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Sen. Carl Levin: Only way to hold James Clapper accountable is to ‘fire him’

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The head of the Senate Armed Services Committee said Tuesday the only way to hold the top U.S. intelligence official accountable for lying to Congress was to fire him.

Speaking at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast meeting, Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI) stopped short of himself calling on President Barack Obama to fire Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.

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“I’m troubled by that testimony,” he said. “I don’t know how he has tried to wiggle out from it, but I’m troubled by it, so how do you hold him accountable? I guess the only way to do that would be for the President to somehow or other fire him. I think he made it clear he regrets saying what he said and I don’t want to call on the President to fire him, although I’m troubled by it.”

During a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing in March, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) specifically asked Clapper if the National Security Agency collected “any type of data at all on millions or hundreds of millions of Americans?” Clapper denied the NSA amassed such data, but that testimony was later proven false by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

Clapper has said he provided the “least untruthful answer possible.”

Levin said he felt adequately informed about the NSA’s surveillance programs with the exception of PRISM, a program that intercepted foreign Internet communications. Though “in principle” the NSA was doing what intelligence services had done for decades, current technologies allowed for levels of surveillance that were previously unthinkable, the senator added.

“They can’t look at the substance of my conversations, but they can find out a heck of a lot about me by what phone calls I make,” Levin remarked. “If this technology were in the hands of [former FBI director] J. Edgar Hoover, would I feel comfortable? No. But, on the other hand, I wasn’t comfortable with J. Edgar Hoover with his technology.”

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Watch this video from C-SPAN, broadcast July 16, 2013.

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WATCH: Bob Woodward grilled on HBO about Trump supporters being disconnected from reality on COVID

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Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Bob Woodward was taken to task for failing to warn Americans that Donald Trump's public statements on coronavirus were the exact opposite of what he actually believed.

Axios reporter Jonathan Swan interviewed Woodwood on "Axios on HBO" for an episode that aired on Monday.

Swan noted Woodward recorded Trump admitting that COVID was dangerous on March 19th, but instead of immediately warning America by publishing the bombshell, he saved it for his book Rage -- which was published on September 15th.

Woodward claimed that the world already knew the facts on coronavirus by the 19th of March, but Swan pushed back and pointed out that many of Trump's supporters ignore reality and instead trust Trump -- even when his views are not backed up by science or reality.

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‘It was all a hoax’: NYT destroys Trump’s claims of business success — in second blockbuster on his taxes

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President Donald Trump's tax returns have resulted in a second bombshell story by The New York Times.

"From the back seat of a stretch limousine heading to meet the first contestants for his new TV show “The Apprentice,” Donald J. Trump bragged that he was a billionaire who had overcome financial hardship. 'I used my brain, I used my negotiating skills and I worked it all out,” he told viewers. “Now, my company is bigger than it ever was and stronger than it ever was.' It was all a hoax," the newspaper reported Monday evening.

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2020 Election

Trump campaign accused of ‘laundering’ 170 million — companies linked to Brad Parscale are implicated: report

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The Trump campaign may be in legal hot water after a new complaint accused the organization of money laundering.

"The Campaign Legal Center, a nonpartisan campaign finance watchdog group, filed a complaint with the Federal Elections Commission Tuesday accusing the Trump campaign of “laundering” $170 million through numerous companies, some with connections to former Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale," Forbes reported Monday.

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