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Trump ‘is a clear and present danger’ to national security’: Ex-DOJ counterintelligence head

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MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow brought the former chief of the Justice Department’s Counterintelligence and Export Control Section to discuss the latest revelations in scandals involving Russia swirling around President Donald Trump.

David Laufman served as a federal prosecutor and ran the D.O.J.’s counterintelligence division at the time the FBI, according to a New York Times report, began a counterintelligence investigation into President Trump.

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Maddow noted a tweet by Laufman, which she said, “sent a shiver down my spine.”

“It was a tipping point, among the data points we’re familiar with through the public actions of the special counsel, other investigative reporting,” he explained. “I spent 25 years in public service, mostly in the national security space and I feel I have a moral obligation to speak up when I see action taken by the president or the members of the administration that in my judgment undermine the national security of the United States.”

“The notion that the president of the united states would be trying to conceal details of conversations with a leader of our principle foreign adversary was positively chilling,” he continued.

“When you describe the president as acting in a way that the counter to the national security interest of the United States, those of us who don’t think of this in legalistic terms, those of us who are civilians trying to make sense of this moment in history and thinking about our own responsibility which you’re calling us to think about here, do you mean in blunt terms that the continuing existence of this presidency is a threat to the national security of the United States?” Maddow asked. “Do you think the president is that kind of a threat?”

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“I think there’s a culmination of things we can point to in the public record now, the unbelievable acquiescence to Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, that was positively shocking to those of us who worked in the national security, all of the charging documents, people associated with the president, all of those point to a reasonable inference — and it’s a painful anguishing thing to acknowledge — that the president of the United States is a clear and present danger to the national security of the United States,” he concluded.

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2020 Election

Will Trump peacefully vacate the Oval Office if he loses the presidential election in 2020? A lesson from 1800

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As primary season heats up in the United States, the Democrats are anxiously debating the best path to unseat Donald Trump in 2020. But the question of how to beat Trump is perhaps less urgent than the issue of whether he will accept defeat.

Trump has already questioned his loss of the 2016 popular vote with baseless accusations of voter fraud. He has also repeatedly toyed with the idea of extending his presidency beyond the eight-year limit enshrined in the U.S. Constitution, even trumpeting Jerry Falwell Jr.’s assertion that his first term be extended by two years to compensate for the Russia investigation. Perhaps most ominously, Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen warned while testifying before the House Oversight Committee in February 2019:

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Something is killing galaxies — and science is on the case

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In the most extreme regions of the universe, galaxies are being killed. Their star formation is being shut down and astronomers want to know why.

The first ever Canadian-led large project on one of the world’s leading telescopes is hoping to do just that. The new program, called the Virgo Environment Traced in Carbon Monoxide survey (VERTICO), is investigating, in brilliant detail, how galaxies are killed by their environment.

As VERTICO’s principal investigator, I lead a team of 30 experts that are using the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) to map the molecular hydrogen gas, the fuel from which new stars are made, at high resolution across 51 galaxies in our nearest galaxy cluster, called the Virgo Cluster.

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Inside the Trump administration’s chaotic dismantling of the Federal Land Agency

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Early this month, workers at the Washington headquarters of the Bureau of Land Management gathered to discuss a Trump administration plan that would force some 200 people to uproot their lives or find other jobs.

With a vague plan that keeps changing as officials describe it — and no guarantees that Congress would fully fund their relocations — the employees were being detailed to distant locations in the West like Grand Junction, Colorado, and Reno, Nevada. Many career staff saw the move as part of a wider Trump administration effort to drive federal employees out of their jobs. Acting White House chief of staff Mike Mulvaney has described that approach as a “wonderful way to streamline government.”

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