Donald Trump, Robert Mueller’s Indictments And three Ways To Think About A Busy Week : NPR


Robert Mueller, particular counsel in control of the investigation into Russian connections with the Trump marketing campaign, rocked the political world charging three Trump marketing campaign officers this week.

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Robert Mueller, particular counsel in control of the investigation into Russian connections with the Trump marketing campaign, rocked the political world charging three Trump marketing campaign officers this week.

Alex Wong/Getty Images

The week began with “legal shock and awe,” as Carrie Johnson, NPR’s Justice correspondent described it on the PBS NewsHour.

It’s onerous to imagine it was solely Monday that indictments have been handed down stemming from particular counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into the Trump marketing campaign and Russia.

There was plenty of fallout from that. But it was hardly all that occurred this week — there was a terrorist badault that killed eight folks in New York, a significant tax invoice unveiled that would have an effect on tens of millions of Americans and social gathering division was once more highlighted on the Democratic facet.

That’s life within the deluge of reports through the Trump presidency.

Here are 3 ways to consider all the things that went down (and a day-by-day recap under that):

1. The Russia connection acquired nearer

Mueller and his staff of investigators rocked the political world and the White House. Mueller and the courtroom paperwork, particularly the responsible plea from George Papadopoulos, a Trump marketing campaign international coverage adviser, wound up revealing a number of issues:

  • Russia was attempting to infiltrate the Trump marketing campaign, and it succeeded, at the least to an extent;
  • Papadopoulous was “proactive” in cooperating with the the feds. And on condition that he was arrested in July at Dulles Airport (with none leaks) and a plea wasn’t formally launched till October means he might have been serving to brokers take measures to seek out out extra info, like, for instance, by probably sporting a wire.
  • Other Trump marketing campaign officers knew about Papadopoulos’ contacts with Russia, together with the president, the lawyer basic and Sam Clovis, a former co-chairman of the marketing campaign. As a results of the discovering, Clovis withdrew for a job within the Trump administration;
  • Mueller is aware of greater than the general public or reporters do. This is probably going only the start, because the circle will get tighter, and it’s turning into obvious that Mueller has cooperating witnesses.

This Russia connection is a giant downside for Trump. He had taken to calling it a “witch hunt,” however methodically gathered proof goes to be tough to beat with spin and deflection — regardless of Trump’s, and conservative media’s, finest efforts this week in pointing once more to Hillary Clinton.

Russia Tried To Infiltrate Trump Campaign, Mueller Documents Confirm

And regardless of an financial system that appears to be chugging alongside and a jobs report that confirmed the bottom unemployment price in 17 years, Trump hit document low approval scores this week in Gallup and the NBC/Wall Street Journal polls.

2. Trump’s terror badault feedback once more undermine a vital democratic establishment

President Trump speaks throughout a Cabinet badembly and remarks hotly that he desires modifications to U.S. immigration legal guidelines to probably forestall future badaults.

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President Trump speaks throughout a Cabinet badembly and remarks hotly that he desires modifications to U.S. immigration legal guidelines to probably forestall future badaults.

Win McNamee/Getty Images

The terrorist badault that seems to be ISIS-inspired, led to Trump once more exhibiting his hard-line nationalist facet relating to immigration. The suspect got here to the United States in 2010 beneath the range visa lottery program. Trump known as for its elimination, blamed Democratic Senate chief Chuck Schumer for its implementation and lashed out once more on the American judicial system.

Many questioned Trump’s response about U.S. courts, as a result of, because the ostensible chief regulation enforcement officer in America, his speak might make prosecutors’ jobs harder. The American judicial system is one thing previous presidents held up as a shining instance of how free nation-states function — that it reveals the world how honest and simply America is, in contrast to locations which have fewer freedoms.

FACT CHECK: Trump Singles Out Chuck Schumer After N.Y. Terrorist Attack

Trump additionally flirted with the concept of sending the suspect to the jail at Guantanamo Bay.

But a few truth checks: First, Trump’s badault on Schumer was overwrought. Yes, Schumer co-sponsored the laws that launched this system in 1990, however it was a bipartisan effort and signed by a Republican president, George H.W. Bush, into regulation. And through the Senate effort to overtake the immigration system in 2013, Schumer proposed eliminating this system. (See NPR’s Brian Naylor’s truth test on this from earlier this week.)

Second, on Guantanamo, as NPR’s Ryan Lucas famous within the NPR Politics Podcast this week, nobody arrested within the United States has ever been despatched to Gitmo. Sure, that sort of speak makes Trump look powerful along with his base, however it would not align with the details. The U.S. courtroom system has completed a way more environment friendly job of prosecuting terrorism suspects than the trial course of at Guantanamo.

But, ultimately, it would not seem that sending the suspect to Guantanamo was one thing beneath actual consideration, anyway, because the Justice Department has filed fees in opposition to him. It was a query from a reporter that Trump merely reacted to. This is what Trump does, and he proves it over and over — he shoots from the lip, says issues that would have main penalties, however would possibly not likely imply them.

three. Houses divided can’t stand — and as Republicans are hoping the brand new tax invoice can hold them collectively, Democrats’ rift was uncovered as fairly uncooked

Hillary Clinton listens as Bernie Sanders makes remarks throughout a unity rally in July 2016 in New Hampshire.

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Hillary Clinton listens as Bernie Sanders makes remarks throughout a unity rally in July 2016 in New Hampshire.

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Trump and the GOP are hoping to paper over their inner divisions with one thing they hope they’ll all get behind — tax cuts. After failing to repeal and substitute the Affordable Care Act, the results could not be larger for Republicans. If it turns into regulation, they’ll lastly discover a pathway to unify and cross large, essential laws, one thing that has been elusive up to now within the Trump presidency.

Make no mistake: the divisions are there, and this invoice’s destiny might properly be an inflection level for the social gathering’s leaders and their relationship with this president. If it would not cross, what then?

Clinton Campaign Had Additional Signed Agreement With DNC In 2015

Book Reveals Clinton Campaign Effectively Controlled DNC As Early As 2015

Meanwhile, Democrats’ divisions have been laid naked with the publishing of a e book excerpt from former appearing Democratic National Chairwoman Donna Brazile. She alleges the social gathering was in cahoots with the Clinton marketing campaign, not simply because it favored her, however as a result of it owed them financially.

The social gathering was actually financially reliant on the Clinton marketing campaign, was being placed on a finances by the marketing campaign and Clinton successfully had operational management over the social gathering. A couple of takeaways:

  • Some of the main points that emerged have been already recognized; Candidates all have the choice to signal onto joint fundraising agreements; Sanders wasn’t and is not a Democrat.
  • More importantly — whether or not a extra impartial DNC would have actually modified the result is hardly a certainty. How a lot does a celebration actually impact a major? It can agree to carry extra debates; it could possibly badist form a media narrative, however folks nonetheless must vote — and lots of extra voted for Clinton than Sanders.
  • All that is true, however a candidate who shouldn’t be but the nominee shouldn’t be speculated to have operational management over a celebration. The social gathering was giving the impression that it was impartial, when evidently it was not. The cost from challengers was that Clinton was being handled because the nominee and being coronated. That seems to be the case from social gathering insiders, who resolve the nomination. That sort of look can solely serve to additional divide the social gathering.

What was revealed solely reinforces for the left that there was collusion — in opposition to them. It’s solely going to harden and deepen the fissures within the social gathering that’s attempting to oust Republicans in Congress subsequent yr and President Trump two years after that.

If the social gathering would not form up, create a message and work out — most significantly — easy methods to unify its divergent factions, it will be onerous to mount a marketing campaign to defeat a sitting president with a locked-in base.

Here’s a recap of the week. Yes, all this occurred:


Former Trump marketing campaign chairman Paul Manafort leaves federal courtroom following a listening to Thursday. Manafort and his former enterprise accomplice Richard Gates pleaded not responsible to a 12-charge indictment.

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Former Trump marketing campaign chairman Paul Manafort leaves federal courtroom following a listening to Thursday. Manafort and his former enterprise accomplice Richard Gates pleaded not responsible to a 12-charge indictment.

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

—Former Trump marketing campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his deputy, Rick Gates, are indicted for conspiring in opposition to the the United States, cash laundering and extra. These fees stem from Manafort’s work abroad and earlier than he joined the Trump marketing campaign.

—But then, two hours later, one other set of courtroom paperwork dropped. And this very a lot needed to do with Russia. A former foreign-policy adviser to Trump’s marketing campaign, George Papadopoulos, who Trump as soon as known as “excellent,” pleads responsible to mendacity about contacts he had Russians. with folks with ties to the Kremlin.

—Trump’s ban on transgender folks serving within the navy is blocked in courtroom.

—White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders defends President Trump, claiming “no evidence of Trump-Russia collusion, and nothing in the indictment today changes that at all.” —Sanders additionally begins with a multiple-minute Internet meme that was speculated to be an allegory about taxes involving journalists consuming in a bar and trying to separate a bar tab based mostly on earnings.

—White House Chief of Staff John Kelly says in an interview with Fox Monday evening that he wouldn’t apologize for false info he recounted a couple of Democratic congresswoman — after which made information defending Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee and saying that the Civil War, which was fought over slavery, might have been prevented by a compromise. —Trump hits all-time low in approval in Gallup and NBC/WSJ —Clovis recognized because the “supervisor” talked about within the Papadopolous paperwork.


—After not tweeting since earlier than the Papadopoulos paperwork have been launched Monday morning, Trump tweets that he was merely a “low level volunteer” and that folks ought to “check the DEMS!” Former White House press secretary Sean Spicer earlier this yr dismissed Manafort’s relevance through the marketing campaign, saying he performed a “minor role.”

In actuality, whereas Manafort was solely on the marketing campaign for a comparatively quick time, he performed a vital function getting Trump nominated. He was in control of the delegate course of and totally in control of the conference, for instance, working to depress potential ground rebellions over Trump’s nomination.

— Trump Organization lawyer Michael Caputo on CNN claims Papadopoulos was only a “coffee boy.” “If he was going to wear a wire, all we’d know now is whether he prefers a caramel macchiato over a regular American coffee in conversations with his barista,” Caputo stated. “He had nothing to do with the campaign.”

—There was rising hypothesis that Papadopoulos might have worn a wire as a result of it was revealed that he had been taking a “proactive” function in serving to the feds after being arrested — quietly and with out leaks — in July till his responsible plea in early October.

—This got here a day after a day after Trump tweeted “Great job by Michael Caputo on @foxandfriends.”

Trump is understood to judge his badociates’ prowess on cable information, then carry them nearer into his circle or put them on the market extra (or pull them again). (See Anthony Scaramucci, Sean Spicer, Kellyanne Conway, and so on.)

—Later, Sanders takes to the rostrum within the briefing room to once more defend the president and marketing campaign but in addition Kelly. She stated it had been traditionally confirmed that compromises might have ended the Civil War. It was unclear if that concerned slavery.

—Clovis’ attorneys put out a press release acknowledging he’s the “supervisor.” Sanders says the president sees no motive right now to drag Clovis’ nomination because the chief scientist for the USDA. Clovis shouldn’t be a scientist.

—NBC reviews that the FBI “grilled” Clovis final week. In an electronic mail to Papadopolous, Clovis appeared to encourage his badembly with Russians and advised him it was “great work.”

—Apparent ISIS-inspired terrorist badault in New York, the place eight cyclists are killed.

—White House Communications Director Hope Hicks to satisfy with federal investigators subsequent week after Trump’s Asia journey. Others to be interviewed as early as this week.

—Officials from Facebook, Twitter and Google inform a congressional panel that the Russian interference marketing campaign was broader than first recognized.

—House GOP pushes again tax overhaul to Thursday; it was speculated to be unveiled Wednesday. Sticking factors heart on which deductions could be lower, to allow them to pay for it. They’re nonetheless promising a markup Monday.

—More courtroom paperwork launched on Manafort. They present he had at the least three pbadports and used pretend names to journey to a number of nations. Manafort labored without spending a dime for the Trump marketing campaign. He got here on the advice of Tom Barrack, a long-time Trump good friend who employed Gates. This raises questions concerning the Trump marketing campaign’s vetting.

—Lost within the shuffle, however a tremendous learn: former House Speaker John Boehner’s interview with Politico, during which he very candidly shares his ideas on a bunch of issues and folks.


—Trump factors blame at Schumer for New York badault.

The terrorist got here into our nation by means of what known as the “Diversity Visa Lottery Program,” a Chuck Schumer magnificence. I need advantage based mostly.

— Donald J. Trump (@actualDonaldTrump) November 1, 2017

“Senator Chuck Schumer helping to import Europes problems” stated Col.Tony Shaffer. We will cease this craziness! @foxandfriends

— Donald J. Trump (@actualDonaldTrump) November 1, 2017

Schumer responds that he guesses it isn’t too quickly to politicize a tragedy. The White House had stated after the Las Vegas capturing that it was “premature” to speak about weapons.

—Arizona Republican Sen. Jeff Flake involves Schumer’s protection on Twitter.

—Federal officers verify that the alleged driver within the badault got here to the nation by way of the range visa lottery program.

—Trump requires an finish to this system after which calls the U.S. justice system a “laughing stock.” Instead, he says he desires “quick” and “strong justice.” “What we have right now is a joke, and it is a laughing stock, and no wonder so much of this stuff takes place,” Trump advised reporters throughout a Cabinet badembly on the White House. He provides in response to a query from a reporter, “Send him to Gitmo? I would certainly consider that, yes.”

—The White House later says it considers the suspect an “enemy combatant.” The Guantanamo and enemy combatant dialogue raises the query of whether or not that might be allowed. First, the driving force had a Green Card. Georgetown Law writes that “permanent legal residents are protected under the laws of the United States and all local jurisdictions.” Further, “due process” is badured to all individuals, it writes due to the 14th Amendment, “which provides guarantees for ‘any person.'”

—Some Trump allies are rising very involved concerning the Mueller investigation. Former Trump marketing campaign aide Sam Nunberg advised Vanity Fair, for instance:

“Here’s what Manafort’s indictment tells me: Mueller is going to go over every financial dealing of Jared Kushner and the Trump Organization. Trump is at 33 percent in Gallup. You can’t go any lower. He’s f——-.”

—Congress releases social media posts that have been purchased and paid for by Russian accounts.

—Republican Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, the one black Republican senator in Congress, responds to Kelly’s feedback a couple of civil battle “compromise.” “There was no compromise to make — only a choice between continuing slavery and ending it,” Scott stated.

—After hours earlier questioning the efficacy of the U.S. judicial system, Trump went to mattress tweeting that he needed the “DEATH PENALTY” for the New York truck attacker. He additionally appeared to provide away a beforehand unknown element, that the suspect requested to hold the ISIS flag from his hospital mattress.

…There can also be one thing applicable about retaining him within the dwelling of the horrible crime he dedicated. Should transfer quick. DEATH PENALTY!

— Donald J. Trump (@actualDonaldTrump) November 2, 2017

The loss of life penalty shouldn’t be an choice in New York State. It is outlawed there.


—Trump tweets once more about “DEATH PENALTY.”

NYC terrorist was blissful as he requested to hold ISIS flag in his hospital room. He killed eight folks, badly injured 12. SHOULD GET DEATH PENALTY!

— Donald J. Trump (@actualDonaldTrump) November 2, 2017

—Republicans within the House unveil their tax overhaul.

—Trump broadcasts his choose to be the brand new Federal Reserve chairman, a fed governor, Jerome Williams. Williams, a lawyer by coaching and a former Wall St. funding banker, could be the primary fed chair in 40 years to not have his doctorate in economics.

—Clovis withdraws from the Trump administration put up he had been nominated for.

—Trump says he met with Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grbadley earlier within the day and needs what he calls “immigration reform” after the New York badault. Trump known as on Congress to instantly terminate the visa lottery program. “It’s a disaster for our country,” Trump stated, including, “The people put in that lottery are not that country’s finest.” He additionally once more known as for an finish to “chain migration.”

—It’s revealed that Jeff Sessions might have recognized extra about marketing campaign aides’ ties to Russia. Both Papadopoulos and one other foreign-policy adviser Carter Page each advised Sessions about Russian contacts. Page testified behind closed doorways on Capitol Hill that he advised Sessions he was touring to Russia to provide a speech at a college. Page says he advised periods this in pbading at a dinner. Papadopoulos, NBC reviews, requested Sessions if he ought to attempt to use his Russian contacts to attempt to arrange a gathering between Trump and Vladimir Putin. Sessions reportedly advised him not to take action. But there can be questions for Sessions, as a result of he advised Congress earlier this yr that he had no recollection of any contacts between Russia and the marketing campaign.

—Democrats’ social gathering divisions are ripped open. Brazile’s e book excerpt is launched. Trump tweets about it:

Donna Brazile simply said the DNC RIGGED the system to illegally steal the Primary from Bernie Sanders. Bought and paid for by Crooked H….

— Donald J. Trump (@actualDonaldTrump) November three, 2017

The liberal group Democracy for America says it is pulling help from Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Ralph Northam, simply days earlier than Tuesday’s election. They accuse him of working a “racist” marketing campaign after he declares he wouldn’t help “sanctuary cities.”

Howard Dean, a founding member of the group and whose brother runs it, blasts the choice as “incredibly stupid.”

I Hope that is inaccurate as a result of it’s an extremely silly factor to say and deeply discredits the group which I based.

— Howard Dean (@GovHowardDean) November three, 2017

Hillary Clinton seems on The Daily Show and declared once more, “I’m not going anywhere.”

Elizabeth Warren provides gasoline to the fireplace, saying, “Yes,” she believes the Democratic major was “rigged” in favor of Clinton.

—Trump expresses disappointment that he cannot direct the Justice Department or FBI in an interview on conservative speak radio:

“The saddest thing is that because I’m the President of the United States, I am not supposed to be involved with the Justice Department,” Trump stated on the Larry O’Connor present, a conservative talk-radio present. “I am not supposed to be involved with the FBI. … “I take a look at what’s occurring with the Justice Department. Well, why aren’t they going after Hillary Clinton together with her emails and together with her, the file? I am very sad with it that the Justice Department is not going. I’m not speculated to be doing the sort of issues that I’d like to be doing. And I’m very annoyed by it.”

—Trump later goes on Fox and is interviewed by Laura Ingraham and appears to downplay some in his marketing campaign, together with his son, being keen to work with a international authorities to attempt to get “filth” on his opponent:

“Well, she [Clinton] talked about oppo badysis is great. Oppo badysis. But not relating to us. OK? Oppo badysis for us, in fact, isn’t any good. No.”

—The White House approves a local weather report that states unequivocally that local weather change is occurring — and that people are the trigger. Ironically, the president has beforehand stated local weather change is a “hoax” and lots of in his administration deny people are responsible.

—Trump’s Twitter account goes down briefly. Twitter blames it on an worker and says they’re taking “safeguards” so that it doesn’t happen in the future.”


Attorney General Jeff Sessions testifies on Capitol Hill in June. He stated he was unaware of any contacts between the Trump marketing campaign and Russia, however courtroom paperwork launched this week present in any other case.

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions testifies on Capitol Hill in June. He stated he was unaware of any contacts between the Trump marketing campaign and Russia, however courtroom paperwork launched this week present in any other case.

Win McNamee/Getty Images

—It’s revealed that Papadopolous had a number of contacts with Russians and that he bragged about them in entrance of Trump and Sessions. Trump and Sessions have each denied understanding about something about anybody within the marketing campaign having contact with Russia. Trump stated so earlier than reporters in February. Sessions did so a number of occasions in congressional testimony. Trump tells reporters he would not “remember much” about his dialog with Papadopolous and calls the badembly “unimportant”:

“Took place along time ago. I don’t remember much about it. All I can tell you is this. There was no collusion. There was no nothing. It’s a disgrace, frankly, that they continue. You ought to look at Hillary Clinton.”

—Trump tweets encouragement of the FBI/DOJ to look into Democrats “rigging” the first.

Pocahontas simply said that the Democrats, lead by the legendary Crooked Hillary Clinton, rigged the Primaries! Lets go FBI & Justice Dept.

— Donald J. Trump (@actualDonaldTrump) November three, 2017

—Trump leaves for Asia for APEC badembly, as North Korea menace looms, and he tore up the Trans-Pacific Trade partnership and has questioned the commerce take care of South Korea.

—Jobs report comes out, and it reveals job features of 261,000 and unemployment ticking right down to four.1 %, the bottom stage since 2000. A day earlier, in a press release concerning the tax invoice, the president took credit score for robust financial numbers:

“The policies of my Administration have already helped to drive the stock market to all-time highs and the unemployment rate to a 16-year low.”

Trump provides that tax cuts could be “the rocket fuel our economy needs to soar higher than ever before.”

—NPR’s Scott Detrow discovers a second monetary settlement in 2015 between the DNC and the Clinton marketing campaign.

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