Trump escalates Omar controversy | TheHill


President Trump has a new foil: first-year Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.).

Comments from the Minnesota lawmaker last month about 9/11, criticizing its use as a cudgel against Muslim Americans, have been the subject of intense criticism that escalated on Friday when Trump highlighted them in a video he tweeted.

Speaking at the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) last month, Omar said “some people did something” in reference to the 9/11 attacks before explaining that some used the attack to advocate for taking away civil liberties from Muslim Americans.

Trump on Friday shared an edited video superimposing the remarks over images and video of the 2001 terrorist attacks that appeared to suggest Omar was dismissing what happened. “We will never forget,” he tweeted.

The tweet drew immediate backlash and led Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to issue a statement on Sunday saying she had alerted the U.S. Capitol Police in order to ensure Omar’s safety.

 

Source: Trump escalates Omar controversy | TheHill

Trump lashes out at New York Times for Mueller reporting | TheHill


“The New York Times had no legitimate sources, which would be totally illegal, concerning the Mueller Report. In fact, they probably had no sources at all! They are a Fake News paper who have already been forced to apologize for their incorrect and very bad reporting on me!” Trump tweeted.

The Times report detailed concerns from unidentified investigators that Mueller’s findings are worse for Trump than Barr’s summary made them appear.

“False. Our reporters interviewed multiple government officials and others to gather the facts for the story,” The Times said in a statement responding to Trump’s tweet.

 

Source: Trump lashes out at New York Times for Mueller reporting | TheHill

Trump rejects ‘man-made’ climate change | TheHill


President Trump on Tuesday disputed the scientific consensus that human activity contributes to climate change in his most expansive rejection yet of his own administration’s report on global warming.

In an interview with The Washington Post, Trump said “I don’t see” that climate change is man-made and disagreed with the report’s findings that it poses significant health and safety concerns.

“One of the problems that a lot of people like myself, we have very high levels of intelligence but we’re not necessarily such believers,” Trump said. “You look at our air and our water and it’s right now at a record clean.”

On the issue of whether global warming is caused by humans, Trump added: “As to whether or not it’s man-made and whether or not the effects that you’re talking about are there, I don’t see it — not nearly like it is.”

But Trump said the air quality in places like China, Russia and South America is “incredibly dirty,” an apparent acknowledgement that different countries have looser environmental standards.

“And when you’re talking about an atmosphere, oceans are very small. And it blows over and it sails over,” he said. “I mean, we take thousands of tons of garbage off our beaches all the time that comes over from Asia. It just flows right down the Pacific, it flows, and we say where does this come from.”

The comments come days after his administration published its first National Climate Assessment, which found that climate change could upend daily life for many Americans as it takes a toll on infrastructure, human health and the world’s energy supply. It also said current and global and regional efforts are not enough to reverse the trends.

Trump, who decided last year to withdraw from the Obama-era Paris climate accord, has previously criticized the report, and his top aides have said its warnings are overheated.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters on Tuesday that the report is “not based on facts” and because the science behind climate modeling “is never exact.”

Source: Trump rejects ‘man-made’ climate change | TheHill

White House threatening to again pull Acosta press credentials : CNN | TheHill


The White House is threatening to again pull CNN correspondent Jim Acosta’s press credentials after a court-ordered temporary restoration expires at the end of the month, the network reported late Sunday.

“Friday’s court ruling means that a temporary restraining order is in effect for 14 days. But [White House] officials sent Acosta a letter stating that his press pass is set to be suspended again once the restraining order expires,” reported CNN senior media correspondent Brian Stelter.

CNN argued in a statement provided to Stelter that the action would threaten “all journalists and news organizations.”

“The White House is continuing to violate the First and 5th Amendments of the Constitution,” the network stated. “These actions threaten all journalists and news organizations. Jim Acosta and CNN will continue to report the news about the White House and the President.”

The Hill has reached out to the White House, which pulled Acosta’s press credentials after a contentious exchange with President Trump during a news conference in which he refused to yield the microphone, for comment.

CNN on Monday requested an emergency hearing in U.S. District Court to address the White House’s plan to again pull the credentials.

U.S. District Judge Timothy Kelly last Friday granted CNN’s request to restore Acosta’s hard press pass through a 14-day temporary injunction that expires on Nov. 30.

The ruling was limited, however, with Kelly stating that only Acosta’s Fifth Amendment rights to due process were violated. The judge, who was appointed by Trump, did not issue a ruling on whether the correspondent’s First Amendment rights were violated.

 

Source: White House threatening to again pull Acosta press credentials: CNN | TheHill

Did the White House get caught in a lie about the FBI HQ project? | MSNBC


As regular readers know, Donald Trump’s keen interest in the FBI’s headquarters has been at the center of an ongoing controversy. Axios reported in July, for example, that there’s been a debate ongoing for quite a while about whether to leave the FBI where it is or relocate the bureau’s headquarters to a nearby suburb. The president is “dead opposed to plans to move it out of D.C.”

Asked for an explanation, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said last month, “The president wanted to save the government money,” which is why he directly intervened in the project. As the Wall Street Journal  reports today, Sanders’ argument wasn’t true.

New documents suggest the Trump administration was aware that its decision to keep the FBI headquarters in downtown Washington, D.C., would cost more than a competing proposal to relocate to the suburbs, contradicting public assertions from the White House that it wanted to save taxpayers money.

A newly released email exchange shows that Andrew Abrams, deputy associate director of the White House’s Office of Management and Budget, attempting to prepare Emily Murphy, chief of the General Services Administration, for testimony before Congress about the FBI headquarters.

In the email, Mr. Abrams says the toughest question Ms. Murphy could receive is, “How is this a good deal for taxpayers?” The email doesn’t dispute that the proposal to keep the facility in Washington would cost more and be less secure than relocating to the suburbs in Virginia or Maryland.

The information was obtained by House Democrats, several of whom wrote a letter to White House Chief of Staff John Kelly today, demanding additional information.

Given the last two years, I can appreciate why a “Sanders lies about a thing” story may seem uninteresting, but in this case, don’t be too quick to dismiss the revelation. We’re talking about a controversy that points to possible presidential corruption, which now also appears to involve multiple officials who haven’t told the truth.

Let’s back up for a minute to review how we reached this point, because there’s a controversy here that could pose meaningful trouble for the White House.

For those unfamiliar with D.C., the Federal Bureau of Investigation is currently located along Pennsylvania Avenue, about four blocks east of the White House.

As we’ve discussed, it’s also about a block from the Trump International Hotel, which the president still owns and profits from. If the current FBI headquarters were redeveloped in its existing space, it’d benefit Trump’s investment. For that matter, keeping the bureau in its current home would guarantee that a competing hotel wouldn’t go in at that location.

All of which makes it interesting that the Trump White House was directly involved in the talks about plans for the building.

Congressional Democrats recently released materials on a Jan. 24, 2018, meeting at which Trump spoke directly with General Services Administrator Emily Murphy about abandoning the plan to relocate the FBI to a larger campus in a nearby suburb.

 

Source: Did the White House get caught in a lie about the FBI HQ project? | MSNBC