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Trump administration bans TSA officials from talking about problems caused by shutdown

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The Trump administration has issued orders to local Transportation Security Administration officials telling them how to handle questions about the shutdown, CNN reported Friday.

TSA workers are not being paid during the shutdown.

Among the talking points handed down to airport workers nationwide is an instruction to “not make details public about how many officers are missing work due to the partial government shutdown.”

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That’s notable because news of sick-outs forcing the closure of a terminal at Miami’s airport were used to slam President Donald Trump’s handling of the budget standoff.

Jim Gregory, TSA’s deputy assistant administrator for public affairs, sent out the email instructing officials how to talk

“You can engage with media and address topics that touch your workforce such as how they are doing overall but there are some areas you can’t address,” Gregory wrote. “Do not offer specific call out data at your airport. You can say you have experienced higher numbers of call-outs but in partnership with the airport and airlines you are able to manage people and resources to ensure effective security is always maintained.”

Gregory said that call-out stats are “sensitive” and that the TSA should not be releasing them publicly because “adversaries could use the information to exploit perceived vulnerabilities.”

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“Additionally,” Gregory told CNN. “Callout numbers don’t tell the whole story since it’s more about whether FSDs are able to properly staff checkpoints. Regardless, we want to ensure people know security will not be compromised at TSA and we will maintain security standards.”

Read the full report here.


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Trump encourages China to take advantage of Jay Powell and Fed: They ‘don’t have a clue’

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President Donald Trump launched a new attack against his own Federal Reserve chairman in a pair of Monday morning tweets.

The president has been publicly pressuring Fed chairman Jerome Powell to lower interest rates in hopes of staving off a recession, but the Trump appointee has so far resisted his calls.

"Producer prices in China shrank most in 3 years due to China’s big devaluation of their currency, coupled with monetary stimulus," Trump tweeted. "Federal Reserve not watching? Will Fed ever get into the game? Dollar strongest EVER! Really bad for exports. No Inflation...Highest Interest Rates..."

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Internet pummels Trump for frantic demand to investigate Obama instead: ‘This is not the tweet of an innocent man’

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President Donald Trump jealously raged against Barack Obama's post-presidency business deals, which includes a production agreement with Netflix -- and other social media users ridiculed his apparent envy.

Trump questioned that deal and others in a pair of tweets complaining about an impeachment inquiry launched against him last week by the House Judiciary Committee, and he suggested Congress look at Obama's business since he left the White House.

....work that way. I have a better idea. Look at the Obama Book Deal, or the ridiculous Netflix deal. Then look at all the deals made by the Dems in Congress, the “Congressional Slush Fund,” and lastly the IG Reports. Take a look at them. Those investigations would be over FAST!

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Is the Trump administration squelching a whistleblower — and a major scandal?

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America's system of government has always worked on the honor system. With so few Senate-confirmed Cabinet and federal agency heads, and so many “acting” officials working in the Trump administration, people who are constantly forced to audition for permanent positions are now under tremendous pressure to protect a president hellbent on breaking every norm of good governance. Now a new possible political scandal could be brewing in the Trump administration that tests the loyalty of these “acting” officials — pitting their allegiance to the nation against their desire to impress their boss.

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