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Bush admin official explains why Republicans are painfully silent about Alex Acosta’s plea deal with Jeffrey Epstein

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Democrats on Capitol Hill have been demanding the resignation of Secretary of Labor Alex Acosta for the lenient plea deal he once gave billionaire financier and registered sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, who pled “not guilty” this week to new sex trafficking and conspiracy charges. Conservatives, meanwhile, have mostly remained silent, but a major exception is former GOP insider and anti-Trump conservative Peter Wehner — who explained to MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace why he believes Republicans are showing blatant “hypocrisy” where Acosta is concerned.

During an MSNBC appearance on Tuesday, Wehner told Wallace — another anti-Trump conservative — “Remember the context of this: Secretary Acosta is accused of not prosecuting a sexual predator. The president is a sexual predator.” And he went on to say that President Donald Trump was “credibly accused of rape” last month.

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The person who accused Trump of sexual assault last month was veteran journalist and long-time Elle Magazine columnist E. Jean Carroll, who alleges that Trump sexually assaulted her in a Manhattan department store, Bergdorf Goodman, in the 1990s. Trump has flatly denied Carroll’s allegation.

Wehner has a long history with the GOP. He was a senior White House aide under President George W. Bush and before that, served in the administrations of President Ronald Reagan and President George H.W. Bush. And Wehner recalled, “Once upon a time, this was a party that appointed itself as a party of family values.”

In 2008, Epstein was accused of sexually abusing under-age girls in his mansion in Palm Beach, Florida — and he was facing the possibility of being sentenced to life in prison. But Epstein worked out a plea deal with Acosta, who was a prosecutor at the time. And he was sentenced to only 13 months of incarceration, which was a light slap on the wrist in light of the severity of the charges.

Wehner, speaking to Wallace, denounced GOP silence on Acosta as “a joke and hypocrisy and just an extraordinary offense” — adding, “I mean, these are young girls who are being sexually assaulted, and they don’t care. And they’re siding with rich, powerful men against these kids, and the fact that they’re not blinking twice is such an indictment.”

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Wehner is a senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, a right-wing think tank. But he hasn’t been shy about criticizing Trump or expressing vehement disdain for Republicans who reflexively excuse his behavior. In a February piece for The Atlantic, Wehner cited Trumpism as the reason he decided to leave the GOP after many years.

Like Wehner, Wallace was part of the George W. Bush Administration: the MSNBC host served as White House communications director under Bush and went on to serve as a senior advisor to the late Arizona Sen. John McCain when he ran for president against Democratic nominee Barack Obama in 2008. And Wallace joined Wehner in criticizing the response of Republican lawmakers to Acosta, calling it a “joke.”

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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Trump is ‘a bottomless pit of emotional need’ with a ‘desperate’ desire for friends: NYT’s Charles Blow

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New York Times editorial writer Charles Blow called out the president in his Sunday editorial for always associating the country with himself.

The byproduct of narcissism is that everything surrounds the narcissist. Such is the case with President Donald Trump's latest series of tweets talking about "My Stock Market" and quoting a fan referring to him as the second coming of Christ.

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‘Disconnected from reality’: NY Times editor ridicules Trump for being a ‘farce’ of a president

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New York Times editorial board member, Michelle Cottle, released a scathing op-ed highlighting the president's tendency to give oxygen to his adversaries that no one else would be paying attention to otherwise.

In a piece relating the White House to a "three-ring" circus, Cottle called the president a "farce" for his new war with Anthony Scaramucci.

As the president tweeted, no one had heard of Scaramucci until Trump hired him and former chief-of-staff John Kelly fired him after only 11 days.

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Trump goes off on Twitter rant about ‘My Stock Market’ at nearly 2 a.m. in France

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President Donald Trump has an early morning meeting Monday with Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi. He also has a full day of meeting with the G-7, but that wasn't his focus in the early morning hours.

"My Stock Market gains must be judged from the day after the Election (sic), November 9, 2016, where the Market went up big after the win, and because of the win. Had my opponent won, CRASH!" Trump tweeted Sunday night in the U.S., which was nearly 2 a.m. in France where the president is staying during the G-7 summit.

My Stock Market gains must be judged from the day after the Election, November 9, 2016, where the Market went up big after the win, and because of the win. Had my opponent won, CRASH!

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