Officials say situation at medical center in Bethesda was training drill, after police responded to reports of an active shooter
- Manafort held secret talks with Assange in Ecuadorian embassy
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Barack Obama recorded a robo call in Mississippi that went out last night to turn out voters. Mississippi has the highest percentage of African American residents of any state in the country.
NEWS: OBAMA recorded a robocall sent to Mississippi voters last night urging them to vote in the #MSsen special. “My name may not be on the ballot, but our future is, and that’s why I believe this is one of the most important elections in our lifetime.” https://t.co/KZeA3129bo
Democrat Mike Espy has a big hill to climb tonight in Mississippi’s special election runoff. He needs a majority of the vote after getting 40.6% in the first round of voting.
Rudy Giuliani, the former New York mayor and attorney for Trump, tells Huffington Post that Trump has no idea if Manafort ever met with Julian Assange and the two never discussed the controversial Wikileaks founder.
“I have no idea if Paul Manafort met with Julian Assange. The president has no idea if Paul Manafort met with Julian Assange,” Rudy Giuliani told HuffPost, adding that it wouldn’t prove anything nefarious even if Manafort had done so. “I don’t care if he met Assange over the years. I know there were no conversations between the president and Manafort about Assange.”
A federal judge in Mississippi just denied an lawsuit to extend the deadline to return absentee ballots in the Magnolia State.
Voters had until 5PM yesterday to do so.
Update: A federal judge just denied a request to extend the deadline for absentee ballots in Mississippi’s Senate runoff today, though he acknowledged the state’s deadline for returning an absentee ballot “is tight—if not impossible—for some voters.” https://t.co/C42vhsMSaK
NBC News is reporting that special counsel Robert Mueller has messages from conspiracy theorist Jerome Corsi to former Trump advisor Roger Stone about the Wikileaks release of stolen emails from the Clinton campaign.
NEW: Mueller has emails from Stone pal Corsi about WikiLeaks Dem email dump https://t.co/6qgXiaO54b
Although a number of corporate donors have demanded that Cindy Hyde-Smith refund their donations, it’s unclear if the Mississippi Republican has done so yet.
For all the companies and entities asking for their money back from Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, there’s no documented evidence that her campaign has reimbursed any of it. Her campaign not commenting on it, per @kendallkarson #MsSen
Elizabeth Warren will give a foreign policy speech on Thursday in Washington. The Massachusetts Democrat has long been considered a likely presidential candidate in 2020.
Jerry Nadler, the incoming chair of the House Judiciary Committee, suggests Trump is starting to come close to the line for committing an impeachable offense.
Manafort has done nothing to deserve clemency. If the President pardons his former campaign chair, his motives will be perfectly clear. Just by dangling the pardon in front of a witness, @realDonaldTrump comes dangerously close to obstruction of justice. https://t.co/T7LeEgGO0A
Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell said on Tuesday he would “probably” move to once again block a vote on a bill that would protect special counsel Robert Mueller, who leading the investigation into Russian meddling in the US presidential election.
Senator Jeff Flake, a retiring Republican from Arizona, has vowed to vote against every judicial nominee until the legislation receives a vote. He is expected to join Democratic senators Cory Booker and Chris Coons in an attempt to force a vote on the bill on Wednesday.
Jon Tester was a rare red state Democrat to win their Senate race in the midterms. He did so despite attracting the personal ire of Donald Trump over the failed nomination of Ronny Jackson to the VA.
The Huffington Post has a deep dive on how Tester pulled off that feat in Montana.
NEW: Donald Trump made it his personal mission to take out Jon Tester. Here’s how the Montana Democrat survived. https://t.co/h2rx9Mhmhq
Right wing conspiracy theorist Jerome Corsi says he has a joint defense agreement with Donald Trump.
Corsi, who said he turned a plea deal with special counsel Robert Mueller, outlines his deal with Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow in a new book.
Corsi suggests in his book, which clocks in at 57,000-plus words and was written over the course of a few weeks, that his joint defense agreement with Trump’s legal team was intended to be kept from public view.
He claims that Sekulow, Trump’s lawyer, suggested the agreement could be verbal in nature and did not need to be put in writing.
CONFIRMED: No active shooter at Naval Support Activity Bethesda. Was ad hoc drill by tenant command. https://t.co/P9N65mMdOA
Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney is asking for tomorrow’s election to be DCCC chair be delayed.
Maloney is one of four House Democrats seeking to lead the caucus’s campaign arm for the 2020 cycle. However he is currently hospitalized with a bacterial infection.
A spokesman for Manafort just sent out the following statement:
“This story is totally false and deliberately libelous. I have never met Julian Assange or anyone connected to him. I have never been contacted by anyone connected to Wikileaks, either directly or indirectly. I have never reached out to Assange or Wikileaks on any matter. We are considering all legal options against the Guardian who proceeded with this story even after being notified by my representatives that it was false.”
It appears the situation at Walter Reed may have only been a drill after all.
From colleague Lucas Tomlinson: Army Lt. Col. Audricia Harris, a Pentagon spokeswoman, tells Fox News there is no active-shooter at Walter Reed, it was only a drill.
Update: Department of Defense spokesperson tells CNN that the situation at Walter Reed was an exercise.
Senator John Barrasso thinks the American response to Russian aggression in the Kerch Strait has been “inadequate.” The Wyoming senator serves on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) on Ukraine/Russia:
I believe the response so far has been inadequate..I think we need to move ships into the Black Sea
Police have responded to the reports of an active shooter at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda.
Montgomery County police were reportedly called at 2:23 PM and the area where the active shooter was reported by has now been cleared.
1455, UPDATE: Base security has cleared the basement of Bldg. 19, they are in the process of clearing the rest of the building. No indication so far of an active shooter.
Rep. Ruppersberger remains sheltered in a back room at Walter Reed. Described mood as calm. Has not been given any additional details but does not believe this to be a drill.
The Navy says it can’t confirm the earlier reports of an active shooter at Walter Reed.
#BREAKING: We are aware of reports of an active shooter at Naval Support Activity Bethesda. No confirmation. More to follow as available.
Tim Scott of South Carolina, who is the sole African American Republican in the U.S. Senate, is still undecided on the Farr nomination.
.@SenatorTimScott reiterates to reporters he is still “researching” the Thomas Farr judicial nominee, but would not elaborate on his process for “doing his homework.” I.e. who he is talking to, what he’s reading, how he will make his final decision.
Now that he doesn’t have to face voters for another six years. Ted Cruz is trotting out a new look and is sporting some facial hair.
WASHINGTON — Lawmakers are facing a pretty hairy situation with just 10 days till a partial federal government shutdown. pic.twitter.com/XBGEECe3vg
Democrats are emphasizing their opposition to Thomas Farr’s judicial nomination at Chuck Schumer’s weekly press conference.
Kamala Harris and Cory Booker join Schumer & co. at his weekly presser to trash the Thomas Farr judicial nomination, calling him a foe to voting rights and African Americans. pic.twitter.com/mUGmUrRD2x
Donald Trump’s top national security adviser said he had not listened to an audio recording of the murder of Jamal Khashoggi’s murder, stating he did not speak Arabic and believed there was nothing to learn from listening to the tape firsthand.
“People who speak Arabic have listened to the tape and given us the substance of what’s in it,” John Bolton, national security adviser to the president, said during a briefing at the White House on Tuesday.
Pressed on why he did not believe it necessary to hear the recording himself, Bolton grew defensive, asking reporters: “How many of you speak Arabic? I guess I should ask you why you think I should [listen]? What do you think I would learn from it?”
He added: “I mean, if they were speaking Korean, I wouldn’t learn any more from it, either. I can read a transcript.”
The Trump administration has come under widespread criticism over its response to the execution of Khashoggi, a Saudi dissident and Washington Post columnist. Both US and Turkish intelligence authorities have said a tape of the murder and other evidence prove Khashoggi’s killing was ordered by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
Khashoggi, a prominent critic of the Saudi royal family, was last seen on security footage entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on 2 October. His murder sparked an international outcry and prompted the Trump administration to levy sanctions against 17 Saudi officials.
But the White House has stopped short of confronting Prince Mohammed, with whom the president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, shares a close rapport.
Trump also defended Prince Mohammed and cast doubt on US intelligence linking the crown prince directly to the Khashoggi murder.
“Our intelligence agencies continue to assess all information, but it could very well be that the Crown Prince had knowledge of this tragic event — maybe he did and maybe he didn’t!” Trump said in a bizarre statement last week, which included a subheading that read “America First!”
CIA director Gina Haspel has reportedly been barred by the White House from briefing members of the US Senate on the matter. Haspel had traveled to Turkey last month and listened to a recording of Khashoggi’s killing.
Maryland Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger is at Walter Reed Medical Center where he says there is an active shooter.
I am currently at Walter Reed Medical in Bethesda where we’ve been told there is an active shooter. I am currently safe in a conference room w/ approx 40 others.
The White House is continuing to discount a government report outlining the extreme consequences of climate change in the US.
Press Secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters that the National Climate Assessment released last week is based on the most extreme scenarios possible as greenhouse gases continue to rise. She said “modeling the climate is an extremely complicated science that is never exact.” Trump yesterday said he doesn’t believe the findings.
There are now two House districts in the country where turnout was higher in the congressional race than it was for the 2016 presidential election. Cathy McMorris-Rodgers, the outgoing Republican conference chair from Eastern Washington, just saw her successful re-election bid join the at-large race in Montana in that category.
Top White House aide and Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner will be honored by the outgoing president of Mexico later this week.
Jared Kushner will receive the Order of the Aztec — Mexico’s highest honor for foreigners — from Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto this Friday on the sidelines of the G20 in Buenos Aires, per a source familiar
President Donald Trump is expected to have lunch with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo tomorrow at the White House.
Trump is expected to have lunch with Gov. Andrew Cuomo tomorrow, per a White House aide.
Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, who likely be the swing vote on the controversial nomination of Thomas Farr to the federal bench, has made up her mind but won’t say which way she’ll vote.
“I do know,” Murkowski told me when I asked if she knows how she’ll vote on the Farr nomination.
But in classic Murkowski fashion, she didn’t say how.
Jim Jordan, one of the leaders of the hard-right House Freedom Caucus, is mounting a bid to be the top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee. It would make him the leading adversary of Jerry Nadler, the incoming chairman, in investigations of Trump and in any impeachment probe.
NEW: Jim JORDAN is running for Judiciary Committee ranking member, and a pressure campaign from Trump allies on and off Capitol Hill is underway. https://t.co/EYh4WAIFpa
Donald Trump’s top economic adviser signaled on Tuesday the president is prepared to escalate his trade war with China, raising the stakes of a planned summit between Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping later this week.
“President Xi has an opportunity to change the tone and the substance of these talks. It’s a big opportunity,” Larry Kudlow, the director of the National Economic Council, told reporters at the White House.
“There’s a good possibility that we can make a deal, and he is open to it,” Kudlow added of Trump, while noting the president was “perfectly happy to stand on his tariff policies” should both parties fail to reach a cease-fire.
Tensions have escalated between the US and China, two of the world’s largest economies. Trump imposed $250 billion in tariffs on Chinese products earlier this year, citing unfair trade practices on the part of Beijing.
Kudlow said Trump was ready to slap another $267 billion in tariffs on China in January absent a breakthrough, while insisting the US would not incur as much damage to its economy as Bejing.
“I’m not suggesting that there aren’t winners and losers in that game. It’s a complicated game,” he said. “But I think we are in far better shape to weather this than the Chinese are.”
“China should change its practices and come into the community of responsible trading nations.”
Trump will convene with Xi over a working dinner on Saturday while attending the two-day G20 leaders’ summit in Buenos Aires. He is also slated to host bilateral meetings with Russian president Vladimir Putin, Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe, and German chancellor Angela Merkel.
Special counsel Robert Mueller is investigating a meeting between former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and Ecuadorian President Lenin Moreno in Quito in 2017 and has specifically asked if WikiLeaks or its founder, Julian Assange, were discussed at the session, CNN reports.
The latest report comes after the Guardian reported earlier Tuesday that Manafort met with Assange at the Ecuadorian embassy in London.
White House press secretary Sarah Sanders has taken the podium for the first such media briefing in almost a month. She has introduced Larry Kudlow, director of the National Economic Council, and John Bolton, national security adviser. They are speaking to reporters about the forthcoming G20 summit in Argentina, which Donald Trump will attend.
Follow live updates from our correspondent David Smith on Twitter:
At White House press briefing. Larry Kudlow on G20: There’s going to be a dinner meeting between President Trump and President Xi and their representatives. In President Trump’s view, “there’s a good possibility a deal can be made and he’s open to that”.
Sen. Bob Menendez, the top Democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee, said the Guardian’s report that Paul Manafort secretly met with Wikileaks founder Julian Assange “raises serious new questions about Mr. Manafort’s relationship with WikiLeaks” and called on the Ecuadorian government to publicly confirm whether the meetings took place.
“If true, the revelation that Paul Manafort repeatedly met with Julian Assange in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London raises serious new questions about Mr. Manafort’s relationship with WikiLeaks. It is essential that Ecuador’s current government publicly and swiftly confirm whether former Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa and his administration allowed these meetings to take place,” the New Jersey senator said.
The White House is preventing the CIA director, Gina Haspel, or any other intelligence official from briefing the Senate on the murder of Saudi dissident and Washington Post columnist, Jamal Khashoggi.
The secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, and the defence secretary, James Mattis, are due to give a briefing on US relations with Saudi Arabia to the entire Senate behind closed doors on Wednesday, ahead of a vote that could cut off US support for Riyadh’s military campaign in Yemen.
Another one-time opponent has thrown her support behind Nancy Pelosi for House Speaker.
Rep.-elect Jahana Hayes, a former Connecticut teacher elected to Congress, said during her campaign she would not vote for Pelosi but now backs her.
You can’t beat someone with no one, and the fact is that voting against Pelosi on the floor is a vote for the Republican nominee.
I am supporting Barbara Lee for Caucus Chair, Katherine Clark for Vice Chair & Nancy Pelosi for Speaker. Who is in a formal leadership role does matter and these women have a strong progressive track record, but this 116th Congress will be defined by more than who holds a title: pic.twitter.com/1f4wRWu5BU
A political organization backed by Democrat Stacey Abrams filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday challenging the way Georgia’s elections are run, the Associated Press reports.
The suit fulfills a pledge Abrams made when she conceded in the race for governor. From AP:
The lawsuit was filed in Atlanta by Fair Fight Action against interim Secretary of State Robyn Crittenden and state election board members. It asks a judge to correct problems with the state’s elections system.
In a fiery speech ending her campaign Nov. 16, Abrams announced that a lawsuit would be filed against Georgia “for the gross mismanagement of this election and to protect future elections from unconstitutional actions.”
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo says he has ruled out running for president in 2020.
“I am ruling it out. I ran for governor, I have a full plate, I have many projects – I’m going to be here doing the job of governor.”
One of the editors of the Trump administration’s dire new climate report hit the administration for releasing it in a way akin to “burning it and burying it in the backyard.”
The report was released the day after Thanksgiving, and Donald Trump has said he does not believe its findings.
Mississippi Democratic Senate candidate Mike Espy said Tuesday he’ll need support from a significant number of white voters in order to prevail.
“If only African Americans come out to vote for me, and even if they come out in record numbers, I won’t win. I know that. I’ve known that all the time, and I’ve known that throughout my career,” he said, according to video of his remarks to reporters aired by CNN.
White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said Tuesday that Donald Trump is not to blame for General Motors’ plan to close four US plants and lay off thousands of workers.
“The president doesn’t run GM. He runs the country’s economy,” Conway said outside the White House. “That’s why the confidence and optimism numbers are up, the growth numbers are up, the unemployment is way down.”
Pop star Cher says the United States may never be great again in her lifetime because of the damage done by Donald Trump.
In an interview with the Washington Post published Tuesday, Cher said she is heartened by young people she meets who don’t care about things like race or sexual orientation.
The House Judiciary Committee will investigate the rise of white nationalism in the United States when Democrats take over in January, its incoming chairman said.
Rep. Jerry Nadler, a New York Democrat expected to take over the committee, wrote to federal law enforcement officials asking for information about the increasing number of hate crimes, the targeted surveillance of minority communities, and the growing threat of white supremacy and right wing extremism. The questions have been submitted previously by Democrats but answers have not been provided, he said.
Senate Republicans are considering holding a floor vote on a bill to protect the job of special counsel Robert Mueller, the Senate’s number two Republican said Tuesday.
“We’re whipping that to see where people are. I think the leader needs that information to decide how to manage all the competing demands on our time,” said Texas Sen, John Cornyn, the Hill reported.
A federal appeals court on Tuesday threw out some of the convictions against two former aides to former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie in the George Washington Bridge lane-closing scandal, the Associated Press reported.
From the AP:
Bridget Kelly and Bill Baroni were convicted in 2016 in the alleged plot to cause traffic jams to punish a mayor for not endorsing Christie’s re-election bid.
The 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia dismissed a count of civil rights conspiracy for each defendant. It upheld convictions for wire fraud and misapplying property of an organization receiving federal funds.
Reactions are pouring in on social media to the Guardian’s report that Paul Manafort secretly met with Wikileaks founder Julian Assange during the 2016 campaign.
Jennifer Palmieri, the communications director for Hillary Clinton’s campaign, called it “more evidence of collusion.”
Annoyed by all the “wow” tweets about this story as if it’s surprising. It’s not. It’s serious, & more evidence of collusion, but – if you were paying attention in real time to how strategically timed the Wikileaks were – this news is not surprising. https://t.co/YA8dvESNW6
What campaign chair hasn’t held secret talks with Julian Assange in the Ecuadoran embassy in London?
“NO COLLUSION!” https://t.co/DDOHI9ZMWx
Remember this day when the Guardian permitted a serial fabricator to totally destroy the paper’s reputation. @WikiLeaks is willing to bet the Guardian a million dollars and its editor’s head that Manafort never met Assange. https://t.co/R2Qn6rLQjn
This is going to be one of the most infamous news disasters since Stern published the “Hitler Diaries”.
It’s beginning to look a lot like collusion… everywhere you go… https://t.co/rQKMvHjd64
Now, what could Manafort have been doing visiting Wikileaks’ Julian Assange in Ecaudor in 2016? What possibly could he have been interested in? But “no collusion!” lololololol https://t.co/DezMgKbD9q
So let me get this straight:
Manafort joins Trump campaign March 2016
Manafort secretly visits Wikileaks Assange in Ecuador, spring 2016
Trump elevates Manafort to Campaign Manager June 2016
In June and July 2016, Wikileaks releases Democratic emails
WOW: We’re learning a lot more about how the #TrumpRussia treason operation worked. Manafort held secret talks with Julian Assange inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London, and visited around the time he joined Trump’s campaign.#ProtectMueller #TrumpRussia https://t.co/6WbybAQK70
THREAD: What does today’s news that Manafort held a secret meeting with Julian Assange at the Ecuadorian embassy in spring 2016 tell us?
Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke called for a Confederate plaque to be removed from the Texas state capitol.
“Take it down today,” the Democrat and former Senate candidate said in a tweet Tuesday.
Former President Barack Obama recorded a robo-call sent to Mississippi voters Monday night, the National Journal reports this morning.
“My name may not be on the ballot, but our future is, and that’s why I believe this is one of the most important elections in our lifetime. Make a plan to vote tomorrow. I’m counting on you to be in line to vote before polls close,” Obama said. He did not mention the Democratic candidate, Mike Espy, by name in the call.
A Republican Florida Congressman said Donald Trump is “reckless” to refuse to believe the findings of his administration’s climate report.
Rep. Carlos Curbelo told CNN Tuesday the president’s reaction was “extremely disappointing. It’s reckless. It’s irresponsible.”
Democratic Senate candidate Mike Espy cast his vote in Ridgeland, Mississippi.
“I work with everyone of good will who wants to pick Mississippi up,” Espy, who is in a runoff with Republican Cindy Hyde-Smith, said after casting his ballot. “I’ve done it all my life and I’m going to do it as the next senator.”
I’m at precinct 315, in Ridgeland, Miss., just 5 minutes outside of Jackson, where Mike Espy is schedule to vote any minute. As of 8 a.m., CST, 250 people have voted here so far. The polling station stays open until 7. There are just as many media here as there are voters. pic.twitter.com/aBk9SLzBYi
White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said she has “great compassion,” for mothers and children seeking to cross the US border, but cast doubt on the idea that most migrants in the caravan are peacefully seeking asylum.
Conway said she had “great compassion” for women and children caught up in tear gas deployed by the US border patrol but said there are “peaceful and legal ways” to enter the United States that they should be pursuing, CBS News reported.
Former EPA administrator Scott Pruitt was sent questions in advance of interviews on Fox & Friends, and his reps even approved a script introducing Pruitt’s segment, the Daily Beast reports.
The cozy relationship was revealed in emails obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request by the Sierra Club.
Manafort went to see Assange in 2013, 2015 and in spring 2016 – during the period when he was made a key figure in Trump’s push for the White House, sources told the Guardian.
Former CIA director John Brennan ripped into Donald Trump over his attacks on special counsel Robert Mueller, saying his name will be “scorned” by history.
“Your feelings of inferiority, insecurity, vulnerability, and culpability are loud & clear. You remind me of how many corrupt authoritarian leaders abroad behaved before they were deposed,” Brennan said in a tweet Tuesday. “Bob Mueller’s name will be revered in the annals of U.S. history; your name will be scorned.”
Your feelings of inferiority, insecurity, vulnerability, and culpability are loud & clear. You remind me of how many corrupt authoritarian leaders abroad behaved before they were deposed. Bob Mueller’s name will be revered in the annals of U.S. history; your name will be scorned. https://t.co/aYnYetwJV1
Bernie Sanders said Tuesday that climate change is “not a debatable issue” and “the future of the planet is at stake,” after a US government report predicting dire consequences from the changing climate.
“The scientists have told us – despite Trump’s absurd thought that this is a hoax – that the future of the planet is at stake,” the Vermont senator said on CNN’s “New Day,” adding that climate change is “not a debatable issue to my mind.”
Mississippi voters are heading to the polls this morning to decide a runoff election for US Senate, which pits Republican Cindy Hyde-Smith against Democrat Mike Espy.
Polls opened at 7am central time (8am eastern).
This morning, Donald Trump is tweeting again about the Mueller investigation. He calls it a “Phony Witch Hunt,” and complains that the “Fake News Media builds Bob Mueller up as a Saint, when in actuality he is the exact opposite.”
The Phony Witch Hunt continues, but Mueller and his gang of Angry Dems are only looking at one side, not the other. Wait until it comes out how horribly & viciously they are treating people, ruining lives for them refusing to lie. Mueller is a conflicted prosecutor gone rogue….
….The Fake News Media builds Bob Mueller up as a Saint, when in actuality he is the exact opposite. He is doing TREMENDOUS damage to our Criminal Justice System, where he is only looking at one side and not the other. Heroes will come of this, and it won’t be Mueller and his…
….terrible Gang of Angry Democrats. Look at their past, and look where they come from. The now $30,000,000 Witch Hunt continues and they’ve got nothing but ruined lives. Where is the Server? Let these terrible people go back to the Clinton Foundation and “Justice” Department!