Posts Tagged ‘Sessions’

Top Democrats call for Devin Nunes to recuse himself from Trump-Russia inquiry — Devin Nunes Cancels House Intelligence Committee Meetings

March 28, 2017

and in New York and in Washington

Nancy Pelosi joined Adam Schiff in demanding Nunes step aside from inquiry into 2016 election interference ‘in interest of a fair and impartial investigation’

Devin Nunes speaks to reporters outside the White House.
Devin Nunes speaks to reporters outside the White House. Photograph: Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP

Leading Democrats have escalated the controversy over the erratic behavior of Devin Nunes, the Republican chairman of the House intelligence committee, calling on him to recuse himself from the investigation into alleged links between the president’s associates and Russia.

Both Adam Schiff, Nunes’ counterpart on the committee, and Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic leader of the House of Representatives, demanded that he step aside from the ongoing Russia affair that has become an enduring sore for the young Trump administration.

The intervention of senior Democrats takes the dispute to a new level of intensity, raising the prospect of the governing party being forced to make a second humiliating concession after US attorney general Jeff Sessions was forced this month to stand back from all Russian inquiries after he failed to disclose meetings with Moscow’s ambassador to Washington.

Schiff was the first to wade into the fray on Monday night, calling on Nunes to recuse himself in the wake of mounting controversy about his handling of the Russian inquiry. The ranking Democrat on the committee drew a parallel with the Sessions recusal and said in a statement: “I believe the public cannot have the necessary confidence that matters involving the president’s campaign or transition team can be objectively investigated or overseen by the chairman.”

Less than an hour later, Pelosi came out with a similarly weighed statement, saying that her equivalent in the House, Paul Ryan, should lean on Nunes to make him stand aside. “Speaker Ryan must insist that chairman Nunes at least recuse himself from the Trump-Russia investigation immediately. That leadership is long overdue.”

The top Democrat in the Senate, Chuck Schumer, also added his voice to the growing chorus for a Nunes recusal. The senator accused the Republican chairman of being “more interested in protecting the president than in seeking the truth. You cannot have the person in charge of an impartial investigation be partial to one side.”

The open partisan split within the powerful intelligence committee came as Schiff complained that members of the panel continue to wait for Nunes to present them with documents ostensibly relating to intelligence collected on Trump days after he had briefed the president. The embattled committee chairman raised further questions when he said he had no choice under classification rules except to view the sensitive intelligence at the White House, a statement likely to intensify speculation that the Trump administration fed Nunes the material.

The source who made the materials available to Nunes “could not simply put the documents in a backpack and walk them over to the House intelligence committee space”, Nunes’ office said on Monday.

In his statement on Monday night, Schiff tore into the chairman’s explanation. “There was no legitimate justification for bringing that information to the White House instead of the committee,” he said, adding: “That it was obtained at the White House makes this departure all the more concerning.”

Adam Schiff.
Adam Schiff. Photograph: J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Further pressure on Nunes to stand down from the Russian investigation came from the top Democrat on the CIA subcommittee of the House intelligence committee, Eric Swalwell. The chairman should “no longer be anywhere near this investigation, let alone leading it”, he said.

Swalwell added that “too many people in the White House and administration, and now, the chairman of the House intelligence committee, have betrayed their duty to conduct an independent, bipartisan inquiry into the Trump team’s ties with Russia”.

Spicer repeatedly refused to offer any details about why Nunes was on the White House grounds and whom the California congressman was meeting with. “I’m not going to get into who he met with or why,” he said, while insisting the White House “was not concerned” over the possibility of classified information being leaked to Nunes.

Nunes, a member of Trump’s national security transition team, has come under sustained criticism that he is obstructing a high-profile investigation into Trump’s ties to Russia that he is running – a charge likely to intensify over the coming days.

On Wednesday, he stunned Washington by suggesting that communications from Trump’s associates were incidentally collected as part of “lawful” surveillance, with their identities insufficiently masked.

Contradicting testimony from the FBI and NSA directors, Trump claimed Nunes’ remarks provided a modicum of vindication for the president’s baseless claim that Obama placed Trump Tower under surveillance, something even Nunes continues to deny. Nunes has said the intelligence collection that “alarmed” him did not concern Russia.

Before making his statement calling for Nunes’ recusal, Schiff had publicly doubted the impartiality of the House inquiry. Those concerns escalated after Nunes abruptly canceled a public hearing scheduled for Tuesday into the Trump-Russia question.

Nunes has dodged questions, primarily from CNN, that his source came from the White House, and intimated that whistleblowers from the intelligence agencies brought the surveillance documents to him. Nunes told Bloomberg View on Monday that his source was an intelligence official and not a White House staffer.

But Nunes’ office has acknowledged that the chairman viewed whatever surveillance documents he has acquired on the White House grounds, apparently at the Eisenhower executive office building, where the national security council staff works.

Viewing the documents at the White House came under immediate scrutiny, since the House committee possesses secure facilities where it frequently accesses classified information as part of its routine responsibilities.

But Jack Langer, Nunes’ spokesman, told the Guardian that Nunes saw at the White House “executive branch documents” that Congress does not have.

“The White House grounds was the best location to safeguard the proper chain of custody and classification of these documents, so the chairman could view them in a legal way,” Langer said.

It remained unclear why, if Nunes’ source did not originate from the White House, viewing the documents had to occur at the White House complex. His explanation to Bloomberg was that the White House was the closest available location to access a classified computer network hived off from Congress. Nunes appears not to have paid visits to intelligence agency locations where the information would be accessible, including the offices of the director of national intelligence, FBI and NSA.

Langer did not immediately respond to a follow-up question about whether Nunes had in effect confirmed that his source for the documents came from the White House itself.

Read the rest:

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/mar/27/devin-nunes-white-house-intelligence-source-trump

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Devin Nunes Cancels House Intelligence Committee Meetings Amid Growing Questions

The chairman is in hot water.

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03/28/2017 09:13 am ET

WASHINGTON ― Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) on Tuesday abruptly canceled all House Intelligence Committee meetings scheduled for this week, according to committee members, raising further questions on whether its investigation into ties between President Donald Trump’s administration and Russia can proceed.

“Not only [has] this investigation sort of had a shadow cast on it, but the committee has been put into suspended animation,” committee member Rep. Jim Himes (D-Conn.) said on MSNBC, confirming previous reports that Nunes, the committee chair, had canceled the meetings.

The move comes amid growing scrutiny over whether Nunes can lead an independent investigation into ties between Trump’s team and Russian officials.

Nunes claimed last week that members of the president’s team were subject to “incidental” surveillance. One day before making these allegations, however, he met with a source on White House grounds. Nunes said he needed a secure location to view sensitive information, but the visit raised further doubts about the transparency of the investigation and whether Nunes is coordinating with the White House.

After holding a press conference about his findings, Nunes also briefed Trump, whose team is under FBI investigation for alleged ties to Russian officials who may have interfered in the 2016 U.S. election.

Himes said Tuesday that Nunes had not shared his information with the rest of the committee.

“No member of the committee, Republican or Democrat, has seen, after a full week, this stuff that caused Nunes to make himself famous nationally,” Himes said Tuesday. “Not a single member of the committee. I don’t even think anybody on his own staff has any idea what caused him to do this sort of musical chairs thing with the White House.”

Democrats have called for Nunes, who served on Trump’s transition team, to recuse himself from the investigation or even to be replaced as head of the committee, with some speculating that the chairman wants to protect Trump.

“Chairman Nunes is falling down on the job and seems to be more interested in protecting the president than in seeking the truth,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said Monday.

Several Democratic members of the committee said Nunes had lost their trust.

“In the interest of a fair and impartial investigation, whose results will be respected by the public, the Chairman’s recusal is more than warranted,” the committee’s ranking member, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), said Monday.

I think that the writing is on the wall. It might make a good spy novel. It doesn’t make a good investigation.

Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.)

Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.), another member of the committee, said Nunes’ White House meeting was “the last straw.” She suggested he had “colluded in a desperate attempt to salvage the president’s credibility, after the president’s bogus wiretapping claims were debunked by his own FBI director.”

She told CNN on Tuesday that she believes “there is an effort under way to shut this committee down, by the president.”

“I don’t think he can just recuse himself and still chair the committee,” Speier said of Nunes. “I think that the writing is on the wall. It might make a good spy novel. It doesn’t make a good investigation.”

But Nunes said in interviews Monday night that he has no intention of stepping down.

“I’m sure the Democrats do want me to quit because they know that I’m quite effective at getting to the bottom of things,” he told Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/devin-nunes-trump-intelligence-committee_us_58da50dbe4b00f68a5caa9cd

FBI investigating ties between Russia and Trump campaign

March 20, 2017

AFP and The Associated Press

© Nicholas Kamm, AFP | FBI Director James Comey (pictured left) and NSA Director Mike Rogers on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. on March 20, 2017

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2017-03-20

FBI Director James Comey confirmed Monday that the bureau is investigating possible links and coordination between Russia and associates of President Donald Trump as part of a probe of Russian interference in last year’s presidential election.

The extraordinary revelation came at the outset of Comey’s opening statement in a congressional hearing examining Russian meddling and possible connections between Moscow and Trump‘s campaign. He acknowledged that the FBI does not ordinarily discuss ongoing investigations, but said he’d been authorized to do so given the extreme public interest in this case.

“This work is very complex, and there is no way for me to give you a timetable for when it will be done,” Comey told the House Intelligence Committee.

Earlier in the hearing, the chairman of the committee contradicted an assertion from Trump by saying that there had been no wiretap of Trump Tower. But Rep. Devin Nunes, a California Republican whose committee is one of several investigating, said that other forms of surveillance of Trump and his associates have not been ruled out.

Comey was testifying at Monday’s hearing along with National Security Agency Director Michael Rogers.

Trump, who recently accused President Barack Obama of wiretapping his New York skyscraper during the campaign, took to Twitter before the hearing began, accusing Democrats of making up allegations about his campaign associates’ contact with Russia during the election. He said Congress and the FBI should be going after media leaks and maybe even Hillary Clinton instead.

“The real story that Congress, the FBI and others should be looking into is the leaking of Classified information. Must find leaker now!” Trump tweeted early Monday as news coverage on the Russia allegations dominated the morning’s cable news.

Trump also suggested, without evidence, that Clinton’s campaign was in contact with Russia and had possibly thwarted a federal investigation. U.S. intelligence officials have not publicly raised the possibility of contacts between the Clintons and Moscow. Officials investigating the matter have said they believe Moscow had hacked into Democrats’ computers in a bid to help Trump’s election bid.

The real story that Congress, the FBI and all others should be looking into is the leaking of Classified information. Must find leaker now!

Monday’s hearing, one of several by congressional panels probing allegations of Russian meddling, could allow for the greatest public accounting to date of investigations that have shadowed the Trump administration in its first two months.

The top two lawmakers on the committee said Sunday that documents the Justice Department and FBI delivered late last week offered no evidence that the Obama administration had wiretapped Trump Tower, the president’s New York City headquarters. But the panel’s ranking Democrat said the material offered circumstantial evidence that American citizens colluded with Russians in Moscow’s efforts to interfere in the presidential election.

“There was circumstantial evidence of collusion; there is direct evidence, I think, of deception,” Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” ”There’s certainly enough for us to conduct an investigation.”

The Democrats made up and pushed the Russian story as an excuse for running a terrible campaign. Big advantage in Electoral College & lost!

Nunes said: “For the first time the American people, and all the political parties now, are paying attention to the threat that Russia poses.”

“We know that the Russians were trying to get involved in our campaign, like they have for many decades. They’re also trying to get involved in campaigns around the globe and over in Europe,” he said on “Fox News Sunday.”

The Senate Intelligence Committee has scheduled a similar hearing for later in the month.

It is not clear how much new information will emerge Monday, and the hearing’s open setting unquestionably puts Comey in a difficult situation if he’s asked to discuss an ongoing investigation tied to the campaign of the president.

At a hearing in January, Comey refused to confirm or deny the existence of any investigation exploring possible connections between Trump associates and Russia, consistent with the FBI’s longstanding policy of not publicly discussing its work. His appearances on Capitol Hill since then have occurred in classified settings, often with small groups of lawmakers, and he has made no public statements connected to the Trump campaign or Russia.

Any lack of detail from Comey on Monday would likely be contrasted with public comments he made last year when closing out an investigation into Clinton’s email practices and then, shortly before Election Day, announcing that the probe would be revived following the discovery of additional emails.

(AP)

Related:

FBI Director Comey: Justice Dept. has no information that supports President Trump’s tweets alleging he was wiretapped by Obama

March 20, 2017

James Comey. Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images (File Photo)

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The Washington Post
March 20 at 11:27 AM
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FBI Director James B. Comey acknowledged on Monday the existence of a counterintelligence investigation into the Russian government’s efforts to interfere in the 2016 election, and said that probe extends to the nature of any links between Trump campaign associates and the Russian government.
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Testifying before the House Intelligence Committee, Comey said the investigation is also exploring whether there was any coordination between the campaign and the Kremlin, and “whether any crimes were committed.”
.The acknowledgment was an unusual move, given that the FBI’s practice is not to confirm the existence of ongoing investigations. “But in unusual circumstances, where it is in the public interest,” Comey said, “it may be appropriate to do so.”

Comey said he had been authorized by the Justice Department to confirm the wide-ranging probe’s existence.

He spoke at the first intelligence committee public hearing on alleged Russian interference in the 2016 election, along with National Security Agency head Michael S. Rogers.

Comey: No information to support Trump’s wiretapping tweets

FBI Director James B. Comey said at a House Intelligence Committee hearing that he has no information that Trump Tower was wiretapped by former president Barack Obama. (Reuters)

The hearing comes amid the controversy fired up by President Trump two weeks ago when he tweeted, without providing evidence, that President Barack Obama ordered his phones tapped at Trump Tower.

Comey says there is “no information’’ that supports Trump’s claims that his predecessor Barack Obama ordered surveillance of Trump Tower during the election campaign.

“I have no information that supports those tweets,’’ said Comey. “We have looked carefully inside the FBI,’’ and agents found nothing to support those claims, he said. He added the Justice Department had asked him to also tell the committee that that agency has no such information, either.

Under questioning from the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif,), Comey said no president could order such surveillance.

Committee chairman, Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) said in his opening statement, “The fact that Russia hacked U.S. election-related databases comes as no shock to this committee. We have been closely monitoring Russia’s aggressions for years…However, while the indications of Russian measures targeting the U.S. presidential election are deeply troubling, one benefit is already clear – it has focused wide attention on the pressing threats posed by the Russian autocrat. In recent years, Committee members have issued repeated and forceful pleas for stronger action against Russian belligerence. But the Obama administration was committed to the notion, against all evidence, that we could ‘reset’ relations with Putin, and it routinely ignored our warnings.”

Nunes said he hoped the hearing would focus on several key questions, including what actions Russia undertook against the United States during the 2016 election and did anyone from a political campaign conspire in these activities? He also wants to know if the communications of any campaign officials or associates were subject to any improper surveillance.

“Let me be clear,” he said. “We know there was not a wiretap on Trump Tower. However, it’s still possible that other surveillance activities were used against President Trump and his associates.”

Finally, Nunes said he is focused on leaks of classified information to the media. “We aim to determine who has leaked or facilitated leaks of classified information so these individuals can be brought to justice,” he said.

In his opening statement, Schiff said, “We will never know whether the Russian intervention was determinative in such a close election. Indeed it is unknowable in a campaign in which so many small changes could have dictated a different result. More importantly, and for the purposes of our investigation, it simply does not matter. What does matter is this: the Russians successfully meddled in our democracy, and our intelligence agencies have concluded that they will do so again.”

He added: “Most important, we do not yet know whether the Russians had the help of U.S. citizens, including people associated with the Trump campaign. Many of Trump’s campaign personnel, including the president himself, have ties to Russia and Russian interests. This is, of course, no crime. On the other hand, if the Trump campaign, or anybody associated with it, aided or abetted the Russians, it would not only be a serious crime, it would also represent one of the most shocking betrayals of our democracy in history.”

Just hours before the start of the hearing, Trump posted a series of tweets claiming Democrats “made up” the allegations of Russian contacts in an attempt to discredit the GOP during the presidential campaign. Trump also urged federal investigators to shift their focus to probe disclosures of classified material.

“The real story that Congress, the FBI and all others should be looking into is the leaking of Classified information,” Trump wrote early Monday. “Must find leaker now!”

Republican members pressed hard on the subject of leaks to the media that resulted in news stories about contacts between Russian officials and the Trump campaign or administration officials. Nunes sought an admission from the officials that the leaks were illegal under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court act, the law that governs foreign intelligence-gathering on U.S. soil or of U.S. persons overseas.

“Yes,” Comey answered. “In addition to being a breach of our trust with the FISA court.”

One story in particular that apparently upset the Republicans was a Feb. 9 story by The Washington Post reporting that Trump’s national security advisor, Michael Flynn, discussed the subject of sanctions with the Russian ambassador, Sergey Kislyak, in the month before Trump took office. The Post reported that the discussions were monitored under routine, court-approved monitoring of Kislyak’s calls.

Rep. Tom Rooney (R-Fla.) pressed Rogers to clarify under what circumstances it would be legitimate for Americans caught on tape speaking with people under surveillance to have their identities disclosed publicly, and whether leaking those identities would “hurt or help” intelligence collection.

“Hurt,” Rogers noted.

Rogers stressed that the identities of U.S. persons picked up through “incidental collection” – that being the way intelligence officials picked up on Flynn’s phone calls with Kislyak – are disclosed only on a “valid, need to know” basis, and usually only when there is a criminal activity or potential threat to the United States at play.

Rogers added that there are a total of 20 people in the NSA he has delegated to make decisions about when someone’s identity can be unmasked.

The FBI probe combines an investigation into hacking operations by Russian spy agencies with efforts to understand how the Kremlin sought to manipulate public opinion and influence the election’s outcome.

In January, the intelligence community released a report concluding that Russian President Vladi­mir Putin wanted to not only undermine the legitimacy of the election process but also harm the campaign of Hillary Clinton and boost Trump’s chances of winning.

Hackers working for Russian spy agencies penetrated the computers of the Democratic National Committee in 2015 and 2016 as well as the email accounts of Democratic officials, intelligence official said in the report. The material was relayed to WikiLeaks, the officials said, and the anti-secrecy group began a series of damaging email releases just before the Democratic National Convention that continued through the fall.

On Friday, the Justice Department delivered documents to the committee in response to a request for copies of intelligence and criminal wiretap orders and applications. Nunes, speaking Sunday, said the material provided “no evidence of collusion” to sway the election toward Trump and repeated previous statements that there is no credible proof of any active coordination.

But Schiff, also speaking Sunday, said there was “circumstantial evidence of collusion” at the outset of the congressional investigations into purported Russian election meddling, as well as “direct evidence” that Trump campaign figures sought to deceive the public about their interactions with Russian figures.

The concerns about Moscow’s meddling are also being felt in Europe, where France and Germany hold elections this year. “Our allies,” Schiff said, “are facing the same Russian onslaught.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/fbi-director-to-testify-on-russian-interference-in-the-presidential-election/2017/03/20/cdea86ca-0ce2-11e7-9d5a-a83e627dc120_story.html?utm_term=.2b44421224ec

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The Associated Press

WASHINGTON – FBI Director James Comey confirmed Monday that the bureau is investigating possible links and coordination between Russia and associates of President Donald Trump as part of a broader probe of Russian interference in last year’s presidential election.

The extraordinary revelation came at the outset of Comey’s opening statement in a congressional hearing examining Russian meddling and possible connections between Moscow and Trump’s campaign. He acknowledged that the FBI does not ordinarily discuss ongoing investigations, but said he’d been authorized to do so given the extreme public interest in this case.

“This work is very complex, and there is no way for me to give you a timetable for when it will be done,” Comey told the House Intelligence Committee.

Earlier in the hearing, the chairman of the committee contradicted an assertion from Trump by saying that there had been no wiretap of Trump Tower. But Rep. Devin Nunes, a California Republican whose committee is one of several investigating, said that other forms of surveillance of Trump and his associates have not been ruled out.

Comey was testifying at Monday’s hearing along with National Security Agency Director Michael Rogers.

Trump, who recently accused President Barack Obama of wiretapping his New York skyscraper during the campaign, took to Twitter before the hearing began, accusing Democrats of making up allegations about his campaign associates’ contact with Russia during the election. He said Congress and the FBI should be going after media leaks and maybe even Hillary Clinton instead.

“The real story that Congress, the FBI and others should be looking into is the leaking of Classified information. Must find leaker now!” Trump tweeted early Monday as news coverage on the Russia allegations dominated the morning’s cable news.

Trump also suggested, without evidence, that Clinton’s campaign was in contact with Russia and had possibly thwarted a federal investigation. U.S. intelligence officials have not publicly raised the possibility of contacts between the Clintons and Moscow. Officials investigating the matter have said they believe Moscow had hacked into Democrats’ computers in a bid to help Trump’s election bid.

Monday’s hearing, one of several by congressional panels probing allegations of Russian meddling, could allow for the greatest public accounting to date of investigations that have shadowed the Trump administration in its first two months.

The top two lawmakers on the committee said Sunday that documents the Justice Department and FBI delivered late last week offered no evidence that the Obama administration had wiretapped Trump Tower, the president’s New York City headquarters. But the panel’s ranking Democrat said the material offered circumstantial evidence that American citizens colluded with Russians in Moscow’s efforts to interfere in the presidential election.

“There was circumstantial evidence of collusion; there is direct evidence, I think, of deception,” Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” `’There’s certainly enough for us to conduct an investigation.”

Nunes said: “For the first time the American people, and all the political parties now, are paying attention to the threat that Russia poses.”

“We know that the Russians were trying to get involved in our campaign, like they have for many decades. They’re also trying to get involved in campaigns around the globe and over in Europe,” he said on “Fox News Sunday.”

The Senate Intelligence Committee has scheduled a similar hearing for later in the month.

It is not clear how much new information will emerge Monday, and the hearing’s open setting unquestionably puts Comey in a difficult situation if he’s asked to discuss an ongoing investigation tied to the campaign of the president.

At a hearing in January, Comey refused to confirm or deny the existence of any investigation exploring possible connections between Trump associates and Russia, consistent with the FBI’s longstanding policy of not publicly discussing its work. His appearances on Capitol Hill since then have occurred in classified settings, often with small groups of lawmakers, and he has made no public statements connected to the Trump campaign or Russia.

Any lack of detail from Comey on Monday would likely be contrasted with public comments he made last year when closing out an investigation into Clinton’s email practices and then, shortly before Election Day, announcing that the probe would be revived following the discovery of additional emails.


PUBLISHED: MARCH 20, 2017, 8:01 A.M. 

Sessions asks 46 Obama-era U.S. attorneys to resign

March 11, 2017

Sat Mar 11, 2017 | 2:29am EST

Reuters

By Joel Schectman and Mark Hosenball | WASHINGTON

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions abruptly asked the remaining 46 chief federal prosecutors left over from the Obama administration to resign on Friday, including Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, who had been asked to stay on in November by then President-elect Donald Trump.

Although U.S. attorneys are political appointees, and the request from Trump’s Justice Department is part of a routine process, the move came as a surprise. Not every new administration replaces all U.S. attorneys at once.

A Justice Department spokeswoman confirmed the resignation requests included Bharara, whose office handles some of the most critical business and criminal cases passing through the federal judicial system.

Bharara met with Trump in Trump Tower on Nov. 30. After, Bharara told reporters the two had a “good meeting” and he had agreed to stay on.

On Friday, Bharara was unsure where he stood because he did not know if the person who contacted him about resigning was aware that Trump had asked him to remain in office, according to a source familiar with the matter.

It was not immediately clear if all resignations would ultimately be accepted.

A Justice Department spokesman said on Friday Trump had called Dana Boente, acting U.S. deputy attorney general, to decline his resignation.

Trump also called Maryland U.S. Attorney Rod Rosenstein, his pick to take over as deputy attorney general, to keep him in his post, the spokesman said.

CORRUPTION CRUSADER

Bharara, appointed by Democratic President Barack Obama in 2009, has pursued an aggressive push against corruption in state and city politics and is known for his prosecution of white-collar criminal cases. He also has been overseeing a federal probe into New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s fundraising.

In November, he announced charges against two defendants in connection with what he called a multimillion-dollar fraud and kickback scheme at Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc (VRX.TO).

He has also brought dozens of successful cases against insider traders, including a $1.8 billion settlement and plea deal in 2013 with hedge fund SAC Capital Advisors LP.

His office has secured settlements with companies including General Motors Co (GM.N) and JPMorgan Chase & Co (JPM.N); won several convictions and guilty pleas of former employees of Ponzi scheme operator Bernard Madoff; and prosecuted Suleiman Abu Ghaith, a son-in-law of the late al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden.

Bharara’s priorities have often matched those set by Obama’s Justice Department, which potentially puts him at odds with the Trump administration.

Amid an increase in civil rights investigations nationally, for example, Bharara’s office joined a lawsuit that led to a settlement in 2015 aimed at reducing violence in New York City’s Rikers Island jail complex.

U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer, a Democrat, said in a statement that he was “troubled” to learn of the requests for resignations, “particularly that of Preet Bharara.”

As Schumer’s chief counsel, Bharara helped lead the investigation of the dismissals of U.S. attorneys in 2006 during the George W. Bush administration.

Robert Capers, U.S. Attorney in Brooklyn, issued a statement saying he had been asked to resign. He said Bridget Rohde, the chief assistant U.S. attorney in that office, would take over his role in an acting capacity.

The Justice Department said on Friday: “Until the new U.S. attorneys are confirmed, the dedicated career prosecutors in our U.S. attorney’s offices will continue the great work of the department in investigating, prosecuting, and deterring the most violent offenders.”

(Reporting by Eric Walsh, Mark Hosenball and Joel Schechtman in Washington and Nate Raymond in Boston; Editing by Noeleen Walder and Bill Rigby)

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By 
The New Tork Times

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration moved on Friday to sweep away most of the remaining vestiges of Obama administration prosecutors at the Justice Department, ordering 46 holdover United States attorneys to tender their resignations immediately — including Preet Bharara, the United States attorney in Manhattan.

The firings were a surprise — especially for Mr. Bharara, who has a reputation for prosecuting public corruption cases and for investigating insider trading. In November, Mr. Bharara met with then President-elect Donald J. Trump at Trump Tower in Manhattan and told reporters afterward that both Mr. Trump and Jeff Sessions, who is now the attorney general, had asked him about staying on, which the prosecutor said he expected to do.

But on Friday, Mr. Bharara was among federal prosecutors who received a call from Dana Boente, the acting deputy attorney general, instructing him to resign, according to a person familiar with the matter. As of Friday evening, though some of the prosecutors had publicly announced their resignations, Mr. Bharara had not. A spokesman for Mr. Bharara declined to comment.

Sarah Isgur Flores, a Justice Department spokeswoman, said in an email that all remaining holdover United States attorneys had been asked to resign, leaving their deputy United States attorneys, who are career officials, in place in an acting capacity.

“As was the case in prior transitions, many of the United States Attorneys nominated by the previous administration already have left the Department of Justice,” she said in the email. “The Attorney General has now asked the remaining 46 presidentially appointed U.S. Attorneys to tender their resignations in order to ensure a uniform transition.”

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Source: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/10/us/politics/us-attorney-justice-department-trump.html?_r=0

Trump accuses Obama of wiretapping him before election

March 4, 2017

By 
USA Today

Published 7:42 a.m. ET March 4, 2017

President Trump, in a Saturday morning tweetstorm, responded to the mounting questions over his ties to Russia by accusing Obama of wiretapping him at Trump Tower just before the November election.

The outburst follows several days of stories raising questions about meetings between members of the Trump campaign and Russian officials, particularly two previously undisclosed meetings between now Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Russian ambassador Sergei Kislyak.

“How low has President Obama gone to tapp [sic] my phones during the very sacred election process,” he writes. “This is Nixon/Watergate. Bad (or sick) guy!”

Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my “wires tapped” in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!

Is it legal for a sitting President to be “wire tapping” a race for president prior to an election? Turned down by court earlier. A NEW LOW!

I’d bet a good lawyer could make a great case out of the fact that President Obama was tapping my phones in October, just prior to Election!

How low has President Obama gone to tapp my phones during the very sacred election process. This is Nixon/Watergate. Bad (or sick) guy!

In making the charges, Trump did not elaborate on any evidence backing up the explosive accusation.

ADVERTISING

The tweet blasts began at 6:26 a.m. from the Winter White House at Mar-a-Lago in Florida when Trump raised the Sessions issue by noting the first meeting between the senator from Alabama and the Russian ambassador was set up by the Obama administration as part of an education program.

Eight minutes later, he raised the charge of illegal surveillance by the Obama administration: “Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my “wires tapped” in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!”

Then: “Is it legal for a sitting President to be “wire tapping” a race for president prior to an election? Turned down by court earlier. A NEW LOW!”

And: “I’d bet a good lawyer could make a great case out of the fact that President Obama was tapping my phones in October, just prior to Election!”

Sessions recused himself from any Trump-Russia investigation after the Justice Department acknowledged he spoke twice with the Russian ambassador last year and failed to disclose the contacts during his Senate confirmation process.

Sessions said he did not tried to mislead anyone but could have been more careful in his answers. He planned to file amended testimony Monday, a Justice Department spokesman said.

The president responded to the Sessions issue obliquely Friday by taking a swing at Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, noting the New York senator previously met with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

In a tweet, Trump posted a photo of Schumer with Putin during the Russian leader’s visit to New York in 2003. He demanded an investigation of “close ties” between Schumer, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Russia and “lying about it.”

He called Schumer, who has demanded Sessions’ resignation, a “total hypocrite.”

We should start an immediate investigation into @SenSchumer and his ties to Russia and Putin. A total hypocrite!

Trump’s Saturday morning tweets come less than a day after radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh accused Obama of executing a “silent coup” to unseat Trump and render him “effectively immaterial” as president.

“The real Russian scandal is the collusion between Barack Obama and his administration and the Russians,” Limbaugh said. “Obama’s team used the pretext of Russian interference in the election to justify wiretaps and illegal leaks of the Trump team, including a U.S. senator and now attorney general.”

By late morning, Trump had — at least temporarily — moved on, saying Arnold Schwarzenegger, his replacement on NBC’s “Celebrity Apprentice” did not voluntarily leave the show but “was fired by his bad (pathetic) ratings, not by me.” He called it a “Sad end to a great show.”

The movie star and former California governor announced Friday he was leaving the show after one season. He told Empire magazine that he would decline to return, even if asked. Trump, who has remained executive producer of the show, has mocked the show’s sagging ratings.

“With Trump being involved in the show, people have a bad taste and don’t want to participate as a spectator or sponsor or in any other way support the show,” Schwarzenegger said. “It’s a very divisive period right now and I think the show got caught up in all that division.”

Related:

Former Obama White House Gang Involved in “Silent Coup” Against President Donald Trump — Trump cites ‘Nixon/Watergate’ plot to wire tap Trump Tower — Washington Post, Breitbart, NYT put the story together — Anything there?

March 4, 2017

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Breitbart

Friday on his nationally syndicated radio show, conservative talker Rush Limbaugh argued there was a “silent coup” underway against President Donald Trump.

Limbaugh accused former President Barack Obama of putting it in place before leaving office and said that it is currently being executed. He pointed to the ginned-up controversy of Attorney General Jeff Sessions associations with the Russian government and U.S. Senate Democrats slow-walking Trump’s cabinet appointees.

“I’m not taking anything away from what I said yesterday,” he said. “I’m adding to it. We’re watching a silent coup that was put in place by Obama and the Democrats during the transition and before and after the election.”

“I think what is happening here is a full-fledged effort here to deny Trump the actual control of governing and the government by leaving so many Obama career people appointed, by going so slowly on confirming Trump’s cabinet appointees and other lesser bureaucratic position that remain open and haven’t been filled,” Limbaugh said later in the segment. “And that’s why it appears the Democrats are still running the show.”

Limbaugh went to add if you wanted to know the real saboteurs are, then look for a link between Obama and the Russian government.

“I’m telling you — if you want to find out who is really working together to sabotage the United States, you find the link between Barack Obama, Vladimir Putin, and the Russian government. That’s the story.”

Follow Jeff Poor on Twitter @jeff_poor

Includes video:

http://www.breitbart.com/video/2017/03/03/limbaugh-watching-silent-coup-put-place-obama-democrats/

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Trump cites ‘Nixon/Watergate’ plot to wire tap Trump Tower

The Washington Post
March 4 at 8:36 AM

President Trump on Saturday angrily accused former president Barack Obama of orchestrating a “Nixon/Watergate” plot to tap the phones at his Trump Tower headquarters last fall in the run-up to the election.Citing no evidence to support his explosive allegation, Trump said in a series of five tweets sent Saturday morning that Obama was “wire tapping” his New York offices before the election in a move he compared to McCarthyism. “Bad (or sick) guy!” he said of his predecessor, adding that the surveillance resulted in “nothing found.”Trump offered no citations nor did he point to any credible news report to back up his accusation, but he may have been referring to commentary on Breitbart and conservative talk radio suggesting that Obama and his administration used “police state” tactics last fall to monitor the Trump team. The Breitbart story, published Friday, has been circulating among White House officials, according to an administration official.A spokesman for Obama did not immediately reply to a request for comment.Trump has been feuding with the intelligence community since before he took office, convinced that career officers as well as holdovers from the Obama administration have been trying to sabotage his presidency. He has ordered internal inquiries to find who leaked sensitive information regarding communications during the campaign between Russian officials and his campaign associates and allies, including ousted national security adviser Michael Flynn and Attorney General Jeff Sessions.Trump sent the tweets from Palm Beach, Fla., where he is vacationing this weekend at his private Mar-a-Lago estate. It has long been his practice to stir up new controversies to deflect attention from a damaging news cycle, such as the one in recent days about Sessions and Russia.

Here are Trump’s tweets, in the order they were sent:

Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my “wires tapped” in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!

Just out: The same Russian Ambassador that met Jeff Sessions visited the Obama White House 22 times, and 4 times last year alone.

Is it legal for a sitting President to be “wire tapping” a race for president prior to an election? Turned down by court earlier. A NEW LOW!

I’d bet a good lawyer could make a great case out of the fact that President Obama was tapping my phones in October, just prior to Election!

How low has President Obama gone to tapp my phones during the very sacred election process. This is Nixon/Watergate. Bad (or sick) guy!

Trump did not stop tweeting there. About an hour later, the president revived one of his favorite feuds, this one with Arnold Schwarzenegger. The movie star-turned-California governor has been hosting “The New Celebrity Apprentice,” the NBC reality franchise that Trump helped found.

Schwarzenegger announced Friday that he would not return to the show for another season because, he said, the show had too much “baggage.” But Trump insisted on Twitter that there is more to the story than that.

Arnold Schwarzenegger isn’t voluntarily leaving the Apprentice, he was fired by his bad (pathetic) ratings, not by me. Sad end to great show

Robert Costa contributed to this report.

Welfare recipients can use debit cards for marijuana (Is this a great country, or what?)

September 10, 2014
– The Washington Times – Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Welfare recipients can’t use their EBT cards at liquor stores but they can at marijuana dispensaries in states such as Colorado that have legalized pot, Sen. Jeff Sessions revealed Tuesday.

The Alabama Republican announced that he was drafting legislation to close the welfare-for-weed loophole after the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services confirmed to him that marijuana shops were not off limits to EBT cards, which replaced food stamps, or other federal benefits.

“The federal government current spends roughly $750 billion each year on means-tested welfare programs across 80 different accounts. This money is administered by a vast, sprawling bureaucracy with little oversight and no moral vision,” said Mr. Sessions, the ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee.

“Surely we can all agree that the guiding principle ought to be that benefits are reserved for those in real need,” he said.

Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/sep/9/welfare-marijuana-jeff-sessions-tackles-loophole/#ixzz3CubWThah
Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

Jeff Sessions: House Border Bill Is a ‘Surrender To a Lawless President’

July 30, 2014

Senator Jeff Sessions (R., Ala.) denounced the House Republican border bill as a “surrender to a lawless president” because the legislation does not include any language to prevent President Obama from expanding his unilateral legalization of illegal immigrants.

Here’s the statement:

The Obama Administration has openly declared its plan to implement a unilateral executive amnesty for 5–6 million more illegal immigrants. This unlawful amnesty—urged on by congressional Democrats—would include work permits, taking jobs directly from millions of struggling American citizens.

Any action Congress might consider to address the current border crisis would be futile should the President go forward with these lawless actions. Congress must speak out and fight against them. It must use its spending power to stop the President’s executive amnesty.

That the House leaders’ border package includes no language on executive actions is surrender to a lawless President. And it is a submission to the subordination of congressional power.

After years of falling wages and rising joblessness, American workers are pleading for someone to hear them. How can it be that our President is brazenly advertising that he will nullify and strip away American workers’ immigration protections, and their own elected leaders will not rise to their defense? Or to the defense of our laws and our Constitutional order?

There are other grave concerns with the Granger package as well: because it does not fix our asylum rules and loopholes, the end result of the additional judges and hearings will be more illegal immigrants gaining asylum and access to U.S. welfare. It is a plan for expedited asylum, not expedited removal.

Nor will this package make our rogue President actively enforce anything, coming nowhere close to the kinds of reasonable enforcement activities needed to restore the interior application of our immigration laws.

And finally, a package that is silent on blocking amnesty creates an opportunity for Senate Democrats to add elements of their party’s open borders and mass immigration agenda.

This legislation is unworthy of support.

Conservatives aim to defeat immigration bill by stressing economy

April 19, 2013
The U.S. Senate's "Gang on Eight" are pictured during a news briefing on Capitol Hill in Washington, April 18, 2013. REUTERS/Jason Reed

The U.S. Senate’s “Gang on Eight” are pictured during a news briefing on Capitol Hill in Washington, April 18, 2013. REUTERS/Jason Reed

By Caren Bohan

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – As a bipartisan Senate group worked over the past few months to assemble broad legislation to overhaul the U.S. immigration system, conservative critics of the effort kept a fairly low profile. That’s about to change.

Critics of the bipartisan “Gang of Eight” immigration bill are gearing up for an intense fight to defeat the bill and they plan to put the economy at the center of their strategy.

The debate on Capitol Hill over the bill will kick off Friday with a hearing in the Senate Judiciary Committee. Conservatives held back until details of the legislation emerged and now intend to stir grassroots opposition through social media and talk radio among other lobbying efforts.

“Everything in this bill says we have a labor shortage. It’s proposing adding millions more foreign workers over the next decade alone,” said Roy Beck, head of NumbersUSA, a group that favors low immigration levels. “We have 20 million Americans who can’t find a full-time job. It’s as if the Gang of Eight lives in alternate universe.”

Beck took aim at a provision that would allow many of the roughly 11 million undocumented immigrants to obtain provisional visas, giving them the right to live and work in the country for 13 years before becoming eligible for citizenship.

Many foes of the immigration bill view their most effective line of attack to be warnings about the costs of the legislation and its impact on an already weak U.S. labor market.

Some activists and lawmakers have derided the bill as an amnesty for lawbreakers but by emphasizing the law enforcement argument, conservatives risk fueling a perception that they are anti-immigrant.

Republicans are also mindful of their party’s low standing with Hispanic Americans and wary of stirring backlash with these voters.

The bill would establish new guest worker programs of low-skilled workers in farming, construction and other trades and increase the number of skilled workers who can obtain visas.

Former South Carolina Senator Jim DeMint, who now heads the conservative Heritage Foundation think tank, attacked the bill as “amnesty,” adding that it would incur “significant costs” to taxpayers.

“At a time of trillion-dollar deficits and $17 trillion in debt, the cost of implementing amnesty and the strain it will add to already fragile entitlement and welfare programs should be of serious concern for everyone,” DeMint said in a blog post on the Heritage Foundation web site.

The four Democrats and four Republicans who sponsored the bill formally began their effort to sell it at a news conference Thursday.

Under the Gang of Eight proposal, those who obtain provisional visas would not be eligible for most federal benefit programs, including welfare and assistance purchasing health insurance under the 2010 health reform law, until they receive green cards or citizenship.

But those given provisional legal status would eventually be allowed to draw benefits once they receive green cards or citizenship.

FISCAL IMPACT DEBATED

Heritage, which helped defeat the last major effort at comprehensive immigration reform in 2007, plans to issue a study in coming weeks analyzing the fiscal impact of the Gang of Eight’s proposal in a report likely to become fodder for the debate on Capitol Hill.

Within conservative circles, the politics of the immigration issue are complicated. Republican Senator Marco Rubio, a Cuban-American and a favorite of the conservative Tea Party movement, is one of the lead sponsors of the Senate immigration bill.

Rubio, a Florida Republican and potential presidential candidate in 2016, and some other Republicans are embracing immigration reform in the aftermath of a presidential election in which Republican Mitt Romney lost to Democratic President Barack Obama, hurt in part by Obama’s huge advantage with Latino voters.

Romney’s stance on immigration during the campaign, including suggesting that illegal immigrants “self-deport,” helped to cost him votes with Hispanic Americans.

Some prominent economic conservatives, including anti-tax activist Grover Norquist, support the immigration reform bill, arguing that it will boost growth by making labor markets more fluid and giving technology companies and other business greater leeway to hire the skilled workers they need to stay competitive.

Douglas Holtz-Eakin, a former aide to President George W. Bush who also advised McCain’s failed 2008 presidential bid, has estimated that immigration reform could boost U.S. gross domestic product by a nearly a percentage point.

Holtz-Eakin, head of the American Action Forum, a conservative policy institute, also said overhauling immigration laws could reduce cumulative federal budget deficits by $2.5 billion when taking into account the fact that faster economic growth leads to higher tax collections and reduces costs for unemployment insurance and other safety net programs.

But there are plenty of Republican skeptics of the immigration bill on Capitol Hill and it faces a particularly tough road in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives.

In the Senate, which is narrowly controlled by Democrats, Republican Jeff Sessions is expected to lead the effort to defeat the immigration bill. Like DeMint, Sessions said the bill would put a huge strain on federal entitlement programs. He also warned it would exacerbate a scarcity of jobs for Americans already grappling with a 7.6 percent unemployment rate.

“This proposal would economically devastate low-income American citizens and current legal immigrants,” the Alabama Republican senator said. “It will pull down their wages and reduce their job prospects. Including those legalized, this bill would result in at least 30 million new foreign workers over a 10-year period — more than the entire population of the state of Texas.”

(Reporting by Caren Bohan; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

Above: The “Gang of 8” Yesterday:

Republican Weekly Address with Senator Jeff Sessions: The First Democrat Budget In Four Years

March 9, 2013

(WASHINGTON) — “We need to grow the economy — not the government.”

That’s what lawmakers in Washington should be focused on, says Sen. Jeff Sessions, in this week’s Republican address.

Ahead of next week’s unveiling of Senate Democrats’ first budget in four years, Sessions (Ala.), warns that the new plan will include tax gimmicks and new spending that will only grow the government, not the economy.

We have a moral duty We have a moral duty to balance the federal budget and bring the deficit down to zero. This is the great challenge of our time,” says Sessions, the ranking Republican on the Senate Budget Committee.

“But I fear the Democrat proposal will fail this defining test and will never achieve balance. I fear it will crush American workers and our economy with trillions in new taxes, spending and debt. I fear Chairman [Patty] Murray will follow the President’s lead: raising taxes to enrich the bureaucracy at the expense of the people,” he adds in the address.

Sen. Murray, D-Wash., is the Senate Budget Committee chair, and is expected to roll out proposals for taming the national budget in the coming days.

But Sen. Sessions says that while Senate GOP are prepared to reform Washington’s spending to grow the economy, balance the budget and create jobs, Sen. Dems are “determined to shield [the Washington establishment] from accountability.”

The Alabama senator says, “We are at the breaking point,” and asserts that destructive policies employed by Democrats in Washington cannot continue.

“Instead, we must act to create more jobs and better pay. And we can do it without adding to the debt,” he says, explaining how:

  • Make welfare temporary and the welfare office an employment and job training office.
  • Unlock America’s vast energy resources to create millions of good-paying jobs.
  • Defend American workers from unfair foreign trade practices.
  • Reform the tax code to make America globally competitive, creating more jobs here.
  • Make government leaner, less wasteful so it produces greater results for the money you earned and sent here.
  • Enforce an immigration policy that protects legal U.S. workers from unlawful competition.
  • Eliminate every burdensome federal rule or regulation that isn’t needed and that destroys jobs.
  • And, finally, we must balance the federal budget.

“These steps will empower Americans—not the government,” he says.

ABC News Radio: See Video and hear the talk:

http://uneditedpolitics.com/republica
n-weekly-address-with-senator-jeff-
sessions-the-first-democrat-budge
t-in-four-years-3913/

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“Hello. I’m Jeff Sessions from Alabama, Ranking Republican on the Senate Budget Committee. It’s my privilege to speak with you today before the Senate considers a budget plan next week. Congress has an obligation to adopt a budget that does the most good for the most people.

 

“Washington, D.C. provides a troubling illustration of our challenges. No city in America relies more on the federal government than Washington. Federal money pours every single day into every part of the city.

 

“Despite this fountain of federal funds, 1 in 3 children still live in poverty in our nation’s capital. Two in three children live in single parent homes. In nearby Baltimore—another city governed by liberal policies for decades—1 in 3 residents are on food stamps and in 1 in 3 youth live in poverty. Americans are committed to helping our sisters and brothers who are struggling, but we are seeing the damaging human consequences of our broken welfare state.

 

“We spend a trillion dollars each year on federal poverty programs. That’s more than the budget for Social Security or Defense. But poverty seems only to increase. Something is wrong.

 

“Compassion demands that we change.

 

“Amazingly, the federal government says that the more people we have on food stamps, the more it grows the economy. The Department of Agriculture proudly declares: ‘Each $5 in new [food stamp] benefits generates almost twice that amount in economic activity for the community.’ Our government is running food stamp promotions at foreign embassies. One worker was given an award for overcoming ‘mountain pride’ and getting more people to sign up. Where I grew up in Alabama, all honest work, even the hardest, was honored. And pride, self-respect, and a desire to be independent was valued, not a thing to be overcome.

 

“Isn’t it a better goal to help more Americans find good-paying jobs, to have the pride and self-respect that comes from that? Isn’t this a superior form of compassion that has a more solid moral foundation?

 

“Yet every time lawmakers try to reform the bureaucracy to accomplish these goals, they meet with the same response: President Obama attacks the reformers, saying such ideas aren’t compassionate or fair. But what is truly unfair and lacking in compassion is to protect a federal bureaucracy that is failing those that need our help the most.

 

“President Obama speaks of his deep concern for struggling Americans, yet his plans are focused on growing government—not the economy. He has no effective plan to create better jobs, more hiring or rising wages. That’s what’s missing.

 

“Apparently, the federal government is perfect, requires no reform. That would explain why our Senate Democrats have refused to pass a legally-mandated 10-year budget plan in four years.

 

“To compel Senate Democrats do their jobs, Republicans passed the No Budget, No Pay measure. Senate Democrats have then relented and agreed to work on a budget plan.

 

“Senate Budget Chair Patty Murray, and her colleagues, will introduce the long-delayed Democrat plan on Wednesday. Right now, our massive debt is slowing the economy and depressing wages. We have a moral duty to balance the federal budget and bring the deficit down to zero. This is the great challenge of our time. And you may be surprised to learn that we can achieve this goal if we simply hold the annual growth of spending to 3.4 percent each year. But I fear the Democrat proposal will fail this defining test and will never achieve balance. I fear it will crush American workers and our economy with trillions in new taxes, spending and debt. I fear Chairman Murray will follow the President’s lead: raising taxes to enrich the bureaucracy at the expense of the people.

 

“We need to grow the economy—not the government.

 

“People are being hurt every day by the Washington establishment the Democrats are determined to shield from accountability. Government has never been bigger or more out of control. They say there is no problem with waste, fraud, and abuse; they say the problem is you; they say you are not sending them enough money; they say they have wisely spent every penny. So, you must just send them more. And, if you don’t? Well, they won’t stop spending, they’ll just borrow more. These destructive policies cannot continue. We are at the breaking point.

 

“Instead, we must act to create more jobs and better pay. And we can do it without adding to the debt.

 

“Here’s how:

-Make welfare temporary and the welfare office an employment and job training office.

-Unlock America’s vast energy resources to create millions of good-paying jobs.

-Defend American workers from unfair foreign trade practices.

-Reform the tax code to make America globally competitive, creating more jobs here.

-Make government leaner, less wasteful so it produces greater results for the money you earned and sent here.

-Enforce an immigration policy that protects legal U.S. workers from unlawful competition.

-Eliminate every burdensome federal rule or regulation that isn’t needed and that destroys jobs.

-And, finally, we must balance the federal budget.

 

“These steps will empower Americans—not the government. They will promote family—not bureaucracy. And they will help create a future in which the central bonds in our lives are not government rules but the love and loyalty we have for one another.”