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Donald J. Trump After the White House Page 2

The Trump Presidency is over, it started with lie and 30,000 lies later, it ended with lies, over 400,000 Americans dead many who would not have die if not for Trump’s lies. Trump's first lie was about the size of his inauguration claiming it was bigger than Obama it was not. Here are some but not all of his lies. He lied about contacts his campaign had with Russians. He lied about his attempt to force the Ukraine to help him dig up dirt on Biden so he could win the 2020 election. Trump’s lies about the coronavirus caused the deaths of 400,000 Americans maybe more. Trump attempted multiple coups, cause sedition, incited insurrection and the sacking of the capitol of the United States of America. Trump ended his presidency with a lie about the election claiming he won more votes than Biden did he did not. That lie lead to sedition, insurrection and the sacking of the capitol of the United States of America. This page is Tracking Donald J. Trump after his time in the White House.

Learn more about some of the legal issues of Donald J. Trump (aka Don the Con, aka Don the Snake, aka Two face Donnie, aka The Don, aka Criminal Don). Here you can find a short list of the lawsuits against Donald J. Trump.


On January 6, 2021, the United States Capitol was sacked in a riot and violent attack against the 117th United States Congress in an attempted coup d’état. With help from his allies, Fox News, right-wing media and some in the Republican Party; Donald J. Trump incited insurrection, sedition, attempted a coup d’etat and caused the sacking of the United States Capitol. Donald J. Trump’s coup attempt involved some House members, some Senate members, and Mike Pence overturning the election certification process with the hope that Trump could steal the election and steal the presidency. more...

By Kara Scannell, CNN

New York (CNN) Donald Trump once said he calculated his net worth, to a degree, on his "feelings," and that he put the "best spin" on some of the assets. "I think everybody" exaggerates about the value of their properties. "Who wouldn't?" Did he inflate values? "Not beyond reason," Trump said, insisting he gave his "opinion" to a key associate and "ultimately" let that person make the decision, according to an exchange in a 2007 deposition. The exchange takes on fresh meaning this spring as Manhattan prosecutors investigate whether Trump's "best spin" was common practice in local real estate circles -- or if he crossed the line into illegal activity. The answer could determine whether Trump ends up facing criminal charges. The public record already sheds lots of light on how Trump has run the Trump Organization. A CNN examination of sworn depositions, interviews with former employees, and published accounts shows that Trump has tried repeatedly to push responsibility for his valuation decisions onto his chief financial officer. more...

Trump congratulated Georgia on its recent legislative move, which critics have slammed as a major blow to Black voters’ rights
Edward Helmore and agencies

Cleta Mitchell, a Republican lawyer who advised Donald Trump on his campaign to overturn the 2020 election results, is now a key player in the Republican effort to tighten voting laws. A Republican lawyer who advised Donald Trump on his campaign to overturn the 2020 election results is now playing a central role coordinating the Republican effort to tighten voting laws around the country. The moves comes as Trump himself signaled his support for new Republican-pushed legislation in Georgia which critics have slammed as being a major blow to voting rights for communities of color, especially Black voters. Joe Biden called the Georgia laws “Jim Crow in the 21st Century” and “an atrocity”. But Trump, whose grip on the Republican party remains strong, welcomed the Georgia developments. “Congratulations to Georgia and the Georgia state legislature on changing their voter rules and regulations,” Trump said in a statement through his Pac, Save America, which repeated his baseless allegation that fraud was a factor in his election loss to Biden. “They learned from the travesty of the 2020 presidential election, which can never be allowed to happen again. Too bad these changes could not have been done sooner!” more...

By Veronica Stracqualursi, CNN

Washington (CNN) Former President Donald Trump on Thursday attempted to whitewash the history of the January 6 Capitol riot by pushing the false suggestion that his supporters were "hugging and kissing" police officers and posed "zero threat" despite widespread violence, injuries to law enforcement officers and five deaths. It's an outrageous attempt by Trump to rewrite the history of the insurrection, which he stoked by repeatedly and falsely claiming the 2020 election was stolen from him. There is no evidence of widespread fraud, but Trump and many of his conservative allies in the media and on Capitol Hill have continued to push the "big lie" regardless. Calling into Fox News on Thursday night, Trump was asked if he was concerned about the US Capitol's beefed up security, including razor-wire fencing, which he derided as "disgraceful" and a "political maneuver." more...

The bureau is also looking into members of Congress who communicated with rioters
By Peter Wade

Federal law enforcement officials have uncovered contact between the Trump White House and a member of the far-right extremist organization, the Proud Boys, just days before the January 6 attack on the Capitol. According to a New York Times source, the FBI obtained “location, cellular and call record data revealed a call tying a Proud Boys member to the Trump White House.” Earlier this week, CNN reported that law enforcement officials are looking at communications data to determine “whether lawmakers wittingly or unwittingly helped the insurrectionists.” And so far they’ve found “indications of contact” between “alleged rioters discussing their associations with members of Congress.” On Thursday, a former Trump State Department aide, Federico Klein was arrested for taking part in the attack of the Capitol. more...

Documents obtained by The Daily Beast link the $230 million fraud discussed at the Trump Tower meeting in 2016 to Russia’s black-market weapons of mass destruction program.
Nico Hines

LONDON—A company newly sanctioned by the U.S. over Alexei Navalny’s poisoning attack is tied to the money-laundering network that Natalia Veselnitskaya tried to cover up at the infamous 2016 Trump Tower meeting, according to financial records obtained by The Daily Beast. Now we know why Vladimir Putin was so desperate to play down the international corruption probes that began when Sergei Magnitsky uncovered a $230 million fraud on the Russian people. For the first time, that dark-money network can be linked to the murderous chemical-weapons program run by Russia’s notorious intelligence services. more...

By Paul LeBlanc, CNN

Washington (CNN) Former President Donald Trump on Tuesday urged Americans to get vaccinated to help curb the Covid-19 pandemic, calling it "safe" and "something that works." "I would recommend it and I would recommend it to a lot of people that don't want to get it and a lot of those people voted for me, frankly," Trump told Fox News' Maria Bartiromo. "But again," he continued, "we have our freedoms and we have to live by that and I agree with that also. But it is a great vaccine. It is a safe vaccine and it is something that works." The comments -- which amount to Trump's most energetic endorsement of vaccination -- come as vaccine hesitancy among Republicans continues to threaten the US' path to herd immunity. While 92% of Democrats either have gotten vaccinated or want to get vaccinated, that number plummets to 50% among Republicans, a CNN poll conducted by SSRS shows. more...

The assessment was the intelligence community’s most comprehensive look at foreign efforts to interfere in the election.
By Julian E. Barnes

WASHINGTON — President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia authorized extensive efforts to hurt the candidacy of Joseph R. Biden Jr. during last year’s election, including by mounting covert operations to influence people close to former President Donald J. Trump, according to a declassified intelligence report released Tuesday. The report did not name those people but seemed to be a reference to the work of Mr. Trump’s former personal lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani, who relentlessly pushed allegations of corruption about Mr. Biden and his family involving Ukraine.

“Russian state and proxy actors who all serve the Kremlin’s interests worked to affect U.S. public perceptions in a consistent manner,” the report said. The declassified report represented the most comprehensive intelligence assessment of foreign efforts to influence the 2020 vote. Besides Russia, Iran and other countries sought to influence the election, the report said. China considered efforts to influence the presidential vote, but ultimately concluded that any such operation would fail and likely backfire, intelligence officials concluded. more...

By Allison Morrow, CNN Business

In today's business news: The Trump business backlash continues, there's a Keurig for ice cream and Las Vegas can't catch a break. Let's get into it.

TRUMP BACKLASH
What a week. In just seven days, the Trump brand has gone from divisive to radioactive. Businesses can't sever ties fast enough and mainstream platforms have silenced the president's accounts. And today, Trump became the only president in American history to be impeached twice.

Here are the latest developments on the business fallout:

NEW YORK
Officials in New York City announced plans to end the Trump Organization's contracts to operate the Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point, the Central Park Carousel and the Wollman and Lasker ice skating rinks. "The attacks on our Capitol killed a police officer, left four rioters dead, exposed lawmakers to Covid-19 and threatened the constitutional transfer of power," the city said. "They were a national abomination. We're reviewing whether legal grounds exist in light of these new circumstances to terminate concessions with the Trump Organization." more...

By Juan Williams

How green with envy is Donald Trump? President Biden has him begging for attention. Since Biden’s inauguration, the COVID-19 infection rate has been cut by well over half. And last week congressional Democrats passed Biden’s popular COVID-19 relief bill. The economy is rebounding, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average up about 19 percent since Election Day. Poor Trump. All he can do is put out a whiny statement. “I hope everyone remembers when they’re getting the COVID-19 (often referred to as the China Virus) Vaccine, that if I wasn’t President, you would be getting that beautiful ‘shot’ for 5 years, at best, and probably wouldn’t be getting it at all. I hope everyone remembers!” more...

By Jason Morris, CNN

(CNN) Officials in the Georgia Secretary of State's Office located a recently released recording of former President Donald Trump's call to a state investigator in a trash folder on her device, a state official familiar with the situation confirmed to CNN. The discovery of the call comes after state officials originally told CNN that they did not think audio of the call existed. The call added to the examples of Trump's extraordinary efforts to push false claims of widespread voter fraud and influence Georgia election officials as they certified the state's election results. The audio file of the December 23 call between the former President and investigator Frances Watson was discovered as the Georgia Secretary of State's Office responded to a public records request. The personal familiar spoke with CNN on the condition of anonymity to describe the internal process. The Washington Post first reported the details of how the audio of the December phone call emerged. more...

By Kara Scannell, Sonia Moghe and Jason Morris, CNN

(CNN) After averting a conviction in his second impeachment trial, former President Donald Trump faces significant new legal threats as prosecutors in Georgia have joined those in New York to conduct criminal investigations into his actions. As the nation watched harrowing videos from January 6 of Trump supporters storming the US Capitol during the Senate impeachment trial this week, Georgia officials announced they have opened investigations into Trump's efforts to overturn the state's election results, including by pressuring officials to "find" votes to swing the outcome in his favor. The new investigations add to a heaping list of legal issues facing the former President that could threaten his finances and possibly his freedom. Out of office and without the protections that the presidency afforded him, Trump is now facing multiple criminal investigations, civil state inquiries and defamation lawsuits by two women accusing him of sexual assault. more...

In statehouses around the country — most notably, in Georgia — lawmakers are rolling out legislation that would make it a lot harder to vote.
By NOLAN D. MCCASKILL

Former President Donald Trump’s debunked claims of widespread voter fraud and a stolen election galvanized his supporters who stormed the Capitol in January. Now, his rhetoric is turning into policies that are moving through GOP-dominated state legislatures: a rollback of voting access. In statehouses around the country — most notably, Georgia — lawmakers are rolling out legislation that would make it a lot harder to vote. They’re considering dozens of restrictive bills to purge voters from rolls, limit early and absentee voting, add voter ID requirements and eliminate automatic and same-day voter registration. In short, bills are being introduced to prevent something that didn’t happen in 2020 — widespread voter fraud — from recurring in 2022, 2024 and beyond. more...

*** Trump lied about Mexico paying for the wall, he lied about the Russian investigation. Trump lied to the American people about the coronavirus and that lie lead to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Americans. Trump lied about the election and caused the sacking of the capital in a coup attempt and yet Alabama Republicans think he was a great president. Something is serious wrong with the way Alabama Republicans thinks makes a great president. ***

By Sarah Polus

The Alabama Republican Party will honor former President Trump for being "one of the greatest and most effective presidents in the 245-year history of this Republic," Fox News reported. At a Saturday evening reception held at Mar-a-Lago, the party will present Trump with a framed resolution that grants him the honor. "The resolution, basically, it just talks about the greatness of Donald J. Trump, how he made America great again and I hope other states will follow suit," Perry Hooper Jr., a former state representative and a member of the state party’s executive committee, told Fox News. more...

Florida-based Big Dog Ranch Rescue has spent as much as $1,883,160 on fundraising costs for events at Mar-a-Lago
Guardian staff

A dog rescue charity that has links to Lara Trump, the former president’s daughter-in-law, has spent almost $2m at Trump properties in the last seven years, according to US media reports. While other companies and groups have distanced themselves from the Trumps since the 6 January attack on the capital, the Florida-based Big Dog Ranch Rescue is expected to spend another $225,000 at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago country club for an event this weekend, according to a permit filed with the town of Palm Beach, which was reported by HuffPost. The former president has been living in the club full time since leaving the White House in January following his election defeat. more...

By Megan Sheets For Dailymail.com

The former White House counsel to President Richard Nixon has predicted that Donald Trump will be indicted by the Manhattan district attorney's office within a matter of days. John Dean, who delivered pivotal testimony in 1973 that helped cause Nixon to resign after the Watergate scandal, shared his prediction via Twitter on Wednesday. It followed reports that Trump's former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen reportedly met with Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance for a seventh interview in a sweeping investigation into alleged financial crimes by the Trump Organization. more...

The Manhattan District Attorney’s criminal probe is closing in.
By Bess Levin

Since leaving office in January, Donald Trump has apparently laid out a number of goals for himself. One of them is to scam as much money as possible out of his supporters. Another is to maintain relevance despite his social media banishment. Yet another, and probably the most important of the bunch, is to avoid prosecution for his cornucopia of alleged crimes. And on that last front, things aren’t looking great for the ex-president. Weeks after the Supreme Court rejected Trump’s bid to keep his tax returns out of the hands of the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office—a turn of events he reacted to like a man who knows prison is in his future—the D.A. has expanded its criminal investigation of potential insurance, bank, and tax fraud outside of New York City. On Monday, CNN reported that Cy Vance’s office has subpoenaed documents from Fortress Investment Management, which loaned the Trump Organization $130 million to build his Chicago tower and then, seven years later, forgave a cool $102 million of that debt. While Trump ended up getting a sweet deal not having to repay a huge chunk of money, investigators are reportedly interested to know if he paid taxes on the forgiven amount, as required by the IRS. Per CNN: more...

Ed Mazza·Overnight Editor, HuffPost

Former President Donald Trump didn’t get a warm welcome as he returned to New York for the first time since leaving office: Just one person stood outside Trump Tower to cheer his arrival on Sunday night, the New York Post reported. The Daily News said Trump is in his hometown to check on the family business, which had been run by his two adult sons while he was in the White House. Footage from the scene posted on YouTube shows Trump waving from an SUV to the supporter amid a heavy police presence: more...

The court without comment rejected Trump’s appeal challenging thousands of absentee ballots filed in Wisconsin, bringing a muted end to his quest.
Lawrence Hurley | Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) — The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday disposed of the last of three cases brought to the justices by former President Donald Trump challenging his election loss, bringing a muted end to his futile quest in the courts to hold onto power. The court without comment rejected Trump’s appeal challenging thousands of absentee ballots filed in Wisconsin, an election battleground that the Republican businessman-turned-politician lost to Democrat Joe Biden by more than 20,000 votes. Biden became president on Jan. 20. It was the last of three petitions filed at the Supreme Court near the end of Trump’s presidency that the justices declined to take up. The court on Feb. 22 turned away Trump’s other two appeals — a second Wisconsin challenge and one relating to voting in Pennsylvania, another pivotal state Trump lost. Lower courts previously had ruled against Trump in those three cases. more...

The Republican Party’s top lawyer says the First Amendment gives it the right to use the former president’s name in its fundraising appeals.
By S.V. Date

WASHINGTON ― The Republican National Committee on Monday told Donald Trump that it has every right under the First Amendment to continue mentioning him in fundraising missives, rejecting his demand last week to “cease and desist” from doing so. “The RNC, of course, has every right to refer to public figures as it engages in core, First Amendment-protected political speech, and it will continue to do so in pursuit of these common goals,” General Counsel J. Justin Riemer wrote to the former president’s “Save America” political committee. Trump on Friday had told the party to stop using his name or likeness in “all fundraising, persuasion, and/or issue speech,” which came just days after Trump, in his first public appearance since leaving office, told an audience of conservative activists that there was “only one way” to support good Republicans: by giving money to his Save America PAC. One Trump adviser said Save America received “millions” based on that single request and predicted that Trump’s efforts would kill the GOP’s own small-donor program. The Trump campaign and the RNC jointly built a list of more than 40 million supporters over the past five years, which includes several million donors who typically give $5 or $20 or $50 each month. Both have a right to use it. more...

Martin Pengelly in New York

Donald Trump could arrive in New York City for his first visit since leaving the White House as soon as Sunday night, according to multiple reports. The former president was born in Queens and rose to fame in Manhattan but changed his primary residence to Florida in 2019 and has been at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach since leaving Washington on 20 January. After reports of a New York visit proliferated on Saturday, local station WABC-TV reported that police were preparing to increase security around Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue in midtown Manhattan. The New York police department did not comment. Trump’s New York home was the subject of protests and a heavy police presence from the start of his run for the White House in summer 2015 through to the end of his term in office in the acrid aftermath of the 6 January Capitol attack. In July 2020, amid national protests for racial justice and policing reform, city authorities painted the words “Black Lives Matter” on the street outside Trump Tower. Mayor Bill de Blasio claimed to have “liberated” that stretch of Fifth Avenue. The mural was repeatedly vandalised. more...

By Oscar Quine

Federico G. Klein, a former mid-level aide at the State Department, is the first member of the Trump administration to face criminal charges in connection with the January 6 storming of the capital. Klein was arrested in Virginia for charges including unlawful entry, violent and disorderly conduct, obstructing Congress and law enforcement, and assaulting an officer with a dangerous weapon, Samantha Shero, a spokesperson for the Bureau's Washington Field Office, confirmed Thursday. In videos, Klein is seen wearing a red "Make America Great Again" cap while assaulting officers with a stolen riot shield. According to a court document filed by the FBI, Klein was still employed by the State Department and possessed a Top Secret security clearance at the time of the alleged offence. more...

Federico Klein, a former State Department aide, was picked up Thursday on charges stemming from the Jan. 6 takeover of Congress.
By JOSH GERSTEIN

The FBI on Thursday arrested Federico Klein, a former State Department aide, on charges related to the storming of the Capitol on Jan. 6, marking the first known instance of an appointee of President Donald Trump facing criminal prosecution in connection with the attempt to block Congress from certifying President Joe Biden’s victory. Klein, 42, was taken into custody in Virginia, said Samantha Shero, a spokesperson for the FBI’s Washington Field Office. An FBI lookout bulletin issued two weeks after the Capitol assault included a photo of Klein, prompting two tipsters to contact the FBI and finger him as the man in that picture, according to an affidavit filed in federal court in Washington. The affidavit says video from police body-worn cameras on Jan. 6 shows Klein jamming a riot shield into doors at the Capitol as police were trying to secure them to keep the mob out. Klein was also heard on video trying to encourage others to clash with the police, the complaint says. more...

By Christina Zhao

Fears of another Capitol attack have ramped up in the days and hours leading up to March 4, the next significant date in the QAnon calendar. Despite countless failed Q predictions, supporters of former President Donald Trump and the proliferating conspiracy theory believe that Thursday will be the day that the ex-president will be inaugurated again.

On Wednesday, the United States Capitol Police (USCP) announced that they had uncovered threats by militia groups to breach the Capitol building on March 4. The "possible plot" appeared to be connected to the QAnon theory that Trump would return to office on that date, when presidents were inaugurated pre-1933.

"The United States Capitol Police Department is aware of and prepared for any potential threats towards members of Congress or towards the Capitol complex," authorities said in a statement. "We have obtained intelligence that shows a possible plot to breach the Capitol by an identified militia group on Thursday, March 4." more...

The Infowars host, who profits from pandering to Trump’s base, was filmed in an expletive-laden tirade against him in 2019.
By Josephine Harvey

Conspiracy theorist and far-right talk radio host Alex Jones, who has promoted Donald Trump to his audience extensively for years, is heard in a newly leaked video expressing disgust at the former president in 2019. “It’s the truth, and I’m just going to say it. That I wish I never would have fucking met Trump,” Jones says in the footage. “I wish it never would have happened. And it’s not the attacks I’ve been through. I’m so sick of fucking Donald Trump, man. God, I’m fucking sick of him. And I’m not doing this because, like, I’m kissing his fucking ass, you know. It’s, like, I’m sick of it.” Filmmaker Caolan Robertson, who shot a propaganda film called “You Can’t Watch This” with the Infowars host, leaked the footage to the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Hatewatch initiative, which monitors far-right extremism in the U.S. more...

By Sophie Lewis

Hydroxychloroquine should not be used to prevent or treat COVID-19, the World Health Organization (WHO) advised this week. The anti-inflammatory drug was once touted by former President Donald Trump, who said he was taking the treatment to prevent contracting coronavirus last spring. A panel of WHO experts found that the drug has no meaningful effect on deaths or hospitalizations due to coronavirus. They added that it may even increase the risk of adverse effects. With high certainty, "the guideline development panel made a strong recommendation against the use of hydroxychloroquine for individuals who do not have covid-19," the panel wrote in the peer-reviewed medical journal The BMJ on Tuesday. more...

President Joe Biden publicly received both doses of the Pfizer vaccine in an effort to boost confidence about its safety and efficacy.
By Dartunorro Clark and Monica Alba

Former President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump quietly received the Covid-19 vaccine at the White House in January, a Trump advisor told NBC News on Monday. It is not clear which type of vaccine they received and they were not disclosed at the time by the Trump White House. This news was first reported by The New York Times. Trump, who spent months publicly downplaying the virus' impact and eschewing mask-wearing, announced in October that he had tested positive for Covid-19. The first lady also tested positive, but they both later recovered. more...

By David Zurawik | Baltimore Sun

One hour into his rambling, grievance-filled speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference on Sunday night, former President Donald Trump had his big moment. He had already said multiple times that he won the 2020 presidential election but that it was stolen from him. Now, however, he uttered the magical, dumbed-down catchphrase that his audience wanted to hear. “The election was rigged,” he shouted, and the crowd rose to its feet to give him a standing ovation. And then as he posed and beamed amid the applause like the late fascist dictator Benito Mussolini, the audience started to chant: “You won. You won. You won.” more...

Opinion by Scott Jennings

(CNN) Donald Trump's return to the national stage at the Conservative Political Action Convention (CPAC) was about what I expected: In a two-track speech where he was intermittently bored by a teleprompter and amused by his own adlibs, he teased a third presidential run, came home to his animating issue, immigration (which was inexplicably absent from his 2020 reelection campaign) and continued the farce that he actually won last November. He even ran through a "hit list" of Republicans to be ousted from the party. Of note was Trump shooting down the idea of a third party, which is actually a good impulse. Republicans cannot win with a fractured party, nor can they win if it gets any smaller. I don't understand the quest by some Republicans to shrink the party. The GOP just lost the White House by nearly 7 million votes and hasn't won the national popular vote in a presidential election with someone other than a Bush since 1984. Republicans lost the White House and don't control either house of Congress in Washington, despite the relative equilibrium in the congress. more...

By Maeve Reston, CNN

(CNN) Former President Donald Trump repeated his election lies on stage at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Florida, Sunday, looking to reclaim his role as the Republican Party's kingmaker in the 2022 midterm elections and positioning himself for a 2024 presidential run. "It is far from being over," Trump said. "We will be victorious and America will be stronger and greater than ever before." Repeating his false claims that he won the November election, which President Joe Biden won resoundingly with 306 to Trump's 232 electoral votes, Trump teased a White House run in four years: "I may even decide to beat them for a third time," the one-term former President said in his first public remarks since leaving the White House. more...

By Erik Larson

Donald Trump’s niece is balking at the former president’s claim that she waited too long to file her multi-million dollar fraud suit against him, saying she would have sued sooner if he hadn’t covered his tracks so well. Mary Trump on Friday asked a judge to deny Donald Trump’s motion to dismiss the suit, which she filed in September against her uncle and his siblings, Robert Trump and Maryanne Trump Barry. She claims they conspired to skim tens of millions of dollars off her stake in the family business for decades after her father died and left them as her fiduciaries. The suit by the daughter of Donald Trump’s late older brother, Fred Trump Jr., is one of several serious legal threats the former president faces as a private citizen. If the case in New York state court in Manhattan survives, he could be deposed under oath by the end of the year or early 2022. more...

*** No matter what Republicans and right wing media say it was not Antifa is was Trump supporters, white supremacist and Qanon who arrack the United States Capitol. ***

By Marshall Cohen, CNN

(CNN) Nearly a dozen Trump supporters charged in connection with the US Capitol insurrection have said that Antifa and other left-wing groups weren't involved in the attack, debunking a false-flag conspiracy theory that is gaining popularity in the pro-Trump orbit. The baseless claim that left-wing infiltrators were responsible for the violent attack has been promoted by former President Donald Trump's impeachment lawyers, several GOP lawmakers and at least one speaker at the Conservative Political Action Conference Friday morning. Many of the alleged rioters facing charges also embraced this conspiracy. But according to a CNN review of court documents, nearly a dozen defendants have explicitly pushed back, saying that they and other Trump supporters deserve the credit for storming the Capitol -- not Antifa. "There's a lot of memes and posts flying around saying that the people who were fighting last night were all Antifa provocateurs etc.," defendant Jose Padilla allegedly posted to Facebook one day after the January 6 attack. "I just want to say that as a first hand observer of every point of last night, that it was not Antifa. They were Patriots who were trying to Restore the Republic." more...

Mike Redmond

While today’s Republicans are predominantly Evangelical Christians, they clearly missed the part in The Bible about building false idols. In a move that truly captures the apocalyptic vibes of his presidency, Bloomberg’s William Turton captured footage of a golden statue of Donald Trump being wheeled around CPAC on Thursday, and people are having a blast dunking on the graven image. Shortly after the footage hit Twitter, “Golden Calf” started trending as religious leaders and others pointed out the awkward (and hypocritical) Biblical implications of turning Trump into a golden idol, which is a big no-no, according to Christian scripture. And, yet, that’s definitely a gilded Trump wearing American flag shorts. more...

By Nicole Lyn Pesce

Comments like ‘the GOP worship a golden crook’ spread across Twitter faster than you can say ‘Moses’. This is pure Twitter gold. The 2021 Conservative Political Action Conference, or CPAC, kicked off in Orlando, Fla., this week with someone wheeling in a golden statue of Donald Trump. And the inevitable comparisons to the Old Testament story of the Israelites worshiping a false idol in the form of a golden calf spread across social media faster than you can say “Moses.” In fact, “golden calf” and related terms like “Moses” and “CPAC” were soon trending on Friday morning. more...

By Sonia Moghe and Kara Scannell, CNN

(CNN) Donald Trump Jr. was deposed as part of the Washington, DC, attorney general's lawsuit alleging the misuse of Trump inaugural funds, according to a new court filing, the latest investigation in which the former President's children have surfaced.
In a court document dated Tuesday, DC Attorney General Karl Racine's office revealed the former President's son was deposed on February 11. The filing states that Trump's deposition "raised further questions about the nature" of a hotel invoice Racine's office has been investigating. The attorney general's office alleges that the Trump Organization signed a contract with the Loews Madison hotel for $49,358.92 for a block of rooms during the 2017 inauguration, and that the invoice was later forwarded to the Presidential Inaugural Committee, which then paid the bill, according to the filing. more...

The ex-president sure sounds like a guy who’s committed all manner of tax fraud.
By Bess Levin

Every U.S. president since Jimmy Carter has released their tax returns with the exception, of course, of Donald Trump. After lying about being unable to share them due to a “routine audit” and claiming that he would do so just as soon as he got the green light, Trump proceeded to spend the next four-plus years doing everything in his power to ensure such information never saw the light of day—almost as though he had something to hide! So you can imagine his reaction when the Supreme Court decided on Monday to reject his last-ditch attempt to shield his returns, which certainly sounds like that of a guy who’s committed all manner of tax fraud and is concerned about the possibility of spending a good chunk of his twilight years in prison. more...

The former president is stuck with a money-losing monument to his administration’s graft, and so is Washington.
By Zach Everson

For three years, the lobby of the Trump International Hotel Washington, D.C., was the hedonistic center of the MAGA-verse. The room glittered with chandeliers and the flashes of sabers slicing open Champagne bottles (prefaced by the ringing of a bell to draw eyeballs to the spectacle). Trumpworld luminaries like Corey Lewandowski and Sebastian Gorka schmoozed bar-side with established D.C. power brokers. Republican politicians on their way to backroom fundraisers stopped for selfies with star-struck customers swigging $9 Bud Lights. Proud Boys chatted up top presidential advisers. Once, pictures from the hotel lobby showed Trump Cabinet members, foreign leaders, compliant GOP lawmakers, CEOs, lobbyists, Hill staffers, and the MAGA faithful. more...

By Teo Armus

The only Democrat on Georgia’s state election board on Sunday called on Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) to investigate possible civil and criminal violations committed by President Trump during a phone call over the weekend in which the president pressured Raffensperger to “find” enough votes to overturn his defeat. David J. Worley, an Atlanta lawyer, said a transcript of the hour-long call, a recording of which was obtained by The Washington Post, amounted to “probable cause” to believe that Trump had violated Georgia election code. “It’s a crime to solicit election fraud, and asking the secretary to change the votes is a textbook definition of election fraud,” he said in an interview with The Post on Sunday. more...

The Daily Beast has learned that investigators have been asking questions in recent days about Trump’s eldest son as they expand their criminal probe into Trump’s business empire.
Asawin Suebsaeng, Lachlan Cartwright

For months, some of Donald Trump’s top advisers have assured him that he has virtually nothing to fear from the Manhattan district attorney’s tax investigation, which they view as merely “fishing” for information. But investigators with the D.A.'s office have been expanding their criminal probe into Trump’s business empire, asking questions and grilling witnesses—as recently as in the past few days—not only about Trump but particularly about his eldest son, Don Jr., and Allen Weisselberg, one of the former president’s most trusted officers, The Daily Beast has learned. This latest round of interest in Trump Jr. and Weisselberg’s activities, as well as other new developments, underscore the resources and the gravity that New York prosecutors are devoting to the investigation, just as Trump continues to publicly decry the probe as another example of Democrats picking on him. more...

Grace Dean

Luxury fashion retailer Gucci won't be leaving Manhattan's Trump Tower any time soon. That's according to a report in the The New York Times detailing a deal from 2020 in which Gucci, the Trump Tower's biggest commercial tenant, renegotiated and extended its lease in the building at 721-725 Fifth Avenue. The paper cited two people with knowledge of the deal. The 20-year lease the company took in 2006 was due to expire in 2026. Gucci got a reduction in rent after agreeing to expand its lease beyond this date, the sources said. Gucci declined to comment to the Times, and The Trump Organization did not respond to the paper's request for comment. Gucci had asked the Trump Organization to sign confidentiality agreements regarding the terms of the lease, one person who had seen the lease told the publication. more...

Mike McIntire

When New York prosecutors finally get to examine the federal tax returns of former President Donald Trump, they will discover a veritable how-to guide for getting rich while losing millions of dollars and paying little to no income taxes. Whether they find evidence of crimes, however, will also depend on other information not found in the actual returns. The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday cleared the way for the Manhattan district attorney, Cyrus Vance Jr., to obtain eight years of Trump’s federal income tax returns and other records from his accountants. The decision capped a long-running legal battle over prosecutors’ access to the information. more...

Dan Mangan

New York Attorney General Letitia James said Monday that her office is continuing to actively investigate the Trump Organization’s alleged inflation and deflation of property values to evade tax liability in the state and receive other financial benefits. James also said that the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to allow the Manhattan District Attorney’s office to obtain eight years of former President Donald Trump’s income tax returns and other financial records as part of a criminal investigation would not affect her own ongoing civil probe. That ruling, issued Monday, “doesn’t change the tenor of our lawsuit,” James said in an interview for The New York Times’ DealBook DC Policy Project. “We will continue our investigation and upon completion we will announce our findings,” James said. more...

Jeanine Santucci USA TODAY

WASHINGTON — As the Senate Judiciary Committee weighed Merrick Garland's confirmation as attorney general Monday, the fate of former President Donald Trump also looms for the Biden Justice Department. Federal judge Garland, who last served in the Justice Department during the Clinton administration and was blocked as Barack Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court, will likely face pointed questions about Trump during his confirmation hearing. Trump, meanwhile, has lost any "presidential immunity" in a number of legal issues as he returns to life as a private citizen — not only stemming from his speech on Jan. 6 preceding the Capitol assault, but also regarding his business dealings and defamation cases for comments he made about women who accused him of sexual assault. more...

Daniels sued Trump for defamation after he dismissed her claims of being threatened to keep quiet about the tryst as a "total con job."
By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Monday rejected an appeal from porn star Stormy Daniels, who sought to revive a defamation lawsuit she filed against former President Donald Trump. The justices did not comment in leaving in place a lower court ruling dismissing the case. Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, alleges she had an affair with Trump in 2006 and was paid $130,000 as part of a nondisclosure agreement days before the 2016 presidential election. She sued him for defamation after he dismissed her claims of being threatened to keep quiet about the tryst as a “total con job.” A federal judge dismissed the lawsuit in 2018 and ordered Daniels to pay nearly $300,000 in attorneys’ fees. more...

By John Kruzel

The Supreme Court on Monday rebuffed a bid by former President Trump to shield his tax returns and other financial records from a New York grand jury subpoena. The justices issued the order in the long-running dispute between Trump and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. (D) without comment or noted dissents. “The work continues,” Vance tweeted in response. The Supreme Court on Monday rebuffed a bid by former President Trump to shield his tax returns and other financial records from a New York grand jury subpoena. The justices issued the order in the long-running dispute between Trump and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. (D) without comment or noted dissents. “The work continues,” Vance tweeted in response. The court’s order comes in response to an emergency request Trump filed in October to the Supreme Court after losing several rounds in the lower courts. Vance's office has sought Trump's records since 2019, when a New York grand jury issued a subpoena to Trump's accounting firm, Mazars USA, for eight years of the former president's personal and business tax returns and other financial records. more...

By Jason Lemon

Arkansas GOP Governor Asa Hutchinson said Sunday that he would not support Donald Trump if the former president sought a second term in the White House in 2024, arguing that this would "hurt" Republicans. Hutchinson, who easily won reelection in 2018, will not be able seek reelection in 2022 due to term limits in Arkansas. The Republican governor is one of a number of prominent GOP lawmakers to come out against Trump in the wake of the January 6 riot against the U.S. Capitol carried out by the then president's supporters. During an interview with CNN on Sunday morning, Hutchinson said that Trump "will only define our party if we let him define our party." more...

By April Siese

Two ice skating rinks in Central Park that are operated by the Trump Organization will remain open for the remainder of the season, CBS New York reports. The rinks were originally set to close Sunday at 4 p.m. because New York City is cutting ties with the Trump Organization due to the Capitol riot. "New York City kids deserve all the time on the ice they can get this year," Bill Neidhardt, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's press secretary, said in a statement. "The Wollman and Lasker rinks will stay open under current management for the few weeks left in this season. But make no mistake, we will not be doing business with the Trump Organization going forward. Inciting an insurrection will never be forgotten or forgiven." more...

Declan Walsh

NAIROBI, Kenya — Erik Prince, the former head of the security contractor Blackwater Worldwide and a prominent supporter of former President Donald Trump, violated a United Nations arms embargo on Libya by sending weapons to a militia commander who was attempting to overthrow the internationally backed government, according to U.N. investigators. A confidential U.N. report obtained by The New York Times and delivered by investigators to the Security Council on Thursday reveals how Prince deployed a force of foreign mercenaries, armed with attack aircraft, gunboats and cyberwarfare capabilities, to eastern Libya at the height of a major battle in 2019. As part of the operation, which the report said cost $80 million, the mercenaries also planned to form a hit squad that could track down and kill selected Libyan commanders. more...

By Katelyn Polantz, CNN

(CNN) A leader in an alleged Oath Keepers conspiracy in the US Capitol insurrection claims she was given a VIP pass to the pro-Trump rally on January 6, had met with Secret Service agents and was providing security for legislators and others, including in their march to the Capitol, according to a new court filing. Attorneys for Ohio Oath Keeper Jessica Watkins detail how the efforts among paramilitants who are now accused of conspiracy on January 6 were closer to the apparatus around then-President Donald Trump and his rally than was previously known. By sharing the new details in the filing Saturday, the defense attorney for Watkins, a former Army ranger who served in Afghanistan, argues for her release from jail on bond and other restrictions as she awaits trial. more...

Trump’s critics – and the donors backing them – are scrambling fast to try to prise control away from the pro-Trump majority
Peter Stone

Some four dozen Republican donors were on a fundraising conference call on 5 February with Liz Cheney, the congresswoman and only Republican House leader to vote for Donald Trump’s impeachment for his role in the mob attack on the Capitol on 6 January. Many of the donors on the Cheney call are expected to donate the maximum amount of $5,800 to her 2022 re-election campaign before the end of the first quarter of this year, to ward off a primary challenge to her which Trump loyalists like congressman Matt Gaetz are encouraging, said Michael Epstein, a leading Maryland Republican donor. “We want to show a really big cycle for her to scare off competition,” Epstein said in an interview. “We want people who make judgments based on what’s right.” more...

By Dominick Mastrangelo

Nearly half of Republicans say they would abandon the party as it is currently structured and join a new party if former President Trump was its leader, according to a new poll released Sunday. A Suffolk University-USA Today poll found that 46 percent of Republicans said they would abandon the GOP and join the Trump party if the former president decided to create one. Only 27 percent said they would stay with the GOP, with the remainder indicating they would be undecided.  "We feel like Republicans don't fight enough for us, and we all see Donald Trump fighting for us as hard as he can, every single day," a Republican and small-business owner from Milwaukee told the newspaper. "But then you have establishment Republicans who just agree with establishment Democrats and everything, and they don't ever push back." Trump has not indicated the details of his political future. But after his acquittal in his second impeachment trial, Trump issued a scathing rebuke of Republican leadership, specifically Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) more...

By Jim Acosta, CNN

(CNN) Former President Donald Trump will speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Florida, next Sunday, according to a source familiar with the matter. The source, who is familiar with the former President's speech, told CNN on Saturday that "he'll be talking about the future of the Republican Party and the conservative movement." "Also look for the 45th President to take on President Biden's disastrous amnesty and border policies," the source added. The speaking engagement would mark Trump's first public appearance following his departure from the White House last month and comes as senior Republicans are split over how to treat the former President, with his loyalists paying him visits recently in Florida. more...

Cocooned in Mar-a-Lago, the newly acquitted ex-president is stepping up his political activities.
By GABBY ORR and MERIDITH MCGRAW

There’s no longer a chief of staff to screen his calls and he keeps no predictable working hours. So an unspoken rule has governed Donald Trump’s calendar since he left Washington last month: To sit down with the former president, you must belong to his posh Palm Beach club or know how to contact him directly. But even that won’t always do it. For weeks now, Trump has rejected meetings with everyone from former South Carolina governor and 2024 hopeful Nikki Haley to House and Senate GOP candidates vying for his ear — preferring to spend his days leisurely calling friends, binging cable news, golfing with a rotating cast of partners and basking in standing ovations whenever he arrives for dinner on Mar-a-Lago’s outdoor patio. One person close to the ex-president said he’s become “unreachable” to anyone outside his limited circle of loyal aides, longtime friends and die-hard political allies. more...

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