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Trump Daily – 10/22/20 Jagshemash

Madison Cawthorn is a Republican House candidate who spoke at their convention. He’s published an attack website that included a criticism of a reporter who “quit his academia job in Boston to work for non-white males, like Cory Booker, who aims to ruin white males running for office.” The website has since been changed. At the time of publication, Cawthorn had not offered a statement.

The New York Post piece about Hunter Biden’s laptop was written by a journalist who refused to attach his name to the story because he doubted the veracity. One of the women whose name was attached had never had an article published in the paper before and previously worked for Sean Hannity. The Republicans are thinking this story is the “Clinton’s emails” of 2020 but it does not appear that anyone cares in the least. Among many other stories, Giuliani is claiming the hard drive which he’s had a copy of for quite some time has child pornography on it – a fact he has conveniently not mentioned until two weeks before the election. Right-wing media has alleged the laptop is now part of a money laundering investigation. They’re likely correct. What they’re leaving out is that Giuliani is the one under investigation. DNI Ratcliffe announced the laptop is definitely not part of any foreign disinformation campaign. The FBI contradicted him and have not reached that conclusion.

The Trump campaign accused Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer of promoting the assassination of president Trump because she displayed a sign saying “86 45.” 86 does not mean to kill. Both Trump and the campaign have been viciously attacking Whitmer just days after a right wing terrorist group was arrested for planning to kidnap her.

The Department of Justice is continuing to argue in court that when President Trump said “she’s not my type” of E. Jean Carroll, who is accusing him of rape, that he was acting in his official capacity as president and therefore should be defended by government lawyers, not his own personal lawyers. The goal here is to claim immunity to have the lawsuit tossed. Needless to say, denying an accusation of rape has nothing at all to do with the job of the president.

The New York Times has dropped another Trump tax story. Despite his claims of being tough on China, the president used a shell corporation to hide a Chinese bank account. His companies have been pursuing licensing deals in China which have not been previously disclosed.

The White House is looking into cutting off funding for all manner of government services which it has deemed “anarchist” cities. There are zero cities in the US experiencing any form of anarchy. What the president wants is for police to be more brutal with and arrest more protesters.

Lawyers have been unable to find the parents of 545 children who were separated at the border due to Trump’s kidnapping policy. The program was implemented without any sort of tracking system and parents were deported with absolutely no record of how to get in touch with them. Unable to complete the tasks themselves, Department of Justice lawyers eventually said that ACLU lawyers, along with other groups, should track down the parents themselves – which they’ve done. This should be one of the biggest stories in US political history.

Trump is considering firing FBI director Christopher Wray because Wray will not publicly announce that Hunter and Joe Biden are under investigation. If that sounds familiar, it’s because it is the exact same demand Trump made of the Ukrainian government which is what he was impeached over.

DNI Ratcliffe is trying to declassify a document, originated by House Republicans, that concludes Russia did not interfere in the 2016 election on Trump’s behalf. This directly contradicts the finding of every US intelligence agency, the very groups Ratcliffe oversees. The Director of National Intelligence is not supposed to be a partisan position but Ratcliffe has been taking actions solely to benefit the Trump campaign.

Rudy Giuliani was taken in during a stunt for Sacha Baron Cohen’s new Borat movie. Giuliani has correctly pointed out that he was not taken in by Cohen himself and that he recognized him interrupting an interview. The interview itself was the setup. He ended up alone in a hotel room with an actress he thought was a Russian journalist. This is the president’s personal lawyer, placed in a compromising position by two actors. He is a massive national security threat from foreign agencies who are far more skilled at spycraft than Borat.

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Trump Daily – 10/17/2020

Intelligence agencies last year warned the president that Rudy Giuliani was being targeted by Russian intelligence to be a conduit for the election disinformation. This week the New York Post published information they received from Giuliani which is now being investigated by the FBI under suspicion that Russia was behind the story. The story is extremely fishy and even if the source of the information is accurate, what The Post published was stolen data from Hunter Biden. The data includes an email about a meeting between Joe Biden and a Ukrainian businessman set up by Hunter Biden. The Biden campaign says this never happened, which is verifiable. The Post also published a private text conversation, again stolen, between Hunter and his father while Hunter was in rehab. Hunter Biden was worried about the mistakes he’d made in his life harming his father’s political career. Joe Biden responded that the only thing that mattered to him was his son’s recovery and that he loved him. The Republican Party thinks that sentiment is damaging to Joe Biden. The stolen files included pictures of Hunter Biden using drugs. Republican Congressman Paul Gosar tweeted out one of the pictures, mocking Hunter Biden for using drugs, just as Donald Trump attacked him during the first debate. This is the current state of the Republican Party. They are devoid of empathy to a point of thinking attacking a candidate’s son for a drug addiction is a good political strategy. With the US nearing 220,000 Covid-19 deaths, the Trump campaign thinks attacking Hunter Biden is a good closing argument.

Speaking of Giuliani, the president’s lawyer, the “cybersecurity expert” ended a Zoom meeting but left the live feed running. He then proceeded to mock Asians. Yes, really.

The White House has cited a petition calling on the government to fully open businesses to develop herd immunity. The petition includes well known medical experts such as Dr. Person Fakename, I.P. Freely, and Dr. Johnny Bananas. Dr. Fakename could not be reached for comment.

As he publicly downplayed the severity of the pandemic, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow was privately telling investment groups that the pandemic would be catastrophic, prompting his friends to sell off their investments.

President Trump is again bragging that federal law enforcement agents killed a suspect instead of arresting him. The officers appear to have lied about the suspect pulling a gun (he was armed but the weapon was in a pocket after he was shot) and witnesses now say they did not even announce themselves as law enforcement. The president of the United States is praising extrajudicial killings by police.

Trump extended his best wishes to the Kamala Harris staffer who contracted Covid-19 but added that was more than Harris did for him. He’s lying. Harris publicly wished him well.

Multiple times this week, president Trump attacked Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer after the FBI arrested a Trump-supporting terrorist group planning on kidnapping and executing her. He has called her a dictator, said that all of Michigan’s Covid-19 restrictions needed to be removed, and twice tonight led his rally crowd in a chant of “lock her up.” The president, who often encourages violence by his supporters, is openly siding with a terrorist group who planned to take out a governor because of Covid-19 safety measures.

Twice this week the president tweeted out material from The Babylon Bee, a satirical website, thinking it was real. One of the obviously fake articles was about Twitter shutting down to avoid spreading the New York Post article. It included a bit about Twitter programmers being unable to lift a hammer and therefore programming a robot to attack their own servers. The president thought this was a true story.

Trump said on Twitter that he had declassified all information relating to the Russia investigation. He’s done this in the past which resulted in reporters requesting said information. As in the past, the Department of Justice is arguing in court that the president saying he has declassified the information does not mean that the president has declassified the information. Fed up with Trump’s lies, the judge has ordered the Department of Justice to consult with the president about whether he actually issued such an order and return to court with the response.

Similar to what happened to Dr. Fauci recently, the Trump campaign is using an ad featuring Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Mark Milley without his permission and in uniform, which is a violation of the UCMJ. And like the ad featuring Fauci, the Trump campaign is not taking down the ad featuring Milley.

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Trump Daily 9/28/2020

A federal judge recently ordered that the census could not move their deadline for collecting data from October 31 to September 30. Response rates are still low, exacerbated by the pandemic. Commerce Secretary Ross wanted to end collection efforts at the end of this month, despite the fact that we know a large number of people have not yet responded. Today the Census Bureau announced they want to stop collecting on October 5. There is a technicality here the Commerce Department may be relying on in that the original order merely undid moving the deadline to September 30. The judge ordered the Commerce Department to explain what happened here and one government lawyer said there was no paper trail and the tweet announcing the change was the only thing written about the new policy. It’s unlikely the judge finds this acceptable, but watch this space.

The defense team for Michael Flynn submitted documents which were altered. The documents in question were memos from Peter Strzok and they had handwritten dates that were added and/or changed. (Strzok produced the original documents for comparison.) Flynn’s lawyers may not be the ones who changed the memos, but they were definitely altered by someone.

Twitter has added yet another disclaimer to one of the president’s tweets attacking mail-in voting. He said that mail-in ballots cannot accurately be counted. This is a lie. There are multiple states where mail-in ballots are the ONLY way to vote and they have been conducting their elections without issue for years. The primary source for attacking the integrity of the US election is the president.

CDC Director Redfield was overheard on the phone saying of White House coronavirus advisor Scott Atlas, “everything he says is false.” Redfield admitted to the statement. Dr. Atlas, who has zero experience in virology, epidemiology, or public health, has largely replaced Drs. Fauci and Birx at meetings and in public appearances of the task force. Atlas has pushed for removing Covid-19 restrictions and using herd immunity to stop the spread of the virus instead. Waiting for herd immunity will result in millions of deaths. Atlas has falsely claimed that children are not affected by the virus, among other lies.

The Trump campaign and its surrogates accused Hunter Biden of receiving $3.5 million from Yelena Baturina, the wife of former Moscow mayor Yury Luzhkov. Hunter Biden’s connection to the company is in dispute (a Biden lawyer said Hunter had nothing to do with the company’s founding) but regardless of that, there’s an issue that keeps coming up in the Trump smears of Hunter Biden. The COMPANY received $3.5 billion. Hunter Biden did not. When there isn’t a pandemic, I work for a large multi-billion dollar corporation. When that company receives money, an entire zero dollars of that goes to me personally. (I’ve been looking into changing that but so far the board has not expressed interest.) As every accusation Donald Trump makes about someone turns out to actually be something he’s done, Trump tried to develop properties in Moscow working with Luzhkov in the 90s. This is yet another business relationship Trump was pursuing in Russia without disclosing anything about it.

Channel 4 News in the UK (a publicly owned station separate from the BBC) got ahold of a database from the 2016 Trump campaign. 3.5 million African American voters are labeled as “deterrence.” (The label was not solely used for black voters.) Brad Parscale, who ran the 2016 digital operation, testified before congress that the campaign never targeted African Americans. That appears to have been a lie. Ads ran to discourage black voter turnout.

The New York Times has received several years’ worth of the president’s taxes. I want to note that almost immediately, right wingers began circulating that publishing this data or even possessing it is a violation of the Privacy Act of 1974. This isn’t true. The act criminalizing releasing certain private records. That only applies to a government agent releasing the records. The article does not identify the source – it may be any number of people from outside the government. Even if this did come directly from someone at the IRS, that employee committed a crime, but the New York Times has not. Issues like this have long since been settled law thanks to The Pentagon Papers case.

As to the meat of the article, it reveals several details about the president’s financial situation:

  • In 11 out of 18 years, the president paid zero federal income tax. In two of those years, he paid $750. Trump in the past has attacked Romney and Obama for their effective tax rates which we now know are orders of magnitude higher than Trump’s.
  • Nearly every business the president owns is losing a gargantuan amount of money.
  • The president is receiving a large amount of money from foreign sources, including foreign governments.
  • He has roughly half a billion in personally backed loans coming due in the next two years. His income stream does not support any ability to pay these loans. Every commercial bank but Deutsche Bank has refused to loan Trump any money for some time now. The commercial division at DB flagged him as a risk and stopped giving him loans. The personal division at DB flagged him as a risk but continued to loan him money, despite his default on a $600+ million loan from the bank. We do not currently know why DB overrode their own internal process saying not to loan money to Trump. The bank has recently been found guilty of laundering $20 billion for sanctioned Russian entities.
  • Trump used numerous questionable and outright illegal deductions. He deducted $750,000 in consulting fees paid to Ivanka while she was an employee of the company. He deducted the legal expenses incurred by Donald Trump Jr during the Mueller investigation. (Jr’s role in the Mueller investigation was solely related to his campaign activities and therefore cannot be deducted.)

In summation, the president typically pays almost nothing in federal income taxes, is likely using illegal deductions, has large business entanglements with foreign countries, and is massively in debt with no revenue to repay those debts and no banks willing to refinance it.

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Trump Daily – 7/28/2020 – Demon Semen

  • Last night the president retweeted roughly a dozen people touting the benefits of Hydroxychloroquine in treating/curing Covid-19. Several of these involved a video from a group of doctors pushing the drug. You may recognize Dr. Dan Erickson from a different viral video in April which was labeled as false on Facebook. Erickson claimed there was no reason for anyone who wasn’t sick to quarantine and used INCREDIBLY bad math to justify is false claims about the virus. But no one is talking about Dr. Erickson’s part in this new video thanks to Dr. Stella Immanuel who runs a “deliverance ministry” in addition to her medical clinic. (A deliverance ministry focuses on exorcising demons and other evil spirits from people and locations.) Dr. Immanuel claims she has had a 100% success rate with hydroxychloroquine and hasn’t lost a patient. Notably, Dr. Immanuel works at a walk-in clinic which means it’s unlikely she’s seen anyone who was dangerously ill with Covid-19. But it’s her other beliefs which are causing the current attention. Dr. Immanuel believes that diseases are caused by demons and that vaccines are assembled using alien DNA which prevents people from being religious when administered. (She claims the government is run by lizard people and other aliens, but it wasn’t clear if she thinks vaccines are made with the DNA of our reptilian overlords or if said reptilian overlords are using third-party alien DNA.) Dr. Immanuel believes the unique medical issues women face are caused by having sex with demons in their dreams as their semen causes things like endometriosis. I did not make that up. Sometimes though the demons are just witches who are astrally projecting and pretending to be demons. I wasn’t clear on whether an astrally projecting witch masquerading as a demon in a dream can ejaculate, much less if said faux-demon dream witch ejaculate can cause endometriosis. If you’re interested in such things, her ministry website should be back up again soon. Dr. Immanuel confirmed all of these beliefs herself tonight. To bring this back to our topic, THIS IS A PERSON THE PRESIDENT WAS TOUTING AS AN EXPERT ON COVID-19. As the United States closes in on 150,000 deaths, Donald Trump is still pushing conspiracy theories from crackpots and miracle cures while attacking the most experienced infectious disease expert on the entire planet. In today’s press conference, Trump was asked about these beliefs. He initially defended Dr. Immanuel, but when asked a followup about her alien DNA beliefs, he immediately ended the presser without answering. Twitter briefly cut off Donald Trump Jr’s access over this misinformation and deleted the Tweets the president was making about it. Surprisingly he hasn’t mentioned this today after saying this weekend it was “illegal” for Twitter to have trending topics related to negative news about him. Yes, the president thinks the law should force a social media sight from highlighting bad news about him.

(I am intentionally skipping covering Bill Barr’s testimony today as I found it useless)

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Trump Daily 7/20/2020

  • Trump’s interview with Mike Wallace aired yesterday. Trump again bragged about doing well on the Montreal Cognitive Assessment which literally asks you to identify three animals. Trump insisted the questions got “very hard.” Wallace pointed out one of these “very hard” questions was to count backwards from 100 by 7s which he began to do. The president lied about the US having the lowest Covid-19 mortality rate in the world and was angered when Wallace pointed out this was not true. Trump also lied saying Biden wants to defund police which Biden has explicitly said he does not support. Trump asked for the text of a pact Biden made with Bernie Sanders saying it spoke about defunding police. Trump could not find that passage because it does not exist. The president again said that we would have fewer Covid-19 cases if we tested fewer people. He said “everybody” thought the summer heat would make the virus go away. No medical experts said this. The person who did was Donald Trump. When asked about the disproportionate rate black men are killed by police as compared to white men, Trump pointed out that many white men are killed by police too. He said religion will be “gone” if Biden is elected president. Biden is a lifelong devout Catholic. The president was asked about his attempts to have the courts throw out the entire Affordable Care Act which will immediately throw tens of millions of people off of their insurance plans. Trump said he will replace it with something which will protect pre-existing conditions and he will enact this replacement via executive order within the next two weeks because the Supreme Court’s DACA decision means he can enact anything via executive order as long as he follows the proper process. None of this is true. Every part was a lie. He does not have that authority, he does not have a plan, and the Republicans are trying to take away health insurance from millions of Americans during the worst pandemic in a century.
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Trump Daily 6/26/2020

New studies from Harvard Kennedy and the University of Chicago correlate right-wing news consumption with believe in misinformation about the coronavirus.

With millions losing their health insurance during the pandemic, the Trump administration has filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court requesting that the entire ACA be struck down. Donald Trump for years now has maintained he will protect health care access to those with pre-existing conditions while never offering a mechanism for doing so.

In an NPR interview, AG Barr attacked voting by mail as an insecure system, vulnerable to fraud. Barr himself, along with multiple senior members of the Trump administration, votes by mail. Mail voting systems have multiple barriers to fraud that would be effectively impossible for a foreign power to exploit as Barr and Trump have warned of.

In response to testimony and a whistleblower complaint that the Department of Justice’s investigation into marijuana companies was predicated solely on Barr’s personal animus, the DoJ’s Office of Professional Responsibility responded that such investigations would be perfectly fine.

A GRU unit (Russian military intelligence) was paying bounties to terrorists in Afghanistan for killing Allied forces, including Americans. The president was briefed about this in March. The US has not responded in any way. After learning of these assassinations funded by Russia, the president pitched the idea of Russia rejoining the G7.

In the first Covid-19 task force press conference in 68 days, Pence casually estimated 240,000 Americans will die from Covid-19. The estimate coming from Trump and Pence has steadily increased since the beginning of the pandemic, when Trump said there were only 15 cases which would soon be near zero. Pence mentioned daily cases in OK declining while failing to mention it was a slight decline after a massive spike. Pence was twice asked about holding large rallies while the task force advises against large gatherings. And twice Pence responded by saying they had a first amendment right to free speech and assembly. The second time Pence took this question, he promptly ended the press conference, after having answered only six questions.

A 3 panel judge on the 9th circuit ruled that Trump diverting funds appropriated to military infrastructure projects to build the border wall was unconstitutional. (The Supreme Court decision regarding this subject dealt with a stay, not the merits of the case itself.) This will undoubtedly head to the Supreme Court, but likely won’t be resolved this year.

Ron Johnson is reviving his Senate investigation of Joe Biden’s son Hunter ahead of the November election. Hunter Biden has never been credibly accused of any specific wrongdoing.

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Trump Daily 5/20/2020

  • Despite the pandemic, Mitch McConnell is focusing on investigating the Obama administration. The Homeland Security Committee voted along party lines to issue subpoenas related to their investigation of Hunter Biden. The entire fiction of “Obamagate” rests on the concept that a presidential candidate and his family can not be investigated. Yet that’s what’s happening, but in this case there is absolutely zero basis to investigate Hunter Biden. The same senators supporting these subpoenas refused to issue them while investigating the president.
  • The next Inspector General at the State Department showed up to work today. This is illegal. The president is required to give 30 days notice to Congress before removing an IG. Trump instead put the IG on administrative leave and had his replacement begin work. Despite the illegality, Republicans in the Senate will do nothing about it. New IG Akard is not surrendering his OTHER position at the State Department which means that as of today, he is overseeing himself – a blatant conflict of interest. Again, Republicans in the Senate will allow this.
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Trump Daily 3/12/2020

  • Trump accused Democrats of wanting to limit families to one car. There is no such proposal. He lied.
  • The president said a Tampa rally has already had 100,000 ticket requests. He lied. The actual number is zero as the ticket requests are not available yet. The rally had not even been announced when he claimed this.

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Trump Daily 2/6/2020

  • Trump’s state of the union address contained numerous lies, but I wanted to focus on one in particular as it is so egregious. For years now, the president has been claiming that Democrats are trying to destroy healthcare while he and the Republicans are protecting patients with pre-existing conditions. The Department of Justice is currently arguing in the court system for undoing the only legal requirement that insurance companies cover pre-existing conditions. Trump has not taken ANY other actions. His repeated claim has no basis in reality. It’s pure fiction.
  • Susan Collins joined Lamar Alexander in justifying their impeachment votes by saying what the president did was wrong, but he likely learned a lesson from the process and would not do it again. The president has responded to their claims and said he did nothing wrong.
  • One of Ukrainian president Zelensky’s advisers told him to offer to help build a Trump Tower in Ukraine in order to help relations between the two countries. Trump currently operates businesses involved with dozens of foreign governments.
  • The Treasury Department is turning over financial documents about Hunter Biden to Senate investigators. Throughout all of the Ukraine scandal process there has not been so much as an allegation of a criminal act from Hunter Biden. The same Treasury Department is currently fighting turning over Trump’s tax records which the law explicitly requires them to give to Congress.
  • Attorney General Barr is calling for the United States to purchase private companies in order to gain access to their cellular technology.
  • In an hour-long unhinged rant from the White House, the president attacked Democrats, the FBI, and said the investigation into his campaign was “bullshit.” He said Comey was a sleazebag, that Pelosi, a lifelong Catholic, does not pray, and he attacked purple heart recipient Lt. Col. Vindman for testifying against him. In commenting about Steve Scalise’s 2017 shooting, he said most wives would not care their husbands were in the hospital. This was not the first time the president has shown he does not understand the concept of empathy, which he doesn’t personally experience.

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