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Foreign policy expert explains how Russia is attacking US democracy — with the help of Trump’s White House

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During his frequent appearances on MSNBC, former U.S. Navy intelligence officer and foreign policy expert Malcolm Nance has been as critical of Donald Trump’s presidency as he has been supportive of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation. Nance has made it clear that he takes Russian government interference in the 2016 presidential election quite seriously, and during an appearance on Washington Post Live on Wednesday, the Philadelphia native declared that “it’s time for a second Cold War.”

Nance (author of the 2018 book “The Plot to Destroy Democracy: How Putin and His Spies Are Undermining America and Dismantling the West”) explained why he believes that democracy in the U.S. “must be defended right now” against the Russian government. “We have been under attack,” Nance stressed, “and now, we have that attack occurring within our own institutions—coming from, I’m sorry to say it, our own White House.”

The Trump Administration, Nance continued, is “now attacking the 243-year tradition” of U.S. democracy and has been “attacking everything that has been built since the end of World War II—the entire Atlantic alliance.”

Obviously referring to Russian President Vladimir Putin, Nance said that the Trump White House is acting “at the behest of a dictator who is an ex-KGB colonel.” Putin, Nance added, “understands the power of harnessing information and turning that into a weapons system. Everything we’re seeing, even though it comes from the Russian Federation, is really a product of the Soviet-era KGB.”

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Nance went on to say that in the Trump era, the U.S. is “literally putting down our sword” where the Russian Federation is concerned and that 2020’s Democratic presidential nominees “are going to have to enunciate their position on the defense of the Constitution.”

Nance emphasized that future Russian interference in U.S. elections cannot be tolerated, asserting, “People say, ‘Oh, you want to have a nuclear war.’ No, I want a war where…. what happened in the 2016 election is punished and shown that the United States and its allies will never allow this to happen again.”

 

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Ukrainian-Russian developer with Trump Tower Moscow ties suing after getting bilked for $200,000 at inauguration

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It is illegal for foreigners to donate to presidential inaugurations, but a new lawsuit sheds light on how wealthy foreigners attempted to buy access to the Trump administration.

"A Ukrainian-Russian developer who wanted access to President Trump’s inauguration filed a lawsuit on Tuesday saying he was bilked out of the $200,000 he paid for what he thought would be V.I.P. tickets to the event," The New York Times reported Tuesday.

"The developer, Pavel Fuks, who once discussed a Moscow real estate project with Mr. Trump, said in the lawsuit, filed in the United States District Court for the Central District of California, that he had paid the money to a firm at the direction of Yuri Vanetik, a prominent Republican fund-raiser and sometime lobbyist," the newspaper explained. "But, the lawsuit said, Mr. Vanetik failed to come through with the promised tickets, and Mr. Fuks ended up watching the inauguration from a Washington hotel bar."

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Indicted Republican gets his passport back — so he can leave the country prior to his bribery trial

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Despite being indicted and waiting to stand trial, a North Carolina judge returned the passport of a top Republican and is allowing him to leave the country.

Former North Carolina GOP Chair Robin Hayes spent a decade in Congress and was once the Republican nominee for governor.

In April, Hayes was indicted on bribery and wire fraud charges.

Despite the seriousness of the charges, a federal judge will temporarily return Hayes' passport for him to travel abroad in July, WSCO-TV correspondent Joe Bruno reported on Tuesday.

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Republican Attorney General sued by four women for retaliating against their sexual harassment complaints: report

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On Tuesday, Indiana's GOP attorney general, Curtis Hill, was sued in federal court by four women, who accuse him of defaming them and engaging in retaliation after they reported episodes of his sexual harassment.

Democratic state Rep. Mara Reardon, communications director Gabrielle McLemore, and legislative assistants Niki DaSilva and Samantha Lozano, are pursuing both compensatory and punitive damages for sexual harassment, retaliation, sexual battery and defamation, and want the judge to order Hill to apologize and retract his claims that the women are liars.

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