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Westlake Legal Group > Posts tagged "Trump, Donald J" (Page 86)

Huawei’s Sales Jump Despite Trump’s Blacklisting

Westlake Legal Group merlin_155583492_a7fdea77-1f55-4ccd-852e-ee11c2e1dff7-facebookJumbo Huawei’s Sales Jump Despite Trump’s Blacklisting Trump, Donald J Ren Zhengfei Politics and Government International Trade and World Market Huawei Technologies Co Ltd Computers and the Internet China Blacklisting

BEIJING — A little over two months after Huawei’s chief executive began comparing his embattled company to a bullet-riddled fighter plane, the Chinese tech giant said its sales for January through June grew by nearly a quarter from a year earlier, a sign that the Trump administration’s clampdown has hardly brought the firm crashing to the ground.

“Neither production nor shipment has been interrupted, not for one single day,” Liang Hua, the chairman of Huawei’s board of directors, said on Tuesday at the company’s headquarters in the southern city of Shenzhen. “No matter how many difficulties we might face, we remain confident in the company’s future development.”

The strong results, with revenue of around $58 billion for the first half of the year, testify to the breadth of Huawei’s business, which now spans smartphones and laptops, equipment and software for wireless networks, cloud computing services, city surveillance gear and more. Last year, the company generated around $105 billion in sales, more than China’s two best-known internet giants, Alibaba and Tencent, combined.

But Huawei’s future has been uncertain ever since Washington began ratcheting up efforts to undermine the company, saying that its products are dangerously susceptible to influence and disruption by the Chinese government. Huawei rejects the insinuations.

Its fate is now entangled with talks between the United States and China to end their yearlong tariff war. As those negotiations have swung between optimistic highs and gloomy lows, so too has the outlook for Huawei’s business.

The company is not publicly traded, but it periodically releases financial results to counter Washington’s claims that it is secretive and opaque.

After American officials spent months warning the world about the risks of using Huawei’s equipment to build next-generation wireless networks, the Commerce Department took direct aim at the company’s operations in May by putting it on an export blacklist. This meant that American companies like Qualcomm and Intel would need special permission to sell Huawei the microchips and other specialized components that go into its products.

American tech suppliers swiftly halted shipments to Huawei in response. The Chinese company’s founder and chief executive, Ren Zhengfei, predicted in June that revenue this year would be around $30 billion less than previously forecast. That gap alone represents more revenue than Ericsson, one of Huawei’s main rivals in telecom equipment, took in all year in 2018.

Before long, though, some American tech companies decided that they could resume selling certain items to Huawei despite the blacklisting. Their lawyers determined that Washington’s restrictions did not apply to hardware that was manufactured outside the United States and that did not contain much in the way of sensitive American components and technology.

“Once we determined that we could continue to resume most of those products, it really got back to normal pretty quickly,” Dave Pahl, the head of investor relations at the chip maker Texas Instruments, said during a conference call with analysts last week.

Then, after meeting with China’s top leader, Xi Jinping, in Japan last month, Mr. Trump said the administration would permit more American sales to Huawei, in a gesture meant to smooth the path toward a trade deal.

Huawei cannot breathe easy, however. The Commerce Department still has not indicated exactly how it will decide who gets licenses to sell to the company. American trade negotiators were in Shanghai on Tuesday to try once more to piece together an accord.

Some of Huawei’s American partners have already started making potentially hard-to-reverse changes to their operations in response to the blacklisting. The electronics manufacturer Flex said last week that it had scaled down its activities in China for supplying Huawei.

For many years, Huawei’s chief executive, Mr. Ren, was a reclusive figure who almost never spoke to reporters. Of late, he has been a near-constant presence in the global news media, sounding exuberant about his company’s prospects for surviving Mr. Trump’s onslaught.

Speaking this month with a group of Italian journalists, Mr. Ren boasted that Huawei had already patched up 70 to 80 percent of what he called the “bullet holes” in its wireless infrastructure products — the ways in which they relied on American-sourced parts or technology.

By the end of the year, he predicted, Huawei will have filled more than 90 percent of these holes.

“We can stand on our own right now,” Mr. Ren said. “We don’t need to depend on the U.S. to continue serving our customers. The more advanced a system is, the more capable we are of standing on our own.”

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

Huawei’s Sales Jump Despite Trump’s Blacklisting

Westlake Legal Group merlin_155583492_a7fdea77-1f55-4ccd-852e-ee11c2e1dff7-facebookJumbo Huawei’s Sales Jump Despite Trump’s Blacklisting Trump, Donald J Ren Zhengfei Politics and Government International Trade and World Market Huawei Technologies Co Ltd Computers and the Internet China Blacklisting

BEIJING — A little over two months after Huawei’s chief executive began comparing his embattled company to a bullet-riddled fighter plane, the Chinese tech giant said its sales for January through June grew by nearly a quarter from a year earlier, a sign that the Trump administration’s clampdown has hardly brought the firm crashing to the ground.

“Neither production nor shipment has been interrupted, not for one single day,” Liang Hua, the chairman of Huawei’s board of directors, said on Tuesday at the company’s headquarters in the southern city of Shenzhen. “No matter how many difficulties we might face, we remain confident in the company’s future development.”

The strong results, with revenue of around $58 billion for the first half of the year, testify to the breadth of Huawei’s business, which now spans smartphones and laptops, equipment and software for wireless networks, cloud computing services, city surveillance gear and more. Last year, the company generated around $105 billion in sales, more than China’s two best-known internet giants, Alibaba and Tencent, combined.

But Huawei’s future has been uncertain ever since Washington began ratcheting up efforts to undermine the company, saying that its products are dangerously susceptible to influence and disruption by the Chinese government. Huawei rejects the insinuations.

Its fate is now entangled with talks between the United States and China to end their yearlong tariff war. As those negotiations have swung between optimistic highs and gloomy lows, so too has the outlook for Huawei’s business.

The company is not publicly traded, but it periodically releases financial results to counter Washington’s claims that it is secretive and opaque.

After American officials spent months warning the world about the risks of using Huawei’s equipment to build next-generation wireless networks, the Commerce Department took direct aim at the company’s operations in May by putting it on an export blacklist. This meant that American companies like Qualcomm and Intel would need special permission to sell Huawei the microchips and other specialized components that go into its products.

American tech suppliers swiftly halted shipments to Huawei in response. The Chinese company’s founder and chief executive, Ren Zhengfei, predicted in June that revenue this year would be around $30 billion less than previously forecast. That gap alone represents more revenue than Ericsson, one of Huawei’s main rivals in telecom equipment, took in all year in 2018.

Before long, though, some American tech companies decided that they could resume selling certain items to Huawei despite the blacklisting. Their lawyers determined that Washington’s restrictions did not apply to hardware that was manufactured outside the United States and that did not contain much in the way of sensitive American components and technology.

“Once we determined that we could continue to resume most of those products, it really got back to normal pretty quickly,” Dave Pahl, the head of investor relations at the chip maker Texas Instruments, said during a conference call with analysts last week.

Then, after meeting with China’s top leader, Xi Jinping, in Japan last month, Mr. Trump said the administration would permit more American sales to Huawei, in a gesture meant to smooth the path toward a trade deal.

Huawei cannot breathe easy, however. The Commerce Department still has not indicated exactly how it will decide who gets licenses to sell to the company. American trade negotiators were in Shanghai on Tuesday to try once more to piece together an accord.

Some of Huawei’s American partners have already started making potentially hard-to-reverse changes to their operations in response to the blacklisting. The electronics manufacturer Flex said last week that it had scaled down its activities in China for supplying Huawei.

For many years, Huawei’s chief executive, Mr. Ren, was a reclusive figure who almost never spoke to reporters. Of late, he has been a near-constant presence in the global news media, sounding exuberant about his company’s prospects for surviving Mr. Trump’s onslaught.

Speaking this month with a group of Italian journalists, Mr. Ren boasted that Huawei had already patched up 70 to 80 percent of what he called the “bullet holes” in its wireless infrastructure products — the ways in which they relied on American-sourced parts or technology.

By the end of the year, he predicted, Huawei will have filled more than 90 percent of these holes.

“We can stand on our own right now,” Mr. Ren said. “We don’t need to depend on the U.S. to continue serving our customers. The more advanced a system is, the more capable we are of standing on our own.”

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

Huawei’s Sales Jump Despite Trump’s Blacklisting

Westlake Legal Group merlin_155583492_a7fdea77-1f55-4ccd-852e-ee11c2e1dff7-facebookJumbo Huawei’s Sales Jump Despite Trump’s Blacklisting Trump, Donald J Ren Zhengfei Politics and Government International Trade and World Market Huawei Technologies Co Ltd Computers and the Internet China Blacklisting

BEIJING — A little over two months after Huawei’s chief executive began comparing his embattled company to a bullet-riddled fighter plane, the Chinese tech giant said its sales for January through June grew by nearly a quarter from a year earlier, a sign that the Trump administration’s clampdown has hardly brought the firm crashing to the ground.

“Neither production nor shipment has been interrupted, not for one single day,” Liang Hua, the chairman of Huawei’s board of directors, said on Tuesday at the company’s headquarters in the southern city of Shenzhen. “No matter how many difficulties we might face, we remain confident in the company’s future development.”

The strong results, with revenue of around $58 billion for the first half of the year, testify to the breadth of Huawei’s business, which now spans smartphones and laptops, equipment and software for wireless networks, cloud computing services, city surveillance gear and more. Last year, the company generated around $105 billion in sales, more than China’s two best-known internet giants, Alibaba and Tencent, combined.

But Huawei’s future has been uncertain ever since Washington began ratcheting up efforts to undermine the company, saying that its products are dangerously susceptible to influence and disruption by the Chinese government. Huawei rejects the insinuations.

Its fate is now entangled with talks between the United States and China to end their yearlong tariff war. As those negotiations have swung between optimistic highs and gloomy lows, so too has the outlook for Huawei’s business.

The company is not publicly traded, but it periodically releases financial results to counter Washington’s claims that it is secretive and opaque.

After American officials spent months warning the world about the risks of using Huawei’s equipment to build next-generation wireless networks, the Commerce Department took direct aim at the company’s operations in May by putting it on an export blacklist. This meant that American companies like Qualcomm and Intel would need special permission to sell Huawei the microchips and other specialized components that go into its products.

American tech suppliers swiftly halted shipments to Huawei in response. The Chinese company’s founder and chief executive, Ren Zhengfei, predicted in June that revenue this year would be around $30 billion less than previously forecast. That gap alone represents more revenue than Ericsson, one of Huawei’s main rivals in telecom equipment, took in all year in 2018.

Before long, though, some American tech companies decided that they could resume selling certain items to Huawei despite the blacklisting. Their lawyers determined that Washington’s restrictions did not apply to hardware that was manufactured outside the United States and that did not contain much in the way of sensitive American components and technology.

“Once we determined that we could continue to resume most of those products, it really got back to normal pretty quickly,” Dave Pahl, the head of investor relations at the chip maker Texas Instruments, said during a conference call with analysts last week.

Then, after meeting with China’s top leader, Xi Jinping, in Japan last month, Mr. Trump said the administration would permit more American sales to Huawei, in a gesture meant to smooth the path toward a trade deal.

Huawei cannot breathe easy, however. The Commerce Department still has not indicated exactly how it will decide who gets licenses to sell to the company. American trade negotiators were in Shanghai on Tuesday to try once more to piece together an accord.

Some of Huawei’s American partners have already started making potentially hard-to-reverse changes to their operations in response to the blacklisting. The electronics manufacturer Flex said last week that it had scaled down its activities in China for supplying Huawei.

For many years, Huawei’s chief executive, Mr. Ren, was a reclusive figure who almost never spoke to reporters. Of late, he has been a near-constant presence in the global news media, sounding exuberant about his company’s prospects for surviving Mr. Trump’s onslaught.

Speaking this month with a group of Italian journalists, Mr. Ren boasted that Huawei had already patched up 70 to 80 percent of what he called the “bullet holes” in its wireless infrastructure products — the ways in which they relied on American-sourced parts or technology.

By the end of the year, he predicted, Huawei will have filled more than 90 percent of these holes.

“We can stand on our own right now,” Mr. Ren said. “We don’t need to depend on the U.S. to continue serving our customers. The more advanced a system is, the more capable we are of standing on our own.”

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

Ahead of Debates, Pennsylvania Democrats Want Candidates to Stress Pragmatism

NEWTOWN, Pa. — Diane LeBas, a 71-year-old substitute teacher attending the Newtown Democrats’ summer picnic on Sunday, recounted how she was tear-gassed protesting the Vietnam War. No one could question her progressivism.

“But at the moment, I’m leaving progressivism in the back seat for pragmatism,” Ms. LeBas said about the 2020 presidential race. “We have to get rid of the guy who’s threatening our core values. For pragmatism, I would choose Joe Biden.”

Among a circle of activists at the picnic here in Bucks County — a swing town in a swing county in a swing state — there were many nods. Ahead of the second round of Democratic debates in Detroit starting Tuesday night, the party stalwarts were wrestling with the old tug of whether to follow their heart or their head in picking a candidate.

For the moment, the head seemed to be winning.

[Harris and Biden will meet again in the next Democratic debates. Here are the lineups.]

The same was true at a second gathering further south on Sunday, in Delaware County. Unwinding after a weekend of canvassing for candidates in municipal races, several Democratic volunteers acknowledged that they were more liberal than many Democratic voters, which helped explain the enduring appeal of Joseph R. Biden Jr.

“It’s almost like two different parties,” said Andrew Hayman, 28, a Democratic committee member in the town of Upper Darby. “I encounter it every day at the doors: people who are excited for Biden or they don’t have a candidate.”

Many of those Democrats — whether they already have a preferred candidate or remain torn — are hoping that this week’s debates include more economic issues and moderate points of view than the June debates, where liberal issues and arguments dominated the two nights. Several Democrats said that voters were far more concerned about feeding their families or ensuring their children’s futures than they were about issues like impeaching President Trump.

ImageWestlake Legal Group merlin_158609013_10f9778c-a1d6-4f2d-b5d6-01c3e8085742-articleLarge Ahead of Debates, Pennsylvania Democrats Want Candidates to Stress Pragmatism Warren, Elizabeth Trump, Donald J Presidential Election of 2020 Pennsylvania Democratic Party Biden, Joseph R Jr

“I’m leaving progressivism in the back seat for pragmatism,” said Diane LeBas. She supports Joseph R. Biden Jr. in the primary.CreditHannah Yoon for The New York Times

Susan Turner, who complained that the June debates did not include enough so-called kitchen-table issues, said: “Jobs are certainly a concern of people. Minimum wage.”

At the gatherings in Bucks and Delaware Counties, outside Philadelphia, there was plenty of support for several candidates. In a straw poll at the Newtown picnic — held with Democratic-approved paper straws, not plastic — the results were: Elizabeth Warren, 15, Kamala Harris, 14, Mr. Biden, 8 and Pete Buttigieg, 7. Bernie Sanders earned just one vote.

[We tracked down the 2020 Democrats and asked them the same set of questions. Watch them answer.]

Julia Woldorf, a member of the Newtown Borough Council, argued that Mr. Biden was a poor choice if voters were trying to be practical about the candidates. She brought up Ms. Harris’s sharp-scalpeled attack on him in the first debate over his civil rights record, which caught Mr. Biden off guard.

“He showed me he couldn’t respond the way he should have,” Ms. Woldorf said. “If Trump throws something at him, how’s he going to respond?”

There were echoes of the hand-wringing among some national Democrats over whether candidates were lurching too far leftward to win with plans that would end private health insurance or decriminalize unauthorized border crossings.

“I think ‘the squad’ is leading us too far to the left, and we’re alienating a lot of folks in the middle,” said Susan Turner, a retired engineer who now owns the Green Frog Bakery in Newtown, referring to the four progressive congresswomen who have clashed with Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Steve Cickay, a retired I.R.S. executive, played down Democratic fretting over whether Mr. Biden was too old to motivate younger voters.

“The disgust with Trump is so overwhelming,’’ he said. “It’s not going to be the Hillary deal in 2016.”

Elen Snyder, a 62-year-old full-time activist, said she divorced her husband of 35 years over his support for President Trump in 2016.CreditHannah Yoon for The New York Times

Elen Snyder, a 62-year-old full-time activist at the picnic, was an example of how passionate many Democrats have become in the drive to defeat the president. Ms. Snyder said she divorced her husband of 35 years in 2016 over his support of Mr. Trump.

“He’s always been a Republican, and I’ve always been a Democrat and that was fine,” she said. But with the rise of Mr. Trump, she said: “He became an angry man. It was like I was watching this white guy who I thought I knew all of a sudden become racist, become all of the things Trump represented which I abhorred.”

Her favorite 2020 candidate, for now, is Ms. Warren — though the choice may indicate that head over heart isn’t universal. “My Merrill Lynch adviser told me that the only candidate he would be against is Liz Warren because she scares the financial community,’’ she said. “I delighted upon hearing that.”

The Newtown activists, like those in Delaware County, want to elect more Democrats to county and municipal offices in 2019 to continue building a foundation for 2020 turnout, when Pennsylvania will once again be in the eye of the presidential storm.

Bucks County Democrats failed to gain in the 2018 midterm blue wave, when Representative Brian Fitzpatrick held on to the only Repubican-held congressional seat in the Philadelphia region. But a year earlier in Delaware County, Democrats won their first countywide offices in more than a century.

The issue of “Medicare for all,” with its promise to eliminate private health insurance in the version supported by Mr. Sanders and Ms. Warren, proved a sharp dividing line among the Democratic activists.

“I don’t think that health care is a human right. Sorry, I don’t agree with Bernie on that; it’s a privilege,” said Ms. Turner, the bakery owner.

An hour south of Newtown, where the second group gathered in the home of Barbarann Keffer, a candidate for mayor of Upper Darby, Mr. Hayman, the Democratic committee member, explained that Mr. Biden is acceptable even to Republicans he meets. “He’s not hated,’’ he said. “He’s a known quantity.”

People at the picnic cast votes for their favorite presidential candidates using Democratic-approved paper straws.CreditHannah Yoon for The New York Times

That pleased Margo Davidson, a Pennsylvania state representative from Upper Darby. “I’m Biden all the way. I’m with Uncle Joe,” she said in Ms. Keffer’s crowded living room, where volunteers came in with stacks of campaign literature for Democrats on the ballot in November.

Ms. Davidson, the first African-American to represent her statehouse district, noted that despite Ms. Harris’s attack on Mr. Biden in the first round of debates, black support for President Barack Obama’s former vice president seems to be steady.

“I love Kamala,” she said, “but we’ve got to get rid of Trump and that’s more important to me than any one personality.”

Michelle Billups, a candidate for town council in Upper Darby, blurted to a circle of activists: “I’m going to be honest. I like Andrew Yang.”

Another Biden supporter, atypical for her age, was Raeleen Keffer-Scharpf, 17, a daughter of Ms. Keffer, the mayoral candidate. She has watched debates and candidate forums on YouTube. Beto O’Rourke, once thought to galvanize young voters, was a “viral” candidate without staying power, she said, adding that she’s “a sucker for strong female characters in politics.” But she declared Mr. Biden her top choice for now.

“I think he can win the presidential,” Ms. Keffer-Scharpf said.

That concept of presumed electability, much maligned by candidates not named Biden or the other front-runners, nonetheless held sway among activists in both counties.

Mr. Hayman said Democrats’ strongest message in 2020 ought to be about expunging the Trump years and returning the country to stability. Democrats, he said, should take a page from President Warren G. Harding, a Republican, and promise a return to normalcy.

“If we just talk about running the government, I think we win on that,” he said.

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

Ahead of Debates, Pennsylvania Democrats Lean More Pragmatic Than Progressive

NEWTOWN, Pa. — Diane LeBas, a 71-year-old substitute teacher attending the Newtown Democrats’ summer picnic on Sunday, recounted how she was tear-gassed protesting the Vietnam War. No one could question her progressivism.

“But at the moment, I’m leaving progressivism in the back seat for pragmatism,” Ms. LeBas said about the 2020 presidential race. “We have to get rid of the guy who’s threatening our core values. For pragmatism, I would choose Joe Biden.”

Among a circle of activists at the picnic here in Bucks County — a swing town in a swing county in a swing state — there were many nods. Ahead of the second round of Democratic debates in Detroit starting Tuesday night, the party stalwarts were wrestling with the old tug of whether to follow their heart or their head in picking a candidate.

For the moment, the head seemed to be winning.

[Harris and Biden will meet again in the next Democratic debates. Here are the lineups.]

The same was true at a second gathering further south on Sunday, in Delaware County. Unwinding after a weekend of canvassing for candidates in municipal races, several Democratic volunteers acknowledged that they were more liberal than many Democratic voters, which helped explain the enduring appeal of Joseph R. Biden Jr.

“It’s almost like two different parties,” said Andrew Hayman, 28, a Democratic committee member in the town of Upper Darby. “I encounter it every day at the doors: people who are excited for Biden or they don’t have a candidate.”

Many of those Democrats — whether they already have a preferred candidate or remain torn — are hoping that this week’s debates include more economic issues and moderate points of view than the June debates, where liberal issues and arguments dominated the two nights. Several Democrats said that voters were far more concerned about feeding their families or ensuring their children’s futures than they were about issues like impeaching President Trump.

ImageWestlake Legal Group merlin_158609013_10f9778c-a1d6-4f2d-b5d6-01c3e8085742-articleLarge Ahead of Debates, Pennsylvania Democrats Lean More Pragmatic Than Progressive Warren, Elizabeth Trump, Donald J Presidential Election of 2020 Pennsylvania Democratic Party Biden, Joseph R Jr

“I’m leaving progressivism in the back seat for pragmatism,” said Diane LeBas. She supports Joseph R. Biden Jr. in the primary.CreditHannah Yoon for The New York Times

Susan Turner, who complained that the June debates did not include enough so-called kitchen-table issues, said: “Jobs are certainly a concern of people. Minimum wage.”

At the gatherings in Bucks and Delaware Counties, outside Philadelphia, there was plenty of support for several candidates. In a straw poll at the Newtown picnic — held with Democratic-approved paper straws, not plastic — the results were: Elizabeth Warren, 15, Kamala Harris, 14, Mr. Biden, 8 and Pete Buttigieg, 7. Bernie Sanders earned just one vote.

[We tracked down the 2020 Democrats and asked them the same set of questions. Watch them answer.]

Julia Woldorf, a member of the Newtown Borough Council, argued that Mr. Biden was a poor choice if voters were trying to be practical about the candidates. She brought up Ms. Harris’s sharp-scalpeled attack on him in the first debate over his civil rights record, which caught Mr. Biden off guard.

“He showed me he couldn’t respond the way he should have,” Ms. Woldorf said. “If Trump throws something at him, how’s he going to respond?”

There were echoes of the hand-wringing among some national Democrats over whether candidates were lurching too far leftward to win with plans that would end private health insurance or decriminalize unauthorized border crossings.

“I think ‘the squad’ is leading us too far to the left, and we’re alienating a lot of folks in the middle,” said Susan Turner, a retired engineer who now owns the Green Frog Bakery in Newtown, referring to the four progressive congresswomen who have clashed with Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Steve Cickay, a retired I.R.S. executive, played down Democratic fretting over whether Mr. Biden was too old to motivate younger voters.

“The disgust with Trump is so overwhelming,’’ he said. “It’s not going to be the Hillary deal in 2016.”

Elen Snyder, a 62-year-old full-time activist, said she divorced her husband of 35 years over his support for President Trump in 2016.CreditHannah Yoon for The New York Times

Elen Snyder, a 62-year-old full-time activist at the picnic, was an example of how passionate many Democrats have become in the drive to defeat the president. Ms. Snyder said she divorced her husband of 35 years in 2016 over his support of Mr. Trump.

“He’s always been a Republican, and I’ve always been a Democrat and that was fine,” she said. But with the rise of Mr. Trump, she said: “He became an angry man. It was like I was watching this white guy who I thought I knew all of a sudden become racist, become all of the things Trump represented which I abhorred.”

Her favorite 2020 candidate, for now, is Ms. Warren — though the choice may indicate that head over heart isn’t universal. “My Merrill Lynch adviser told me that the only candidate he would be against is Liz Warren because she scares the financial community,’’ she said. “I delighted upon hearing that.”

The Newtown activists, like those in Delaware County, want to elect more Democrats to county and municipal offices in 2019 to continue building a foundation for 2020 turnout, when Pennsylvania will once again be in the eye of the presidential storm.

Bucks County Democrats failed to gain in the 2018 midterm blue wave, when Representative Brian Fitzpatrick held on to the only Repubican-held congressional seat in the Philadelphia region. But a year earlier in Delaware County, Democrats won their first countywide offices in more than a century.

The issue of “Medicare for all,” with its promise to eliminate private health insurance in the version supported by Mr. Sanders and Ms. Warren, proved a sharp dividing line among the Democratic activists.

“I don’t think that health care is a human right. Sorry, I don’t agree with Bernie on that; it’s a privilege,” said Ms. Turner, the bakery owner.

An hour south of Newtown, where the second group gathered in the home of Barbarann Keffer, a candidate for mayor of Upper Darby, Mr. Hayman, the Democratic committee member, explained that Mr. Biden is acceptable even to Republicans he meets. “He’s not hated,’’ he said. “He’s a known quantity.”

People at the picnic cast votes for their favorite presidential candidates using Democratic-approved paper straws.CreditHannah Yoon for The New York Times

That pleased Margo Davidson, a Pennsylvania state representative from Upper Darby. “I’m Biden all the way. I’m with Uncle Joe,” she said in Ms. Keffer’s crowded living room, where volunteers came in with stacks of campaign literature for Democrats on the ballot in November.

Ms. Davidson, the first African-American to represent her statehouse district, noted that despite Ms. Harris’s attack on Mr. Biden in the first round of debates, black support for President Barack Obama’s former vice president seems to be steady.

“I love Kamala,” she said, “but we’ve got to get rid of Trump and that’s more important to me than any one personality.”

Michelle Billups, a candidate for town council in Upper Darby, blurted to a circle of activists: “I’m going to be honest. I like Andrew Yang.”

Another Biden supporter, atypical for her age, was Raeleen Keffer-Scharpf, 17, a daughter of Ms. Keffer, the mayoral candidate. She has watched debates and candidate forums on YouTube. Beto O’Rourke, once thought to galvanize young voters, was a “viral” candidate without staying power, she said, adding that she’s “a sucker for strong female characters in politics.” But she declared Mr. Biden her top choice for now.

“I think he can win the presidential,” Ms. Keffer-Scharpf said.

That concept of presumed electability, much maligned by candidates not named Biden or the other front-runners, nonetheless held sway among activists in both counties.

Mr. Hayman said Democrats’ strongest message in 2020 ought to be about expunging the Trump years and returning the country to stability. Democrats, he said, should take a page from President Warren G. Harding, a Republican, and promise a return to normalcy.

“If we just talk about running the government, I think we win on that,” he said.

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

Trump Widens War on Black Critics While Embracing ‘Inner City Pastors’

WASHINGTON — President Trump widened his war on critics of color on Monday with new attacks on the Rev. Al Sharpton and other political opponents even as he gathered his own African-American allies at the White House to defend him against charges of racism.

In a third straight day of broadsides against black figures, Mr. Trump denounced Mr. Sharpton on Twitter as “a con man” who “Hates Whites & Cops” and again assailed Representative Elijah E. Cummings and his Baltimore-based district, drawing rebukes from Maryland Republicans as well as Democrats.

Mr. Trump’s determination to intensify the furor rather than move on guaranteed that it would continue to dominate the political debate in Washington and force many of the president’s fellow Republicans to choose whether to stand by him, break with him or, in the case of most, find a way to keep out of the discussion.

[Related: How Trump and Sharpton became the ultimate New York frenemies.]

The president linked the clash with Mr. Cummings to his earlier demand that four Democratic congresswomen of color “go back” to their home countries, and he cast it in electoral terms. “If the Democrats are going to defend the Radical Left ‘Squad’ and King Elijah’s Baltimore Fail, it will be a long road to 2020,” he tweeted. “The good news for the Dems is that they have the Fake News Media in their pocket!”

To defend himself, Mr. Trump enlisted a couple of his reliable African-American supporters. He brought a group of about 20 “Inner City Pastors,” as he called them, to the White House for a meeting on Monday about how to help the black community. Aides said the event was planned long before the fight with Mr. Cummings as part of a bid by Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser, to win African-American votes next year.

But if the White House had hoped for a show to shield the president from his detractors, it did not materialize. Mr. Trump, who enjoys inviting news cameras into meetings to showcase his visitors and expound on his views, kept the encounter behind closed doors, and just two of the attendees publicly testified afterward on the White House driveway to the president’s good faith in wanting to improve life for African-Americans.

“The president is concerned about the whole nation, about everybody in the nation,” said Alveda C. King, a niece of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and a leader of an anti-abortion group who also belongs to “Women for Trump” and is a Fox News contributor. “So I want us to remember that we’ve been designed to be brothers and sisters. One member of the human race. Not separate races.”

The Rev. Bill Owens, the founder of the Coalition of African-American Pastors, a group that opposes same-sex marriage, said that he found it “hard to believe” that Mr. Trump was a racist, citing the president’s support for opportunity zones and an overhaul of criminal justice laws.

Asked about the president’s attacks on Mr. Cummings, Mr. Owens demurred. “Well, those are his words,” he said. “I don’t want to second-guess what he says because I hear a lot of things. I see also people pandering to black people, to get them on board with some of their agenda.”

Mr. Trump’s latest tweets provoked increasingly angry reactions in Baltimore and increasingly acute concerns inside the West Wing. Gov. Larry Hogan of Maryland, a Republican, criticized the president’s attack on the state’s largest city as “outrageous and inappropriate,” and an ally of both Mr. Cummings and Mr. Trump in the House defended the congressman against the president.

Several White House officials expressed agreement during a senior staff meeting on Monday morning that the president’s attacks were a bad move, according to people informed about the discussion, but they were uncertain who could intervene with him — or if anyone would even dare try.

They privately scoffed at the idea that it was strategy rather than impulse, concluding that any political benefit he might derive by revving up his conservative, largely white base could be offset by alienating more moderate voters in the suburbs of states like Wisconsin and Michigan that he needs to win a second term.

Three advisers said the president complained about Mr. Cummings throughout the weekend. Two of those advisers said the real source of his ire was the decision by the House Oversight and Reform Committee, which Mr. Cummings leads, to authorize subpoenas for all work-related texts and emails sent or received by Mr. Kushner and Ivanka Trump, the president’s elder daughter and senior adviser, on personal accounts.

In taking on Mr. Sharpton, the president confronted a fellow veteran of New York’s often inflammatory racial politics. Mr. Trump was evidently peeved that Mr. Sharpton traveled to Baltimore on Monday to denounce the attacks on Mr. Cummings.

“I have known Al for 25 years,” Mr. Trump wrote. “Went to fights with him & Don King, always got along well. He ‘loved Trump!’ He would ask me for favors often. Al is a con man, a troublemaker, always looking for a score. Just doing his thing. Must have intimidated Comcast/NBC. Hates Whites & Cops!”

Mr. Sharpton, a longtime civil rights leader and MSNBC host, fired back during his appearance in Baltimore.

ImageWestlake Legal Group merlin_154787568_a14bdf97-6173-4f9c-a1e6-39c373129132-articleLarge Trump Widens War on Black Critics While Embracing ‘Inner City Pastors’ United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Sharpton, Al Race and Ethnicity discrimination Cummings, Elijah E Blacks Baltimore (Md)

The Rev. Al Sharpton in New York City earlier this year. Mr. Trump criticized him on Twitter on Monday as “a con man” who “Hates Whites & Cops!”CreditKena Betancur/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

“Called me a troublemaker?” he said. “Yes, I make trouble for bigots. I made trouble for him with Central Park. I made trouble with him for birtherism. I’m going to keep making trouble for bigots. As far as me being a con man, if he really thought I was a con man, he’d be nominating me for his cabinet.”

Mr. Sharpton and Mr. Trump did get along in the past even as they clashed over the case of the Central Park Five involving black and Hispanic teenagers who were accused of raping a white woman but were later exonerated. Mr. Sharpton grew increasingly critical after Mr. Trump began falsely accusing President Barack Obama of being secretly born in Kenya.

Mr. Sharpton has his own complicated history on race. He was an outspoken activist through a string of racially charged episodes in New York in the 1980s and 1990s, and was regarded in that era alternately as a champion of social justice or as a self-promoting provocateur. He drew broad criticism as one of the most vocal supporters of Tawana Brawley, an African-American teenager whose claims of rape by a gang of white men in 1987 were exposed as a hoax.

Mr. Sharpton has reinvented himself as a more measured, mainstream national voice on civil rights, and he ran for president in 2004. His National Action Network has become a force on the political left and even Mr. Trump twice attended its conventions.

The flare-up with Mr. Sharpton came after Mr. Trump assailed Mr. Cummings over the weekend, saying the congressman should spend less time criticizing the president’s handling of detained migrants at the border and more time fixing his “disgusting, rat and rodent infested” district where “no human being would want to live.”

After he was accused of perpetuating racist stereotypes about the majority-black district, Mr. Trump tweeted that it was Mr. Cummings who was a racist and that his fellow Democrats were playing “the Race Card.” On Monday, he nicknamed Mr. Cummings “King Elijah,” accusing him of “25 years of all talk, no action!”

The president was so obsessed with the congressman and Mr. Sharpton that he started his day focused on them and ended it that way, as well. His first tweet attacking Mr. Sharpton came at 6:30 a.m. By 10:45 p.m., he was still at it, along the way vaguely insinuating corruption by Mr. Cummings without any hint of evidence.

“Billions of dollars have been pumped in over the years, but to no avail,” Mr. Trump wrote. “The money was stolen or wasted. Ask Elijah Cummings where it went. He should investigate himself with his Oversight Committee!”

Mr. Cummings made no comment on Monday. But in Baltimore, Michael Steele, the former Republican National Committee chairman and Maryland lieutenant governor who himself is black, joined Mr. Sharpton to denounce the president’s attacks.

Mr. Steele urged Mr. Trump to visit Baltimore if he really cared about conditions for people living there. “Folks want to talk to you,” he said. “So just show up. Put the tweet down, brother, and show up.”

Mr. Hogan, who considered but opted against a Republican primary challenge to Mr. Trump next year, issued a broad criticism of “angry and divisive politics” in Washington punctuated by too much tweeting and name calling. But he largely avoided addressing Mr. Trump by name.

“Enough is enough,” Mr. Hogan said on WBAL radio. “People are just completely fed up with this kind of nonsense.”

Representative Mark Meadows of North Carolina, a senior Republican on Mr. Cummings’s committee and a friend of the chairman’s, broke his silence on Monday. Mr. Meadows, who when accused of racism himself was defended by Mr. Cummings, sent a text to former Senator Rick Santorum, a CNN commentator, to read on air.

“No one works harder for his district than Elijah,” Mr. Meadows said in the text as read by Mr. Santorum. “He’s passionate about the people he represents, and no, Elijah is not a racist. I am friends with both men, President Trump and Chairman Cummings. I know them both well, and neither is a racist.”

Other Republicans rejected the suggestion that Mr. Trump singles out lawmakers of color.

“Oh, for Pete’s sake, that’s ridiculous — no, he does not,” said Senator Kevin Cramer, Republican of North Dakota. “If African-American lawmakers are going after him, he goes after them. If a white lawmaker goes after him, he goes after them. If there were striped lawmakers and they went after him, he’d go after them.”

Mr. Trump has told aides he sees his latest outbursts as smart strategy. The president has long been petrified of losing his base, and some aides believe he will need to maximize turnout from the voters who helped put him in the White House the first time given the highly partisan environment.

Several advisers said they were aghast that he was making such a target of Mr. Cummings. If anyone had tried to persuade the president of that, they were keeping it to themselves on Monday. But many advisers sounded defeated as they talked about a tweetstorm they hoped would end soon.

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Baltimore to Trump: You Lost Your Authority to Criticize

BALTIMORE — The last time Donald J. Trump blamed a black man for the condition of this undoubtedly troubled city, the year was 2015, the death of Freddie Gray in police custody had spawned a racial uprising, and the black man in question was President Barack Obama.

“Our great African American president hasn’t exactly had a positive impact on the thugs who are so happily and openly destroying Baltimore!” Mr. Trump wrote then on Twitter.

Now Mr. Trump is president himself, and he has written off this entire city as a “disgusting, rat and rodent infested” place where “no human being would want to live,” and is blaming its longtime and revered congressman, Representative Elijah E. Cummings, for the city’s problems. But people here say that even if their city has its struggles, Mr. Trump has lost his right to point them out.

“This is the struggle that he doesn’t know anything about,” the Rev. Timmie Lee, from the Cornerstone Christian Community Church, said as he stopped by a street stand he operates in West Baltimore, where his son Isaiah, 12, was helping sell sneakers and soap. “If he was raised up in this community, if he had any dealings with this community, then he can speak to this community. Elijah Cummings is here. He walks through this community. He lives in this community.”

ImageWestlake Legal Group merlin_158622501_87712065-3d70-4fb7-8b9a-97e17b0d44d9-articleLarge Baltimore to Trump: You Lost Your Authority to Criticize United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Race and Ethnicity Blacks Baltimore (Md)

A mural in the Druid Heights neighborhood of Baltimore. Mr. Trump’s tweets criticizing Baltimore and its congressman reverberated throughout the long-suffering city.CreditPhoto: Anna Moneymaker/The New York Times; Mural: F. Michelle Santos

Mr. Trump’s weekend tweetstorm assailing the congressman — which continued into Monday with an attack on the Rev. Al Sharpton, a civil rights leader who was in Baltimore for a conference on the black economic agenda — reverberated throughout this long-suffering city, whose troubles predated the Freddie Gray uprising. City leaders and residents are furious but not entirely surprised that a president who seems intent on exploiting racial and cultural tensions as a path to re-election in 2020 would train his fire on Baltimore.

On Monday, Gov. Larry Hogan of Maryland belatedly weighed in after absorbing criticism for an initially tepid response to the president’s comments. He called Mr. Trump’s attacks “outrageous and inappropriate,” though Mr. Hogan — a Republican who was once considered a possible primary race challenger to Mr. Trump — avoided going after the president by name. Instead, he issued a broad criticism of the dysfunction of Washington.

City leaders were more pointed.

“No one in Baltimore is surprised that the president is attacking Baltimore,” the City Council president, Brandon M. Scott, said in an interview on Monday morning. “I think that this president is someone who’s trying to get re-elected off us. So he is going to try to rally his base. He’s trying to stoke fears, racial biases — and he is trying to pull the worst out of American society in order to get re-elected.”

Residents were more pointed still.

“Trump is a buffoon. He looks at this as an African-American community, and that’s all he sees. That’s where his narrow mind is,” said John Cheatham, 66, who said he covers murder trials for a local radio station, adding, “If you had a Mount Rushmore of hate, he would be on it.”

It is not news to anyone here that Baltimore, which is 63 percent black, is struggling with long-term systemic problems and unstable political leadership. It has gone through five police commissioners in the past five years, and its crime rate is out of control: The city has recorded at least 33 more homicides this year than New York, despite being about one-fourteenth the size. The mayor who presided during the unrest did not run for re-election, and her successor was forced to resign amid a corruption scandal.

“If he were out here helping people, it would be one thing,” said Tyra Reeder, 18. “But if he’s just watching from Trump Tower, drinking out of his $10,000 cup, then he can’t say anything about Baltimore to me.”CreditAnna Moneymaker/The New York Times

The city is confronting joblessness, homelessness, blocks of vacant housing, crushing poverty and a huge wealth gap. According to Lawrence Brown, an associate professor at Morgan State University in Baltimore, the median annual income for white families in the city is roughly $76,000, while the median income for black families is $36,000. But those problems have much more to do with a long history of housing segregation — mandated by law in the early 1900s — than with any one politician, city and community leaders say.

And if Mr. Trump wanted to do something about it, he has the power, through his Department of Housing and Urban Development, and his housing secretary, Ben Carson, who was a prominent surgeon in Baltimore for much of his life.

Candidate Trump promised repeatedly to fix the problems of urban America. President Trump appears determined to use it as a political foil.

“If he were out here helping people, it would be one thing,” said Tyra Reeder, 18, who was giving away cellphones as part of a government program to help the poor, outside a CVS Pharmacy that was looted and burned during the unrest of 2015. “But if he’s just watching from Trump Tower, drinking out of his $10,000 cup, then he can’t say anything about Baltimore to me.”

Professor Brown put it this way: “He’s the president of the United States. The last time I checked, Baltimore is part of the United States. So if there is blame that needs to go around, that includes everybody — from the governor on down, and of course the president.”

Baltimore’s Hampden neighborhood on Monday evening.CreditAnna Moneymaker/The New York Times

Baltimore is in some ways two cities — one black and one white. It is also a collection of neighborhoods: The West Baltimore of Mr. Trump’s imagination is just one corner of a city that also boasts a bustling harbor; new investment along the waterfront; and hip commercial strips like 36th Street, known as “The Avenue,” in Hampden, where rainbow flags fly from storefronts and Casey Hunt, a 24-year-old chemist, was sipping a National Bohemian — the local beer known as “Natty Boh” — on Monday afternoon at the Cafe Hon. (In Baltimore, waitresses always call the customers “Hon.”)

“A lot of people like to talk” badly about Baltimore, she said, using a far more colorful word, “but they’ve never been here.”

In the Druid Heights neighborhood of West Baltimore on Monday, Kevin Brown, 55, was tending a garden where an empty lot used to be — two blocks from where Mr. Cummings lives — against the backdrop of a colorful mural painted on the brick wall of a historic home. The owner had planted it in an effort to beautify the neighborhood.

“Everybody here helps each other,” Mr. Brown said, adding that that is something Mr. Trump knows little about.

Throughout the city, there was a sense of real pain. Baltimore is accustomed to being painted as downtrodden and falling apart; whenever anything bad happens, people here say, the national media swoops in, scaring away tourists and investors. Now the president of the United States is reinforcing that perception on his Twitter feed.

“I mean, Baltimore may be not that great, but Baltimore is not what you think it is,” Isaiah Lee said.CreditAnna Moneymaker/The New York Times

“People tend to hear these hurtful words and internalize it,” said the Rev. Cleveland T. A. Mason, a Baptist minister who was meeting with faith leaders on Monday at the New Shiloh Baptist Church, where Freddie Gray was eulogized four years ago. “These things that are being said by the president of the United States are more hurtful because of who he is.”

City boosters are pushing back. On Monday, after the hashtag #WeAreBaltimore started trending on Twitter, a website by that name — already in the works before Mr. Trump’s tweets — went live earlier than planned. “We are more than alright,” its home page says.

Mr. Cummings — a son of South Carolina sharecroppers who moved to Baltimore to be preachers — has represented Baltimore for more than 20 years. After the 2015 unrest, he went onto the streets of West Baltimore, where he lives, to try to keep the peace. His district also includes some white suburbs, and in 2018, he won re-election with 76 percent of the vote.

As chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, a role that gives him the authority to investigate the president, he is a powerful and vocal critic of Mr. Trump. In Baltimore, Mr. Cummings is revered; the president, by contrast, is reviled. Mr. Trump took just 10 percent of the vote in Baltimore in 2016.

In West Baltimore, the kerfuffle around Mr. Trump’s tweets was tempered by an acknowledgment that any criticism of Charm City was going to have some truth to it.

On a street corner a few blocks from the Penn-North metro station, where the CVS drugstore has been rebuilt and two police cars sat on the plaza, Isaiah Lee was helping his uncle at the street stand in a vacant lot strewn with trash.

“Look at where we live at,” Isaiah said. “I mean, Baltimore may be not that great, but Baltimore is not what you think it is.”

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Republican Senators Are Cool to Trump’s Choice for Top Intelligence Post

WASHINGTON — Republicans hesitated on Monday to embrace President Trump’s choice for the director of national intelligence, and some privately expressed doubts about his potential confirmation, echoing concerns of experts and Democrats that he was too inexperienced and too partisan.

Mr. Trump’s pick, Representative John Ratcliffe of Texas, could face an uphill battle, Senate Republicans said in private conversations. Several said they wanted to keep the intelligence post apolitical, and Mr. Ratcliffe will need to show he can move beyond the die-hard conservative persona that has made him a star in the House and on Fox News but less well known among senators who will decide whether to confirm him.

Republicans on the Senate Intelligence Committee, including its chairman, Richard M. Burr of North Carolina, said they were unfamiliar with the congressman. “I don’t know John Ratcliffe,” Mr. Burr said. “I talked to him on the phone last night — it’s the first contact I’ve ever had with him. I look forward to getting to know him, and if I get an official nomination, I’ll process it through the committee.”

Another Republican committee member, Senator Susan Collins of Maine, who helped craft the 2004 law that created the position of director of national intelligence, said the job should be filled by someone “with the integrity and skill and ability to bring all the members of the intelligence community together.”

The cool reception from members of the president’s own party reflected the split at hand: For what is supposed to be perhaps the most nonpartisan job in Washington, Mr. Trump selected one of the capital’s fiercest political warriors.

One of Mr. Trump’s most ardent defenders, Mr. Ratcliffe was elected to Congress in 2014 after mounting a conservative primary challenge to a 17-term Republican incumbent, Ralph Hall. Mr. Ratcliffe had served as a United States attorney in Texas and as the mayor of Heath, Tex., a town of about 9,000 people outside Dallas.

Mr. Ratcliffe’s main intelligence experience has come as a member of the House Intelligence Committee, which he joined this year. But his record is one of fierce combat in the most partisan intelligence and judicial fights. A relentless critic of the Russia investigation, he ably challenged Robert S. Mueller III during his House testimony last week and has cast doubt on the C.I.A.’s finding that Moscow favored Mr. Trump the 2016 election.

With Senator Rand Paul, Republican of Kentucky, almost certain to oppose any nominee to the position, Republicans can only afford to lose two more yes votes if Democrats line up against the nomination.

Senator Marco Rubio, Republican of Florida and a member of the intelligence panel, said he knew and liked Mr. Ratcliffe but acknowledged that he could have difficulty attracting broad Senate backing because of his reputation as a partisan. A critical function of the director, Mr. Rubio noted, is “to make sure that the entire intelligence community is working in an apolitical way to arrive at a set of facts that policymakers can make decisions on.”

Mr. Rubio added: “I wouldn’t say that I’m concerned that he’s incapable of doing that job. I certainly think that’s going to be an issue among Democrats and others that we’re going to have to confront, because I do think the D.N.I. needs to be someone that goes in with a strong vote of support.”

Republican Senate leaders showed subtle signs of discontent about the nomination. Mr. Burr waited nearly a day to publicly congratulate Mr. Ratcliffe. By contrast, Mr. Burr issued an effusive endorsement when the president nominated Dan Coats to the post in 2017.

The Trump administration has done little to vet cabinet nominees, to the frustration of many Republicans. While they have been loath to block many of Mr. Trump’s appointments, they have slow-rolled some nominations, like that of former Acting Defense Secretary Patrick M. Shanahan, who withdrew from consideration after a drawn-out review of his background and qualifications. And questions on Capitol Hill about the qualifications of two picks for the Federal Reserve effectively torpedoed them.

The political winds from the Trump White House have buffeted the intelligence agencies, and Mr. Coats worked to insulate them. If Mr. Ratcliffe is confirmed, some current and former American officials believe that other top intelligence officials like the C.I.A. director, Gina Haspel, and the F.B.I. director, Christopher A. Wray, could lose their shield against White House interference and partisan criticism.

Democrats said on Monday that they were worried that Mr. Ratcliffe would do little to push back against the Justice Department’s review of the origins of the Russia inquiry, for which Mr. Trump gave Attorney General William P. Barr broad power to declassify intelligence. Democrats also said they had concerns that Mr. Ratcliffe would not stand up to Mr. Trump when his views on Iran or North Korea were at odds with the assessment of intelligence analysts.

Mr. Ratcliffe’s chief qualification is “his record of promoting Donald Trump’s conspiracy theories,” said Senator Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat who is on the Intelligence Committee.

“Congressman Ratcliffe is the most partisan and least qualified individual ever nominated to serve as director of national intelligence,” Mr. Wyden said.

Mr. Ratcliffe has relentlessly criticized the F.B.I. for using uncorroborated information provided by a former British spy to obtain a surveillance warrant on a former Trump campaign adviser. He has also repeatedly raised the issue of anti-Trump bias among key investigators. While he acknowledges Moscow interfered in the election, Mr. Ratcliffe has also questioned whether the Russians were really trying to aid Mr. Trump, as the formal intelligence committee assessment and Mr. Mueller’s report concluded, or were merely trying to sow chaos in the American political system.

His record of criticism of the F.B.I. has provoked fears among former law enforcement officials that Mr. Ratcliffe would continue his assault on the bureau.

“Mr. Ratcliffe’s partisan political behavior on behalf of the president, including attacks on the special counsel’s investigation, raises serious questions about whether he possesses the requisite qualities to fulfill that responsibility,” said David Laufman, a former top Justice Department official.

While the response to Mr. Ratcliffe on Capitol Hill was more tepid than the White House hoped for, the nomination is still in its very early stages, and the congressman could build support as he begins to meet with senators.

Mr. Ratcliffe’s Republican defenders insisted he is fair. His political bite is largely virtue of circumstance, they said, adding that he harbors greater respect for the law enforcement and intelligence communities than many House Republicans in his circle.

In private, his allies said, he is inclined to give national security officials the benefit of the doubt and has defended — sometimes against his political allies — the need for law enforcement and intelligence agencies to have access to tools like domestic surveillance. And despite his criticisms of the Russia investigation, they pointed out, he did not join calls for Mr. Mueller’s removal as special counsel or question the evidence of Russian election interference.

Democrats’ criticism of Mr. Ratcliffe is “more reflective of the political environment we are in than John Ratcliffe,” said Trey Gowdy, the former congressman from South Carolina who like Mr. Ratcliffe is a former federal prosecutor.

Mr. Ratcliffe has not always toed the Trump administration’s rhetorical line: He said Americans were more at risk from a digital attack than from someone crossing the southern border and has told associates that his focus as director of national intelligence would be on cyberthreats and counterterrorism.

Mr. Ratcliffe pledged in a statement on Sunday to “work on behalf of all the public servants who are tirelessly devoted to defending the security and safety of the United States.”

Mr. Trump, of course, has named other partisans to top intelligence jobs. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, his first C.I.A. director, had a reputation as a strong skeptic of the Iran nuclear deal and a critic of the Obama administration’s handling of the Benghazi attacks.

But Mr. Pompeo appointed Ms. Haspel, an agency veteran, as his deputy and quickly came to rely on her expertise, signaling to the C.I.A. rank and file that he valued intelligence professionals.

Mr. Ratcliffe, however, has indicated that he intends to clean house, according to people familiar with his plans. The fate of Mr. Coats’s deputy, Sue Gordon, who runs the office’s day-to-day operations, is unclear. The White House did not immediately announce that she would serve as the acting director when Mr. Coats departs on Aug. 15, as is typical.

Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee have long been pushing for an overhaul of the office, eliminating jobs, slimming the agency and changing how it operates. Mr. Ratcliffe, according to American officials, is likely to try to push through some of those changes if confirmed.

But Mr. Gowdy expressed skepticism that Mr. Ratcliffe would focus on shaking up the office. “People are most upset with John because he is good at what he does,” Mr. Gowdy said. “He is also going to be good at what he is fixing to do, and that is intelligence, not politics.”

The White House has considered Mr. Ratcliffe for at least one law enforcement position in recent months, and he won over Mr. Trump in a meeting in recent weeks. He appeared to have sealed the intelligence nomination by executing one of the most effective Republican attacks on Mr. Mueller during his closely watched House testimony last week.

Indeed, if Mr. Ratcliffe is confirmed, the appointment would deprive the president of one of his ablest allies in the House. Republicans consider Mr. Ratcliffe so important to Mr. Trump’s defense on Capitol Hill that his appointment would have been less likely if they still feared that Democrats would advance an impeachment case against Mr. Trump, said one lawmaker familiar with the president’s thinking.

In addition to the reservations over Mr. Ratcliffe’s partisanship, some former intelligence officials have said they do not think he has the necessary background. The law establishing the intelligence post required that the director have “extensive national security expertise.”

Though directors of national intelligence do not have to have experience as intelligence officers  — Mr. Coats did not — they should be deeply immersed in national security and the uses of intelligence, said Mark M. Lowenthal, a former senior C.I.A. official.

“This is not a great position for on-the-job training,” Mr. Lowenthal said. “There is a very steep learning curve.”

Julie Hirschfeld Davis and Emily Cochrane contributed reporting.

Dan Coats to Step Down as Intelligence Chief; Trump Picks Loyalist for Job

Jul 28, 2019

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John Ratcliffe, Nominee for Intelligence Chief, Is Seen as Staunch Trump Ally

Jul 28, 2019

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Trump’s Targeting of Intelligence Agencies Gains a Harder Edge

May 25, 2019

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Trump Widens War on Race Critics While Embracing Black Pastors

WASHINGTON — President Trump widened his war on critics of color on Monday with fresh attacks on the Rev. Al Sharpton and other political opponents even as he gathered his own African-American allies at the White House to defend him against charges of racism.

In a third straight day of broadsides against black figures, Mr. Trump denounced Mr. Sharpton on Twitter as “a con man” who “Hates Whites & Cops” and again assailed Representative Elijah E. Cummings and his Baltimore-based district, drawing rebukes from Maryland Republicans as well as Democrats.

Mr. Trump’s determination to intensify the furor rather than move on guaranteed that it would continue to dominate the political debate in Washington and force many of the president’s fellow Republicans to choose whether to stand by him, break with him or, in the case of most, find a way to keep out of the discussion.

[Related: How Trump and Sharpton became the ultimate New York frenemies.]

The president linked the clash with Mr. Cummings to his earlier demand that four Democratic congresswomen of color “go back” to their home countries, and he cast it in electoral terms. “If the Democrats are going to defend the Radical Left ‘Squad’ and King Elijah’s Baltimore Fail, it will be a long road to 2020,” he wrote on Twitter. “The good news for the Dems is that they have the Fake News Media in their pocket!”

To defend himself, Mr. Trump enlisted a couple of his reliable African-American supporters. He brought a group of about 20 “inner city pastors,” as he called them, to the White House for a meeting on Monday about how to help the black community. Aides said the event was planned long before the fight with Mr. Cummings as part of a bid by Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser, to win African-American votes next year.

But if the White House had hoped for a show to shield the president from his detractors, it did not materialize. Mr. Trump, who enjoys inviting news cameras into meetings to showcase his visitors and expound on his views, kept the encounter behind closed doors, and just two of the attendees publicly testified afterward in the White House to the president’s good faith in wanting to improve life for African-Americans.

“The president is concerned about the whole nation, about everybody in the nation,” said Alveda C. King, a niece of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and leader of an anti-abortion group who also belongs to “Women for Trump” and is a Fox News contributor. “So I want us to remember that we’ve been designed to be brothers and sisters. One member of the human race. Not separate races.”

The Rev. Bill Owens, founder of the Coalition of African-American Pastors, a group that opposes same-sex marriage, said, “I find it hard to believe” that Mr. Trump is a racist, citing the president’s support for opportunity zones and an overhaul of criminal justice laws.

Asked about the president’s attacks on Mr. Cummings, Mr. Owens demurred. “Well, those are his words,” he said. “I don’t want to second-guess what he says, because I hear a lot of things. I see also people pandering to black people, to get them on board with some of their agenda.”

Mr. Trump’s latest tweets provoked increasingly angry reactions in Baltimore and increasingly acute concerns inside the West Wing. Gov. Larry Hogan of Maryland, a Republican, criticized the president’s attack on the state’s largest city as “outrageous and inappropriate,” and an ally of both Mr. Cummings and Mr. Trump in the House defended the congressman against the president.

Several White House officials expressed agreement during a senior staff meeting on Monday morning that the president’s attacks were a bad move, according to people informed about the discussion, but they were uncertain who could intervene with him — or if anyone would even dare try.

They privately scoffed at the idea that it was strategy rather than impulse, concluding that any political benefit he might derive by revving up his conservative, largely white base could be offset by alienating more moderate voters in the suburbs of states like Wisconsin and Michigan that he needs to win a second term.

Three advisers said the president complained about Mr. Cummings throughout the weekend. Two of those advisers said the real source of his ire was the decision by the House Oversight and Reform Committee, which Mr. Cummings leads, to authorize subpoenas for all work-related texts and emails sent or received by Mr. Kushner and Ivanka Trump, the president’s daughter and senior adviser, on personal accounts.

In taking on Mr. Sharpton, the president confronted a fellow veteran of New York’s often inflammatory racial politics. Mr. Trump was evidently peeved that Mr. Sharpton traveled to Baltimore on Monday to denounce the attacks on Mr. Cummings.

“I have known Al for 25 years,” Mr. Trump wrote. “Went to fights with him & Don King, always got along well. He ‘loved Trump!’ He would ask me for favors often. Al is a con man, a troublemaker, always looking for a score. Just doing his thing. Must have intimidated Comcast/NBC. Hates Whites & Cops!”

ImageWestlake Legal Group merlin_154787568_a14bdf97-6173-4f9c-a1e6-39c373129132-articleLarge Trump Widens War on Race Critics While Embracing Black Pastors United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Sharpton, Al Race and Ethnicity discrimination Cummings, Elijah E Blacks Baltimore (Md)

The Rev. Al Sharpton in New York City earlier this year. Mr. Trump criticized him on Twitter on Monday as “a con man” who “Hates Whites & Cops!”CreditKena Betancur/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Mr. Sharpton, a longtime civil rights leader and MSNBC host, fired back during his appearance in Baltimore.

“Called me a troublemaker?” he said. “Yes, I make trouble for bigots. I made trouble for him with Central Park. I made trouble with him for birtherism. I’m going to keep making trouble for bigots. As far as me being a con man, if he really thought I was a con man he’d be nominating me for his cabinet.”

Mr. Sharpton did get along in the past even as they clashed over the case of the Central Park Five involving black and Hispanic teenagers who were accused of raping a white woman but later exonerated. Mr. Sharpton grew increasingly critical after Mr. Trump began falsely accusing President Barack Obama of being secretly born in Kenya.

Mr. Sharpton has his own complicated history on race. He was an outspoken activist through a string of racially charged episodes in New York in the 1980s and 1990s, and was regarded in that era alternately as a champion of social justice or as a self-promoting provocateur. He drew broad criticism as one of the most vocal supporters of Tawana Brawley, an African-American teenager whose claims of rape by a gang of white men in 1987 were exposed as a hoax.

Mr. Sharpton has reinvented himself as a more measured, mainstream national voice on civil rights, and he ran for president in 2004. His National Action Network has become a force on the political left and even Mr. Trump twice attended its conventions.

The flare-up with Mr. Sharpton came after Mr. Trump assailed Mr. Cummings over the weekend, saying the congressman should spend less time criticizing the president’s handling of detained migrants at the border and more time fixing his “disgusting, rat and rodent infested” district where “no human being would want to live.”

After he was accused of perpetuating racist stereotypes about the majority-black district, Mr. Trump tweeted that it was Mr. Cummings who was a racist and that his fellow Democrats were playing “the Race Card.” On Monday, he nicknamed Mr. Cummings “King Elijah,” accusing him of “25 years of all talk, no action!”

In Baltimore on Monday, Michael Steele, the former Republican National Committee chairman and Maryland lieutenant governor who himself is black, joined Mr. Sharpton to denounce the president’s attacks.

Mr. Steele urged Mr. Trump to visit Baltimore if he really cared about conditions for people living there. “Folks want to talk to you,” he said. “So just show up. Put the tweet down, brother, and show up.”

Mr. Hogan, who considered but opted against a Republican primary challenge to Mr. Trump next year, issued a broad criticism of “angry and divisive politics” in Washington punctuated by too much tweeting and name calling. But he largely avoided addressing Mr. Trump by name.

“Enough is enough,” Mr. Hogan said on WBAL radio. “People are just completely fed up with this kind of nonsense.”

Representative Mark Meadows of North Carolina, a senior Republican on Mr. Cummings’s committee and a friend of the chairman’s, broke his silence on Monday. Mr. Meadows, who when accused of racism himself was defended by Mr. Cummings, sent a text message to former Senator Rick Santorum, a CNN commentator, to read on air.

“No one works harder for his district than Elijah,” Mr. Meadows said in the text as read by Mr. Santorum. “He’s passionate about the people he represents, and no, Elijah is not a racist. I am friends with both men, President Trump and Chairman Cummings. I know them both well, and neither is a racist.”

Other Republicans rejected the suggestion that Mr. Trump singles out lawmakers of color.

“Oh, for Pete’s sake, that’s ridiculous — no, he does not,” Senator Kevin Cramer, Republican of North Dakota. “If African-American lawmakers are going after him, he goes after them. If a white lawmaker goes after him, he goes after them. If there were striped lawmakers and they went after them, he’d go after them.”

Mr. Trump has told aides he sees his latest outbursts as smart strategy. The president has long been petrified of losing his base, and some aides believe he will need to maximize turnout from the voters who helped put him in the White House the first time given the highly partisan environment.

Several advisers said they were aghast that he was making such a target of Mr. Cummings. If anyone had tried to persuade the president of that, they were keeping it to themselves on Monday. But many advisers sounded defeated as they talked about a tweet storm they hoped would end soon.

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

Trump Widens War on Race Critics While Embracing Black Pastors

WASHINGTON — President Trump widened his war on critics of color on Monday with fresh attacks on the Rev. Al Sharpton and other political opponents even as he gathered his own African-American allies at the White House to defend him against charges of racism.

In a third straight day of broadsides against black figures, Mr. Trump denounced Mr. Sharpton on Twitter as “a con man” who “Hates Whites & Cops” and again assailed Representative Elijah E. Cummings and his Baltimore-based district, drawing rebukes from Maryland Republicans as well as Democrats.

Mr. Trump’s determination to intensify the furor rather than move on guaranteed that it would continue to dominate the political debate in Washington and force many of the president’s fellow Republicans to choose whether to stand by him, break with him or, in the case of most, find a way to keep out of the discussion.

[Related: How Trump and Sharpton became the ultimate New York frenemies.]

The president linked the clash with Mr. Cummings to his earlier demand that four Democratic congresswomen of color “go back” to their home countries, and he cast it in electoral terms. “If the Democrats are going to defend the Radical Left ‘Squad’ and King Elijah’s Baltimore Fail, it will be a long road to 2020,” he wrote on Twitter. “The good news for the Dems is that they have the Fake News Media in their pocket!”

To defend himself, Mr. Trump enlisted a couple of his reliable African-American supporters. He brought a group of about 20 “inner city pastors,” as he called them, to the White House for a meeting on Monday about how to help the black community. Aides said the event was planned long before the fight with Mr. Cummings as part of a bid by Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser, to win African-American votes next year.

But if the White House had hoped for a show to shield the president from his detractors, it did not materialize. Mr. Trump, who enjoys inviting news cameras into meetings to showcase his visitors and expound on his views, kept the encounter behind closed doors, and just two of the attendees publicly testified afterward in the White House to the president’s good faith in wanting to improve life for African-Americans.

“The president is concerned about the whole nation, about everybody in the nation,” said Alveda C. King, a niece of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and leader of an anti-abortion group who also belongs to “Women for Trump” and is a Fox News contributor. “So I want us to remember that we’ve been designed to be brothers and sisters. One member of the human race. Not separate races.”

The Rev. Bill Owens, founder of the Coalition of African-American Pastors, a group that opposes same-sex marriage, said, “I find it hard to believe” that Mr. Trump is a racist, citing the president’s support for opportunity zones and an overhaul of criminal justice laws.

Asked about the president’s attacks on Mr. Cummings, Mr. Owens demurred. “Well, those are his words,” he said. “I don’t want to second-guess what he says, because I hear a lot of things. I see also people pandering to black people, to get them on board with some of their agenda.”

Mr. Trump’s latest tweets provoked increasingly angry reactions in Baltimore and increasingly acute concerns inside the West Wing. Gov. Larry Hogan of Maryland, a Republican, criticized the president’s attack on the state’s largest city as “outrageous and inappropriate,” and an ally of both Mr. Cummings and Mr. Trump in the House defended the congressman against the president.

Several White House officials expressed agreement during a senior staff meeting on Monday morning that the president’s attacks were a bad move, according to people informed about the discussion, but they were uncertain who could intervene with him — or if anyone would even dare try.

They privately scoffed at the idea that it was strategy rather than impulse, concluding that any political benefit he might derive by revving up his conservative, largely white base could be offset by alienating more moderate voters in the suburbs of states like Wisconsin and Michigan that he needs to win a second term.

Three advisers said the president complained about Mr. Cummings throughout the weekend. Two of those advisers said the real source of his ire was the decision by the House Oversight and Reform Committee, which Mr. Cummings leads, to authorize subpoenas for all work-related texts and emails sent or received by Mr. Kushner and Ivanka Trump, the president’s daughter and senior adviser, on personal accounts.

In taking on Mr. Sharpton, the president confronted a fellow veteran of New York’s often inflammatory racial politics. Mr. Trump was evidently peeved that Mr. Sharpton traveled to Baltimore on Monday to denounce the attacks on Mr. Cummings.

“I have known Al for 25 years,” Mr. Trump wrote. “Went to fights with him & Don King, always got along well. He ‘loved Trump!’ He would ask me for favors often. Al is a con man, a troublemaker, always looking for a score. Just doing his thing. Must have intimidated Comcast/NBC. Hates Whites & Cops!”

ImageWestlake Legal Group merlin_154787568_a14bdf97-6173-4f9c-a1e6-39c373129132-articleLarge Trump Widens War on Race Critics While Embracing Black Pastors United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Sharpton, Al Race and Ethnicity discrimination Cummings, Elijah E Blacks Baltimore (Md)

The Rev. Al Sharpton in New York City earlier this year. Mr. Trump criticized him on Twitter on Monday as “a con man” who “Hates Whites & Cops!”CreditKena Betancur/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Mr. Sharpton, a longtime civil rights leader and MSNBC host, fired back during his appearance in Baltimore.

“Called me a troublemaker?” he said. “Yes, I make trouble for bigots. I made trouble for him with Central Park. I made trouble with him for birtherism. I’m going to keep making trouble for bigots. As far as me being a con man, if he really thought I was a con man he’d be nominating me for his cabinet.”

Mr. Sharpton did get along in the past even as they clashed over the case of the Central Park Five involving black and Hispanic teenagers who were accused of raping a white woman but later exonerated. Mr. Sharpton grew increasingly critical after Mr. Trump began falsely accusing President Barack Obama of being secretly born in Kenya.

Mr. Sharpton has his own complicated history on race. He was an outspoken activist through a string of racially charged episodes in New York in the 1980s and 1990s, and was regarded in that era alternately as a champion of social justice or as a self-promoting provocateur. He drew broad criticism as one of the most vocal supporters of Tawana Brawley, an African-American teenager whose claims of rape by a gang of white men in 1987 were exposed as a hoax.

Mr. Sharpton has reinvented himself as a more measured, mainstream national voice on civil rights, and he ran for president in 2004. His National Action Network has become a force on the political left and even Mr. Trump twice attended its conventions.

The flare-up with Mr. Sharpton came after Mr. Trump assailed Mr. Cummings over the weekend, saying the congressman should spend less time criticizing the president’s handling of detained migrants at the border and more time fixing his “disgusting, rat and rodent infested” district where “no human being would want to live.”

After he was accused of perpetuating racist stereotypes about the majority-black district, Mr. Trump tweeted that it was Mr. Cummings who was a racist and that his fellow Democrats were playing “the Race Card.” On Monday, he nicknamed Mr. Cummings “King Elijah,” accusing him of “25 years of all talk, no action!”

In Baltimore on Monday, Michael Steele, the former Republican National Committee chairman and Maryland lieutenant governor who himself is black, joined Mr. Sharpton to denounce the president’s attacks.

Mr. Steele urged Mr. Trump to visit Baltimore if he really cared about conditions for people living there. “Folks want to talk to you,” he said. “So just show up. Put the tweet down, brother, and show up.”

Mr. Hogan, who considered but opted against a Republican primary challenge to Mr. Trump next year, issued a broad criticism of “angry and divisive politics” in Washington punctuated by too much tweeting and name calling. But he largely avoided addressing Mr. Trump by name.

“Enough is enough,” Mr. Hogan said on WBAL radio. “People are just completely fed up with this kind of nonsense.”

Representative Mark Meadows of North Carolina, a senior Republican on Mr. Cummings’s committee and a friend of the chairman’s, broke his silence on Monday. Mr. Meadows, who when accused of racism himself was defended by Mr. Cummings, sent a text message to former Senator Rick Santorum, a CNN commentator, to read on air.

“No one works harder for his district than Elijah,” Mr. Meadows said in the text as read by Mr. Santorum. “He’s passionate about the people he represents, and no, Elijah is not a racist. I am friends with both men, President Trump and Chairman Cummings. I know them both well, and neither is a racist.”

Other Republicans rejected the suggestion that Mr. Trump singles out lawmakers of color.

“Oh, for Pete’s sake, that’s ridiculous — no, he does not,” Senator Kevin Cramer, Republican of North Dakota. “If African-American lawmakers are going after him, he goes after them. If a white lawmaker goes after him, he goes after them. If there were striped lawmakers and they went after them, he’d go after them.”

Mr. Trump has told aides he sees his latest outbursts as smart strategy. The president has long been petrified of losing his base, and some aides believe he will need to maximize turnout from the voters who helped put him in the White House the first time given the highly partisan environment.

Several advisers said they were aghast that he was making such a target of Mr. Cummings. If anyone had tried to persuade the president of that, they were keeping it to themselves on Monday. But many advisers sounded defeated as they talked about a tweet storm they hoped would end soon.

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