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Harvard law professor concludes the only true national emergency is Donald Trump

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During a panel discussion on MSNBC, activist, lawyer and Harvard professor Lawrence Lessig explained why the true national emergency facing the United States is not the immigrants on the border but the president himself.

Lessig explained that President Donald Trump’s threat to declare a national emergency to score his border wall isn’t Constitutionally possible.

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“The question is, under these statutes whether had could create enough uncertainty to be able to dislodge the presumption, the very strong presumption, that building a wall on the border requires an act by Congress, which he’s just not going to get,” Lessig said.

The more significant problem, he said, was that Trump is using language that has “no connection to reality” when it comes to immigration.

“He says we have a national crisis, a national security crisis,” he continued. “A national emergency. I agree we have a national emergency, but the emergency is this president. The emergency is the fact we don’t have an executive who’s exercising his power in a responsible way. So, if he calls this national security, and he invokes the powers that have been granted under these statutes according to national security then there has to be a process to check him, and that process takes time.”

While Lessig doubts Trump has the Constitutional authority to make a move like that, it will put Congress, notably Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, in an awkward position.

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Watch the full conversation in the video below:


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White House pulls new FEMA nominee for barroom brawl — but not for his boss’ bribery

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MSNBC host Rachel Maddow began her Wednesday show detailing that Jeff Byard, President Donald Trump's nominee to lead FEMA, has withdrawn his name from nomination because of an "altercation" previously reported.

Already Trump's FEMA is having problems because of the lead FEMA officials being named in serious bribery scandals. Byard's boss, in particular, is under a 10-count indictment. To make matters worse, a former deputy is also under indictment, but for a completely different case involving a 2013 Navy scandal.

"Any mystery around that part of the guy’s past would have been cleared up this past year in August when he was indicted by a federal grand jury for his alleged involvement in that Navy bribery scheme," Maddow reported. "He was arrested thereafter."

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Right-wing activists call on Mitch McConnell to stop blocking election security bills

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On Wednesday, CNN reported that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is facing renewed pressure to take up election security legislation, from a pair of unlikely sources: Americans for Tax Reform President Grover Norquist, and FreedomWorks President Adam Brandon.

Norquist — who once famously said that he wanted to slash government to a size where he could "drown it in a bathtub" — called for hand-marked paper ballots, and urged Congress to pass something similar to the bipartisan Secure Elections Act, which would have given states incentives to switch to secure voting methods and promoted data-sharing to identify threats. The measure was first introduced in 2017 by Sens. Kamala Harris (D-CA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), James Lankford (D-OK), and Lindsey Graham (R-SC), but never came to a vote.

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DNI whistleblower complaint stems from promise Trump allegedly made in phone call to foreign leader: report

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On Wednesday, the Washington Post reported that the source of the whistleblower complaint currently being suppressed by the Director of National Intelligence is a phone conversation between President Donald Trump and a foreign leader.

According to the report, the whistleblower became aware that the president made a "promise" to this unspecified foreign leader, and was so disturbed by the nature of that promise that he or she filed a complaint through channels set up to help whistleblower claims involving classified information.

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