AMERICAblog NewsElections – AMERICAblog News http://americablog.com A great nation deserves the truth // One of America's top progressive sites for news and opinion Fri, 22 Jun 2018 18:31:09 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8.6 Paul Begala says Mitch McConnell is guilty of “borderline treason” http://americablog.com/2018/06/paul-begala-says-mitch-mcconnell-is-guilty-of-borderline-treason.html http://americablog.com/2018/06/paul-begala-says-mitch-mcconnell-is-guilty-of-borderline-treason.html#respond Thu, 07 Jun 2018 21:09:13 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144461 Democratic strategist Paul Begala, who played a key role in helping get President Clinton elected to the White House in 1992, joins us for a free-ranging discussion  about the Trump era and whether America can survive the unprecedented attacks on our norms and democracy itself. Paul talks in particular about Mitch McConnell, and how he […]

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Democratic strategist Paul Begala, who played a key role in helping get President Clinton elected to the White House in 1992, joins us for a free-ranging discussion  about the Trump era and whether America can survive the unprecedented attacks on our norms and democracy itself.

Paul talks in particular about Mitch McConnell, and how he singlehandedly sold our country out when we needed him most, at the onset of the Russia election hack. And he examines what Democrats (including himself) did wrong in 2016, and how we can fix things going forward, such as reaching out to Trump voters without selling our souls, and promoting a concrete positive message for the midterm elections (Paul details a health care “contract with America” that he favors).

Paul Also talks about our chances in the fall elections, and his thoughts on impeachment. This is a good one, I know you’ll enjoy it.

This is a 14-minute excerpt of the 73-minute episode. Premium patrons can listen to the entire episode, and support our podcast, here.

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Women won big on Tuesday http://americablog.com/2018/06/women-won-big-on-tuesday.html http://americablog.com/2018/06/women-won-big-on-tuesday.html#respond Thu, 07 Jun 2018 14:32:50 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144454 Democrats (and progressives) had a huge victory on Tuesday in the biggest primary day before the 2018 elections, and among those who won big: women. A record number of women are on the ballot this year, and a lot of them are winning. Here’s a bit more from HuffPo: More than 500 women have so far […]

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Democrats (and progressives) had a huge victory on Tuesday in the biggest primary day before the 2018 elections, and among those who won big: women. A record number of women are on the ballot this year, and a lot of them are winning. Here’s a bit more from HuffPo:

More than 500 women have so far filed to run in primaries this year, according to the Center for American Women and Politics. That number represents a 67 percent jump from 2016. More than 110 of those women have won their races, 30 of them in California alone. Most of the women running are Democrats, although one-third of Republican women running have also won their races.

Yet despite the unprecedented number of female candidates, they still only represent about 23 percent of all candidates running nationwide, Lawless noted. “That’s not much different to the proportion in previous election cycles. Men are motivated to run for office too, and that’s why we’re seeing such a crowded primary.”

Let me walk you through a few of the most-notable female candidates on the ballot this fall, along with links for you to donate to their campaigns. If we’re going to take back the Congress in November, we need to support good candidates NOW. So here is my certainly-not-all-inclusive list of candidates of note who either won their primaries Tuesday, or are simply kick-ass women we need to support in November:

NEW JERSEY: Former US Navy pilot Mikie Sherrill is running for Congress from New Jersey in the open seat being vacated by GOP Trump protégé Rodney Frelinghuysen. She won her primary Tuesday night, and she’s the real deal. Donate here.

NEW MEXICO: Deb Haaland won her primary Tuesday, and is set to become the first Native American woman to ever serve in Congress. Donate here.

TEXAS: Veronica Escobar is set to become the first Latina congresswoman from Texas. Donate here.

ARIZONA: Kyrsten Sinema is running for the US Senate, and would be the first openly-bisexual US Senator. Donate here.

IOWA: Abby Finkenauer won her primary on Tuesday, and will be the youngest woman elected to Congress if she beats Tea Party Trump-supporting GOP congressman Rod Blum this fall. Donate here.

KENTUCKY: Former Marine fighter pilot Amy McGrath is running for Congress as a Democrat from the 6th district in Kentucky. McGrath just won her primary last night. Now let’s take her across the finish line. Donate here.

NEVADA: Jacky Rosen has the best to unseat a Republican US Senator this fall, in her battle against TrumpCare architect Dean Heller. Donate here.

Please do give to these candidates. The only way we’re going to win this fall is by supporting our candidates now, today. I cannot emphasize enough how important it is for us to win back the Congress this fall. Our entire strategy for stopping Trump, and putting America back on the right path, depends on it. Please help.

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Russia swung the election to Trump http://americablog.com/2018/05/russia-swung-the-election-to-trump.html http://americablog.com/2018/05/russia-swung-the-election-to-trump.html#respond Wed, 23 May 2018 14:17:02 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144418 Former Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, finally admitted what most of us already suspected: Donald Trump didn’t really win the election, Russia did. In his new memoir, “Facts and Fears: Hard Truths From a Life in Intelligence,” Clapper gives a scathing analysis of Trump’s victory (well, loss) against Hillary Clinton, and the role Russia played […]

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Former Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, finally admitted what most of us already suspected: Donald Trump didn’t really win the election, Russia did.

In his new memoir, “Facts and Fears: Hard Truths From a Life in Intelligence,” Clapper gives a scathing analysis of Trump’s victory (well, loss) against Hillary Clinton, and the role Russia played in the 2016 election. According to Clapper, Trump wouldn’t have won the election without Russia’s help:

“Of course the Russian efforts affected the outcome. Surprising even themselves, they swung the election to a Trump win. To conclude otherwise stretches logic, common sense, and credulity to the breaking point. Less than eighty thousand votes in three key states swung the election. I have no doubt that more votes than that were influenced by this massive effort by the Russians.”

The Russians swung the election to Trump.

And but-for Russia, Hillary Clinton would now be president.

But it’s actually worse than that. As Clapper notes, Trump has remained “aggressively indifferent” to the news, and then fact, of Russia’s interference. At the very least you had soft-collusion (my term) with Russia — Trump Jr., and Trump himself, making clear that they welcomed Russia’s help. And at worst, they were knowingly part of a criminal conspiracy to defraud the American people of one of our most fundamental rights, the right to vote.

Donald Trump is mortally afraid of the Mueller probe because he fears, rightly, that the growing evidence of collusion with Russia calls into question his electoral legitimacy. And he should be. Even had Team-Trump not actively colluded with the Russians (I think they did), Russia still got Trump elected, and Trump’s victory is still, thus, tainted.

It’s bad enough that Trump “won” by losing the popular vote — a metric that in nearly every country in the world would spell loss. But Trump won the presidency of the United States due to the intervention of a foreign enemy, and one he welcomed (“Russia, if you’re listening…”) Had Hillary Clinton been elected under similar circumstances, let’s imagine how that would have played out:

1. Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell would have said from day one that Hillary wasn’t legitimately elected, and they would have attempted to block the swearing-in until the American people could find out what “really” happened.

2. Trump would have declared himself the winner, and the GOP would have rallied around him. They’d have even held their own swearing-in, and set up their own White House in exile, if not openly-challenging Hillary’s right to occupy 1600 Pennyslvania.

3. The Republicans would have stopped all legislation, and nominations, until the American people could be assured that a Russian spy wasn’t working out of the Oval Office.

4. It would have been non-stop “Treason” hearings on the Hill.

5. The GOP would have called for Hillary and Kaine to step down and be replaced by a member of the other rightfully-elected party (Paul Ryan).

6. And the electoral college would have been gone by now had two Democratic presidents in two decades been elected after having lost the popular vote.

And finally, if Democrats said “no” to any of this, there would have been well-orchestrated riots in the streets. Eventually, some in the Democratic establishment would have urged Hillary to step down “for the good of the country.”

So what are we going to do about it?

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Stop Devin Nunes http://americablog.com/2018/05/stop-devin-nunes.html http://americablog.com/2018/05/stop-devin-nunes.html#respond Tue, 22 May 2018 22:09:35 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144415 One of the most effective, and dangerous, Trump allies is House Intelligence Chair Devin Nunes. Nunes, for reasons unknown, has put his career on the line — and our safety — in order to derail the Mueller investigation and save Donald Trump, to hell with finding out what Russia actually did to undermine our election. […]

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One of the most effective, and dangerous, Trump allies is House Intelligence Chair Devin Nunes. Nunes, for reasons unknown, has put his career on the line — and our safety — in order to derail the Mueller investigation and save Donald Trump, to hell with finding out what Russia actually did to undermine our election. And he’s at it again.

At the end of this Nunes Update I’m going to ask you to contribute to the campaign of Nunes’ Democratic opponent, Andrew Janz. But first a bit more background.

NUNES LIES ABOUT UNMASKING

Now, you may recall that Nunes is the good fellow who in March 2017 ran to the White House to brief Trump on new evidence he “found” that Obama administration officials had “incidentally collected” and “unmasked” Trump campaign officials. In fact, the White House “found” the information, gave it to Nunes, who then held a press conference claiming “he’d” found it, and then Nunes ran to the White House to brief them on the information they had surreptitiously given him. It was all a huge scam. In the end, there was no smoking gun, and Obama official Susan Rice it was determined did nothing wrong.

NUNES LIES ABOUT HIS SECRET MEMO

Nunes’ next stroke of genius to release the much-ballyhooed “memo” about the FBI secretly surveilling former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page AFTER Page left the Trump campaign. Page, you’ll recall, had all sorts of creepy Russia contacts before and during the campaign, and the FBI was concerned that he was a Russian asset. In an effort to brand the entire Trump-Russia investigation as tainted, Nunes claimed that the warrant used to spy on Page — the FISA warrant — was inappropriately issued. We were told, falsely, that the warrant was based on the Steele dossier, when in fact, the Steele dossier was one small part of the larger presentation to the FISA judges (who were all Republican appointees). We were also told that the Steele dossier had been debunked — it hasn’t been — and that the dossier was the entire basis of the Trump-Russia investigation — it wasn’t. Trump-Russia began when Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos bragged to an Australian diplomat in London that a Russian intermediary told him the Russians had hacked emails relating to Hillary Clinton. Papadopoulos and the Trump campaign didn’t even bother informing the FBI. Once the Nunes Memo was finally made public, all of Nunes’ claims fell.

NUNES LIES ABOUT RUSSIA’S ELECTION INTERFERENCE

Then Nunes, as head of the House Intelligence Committee, issued a “final” report on Trump-Russia, without interviewing scores of key witnesses. The “final” report determined that Russia had no intent on helping Trump win the election. In fact, everyone, including the GOP-run Senate Intelligence Committee, agrees that the Russians tried to help Trump win.

NUNES LIES ABOUT TRUMP CAMPAIGN BEING INFILTRATED BY AN FBI SPY

And now, Nunes is feeding Trump’s descent into paranoia by claiming that Trump’s election campaign was infiltrated by an FBI spy — it wasn’t. What happened was that the FBI, while investigating the accurate reports that the Russians had infiltrated Trump’s campaign, used an outside information to speak with the potentially-compromised Trump campaign officials to see what the Russians had been telling them. Ironically, the FBI didn’t want to approach the Trump campaign itself, lest word got out, and it appeared right before the election that “the FBI was investigating Donald Trump,” even though, in fact, the FBI was investigating Donald Trump. (Yes, you are correct, the FBI had no such concerns about publicly announcing, repeatedly, that it was investigating Hillary Clinton.)

So, Nunes started demanding that the FBI release the name of its confidential informant. The name finally did leak. That could have a number of impacts:

1. The man is ruined as a future FBI informant.

2. The man’s life could be at risk.

3. Future potential FBI informants are going to think twice about the FBI’s promise to keep their names secret.

4. And more on point, future potential FBI informants interested in turning state’s evidence against Donald Trump are going to think twice about the FBI’s promise to protect them.

And now, because of course Trump got involved, claiming repeatedly (and falsely) that the FBI embedded a spy on his presidential campaign, and demanding that the FBI investigate its own investigation, the FBI is having to sit down with Nunes and fellow House Republican Trey Gowdy on Thursday, where the FBI will provide access to secret documents about the information. No Democrats are invited. No Senate Republicans are invited. Just Nunes the Red and Trey Gowdy, who used to be nuts (he of Benghazi fame), but now that he’s retiring seems to have found a modicum of sanity, so Gowdy is the wild card here.

One additional benefit to Trump of all of this: Nunes can then brief Trump and his defense team, so they’ll know what information the FBI has on Trump.

WE MUST DEFEAT DEVIN NUNES IN NOVEMBER

As I said at the outset, Devin Nunes is Donald Trump’s most effective ally in Congress. Nunes has made it his mission — for reasons no one has quite figured out (is Nunes himself compromised?) — to derail Mueller’s Trump-Russia investigation. And we need to make it our mission to defeat Devin Nunes at the ballot box in November.

One thing folks need to understand about elections. Yes, we need to vote on election day. But we also need to get involved NOW to ensure that Democrats win and Republicans lose in November. That means donating to  good progressives who are taking on bad Republicans, like Andrew Janz taking on Devin Nunes. They need your support now — not ten days before the election, now. Andrew Janz is a great progressive taking on a god-awful Trump-Republican. In addition to be no fan of treason, Andrew Janz is pro-choice, pro-immigration, pro-healthcare, pro-Dreamers and pro-DACA, pro- gun control and pro-education. And Janz is giving Nunes a run for his money. Please donate and support Janz’s campaign now.

STOPPING TRUMP STARTS WITH STOPPING THE GOP CONGRESS

As Devin Nunes’ interference makes clear, one of the best ways to stop Trump is by stopping his enablers in Congress. By getting rid of Devin Nunes, and taking back the House and possibly even the Senate, we not only stop people like Nunes from running interference for Trump, we also take over the reins of power, and the subpoena power that comes with it. That means that every Trump-related controversy that arises — from his ongoing graft, to his leaks of classified info to the Russians, to, most importantly, his election collusion with Russia, the Saudis, the Emiratis and more — all of that can and will be investigated by Democratic-run congressional committees. But that will only happen if we win. And we will only win if you help.

So please donate to Andrew Janz’s campaign to defeat Treason-Weasel Devin Nunes. And thanks.

JOHN

red-donateIndependent journalism and activism is more needed than ever. Please support my work with a $25 donation. We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

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GOP campaign consultant John Weaver on John McCain & the GOP Stockholm Syndrome under Trump http://americablog.com/2018/05/gop-campaign-consultant-john-weaver-on-john-mccain-the-gop-stockholm-syndrome-under-trump.html http://americablog.com/2018/05/gop-campaign-consultant-john-weaver-on-john-mccain-the-gop-stockholm-syndrome-under-trump.html#respond Mon, 21 May 2018 17:19:15 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144410 John Weaver is a longtime GOP presidential campaign manager (McCain 2000 & 2008 (for part of the campaign), Huntsman 2012, Kasich 2016) who, rare among campaign operatives, also nearly worked for the Democrats in the 2000s. A vocal Never-Trumper, John spoke to us today about John McCain and the “Stockholm Syndrome” grasp that Donald Trump […]

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John Weaver is a longtime GOP presidential campaign manager (McCain 2000 & 2008 (for part of the campaign), Huntsman 2012, Kasich 2016) who, rare among campaign operatives, also nearly worked for the Democrats in the 2000s.

A vocal Never-Trumper, John spoke to us today about John McCain and the “Stockholm Syndrome” grasp that Donald Trump has on today’s Republican party. John also talked to us about just how rare it is for a presidential campaign to have any foreign contacts at all, let alone the 75 contacts with Russians that Donald Trump’s campaign had, and then hid. We also talked to John about impeachment, which he favors if Mueller catches Trump with the goods, and his views of Karl Rove and Matt Schlapp. After John left, Cliff and I discuss North Korea, and Trump’s meltdown this weekend over his delusion that the FBI “infiltrated” his 2016 presidential campaign (they didn’t).

John rounds out our recent deeper-dive into the Never-Trump movement.

Hope you enjoy. (Image of John Weaver courtesy of C-Span.)

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Guest Ohio Democratic party chair David Pepper on gerrymandering reform & his time with Putin http://americablog.com/2018/05/guest-ohio-democratic-party-chair-david-pepper-on-gerrymandering-reform-his-time-with-putin.html http://americablog.com/2018/05/guest-ohio-democratic-party-chair-david-pepper-on-gerrymandering-reform-his-time-with-putin.html#respond Thu, 17 May 2018 17:17:17 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144402 Cliff and I talk with Ohio Democratic party chair David Pepper. Our discussion includes: Ohio’s recent successful gerrymandering reform; David’s extensive Russian background, the three years he spent working with Vladimir Putin in St. Petersburg, and his impressions of Putin; Russian election interference and how the Ohio case sadly mirrors the confusion and disinterest that […]

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Cliff and I talk with Ohio Democratic party chair David Pepper.

Our discussion includes: Ohio’s recent successful gerrymandering reform; David’s extensive Russian background, the three years he spent working with Vladimir Putin in St. Petersburg, and his impressions of Putin; Russian election interference and how the Ohio case sadly mirrors the confusion and disinterest that Trump is showing the issue at the federal level; about a series of Ohio scandals that should help Democrats in November; and more generally a discussion of key Ohio races taking place this fall. And finally, David talks about his new book, “The Wingman.

Below is a 10-minute excerpt (about gerrymandering and Putin) of the 75-minute long episode. Premium patrons can listen to the entire episode, and support our podcast, here.

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Support LGBT hero Zach Wahls http://americablog.com/2018/05/support-lgbt-hero-zach-wahls.html http://americablog.com/2018/05/support-lgbt-hero-zach-wahls.html#respond Wed, 16 May 2018 23:27:59 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144398 As a straight college kid with two lesbian moms, Zach Wahls famously spoke out in favor of gay marriage before the Iowa House of Representatives back in 2012, when he was only 19 years old. Zach gave an amazing speech, you can check it out here. He then went on to lead a campaign, as a former […]

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As a straight college kid with two lesbian moms, Zach Wahls famously spoke out in favor of gay marriage before the Iowa House of Representatives back in 2012, when he was only 19 years old.

Zach gave an amazing speech, you can check it out here. He then went on to lead a campaign, as a former Eagle Scout, to successfully pressure the Boy Scouts to drop their gay ban. Zach is the real deal. He was there to help us when we needed him. And now he needs our help in return.

Zach is now running for the Iowa State Senate, and I’d like to ask you to support his campaign for a seat held by a Democrat who is not running for reelection. You can donate to Zach here.

Zach Wahls

If we want good Democrats, we need to elect them AND find them young, and get them involved in the political process early on. And they don’t get any better than Zach. I’ve gotten to know Zach over the years, and he’s an amazing young man who is going to go far in progressive politics. His top three issues for this race are health care, education, and workers’ rights. The primary is in just three weeks, and then the general election is in the fall.

No one is more deserving of our help than Zach. He was there for the LGBT community when most kids his age were worrying about final exams. Please join me in returning the favor by helping elect Zach to the Iowa State Senate. This guy is going to go far, so long as we help him. Please donate $25 or more to his campaign. And as this is a local race, your donation will go a LONG way — you can actually make a difference in electing the next generation of progressives. Support Zach now.

And do take a minute and watch Zach’s speech, at only 19 years of age, before the Iowa legislature. It’s still one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen. I think you’ll agree.

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Guest Amanda Carpenter on how Trump is gaslighting America http://americablog.com/2018/05/guest-amanda-carpenter-on-how-trump-is-gaslighting-america.html http://americablog.com/2018/05/guest-amanda-carpenter-on-how-trump-is-gaslighting-america.html#respond Tue, 15 May 2018 14:28:27 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144393 Prominent Never-Trumper and CNN contributor Amanda Carpenter joins us in today’s UnPresidented podcast for a discussion of her new book, “Gaslighting America: Why We Love It When Trump Lies to Us.” Among the topics: Trump’s birtherism; why the GOP fell for Trump and the importance of “the Flight 93 essay”; why Ted Cruz caved after […]

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Prominent Never-Trumper and CNN contributor Amanda Carpenter joins us in today’s UnPresidented podcast for a discussion of her new book, “Gaslighting America: Why We Love It When Trump Lies to Us.”

Among the topics: Trump’s birtherism; why the GOP fell for Trump and the importance of “the Flight 93 essay”; why Ted Cruz caved after initially publicly challenging Trump; how the GOP prepared the ground for Trump eventual arise; how the GOP ostracizes Trump critics; whether Trump should be impeached; and still, throughout all of this, why there’s cause for hope (which Amanda still, amazingly, has). It was another really interesting interview, we hope you enjoy.

Below is a 10-minute excerpt of our 70-minute episode. Premium patrons can listen to the entire episode, and support our podcast, here.

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President Pelosi http://americablog.com/2018/04/president-pelosi.html http://americablog.com/2018/04/president-pelosi.html#respond Tue, 24 Apr 2018 20:09:15 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144320 If Trump gets impeached, convicted and removed from office — and Democrats take back the House in the elections this fall, as currently expected — Democrat Nancy Pelosi could become president. How about them apples? In today’s UnPresidented podcast episode — snippet below — there’s a lot of focus on women: In addition to Pelosi […]

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If Trump gets impeached, convicted and removed from office — and Democrats take back the House in the elections this fall, as currently expected — Democrat Nancy Pelosi could become president. How about them apples?

In today’s UnPresidented podcast episode — snippet below — there’s a lot of focus on women: In addition to Pelosi and impeachment, we talk about the never-ending attacks on Hillary Clinton by the Republicans and the media; the lack of attention being played to a hugely important US House race in Arizona in which Democrat Hiral Tipirneni has a real chance for an upset in this traditionally-Republican seat; and another hand-holding snafu between Trump and Melania, who clearly doesn’t want to touch her husband with a ten-foot pole.

We also discuss Trump’s abominable behavior with French President Macron, and his embattled Veterans Affairs secretary nominee Ronny Jackson. Lots to unpack today.

This is an 8-minute snippet of the 70-minute episode, below. Premium patrons can listen to the entire episode here.

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Neera Tanden: “Trump acts like a traitor” http://americablog.com/2018/04/neera-tanden-trump-acts-like-a-traitor.html http://americablog.com/2018/04/neera-tanden-trump-acts-like-a-traitor.html#respond Wed, 18 Apr 2018 19:42:37 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144313 In today’s UnPresidented podcast episode, our guest is Neera Tanden, the president and CEO of the liberal think-tank Center for American Progress (CAP). You can listen below. Neera talked to us for almost a full hour about Sean Hannity, James Comey, the 2016 election debacle, the Resistance, Democrats’ chances for winning the House in 2018 […]

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In today’s UnPresidented podcast episode, our guest is Neera Tanden, the president and CEO of the liberal think-tank Center for American Progress (CAP). You can listen below.

Neera talked to us for almost a full hour about Sean Hannity, James Comey, the 2016 election debacle, the Resistance, Democrats’ chances for winning the House in 2018 and the White House in 2020, impeaching Trump, working with Never-Trump conservatives, CAPs work against Trump, and much more.

Here’s a 13-minute excerpt, below — you can find the full hour-long interview here — and below that are some quotes I pulled from the interview:

Among the highlights:

On Fox News
“They are a propaganda arm of the Republican party.”

On James Comey
“He was fired because Trump was trying to limit the Russia investigation. My view of this is had he just said, ‘Look I made a mistake, I’m sorry,’ and moved on, it would have been fine. His own mistake was he rationalized his own decision, and there’s really no defense… He screwed up, he didn’t follow Department of Justice guidelines, he made his own unilateral decisions because of how he perceived politics at the time. It turns out he’s a terrible reader of politics and he shouldn’t have played pundit.”

“Comey was incredibly concerned about the political perceptions his actions would have. And how people would perceive what he’s doing. But the truth is, when you really unpack it, he only cared about the perceptions of the right…. He was shaped by the impact of the right-wing noise machine.”

On the Resistance
“We should remember who the resistance is, the new activists are really a lot college-educated women. It’s not just millennials, it’s not just ideologically hard-left. It’s a lot of, essentially, moms who are scared for the future of the country, for their children, and they’re getting involved in politics to take their country back.”

On how Liberals need to fight like Conservatives
“I think this is the asymmetric warfare that liberals and conservatives are engaged in every day. Conservatives are willing to use every tactic at their disposal to reach their political ends. And liberals are trying to be fair-minded in political discourse. This has some benefits too. We believe in good-government so that when we’re in government we’re actually competent. If this administration were more competent it would be far more damaging to the American people…. I think progressives need to recognize that we are in a street-fight for the soul of the country. We are not in an arm-chair chess match. We are in a street-fight. And we have to fight as hard as they do, and we have to use every tool that we can. We shouldn’t be evil, but we have to be really a lot tougher.”

On Trump being a traitor
“He acts like a traitor. My view of it is, I think it is beyond odd. I think it is very suspicious…. and evidence of some kind of Kompromat at play that on every issue Trump is an ‘America First’ person until it comes to Russia. It’s astounding on how every issue related to Russia he tries to be as weak as he can.”

On Impeachment
“[Trump] definitely colluded… If we find that Trump knowingly colluded to impact the election, he knew about Wikileaks or any other of the various strands in play, and then came into power. And then these actions to limit the impact of the government’s ability to effect Russia is because of this collusion, that would make him a traitor in my view.”

“I think that people [on the left arguing against impeachment] are making a huge mistake. This is really a legal question in front us. If Donald Trump has broken the law, I think he should be impeached. I think the Founders thought that if we have a president breaking the law they should be impeached.”

“If the special prosecutor makes a clear case that Donald Trump has broken the law, a lot of Republicans will recognize, just like eventually they did with Nixon, that they were in a fever-dream with a criminal. And I think that can also be a cathartic moment for a lot of people.”

On Mitch McConnell
“One of the many things that gave rise to Trump was the actions of Mitch McConnell…. I think what really gave rise to Trump is, a lot of people looking around saying ‘you know, I’m not doing so well, and Washington isn’t doing anything to solve it.’”

On being called a Corporate Democrat
“I went from being attacked as a communist and a socialist to a neoliberal corporate shill.”

On the importance of embracing Never-Trump conservatives
“Jennifer Ruben, David Frum, Bill Kristol. I have had knock-down drag-down fights with those folks during the Obama years. I had major battles on health care, and taxes, and the whole range of issues. But look, at the end of the day, if I’m going to argue to my friends on the left that we have an existential threat in front of us, and we could stop taking our pitchforks and sticking them into each other … I don’t need to agree with every one of David Frum’s views on the world to say that it’s important to have republicans make the critique of Trump…. Let’s eliminate the assault on democracy, and the impact of a possible traitor, and then I’m happy to argue tax policy with any of these people.”

Neera also discusses CAP’s role in the upcoming elections and the resistance overall, and CAP’s upcoming Ideas conference. It’s a really interesting interview, hope you enjoy.

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Rick Wilson on why Trump is a traitor http://americablog.com/2018/04/rick-wilson-on-why-trump-is-a-traitor.html http://americablog.com/2018/04/rick-wilson-on-why-trump-is-a-traitor.html#respond Tue, 10 Apr 2018 23:01:24 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144284 GOP political consultant Rick Wilson joins us in today’s premium episode of our UnPresidented Podcast for a long talk about Donald Trump and the danger he poses to the Republican party and the long-term survival of the republic. You can hear a 13-minute free clip of the interview just below, and the entire 75-minute interview […]

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GOP political consultant Rick Wilson joins us in today’s premium episode of our UnPresidented Podcast for a long talk about Donald Trump and the danger he poses to the Republican party and the long-term survival of the republic.

You can hear a 13-minute free clip of the interview just below, and the entire 75-minute interview with a premium subscription ($5/month or more) to our podcast. I’ve also transcribed some of the best quotes from this episode below.

Among the podcast highlights….

Rick Wilson on Michael Cohen’s FBI raid: “It couldn’t happen to a nicer douchebag… this guy is so eminently punchable.”

Rick on the 2018 elections: “Democratic voters will crawl over broken glass to vote against Donald Trump’s friends.”

Rick on what GOP Senators will, and should, do if Trump fires Mueller: “Believe me, they won’t do a damn thing. They will not do a damn thing. Nothing will happen. “

Rick on how GOP members of Congress really hate Trump: “A lot of the ones that hate him are publicly the most red-hat wearing, chest beating, MAGA, ‘build the wall’ people you see out there. They hate him. They fear him, they loathe him, they hate their voters because of him. They hate him because they know they basically sold out their conservative principles.”

What Rick recently told a GOP Senator complaining about Trump’s attacks on Mueller: “You guys have to all get together and send him a f*cking letter that says ‘Dear Mr. President, if you remove Robert Mueller from office, we in the United States Senate Republican caucus will take up articles of impeachment when they are sent to us from the House and will proceed with convicting you.”

Rick on the damage Trump is doing to our country: “We’re going to have generational damage from what Trump is doing. He’s broken what the presidency means as a leader for the country. He’s broken the moral stature of the presidency. He’s broken the belief that the president will adhere to the Constitution and the rule of law. He’s moved from being the leader of the Free World to somebody who at best is the bullsh*tter of the Free World with a love of authoritarians. I think there’s a lot of damage he’s done to the American brand.”

Rick when asked if Donald Trump is a traitor: “I believe that Donald Trump has put the national interest of Russia above the national interest of the United States repeatedly. And by any definition I think that’s traitorous.”

Rick on why Trump is the worst president ever: “Even our worst presidents, none of them were willing to burn down the republic for their own ego… If Trump were impeached and convicted, he wouldn’t leave the White House. He would dig in and make them pull him out of there like a tick on the back of a hog, it would not be pretty.”

Rick also called Trump “a gigantic c*cknozzle,” and discussed his upcoming book: “Everything Trump Touches Dies: A Republican consultant gets real about the worst president ever.”

It was a wild interview, with a lot of laughs, and a lot of sobering discussion of where our country is heading. I hope you enjoy this as much as we did.

This is a 13-minute snippet of the 75-minute-long interview — listen to the full episode here with a premium subscription.

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Roseanne vs. Jared Yates Sexton http://americablog.com/2018/04/roseanne-vs-jared-yates-sexton.html http://americablog.com/2018/04/roseanne-vs-jared-yates-sexton.html#respond Mon, 09 Apr 2018 17:01:55 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144280 The reboot of Roseanne Barr’s eponymous show “Roseanne” has caused a bit of controversy, not just in that both the real-Roseanne and her fictional TV character are both Trump supporters, but in the way that Roseanne is whitewashing Trump’s bigotry on the show. That’s the argument that author Jared Yates Sexton makes in our latest […]

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The reboot of Roseanne Barr’s eponymous show “Roseanne” has caused a bit of controversy, not just in that both the real-Roseanne and her fictional TV character are both Trump supporters, but in the way that Roseanne is whitewashing Trump’s bigotry on the show.

That’s the argument that author Jared Yates Sexton makes in our latest UnPresidented Podcast, below, and it’s quite compelling. (Jared got into a Twitter-fight with Roseanne after she read his criticism, and wasn’t amused.)

ROSEANNE

We had a fascinating, almost 90-minute discussion with Jared, about Roseanne, but also his theory about how “toxic masculinity” undergirds much of Trump’s appeal, and much of the damage Trumps is causing our country. That then took us into a larger conversation about Jared’s theory of “the knot” that plagues much of America — as Jared puts it: “The idea that over time, all of our problems become interconnected [like one big knot]. And you don’t even know where to start, there’s no idea of which strand to start tugging. It’s gender, it’s race, economics, world views, money and politics.”

That led us into a discussion of: Trump’s election; Obama’s re-election in 2012 and whether a black man winning the presidency was an aberration or a sign of hope; Jared’s take on the “Alt Right”; and then a rather interesting discussion of whether the Internet has been a force for good or bad (Jared thinks more bad than good). Jared also talks about his most recent book, “The People Are Going to Rise Like the Waters Upon Your Shore: A Story of American Rage,” and its themes permeate the entire podcast discussion.

And finally, we close with Jared telling us a hilarious anecdote about his rural Indiana mom and the stray chicken she just adopted.

It was a really fun, interesting interview. I hope you’ll listen to the 15-minute excerpt about Roseanne, then become a premium subscriber to our podcast for as little as $5/month to unlock the rest of the interview with Jared, and our other premium episodes, like our blockbuster interview with national security expert Malcolm Nance.

(As always, a podcast is simply audio – like a radio show – that you listen to on your computer, tablet or phone.)

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Malcolm Nance: “Russia owns Trump” http://americablog.com/2018/03/malcolm-nance-russia-owns-trump.html http://americablog.com/2018/03/malcolm-nance-russia-owns-trump.html#respond Fri, 30 Mar 2018 16:20:15 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144273 National security expert Malcolm Nance says Trump & Kushner have already been compromised by foreign intelligence.

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Cliff Schecter and I recently spoke with former intelligence officer, and national security expert, Malcolm Nance about his upcoming new book, “The Plot to Destroy Democracy,” and his shocking claim that both Donald Trump and Jared Kushner have already been compromised by foreign intelligence services.

You can listen to a 10-minute excerpt of Malcolm’s blunt words here:

Malcolm tells us that Trump “has been involved with Russian operatives with regards to this election since 2012… he is a witting asset”; that Putin became “the leader of the global conservative movement” by “coopt[ing] all of Europe and the American Republican party via the NRA, Evangelicals and the Alt Right — they own the hard core base of the Republican party now”; and why he believes that “Jared Kushner is a compromised person.”

It’s a great, and disturbing, interview that we know you’ll enjoy. Again, you can listen to a free 10-minute clip above, and you can hear the entire hour-long interview with Malcom here by becoming a premium subscriber to the UnPresidented Podcast, for only $5/month.

Thanks so much.

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Podcast: David Frum on Conor Lamb, Trump/Russia, & authoritarianism in America http://americablog.com/2018/03/podcast-david-frum-on-conor-lamb-trumprussia-authoritarianism-in-america.html http://americablog.com/2018/03/podcast-david-frum-on-conor-lamb-trumprussia-authoritarianism-in-america.html#respond Thu, 15 Mar 2018 19:14:57 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144254 David Frum — a vocal Trump critic, former Bush White House official, Atlantic senior editor, and author of the new book “Trumpocracy: The corruption of the American republic” — is our guest on today’s episode of the UnPresidented Podcast. In this premium episode, David talks to us about Conor Lamb’s stunning election victory in Pennsylvania […]

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David Frum — a vocal Trump critic, former Bush White House official, Atlantic senior editor, and author of the new book “Trumpocracy: The corruption of the American republic” — is our guest on today’s episode of the UnPresidented Podcast.

In this premium episode, David talks to us about Conor Lamb’s stunning election victory in Pennsylvania the other night, the wisdom of impeaching Donald Trump, Watergate compared to Trump/Russia, Iraq in retrospect, the nature of truth, the danger authoritarian kleptocracies pose to America and the world, and how Canada has effectively regulated guns. It was a fascinating interview, I think it will give you a lot to think about.

Here’s a 15-minute snippet in which David talks about the Conor Lamb election and what it means for other congressional races in November.

And you can hear the rest of our hour-long interview with David Frum by becoming a premium patron of our podcast with only a $5/month subscription.

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Election Special – Conor Lamb wins PA! http://americablog.com/2018/03/election-special-conor-lamb-wins-pa.html http://americablog.com/2018/03/election-special-conor-lamb-wins-pa.html#respond Wed, 14 Mar 2018 21:43:24 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144249 In today’s UnPresidented Podcast, Cliff Schecter and I look at how Democrat Conor Lamb won the special US House election in a huge upset on Tuesday in the heart of Trump country, and what it means for Democrats as we approach the November congressional elections. Spoiler alert: The Dem wave is now real! (And no, […]

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In today’s UnPresidented Podcast, Cliff Schecter and I look at how Democrat Conor Lamb won the special US House election in a huge upset on Tuesday in the heart of Trump country, and what it means for Democrats as we approach the November congressional elections.

Spoiler alert: The Dem wave is now real! (And no, the results aren’t official yet in PA, but we’re confidently optimistic that Lamb has this.)

Please subscribe to the UnPresidented Podcast on iTunes (www.UnPresidentedPodcast.com) and leave us a rating & review. And access our premium shows by becoming a patron here on Patreon: www.patreon.com/UnPresidentedPodcast

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From Russia with Poison http://americablog.com/2018/03/from-russia-with-poison.html http://americablog.com/2018/03/from-russia-with-poison.html#respond Mon, 12 Mar 2018 23:12:12 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144227 Russia has escalated its efforts to start a new Cold War with the West by recklessly poisoning a former Russian spy, his daughter, and a police detective in Great Britain. This comes on the heels of the Russians trying to kill US troops in Syria (that one backfired on them badly), and it’s clear that […]

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Russia has escalated its efforts to start a new Cold War with the West by recklessly poisoning a former Russian spy, his daughter, and a police detective in Great Britain.

This comes on the heels of the Russians trying to kill US troops in Syria (that one backfired on them badly), and it’s clear that Vladimir Putin has been enabled by Donald Trump’s and Theresa May’s feckless policies of appeasement. That’s our big story of the day in today’s UnPresidented Podcast.

We also talk about the nail-biter US House election taking place tomorrow (Tuesday, March 13) in Pennsylvania; more corruption concerns about Donald Trump Jr. and his sister Ivanka; and about former Trump official and Alt Right leader Steve Bannon’s trip to a fascist conference in France.

Listen below:

Please subscribe to the UnPresidented Podcast on iTunes (www.UnPresidentedPodcast.com) and leave us a rating & review. And access our premium shows by becoming a patron here on Patreon: www.patreon.com/UnPresidentedPodcast

(Red Square photo by Alvesgaspar.)

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Dan Savage on sex & politics (podcast) http://americablog.com/2018/03/dan-savage-sex-politics-podcast.html http://americablog.com/2018/03/dan-savage-sex-politics-podcast.html#respond Thu, 08 Mar 2018 15:35:40 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144217 Advice columnist and LGBT advocate Dan Savage joins us for a wide-ranging conversation about politics, sex, and everything in between. This episode is definitely not-safe-for-work. We talk to Dan about conservative dating advice, Donald Trump, Dan’s fear of the Titanic, the gun debate, the Mueller Trump-Russia probe, chariot racing (don’t ask), Oscar pervertibles (don’t ask), […]

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Advice columnist and LGBT advocate Dan Savage joins us for a wide-ranging conversation about politics, sex, and everything in between.

This episode is definitely not-safe-for-work.

We talk to Dan about conservative dating advice, Donald Trump, Dan’s fear of the Titanic, the gun debate, the Mueller Trump-Russia probe, chariot racing (don’t ask), Oscar pervertibles (don’t ask), monogamy, kink, and the intersection of sex and politics.

And we’re proud to announce that we’re joining Dan in a new project announced during the podcast: OnlyMerrick.com, a new effort to take back the Supreme Court seat the Republican stole from Merrick Garland.

It was a hilarious, and sometimes-serious, hour that we think you’ll really enjoy. We know we did. You can listen below:

Please subscribe to the UnPresidented Podcast on iTunes (www.UnPresidentedPodcast.com) and leave us a rating & review. And access our premium shows by becoming a patron

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Conor Lamb http://americablog.com/2018/03/conor-lamb.html http://americablog.com/2018/03/conor-lamb.html#respond Wed, 07 Mar 2018 19:06:18 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144212 In 6 days, on March 13, there will be a special US House of Representatives election in Pennsylvania, at which the next US congressman from Pennsylvania will be chosen. And Republicans are freaking. Axios reported on Monday that top Republicans in Washington have already given up on the seat, which Democrat Conor Lamb should NEVER […]

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In 6 days, on March 13, there will be a special US House of Representatives election in Pennsylvania, at which the next US congressman from Pennsylvania will be chosen. And Republicans are freaking.

Axios reported on Monday that top Republicans in Washington have already given up on the seat, which Democrat Conor Lamb should NEVER be able to win — the district is THAT Republican.

And CNN just reported, minutes ago, that they’ve been contacted by multiple congressional Republicans who think the race is lost, and who blame it on Donald Trump!

Donate to Conor Lamb here, and let’s steal this seat from the Republicans next Tuesday March 13.

As I said, we should not be competitive in these traditionally-Republican seats, but this is the age of Trump, and (fortunately) the GOP is setting itself up for an electoral disaster this fall. We’ve already seen ample evidence of a Blue Wave, from our surprise US Senate victory in Alabama (Alabama!), to almost winning control of the Virginia House of Delegates a few months ago, something else that no one had predicted was even possible.

This is an election year of impossible possibilities. In 2016, the impossible was Donald Trump winning the presidency. But now, thank God, the shoe is on the other foot, and Democrats are winning races they simply should not be able to win. That presents us with an unprecedented opportunity. It also teaches us an important lesson. No matter how bad the odds, don’t assume we can’t win. Politics is the art of the possible — and the bad guys win when we assume the results in advance, whether it’s that we’re going to win or lose. Nothing is set in stone until the last person votes.

As an aside, don’t underestimate how important it is to take back the House. Democrats will then have subpoena power. We will finally have real investigations of what Trump did with Russia (beyond the Mueller probe). Trump sycophants like Devin Nunes will lose their committee chairmanships, and no longer be able to defend Trump. And if we get the Senate, we control Supreme Court appointments, judges, administration appointees and more. It is HUGELY important that we take back Congress if we want to stop Donald Trump.

One more thing. While Conor Lamb’s election is next week — and please do donate if you can, and share this donation link on social media (Facebook & Twitter): https://secure.actblue.com/donate/lambablog  But after next Tuesday, we all have another job. To start supporting other Democratic candidates for the fall, and do it early. These folks need money NOW. Not just in the last few weeks before the election, but now. So when you see appeals going out for specific candidates, if you can afford to help, please do.

Speaking of which, here are a few other of our AMERICAblog Action endorsed candidates/races for the fall. If you can, please support them. They’re all great candidates. We’ll be adding to the list as time goes on.

***US House
Mikie Sherrill (NJ-11 open seat)
Veronica Escobar (TX-16 open seat)
Andrew Janz (CA-22, running against Devin Nunes)
Randy Bryce (WI-01, running against Paul Ryan — Ryan is actually in danger)
Eventual Democratic Nominee (CA-48, taking on Dana Rohrabacher — Rohrabacher is also in danger)

***US Senate
Kyrsten Sinema (Arizona open seat)
Beto O’Rourke (Texas, running against Ted Cruz)
Jacky Rosen (Nevada, running against Dean Heller — Heller is seriously vulnerable)

***State races
Zach Wahls (IA-37th State Senate District. Zach is a longtime LGBT advocate who famously gave a speech before the Iowa legislature at age 19 about his two moms. You really have to see this video, if you’re not familiar. More on Zach here.)

And be sure to check out our latest podcast, about sexism at the Oscars, bigotry at the Women’s March, some great election news, and we also go off on that goofball Sam Nunberg. Later this week, we’ll be interviewing Dan Savage, in what was definitely a fun episode.

Thanks, JOHN

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The Democratic memo about the Russia investigation, explained http://americablog.com/2018/02/democratic-memo-russia-investigation-explained.html http://americablog.com/2018/02/democratic-memo-russia-investigation-explained.html#respond Sat, 24 Feb 2018 23:20:36 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144187 The House GOP Intelligence committee has finally released the Democratic memo about Trump’s collusion with Russia, Carter Page, and the Steele (aka Pee Pee) memo. Let’s pull out some of the good stuff. The Dem memo confirms that “the FBI assessed [Trump campaign top foreign policy aide Carter Page] to be an agent of the […]

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The House GOP Intelligence committee has finally released the Democratic memo about Trump’s collusion with Russia, Carter Page, and the Steele (aka Pee Pee) memo. Let’s pull out some of the good stuff.

The Dem memo confirms that “the FBI assessed [Trump campaign top foreign policy aide Carter Page] to be an agent of the Russian government.”

That doesn’t sound good.

The FBI did not use Steele’s dossier as justification for beginning the Russia probe, which started in July 2016. The FBI didn’t get Steele’s memo until mid-September, 7 weeks AFTER the probe was begun.

The initial FISA warrant to spy on Page was granted by a GOP-appointed judge, and then renewed by 3 different judges — four different federal judges in total — all appointed by GOP presidents. They were Republican judges who approved spying on Page.

Page had already left the Trump campaign by the time the FBI got the warrant to eavesdrop on him. So there was not tapping of the Trump campaign.

The FBI corroborated parts of the Steele dossier, and presented that to the FISA court, but that’s such a secret it got blacked out in the memo. Oh yeah, and the evidence corroborating Steele contradicts what Carter Page told the House Intelligence Committee.

As we suspected, the FISA court renewed the wiretap on Carter Page 4 times because it kept yielding useful information. The info was so useful that it got censored from the Democratic memo.

Devin Nunes lied. The FBI told the FISA court all about Steele, and that the memo was paid for by people who wanted “to discredit” Trump’s campaign. And DOJ never paid Steele for the dossier — Nunes lied about this.

And Nunes lied about the Yahoo news story. Nunes claimed the DOJ used the Yahoo story as proof of the Steele dossier. No. The article was used to quote Page’s denials of secret Moscow meetings, which makes the meetings all the more suspect.

And finally, those FBI lovebirds with the texting fetish had zero to do with the FISA warrant. Nunes lied about that too.

Some interesting footnotes. First of all, I’m still shocked that the Trump campaign didn’t go the FBI the second they were told the Russians had stolen “thousands” of Hillary’s emails. That’s un-American, un-patriotic behavior.

Nor did the Trump campaign go to the FBI a few months later when they saw the news go public that, in fact, Hillary’s emails HAD been stolen, just as the Russians had an intermediary tell Papadopoulos. How do you not THEN call the FBI?

Bottom line: Four Republican federal judges found sufficient evidence that former top Trump campaign foreign policy aide Carter Page was acting as a Russian agent, to issue a FISA warrant permitting the FBI to spy on him. And, they received useful info during that spying.

And for some reason, Devin Nunes and Donald Trump and Paul Ryan don’t want you to know that one of Trump’s former top foreign policy aides was credibly suspected of working for the Russians. You do the math.

PS Trump is worried, he just tweeted:

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Even Trump’s hair is a lie http://americablog.com/2018/02/even-trumps-hair-lie.html http://americablog.com/2018/02/even-trumps-hair-lie.html#respond Thu, 08 Feb 2018 16:52:45 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144176 New video seems to show that Trump is as bald as Darth Vader. And while none of us actually care, Trump cares, a lot, about his own appearance, and more importantly, about mocking the appearance of others, especially women. So, today we care too. But more importantly, the guts of today’s episode deals with the […]

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New video seems to show that Trump is as bald as Darth Vader.

And while none of us actually care, Trump cares, a lot, about his own appearance, and more importantly, about mocking the appearance of others, especially women. So, today we care too.

But more importantly, the guts of today’s episode deals with the budget deal just reached by Democrats and Republicans in the Senate; and a new article in the Atlantic, by two conservatives, calling on Republicans to boycott any candidate with an R after their name in 2018. Also, we talk about the stunning election news from Missouri, and what it portends for the congressional elections this coming November.

All that and more in today’s episode of my UnPresidented Podcast, below.

Please subscribe to the UnPresidented Podcast on iTunes (www.UnPresidentedPodcast.com) and leave us a rating & review. And access our premium shows by becoming a $5/month or more patron here on Patreon: www.patreon.com/UnPresidentedPodcast

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