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Republicans will double-down on Trump, invoke impeachment talk in 2018 campaigns: report

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Republicans running for U.S. Congress have settled on a strategy that may prove brilliant or disastrous, raising the specter of impeachment to scare moderate voters into supporting them reports The New York Times.

The idea of what ring-wingers call a “coup”—such as impeaching Trump for his misdeeds after revelations that show his campaign colluded with Russia—was the stuff on conspiracy theorists on the far right a year ago, the story points out, but today appears to be part of the mainline party’s talking points.

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“The appeals have become a surefire way for candidates to raise small contributions from grass-roots conservatives who are devoted to Mr. Trump,” the story says. “But party strategists also believe that floating the possibility of impeachment can also act as a sort of scared-straight motivational tool for turnout.”

One of the candidates employing the strategy is Trump’s old foil Senator Ted Cruz of Texas. He is facing a well-liked and well-funded Democrat. In his election kick-off video, Cruz screened a fake news video featuring an actor reading headlines that would scare his supporters.

“Senate Majority Leader Schumer announced the impeachment trial of President Trump,” one of the actors says.

The danger, of course, is that the strategy risks tying Republicans even more closely to the most unpopular president of all-time.

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Giuliani’s public invitation to Ukraine to interfere in US elections opened the door for other countries to run to Trump

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President Donald Trump's attorney Rudy Giuliani turned heads with his bizarre, unhinged rant on national television that effectively urged Ukraine to continue trying to gather dirt on former Vice President Joe Biden — and for news outlets to take whatever they find seriously.

As Casey Michel wrote in The Daily Beast, even if this effort ultimately fails to turn up useful opposition research against Biden, this is a profoundly dangerous development for American democracy.

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Trump whistleblower needs to go directly to FBI because Bill Barr can’t be trusted: Ex-FBI director

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Appearing on MSNBC with host Alex Witt, former FBI Assistant Director for Counterintelligence Frank Figliuzzi blew up Donald Trump's claim that he is the victim of a "Ukraine Witchhunt."

He then added that the whistleblower who went to the inspector general with a serious charge against the president should take what he has and go to the FBI within a week if nothing happens.

"We've got to get to the bottom of this, and we can't rely on leaks and certain reporters getting certain tidbits of information," the ex-FBI man explained. "This needs to be explored and it's likely this could end up in a criminal investigation."

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Trump took out DNI head Dan Coats to install a new acting director in charge of whistleblowers: CIA veteran

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Appearing on MSNBC's "AM Joy," a longtime veteran CIA official said the whistleblower, who ran to the inspector general with a complaint about Donald Trump asking Ukraine's president for dirt on Joe Biden, should expect the president and his aides to come after them.

Speaking with host Joy Reid, Jonna Mendez said she saw the first warnings signs that something was up in the U.S. intelligence community when the president forced DNI head Dan Coats and his top deputy out.

"Through the lens of someone who spent 27 years at the CIA, the thing that caught my eye instantly was Dan Coats' resignation follow by Sue Gordon," Mendez explained. "The fact that Dan Coats went into a meeting and said 'Sue, you've got to resign' and that she did, truncating a career that clearly hadn't reached its zenith."

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