‘The People Can’t Take It Anymore’: Puerto Rico Erupts in a Day of Protests

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michael barbaro

From The New York Times, I’m Michael Barbaro. This is “The Daily.” Today: Hundreds of leaked text messages revealed the governor of Puerto Rico mocking his own citizens. For Puerto Ricans, it was the last straw. It’s Friday, July 19.

patricia mazzei

Hello, Michael Barbaro.

michael barbaro

Hello, hello. How are you?

patricia mazzei

I’ve been better. How are you?

michael barbaro

I’m O.K. Why have you been better? What’s the matter?

patricia mazzei

Well, I’m just tired. It’s been really long nights. But that’s O.K.

michael barbaro

You’ve been staying up late covering the protests.

patricia mazzei

Yes, sir. There’s a meme in Puerto Rico of people saying, O.K., I’m going to bed, and a friend telling them, but what if the governor resigns? And the person lying in bed with their eyes wide open. They don’t want to miss that moment, and so —

michael barbaro

Right, right, right. The one moment you doze off is the moment it all happens.

patricia mazzei

That’s what we live in fear of.

michael barbaro

I reached Pati Mazzei, a national correspondent for The Times, in San Juan. Pati, for most listeners, I suspect the story of Puerto Rico hits the pause button in October of 2017. Hurricane Maria hits. The island is thrown into darkness and into chaos. And President Trump’s response is seen by many as insensitive and insufficient.

patricia mazzei

Yes. But the story came back in April of this year when members of Congress were considering a disaster aid bill.

archived recording

Nature’s forces have battered the United States in the past half year — storm winds, floodwaters, and deadly wildfire. To those natural disasters, now add a man-made one.

patricia mazzei

Not just for Puerto Rico, but for a bunch of states on the mainland that had suffered various natural disasters.

archived recording

A dispute between President Trump and Democrats over hurricane relief for Puerto Rico is threatening disaster relief funding for California’s wildfire victims.

patricia mazzei

The president wanted to hold up the bill just because he did not want to send money to Puerto Rico. So these were billions of dollars that would have gone to Florida, Texas, states in the Midwest that were suddenly at this impasse because the president said, I’m not sending more to Puerto Rico.

archived recording

President Trump accused Puerto Rico’s leaders of misspending money they had already received.

patricia mazzei

He said the government can’t do anything right, that the place is a mess, and nothing works there.

archived recording

Here’s part of the tweet: The pols are grossly incompetent, spend the money foolishly or corruptly, and only take from the U.S.A.

patricia mazzei

And therefore, he did not trust Puerto Rican leaders to manage new funds well.

archived recording

The best thing that ever happened to Puerto Rico, the tweet says, is President Donald J. Trump.

michael barbaro

And what’s the response in Puerto Rico this time?

patricia mazzei

So Puerto Ricans still don’t like being called out by the president. They find that offensive. But that doesn’t mean that some of them, at least, don’t agree with some of the substance of his criticism, which is that the leaders on the island haven’t always been very good fiscal stewards of public funds. Puerto Rico has suffered financial troubles for years and has had corruption scandals for decades. And so people on the island were wary that once again, some of this might come up with billions of dollars in recovery aid flowing into the island.

michael barbaro

So Puerto Ricans don’t entirely disagree with the president that perhaps the island can’t be trusted with the money.

patricia mazzei

No. And that’s what made some of their response nuanced. You can be mad that the president — the only time he talks about you is to say bad things and still think he’s got a point in that our leaders haven’t always done well by us. In fact, Puerto Rico is effectively bankrupt. They’re in a 12-year recession, and they have a debt crisis. Their leaders borrowed until they couldn’t anymore, and the island ran out of money.

michael barbaro

So Pati, what happens next?

archived recording

[SPEAKING SPANISH]

patricia mazzei

So three weeks ago, Puerto Rico’s Treasury secretary says in an explosive radio interview that he has gone to federal authorities to report this institutional mafia, he calls it, within the government that is trying to extort him. In a matter of hours, the governor asks the Treasury secretary for his resignation, saying he can’t trust him because the secretary didn’t go to the governor to tell him what he had found. He went straight to the feds.

archived recording

[SPEAKING SPANISH]

michael barbaro

He’s firing the Treasury secretary for reporting an alleged extortion attempt to the United States government.

patricia mazzei

As you can imagine, that doesn’t sit well with some of the governor’s critics, and also with some of the secretary’s family members.

archived recording

[SPEAKING SPANISH]

patricia mazzei

His son takes to social media to criticize the governor, and then the son gets investigated by police. And this starts turning into a real drama.

archived recording

Six people, including two former Puerto Rican officials, were arrested for allegedly diverting millions in federal funds to unqualified, politically connected contractors yesterday.

patricia mazzei

In the middle of all this, last week, the U.S. attorney’s office in Puerto Rico announces six high-profile arrests, including of the former education secretary and of the former executive director of the island’s health insurance administration agency.

archived recording 1

The alleged scam involves $15.5 million in federal funding allocated since 2017.

archived recording 2

The feds say they were defrauding the federal government.

archived recording 3

Here’s what is really so disappointing. Julia Keleher, she was impressive. She was driven. She seemed like someone who could do some good things. It’s such a slap in the face for an island that needs so much to see her go down if this is true.

archived recording 4

And what I was thinking, too, is that Puerto Rico, P.R., does not need any bad P.R.

patricia mazzei

And to top it all off, the governor is on vacation in Europe. He calls off his vacation, leaves his wife and children on a cruise ship in the Mediterranean, and flies back to get back to the island as quickly as possible. And then while he’s flying back, there’s a new wrinkle. Someone leaks bits and pieces of a group chat on the messaging app Telegram between the governor and 11 of his closest aides. And in this leak are offensive and profane comments that they make about some of their political opponents. There is a snapshot that the governor posts of a tweet by the former speaker of the New York City Council, Melissa Mark-Viverito, who is originally from Puerto Rico, where she’s criticizing Tom Perez, the president of the Democratic National Committee. And the governor’s response is [SPEAKING SPANISH], which, in English, means, our people need to go out and defend Tom and go after this whore.

archived recording (ricardo rosselló)

So, well, first of all, good afternoon. Thank you all for being here.

patricia mazzei

So by the time the governor lands in San Juan —

archived recording (ricardo rosselló)

Briefly, I wanted to talk to the press.

patricia mazzei

The entire press corps has assembled and is ready to pounce.

archived recording

What strategy are you using to continue the operations of government and the economy, for the economy to continue?

archived recording (ricardo rosselló)

So good question.

archived recording

There’s been some calls for your resignation from your political position. Do you have a decision or an answer to that call?

archived recording (ricardo rosselló)

So I’m moving forward with all of my elected positions.

archived recording

You were the leader of this chat room that conspired to discredit people you didn’t like. Why would you do that?

archived recording (ricardo rosselló)

Well, again, I’ve already mentioned I am — I am not proud of what I did. Those were merely comments, but they were hurtful comments. It’s why I apologize for what I’ve done.

michael barbaro

And how does that explanation go over?

patricia mazzei

Not particularly well. The people who were insulted in the chat say that this is unacceptable behavior by their leaders. And Puerto Ricans in general, who have been seeing these bits and pieces come out, are sort of just waiting for the next one to drop. And then it’s not that there’s another bit that drops.

archived recording

Governor Ricardo Rosselló has been under fire since nearly 900 pages of a private group chat were leaked and published this weekend by the Center for —

patricia mazzei

It’s 889 pages published on Saturday morning by Puerto Rico’s Center for Investigative Reporting detailing two months of this chat in full.

archived recording

The leaked chat room conversations between the governor and 11 others are laced with profane, homophobic and sexist comments.

michael barbaro

And what is in this second batch of messages?

patricia mazzei

The second batch of messages has more insults where not only are they targeting critics of the governor and his administration, but also their allies — for example, a young man who is overweight who met with the governor. And there’s a picture in the chat of the two shaking hands and the governor making a crack about [SPEAKING SPANISH]. No, I’m not thinner. It’s an optical illusion. And then saying, [SPEAKING SPANISH]. He generates his own gravity field. I mean, things that are just really —

patricia mazzei

Inappropriate. Yes. But in addition to that, there is the bigger picture, which is that there are people in this chat who are no longer members of the government, including a lobbyist who has his own business interests. And he is getting fed inside information from his buddies with the governor being aware of it.

michael barbaro

So weeks after President Trump calls the government of Puerto Rico corrupt, there are all these indictments that basically say he’s right. And then there are these leaks that cast the Puerto Rican government as completely insensitive to everyday Puerto Ricans.

patricia mazzei

Yeah. If you thought, cynically, that these people were more concerned about how they look than what they do, if you thought that maybe they didn’t really respect people, even if they pretended outwardly that they did, and if you were concerned that there was — if not real corruption, then the perception of corruption, that it could be happening, that people were really cozy with their friends, with lobbyists and business leaders in their inner circle, then what the chat did was confirm your worst fears and prove that you were right. And so people started taking to the streets spontaneously. And they’re very fed up. And so that’s when I get on a plane and come, because we’re starting to wonder if this is going to force the governor to resign. Is this going to be a moment that changes things?

michael barbaro

We’ll be right back.

michael barbaro

So Pati, walk me through the last few days in San Juan.

patricia mazzei

The streets of Old San Juan are narrow and colonial. They’re cobblestone streets lined with shops that are painted in colorful red and pink and green and purple. And they have been deserted during the day and packed at night — not because people are going to bars or there’s a bunch of tourists here, but because the protesters come down.

archived recording

[CHANTING]

patricia mazzei

They come with flags in hand, and they’re wearing black and white T-shirts with political messages. And they are just standing for hours, sometimes starting in the middle of the day under the scorching sun, in front — or as close as they can get in front — to the governor’s mansion, La Fortaleza, which means the fortress. And —

archived recording

[CHANTING]

patricia mazzei

— they start chanting. And this is the Caribbean, so the percussion is great.

archived recording

[CHANTING]

patricia mazzei

They find these great rhymes.

archived recording

[CHANTING]

patricia mazzei

With the governor’s nickname, Ricky. And so they just keep saying, ¡Ricky, renuncia!” Resign, resign.

archived recording

[CHANTING]

patricia mazzei

People were not just mad about these chats. Some of the signs were about that. Some of the chants were about that. But one of the things that was really stunning was the number of protest signs that just listed the number of people who have been estimated could have died under Hurricane Maria. So some signs just said 4,645, the upper-end estimate. These people have suffered not only through hurricanes and a power outage that lasted a year, but also with major economic hardships, and layoffs, and school closures, and people leaving the island en masse to move to the mainland. And it all just was pent up, and it exploded all at once.

archived recording

[SPEAKING SPANISH]

patricia mazzei

And then the celebrities joined the people.

archived recording

[SPEAKING SPANISH]

patricia mazzei

And on Wednesday night, there is Ricky Martin and the rapper Residente, and the trap musician Bad Bunny, and the singer iLe.

archived recording

[SINGING]

patricia mazzei

And they’re standing on the platform of this truck as the sun is setting, and they’re in front of the ocean, the Capitol behind them. And iLe looks out over this crowd between the Capitol and the palm trees and the ocean, and she says, it was about damn time to wake up.

archived recording

[SINGING]

michael barbaro

So it’s clear that a lot of this frustration is landing at the doorstep of the governor. But my sense is that because of the complicated relationship between Puerto Rico and the United States, that the governor is not all that powerful, right?

patricia mazzei

It’s interesting that you mentioned that, Michael, because one of the other chants that we heard was ¡Ricky, renuncia, y llévate a la junta!

archived recording

[SPEAKING SPANISH]

patricia mazzei

Ricky, resign, and take the board with you. And that refers to this federal oversight board that Congress created to handle Puerto Rico’s finances after it essentially went bankrupt. And that is another big target of these protests, because the board’s role is to tell Puerto Rico what it cannot spend. And that involves layoffs, and school closures, and university tuition hikes, and possibly targeting public pensions. And so the board, which is unelected and comes from Washington, has made Puerto Ricans feel powerless. To a lot of them, it’s just another example of how they have been colonized, first by Spain and then by the United States. And it reminds them that they can elect their governor, they can elect some of their leaders, but they cannot elect the president. They are not a state. They are not a country. And a lot of this is out of their hands.

michael barbaro

So the mismanagement by Puerto Rico’s own leadership leads the federal government, a government that Puerto Ricans don’t think really sees them as equal to the mainland, to step in. And it’s sort of this vicious cycle where the worse Puerto Rico’s leadership behaves, the more the federal government intervenes, and also has sort of proven correct in this argument that Puerto Rico doesn’t deserve or can’t quite properly handle this federal funding.

patricia mazzei

Right. And in the middle, the people of Puerto Rico keep suffering.

archived recording

[SHOUTING]

michael barbaro

Pati, what happens now?

patricia mazzei

Well, the people on the streets want the governor to resign, but he says that he’s not going to go. There is talk in the legislature that they might impeach him, but they have not decided if they’re going to yet. Even if he goes, then there is a whole new set of questions. Can his replacement, in that case, govern? Many Puerto Ricans would like more autonomy to govern themselves, but who can they trust when the federal government is not inclined to give them more autonomy? The island government has not proven to be all that effective. How can the next person lead an island under these circumstances, under this sort of federal oversight, without any money, recovering from a hurricane? And basically, the biggest question is, is this island governable? Is this place a place that can be effectively run? And I don’t know the answer to that.

archived recording

[CHANTING]

michael barbaro

Pati, thank you very much.

patricia mazzei

Thank you, Michael.

archived recording

[CHANTING]

michael barbaro

We’ll be right back. Here’s what else you need to know today. On Thursday, the U.S. Navy shot down an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz not far from where Iran shot down a U.S. drone several weeks ago. The Trump administration said that before it was struck, the unmanned Iranian drone had ignored multiple warnings that it was straying close to an American ship, the U.S.S. Boxer. The attack is expected to inflame tensions between the two countries. And —

archived recording

When your supporters last night were chanting “send her back,” why didn’t you stop them? Why didn’t you ask them to stop saying that?

archived recording (donald trump)

Well, number one, I think I did. I started speaking very quickly.

michael barbaro

President Trump on Thursday tried to distance himself from supporters who chanted “send her back” at a rally the night before when he mentioned Congresswoman Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, a reference to his own tweet about Omar and three of her Democratic colleagues.

archived recording (donald trump)

I disagree with it, by the way. But it was quite a chant. And I felt a little bit badly about it.

michael barbaro

But contrary to the president’s claim that he tried to quickly end the chant, video shows he listened on for 13 seconds as the crowd repeatedly yelled.

archived recording

Send her back! Send her back! Send her back! Send her back! Send her back!

michael barbaro

On Thursday afternoon, a large crowd greeted Congresswoman Omar as she returned to Minnesota.

archived recording

Welcome home, Ilhan! Welcome home, Ilhan! Welcome home, Ilhan! Welcome home, Ilhan! Welcome home, Ilhan!

michael barbaro

“The Daily” is made by Theo Balcomb, Andy Mills, Lisa Tobin, Rachel Quester, Lynsea Garrison, Annie Brown, Clare Toeniskoetter, Paige Cowett, Michael Simon Johnson, Brad Fisher, Larissa Anderson, Wendy Dorr, Chris Wood, Jessica Cheung, Alexandra Leigh Young, Jonathan Wolfe, Lisa Chow, Eric Krupke, Marc Georges, Luke Vander Ploeg, Adizah Eghan, Kelly Prime, Julia Longoria, Sindhu Gnanasambandan and Jazmín Aguilera. Our theme music is by Jim Brunberg and Ben Landsverk of Wonderly. Special thanks to Sam Dolnick, Mikayla Bouchard, Julia Simon, Stella Tan and William Rashbaum. That’s it for “The Daily.” I’m Michael Barbaro. See you on Monday.


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Opinion | Ask Mueller Anything. The Facts Won’t Change.

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Michael_Novakhov
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More specifically, Judiciary Committee members will press Mr. Mueller to expand on a handful of the dozen or so episodes of potential obstruction cited in his report — including Mr. Trump ordering Don McGahn, the White House counsel at the time, to fire Mr. Mueller, then later instructing Mr. McGahn to deny any such effort. The Trump administration has blocked Mr. McGahn himself, along with many others named in the report, from testifying before Congress.

Complicating matters, Mr. Mueller is seen as, if not a hostile witness, at least a grudging one. In his brief public statement on his report in May, he all but begged Congress not to force him to testify and warned that, if called, he would provide no information beyond the scope of his report. “The report is my testimony,” he asserted.

Lawmakers have held mock sessions, running through practice questions and fine-tuning them to be as pointed — and un-duckable — as possible. On “Fox News Sunday” this weekend, Jerrold Nadler, the Judiciary Committee chairman, offered an example of how this could go: “‘Look at Page 344, Paragraph 2. Please read it. Does that describe obstruction of justice? Did you find that the president did that?’”

That said, Democrats acknowledge that it will be a challenge to get anything new out of Mr. Mueller. As Mr. Schiff recently joked, “We have a far better chance of the love affair in North Korea working out” than of getting Mr. Mueller to say whether Mr. Trump should be indicted after leaving office.

With this in mind, Mr. Schiff noted that he and his fellow Democrats “have to decide how much of our time we want to spend fighting with him to discuss things outside the report.”

The House Democratic leadership has warned members against grandstanding.

Republicans also will be aiming to keep their team from overreaching and appearing too partisan in their attacks on Mr. Mueller, who is widely respected. It bears recalling that Representative Devin Nunes of California, the top Republican on the Intelligence Committee, has been among Congress’s most fervent crusaders in trying to discredit the Mueller investigation. Representative Louie Gohmert of Texas, a Republican who sits on the Judiciary Committee, put out a report titled “Mueller Unmasked” that claimed to expose “the disreputable, twisted history” of the special counsel.

Looking to stir up trouble, Mr. Trump has waded into the drama. On Monday, he tweeted out fresh insults of Mr. Mueller and warned that the hearings would end badly for Democrats. He even found a way to work in Hillary Clinton, claiming, bizarrely, that all of her people had been “given immunity.”


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6:08 PM 7/22/2019 – Michael Novakhov on Trump

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6:08 PM 7/22/2019 – Michael Novakhov on Trump

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3:07 PM 7/22/2019 – Rx: Trump, decrease your dose of Prozac! And start packing… | Trump and Trumpism – Review Of News And Opinions

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3:07 PM 7/22/2019 – Rx: Trump, decrease your dose of Prozac! And start packing…

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2:56 PM 7/22/2019 – M.N.: Trump, decrease your dose of Prozac, you talk too fast, and with the very little sense. Get practical. Start packing your arrest clothes. Melania will be long gone by then, with the new lover… Your only hope is to share a cell with Epstein, maybe he will get you a couple of tricks, somewhere; down there…

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2:56 PM 7/22/2019 – M.N.: Trump, decrease your dose of Prozac, you talk too fast, and with the very little sense. Get practical. Start packing your arrest clothes. Melania will be long gone by then, with the new lover… Your only hope is to share a cell with Epstein, maybe  he will get you a couple of tricks, somewhere; down there…
__________________________________________________________

Trump repeats false Robert Mueller criticism – YouTube

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William Barr probe pits Obama intelligence chiefs against Trump-aligned dissenters

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Attorney General William P. Barr’s review of the Obama-era conclusion that Russia interfered in the election to help Donald Trump sets up a struggle between the nation’s top spies and Mr. Trump’s skeptical Republican allies.
On one side are President Trump’s past two CIA directors and his current chief of national intelligence. All have publicly endorsed the January 2017 intelligence community assessment that Russian President Vladimir Putin interfered to help Mr. Trump and hurt Hillary Clinton.
But there are dissenters, and they are close to the White House.
Rep. Devin Nunes of California, the ranking Republican on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, issued a report last year that found no Russian-Trump conspiracy. Special counsel Robert Mueller confirmed the finding in March.
Mr. Nunes made a less noticed finding. He said intelligence chiefs violated good tradecraft by writing the assessment section on Mr. Putin’s intentions. What’s more, Fred Fleitz, who served inside the White House as National Security Adviser John R. Bolton’s chief of staff, has written a series of columns casting doubt on the section about Mr. Putin’s role in the election.


Mr. Fleitz is being considered as a possible replacement for Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats, whose job is in jeopardy because of testimony this year on North Korea, a White House adviser told The Washington Times.
Mr. Coats reportedly angered the president by telling Congress that U.S. intelligence agencies don’t believe North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will give up his nuclear weapons, despite the president’s groundbreaking diplomatic outreach to Pyongyang and its leader. He gave the Senate testimony on the eve of Mr. Trump’s second summit with Mr. Kim in Vietnam in February.
Axios first reported this month on Mr. Coats’ shaky status, and Mr. Fleitz has been interviewed in the Oval Office by Mr. Trump and Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney.
Mr. Trump has always bristled at the intelligence community findings that Mr. Putin helped him win the presidency.

The assessment came from two Obama loyalists who have since become Mr. Trump’s most ardent critics on CNN and MSNBC: former CIA Director John O. Brennan and former Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper. Also signing off was another fierce Trump critic, then-FBI Director James B. Comey.
Mr. Brennan and Mr. Clapper have accused the president of being an agent for Russia. The Mueller report, which looked at “any links” between Trump allies and Russians, made no mention of Trumpconnections to the Kremlin as some kind of operative.
Former intelligence officials told The Times that Mr. Barr wants to determine whether there was any political influence to skew the conclusions of the intelligence community assessment.
Mr. Coats seemed to confirm that Mr. Barr is conducting a wide-ranging investigation of intelligence agency activities. After Mr. Trump announced in May that he had granted Mr. Barr wide powers to collect information and declassify material, Mr. Coats issued his own statement in response.
“Much like we have with other investigations and reviews,” the statement read, “the intelligence community … will provide the Department of Justice all of the appropriate information for its review of intelligence activities related to Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.”
Casting a wide net
Mr. Barr’s search for material on “intelligence activities related to Russian interference” indicates that he is casting a wide net.
Senior Trump aides back the intelligence community assessment, including former CIA director and now Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, one of Mr. Trump’s closest advisers.
Asked by Sen. Kamala D. Harris, California Democrat, at his Senate CIA confirmation hearing, “Do you fully accept its findings? Yes or No.” Mr. Pompeo answered, “I’ve seen nothing to cast any doubt on the findings in the report.”
He later told the intelligence committee, “Everything I’ve seen suggests to me that the report has an analytical product that is sound.”
Likewise, Gina Haspel, a career spy who succeeded Mr. Pompeo as director of the CIA, endorsed the intelligence community assessment.
Then there was the Helsinki episode that prompted Mr. Coats to immediately weigh in publicly.
A year ago, Mr. Trump stood alongside Mr. Putin when a reporter asked about Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election.
“I have President Putin, he just said it’s not Russia. I don’t see any reason why it would be,” Mr. Trumpsaid.
The answer astonished the intelligence community, which thought the issue was settled.
Back at the White House, Mr. Trump said he had mangled his answer. He wanted to say “wouldn’t be” surprised to hear of Russian attempts to interfere.
Mr. Coats then posted a statement to reaffirm the intelligence community assessment.
“We have been clear in our assessments of Russian meddling in the 2016 election and their ongoing, pervasive efforts to undermine our democracy, and we will continue to provide unvarnished and objective intelligence in support of our national security,” the statement read in part.
Former intelligence officials told The Times it appears the order on Mr. Barr’s powers will allow the Justice Department to hunt for any documentation of a political motive in writing the Russian assessment. The report’s authors said they had “high confidence” in their findings.
But people close to Mr. Trump have their doubts.
Mr. Nunes has said he found great fault in how the Obama appointees wrote the intelligence community assessment on Mr. Putin’s intentions.
“While the committee found that most ICA analysis held up to scrutiny, the investigation also identified significant intelligence tradecraft failings that undermine confidence in the ICA judgments regarding Russian President Vladimir Putin’s strategic objectives for disrupting the U.S. election,” his 2018 report said.
CIA analysts and their draft was subjected to an unusually constrained review and coordination process, which deviated from established practice.”
The Wall Street Journal and other news sites reported that Mr. Barr is reviewing the assessment.
Focus of investigation
Mr. Barr’s main stated focus is to determine how the FBI investigation into the Trump colleagues began and what role Western intelligence services played in surveilling campaign workers. Mr. Barr appointed John Durham, the U.S. attorney in Connecticut, to head the investigation. Republicans in Congresswonder whether FBI informants were put into place for the sole purpose of getting a Trump ally to say something that could justify an investigation.
Stefan Halper, an academic and longtime Washington national security scholar, was an FBI informant assigned to spy on at least two Trump associates: George Papadopoulos and Carter Page. The FBIalso assigned a flirtatious woman of mystery who assumed the role of office assistant to Mr. Halper.
FBI agent Peter Strzok formally opened the investigation on July 31, 2016, after an Australian diplomat in London reported that Mr. Papadopoulos told him that the Russians had obtained Mrs. Clinton emails.
Mr. Papadopoulos heard the gossip from another mysterious figure, Joseph Mifsud, a Maltese professor who traveled in Russian and Western circles. He has not been seen in public for months.
Mr. Papadopoulos said he believes Mr. Mifsud was a Western plant; the FBI believes he was a Russian agent but has produced little evidence.

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9:51 PM 7/18/2019 – Who is behind Epstein? The Questions for Investigations.

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9:51 PM 7/18/2019 – Who is behind Epstein?

“Epstein wasn’t just a serial child rapist, he was acting as some kind of hub for other child rapists and sexual assaulters”, says Palmer.

I will second Palmer, I agree with him. I also have the impression that Jeffrey Epstein was more of a “supplier” for his clients, to keep them pleased, whatever pleased them (and him).

Was Mr. Trump one of his “clients”?

Were Epstein and Melania lovers, as I asked previously?

What were the circumstances of his introduction of Melania to Trump?

Were there money or some exchange involved, for his services?

Did Trump and his FBI friends play any role in investigations and prosecutions of Epstein, overtly or covertly?

What are Epstein’s connections to the TOC: Slovenian, Balkan, Russian, German, and to the corresponding Intelligence Services?

Who were Epstein’s clients?

What were Epstein’s relations with the Deutsche Bank?

Who is behind Epstein?

What are Epstein’s relations with Ghislaine Maxwell, and who was Robert Maxwell? He looks like the Abwehr agent to me. And he was also the “commercial antagonist” of Rupert Murdoch, curiously enough.

What are Epstein’s relations with the Republican Party and its financial structures?

Did Epstein play any role in financing of Trump’s campaign 2016?

What are Epstein’s relations with Tom Barrack and other persons of the Broidy – Manafort circle?

How exactly did Epstein make his money? What did he trade?

What is the history and the true nature of his relations with Bear Stearns?

What was the  relationship if any, between Bear Stearns, and Abwehr, and Nazi Gold?

Is there any connection between Epstein and Chris Cline and his death in the helicopter accident on the night of Epstein’s arrival from Paris to Teterboro airport in New Jersey?

And so on, and so on – a lot of questions.

Psychological understanding of the players in this political drama should also be attempted, via the formal evaluations or in other ways. It can provide the clues to motivations.

Michael Novakhov

9:48 PM 7/18/2019

__________________________________________________

All News Review In 25 Saved Stories

Saved Stories – None
Palmer Report: Donald Trump’s Jeffrey Epstein scandal is just a few days away from fully exploding
FoxNewsChannel’s YouTube Videos: Past Epstein ties may expose worst royal family scandal yet
I Hope Jeffrey Epstein Sings Like a Bird | Judge could throw out criminal case against Flynn’s lobbying partner – Michael Novakhov – SharedNewsLinks℠ – In 50 Brief Posts – 7:57 PM 7/18/2019 | Trump and Trumpism – Review Of News And Opinions

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2:56 PM 7/22/2019 – M.N.: Trump, decrease your dose of Prozac, you talk too fast, and with the very little sense. Get practical. Start packing your arrest clothes. Melania will be long gone by then, with the new lover… Your only hope is to share a cell with Epstein, maybe he will get you a couple of tricks, somewhere; down there…

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2:56 PM 7/22/2019 – M.N.: Trump, decrease your dose of Prozac, you talk too fast, and with the very little sense. Get practical. Start packing your arrest clothes. Melania will be long gone by then, with the new lover… Your only hope is to share a cell with Epstein, maybe  he will get you a couple of tricks, somewhere; down there…
__________________________________________________________

Trump repeats false Robert Mueller criticism – YouTube

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William Barr probe pits Obama intelligence chiefs against Trump-aligned dissenters

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Attorney General William P. Barr’s review of the Obama-era conclusion that Russia interfered in the election to help Donald Trump sets up a struggle between the nation’s top spies and Mr. Trump’s skeptical Republican allies.
On one side are President Trump’s past two CIA directors and his current chief of national intelligence. All have publicly endorsed the January 2017 intelligence community assessment that Russian President Vladimir Putin interfered to help Mr. Trump and hurt Hillary Clinton.
But there are dissenters, and they are close to the White House.
Rep. Devin Nunes of California, the ranking Republican on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, issued a report last year that found no Russian-Trump conspiracy. Special counsel Robert Mueller confirmed the finding in March.
Mr. Nunes made a less noticed finding. He said intelligence chiefs violated good tradecraft by writing the assessment section on Mr. Putin’s intentions. What’s more, Fred Fleitz, who served inside the White House as National Security Adviser John R. Bolton’s chief of staff, has written a series of columns casting doubt on the section about Mr. Putin’s role in the election.


Mr. Fleitz is being considered as a possible replacement for Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats, whose job is in jeopardy because of testimony this year on North Korea, a White House adviser told The Washington Times.
Mr. Coats reportedly angered the president by telling Congress that U.S. intelligence agencies don’t believe North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will give up his nuclear weapons, despite the president’s groundbreaking diplomatic outreach to Pyongyang and its leader. He gave the Senate testimony on the eve of Mr. Trump’s second summit with Mr. Kim in Vietnam in February.
Axios first reported this month on Mr. Coats’ shaky status, and Mr. Fleitz has been interviewed in the Oval Office by Mr. Trump and Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney.
Mr. Trump has always bristled at the intelligence community findings that Mr. Putin helped him win the presidency.

The assessment came from two Obama loyalists who have since become Mr. Trump’s most ardent critics on CNN and MSNBC: former CIA Director John O. Brennan and former Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper. Also signing off was another fierce Trump critic, then-FBI Director James B. Comey.
Mr. Brennan and Mr. Clapper have accused the president of being an agent for Russia. The Mueller report, which looked at “any links” between Trump allies and Russians, made no mention of Trumpconnections to the Kremlin as some kind of operative.
Former intelligence officials told The Times that Mr. Barr wants to determine whether there was any political influence to skew the conclusions of the intelligence community assessment.
Mr. Coats seemed to confirm that Mr. Barr is conducting a wide-ranging investigation of intelligence agency activities. After Mr. Trump announced in May that he had granted Mr. Barr wide powers to collect information and declassify material, Mr. Coats issued his own statement in response.
“Much like we have with other investigations and reviews,” the statement read, “the intelligence community … will provide the Department of Justice all of the appropriate information for its review of intelligence activities related to Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.”
Casting a wide net
Mr. Barr’s search for material on “intelligence activities related to Russian interference” indicates that he is casting a wide net.
Senior Trump aides back the intelligence community assessment, including former CIA director and now Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, one of Mr. Trump’s closest advisers.
Asked by Sen. Kamala D. Harris, California Democrat, at his Senate CIA confirmation hearing, “Do you fully accept its findings? Yes or No.” Mr. Pompeo answered, “I’ve seen nothing to cast any doubt on the findings in the report.”
He later told the intelligence committee, “Everything I’ve seen suggests to me that the report has an analytical product that is sound.”
Likewise, Gina Haspel, a career spy who succeeded Mr. Pompeo as director of the CIA, endorsed the intelligence community assessment.
Then there was the Helsinki episode that prompted Mr. Coats to immediately weigh in publicly.
A year ago, Mr. Trump stood alongside Mr. Putin when a reporter asked about Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election.
“I have President Putin, he just said it’s not Russia. I don’t see any reason why it would be,” Mr. Trumpsaid.
The answer astonished the intelligence community, which thought the issue was settled.
Back at the White House, Mr. Trump said he had mangled his answer. He wanted to say “wouldn’t be” surprised to hear of Russian attempts to interfere.
Mr. Coats then posted a statement to reaffirm the intelligence community assessment.
“We have been clear in our assessments of Russian meddling in the 2016 election and their ongoing, pervasive efforts to undermine our democracy, and we will continue to provide unvarnished and objective intelligence in support of our national security,” the statement read in part.
Former intelligence officials told The Times it appears the order on Mr. Barr’s powers will allow the Justice Department to hunt for any documentation of a political motive in writing the Russian assessment. The report’s authors said they had “high confidence” in their findings.
But people close to Mr. Trump have their doubts.
Mr. Nunes has said he found great fault in how the Obama appointees wrote the intelligence community assessment on Mr. Putin’s intentions.
“While the committee found that most ICA analysis held up to scrutiny, the investigation also identified significant intelligence tradecraft failings that undermine confidence in the ICA judgments regarding Russian President Vladimir Putin’s strategic objectives for disrupting the U.S. election,” his 2018 report said.
CIA analysts and their draft was subjected to an unusually constrained review and coordination process, which deviated from established practice.”
The Wall Street Journal and other news sites reported that Mr. Barr is reviewing the assessment.
Focus of investigation
Mr. Barr’s main stated focus is to determine how the FBI investigation into the Trump colleagues began and what role Western intelligence services played in surveilling campaign workers. Mr. Barr appointed John Durham, the U.S. attorney in Connecticut, to head the investigation. Republicans in Congresswonder whether FBI informants were put into place for the sole purpose of getting a Trump ally to say something that could justify an investigation.
Stefan Halper, an academic and longtime Washington national security scholar, was an FBI informant assigned to spy on at least two Trump associates: George Papadopoulos and Carter Page. The FBIalso assigned a flirtatious woman of mystery who assumed the role of office assistant to Mr. Halper.
FBI agent Peter Strzok formally opened the investigation on July 31, 2016, after an Australian diplomat in London reported that Mr. Papadopoulos told him that the Russians had obtained Mrs. Clinton emails.
Mr. Papadopoulos heard the gossip from another mysterious figure, Joseph Mifsud, a Maltese professor who traveled in Russian and Western circles. He has not been seen in public for months.
Mr. Papadopoulos said he believes Mr. Mifsud was a Western plant; the FBI believes he was a Russian agent but has produced little evidence.

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 before commenting.
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· · · · · ·

9:51 PM 7/18/2019 – Who is behind Epstein? The Questions for Investigations.

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9:51 PM 7/18/2019 – Who is behind Epstein? 

“Epstein wasn’t just a serial child rapist, he was acting as some kind of hub for other child rapists and sexual assaulters”, says Palmer. 


I will second Palmer, I agree with him. I also have the impression that Jeffrey Epstein was more of a “supplier” for his clients, to keep them pleased, whatever pleased them (and him). 

Was Mr. Trump one of his “clients”? 

Were Epstein and Melania lovers, as I asked previously? 

What were the circumstances of his introduction of Melania to Trump? 

Were there money or some exchange involved, for his services? 

Did Trump and his FBI friends play any role in investigations and prosecutions of Epstein, overtly or covertly?

What are Epstein’s connections to the TOC: Slovenian, Balkan, Russian, German, and to the corresponding Intelligence Services? 

Who were Epstein’s clients? 

What were Epstein’s relations with the Deutsche Bank? 

Who is behind Epstein? 

What are Epstein’s relations with Ghislaine Maxwell, and who was Robert Maxwell? He looks like the Abwehr agent to me. And he was also the “commercial antagonist” of Rupert Murdoch, curiously enough. 

What are Epstein’s relations with the Republican Party and its financial structures? 

Did Epstein play any role in financing of Trump’s campaign 2016? 

What are Epstein’s relations with Tom Barrack and other persons of the Broidy – Manafort circle? 

How exactly did Epstein make his money? What did he trade? 

What is the history and the true nature of his relations with Bear Stearns?

What was the  relationship if any, between Bear Stearns, and Abwehr, and Nazi Gold? 

Is there any connection between Epstein and Chris Cline and his death in the helicopter accident on the night of Epstein’s arrival from Paris to Teterboro airport in New Jersey? 

And so on, and so on – a lot of questions. 

Psychological understanding of the players in this political drama should also be attempted, via the formal evaluations or in other ways. It can provide the clues to motivations. 

Michael Novakhov

9:48 PM 7/18/2019

__________________________________________________

All News Review In 25 Saved Stories

Saved Stories – None
Palmer Report: Donald Trump’s Jeffrey Epstein scandal is just a few days away from fully exploding
FoxNewsChannel’s YouTube Videos: Past Epstein ties may expose worst royal family scandal yet
I Hope Jeffrey Epstein Sings Like a Bird | Judge could throw out criminal case against Flynn’s lobbying partner – Michael Novakhov – SharedNewsLinks℠ – In 50 Brief Posts – 7:57 PM 7/18/2019 | Trump and Trumpism – Review Of News And Opinions
Barr probe sets up showdown between Obama intelligence chiefs, dissenters
PBSNewsHour’s YouTube Videos: The opioid industry fought hard to keep this database hidden. Here’s what it shows
Mugger Trump, go back to Germany, you Nazi Pig! pic.twitter.com/gT71g3nvUR (mikenov on Twitter) michael_novakhov.newsblur.com/story/mugger-t… pic.twitter.com/mF1ATZmtQM
Judge could throw out criminal case against Flynn’s lobbying partner channel3000.com/news/politics/…
Judge could throw out criminal case against Flynn’s lobbying partner – Michael Novakhov – SharedNewsLinks℠ – In 50 Brief Posts – 7:57 PM 7/18/2019 trumpandtrumpism.com/2019/07/18/jud…
The biggest hole in prosecutors’ presentation appears to have been the lack of testimony from Flynn – Judge could throw out criminal case against Flynn’s lobbying partner channel3000.com/news/politics/…
12:46 PM 7/17/2019 – “Trump was known to pay particular attention to Epstein during his Florida pool parties. “He threw a party one night just because of Epstein” | Trump and Trumpism – Review Of News And Opinions
2:19 PM 7/17/2019 – Michael Novakhov – SharedNewsLinks℠: Newly-Found Footage Shows Donald Trump, Jeffrey Epstein At A ’92 Party | Morning Joe | MSNBC – YouTube | Trump and Trumpism – Review Of News And Opinions
That’s The Game. The New York City Abwehr Upper East Side Game. Or Zo it lookZ like to me. – M.N. – Shared Links – Trump and Trumpism – 2:57 PM 7/17/2019 | Trump and Trumpism – Review Of News And Opinions
2:19 PM 7/17/2019 – They used to be “good friends”…
Video shows Donald Trump partied in 1992 with Jeffrey Epstein
The crisis in the leadership of the European Union
Hugh Laurie – Saint James Infirmary (Let Them Talk, A Celebration of New Orleans Blues) – YouTube
6:15 AM 7/18/2019 – PM: “We’ve turned Israel into a rising global power” | M.N.: “By using our private spying firms and interfering in elections everywhere, Worldwide” (?!) | Trump and Trumpism – Review Of News And Opinions
5:57 AM 7/18/2019 – PM: “We’ve turned Israel into a rising global power” | M.N.: “By using our private spying firms and interfering in elections everywhere, Worldwide” (?!)
private spying firms – Google Search
private Mossad – Google Search
Private Mossad Update – 6:44 AM 7/18/2019 | Trump and Trumpism – Review Of News And Opinions
Israel interferes in elections worldwide – Google Search
#MuggerTrump, go back to #Germany, you #NaziPig! – #MichaelNovakhov – #SharedNewsLinks℠ – Google Search
#MuggerTrump, go back to #Germany, you #NaziPig! – #MichaelNovakhov – #SharedNewsLinks℠ – Google Search
#MuggerTrump, go back to #Germany, you #NaziPig! – #MichaelNovakhov – #SharedNewsLinks℠ – Google Search
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Michael Novakhov – Google Search

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6:57 AM 7/22/2019 – Investigate the possible violations of the U.S. Immigration Laws and bring the criminal charges of Sex Trafficking against Donald Trump, Melania Knauss Trump, and Jeffrey Epstein The Pimp For The Rich, who sold Melania to Donald. For how much? Find it out! Melania was brought to the U.S. on “The Einstein Visa”, which in fact was “The Epstein Visa”! #SendMelaniaBack!

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Are we really sure that she and her parents had nothing to do with any of the drug trafficking? They need to go. #sendmelaniaback pic.twitter.com/PSTFAMld0t

Posted by  Bella74357753 on Sunday, July 14th, 2019 3:53pm
Retweeted by  mikenov on Sunday, July 21st, 2019 6:28pm

43 likes, 31 retweets

____________________________________
Investigate the possible violations of the U.S. Immigration Laws and bring the criminal charges of Sex Trafficking against Donald Trump, Melania Knauss Trump, and Jeffrey Epstein The Pimp For The Rich, who sold Melania to Donald. 
For how much? Find it out! 
Melania was brought to the U.S. on “The Einstein Visa”, which in fact was “The Epstein Visa”, on a special and higher level. 
For how much? Ah, Donald? 
#SendMelaniaBack! #LockMelaniaUp! 
How much did you pay for your Melania Delivery? $10 Mil? More? You should have given it to charity, you stupid fool! 
Did you and your FBI cronies also arrange the investigations and the prosecutions of Epstein after this deal, to secure your hold on your trophy and posession, and to limit their communications? 
They were lovers, after all. He prepped her for you. And Epstein counted on staying in the picture and continuing to manipulate her, for the ultimate benefit of those, whose agent he was. And I think, that Epstein employer and boss was the New Abwehr-Mob, which is confirmed by Epstein’s very special relationship with the Deutsche Bank, closely resembling its relationship with Donald Trump. 
All this has to be investigated in depth and in details, but the structure and the functions of the Donald-Melania-Jeffrey “Love”-Spying Triangle, appears to be evident. 
Sing, Epstein, sing! And sing well… 
These are the questions, among many others of the similar kind,  that should be asked of Mr. Mueller. 
Donald Trump could not do anything in any project of his, without the FBI participation, overt, but mostly covert. 
His connections with the FBI have to be investigated very carefully. It is quite possible that many FBI officials, officers, and agents, especially of the corrupt and rotten NYC Branch, were and are on Trump’s payroll. 
Naturally, Mr. Mueller would be reluctant to go into these issues, Trump – FBI Collaboration and Complicity, to avoid self-incrimination of the responsibility for the FBI misconduct when he was a Director. 
SDNY should investigate Trump and all the related issues aggressively, decisively, and fast. 

Michael Novakhov
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7:33 PM 7/21/2019 – The New Mordaza: President Trump’s War on Governor Rossello

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Rosselló to Trump: “If the bully approaches, I’ll give him a fist in the mouth” | Government and Politics | notiuno.com

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According to the CNN news network, government officials in Puerto Rico were “threatened” by Pete Navarro and other Trump advisers.
The governor of Puerto Rico, Ricardo Rosselló, warned in an interview on CNN that he will not allow his team to be “intimidated” by the White House, after expressions of Washington officials of possible restrictions on the disbursement of money for the recovery of the Island after The devastating passage of Hurricane Maria in September 2017.
“If the bully comes close, I’ll give him a fist in the mouth, it would be a mistake to mistake courtesy for courage,” Rosselló Nevares said. 
According to the CNN news network , Puerto Rico government officials were “threatened” by Pete Navarro and other Trump advisers at a meeting. According to the publication, even profanity was used against the island’s advisers.
“You must stop being jod … with the request for a meeting,” Navarro allegedly warned. 
So far the White House has not spoken itself on the matter.

Rossello and Trump – Google Search

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Web results

Jul 14, 2019 – Ricardo A. Rosselló’s cabinet have stepped down amid a widening political crisis … Demonstrators demanded the resignation of Gov. … viewed as his meek approach toward President Trump, that put him under increased scrutiny. … speaker of the New York City Council, who was born in Puerto Rico, using …

Missing: Mordaza: ‎War
3 days ago – SAN JUAN, P.R. — In the crushing days after Hurricane Maria, Gov. Ricardo A. Rossellódeclared in no uncertain terms, “Puerto Rico se levanta. … power has handed political fuel to President Trump, who on Thursday again derided the island’s … The Vietnam War Was Already Lost, but I Had to Go Anyway …

Missing: Mordaza:
3 days ago – Demonstrators are calling for Governor Ricardo Rosselló to resign, but he has … San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz is responding after President Trump …. Thursday calling for a meeting of the New Progressive Party (PNP).

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Rosselló to Trump: “If the bully approaches, I’ll give him a fist in the mouth” | Government and Politics | notiuno.com

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According to the CNN news network, government officials in Puerto Rico were “threatened” by Pete Navarro and other Trump advisers.

The governor of Puerto Rico, Ricardo Rosselló, warned in an interview on CNN that he will not allow his team to be “intimidated” by the White House, after expressions of Washington officials of possible restrictions on the disbursement of money for the recovery of the Island after The devastating passage of Hurricane Maria in September 2017.

“If the bully comes close, I’ll give him a fist in the mouth, it would be a mistake to mistake courtesy for courage,” Rosselló Nevares said. 

According to the CNN news network , Puerto Rico government officials were “threatened” by Pete Navarro and other Trump advisers at a meeting. According to the publication, even profanity was used against the island’s advisers.

“You must stop being jod … with the request for a meeting,” Navarro allegedly warned. 

So far the White House has not spoken itself on the matter.


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5:14 PM 7/21/2019 – Send lesbian Abwehr bitch Melania back!

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5:14 PM 7/21/2019 – 

Send lesbian Abwehr bitch Melania back!

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4:31 PM 7/21/2019 – Whom are you Trump, trying to bullshit? The American People? Investigate Melania Knauss Trump, and the whole Trump-Kushner Crime Family!

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4:31 PM 7/21/2019 – Whom are you Trump, trying to bullshit? The American People? Investigate Melania Knauss Trump, and the whole Trump-Kushner Crime Family!


4:13 PM 7/21/2019 – Whom are you Trump, trying to bullshit? The American People? | Trump and Trumpism – Review Of News And Opinions

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4:13 PM 7/21/2019 – Whom are you Trump, trying to bullshit? The American People?

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7:51 AM 7/21/2019 – Investigate Melania Knauss Trump, and the whole Trump-Kushner Crime Family!
rico act statute – Google Search
Trump Investigations and the RICO vs Conspiracy Puzzle
Trump and rico act statute – Google Search
Why One of Trump’s Biggest Legal Threats Is New York’s Attorney General | FiveThirtyEight
As the Mueller Investigation Closes, New York Investigations Shift into High Gear
Why The Trump Organization Now Risks Being Charged As A Criminal Enterprise
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Trump and rico act statute – Google Search
Trump and rico act statute – Google Search
10:58 AM 7/21/2019 – Why One of Trump’s Biggest Legal Threats Is New York’s Attorney General | FiveThirtyEight | Trump and rico act statute – Google Search | Trump and Trumpism – Review Of News And Opinions
1:59 PM 7/21/2019 – Mueller report: Jerry Nadler says substantial evidence Trump ‘guilty of high crimes’ | Trump and Trumpism – Review Of News And Opinions
1:59 PM 7/21/2019 – #Mueller report: #JerryNadler says substantial evidence #Trump ‘guilty of high crimes’ trumpandtrumpism.com/2019/07/21/159…
RT @angelbabesgrany: #SendMelaniaBack it’s ok she came here illegally and worked because her skin is white? @FLOTUS needs to prove she’s he…
RT @TheRealBaneGirl: @realDonaldTrump #ScarecrowKids #RacistPresident #SendMelaniaBack #CageTrumpNotKids pic.twitter.com/TZ6riyWVVM
RT @Bella74357753: Are we really sure that she and her parents had nothing to do with any of the drug trafficking? They need to go. #sendm…
RT @Sais_Queen: @lpk1657 I still don’t understand why he hasn’t been relieved of command. If it were any other person in any other job……
RT @SueinRockville: @kthurmokt @worldflood1 Y’know modeling in the nude isn’t easy! I guess that’s why she got an #EinsteinVisa https://t.c…
RT @TheRealBaneGirl: @realDonaldTrump #RacistPresident #SendMelaniaBack #CageTrumpNotKids pic.twitter.com/fQcwaRIEsE
RT @SheBleedsGreen: @marklutchman #SendHerBack #SendMelaniaBack #TrumpCrimeFamily #DonTheCon #TrumpIsAFraud #FollowTheMoney #BarrCoverup #R…
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Whom are you Trump, trying to bullshit? The American People? – Google Search