Trump Accuses Clinton Of Collusion With DOJ, FBI, State Dept.

On Sunday Trump released a short video on Twitter blasting Hillary Clinton on the released hacked emails from her time as Secretary of State. He alleges collusion and “quid pro quo” between the State Department, FBI and Department of Justice. Below is a full transcript.

This is very big and frankly it’s unbelievable. What was just found out is that the Department of Justice, the State Department and the FBI colluded, got together, to make Hillary Clinton look less guilty and look a lot better than she looks.

This is one of the big breaking stories of our time, in my opinion. This shows corruption at the highest level, and we can’t let it happen as American citizens.

So let’s see how the press covers it. The press likes not to cover it, because the best thing that Hillary Clinton has going is The Media. Without The Media she wouldn’t even be in this race.

This is collusion between the FBI, Department of Justice, and the State Department to try and make Hillary Clinton look like an innocent person when she’s guilty of very high crimes. So all I can say is that let’s hope our country gets a fair shake. This is a big mess.

The appearance of quid pro quo is problematic for Clinton, but the release of these emails doesn’t really back up the accusation. Undersecretary Kennedy wanted an email designation changed by FBI, and in return the State Department would allow additional personnel in Iraq.

The FBI said there was no way to change the designation of the email. That’s the end. It never happened.

Perhaps most importantly to discredit Trump’s accusations of collusion, nothing happened. The email didn’t change designation and the personnel stayed the same. In order for collusion or quid pro quo to happen there has to be a quid and there has to be a quo. That just didn’t happen in this case.

Honestly this sort of horsetrading seems like Washington business as usual. Everything in Washington is a compromise, that is how democracy works. This statement is more evidence that Donald Trump would have a very difficult time navigating the political landscape of Washington, and has a very hard time compromising.

If Donald Trump is going to make the accusation of a giant conspiracy of collusion “at the highest levels,” he’s definitely going to need more evidence than this. These are condensed interviews about a negotiation that never actually happened.

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, but Donald Trump has always been stronger on the former rather than the latter.

Sources:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2016/10/19/trumps-claim-of-collusion-by-the-fbi-and-state-to-make-hillary-clinton-look-less-guilty/
http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/fbi-state-department-deny-working-quid-pro-quo/story?id=42858792

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Trump Blames “Animals Representing Hillary Clinton” In North Carolina GOP Firebombing

fire

A GOP office was firebombed in Hillsborough, NC over the weekend. Trump quickly responded by blaming it on “Animals representing Hillary Clinton and Dems.”

animals

The Hillsborough police and the ATF have yet to release statements on suspects. Donald Trump immediately jumped to the conclusion that not only was the crime perpetrated by Democrats, but Democrats representing Hillary Clinton and Democrats in North Carolina. The attack is pretty obviously politically motivated:

nazi

But Trump is not just blaming this attack on people who oppose the GOP, he is saying that the criminals are “representing Hillary Clinton and Dems in North Carolina” and implying that they are somehow in the employ of the Clinton campaign or North Carolina Democrats. Additionally, referring to your opponents as “animals” is problematic, even if those opponents are firebombing political offices.

Further evidence of the Trump echo chamber of denial is alleging that the “animals” did this “because we are winning.” Donald Trump is definitely not winning. Nate Silver’s 538 Election Forecast gives Trump just a 12% chance of becoming President. Trump has been dropping steadily in the polls since the first debate. The House and Senate races in North Carolina are close for the GOP, both on the state and national level, and GOP leaders worry that Trump is hurting more than he is helping.

In a bit of a bright spot, North Carolina Democrats came together on this GoFundMe page to raise $10,000 for the GOP office. $13000 was raised in mere hours before the effort was closed.

Sources:
http://www.usnews.com/news/national-news/articles/2016-10-17/north-carolina-gop-office-firebombed-trump-blames-clinton-backing-animals
Donald Trump Says GOP Office Firebombed ‘Because We Are Winning’
http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/301268-donald-trump-hillary-clinton-north-carolina-firebombing
http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/politics-government/article107354007.html

Donald Trump Claims There Is “Large Scale Voter Fraud Happening”

tramp

Donald Trump has apparently decided that embarrassing himself and the GOP is not enough, and has decided to strike at the very heart of American democracy. He expanded on his litany of “this election is rigged” this morning tweeting that “Of course there is large scale voter fraud happening on and before election day. Why do Republican leaders deny what is going on? So naive!”

Donald Trump is no longer just talking about the media “rigging” the election against by reporting on the horrible things past and present that have tumbled from his mouth. Trump is no longer just talking about watching “certain” (ie African American) people in disputed polling stations in Philadelphia. Trump is now attempting to cast doubt upon the entire American system of democracy, trying to justify a loss weeks before a vote is cast.

This is the swan song of the petulant loser, the likes of which  America has perhaps never seen. The hubris required is staggering. To think that despite dozens of allegations of sexual harassment, alienating nearly every minority in the country, being incapable of maintaining any semblance of truth and running a campaign completely lacking in any sort of coherent policy that the only way that you could lose an election is voter fraud.

While his assertion seems ludicrous on its face, did the Trump campaign provide any evidence that there was voter fraud going on?

In a word, no.

According to Politifact, the Trump campaign pointed to a few pieces of “evidence.”

The Trump campaign cited a discredited study that said that 6.4% of non-citizens in the US voted. There are multiple problems with this study, namely that most of the data was self-reported on the Internet.

When studying whether a photo ID is needed to prevent voter fraud, the Carnegie Corporation and James L. Knight Foundation found that there were a total of just 216 alleged cases of voter fraud from 2000 to 2011.

Voter fraud does happen, but it is vanishingly rare and unlikely to ever impact any but the closest elections. Donald Trump has already conceded the election and is now blaming the referees. Donald Trump is engaging in a scorched earth policy, trying to burn down our precious democracy that has all but rejected him. This is the most dangerous statement Donald Trump has ever made.

Sources:
http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2016/oct/17/donald-trump/donald-trumps-pants-fire-claim-large-scale-voter-f/
http://votingrights.news21.com/article/election-fraud/
https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/monkey-cage/wp/2014/10/24/could-non-citizens-decide-the-november-election/
http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2016/aug/15/donald-trump/donald-trumps-baseless-claims-about-election-being/

Trump Says US Doesn’t Have Any “Grand Chess Masters.” We Have 90.

https://www.c-span.org/video/standalone/?416683-1/donald-trump-campaigns-ambridge-pennsylvania

As the wheels fall off of the Trump campaign and the screens fall off the teleprompters, Donald Trump made some disparaging remarks about the state of the US chess game.

Taking a break from defending himself from dozens of new sexual assault allegations, Trump railed against a favorite punching bag: the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Calling it the worst deal since NAFTA, he swore to get rid of it and renegotiate a better deal, but without any evidence, research or policy to back it up. And then, at the 20:30 mark of the above video at a rally in Ambridge, PA last week, he threw shade on US chess players.

“[TPP] is a complex deal with many countries, you have to see the arrows all over the place. Once you sign it it’s five thousand pages, or more than that, long. Once you sign it, it’s a mess. I like free trade. We made one deal, two deals, we make them with individual countries, and if they don’t behave we terminate them. We send them what is called a notice of termination. Right? but that’ll never happen because during that thirty day period we’ll renegotiate a better deal for our country, ok? And the other way you can’t terminate, it’s going, people go crazy. You have to be like a Grand Chess Master. And we don’t have any of them.

The 90 current US chess grandmasters (“grand chess masters” as Trump said, is wrong) would beg to differ. The US ranks third in the world in number of grandmasters, behind Russia and Germany. The title of grandmaster is the highest title that a chess player can attain and it is awarded by Fédération Internationale des Échecs or World Chess Federation, and is awarded for life.

Also, I know that Trump’s catch phrase is “You’re Fired,” but couldn’t he find a better word than “terminate” to describe what we’re going to other countries that don’t cooperate with us?

Sources:
http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2016/oct/14/donald-trump/donald-trump-wrongly-maligns-us-chess-prowess/
https://ratings.fide.com/topfed.phtml
https://www.c-span.org/video/?416683-1/donald-trump-campaigns-ambridge-pennsylvania

Contrary To Trump’s “Armrest Truthers,” The Armrests In Those Planes Definitely Move

Jessica Leeds has accused Donald Trump of groping her in an airplane in 1979. She was upgraded to a seat in first class next to Donald Trump on a Braniff International Airways flight into New York. She claimed that he moved the armrest up and began kissing her, touching her breasts and attempted to put his hand up her skirt. Leeds claims that she never gave consent, and moved back to her original seat when Trump attempted to go up her skirt.

Spokeswoman for the Trump campaign Katrina Pierson tried to refute this in the above CNN video, as her fellow interviewees laughed and mocked her.

“First-class seats have fixed armrests, so what I can tell you about her story is, if she was groped on a plane, it wasn’t by Donald Trump and it certainly wasn’t in first class,” Pierson said.

Jessica Leeds thought that the plane that she was riding then was a Boeing 707, though Braniff ceased using that plane in 1973. The almost identical Boeing 727, however, was the main plane used by Braniff to fly into New York during the late 1970s.

CNN dug up a Braniff flight attendant manual from the era that clearly shows that the armrests are moveable:

manual

CNN also found pics of the first class seats, with a moveable arm rest:

seats

After this armrest defense was quickly debunked, Trump tried another tack: saying that Leeds was not attractive enough to be sexually assaulted by him.

“Yeah, I’m going to go after you,” Trump said sarcastically of Leeds at a rally yesterday. “Believe me, she would not be my first choice, that I can tell you. You don’t know. That would not be my first choice.”

“That” would not be my first choice. That what, Mr. Trump? That human being? That person that is somebody’s daughter and mother? That object?

Sources:
http://money.cnn.com/2016/10/14/news/donald-trump-jessica-leeds-armrest/
http://www.npr.org/2016/10/14/497953012/jumped-out-of-my-skin-trump-accuser-jessica-leeds-on-why-she-came-forward
http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2016/10/13/trump_responds_to_groping_allegations_by_blaming_global_conspiracy.html
https://www.yahoo.com/news/katrina-pierson-uses-curious-aviation-defense-against-trump-accusations-181414361.html

Debate #2 Vol. 4: Trump Claims He Won Every Poll Following the Debate. He Did Not.

capture

Donald Trump bragged on Twitter following the debate that he won in a “landslide” and won “every poll.”

According to the Washington Post, the most scientific of the polls that came immediately following the debate was the CNN Poll. Using a scientific methodology and following up with phone respondents that said they were planning to watch the debate, the poll found that 57% said Clinton won. 34% said Trump won.

The Washington Post also sites three other “online opt in” polls of lesser but respectable quality that all found Clinton to have won by margins of 5-16%.

Trump loves polls, as long as they show him up. He has never tweeted a poll that shows him down, and loves to post polls of very poor methodology. For example:

a

These polls are referred to by 538’s Nate Silver as “clickers” or “fauxlls” because they lack any sort of sampling, methodology or oversight. All are online polls, and anyone can vote in them as many times as they want, so you can imagine that the people that are haunting Breitbart might be a little partisan.

Not only did Trump not win “every poll” in a “landslide,” all of the scientific polls conducted immediately after the debate had Clinton winning by a significant margin. This seems to play into Trump’s distrust of polls, as he sees his numbers sliding there, but attendance and enthusiasm at his rallies remain high.

Sources:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2016/10/12/trumps-ridiculous-claim-that-he-won-every-poll-on-the-second-presidential-debate/
http://politifact.com/wisconsin/statements/2016/oct/12/donald-trump/donald-trumps-ridiculous-claim-all-polls-show-he-w/
http://www.cnn.com/2016/10/09/politics/clinton-wins-debate-but-trump-exceeds-expectations/

Debate #2 Vol. 3: Donald Trump Denies Tweeting To “Check Out A Sex Tape”

tramp

After the first debate Donald Trump spent a lot of energy attacking former Miss Universe Alicia Muchado, referring to her as “Miss Piggy” because she gained some weight and “Miss Housekeeping” presumably because she is Latina.  Again and again he doubled down, defending his attacks on her weight and calling her “The worst. The absolute worst. She was impossible.”

At the second debate Anderson Cooper asked Trump about a specific tweet he made at 4:30am imploring his supporters to watch a purported sex tape made by Muchado.

COOPER: Mr. Trump, let me follow up with you. In 2008, you wrote in one of your books that the most important characteristic of a good leader is discipline. You said, if a leader doesn’t have it, quote, “he or she won’t be one for very long.” In the days after the first debate, you sent out a series of tweets from 3 a.m. to 5 a.m., including one that told people to check out a sex tape. Is that the discipline of a good leader?

TRUMP: No, there wasn’t check out a sex tape. It was just take a look at the person that she built up to be this wonderful Girl Scout who was no Girl Scout.

COOPER: You mentioned sex tape.

TRUMP: By the way, just so you understand, when she said 3 o’clock in the morning, take a look at Benghazi. She said who is going to answer the call at 3 o’clock in the morning? Guess what? She didn’t answer it, because when Ambassador Stevens…

When Anderson Cooper asks Trump about a specific tweet Donald Trump denies it, mumbling “no, there wasn’t check out a sex tape.”

cap

He didn’t even bother to delete it, it’s still on his Twitter feed.

Sources:

http://www.usmagazine.com/celebrity-news/news/donald-trump-miss-universe-alicia-machado-gained-weight-w442249
http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2016/10/09/watch_trump_deny_sex_tape_tweet_in_incomprehensible_debate_answer.html

Debate #2 Vol. 2: Trump Claims Warren Buffett “Took A Massive Deduction.” So Buffett Released His Tax Returns.

buffet

Obviously the topic of Donald Trump’s tax returns was going to come up in the second Presidential debate. Donald Trump tried to deflect the fact that he had paid no income taxes by saying that many of Clinton’s wealthy donors didn’t pay any taxes either.

“Now, the taxes are a very simple thing. As soon as I have — first of all, I pay hundreds of millions of dollars in taxes,” Donald Trump said, after bragging that he was ‘smart’ in the first debate for paying no taxes. “Many of her friends took bigger deductions. Warren Buffett took a massive deduction. Soros, who’s a friend of hers, took a massive deduction. Many of the people that are giving her all this money that she can do many more commercials than me gave her — took massive deductions.”

Warren Buffett responded by saying “Trump better get my name out he mouth.” Ok, he said that in a wonderful dream I had. But in real life the sentiment Warren Buffett expressed was similar, saying “I have paid federal income tax every year since 1944, when I was 13. (Though, being a slow starter, I owed only $7 in tax that year.) I have copies of all 72 of my returns and none uses a carryforward,” Buffett said in a statement.

Trump claimed that Buffett took “a massive deduction.” He may be confusing carryforward deductions with Buffett’s charitable giving as Warren Buffett gave $2.36 BILLION to charities in 2015 alone. Let that wash over you. A man who paid no taxes is taking shots at the fourth richest man in the world that gave over $2 billion to charities last year alone. Your move, Donald.

Sources:
http://www.bbc.com/news/election-us-2016-37613971
How Warren Buffett’s Released Tax Returns Prove Trump Wrong

Debate #2 Vol. 1: Trump Flubs “Line In The Sand” Quote, Accuses Clinton Of Being There

debate-1

While speaking about Syria, Donald Trump accused Hillary Clinton of being there during Obama’s “line in the sand.” Presumably Donald Trump is talking about Obama’s “red line,” which would be crossed if and when Assad used chemical weapons, but he just made it sort of racist in his head.

TRUMP: First of all, she was there as secretary of state with the so-called line in the sand, which…

CLINTON: No, I wasn’t. I was gone. I hate to interrupt you, but at some point…

TRUMP: OK. But you were in contact — excuse me. You were…

CLINTON: At some point, we need to do some fact-checking here.

TRUMP: You were in total contact with the White House, and perhaps, sadly, Obama probably still listened to you. I don’t think he would be listening to you very much anymore. Obama draws the line in the sand. It was laughed at all over the world what happened.

Obama made the statement in August of 2012, when Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State. “We have been very clear to the Assad regime, but also to other players on the ground, that a red line for us is we start seeing a whole bunch of chemical weapons moving around or being utilized. That would change my calculus. That would change my equation,” Obama said.

The incident that Trump was probably talking about was when Assad was caught using chemical weapons in August of 2013 and the US military did not intervene. At this point John Kerry was Secretary of State.

This isn’t a complete lie, as Donald Trump flubs the quote and doesn’t elaborate on what he means. He isn’t very sure in any case, as he back tracks immediately and says that Clinton was still in contact with the White House, even if she wasn’t there.  I read Trump’s quote as referring to the decision to not use force in 2013, as the 2012 threat to use force would not be “laughed at all over the world.”

In any case, while some would describe this as a failure to act, a multilateral coalition has used diplomacy to help Russia remove over 1300 pounds of chemical munitions from Syria. Only scattered uses of chemical weapons have occurred since. If the goal was to keep Assad from using chemical weapons then Obama’s tactic succeeded without putting a single US soldier in harm’s way.

Sources:

http://politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2016/oct/10/hillary-clinton/clinton-and-line-sand-comment/

Trump Vows To Ignore Bill Clinton’s Personal Life Just Four Days Ago, Then Retweets His Rape Accuser

juanita

As Republicans scramble to put as much distance between themselves and Donald Trump’s gleeful boasting about sexual assaults, Trump has gone on the offensive and grabbed the last dangerous arrow in his Clinton quiver. Yesterday he retweeted Juanita Broaddrick, the woman who accused Bill Clinton of raping her in 1978 when Clinton was Attorney General.

Just four days ago, on October 5th, Trump told the New York Post that he wouldn’t mention Bill Clinton’s infidelities at the debate on Sunday. Trump told the Post in regard to tonight’s debate that “I want to win this election on my policies for the future, not on Bill Clinton’s past. Jobs, trade, ending illegal immigration, veteran care, and strengthening our military is what I really want to be talking about.”

As his campaign imploded, he has apparently “reconsidered,” threatening the Clintons in his apology video from Saturday and retweeting Juanita Broaddrick’s accusations. He ended his apology video, where he forgot to apologize to his poor wife by the way, with a thinly veiled threat that Bill Clinton’s past sexual indiscretions were now on the table, saying “Bill Clinton has actually abused women, and Hillary has bullied, attacked, shamed and intimidated his victims. We will discuss this more in the coming days. See you at the debate on Sunday.”

There were rumors swirling at the last debate that Gennifer Flowers would be in attendance in the front row. She did not attend.

The stench of Trump’s desperation will no doubt fill the auditorium in St. Louis tonight, as Trump scorches the earth with a last ditch effort to discredit the Clintons with  infidelities. Let’s not forget that Donald Trump was having a very public affair with his second wife Marla Maples while married to his first wife Ivanka, who has accused Trump of raping her. Trump did not just admit to an affair in the 2005 video, he admitted to a modus operandi of coercion and unwanted sexual advances. Also, the lawsuit against Donald Trump for forcible rape of a minor just got a hearing date. There is plenty of gross to go around, and I’m exhausted.

Sources:

http://pagesix.com/2016/10/05/trump-i-wont-mention-bill-clintons-past-at-next-debate/

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3828991/Donald-Trump-promotes-claims-Juanita-Broaddrick-Bill-Clinton-raped-eve-second-presidential-debate.html
http://pagesix.com/2016/10/05/trump-i-wont-mention-bill-clintons-past-at-next-debate/
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/10/08/donald-trump-just-retweeted-juanita-broaddrick-calling-bill-clinton-a-rapist-all-bets-are-now-off/
http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2016/10/08/donald-trump-just-revealed-his-next-debate-strategy.html
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/donald-trump-accused-underage-rape-lawsuit-a7352976.html
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/donald-trump-ex-wife-claim-he-raped-her-resurfaces-in-new-documentary-a6836151.html