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Ex-acting Attorney General Sally Yates rips Trump’s ‘relentless attack on democratic institutions and norms’

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Former acting Attorney General Sally Yates on Tuesday ripped Donald Trump’s “relentless attack on democratic institutions and norms,” arguing his efforts to diminish the Department of Justice will impact the United States “in the years to come.”

“Elections have consequences,” Yates acknowledged at a TimesTalk conversation in Washington, D.C. “And I think you have to expect in a change in administrations, a change in party, that there are going to be policy decisions that are made that you don’t think are a good idea.”

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“What worries me more than any of that is the relentless attack on democratic institutions and norms, and the impact that that can have on our country not just during the term of a Trump presidency, but in the years to come as well,” Yates added.

The former acting attorney general, who was fired by Trump for refusing to defend his travel ban—and later emerged as a key figure in special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation—warned the president’s tendency to bully the Justice Department will lead to “the public’s loss of confidence” in the DOJ.

“Through Democratic and Republican administrations alike, at least since Watergate, there has been a time-honored norm that the White House stays completely away from criminal investigations or prosecutions,” Yates said.

“The damage is done by the public’s loss of confidence that the Department of Justice is acting independently and is making those decisions based on facts and law and nothing else,” she added.

Though she declined to speak about specifics regarding the Russia investigation during her time at the DOJ, Yates insisted she as “absolutely no reason to believe that anything inappropriate was done in connection with the FISA warrants during the time that I was there.”

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Yates said warrants go “through many, many layers of review and in excruciating detail, and folks are very, very careful and serious about that process.”


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Trump declares impeachment ‘dead’ — and demands apology — in late night Twitter outburst

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President Donald Trump lashed out on his favorite social media platform late Thursday evening.

Eight minutes before midnight eastern time, Trump unloaded.

Trump wrote, "Democrats must apologize to USA: Ukrainian Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko said that 'United States Ambassador Gordon Sondland did NOT link financial military assistance to a request for Ukraine to open up an investigation into former V.P. Joe Biden & his son, Hunter Biden. Ambassador Sondland did not tell us, and certainly did not tell me, about a connection between the assistance and the investigation.'”

Trump did not say why he was taking the word of a foreign official over multiple sworn testimonies from members of his own administration.

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Pelosi is ‘marrying up the facts and the law’: Ex-prosecutor says ‘bribery’ is a critical indictment of Trump

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Speaker Nancy Pelosi was masterful in using the word "bribery" to describe President Donald Trump's actions with Ukraine that are at the heart of the impeachment inquiry, according to a former federal prosecutor.

MSNBC anchor Brian Williams interviewed former Assistant U.S. Attorney Berit Berger on Thursday evening's "The Last Word."

Please expand for us on why it is significant and why is it important to label this bribery," Williams said.

"So I think Nancy Pelosi was very specific in calling this bribery for two reasons," Berger replied.

"The first is that -- unlike quid pro quo -- ribery is something that most people understand, especially people who have children," she said, with a chuckle. "We all sort of have a general understanding of that."

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Giuliani henchmen showered Republican with cash — and Trump almost made him ambassador to Ukraine: report

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Yet another bombshell report has shed new light on President Donald Trump's suspicious Ukraine policies.

"At the same time that Rudy Giuliani and his now-indicted pals were pushing for President Donald Trump to remove Amb. Marie Yovanovitch from her post in Ukraine, Trump administration officials were eyeing potential contenders to take over her job. One of the people in the mix, according to three sources familiar with the discussions, was Rep. Pete Sessions, a former Congressman who called for Yovanovitch’s firing," The Daily Beast reported Thursday night. "He is also a longtime ally of the former New York Mayor, and is believed to have taken millions of dollars from Giuliani’s indicted cronies."

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