his memoir with a degree of scepticism. It could merely be an act of revenge, in which he allows himself to be dragged into an exchange of insults by the President, who with characteristic magnanimity denounced him, as this volume was about to appear, as a “slimeball”.

The book is actually much better than that. It is a pity that Comey’s editors allowed him to clutter it with quite so many references to ethical leadership, so it reads at times like a self-help manual, though one suspects a great deal more of that sort of stuff was removed.

Again and again, the author feels impelled to make grand moral statements, interspersed with reflections on how to be a great leader. These statements are not wrong, but are delivered in such an innocent tone that one cannot help feeling the speaker lacks the subtlety needed to navigate the politics of law.

But for readers on this side of the Atlantic, there is also some value in being shown how explicit, and serious, the Americans like to be about moral questions. That is part of the American tradition. As one walks round the middle of Washington, one finds the very buildings inscribed with uplifting maxims.

And by the end of Comey’s book, he has earned our respect. For here is a lawyer, and public servant, who does not think it is good enough to allow one’s principles to be implicit in one’s behaviour. Comey is an altogether more explicit kind of character.

He is also rather tough. In his view, justice depends on people knowing they must tell the truth or else suffer terrible consequences:

“There was once a time when most people worried about going to hell if they violated an oath taken in the name of God. That divine deterrence has slipped away from our modern cultures. In its place, people must fear going to jail. They must fear their lives being turned upside down. They must fear their pictures splashed on newspapers and websites. People must fear having their name forever associated wth a criminal act if we are to have a nation with the rule of law. Martha Stewart lied, blatantly, in the justice system… She had to be prosecuted.”

Comey was the United States Attorney, or chief federal prosecutor, in Manhattan, responsible for the celebrated case which resulted in Stewart going to jail. He also conducted many successful Mafia prosecutions in New York.

He goes to Washington, and describes the extreme difficulty of remaining independent, devoted to upholding and enforcing the law without fear or favour, in an atmosphere of ferocious and unscrupulous partisanship. Just before the 2016 presidential election, he decides the FBI’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails must be reopened because new evidence has come to light, and that he must announce this reopening, or will be accused, after her victory, of favouritism towards her.

It is certainly a hard decision to make, with no course of action which lacks disadvantages. But one cannot help feeling his determination to avoid looking partisan led him into a course of action which handed an unfair advantage to Trump.

Fiat justitia ruat caelum – let justice be done though the heavens fall – is the Comey way, The heavens do not fall, but Trump wins the election.

Comey, though a registered Republican, was appointed Director of the FBI by Barack Obama, and had by then served just over three years of his ten-year term. He is interesting on Obama, who in his experience observes all the constitutional proprieties and is exceptionally good at listening to what other people are saying.

He is fascinating on Trump, to whom the last quarter of this 280-page book is devoted. He meets him for the first time in early January 2017, in Trump Tower, where along with other intelligence leaders, he has to brief the President elect about Russian actions during the presidential election, and to warn him of unsubstantiated but already widely circulated allegations that Trump was vulnerable to Russian blackmail, because on a visit to Moscow in 2013 he had been filmed watching prostitutes urinating on a hotel bed in the presidential suite of the Ritz-Carlton which had been used by the Obamas on their visit there.

He finds at once that Trump is determined to dissolve the distinction between intelligence gathering and politics:

“As I was sitting there, the strangest image filled my mind. I kept pushing it away because it seemed too odd and too dramatic, but it kept coming back: I thought of New York mafia social clubs, an image from my days as a Manhattan federal prosecutor in the 1980s and 1990s. The Ravenite. The Palma Boys. Café Giardino. I couldn’t shake the picture. And looking back, it wasn’t as odd and dramatic as I thought it was at the time.

“The Italian Mafia, as noted earlier, called itself La Cosa Nostra – ‘this thing of ours’ – and always drew a line between someone who was a ‘friend of yours’, meaning someone outside the family, and someone who was a ‘friend of ours’, meaning an official member of the family. I sat there thinking, Holy crap, they are trying to make each of us an ‘amica nostra’  – friend of ours. To draw us in. As crazy as it sounds, I suddenly had the feeling that, in the blink of an eye, the president-elect was trying to make us all part of the same family and that Team Trump had made it a ‘thing of ours’.”

He is deeply embarrassed by Trump, and has no idea how to deal with him, but is on his guard, and soon resolves to write contemporary accounts of their conversations, which he shares with senior colleagues at the FBI.

On 27 January 2017, Trump invites Comey to dinner at the White House. To Comey’s dismay, it is just the two of them:

“The head of the FBI could not be put into the position of meeting and chatting privately with the President of the United States – especially after an election like 2016. The very notion would compromise the Bureau’s hard-won integrity and independence. My fear was that Trump expected exactly that.”

Trump says he has heard great things about Comey, but asks if he wants to keep his job, and observes that he could “make a change at FBI” if he wanted to. Comey interprets this as “an effort to establish a patronage relationship”.

Comey says he certainly wants to go on doing the job, and will be “reliable”, not in the sense of supporting a particular side, but because he can be counted on to tell the President the truth. He argues that it is in the President’s best interest for the FBI and the Department of Justice to be seen to be independent of the White House, especially when, as often happens, prominent members of a presidential administration are under investigation.

Trump is not pleased by this reply. He says: “I need loyalty. I expect loyalty.”

Comey remains silent. He is reminded of “Sammy the Bull’s Cosa Nostra induction ceremony”:

“I was determined not to give the President any hint of assent to this demand, so I gave silence instead… I stared again at the soft white pouches under his expressionless blue eyes.”

As Comey cannot resist adding, “Ethical leaders never ask for loyalty.” Later in the meal, when Trump renews his demand for loyalty, Comey says: “You will always get honesty from me.” Trump replies, after a pause: “That’s what I want, honest loyalty.”

With that uneasy compromise, the meal ends. But Trump has not got the submission he wants, and a few months later, “in a blizzard of awful behaviour”, he fires Comey.

Comey’s contemporaneous accounts of these conversations are in the public domain, and he has been interviewed by Robert Mueller, who was Director of  the FBI from 2001-13 and is now the Special Counsel charged with investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election campaign. As Comey writes:

“I don’t know whether the Special Counsel will find criminal wrongdoing by the President or others who have not been charged as of this writing. One of the pivotal questions I presume that Bob Mueller is investigating is whether or not in urging me to back the FBI off our investigation of his National Security Adviser and in firing me, President Trump was attempting to obstruct justice, which is a federal crime.”

Comey has written an impressive book about the incompatibility of the values epitomised since the start of the Republic by George Washington – “restraint and integrity and balance and transparency and truth” – with Trump’s unethical leadership.

https://www.conservativehome.com/highlights/2018/04/trump-reminds-comey-of-a-mafia-boss.html