By Nick Baum
FRIDAY – 1/18/19
According to BuzzFeed News, inside sources have said that President Donald Trump personally directed his at-the-time lawyer, Michael Cohen, to lie to Congress when being testified about his Trump Tower Project in Moscow. More specifically, lying about any relations and discussions had with Russian authorities.
Michael Cohen, who was found guilty and jailed after it was revealed he lied to Congress, has declined all comments to BuzzFeed. He was found guilty in late November, and sentenced to three years in prison. Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani declined the action, saying: “If you believe Cohen I can get you a great deal on the Brooklyn Bridge.”
BuzzFeed has also reported that Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign supported a plan to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin for negotiations in Moscow. Although plans most likely fell through, other members of the Trump campaign might’ve played a role, although very minimal according to BuzzFeed News.
Sources and Pictures: CNN, The New York Times, BuzzFeed News, The Daily Nick
By Nick Baum
TUESDAY – 1/15/19
Nominee for Attorney General William Barr will be facing his Senate confirmation hearing today in an effort to get elected by President Trump, and replace Jeff Sessions, whom Donald Trump criticized and fired. If elected, Barr will oversee the Mueller Probe into potential relations between the 2016 Trump campaign and Russia.
Each Senator part of the committee will have fifteen minutes to interview the nominee, followed by a vote by the entire Senate floor that will ultimately decide both the state of the Trump Administration and the Mueller Probe at this point.
The Mueller investigation has already found multiple members of the campaign guilty, including a recent prison sentence for former Trump Campaign Manager Paul Manafort. Barr, if elected, will have a tough task if voted in, and experts have forecasted that it is probable that he gets in.
Sources and Pictures: CNN, Flickr, MSNBC
By Nick Baum
THURSDAY – 1/10/19
The partial government shutdown has now reached 19 days with very little sign of an end in sight. But as the days with empty department headquarters drags, so does the number of fingers pointing in different directions. What many individuals and the media fail to realize, though, is that both sides are to blame.
Both Senate Republicans and Democrats acted hastily with one another when voting on a temporary government funding bill, mostly in part due to the $5 billion border wall that was a key part of Trump’s campaign promises. The wall is fine, in fact, it is one of the most efficient ways of stopping illegal immigrants. Even if half of all border crossings were stopped, we would save $64 billion in welfare.
Honestly, it’s on the Democrats if they don’t want to vote for the border wall. The fact that they would rather allow a government shutdown than protecting our borders and our citizens really makes you question the motives of their party. However, we shouldn’t act like President Trump and the Senate Republicans are innocent, either.
Donald Trump had stated multiple times that he was, “proud to shut the government down” and said that he could “keep the government closed for months or even years.” Not only that, but he has been met with conservative praise to shutting down the government, calling it a “win”. In fact, a bill sponsored by Senate Democrats to fund the IRS and tax filing agencies was blocked by Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell.
While the reason for the bill being blocked could’ve been due to the conservative side’s dislike of high taxes, especially when a portion of the government isn’t operating, it is no question that both sides have responsibility on this pressing issue, that must be resolved soon enough.
Sources and Pictures: Wikimedia Commons, CNN, C-SPAN, MSNBC, Fox News
By Nick Baum
WEDNESDAY – 1/9/19
President Donald Trump made his first televised speech from the oval office last night to speak about the controversy surrounding the $5 billion border wall, and the partial government shutdown about it that has reached 17 days. Senate Republicans and Democrats failed to compromise on the border wall, in return shutting down a part of the government for the third longest time on record.
During the speech, Trump pulled different statistics and evidence supporting his case regarding the border wall crisis. Just after the oval office speech, Democratic congressional leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer made a speech regarding his televised broadcast, as well as reconfirming their own stances on the crisis.
In the broadcast, Trump described the situation as “a humanitarian crisis” and stated that more Americans have died from illegal drugs than the Vietnam War. In return, Democratic leaders Pelosi and Schumer stated that Trump is unwilling to cooperate on bipartisan bills. So far, the partial government shutdown doesn’t have an end in sight, and it’s still up to debate over who started it.
Sources and Pictures: Flickr, CNN, CNN Politics, Fox News
By Nick Baum
MONDAY – 1/7/19
The government shutdown between Senate Republicans and Democrats over a $5 billion border wall has lasted for 16 days now, which is the third longest on record. The shutdown started on December 21, and requires 60 senators to accept it in order for the funding bill to go into effect.
Days before the shutdown, President Trump met with Democratic House Leader Nancy Pelosi and Democratic Senate leader Chuck Schumer over potential funding options for the government. As of right now, it is only a partial government shutdown, with some national parks and federal departments closing. Of these departments include the Department of Transportation, which controls the pay of TSA workers in airports, who are currently working without pay.
President Trump traveled to Camp David in Maryland to meet with officials over government funding again. Vice President Mike Pence has also met with leaders from both parties over options. Trump has considered declaring it a “national emergency”, where funding can be diverted from the military to the border wall without government funding.
Sources and Pictures: CNN, CBS, Wikimedia Commons
By Nick Baum
FRIDAY – 12/21/18
Last night, the House of Representatives voted 217 to 185 to pass a government funding bill that would allocate $5.7 billion to the border wall between Mexico and the United States. The somewhat large Republican majority was able to pass it with ease, but as the bill goes to the Senate, where a Republican majority is just 51 – 49, every vote will count.
Not only does the bill need a majority though, but it would also need to pass by 60 votes in the Senate, meaning that it is much likelier that there will be a partial government shutdown than a border wall funding bill, as President Trump said he won’t enact any Senate funding bills that don’t pay for the border wall.
However, if the bill does not pass there will only be a partial government shutdown, where only 9 of the 15 cabinet departments close down, and only some areas of government stop working. If there is a shutdown, then it will happen by midnight of today.
Sources and Pictures: Wikimedia Commons, Fox News, CNN
By Nick Baum
THURSDAY – 12/13/18
Former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen has pleaded guilty to lying under oath and taking part in illegal activity with the Russians, prompting a thirty-six-month sentence in Otisville Prison in New York, the prison that Forbes describes as “one of the cushiest in the nation.”
In addition to the three years required to serve, Cohen has a $50,000 fine, a $500,000 forfeiture (giving money up for wrongdoing), but will receive $1.4 million in restitution, meaning what he gets back after being in prison.
Cohen has been another figure in the Trump Administration to be proven guilty through illegal campaign finance, illegal contact, and through lying to multiple sources. Authorities are currently waiting on the final decision of which prison for him to go to.
Sources and Pictures: CNN, Forbes, Fox News