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‘A grotesque violation of the president’s oath’: Law experts blast Trump for sharing classified intel with Russians

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As the news cycle remains dominated by the fallout of a Washington Post report claiming that President Donald Trump revealed classified intel to Russian officials in the Oval Office last week, a team of legal experts have released a scary analysis of what the revelation could mean.

The end of a Lawfare Blog analysis of the bombshell report offers one terrifying prospect: that the president may have violated the constitution.

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“This may well be a violation of the President’s oath of office,” reads the fifth point in the post co-authored by six legal experts. “Questions of criminality aside, we turn to the far more significant issues: If the President gave this information away through carelessness or neglect, he has arguably breached his oath of office.”

The analysis calls a potential “loose lips” situation in which the president bragged about intel he’d received a “grotesque violation of the President’s oath” that could operate “as a standalone basis for impeachment”.

“In taking the oath President Trump swore to ‘faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States’ and to ‘preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States’ to the best of his ability,” it reads. “It’s very hard to argue that carelessly giving away highly sensitive material to an adversary foreign power constitutes a faithful execution of the office of President.”

According to the analysis, “violating the oath of office does not require violating a criminal statute” — and all three presidents who’ve been tried or considered for impeachment (Presidents Andrew Johnson, Richard Nixon, and Bill Clinton) have been investigated for violating their oath.

Along with claims that the president may indeed have breached his own oath of office, the analysis also raises the question of whether or not Trump, like Nixon before him, believes that “when the president does it, that means that it is not illegal.” The writers of the analysis state that in certain cases, this can be true because “the President gets to disclose what he wants”.

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You can read the entire report via Lawfare Blog.


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Republican Kevin McCarthy gets taken down by former top GOP colleague

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Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) was attacked by a former Republican colleague who alleged McCarthy and his fellow members of Congress have allowed the House GOP to become the official shill for the White House.

In a profile for the New York Times, former Oversight Committee Chairman Tom Davis (R-VA) shamed the GOP House for the way that a once-respectable institution has fallen.

“Congress no longer operates as an independent branch of government, but as an appendage of the executive branch,” said Davis. “He is made for that role.”

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Former senator reveals to Maddow how one brave Democrat can reveal key document in impeachment trial

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Near the end of Wednesday's impeachment trial, Chief Justice John Roberts announced that an agreement had been made to allow senators to read supplemental testimony from Vice President Mike Pence aide Jennifer Williams.

The document will remain classified, despite claims that there is no classified material in the document, only evidence that is damning to the president.

"In terms of this document potentially being improperly classified, which is something that has been raised in writing by Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) and raised on the floor of the Senate tonight by Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA)," MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow noted. "Obviously, it was the vice president's office that said it was classified, they are getting publicly criticized for that. If it has been improperly classified and it should be something that the public can see, who adjudicates that?"

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Florida Republican Matt Gaetz admits Trump’s legal defense was ‘like an 8th grade book report’ — only worse

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Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) admitted that President Donald Trump's team of lawyers weren't quite the legal eagles that he thinks they might be, said Politico reporter Andrew Desiderio.

Questioned about his take on the way the case is unfolding in the Senate, Gaetz said that the House presented it like it was going to be on "cable news." For many that may be an insult, but it appears to Gaetz that was a compliment.

Desiderio said that Gaetz then lamented that the White House presented their case more like “an 8th-grade book report.”

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