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Ambassador McFaul reveals damning flaw in the White House denial over Trump’s latest Russia scandal

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NSC Senior Director for Russian Affairs Mike McFaul briefs President Barack Obama in the Oval Office, February 24, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Former Obama administration Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul offered his analysis on Saturday after the White House finally responded to the bombshell New York Times report that Russia had put bounties on U.S. troops serving in Afghanistan.

“The White House denied President Trump had been briefed on U.S. intelligence that reportedly determined Russia offered secret bounties to kill U.S. troops,” the Washington Examiner reported Saturday. “Kayleigh McEnany, the White House press secretary, issued a statement soon after presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden castigated Trump for reportedly taking no retaliatory action.”

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“The United States receives thousands of intelligence reports a day, and they are subject to strict scrutiny. While the White House does not routinely comment on alleged intelligence or internal deliberations, the CIA director, national security adviser, and the chief of staff can all confirm that neither the president nor the vice president were briefed on the alleged Russian bounty intelligence,” McEnany claimed in a statement.

CNN analyst and Russia expert Bianna Golodryga, who was born in the USSR, was perplexed by the statement.

“Why on earth would the [White House] wait 24 hours to respond with this given how damning the story is?” she wondered.

Ambassador McFaul, who also worked for the National Security Council, had his own question.

“And, if true, why on earth was the president not briefed on his intelligence?” McFaul asked.

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The scandal has blown up since the NYT report, which The Washington Post confirmed. On Saturday, “Traitor Trump” and “TRE45ON” trended nationwide on Twitter.

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2020 Election

Georgia GOP secretary of state: Trump ‘threw my family under the bus’ even though we voted for him

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Brad Raffensperger, the Republican secretary of state in Georgia, has written an angry editorial for USA Today in which he details the harassment he and his family have been subjected to because he followed the law and certified President-elect Joe Biden's victory.

Raffensperger starts out his editorial by praising the Peach State for holding a free and fair election under difficult circumstances stemming from the novel coronavirus pandemic.

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‘The election wasn’t stolen — he blew it’: Michigan Republican says Trump ‘did everything possible to lose’

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President Donald Trump insists the election was stolen from him in Michigan, but Republicans there haven't been willing to indulge his fantasy.

The president has zeroed in on the state, which he narrowly won in 2016, in his effort to overturn his election loss to Joe Biden by claiming widespread fraud and pressuring legislators to overrule the will of the voters, but few Republicans are buying in, reported Politico.

“We must not attempt to exercise power we simply don’t have,” said Aaron Van Langevelde, who sits on Michigan’s board of state canvassers, which was statutorily obligated to certify the election win by Joe Biden. “As John Adams once said, 'We are a government of laws, not men.' This board needs to adhere to that principle here today. This board must do its part to uphold the rule of law and comply with our legal duty to certify this election.”

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2020 Election

Trump’s efforts to overturn the election are clumsy and petulant – but it’s still treason: historian

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We are now witnesses to the most dangerous act of selfishness from the King of the Self. Trump knows the evidence for any form of election fraud is silly fantasy. His electoral deficits are beyond challenge--74 Electoral College votes and more than 5 million popular votes. Yet he repeats his denunciations of American elections, the bedrock of any democracy, that began when he was only a candidate. In October 2016, he called the election “one big, ugly lie”.

His disastrous character flaws are obvious to everyone. We, and here I mean all those who care about the real world around us, must now go beyond psychological analysis to political clarity. Trump is a traitor.

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