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Tillerson threatened to quit after calling Trump a ‘moron’ in Pentagon meeting on ISIS: report

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Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had to be talked out of quitting this summer as he clashed with President Donald Trump — whom he dismissed as a “moron.”

Tillerson was infuriated after the president delivered a raunchy and highly politicized speech in late July to the Boy Scouts of America, an organization the secretary of state once led, reported NBC News.

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The secretary of state had openly criticized Trump as a “moron” just days before, after a July 20 meeting at the Pentagon to discuss the Islamic State with the president’s national security team and Cabinet officials, according to three officials with knowledge of the incident.

“We’re doing very well against ISIS,” the president said before entering that meeting. “ISIS is falling fast, very fast.”

Afterward, Trump described the meeting as “absolutely great.”

Tillerson was in Texas for his son’s wedding when Trump addressed the Boy Scouts, and he threatened not to return to Washington.

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Vice President Mike Pence gave him a “pep talk” afterward, and other top administration officials begged Tillerson to stay on the job until at least the end of the year, the sources said.

“They did beg him to stay,” said one senior administration official. “They just wanted stability.”

The sources identified those officials as retired Gen. John Kelly, who became chief of staff not long afterward, and Defense Secretary James Mattis.

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Pence has since asked Tillerson to be more respectful of Trump in meetings and in public, although those tensions again spilled out into the open this week when Trump tweeted out criticism of the secretary’s handling of North Korea diplomacy.

State Department spokesman R.C. Hammond denied that Tillerson considered quitting or called Trump a moron, and he denied knowledge of what the secretary and Pence discussed.


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Is a strange Twitter glitch censoring the left?

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The Working Families Party, a New York-based progressive political party, has a reputation befitting its name as a left-populist political organization. So when the organization endorsed the center-left Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren — who was once a hardcore Republican and has emphasized her capitalist credentials — over the explicitly democratic socialist candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, Sanders (I-Vt.) supporters were understandably disappointed. After all, the party overwhelmingly endorsed Sanders in the previous presidential election. What had changed?

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NYC mayor Bill de Blasio ending his Democratic presidential campaign

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New York City mayor Bill de Blasio has ended his Democratic presidential campaign.

De Blasio made the announcement Friday on MSNBC's "Morning Joe," where he explained his decision.

"I feel like I've contributed all I can to this primary election," he said, "and it's clearly not my time."

The mayor said he was optimistic about the Democratic Party's chances in the 2020 election, no matter who was nominated to face President Donald Trump.

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CNN lays out damning timeline of Trump and Giuliani’s calls to Ukraine seeking dirt on Biden

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Following Rudy Giuliani's extraordinary appearance on CNN on Thursday night, where he may have admitted the commission of a crime, the hosts of CNN's "New Day" compiled a timeline linking the approximate date of Trump's phone call that was flagged by a whistleblower to subsequent events involving Ukraine.

According to the timeline, presented by hosts John Berman and Alisyn Camerota, Trump spoke with the president of Ukraine on July 25, with Giuliani meeting with him later that month.

What followed was the August 12 whistleblower complaint and then Trump blocking aide to Ukraine by the end of the month.

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