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‘Are you really not capable of answering a question?’: GOP lawmaker wilts as Tapper grills him on Trump corruption

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An appearance on CNN’s State of the Union by Sen. Kevin Kramer (R-ND) may not have panned out as well as he had hoped after he was peppered with questions about Donald Trump’s corruption and false claims and was unable to answer host Jake Tapper’s questions.

Asked about Trump and former New York Mayor Rudy Giulani’s fishing expedition for dirt on former Vice President Joe Biden’s son, Kramer instead talked about Hunter Biden’s “corruption,” which the CNN host promptly slapped down with a fact check, saying there was no corruption involved — before moving on to the president’s quid pro quo phonecall with Ukraine.

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After Tapper asked a State Department texts indicating a presidential offer of foreign aid for dirt on Biden and whether it should be investigated, Kramer instead stated, “Well, if it is, then certainly worth investigating whether Hunter Biden used his status as the son of the vice president to fly around the world on Air Force Two and gain all kinds of government contracts and — or positions with companies that he has no qualifications to serve for and getting a large paycheck as a result of it.”

“Are you really not capable of answering a question of whether or not it is acceptable for a president to ask a foreign rival to investigate his political rivals, to ask a foreign nation to investigate his political rival without bringing up Hunter Biden?” the exasperated Tapper shot back. “I’m not defending Hunter Biden, but I’m just saying can you say this is a precedent and now an American foreign policy that it is okay for a Democratic president to push China or Russia or whatever to investigate the children or the family of his political rivals? Is this now the country we’re going to live in?”

“I would say this much, Jake, I appreciate that we have a president that is transparent about his opinions and clear about them and he didn’t try to do it covertly,” he replied without answering the CNN host’s question once more.

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Joe Biden takes on Trump’s rhetoric during racial justice crises: ‘The words of a president matter’

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Former Vice President Joe Biden talked about the importance of a president's words and accountability during times of crisis during a Friday appearance on MSNBC.

Biden was interviewed by Craig Melvin, who noted the protests tearing apart cities and asked where he would start if elected president.

"I start by talking about what we must be, making no excuses, talking about our obligation to be decent," Biden answered. "Our obligation to take responsibility, our obligation to stand up when we see injustice."

"Look, the words of a president matter -- no matter how good or bad that president is," he explained. "A president can, by their words alone no matter who they are, make it rise or fall, take us to war, bring us to peace. The words of a president matter."

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South Carolina Republicans gather for an ‘active rejection’ of social distancing measures: report

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On Friday, The New York Times reported on a gathering of Republicans in Conway, South Carolina that appeared to be an "active rejection" of social distancing measures and other public health guidelines.

"The outdoor gathering here on Thursday was a send-off event for Cleo Steele, a longtime Republican Party operative in Horry County, who is retiring to Ohio," wrote Astead Herndon. "Speakers shared the same microphone. Local and state political candidates greeted voters with handshakes and squeezed tight for pictures. Of all the people gathered outside the county Republican office — many of them senior citizens — fewer than a dozen wore masks."

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Paul Krugman: A stronger GDP won’t help Americans if they’re dead

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Liberal economist Paul Krugman, in his New York Times column, has been stressing that the better a job the United States does with social distancing policies now, the better off the U.S. economy will be in the long run. In his Thursday column, Krugman warns that a premature reopening could hurt the U.S. both economically and from a health standpoint.

“America is now engaged in a vast, dangerous experiment,” Krugman writes. “Although social distancing has limited the spread of the coronavirus, it is far from contained. Yet despite warnings from epidemiologists, much of the country is moving to open up for business as usual.”

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