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If Flynn was warned by Trump campaign, what did Pence know and when did he know it?

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In a Jan. 15 appearance on “Face the Nation,” Vice President Mike Pence denied Ret. Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn had discussed sanctions with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. It was then found that Flynn lied and as a result, he was let go from his new position as President Donald Trump’s national security advisor.

In March, it was revealed that the Trump campaign and Trump transition team warned Flynn that he might need to register
as a foreign agent due to his work for a Turkish businessman. However, The Washington Post reported Friday that Flynn was also warned in Nov. 2016 about his contacts with the Russian Ambassador.

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A full two months later, Pence went on “Face the Nation” to deny Flynn had any contact with the ambassador. It begs the question made famous by Washington Post Watergate investigative reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein: What did Mike Pence know and when did he know it?

Flynn was fired for lying to Pence but now it seems the entire campaign and transition team also lied to Pence. Conversely, Pence could have known and gone on “Face the Nation” and lied to protect the new White House.

MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow has spent several nights taking deep dives into the specifics surrounding the Russian communication between top Trump aides.

“Either they were criminally negligent — or they weren’t and they knew,” Maddow said in March.

When it comes to Pence, Maddow refused to believe the claim that Pence knew nothing.

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“It’s something to pick someone manifestly unfit for the job of National Security Advisor to be National Security Advisor, that’s one thing,” she said. “It is another thing when you bring somebody on board to a top national security position while they’re also on the payroll of a foreign government! And you either don’t notice or you don’t care.”

Maddow also recalled that Flynn attended the president’s daily intelligence briefings and had top secret national security clearance while getting paid by Turkey. She said that it was a “third level of scandal,” however when someone like Pence begins to make utterly implausible denials that he knew anything about it.

The failed efforts to intervene with Flynn also cast harsh new light on a national security adviser who lasted just 24 days on the job before revelations about his discussions with Kislyak — and misleading accounts of them — forced him to resign.

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2020 Election

Trump advisors futilely trying to get him to stop ranting about statues as his re-election prospects collapse: report

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According to a report focusing on Donald Trump's rally at Mt. Rushmore on the evening before the 4th of July, advisors to the president ate attempting to get him to start focusing on bread and butter issues that will get him re-elected instead of harping on statues being pulled down by protesters across the country.

As the Daily Beast report illustrates, their efforts appear to be futile based upon his Friday night speech.

With the president trying to fire up the crowd by insisting, “Angry mobs are trying to tear down statues of our founders. They think the American people are weak, and soft, and submissive,” the Beast reported that Trump, "decided to focus heavily Friday evening on protesters and Black Lives Matter activists who want various American monuments, including those honoring Confederate, white-supremacist, and slave-owning figures of history, torn down and destroyed for good. "

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Trump’s a traitor — and the Russian bounty scandal is the final straw

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The first story of the rest of Donald Trump's life was published last Friday in the New York Times, revealing that the Russian intelligence agency known as the GRU has been paying bonuses to Taliban fighters to kill Americans, and that this intelligence had been reported to Trump and had been known at least since March. The story was subsequently confirmed by the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal and the AP.

This article first appeared in Salon.

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2020 Election

GOP scrambling to pay for Jacksonville convention after Trump yanked it from North Carolina: report

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According to a report from the New York Times, Republican officials are having difficulties getting donors to pay for the Republican National Convention to be held in Jacksonville, Florida after Donald Trump yanked the gathering out of Charlotte, North Carolina in a fit of pique over COVID-19 health restrictions.

At issue, the report notes, is that millions of dollars were spent in North Carolina where a smaller event will now be held, and now the party is, in essence, forced to pay for a second convention.

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