Trump/Putin in 2020

 

Fox News is continuing to provide enormous spin for Donald Trump. Earlier this week they twisted the news that Trump was angry an intelligence official briefed Congress on Russia attacking the 2020 election to help get him re-elected, by claiming “Trump Upset Over Kremlin Trying to Re-Elect Him.”

The irony, of course, is our intelligence agencies brought the information to leaders in our government. House Republicans were furious upon hearing the news – furious that they were being told the truth, and wanted to stomp it out. So Rep. Devin Nunes told Trump, who then fired his Director of National Intelligence.

Predictably the Kremlin is laughing off claims they are once again interfering in the 2020 election, saying the very notion is “paranoid.”  “The Kremlin said on Friday that allegations from U.S. intelligence officials that Russia is interfering in the 2020 election campaign and trying to boost Donald Trump’s re-election chances are false and the result of paranoia, ” before adding Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters, “These are more paranoid announcements which, to our regret, will multiply as we get closer to the (U.S.) election.”

However, in a report for the Daily Beast, Russian media expert Julia Davis explains that, despite Donald Trump’s disavowals, his presidency has been highly beneficial to the Kremlin, they could not be happier and the state-run press has no qualms about boasting about it.

With reports coming out that the Russians are once again interfering in the presidential race, and Trump’s fury that intelligence community has been briefing Democrats about it, Davis claimed that you don’t need an intel briefing to know who they support in 2020 — and why.

Writing that Russian state media has “consistently conveyed the message that Trump’s election has proven exceedingly beneficial for the Kremlin, Davis writes, “Indeed, Trump’s presidency is so valuable for President Vladimir Putin that even ‘tough’ sanctions are minor by comparison. The Chekist( the first of a succession of Soviet state security organizations). in the Kremlin is willing to make temporary sacrifices in order to keep such a disruptive figure in charge of the mightiest country in the world, and Russian state media repeatedly make the point that Russia’s gamble will continue to pay off since the Kremlin is holding, as it were, the trump card.”

“Russian experts and pundits on state television frequently express their desire to see Donald Trump re-elected,” she continued. “Appearing on Russia’s popular state television news talk show 60 Minutes last October, political analyst Mikhail Sinelnikov-Orishak gushed: ‘I look at Trump and think: ‘May God grant him good health—and another term.’ This is a great situation for Russia… may he flourish and get re-elected…Trump is a great candidate. I applaud him… For America, this isn’t a very good president.’”

According to her report, Russian officials fully expect to cash in on another four years of Trump, “… from the removal of sanctions imposed after Putin annexed the Crimean Peninsula and backed a separatist war in Ukraine, to restoration of access to diplomatic compounds the U.S. seized after Russia’s effort to murder a defector in Britain.”

“Normally, spymasters seek to shroud in secrecy their relations with those who wittingly or unwittingly serve their interests,” she wrote. “But Russian state media openly gloat about the Kremlin’s influence over Trump, believing that he can endure the exposure without repercussions, and by flaunting the Kremlin’s sway with the White House, Russia further weakens U.S. democracy, which has always been one of its main pursuits.”

“The Kremlin wants to be perceived as a force to be reckoned with, fostering an atmosphere devoid of accountability for Russia’s human rights violations, foreign invasions, land grabs, and assassinations. In the style of ‘fake it till you make it,’ Putin is determined to persuade the world that resistance is futile and the Kremlin is omnipotent,” she warned. “Every denial of Russian election interference coming out of the White House brings Putin one step closer to the fulfillment of his goals. Every election security bill that is blocked by the GOP in the Senate gives an advantage to our foreign adversaries—and they are not sick of winning.”

Raw Story

When you’re on the crazy Trump train… All roads really do lead to Putin

A completely deranged Donald Trump on Friday spoke in front of a gaggle of reporters and made a series of unhinged and outright false claims about his political opponents, the still-anonymous whistleblower, and the news media.

Below are the lowlights from Trump’s latest crazed rant.

1.) Trump says that the whistleblower should be exposed as the whistleblower’s lawyer “sued for treason.”

The president continued calling for the public release of the whistleblower’s name, which would be against the law, before serving up a particularly weird attack on Mark Zaid, the attorney representing the whistleblower.

According to PBS News’ Yamiche Alcindor, the president said Zaid should be sued “maybe for treason.”

2.) Trump says he might endorse Jeff Sessions after all because the former attorney general said “very nice things” about him in his campaign launch video.

Even though the president still reportedly loathes Sessions for not doing enough to block special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe, he said on Friday that he might be open to endorsing him in the Alabama Senate race next year. (This after Sessions blatantly openly kissed Trump’s ass)

“I saw he said very nice things about me last night,” Trump said of Sessions. “But we’ll have to see.”

3.) Trump says he doesn’t know the man whom he appointed to be America’s ambassador to the European Union.

American EU ambassador Gordon Sondland testified this week that he told Ukrainian officials that military aid to their country would not be released unless they agreed to launch investigations into former Vice President Joe Biden.

When asked about this by a reporter, Trump began by saying, “I hardly know the gentleman.”

Other witnesses have testified that Sondland was regularly in contact with Trump this year, however, and Trump called Sondland “a really good man and great American” just one month ago.

On Twitter: Donald J. Trump✔@realDonaldTrump

“I would love to send Ambassador Sondland, a really good man and great American, to testify, but unfortunately he would be testifying before a totally compromised kangaroo court, where Republican’s rights have been taken away, and true facts are not allowed out for the public….”

4.) Trump melted down and kept yelling, “Quiet!” at a reporter.

While Trump was trying to accuse former Vice President Joe Biden of corruption, a reporter interrupted him with a question, which made Trump visibly angry.

“Be quiet,” Trump said. “Be quiet! Quiet! Quiet!”

5.) Trump stuns reporters by saying he might attend Russia’s May Day military parade.

Trump revealed that Russian President Vladimir Putin has invited him to attend next year’s May Day Parade in Moscow.

“President Putin invited me to the — it’s a very big deal!” he said. “Celebrating the end of the war, etc., etc. A very big deal. So I appreciate the invitation… I would love to go if I could.”

OMFG!

 

from Raw Story

Trump flunky Bill Barr hard at work trying to prove fantasy plots

Willaim Barr Trump’s “Roy Cohn”

As the impeachment noose gets tighter and more and more alarming for Donald Trump, with damning new evidence emerging every day, there is an increasing urgency in the parallel counteroffensives underway by Trump’s “Roy Cohn” team in an attempt to defend him.

There are attacks against the witnesses giving testimony by Trump and his supporters, including attempts to smear Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman, Ukraine expert at the National Security Council who this week provided crucial testimony about Trump’s telephone call to Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky. And there have been the extraordinary scenes of congress Republicans breaking into the proceedings and disrupting them.

But going on relatively unreported at the same time is the ever-metastasizing investigation by William Barr, the “so-called” attorney general, which the White House fantasizes as a game-changer. A farfetched investigation which is seeking nothing less than to overturn the conclusion of the US intelligence services and special counsel Robert Mueller that Russia interfered in the last US presidential election.

To raise the ante this has actually now been designated a criminal investigation with the power of subpoenas and the possibility of prison sentences for those who have been (in Trump’s fantasy) allegedly involved in “criminal actions”, meaning not supporting Dear Leader.

It’s pretty odd that Trump has repeatedly claimed that the Mueller report was a “complete and total exoneration” of him over Russiagate, is now going to such lengths to try and discredit it.

Ukraine is a common factor in both the impeachment hearings and the Barr investigation. The House is looking into Trump withholding military aid to Ukraine to force the Zelensky government to reopen investigations into unproven allegations, with Trump’s own personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani playing a leading part in this subterfuge.

Bill Barr is focusing on the crazy theory, aired on far-right conspiracy sites, and raised by Trump and Giuliani, that Ukraine framed Vladimir Putin over the US election in a complex triple-cross operation by impersonating Russian hackers.

Trump and Barr have also been asking other foreign governments for help in investigating the FBI, CIA, and Mueller investigators. Trump has called on the Australian prime minister Scott Morrison for assistance, while his flunky attorney general has been on similar missions to the UK and Italy.

The information being requested has left our allies astonished. One British official with knowledge of Barr’s wish list presented to London commented that “it is like nothing we have come across before, they are basically asking, in quite robust terms, for help in doing a hatchet job on their own intelligence services”.

The UK, in particular, has been viewed by Trump followers, especially far-right conspiracy theorists, as a deep source of woes for Trump.

 

from a story in the Independent UK

Putin’s favorite candidate this election cycle

Tulsi with war criminal Syrian Dictator Bashar al-Assad

 

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, a Democrat running for her party’s 2020 presidential nomination, continues to scoff at charges that her campaign is being backed by prominent Russian sympathizers. She like Trump calls it “fake news.”

“Fake news”  is the favorite phrase of the Trumpies, Trump himself has tweeted it hundreds of times during his reign.

Gabbard has received donations to her 2020 campaign from supporters of Russian President Vladimir Putin, including a Russian studies professor and an employee of the Russian government-funded broadcaster RT.

Gabbard also has received sharp criticism for her refusal to call Syrian President Bashar Assad a war criminal — a position aligned with Russia’s stance not that of the United States.

Gabbard is called a progressive by some but there no evidence of that  It’s true that she has voiced support Medicare for all and free college tuition, her actual record skews center-right. She has broken from her party on votes to increase restrictions on refugees and weaken gun control. She has introduced legislation supported by GOP donor Sheldon Adelson and interviewed for a possible position in Trump’s Cabinet.

Many Democrats balk at Gabbard’s tactics and lengthy opposition-research file, which is bulging with ties to controversial figures and lingering questions about her conservative upbringing. While some say her opposition to military intervention in Syria makes her an advocate for peace, others say it makes her a “mouthpiece” for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. In 2017, she was widely rebuked for taking a meeting with Assad, an act that legitimized the accused war criminal, and saying she was “skeptical” of the U.S. conclusion that Assad had used chemical weapons. The previous year, she was one of only three members of Congress to vote against a resolution condemning the Syrian government’s use of force against its own people.

Gabbard grew up a spiritual follower of a Hare Krishna sect that has been accused by former members of being an authoritarian cult. Its teachings include anti-gay activism, something that has already created headaches for Gabbard’s presidential campaign. As a teenager, Gabbard worked with her father, a fervent crusader against gay rights, at the Alliance for Traditional Marriage, which supported conversion therapy and helped pass an anti-same-sex marriage law. At least twice as a state representative, Gabbard referred to LGBT-rights advocates as “homosexual extremists.” She has since apologized,

All in all, she looks like Putin’s perfect replacement for Jill Stein this election cycle.

 

Mueller stumbled and bumbled, but still delivered important facts

Former special counsel Robert Mueller delivered some bombshells in his lengthy testimony before the House Judiciary Committee.

Mueller steadfastly refused to touch questions about impeachment, but he refuted Donald Trump’s claims about exoneration — and confirmed he would likely have been charged with crimes if he were not president.

  1. Trump has repeatedly claimed Mueller’s report found no evidence of obstruction of justice and completely exonerated him, but the former special counsel told committee chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY) that was inaccurate.

 “Correct,” Mueller told the chairman, “that is not what the report said.”

  1. Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-LA) asked Mueller whether the president tried to protect himself by ordering staff to falsify records, and the former special counsel agreed, and Mueller also agreed those actions were intended to hamper the investigation.

“I believe that to be true,” Mueller said.

  1. Mueller told Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) that his report found “sufficient factual and legal basis” to continue an investigation of Trump for obstruction of justice, although he declined to elaborate how that should play out.
  2. One of the most surprising moments was the own-goal scored by Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO), who pressed Mueller to explain why he did not reach a conclusion on whether Trump had obstructed justice and accidentally set up one of the hearing’s biggest bombshells.

“Could you charge the president with a crime after he left office?” Buck asked.

“Yes,” Mueller said, without hesitation.

You believe that he committed — you could charge the President of the United States with obstruction of justice after he left office?” Buck continued.

“Yes,” Mueller agreed.

  1. Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA) delivered one of the other most significant moments from the hearing when he asked Mueller to confirm that the only reason Trump was not indicted was because that is prohibited by an opinion issued by the Office of Legal Counsel.

“That is correct,” Mueller agreed.

Mueller later tried to walk it back and revised his answer to Lieu, saying that his report showed that investigators did not reach a determination of whether the president committed a crime.

  1. Mueller generally did not push back against batshit crazy Republican attacks on his own credibility, but he strongly disagreed with Rep. Kelly Armstrong (R-ND) accusing his team of political bias.

“We strove to hire those individuals that could do the job,” Mueller said. “I’ve been in this business for almost 25 years, and in those 25 years, I have not had occasion once to ask somebody about their political affiliation. It is not done. What I care about is the capability of the individual to do the job and do the job quickly and seriously and with integrity.”

from raw story

The Trump Fanboy Groveling Tour meets with his bff’s, Vladimir Putin, and Kim Jong-un.

The hard-hitting Joy Reid of MSNBC opened her show on Saturday morning by calling out Donald Trump for turning his overseas trip — which included attending the G-20 conference — into a fanboy “groveling” tour to meet with his new best friends, Vladimir Putin, and Kim Jong-un.

In a commentary dripping with sarcasm, the MSNBC host pointed out the extraordinary fact that former President Jimmy Carter recently slammed Trump and claimed that his presidency is illegitimate.

Former President and real Christian Jimmy “Carter’s absolute rebuke came on the same day Donald Trump had his first face-to-face meeting since the end of the Russia investigation with Vladimir Putin,” Joy explained. “A meeting at which Trump once again publicly defended him and even joked about needing to warn Putin not to attack our election again.”

Joy Reid translated: “Message please, sir: please help me by attacking the election again,” she mocked Trump. “Right now  President (“Kleptocrat”) Trump is in South Korea for meetings with President Moon, who is not a dictator, so Trump will probably not grovel.”

“What Trump wants is a photo-op with murderous dictator Kim Jong-un; tweeting a plea to please come hang out at the DMZ. Please come spend time and take selfies, and Trump bragging about the possibility of such a meeting this morning,” the MSNBC host added.

Noting that Trump told reporters that the murderous North Korean dictator appears to follow him on Twitter, Reid ridiculed the leader of the free world for his giddy excitement, smirking, “Oh my god! He follows me on Twitter. Will there be friendship bracelets?”

Racists, Traitors anti-free press and more election interference just another day in Trump world

Donald Trump Jr and an army of suspicious social media accounts target Kamala Harris with a dumb racist smear

Donald Trump sarcastically asked Vladimir Putin not to meddle in the 2020 election — hours after his son helped amplify an attack on Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) that was pushed by suspicious bot accounts.

Shortly after Harris dealt former Vice President Joe Biden a devastating blow by questioning his commitment to racial justice, Donald Trump Jr. retweeted a post questioning the California Democrat’s own racial credentials.

Trump doofus son later deleted his post, but an army of sketchy-looking Twitter accounts (Russian backed) began pushing the same theme just minutes later.

Caroline Orr

@RVAwonk

A lot of suspect accounts are pushing the “Kamala Harris is not Black” narrative tonight. It’s everywhere and it has all the signs of being a coordinated/artificial operation.  #DemDebate2

That message was further amplified by Katrina Pierson, Trump’s former campaign spokeswoman.

Katrina Pierson

@KatrinaPierson

 Kamala Harris is going to get a stern talking to after the debate. Can’t play the race card without going all the way…Obama did choose Biden &none one yelled foul! Obama is actually African American – Kamala Harris is not. Who is best to speak for the AA Community?  #DemDebate2

Raw Story