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Congress needs to ‘follow the rubles’ on Trump: Oversight congressman

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On Monday’s edition of CNN’s “The Situation Room,” Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL) told host Wolf Blitzer that Congress needs to “follow the rubles” on Trump to find out why he expresses an affinity for Russia to the point of contradicting U.S. national security interests.

“As you know, The New York Times is reporting that President Trump is being largely kept in the dark by his own administration about cyberweapons being developed for use against Russia’s infrastructure as a warning to the Russians not to use their cyber warfare capabilities against America’s power grid and America’s infrastructure,” said Blitzer. “What national security concerns does this raise, the president not being fully informed about what is going on?”

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“Well, I think the concerns are at least twofold,” said Krishnamoorthi. “One, maybe our intelligence community believes the president is reckless with the information that is in his possession. For instance, you mentioned in the setup piece about the information about the sensitive operation inside of Syria that was shared with the Russians. That might have been recklessly disclosed.”

“On the other hand, the more nefarious issue is whether he intentionally shares this information with our adversaries or tries to countermand directives that might be used to undermine them,” added Krishnamoorthi. “This is very serious and it’s something that obviously we need to continue to explore.”

“That’s why I think we have to get at the heart of the financial documents and follow the rubles,” Krishnamoorthi concluded. “What is going on with regard to why does he cozy up to some of our adversaries?”

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‘Mulvaney lied’: CNN panel breaks down ‘incredibly damning’ White House confession

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On Thursday's edition of CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360," a panel discussed how White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney's press briefing was a disaster for President Donald Trump.

"Can I just point out why this matters?" said CNN chief legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin. "I mean, this is not just some gotcha thing because we all want to get something on the chief of staff. Here we have congressionally appropriated money. Congress says give this money to the Ukrainians. Taxpayer money. And what the White House has done and what they admitted today was, you only get the money if you help us win the election. Not because you help us [with] national security, international relations. The only thing we want from you is help to defeat Democrats. That is wrong. That’s why this matters."

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CNN

Sondland may have refused to be ‘the fall guy’ — but he’s still complicit: CNN security analyst

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On Thursday's edition of CNN's "The Situation Room," CNN security analyst and Lawfare editor Susan Hennessey pointed out that even though EU Ambassador Gordon Sondland turned against President Donald Trump in testimony, it should not be forgotten he was a willing participant in much of the Ukraine scheme.

"In his opening statement today, Sondland wrote he was 'disappointed by the president's direction that we involve Mr. Giuliani in the Ukraine policy,'" said anchor Wolf Blitzer. "In his actions, though, did Ambassador Sondland actually advance Giuliani's goals here?"

"Yes, and to the extent that he was disappointed in what the president asked of him, he took the ball and ran with it," said Hennessey. "He was trying to facilitate Giuliani's efforts, trying to introduce him to Ukrainian officials, and Sondland himself was carrying the same corrupt message, including they needed to be investigating the Bidens for the president's personal political interest. This is Sondland saying, I'm not going to be the fall guy. So I don't know how strong of a message it is that he was saying, I knew it was wrong, but that's the message that he's not willing."

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Trump’s lead counsel disavows Mulvaney’s admission the president engaged in Ukraine quid pro quo

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On Thursday, White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney stunned reporters by effectively admitting President Donald Trump demanded a quid pro quo from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky for foreign aid appropriated by Congress.

According to CNN's Jim Acosta, Mulvaney's speech was so out of left field that the president's chief attorney immediately disavowed it.

"Mulvaney's performance blindsided the president's outside legal team, as the president's lead attorney, Jay Sekulow, said on the record to CNN, the legal team was not involved in the acting chief of staff's press briefing," said White House correspondent Jim Acosta. "That is pretty telling when the chief counselor to the president is saying, we did not have anything to do with this."

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