In spite of mounting evidence, Trump refuses to believe Russia tried to interfere with US election

According to a Wall Street Journal report, President Donald Trump attempted to persuade the director of the National Security Agency to say that there was no collusion between the president’s campaign and Russia, and that he does not believe Russia interfered in his election.

According to sources familiar with the matter, there exists a memo written after a phone conversation between Trump and NSA Director Adm. Rogers where “the president questioned the veracity of the intelligence community’s judgment that Russia had interfered with the election and also tried to persuade Adm. Rogers to say there was no evidence of collusion between the campaign and Russian officials.”

On June 7, the day before former FBI Director James Comey testified before Congress about the events leading up to his firing by Trump, Adm. Rogers said he didn’t feel any pressure from the president “to push back against allegations of possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.”

The Journal‘s report also confirms the Washington Post and New York Times reports that Trump is now being investigated for potential obstruction of justice by Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller.

Read the entire report via the Wall Street Journal.

Follow the money!! Mueller investigating money laundering by Trump campaign and White House officials.

In addition to investigating whether or not Donald Trump committed obstruction of justice by firing former FBI Director James Comey, special counsel Robert Mueller is also reportedly investigating “money laundering by Trump associates,” the New York Times reports.

The Times report corroborates a separate bombshell Washington Post article, published Wednesday, that said in addition to possible obstruction, investigators are also “looking for any evidence of possible financial crimes among Trump associates.”

“A former senior official said Mr. Mueller’s investigation was looking at money laundering by Trump associates,” a source told the Times. “The suspicion is that any cooperation with Russian officials would most likely have been done in exchange for some kind of financial payoff, and that there would have been an effort to hide the payoffs, most likely by routing them through offshore banking centers.”

A separate investigation into Russia has also reportedly focused on potential use of offshore banking centers to launder money. In April, House Intelligence Committee member Rep. Mike Quigley (D-IL) visited Cyrpus, which “has a reputation as a laundromat for the Russians who are trying to avoid sanctions.”

“Sanctions are the possible motives for collusion,” Quigley said at the time.

Though Trump was told by Comey on multiple occasions that he was not under investigation by the FBI, the president reportedly became the focus of Mueller’s investigation after firing Comey.

VP Pence to speak at gathering sponsored by man who said Hitler was sent by God to hunt down Jews

Vice President Mike Pence next month will address Christians United for Israel, a group founded by megachurch Pastor John Hagee, who once said Hitler was a “hunter” sent by God to expedite the return of Jews to Israel.

According to Right Wing Watch, Pence has signed on to speak at Christians United’s annual gathering in Washington D.C., after Hagee supported the president and vice president throughout the 2016 presidential election.

Hagee made the remarks in a 1990s sermon uncovered during the 2008 presidential election—which prompted then-candidate John McCain to disavow the prominent evangelical.

“‘And they the hunters should hunt them,’ that will be the Jews,” Hagee said in that sermon, which he later apologized for. “ ‘From every mountain and from every hill and from out of the holes of the rocks’—If that doesn’t describe what Hitler did in the holocaust you can’t see that.”

“Theodore Herzl is the father of Zionism,” Hagee continued. “He was a Jew who at the turn of the 19th century said, this land is our land, God wants us to live there. So he went to the Jews of Europe and said ‘I want you to come and join me in the land of Israel.’ So few went that Hertzel went into depression.”

“Those who came founded Israel; those who did not went through the hell of the Holocaust,” he added. “Then god sent a hunter. A hunter is someone with a gun and he forces you. Hitler was a hunter.”

Pence’s boss, Donald Trump, has pledged support for evangelical Christians. Last week, the president spoke at the Christian conservative nonprofit Faith and Freedom Coalition, arguing “It is time to put a stop to the attacks on religion.”

“We will end the discrimination against people of faith. Our government will once again celebrate and protect religious freedom,” he said, later adding he and his evangelical audience are “under siege.”

Cabinet lines up, kisses Trump’s ass . . . what a disgusting show

As you read the following, try to remember:  This is a republic, NOT a monarchy.

President Donald Trump held a super weird Cabinet meeting Monday afternoon. In it, he sat silently as each member of his Cabinet got on his/her knees and kissed Trump’s fat ass.


I went through the transcript and ranked the Cabinet members by just how obsequious their encomiums to Trump actually were.
23. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt
“I actually arrived back this morning at 1 o’clock from Italy and the G-7 summit focused on the environment. And our message there was the United States is going to be focused on growth and protecting the environment. And it was received well.”
I admire Pruitt slickly getting the whole I-work-super-hard-and-super-late thing into a short statement. But, this was WAY short on direct praise for the President. Do better, Pruitt!
22. Defense Secretary James Mattis
“Mr. President, it’s an honor to represent the men and women of the Department of Defense. And we are grateful for the sacrifices our people are making in order to strengthen our military so our diplomats always negotiate from a position of strength. Thank you.”
A nice sentiment. But nary a word of direct praise for Trump’s commitment to the military.
21. Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly
“In the five months that I’ve been at the job, we have gone a long way to facilitate the — improve the legal movement of people and commerce across our borders, yet at the same time, we have gone a long way to safeguarding our borders, particularly the southern border, working with all of our partners to the south.”
A clear appeal to Trump’s ego by citing the gains made across the southern border. But, heavier on policy than praise, to be honest.
20. US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer
“First of all, I apologize for being late to work. I got bogged down in that swamp that you’ve been trying to drain.”
I am going to use this excuse the next time I miss a TV hit. (Related: I am on TV and, therefore, a big deal. Many leather-bound books.)
19. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson
“Thank you for the honor to serve the country. It’s a great privilege you’ve given me.”
“Great privilege?” Good. But not great.
18. Small Business Administrator Linda McMahon
“I’ve been traveling around the country, and what I’m continuing to hear is this renewed optimism from small businesses.”
This started out with promise. A better ending to this sentence would have been “and people are crediting it all to you.”
17. Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats
“It’s a joy to be working with the people that I have inherited, and we are going to provide — continue to provide you with the very best intelligence we can, so you can formulate policies to deal with these issues.”
“Joy” got my hopes up. But I wound up, ultimately, disappointed.
16. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke
“Mr. President, as your SEAL on your staff … it’s an honor to be your steward of our public lands and the generator of energy dominance (ph). I am deeply honored.”
As a general life rule, I am not in the business of messing with SEALs.
15. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos
“It’s a privilege to serve, to serve the students of this country, and to work to ensure that every child has an equal opportunity to get a great education, and therefore a great future.”
You had me at “privilege to serve.”
14. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross
“Mr. President, thank you for the opportunity to help fix the trade deficit and other things. The other countries are gradually getting used to the (inaudible) the free rides are somewhat over with. They’re not happy with this, but I think (inaudible) growing recognition that (inaudible) have a chance to help you live up to your campaign promises.”
“Live up to campaign promises” is music to Trump’s ears.
13. Energy Secretary Rick Perry
“America is not stepping back, but we’re stepping into place and sending some messages, that we’re still going to be leaders in the world when it comes to the climate, but we’re not going to be held hostage to some executive order that was ill thought out. And so, my hat’s off to you for taking that stance and presenting a clear message around the world that America’s going to continue to lead in the area of energy.”
Affirming Trump’s decision on the Paris climate accord will endear Perry to Trump. But he missed a real opportunity to say “my cowboy hat’s off to you.”
12. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson
“Mr. President, its been a great honor to — to work with you. Thank you for your strong support of HUD and for all the others around this table that I’ve worked with.”
11. Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta
“I am privileged to be here. Deeply honored, and I want to thank you for being — your commitment to the American workers.”
“Deeply honored” > “great honor.” Take note, Dr. Carson.
10. Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin
“Mr. President, thank you for your support and commitment to honoring our responsibility to America’s veterans. I know that this is personally very important to you.”
This was already good but the “personally very important” line turned it up to 11.
9. UN Ambassador Nikki Haley
“It’s a new day at the United Nations. You know, we now have a very strong voice. People know what the United States is for, they know what we’re against, and they see us leading across the board. And so, I think the international community knows we’re back.”
Haley isn’t always on the Trump message. But she was today!
8. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin
“It was a great honor traveling with you around the country for the last year and an even greater honor to be here serving on your Cabinet.”
Not sure if you guys know this but Mnuchin traveled around the country with the President for a whole year. Beat that!
7. CIA Director Mike Pompeo
“Mr. President, it’s an honor to serve as your CIA director. It’s an incredible privilege to lead the men and women who are providing intelligence so that we can do the national security mission. And in the finest traditions of the CIA, I’m not going to share a d*mn thing in front of the media.”
This one had a lot: a) “honor to serve” b) “incredible privilege” and c) media bashing!
6. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao
“Mr. President, last week was a great (inaudible). It was infrastructure week. Thank you so much for coming over to the Department of Transportation. Hundreds and hundreds of people were just so thrilled, hanging out, watching (inaudible) ceremony. “
People loved you. [Inaudible]. All of them.
5. Attorney General Jeff Sessions
“We are receiving, as you know — I’m not sure the rest of you fully understand — the support of law enforcement all over America. They have been very frustrated. They are so thrilled that we have a new idea that we’re going to support them and work together to properly, lawfully fight the rising crime that we are seeing. … The response is fabulous around the country.”
You don’t even KNOW how much people love you, Mr. President.
4. Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney
“Thanks for the kind words about the budget. You’re absolutely right: We are going to be able to take care of the people who really need it. And at the same time, with your direction, we were able to also focus on the forgotten man and woman who are the folks who are paying those taxes.”
Thanks for being absolutely right, Mr. President. And the “forgotten man and woman” line was just the cherry on the top there, Mick.
3. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue
“I want to congratulate you on the men and women you’ve placed around this table. … This is the team you’ve assembled that’s working hand in glove with — for the men and women of America, and I want to — I want to thank you for that. These are — are great team members and we’re on your team.”
Check out the new guy!
2. Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price
“Mr. President, what an incredible honor it is to lead the Department of Health and Human Services at this pivotal time under your leadership. I can’t thank you enough for the privileges you’ve given me and the leadership that you’ve shown. It seems like there’s an international flair to the messages that are being delivered. I had the opportunity to represent the United States at the G-20 Health Summit in Berlin and at the World Health Assembly in Geneva. And I can’t tell you how excited and enthusiastic folks are about the United States leadership as it relates to global health security.”
Incredible! Honor! Leadership! Privileges! Excited! Enthusiastic!
1. Vice President Mike Pence
“It is just the greatest privilege of my life is to serve as the — as vice president to the President who’s keeping his word to the American people and assembling a team that’s bringing real change, real prosperity, real strength back to our nation.”
Still. The. Champ.

Poor little Snowflake Trump gets his feelings hurt, will not visit UK

Courtesy of Politico: 

U.S. President Donald Trump won’t visit the U.K. until he feels the British public would welcome him, he told U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May in a phone conversation in recent weeks, the Guardian reports.

Trump didn’t want to spark public protests, he told May according to a Downing Street advisor quoted anonymously by the paper, potentially postponing the visit indefinitely.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan earlier this week called for the visit to be cancelled over the president’s comments in the aftermath of the London terrorist attacks.

“I don’t think we should roll out the red carpet to the president of the U.S. in the circumstances where his policies go against everything we stand for,” Khan told Channel 4 News Monday evening.

Aww, did the little snowflake get his fee fees hurt?

Well he better get used to it because if the British papers are any indication, things are certainly not going to get better for him anytime soon.

Courtesy of The Guardian: 

Donald Trump is not a fit and proper person to hold the office of president of the United States. That is a view widely held in the US and among America’s European allies, by politicians and diplomats in government and by rank-and-file voters repelled by his gross egoism, narcissism and what Boris Johnson, the foreign secretary, has rightly termed his “stupefying ignorance”. It is a view we wholeheartedly share and have repeatedly expressed, before and after Trump’s narrow election victory last November.

Trump is an habitual liar, as evidenced again in last week’s sworn congressional testimony by his sacked FBI director, James Comey. Trump is a bully, as Angela Merkel, Germany’s chancellor, among many others, can testify from personal experience. And Trump is a coward. When put on the spot, as over his authorisation of a disastrous special forces raid in Yemen in January or his bogus claim that Britain’s GCHQ bugged him, his craven instinct was to shift blame to others.

Since taking office, Trump’s dangerous, loutish and irresponsible behaviour has exceeded his critics’ worst nightmares. He has fuelled Islamist extremism by escalating US military involvement in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, at a rising cost in civilian lives. He has exacerbated divisions by his attempts to ban Muslims travelling to the US. He threatens war with Iran while cutting foreign aid and cosying up to autocrats and human rights abusers in Saudi Arabia, the Philippines and Turkey.

Yeah I don’t see that red carpet in England rolling out for Trump anytime soon.

Here’s an idea.

Perhaps if we ratchet up the criticisms here at home, we can irritate Trump enough so that he no longer feels welcome in America either.

Maybe we can piss him off so much that refuses to live here anymore and takes his traveling sideshow to somewhere that he feels more welcome.

Say Saudi Arabia for instance.

After all they let him touch their orb and gave him a bunch of expensive goodies.

Hey its worth a try, and I know I will certainly continue doing my part.

UPDATE:  Apparently after this story broke Britain’s soon-to-be replaced Prime Minister found out and is now saying the visit is still on.

Okay, let’s wait to see who’s right.

Trump give Priebus until July 4 to “clean up the White House mess”

President Donald Trump has ordered his Chief of Staff Reince Priebus to “clean up” the White House by July 4, according to a Sunday night report from Politico, or lose his job.

Frustrated by the dysfunction and factionalism in his administration, the president reportedly told Priebus — who, like Press Secretary Sean Spicer, came to the White House from the Republican National Committee (RNC) — that it is his responsibility to engineer a massive staff shakeup or face termination himself.

Politico’s Tara Palmeri wrote that Trump reportedly bawled out Priebus in the Oval Office for allowing the dysfunctional culture in the White House to continue. A source told Politico that former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski and deputy campaign manager David Bossie were both on the scene for the dressing down.

Trump has reportedly been contemplating bringing Bossie into the White House as Deputy Chief of Staff and Lewandowski is being considered for a senior adviser position. The president told Priebus that he’s reluctant to bring the two campaign veterans into such a “mess.”

“I’m giving you until July 4,” Trump said, according to witnesses. “I don’t want them to come into this mess. If I’m going to clean house, they will come in as fresh blood.”

The Trump White House has been riven with conflicts, undermined by leaks and is reportedly a scene of constant “chaos and ineptitude” as competing factions vie for Trump’s attention and favor.

Priebus ally Sean Spicer pushed back against the report, saying, “Whoever is saying that is either a liar or out of the loop.”

Palmeri said that the July 4 deadline parallel’s Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY)’s tentative deadline for passage of a Senate version of the House of Representatives’ wildly unpopular, hastily-planned American Healthcare Act (ACHA), which is intended to “repeal and replace Obamacare,” but which observers say will result in millions of people losing coverage and a spike in the cost of premiums.

Well, actually, “cleaning up the mess in the White House” is easy.  Just fire Trump, Ivanka, Jared, Eric, Donald Jr. and President Bannon.  Done.

This is what Trump calls “job creation?”

Ascena Retail Group (ASNA) — which owns the Ann Taylor, Dress Barn, Loft, Lane Bryant, Justice, Maurices and Catherines stores — plans to shutter between 250 and 650 locations over the next two years.

Chief executive David Jaffe made the announcement during a conference call with investors Thursday, and he didn’t specify how many store closures will affect each brand. Ascena could not be immediately reached for comment.

Jaffe said 250 locations will definitely close down, and another 400 will close their doors unless the company can negotiate lower rents at those locations.

Related: Department stores have lost more jobs than coal mines

He said that the move is necessary to help the company traverse the deeply troubled brick-and-mortar retail market. Jaffe said Ascena is facing a “persistent traffic decline” and expects that to remain a “major headwind” for the company.

Ascena is far from the only company feeling the pressure. Stores that were once staples of American malls are failing rapidly, largely because of increasing competition from digital retailers like Amazon (AMZN, Tech30).

Earlier this week, Hudson’s Bay (HBAYF) — owner of Saks Fifth Avenue and Lord & Taylor — said it is cutting its workforce by 2,000 jobs.

Macy’s(M) said earlier this year that it will close 68 stores and cut 10,000 jobs.

Related: Robots could wipe out another 6 million retail jobs

JCPenney(JCP) is shutting down 138 stores by August. Bebe said it planned to shut down all of its stores by the end of May.

GameStop(GME) said in March it will close more than 100 retail locations.

The parent company of Kmart and Sears (SHLD) said in January it will shutter 150 stores.

And without their thriving tenants, malls have been hit hard by the retail woes. A June 2 report from Credit Suisse estimates 20% to 25% of American malls will close within the next five years.

Trump’s biographer says Trump lies all the time about taping conversations

Biographer Tim O’Brien revealed on Sunday that now-President Donald Trump lied about taping him in an effort to intimidate him.

In 2005, Trump sued O’Brien over his book TrumpNation: The Art of Being the Donald, which suggested that the real estate mogul was worth only $250 million. But the author turned the tables on Trump and cornered him in a deposition for making at least 30 false statements.

“His loose association with the truth becomes problematic when he’s confronted with documents,” O’Brien explained to CNN host Brian Stelter on Sunday. “We’ve had decades now of Trump frequently lying or exaggerating about a wide range of things.”

O’Brien pointed out that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has an arsenal of tools available to assist the Trump investigation, including subpoena power, access to financial records and a law enforcement community that is “deeply disturbed” by the direction of the presidency.

The the author also threw cold water on Trump’s suggestion that he may have “tapes” of his conversation with former FBI Director James Comey.

“He’s said this over the years to reporters when they go into the Trump organization, ‘I just want to let you know that I’m taping you right now,’” O’Brien noted. “And he said it multiple times during my interviews with him. He said that into my own tape recorder when I recorded our interviews.”

“But when he sat down for the deposition, my attorney said, ‘Mr. Trump, do you have a taping system?’” he recalled. “And he said no. And [my attorney] said, ‘Why did you say this to Mr. O’Brien.’ And he essentially said, ‘I wanted to intimidate him.’”