Thứ sáu, 07 03rd

Last updateThứ 6, 03 07 2020 6pm

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Maybe we now know the real reason that Bob Mueller was so reluctant to testify.

With even liberal commentators conceding that Mueller was a shaky witness during two House hearings, questions are swirling about his mental acuity and his ability to handle the job of special counsel.

Let me also say that the hearings shouldn’t be graded only on optics, although they were, like most hearings, designed as political theater. But even on substance, Mueller offered almost nothing that was new, and for all the media hype, that was very much by design.

Still, Mueller’s struggles on the Hill were a real head-scratcher, especially for those who have worked with him.

Read Full at Fox News

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Former special counsel Robert Mueller is sworn in by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler to testify before the House Judiciary Committee hearing on Capitol Hill, July 24, 2019, in Washington - VOA

WASHINGTON - The U.S. economy added 4.8 million jobs in June as it struggles to recover from the business closures forced by the coronavirus pandemic, the government reported Thursday, even as it said another 1.4 million laid-off workers filed for unemployment benefits last week. 

The Bureau of Labor Statistics said the country’s unemployment rate improved to 11.1% in June, compared to the official May figure of 13.3%. But the June figure was compiled at mid-month before a new, record-high surge of confirmed coronavirus infections spread across the U.S. states that were among the first to reopen their economies. 

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FILE - Shoppers walk around Garden State Plaza in Paramus, N.J., as New Jersey's indoor shopping malls reopened Monday from their COVID-19 pause.

U.S. President Donald Trump is dismissing intelligence reports suggesting Russia may have offered a bounty to Taliban-linked militants for attacks on U.S. forces after top aides said he was fully briefed on the matter.
In a series of early morning tweets Wednesday, the president called media reports about the intelligence “just another HOAX!” and said the source for the original report in The New York Times “probably does not even exist.” 

Trump also cited a statement from the Pentagon that military officials have "no corroborating evidence." 

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FILE - President Donald Trump speaks with reporters before departing on Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House, June 23, 2020.

WASHINGTON - Eight Republican lawmakers attended a White House briefing about explosive allegations that Russia secretly offered bounties to Taliban-linked militants for killing American troops in Afghanistan — intelligence the White House insisted the president himself had not been fully read in on.  

Members of Congress in both parties called for additional information and consequences for Russia and its president, Vladimir Putin, and eight Democrats were to be briefed on the matter Tuesday morning, a day after the Republicans' briefing. Still, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany insisted Trump had not been briefed on the findings because they hadn't been verified.  

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Rep. Michael McCaul, the ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said that lawmakers were told ‘there is an ongoing review to determine the accuracy of these reports.’

The White House has denied that President Donald Trump was briefed on a reported finding that Russian military intelligence offered bounties to Taliban-linked militants to kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan. 

Neither Trump nor Vice President Mike Pence was briefed on the alleged Russian bounty intelligence, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said in a statement, referring to a report on June 26 in The New York Times. 

"This does not speak to the merit of the alleged intelligence but to the inaccuracy of The New York Times story erroneously suggesting that President Trump was briefed on this matter," she added. 

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FILE - President Donald Trump speaks to a group of young Republicans at Dream City Church in Phoenix, June 23, 2020.

WASHINGTON - This month China reported to the U.S. Department of Justice that one of its English language publications has paid $19 million to U.S. media since November 2016, including $12 million in payments to major U.S. newspapers like The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal.

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A man wearing a face mask to protect against the spread of the new coronavirus walks past a propaganda banner encouraging people to sort their garbage in Beijing, June 24, 2020.

WASHINGTON - In a bipartisan rebuke of China, the Senate on Thursday unanimously approved a bill to impose sanctions on business and individuals — including the police — that undermine Hong Kong's autonomy or restrict freedoms promised to Hong Kong residents.

The bill targets police units that have cracked down on Hong Kong protesters, as well as Chinese Communist Party officials responsible for imposing a strict "national security" law on Hong Kong, which is considered a special administrative region within China and maintains its own governing and economic systems. The measure also would impose sanctions on banks that do business with entities found to violate the law.

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Pro-democracy demonstrators hold up a banner and portraits of jailed Chinese civil rights activists as they march in Hong Kong, June 25, 2020. US Senate bill passed targets police units that have cracked down on Hong Kong protesters.

U.S. President Donald Trump’s national security adviser says China is trying to “remake the world’ in its image.

Speaking Wednesday before a group of business leaders in Phoenix, Arizona, Robert O’Brien said U.S. policymakers had naively believed for decades that the Chinese Commnunist Party would move steadily towards democracy as it grew economically, while at the same time downplaying Beijing’s numerous human rights abuses.

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Robert O'Brien, assistant to the president for national security affairs, leaves the podium after speaking at a news conference regarding China, June 24, 2020, in Phoenix, Ariz.

WASHINGTON - U.S. President Donald Trump’s campaign on Sunday brushed off the underwhelming size of the crowd at his first political rally in three months, blaming “fake news media” reports of the threat of coronavirus infections and the possibility of protests for keeping people away.

The 19,000-seat BOK Center arena in Tulsa, Oklahoma, appeared to be a bit more than half full Saturday night, even though the president’s campaign last week boasted that a million people had registered to attend. The Trump campaign said about 12,000 people passed through metal detectors at the entrances.

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President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at the BOK Center, in Tulsa, Oklahoma, June 20, 2020.

WASHINGTON - A U.S. federal judge ruled Saturday that former U.S. national security adviser John Bolton’s book about the Trump Administration can be published, despite an emergency request from the Justice Department to block it.

The tell-all book by the president’s former aide, set to go on sale Tuesday, is critical of President Donald Trump’s foreign policy decision-making during the year-and-a-half Bolton worked in the White House.

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FILE - U.S. President Donald Trump, left, conducts a meeting in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, May 22, 2018, as then-National Security Adviser John Bolton, right, looks on.

WASHINGTON - The Justice Department moved abruptly Friday to oust Geoffrey S. Berman, the U.S. attorney in Manhattan overseeing key prosecutions of President Donald Trump's allies and an investigation of his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. But Berman said he was refusing to leave his post and said his ongoing investigations would continue.

“I have not resigned, and have no intention of resigning, my position,” Berman said. His statement came hours Attorney General Bill Barr said Berman was stepping down from his position.

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FILE - Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York, holds a news conference, Aug. 8, 2018, in New York.