Trump-a-day is going on a holiday to a remote location with no wi-fi for a week of digital detox.
A growing number of White House and Trump campaign officials are hiring their own lawyers to handle the wide-ranging probe into whether the president’s associates colluded with Russia’s 2016 election-meddling effort, The Hill reports.
Trump, Vice President Pence and the president’s son-in-law and senior White House adviser, Jared Kushner, have all hired personal lawyers, as did Trump’s long-time lawyer Michael Cohen and several former aides. Trump allies and White House veterans who have dealt with investigations say it’s prudent for staff members who might be swept up in the Russia probe to enlist their own legal help, even though hiring lawyers could place a heavy financial burden on some staff who did not enter government service with large bank accounts. Deep-pocketed Trump aides and confidants have retained veteran Washington lawyers who command high fees to help them navigate the investigation. Kushner, for example, has hired former Clinton Deputy Attorney General Jamie Gorelick and renowned defence attorney Abbe Lowell. “There are famous stories from the Clinton White House about these astronomical fees,” said Robert Ray, a former independent counsel during the Whitewater scandal.
Jennifer Palmieri, a long-time Democratic strategist who served as former President Clinton’s deputy press secretary, told The Hill that the experience of working in a White House under investigation is “even more disorienting than it appears.” “No one in a position of authority at the White House tells you what is happening,” she wrote in an op-ed last month. “No one knows. Your closest colleague could be under investigation and you would not know. You could be under investigation and not know. It can be impossible to stay focused on your job.” Inside the West Wing, staff are fearful that speaking out could result in them becoming entangled in the Mueller investigation. White House officials were reluctant to speak about the probe, even anonymously, out of concern about possible legal pitfalls. A dream job it is not.
President Trump took to Twitter on Wednesday morning to hit back. He praised his son for doing “a good job” in a TV interview with Sean Hannity of Fox News on Tuesday night.
Trump also blasted the “fake media” for what he said was the use of imaginary sources (i.e. his son’s emails, which Trump Jr. personally released on Twitter).
Rick Wilson, a Florida-based GOP strategist and a long-standing Trump critic said that “administration is paralyzed from its own actions. Nothing is getting done.” The increasing number of lawyers could make life even more difficult for a White House staff that is struggling to advance President Trump’s policy agenda by limiting communication and creating divisions between aides.
Trump said he’ll be “very angry” if Senate Republicans aren’t able to pass a bill to repeal and replace Obama Care, as GOP leaders get ready to unveil their updated legislation. Trump said Republicans have been promising for years that they’d repeal Obama Care, and now with Republicans controlling Congress and the White House, he said he’s “waiting” to sign a repeal bill. What if Senate Republicans aren’t able to pass their bill, known as the Better Care Reconciliation Act? “Well, I don’t even want to talk about it, because I think it would be very bad. I will be very angry about it and a lot of people will be very upset,” Trump said during an interview with Christian Broadcasting Network’s Pat Robertson.
Meanwhile, in Russia
Sometimes, in order to fly you have to lift others first. Treasure your friends, teachers, parents, lovers, and even complete strangers - everyone who has ever made an effort to push you up and out of your comfort zone, a sleepy area where nothing grows. And lift others whenever you can - someone else's star might be part of your galaxy.
Today, we’ll start with good news (in the office, the aircon above my head finally broke down, so I am warm and happy. Power of thought).
Yesterday morning, as most mornings, I posted on Instagram. The picture taken from the Dome of St Paul’s Cathedral was featured by one of the most popular feeds in the world, @London, who took the opportunity to wish all Americans happy Independence Day.
At the time of writing, the picture has got many, many likes.
It feels surreal, but anyway, the best comment was from a New Yorker in her 20s, whose immediate goal in life is to get Twitter banned by Trump. Oh, the youth!
Americans marked the 4th of July, the only day of the year America quotes the date the British way, in a variety of ways. Some got out their barbecues, others hit the beach, President Trump played golf, Ivanka Trump went to a party where half of the guests were liberal-minded Democrats, like George Soros, who cannot stand Ivanka’s father. CNN took the opportunity to make a gentle but important point to Donald Trump about his recent attacks on the media.
Trump will be playing for high stakes when he meets Russian President Vladimir Putin during the G-20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, later this week. The encounter between the two men, the first since Trump became president, will be closely scrutinised in light of the allegations of Russian meddling in last year’s U.S. election — and because of the ongoing probes into whether there was any collusion between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin. It is far from certain that Trump will even bring up the issue of Russian interference. At a White House briefing last week, national security adviser H.R. McMaster insisted “there’s no specific agenda” for the meeting. Ah, good, Trump’s infamous verbal free styling it is then!
“It’s really going to be whatever the president wants to talk about,” McMaster said.
McMaster later clarified that Trump’s overall policy on Russia has three priorities: to “confront Russia’s destabilising behaviour,” to deter the Kremlin from unwelcome actions and “to foster areas of cooperation.” I think the first two points somewhat undermine the last and Trump will never pull these off, but what do I know, I am not a career diplomat. Oh, wait, neither is anyone in the current State Department.
“There is a dramatic, almost theatrical, aspect to this,” Republican strategist Matt Mackowiak said. “Drama” is the operative word in the White House these days.
Trump will also meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel during the Hamburg event.
A new online poll finds that Americans trust CNN, The Washington Post and The New York Times more than President Trump, Axios reported Tuesday. Amid Trump’s ongoing war against the press, trust is largely split among partisan lines, with 89 percent of Republicans viewing Trump as more trustworthy than CNN while 91 percent of Democrats think the opposite. Among all adults, trust for CNN is 7 points ahead of Trump.
The online poll by Survey Monkey was taken from June 29 to July 3 and surveyed 4,965 adults, with a margin of error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.
Following a White House commission’s request that states turn over voters’ full names, addresses, dates of birth, political parties, social security digits, and other personal data, dozens of U.S. states have registered their on-the-record objections.
CNN reported that 44 states have now refused a request by the Trump administration to provide certain information about registered voters, ranging from their criminal records to time spent abroad. A CNN inquiry into all 50 U.S. states found that state leaders and voting officials across the country have been fairly quick to respond to the request for voter data, sent last Wednesday by the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity – and, in most cases, to reject it.