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Trump plans his fraud trial return during gag order appeal: Latest

A judge has denied Donald Trump’s attempt for a fast-tracked appeal of his gag order in his New York fraud trial, days after a ruling allowed the order to stay in place after court filings revealed the scope of abuse and harassment Judge Arthur Engoron’s staff has received.

Monday’s latest appeals court ruling means that the former president will likely still face a gag order when he makes his expected return to New York State Supreme Court this week, and when he gets another round on the witness stand next week.

His court battle follows warnings from Liz Cheney and voting rights advocates about his antidemocratic threats as he seeks the Republican nomination for president. At a campaign rally in Iowa on Saturday, the former president amplified bogus fraud claims to call on his supporters to “go into” cities to “watch” elections, while Ms Cheney has warned about the “existential crisis” he poses to American elections and the future of Congress.

On Monday, one of his GOP rivals Doug Burgum dropped out of the race, while only three remaining candidates not named Trump will take the debate stage later this week.

Key Points

  • Judge denies Trump’s attempt for quick appeal on gag order

  • Trump’s ‘co-opted’ GOP should lose House majority, says Cheney

  • Trump isn’t immune from January 6 lawsuits, federal appeals court rules

  • Faced with new gag order covering court staff, Trump attacks judge’s wife

  • Trump’s violent rhetoric charts his campaign warpath

Full story: Trump will face gag order during fraud trial testimony after another courtroom loss

23:33 , Alex Woodward

An appeals court judge has rejected Donald Trump’s request for a fast-tracked appeal of his gag order in his New York fraud trial, days before he is scheduled to return to the witness stand before his attorneys bring their case to a close.

On Monday, the former president’s legal team asked a state appeals court for a fast-tracked appeal process to challenge last week’s decision that keeps the gag order in place. A judge denied the request, and his lawyers will instead have to make their case before a full panel of judges next week.

The decision effectively guarantees that Mr Trump will remain under a gag order through the final days of his defence team’s presentations in a civil trial that could imperil the family’s vast real estate empire.

Trump loses latest attempt to block his fraud trial gag order

A university made a MAGA congressman its president. Is it a sign of things to come in higher ed?

23:00 , Alex Woodward

In Ohio, Youngstown State University students, faculty, alumni, and community members were outraged to find out that Republican US Rep Bill Johnson — who has no background in education of any kind — was offered the contract to be the university’s new president with only two hours notice and without any public input.

Johnson, who joined spurious 2020 challenges to attempt to invalidate millions of votes in that year’s presidential election, has previously invoked right-wing grievances against “cancel culture” and “indoctrination” on college campuses. University donors are now looking for the exits.

The Independent’s Graig Graziosi reports:

An Ohio community is furious after college makes MAGA congressman president

Just in: Judge denies Trump’s attempt for quick appeal on gag order

21:28 , Alex Woodward

An appeals court judge has rejected Donald Trump’s request for a swift appeal of his gag order in his New York fraud trial, meaning that the former president will have to make his case before a full panel of judges.

His attorneys will have a chance to argue before a full appeals court on Monday.

Last week, another appeals court allowed the gag order to stand, after court filings revealed the wave of abusive messages and credible death threats to Judge Arthur Engoron and his staff.

Trump then immediately attacked the judge’s wife.

Trump immediately attacks judge’s wife after gag order reinstated in fraud trial

Trump is expected to return to his fraud trial this week

21:21 , Alex Woodward

Donald Trump hasn’t been inside New York State Supreme Court since his testimony last month in a fraud trial that could imperil his family’s real estate empire.

He is reportedly expected to return to Judge Arthur Engoron’s courtroom on Thursday.

Trump also will testify again, this time as the final witness for the defence, a week from today.

Eric Trump will testify for a second time this week on Wednesday.

‘No question’ Trump will try to stay in office as long as he can, Liz Cheney says

20:45 , Alex Woodward

Former US Rep Liz Cheney has warned that there is “no question” Trump would leave office if he is elected next year.

NBC’s Savannah Guthrie on Today on Monday asked Ms Cheney whether Trump would “try to stay in power forever,” if elected.

“Absolutely. He’s already done it once,” she said.

Trump tries to blame DeSantis for Florida State Football playoffs snub

20:30 , Alex Woodward

Perhaps somewhat unsurprisingly, given the history of Donald Trump and his bullying of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, the former president wrote on Truth Social early Monday morning that Floridians should actually “blame” the state’s governor for Florida State’s exclusion from the upcoming playoff series set to begin on 1 January.

Trump tries to blame DeSantis for Florida State Football playoffs snub

Trump’s violent rhetoric charts his campaign warpath

20:15 , Alex Woodward

Trump sees the criminal indictments and civil cases against him as part of a Democratic conspiracy that is “weaponising” the federal government to keep him away from the White House, and he appears ready to do the same to his political opponents if he’s elected.

The leading candidate for the 2024 Republican nomination for president is giving his supporters permission to dehumanise and degrade his political opponents as he does, priming their acceptance of political violence against the “other” side, while absolving them of responsibility for it, according to urgent warnings from scholars and legal analysts.

Trump’s violent rhetoric charts his campaign warpath

Trump is skipping another debate, leaving only three candidates left on the stage

19:45 , Alex Woodward

Four candidates for the GOP’s nomination for president have qualified to appear at the next primary debate scheduled for Wednesday night.

Trump is among them, but he won’t be there, as usual. Ron DeSantis, Nikki Haley and Vivek Ramaswamy will be the only three candidates on the stage.

Who qualified for the fourth GOP debate?

Trump’s call to ‘go into’ cities and ‘watch’ elections sounds alarms from election officials and voting rights groups

19:15 , Alex Woodward

Trump’s call to his supporters to “guard” and “watch” ballot counting in cities with large Black populations has raised alarms among elections officials and voting rights advocates bracing for more threats to elections fuelled by his bogus narrative of widespread fraud.

“The most important part of what’s coming up is to guard the vote, and you should go into Detroit, and you should go into Philadelphia, and you should go into some of these places – Atlanta – and you should go into some of these places, and we gotta watch those votes when they come in,” he told supporters in Iowa on Saturday.

He then falsely claimed that ballots are “shoved around in wheelbarrows and dumped on the floor”.

The president of the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund called his comments “lawless intimidation,” and a grim reminder of 2020.

Trump’s call to ‘go into’ cities and ‘watch’ elections sounds alarms

Eric Garcia: ‘Trump uses Obamacare as a distraction. Biden sees an opportunity'

18:45 , Alex Woodward

Democratic officials and Joe Biden are leaping on Donald Trump’s revived threats to dismantle the Affordable Care Act.

The Independent’s Eric Garcia writes:

Mr Trump never seemed to care much about the intricacies of health care policy. He famously said as president that “nobody knew health care could be so complicated,” which his direct predecessor Barack Obama could have told him. But many Americans see threats to their health care as more immediate to their wellbeing than still-hypothetical plans for Mr Trump to turn the government into his own personal bludgeoning tool. And Democrats seem to recognize this and have responded accordingly.

Trump is using Obamacare as a distraction. Biden sees an opportunity

Just in: Trump’s attorneys will argue for gag order appeal in New York today

18:18 , Alex Woodward

Donald Trump’s attorneys in his fraud trial in New York are asking another appeals court this afternoon to allow the state’s highest court to weigh in on the fate of a gag order in the case.

Oral arguments will begin this afternoon following a request for an expedited review of their appeal, after a state appellate court allowed Judge Arthur Engoron’s gag order to stand last week.

Stay tuned.

New York State Supreme Court Judge Arthur Engoron, right, with his chief clerk Allison Greenfield, as the judge presides over Donald Trump’s fraud trial. (REUTERS)
New York State Supreme Court Judge Arthur Engoron, right, with his chief clerk Allison Greenfield, as the judge presides over Donald Trump’s fraud trial. (REUTERS)

ICYMI: Trump attorney charged in Georgia 2020 case begins cooperating in Nevada probe

17:39 , Alex Woodward

The state-level criminal investigation into the 2020 election “fake electors” plot in Nevada has secured the cooperation of a key witness: Kenneth Chesebro, the lawyer who orchestrated the scheme to overturn Joe Biden’s win in the state.

He has agreed to meet with investigators in the state in a bid to avoid prosecution there.

Chesebro pleaded guilty to charges relating to the plot in Georgia and as part of that plea deal has agreed to cooperate with the prosecution in the sprawling racketeering case against former president Donald Trump and 14 other co-defendants.

Trump ‘fake electors’ attorney begins cooperating in Nevada probe

Just in: North Dakota governor Doug Burgum suspends 2024 campaign

16:45 , Alex Woodward

North Dakota’s Governor Doug Burgum ended his campaign for the presidency on Monday ahead of the fourth Republican primary debate in Alabama.

Burgum, 67, poured millions of his own money into his presidential bid but after an initial meetup of the candidates in August failed to reach the polling requirements necessary for attendance at successive GOP primary debates. He sought to run on his record as governor, but had little name recogniton at the national level.

His departure from the race for the GOP’s 2024 nomination for president winnows a field that Donald Trump hopes to dominate.

North Dakota governor Doug Burgum suspends his 2024 campaign

Full story: Trump launches belated attack on Robert De Niro

16:30 , Alex Woodward

Trump finally responded to criticism from Robert De Niro aired during an awards speech last week.

The actor hit out at the former president during the Gotham Awards on 27 November, saying that Trump “can’t hide his soul”.

“He attacks the weak, destroys the gifts of nature and shows his disrespect, for example, using Pocahontas as a slur.”

Trump launches belated attack on Robert De Niro: ‘Total loser’

Did one of Trump’s co-defendants threaten a witness?

16:15 , Alex Woodward

Trevian Kutti, a former Kanye West publicist and co-defendant alongside Donald Trump in the sprawling election subversion case in Georgia, appears to have threatened a witness in the case, violating the terms of her bond that keeps her out of jail.

In comments on Instagram Live over the weekend, she appeared to threaten Fulton County election worker Ruby Freeman, who along with her daughter Shaye Moss has faced a wave of abuse and harassment that is at the centre of the charges facing Ms Kutti.

“There’s a woman sitting somewhere who knows this whole thing is a lie,” she said. “There’s a woman sitting somewhere who knows that I’m going to f**** her whole life up when this is done.”

Her $75,000 bond agreement prohibits her from intimidating co-defendants and witnesses, obstructing justice or posting on social media about the facts of the case.

Legal experts predict Fani Willis might ask a judge to revoke her bond.

Just in: Trump to appeal New York gag order to state’s highest court

15:45 , Alex Woodward

Donald Trump’s legal team is seeking an appeal of a New York appellate court decision that allowed a gag order in his fraud trial to remain in place.

His attorneys are seeking permission to appeal to the state’s highest court, claiming that the former president suffers “irreparable injury daily, as they are silenced on matters implicating the appearance of bias and impropriety on the bench during a trial of immense stakes,” despite a wave of death threats and abuse his comments have inspired against the court’s staff.

A state appeals court had temporarily paused the order from Judge Arthur Engoron, but last week, the panel agreed to let it stand, after court filings revealed the scale of harassment the court has received.

After the gag order was upheld, Trump attacked the judge’s wife.

Trump immediately attacks judge’s wife after gag order reinstated in fraud trial

Judge shoots down Giuliani’s attempt to avoid a jury trial in defamation case

15:15 , Alex Woodward

Rudy Giuliani is heading back to court.

Giuliani will face a jury trial, as planned, to determine damages surrounding a defamation case from two election workers in Georgia who sued the former president’s attorney for the death threats and harassment they faced as a result of his false statements about them in the wake of 2020 elections.

A weekend ruling from the federal judge overseeing the case dismissed his request, calling some of his arguments “simply nonsense” and flat-out “incorrect”.

More background on the case from The Independent:

Rudy Giuliani and Jenna Ellis could testify in election workers’ defamation trial

14:45 , Alex Woodward

Good morning from New York.

Donald Trump’s fraud trial resumes in lower Manhattan this morning, the beginning of the end of the defence’s arguments in a trial entering its 10th week. Eric Trump is scheduled to testify on Wednesday. A week from today, the former president will be on the witness stand.

Meanwhile, on Friday night, Trump was dealt a second of two legal blows that day in his attempts to evade liability for events surrounding the January 6 attack. Earlier in the day, a judge allowed lawsuits blaming him for violence to move forward, and the judge overseeing his election subversion case rejected his claim of “presidential immunity” in a blistering ruling.

More on that late-night Friday decision here:

Judge in Trump election conspiracy case rules he does not have presidential immunity

Gaetz frets about House GOP’s precarious majority after Santos expulsion

14:30 , Oliver O’Connell

Florida US Rep Matt Gaetz is worried.

The controversial right-wing lawmaker fears that following the expulsion of disgraced former congressman George Santos, the slim Republican majority in the House of Representatives is in peril

Matt Gaetz frets about precarious Republican majority after George Santos exit

Santos threatens ex-colleagues with ethics complaints after expulsion

14:10 , Oliver O'Connell

Having said he would leave Congress “graciously” were he expelled, disgraced former congressman George Santos appears out for revenge against those lawmakers who supported his expulsion in Friday’s landslide vote.

After his exit from the Capitol on Friday afternoon there was silence from the ex-Republican congressman.

That is, until 11.35pm when he took to his personal account on X and wrote of his intention to file ethics complaints against four of his former colleagues. The Independent has contacted their offices for comment and received responses from two.

Read on...

George Santos threatens ex-colleagues with ethics complaints after expulsion

McCarthy limps towards possible exit from Congress

13:50 , Oliver O'Connell

Former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy was third in line to the presidency just a few months ago. Soon, he may not be in Washington at all.

The California congressman endured a grinding nine months as leader of a fractured and bitter Republican caucus, one that may have been destined to cast him aside from the very beginning. Following a last-minute deal with Democrats to avert a government shutdown in October, he was unceremoniously ousted by one of his most polarising foes: Matt Gaetz of Florida, leading a cadre of Republican malcontents with their own varying complaints about Mr McCarthy’s leadership.

John Bowden looks at what might happen next.

McCarthy limps towards possible exit from Congress after year of bruising speakership

ICYMI: Trump can’t be on trial in Georgia if he’s president, attorneys argue

13:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump shouldn’t be on trial in Georgia during his 2024 presidential campaign, and, if he wins that election, he shouldn’t be on trial until he leaves the White House, his attorneys told the judge overseeing a criminal case surrounding his efforts to overturn the results of the last election he lost.

The former president and leading candidate for the Republican nomination next year is criminally accused of joining a conspiracy to unlawfully subvert the state’s election results.

Prosecutors in Fulton County have proposed an August 2024 trial date, which his attorneys have called “election interference.”

Alex Woodward reports.

Trump can’t be on trial in Georgia if he’s president, attorneys argue

WATCH: Jimmy Kimmel mocks claim that Trump stopped eating after January 6

13:15 , Rachel Sharp

Lindsey Graham warns Liz Cheney ‘world will be truly on fire’ if Trump not re-elected

13:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Senator Lindsey Graham, one of Donald Trump’s most ardent supplicants, had a warning for former rep Liz Cheney in an appearance on CNN this morning.

On State of the Union host Dana Bash turned to the topic of Ms Cheney’s new book Oath and Honor in which she dishes the dirt on fellow Republicans who reverted to backing Trump after the January 6 Capitol riot.

Bash asked the South Carolina senator about Ms Cheney saying that the US is “sleepwalking into a dictatorship” if Trump returns to the White House in 2024.

First Senator Graham bashed President Joe Biden:

Yeah. I think a continuation of the Biden presidency would be a disaster for peace and prosperity at home and abroad. Our border is broken. The only person really going to fix a broken border is Donald Trump.

When he was president, none of this stuff was going on in Ukraine. Hamas and all of these other terrorist groups were afraid of Trump. I think Liz’s hatred of Trump is real. I understand why people don’t like what he does and says at times, but in terms of actions and results, he was far better president [than] Biden.

Then he warned the former lawmaker:

If we have four more years of this, Liz Cheney, we won’t recognise America and the world will be truly on fire.

Trump denies he wasn’t eating after Jan 6 – he was eating ‘too much’

12:40 , Rachel Sharp

Donald Trump is pushing back on claims that he stopped eating in the aftermath of the January 6 Capitol riot – instead saying he was actually eating “too much”.

Last week, an extract from former Republican lawmaker Liz Cheney’s new book was released, revealing details of the GOP party’s response to the violent insurrection.

In the memoir Oath and Honor, set to be released this Tuesday, Ms Cheney writes about the moment that she learned then-GOP leader Kevin McCarthy had gone to visit Mr Trump at Mar-a-Lago in the aftermath of the Capitol riot.

When she confronted Mr McCarthy over the meeting, Ms Cheney – a staunch and vocal Mr Trump critic – he is said to have told her he had gone to visit him because the former president’s inner circle was growing concerned about his health.

This apparent concern was founded on the fact that Mr Trump wasn’t eating, the book claims.

Read the full story:

Trump denies he wasn’t eating after Jan 6 – he was eating ‘too much’

Trump calls Biden ‘destroyer’ of democracy despite own efforts to overturn 2020 election

12:15 , AP

Former President Donald Trump on Saturday attempted to turn the tables on his likely rival in November, President Joe Biden, arguing that the man whose election victory Trump tried to overturn is “the destroyer of American democracy.”

Trump’s allegations about Biden, a Democrat, echo the ones that Biden has been making for years against his predecessor. As Trump has dominated the Republican presidential primary and talked about targeting his rivals and the news media if he wins the White House again, Biden has stepped up his own warnings, contending Trump is “ determined to destroy American democracy.”

On Saturday, Trump made his most explicit argument to date on why voters should instead see his rival as the bigger democratic threat.

Trump calls Biden destroyer of democracy despite own 2020 election subversion cases

A university made a MAGA congressman its president. Is it a sign of things to come in higher ed?

11:45 , Rachel Sharp

In the heart of downtown Youngstown, Ohio, inside a conference room where the Youngstown State University board of trustees hold their meetings, a chorus of angry boos rang out when it was decided the college’s next president would be an election-denying MAGA congressman.

With little forewarning, YSU’s trustees selected Congressman Bill Johnson — one of five Ohio Republican congressmen to back a bogus Texas lawsuit seeking to invalidate millions of legitimate votes in the 2020 election — as the university’s new president.

Three of the board members — all appointed to their positions by Republican Governor Mike DeWine — contributed to Mr Johnson’s congressional runs, according to the Youngstown Vindicator. Mr Johnson announced he would not seek re-election at the end of his term.

The only dissenting vote, YSU Trustee Molly Seals, said “I do not think the congressman is right for this job” in a statement.

Students, faculty, alumni, and community members were outraged to find out that Mr Johnson — who has no background in education of any kind — was offered the contract with only two hours notice and without any public input, according to local broadcaster WKBN.

The Independent’s Graig Graziosi reports:

An Ohio community is furious after college makes MAGA congressman president

What happens at the GOP convention if Trump is convicted? Don’t ask the RNC...

11:15 , AP

The Republican National Committee’s rules for next year’s nominating contest and convention were released this week without addressing a question the GOP could well face next summer: can the party’s delegates vote for a different candidate if the presumptive nominee is convicted of a felony?

Former President Donald Trump is under four criminal indictments that will proceed through the GOP primary season, an overlap of legal and political calendars with no precedent in American politics. Fifteen states and American Samoa hold their GOP primaries on 5 March, known as Super Tuesday, which is also the day after his first trial is scheduled to begin in Washington on charges that he unlawfully sought to overturn the 2020 election.

Trump is dominating the Republican field and may secure much of the support he needs by Super Tuesday, by which time almost half of the delegates who select the nominee at the GOP convention will have been awarded. Even if he were to be convicted in Washington or another trial, top party leaders and many voters have indicated they would stand by Trump anyway. And Trump and his allies are pushing to dismiss and delay the trials and have worked with state parties to craft rules favourable to him.

The RNC rules don’t include any provisions specific to the unprecedented scenario unfolding.

Read the full article...

Trump launches belated attack on De Niro over awards speech

10:54 , Rachel Sharp

Donald Trump has launched a belated attack on Robert De Niro after the star jabbed the former president in an awards ceremony speech last week.

The Hollywood actor was left fuming when he took to the stage at the the Gotham Awards in New York City on 27 November and noticed his speech had been censored to remove anti-Trump remarks.

Almost one week on, Mr Trump appears to have learnt about the incident – lashing out at De Niro on Truth Social.

“Robert De Niro, whose acting talents have greatly diminished, with his reputation now shot, must even use a teleprompter for his foul and disgusting language, so disrespectful to our Country,” he fumed.

“He has become unwatchable both in movies, and with the FOOLS that destroyed the Academy Awards, bringing them from one of the top shows in the Country to a Low Rated afterthought. De Niro should focus on his life, which is a mess, rather than the lives of others. He has become a total loser, as the World watches, waits, and laughs!”

Watch: Bizarre moment Trump claims even his opponents say he had ‘one of the great presidencies'

10:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Cheney wants Trump’s ‘co-opted’ GOP to lose House majority

09:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Liz Cheney, the former Republican congresswoman and one of Donald Trump’s greatest foes, has given a dire warning about the possibility of the former president returning to the White House.

Speaking on CBS Sunday Morning she even went as far as saying she would like the GOP to lose its House majority to prevent “collaborator” Mike Johnson from holding onto his role as speaker.

Ms Cheney spoke with John Dickerson of CBS News about the looming danger to democracy posed by Mr Trump as explored in her new book Oath and Honor.

After saying that Mr Johnson was “absolutely” a collaborator in the attempt to overturn the 2020 election, Ms Cheney was asked what would happen if he is still speaker come January 2025.

Continued...

Liz Cheney wants Trump’s ‘co-opted’ GOP to lose House majority

Watch: DeSantis dodges Trump Nazi rhetoric question, asks why Trump is running at all

08:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Kenneth Chesebro begins cooperating in Nevada fake elector probe

06:15 , Oliver O'Connell

The state-level criminal investigation into the 2020 election “fake electors” plot in Nevada has secured the cooperation of a key witness — Kenneth Chesebro, the lawyer who orchestrated the scheme to overturn Joe Biden’s win in the state.

Both CNN and The Washington Post report that Mr Chesebro has agreed to meet with investigators in the state in a bid to avoid prosecution there.

He pleaded guilty to charges relating to the plot in Georgia and as part of that plea deal has agreed to cooperate with the prosecution in the sprawling racketeering case against former president Donald Trump and 14 other co-defendants.

Mr Chesebro also agreed to cooperate with any relevant cases in the future both inside and outside the state.

Continue reading the full article

Trump does not have presidential immunity, judge rules

04:15 , Oliver O'Connell

The judge presiding over Donald Trump’s federal election conspiracy case in Washington DC has rejected a motion to dismiss the case based on his argument that he enjoys presidential immunity.

Judge Tanya Chutkan, who is overseeing the case, said that the former president’s time in officer did not bestow on him “the divine right of kings” to evade criminal accountability.

It comes as a long-awaited federal appeals court ruling also determined that Mr Trump can be held civilly liable for inciting the riots at the US Capitol on 6 January, 2021 in the wake of his 2020 loss.

Lawyers for Mr Trump had also tried to use his presidential “immunity” as a shield from the litigation.

In her ruling on Friday, Judge Chutkan said: “[The] defendant’s four-year service as Commander in Chief did not bestow on him the divine right of kings to evade the criminal accountability that governs his fellow citizens.”

The decision tees up a legal fight over the scope of presidential power that could ultimately reach the US Supreme Court.

Mike Bedigan reports.

Judge in Trump election conspiracy case rules he does not have presidential immunity

Speaker Johnson wrote intro for book filled with conspiracies and homophobia

03:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Republican Speaker of the House Mike Johnson wrote the introduction to a 2022 book that included baseless debunked conspiracy theories as well as homophobic slurs.

In addition to writing the foreword, the Louisiana lawmaker actively promoted the book by Scott McKay, a politics blogger, CNN reported.

Indeed, the speaker pushed the book on social media and dedicated an episode of his podcast to it.

The Revivalist Manifesto includes conspiracies often championed by the far-right, including the infamous discredited “Pizzagate” hoax concerning a high-ranking paedophile ring in Washington DC, and the unfounded conspiracy that the Democratic National Committee’s emails were not hacked in 2016 but leaked.

House Speaker Mike Johnson wrote foreword for conspiracy-laden book

Court rules Trump can be sued for inciting the Capitol riots

02:15 , Oliver O'Connell

A US appeals court has ruled that Donald Trump can be sued for inciting the Capitol riot.

The judgement was passed down today in US District Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

Mr Trump’s attorneys attempted to use “presidential immunity” to shield him from civil action resulting from his incitement of the Capitol riot.

The appeals court was asked to determine whether Mr Trump has “demonstrated an entitlement to official-act immunity for his actions leading up to and on January 6 as alleged in the complaints.”

“We answer no, at least at this stage of the proceedings,” they wrote in a ruling on Friday.

Graig Graziosi has the details.

Analysis: Trump’s violent rhetoric charts his campaign warpath

01:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Alex Woodward writes:

News networks should be taken off air and investigated for treason. The nation’s top military official should be executed. A state judge presiding over a trial against him, and the attorney general suing him, should be arrested. People seeking asylum in the US are “poisoning the blood of our country” and should be turned away if they don’t accept “our religion.” Drug dealers should get the death sentence. “Liberal Jews” are voting to “destroy America and Israel.” The regime will “root out” political opponents who “live like vermin”.

Donald Trump’s latest violent, authoritarian visions in his 2024 campaign for the presidency are building on his platform of self-described retribution.

Read on...

Trump’s violent rhetoric charts his campaign warpath

What’s next for Gavin Newsom ‘shadow campaign’?

00:15 , Oliver O'Connell

The Fox News debate on Thursday between Florida governor Ron DeSantis and California governor Gavin Newsom was billed as the “Great Red vs Blue State debate,” a showdown between conservatism and liberalism itself.

But the spectre of the 2024 presidential election – and, well, maybe the 2028 one – hung over the conversation all night.

What exactly were these two men fighting for? And what comes next?

Josh Marcus reports from San Francisco.

After Ron DeSantis debate, what’s next for Gavin Newsom ‘shadow campaign’?

Attorneys argue Trump can’t be on trial in Georgia if he’s president

Sunday 3 December 2023 23:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump shouldn’t be on trial in Georgia during his 2024 presidential campaign, and, if he wins that election, he shouldn’t be on trial until he leaves the White House, his attorneys told the judge overseeing a criminal case surrounding his efforts to overturn the results of the last election he lost.

The former president and leading candidate for the Republican nomination next year is criminally accused of joining a conspiracy to unlawfully subvert the state’s election results.

Prosecutors in Fulton County have proposed an August 2024 trial date, which his attorneys have called “election interference.”

Trump can’t be on trial in Georgia if he’s president, attorneys argue

Watch: Republicans would find defending Santos and Trump difficult and wanted to move on

Sunday 3 December 2023 22:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Trump golf club staffer claims she was tricked into NDA after sexual harassment

Sunday 3 December 2023 22:15 , Oliver O'Connell

A former server is suing Donald Trump‘s National Golf Club in Bedminster, alleging she was sexually harassed and coerced into sex by one of her supervisors before being tricked into signing an illegal NDA by Mr Trump’s lawyer, Alina Habba.

Alice Bianco filed the lawsuit on Wednesday in New Jersey’s Middlesex County Superior Court, according to Politico.

Mr Trump is not named as a defendant in the suit.

The alleged incident began in 2021, when Ms Bianco, then 21, claims that a manager harassed her and tried to force a kiss on her. When she refused, she allegedly was given an “unfair job assignment” in retaliation. The situation culminated in her having to agree to have sex with the manager “as a quid pro quo for continued employment and ‘protection’”, according to the lawsuit.

The manager is also not named as a defendant.

Graig Graziosi reports.

Woman claims she was tricked into NDA after sexual harassment at Trump golf club

Gaetz frets about House GOP’s precarious majority after Santos expulsion

Sunday 3 December 2023 22:01 , Oliver O'Connell

Florida Rep Matt Gaetz is worried.

The controversial right-wing lawmaker fears that following the expulsion of disgraced former congressman George Santos, the slim Republican majority in the House of Representatives is in peril

Specifically, he believes that other GOP lawmakers may also soon exit the lower chamber of Congress.

Speaking on The Charlie Kirk Show, Mr Gaetz, who in October led the ousting of former speaker Kevin McCarthy, said: “Our willingness to self-mutilate on these things really impairs our ability to get the job done.”

He called the expulsion of Mr Santos “tactically stupid” in the context of the narrow majority.

Read on...

Matt Gaetz frets about precarious Republican majority after George Santos exit

Watch: Asked about faith, Trump talks about polls

Sunday 3 December 2023 21:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Trump calls Biden ‘destroyer’ of democracy despite own efforts to overturn 2020 election

Sunday 3 December 2023 21:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Former President Donald Trump on Saturday attempted to turn the tables on his likely rival in November, President Joe Biden, arguing that the man whose election victory Trump tried to overturn is “the destroyer of American democracy.”

Trump’s allegations about Biden, a Democrat, echo the ones that Biden has been making for years against his predecessor. As Trump has dominated the Republican presidential primary and talked about targeting his rivals and the news media if he wins the White House again, Biden has stepped up his own warnings, contending Trump is “ determined to destroy American democracy.”

On Saturday, Trump made his most explicit argument to date on why voters should instead see his rival as the bigger democratic threat. Trump repeated his longstanding contention that the four criminal indictments against him show Biden is misusing the federal justice system against his rival.

Trump calls Biden destroyer of democracy despite own 2020 election subversion cases

Trump’s ‘co-opted’ GOP should lose House majority, says Cheney

Sunday 3 December 2023 21:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Liz Cheney, the former Republican congresswoman and one of Donald Trump’s greatest foes, has given a dire warning about the possibility of the former president returning to the White House.

Speaking on CBS Sunday Morning she even went as far as saying she would like the GOP to lose its House majority to prevent “collaborator” Mike Johnson from holding onto his role as speaker.

Ms Cheney spoke with John Dickerson of CBS News about the looming danger to democracy posed by Mr Trump as explored in her new book Oath and Honor.

Read more...

Liz Cheney wants Trump’s ‘co-opted’ GOP to lose House majority

Trump does not have presidential immunity, judge rules

Sunday 3 December 2023 20:45 , Oliver O'Connell

The judge presiding over Donald Trump’s federal election conspiracy case in Washington DC has rejected a motion to dismiss the case based on his argument that he enjoys presidential immunty.

Judge Tanya Chutkan, who is overseeing the case, said that the former president’s time in officer did not bestow on him “the divine right of kings” to evade criminal accountability.

It comes as a long-awaited federal appeals court ruling also determined that Mr Trump can be held civilly liable for inciting the riots at the US Capitol on 6 January, 2021 in the wake of his 2020 loss.

Lawyers for Mr Trump had also tried to use his presidential “immunity” as a shield from the litigation.

In her ruling on Friday, Judge Chutkan said: “[The] defendant’s four-year service as Commander in Chief did not bestow on him the divine right of kings to evade the criminal accountability that governs his fellow citizens.”

The decision tees up a legal fight over the scope of presidential power that could ultimately reach the US Supreme Court.

Continue reading the full article...

McCarthy limps towards possible exit from Congress

Sunday 3 December 2023 20:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy was third in line to the presidency just a few months ago. Soon, he may not be in Washington at all.

The California congressman endured a grinding nine months as leader of a fractured and bitter Republican caucus, one that may have been destined to cast him aside from the very beginning. Following a last-minute deal with Democrats to avert a government shutdown in October, he was unceremoniously ousted by one of his most polarising foes: Matt Gaetz of Florida, leading a cadre of Republican malcontents with their own varying complaints about Mr McCarthy’s leadership.

John Bowden reports from Washington, DC.

McCarthy limps towards possible exit from Congress after year of bruising speakership

Watch: Bizarre moment Trump claims even his opponents say he had ‘one of the great presidencies'

Sunday 3 December 2023 20:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Kenneth Chesebro begins cooperating in Nevada probe, reports say

Sunday 3 December 2023 19:45 , Oliver O'Connell

The state-level criminal investigation into the 2020 election “fake electors” plot in Nevada has secured the cooperation of a key witness — Kenneth Chesebro, the lawyer who orchestrated the scheme to overturn Joe Biden’s win in the state.

Both CNN and The Washington Post report that Mr Chesebro has agreed to meet with investigators in the state in a bid to avoid prosecution there.

He pleaded guilty to charges relating to the plot in Georgia and as part of that plea deal has agreed to cooperate with the prosecution in the sprawling racketeering case against former president Donald Trump and 14 other co-defendants.

Mr Chesebro also agreed to cooperate with any relevant cases in the future both inside and outside the state.

Read on...

Trump ‘fake electors’ attorney begins cooperating in Nevada probe

DeSantis campaign chaos continues as super PAC ousts CEO after just nine days

Sunday 3 December 2023 19:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Just over one month before a critical test for his campaign, Ron DeSantis is watching his presidential bid become mired in personal conflicts, disagreement on strategy and the shadow of two surging opponents who appear to be slowly bleeding his campaign dry.

On Sunday, CNN reported that his allied Never Back Down PAC — the vessel for outside spending in support of his bid and more barbed attacks against his opponents — was losing its CEO after just nine days on the job. Two other senior operatives are also out, according to CNN, with one source describing the incident as “firings”, according to the network.

The end of their service to Never Back Down comes following a profile of the sputtering DeSantis presidential movement in The Washington Post, which described the Florida governor’s bid as in “extraordinary turmoil”. Senior campaign staffers were described as “gloomy” by a close ally of Mr DeSantis, the Post reported.

John Bowden has the story for The Independent.

Ron DeSantis campaign chaos continues as super PAC ousts CEO after just nine days

After he endorsed Trump, BLM slams ‘publicity seeking’ ex-activist

Sunday 3 December 2023 18:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Black Lives Matter (BLM) has slammed one of its ex-activists after he endorsed Donald Trump for president.

Mark Fisher, who was formerly associated with a Rhode Island BLM group, endorsed Mr Trump on Tuesday in an interview posted online.

Mr Fisher said he had decided to endorse the former president, who in the past has refused to condemn white supremacist groups, because “everybody else sucks.”

He added that he likes Mr Trump and thinks “who we have sitting in the Oval Office is a deep disappointment.”

The Black Lives Matter organisation condemned Mr Fisher’s comments as a “publicity stunt.”

BLM slams ‘publicity seeking’ ex-activist after he endorsed Trump

Watch: DeSantis dodges Trump Nazi rhetoric question, asks why Trump is running at all

Sunday 3 December 2023 18:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Tucker Carlson plans to vote for Trump

Sunday 3 December 2023 17:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Former Fox News personality Tucker Carlson has privately said he “passionately” hates Donald Trump. He has described him as a “demonic force” and a “destroyer” that he “can’t wait” to ignore. Carlson says he plans to vote for him in 2024.

The far-right commentator was fired from the network in the wake of a record-breaking settlement in a defamation case stemming from the former president’s election lies.

On Thursday, he told Roseanne Barr on her podcast that he has “always agreed” with Mr Trump’s policies but became an “active Trump supporter” following the law enforcement search of his Mar-a-Lago estate last summer.

“That can’t stand. I agree with Trump on a lot, but even if I disagreed with Trump on a lot, I’d still be a Trump supporter because you cannot allow that,” he said.

He accused President Joe Biden’s “regime” of using the US Department of Justice “to knock the front runner out of the race.”

Read more...

Trump’s ‘co-opted’ GOP should lose House majority, says Cheney

Sunday 3 December 2023 17:21 , Oliver O'Connell

Liz Cheney, the former Republican congresswoman and one of Donald Trump’s greatest foes, has given a dire warning about the possibility of the former president returning to the White House.

Speaking on CBS Sunday Morning she even went as far as saying she would like the GOP to lose its House majority to prevent “collaborator” Mike Johnson from holding onto his role as speaker.

Ms Cheney spoke with John Dickerson of CBS News about the looming danger to democracy posed by Mr Trump as explored in her new book Oath and Honor.

Read more...

Liz Cheney wants Trump’s ‘co-opted’ GOP to lose House majority

After gag order reinstated in fraud trial, Trump immediately attacks judge’s wife

Sunday 3 December 2023 17:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Moments after a New York appeals court reinstated a gag order in Donald Trump’s civil fraud trial, the former president unleashed a series of baseless Truth Social posts attacking the wife of the judge presiding over the case.

Mr Trump reshared several conspiratorial “reports” from far-right activist and failed congressional candidate Laura Loomer about the wife of New York Supreme Court Judge Arthur Engoron.

He also accused her of making anti-Trump memes that included AI images of Mr Trump in orange prison jumpsuits with captions saying he’s “headed for the big house.”

A statement from the court on Thursday denied that the judge’s wife had anything to do with those posts.

Alex Woodward reports.

Trump immediately attacks judge’s wife after gag order reinstated in fraud trial

Court rules Trump can be sued over Capitol riot

Sunday 3 December 2023 16:45 , Oliver O'Connell

A US appeals court has ruled that Donald Trump can be sued for inciting the Capitol riot.

The judgement was passed down today in US District Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

Mr Trump’s attorneys attempted to use “presidential immunity” to shield him from civil action resulting from his incitement of the Capitol riot.

The appeals court was asked to determine whether Mr Trump has “demonstrated an entitlement to official-act immunity for his actions leading up to and on January 6 as alleged in the complaints.”

“We answer no, at least at this stage of the proceedings,” they wrote in a ruling on Friday.

Graig Graziosi reports.

Trump can be sued for inciting the Capitol riots, court rules

Olympic gold medalist swimmer gets six months in home detention for role at Capitol riot

Sunday 3 December 2023 16:15 , AP

Olympic gold medalist swimmer Klete Keller, who threw his USA team jacket in a trash can after he stormed the U.S. Capitol, was sentenced on Friday to six months of home detention for joining the mob’s Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the seat of American democracy.

At 6-foot-6, Keller towered over police officers guarding the Capitol and other Donald Trump supporters who breached the building, and he was quickly identified by authorities. He pleaded guilty in 2021 to a felony charge and was one of the first rioters to publicly agree to cooperate with authorities investigating the Capitol attack.

Video captured Keller leading profane chants directed at then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, both Democrats. He also joined a chorus of rioters in singing the national anthem in the middle of the Capitol. He resisted efforts to remove him from the Capitol, ripping an elbow away and shaking off a police officer, prosecutors said.

U.S. District Judge Richard Leon sentenced Keller to three years of probation, including six months of home detention, and ordered him to perform 360 hours of community service.

Read the full article

Watch: Cheney warns that a second Trump term could be the end of the republic

Sunday 3 December 2023 15:47 , Oliver O'Connell

Lindsey Graham warns Liz Cheney ‘world will be truly on fire’ if Trump not re-elected

Sunday 3 December 2023 15:25 , Oliver O'Connell

Senator Lindsey Graham, one of Donald Trump’s most ardent supplicants, had a warning for former rep Liz Cheney in an appearance on CNN this morning.

On State of the Union host Dana Bash turned to the topic of Ms Cheney’s new book Oath and Honor in which she dishes the dirt on fellow Republicans who reverted to backing Trump after the January 6 Capitol riot.

Bash asked the South Carolina senator about Ms Cheney saying that the US is “sleepwalking into a dictatorship” if Trump returns to the White House in 2024.

First Senator Graham bashed President Joe Biden:

Yeah. I think a continuation of the Biden presidency would be a disaster for peace and prosperity at home and abroad. Our border is broken. The only person really going to fix a broken border is Donald Trump.

When he was president, none of this stuff was going on in Ukraine. Hamas and all of these other terrorist groups were afraid of Trump. I think Liz’s hatred of Trump is real. I understand why people don’t like what he does and says at times, but in terms of actions and results, he was far better president [than] Biden.

Then he warned the former lawmaker:

If we have four more years of this, Liz Cheney, we won’t recognise America and the world will be truly on fire.

Analysis: Trump’s violent rhetoric charts his campaign warpath

Sunday 3 December 2023 15:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Alex Woodward writes:

News networks should be taken off air and investigated for treason. The nation’s top military official should be executed. A state judge presiding over a trial against him, and the attorney general suing him, should be arrested. People seeking asylum in the US are “poisoning the blood of our country” and should be turned away if they don’t accept “our religion.” Drug dealers should get the death sentence. “Liberal Jews” are voting to “destroy America and Israel.” The regime will “root out” political opponents who “live like vermin”.

Donald Trump’s latest violent, authoritarian visions in his 2024 campaign for the presidency are building on his platform of self-described retribution.

They are also increasingly colliding with the multiple criminal investigations and lawsuits against him, as prosecutors and judges hope to rely on gag orders to rein in his rhetoric, which has invited hundreds of abusive messages and credible death threats from his supporters against the judges and prosecutors involved.

Continue reading...

Trump’s violent rhetoric charts his campaign warpath

Speaker Johnson wrote intro for book with Pizzagate conspiracies and homophobic attacks on Pete Buttigieg

Sunday 3 December 2023 14:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Republican Speaker of the House Mike Johnson wrote the introduction to a 2022 book that included baseless debunked conspiracy theories as well as homophobic slurs.

In addition to writing the foreword, the Louisiana lawmaker actively promoted the book by Scott McKay, a politics blogger, CNN reported.

Indeed, the speaker pushed the book on social media and dedicated an episode of his podcast to it.

House Speaker Mike Johnson wrote foreword for conspiracy-laden book

What happens at the GOP convention if Trump is convicted? Don’t ask the RNC...

Sunday 3 December 2023 14:15 , AP

The Republican National Committee’s rules for next year’s nominating contest and convention were released this week without addressing a question the GOP could well face next summer: can the party’s delegates vote for a different candidate if the presumptive nominee is convicted of a felony?

Former President Donald Trump is under four criminal indictments that will proceed through the GOP primary season, an overlap of legal and political calendars with no precedent in American politics. Fifteen states and American Samoa hold their GOP primaries on 5 March, known as Super Tuesday, which is also the day after his first trial is scheduled to begin in Washington on charges that he unlawfully sought to overturn the 2020 election.

Trump is dominating the Republican field and may secure much of the support he needs by Super Tuesday, by which time almost half of the delegates who select the nominee at the GOP convention will have been awarded. Even if he were to be convicted in Washington or another trial, top party leaders and many voters have indicated they would stand by Trump anyway. And Trump and his allies are pushing to dismiss and delay the trials and have worked with state parties to craft rules favourable to him.

The RNC rules don’t include any provisions specific to the unprecedented scenario unfolding.

Read on...

Report: McCarthy claims he swore at Trump in tense phone call

Sunday 3 December 2023 13:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Multiple people familiar with a conversation between the former speaker and the ex-president after Mr McCarthy’s removal have told The Washington Post that he was so hurt by the ordeal that he exploded at Mr Trump for not ordering Mr Gaetz to back down.

“F*** you,” the Post reports those persons as quoting the former speaker.

John Bowden has the story.

McCarthy claims he swore at Trump in tense phone call, report says

ICYMI: Trump immediately attacks judge’s wife after gag order reinstated in fraud trial

Sunday 3 December 2023 13:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Moments after a New York appeals court reinstated a gag order in Donald Trump’s civil fraud trial, the former president unleashed a series of baseless Truth Social posts attacking the wife of the judge presiding over the case.

Mr Trump reshared several conspiratorial “reports” from far-right activist and failed congressional candidate Laura Loomer about the wife of New York Supreme Court Judge Arthur Engoron.

He also accused her of making anti-Trump memes that included AI images of Mr Trump in orange prison jumpsuits with captions saying he’s “headed for the big house.”

A statement from the court on Thursday denied that the judge’s wife had anything to do with those posts.

Trump immediately attacks judge’s wife after gag order reinstated in fraud trial

Newsom trolls DeSantis over flailing 2024 bid

Sunday 3 December 2023 12:45 , Oliver O'Connell

During a fierce debate hosted by Fox News on Thursday night, California governor Gavin Newsom took a shot at opponent Florida governor Ron DeSantis’s 2024 presidential campaign, telling viewers that “neither of us will be the nominee for our party in 2024.”

According to a 538 average of Republican presidential polls, Donald Trump has 60 per cent support from GOP voters, nearly six times that of his nearest rival, Mr DeSantis, whose support has declined precipitiously since the beginning of the year.

The Fox debate, framed by host Sean Hannity as the “Great Red vs Blue State debate,” at times felt like a quasi-presidential debate.

Mr DeSantis hammered the California leader as practically a third member of the Biden White House, while Mr Newsom painted the Florida governor as a secret moderate corrupted by the Trumpian “fringe” of the GOP.

Newsom trolls DeSantis over flailing 2024 bid in hostile Fox News debate

Tucker Carlson ‘passionately’ hated Trump... but he’ll still vote for him

Sunday 3 December 2023 12:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Former Fox News personality Tucker Carlson has privately said he “passionately” hates Donald Trump. He has described him as a “demonic force” and a “destroyer” that he “can’t wait” to ignore. Carlson says he plans to vote for him in 2024.

The far-right commentator was fired from the network in the wake of a record-breaking settlement in a defamation case stemming from the former president’s election lies.

On Thursday, he told Roseanne Barr on her podcast that he has “always agreed” with Mr Trump’s policies but became an “active Trump supporter” following the law enforcement search of his Mar-a-Lago estate last summer.

Alex Woodward has the story.

Analysis: Was the DeSantis campaign doomed from the start?

Sunday 3 December 2023 11:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Ron DeSantis entered the Republican primary this spring as the preeminent challenger to former President Donald Trump and as the heir apparent taking on the old guard.

The Florida governor was “Trump without the baggage,” a far-right fighter ready to rumble with the “radical left” and govern more productively than the chaotic reality TV star, blustering real estate mogul and grievance-filled showman.

In a race against the oldest president in US history, being born in the late 1970s instead of the mid-1940s would also be helpful. Part of the thinking was that Mr DeSantis could win the White House by simply standing next to President Joe Biden on the debate stage and not looking old.

Gustaf Kilander asks: was the Florida governor’s floundering campaign always inevitable? Was Mr DeSantis always too awkward to be president?

Was Ron DeSantis lacklustre campaign doomed from the start?

Trump does not have presidential immunity, election conspiracy case judge rules

Sunday 3 December 2023 09:30 , Oliver O'Connell

The judge presiding over Donald Trump’s federal election conspiracy case in Washington DC has rejected a motion to dismiss the case based on his argument that he enjoys presidential immunity.

Judge Tanya Chutkan, who is overseeing the case, said that the former president’s time in officer did not bestow on him “the divine right of kings” to evade criminal accountability.

It comes as a long-awaited federal appeals court ruling also determined that Mr Trump can be held civilly liable for inciting the riots at the US Capitol on 6 January, 2021 in the wake of his 2020 loss.

Lawyers for Mr Trump had also tried to use his presidential “immunity” as a shield from the litigation.

Read on...

Judge in Trump election conspiracy case rules he does not have presidential immunity

Attorney argue Trump can’t be on trial in Georgia if he’s president

Sunday 3 December 2023 08:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Yes, they’re actually trying to push the trial back to 2029 when the former president may leave the White House after a possible second term. He will be 83 years old.

Alex Woodward reports.

Trump can’t be on trial in Georgia if he’s president, attorneys argue

Olympic gold medalist swimmer gets six months in home detention for role at Capitol riot

Sunday 3 December 2023 06:00 , AP

Olympic gold medalist swimmer Klete Keller, who threw his USA team jacket in a trash can after he stormed the U.S. Capitol, was sentenced on Friday to six months of home detention for joining the mob’s Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the seat of American democracy.

At 6-foot-6, Keller towered over police officers guarding the Capitol and other Donald Trump supporters who breached the building, and he was quickly identified by authorities. He pleaded guilty in 2021 to a felony charge and was one of the first rioters to publicly agree to cooperate with authorities investigating the Capitol attack.

Video captured Keller leading profane chants directed at then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, both Democrats. He also joined a chorus of rioters in singing the national anthem in the middle of the Capitol. He resisted efforts to remove him from the Capitol, ripping an elbow away and shaking off a police officer, prosecutors said.

U.S. District Judge Richard Leon sentenced Keller to three years of probation, including six months of home detention, and ordered him to perform 360 hours of community service.

Continued...

What’s next for Gavin Newsom ‘shadow campaign’?

Sunday 3 December 2023 04:00 , Oliver O'Connell

The Fox News debate on Thursday between Florida governor Ron DeSantis and California governor Gavin Newsom was billed as the “Great Red vs Blue State debate,” a showdown between conservatism and liberalism itself.

But the spectre of the 2024 presidential election – and, well, maybe the 2028 one – hung over the conversation all night.

What exactly were these two men fighting for? And what comes next?

Josh Marcus reports for The Independent from San Francisco.

After Ron DeSantis debate, what’s next for Gavin Newsom ‘shadow campaign’?

Trump golf club server claims she was tricked into NDA after sexual harassment

Sunday 3 December 2023 03:00 , Oliver O'Connell

A former server is suing Donald Trump‘s National Golf Club in Bedminster, alleging she was sexually harassed and coerced into sex by one of her supervisors before being tricked into signing an illegal NDA by Mr Trump’s lawyer, Alina Habba.

Alice Bianco filed the lawsuit on Wednesday in New Jersey’s Middlesex County Superior Court, according to Politico.

Mr Trump is not named as a defendant in the suit.

The alleged incident began in 2021, when Ms Bianco, then 21, claims that a manager harassed her and tried to force a kiss on her. When she refused, she allegedly was given an “unfair job assignment” in retaliation. The situation culminated in her having to agree to have sex with the manager “as a quid pro quo for continued employment and ‘protection’”, according to the lawsuit.

The manager is also not named as a defendant.

Graig Graziosi has the full story.

Woman claims she was tricked into NDA after sexual harassment at Trump golf club

BLM slams ‘publicity seeking’ ex-activist after he endorsed Trump

Sunday 3 December 2023 02:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Black Lives Matter (BLM) has slammed one of its ex-activists after he endorsed Donald Trump for president.

Mark Fisher, who was formerly associated with a Rhode Island BLM group, endorsed Mr Trump on Tuesday in an interview posted online.

Mr Fisher said he had decided to endorse the former president, who in the past has refused to condemn white supremacist groups, because “everybody else sucks.”

He added that he likes Mr Trump and thinks “who we have sitting in the Oval Office is a deep disappointment.”

The Black Lives Matter organisation condemned Mr Fisher’s comments as a “publicity stunt.”

Martha McHardy reports.

Watch: Trump tells supporters to ‘guard the vote’ in Detroit, Philadelphia, Atlanta

Sunday 3 December 2023 01:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump today told supporters in Iowa that the most important part of the upcoming election is to “guard the vote”. He specifically mentions Detroit, Philadelphia, and Atlanta.

Sherrilyn Ifill, president and director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, highlights the racial dimension of what the former president is saying — just as he did in 2020.

“Exactly what he said in 2020. Not sure why the racial dimension of Trump’s attack on the Constitution has been underplayed, but it was central to the effort. It’s not mysterious. And he’s doing it again.”

After debating DeSantis, what’s next for the Newsom ‘shadow campaign'

Sunday 3 December 2023 00:00 , Oliver O'Connell

The Fox News debate on Thursday between Florida governor Ron DeSantis and California governor Gavin Newsom was billed as the “Great Red vs Blue State debate,” a showdown between conservatism and liberalism itself.

But the spectre of the 2024 presidential election – and, well, maybe the 2028 one – hung over the conversation all night.

What exactly were these two men fighting for? And what comes next?

Josh Marcus reports from San Francisco.

After Ron DeSantis debate, what’s next for Gavin Newsom ‘shadow campaign’?

Trump attorney wants Georgia case dropped if he can’t get federal case evidence

Saturday 2 December 2023 23:00 , Oliver O'Connell

In his debut in the Fulton County election subversion case on Friday, Donald Trump’s attorney Steve Sadow told the judge overseeing the case that the former president should be dropped if his team can’t get evidence from the parallel federal case.

If he is denied that evidence, the case brought by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis should be dismissed, he said, pointing to court precedent that would allow him access to overlapping evidence in the federal and state cases.

“This is a problem,” he said.

“I would issue a subpoena to both counsel for President Trump in DC as well as [the office of Justice Department special counsel Jack Smith] for disclosure of what I want,” Mr Sadow told the judge. “All I would ask for is a list of their discovery, so that we’re able to determine what they have.”

And if they fight that request, it “would come either before your honor for a determination or it would come, if they wanted to remove it, strangely enough, they could remove it to federal court,” he added.

Steve Sadow (EPA)
Steve Sadow (EPA)

Mr Smith’s office “has relevant and material information that deals with the allegations in this case,” according to Mr Sadow.

Indeed, the cases largely involve the multi-state scheme to overturn election results. Trump is charged in the federal case with conspiracy and obstruction. He faces 13 felonies in Georgia.

Fulton County prosecutors stressed they don’t have any authority over the Justice Department, and they don’t know what role they can play, if any, without the feds’ or the judge’s direction.

“Maybe we’ll have more enlightenment on it if we know what the Special Counsel’s position is on it,” Judge Scot McAfee said. “I don’t know who they’d be more open to taking a phone call from.”

Trump doesn’t have immunity from January 6 lawsuits or his election subversion case

Saturday 2 December 2023 22:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Lawsuits seeking to hold Donald Trump accountable for the violence that erupted at the US Capitol on January 6 can move forward, after a federal appeals court rejected his “immunity” claim to shield him from liability.

The decision on Friday will allow those three civil suits – from law enforcement officers and members of Congress whose lives were endangered that day – to proceed in federal court.

Hours later, the federal judge overseeing his election subversion case also denied his attempts to cite “presidential immunity” in his attempts to dismiss the case.

That litigation adds to a mountain of criminal and civil cases facing the former president as he seeks the 2024 nomination for president.

Judge in Trump election conspiracy case rules he does not have presidential immunity

Trump attacks judge’s wife for her alleged posts on X. She doesn’t have an account

Saturday 2 December 2023 21:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Moments after a New York appeals court reinstated a gag order in Donald Trump’s civil fraud trial, he unleashed a series of baseless Truth Social posts attacking the wife of the judge presiding over the case.

Trump reshared several conspiratorial “reports” from far-right activist and failed congressional candidate Laura Loomer about the wife of New York Supreme Court Judge Arthur Engoron.

He also accused her of making anti-Trump memes that included AI images of Mr Trump in orange prison jumpsuits with captions saying he’s “headed for the big house.”

The judge’s wife not only didn’t make them, she doesn’t even have an account. according to a court spokesperson.

“Justice Engoron’s wife has sent no social media posts regarding the former president. They are not hers,” the statement added.

Trump’s attorneys also have never raised those alleged posts in court statements or in filings.

Alex Woodward reports.

Trump immediately attacks judge’s wife after gag order reinstated in fraud trial

Trump’s legal team says he can’t be on trial if he’s president. Or before that

Saturday 2 December 2023 20:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump shouldn’t be on trial in Georgia during his 2024 presidential campaign, according to his attorneys.

And, if he wins that election, he shouldn’t be on trial until he leaves the White House, they said.

They tried to make their case to the judge overseeing an upcoming criminal trial surrounding Trump’s efforts to overturn the results of the last election he lost.

The latest from the Fulton County case:

Trump can’t be on trial in Georgia if he’s president, attorneys argue

Trump continues to claim BLM support him

Saturday 2 December 2023 19:31 , Oliver O'Connell

Here’s the background to the former president’s wild claims of having the support of Black Lives Matter:

BLM slams ‘publicity seeking’ ex-activist after he endorsed Trump

Tucker Carlson, who ‘passionately’ hated Trump, will still vote for him

Saturday 2 December 2023 19:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Former Fox News personality Tucker Carlson has privately said he “passionately” hates Donald Trump. He has described him as a “demonic force” and a “destroyer” that he “can’t wait” to ignore. Carlson says he plans to vote for him in 2024.

The far-right commentator was fired from the network in the wake of a record-breaking settlement in a defamation case stemming from the former president’s election lies.

On Thursday, he told Roseanne Barr on her podcast that he has “always agreed” with Mr Trump’s policies but became an “active Trump supporter” following the law enforcement search of his Mar-a-Lago estate last summer.

Tucker Carlson says he plans to vote for Trump

Watch: Cheney says Trump ‘can’t do it by himself’ as she calls Speaker John ‘collaborator'

Saturday 2 December 2023 18:50 , Oliver O'Connell