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Adam Schiff calls out Trump’s Guatemala threats: ‘A reference to violence — but he won’t intimidate me’

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Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) believes President Donald Trump made a violent threat toward him, but he vowed to continue holding him accountable for his misconduct in office.

The president suggested Schiff should be punished for paraphrasing his phone call with Ukraine’s president, saying “in Guatamala they handle things much tougher than that,” and the California Democrat perceived that as a threat.

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“I think that’s what he intended it to be,” Schiff told CNN as he headed toward the House impeachment debate. “This is a president, after all, who has said of people who blow the whistle on him that they’re traitors and spies and should be treated as traitors and spies used to be treated. We used to execute traitors and spies.”

Schiff did not believe that Trump simply wanted him thrown in jail for exaggerating his comments to Ukraine’s president.

“No, I think the undertone is very much a reference to Guatemala’s violent history,” Schiff said, “but look, he’s not going to intimidate me, and thankfully, we have courageous public servants come and testify who were not intimidated by him either. They did their constitutional duty, I’m going to do mine. I took an oath as well.”

Schiff again clarified that he believes Trump was calling for violent retribution against him, which he said only underscored why the president must be impeached.

“I think it was deliberately designed to be a threat,” he said, “and this is the president’s modus operandi. I’m not the first person he made a threat about, I won’t be the last. This is precisely the kind of conduct that Americans should not accept in the Oval Office. He has so debased that office with his threats and his temper tantrums, but more to the point, he has sacrificed our national security by withholding military aid from an ally at war so that he could get help in cheating in the next election. That’s what brings us to this day.”

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CNN’s Don Lemon demands ‘urgency’ of justice for George Floyd: ‘How much more video do they need?’

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On CNN Thursday, host Don Lemon made a furious call for justice in the George Floyd case.

"How much more video do they need? I kept saying, is this some sort of a joke?" said Lemon. "Great, get more evidence. But from the evidence they have, there appears to be no area on tape anywhere, from any witness, that Mr. Floyd was resisting arrest in any way. So people want to know, these officers, one of them with 18 complaints against them, I think 16 still open, another one that had 6. I know people complain and it's false sometimes, but 18 complaints. Are they going to be arrested or are they not? Is the justice system going to work with these officers the way it works with the general public?"

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‘Resisting suffocation is not resisting arrest’: Ex-prosecutor explains why police defense in George Floyd killing won’t fly

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On CNN Thursday, former federal prosecutor Laura Coates explained why police cannot use the defense the George Floyd was "resisting arrest" to excuse his death.

"If these officers can prove there was some kind of resistance at some point, might that complicate the task of the Hennepin County attorney, were he to bring charges?" asked anchor Jake Tapper.

"It's a consideration, but it would not be a full explanation or defense of behavior," said Coates. "Resisting suffocation is not resisting arrest. Let me be clear with that. The code and the policy of the police officers is that they have to use only the amount of force necessary to repel a force against them. This is a man on his stomach, handcuffed behind his back, gasping for air, calling out for help and saying he cannot breathe."

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CNN

Saint Paul police chief condemns tactics used on George Floyd: ‘We’re here to serve — not choke people!’

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Saint Paul Police Chief Todd Axtell told CNN's Jim Sciutto and Poppy Harlow on Thursday that he's showing his officers footage from George Floyd's death as an example of how not to handle a suspect.

In particular, Axtell told the CNN hosts that all of the officers in his department said that the actions of the officers in Minneapolis to Floyd were completely unacceptable.

"Every police officer that I know that I interacted with yesterday in the city of Saint Paul, there was not one who felt that what they observed on that video in Minneapolis was in any way, shape, or form acceptable police behavior," he said. "It is disgusting, it is dehumanizing, it is something that absolutely has to stop."

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