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GOP operative nails Trump for border wall flop: ‘They had two years — they failed by their own standards’

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Republican operative Liz Mair on Tuesday shredded President Donald Trump for his desperate last-ditch attempt to get his proposed border wall funded by shutting down the federal government.

Reacting to Vice President Mike Pence’s interview with NBC’s “Today,” in which he claimed there was a massive crisis along the southern U.S. border, Mair pointed out that the president has vast powers to enforce American immigration laws, meaning that any “crisis” regarding undocumented immigration rests squarely on his shoulders.

“Bottom line is, this administration has had two years to address what they perceive as a massive problem with unlawful immigration,” Mair wrote. “Almost all of this is within the purview of the executive. Congress plays a small role. They’ve failed by their own standards.”

Mair said that, among other things, the administration could have been working to try to stabilize the political situations in Central American countries where violence is forcing migrants to flee to the United States, while also increasing the number of work visas issued to give employers less incentive to hire undocumented labor.

“If you’re someone who genuinely believes unlawful immigration and/or immigrants are a problem, you should be asking why support the Trump administration at all,” Mair concluded. “And ‘they’re trying’ shouldn’t be the answer, because THEY ARE NOT.”

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Hope Hicks told Congress that Trump has cut her out of his life — he virtually never calls her anymore

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Former White House Communications Director Hope Hicks was broadly considered to be one of President Donald Trump's favorite staffers.

But when she left the administration in 2018, the president virtually cut off ties to her, and has only spoken with her five times since then, according to the transcript of the closed-door hearing in the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday:

In her interview, Hope Hicks says she has only spoken to Trump between five and ten times since she left the White House in February 2018. (He used to call that much in a day.) They last spoke in April, when they had dinner. Our story from yesterday:https://t.co/3gzVY21c3z pic.twitter.com/VMZqhnbgib

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Elections regulator warns foreign intrusion into US campaigns is already happening

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In a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee, the Federal Elections Commission is warning that there is already foreign intrusion in the U.S. campaigns.

FEC chair Ellen L. Weintraub was forced to issue a statement after President Donald Trump said that he wasn't sure what he would do if a foreign government approached him with "dirt" on his political opponent. He said that he "might" tell the FBI but would likely hear what they had to say. He said that it wasn't illegal, but Weintraub issued a statement reiterating that it is illegal.

"I am particularly concerned about the risk of illicit funds and foreign support influencing our political system. Foreign dark money represents a significant vulnerability for American democracy. We do not know the extent to which our political campaigns receive foreign dark money, but we do know that the political money can be weaponized by well-funded hostile powers," the letter warned.

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Trump’s anti-abortion rule attacking Planned Parenthood can go into effect in 49 states: appeals court

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According to the Associated Press, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled on Thursday that President Donald Trump's domestic "gag rule" can take effect while litigation proceeds, potentially making it far harder for low-income women to access abortion care.

District judges in California, Oregon, and Washington previously blocked the rule from taking effect. But a three-judge panel in San Francisco today said that the rule was "reasonable" as an interpretation of federal law, and lifted the injunction preventing it from being enforced. The rule can now take effect in every state except Maryland, where another federal judge's order has still enjoined the policy.

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