Appearing on Fox News Tuesday night, acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf — who has not been confirmed to his position by the Senate — made a damning admission about his department’s conduct in Portland.
Federal officials in Portland have prompted a fierce backlash for aggressive and legally dubious tactics against protesters in the city. Local officials have demanded that the federal officials, some of them using unmarked vehicles and wearing camouflage without identifying insignia, leave and let police handle law enforcement. But President Donald Trump and Wolf seem intent on using the Homeland Security forces to intimidate, rough up, and apprehend protesters to make the federal government appear tough.
And while he was speaking to Fox Host Martha MacCallum on Tuesday, Wolf seemed to confirm what many had accused his agency of doing: making unlawful arrests.
“The department, because we don’t have that local support, that local law enforcement support, are having to go out and proactively arrest individuals,” Wolf said. “And we need to do that because we need to hold them accountable. This idea that they can attack federal property and law enforcement officers and go to the other side of the street and say ‘you can’t touch me’ is ridiculous.”
Watch the clip below:
Acting DHS Secretary Chad Wold says the actions of his department in Portland are “proactive” arrests of individuals and argues that his stormtroopers aren’t bound by the physical jurisdiction of federal property. pic.twitter.com/tIkcSTSmKf
— nikki mccann ramírez (@NikkiMcR) July 21, 2020
By saying that his officers are proactively arresting people, Wolf suggests that they’re making arrests before people have committed crimes. This, of course, would be an unlawful arrest — you can’t arrest someone just because you think they might commit a crime.
Some could argue this is an unfair reading of Wolf’s remarks because his remarks referred to people who committed crimes, such as assaulting federal officers. The problem is that there have been multiple incidents of federal officials sweeping people off the streets despite no clear evidence or reason to believe they were involved in a crime. One person, Mark Pettibone, was reportedly detained by agents and eventually released without ever being charged with a crime.
So the seemingly “unfair” reading of Wolf’s remarks actually seems to accurately reflect what is happening on the ground in Portland.
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Watch: Trump Declares Any Conversation With Him Is ‘Highly Classified’ (Which Is a Lie)
President Donald Trump says that any conversation anyone has with him is classified.
“I will consider every conversation with me as president as highly classified,” Trump said Monday, according to multiple reports.
The President made the glaringly false and impossible assertion while speaking to reporters Monday afternoon in the White House as he was attacking his former National Security Advisor, Ambassador John Bolton. The White House reportedly is working on a major plan to try to strip credibility from Bolton and his soon-to-be released book about his time with Trump.
Calling it “highly inappropriate,” Trump also falsely claimed it is “unprecedented” for books to be published about sitting presidents.
Trump on Monday also wrongly threatened that Bolton faces “criminal liability”if he published his book.
“He’s breaking the law,” Trump told reporters about Bolton’s impending book release.
The Trump administration is reportedly planning a lawsuit to stop publication, as Bloomberg News reports.
“I would think he would have criminal problems. I hope so,” Trump said. “Maybe he’s not been telling the truth. He’s been known not to tell the truth.”
That’s factually incorrect. Regardless of Bolton’s agenda, he does not have a reputation for not telling the truth. In fact, just one of his statements was considered necessary to fact check by Politifact, which rated it “mostly true.”
Bolton worked as Trump’s NSA for 17 months.
Trump on Bolton’s Book: I don’t think he’s even supposed to be calling himself an ambassador because he couldn’t get senate confirmed… That’s highly classified information. Even the conversations with me, they’re highly classified… If the book gets out, he’s broken the law pic.twitter.com/FFVcFHobjy
— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) June 15, 2020
Pence Press Secretary Katie Miller Condescendingly Blasts Reporter for Asking if Uninsured Can Get Tested for Coronavirus
Vice President Mike Pence’s press secretary Katie Miller blasted a well-known reporter for asking if uninsured Americans will be able to get tested for COVID-19.
Miller, recently married to white nationalist and Senior Advisor to the President Stephen Miller, condescendingly criticized CNN political analyst Brian Karem during Wednesday’s coronavirus press briefing at the White House.
Karem, who is also the White House correspondent for Playboy, at the end of the event asked, “Guys, guys, can the uninsured, can the uninsured get tested?”
Pence and his numerous aides walked away without answering the very valid question.
Karem repeated his question.
“Gentlemen, ladies,” he pressed, “Can the uninsured get tested?”
Katie Miller paused, turned her head to Karem, and replied, “Screaming for the camera isn’t going to get you anywhere.”
Karem did not miss a beat.
“Well how about answering the question?”
As Miller continued to walk away, Karem continued: “A valid question – could you answer it?”
This was probably not picked up most cable network coverage.
“Can the uninsured get tested?”
“Gentlemen, ladies…Can the uninsured get tested?”
WH staffer(?): “Screaming for the camera can’t get you anywhere.”
These people. SMH. pic.twitter.com/zBxPmPrCsn
— Ivan the K™ (@IvanTheK) March 4, 2020
Trump White House Adds Loyalty Litmus Test Questions for Job Applicants
New applicants for jobs in the Trump administration will now have to answer a six-page questionnaire detailing everything from their social media accounts to any interviews they have ever given, CNN reports. They even have to answer this question: “What part of Candidate Trump’s campaign message most appealed to you and why?”
John McEntee, the new head of the White House Personnel Office who is the former body man to President Donald Trump, has been authorized by the President to “purge” anyone not fully embracing Trump’s views. McEntee was previously fired from the White House over a problem related to gambling that apparently led to a security clearance issue.
Now, John McEntee is going after prospective employees by expanding the administration’s loyalty test, quizzically called a “research questionnaire.”
The document makes clear all applicants must be completely loyal to Trump. It reportedly is not being used for applicants to career positions.
It also asks questions like, “Have you ever appeared in the media to comment on Candidate Trump, President Trump or other personnel or policies of the Trump Administration?”
And, “Have you ever appeared on a political podcast, talk radio/local radio, the major cable networks (Fox, CNN, CNBC, etc.), given speeches in a public forum, or testified before Congress?”
There’s this important question: “Is there anything in your background that could potentially embarrass the Administration were it to come out?”
And there’s even a question that might stump President Trump.
“Brie?y describe your political evolution. What thinkers, authors, books, or political leaders influenced you and led you to your current beliefs? What political commentator, thinker or politician best reflects your views?”
For those who question the administration’s loyalty litmus test, White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham says, basically, too bad.
“Every President has the right to appoint people who are in line with their agenda and policies.”
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