Tag Archives: trump

Twitter takes responsibility for Trump Twitter failure

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Josh Haner/ The New York City Times Donald Trump shows the Twitter app on his Samsung smartphone, in his office at Trump Tower in New York City, Sept. 29, 2015. Considering that he reshuffled his project’s management in August 2016, Trump’s group has aimed to impart a more disciplined approach. Twitter, nevertheless, has actually continued to be an outlet for Trump to vent without a filter.

Thursday, Nov. 2, 2017|7:37 p.m.

WASHINGTON– President Donald Trump’s Twitter account briefly disappeared Thursday night, but is now back up and running, according to the social messaging company.

Quickly prior to 7 p.m. Thursday, social media reports appeared that the president’s individual account, @RealDonaldTrump, was not available, offering the error message that the user “does not exist.” The account was restored by 7:03 p.m.

Twitter took responsibility for the blackout. In a tweeted statement, the company said Trump’s account was “unintentionally shut off due to human mistake” by among its workers. The account was unreachable for 11 minutes.

“We are continuing to investigate and are taking steps to prevent this from occurring again,” the business declaration continued.

A representative for the White House did not immediately react to ask for remark.

Trump campaign got early word that Russia had Democrats’ e-mails

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Donald Trump’s Twitter

account by means of AP In this photo from President Donald Trump’s Twitter account, George Papadopoulos, 3rd from left, sits at a table with then-candidate Trump and others at what is labeled at a national security conference in Washington that was posted on March 31, 2016. Papadopoulos, a former Trump campaign assistant belittled by the White Home as a low-level volunteer was thrust on Oct. 30, 2017, to the center of unique counsel Robert Mueller’s examination, providing evidence in the very first criminal case that connects Trump’s team and intermediaries for Russia looking for to interfere in the campaign.

Tuesday, Oct. 31, 2017|2 a.m.

WASHINGTON– The guilty plea of a 30-year-old campaign aide– so green that he listed Model United Nations in his certifications– moved the story Monday of the Trump project’s interactions with Russia: Court files revealed that Russian authorities alerted the project, through an intermediary in April 2016, that they possessed thousands of Democratic e-mails and other “dirt” on Hillary Clinton.

That was 2 months prior to the Russian hacking of the Democratic National Committee was publicly revealed and the taken e-mails began to appear online. The brand-new court filings supplied the very first clear evidence that Trump campaign aides had early understanding that Russia had taken personal documents on Clinton and the committee, an appealing trove in a close governmental contest.

By the time of a vital conference in June of last year, when Donald Trump Jr. and other senior Trump campaign authorities consulted with a Russian lawyer offering damaging details on Clinton, some might have understood for weeks that Russia had actually material most likely gotten by unlawful hacking, the brand-new documents suggested. The disclosures contributed to the proof indicating efforts at collaboration in between the Trump project and the Russian federal government, but they appeared to disappoint evidence that they conspired in the hacking or other prohibited acts.

The unlikely figure at the center of the new details was a “diplomacy advisor” to Trump, George Papadopoulos. It was Papadopoulos, among three males whose charges were revealed Monday, who appears to have been the very first campaign aide to discover the Russian hacking of Democratic targets.

An essential information is still missing: Whether and when Papadopoulos informed senior Trump project authorities about Russia’s ownership of hacked e-mails. And it appears that the young aide’s quest for a much deeper connection with Russian authorities, while he strongly pursued it, led nowhere.

Papadopoulos repeatedly promoted the idea of a “history making” meeting in between Trump and Vladimir Putin, the Russian president. Senior campaign authorities, however, stated that Trump ought to not make the trip and leave it to someone “low level in the project so as not to send out any signal,” inning accordance with an email cited in court files.

Papadopoulos then proposed that he himself, possibly with another campaign official, travel to Moscow to consult with the Russians.

“The trip proposed by defendant PAPADOPOULOS did not occur,” prosecutors wrote.

To understand the significance of Monday’s advancements, it assists to recall exactly how the Russian attack unfolded.

In September 2015, the FBI made its first call to the Democratic National Committee to report proof of Russian hackers inside the committee’s network. But for 7 months, the word never ever got beyond an IT contractor, and the hackers apparently had the run of confidential e-mails and other files.

During that time, Trump was pressed to assemble a team of foreign policy advisors, a difficult task due to the fact that he was shunned by lots of Republicans who had served in earlier administrations. In early March, Papadopoulos, who had actually been helping the beleaguered campaign of Dr. Ben Carson, used his services to the Trump campaign.

Around March 6, documents state, a project supervisor– recognized by a former Trump advisor as Sam Clovis– told Papadopoulos, then living in London, that “a principal foreign policy focus of the campaign was an enhanced relationship with Russia.”

A week later, traveling in Italy, Papadopoulos came across a London-based teacher of worldwide relations, Joseph Mifsud, who claimed to have “significant connections with Russian federal government officials.” (The court files do not name Mifsud, but a Senate aide informed on the case identified him as the professor in concern.)

Unimpressed by Papadopoulos in the beginning, Mifsud became far more interested when he found out that the young traveler was working for the Trump campaign. The two guys reunited in London on March 24, when the teacher presented Papadopoulos to a Russian woman he said was a relative of Putin with close ties to senior Russian officials.

On March 31, back in Washington, Papadopoulos met Trump for the first time at an event of his brand-new foreign policy group at the prospect’s Washington hotel. Inning accordance with the previous Trump advisor who existed, and who spoke on condition of privacy to avoid angering previous coworkers, Papadopoulos spoke for a couple of minutes about his Russian contacts and the prospects for a meeting with the Russian president.

However several individuals in the space started to raise questions about the wisdom of a meeting with Putin, noting that Russia was under sanctions from the United States. Jeff Sessions, now chief law officer and after that a senator from Alabama who was counseling Trump on national security, “shut George down,” the consultant said. “He stated, ‘We’re not going to do it’ and he added, ‘I ‘d prefer that nobody discuss this once again.'”

But Papadopoulos was not deterred, the documents say, and he continued to interact with Mifsud and the Russian woman about more contacts. The Russian woman wrote on April 11, “we are all really excited by the possibility of a great relationship with Mr. Trump.” Mifsud introduced Papadopoulos over email to a Moscow contact who said he had connections to the Russian foreign ministry. They spoke repeatedly over Skype about a possible Moscow journey, the files state.

On April 26 came a crucial conference. At breakfast at a London hotel, Mifsud told Papadopoulos that he had actually just returned from Moscow, where he had “learned that the Russians had actually obtained ‘dirt’ on then-candidate Clinton.” Mifsud said he had actually been informed the Russians had “countless emails.”

On Might 4, the Russian contact with ties to the foreign ministry wrote to Papadopoulos and Mifsud, stating ministry authorities were “open for cooperation.” Papadopoulos forwarded the message to a senior campaign authorities, asking whether the contacts were “something we wish to move forward with.”

The court files describe in information how Papadopoulos continued to report to senior project officials on his efforts to set up meetings with Russian authorities, which The Washington Post reported on in August. But the files do not say explicitly whether, and to whom, he handed down his most explosive discovery– that the Russians had exactly what they thought about compromising emails on Trump’s challenger.

J.D. Gordon, a previous Pentagon official who worked for the Trump project as a national security consultant and assisted set up the March 31 foreign policy meeting, stated he had known nothing about Papadopoulos’ discovery that Russia had actually acquired Democratic e-mails or of his extended pursuit of conferences with Russians.

“I was shocked to discover exactly what George Papadopoulos was up to throughout the project,” Gordon stated in a text message. “He certainly went to fantastic lengths to walk around me and Senator Sessions.”

Gordon stated that such end-runs around typical channels are common in presidential campaigns. “It’s extremely tough to understand what each person is doing, especially considering that some folks intentionally go around the hierarchy,” he said. “But George Papadopoulos undoubtedly represents a severe case.”

Prosecutors may have deliberately left prominent information out of the documents filed in court to secure the continuing examination. But exactly what they did state portrays Papadopoulos as continuing for months to set up conferences with Russian authorities. As late as August 2016, Papadopoulos was encouraged by a project official, apparently Clovis, to take a trip to Moscow “if it is possible.”

Rather of opening a new era in relations with Russia, Papadopoulos found himself caught up in the examination of the Russian disturbance in the U.S. election. The files accuse him of lying to FBI representatives in two interviews, first on Jan. 27 and then on Feb. 16, when he “restated his supposed desire to comply with the FBI’s examination,” according to an affidavit submitted by Robert M. Gibbs, an FBI agent investigating the case.

On Feb. 17, the representative wrote, Papadopoulos shut down the Facebook account he had used since 2005, consisting of to exchange messages with the intermediaries for Russia. Prosecutors considered that to be obstruction of justice, and it became part of the case that concluded Oct. 5 when Papadopoulos pleaded guilty to making a false declaration to the FBI, which brings a maximum charge of five years in jail.

Clinton project, DNC helped pay for Trump-Russia file

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Patrick Semansky/ AP In this June 5, 2017 file image, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks in Baltimore.

Wednesday, Oct. 25, 2017|1 a.m.

WASHINGTON– The presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Committee spent for research study that was included in a file revealed in January which contained salacious claims about connections in between Donald Trump, his partners and Russia.

A representative for a law office said on Tuesday that it had employed Washington-based scientists last year to gather destructive information about Trump on many subjects– including possible ties to Russia– on behalf of the Clinton project and the DNC.

The discovery, which emerged from a letter submitted in court on Tuesday, is likely to sustain brand-new partisan attacks over federal and congressional investigations into Russia’s efforts to interrupt in 2015’s election and whether any of Trump’s associates assisted in the effort.

The president and his allies have actually argued for months that the examinations are politically encouraged. They have challenged the info included in the dossier, which was compiled by a previous British spy who had been contracted by the Washington research study company Combination GPS.

The letter that was submitted in court stated that Combination GPS started working for the law office, Perkins Coie, in April 2016. Composed by the firm’s handling partner Matthew J. Gehringer, the letter said that Combination GPS had currently been conducting the research study “for several other customers throughout the Republican main contest.”

Perkins Coie was paid $12.4 million to represent the Clinton project and the DNC throughout the 2016 project, according to filings. The role of the Clinton campaign and the national party in moneying the research study for the file was first reported on Tuesday by The Washington Post.

At the time that Democrats started spending for the research study, Trump was in the process of clinching the Republican governmental nomination, and Clinton’s allies were rushing to figure out ways to run against a prospect who had currently weathered attacks from Republican competitors about his shifting policy positions, his character and his business record.

Combination GPS hired Christopher Steele, a reputable former British spy with substantial experience in Russia, to carry out research study into any possible connections in between Trump, his services, campaign team and Russia.

Steele produced a series of memos that alleged a broad conspiracy in between the Trump campaign and the Russian federal government to affect the 2016 election on behalf of Trump. The memos also consisted of unsubstantiated accounts of encounters between Trump and Russian prostitutes, and real estate deals that were planned as kickbacks.

The contents of the memos distributed in Washington in late 2016, and were briefed to Trump by senior U.S. intelligence authorities during the governmental shift. The memos, which ended up being called the “Steele File,” were made public by BuzzFeed– triggering an ongoing dispute about their precision and about who moneyed the research.

Blend GPS was begun by 3 former Wall Street Journal staff members. The company worked directly with Perkins Coie and its lead election attorney, Marc Elias, inning accordance with the law practice representative, who spoke on condition of privacy to talk about delicate details about confidential organisation relationships. The law practice’s payments to Combination GPS for the Russia research ended just before Election Day, the spokesperson said.

The representative stated that neither the Clinton project, nor the DNC, knew that Combination GPS had been employed to carry out the research.

Earlier this year, Elias had actually denied that he had possessed the dossier prior to the election.

Anita Dunn, a veteran Democratic operative dealing with Perkins Coie, stated Tuesday that Elias “was definitely acquainted with a few of, but not all, of the details” in the file. But, she said “he didn’t have and had not seen the full file, nor was he associated with pitching it to press reporters.” And Elias “was not at liberty to confirm Perkins Coie as the client at that point,” Dunn stated.

Brian Fallon, who acted as a representative for the Clinton campaign, on Tuesday wrote on Twitter that he did not know that Steele had actually been dealing with behalf of the Clinton campaign prior to the election.

“If I had, I would have volunteered to go to Europe and aim to assist him,” Fallon composed.

A legal representative and spokeswoman for Combination GPS did not respond to ask for comment.

A spokeswoman for the DNC looked for to distance the national celebration from the work, noting that the celebration’s chairman, Tom Perez, was elected only after in 2015’s election. He and his management group “were not involved in any decision-making concerning Combination GPS, nor were they mindful that Perkins Coie was dealing with the company,” stated Xochitl Hinojosa, the DNC spokesperson.

The work by Blend GPS on the file has actually come under analysis from congressional investigators, who have actually questioned among its founders and subpoenaed its banking records to attempt to identify who moneyed the research study.

Fusion GPS is battling the subpoena in federal court, and Gehringer’s letter was produced in connection with that legal case.

In the letter, Gehringer praised Blend GPS for its “efforts to fulfill your commitment to maintain client confidentiality. In the scenarios, nevertheless, our company believe it is appropriate to release Blend GPS from this obligation as it associates with the identity of Perkins Coie.”

Gehringer added that “offered the interest in this problem, our company believe it would be proper for all parties who worked with Blend GPS in connection with the 2016 governmental campaign to release Blend GPS from this obligation too.”

Clinton camp helped fund Trump-Russia dossier research study

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Rick T. Wilking/Pool/ AP In this Oct. 9, 2016, file picture, Democratic governmental candidate Hillary Clinton, right, speaks as Republican governmental nominee Donald Trump listens throughout the 2nd governmental debate at Washington University in St. Louis, Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016.

Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017|6:15 p.m.

WASHINGTON– Hillary Clinton’s presidential project and the Democratic National Committee assisted money political research into President Donald Trump that ultimately produced a dossier of claims about his ties to Russia, an individual familiar with the matter said Tuesday night.

The revelation is likely to sustain grievances by Trump that the dossier, which the president has actually derided as “fake things,” is a politically inspired collection of salacious claims. Yet the FBI has worked to corroborate the file, and in a sign of its continuous importance to investigators, unique counsel Robert Mueller’s group– which is penetrating potential coordination between Russia and the Trump project– weeks ago questioned the previous British spy who assisted compile the claims in the dossier.

The file, which circulated in Washington in 2015 and was committed the FBI for its evaluation, contends that Russia was taken part in a longstanding effort to help Trump and had actually accumulated compromising information about him. Trump has actually repeatedly dismissed the file as false and in recent days has actually questioned on Twitter whether Democrats or the FBI had actually helped money it.

The individual knowledgeable about the matter, who spoke on condition of privacy to go over private customer matters, stated the arrangement was brokered by Marc Elias, a legal representative for the project and the DNC, and his law office of Perkins Coie. The offer started around last spring, when the company was approached by Combination GPS, the political research company behind the file, and lasted into the fall, right before Election Day, according to the individual.

Elias did not immediately return an email seeking remark, and representatives of Blend GPS declined to comment. The Washington Post first reported the plan.

According to a letter acquired by the AP Tuesday night, representatives of Blend GPS reached out to the company to reveal interest in continuing research study on Trump it had begun “for several other clients during the Republican main contest.” The identity of that other customer has actually not been exposed.

Perkins Coie then engaged Blend GPS in April 2016 “to carry out a range of research study services throughout the 2016 election cycle,” according to the letter.

The letter was sent out Tuesday by the law office’s basic counsel to a legal representative for Combination GPS. It is meant to launch the research company from its customer privacy responsibilities.

Trump urges Home GOP to move quickly on budget, tax cuts

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J. Scott Applewhite/ AP FILE In this Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2017, file photo, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., pays attention to remarks throughout a news conference at the Capitol in Washington. McConnell stated Sunday, Oct. 22, he wants to bring bipartisan healthcare legislation to the floor if President Donald Trump explains he supports it.

Sunday, Oct. 22, 2017|3:55 p.m.

WASHINGTON, D.C.– President Donald Trump urged House Republicans to move quickly on passing a budget bill throughout a teleconference Sunday, clearing the method for what he referred to as a historic push for tax cuts.

Trump and Vice President Mike Pence both signed up with the House GOP employ which Trump gotten in touch with members to adopt the budget plan gone by the Senate this week, so that they can carry on to passing his tax reform strategy.

Trump informed the members they were on the verge of doing something historic, according to one Republican authorities on the call, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to go over publicly exactly what was intended as a private upgrade for members.

Another GOP aide acquainted with the discussion said that Trump informed the members once again and again that the celebration would have a high rate to pay in next year’s midterm elections if they failed to pass his plan, which would slash the corporate tax rate to 20 percent and double the basic reduction utilized by many average Americans. The president also stated several times that, beyond the looming elections, his plan was the ideal thing to do for nation, the person stated.

The Senate recently passed a budget that consists of guidelines that will permit Republicans to get tax legislation through the Senate without Democratic votes and without worry of a Democratic filibuster.

Republican politicians are desperate to rack up a legal win after a series of awkward failures that have come in spite of the truth that the party manages both chambers of Congress and the White Home.

On the call, Home Speaker Paul Ryan told members he intended to pass a modified Senate spending plan costs today to increase the modifications that tax reform can be enacted by the end of the year.

Trump will also work to rally support for the plan on the Hill Tuesday at a lunch with Senate Republicans.

Congress also continues to battle with the health care system.

Senate Bulk Leader Mitch McConnell stated Sunday he’s willing to bring bipartisan healthcare legislation to the flooring– if Trump makes clear he supports it. A proposition by two senators – Republican Lamar Alexander of Tennessee and Democrat Patty Murray of Washington – would extend for 2 years federal insurance payments that Trump has blocked. However Trump has actually offered blended signals, alternately applauding and condemning the effort – confusing Democrats and Republicans alike.

Asked whether he would bring the costs to the floor, McConnell stated on CNN’s “State of the Union” that he was waiting “to speak with President Trump what kind of health care bill he might sign.”

“If there’s a requirement for some kind of interim action here to stabilize the marketplace, we need a bill the president will in fact sign. And I’m not certain yet what the president is searching for here, however I will enjoy to bring an expense to the flooring if I understand President Trump would sign it,” the Republican politician said. He added of Trump: “I think he hasn’t made a final decision.”

The strategy unveiled last week likely has 60 votes in the Senate, mainly from Democrats, and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Sunday urged McConnell to bring it to the flooring “instantly, today.”

“This is a great compromise,” Schumer stated on NBC’s “Satisfy journalism.” He forecasted it would pass “by a large number of votes” which the president would ultimately sign it to prevent the blame for rising insurance premiums.

“If Republicans believe that if premiums increase they’re going to prevent the blame, if Senator McConnell believes that, he’s wrong,” Schumer stated.

Trump at first recommended he supported the short-lived fix as he continues to hold out hope for the passage of legislation that would repeal and replace former President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act, which Republicans have repeatedly cannot accomplish. However White House authorities stated later that Trump would only sign an interim bill that also raises the tax charges that Obama’s health care law imposes on people who do not buy coverage and companies who do not provide plans to staff members. The White Home also wants arrangements making it simpler for individuals to purchase low-premium policies with less protection. Top Senate Democrats decline those needs.

White House budget director Mick Mulvaney, who was also found at Trump’s Virginia golf course Sunday, stated on CBS’ “Face the Country” that Trump does not want to back a strategy “without also getting something for folks who are being injured.”

“And I believe the criticisms you’ve heard today are like, ‘Look, I’m all right with doing an offer.’ This is the president now. ‘However I’m not getting enough for the folks who are getting hurt. So give me more by method of associated health plans. Provide me more of the important things that we understand” we can do for folks back home to actually assist them,'” Mulvaney stated.

“I think there’s actually a pretty good opportunity to get an offer,” he included. “It’s just Murray-Alexander in its current form most likely isn’t really far enough yet.”

McConnell, in his interviews, also but pressed back against former White Home chief strategist Steve Bannon’s efforts to recruit prospects to challenge Republican incumbents who support McConnell’s leadership, arguing that exactly what Republicans need is candidates who can win.

“Look, this is not about personalities. This is about achievement. And in order to make policy, you have to really win the election,” he said on Fox News. “And some of these folks that you have actually been quoting, as I stated are professionals on nominating individuals who lose.”

AP Congressional Correspondent Erica Werner contributed to this report.

Bush condemns Trump-era America: '' Bigotry appears emboldened''.

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Seth Wenig/ AP Former U.S. President George W. Bush speaks at a forum sponsored by the George W. Bush Institute in New York City, Thursday, Oct. 19, 2017.

Thursday, Oct. 19, 2017|12:23 p.m.

New York City– Former President George W. Bush on Thursday knocked bigotry in Trump-era American politics, cautioning that the increase of “nativism,” isolationism and conspiracy theories have clouded the country’s true identity.

The comments, provided at a New York City conference hosted by the George W. Bush Institute, amounted to an indirect review from a former Republican president who has actually stayed mostly quiet throughout President Donald Trump’s unlikely rise to power. The 43rd president did not name Trump on Thursday, but he attacked some of the principles that specify the 45th president’s political brand.

“We have actually seen nationalism misshaped into nativism, forgotten the dynamism that immigration has constantly brought to America,” Bush stated. “We see a fading self-confidence in the worth of free enterprises and global trade, forgetting that dispute, instability and poverty follow in the wake of protectionism. We’ve seen the return of seclusion sentiments, forgetting that American security is directly threatened by the mayhem and misery of remote places.”

“We have actually seen our discourse broken down by casual cruelty,” he continued. “Bigotry seems emboldened. Our politics seems more vulnerable to conspiracy theories and straight-out fabrication.”

“We need to recall and recover our own identity,” he continued. “To renew our nation, we just have to remember our worths.”

Inquired about the speech, Trump said he hadn’t seen it.

The comment about identity was one of numerous that cautioned of what Bush referred to as uncomfortable political patterns.

Bush noted Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election and stated that “the Russian government has made a project of turning Americans against each other.”

“Foreign hostilities, including cyberattacks, disinformation and monetary impact, ought to never be downplayed or endured,” Bush stated.

Trump has revealed hesitation of Russia’s involvement. A special district attorney is currently examining whether Trump and his campaign associates collaborated with Moscow in the effort to sway the election.

Bush is the sibling of 2016 governmental hopeful Jeb Bush, the former Florida guv nicknamed, belittled and eventually vanquished by Trump during the race for the Republican nomination. He joins a slowly growing list of popular Republicans who have openly defied Trump, including Republican Sens. John McCain, who delivered a similar speech today. Sen. Bob Corker, the Tennessee Republican who has actually revealed he’s retiring, has denounced exactly what he termed the “adult day care center” of the Trump White Home.

However throughout the Bush event, a current Trump administration official likewise broke with Trump’s dismissive tone on Russian interference. Nikki Haley, Trump’s primary envoy to the United Nations, cast Russia’s efforts to affect the 2016 election as “warfare” and efforts to “sow chaos” in elections throughout the world.

“The Russians, God bless them, they’re stating, ‘Why are Americans anti-Russian? And why have we done the sanctions?’ Well, do not interfere in our elections and we won’t be anti-Russian,” Haley said. She included, “When a nation can come and interfere in another nation’s elections, that is warfare.”

Facebook just recently supplied 3 congressional committees with more than 3,000 advertisements they had actually traced to a Russian internet firm and told investigators of their contents. Twitter likewise informed Congress last month and handed over to Senate detectives the profile names of 201 accounts connected to Russians.

Laurie Kellman contributed from Washington.

Solace or silence? Not all households of fallen get Trump call

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WPLG/ AP In this Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2017, frame from video, Myeshia Johnson weeps over the coffin of her husband, Sgt. La David Johnson, who was killed in an ambush in Niger, upon his body’s arrival in Miami.

Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2017|5:50 p.m.

WASHINGTON– Some got compassion and solace. Some got silence. One got a promise of cash.

Loved ones of individuals who passed away in military service have stated diverse interactions with President Donald Trump in the difficult days and weeks after their enjoyed one’s death. Despite Trump’s boast that he connects personally to all families of the fallen, interviews with member of the families did not support his claim. Some never ever spoken with him at all, and a couple of who did came away more upset.

The Associated Press called relative of 21 of the 43 individuals who have died in military service given that Trump ended up being president. Of those who would resolve the concern, family members of 9 stated they had heard from Trump by phone or mail. Loved ones of nine others said they have not.

A number of spoke of being comforted by Trump but a minimum of one call went awry: Cowanda Jones-Johnson informed the AP that Trump spoke disrespectfully of her fallen nephew, Sgt. La David Johnson, when he called relative Tuesday. Johnson was among 4 servicemen killed in Niger earlier this month.

Chris Baldridge of Zebulon, North Carolina, told The Washington Post that Trump promised him $25,000 of his own cash when they spoke in the summertime about the loss of his kid, Army Sgt. Dillon Baldridge, killed in Afghanistan, however the check never came. The White House said Wednesday, after the report, that “the check has actually been sent out.”

Others awaited calls that did not come.

After Army Sgt. Jonathon M. Hunter passed away in a suicide bombing attack in Afghanistan in August, his family was told to expect a call from Trump. However it didn’t occur. Hunter, 23, from Columbus, Indiana, passed away 32 days into his first implementation because signing up with the Army in 2014.

Mark Hunter, his dad, stated a military casualty officer notified the family that Trump would call and the family was let down when he didn’t.

“Disappointed that he a minimum of didn’t call and thank me for my kid and our ultimate sacrifice,” Hunter said. “That’s all I wanted to hear. He didn’t need to state nothing else. That’s all I wanted to hear. From him– not the vice president.”

The family talked with Vice President Mike Pence, who matured in the same southern Indiana city, at the ceremony honoring the return of the soldier’s remains at Dover Flying force Base in Delaware. So did a number of other households who lost loved ones in uniform.

Calling every member of the family isn’t a presidential custom. Trump’s current predecessors have actually reached out to Gold Star households through letters, personal meetings and invitations. For Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, who saw much more war dead on their watch, individual call would have been a lengthy task. Still, Trump today utilized his calls as evidence of his support for the military, recommending he did more to honor the households than his predecessors.

“I think I have actually called every family of somebody who’s died,” Trump stated, then adding, “practically everyone.” He said it’s his practice both to make phone calls and correspond.

Trump spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders repeated the claim Wednesday, stating the president “has actually reached all of the families that have existed to him through the White House Armed Force Workplace.” She did not state whether that contact always indicated a telephone call, or only a letter, and she did not deal with the specifics of why families of some war dead have actually received neither.

When someone is killed in action, a Pentagon officer notifies near relative and sends details to the White Home office that is validated and assembled. “Once that process is completed, the president or other members of the administration can take part in contact,” she stated.

That process appears to have broken down.

After Army Spc. Christopher Michael Harris, 25, of Jackson Springs, North Carolina, was eliminated in a suicide attack in Afghanistan in August, the White House provided to establish a call however “it failed” and no letter came from the president, either, said his widow, Brittany Harris.

Aaron Butler, a 27-year-old guardsman from Monticello, Utah, was eliminated Aug. 16 at a booby-trapped building in Nangarhar Province, Afghanistan. His mom, Laura Butler, and family representative Costs Boyle said Trump has not called or sent a letter. The family is not complaining. “The family is really mindful that they do not want to be pulled into a partisan slugfest,” Boyle said.

Jodie Missildine’s 20-year-old stepson, Alex Missildine, was eliminated Oct. 1 when an IED exploded near his vehicle in Ninawa Province, Iraq. He had actually remained in Iraq for less than a month.

Jodie Missildine said the family had actually received a profusion of support from Washington because receiving news of Alex’s death. However when asked if Trump had actually been in contact, she demurred, saying, “We will not speak ill of a president who loves his troops.”

In his claims, Trump made no distinction in between fight and non-combat deaths. Past practice recommends that those who die battling are most likely than military-accident victims to trigger a president to reach out personally to the household.

After U.S. Army Specialist Isiah Booker died Jan. 7 in Jordan, obviously when operating heavy construction devices, President Barack Obama did not call. Neither did Trump after he took workplace that month. Chereisa Booker, of Schertz, Texas, said Trump had actually taken office by the time a condolence letter was processed and she and her husband received the letter. They also asked for and got one from Obama. However no calls.

Booker said “not truly” when asked if she wanted to speak with Trump. However Sheila Murphy did after her son, Army Spc. Etienne J. Murphy, 22, died May 26 after an armored lorry he was riding in rolled over in Syria.

“Since it was non-combat, I feel like possibly he believed it was a mishap, it does not matter,” Sheila Murphy said of Trump. “However my boy remained in Syria.” She states she’s waited in vain for a letter, after composing to Trump 6 weeks ago to tell him she was still deeply grieving.

“I hate sunrises since I have to handle another day that my son is not here,” she informed the AP Wednesday. “I welcome sunsets since I’m hoping that maybe when the sun goes down I will not need to handle another daybreak. So daybreaks are my opponent today.”

Cynthia Kimball got a letter from the president, but no call, after her Navy kid John Henry Hoagland III passed away in the crash between the USS John S. McCain and a merchant vessel in August. “They stated we might order more copies of it if we desired,” she stated. “It was pretty generic. I dislike to say that, due to the fact that it did come from Washington and the president. However, I’m going to guess that it was the very same or much like the letter that everybody else received.”

McCain, himself, however, called her and other households of the victims. He left a “actually great” phone message with his telephone number in case she required anything, she stated. Kimball lives in Fort Benning, Georgia, and her kid grew up in Cleveland, Texas.

Lemire reported from New York. Associated Press writers Jennifer Kay in Miami, Russ Bynum in Savannah, Georgia. Jonathan Drew in Raleigh, North Carolina, Kristen de Groot in Philadelphia, Jennifer McDermott in Providence, Rhode Island, Michelle Rate in Salt Lake City, and Hope Yen and Robert Burns

Is Trump a madman with nuclear codes, or insane like a fox?

Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2017|2 a.m.

Seoul, South Korea–.

View more of the Sun’s viewpoint area.

Donald Trump sometimes takes part in such flights of rhetorical fancy that a great deal of individuals think he’s insane or unforeseeable. How can you be sure of a president who discusses destroying North Korea, who holds out “the military alternative”– however professes to want to avoid conflict?

There are two schools of considered Trump. Almost every college professor, like the columnists for The New york city Times and Washington Post, believes he’s unhinged and we ‘d better look out. Then there are those who believe he’s insane like a fox, that he might act and talk insane but deep down he understands what he’s doing.

It may be too early to pronounce judgment on Trump’s sanity. However here’s a concern that individuals fret about: Does he truly have his finger on the nuclear button? Can he flick a switch and send out bombers off on a nuclear strike if he’s in the state of mind?

Keep in mind, every U.S. president needs to bring the nuclear football wherever he goes. Someone in his entourage, perhaps a Secret Service officer, has this luggage inside of which are the codes and buttons needed to open a nuclear war. Could Trump late one night, snug in bed in the White Home, after withstanding a particularly vexing barrage of insults joined the direst risks from his opposite number in Pyongyang, mumble, “enough is enough,” reach for the football, tear it open, struck the switch and plunge the world into nuclear war?

Easily? Might it be that easy?

The question is not as unimportant as it may seem. At the height of the Korean War, prior to President Harry Truman fired him, Gen. Douglas MacArthur, from his aerie in Tokyo, more than as soon as required obliterating the bad people as the quickest, safest method to obtain rid of them. Nor was the nuclear alternative forgotten during the Vietnam War.

Peter Arnett, the Pulitzer Prize-winning Associated Press star in Vietnam in those days, remembers for the advantage people “old hacks” who covered the war a memo from Gen. Earl Wheeler, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to President Lyndon Johnson on Feb. 3, 1968. The legendary siege of the Marine fight base at Khe Sanh in the northwestern corner of what we then called South Vietnam had begun. The base was surrounded by North Vietnamese forces shooting from jungle-clad ridges.

” Making use of tactical nuclear weapons need to not be needed in today scenario,” Wheeler wrote, mentioning the authority to use “controlled fragmentation of munitions,” implying artillery shells that would piece over enemy troops, detonating bomblets over a large area.

The basic added a qualifier that might strike a chord in Korea by its recommendation to the DMZ, the apparently “demilitarized zone” between North and South Vietnam at the 17th Parallel. Unlike the DMZ that has separated North from South Korea given that completion of the Korean War, this DMZ in Vietnam was permeable. There were no peacekeepers monitoring inviolable lines; North Vietnamese crossed at will, attacking U.S. forces operating out of fire bases south of the fictive line.

Extremely, the general wrote, “Ought to the scenario in the DMZ location modification dramatically, we must be prepared to introduce weapons of higher effectiveness against mass forces.” Undoubtedly, he added ominously, “Under these situations I imagine that either tactical nuclear weapons or chemical agents would be active candidates for work.”

Johnson didn’t wish to become aware of it. Inquired about “the possible usage of N weapons at Khe Sanh,” inning accordance with Arnett, LBJ responded, “Do not ever ask me to have to consider it.”

One questions if Trump, confronted with bad choices, would consider the nuclear “option.” Should he be trusted with the nuclear football? Or does he take pleasure in baiting Kim Jong Un in a campaign shrewdly computed to alleviate rather than increase stress?

It would be great to understand Trump is insane like a fox, not a madman with his finger on the nuclear button, craving a fight in which millions would die.

Donald Kirk has actually been a columnist for Korea Times, South China Early morning Post numerous other newspaper and magazines. He wrote this for InsideSources.com.

Collins advises Trump to back effort to bring back health subsidy

Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017|12:34 p.m.

WASHINGTON– A crucial moderate Republican politician advised President Donald Trump on Sunday to back a bipartisan Senate effort to shield customers from rising premiums after his abrupt choice to stop federal payments to insurance companies, calling the move “disruptive” and an immediate threat to access to health care.

“What the president is doing is affecting individuals’s access and the expense of health care today,” said Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, who has cast essential votes on health care in the narrowly divided Senate. “This is not a bailout of the insurance providers. What this money is utilized for is to assist low-income individuals afford their deductibles and their co-pays.”

“Congress needs to step in and I hope that the president will have a look at exactly what we’re doing,” she included.

Her comments showed an increasing focus Sunday on the bipartisan Senate effort led by Sens. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., and Patty Murray, D-Wash., to a minimum of briefly reinstate the payments to prevent immediate turmoil in the insurance coverage market, even as Trump indicated he wouldn’t back a deal without getting something he desires in return.

The payments will be stopped beginning today, with sign-up season for subsidized personal insurance coverage set to begin Nov. 1.

“The president is not going to continue to throw great loan after bad, give $7 billion to insurance companies unless something modifications about Obamacare that would validate it,” stated Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., who golfed with Trump Saturday at the Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, Virginia.

“It’s got to be a bargain,” Graham said.

In his decision recently, Trump derided the $7 billion in aids as bailouts to insurance providers and suggested he was attempting to get Democrats to negotiate and consent to a broader effort to reverse and replace previous President Barack Obama’s healthcare law, a quote that repeatedly crashed in the GOP-run Senate this summertime.

The payments look for to lower out-of-pocket costs for insurance companies, which are required under Obama’s law to decrease poorer people’s expenses– about 6 million individuals. To recover the lost cash, carriers are likely to raise 2018 premiums for people buying their own health insurance policies.

Alexander and Murray have actually been seeking an offer that the Tennessee Republican has actually said would renew the payments for 2 years. In exchange, Alexander stated, Republicans want “significant versatility for states” to use lower-cost insurance policies with less coverage than Obama’s law requireds.

Still, congressional Republicans are divided over that effort. White Home spending plan director Mick Mulvaney has actually suggested that Trump may oppose any contract unless he gets something he desires– such as a repeal of Obamacare or financing of Trump’s promised wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

On Sunday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., explained Trump’s demand for a sit-down with congressional Democratic leaders as “a little far down the roadway.” She noted the bipartisan effort in the Senate and said eventually it will depend on a Republican-controlled Congress and executive branch whether the federal government can prevent a shutdown by year’s end.

The federal government faces a Dec. 8 deadline on the debt limitation and government spending.

“We’re not about closing down government. The Republicans have the majority,” Pelosi said. “In regards to the healthcare, we’re saying ‘Let’s follow exactly what Sen. Murray and Alexander are doing.”

Collins praised the Senate effort so far, that included public hearings by the Senate health and education committee. Still, she acknowledged a possibly hard road in reaching broader agreement.

“I hope we can continue, however Democrats will need to step up to the plate and assist us,” stated Collins, who belongs to the committee. “It’s a two-way street.”

The scrapping of subsidies would affect millions more consumers in states won by Trump in 2015, consisting of Florida, Alabama and Mississippi, than in states won by Democrat Hillary Clinton. Nearly 70 percent of the 6 million who gain from the cost-sharing aids are in states that chose the Republican.

Republican politician Gov. John Kasich of Ohio stated Sunday his state had actually prepared for that the insurer payments would be halted but not so quickly. He required the payments to be reinstated right away, describing a hit to Ohio– a state also won by Trump last November– for at least the “very first two or three months.”

“In time, this is going to have a significant impact,” Kasich stated. “Who gets hurt? People. And it’s simply outrageous.”

Nineteen Democratic state attorney generals of the United States have actually revealed plans to sue Trump over the blockage. Attorneys generals from California, Kentucky, Massachusetts and New york city were amongst those stating they will file the claim in federal court in California to stop Trump’s attempt “to gut the health and well-being of our nation.”

Collins appeared on ABC’s “This Week” and CNN’s “State of the Union,” Pelosi also spoke on ABC, Graham appeared on CBS’ “Face the Nation,” and Kasich was on NBC’s “Satisfy the Press.”