JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Police investigating Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have recommended to Israel’s attorney general that he be charged with bribery in two cases, Israeli news media reported on Tuesday. Netanyahu, who denies wrongdoing, has been questioned several times since the start of 2017. Police can make only a recommendation; the final decision to […]
With no evidence to support his claim, Trump assumed that GM was bringing a South Korean plant back to Detroit. Trump said that GM was coming back to Detroit. The problem is that GM never left Detroit. Video: .@POTUS on General Motors closing plant in South Korea: "General Motors is coming back into Detroit. That […]
Thanks to the chaos Trump continues to unleash with everything he does, five former federal prosecutors have decided to seek House seats — and they’re running as Democrats. As reported by The Wall Street Journal, Chris Hunter resigned from the job he’d held at the Justice Department for over a decade in December, prompted by […]
Donald Trump spent the past week doing his level best to hit all the hot-button issues that helped him win over a small but ultimately decisive slice of the electorate through the Rust Belt region in 2016. But as November approaches, the very same issues that wooed white working class voters to his side are galvanizing a coalition on the left that promises to overwhelm Trump’s 35 percent sliver of dead enders.
What Trump largely tapped into in 2016 was an ugly and virulent strain of anti-immigrant sentiment that represented something bigger than immigration. It was a festering nostalgia for a bygone era in which the promise of America’s future gleamed brighter in the eyes of white men. Everyone else was left to benefit from that promise by degrees of how closely situated they were to the white patriarchy. But the forces that once churned in Trump’s favor have produced an equally powerful and emotionally resonant set of issues that are driving 2018 in the exact opposite direction. And just like the emotional charge that helped Trump shock pollsters and defy political gravity, the countervailing jolt promises to be just as extraordinary.
Much of that force has been driven by Trump’s comportment as president continually putting an exclamation point on two major issues—racism and misogyny. Last week was no exception. When the White House convened a roundtable on law enforcement last Tuesday, Trump framed immigration purely as a debate about stopping violence. He repeatedly referenced “killers” and the notorious Salvadoran gang MS-13, as if they were representative of the greater immigrant population.
“If we don’t change the legislation, if we don’t get rid of these loopholes where killers are allowed to come into our country and continue to kill—gang members,” Trump said, linking immigration measures to the government funding bill, “If we don’t change it, let’s have a shutdown. We’ll do a shutdown. And it’s worth it for our country.”
Naturally, it was all a stunt for him. Congressional lawmakers ignored him entirely—a necessity for passing legislation these days—and when a spending bill reached his desk that included nothing about immigration, he signed it anyway. For Trump, the essence of his rant existed outside the machinations of government. Indeed, it was the racist spirit of his message rather than the letter of the law that mattered to him.
But what Trump hasn’t factored into his electoral equation going forward is that voters who vehemently reject his nativism have now tuned into the real import of his words, even if he doesn’t know the first thing about legislating. As Matt Barreto of the polling firm Latino Decisions wrote for the New York Times Monday, hateful Trumpian attacks on immigrants have been hurting GOP candidates such as Virginia’s Ed Gillespie more than it’s been helping them in key elections.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Senate Republicans on Tuesday turned up the heat on Democrats seeking protections for young “Dreamer” immigrants as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell embraced President Donald Trump’s demands for broad changes to the country’s immigration policies.
Sen. Ron Wyden grilled FBI Director Chris Wray over what and when the FBI told the White House about Rob Porter’s serial domestic violence. Wray said that the FBI gave the White House information about Porter last year. Video: When asked by Sen. Ron Wyden when the White House knew about Porter, FBI Director Christopher […]
On Monday, Donald Trump issued an infrastructure plan that was seen as a burden on states, an attack on blue states, a fantasy that calls on money to magically appear, and a fraction of the necessary investment. But apparently whoever had the early morning Trump whisperer duty told him it went over well.
Our infrastructure plan has been put forward and has received great reviews by everyone except, of course, the Democrats. After many years we have taken care of our Military, now we have to fix our roads, bridges, tunnels, airports and more. Bipartisan, make deal Dems?
The military got a boost in funds in the just-passed budget, and while not a dime of that money has yet been spent, apparently the military is now fine—presumably meaning that Trump will now switch from constant mentions of the supposedly-broken military, to constant mentions of how he supposedly-fixed the supposedly-broken military. But Trump’s infrastructure plan has received great reviews …where? Even Fox News noted that Trump’s budget, of which the plan was a part, would “see the federal deficit once again rising past $1 trillion in the near-term” and that not just Democrats but such rock-solid Republican supporters as the Chamber of Commerce slammed the plan. Still, Trump didn’t spend much time thinking about.
Negotiations on DACA have begun. Republicans want to make a deal and Democrats say they want to make a deal. WouldnÃ¢Â€Â™t it be great if we could finally, after so many years, solve the DACA puzzle. This will be our last chance, there will never be another opportunity! March 5th.
Yes, there will never be another chance … because some insane jackass has decided to place an arbitrary deadline on the crisis he created then sit back to sneer as everyone tries to clean up the absolutely unnecessary mess.
Since Donald Trump took office in January of 2017, it has been a year of disasters. Three massive hurricanes ravaged the Gulf Coast and the Caribbean. Mass shootings at a concert in Las Vegas and a church in Texas were among the deadliest in modern American history. Terrorist attacks around the world killed thousands. School shootings, naval ship crashes, white nationalist violence, wildfires, police killed in the line of duty, and innocent and unarmed people killed by police all cost lives here and abroad in the first year of the presidency. So how did a new president respond?
With Twitter, Trump’s chosen outlet for his response to the events each day. His Twitter timeline tells the story of the first 12-plus months of the Donald Trump era. As these calamities unfolded — some acts of nature and other acts of humanity — some drew Trump’s attention. Others he ignored totally. Some received a great deal of his immediate attention, ranging as high as 40-plus tweets about Hurricanes Harvey and Maria. Some served as little more than convenient pretext for a one-off tweet to smear critics and promote his Islamophobic and xenophobic worldview. In all, a ThinkProgress review of his feed from his inauguration to February 6, 2018 finds that 244 of his 2,632 tweets and retweets (including a few he later deleted, accessed via trumptwitterarchive.com) were responses of some kind to tragic event that happened on his watch. In more than 75 of those, the president overtly sought to politicize and exploit the tragedy for political gain.
Some patterns emerged.
Trump uses tragedy to convince the public to ban Muslims
At least fourteen of the tragedies Trump highlighted through his tweets involved attacks by people apparently acting on behalf of ISIS, the Taliban, or others he termed “Radical Islamic Terrorists.” Incidents in cities like Barcelona, Kabul, London, Paris, and New York were met with at least 62 Trump tweets — 29 of them pushing Trump’s political talking points.
Most were messages tying the attacks to Islam, denouncing “political correctness,” and claiming the attacks were examples of why his Muslim travel ban is necessary.
A new radical Islamic terrorist has just attacked in Louvre Museum in Paris. Tourists were locked down. France on edge again. GET SMART U.S.
As a candidate, Trump called for a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what’s going in,” but courts have determined the travel ban is intended to discriminate, rather than make the country safer.
Trump uses tragedy to say immigrants are dangerous
Perhaps an even bigger priority for Trump than his Islamophobic policies are his xenophobic policies, especially his dream of a “big, beautiful wall” at the southern border — a project he insistedover and over would be paid for by Mexico but now seeks $18 billion in U.S. taxpayer funds to built. While candidate Trump talked mostly about ending illegal immigration, President Trump has also proposed to end many of the ways people legally immigrate to the United States.
After the October 31, 2017 truck attack in New York City by an immigrant from Uzbekistan, Trump pounced with a string of anti-immigrant tweets. He used the deaths to call for the elimination of both the diversity lottery and the rules that allow preference to immediate family members of immigrants (which Trump misleadingly dismisses as “chain migration”).
The terrorist came into our country through what is called the "Diversity Visa Lottery Program," a Chuck Schumer beauty. I want merit based.
Early Sunday morning, NFL linebacker Edwin Jackson was killed by a drunk driver. Only after police revealed that the driver was an undocumented immigrant — two days later — did Trump tweet out his condolences and spotlight his death as one of “many such preventable tragedies” that would stop if only the Democratic minority in Congress would “get tough on the Border [sic].”
My prayers and best wishes are with the family of Edwin Jackson, a wonderful young man whose life was so senselessly taken. @Colts
So disgraceful that a person illegally in our country killed @Colts linebacker Edwin Jackson. This is just one of many such preventable tragedies. We must get the Dems to get tough on the Border, and with illegal immigration, FAST!
Although his inaugural address promised that “American carnage” in violent inner-cities like the Windy City “stops right here and stops right now,” there were still 650 murders — some of them among the 2,785 recorded shooting incidents — there in the first year of Trump’s presidency (less than a 16-percent decline from 2016).
While Trump has done virtually nothing to actually reduce gun violence, he did repeatedly highlight homicides in Chicago and threaten some sort of federal takeover of law enforcement there.
If Chicago doesn't fix the horrible "carnage" going on, 228 shootings in 2017 with 42 killings (up 24% from 2016), I will send in the Feds!
In August, after coming under fire for his response to white supremacist violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, Trump retweeted a tweet from a supporter with white nationalist ties, demanding to know why the national media was not paying as much attention to the shootings going on in Chicago over the same weekend.
Trump blames Puerto Rico for a poor hurricane recovery
In September, Hurricane Maria ravaged the Caribbean, causing historic damages to Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, American territories that are home to millions of U.S. citizens. More than four months later, huge swaths of Puerto Rico remain without electrical power and running water. The administration’s insufficient response to the storm drewbipartisancriticism and has been labeled “Trump’s Katrina.”
While Trump devoted more tweets (at least 48) to Hurricane Maria than any other single tragedy of his presidency to date, more than a third of them were used to push his political message. Trump quickly pivoted from messages like “we are with you,” to trying to deflect any blame, proclaiming that Puerto Rico was a mess before the storm. Rather than express empathy with Americans killed, or struggling to survive without food or water, much of Trump’s message was, essentially, “it’s their own fault.”
Texas & Florida are doing great but Puerto Rico, which was already suffering from broken infrastructure & massive debt, is in deep trouble..
Another frequent refrain from Trump, especially after he took a pounding for his tone-deaf handling of Puerto Rico and Charlottesville, was to lash out at the media for being unfair to him. Trump, who has frequently used Twitter to attack the “fake news” provided by news outlets other than Fox News, seemed especially irked that these outlets accurately reported on hisresponse to these disasters.
Over and over, he complained of the media’s coverage of Puerto Rico:
When a fellow Republican, Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, criticized his botched Charlottesville response, Trump blasted him as “publicity seeking” and implied it would cost Graham his senate seat:
Publicity seeking Lindsey Graham falsely stated that I said there is moral equivalency between the KKK, neo-Nazis & white supremacists……
After a deadly attack in London, Mayor Sadiq Khan — who is Muslim and has previously criticized Trump’s divisive and Islamophobic actions — urged his city not to be alarmed by the heightened presence of police. Trump seized on this, out of context, to accuse Khan of not taking the violent attacks seriously:
At least 7 dead and 48 wounded in terror attack and Mayor of London says there is "no reason to be alarmed!"
Even private citizens were not immune. He went after Myeshia Johnson, the grieving widow of Army Sgt. La David Johnson, who was killed in a U.S. military operation Niger in October. She had revealed that Trump told her in a condolence call that her husband “knew what he signed up for,” and she said the president struggled to even remember his name. In return, Trump essentially called her a liar on Twitter.
I had a very respectful conversation with the widow of Sgt. La David Johnson, and spoke his name from beginning, without hesitation!
Trump thinks law enforcement is great, but pays no attention to police officer-involved shootings
One of the themes of Donald Trump’s 2016 Republican National Convention speech was that he was the candidate who supports law enforcement. “The attacks on our police, and the terrorism in our cities, threaten our very way of life. Any politician who does not grasp this danger is not fit to lead our country,” he told the audience.
But when later that day, two Virginia State Police officers were killed in a helicopter crash while participating in surveillance of the Charlottesville rallies, Trump responded with a retweet of a Secret Service tweet sending “thoughts & prayers” and with a tweet of his own sending “[d]eepest condolences” and praising the officers as “all among the best this nation produces.”
Deepest condolences to the families & fellow officers of the VA State Police who died today. You're all among the best this nation produces.
But the president did not respond at all to the more than1,000 people fatally shot by police officers since his inauguration — even when those killed were unarmed. For example, when Kansas police shot and killed an unarmed innocent man after a fake 911 call by online gamers, Trump ignored the tragedy and instead tweeted about how unfair it is that Amazon.com is able to use the postal service to ship products at an affordable rate, how Fox & Friendsproves that his approval ratings are equal to where Obama’s eight years earlier, and how climate change must be a hoax because it was cold that day.
Trump ignored national and international tragedies unless they could score him political points
Those police shootings were not the only tragedies that Trump just simply ignored. A ThinkProgress review of multiple other databases based on publicly available information found dozens of fatal attacks, at home and abroad, that neither fit Trump’s political narrative nor received even a single tweet’s response from the president.
At least eight mass-casualty attacks in places like Afghanistan, Lebanon, Somalia, and Syria were responsible for more than 100 deaths each — mostly of Muslims. Trump met each with Twitter silence.
The Gun Violence Archive documents seven mass shootings since April in the United States that resulted in five or more deaths, but received no Trump response. But Trump did notice after the June attacks on the London Bridge that that particular attack did not involve guns:
Do you notice we are not having a gun debate right now? That's because they used knives and a truck!
And while none has received the attention that Columbine and Sandy Hook received, the Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund has documented more than 75 school shootings in the United States since Trump took office. Three dozen of these were intentional attacks that resulted in the injury or death of another person. Trump responded to just two of these via Twitter.
After a January 2018 school shooting in Kentucky left 18 students injured and two more dead, Trump did not initially let the tragedy distract from his tweets smearing FBI agents and demanding a border wall. Only a day after the Prime Minister of Canada tweeted his condolences did Trump finally follow his lead.
I’ve spoken with Kentucky’s @GovMattBevin to offer condolences on behalf of Canadians for today’s shooting in Benton. Our hearts go out to Kentuckians, and to all those affected by this tragedy.
Earlier today, I spoke with @GovMattBevin of Kentucky regarding yesterday’s shooting at Marshall County High School. My thoughts and prayers are with Bailey Holt, Preston Cope, their families, and all of the wounded victims who are in recovery. We are with you!
The one other school shooting that seemed to received Trump’s attention was a November shooting at the Rancho Tehama Elementary School in northern California. Trump literally reused his tweet from a different tragedy nine days earlier (in Sutherland Springs, Texas), tweeting “May God be with the people of Sutherland Springs, Texas. The FBI and Law Enforcement has arrived.”
The next morning, Trump (apparently realizing his error), deleted the tweet — and did not replace it. The shooter, after all, was a white man who should not have had access to a gun, making it incongruent with any of the president’s political messages.
In a preview for the latest episode of Celebrity Big Brother, former White House staffer Omarosa Manigault Newman said that Vice President Mike Pence would make an even more terrifying president than Donald Trump. “Can I just say this? As bad as y’all think Trump is, you would be worried about Pence,” she said, surrounded by […]