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Westlake Legal Group > News Media (Page 207)

After stumbles, the White House aims to hone its impeachment defense.

Westlake Legal Group 5d9bdb3e2100009004abc1df After stumbles, the White House aims to hone its impeachment defense.

WASHINGTON (AP) — As House Democrats fire off more subpoenas, the White House is finalizing a high-stakes strategy to counter the impeachment threat to President Donald Trump: Stall. Obfuscate. Attack. Repeat.

Trump aides are honing their approach after two weeks of what allies have described as a listless and unfocused response to the impeachment probe. One expected step is a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi rejecting the inquiry because Democrats haven’t held a vote on the matter and moving to all but cease cooperation with Capitol Hill on key oversight matters.

The strategy risks further provoking Democrats in the impeachment probe, setting up court challenges and the potential for lawmakers to draw up an article of impeachment accusing Trump of obstructing their investigations. But as lawmakers seek to amass ammunition to be used in an impeachment trial, the White House increasingly believes all-out warfare is its best course of action.

“What they did to this country is unthinkable. It’s lucky that I’m the president. A lot of people said very few people could handle it. I sort of thrive on it,” Trump said Monday at the White House. “You can’t impeach a president for doing a great job. This is a scam.”

House Democrats, for their part, issued a new round of subpoenas on Monday, this time to Defense Secretary Mark Esper and acting White House budget director Russell Vought. Pelosi’s office also released an open letter signed by 90 former national security officials who served in both Democratic and Republican administrations, voicing support for the whistleblower who raised concerns about Trump’s efforts to get Ukraine to investigate political foe Joe Biden.

“A responsible whistleblower makes all Americans safer by ensuring that serious wrongdoing can be investigated and addressed, thus advancing the cause of national security to which we have devoted our careers,” they wrote. “Whatever one’s view of the matters discussed in the whistleblower’s complaint, all Americans should be united in demanding that all branches of our government and all outlets of our media protect this whistleblower and his or her identity. Simply put, he or she has done what our law demands; now he or she deserves our protection.”

The House Intelligence, Oversight and Foreign Affairs committees are investigating Trump’s actions pressing Ukraine to investigate Biden and his son, potentially interfering in the 2020 election. The former vice president, for his part, has accused Trump of “frantically pushing flat-out lies, debunked conspiracy theories and smears against me.” Trump also withheld hundreds of millions of dollars in military assistance to Ukraine.

The White House has struggled to communicate its message beyond Trump’s angry public proclamations and an endless stream of tweets.

Indeed, top officials were absent from the Sunday talk shows, and the sole White House official to appear in public on Monday dodged questions on the inquiry.

Asked whether he believed the president was joking or in any way not serious when he suggested publicly that China should investigate the Bidens, Larry Kudlow, Trump’s top economic adviser, responded: “I don’t honestly know.”

Trump and his team’s initial strategy had been to try to undermine the credibility of the intelligence community whistleblower who first raised questions about Trump’s conduct with Ukraine, just as they tried to undercut special counsel Robert Mueller and his team. They stressed that the whistleblower had only second- or third-hand information and alleged that the person misrepresented the president’s efforts. But now a second whistleblower has come forward to corroborate the information, and a cache of text messages echoes the concerns that have been laid out.

As the impeachment inquiry ramps up, the White House plans to reprise its past response to congressional oversight: open scorn. The president’s aides have ignored document requests and subpoenas, invoked executive privilege — going so far as to argue that the privilege extends to informal presidential advisers who have never held White House jobs — and all but dared Democrats to hold them in contempt.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blew a Friday deadline for complying with a subpoena. But he said over the weekend that the State Department had sent a letter to Congress as its initial response to the request. He also indicated a new willingness to comply, saying: “We’ll obviously do all the things that we’re required to do by law.”

The letter to Pelosi has been delayed as aides work to finalize legislative and communications plans to go along with the legal strategy.

At the same time, Trump’s campaign, which has reported a fundraising surge since the impeachment inquiry, held a curiously timed briefing call with reporters Monday to trumpet its efforts to overhaul the delegate selection process to ensure there is no drama at the Republican National Convention. Trump campaign officials said the effort had nothing to do with concerns about fending off a primary challenge.

Follow Colvin on Twitter at https://twitter.com/colvinj , Miller at https://twitter.com/zekejmiller and Lemire at https://twitter.com/JonLemire

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Bill Clinton asked UK’s Tony Blair to ‘take a look at’ fixing problem during 2000 ‘political season’: document

While Democrats have been calling for President Trump’s impeachment over his alleged soliciting of assistance from foreign countries ahead of the 2020 election, an unearthed comment from 2000 might show stones were being thrown from glass houses.

On his show Monday, Tucker Carlson discussed a transcript of a call between former President Bill Clinton and then-U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair, the same year as the election pitting Clinton’s vice president, Al Gore, against George W. Bush.

“You’ve heard endlessly on cable news that it is unprecedented the president would seek political gain from a conversation with a foreign leader. Well, turns out, it has happened before,” Carlson said.

Westlake Legal Group Clinton-Blair-Dec-2000 Bill Clinton asked UK's Tony Blair to 'take a look at' fixing problem during 2000 'political season': document Liam Quinn fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/the-clintons fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/politics fox news fnc/media fnc article 99868d4a-866a-5439-a920-c31d73a2a8fb

President Bill Clinton British Prime Minister Tony Blair at Warwick University in December 2000. (BRIAN BOULD/AFP/Getty Images, File)

“Back in 2000, President Bill Clinton had a conversation with Tony Blair of the U.K. and asked him to intercede in a dispute between British Airways and two carriers. The president, at the time, was much more direct than President Trump was in his conversation.

JOE, HUNTER BIDEN SEEN GOLFING WITH UKRAINE GAS COMPANY EXEC BACK IN 2014, PHOTO SHOWS

Westlake Legal Group Clinton-letter-2000 Bill Clinton asked UK's Tony Blair to 'take a look at' fixing problem during 2000 'political season': document Liam Quinn fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/the-clintons fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/politics fox news fnc/media fnc article 99868d4a-866a-5439-a920-c31d73a2a8fb

A screenshot of the conversation was shown during “Tucker Carlson Tonight” on Monday.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

“This is Bill Clinton, and I’m quoting: ‘In a political season, it would be big over here to get this open sore resolved. If you could have somebody take a look at it.’ Tony Blair responded that he would.”

Carlson continued: “Now, is this a big deal? Not really. Is it nakedly political? Is it an attempt to use a foreign country to influence the outcome of an election in a presidential year? Yes it is, obviously.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ALL-NEW FOXBUSINESS.COM

“Incidentally, it didn’t take long for us to find that, we only had to dig through old Clinton transcripts for about 15 minutes… there are probably a lot more examples, and if we find them we will bring them to you.”

The quote referenced by Carlson can be found among a collection of declassified documents relating to Blair. It can be read in full here.

Westlake Legal Group Clinton-Blair-Dec-2000 Bill Clinton asked UK's Tony Blair to 'take a look at' fixing problem during 2000 'political season': document Liam Quinn fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/the-clintons fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/politics fox news fnc/media fnc article 99868d4a-866a-5439-a920-c31d73a2a8fb   Westlake Legal Group Clinton-Blair-Dec-2000 Bill Clinton asked UK's Tony Blair to 'take a look at' fixing problem during 2000 'political season': document Liam Quinn fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/the-clintons fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/politics fox news fnc/media fnc article 99868d4a-866a-5439-a920-c31d73a2a8fb

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Fox News in Disarray as Hosts Struggle to Digest Trump’s Betrayal of the Syrian Kurds

Westlake Legal Group -G8tyI0P3omdyd2DlsrCHVGk8YrzpwQLe3m2FsNuAWQ Fox News in Disarray as Hosts Struggle to Digest Trump’s Betrayal of the Syrian Kurds r/politics

use his exact quotes to explain it.

“I have a little conflict of interest ’cause I have a major, major building in Istanbul,” Trump boasted in response. “It’s a tremendously successful job. It’s called Trump Towers — two towers, instead of one, not the usual one; it’s two. And I’ve gotten to know Turkey very well. They’re amazing people, they’re incredible people. They have a strong leader.” – Donald J Trump

copied from post submitted just after this one. this is why he did it

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Pat Robertson: Trump could risk ‘losing the mandate of heaven’ with Syria decision

CLOSEWestlake Legal Group icon_close Pat Robertson: Trump could risk 'losing the mandate of heaven' with Syria decision

Donald Trump is warning Turkey that there will be “big trouble” if any American personnel in Syria are injured, as Turkey prepares to mount an operation against Kurdish fighters who had been allied with the U.S. against the Islamic State. (Oct. 7) AP, AP

WASHINGTON — Longtime televangelist and ally to the president Pat Robertson said Trump is “in danger of losing the mandate of heaven” over his announcement that American forces will pull out of a region of Syria. 

Calling Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan a dictator and a thug, Robertson said that he is “absolutely appalled that the United States is going to betray those democratic forces in northern Syria, that we are possibly going to allow the Turkish to come in against the Kurds.”

“To say that (Erdoğan) is an ally of America is nonsense. He is in it for himself,” Robertson said. 

The White House announced late Sunday that “Turkey will soon be moving forward with its long-planned operation into Northern Syria. The United States Armed Forces will not support or be involved in the operation.” Erdoğan considers the Kurdish forces terrorists allied with insurgents inside his country.

Robertson, who created the Christian Broadcast Network and is host of the 700 Club, made the comments during Monday’s show.

Though Robertson has been a consistent Trump defender, he continued to rip the decision, saying that “the president, who allowed (Washington Post journalist Jamal) Khashoggi to be cut in pieces without any repercussions whatsoever, is now allowing the Christians and the Kurds to be massacred by the Turks.” 

“And I believe — and I want to say this with great solemnity — the President of the United States is in danger of losing the mandate of heaven if he permits this to happen,” he concluded. 

Robertson’s comment joins a flurry of criticism around the Syria decision from GOP lawmakers and commentatorsSenate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said “a precipitous withdrawal of U.S. forces from Syria would only benefit Russia, Iran, and the Assad regime.” Sen. Lindsey Graham who labeled the President’s move as “irresponsible” and a “stain on America’s honor.” Both have been stalwart allies to the president.

Fox and Friends Host Brian Kilmeade was visibly upset with the decision on Monday’s show and called Trump’s decision “disastrous.” He questioned why any future ally would want to side with the U.S, exclaiming, “What kind of message is that?” 

The president has defended the plan, telling reporters in the Roosevelt Room Monday that “It’s time to come back home.”

“We’re 7,000 miles away,” Trump said. “I campaigned on the fact that I was going to bring our soldiers home.”

Robertson once declared that Trump was “God’s man for this job.” Trump typically receives high praise from the Christian-right, and evangelicals strongly support him.  

A recent survey showed 77% of white evangelical Protestants approve of Trump’s performance while those who report attending church weekly were more likely to approve than those who attend less often, 81% versus 73%.

Contributing: David Jackson, John Fritze, William Cummings, Deirdre Shesgreen, Ben Tobin

Read or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/elections/2019/10/07/pat-robertson-trump-losing-mandate-heaven-over-syria-decision/3903941002/

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After stumbles, the White House aims to hone its impeachment defense.

Westlake Legal Group 5d9bdb3e2100009004abc1df After stumbles, the White House aims to hone its impeachment defense.

WASHINGTON (AP) — As House Democrats fire off more subpoenas, the White House is finalizing a high-stakes strategy to counter the impeachment threat to President Donald Trump: Stall. Obfuscate. Attack. Repeat.

Trump aides are honing their approach after two weeks of what allies have described as a listless and unfocused response to the impeachment probe. One expected step is a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi rejecting the inquiry because Democrats haven’t held a vote on the matter and moving to all but cease cooperation with Capitol Hill on key oversight matters.

The strategy risks further provoking Democrats in the impeachment probe, setting up court challenges and the potential for lawmakers to draw up an article of impeachment accusing Trump of obstructing their investigations. But as lawmakers seek to amass ammunition to be used in an impeachment trial, the White House increasingly believes all-out warfare is its best course of action.

“What they did to this country is unthinkable. It’s lucky that I’m the president. A lot of people said very few people could handle it. I sort of thrive on it,” Trump said Monday at the White House. “You can’t impeach a president for doing a great job. This is a scam.”

House Democrats, for their part, issued a new round of subpoenas on Monday, this time to Defense Secretary Mark Esper and acting White House budget director Russell Vought. Pelosi’s office also released an open letter signed by 90 former national security officials who served in both Democratic and Republican administrations, voicing support for the whistleblower who raised concerns about Trump’s efforts to get Ukraine to investigate political foe Joe Biden.

“A responsible whistleblower makes all Americans safer by ensuring that serious wrongdoing can be investigated and addressed, thus advancing the cause of national security to which we have devoted our careers,” they wrote. “Whatever one’s view of the matters discussed in the whistleblower’s complaint, all Americans should be united in demanding that all branches of our government and all outlets of our media protect this whistleblower and his or her identity. Simply put, he or she has done what our law demands; now he or she deserves our protection.”

The House Intelligence, Oversight and Foreign Affairs committees are investigating Trump’s actions pressing Ukraine to investigate Biden and his son, potentially interfering in the 2020 election. The former vice president, for his part, has accused Trump of “frantically pushing flat-out lies, debunked conspiracy theories and smears against me.” Trump also withheld hundreds of millions of dollars in military assistance to Ukraine.

The White House has struggled to communicate its message beyond Trump’s angry public proclamations and an endless stream of tweets.

Indeed, top officials were absent from the Sunday talk shows, and the sole White House official to appear in public on Monday dodged questions on the inquiry.

Asked whether he believed the president was joking or in any way not serious when he suggested publicly that China should investigate the Bidens, Larry Kudlow, Trump’s top economic adviser, responded: “I don’t honestly know.”

Trump and his team’s initial strategy had been to try to undermine the credibility of the intelligence community whistleblower who first raised questions about Trump’s conduct with Ukraine, just as they tried to undercut special counsel Robert Mueller and his team. They stressed that the whistleblower had only second- or third-hand information and alleged that the person misrepresented the president’s efforts. But now a second whistleblower has come forward to corroborate the information, and a cache of text messages echoes the concerns that have been laid out.

As the impeachment inquiry ramps up, the White House plans to reprise its past response to congressional oversight: open scorn. The president’s aides have ignored document requests and subpoenas, invoked executive privilege — going so far as to argue that the privilege extends to informal presidential advisers who have never held White House jobs — and all but dared Democrats to hold them in contempt.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blew a Friday deadline for complying with a subpoena. But he said over the weekend that the State Department had sent a letter to Congress as its initial response to the request. He also indicated a new willingness to comply, saying: “We’ll obviously do all the things that we’re required to do by law.”

The letter to Pelosi has been delayed as aides work to finalize legislative and communications plans to go along with the legal strategy.

At the same time, Trump’s campaign, which has reported a fundraising surge since the impeachment inquiry, held a curiously timed briefing call with reporters Monday to trumpet its efforts to overhaul the delegate selection process to ensure there is no drama at the Republican National Convention. Trump campaign officials said the effort had nothing to do with concerns about fending off a primary challenge.

Follow Colvin on Twitter at https://twitter.com/colvinj , Miller at https://twitter.com/zekejmiller and Lemire at https://twitter.com/JonLemire

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

George Papadopoulos claims other nations had ‘vested interest’ against Trump’s ‘America First’ platform in 2016

Westlake Legal Group Trump-Papadopoulos_AP-FOX George Papadopoulos claims other nations had 'vested interest' against Trump's 'America First' platform in 2016 fox-news/world/world-regions/italy fox-news/world/world-regions/australia fox-news/shows/the-story fox-news/politics/justice-department fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/person/william-barr fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz article 6760b86f-41b8-5f56-b630-3d0df560d504

Former Trump 2016 campaign adviser George Papadopoulos claimed Monday several nations, including U.S. allies, had a “vested interest” against the then-candidate’s 2016 platform.

Papadopoulos praised Attorney General William Barr and federal prosecutor John Durham for engaging with Australian, British and Italian officials, in an interview with Martha MacCallum on “The Story.”

“Bill Barr and John Durham are not on a wild goose chase,” he claimed. “These countries were willfully complicit in what I believe was an international conspiracy to undermine the Donald Trump campaign, and to assure that if he was elected president that he would be handcuffed because they had a vested interest in assuring that his America First policies would not be the ones that would be implemented.”

BARR ASKED TRUMP TO SPEAK TO OTHER COUNTRIES IN DURHAM PROBE, OFFICIAL SAYS

Last year, Papadopoulos served 12 days in prison in connection with then-Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.

More from Media

He had pleaded guilty to making false statements to federal prosecutors and spent those nearly-two-weeks in a Wisconsin facility.

Speaking with MacCallum, Papadopoulos appeared to nod to the events during the campaign that led to the Mueller team focusing on him.

“I lived it,” he said. “I spoke to these diplomats and I know what they wanted.”

TRUMP DEMANDS SCHIFF RESIGN OVER ‘PARODY’ READING OF UKRAINE CALL

He also reacted to former Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi reportedly threatening to sue him for $1 million.

Papadopoulos noted Renzi was in office during Trump’s campaign and claimed the ex-politician went “on a rant about the president and then says he wants to sue me.”

“I welcome discovery in any lawsuit.”

Barr sparked criticism in multiple countries in recent days, as he seeks assistance in studying the Russia investigation’s origins, according to the Wall Street Journal.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

A Justice Department official told Fox News on Monday that Attorney General Bill Barr asked President Trump to make introductions to foreign countries that might have had information pertinent to U.S. Attorney John Durham’s ongoing probe into possible misconduct by the intelligence community at the outset of the Russia investigation.

But, a person familiar with the situation told Fox News it would be wrong to say Trump “pressed” the Australian prime minister for information that could have discredited Mueller’s now-completed probe, as The New York Times reported earlier Monday.

Fox News’ Brooke Singman contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group Trump-Papadopoulos_AP-FOX George Papadopoulos claims other nations had 'vested interest' against Trump's 'America First' platform in 2016 fox-news/world/world-regions/italy fox-news/world/world-regions/australia fox-news/shows/the-story fox-news/politics/justice-department fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/person/william-barr fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz article 6760b86f-41b8-5f56-b630-3d0df560d504   Westlake Legal Group Trump-Papadopoulos_AP-FOX George Papadopoulos claims other nations had 'vested interest' against Trump's 'America First' platform in 2016 fox-news/world/world-regions/italy fox-news/world/world-regions/australia fox-news/shows/the-story fox-news/politics/justice-department fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/person/william-barr fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz article 6760b86f-41b8-5f56-b630-3d0df560d504

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

After Stumbles, White House Aims To Hone Impeachment Defense

Westlake Legal Group 5d9bdb3e2100009004abc1df After Stumbles, White House Aims To Hone Impeachment Defense

WASHINGTON (AP) — As House Democrats fire off more subpoenas, the White House is finalizing a high-stakes strategy to counter the impeachment threat to President Donald Trump: Stall. Obfuscate. Attack. Repeat.

Trump aides are honing their approach after two weeks of what allies have described as a listless and unfocused response to the impeachment probe. One expected step is a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi rejecting the inquiry because Democrats haven’t held a vote on the matter and moving to all but cease cooperation with Capitol Hill on key oversight matters.

The strategy risks further provoking Democrats in the impeachment probe, setting up court challenges and the potential for lawmakers to draw up an article of impeachment accusing Trump of obstructing their investigations. But as lawmakers seek to amass ammunition to be used in an impeachment trial, the White House increasingly believes all-out warfare is its best course of action.

“What they did to this country is unthinkable. It’s lucky that I’m the president. A lot of people said very few people could handle it. I sort of thrive on it,” Trump said Monday at the White House. “You can’t impeach a president for doing a great job. This is a scam.”

House Democrats, for their part, issued a new round of subpoenas on Monday, this time to Defense Secretary Mark Esper and acting White House budget director Russell Vought. Pelosi’s office also released an open letter signed by 90 former national security officials who served in both Democratic and Republican administrations, voicing support for the whistleblower who raised concerns about Trump’s efforts to get Ukraine to investigate political foe Joe Biden.

“A responsible whistleblower makes all Americans safer by ensuring that serious wrongdoing can be investigated and addressed, thus advancing the cause of national security to which we have devoted our careers,” they wrote. “Whatever one’s view of the matters discussed in the whistleblower’s complaint, all Americans should be united in demanding that all branches of our government and all outlets of our media protect this whistleblower and his or her identity. Simply put, he or she has done what our law demands; now he or she deserves our protection.”

The House Intelligence, Oversight and Foreign Affairs committees are investigating Trump’s actions pressing Ukraine to investigate Biden and his son, potentially interfering in the 2020 election. The former vice president, for his part, has accused Trump of “frantically pushing flat-out lies, debunked conspiracy theories and smears against me.” Trump also withheld hundreds of millions of dollars in military assistance to Ukraine.

The White House has struggled to communicate its message beyond Trump’s angry public proclamations and an endless stream of tweets.

Indeed, top officials were absent from the Sunday talk shows, and the sole White House official to appear in public on Monday dodged questions on the inquiry.

Asked whether he believed the president was joking or in any way not serious when he suggested publicly that China should investigate the Bidens, Larry Kudlow, Trump’s top economic adviser, responded: “I don’t honestly know.”

Trump and his team’s initial strategy had been to try to undermine the credibility of the intelligence community whistleblower who first raised questions about Trump’s conduct with Ukraine, just as they tried to undercut special counsel Robert Mueller and his team. They stressed that the whistleblower had only second- or third-hand information and alleged that the person misrepresented the president’s efforts. But now a second whistleblower has come forward to corroborate the information, and a cache of text messages echoes the concerns that have been laid out.

As the impeachment inquiry ramps up, the White House plans to reprise its past response to congressional oversight: open scorn. The president’s aides have ignored document requests and subpoenas, invoked executive privilege — going so far as to argue that the privilege extends to informal presidential advisers who have never held White House jobs — and all but dared Democrats to hold them in contempt.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blew a Friday deadline for complying with a subpoena. But he said over the weekend that the State Department had sent a letter to Congress as its initial response to the request. He also indicated a new willingness to comply, saying: “We’ll obviously do all the things that we’re required to do by law.”

The letter to Pelosi has been delayed as aides work to finalize legislative and communications plans to go along with the legal strategy.

At the same time, Trump’s campaign, which has reported a fundraising surge since the impeachment inquiry, held a curiously timed briefing call with reporters Monday to trumpet its efforts to overhaul the delegate selection process to ensure there is no drama at the Republican National Convention. Trump campaign officials said the effort had nothing to do with concerns about fending off a primary challenge.

Follow Colvin on Twitter at https://twitter.com/colvinj , Miller at https://twitter.com/zekejmiller and Lemire at https://twitter.com/JonLemire

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

After Stumbles, White House Aims To Hone Impeachment Defense

Westlake Legal Group 5d9bdb3e2100009004abc1df After Stumbles, White House Aims To Hone Impeachment Defense

WASHINGTON (AP) — As House Democrats fire off more subpoenas, the White House is finalizing a high-stakes strategy to counter the impeachment threat to President Donald Trump: Stall. Obfuscate. Attack. Repeat.

Trump aides are honing their approach after two weeks of what allies have described as a listless and unfocused response to the impeachment probe. One expected step is a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi rejecting the inquiry because Democrats haven’t held a vote on the matter and moving to all but cease cooperation with Capitol Hill on key oversight matters.

The strategy risks further provoking Democrats in the impeachment probe, setting up court challenges and the potential for lawmakers to draw up an article of impeachment accusing Trump of obstructing their investigations. But as lawmakers seek to amass ammunition to be used in an impeachment trial, the White House increasingly believes all-out warfare is its best course of action.

“What they did to this country is unthinkable. It’s lucky that I’m the president. A lot of people said very few people could handle it. I sort of thrive on it,” Trump said Monday at the White House. “You can’t impeach a president for doing a great job. This is a scam.”

House Democrats, for their part, issued a new round of subpoenas on Monday, this time to Defense Secretary Mark Esper and acting White House budget director Russell Vought. Pelosi’s office also released an open letter signed by 90 former national security officials who served in both Democratic and Republican administrations, voicing support for the whistleblower who raised concerns about Trump’s efforts to get Ukraine to investigate political foe Joe Biden.

“A responsible whistleblower makes all Americans safer by ensuring that serious wrongdoing can be investigated and addressed, thus advancing the cause of national security to which we have devoted our careers,” they wrote. “Whatever one’s view of the matters discussed in the whistleblower’s complaint, all Americans should be united in demanding that all branches of our government and all outlets of our media protect this whistleblower and his or her identity. Simply put, he or she has done what our law demands; now he or she deserves our protection.”

The House Intelligence, Oversight and Foreign Affairs committees are investigating Trump’s actions pressing Ukraine to investigate Biden and his son, potentially interfering in the 2020 election. The former vice president, for his part, has accused Trump of “frantically pushing flat-out lies, debunked conspiracy theories and smears against me.” Trump also withheld hundreds of millions of dollars in military assistance to Ukraine.

The White House has struggled to communicate its message beyond Trump’s angry public proclamations and an endless stream of tweets.

Indeed, top officials were absent from the Sunday talk shows, and the sole White House official to appear in public on Monday dodged questions on the inquiry.

Asked whether he believed the president was joking or in any way not serious when he suggested publicly that China should investigate the Bidens, Larry Kudlow, Trump’s top economic adviser, responded: “I don’t honestly know.”

Trump and his team’s initial strategy had been to try to undermine the credibility of the intelligence community whistleblower who first raised questions about Trump’s conduct with Ukraine, just as they tried to undercut special counsel Robert Mueller and his team. They stressed that the whistleblower had only second- or third-hand information and alleged that the person misrepresented the president’s efforts. But now a second whistleblower has come forward to corroborate the information, and a cache of text messages echoes the concerns that have been laid out.

As the impeachment inquiry ramps up, the White House plans to reprise its past response to congressional oversight: open scorn. The president’s aides have ignored document requests and subpoenas, invoked executive privilege — going so far as to argue that the privilege extends to informal presidential advisers who have never held White House jobs — and all but dared Democrats to hold them in contempt.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blew a Friday deadline for complying with a subpoena. But he said over the weekend that the State Department had sent a letter to Congress as its initial response to the request. He also indicated a new willingness to comply, saying: “We’ll obviously do all the things that we’re required to do by law.”

The letter to Pelosi has been delayed as aides work to finalize legislative and communications plans to go along with the legal strategy.

At the same time, Trump’s campaign, which has reported a fundraising surge since the impeachment inquiry, held a curiously timed briefing call with reporters Monday to trumpet its efforts to overhaul the delegate selection process to ensure there is no drama at the Republican National Convention. Trump campaign officials said the effort had nothing to do with concerns about fending off a primary challenge.

Follow Colvin on Twitter at https://twitter.com/colvinj , Miller at https://twitter.com/zekejmiller and Lemire at https://twitter.com/JonLemire

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Trump On Turkey: ‘I Have A Little Conflict Of Interest … It’s Called Trump Towers’

Westlake Legal Group 5d9bbf662000004e004ee0af Trump On Turkey: ‘I Have A Little Conflict Of Interest ... It’s Called Trump Towers’

As even Republican lawmakers and foreign policy experts reel over Donald Trump’s unilateral decision to abandon Kurdish allies to an assault from Turkey in Syria, the president himself apparently has an explanation: “I have a little conflict of interest” concerning Turkey.

Trump made the comment in a Breitbart News interview in December 2015 during his presidential campaign when asked how he would handle Turkey and Syria.

“I have a little conflict of interest ’cause I have a major, major building in Istanbul,” Trump boasted in response. “It’s a tremendously successful job. It’s called Trump Towers — two towers, instead of one, not the usual one; it’s two. And I’ve gotten to know Turkey very well. They’re amazing people, they’re incredible people. They have a strong leader.”

He said then that the situation was “complicated,” adding, “I thrive on complicated.” Trump did not reveal what he would do in the region if he were to become commander in chief.

Trump still profits from Trump Towers in Istanbul, and the “strong leader” then was the same as now: President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Though his continuing business interest in Istanbul is widely known, his own admission that it represents a conflict of interest is startling. Critics have long argued that Trump, as presidents traditionally do, should divest from his businesses to avoid conflicts of interest that threaten to put his personal benefit ahead of the nation’s.

In a late Sunday phone call with Erdogan, Trump suddenly agreed to let Turkey occupy a strip of northern Syria, currently controlled by ethnic Kurds who have been America’s most effective allies in battling the so-called Islamic State. Now supporters fear a U.S.-enabled slaughter of the Kurds, who have a centuries-long dispute with Turkey over self-rule.

“Everyone was absolutely flabbergasted by this,” retired Adm. James Stavridis said Monday on MSNBC, referring to the Pentagon perspective on Trump’s action. “Nobody saw it coming, and that is a real problem when you’re trying to conduct not only foreign policy … but also military operations. That kind of whipsawing effect is extremely detrimental, not only in this tactical situation but strategically, as our planners try and prepare in other theaters, from North Korea to Afghanistan.” (See the video above at 9:18.)

White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said Monday that Trump’s decision had nothing to do with the Trump Towers Istanbul complex. 

Check out Trump’s Breitbart interview about his “conflict of interest” below. The section on Turkey begins at the start.

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Brooke Shields shares age-defying secret: ‘I’m now starting to celebrate my body’

Westlake Legal Group RT_BrookeShields Brooke Shields shares age-defying secret: 'I'm now starting to celebrate my body' Nate Day fox-news/style-and-beauty fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 922b57e0-8ce9-5bef-aa8c-7aeb8d253048

Actress and model Brooke Shields didn’t always have confidence in the way she looked.

“Well, I had a really fraught relationship with the whole idea of beauty since I was a little kid,” she explained on “Dr. Oz” on Monday. “There was a disconnect between my head and my body.”

Shields — known for her roles in “Suddenly Susan” and “The Blue Lagoon” — is now 54 years old, and her attitude toward her body has changed a bit.

BROOKE SHIELDS SAYS SHE LOST ‘VIEW’ CO-HOSTING GIG TO JENNY MCCARTHY 

“… I’m now starting to celebrate my body in a way that I never felt free to do it as a kid,” she told Dr. Mehmet Oz.

For Shields, part of celebrating her body includes taking care of her skin and hair with a simple product: body balm.

Shields explained that she started using body balm as a young girl to sculpt her eyebrows, but has since begun to spread it on the skin around her eyes as well.

JENNY MCCARTHY SAYS BROOKE SHIELDS SHOULD BE THANKFUL SHE DIDN’T LAND ‘VIEW’ HOSTING GIG

Similarly, Shields — who demonstrated her application technique on the show — revealed that she also uses body balm on the ends of her hair and even on her eyelashes as a moisturizer.

She explained that the balm isn’t greasy, so it serves as a conditioner for skin and hair.

Shields, who last guest-starred in seasons four and five of “Jane the Virgin,” was nominated for two Golden Globes for her portrayal of the title character in “Suddenly Susan.”

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Her modeling career began when she starred in an Ivory Soap ad at 11 months old. At 14, she became the youngest model ever to appear on the cover of Vogue Magazine.

She’s slated to be seen next in the comedy “My Boyfriend’s Meds,” in February 2020.

Westlake Legal Group RT_BrookeShields Brooke Shields shares age-defying secret: 'I'm now starting to celebrate my body' Nate Day fox-news/style-and-beauty fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 922b57e0-8ce9-5bef-aa8c-7aeb8d253048   Westlake Legal Group RT_BrookeShields Brooke Shields shares age-defying secret: 'I'm now starting to celebrate my body' Nate Day fox-news/style-and-beauty fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 922b57e0-8ce9-5bef-aa8c-7aeb8d253048

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com