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Trump signals his desire to illegally stay in office as he rages against James Comey over ‘stolen time’

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- Commentary

Not the first time he has done this, President Donald Trump on Friday morning insinuated he would like to extend his term beyond the four years granted by the nation’s constitution when he posed as a question the idea of being granted back “stolen time” that was taken from him because of the investigation of Special Counsel Robert Mueller and accusations of misconduct by former FBI head James Comey.

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While the IG report this week chided Comey for handing off contemporaneous notes about his interactions with the president to a friend so that they could be provided to the press, the Justice Department said it would not pursue criminal charges against the former FBI director.

In reaction to Trump’s tweet suggesting he be given extra time on his current term, critics said the idea was ludicrous.

“Trump is talking about illegally extending his presidency again through a coup of his own making,” tweeted John Aravosis, liberal activist and editor of AmericaBlog. “It’s time Republicans started standing up for the country rather than the man.”

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It’s not the first time Trump has talked about staying beyond his allowable limit or suggesting he would not cede the office.

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In June, as Common Dreams reported at the time, Trump pinned a tweet to his timeline showing an online meme that depicted him holding power indefinitely. While critics then acknowledged that the behavior appears to be a form of trolling by the president, it still is a frightening suggestion that would be foolish not to take seriously or with at least some level of concern.

In response to Trump’s comments on Friday, many took the idea of “stolen time” and ran with it as they suggested that it was Trump’s presidency—predicated on racism, misogyny, xenophobia, environmental rollbacks, corporate giveaways, cruelty to children, fealty to wealthy elites, and an overall assault on decency and the common good—that had stolen so much time and progress from the country and the world.

“We should absolutely be given back our stolen time!” said one Twitter user, exemplary of many others. “And the whole Trump fiasco should be stricken from history. Everything Trump has done should be reversed as though it never happened.”

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So much for ‘originalism’ — Trump’s impeachment defense is a constitutional dumpster fire

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In the absence of any exculpatory evidence, Donald Trump's defense against impeachment increasingly relies on arguments that fly directly in the face of the Constitution. Trump himself set the standard last July with his grandiose claim that "Article II says I can do anything I want," which encountered no serious pushback from his fellow Republicans.

This article first appeared in Salon.

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Any normal president could find some defense attorneys who aren’t clowns and grifters

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Welcome to another edition of What Fresh Hell?, Raw Story’s roundup of news items that might have become controversies under another regime, but got buried – or were at least under-appreciated – due to the daily firehose of political pratfalls, unhinged tweet storms and other sundry embarrassments coming out of the current White House.

Donald Trump's penchant for telling reporters about his crimes doesn't leave his legal defense team a lot to work with. In the first week of his Senate trial, they've pounded the desk and rended their garments over how mean their Democrats opponents are toward their client. But the worst is yet to come--WaPo reports that during the next phase of the proceedings, Trump's legal team will offer "a scorched-earth defense of President Trump in the impeachment trial, mounting a politically charged case aimed more at swaying American voters than GOP senators — and damaging Trump’s possible 2020 opponent, Joe Biden."

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White House attorneys’ defense of Trump debunked and discredited by nearly everyone with readily available facts

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After three days of House impeachment managers’ brilliant prosecution of President Donald Trump – and “prebuttal” of the arguments the president’s team was expected to make – White House attorneys Saturday morning began their defense of President Trump.

It’s not going well.

Deputy White House Counsel Mike Purpura (photo) has been making the majority of today’s arguments – they have decided that not enough people will be watching on TV so Saturday’s defense will last not eight but just two hours.

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