Esper says he stopped Trump from doing ‘terrible things’ – latest

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GOP governor calls on fellow Republicans to ‘move on’ from Trump

A new report has claimed that former president Donald Trump is “completely weirded out” by the various lurid stories swirling around Madison Cawthorn, the young far-right congressman who has lately been embarrassed by unflattering images and video of his lewd antics. Mr Cawthorn has also twice been caught carrying a handgun in an airport, and has had multiple encounters with police while driving.

Meanwhile, former secretary of defence Mark Esper is making headlines with his soon-to-be-released book about his experiences serving under Donald Trump. Among the claims he makes is that during the Black Lives Matter protests in the summer of 2020, Mr Trump wanted to deploy 10,000 soldiers to the streets of Washington and order them to open fire on protesters .

Mr Trump has hit back at the story, insisting instead that he wanted a similar deployment on 6 January 2021 to maintain order in advance of the certification of Joe Biden’s election victory. He claims without evidence that he was rebuffed.

Mr Esper, who was fired from his position in November 2020 following disputes with the former president, has made several startling revelations in his new book titled A Sacred Oath, which is set to be released tomorrow.


House panel inching closer to issuing subpoenas to GOP members

The House select committee investigating the 6 January Capitol riot are inching closer to issuing subpoenas to Republican members of Congress to compel their cooperation.

The panel is expected to make a final decision on the subpoenas over the next couple of weeks ahead of the public hearings in June, sources familiar with the matter told The Guardian.

According to sources, Republican leaders’ refusal to assist the investigation in any form has caused a stir among the members of the committee, prompting them to deliberate issuing subpoenas.

Alisha Rahaman Sarkar10 May 2022 07:58


Esper says he believes Trump was a ‘threat to democracy’

Former defence secretary Mark Esper said he believes Donald Trump was a threat to democracy, alleging that his actions led to the Capitol riots last year.

“I think that, given the events of 6 January, given how he has undermined the election results, he incited people to come to DC, stirred them up that morning, and failed to call them off, to me, that threatens our democracy,” Mr Esper told Fox News on Monday.

The former defence secretary said he hopes his former boss doesn’t run for office in 2024.

Alisha Rahaman Sarkar10 May 2022 07:19


Department of Defense ‘tried to stop Esper’s Mexico revelation’

The US defence ministry reportedly tried to block former secretary Mark Esper from revealing that Donald Trump threatened to bomb Mexico to “destroy” drug production labs.

In his upcoming book A Sacred Oath: Memoirs of a Secretary of Defense During Extraordinary Times, Mr Esper recounts a conversation in 2020 where the former president said: “We could just shoot some Patriot missiles and take out the labs, quietly.”

Pentagon officials were alarmed at the potential effect the revelation could have on US-Mexico relations, CNN reported, citing sources.

Alisha Rahaman Sarkar10 May 2022 06:50


Trump says he has no phones given by Trump Organization

Former president Donald Trump in an affidavit filed with the court has stated that he doesn’t have any cell phones requested by New York attorney general Letitia James in the ongoing investigation of alleged fraud by the Trump Organization.

In a bid to stay a $10,000 per day fine for contempt of court, the former president said he had turned over all material in his possession that the attorney general’s office had subpoenaed.

Mr Trump said he no longer has a phone given to him by the organisation in 2015, two other flip phones, or a Samsung phone that was “taken from me at some point while I was president”, according to a CNN report.

Alisha Rahaman Sarkar10 May 2022 06:05


Trump refuses to deny that he wanted to bomb drug labs in Mexico

Former president Donald Trump has refused to comment on allegations made by former defence secretary Mark Esper that he suggested launching missiles into Mexico to “destroy the drug labs”.

Mr Esper during an interview with CBS alleged that during the last year of the Trump administration, he and other officials worked tirelessly to prevent “really bad things” from happening under the former president’s watch.

When CBS sought comments from Mr Trump, he responded by flatly denying all but one of the claims sent over by the network.

Johanna Chisholm reports.

Alisha Rahaman Sarkar10 May 2022 05:25


Trump claims he personally ran US military due to ‘lightweight’ defence secretary

Former president Donald Trump claimed he had to “run the military” during his tenure in office because his defence secretary Mark Esper was a “lightweight”.

Hitting out at Mr Esper, the former president in a written response to CBS said: “Mark Esper was weak and totally ineffective and because of it, I had to run the military.

“Mark Esper was a stiff who was desperate not to lose his job. He would do anything I wanted, that’s why I called him ‘Yesper.’ He was a lightweight and figurehead, and I realised it very early on,” he added.

Maroosha Muzaffar has more.

Alisha Rahaman Sarkar10 May 2022 04:54


‘The truth does not benefit Donald’: Michael Cohen testifies in lawsuit against Trump

Donald Trump’s longtime fixer and former personal attorney Michael Cohen told reporters on Monday that he was deposed for several hours as part of a lawsuit filed by protesters who say that Trump Organization security attacked them outside of Trump Tower.

According to Mr Cohen, Donald Trump’s security guards attacked the demonstraters after being ordered by then-candidate Trump himself to “get rid” of them. The ex-president has denied this.

“They asked me a series of questions and I answered them honestly and truthfully,” Mr Cohen said on Monday, adding: “The truth does not benefit Donald.”

Read more from The Independent’s Alex Woodward:

John Bowden10 May 2022 04:26


Manchin doesn’t say if he’ll support Democrats’ bill to codify abortion rights

Joe Manchin, the centrist Democratic senator whose opposition to the president’s Build Back Better agenda torpedoed that legislation last year, could be on the verge of breaking with his party again.

Asked by CNN on Monday whether he would join with Democrats to vote to advance their bill codifying abortion rights into federal law, he replied: “I’m going to wait — until tomorrow,” apparently meaning he has not made up his mind.

The West Virginia senator opposed a similar bill in February, and also has long stood in opposition to using federal money to support abortion services.

John Bowden10 May 2022 03:26


Mike Pence attacks Kamala Harris over abortion rights

Former Vice President Mike Pence is swinging at his successor, Kamala Harris, after she criticised the Supreme Court’s apparent impending decision that would upend 40 years of protected abortion rights in the US.

Ms Harris was speaking at an event hosted by the pro-choice EMILY’s List group when she questioned last week: “Those Republicans leaders who are trying the weaponise the use of the law against women, well we say, how dare they? How dare they tell a woman what she can do and cannot do with her own body?”

Mr Pence fired back in response at an anti-abortion group’s event on Friday, exclaiming: “I say with the lives of 62 million unborn boys and girls ended in abortion since 1973, generations of mothers enduring heartbreaking loss that can last a lifetime: Madam Vice President, how dare you?”

Read more about the growing US divide on abortion rights from The Independent’s Eric Garcia:

John Bowden10 May 2022 02:26


Arizona high court rejects effort to block GOP lawmakers from ballot

Arizona’s highest court has ruled that activists seeking to block three GOP lawmakers from the ballot in November over their support for efforts to overturn the 2020 election will not succeed.

The move ends the effort to block US House members Andy Biggs and Paul Gosar as well as state Rep. Mark Finchem from running for reelection in 2022; the three are loyal supporters of Donald Trump and vocally supported his false claims about the 2020 election being supposedly stolen by Joe Biden.

Similar efforts were kicked off in numerous states including North Carolina and Georgia targeting other allies of the former president like Madison Cawthorn and Marjorie Taylor Greene in response to the violence on January 6.

Read more from The Associated Press:

Arizona high court tosses push to disqualify GOP lawmakers

The Arizona Supreme Court has rejected an effort to disqualify three Republican lawmakers from this year’s ballot because of their alleged roles in planning or attending the rally that led to the unprecedented attack on Congress on Jan. 6, 2021

John Bowden10 May 2022 01:26

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