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Texas law professor shoots down Trump lawyer’s attack on Comey for ‘leaking’

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Responding to the day’s top story about fired FBI Director James Comey’s testimony regarding his conversations with President Donald Trump, CNN analyst and Texas law professor Steve Vladeck posted a series of tweets eviscerating the president’s argument that Comey’s decision to leak his memos to the press was illegal.

“Did Comey’s orchestration of the memo leak break the law? In a word, no,” Vladeck wrote at the beginning of his thread. “Don’t get caught up on whether it was a ‘leak’ or not; no statute prohibits ‘leaks,’ as such.”

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He went on to write that “unless memo includes ‘information relating to the national defense’ (& no indication it did), then leak doesn’t violate Espionage Act.”

Although Comey didn’t break the law by leaking his memos on Trump, he may have, according to Vladeck, violated a “federal conversion-of-property statute” that leaves open the question about whether “‘pure ‘information’ constitutes property.” Although it could be applied legally, Vladeck said conviction under the conversion-of-property statue is unlikely because the memos had no monetary value.

Though “there may be ethical issues” with Comey’s release of the memos, Vladeck said “any legal argument is a real stretch, here.”

Read Vladeck’s entire tweet thread below.

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Trump official who doesn’t want poor people to have publicly-funded healthcare wants public to pay for stolen Ivanka jewelry

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President Donald Trump's official in charge of Medicare and Medicaid, Seema Verma, came under fire after Politico reported Saturday that she submitted a $47,000 claim for reimbursement on the taxpayers' dime for stolen, uninsured items items.

https://twitter.com/RepJayapal/status/1203673974867210240

The bulk of the claim—for which the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) ultimately reimbursed her $2,852.40—was for roughly $43,000 worth of jewelry. Among the roughly two dozen pieces was an Ivanka Trump brand pendant whose estimated value was $5,900, according to documents obtained by Politico. A $325 claim for moisturizer was also among the items included.

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Why Colbert got serious — and why Donald Trump isn’t funny

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In her new book, “Irony and Outrage: The Polarized Landscape of Rage, Fear, and Laughter in the United States,” Dannagal Goldthwaite Young advances the argument that the ironic satire of "The Daily Show" and the outrage programming of Fox News — which debuted within months of each other — play remarkably similar roles for their respective audiences, speaking to their distinctively liberal and conservative psychological orientations to motivate not just voter loyalty, but political engagement.

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Head of Jewish Democratic Council of America denounces Trump speech as anti-Semitic

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The executive director of the Jewish Democratic Council of America told Salon on Sunday that President Donald Trump's recent comments about Jewish voters continue "what has been a very negative stereotype of Jews and money and power."

"He has said in the past that he wants Jews to be the ones counting his money," Halie Soifer told Salon. "He has repeatedly made references to what has been a very negative stereotype of Jews and money and power." After saying that "I think that he must believe it, and that is why he continues to repeat it," Soifer noted that Trump was repeating claims that he has made when "typically speaking extemporaneously, and clearly he's speaking from his heart. It's clear that there's quite a bit of hatred in it." Soifer also criticized Trump for having "views of Jews as driven largely by money, which is why he said at this events that Jews have no choice but to support him, referring to tax cuts."

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