It’s Wednesday and Trump is off the rails again

Trump threatened to obstruct the special counsel probe just hours after insisting it was a “hoax” and a “trap.”

The president tried to change the subject Wednesday morning to North Korea and trade negotiations with China and North American trade pact partners, but he complained three hours later that the justice system was “rigged” against him. “A Rigged System – They don’t want to turn over Documents to Congress,” Trump tweeted.

House Republicans have ordered the Department of Justice to turn over FBI documents related to Hillary Clinton and FISA surveillance of Trump associates, and the president has complained for weeks that officials are “slow-walking” the process.

“What are they afraid of? Why so much redacting?” he tweeted. “Why such unequal ‘justice?’ At some point I will have no choice but to use the powers granted to the Presidency and get involved!”

Donald J. Trump✔@realDonaldTrump

 A Rigged System – They don’t want to turn over Documents to Congress. What are they afraid of? Why so much redacting? Why such unequal “justice?” At some point I will have no choice but to use the powers granted to the Presidency and get involved! 7:45 AM – May 2, 2018

Trump apparently spent Wednesday morning watching news coverage of the special counsel probe — and then lashed out angrily on Twitter.

Trump insisted the Russia probe was a “hoax” and dismissed the possibility that he had obstructed justice — which he has essentially admitted to several times on Twitter, in television interviews and in an Oval Office meeting with Russian officials. “There was no Collusion (it is a Hoax) and there is no Obstruction of Justice (that is a setup & trap),” Trump tweeted. “What there is is Negotiations going on with North Korea over Nuclear War, Negotiations going on with China over Trade Deficits, Negotiations on NAFTA, and much more. Witch Hunt!”

Donald J. Trump✔@realDonaldTrump

 There was no Collusion (it is a Hoax) and there is no Obstruction of Justice (that is a setup & trap). What there is is Negotiations going on with North Korea over Nuclear War, Negotiations going on with China over Trade Deficits, Negotiations on NAFTA, and much more. Witch Hunt! 4:45 AM – May 2, 2018

In a series of indignant tweets on Wednesday morning, Trump again condemned the “Russia hoax,” the Mueller investigation, and the failure of investigators to give requested information to Congress.

In his most recent tweet, Trump said he may have to “get involved.”

“A Rigged System – They don’t want to turn over Documents to Congress. What are they afraid of? Why so much redacting? Why such unequal ‘justice?’ At some point I will have no choice but to use the powers granted to the Presidency and get involved!” the president tweeted at mid-morning.”

Trump has both pardoning power and the power to fire anyone in the Executive branch.

In two earlier tweets on Wednesday morning, Trump reacted to all those open-ended questions Special Counsel Robert Mueller wants to ask him, indicating his reply to Mueller will be “no.”

“‘The questions are an intrusion into the President’s Article 2  powers under the Constitution to fire any Executive Branch Employee,'” Trump tweeted around 9:30 a.m. He was quoting Joe diGenova, a friend and former U.S. Attorney. DiGenova also made the case that the president has the “unfettered power” to fire any executive branch employee, and he said it’s “outrageous” for Mueller to inquire “what the President was thinking.”

Also on Wednesday, the president tweeted: “There was no Collusion (it is a Hoax) and there is no Obstruction of Justice (that is a setup & trap). What there is is Negotiations going on with North Korea over Nuclear War, Negotiations going on with China over Trade Deficits, Negotiations on NAFTA, and much more. Witch Hunt!”

The four-dozen-plus questions leaked to The New York Times — by someone outside the president’s legal team — have the president’s allies warning him of a perjury trap.

The questions jotted down by Trump’s lawyers, following their discussion with Mueller’s people last month, include inquiries into the president’s mindset, feelings, and reactions to certain people and events.

Meanwhile, the headline in Wednesday’s Washington Post says “Mueller warned of a possible presidential subpoena in meeting with Trump lawyers.” That meeting took place in March.

Trump previously has said he wants to speak to Mueller, but some legal experts, including DiGenova and Alan Dershowitz, insist it would be a mistake.  Dershowitz has mused that the Mueller investigation apparently has discovered no criminal case involving Trump and Russia, so Mueller is trying to build an obstruction of justice case against the president instead, by asking questions that go to motive and intent.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Tuesday referred all questions about Mueller’s questions to the president’s personal attorneys, Jay Seulow and Rudy Giuliani.

Trump on Wednesday also tweeted a plug for a new book by Fox News legal analyst Gregg Jarrett. The book, titled “The Russia Hoax — the Illicit Scheme to Clear Hillary Clinton and Frame Donald Trump” is a “MUST READ,” Trump wrote.


source; various Raw Story posts



The Libertarian Alt left’s Jill Stein seems to still be a “useful idiot” for Putin

On CNN’s New Day, former Green Party candidate Jill Stein refused to condemn Russian meddling in the 2016 election, while telling host Chris Cuomo that she is refusing to turn over some campaign communications to Senate investigators because she is “protecting Americans’ civil liberties.”

According to reports, Stein’s campaign has provided some documents related to communications with officials tied to Russian media organizations and the Kremlin, as well as information related to her 2015 trip to Moscow to attend a dinner where she sat a table with President Vladimir Putin and former Trump administration aide Michael Flynn

Beginning the interview, host Cuomo pointed out to the 2-time presidential candidate that she is giving the appearance of hiding something by not fully cooperating.

‘If you don’t fully comply that means you’re hiding something,” Cuomo suggested. “If you’re hiding something, that makes people suspicious that maybe you had something to do with the Russian interference?”

“Let’s get the facts straight,” Stein replied. “We complied with everything relevant to the question of Russian interference. we turned over all of our communications with Russian media, government, business, although there was no communications to turn over, like-wise anything having to do with Wikileaks or with opposition research or Fusion GPS.”

“What we didn’t turn over was material that basically protects the civil liberties of all Americans. at a time when our civil liberties are really being seriously eroded,” she added.

“What did you not turn over in the name of civil liberties?” the baffled CNN host pressed.

“What we did not turn over –,” she began before switching gears. “I should add, we also turned over our policy positions which were the same as what we said publicly throughout the campaign, so there was nothing hidden there. We did not turn over our internal discussions about policy which were really no great shakes because there was not really — not much difference between the policies that the Green Party has held for a long time and the policies of the campaign.”

“It’s not like there’s some, you know, a special golden goose that we’re protecting here or some vulnerable conversation,” she continued. “But rather we’re standing up on a principle and that is the principle that’s part of the first amendment, our right to basically freedom of association and that — that needs to be protected and the courts have always upheld that .”

“Do you still have reservations about whether or not Russia interfered in election and did so with obvious negative intent?” Cuomo asked.

“So let me say I think it would be naive to think that Russia did not try to interfere,” she began. “Certainly that’s what the United States does and that’s not to justify it. Interference is wrong and it’s an assault against democracy, and it should be pursued. But we should pursue it knowing that we do it too, as James Woolsey, the former CIA head recently said publicly, I believe it was on Fox, yes! We’re doing that and we always do it and the records show we do it about twice as much as the Russians over the course of the past.”

“That would be the case for Russia to make, not from the American perspective,” Cuomo shot back. “Let Russia say the United States did it to us so this is fair play from the American perspective and you running for president, more than once of this country, shouldn’t your position have been this was bad what they did?  They’re trying to do it right now and we have to stop it?”

“You know, I think that kind of position which says that we’re in a totally different category from the rest of the world is not working,” Stein shot back, before rambling about tax dollars going to the Pentagon and praising the Trump administration for making headway into the problems with North Korea — and never addressing ongoing efforts by Russia to hack U.S. elections.

Republican Russian Election Interference Report is misleading and unsupported by the facts

“Misleading and Unsupported By the Facts”: House Intelligence Democrats Slam Republican Russia Report

“The Majority subverted this investigation.”

On Friday, Democrats on the House intelligence committee released a fiery, 98-page rejoinder to the report on Russian election interference issued by their Republican colleagues that “found no evidence” of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. Accusing the Republicans of “sophistry” and subverting the committee’s investigation for political reasons, the Democrats’ report excoriates their GOP colleagues for prematurely ending the Russia probe, failing to follow investigative leads, and distorting the facts.

“A majority of the report’s findings are misleading and unsupported by the facts and the investigative record,” the minority’s report states. “They have been crafted to advance a political narrative that exonerates the Trump, downplays Russia’s preference and support for then-candidate Trump, explains away repeated contacts by Trump associates with Russia-aligned actors, and seeks to shift suspicion towards President Trump’s political opponents and the prior administration.”

The Democrats’ report seeks to show where their Republican colleagues’ investigation fell short, with a significant focus on the process of how the committee’s investigation was carried out. One allegation is that the Republicans hobbled the investigation by limiting its the committee’s document requests.

“Despite repeated entreaties, the Majority refused follow-up document requests informed by new information and leads,” the report explains. “For instance, the Committee has not received from the Trump campaign and transition all correspondence to and from George Papadopoulos, Carter Page, and other key persons of interest, thereby making it impossible to determine whether the Committee has reviewed the complete universe of relevant correspondence.”

Another area of contention on the committee is over the impact of the Russians’ social media-based propaganda campaign. The Republicans’ report acknowledges the Russian disinformation campaign, but Democrats allege that the GOP report downplays the effect of Russian propaganda in helping the Trump campaign.

In a final effort to obscure Russia’s social media operation in support of Trump, the Majority report argues that “Russian malign influence activities on Facebook were significant but they were not well-funded or large-scale operations relative to the overall scope of election-related activity on these platforms.”30 In its February 16, 2018 indictment, the Special Counsel revealed that the IRA’s operation was, in fact, well-funded and organized. The Committee, moreover, was unable to fully investigate and determine the financial backing, scope, and reach of Russia’s covert effort.


Longtime investigative reporter spells out our stark reality

Criminal Background

You have studied and written about Donald Trump for three decades. What does the public need to know about his background to understand his behavior as president?

Here are the key things people should know about Donald Trump. He comes from a family of criminals: His grandfather made his fortune running whorehouses in Seattle and in the Yukon Territory. His father, Fred, had a business partner named Willie Tomasello, who was an associate of the Gambino crime family. Trump’s father was also investigated by the U.S. Senate for ripping off the government for what would be the equivalent of $36 million in today’s money. Donald got his showmanship from his dad as well as his comfort with organized criminals.

I think it is very important for religious Americans to know that Donald Trump says that his personal philosophy of life is revenge. He has called anyone who turns the other cheek — which is a fundamental teaching of Christ in the Sermon on the Mount — a fool, an idiot or a schmuck. Trump is a man who says things that are absolutely contrary to the teachings of the New Testament. He also denigrates Christians. Yet you see all of these ministers endorsing him.

I’ve followed and reported on Donald for 30 years, I don’t see any evidence that he has changed and he certainly hasn’t repented, which is a fundamental Christian obligation.

Full-on racist

He is a racist through and through. He has been found in formal judicial proceedings to discriminate against nonwhites in rentals and employment.

It’s important to understand that Trump is aggressively anti-Christian despite claiming to be one. He is bluntly a racist. Most importantly, he is literally ignorant about almost everything.

Trump’s voters will not abandon him under any circumstances. He leads the Republican Party and thus has its news media and other resources at his disposal. Some folks believe that there will be a “blue wave” of Democratic votes that will wash him and the Republican Party out to sea in 2018 and 2020. I don’t see that happening. I think Trump wins in 2020. Am I being too cynical?

Well, he may win again in 2020. The November elections are the most important American elections since the Civil War, and I’m including 1932.

Based just on normal historic averages, the Republicans should lose control of the House by about four seats. They should lose control of the Senate as well, although the map is pretty awful for the Democrats. If Republicans retain control then I believe what will happen over time is that someone who shares Trump’s dictatorial and authoritarian tendencies but doesn’t have his baggage — someone who is a competent manager and just as charismatic — will eventually arise and you can kiss your individual liberties goodbye. That will take time but it’s the trend we are heading towards.

On the other hand, if enough people go to the polls — remember, roughly 100 million people did not vote in 2016 — if the Democrats get organized, if they can persuade the public they have an agenda that goes beyond just getting just get rid of Trump and they get control of Congress, they will move to impeach him. They need a two-thirds majority in the Senate to convict him but they will certainly move to have public hearings.

Is Trump an ideologue?

No. That’s the whole point of the first chapter of my book, “President Like No Other.” The 44 previous presidents were all over the map. There were smart people and dumb people, there were people of impeccable integrity such as Barack Obama and Jimmy Carter, there were absolute scoundrels like Warren G. Harding. We had a murderous racist in the White House whose painting hangs in the Oval Office now looking down on Trump. What distinguishes all those presidents, particularly Chester B. Arthur, the one closest to Trump, is that they tried in the context of their times to make America better.

Donald Trump is a man with this desperate need for adoration. He is an empty vessel, the exact opposite of Henry David Thoreau — a “life unexamined.” His only philosophy is the glorification of Donald.

Trump supporters

This is a crucial point. People who’ve been had by con artists are ashamed and the world is full of cases, I’ve written about some of them, you see it in movies and TV shows. They just can’t face the fact that they were tricked. It makes them feel stupid and foolish.

Well, people who got conned by Trump — it’s painful for many of them and they will do anything to avoid it. You don’t want to confront them, you don’t want to make them feel stupid.

Mueller investigation

What do you think will happen with the Mueller investigation? Trump is not acting like an innocent person.

Well, Mueller has assembled an extraordinarily talented team. Here is what Mueller is going to find. Mueller has the Trump tax returns. A competent prosecutor would have them by now. The Trump tax returns are the beginning point. You have to get the books and records–Donald has a long history of hiding books and records when they’re sought by auditors. As for the Russians, it is beyond dispute at this point that the Trump campaign was actively involved in a conspiracy.

He’s not exactly what Putin wanted, but most importantly Trump’s not Hillary Clinton, who would have gone up to the edge of war to make Putin give up Crimea. She made that very clear in a campaign. He would be in severe pain if he didn’t give up the Crimean peninsula in eastern Ukraine. So he didn’t want her under any circumstances. Mueller is going to report on tax fraud, he’s going to report on the Russians and he is going to show that the Trump campaign was knowingly being helped by the Russians. Remember that the Australian, Dutch and British intelligence agencies, and maybe others, went to the FBI, State Department and other contacts and said, “You folks have a problem. ”

Where exactly Mueller will go beyond that, I don’t know. His mission is the Russians and the Russians are tied in with the tax returns. But remember this: The job of a prosecutor is not to bring the perfect case, it’s not to bring the case that should be brought for political reasons. It’s to bring the easiest, most solid case that wins. Mueller will do that. There is nothing that prevents indicting a sitting president, but it is an untested issue. Mueller is going to have to decide whether to indict him or to go to Congress.

If the overwhelming conclusion of the Mueller report is that the Russians put Trump in the White House, then you face a second terrible problem: What do you do about Mike Pence who is also the beneficiary of Russian interference?

However Trump leaves, there’s no good ending

If the Congress impeaches and removes Trump and Pence, it will only be because the Democrats control Congress. So unless something else changes, we get President Nancy Pelosi. You can just imagine the people who will be in the streets screaming coup d’état if she’s president. I think the only way to address that is for her, or whoever is the speaker, to announce they will be a caretaker president who is not going to do anything extreme.

There is no good ending to the story. America will survive this, we’ll get past it, but whenever Trump leaves, there’s no good ending. If Trump is removed by impeachment or by the voters, whether in a Republican primary or a general election, I know what he will do. He’s already told us what he will do by his actions. Trump will spend the rest of his days fomenting violence and revolution in this country.

He’s being careful not to directly say “revolution,” but he will call the government illegitimate. He might even call it criminal, since he called Democrats who didn’t stand up during his State of the Union speech treasonous. If they’re going to impeach Trump, I believe they have to have a plan to indict, try, convict and imprison him. But Trump will be a role model for some people and there may well be violence over it.

As Malcolm Nance and others have warned, Russia’s interference in the 2016 election and likely infiltration of Trump’s inner circle could be one of the worst intelligence disasters in American history, a failure of Benedict Arnold or Rosenberg proportions.

Let me be very clear and quotable about this. At an absolute minimum, Donald Trump has divided loyalties, and the evidence we already have suggests that Donald Trump is a traitor. In fact, I would say that the evidence we already have, the public materials such as emails for example, strongly indicate that Donald Trump is a traitor. However, I don’t even think he understands what he’s done.

Excerpts of an interview with Trump Investigative reporter David Cay Johnson, who has covered Trump for 30 years, by Chauncey Devega of Salon


Finally; the Democrats take the gloves off…..’bout damn time

The Democratic National Committee has filed a lawsuit against the Trump campaign, Wikileaks, and the Russian government, alleging a conspiracy to disrupt the 2016 election.

The far-reaching suit also names Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, Roger Stone, and Russian oligarch Aras Agalarov as defendants, among others.

The suit alleges that the Trump campaign was a “willing and active partner” in the Russian effort to attack American democracy.

The lawsuit asserts that the Trump campaign “maintained secret communications with individuals tied to the Russian government, including one of the intelligence agencies responsible for hacking the DNC.”

The DNC accuses the Trump campaign of “unimaginable treachery.”

The lawsuit seeks damages for computer fraud, conspiracy, trespass, and other statutory violations.

The lawsuit largely recounts publicly known facts about the Trump campaign’s activities but provides new details about the precise timing of the Russian hack of DNC servers. It notes that just four days after Russian intelligence started siphoning data off of DNC servers, a professor with links to the Russian government information a Trump campaign adviser, George Papadopolous that the Russians had “dirt” on Hillary.

The Washington Post notes there is some precedent for the DNC’s tactic. The DNC filed a lawsuit in 1972 “against then President Richard Nixon’s reelection committee seeking $1 million in damages for the break-in at Democratic headquarters in the Watergate building.”

The defendants

There are some 25 total people and entities named in Friday’s lawsuit, ranging from the Russian government and WikiLeaks to Stone and Julian Assange. All of the people and entities, over the past two years, have played their own, interconnected roles in the unfurling revelations about the Trump campaign’s ties to Russian hacking, and communiques with both WikiLeaks and Russian operatives.

For those following the saga, many of the names are unsurprising. For instance, the lawsuit identifies both Aras Agalarov, a Russian oligarch, and his son, Emin, each of whom were instrumental in setting up a June 2016 meeting with Trump, Jr., Kushner, and Manafort, the latter of whom was then Trump’s campaign chief. That meeting, which Trump Jr. believed would provide information on Hillary Clinton to the Trump campaign — an idea Trump Jr. memorably said he “loved” — ended up primarily discussing Russia’s ban on allowing Americans to adopt Russian children, a ban put in place following the implementation of the U.S.’s Magnitsky Act.

Both Agalarovs were also instrumental in partnering with the Trump Organization to bring the 2013 Miss Universe pageant to Moscow. The Trump Organization has previously passed along documents to the office of Special Counsel Robert Mueller on the Agalarovs, according to CNN.

One of the new pieces of information in the lawsuit, which describes in detail the alleged conspiracy between the defendants, deals with the timeline involving the DNC hack and Joseph Mifsud, the professor who informed Papadopoulos — then one of Trump’s foreign policy advisors — that Russia had “dirt” on Clinton. Per the lawsuit, Russian hackers exfiltrated emails from the DNC on April 22, 2016 — only four days before Mifsud spoke with Papadopoulos about Russian “dirt” on Clinton. Both Mifsud and Papadopoulos are named in the lawsuit.

Many of those named in the lawsuit have also been charged by Mueller’s office, including Manafort and Rick Gates, Manafort’s erstwhile partner. In February, Gates pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI, but a few weeks ago Mueller’s office also accused Gates of “directly communicating” with a “former Russian Intelligence Officer.”

Perhaps the most surprising defendant in the lawsuit is the Russian Federation itself, in that lawsuits against foreign countries rarely succeed on account of other countries’ immunity from most U.S. lawsuits. The DNC, however, alleges that Russia is “not entitled to sovereign immunity because the DNC’s claims arise out of Russia’s trespass onto the DNC’s private servers.” According to the DNC, Russia also “committed the trespass in order to steal trade secrets and commit economic espionage.”

Likewise, the lawsuit targets 10 unidentified Russian intelligence “officers or agencies,” identified as John Doe 1-10. The lawsuit claims that these ten “participated in the conspiracy” to hack the emails and servers, as well as circulate the stolen emails.

Interestingly, the lawsuit does not name all of the key players within the convoluted ties between Trump, his campaign, and Russian officials and cut-outs. Not only is the president not named, but neither is his daughter, Ivanka. Nor is Rob Goldstone or Natalia Veselnitskaya, both of whom were instrumental in organizing the 2016 Trump Tower meeting with Trump Jr., Manafort, and Kushner. And curiously, Felix Sater, who is mentioned in the lawsuit, is not listed as a defendant — despite the fact that Sater once wrote to Trump lawyer Michael Cohen that he would get “Putin on this programme and we will get Donald elected.”


The Trumpulicans should be quaking in their boots

Ya, you should be afraid of eagles and millennials

The Harvard Institute of Politics released their Spring 2018 poll of young voters revealing the younger members of the Millennial Generation are enthusiastic about the midterm elections. It isn’t the first time millennials are keyed into an election — but it’s the first time the entirety of the generation is voting in an election.

For those born after 1980 or before 2000, politics has been fraught with war, economic depression, scandals and now fake news. The generation is the largest and most diverse in American history. This year marks the first that anyone born before November 2000 will be eligible to vote and they’re paying attention.

Real-time digital insights company Toluna revealed a full 89 percent of millennials use social media and news has become a significant part of social media interaction, The American Press Institute said.

“Millennials consume news and information in strikingly different ways than previous generations,” wrote API. “And their paths to discovery are more nuanced and varied than some may have imagined, according to the new study by the Media Insight Project… Fully 69 percent report getting news at least once a day — 40 percent several times a day.”

Millennials are watching and in November approximately 83.1 million of them will be eligible to vote. To put that in context, there are 76.4 million baby boomers and 65 million members of GenX.

Younger Millennials are Joining the Former Obama Generation.

In 2008, millennials were inspired by then-Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL), who stood in opposition to the war in Iraq that had taken the lives of many millennials. With a campaign infrastructure already in place for then-Sen. Hillary Clinton and former presidential candidate John Edwards, Obama had to look outside the box for a way to succeed in the Iowa Caucuses. So, his team sought out young voters.

The campaign continued their youth outreach from state to state and into the general election. Turnout among young voters that election was 52 percent. It marked one of the highest turnout elections among youth since the voting age was lowered to 18. While young people disproportionately supported Democrats starting back in the 1990s when former President Bill Clinton first appeared on MTV, that divide between support for the parties has only grown since millennials first came of age in 2000.

Even without the historic personal and digital outreach from the Obama campaign in 2008 and 2012, Republicans were on the outs with young voters. The 2004 election aligned the Republican Party with white evangelical Christians in a fight to pass state Constitutional laws banning same-sex marriage. The head of today’s GOP, President Donald Trump, was behind the racist birther movement and is now warring against immigrants. The Republican Party has further been overrun by those who have called the Black Lives Matter movement a terrorist organization. These are all values the vast majority of millennials find repugnant.

Harstad Strategic Research conducted a survey of millennial voters on a series of political issues. Their attitudes spell a disaster for a Republican Party that has been moving further and further to the right.

(2014 Survey by Harstad Strategic Research)

As the chart reveals, every, single, policy the GOP stands for is opposed by young voters in both parties. In the past, an increase in independent voter registration has prompted some to argue that young people don’t see a difference between the two parties and ultimately wash their hands of both. GenForward, a bi-monthly survey of Millennials showed that it couldn’t be further from the truth.

The New War Against the NRA

If that wasn’t already a problem, the GOP is now standing with the National Rifle Association and in opposition to students fearful of their lives as the proliferation of mass shootings persists. While young people are frequently activated in college, high school students around the country have taken to the streets in wake of the Parkland, Florida shooting and the angry survivors demanding sensible gun laws.

GenForward reported that the majority of African American (63 percent), Asian American (76 percent), and Latino (60 percent) millennials say “it is more important to control gun ownership than to protect the right to own guns.” White youth, however, support gun control over gun ownership to a lesser extent (46 percent.)

The Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students that have become gun safety activists are pushing regulations and restrictions, but not abolition of guns entirely.

The fear isn’t exclusive to white suburban schools, however. When it comes to shootings of people of color by police, millennials see it as a serious problem.

Democrats Could Score Big — But Only if They Do The Work

In recent election cycles, the Center for Information and Research on Civil Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE) said turnout among 18 to 20-year-old voters has been significantly lower than older millennials. That could change this year.

Outside of presidential elections, the Democratic Party has under-mobilized young voters, CIRCLE explained. Meaning, they’ve worked to register youth, but then don’t do the work to win their vote and get them to the polls the way other generations are targeted.

“While tools like text-message reminders and maps of polling locations can help get young people to the polls, they are still more likely to turn out if they receive personal outreach,” CIRCLE explained.

The last time Democrats ignored young voters in the 2010 midterm elections, they lost control of the House. When they did it again in 2014, Democrats lost control of the Senate.

In 2008, the Clinton team was caught disparaging young voters. At least two of the upper-echelon advisers, Mandy Grunwald and Mark Penn, were decidedly unimpressed with Obama’s young supporters.

Our people look like caucus-goers,” said top Clinton adviser Mandy Grunwald in Iowa. “And his people look like they are 18.”

Clinton strategist Mark Penn allegedly said, “they look like Facebook,” according to Grunwald. Adding, “Only a few of their people look like they could vote in any state.”

It proved to be yet another significant miscalculation about the youth vote that the Democratic Party should learn from.


Trump completely wimps out again and throws US Ambassador Nikki Haley under the bus

Thanks sir, I’ll have another!

On Sunday, Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, announced that the Treasury Department would be rolling out tough new sanctions against Russia on Monday as punishment for its continued support of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad.

But not 24 hours later, the White House threw Haley under the bus with a clear, contradictory message: Not so fast.

“We are considering additional sanctions on Russia and a decision will be made in the near future,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said.

Sources familiar with the sanctions rollout process described a chaotic back-and-forth as lawmakers and staffers were struggling to figure out what Haley was exactly referring to. It was unlikely that Haley, who has been lauded by lawmakers from both parties for her tough anti-Kremlin positions, would have misspoken so egregiously if a sanctions regime was not already in the works.

Trump on Monday has now reneged on the preliminary plan to impose additional economic sanctions on Russia, walking back a Sunday announcement by U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley that the Kremlin had swiftly denounced as “international economic raiding.”

Preparations to punish Russia anew for its support of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s government over an alleged chemical weapons attack in Syria caused consternation at the White House. Haley had said on CBS News’s “Face the Nation” that sanctions on Russian companies behind the equipment related to Assad’s alleged chemical weapons attack would be announced Monday by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

After this announcement, Trump conferred with his national security advisers later Sunday and told them he was upset the sanctions were being officially rolled out because he was not yet comfortable executing them, according to several people familiar with the plan.

Administration officials said Monday it was highly unlikely Trump would approve any additional sanctions without at least another triggering event by Russia.

Sometime after Haley’s comments on CBS, the Trump administration notified the Russian Embassy in Washington that the sanctions were not in fact coming, a Russian Foreign Ministry official said Monday.

The Trump team decided to publicly characterize Haley’s announcement as a misstatement but White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement Monday: “We are considering additional sanctions on Russia and a decision will be made in the near future.”

An official at White House tried to spin the news as Haley got ahead of herself and made “an error that needs to be mopped up.”

But other administration officials expressed serious skepticism that Haley had merely misspoken. They said Haley is one of the most disciplined and cautious members of the Cabinet, especially when it comes to her public appearances. She regularly checks in with Trump personally to go over her planned statements before she sits for television interviews.

Haley issued no clarifying statement on Sunday after news organizations, including The Washington Post, reported prominently that the new sanctions would be announced Monday based on her comments to CBS.

Asked Monday morning why it had taken 24 hours for the administration to walk back Haley’s comments, one White House official said only that there had been confusion internally about what the plan was.

White House officials said Trump has been impressed with Haley lately, particularly her remarks about Syria over the past week, and stressed Monday that the president holds her in high regard.

In the absence of a permanent secretary of state, Haley has been the face of American diplomacy, playing an especially prominent role over the past week as the Trump administration responded to the attack in Syria.

Haley said Sunday on CBS: “You will see that Russian sanctions will be coming down. Secretary Mnuchin will be announcing those on Monday if he hasn’t already. And they will go directly to any sort of companies that were dealing with equipment related to Assad and chemical weapons used. And so I think everyone is going to feel it at this point. I think everyone knows that we sent a strong message, and our hope is that they listen to it.”

The Russians were listening. After Haley’s comments, Kremlin press secretary Dmitry Peskov told reporters in Moscow that the sanctions were a U.S. ploy to oust Russia from international markets and constituted “undisguised attempts of unfair competition.”

Sources: Daily Beast and Washington Post