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White House lawyers’ defense of Trump was ‘grossly misleading and a violation of ethical duties’: Preet Bharara

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On CNN Tuesday, former Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara pointed out that if White House lawyers had any advance knowledge of former National Security Adviser John Bolton’s testimony, they had an ethical obligation not to hide it from the Senate.

“There is … an ethical question,” said Bharara. “They were asked today in a briefing, where they had a source, who was asked the question, did you review the manuscript, and they said no, we didn’t review the manuscript. They were then asked where you briefed on the contents of the manuscript and they said, that’s all we’re going to say.”

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“So they made arguments in the well of the Senate floor that said there’s no witness — essentially, there’s no witness who can say or has said that the president of the United States told them that they were linking aid to these investigations of the Bidens, and that might be, depending on your view, technically true to the letter,” said Bharara. “But it’s grossly misleading, and, I think, a violation of ethical duties.”

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Markets are ‘getting ready for something worse’ amid coronavirus chaos: Expert

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On Thursday's edition of CNN's "The Situation Room," business analyst Richard Quest said that the United States is not likely on track for a recession at the moment — but that if the coronavirus outbreak explodes within the country, it could destabilize the economy into a tailspin.

"The 1,190-point drop today, the largest in the history of the New York Stock Exchange," said anchor Wolf Blitzer. "Over the past week, the Dow Jones has dropped 3,581 points since last Thursday alone ... could the U.S. economy now go into recession if the coronavirus spreads here in the United States?"

"Right, the qualifications of that is the last bit of your question: If it spreads in the United States," said Quest. "At the moment, there's no reputable economist that is forecasting a global recession or a U.S. recession if the status quo is maintained, i.e., periodic expansions of this with just a few more cases. However, if there was a full-scale outbreak and you start looking at large parts of the U.S. economy being shut down, no question about it. A recession would be on the cards."

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Trump is getting a ‘no-confidence vote from financial markets’ over erratic coronavirus response: CNN’s Harwood

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The Dow Jones Industrial Average sank once again in early trading on Thursday amid concerns about how the spread of the coronavirus will impact the economy.

CNN's John Harwood on Thursday said that President Donald Trump's efforts to calm markets by appointing Vice President Mike Pence to oversee the government's coronavirus response had clearly flopped, as the Dow dropped by more than 700 points in early trading.

"What you have seen today and last night, when Dow futures fell while that press conference was going, on is a no confidence vote from financial markets," Harwood said. "You have the president appointing Mike Pence saying he's good on health -- we all remember that as governor of Indiana, he struggled to cope with a public health crisis on HIV by delaying needle exchanges. That had real consequences in terms of lives lost, so the administration has not gotten its act together."

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NYT reporter reveals the stunning reason Trump believed coronavirus would disappear next month

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On CNN Thursday, New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman revealed that President Donald Trump is angry about his administration's coronavirus response — in part because he misunderstood what the experts told him about the disease and thought they meant it was going to go away soon.

"The president has been very frustrated with the public messaging of this from his administration, but not for the reasons that people necessarily think," said Haberman. "It's because there were experts who were saying one thing from the CDC, which was that there is this problem growing, and then he was trying to tamp this down in his own comments, and he keeps saying something that, as I understand it, is a misinterpretation of what he was told in a briefing, which was that viruses tend to decrease in numbers in terms of spread during warmer weather. He has taken that and put his own spin on it which is, it's going to stop by April. He's been telling people that for a while."

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