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Lindsey Graham urging Trump not to send direct payments to Americans as part of coronavirus relief

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U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham speaking with attendees at the 2015 Iowa Growth & Opportunity Party at the Varied Industries Building at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines, Iowa. (Gage Skidmore)

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is reportedly hoping that President Donald Trump will take a trickle down approach to the next coronavirus relief bill.

During a Republican lunch on Thursday, Graham encouraged his colleagues not to support direct payments to Americans in what’s known as “phase 3” of the package. Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) — the new White House chief of staff — was in attendance at the event.

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The White House has proposed sending $1,000 to each American adult and $500 for each child. Under the proposal, the checks would go out in two tranches.


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Nicolle Wallace bashes ‘two-bit criminal’ Trump for ‘skivvy’ tweet pardoning Michael Flynn

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Retired Lt. Gen Michael Flynn admitted his guilt to Judge Emmett Sullivan, but President Donald Trump announced that the former director of national intelligence would never see jail time. After issuing a pardon to Flynn the day before Thanksgiving, MSNBC's Nicolle Wallace attacked the manner in which Trump announced the pardon: by tweet.

"Of all the sordid tales of Trump's presidency, this one might take the cake," said Wallace. "We knew this might be coming. We know Donald Trump likes the power to pardon. There's some reporting he's looking at a pardon for lots of other people. I wonder what your sense is about what else Donald Trump has up his sleeve?"

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NRA tax filing alleges Wayne LaPierre used the group’s funds for ‘personal benefit and enrichment’: report

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According to a new IRS tax filing from the National Rifle Association (NRA), current and former executives used the nonprofit group’s money for personal benefit and enrichment, the Washington Post reports.

"The NRA said in the filing that it continues to review the alleged abuse of funds, as the tax-exempt organization curtails services and runs up multimillion-dollar legal bills," the Post's report states. "The assertion of impropriety comes four months after the attorney general of New York state filed a lawsuit accusing NRA chief executive Wayne LaPierre and other top officials of using NRA funds for decades to provide inflated salaries and expense accounts."

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Trump and Bill Barr’s ‘bloodthirsty execution spree’ in his final months in office is unprecedented: op-ed

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In an op-ed for Slate this Tuesday, Austin Sarat says that the Trump administration's announcement that it would continue to carry out executions in the days and weeks leading up to the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden is a "bloodthirsty decision" that defies "the norms and conventions for modern presidential transitions."

"The Death Penalty Information Center reports that the last time an outgoing administration did anything remotely similar was more than a century ago, in 1889," Sarat writes. "At that time Grover Cleveland, the first Democrat to be elected president after the Civil War and the only president ever to have served as an executioner (when he was the sheriff in Erie County, New York), permitted three executions to proceed in the period between his electoral defeat and Benjamin Harrison’s inauguration in March 1889."

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