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Kavanaugh flounders as Kamala Harris grills him over whether he’s talked to Trump’s personal attorney

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Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) asked Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh pointed questions about the Russia investigation Wednesday during the second day of his Senate confirmation hearing.

This article was originally published at Salon

Harris wanted to know specifically if the judge had ever spoken to anyone about special counsel Robert Mueller’s ongoing investigation from Kasowitz, Benson & Torres, the law firm where Marc Kasowitz, President Donald Trump’s personal attorney, is a partner.

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Kavanaugh seemed perplexed by the question – and the exchange got tense from there. “Have you had any conversation about Robert Mueller or his investigation with anyone at that firm? Yes or no?” Harris questioned Kavanaugh.

“Is there a person you’re talking about?” Kavanaugh replied, refusing to answer the question.

“I’m asking you a very direct question, yes or no?” Harris retorted.

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Kavanaugh insisted that he doesn’t know “everyone who works at that law firm,” Harris replied: “I don’t think you need to. I think you need to know who you talked with.”

Kavanaugh took long pauses in between answers and offered responses such as “I’m not remembering, but I’m happy to be refreshed or if you want to tell me who you’re thinking of.” At every prompt, he stopped short of saying “yes” or “no” – or even “I don’t think so.”

Harris found that hard to believe. She described Kavanaugh’s memory as “impeccable” and reminded him that he had been speaking at length to the committee for hours Wednesday about issues that date much further back in time than Mueller’s investigation into the 2016 presidential election.

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READ MORE: Another American happy warrior laid to rest: John McCain’s legacy of gung-ho militarism

But Kavanaugh did not bite. He continued to speak around the question, asking again for Harris to give him a name.

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“It’s a really specific question,” Harris said. “I think you’re thinking of someone, and you don’t want to tell us.”

This back and forth went on for several minutes, and the closest Kavanaugh came to answer Harris’ yes or no question was the following: “I’m not remembering anything like that, but I want to know a roster of people [who work at the firm], and I want to know more.”

It remains unclear if Harris has evidence that Kavanaugh spoke to someone from the firm about the investigation, as she eventually abandoned the question. (A Democratic aide told CNN that “we have reason to believe that a conversation happened and are continuing to pursue it.”)

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But Harris may have engaged in this line of questioning, because some Democrats are worried about Kavanaugh’s stance on presidential authority and whether or not he believes a sitting president may be indicted, which could be pertinent if special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into alleged collusion between Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and Russia were to find any information incriminating the commander-in-chief himself.

“The Justice Department has said on two separate occasions — in 1973 and in 2000— that the president cannot be charged with a crime while in office. The Supreme Court would have to rule on that question to settle the matter for good,” Business Insider reported. “In previous writings, Kavanaugh has advocated for more latitude within the executive branch. An analysis from The Washington Post notes that this could mean Kavanaugh believes current law is too restrictive on the office of the president.”


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2020 Election

Here are 3 winners and 3 losers from the 2020 Democratic presidential primary debate

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Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg joined the other leading Democratic presidential primary candidates Wednesday night in the fieriest evening of the race so far.

His presence on the stage drew fire from the other candidates, but it also seemed to change the overall tone of the debate, with more attacks, counter-attacks, and passion than was generally seen earlier in the campaign.

Here’s a (necessarily subjective!) list of the winners and losers from the fray:

Winners

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) — Warren hit her stride right as the debate started by attacking Bloomberg for his record on the mistreatment of women, racist policies, and his tax returns. She repeatedly came back to skewer the former mayor, making herself the biggest and most notable presence in the debate. But importantly, she also continuously brought the discussion back to the issues she cares about — like expanding health care, environmental justice,  and consumer protection — while getting in digs at the other candidates on the stage.

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After bombing in #DemDebate internet changes Mike Bloomberg’s ‘death’ date on Wikipedia

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Someone online changed former Mayor Michael Bloomberg's information on Wikipedia during the Wednesday debate to say that he died on Feb. 19.

After being ripped to shreds during the MSNBC Democratic debate, it became clear that Bloomberg wasn't quite as prepared as the other Democratic candidates.

The Wikipedia article was also changed to indicate that his cause of death was Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA).

https://twitter.com/joshrobin/status/1230333066280886273

Bloomberg had several unfortunate moments, namely his refusal to release female accusers from nondisclosure agreements, he came out in favor of fracking, he blamed India for China's involvement in climate change, and many many more things.

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Internet slams ‘cringe-worthy elitist’ Mike Bloomberg for saying he’s too rich to use TurboTax

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At the Democratic presidential debate in Nevada, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg stumbled after being asked when he will release his tax returns, when he suggested that he "can't go to TurboTax" because he's too wealthy.

Moderator: "You've said you'll release your tax returns, but why do Democrats have to wait?"

Bloomberg: "We do business around the world. The document will be thousands of pages. I can't go to TurboTax."

😂😂😂#DemDebate

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