"The Man Doesn't Tell Truth": Ex-Lawyer Michael Cohen On Trump

Washington: President Donald Trump knew it was wrong to order election-eve hush money paid to two women who claimed to have had affairs with him, his former lawyer Michael Cohen said in an interview to be broadcast Friday.

Trump acted because he "was very concerned about how this would affect the election," Cohen told ABC News of the women's allegations in his first comments since being sentenced to three years in prison on Thursday.

Trump has said he never directed Cohen to break the law. But Cohen, asked if Trump knew the payments to Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal were wrong, said "of course."

Cohen challenged Trump's assertion that he never told him to break the law.

"I don't think there is anybody that believes that," Cohen told George Stephanopoulos on the program "Good Morning America." ABC released excerpts of the interview ahead of its full airing.

"First of all, nothing at the Trump Organization was ever done unless it was run through Mr. Trump. He directed me to make the payments, he directed me to become involved in these matters," Cohen said.

"He knows the truth. I know the truth. Others know the truth," Cohen added.

"And here is the truth: People of the United States of America, people of the world, don't believe what he is saying. The man doesn't tell the truth. And it is sad that I should take responsibility for his dirty deeds," said Cohen.

Trump denies having affairs with the women who were paid off just weeks before the election in which Trump beat Hillary Clinton.

The US president enters his third year in office facing an increasingly perilous situation as federal prosecutors and the special investigation into alleged collusion with Russia close in on him and his inner circle.

But he was as combative as ever on Twitter Thursday when he sought to distance himself from Cohen, his loyal fixer for a decade.

In his first public reaction since Cohen was sentenced, Trump said he was the victim of the attorney's malpractice.

"He was a lawyer and he is supposed to know the law," Trump tweeted. "It is called 'advice of counsel,' and a lawyer has great liability if a mistake is made. That is why they get paid."

Later, he told Fox News that he was being singled out for a grilling over payments that would not cause a ripple elsewhere among politicians.

"Nobody except for me would be looked at like this, nobody," he said.

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Trump Worried About Impeachment, Thinks It's "Real Possibility": Report

Washington: US President Donald Trump has expressed concern that he could be impeached when Democrats take over the House and saw it as a "real possibility", a source close to him told CNN.

But Trump isn't certain it would happen, the source said on Monday night.

A separate source close to the White House told CNN that aides inside the West Wing believe "the only issue that may stick" in the impeachment process is the campaign finance violations tied to the President's former personal lawyer Michael Cohen's payouts to Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, both women have alleged to have affairs with Trump.

Impeachment talk has ratcheted up in recent days following a blockbuster filing from prosecutors in the Southern District of New York.

In the filing, prosecutors directly alleged for the first time that Cohen was being directed by Trump when he broke the law during the 2016 presidential campaign.

Democrats were suggesting that Trump committed an impeachable offence and could be sent to prison when his term in the White House is over.

The incoming chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Representative Jerry Nadler, said on Sunday the allegations, if proven, would constitute "impeachable offences".

Democratic Senato Chris Coons said earlier on Monday that Trump could be indicted after he leaves office.

White House officials, at the moment, still do not believe that Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into possible collusion will result in impeachment.

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"China Has Agreed To Reduce, Remove Tariffs On US Cars": Donald Trump

Washington: China has agreed to scale back tariffs on imported US cars, President Donald Trump said Sunday, one day after agreeing with Xi Jinping to a ceasefire in the trade war between the world's top two economies.

Asia stocks had rallied on the news that Washington and Beijing would not impose any new tariffs during a three-month grace period, during which the two sides are meant to finalize a more detailed agreement.

"China has agreed to reduce and remove tariffs on cars coming into China from the U.S. Currently the tariff is 40 percent," Trump said on Twitter.

On Saturday, Trump and Xi agreed to put a stop to their tit-for-tat tariffs row, which had roiled world markets for months.

The Republican president called their agreement -- which Washington hopes will help close a yawning trade gap with the Asian giant and help protect US intellectual property -- an "incredible" deal.

Trump agreed to hold off on his threat to slap 25 percent tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods from January 1, leaving them at the current 10 percent rate.

In return, China is to purchase "very substantial" amount of agricultural, energy, industrial and other product from the US

The US president did not send any subsequent tweets Sunday explaining which auto tariffs would be removed, and which would be reduced.

In July, China reduced auto import duties from 25 percent to 15 percent, a boon for international carmakers keen to grow sales in the world's largest auto market.

But as trade tensions ratcheted up with the US this summer, Beijing retaliated by slapping vehicles imported from the US with an extra 25 percent tariff, bringing the total tariff rate to 40 percent.

Many US automakers build their cars in China, but for some the tariff hikes have hit sales.

US company Tesla saw its sales drop with the higher prices this fall and recently said it would absorb some of the higher tariff costs and no longer pass them on to consumers.

German carmaker BMW and Ford's Lincoln brand have also been hit hard by the tariffs with some of their cars made in the US for the Chinese market.

The news comes as Trump mulls a tariff hike on vehicles imported from the European Union.

Top executives from German carmakers Volkswagen, Daimler and BMW are to meet Tuesday with senior US officials at the White House to discuss the situation, the German news agency DPA reported, citing unnamed sources.

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Bolsonaro Calls Meeting with Trump's Security Advisor Productive

Brazilian President-elect Jair Bolsonaro called the meeting held Thursday in Rio de Janeiro with United States National Security Advisor John Bolton a productive one. A very pleasant and productive meeting with the US National Security Advisor, John Bolton, the right wing politician wrote on Twitter and posted a photo of the meeting, in which he appears with Donald Trump's advisor, together with General( r) Augusto Heleno, future minister of Institutional Security, and Foreign Minister to be Ernesto Araujo.

For his part, Bolton said: 'I handed over an invitation from President Trump to Bolsonaro to visit the United States... We expect dynamic cooperation with Brazil.'

Before flying to Brazil Bolton told the press on Tuesday in Washington Bolsonaro's election was a historic opportunity for both countries to work together.

Last week he wrote on Twitter: 'Anxious to meet with the next president of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro, in Rio de Janeiro, on November 29, we share many bilateral interests and will work closely to increase freedom and prosperity in all the Western Hemisphere. '

For Bolton, the far-right politician is an ally in the region against progressive governments and movements.

As part of preparations for this meeting, Senator Eduardo Bolsonaro, son and adviser to the president-elect, traveled to the US capital this week and met with officials from the Trump administration.

On Monday, the lawmaker met with Undersecretary of State for the Western Hemisphere, Kimberly Breier, a meeting he described as good, since they spoke about steps that Brazil is taking 'together with the United States on international issues.'

According to analysts, Bolsonaro and Trump have similar personalities and agree in many ways on how to approach politics and its communication strategies.

The Brazilian ex military won the October 28 election with more than 55 percent of the vote. He will take office on January 1.

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Over 150 Migrant Children Still in US Far from Their Parents

Washington, Nov 22 (Prensa Latina) Almost 150 immigrant children are still in the United States away from their parents as victims of the criticized practices of President Donald Trump's government on this issue, according to official data.

A report released by the Department of Health and Human Services pointed out that exactly 147 minors are in federal custody almost five months after a court order for family reunification.

Due to the rejected policy of 'zero tolerance' towards undocumented immigrants, 2,667 children were separated from their parents.

The administration initially identified 2,654 affected by the situation, but it recently increased that number by 13.

The source stated that 30 of the parents had been declared ineligible for the union considering their criminal record, although some, according to civil organizations, committed minor offenses without affecting their ability to care for their descendants.

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US Congresswoman to Trump: Stop Being 'Saudi Arabia’s Bitch'

Gabbard previously clashed with former President Barack Obama on Syrian policy, commenting that the United States was hastily pushing for change in the country but ignoring the potential consequences.

Hawaiian Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, who has been criticized for opposing U.S. interference in Syria, had harsh words for President Donald Trump, regarding Washington’s relationship with Saudi Arabia. 

RELATED: Khashoggi Killing: Trump Will Remain Saudi Arabia 'Partner'

Gabbard tweeted that the U.S. president was “Saudi Arabia’s bitch,” after Trump said Washington will remain allies with Riyadh regardless of the Kingdom being implicated in the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi - who was killed on the Saudi consulate in Turkey.  

Trump doubled down, saying the United States Government will not dissolve any partnership with Saudi Arabia despite a Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) investigation concluding that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had ordered Khashoggi's killing.

“...we may never know all of the facts surrounding the murder of Mr. Jamal Khashoggi... the United States intends to remain a steadfast partner of Saudi Arabia to ensure the interests of our country, Israel and all other partners in the region."

On Tuesday, Trump highlighted that Saudi Arabia was a key ally against Iran as well as an important oil supplier. The U.S. president added that, though Khashoggi’s murder was an “unacceptable and horrible crime” and “it could very well be that the Crown Prince had knowledge of this tragic event,” Washington will not sever ties with the middle eastern country.

“I’m not going to destroy the world economy, and I’m not going to destroy the economy for our country by being foolish with Saudi Arabia,” Trump told reporters. "If we abandon Saudi Arabia, it would be a terrible mistake."  

Oil prices getting lower. Great! Like a big Tax Cut for America and the World. Enjoy! $54, was just $82. Thank you to Saudi Arabia, but let’s go lower! 

Similarly, Gabbard, who is a two-tour veteran, previously clashed with former President Barack Obama on Syrian policy, commenting that the United States was hastily pushing for change in the country but ignoring the potential consequences of that action, and hitting out against Washington arming anti-government fighters in Syria.

Republican senators Rand Paul and Lindsey Graham have both made remarks against Trump’s stance on the Saudi Kingdom. Paul has urged the U.S. head of state to suspend the arms deal with Riyadh, while Graham noted that the Crown Prince is responsible for Khashoggi’s death.
 
"They are an important ally but when it comes to the Crown Prince, he's irrational, he's unhinged and I think he's done a lot of damage to the relationship (between) the United States and Saudi Arabia. And I have no intention of working with him ever again," Graham told NBC.
 

The President indicates that Saudi Arabia is the lesser two evils compared to Iran and so the US won’t punish Saudi Arabia for the brutal killing and dismemberment of a dissident journalist in their consulate. I disagree.

"I'm pretty sure this statement is Saudi Arabia First, not America First," Paul posted on his Twitter page. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker also tweeted displeasure, "I never thought I'd see the day a White House would moonlight as a public relations firm for the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia.”

Last week, anti-interventionist Gabbard also called for an end to U.S. involvement with the Saudi-led war in Yemen. "It is long overdue that we end U.S. complicity in Saudi Arabia's atrocities. We must end all U.S. support for Saudi Arabia's genocidal war in Yemen now."

Gabbard had began her political career with more conservative views on several issues. “I began to realize that the positions I had held previously regarding the issues of choice and gay marriage were rooted in the same premise held by those in power in the oppressive middle east regimes I saw,” the Hawaiian Democrat said, referencing her tours of duty.

The congresswoman, who supported Bernie Sanders during the 2016 Democratic primary, is being considered a potential presidential candidate for 2020.

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Iran: New European Initiatives for Non-Dollar Trade to Come

European Union Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini announced, in September, the establishment of a legal entity that would facilitate business between Iran and international trading partners.

On Wednesday, Iran praised European efforts to maintain business with Tehran despite U.S. sanctions, citing discussions to conduct non-dollar trade. "We had constructive meetings with British and French officials and nuclear negotiators in Tehran," Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi said, in a tweet, on the occasion of the British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt's visit.

RELATED: US: Sanctions on Russia, Iran to Curb Oil Shipments to Syria

In May, U.S. President Donald Trump's Administration reimposed sanctions on Iran in an attempt to prevent the entry of financial resources for the country. As a reaction to the sanctions, the European Union’s (EU) Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini announced, in September, the establishment of a legal entity that would facilitate business between Iran and international trading partners.

The “Special Purpose Vehicle” (SPV) system was conceived of as a barter-based system to avoid handling dollars by keeping "credit" records.

“If Iran exports crude oil to a French company,” according to an Al Bawaba report, “[that] company would register an agreed amount of “credit” with the SPV. Iran could then arrange to import goods from an Italian company, and that company could claim back the credit from the SPV as payment. Technically, this translates to no dollars changing hands with Iranian companies.

A French delegation was also in Tehran, on Wednesday, to meet with Araghchi, who commented that "the EU and the three European countries are still determined to save the JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) [nuclear deal]. New initiatives are being designed for the SPV."

The Iranian foreign ministry's spokesman said that Iran had not yet given up hope on the mechanism.

"We have not been able yet to finalize the (SPV) issue to facilitate Iran's purchase of essential goods, and business with small and medium-sized enterprises," Bahram Qasemi said.

However, the United States' stance has not changed.

Recently, U.S. Special Representative for Iran, Brian Hook, threatened to sanction European banks and companies that are or become associated with the SPV.

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Jim Carrey calls Donald Trump a 'melanoma', says Republicans are 'raping our system'

Actor Jim Carrey has called Donald Trump a “melanoma” and said that the current administration is “raping our system”.

In a strongly worded attack reported by the Hollywood Reporter during a panel discussion at the Vulture festival in Los Angeles, Carrey denounced Republicans while speaking about his interest in politically oriented painting.

Carrey called Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell “incredibly dangerous, a threat to homeland security. And now he has the nerve to come out a couple of days ago and ask for bipartisanship.” During the discussion, Carrey posted a painting of McConnell on social media, depicting the politician as a turtle waving a white flag on which is written the word “Bipartisanship” while a wave – an allusion to the Democratic “blue wave” in the 2018 mid-term elections – threatens to swamp him.

Carrey reportedly added, “These are not people you can deal with. You cannot be bipartisan with a criminal. A rapist needs to be removed, not negotiated with. These people are raping our system, they’re destroying it right in front of us … This corrupt Republican Congress that was … These people have to be removed from our system because they’re bad for us. Trump is a melanoma, and anybody that covers for him, including Sarah Sanders, is putting makeup on it. It shows that there’s a deeper problem in this country, and that problem is greed.”

Carrey also had harsh words for the Christian right, saying: “I think they’re going to find out once and for all that the Christian right has never been about morality, it’s been about holding on to power and using morality to do so.”

Carrey has produced a stream of artworks in the last few years, to less than resounding acclaim. He has recently posted pictures of Trump and vice president Mike Pence in space, Trump crucifying Jesus, and former Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt vomiting oil.

  • Published in Culture
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