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Bill Barr is ‘a central figure’ in the Ukraine scandal and must recuse himself: CNN’s Jeffrey Toobin

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Jeffrey Toobin -- CNN screenshot

On Wednesday, the White House released a rough transcript of President Donald Trump’s call with Ukrainian leaders, not only confirming the president pressured them to dig up dirt on former Vice President Joe Biden, but also revealing that he urged them to get in touch with Attorney General William Barr to help.

CNN chief legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin broke down why this is a huge development — and why it could mean that Barr will face unavoidable pressure to recuse himself from any Ukraine investigation just as his predecessor Jeff Sessions had to recuse himself from Russia.

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“I think the legal complexities could get considerable very quickly,” said Toobin. “But it is certainly possible and it certainly seems to be the basis of this investigation, this criminal investigation that the president was seeking a thing of value from a foreign source, and possible — and I emphasize possible, violation of American campaign finance law. That seems to be the basis of the criminal referral which now is before attorney general William Barr. William Barr is in this transcript. William Barr becomes a very important person in this investigation at several different levels. He is now presumably, at least for the time being unless he has to recuse himself, in charge of deciding what to do with this criminal referral. He is also someone that the president is saying in this transcript, talk to him, Mr. President, Mr. Zelensky, president of Ukraine, cooperate with him in the investigation of my rival Biden.”

“So William Barr is now a central figure in all of this — these developments,” added Toobin. “Unless he recuses himself, and in light of his being all over this transcript he is going to have a lot of pressure to recuse himself.”

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‘They are on a different planet’: CNN panel shocked by Jared Kushner’s delusional COVID predictions

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CNN's Alisyn Camerota on Thursday reacted with shock to newly released audio of Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner discussing the novel coronavirus pandemic with journalist Bob Woodward.

In an interview conducted this past April, Kushner told Woodward that the administration was moving away from a containment strategy for the virus and was instead pushing toward reopening the economy as soon as possible.

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Former Donald Trump staffer says conservative media ‘brainwashed’ her into hating Democrats

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On CNN Wednesday, Jessica Denson, the former coordinator of the Trump 2016 campaign's Hispanic outreach who starred in a recent ad for Joe Biden, opened up about how she was taken in by the Trump campaign — and why he must be defeated.

"My motive to go and help that campaign and be of service to the American people was sabotaged, and I've seen my experience repeated in the experience of one public servant after another over the past four years," said Denson, who spearheaded a lawsuit to free former Trump campaign officials from nondisclosure agreements. "I have seen that this campaign continues to go out brandishing a Bible and an American flag and claiming that they have anything to do with freedom, but I've lived first-hand that they have nothing to do with freedom. They have worked very much against free speech and democracy."

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2020 Election

‘You’re free to go’: CNN’s Lemon tells Trump after president spends weeks complaining about going to rallies

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President Donald Trump has spent the last several days at rallies complaining about how much he hates being there and how much he hates being president.

CNN's Don Lemon played clips of the rally airing of grievances.

"I probably bottom be standing out here in the freezing rain with you," Trump complained while in Lansing, Michigan. "I would be home in the White House doing whatever the hell I was doing. I wouldn't be out here."

"We win Wisconsin, we win the whole ball game," Trump told a crowd in Janesville, Wisconsin last week. "What the hell do you think I'm doing here on a freezing night with 45-degree wind? What do you think? Do you think I'm doing this for my health? I'm not doing this for my health."

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