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Trump is guilty of everything Bill Barr decried in his Bible-thumping speech: Columnist

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On Monday, Washington Post columnist Catherine Rampell suggested that while Attorney General William Barr’s pro-theocracy speech at the University of Notre Dame was horrifying, in one sense it could be thought of as a “cry for help” — because President Donald Trump is guilty of every godless action he decried as poisoning American society.

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“Amid calling for greater freedom of religion, Barr also called for religion (his religion) to infiltrate government at all levels. He specifically decried the fact that ‘public agencies — including public schools — are becoming secularized,'” wrote Rampell. “Militant secularism, he said, is to blame for the country’s greatest ills, including drug use, mental illness and ‘an increase in senseless violence.’ Given such crises, Barr urged his audience to fight back against ‘so-called ‘progressives” and others who insist upon respecting America’s pesky, constitutionally mandated separation of church and state.”

But looking more closely, Rampell wrote, Trump’s faults are everything Barr goes on to describe in that speech.

“Barr decried the government’s ‘attacks on religion,'” wrote Rampell. “One could be forgiven for reading this as a passive-aggressive swipe at a president who, during the 2016 campaign, called for blocking immigrants based on their religious beliefs … Neither is the administration’s recent push to allow greater religious discrimination by enabling federal contractors to hire and fire based on religious belief. This means allowing a for-profit private company to fire an employee for being gay or transgender — but also for being Catholic rather than Protestant.”

That wasn’t the only example.

“Barr bemoaned the ‘unremitting assault’ not just on private exercise of faith but also ‘traditional values,'” wrote Rampell. “It’s hard to know exactly what was being invoked here. Maybe he was envisioning regressive traditions of days past, such as respect for the patriarchy. But perhaps he was instead invoking traditional values such as: Always keep your word. Keep it in your private business dealings, but also when making promises to friends and allies who have put their lives on the line for you, whether at home or in northern Syria.”

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“Or maybe: Don’t boast about grabbing unsuspecting women by the genitals. Also, maybe don’t grab them there in the first place,” suggested Rampell. “Or: Don’t commit adultery, with a porn star or anyone else, especially not a few months after your third wife gave birth. Also: The only people who should be asked to participate in American elections are Americans. Not foreign powers, especially not adversarial foreign powers. Don’t lie, cheat or steal (including from Uncle Sam); don’t blaspheme; welcome the stranger; have compassion for the poor and sick; and do unto others as you would have them do unto you, even when they don’t have political oppo to offer in return.”

Lastly, Rampell noted, Barr went on to “lament the rise of ‘moral relativism,’ which he said public schools were ‘actively promoting.’ So, too, presumably, are members of his own party, who selectively condemn bad behavior only when committed by someone other than Trump.”

It seems far-fetched that Barr, who is unflinchingly loyal to Trump, meant any of this as a subtle dig at his boss. But at the very least, it betrays a lack of self-reflection.

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2020 Election

He ‘can’t understand why he is being impeached’: CNN reports Trump is asking ’why are they doing his to me?’

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President Donald Trump is reportedly "distracted" by impeachment while vacationing at Mar-a-Lago as the United States Senate trial begins.

"A source close to the White House who speaks to Donald Trump regularly said the President has appeared 'distracted' by the impeachment trial that begins on Tuesday, telling people around him Friday night at Mar-a-Lago that he 'can't understand why he is impeached,'" CNN's Jim Acosta reported Saturday. "'Why are they doing this to me,' the source quoted Trump as saying repeatedly."

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Rod Rosenstein’s legal defense in lawsuits from Strzok and Page won’t hold up under oath: legal experts

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Rod Rosenstein

Former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein claimed responsibility for the release of text messages between then-FBI attorney Lisa Page and then-FBI official Peter Strzok.

Emails released in a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit by the watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) revealed the highly unusual release by Sarah Isgur Flores, who at the time was the spokesperson for Trump's Department of Justice (she is now overseeing CNN's 2020 election coverage).

Flores instructed reporters to not cite the release of the documents to the Depart of Justice.

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Neo-Nazi arrested by FBI in terror plot before his comrades tried to kill him for being ‘stupid’ and ‘incompetent’: report

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On Saturday, CBC News reported that several members of a white supremacist group called The Base have been arrested in Georgia and Wisconsin. This comes one day after another set of raids in Maryland and Delaware that caught Patrik Mathews, a former reservist from Manitoba who crossed into the United States illegally and has been missing for five months after being accused of recruiting for the extremist group.

One new key detail came out about Mathews in an affidavit used to secure the arrest warrants for Mathews' alleged compatriots, according to the CBC: "Although the document suggests the group member believed to be Mathews stayed with a Georgia cell member for months, he is later reportedly characterized as 'incompetent' and 'stupid' and is seen as a liability to the local group. In fact, he eventually becomes a new potential murder target."

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