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How Michael Cohen Turned Against President Trump

“Are we going to meet Thursday or Friday?” Mr. Costello texted Mr. Giuliani on a Monday. Mr. Costello told prosecutors in a recent meeting that the pardon discussion had been initiated by Mr. Cohen and rejected by Mr. Giuliani. When Mr. Giuliani was hired by the president a few days later, Mr. Costello emailed Mr. Cohen: “I told you my relationship with Rudy which could be very very useful for you.” “Great news,” Mr. Cohen replied. The next day, after speaking to Mr. Giuliani by phone, Mr. Costello wrote in an email to Mr. Citron that the president’s lead lawyer had been “thrilled that I reached out to him about Cohen.” He added that Mr. Giuliani was “calling the president tonight.” Mr. Costello also shared his upbeat assessment with Mr. Cohen. Under an information-sharing agreement among the lawyers, Mr. Ryan had discussed with Mr. Giuliani that the Trumps had reimbursed Mr. Cohen for the hush money he paid to the pornographic film actress Stormy Daniels. As the president’s lead lawyer continued to publicly discuss the hush-money scheme in the days and weeks that followed, Mr. Cohen told associates that Mr. Giuliani was “blowing this whole thing.” ‘Keep on Punching’ Days after Mr. Giuliani appeared on Fox News, Mr. Costello confided to Mr. Citron, his partner, about his mounting concerns that Mr. Cohen was stringing them along. “Does Cohen really want a friend of Comey as his lawyer?” he asked in a text message. In the interview with The Times, Mr. Giuliani said that he was new to the issue of the legal fees at the time, having just been hired by Mr. Trump a couple of months earlier. “The idea that the Trump Organization should have paid his legal fees and expenses is a total crock.” Distrust between the two sides only grew in June when the comedian Tom Arnold tweeted a selfie with Mr. Cohen and later claimed that they were teaming up to take down the president. Mr. Davis said that he asked Mr. Cohen at the time why he wanted to hire him.

Trump and impeachment: where Democrats stand after Mueller

Because it matters not just for this president, but for all future presidents. Despite deciding not to run, he has continued to pursue impeachment. He continues to push on. “Let me assure you that whatever the issue and challenge we face, the Congress of the United States will honor its oath of office to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States to protect our democracy,” she told reporters this week. “We believe that the first article – Article I, the legislative branch – has the responsibility of oversight of our democracy, and we will exercise that.” The avenue is not impeachment. “The avenue is not impeachment,” he said this week. The New York representative, who has subpoenaed the unredacted report, has discussed impeachment repeatedly as it would originate with his committee. “The idea is not whether to debate articles of impeachment,” Nadler said. Kamala Harris: “I think that there is definitely a conversation to be had on that subject,” the California senator and presidential hopeful told MSNBC on Thursday, “but first I want to hear from Bob Mueller and really understand what exactly is the evidence that supports the summary that we have been given today.” Cory Booker: Speaking in Nevada on Friday, the New Jersey senator, who is also a member of the judiciary committee and a 2020 hopeful, said it was too soon to discuss impeachment because Congress has not seen the unredacted report and has not had a chance to interview Mueller. April 18, 2019 Beto O’Rourke: The 2020 contender and former Texas representative said he believed voters cared more about policy discussions than impeachment, telling reporters on Thursday: “I don’t know that impeachment and those proceedings in the House and potential trial in the Senate is going to answer those questions for people.” The full text of Robert Mueller's report on Trump and Russia Read more Elijah Cummings: The House oversight committee chairman told MSNBC on Friday the Mueller report revealed actions that were “at least 100 times worse” than those that led to Bill Clinton’s impeachment in 1998.

Scarborough: Trump Is Unfit For Office, Anyone Who Suggests Otherwise Hasn’t Read The Mueller...

MSNBC host Joe Scarborough savaged Attorney General Bill Barr as a "political hack" on Friday's edition of "Morning Joe," saying Barr was among the worst attorneys general in history. Scarborough said Barr "shamed himself" with the release of a redacted version of the Mueller report this week and in doing has made himself "irrelevant to the discussion and to history." Yesterday was fascinating. I think really the most remarkable thing about yesterday was the fact that a man who had had the respect of attorneys on both sides of the aisle over the past 30, 40 years, Attorney General Barr humiliated himself, shamed himself by just a pathetic performance. And you’ll notice yesterday half of the talk was about what Barr did and a lot of pundits couldn’t focus long enough on what Donald Trump did. And Robert Mueller even said in the report, of course, William Barr lied. That's exactly what Barr did yesterday like any political hack would do. I want to say, though, how ridiculous for Barr to try to excuse Donald Trump’s obstruction of justice, for Barr to try to excuse Donald Trump running around telling people to fire the special counsel, telling people to lie to investigators, all the things he did, because he was angry, he was frustrated because of political enemies. What Bill Clinton was charged for, I mean, again, we’re talking about lying before a grand jury, lying in a deposition about his personal life, so pales in comparison to what Lindsey Graham, who prosecuted that case in the Senate, to what Lindsey Graham now excuses every day of the week. Let's talk about the Mueller report, what we know about it so far.

Pete Buttigieg Announces Official Start to 2020 Campaign

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Pete Buttigieg, the young Midwestern mayor whose presidential bid has been an unlikely early focus of attention from Democratic voters and donors, kicked off his campaign on Sunday and proclaimed his hometown’s revival was the answer to skeptics who ask how he has the “audacity” to see himself in the White House. At a rally inside a partly rebuilt factory, once owned by the automaker Studebaker and now being turned into glass-sheathed offices for tech and other businesses, Mr. Buttigieg said, “I ran for mayor in 2011 knowing nothing like Studebaker would ever come back, but that we would, our city would, if we had the courage to reimagine our future.” If elected, Mr. Buttigieg, a 37-year-old Rhodes scholar and veteran of the war in Afghanistan, would represent a series of historic firsts: the youngest president ever and the first who is openly gay. He said he was motivated to run despite his youth because of an urgency to correct the course of the Trump administration on climate change, health care and immigration. “This is one of those rare moments between whole eras in the life of our nation,” Mr. Buttigieg said, adding, “The moment we live in compels us to act.’’ [Pete Buttigieg’s college writings reveal the roots of his 2020 campaign.] He painted a picture of a hopeful future rooted in Midwestern values, contrasting his focus on a better life in 2030, 2040 and 2054 — the year he would be the same age as President Trump is today — with what he called Mr. Trump’s appeal to “resentment and nostalgia.” And he invoked his marriage to his husband, Chasten Buttigieg, as one of the blessings of American freedom, but one that feels fragile in the current climate. “Our marriage exists by the grace of a single vote on the U.S. Supreme Court,’’ Mr. Buttigieg told a crowd of several thousand people. “Nine men and women sat down in a room and took a vote, and they brought me the most important freedom in my life.” Though Mr. Buttigieg is a political progressive, his main message is the claim to leadership of millennial Americans, those he says will be on “the business end” of climate change, who grew up with school shootings and who supplied most of the troops in America’s wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Little known just two months ago, Mr. Buttigieg has won support and financial backing through a blitz of television interviews in which he has given earnest, nuanced responses that make liberal points without raising the temperature. “We’re all excited about what’s happening downtown — the black community, poor folks, Hispanic people,” she said.

US healthcare stocks battered by politics

Investors came to a realization this week that political insiders have been quietly acknowledging for some time now. Not only might self-proclaimed democratic socialist Bernie Sanders win the 2020 Democratic primary, but he could also become the next US president. Healthcare stocks plummeted this week amid coverage of a town hall event hosted by Fox News, during which Sanders’ shocked many observers by the degree to which he connected with the audience. Fox News caters to a conservative audience and the event was held in a city, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, which Donald Trump carried in 2016. Driving the scare among healthcare sector investors is the growing support for Sanders’ Medicare-for-All government insurance plan, which threatens to severely restrict the role private insurers can play. But the fears of Sanders’ signature healthcare plan, a bill for which has been co-sponsored by several of his opponents in the presidential primary contest, may prove to be premature, some analysts say. While Republican strategist Karl Rove warned that – judging from the town hall event – his party may be underestimating Sanders’ appeal to Trump voters, legislation would require more than a 2020 win for the Vermont Senator. “Whether he secures [the Democratic nomination] or not, I don’t think Medicare-for-All happens. So I think there’s a huge opportunity here,” Mark Tepper of Strategic Wealth Partners said in an interview on CNBC. “As a long-term investor, I think you have the opportunity to get in at a good price point right now.” The Health Care Select Sector SPDR (XLV) ETF fell 2.9% on Thursday and is now in the red on the year.

Mueller Reveals Trump’s Efforts to Thwart Russian Inquiry in Highly Anticipated Report

Todd Heisler/The New York Times WASHINGTON — Robert S. Mueller III revealed the scope of a historic Russian campaign to sabotage the 2016 presidential election in a much-anticipated report made public on Thursday, and he detailed a frantic monthslong effort by President Trump to thwart a federal investigation that imperiled his presidency from the start. Then, after federal investigators opened an inquiry into the extraordinary Russian campaign, the president repeatedly tried to undermine it. “The incidents were often carried out through one-on-one meetings in which the president sought to use his official power outside of usual channels,” the report said. But on Thursday, top Democratic lawmakers seized on the report’s findings and suggested that the issue of impeachment was not settled. When Mr. Mueller began his work, there were still prominent voices at both ends of the political spectrum openly debating whether the hacking and leaking of emails — and the fake news that spread like a wildfire on social media in the months before the election — was the work of Russia, China, stateless hackers or, as Mr. Trump once liked to say, “someone sitting on their bed that weighs 400 pounds.” Even last summer, standing next to President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia after a summit meeting in Finland, Mr. Trump refused to accept that the Russians had carried out the election sabotage. The indictments gave exquisite details about the entirety of the Russian operation — how Russians paid unsuspecting Americans to stage pro-Trump rallies in battleground states, how Russian hackers penetrated the personal email account of Mrs. Clinton’s campaign chairman and how a pair of Russian women took a scouting trip to the United States two years before the election to gather information for the planned assault. Mr. Mueller’s team found that the evidence was “not sufficient.” Some of the meetings with Russians were a mélange of business and politics, and Mr. Mueller’s prosecutors wrapped up their inquiry still puzzled about their purpose. In the end, the special counsel’s team “did not resolve the apparent conflicts in the accounts,” according to the report. He was a god to them until he said ‘no collusion.’ They don’t like him so much now.” Even so, the revelations in Mr. Barr’s letter did not produce a noticeable bump in Mr. Trump’s approval rating, and polls taken in the weeks since Mr. Barr’s letter have shown that many Americans were reserving judgment until they had a fuller picture of Mr. Mueller’s conclusions. So far, only two of those have officially been made public.

The ‘On Politics’ Mueller Report Cheat Sheet

This is a moment, people: It’s a major crossroads in Donald J. Trump’s presidency. (If you read only one section, make it pages 290-299, which detail Mr. Trump’s attempts to fire the special counsel.) This is the worst thing that ever happened to me.” [Get On Politics delivered to your inbox.] The report notes, though, that the tapes were likely “fake.” The report also details a search by Mr. Trump’s associates for Hillary Clinton’s deleted emails, which Mr. Trump, in July 2016, publicly asked Russia to help him obtain. What about the obstruction investigation? “If we had confidence after a thorough investigation of the facts that the president clearly did not commit obstruction of justice,” they wrote, “we would so state.” Here’s some of what they’re describing: • For 13 days after Mr. Trump asked Mr. Finally, on May 30, the president returned the letter with a notation: “Not accepted.” • Mr. Trump repeatedly called Donald F. McGahn II, the White House counsel, at home and ordered that he have Mr. Mueller removed. The two-volume document is a redacted version of the report written by Mr. Mueller, the special counsel, presenting the findings of his team’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, and into Mr. Trump’s possible effort to influence the outcome. Mr. Barr, the attorney general, released a four-page summary of Mr. Mueller’s report last month, in which he said the investigation did not find that the Trump campaign had colluded with the Russian government and cleared the president of the charge of obstruction of justice. A lot of Democrats were skeptical of Mr. Barr’s summary — particularly on the obstruction issue — and pushed for the release of the full report.

The New Republic’s May Issue Delivers No-Holds-Barred Commentary on Political Landscape

New York, NY—(April 18, 2019)—The New Republic today published its May 2019 issue, which features a cover story by Liza Mundy, “Women of Substance.” Mundy profiles the current six female Democratic presidential candidates — a historic number — in the 2020 race, four of whom have “a plausible shot at the U.S. presidency.” She outlines the challenges and advantages the women will face, particularly as they relate to stereotypes about women’s nature, their ability to lead, and their ambition to do so. In the post-Hillary Clinton period, Mundy makes the argument that “because they are not Hillary, this group will present a purer test of how voters and members of the chattering classes react to women ... between women whose backgrounds, careers, and accomplishments have nothing to do with their husbands.” She continues: “The upshot will be to encourage the healthy idea that women can be as bold, eloquent, original, irritated, aggressive, vacuous, and vague as men. This is progress.” The New Republic’s May issue also features timely pieces regarding the potential limits of feminist politics, “moderate” health reform, Jerry Nadler’s quest for presidential accountability, and further commentary on today’s political media landscape, with pieces that focus on MSNBC and Fox News’ Tucker Carlson. Highlights from the issue include: Looking at the female presence in the 2020 presidential race through another analytical lens, Abi Wilkinson’s “Empowerment for What” complicates the feminist idea that “because it’s bad that there are additional struggles for women in politics, it’s by definition good for women in politics to succeed. When a woman obtains high office, that candidate’s ascension marks a victory for women as a whole.” Wilkinson warns against acting on this principle in a vacuum — using female British leaders as examples — instead pointing out the many factors that should also be considered when electing leadership. It would be a wonderful, historic thing to elect a female president, “but what really matters is that president’s platform.” 2020 Democrats are lending their support to “moderate” health reforms, including Medicare for America, a popular public option policy that blends public and private sectors. In “Code Green,” Amber A’Lee Frost analyzes how a comparable system already exists in the Republic of Ireland, where it’s created a crisis of care. Frost argues a similar program would create a similar problem in the U.S.: “[The crisis is] the direct result of a health care system that tries to supplement a public service with a private market. For Res Publica, Jason Frederick Lambacher argues that to succeed the Green New Deal needs people arguing about it in “The Good Fight.” The entire May 2019 issue of The New Republic is available on newsstands and via digital subscription now. * * * Press: ###

Does everyone really love Mayor Pete? His home town has some answers

“The whole economy suffered because a lot of the Studebaker workers not only lost their jobs, they lost their pensions and there was a lot of poverty, suicides even. While South Bend is about 55% Democratic, he won reelection with more than 80% of the vote. And his daring 1,000 houses in 1,000 days initiative demolished or repaired abandoned homes. “When he announced that, I thought he was crazy,” Colwell said. “In fact, I think I told him at the time, why would you set a goal so ambitious? She told CNN: “There was just this real concerted effort to make sure we hit that goal. A lot more people are living downtown; there are three or four buildings being converted into luxury apartments. There’s no doubt the city is better now than when he took office. Two in five African Americans in the city live below the poverty line, which is almost double the national poverty rate for African American households, according to a study by the city in 2017. James Brainard, the six-term mayor of Carmel, which has grown to a similar size as South Bend, said: “Pete’s done a good job as mayor.

Keller @ Large: Former Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards On Women In Politics

BOSTON (CBS) – Cecile Richards, the longtime president of Planned Parenthood, joined WBZ-TV political analyst Jon Keller to discuss her best-selling book along with her belief that now is the time for women to lead a political movement. Richards was president of Planned Parenthood from 2006-2018. She also wrote the best-selling book “Make Trouble: Standing Up, Speaking Out, and Finding the Courage to Lead.” Keller @ Large: Part 2 Keller asked Richards about her previous statement that we need a political movement “of, by and for women” as the country inches toward the 2020 presidential election. “I think the most important thing is that women’s issues that women care about are part of the political conversation, whether it’s a woman or man running for president,” Richards said. “I just think it’s important that women’s equality and our ability to participate in the work force and raise our families should be front and center in this campaign and that’s my goal.” Richards also discussed a meeting she had with Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner shortly after President Trump was elected. “They asked to meet and their offer to me was if Planned Parenthood would quit providing abortion services to women in America that they would try to get more funding for the organization,” she said. “Needless to say it didn’t go anywhere. I said we are absolutely there to provide the full range of reproductive healthcare services for women. It was a disappointing meeting for sure.”