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‘This will be a car wreck’: Ex-CIA officer says Barr will try to use Steele’s testimony to discredit Russia investigation

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On Tuesday’s edition of CNN’s “The Situation Room,” former CIA officer Phil Mudd told Wolf Blitzer that ex-MI6 agent Christopher Steele’s decision to brief the Justice Department about his infamous dossier on President Donald Trump’s connections to Russia is going to end badly for him, and possibly for the rule of law.

“This will be a car wreck,” said Mudd. “Look, this isn’t about the Mueller investigation per se. It’s about the origins of the investigation and how the Department of Justice — and Attorney General Barr has talked about this repeatedly, his suspicions about how the Department of Justice originated the investigation. Obviously one of the documents was Christopher Steele, former intelligence operative, the information he uncovered about Donald Trump from Russian operatives.”

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Steele’s dossier alleged a number of things that turned out to be true, like that Russia laundered intelligence they gathered on the Democratic Party through WikiLeaks and that former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort was involved in personally lucrative negotiations with Ukrainian oligarchs. Other parts of it are salacious and unverified, like the claim that Russian prostitutes performed urine-related sex acts for Trump and the Russian government was blackmailing him with video footage of the incident.

The dossier was not the sole source of information that prompted the FBI to open an investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia. However, the president’s allies have long tried to use the dossier’s spottier claims as evidence that the FBI’s investigation, and the subsequent appointment of special counsel Robert Mueller, was illegitimate.

“Let me give you how this game ends,” said Mudd. “Christopher Steele shows up in front of the Department of Justice, and I’m guessing doesn’t have terrific answers for the quality of the information in that Steele dossier. I’m telling you, Wolf, this is not going to go well. I can’t believe he has perfect answers about the origins of the Steele dossier. I’m not even sure why he’s showing up. If I were him, I’d go to Disney World. I would not go to the Department of Justice, because it will not end up well.”

“The question here is not just what Steele found,” warned Mudd. “If it’s determined that Steele had a bit of questionable information, that’s fine. If it’s found that that questionable information played into, for example, the FISA warrant to look at Carter Page’s e-mails, that is a hot mess, and I think that’s where we’re headed from here.”

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CNN

‘Gaslighting on a massive scale’: Doctor warns Trump is lying us into a COVID disaster

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On CNN Friday, Dr. Celine Grounder tore into President Donald Trump's ongoing falsehoods about the coronavirus pandemic.

"No matter how many times public health officials, especially like Anthony Fauci, speak the truth, what does it do, Doctor, when the president continues to lie to the public in face of a public health crisis?" asked anchor Kate Bolduan.

"This is gaslighting on an enormous scale, and means until people eventually get sick or their family members get sick, the communities hit hard, they won't believe it, and then it will be too late," said Grounder. "The problem is there's a lag period from the time that somebody's infected and starts to develop symptoms a couple days later. We don't see people get severely sick and need to be hospitalized and in ICUs until a week into disease, and talking about probably one to two weeks of lag time from the time somebody's exposed at least before you start to see hospitalizations and then another couple weeks before you start to see deaths."

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2020 Election

‘We’ve got to get a new guy’: Florida Trump voters lash out at the president as they flee the GOP

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In interviews with CNN's Jeff Zeleny, longtime Florida Republicans who voted for Donald Trump in 2016 admitted they have no intention of helping him stay in office when they vote in November.

With polls showing the president trailing in the all-important Sunshine State, where seniors preferred Trump over former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton by 21 points last election, the president now finds himself bleeding support from a demographic he desperately needs if he wants to stay in the Oval Office after the first of the year.

According to retired banker John Dudley, 77, he voted for Trump last election and the president promptly "blew it."

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CNN

Trump wants ‘white grievance’ fight — while ignoring coronavirus: Pulitzer Prize-winner Maggie Haberman

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On CNN Thursday, New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman deconstructed President Donald Trump's unwillingness to address the national crises in America.

"According to three people familiar with his comments, Trump has brushed off efforts to address historic racial inequality, as something 'his people' won't care about," said anchor Jim Sciutto. "Maggie, you have covered this president and the White House. Clearly, he wants to leave the outbreak behind him, even as the numbers rise. Is there anyone in that building who is telling him honestly, directly, that he can't do that?"

"There are many people who are telling him that honestly, Jim," said Haberman. "What has become clear to people, or should have by now, this president wants to run his re-election effort a certain way, and that does not relate to talking about the coronavirus unless it's about describing his administration's response in glowing terms that just don't comport with reality. Certainly for the first many weeks as the pandemic was growing."

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