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CNN’s Fareed Zakaria explains why Trump’s border wall standoff is really about avoiding impeachment

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The federal government shutdown caused by President Donald Trump’s fight over his proposed border wall may not just be a distraction from his legal troubles, but a way to shore up his base ahead of a possible impeachment trial, CNN analyst Fareed Zakaria said Thursday.

Appearing with CNN host Don Lemon, Zakaria said that Trump’s support of the wall was what separated him from the rest of the GOP pack at the beginning of his political career.

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“What separated him from all those 16 Republican candidates was immigration, was the wall, was that he was going to be tougher than anyone else,” said Zakaria. “That is the heart of his campaign. That is why the base loves him.”

Trump is now pursuing a “base-only strategy” Zakaria said.

“Part of me thinks that this is the anti-impeachment strategy,” he said. “What he’s doing is locking in a base so strongly that no Republican would dare cross it because they would worry about being primaried.”

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2020 Election

Pete Buttigieg answers those who question his family values: ‘I’ve never had to pay off a porn star’

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Mayor Pete Buttigieg appeared on CNN Tuesday for a town hall in Nevada where he was asked about his sexual orientation. Thus far, Buttigieg is the first openly gay presidential candidate being taken seriously by both the media and the electorate.

He was asked by a voter how he would deal with the flood of personal attacks on his sexual orientation and his family.

He explained that it would happen and he was ready for it. Speaking about his coming-out story, Buttigieg said that he wasn't sure what impact it would have on his career but that he didn't want to not have a personal life anymore after he got out of the military.

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CNN

Bernie Sanders calls for an end to ‘Bernie Bro’ behavior at town hall: ‘I don’t tolerate ugly attacks against anybody’

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At Tuesday's CNN town hall, Las Vegas caretaker Maria Carrillo asked Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) about the culture of online harassment surrounding his supporters. Sanders firmly condemned bullying behavior at the hands of the "Bernie Bros" — and called on other candidates to join him in watching the tone of their supporters as well.

"Hello, Senator Sanders," said Carrillo. "So I'm a big supporter. For those who still need to hear it, will you condemn the Bernie Bro behavior?"

"I will condemn absolutely anybody, including my campaign or any other campaign, that makes vicious personal attacks against people," said Sanders. "What our people are involved in — we are a campaign which believes in compassion, which believes in justice. So I don't tolerate ugly attacks against anybody. But let me just say this. Talk to the people in my campaign, often the African-American women in this campaign, talk to my wife about the kind of ugly attacks that have come in to us. So right now, which is a very serious national problem, we have an internet which is essentially the Wild West. Somebody could say, 'hey, I'm Anderson Cooper' and zippo, say some ugly things, and right now that cannot be stopped."

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Trump meddled in a lot more than just the Stone case — he’s also using his DOJ to play favorites among corporations

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Trump’s effort to influence the outcome of the prosecution of his buddy Roger Stone represents another threat to the rule of law in the United States. Yet it is not just the rule of criminal law that is endangered. The Trump Administration has also been meddling with civil law, particularly in the area of antitrust.

This has been going on for a while. Early in his administration, the Trump Justice Department sought to block AT&T’s acquisition of Time Warner, mainly, it appears, because the president wanted to get back at Time Warner subsidiary CNN for its negative coverage of him. Even after a federal court ruled in favor of AT&T and allowed it to close the deal, Justice continued its legal crusade. A year ago, some critics were arguing that Trump’s actions with regard to AT&T amounted to an impeachable offense.

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