Lyin’ Sean Spicer’s ‘lack of credibility’ Gets Him Rejected by All 5 Major News Networks

by News Corpse – In August Donald Trump’s Press Secretary, Sean Spicer (Fibby Spice), was advised that his services would no longer be required. He was fired after only six months of loyal lying for the President. At first glance, Spicer seemed to be the perfect person for the job. On his first day at work he assembled the Washington press corps to berate them for telling the truth about the dismal attendance at Trump’s inauguration. And it was all downhill from there. The White House has jettisoned a record number of top staffers in its short tenure. They include his chief of staff Reince Priebus, national security advisor Michael Flynn, and communications director Anthony Scaramucci. Some of Trump’s castoffs have already found new employment with right-wing media outlets like Breitbart News and the Sinclair Broadcast Group. But Spicer is having a rough go of it in his post-Trump career. NBC News...

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Mueller Reportedly Seeking to Interview Trump’s Inner Circle, Family Members Included

by Jen Hayden – Special Counsel Robert Mueller has reportedly zeroed in on six current and former top advisors to Donald Trump he’d like to interview for his growing investigation. From the Washington Post: Mueller’s interest in the aides, including trusted adviser Hope Hicks, ex-press secretary Sean Spicer and former chief of staff Reince Priebus, reflects how the probe that has dogged Trump’s presidency is starting to penetrate a closer circle of aides around the president. Each of the six advisers was privy to important internal discussions that have drawn the interest of Mueller’s investigators, including his decision in May to fire FBI Director James B. Comey and the White House’s initial inaction following warnings that then-national security adviser Michael Flynn had withheld information from the public about his private discussions in December with Russia’s ambassador to the United States, according to people familiar with the probe. Priebus and Spicer have both left the...

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New White House Communications Chief Begins Tenure by Defending One of Trump’s Most Dangerous Lies

by Aaron Rupar – Smoother delivery, but some things haven’t changed. Sean Spicer began his tenure as White House Press Secretary by defending a lie about the crowd size at Trump’s inauguration being “the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration. Period.” On the day of Spicer’s resignation, new White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci defended another, more dangerous Trump lie. Asked by a reporter if he stands by Trump’s claim that three to five million illegal votes cost him the popular vote, Scaramucci said, “If the president says it… my guess is that there is probably some level of truth to that.” “I think what we have found sometimes, the president says stuff, some of you guys in the media think it’s not true or it isn’t true, and it turns out it is closer to the truth than people think,” he added. There isn’t a shred of evidence that widespread illegal voting occurred...

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George Orwell on Sean Spicer

by TODD GITLIN – A note on the uses of stupefaction. The Trumps’ nine-day journey outside the United States was “incredible, historic…because it truly was an extraordinary week.” It was “unprecedented.” “We’ve never seen before at this point in a presidency such sweeping reassurance of American interest,” said press secretary Sean Spicer. Most of what Spicer had to say in his press briefing and Q&A on May 30 was — to be generous — intelligible if empty or, in the case of his example of “fake news,” absurdly misleading, concerning as it did a BBC error that was quickly corrected. But my point here is more general — his vocabulary and his style. “Incredible graciousness” — Saudi Arabia’s monarchy. “A historic turning point that people will be talking about for many years to come” — his speech in Riyadh. “Right direction” — that’s where Trump moved NATO. “Holistic solution” — that’s what’s...

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As Trump Rages Over Russia Probe, Big Changes may be Coming in the White House

by Hunter – Donald Trump is now back from his foreign trip. It was touch and go for that last bit there, when he was shoving other leaders and making threatening comments about how the rest of NATO owed him lunch money, and when the rest of the G7 leaders went out for a brief final stroll Trump lacked the stamina to follow, instead trailing behind in a golf cart. Oh, and he comes home to multiple catastrophes. But don’t worry! He has a plan! Like any middlingly successful rich fart, Trump knows that the first, last and only thing a sinking company effort needs is a good, hard rearranging of the deck chairs. While much remained fluid Saturday, the beefed-up operation could include the return of some of Trump’s more combative campaign aides, including former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, who was fired nearly a year ago, and former deputy campaign manager David...

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Steve Bannon Told Trump: ‘go to the mattresses’ & Bodies Falling at WH Just Like a Mafia Movie

by ursulafaw – The Trump White House is flailing like a beached whale right now as Kremlin Gate looms like a tsunami in the distance. They can hear it roaring and it’s only a question of time before it arrives, smashing them down, engulfing them and splintering their soon to be lost dreams of glory. And who is the only man who can stop it, or so he tells them? Steve Bannon. Steve Bannon has advised Donald Trump that his only hope is to “go to the mattresses,” under Bannon’s direction if he wants to  save his presidency. This from the Washington Post: Although much remained fluid Saturday, the beefed-up operation could include the return of some of Trump’s more combative campaign aides, including Corey Lewandowski, who was fired as campaign manager nearly a year ago, and David N. Bossie, who was deputy campaign manager and made his name in politics...

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Trump Told Russians “Nut Job” Comey Was Fired to Ease Pressure: Report

by Common Dreams staff – “What’s worse: President admitting Comey was fired over Russia, or Spicer justifying it?” President Donald Trump characterized former FBI director James Comey, whom the president had fired just a day earlier, as a “nut job” to top Russian government officials during a recent Oval Office meeting, the New York Times reports on Friday citing an anonymous U.S. official who read from an internal document that purportedly summarized the exchange. Trump was meeting with Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Ambassador Sergey Kislyak in the White House on May 10 when, according to the account reported by the Times, he made the derisive statements about Comey and also indicated possible motivations behind the director’s ouster. “I just fired the head of the F.B.I. He was crazy, a real nut job,” Mr. Trump said, according to the readout of the document provided to the Times. “I faced great...

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Flynn Never Received Level of Security Clearance Required for National Security Adviser

by Mark Sumner – In today’s press conference, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer addressed the issue of President Obama providing a timely warning to Donald Trump against hiring Michael Flynn. Spicer denied knowing the details of the discussion, but repeatedly put it off as President Obama making it clear he “wasn’t exactly a fan of General Flynn.” Spicer defended Donald Trump’s former national security adviser, saying that President Obama’s reason for warning Trump against Flynn was because he was “outspoken about Obama’s lack of strategy” on ISIS. And Spicer retreated frequently to the standard position of the Trump regime over the last week: It’s Obama’s fault for giving Flynn a high level of security clearance, a level that Spicer insisted was equal to that Flynn would require as NSA, saying that the DNI and NSA had the same level of clearance. Except that’s not true. Peter Alexander ✔@PeterAlexander NEW: Flynn never received broader security...

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A Timeline: Russia and President Trump

by STEVEN HARPER –   This timeline has been updated. 1979: Roger Stone is introduced to Donald Trump by notorious attorney Roy Cohn. 1980: Roger Stone founds a lobbying practice with Paul Manafort; Trump becomes one of Stone’s first clients. In the 1980s, Trump hires Manafort as his lawyer on gambling and real estate issues. By 1988, Stone is one of Trump’s closest advisers. Trump’s efforts to develop business in Russia date to 1987. In 1996, he applies for his trademark in that country. Discussing ambitions for a Trump hotel in 2007, he declares, “We will be in Moscow at some point.” August 1998: Russia defaults on its debt and its stock market collapses. As the value of the ruble plummets, Russian millionaires scramble to get money out of their country and into New York City, where real estate provides a safe haven for...

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Dan Rather Says What Every Person With a Moral Compass is Thinking Regarding Sean Spicer & Trump

by Sarah – It’s gotten to the point where if Donald Trump doesn’t fire Sean Spicer for his egregious remarks about the Holocaust, Assad and Syria, he should be seen as agreeing with Spicer’s sentiment as well as condoning it. It’s disgusting, to say the least, and the legendary Dan Rather just released a statement that should summarize what every person with a decent moral compass is thinking right now. Rather wrote: “It is with sadness that I do not know where to begin. Today in a briefing, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer issued a statement that is so far beyond the pale, so tone deaf and blind to history and our precarious moment in world affairs, that it is with only a heavy heart that I even bring attention to it. There can be no joy in such incompetence. In trying to make the case for the Administration’s policy...

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The Trump Team’s History of Flirting With Holocaust Deniers (VIDEO)

by Laurel Raymond – This White House has a long history of thinly veiled anti-Semitism. On Tuesday, the first day of Passover, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer made a series of statements about Hitler that parallel conspiracy theories common among anti-Semites and Holocaust deniers. It’s hardly the first time that Trump officials have sent veiled signals to neo-Nazis, anti-Semites, and white supremacists. Spicer began on Tuesday by comparing Hitler favorably to the Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad — alleging that Hitler, who used poisonous gas to kill millions of Jews, “didn’t even sink to using chemical weapons.” When given a chance to clarify, Spicer said that Hitler “was not using the gas on his own people the same way that Assad is doing,” and that Assad, unlike Hitler, was dropping chemical weapons “down to innocents in the middle of town.” In a subsequent clarification, Spicer repeated that Assad used chemical weapons on “innocent...

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Spicer Won’t Give Straight Answer on Reported Changes to Trump Trust

by Deirdre Fulton – White House press secretary Sean Spicer claims “the entire point” of setting up such a trust “is so somebody can withdraw money”. White House press secretary Sean Spicer didn’t offer a clear explanation or response to questions on Monday about new reporting showing that President Donald Trump can withdraw funds at any time from any of his businesses—without telling the American people. Citing a trust document signed on February 10, online outlet ProPublica reported Monday: “Trump can draw money from his more than 400 businesses, at any time, without disclosing it.” According to ProPublica reporters Derek Kravitz and Al Shaw: The previously unreported changes to a trust document, signed on Feb. 10, stipulates that it “shall distribute net income or principal to Donald J. Trump at his request” or whenever his son and longtime attorney “deem appropriate.” That can include everything from profits to the underlying assets,...

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Is Boris Epshteyn a Russian Agent?

by GregLwood – Boris Epshteyn, an official in the White House press office…is leaving his job, according to three people with knowledge of the move. The departure was treated with some mystery. Sean Spicer, the White House press secretary, would not comment on the reason… (New York Times 3/25/17) Is Epshteyn’s departure directly linked to Trump’s exploding Russia scandal? Consider the following. Russia’s Federal Security Service (the FSB) often recruits Western businessmen by obtaining compromising material (“kompromat”) during tours and junkets to Russia.  Russian intelligence has used this iconic recruitment technique for over fifty years. Epshteyn worked with the Russian government in 2013 to promote investment in Russia to the American business community.  His actions fit tightly with the FSB model described above. The Russia-born investment banker and attorney moderated a panel at an October 2013 conference in New York City called “Invest in Moscow!” The panel was mainly comprised of...

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Trump’s War on the Truth Tellers

by Robert Reich – Trump and his White House don’t argue on the merits. They attack the credibility of the institutions that come up with facts and arguments they don’t like. They even do it preemptively. Last week, White House press secretary Sean Spicer warned that the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office couldn’t be trusted to come up with accurate numbers about the costs and coverage of the Republicans’ replacement for the Affordable Care Act. “If you’re looking at the CBO for accuracy, you’re looking in the wrong place,” he said. So what’s the right place? The Oval Office? Bear in mind the director of the CBO is a Republican economist and former George W. Bush administration official who was chosen for his position by the Republican Congress in 2015. No matter. The White House is worried about what the CBO will say about Trumpcare, so it throws the CBO under the bus...

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White House Apologizes to Britain for False Wiretapping Allegations

by Zack Ford – Noooooo, British intelligence didn’t bug Trump Tower either. The White House has apologized to Britain and promised it will no longer reiterate conspiracy theories about British intelligence working against President Trump. During Thursday’s press briefing, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer read through a litany of news stories that he argued gave credence to President Trump’s baseless accusation that President Obama wiretapped — or “wiretapped” — Trump Tower during the election. The corroborating “evidence” included remarks made by Fox News’ Judge Andrew Napolitano, who — humoring Trump’s claims — suggested that Obama could have used a foreign intelligence service to avoid a paper trail — and that, if he did, he “more likely than not” used the British intelligence agency GCHQ to conduct that supposed surveillance. The GCHQ, like U.S. intelligence agencies, rarely comments on its own activities, but in this case, it responded that such allegations are “utterly ridiculous” and “should be ignored.” U.S. National Security Adviser...

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New York Times: FBI’s James Comey Requests the DOJ Reject Trump’s Wiretapping Claims

by Leslie Salzillo – Michael S. Schmidt and Michael D. Shear with The New York Times reported Sunday afternoon, that James Comey, Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), is asking the Department of Justice (DOJ) to reject Donald Trump’s wiretapping claim. “The F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, asked the Justice Department this weekend to publicly reject President Trump’s assertion that President Barack Obama ordered the tapping of Mr. Trump’s phones, senior American officials said on Sunday. Mr. Comey has argued that the highly charged claim is false and must be corrected, they said, but the department has not released any such statement.” The White House has shown no signs of backing down, saying an inquiry is needed. “In his demand for a congressional inquiry, the president, through his press secretary, Sean Spicer, issued a statement on Sunday that said, ‘President Donald J. Trump is requesting that as part of their investigation into Russian activity, the congressional intelligence committees exercise...

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A Great Danger to Our Country

by TODD GITLIN – The twisted art of intimidating with slander to help build “a new political order.”   Donald J. Trump  ✔@realDonaldTrump FAKE NEWS media knowingly doesn’t tell the truth. A great danger to our country. The failing @nytimes has become a joke. Likewise @CNN. Sad! 10:09 PM – 24 Feb 2017 So blared the tweeter-in-Chief at 10:09 p.m. Friday, rounding out a full day spent ranting against The Enemy Within. Trump, whose prime rhetorical instrument is percussion, used the word “dishonest” seven times to describe journalists — not all journalists, mind, only the ones who “knowingly tell the truth.” Earlier that day, Trump strutted into the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) and repeated his charge that what he calls “FAKE NEWS” is “the enemy of the people,” meaning that “they have no sources, they just make it up” — a practice with which he has some familiarity, having...

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Jeff Sessions: Legal Pot Drives Violent Crime, Statistics be Damned

by Alan Pyke – The Attorney General revives debunked pot-crime link. While the Trump administration has yet to take any formal action on marijuana policy, its words continue to signal a crackdown. On Monday, days after White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters to expect stricter enforcement of federal pot law, Attorney General Jeff Sessions recycled discredited drug war talking points in remarks of his own. “I believe it’s an unhealthy practice, and current levels of THC in marijuana are very high compared to what they were a few years ago, and we’re seeing real violence around that,” Sessions said. “Experts are telling me there’s more violence around marijuana than one would think and there’s big money involved.” In reality, violent crime rates tend to decrease where marijuana is legalized. Denver saw a 2.2 percent drop in violent crime rates in the year after the first legal recreational cannabis sales...

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1. Spicer Conducts Random “Phone Checks” to Curb Leaks. 2. News of Phone Checks Leaked to Press

by VTGenie – White House Spokesman Sean Spicer has instituted a new tactic to ferret out potential leakers among the communications staff: subject them to random phone checks. After information from a planning meeting last week with communications staffers ended up in the press, Spicer reconvened the group: Upon entering Spicer’s office for what one person briefed on the gathering described as “an emergency meeting,” staffers were told to dump their phones on a table for a “phone check,” to prove they had nothing to hide. Spicer, who consulted with White House counsel Don McGahn before calling the meeting, was accompanied by White House lawyers in the room, according to multiple sources. Apparently, both government-issued and personal phones were checked— whatever staffers had with them at the meeting. Spicer also warned them about using texting apps (e.g., Confide) that immediately erase the text after sending, saying that such use would violate the Presidential Records...

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Bill Maher Lashes out at the Press: Toughen up, Stop Covering Crap, Take one for the Team

by Egberto Willies – A national press with similarly lousy credibility as Trump is one that is ineffective. Bill Maher uses actual examples of their screw ups to point out what they should do in this excerpted video clip. Now more than ever we need a robust and assertive press. It is the time that the media gets back to the basics but most importantly grow spines to confront our political bully. “Now that polls show that the public finds the news media less trustworthy than Donald Trump,” Bill Maher said. “They have to fight to get their reputation back. And there are encouraging signs that that fight has been joined.” Maher then pointed out that the New York Times called out Trump’s untruths by name, lies. Chuck Todd, Scot Pelley, and George Stephanopoulos slammed Trump spokespersons when they came on the air with their alternative facts. “We are going to need...

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