Starbucks said Friday it will reimburse abortion travel expenses for partners enrolled in its health care plan if a legal provider isn't in the partner's state of residence or within 100 miles of their home. Responding to the U.S. Supreme Court decision ending constitutional protections for abortion, the company also said it will begin providing gender-affirming care for partners. It did not say when because "there are more procedures to consider as part of this benefit." "Even though we have prepared for this scenario, personally and as a company, I know this decision leaves many of you dishe...
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FBI Agents Association blasts Trump allies: 'Calls for violence against law enforcement are unacceptable'
A man with an AR-15 and a nail gun went after the FBI office in Cincinnati, Ohio Thursday morning leading to a chase and crisis negotiation with the individual. Supporters of President Donald Trump have filled message boards with attacks on federal law enforcement and attacked the judge who signed the search warrant for Mar-a-Lago. Republicans have attacked the FBI, going so far as to demand defunding the FBI and implying that they planted evidence.
By Thursday afternoon, the FBI Agents' Association released a statement saying that leaders should be supporting federal law enforcement not urging on attackers.
"FBI Special Agents are dedicated members of the law enforcement community who put their lives on the line every day to protect the public from criminals and terrorists," the statement said. "Special Agents and their families should never be threatened with violence, including for doing their jobs."
"The threats made recently contribute to an atmosphere where some have, or will accept violence against law enforcement as appropriate. It is not. This is not a partisan or political issue. It is a matter of public safety and basic decency. Calls for violence against law enforcement are unacceptable, and should be condemned by all leaders."
After the news broke about the search warrant, Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) called to destroy the FBI. The tweet was still online three days later.
Earlier on Thursday, Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA) was confronted by a Fox News host who asked what happened to "backing the blue," meaning why he was no longer supportive of law enforcement.
"The FBI, with 35,000 members, you know, now they apparently are receiving a lot of specific field agents are receiving specific death threats because there are a number of people online and elsewhere who are demonizing the FBI, and some Republicans," the Fox host explained to the Congressman.
In the wake of the FBI's raid on Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, supporters of the former president have framed the raid as an unprecedented "weaponization" of law enforcement in a partisan manner. Others have suggested, without evidence, that the FBI "planted" evidence during the search.
But according to Fox News contributor Jessica Tarlov, the fact that some Republicans have offered full-throated defenses of Trump before all the facts are in just shows how unqualified they are to serve in government.
"This is an important piece of the puzzle," Tarlov said. "When you look at how many Republicans are dashing without information to defend former President Trump ... you can see that this is a piece of the puzzle of why Republicans cannot be given control again of the government."
In a press conference Thursday, Attorney General Merrick Garland said the Justice Department has asked a court to unseal the warrant the FBI received before the search at Trump's resort and said that he had "personally approved" the search.
Garland did not explain the reason for the search, but stressed there was "probable cause" and said he had asked a court to make the case's documents public.
"I personally approved the decision to seek a search warrant in this matter," he told reporters. "The department does not take such a decision lightly."
The extraordinary FBI raid this week on Trump's Mar-a-Lago residence has sparked a political firestorm in an already bitterly divided country and comes as he is weighing another White House run.
Leading Republicans have rallied around the former president, who was not present when the raid took place.
Trump's former vice president Mike Pence, a potential 2024 rival, expressed "deep concern" and said the raid smacked of "partisanship" by the Justice Department.
Garland criticized "unfounded attacks on the professionalism of the FBI and Justice Department agents and prosecutors."
Watch the video below.
\u201cJessica: When you look at how many Republicans are dashing without information to defend Trump.. you can see that this is a piece of the puzzle of why Republicans cannot be given control again of the government\u2026\u201d— Acyn (@Acyn) 1660238914
With additional reporting by AFP
NOW WATCH: That decision has consequences': Experts respond to Trump pleading the 5th
'That decision has consequences' Experts respond to Trump pleading the 5th www.youtube.com
Legal experts are questioning Donald Trump’s claim that he's helped his case by pleading the Fifth when giving a sworn deposition to lawyers from the Office of the New York Attorney General. At least one lawyer says Attorney General Letitia James’ case against the former president is now “immeasurably stronger.”
Trump infamously derided others over the years for invoking their Fifth amendment right to silence, saying people only invoke their Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination if they’re guilty.
In a lengthy statement after his testimony Wednesday, Trump said, “under the advice of my counsel and for all of the above reasons, I declined to answer the questions under the rights and privileges afforded to every citizen under the United States Constitution.”
“I once asked, ‘If you’re innocent, why are you taking the Fifth Amendment?’ Now I know the answer to that question,” he added. “When your family, your company and all the people in your orbit have become targets of unfounded, politically motivated Witch Hunt supported by lawyers, prosecutors, and the Fake News Media, you have no choice.”
Legal experts demurred.
Trump critic and attorney George Conway asserted that Attorney General Letitia James’ “case against Trump became immeasurably stronger today.”
"In any civil case that AG James may bring against Trump, the finder of fact is free to draw adverse inferences from his invocation of the Fifth Amendment’s protections," Conway added.
“Trump was right to take the Fifth, but that decision has consequences," remarked former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti. "While his silence can’t be used against him in a criminal case, it can be used against him in the AG’s civil case.”
“If he is sued,” Mariotti added, “jurors may be instructed [that] they should presume his answers would have hurt him.”
Attorney Tristan Snell, who successfully prosecuted a case against the Trump University for the New York Attorney’s Office, offered additional insight.
“Trump pleads Fifth, refuses to answer NY AG questions about Trump Organization’s alleged tax and financial fraud," Snell tweeted. "This is a civil case — so the court can draw an inference of liability. This is exactly what the AG was hoping to achieve. The case is now even stronger.”
Snell also posited that “Don Jr. and Ivanka did not plead the Fifth, likely because their involvement with the fraud was minimal. Donald Trump pled the Fifth, because he was almost certainly running the fraud.”
Historian Garrett Graff, former editor of Politico magazine added, “I recognize it’s the important right of any American to take the Fifth, but it’s worth noting how Hillary Clinton sat through 11 hours of public Benghazi testimony and sat with the FBI for 3.5 hours amid her emails—and when Trump faces questions, he takes the Fifth.”
With David Badash.