Good Tuesday morning.
Here is what's on the president's agenda today:
- The president has lunch with the secretary of State and the secretary of Defense
- President Trump meets with House Republican leadership
- The president and the first lady participate in a White House Christmas reception
- The president and the first lady participate in the United States Secret Service Christmas reception
Mueller sez Manafort lied to special counsel, blew up deal
Mueller's posse claims that short-lived Trump campaign manager Manafort lied to investigators, jeopardizing his plea deal.
Manafort said in the same filing on Monday that he disagreed with Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s assertion that he had lied, but both sides agreed the court should move ahead and sentence him for his crimes.
While not a fatal blow, the dissolution of Manafort’s plea agreement means Mueller is losing the contributions of a witness with deep ties to Russia and who ran the Trump campaign as it took off in mid-2016.
Yeah, why am I skeptical that Manafort had any info on treasonous Trump campaign collusion with RUSSIA? According to Mueller, “Manafort committed federal crimes by lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Special Counsel’s Office on a variety of subject matters.” We don't know what Manafort lied about yet -- that will be revealed before sentencing.
Homeland Security statement on the border situation
Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen provided the following statement regarding the recent crisis on our southern border:
“Given the activities of the last 24 hours at the San Ysidro Port of Entry, I want to provide an update on what occurred and attempt to dispel many of the rumors and much of the misinformation circulating.
“First, the violence we saw at the border was entirely predictable. This caravan, unlike previous caravans, had already entered #Mexico violently and attacked border police in two other countries. I refuse to believe that anyone honestly maintains that attacking law enforcement with rocks and projectiles is acceptable. It is shocking that I have to explain this, but officers can be seriously or fatally injured in such attacks. Self-defense isn’t debatable for most law-abiding Americans.
“Second, the caravan is far larger and more organized than previous ones. There are 8,500 caravan members in Tijuana and Mexicali. There are reports of additional caravans on their way.
“Third, the overwhelming majority of these individuals are not eligible for asylum in the United States under our laws. Historically, less than 10% of those who claim asylum from #Guatemala, #Honduras, and #ElSalvador are found eligible by a federal judge. 90% are not eligible. Most of these migrants are seeking jobs or to join family who are already in the U.S. They have all refused multiple opportunities to seek protection in Mexico or with the UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency. Seeking employment or family reunification are not grounds for asylum under our laws, or any international obligation. There are, however, legal ways to seek a job or to be reunited in the U.S.
“Fourth, the caravan members are predominately male. It appears in some cases that the limited number of women and children in the caravan are being used by the organizers as “human shields” when they confront law enforcement. They are being put at risk by the caravan organizers as we saw at the Mexico-Guatemala border. This is putting vulnerable people in harms way.
“Fifth, we cannot confirm the backgrounds and identities of all caravan members which possess a national security and public safety risk to our country. However, at this point we have confirmed that there are over 600 convicted criminals traveling with the caravan flow. This includes individuals known to law enforcement for assault, battery, drug crimes, burglary, rape, child abuse and more. This is serious. Additionally, Mexico has already arrested 100 caravan members for criminal violations in Mexico.
“Sixth, our Border Patrol agents and officers responded admirably and responsibly to the events on Sunday. It is a testament to their training and professionalism that no one was injured. The accepted use of nonlethal force (also used by the Obama Administration in 2013) prevented further injury to agents and a mass illegal rush across the border. We will not shy away from protecting our people. I ask parents to avoid violent caravan groups and refrain from attempts to illegally enter our country – these acts will put your children in danger.
“Seventh, I want to thank President Donald J. Trump again for the decision to send @DeptofDefense to the border to bolster our ports of entry and provide force protection for Customs and Border Protection. This decision likely prevented injuries to personnel and migrants or additional damage to property. Instead of “a political stunt,” as suggested by some, this was in fact the act of a leader concerned about the rule of law.
“Eighth, this Administration has been working nonstop to fix our immigration system to address the crisis at the border. We have proposed legislation and asked Congress to pass it. The President has repeatedly made clear what is needed to secure our border and negotiated in good faith. It is time for Congress to do its job. Absent Congressional action courts have misinterpreted existing laws and have made the job of law enforcement far more difficult. But the men and women of DHS will continue to do all we can to enforce the law and DHS and U.S. Department of State will continue negotiations with Mexico and our other partners in the region. We are optimistic that cross border collaboration can help make America, indeed the entire region, more secure.
“Finally, this Administration warned about the danger of the caravan. We predicted the violence we saw on Sunday. We prepared to address it with additional personnel and DOD deployments. We will continue to prepare for the next assault while looking for lasting solutions with Congress and our Mexican partners. As always, I want to thank those officers and agents in San Ysidro who, under tremendous strain, used professionalism and restraint to ensure that no one was injured as they were attacked themselves. I also thank DOD and our state & local law enforcement who were on scene to support our people.”
Historical picture of the day
And that's all I've got, now go beat back the angry mob!
Because conservatives made a stink, Twitter has reinstated Jesse Kelly's Twitter account.
@Jack appears to be lying again. Twitter had reportedly told Kelly he was permanently banned and it was final.
Nice automobile manufacturing company you've got there. Be a shame if something happened to it.
President Donald Trump on Tuesday threatened to cut government subsidies to General Motors in response to the auto company's announcement Monday that it will shutter North American plants and cut thousands of jobs.
"Very disappointed with General Motors and their CEO, Mary Barra, for closing plants in Ohio, Michigan and Maryland. Nothing being closed in Mexico & China," Trump tweeted. "We are now looking at cutting all @GM subsidies, including...for electric cars. General Motors made a big China bet years ago when they built plants there (and in Mexico) - don’t think that bet is going to pay off."
Hey, Don Trump. Capo Kudlow agrees.
White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said much the same during a White House news briefing Tuesday, saying before the president's tweet that the administration was "going to be looking at certain subsidies regarding electric cars and others, whether they should apply or not."
"I can’t say anything final about that, but we’re looking into it," Kudlow said. "Again, that reflects the president’s own disappointment."
Lost in the news of plant closings in the U.S. was GM's plan to close 2 other plants overseas.
GM said Monday it will cut more than 14,000 jobs as part of a sweeping realignment to prepare for a future of electric and self-driving vehicles. The company plans to close five plants in North America. It also said two plants in other regions will face the ax, without identifying them. GM has four factories in China through its equally owned joint venture with SAIC Motor Corp. that builds Cadillac, Buick and Chevrolet vehicles. It has three plants in South Korea after closing one earlier this year, and also operates a factory in Thailand.
Sales of autos in China have dropped through the floor and it's likely that one of those foriegn plant closings will, indeed, be in China. What the Don fails to understand is that GM doesn't need those subsidies to survive. His threats are empty and make the Don look ridiculous.
So, the Don can threaten GM all he wants. Even if Ms. Barra ends up with a horse head in her bed, I doubt if it will make much of a difference.
Sorry, President Trump, but no.
Donald Trump has pleasantly surprised me, and I'm a very big fan of a great deal of his accomplishments, but none of that makes a government TV network a good idea.
Then again, something like what Trump is calling for already exists, as The Washington Post reported.
The U.S. Agency for Global Media oversees several US government broadcasters, such as Radio and Television Marti, whose target audience is in Cuba, and Voice of America, which broadcasts radio and TV content across the globe in a variety of languages. Among the programs aired by Voice of America is "Plugged In," which is anchored by former cable news host Greta Van Susteren.
This may be one of Trump's distractions, and he certainly is a genius at those. I disagree with him on this, but agree that the legacy media has been unfair to him — that's one of the reasons we do our work here at PJ Media.