According to a report at the New York Times, career Justice Department officials are bracing for more chaos and disarray caused by President Donald Trump despite what many think was Attorney General Bill Barr’s insincere rebuke of the president for tweeting about pending cases.
According to the report, many within the Justice Department fear the president and his associates will either come after them or try to interfere with their work and believe that Barr will look the other way.
“In more than three dozen interviews in recent days, lawyers across the federal government’s legal establishment wondered aloud whether Mr. Trump was undermining the Justice Department’s treasured reputation for upholding the law without favor or political bias — and whether Attorney General William P. Barr was able or willing to protect it,” the report states. “Mr. Trump elicited those fears by denouncing federal prosecutors who had recommended a prison sentence of up to nine years for his longtime friend and political adviser Roger J. Stone Jr. Mr. Barr fanned them by scrapping the recommendation in favor of a far more lenient one, leading the prosecutors to quit the case in protest.”
According to the report, there was already a belief within the department that Barr was appointed by Trump to protect him and there has been little that has happened since that has convinced them otherwise.
“As many of the department lawyers and some recently departed colleagues see it, Mr. Barr has devoted much of his authority and stature to bolster the president since he took office a year ago,” the Times reports, before adding that there was some relief when Barr publically complained that the preside was making his job harder.
“Others questioned Mr. Barr’s sincerity, saying he was already too closely aligned with Mr. Trump’s political priorities to accept his words at face value,” the report continued. “One described Mr. Barr’s timing as self-serving, saying that the president had attacked the department before but Mr. Barr spoke up only when he felt his own credibility was on the line. Another suggested that the best way for Mr. Barr to demonstrate his integrity would be to resign.”
The Times reports that some officials now believe that judges will survey their cases with a jaundiced eye after so much attention has been paid to Barr’s interference to date.
“I’m sure that some D.O.J. attorneys feel that judges are not going to look at them in the same way,” explained Mary McCord, a former assistant attorney general. “And I’m sure there are judges who are going to wonder, ‘Can we credit what you say, or is D.O.J. going to come back tomorrow and say something different?’”
You can read more here.
Florida seniors are ‘highly susceptible’ to coronavirus — which could hurt Trump’s reelection chances
On Monday, The Washington Post examined the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on older voters' politics, and in particular how it is hurting President Donald Trump with the critical demographic in Florida — a state that is almost mandatory for the president to win for a second term.
"While Democrats have worried about Biden’s struggles to excite younger voters, older voters who are upset with the president are poised to be potentially more influential in November, especially in swing states whose populations skew their way, like Florida, Pennsylvania, Arizona, Michigan and Wisconsin," reported Jenna Johnson and Lori Rozsa. "In Florida, more than 20 percent of those who voted in the 2016 election were over age 65, according to exit polls. In 2016, Trump won the Florida senior vote by a 17-point margin over Clinton, according to exit polls. The state ranks as one Trump must almost certainly win to insure his victory, while Biden has other paths to the White House."
Lawmakers discussing possibility that ‘freaked out’ Trump won’t accept election loss
President Donald Trump's increasing attacks on election integrity have raised new alarms about his efforts to delegitimize the results in November.
Just as he did in 2016, Trump has been flinging baseless accusations of "rigged" elections and has, as president, threatened to withhold funding from Michigan and Nevada for going ahead with plans to allow voting by mail during the coronavirus pandemic, reported Politico.
"He is planting the seeds for delegitimizing the election if he loses," said Vanita Gupta, a former head of Justice Department’s civil rights division under President Barack Obama. "It’s from the playbook. It’ll get more intense as he gets more freaked out."
‘Un-American’ anti-lockdown protesters hammered by Army veteran for appropriating military gear to make their point
In a Memorial Day column for the Washington Post, military vet Drew Garza -- who served three tours in Iraq and Afghanistan among other deployments -- hammered anti-lockdown protesters who have appropriated a quasi-military style of dress while sometimes carrying "un-American" flags at lockdown rallies.
According to the U.S. Army vet who is now a Tillman scholar at George Washington University, protesters who adorn themselves in military-style garb while carrying high-powered weapons to protest stay-at-home orders designed to stem the spread of the coronavirus pandemic is a personal affront to those who have actually served.