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Trump’s complaint about Comey’s ‘leak’ could be obstruction of justice — here’s why

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President Donald Trump’s attorney intends to file a complaint with the Justice Department against former FBI director James Comey for his “leak” of a personal memo to a friend who then passed along the document to reporters.

That complaint, and the president’s Friday morning tweet griping about Comey’s action, could be considered obstruction of justice, according to a legal expert who spoke to the Washington Post.

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Stephen Kohn, a lawyer who specializes in whistleblower protection, dismissed the pending complaint by Trump attorney Marc Kasowitz as “frivolous grandstanding” because the Justice Department’s inspector general no longer had any authority over Comey as a private citizen.

But he said the complaint, which Kasowitz also plans to file with the Senate Judiciary Committee, is legally problematic for the president.

“Initiating an investigation because you don’t like somebody’s testimony could be considered obstruction,” Kohn told the newspaper, “and in the whistleblower context, it’s both evidence of retaliation and, under some laws, could be an adverse retaliatory act itself.”

Comey testified under oath that he wrote the memo documenting his private conversation with the president, before Trump fired him as FBI director, and then gave his notes to a friend and directed him to share them with the New York Times.

Kohn said Comey’s actions, as described to lawmakers, are not illegal because the president’s activity is not confidential or classified, and executive privilege is aimed at protecting the chief executive’s deliberative process in some instances — but not this one.

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“The reason why that is protected constitutionally is that the courts — including the U.S. Supreme Court — have ruled that the public has a constitutional right to hear this information,” Kohn said.

Kohn said Trump and his legal team almost certainly know Comey hasn’t broken the law, so their threats appear to be aimed at sabotaging his testimony and creating a “chilling effect” on others with damaging information about the Russia investigation.

“This is a chilling effect on people not to talk about conversations they had with the president that are not classified as a matter of law,” Kohn said. “That is illegal —
that is unconstitutional.”

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Mike Pompeo under increasing scrutiny as as Trump impeachment ramps up: report

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On Saturday, WVAS Radio's Scott Simon profiled Secretary of State Mike Pompeo — and how the impeachment investigation is shaping his political situation.

"As the impeachment inquiry against President Trump continues its march through Congress, questions are churning around his secretary of state, Mike Pompeo," wrote Simon. "For example, did he know, as witnesses testified before House investigators, that President Trump sought political favors from Ukraine in exchange for millions in U.S. assistance? Why did he take days to reveal he was on the now infamous July 25 call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy? And does he believe allies of the president who — despite the findings of the intelligence community — claim that Ukraine, not Russia, interfered in the 2016 election?"

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World leaders mocked Trump because they’re tired of his ‘center of attention’ act: MSNBC guest

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During an MSNBC segment on President Donald Trump's abrupt departure from NATO talks in London after video was released of world leaders making fun of him, an MSNBC guest said those same leaders have become tired of his act.

Speaking with host David Gura, the LA Times Eli Stokols said international diplomats have realized there is no dealing with the president who is in his own world and just wants attention..

"Your colleague had a great line: 'This is a president who views norms like a teenager views curfews,'" Gura began.

"Well, he likes going to these things and blowing them up and being the center of attention," Stokols replied.

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‘Unbelievable’: Ex-Trump official stunned president is still letting Giuliani run around unchecked in Ukraine

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In a Washington Post report on the continuing attempts by former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani to dig up dirt on political opponents -- at the same time that President Donald Trump is facing impeachment for pressuring Ukraine with the promise of aid for the same -- a former Trump administration official expressed shock that Giuliani hasn't been told to stop.

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