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White House limiting staff access to Trump’s phone calls to prevent future whistleblowers: CNN

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On Thursday’s edition of CNN’s “The Situation Room,” CNN White House correspondent Jim Acosta reported that President Donald Trump has grown furious about the state of White House leaks, and his officials are working to keep as many people in the administration as possible shut out from his phone calls with foreign leaders — precisely to avoid situations like the exploding DNI whistleblower scandal.

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“As for the whistleblower complaint that’s being kept from Congress, a senior administration official tells CNN as these leaks from these calls have angered Trump, top officials in the West Wing began to limit who could listen in on these conversations so as to tighten the circle of people in the know and what the president has been discussing in some of these phone calls with foreign leaders,” said Acosta.

“That means there may be only a small number of people are aware of the details contained in this whistleblower complaint,” he added. “Lot of questions for the White House, not a lot of answers tonight.”

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2020 Election

Trump accused by ex-Defense Secretary of putting US on ‘the trail toward a dictatorship’

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During an appearance on CNN on Friday morning, former Defense Secretary William Cohen - who also served in the U.S. Senate as a Republican -- denounced Donald Trump in no uncertain terms, saying his use of military personnel against anti-police brutality protesters is a sign he has set the country on the path to a dictatorship.

To emphasize his point, he later called Trump the "dictator-in-chief."

Speaking with host Jim Sciutto, Cohen didn't mince words after the CNN host noted that the president and his former attorney called the protesters "terrorists."

"What does it mean for you to hear a sitting president dismissing a whole range of protesters, who in fact were largely peaceful around the White House, dismissing a whole range of them as terrorists? What does that mean to you?" the CNN host asked.

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Richmond mayor schools white lawmaker complaining removal of Confederate statue strips her of her history

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Appearing on CNN's "New Day" on Friday morning, the mayor of Richmond, Virginia set a white state lawmaker straight over her comments that the imminent removal of a statue commemorating Confederate General Robert E. Lee was erasing her history.

Speaking with host John Berman, Mayor Levar Stoney expressed pleasure at the upcoming removal of the massive statue, saying it was a long overdue -- before the interview turned to comments made by State Senator Amanda Chase (R) made in a Facebook post.

Noting that the white lawmaker complained, "Let's be honest here, there is an overt effort here to erase all-white history," Stoney had a few words for the lawmaker.

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2020 Election

Trump ‘crossed the line’ with the military this week — leading retired officers to revolt: former general

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Appearing on CNN's New Day with host John Berman, retired Lt. Gen. Douglas Lute explained that Donald Trump finally went a bridge too far this week with retired military officials when his administration deployed military police to turn on peaceful protesters in a Washington D.C. park.

Speaking with the host, Lute -- who also served as U.S. ambassador to NATO -- said tension between the president and military officials has gradually increased over the past three and a half years, but that the past week's incidents led to a "tipping point."

After host Berman read off a list of high profile ex-military officials who have either criticized Trump or defended their former colleagues from attacks from the president, Lute was asked what had changed.

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