Watch Live: Biden Announces Executive Order to Help Protect Abortion Rights, ‘Safeguarding Access’ in White House Speech
President Joe Biden Friday morning at 11:30 AM ET will deliver a speech announcing he is signing an executive order to help protect women’s access to abortion medication and emergency contraception, to help convene legal representation to protect their right to travel out of state to access reproductive healthcare, and to protect patient privacy rights.
A statement from the White House says the executive order will be used for:
Safeguarding access to reproductive health care services, including abortion and contraception;
Protecting the privacy of patients and their access to accurate information;
Promoting the safety and security of patients, providers, and clinics; and
Coordinating the implementation of Federal efforts to protect reproductive rights and access to health care.
The order announces efforts to provide legal representation for women to protect “the right to travel out of state to seek medical care.”
“The Attorney General and the White House Counsel will convene private pro bono attorneys, bar associations, and public interest organizations to encourage robust legal representation of patients, providers, and third parties lawfully seeking or offering reproductive health care services throughout the country,” the White House says. “Such representation could include protecting the right to travel out of state to seek medical care.”
The Washington Post notes the President’s speech comes “as many Democrats have called on him to respond with bolder and more urgent action.”
In May, following the leaked Supreme Court draft overturning the right to abortion Biden called on Congress to pass legislation to codify that “fundamental” right into federal law.
Last week, from Madrid in a speech to NATO leaders Biden criticized the “outrageous behavior” of the U.S. Supreme Court and called on the Senate to change the filibuster to allow a simple majority to codify Roe v. Wade and other essential rights to privacy into federal law.
And last Friday in a virtual roundtable with Democratic governors Biden blasted the “extremist” Supreme Court and promised he will protect women traveling across state lines to obtain an abortion and will protect women’s rights to FDA-approved abortion drugs.
The President will speak at 11:30 AM from the Roosevelt Room. Vice President Kamala Harris and Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra will join President Biden.
Watch the President live below or at this link:
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Watch Live: Special Counsel Jack Smith Holds News Conference After Trump Criminal Indictment Unsealed
Special Counsel Jack Smith will hold a news conference Friday at 3:00 PM ET, after the U.S. Dept. of Justice unsealed its 49-page 37-criminal count indictment against Donald Trump. The indictment also names a Trump aide.
Legal experts reviewing the indictment were stunned at not only the level of detail but the manner in which Trump treated classified documents, including allegedly storing them in boxes on the stage at Mar-a-Lago, in a bathroom, a shower, and a bedroom.
Former Dept. of Defense special Counsel Ryan Goodman, now an NYU professor of law, calls the indictment “devastating,” and concludes: “Extraordinary risks to U.S. national security. Foreign adversaries would pay tens of millions for that info.”
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Smith, who was appointed by Donald Trump as an acting U.S. Attorney, also prosecuted war crimes cases at The Hague. he also was the head of the DOJ’s Public Integrity Section.
Watch live below or at this link.
Mark Meadows Reportedly Agrees to Plea Deal – Attorney Denies
Mark Meadows, the former Trump White House Chief of Staff and former North Carolina Republican Congressman, reportedly has accepted a plea deal from the Dept. of Justice in exchange for pleading guilty to federal charges.
According to The Independent’s Andrew Feinberg, Meadows has also been co-operating with Special Counsel Jack Smith’s investigators, which several legal experts have recently suggested was likely happening.
“Over the course of the last year, grand jurors have heard testimony from numerous associates of the ex-president, including nearly every employee of Mar-a-Lago, former administration officials who worked in Mr Trump’s post-presidential office and for his political operation, and former high-ranking administration officials such as his final White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows,” Feinberg reports at The Independent.
“Mr Meadows has already given evidence before the grand jury and is said to be cooperating with the investigation into his former boss,” the article, published Wednesday afternoon, states. “It is understood that the former North Carolina congressman will plead guilty to several federal charges as part of a deal for which he has already received limited immunity in exchange for his testimony.”
In an update to its reporting, The Independent adds Meadows’ attorney denies he would ever enter any guilty plea:
“A source who was briefed on the agreement claimed that the alleged agreement will involve the ex-chief of staff entering pleas of guilty to unspecified federal crimes but an attorney for Mr Meadows, George Terwilliger, denied that to The Independent. Mr Terwilliger said that the idea that his client would enter any guilty pleas was ‘complete bulls***’ but did not address the matter of immunity in a brief telephone conversation with this reporter.”
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But in addition to breaking news that Meadows allegedly has accepted a plea deal, The Independent reports Trump is expected to be indicted under a portion of the Espionage Act. NCRM has not verified either of these reports.
“The Department of Justice is preparing to ask a Washington, DC grand jury to indict former president Donald Trump for violating the Espionage Act and for obstruction of justice as soon as Thursday.”
“The Independent has learned that prosecutors are ready to ask grand jurors to approve an indictment against Mr Trump for violating a portion of the US criminal code known as Section 793, which prohibits ‘gathering, transmitting or losing’ any ‘information respecting the national defence,'” The Independent adds.
In early June, former Nixon White House Counsel John Dean remarked, “Meadows has a really good lawyer, a former deputy AG, who could guide him through cooperation and a minimal plea deal of some sort.”
That attorney, George Terwilliger, played coy when asked about his client’s possible grand jury testimony. Terwilliger told The New York Times in an article published late Tuesday, “Without commenting on whether or not Mr. Meadows has testified before the grand jury or in any other proceeding, Mr. Meadows has maintained a commitment to tell the truth where he has a legal obligation to do so.”
Former Deputy Asst. Attorney General Harry Litman on Tuesday said, “I’ve already observed Terwilliger’s skill in representing Meadows. But if he got him an immunity deal–as opposed to a guilty plea + promise to cooperate deal–he is a wizard. [Would] think that Meadows is way too culpable to merit a pass, but if Smith [couldn’t] make case w/o him…”
U.S. Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA), a former JAG attorney, tweeted on Tuesday:
“Mark Meadows had three options: 1. Take the Fifth Amendment. 2. Voluntarily cooperate. 3. Cooperate because he was given immunity or a plea deal. Based on the public reporting, it appears he did 2 or 3 above. This makes it more likely Donald Trump will be indicted, again.”
Meadows is a former chair of the far right House Freedom Caucus, and former chair of the House Oversight Committee.
NYU Law professor of law Ryan Goodman, a former U.S. Dept. of Defense Special Counsel, Wednesday morning said it is “NOT a big if” if Meadows has been granted immunity in exchange for his testimony.
If the Special Counsel has given Mark Meadows immunity to testify (NOT a big if), here’s why that’s enormously significant about the likelihood of an indictment of former President Trump in January 6th investigation.
My conversation with @ErinBurnett @OutFrontCNN 👇 pic.twitter.com/xdcJegLHPh
— Ryan Goodman (@rgoodlaw) June 7, 2023
This article has been updated to include remarks from Ryan Goodman, and The Independent’s additional reporting with comment from Meadows’ attorney.
This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change.
Will Santos Choose Jail? Judge Rules Names of Persons Who Provided His Half-Million Dollar Bond Must Be Made Public
A district magistrate judge Tuesday afternoon ruled the names of the three people who put up the $500,000 bond for U.S. Rep. George Santos (R-NY) must be made public. Santos, under indictment on 13 federal charges including money laundering, wire fraud, theft of public funds, and lying to Congress, has said he would rather go to jail than allow the names to be released to the public.
Santos pleaded not guilty and was released on a $500,000 bond on May 10. He could face up to 20 years in prison if convicted.
Law & Crime News’ Adam Klasfeld reports, “The identities of Rep. George Santos’s bond co-signers must be UNSEALED, a magistrate judge ruled. Santos has a brisk schedule for an appeal.”
Santos has until Friday at noon to appeal, or the documents and bond will be unsealed.
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The embattled New York Republican Congressman’s legal team has argued “the three people who helped provide Santos’ bond ‘are likely to suffer great distress, may lose their jobs, and God forbid, may suffer physical injury,'” CBS News reported Monday evening.
“There is little doubt that the suretors will suffer some unnecessary form of retaliation if their identities and employment are revealed,” the motion also says.
“My client would rather surrender to pretrial detainment than subject these suretors to what will inevitably come,” Santos’ attorney said in the filing.
CBS News adds that the House Ethics Committee is also requesting the names of the three people who helped the Congressman make bail be made public.
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