Defense the Trump Way DIVERSION TACTICS FROM THE INVESTIGATION & Counter-attacks
The Trump Administration’s response to all accusations is complete denial…followed by offensive action by placing blame or creating a media storm about anyone they can: Obama, Clinton, , Intelligence, etc.
SUSAN RICE & UNMASKING: The first incident was the Susan Rice “Unmasking” scandal, which resulted in Devin Nunes recusing himself from the Investigation. It was also an early public indicator of recorded conversations between the Trump Campaign and Sergey Kislyak.
OBAMA WIRETAPPING ACCUSATIONS: As it turns out, FISA court orders WERE issued, but Trump the accuser would be at risk of being recorded if he were speaking with people under investigation. Once again, he pointed the finger and it comes back to him and his associates talking to Russians under investigation.
BLAMING OBAMA FOR NOT ALERTING THE PUBLIC TO RUSSIAN INTERFERENCE IN THE ELECTION
“Utah GOP Rep. Jason Chaffetz, chairman of House oversight committee, said Saturday that the Justice Department’s inspector general’s office, in addition to a Senate panel, is looking into whether former Attorney General Loretta Lynch tried to squash the FBI’s Hillary Clinton email investigation.”
ATTACKING “MORNING JOE” HOSTS AND TRUMP PUNCHING CNN IN WRESTLING VIDEO
While the first direct evidence of the Trump Campaign’s collusion with the Russian hackers was revealead (GOP Operative worked for Mike Flynn to obtain Hillary’s missing 33,000 emails by contacting at least 2 Russian hacker groups), and simultaneously Trump was calling for 32 million people to lose healthcare by repealing the ACA, concurrent with Trump defunding the agency tasked (Election Assistance Commission) with protecting our election systems, Trump attacked Mika from “Morning Joe” with Tweets, lying about her “Bleeding from her face”, and then r_The_Donald created a video of Trump beating up CNN to shore up more support generated by Trump fans appreciating his lack of good taste with Mika.
“Before it made it to President Donald Trump’s Twitter account, a now-infamous video of the leader beating a man with the CNN logo transplanted over his face wound its way through Reddit — and appeared to have been created by a redditor with a history of openly racist posts.
The GIF appears to have first been posted to Reddit’s /r/the_donald board just a few days ago by user HanAssholeSolo, where it quickly accrued nearly 9,000 upvotes as of Sunday afternoon.” MIC
“It’s beginning to look like Special Counsel Mueller will catch President Trump and his three eldest children committing the first ever reality TV show assisted financial crime, all collaborating in a $350 million dollar bank fraud related to the Trump SoHo Condominium Hotel.
A Congresswoman has introduced a resolution calling for President Trump to undergo a physical and mental evaluation to determine if he is fit to continue in office as president. While the measure by Representative Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) probably has little chance of passage in a House controlled by Republicans, it shows that there is growing concern about Trump’s ability to carry out his role as the nation’s chief executive.Washington Journal
CHRISTOPHER STEELE DOSSIER“A Russian emigre figure close to the Republican US presidential candidate Donald TRUMP campaign team…the emigre confirmed that an intelligence exchange had been running between them for at least 8 years. Within this context priority requirement had been for intelligence on the activities, business and otherwise, in the US of leading Russian oligarchs and their families. TRUMP and his associates duly had obtained and supplied the Kremlin with this information.”
The Mentor, Roy Cohn
Roy Cohn biographer Wayne Barrett said on Netflix’s “Get Me Roger Stone”, “I started hearing about Roger from people who were close to Roy…Roy Cohn is the single most evil person I have ever…If that’s a Magnet for you as a young man, it says you’re Soulless before you start.”
Trump is the son of a tough New York [slum/]landlord who treated him more like a business guy than a warm father. He died young and Trump ran into the notorious Roy Cohn, the McCarthy-era attorney who bragged about skirting numerous indictments and was a closeted homosexual who died of AIDS in 1986. “I hear Roy in the things he says quite clearly,” said Peter Fraser, who as Mr. Cohn’s lover for the last two years of his life spent a great deal of time with Mr. Trump. “That bravado, and if you say it aggressively and loudly enough, it’s the truth — that’s the way Roy used to operate to a degree, and Donald was certainly his apprentice.” NY Times
“Then New York’s most feared lawyer, Mr. Cohn had a client list that ran the gamut from the disreputable to the quasi-reputable: Anthony (Fat Tony) Salerno.” NY TimesFat Tony Salerno went to prison in 1989 and died in 1992. “In a much-debated 1986 article, Fortune magazine rated him [Salerno] the most powerful and wealthiest gangster in America, citing earnings in the tens of millions from loan sharking, profit skimming at Nevada casinos and charging a “Mafia tax” on New York City construction projects. At the time, he maintained a home in Miami Beach, a 100-acre estate in Rhinebeck, N.Y., and an apartment in Gramercy Park.” NY Times
Mafia Consigliere Roy Cohn introduced Trump to Roger Stone, Ronald Regan campaign manager at the time. He started the most amoral lobbying firm to date with Paul Manafort just as Trump Tower was being built. Black, Manafort, Stone and later, Kelly, became Trump’s representatives and consultants throughout his career and Presidential campaigns. Trump Tower utilized illegal immigrant labor under the directive of Roy Cohn’s clients, Italian Mafia-run labor unions and owned concrete supplier. Trump used the inflated construction cost of Concrete, presumably for some gain or ease in development. Trump offered financing for his Trump Tower units from his own connection, and Manafort bought a unit. 3 units were sold to an unemployed girlfriend of the Mafia. This and the Polish illegal alien cases both ended up in court. Felix Sater, son of Russian Mafia and himself a criminal turned FBI informant, is the long-term business partner of Trump in Bayrock LLC. Bayrock is the subject of Dutch investigation into money laundering with former Soviet business partners and legally organized by Rudy Giuliani. Watch This Film, The Dubious Friends of Donald Trump: The Russians
Trump Fired FBI Director James Comey via letter delivered by private bodyguard on May 9, 2017. PODCAST How much power does a president have to affect an investigation? As the fallout from Trump’s decision to fire FBI Director James Comey continues, we take a look at the limitations of presidential power when it comes to investigations. Plus, we assess how history measures up, with Bob Woodward and Marc Fisher. Washington Post
May 10, 2017, Trump locked out US Press and Photographers out while he entertained Russian Ambassador/Explosive Expert Physicist Sergey Kislyak, central to the Flynn firing and inquiry, and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. Russia tweeted photos which alerted the US. Business Insider; H.R. McMaster, new National Security Advisor, was present and denied the importance of what was shared. This sharing of Israeli intelligence could end the sharing of intelligence with the U.S. “Trump allegedly revealed the city in ISIS-held territory where, according to his intelligence briefing, the U.S. ally retrieved evidence that the militant group is actively planning to smuggle a laptop wired with an explosive onto an airliner. The information of the location and nature of the plot threatens to give away Israeli intelligence methods to Russia. Israel fears that Moscow, allied with Iranian forces in Syria, may then pass the intelligence onto Tehran, its longtime enemy.”Newsweek
Trump Told Russians That Firing ‘Nut Job’ Comey Eased Pressure From Investigation “I just fired the head of the F.B.I. He was crazy, a real nut job,” Mr. Trump said, according to the document, which was read to The New York Times by an American official. “I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off.” The White House document that contained Mr. Trump’s comments was based on notes taken from inside the Oval Office and has been circulated as the official account of the meeting. One official read quotations to The Times, and a second official confirmed the broad outlines of the discussion.” NY Times
Steve Bannon pushed him through as Attorney General, the first appointee confirmed on February 8, 2017. Like Bannon and Trump, and according to his mother, he is a contrarian and loves to argue. Sessions recused himself from the investigation, and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein appointed Robert Mueller as special counsel. Trump has been openly displeased with Sessions refusing to resign, and Sessions protects Mueller from being fired from the investigation.
Then-Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) prepares to testify at his confirmation hearing to be attorney general. (Jim Lo Scalzo/European Pressphoto Agency)
Below, a timeline of events related to Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s relationship with the Trump campaign and his own conversations with Russian officials. This will be updated as needed.
Aug. 21, 2015. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) makes an unexpected appearance at a Donald Trump campaign rally in Mobile, Ala. While he doesn’t endorse Trump, he dons a “Make America Great Again” cap to loud applause. Sessions is one of the first elected officials to tacitly embrace Trump’s upstart candidacy.
Feb. 28, 2016. Sessions formally endorses Trump and becomes one of his campaign’s key surrogates.
March 3. Trump names Sessions as chairman of his campaign’s national security advisory committee.
March 17. At an event hosted by the American Council for Capital Formation, Sessions discusses Trump’s foreign policy positions.
“I think an argument can be made there is no reason for the U.S. and Russia to be at this loggerheads. Somehow, someway we ought to be able to break that logjam,” Sessions said. “Strategically it’s not justified for either country. It may not work. Putin may not be able to be dealt with, but I don’t condemn his instincts that we ought to attempt to do that.”
July 18. On the first day of the Republican National Convention, the Heritage Foundation hosted a panel conversation addressing European relations that was attended by a number of ambassadors. “Much of the discussion focused on Russia’s incursions into Ukraine and Georgia,” moderator Victor Ashe later wrote, adding that “[s]everal ambassadors asked for names of people who might impact foreign policy under Trump.”
This appears to be the event after which Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak approached Sessions as part of a small group of foreign dignitaries. Sessions, The Post reports, “then spoke individually to some of the ambassadors, including Kislyak.”
July 31. In an appearance on CNN, Sessions defends Trump’s position on reaching out to Russia.
“This whole problem with Russia is really disastrous for America, for Russia and for the world,” he said. “Donald Trump is right. We need to figure out a way to end this cycle of hostility that’s putting this country at risk, costing us billions of dollars in defense, and creating hostilities.
Sept. 8. Sessions and Kislyak meet in his Senate office. The subject of the meeting isn’t clear, but one official told NBC’s Hallie Jackson that during such meetings ambassadors would “often make superficial comments about election-related news.”
On Mar. 2, 2017, Session explained that the meeting was attended by himself and two or three other staffers. They “listened to the ambassador and what his concerns might be.” The topics discussed included travel to Russia, terrorism and Ukraine. “I don’t recall any specific political discussions,” Sessions said.
Sept. 13. A spokesperson for Sessions indicated that he and Kislyak spoke by phone on this day, but then retracted that claim.
Nov. 8. Trump is elected president.
Nov. 18. President-elect Trump nominates Sessions to serve as his attorney general.
Jan 10, 2017. A hearing on Sessions’s nomination to serve as attorney general is held by the Senate Judiciary Committee. Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) asks about a CNN report on Russian ties to the Trump campaign that came out that day.
Sessions ‘unable to comment’ on Trump intelligence briefing reports
FRANKEN: CNN just published a story alleging that the intelligence community provided documents to the president-elect last week, that included information that “Russian operatives claim to have compromising personal and financial information about Mr. Trump.” These documents also allegedly say “there was a continuing exchange of information during the campaign between Trump surrogates and intermediaries for the Russian government.” Again, I’m telling you this as it’s coming out, so, you know.
But if it’s true, it’s obviously extremely serious, and if there is any evidence that anyone affiliated with the Trump campaign communicated with the Russian government in the course of this campaign, what will you do?
SESSIONS: Senator Franken, I’m not aware of any of those activities. I have been called a surrogate at a time or two in that campaign and I did not have communications with the Russians, and I’m unable to comment on it.
FRANKEN: Very well.
Jan. 12. The first questions about national security adviser-designate Michael Flynn’s interactions with Russia’s ambassador are reported by The Washington Post.
Jan. 15. Vice President-elect Mike Pence appears on “Face the Nation” and — erroneously, as it turns out — says that Flynn’s contacts with Kislyak were “strictly coincidental” and that Flynn and the Russian “did not discuss anything having to do with the United States’ decision to expel diplomats or impose censure against Russia.”
Jan. 17. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) sends Sessions a lengthy letterasking about Russia (and a number of other things).
Several of the President-Elect’s nominees or senior advisers have Russian ties. Have you been in contact with anyone connected to any part of the Russian government about the 2016 election, either before or after Election Day?
Jan. 20. Trump is inaugurated as president.
Feb. 8. Sessions is confirmed as attorney general in a 52-47 vote. Franken and Leahy — and every other Democrat save Sen. Joe Manchin III (D-W.Va.) — vote no.
March 1. The Post reveals Sessions’s two interactions with Kislyak.
Sessions’s staff releases a statement from the attorney general: “I never met with any Russian officials to discuss issues of the campaign. I have no idea what this allegation is about. It is false.”
A statement from Trump’s administration called the questions an “attack” and hinted that Franken was pushing the story for political purposes.
Sarah Isgur Flores, director of public affairs for the Department of Justice, went further in a statement to BuzzFeed.
“There was absolutely nothing misleading about his answer. Last year, the Senator had over 25 conversations with foreign ambassadors as a senior member of the Armed Services Committee, including the British, Korean, Japanese, Polish, Indian, Chinese, Canadian, Australian, German and Russian ambassadors,” she said. “He was asked during the hearing about communications between Russia and the Trump campaign—not about meetings he took as a senator and a member of the Armed Services Committee.”
March 2. Speaking with NBC, Sessions addresses the situation directly.”
Sessions had a third meeting with Kislyak in his Senate office in September. Officials declined to say whether U.S. intelligence agencies intercepted any Russian communications describing the third encounter.
As a result, the discrepancies center on two earlier Sessions-Kislyak conversations, including one that Sessions has acknowledged took place in July 2016 on the sidelines of the Republican National Convention.
By that point, Russian President Vladimir Putin had decided to embark on a secret campaign to help Trump win the White House by leaking damaging emails about his rival, Democrat Hillary Clinton, according to U.S. intelligence agencies.
Although it remains unclear how involved Kislyak was in the covert Russian campaign to aid Trump, his superiors in Moscow were eager for updates about the candidate’s positions, particularly regarding U.S. sanctions on Russia and long-standing disputes with the Obama administration over conflicts in Ukraine and Syria.
Kislyak also reported having a conversation with Sessions in April at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, where then-candidate Trump delivered his first major foreign policy address, according to the officials familiar with intelligence on Kislyak.
Sessions has said he does not remember any encounter with Kislyak at that event. In his June testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee, Sessions said, “I do not recall any conversations with any Russian official at the Mayflower Hotel.”
Later in that hearing, Sessions said that “it’s conceivable that that occurred. I just don’t remember it.”
Current and former U.S. officials said that assertion is at odds with Kislyak’s accounts of conversations during two encounters over the course of the campaign, one in April ahead of Trump’s first major foreign policy speech and another in July on the sidelines of the Republican National Convention.
The apparent discrepancy could pose new problems for Sessions at a time when his position in the administration appears increasingly tenuous.” Washington Post
Sessions met with Russian envoy twice, encounters he did not disclose in confirmation hearings March 1, 2017 Washington Post
September 8, 2016:”Then-Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) spoke twice last year with Russia’s ambassador to the United States, Justice Department officials said, encounters he did not disclose when asked about possible contacts between members of President Trump’s campaign and representatives of Moscow during Sessions’s confirmation hearing to become attorney general.
One of the meetings was a private conversation between Sessions and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak that took place in September in the senator’s office, at the height of what U.S. intelligence officials say was a Russian cyber campaign to upend the U.S. presidential race.”
July 18, 2016: “On the first day of the Republican National Convention, the Heritage Foundation hosted a panel conversation addressing European relations that was attended by a number of ambassadors. “Much of the discussion focused on Russia’s incursions into Ukraine and Georgia,” moderator Victor Ashe later wrote, adding that “[s]everal ambassadors asked for names of people who might impact foreign policy under Trump.”This appears to be the event after which Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak approached [Jeff] Sessions as part of a small group of foreign dignitaries. Sessions, The Post reports, ‘then spoke individually to some of the ambassadors, including Kislyak.'” Washington Post Sessions’ Timeline Washington Post
Sessions offered in recent months to resign as attorney general “Sessions announced his recusal shortly after he became attorney general and a day after The Washington Post revealed that he had twice met with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the campaign and did not disclose that fact to the Senate Judiciary Committee during his January confirmation hearing. Trump learned of the attorney general’s decision shortly before Sessions announced it at a news conference. The president’s anger has lingered for months, according to the people close to the White House. They said that Trump cites Sessions’s recusal as a factor that prompted the decision last month by Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein to appoint a special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, to oversee the expanding Russian investigation.” Washington Post June 6 ABC Breaking News
“Democrats spent the hours before the vote on Wednesday seething over the rebuke of Ms. Warren, of Massachusetts, who had been barred from speaking on the floor the previous night. Late Tuesday, Republicans voted to formally silence Ms. Warren after she read from a 1986 letter by Coretta Scott King that criticized Mr. Sessions for using “the awesome power of his office to chill the free exercise of the vote by black citizens” while serving as a United States attorney in Alabama. Since Mr. Trump announced his choice for attorney general, Mr. Sessions’s history with issues of race had assumed center stage. A committee hearing on his nomination included searing indictments from black Democratic lawmakers like Representative John Lewis of Georgia, the civil rights icon, and Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey, who broke with Senate tradition to testify against a peer.” NY TimesNow we know that Cory Booker took campaign contributions from Jared Kushner. MSN
“Jeff Sessions got confirmed as attorney general despite refusing to commit to recuse himself from DOJ inquiries into Trump and other administration officials.” Washington Post
“Sessions, then a U.S. senator from Alabama, was among Trump’s early supporters in Congress and went on television to promote the candidate. He has come under scrutiny for two meetings with Kislyak last year…Sessions said at a news conference Thursday that he was “taken aback” by a question — which referred to a breaking news story about contacts between Trump campaign surrogates and Russians. “In retrospect, I should have slowed down and said I did meet one Russian official a couple times. That would be the ambassador,” he said….John McLaughlin, a former deputy CIA director and acting CIA director under Obama, said that “it does strain credibility” that Sessions would have simply forgotten about his meetings with Kislyak when he asserted during his confirmation hearing to become attorney general that he had not met with Russian officials…Paul Saunders, a Russia specialist at the Center for the National Interest and a former official in the George W. Bush administration…hosted then-candidate Donald Trump for a foreign policy speech in April last year. Kislyak was in the audience as one of four invited foreign ambassadors as Trump proclaimed, “America-first will be the major and overriding theme of my administration.” Kislyak is known to collect scores of business cards as he moves around Washington, and to follow up, sometimes relentlessly, with requests for one-on-one meetings. Sessions said Thursday that Kislyak had also invited him to lunch, an invitation he never took up…In the case of Sessions, who was considered a top prospect for a Cabinet job when Kislyak visited him in his Senate office in September, Kislyak would have wanted to know: How reasonable is he from a Russia perspective? Hall said [Steven Hall, former head of Russia operations at the CIA].” Washington Post
Daily Kos Petition:”At his Senate confirmation hearing, Attorney General Jeff Sessions lied under oath that he had never had contact with the Russian government as a surrogate for the Trump campaign. We now know that he met with Russian officials at the Republican National Convention, right as they were engaging in cyberattacks to influence the election in favor of Donald Trump. After claiming he would “recuse himself” on all Trump-Russia matters at the Justice Department, Sessions then advised President Trump to fire FBI Director James Comey—right after Comey had issued subpoenas on the Trump-Russia investigation and requested more funding. As the nation’s top law enforcement official, Jeff Sessions has completely violated our trust. He must resign, and his successor appoint a special prosecutor to fully and openly investigate the Trump campaign’s ties with Russian officials.”
From Rolling Stone’s Meet the Leaders of the Trump Resistance by Tim Dickinson : “No cabinet pick has united the Trump resistance like Jeff Sessions, the Alabama senator tapped to head the Justice Department, where he would have broad autonomy to set the national course on the enforcement of civil rights, drug and immigration policy. Sessions was blocked from Senate confirmation once before, when the body refused to seat him as federal judge in the mid-Eighties, following hearings that detailed a distressing history of racism. As a U.S. attorney, Sessions had prosecuted black voting-rights activists – close associates of Martin Luther King Jr. – on trumped-up accusations of voter fraud. (The activists were found not guilty.) And he’s railed against the Voting Rights Act as “intrusive.” According to Senate testimony, Sessions repeatedly referred to a black subordinate as “boy” and opined – during an investigation of a Ku Klux Klan lynching – that he’d thought the KKK was “OK until I found out they smoked pot.” (Sessions denied denigrating his colleague, and insisted the Klan comment was a joke.) Sessions also called civil rights groups, including the NAACP, “un-American organizations teaching anti-American values.” In his U.S. Senate career, Sessions has continued a track record as an extremist. He’s an unreconstructed drug warrior – Sessions insisted last year that “good people don’t smoke marijuana.” An immigration hardliner, Sessions has long ties to the far-right organization FAIR; “he has cavorted with groups that we consider to be hate groups,” says Richard Cohen, president of the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Sharry, the immigrant-rights leader, calls the idea of Sessions enforcing civil rights and immigration laws “preposterous.” Todd A. Cox, director of policy at the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, says “it is unimaginable that he could be trusted to enforce this nation’s civil rights laws.” Coretta Scott King warned in a 1986 letter that Sessions’ appointment to the judiciary would “irreparably damage the work of my husband.” Sessions faces deep resistance from the drug-reform community, concerned Sessions will break the fragile federal Drug War truce that has enabled state-legal marijuana to boom into a $7 billion industry. Sessions is also opposed by conservatives, who fear he will derail bipartisan progress on issues like criminal justice reform. “Sessions illustrates the need for a new conservative movement,” McMullin says.”