Good Tuesday morning.
Here is what’s on the president’s agenda today:
- The president gives remarks at the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States National Convention in Kansas City, Missouri
- President Trump participates in a roundtable with supporters
- The president delivers remarks at a joint fundraising committee luncheon
Trump wants to yank security clearances for deep state roster
Over the weekend, Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) suggested cutting the security clearances for the celebrity Obama-era officials who are barking fantastical RUSSIA-collusion stories on cable news networks nightly. During the daily White House press briefing yesterday, Sarah Sanders confirmed the administration is looking into terminating the clearances of Brennan, Clapper, Comey, McCabe, Hayden, and Rice. Comey and McCabe already had their clearances pulled when they were fired. I only wish Trump could pull them again.
Donald Trump’s press conference performance in Helsinki rises to & exceeds the threshold of “high crimes & misdemeanors.” It was nothing short of treasonous. Not only were Trump’s comments imbecilic, he is wholly in the pocket of Putin. Republican Patriots: Where are you???
— John O. Brennan (@JohnBrennan) July 16, 2018
“The president is exploring these mechanisms to remove security clearance because they’ve politicized and in some cases monetized their public service and their security clearances. And making baseless accusations of improper relationship with Russia is inappropriate,” said Sanders.
“Clearances are taken away for security violations, usually after an investigation. These people do not talk classified publicly. It would be political punishment infringing on First Amendment rights,” McLaughlin said.
It’s not an infringement of First Amendment rights. What does freedom of speech have to do with a security clearance? There’s no constitutional right to a clearance.
Sen. Ron Wyden claimed removing the security clearances from the roster was President Trump making an enemies list.
“As I listen to this, it sounds to me like Donald Trump is talking about building an enemies list,” Wyden, an Oregon Democrat, said on CNN’s “Erin Burnett OutFront.” “This is just plain wrong. The idea, and that’s why I characterize it, of building an enemies list in order to look at the possibility or strategize ways to go after your critics is contrary to everything that our country is all about.”
Normally, political appointees keep their clearances because the appointee has institutional knowledge that can be of help to future administrations, but it’s fair to say these folks aren’t interested in being helpful.
New York Daily News slashes staff
Looks like nasty anti-Trump newspaper covers aren’t selling papers. The field is pretty crowded with anti-Trump #resistance media, so it’s a competitive market.
The Daily News announced Monday it will cut half of its newsroom staff, saying it will focus more on digital news.
Recent reports had said layoffs at the nearly 100-year-old paper were coming, but the decision was made final in an email sent to staff Monday. Tronc Inc. said staff at the Daily News will focus on breaking news involving “crime, civil justice and public responsibility.”
Revenue has been tanking for years.
Revenue and print circulation have been sliding at the newspaper for years, as the paper reportedly lost $90.4 million since 2011 — even after it provided critical coverage of health issues in public housing and for first responders after the Sept. 11 attacks.
The New York Daily News is owned by Tronc, which also owns the Baltimore Sun and the Chicago Sun-Times.
The latest Red Scare happenings
U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley came out strong against RUSSIA yesterday in an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network.
“We don’t trust Russia, we don’t trust Putin, we never will,” Haley said. “They’re never going to be our friend. That’s just a fact.” And she continued: “What I do think is, whether it’s the president sitting down with [North Korean leader] Kim or whether the president sits down with [Russia President Vladimir] Putin, those are things that have to happen.” Haley added, “You can’t get to the end of the other side if you don’t have those conversations.”
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has turned down an invitation by the House Foreign Affairs Committee to testify about President Trump’s meeting with RUSSIAN President Vladimir Putin. He will appear before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee tomorrow. That ought to be crazy, so check your C-SPAN lineup.
National Security Advisor John Bolton will be meeting with his RUSSIAN counterpart next month to follow up on Trump’s previous meeting with Putin.
“The only specific agreement made was that the two national security teams from both the United States and Russia would continue at a working level,” WH press secretary Sarah Sanders said at the Monday press briefing before making the announcement about Bolton.
Your daily WTF:
Historical picture of the day:
(Rudyard Kipling’s “If”) Students scrub famous poem from wall at UK college, declare iconic author was racist, ‘imperialist’
And that’s all I’ve got, now go beat back the angry mob!