DOJ Watchdog Expected To Find Russia Probe Valid Despite Flaws

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The upcoming release of the review is unlikely to quell the partisan battles that have surrounded the Russia investigation.

The Justice Department’s internal watchdog will release a highly anticipated report Monday that is expected to reject President Donald Trump’s claims that the Russia investigation was illegitimate and tainted by political bias from FBI leaders. But it is also expected to document errors during the investigation that may animate Trump supporters.

The report, as described by people familiar with its findings, is expected to conclude there was an adequate basis for opening one of the most politically sensitive investigations in FBI history and one that Trump has denounced as a witch hunt. It began in secret during Trump’s 2016 presidential run and was ultimately taken over by special counsel Robert Mueller.

The report comes as Trump faces an impeachment inquiry in Congress centered on his efforts to press Ukraine to investigate a political rival, Democrat Joe Biden. Trump also claims the impeachment investigation is politically biased.

The release of Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s review is unlikely to quell the partisan battles that have surrounded the Russia investigation. It’s also not the last word on that investigation. A separate internal investigation continues, overseen by Trump’s attorney general, William Barr and led a U.S. attorney, John Durham.

Trump told reporters Saturday that he was waiting for the chance to see Horowitz’s report and that he looked forward ``very much to seeing what happens with the Durham report, maybe even more importantly, because it’s a horrible thing that took place and it should never happen to another president.″

Horowitz’s report is expected to identify errors and misjudgments by some law enforcement officials, including by an FBI lawyer suspected of altering a document related to the surveillance of a former Trump campaign aide. Those findings probably will fuel arguments by Trump and his supporters that the investigation was flawed from the start.

But the report will not endorse some of the president’s theories on the investigation, including that it was a baseless &ld

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More Than 500 Legal Scholars Say Trump Committed Impeachable Acts

Image result for trump   Their open letter comes as House Democrats are drawing up articles of impeachment for a full floor vote.

A group of more than 500 legal scholars has signed an open letter to Congress declaring that President Donald Trump “engaged in impeachable conduct” as the impeachment proceedings against him continue.

“We do not reach this conclusion lightly,” stated the letter, dated Friday.

Trump “betrayed his oath of office” by attempting to pressure Ukrainian leaders to help him “distort” the 2020 election “at the direct expense of national security interests as determined by Congress.”

“The Founders did not make impeachment available for disagreements over policy, even profound ones, nor for extreme distaste for the manner in which the President executes his office. Only ‘Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors’ warrant impeachment,” the scholars asserted.

The signees include professors and other experts from an array of academic institutions such as Columbia, Berkeley, Harvard, Yale, George Washington University and the University of Michigan, among many others. Their message was spearheaded by the Protect Democracy Project, a nonprofit created in 2017 with the goal of holding the White House “accountable to the laws and longstanding practices that have protected our democracy through both Democratic and Republican Administrations.” 

Since the impeachment inquiry began in late September, House investigators have heard from a number of witnesses both in private and in public who have painted a fuller picture of Trump’s dealings with Ukraine.

According to sworn testimony from U.S. foreign policy officials, Trump threatened to withhold millions of dollars in military aid in exchange for investigations that would help his reelection campaign, and conditioned a White House meeting with Ukraine’s president on a public announcement of those investigations.

The Kanye Effect New Polls Show Black Support for Trump Surging

Rush Limbaugh could hardly contain his excitement. “We’ve got three polls today showing Donald Trump at 30 percent or higher with black voters,” he told his national radio audience on Monday. “We’ve got Emerson, we’ve got Rasmussen and we’ve got Marist!”

Rush was echoing a Trump 2020 campaign email entitled “Black Voters Are Raising Their Voices in Support of President Trump. Recent Polls Show Significant Increase in Support from Black Community.”

“You can’t dispute the fact that African Americans have been benefiting from President Trump’s policies,” Katrina Pierson with the Trump campaign said in a statement. “Four years ago, the President asked the blackcommunity, ‘What do you have to lose;’ now we are thinking, ‘Imagine what we stand to gain!’”

The new Emerson poll puts Trump at 35 percent with black voters and 38 percent with Hispanics. “If you add in Asian voters at 28 percent approval,” notes Emerson’s director of polling Spencer Kimball, “our number is very close to the new Marist poll,” which finds Trump’s approval at 33 percent among non-white voters.  A recent RasmussenReports poll has Trump support among black voters at 34 percent, and even the new CNN poll has Trump’s approval among non-white voters at 26 percent.

Why is losing black voters by a two-to-one margin something to shout about? Because if Donald Trump came anywhere close to those numbers on Election Day, he’d likely win a 50-state sweep. Minority voters — and black voters in particular — are an absolutely vital part of the Democratic base. And they don’t vote for Republicans, particularly for president.

Over the past 40 years, black voter support for Republican presidential candidates has consistently registered somewhere between “embarrassingly low” and “nonexistent.”  Running for re-election with a red-hot economy, President Reagan got just 9 percent of the African-American vote in 1984. That’s the same 9 percent GOP presidential candidates averaged ever since, according to data from the Roper Center for Public Opinion Research.

In his 2012 race against President

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House Intelligence Report Devin Nunes Was In Contact With Rudy Giuliani Lev Parnas

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The committee’s ranking GOP member, who has repeatedly denounced the impeachment investigation, was in contact with some of the scheme’s key players.

The House Intelligence Committee’s impeachment report released Tuesday includes call records showing that the committee’s own ranking member, Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), was privately in contact with key players in President Donald Trump’s dealings with Ukraine that led to the impeachment inquiry.

The report, which came after several long days of hearings last month, contains phone logs from AT&T that show Nunes had multiple calls in April with Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani and Giuliani’s now-indicted business associate Lev Parnas. John Solomon, then a right-wing contributor with The Hill who helped push Ukrainian conspiracy theories, also had calls with Parnas and Giuliani at the same time Nunes was in contact with them.

While most of the information in the report was already known thanks to public witness hearings and increased transparency over obtained documents, the call records involving Nunes are new. All three of those players Nunes was involved with had an important role in Trump’s attempt to pressure Ukraine’s government to investigate his 2020 political rival former Vice President Joe Biden, his son Hunter Biden and a widely debunked conspiracy theory that Ukraine, not Russia, interfered in the 2016 U.S. presidential elections. 

The contacts occurred after Solomon published a column on April 7 that smeared Marie Yovanovitch, the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine. Yovanovitch was abruptly removed from her position in May after Trump allies and conservative media ― specifically Solomon ― falsely accused her of conspiring with Democrats to influence the 2016 presidential election and release damaging information against Trump. Most of Solomon’s sourcing came from Yuriy Lutsenko, a former Ukrainian top prosecutor who originated the lies about Yovanovitch after clashing with her about corruption in his own office.

“Over the course of the four days following the April 7 article, phone records show contacts between Mr. G

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