‘No leaks…This Is How We Know We’re a Real Family Here’
Last summer, just one month before Donald Trump officially became the Republican Party’s nominee for president, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, Republican House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, and other Republicans were speaking about Russia and Ukraine. Rep. McCarthy told the group, “There’s two people I think Putin pays: Rohrabacher and Trump,” referring to California GOP Congressman Dana Rohrabacher, and Donald Trump. Rohrabacher is a far right wing extremist.
The Washington Post first reported the exchange, after listening to audio of the conversation. The Post, which describes Rohrabacher as “a fervent defender of Putin and Russia,” published the transcript of the disturbing conversation.
Speaker Ryan “immediately interjected, stopping the conversation from further exploring McCarthy’s assertion, and swore the Republicans present to secrecy,” the Post reports.
Some of the lawmakers laughed at McCarthy’s comment. Then McCarthy quickly added: “Swear to God.”
Ryan instructed his Republican lieutenants to keep the conversation private, saying: “No leaks…This is how we know we’re a real family here.”
The remarks remained secret for nearly a year.
The Post calls it “difficult to tell from the recording the extent to which the remarks were meant to be taken literally.”
But former House Republican Conference policy director Evan McMullin, who ran for president last year, confirmed the conversation took place.
“It’s true that Majority Leader McCarthy said that he thought candidate Trump was on the Kremlin’s payroll,” McMullin told the Post. “Speaker Ryan was concerned about that leaking.”
The Post did not publish the audio.
McCarthy’s spokesperson Matt Sparks initially flatly denied the exchange ever took place. “The idea that McCarthy would assert this is absurd and false,” he said.
Speaker Ryan’s spokesperson Brendan Buck told the Post: “That never happened,” but apparently when confronted with evidence, Buck said “This entire year-old exchange was clearly an attempt at humor. No one believed the majority leader was seriously asserting that Donald Trump or any of our members were being paid by the Russians. What’s more, the speaker and leadership team have repeatedly spoken out against Russia’s interference in our election, and the House continues to investigate that activity.”
Sparks called it “a failed attempt at humor.”
McCarthy has since posted his denial to Twitter:
This was an attempt at humor gone wrong. No surprise @WashingtonPost tried to contort this into breaking news.
â€” Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) May 17, 2017
Some responses via Twitter:
Caught up with Rep. Rohrabacher, who says McCarthy was joking. Compared it to a joke he once told about farts killing the dinosaurs.
â€” Dave Weigel (@daveweigel) May 17, 2017
McCarthy/Ryan integrity check: It didn’t happen. It didn’t happen. What? You have recording? It was just a joke.
â€” Patrick Gauen (@pgauen) May 17, 2017
McCarthy: “Swear to G’d.”
McCarthy: “I NEVER SAID THAT!”
Wapo: “We have it on tape.”
Both: “We were joking!”#resist
â€” Ceasar Manuel (@BXToDaHeart) May 17, 2017
Trump. Ryan. McCarthy. Taylor. Looks like house cleaning time for the #gop. Who’s next?
â€” Blake (@defeatscotttayl) May 17, 2017
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Senior Trump Campaign Advisor and Top Fundraising Official Kimberly Guilfoyle Tests Positive for Coronavirus: Reports
Trump campaign senior advisor Kimberly Guilfoyle, a former Fox News host who is also the campaign’s top fundraising official, has reportedly tested positive for coronavirus.
Guilfoyle was tested while in South Dakota, where President Donald Trump is right now, about to preside over a Fourth of July fireworks show at Mt. Rushmore.
ABC News Senior Editorial Producer John Santucci posted the news to Twitter:
BREAKING – Kimberly Guilfoyle tested positive for coronavirus while in SD / was expected to attend tonight’s event at Mt Rushmore. Sources familiar add Donald Trump Jr tested negative. Neither have been in direct contact with the president and did not fly on AF1 – @ABC
— John Santucci (@Santucci) July 4, 2020
The New York Times also reported Guilfoyle’s test result, and noted she is “the girlfriend of President Trump’s eldest son,” Donald Trump, Jr.
“Ms. Guilfoyle traveled to South Dakota with Mr. Trump’s son Donald Trump Jr., in anticipation of attending a huge fireworks display where the president was set to speak.”
Re-Election Campaign Spokesperson Pushes Mt. Rushmore Meme That Adds Trump to Monument of Famous Four Presidents
Would adding President Donald Trump to the famous Mt. Rushmore monument to four of America’s greatest president’s make it better?
A spokesperson and Trump re-election campaign “Rapid Response” official seems to think so.
Just hours before President Trump is set to travel to South Dakota’s famous 60-foot tall 80-year old carving, Abigail Marone posted a widely-circulated meme of the 45th President’s image, not only added to Mt. Rushmore, but in front of Presidents Washington, Jefferson, Roosevelt, and Lincoln.
Washington Post national political reporter Michael Scherer says “Democrats think the continued ego gratification of Trump is one of the best things they have going for them.”
This is being pushed out by Trump advisers today. Democrats think the continued ego gratification of Trump is one of the best things they have going for them. My story on how “I alone can fix it” no longer means the same thing amid Covid with @ToluseO https://t.co/7PXDhykK4e https://t.co/0e7SDO3f8M
— michaelscherer (@michaelscherer) July 3, 2020
The President traveling to South Dakota for a fireworks show he forced to have happen despite experts warning about the pollution of local drinking water and possible wildfires it could cause is one more addition to the long list of Trump ego gratification items.
Meanwhile, this Twitter user offered up an appropriate (fact check: true) response.
Since the sculptor who created Mount Rushmore, Gutzon Borglum, was a member of the KKK and avowed anti-Semite, you’re more accurate than you dreamed. https://t.co/XkFb586d8V
— George Kaplan (@GeorgeKaplan8) July 3, 2020
Image via Wikimedia
MSNBC’s Donny Deutsch Predicts Trump Will Drop Out in the Face of ‘The Biggest Landslide Defeat in US History’
Appearing on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” regular contributor Donny Deutsch said he would not be surprised at all if Donald Trump dropped out of the 2020 presidential race because he wouldn’t be able to face losing to former Vice President Joe Biden in a landslide.
Speaking with hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski, Deutsch — who has known Trump for years — said the president is looking at a humiliating defeat and may not stick around and let it happen.
“We’ve got four months to the election but we’re now entering the 57th month out of a 60-month experiment with Donald Trump,” he explained. “He is baked at this point, Joe Biden is baked at this point.”
“When you look at the 2016 election, you had Donald Trump who was an unknown, Hillary [Clinton] a known. Now we’ve got two knowns,” he continued. “And none of this stuff is going to work. It is just — it’s a pathetic attempt — people are not stupid, just like they’re not stupid about their health. They’re just not stupid and, Joe, I want to go back to something you teed up last week that I have been thinking all week.”
“I would not be shocked at some point if he doesn’t drop the mic,” Deutsch admitted. “It’s [the election] is not turning around. This is a guy that I cannot see standing up and owning the biggest landslide defeat in U.S. history. I know you have been throwing it out in, a lot of people are saying no, that’s not possible. But the more I think about it, the more I’m jumping on your bandwagon. I don’t see this guy going the distance.”
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