And Then The Laughter Stopped

Ken AshfordEnvironment & Global Warming & Energy, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

Yeah, we all had fun last night…. But then came the sobering news this morning…. President Trump will pull the United States out of the Paris climate change agreement, according to several reports Wednesday. Axios first reported that Trump is working with a group led by Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) chief Scott Pruitt on the exact mechanism of pulling out before … Read More

Jared And The Russian Backchannel – It Happened, Didn’t Happen, But He Didn’t Do It, But So What If He Did?

Ken AshfordL'Affaire Russe, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

On Friday, The Washington Post reported that Jared Kushner sought to create a secret line of communication between Donald Trump’s transition team and the Kremlin during a meeting with Russian diplomats in December. On Saturday, national security adviser H.R. McMaster said at a news conference that he “would not be concerned” about such an arrangement and added that “we have back-channel … Read More

Congressional Investigation Committees Go for Trump’s Personal Lawyer, Michael Cohen

Ken AshfordL'Affaire Russe, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

President Donald Trump’s personal attorney, Michael Cohen, has received requests for information from the Senate and House intelligence committees as part of their probes into Russian interference in the U.S. election. The request ;letters were the same ones sent to former Trump aides Carter Page, Roger Stone, Paul Manafort, Mike Flynn and others. Those letters sought information about Russian contacts, … Read More

The Smoking Gun?

Ken AshfordL'Affaire Russe, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

Another bombshell from the New York Times.  If this is true, Trump not only revealed classified information to Russians, but he also admitted to firing Comey because of the investigation: WASHINGTON — President Trump told Russian officials in the Oval Office this month that firing the F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, had relieved “great pressure” on him, according to a … Read More

Hmmmmmm… RED FLAG!

Ken AshfordPolitical Scandals, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

Interesting: President Donald Trump’s attorneys originally wanted him to submit an updated financial disclosure without certifying the information as true. In correspondence with the Office of Government Ethics, attorney Sheri Dillon said she saw no need for Trump to sign his 2016 personal financial disclosure because he is filing voluntarily this year. But OGE director Walter Shaub said his office … Read More

Here’s A Good Place For Mueller To Start

Ken AshfordL'Affaire Russe, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

Reuters is reporting that former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and other Trump campaign advisers “were in contact with Russian officials and others with Kremlin ties in at least 18 calls and emails during the last seven months of the 2016 presidential race.” That news stands in contrast to what Trump transition team chair-turned-Vice President Mike Pence said in January, when … Read More

Day 118. Hot Mess

Ken AshfordCongress, L'Affaire Russe, Polls, Republicans, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

1/ Rod Rosenstein appointed former FBI Director Bob Mueller to oversee the investigation of Russian interference in election. Mueller will take command of the prosecutors and FBI agents who are working on the far reaching Russia investigation. Trump said that he expects the probe will find no collusion between his 2016 White House campaign and foreign countries, calling the Russia … Read More

How We Got Here

Ken AshfordL'Affaire Russe, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

I have been out of town and/or recuperating from being out of town, so the events of earlier this week caught me off guard.  Nothing to say, and yet so much to say, and yet so much has already been said.  Clearly though, this appears to be the beginning of the end for Trump. We are in impeachment territory, and … Read More

Day 116. Jeopardized.

Ken AshfordImmigration and Xenophobia, L'Affaire Russe, North Korea, Republicans, Syria, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

1/ Trump revealed highly classified information to Russian diplomats during their Oval Office meeting last week, which has jeopardized a critical source of intelligence on the Islamic State. Trump’s decision to disclose information risks cooperation from an ally that has access to the inner workings of the Islamic State. A US official said Trump “revealed more information to the Russian … Read More

Day 117. Wow.

Ken AshfordForeign Affairs, L'Affaire Russe, Polls, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

1/ Trump asked James Comey to shut down the Michael Flynn investigation in a February memo he wrote shortly after meeting with Trump. “I hope you can let this go,” Trump told Comey. The request is the clearest evidence that he tried to directly influence the Justice Department and FBI investigations. Comey kept detailed notes of his meetings with Trump, … Read More

Trump Fires Comey

Ken AshfordBreaking News, L'Affaire Russe, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

It’s been an amazing 16 hours. The comparisons to Watergate’s “Saturday Night Massacre” can’t be helped. Let’s be clear about this: Trump has fired the head of the investigation into his campaign’s contacts with the Russians. The reason? Because of the way Comey handled the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server.  Almost nobody is buying that rationale, or the timing. … Read More

Yikes! Yates!

Ken AshfordL'Affaire Russe, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

Sally Yates is a career civil servant in the Justice Department. She was hired under the first Bush administration, promoted during the Clinton administration, promoted again during the second Bush administration, and yet again under the Obama administration. Two years ago she was named deputy attorney general, the second ranking position in the department, and then became acting attorney general … Read More