Your Daily Dose of Trump and His Administration News
- Joseph Bondy, an attorney representing Rudy Giuliani’s indicted associate, Lev Parnas, asked that documents and recordings seized by feds seized during his client’s arrest be released to the House committees leading the impeachment inquiry into President Trump.
- In another ruling against Trump, Judge Brown Jackson denies Trump request for stay in McGahn case and orders McGahn to abide by Congressional subpoena and appear for testimony. Judge Brown called the DOJ arguments “disingenuous” and an “unacceptable mischaracterization.”
- The Trump Administration has proposed tariffs “up to 100%” on certain French goods (about $2.4 billion worth) in retaliation for France’s digital services tax. Items include: Sparkling wine, Swiss, Gruyere, Pecorino and other cheeses, Handbags, and Various makeup products.
- France and the EU said they were ready to retaliate if President Trump acted on a threat to impose duties of up to 100% on imports of Champagne, handbags and other French products worth $2.4 billion.
- The Trump administration has released more than $100 million in assistance to Lebanon that had been on hold in recent months. A congressional aide also said the administration “has not provided any explanation of why it was held” in the first place
- President Trump on Monday questioned whether he and his allies could go to the Supreme Court to halt the House impeachment inquiry. Trump tweeted shortly after arriving in the United Kingdom for two days of NATO meetings that he had read House Republicans’ draft defense in which his allies insist there was no evidence of wrongdoing in Trump’s interactions with Ukraine. “Great job! Radical Left has NO CASE,” Trump tweeted. “Read the Transcripts. Shouldn’t even be allowed. Can we go to Supreme Court to stop?”
NOTE: Legal experts doubt the chances of the Supreme Court taking up such a case. They noted that the Constitution grants impeachment powers to the House and that Chief Justice John Roberts would be expected to preside over a Senate trial.
- With a 70-15 vote, the Senate confirmed Dan Brouillette to be President Trump’s second Energy Secretary replacing Rick Perry. He served as Deputy Energy Secretary since August 2017.
- Attorney General William P. Barr has told associates he disagrees with the Justice Department’s inspector general on one of the key findings in an upcoming report — that the FBI had enough information in July 2016 to justify launching an investigation into members of the Trump campaign.
- A federal appeals court ruled Tuesday that Deutsche Bank and Capital One can hand over years of President Trump’s financial records in compliance with House subpoenas. The ruling in the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals deals another loss in the courts for Trump, who has fought attempts to obtain his financial records, including his tax returns.The case is likely destined for the Supreme Court, where the president has already appealed two other lower court rulings requiring him to share his hidden financial documents.
- House Democrats on Tuesday released a 300-page impeachment report asserting that President Trump abused his power by trying to enlist Ukraine to help him in the 2020 presidential election. The report said that Mr. Trump “placed his own personal and political interests above the national interests of the United States,” seeking to undermine American democracy and endangering national security.
- Brian Barnard, who was a senior adviser to Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, has left the administration to join Uber’s Washington office. He’ll be a senior manager of federal affairs at Uber and plans to register to lobby.
- President Trump on Tuesday claimed to not know Prince Andrew despite multiple pictures of the two men together taken over the years.
- President Trump’s long-standing pledge to revive American manufacturing through a muscular trade policy took another hit with new data showing that the sector continued to slow for a fourth straight month.
- Prosecutors say more charges are possible against Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, two associates of President Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani. The pair have been indicted on charges related to alleged campaign finance violations.
- A damning part of the new House report is the newly disclosed phone calls between Giuliani and everyone else involved – Nunes staff, Parnas and Fruman, OMB, Bolton, and others. On the day Marie Yovanovitch was told to “be on the next plane home” Giuliani took part in 13 phone calls with the White House and the Office of Management and Budget.
- Lev Parnas’ attorney, Joseph Bondy, tells PBS correspondent, Yamiche Alcindor : “Everything that Mr. Parnas has been attempting to convey to Congress and the American public would appear to be validated by the existence of phone records for Devin Nunes, Rudy Giuliani, President Trump.”
- Lewis Lukens, the deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in London, claims that he was prematurely fired from his post in 2018 because he cited former President Obama in a speech, GQ magazine reports. According to GQ, Lukens asserts the reason he was fired was because he had told an anecdote about Obama in a speech he gave to a pair of British universities right before Halloween.
- Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham says he is “1,000% confident” that Russia, not Ukraine, meddled in the 2016 US presidential election, breaking from President Trump and others in his party who have pushed the discredited conspiracy theory.
- Armed with never-before-seen phone records, Democrats on Tuesday accused President Trump’s allies of coordinating with a conservative journalist to peddle “false narratives” about Trump’s opponents as part of his multi-pronged pressure campaign on Ukraine. The House Intelligence Committee’s impeachment report says the committee’s top Repubican, Rep. Devin Nunes, was linked to that effort. The records were subpoenaed from third-parties. “Mr. Solomon was not working alone,” the report said of conservative journalist John Solomon’s articles throughout 2019 that spread Trump-backed conspiracies about Ukraine.The phone records, which are labeled in the report’s endnotes as coming from AT&T, show a web of communications between Solomon, Trump personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, Ukrainian American businessman Lev Parnas, Nunes and the White House’s budget office.
- Trump’s obstruction of Congress included 12 witnesses prevented from testifying (10 defied subpoenas) and Executive branch agencies ignored subpoenas for documents.