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Friday, December 15, 2017
Jeff Sessions
Sessions, Department Of Justice

Jeff Sessions Claims Marijuana Only ‘Slightly Less Awful’ Than Heroin

Sessions’ uninformed claim is likely to increase jitters in the country’s nascent legal marijuana industry as it confronts an attorney general whose rhetoric so far has strongly suggested he would like to crack down on legal weed—although he has yet to take any concrete steps to do so.

March 16, 2017
Sessions

Sessions’ Tough-On-Crime Tactics Bound To Fail

Sessions’ memo on dealing with violent offenders seems to be a part of the new administration’s tough-on-crime approach, but longer sentencing for violent offenders under federal law has already been tried and failed, says Jeffrey Fagan, professor of law at Columbia University and senior research scholar at Yale Law School.

March 12, 2017
Bharara

U.S. Attorney Bharara Fired By Trump After Refusing To Resign

On Saturday, the outspoken U.S. attorney from the Southern District of New York said he was fired after refusing to resign, as requested a day earlier by Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

March 12, 2017
Sessions speaks with reporters ahead of the weekly Senate Republican caucus luncheon at the U.S. Capitol in Washington

Jeff Sessions Asks 46 Obama-Appointed U.S. Attorneys To Resign

Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ action comes the same day White House press secretary Sean Spicer addressed the specter of a “deep state” of bureaucrats trying to harm President Donald Trump’s agenda.

March 11, 2017
Watergate: Richard Nixon resigning the presidency amid Watergate scandal, August 9, 1974

Déjà Vu: How The Trump Presidency Recalls The Nixon Era

Not since Nixon has the United States had a leader who believes so strongly that there is an orchestrated campaign to undermine his presidency. And the revelations over months about contacts between Russian officials and Trump advisers remind some of the slow beginnings of the Watergate scandal.

March 9, 2017
Rod Rosenstein, Trump, Russia Probe

Deputy Attorney General Nominee Resists Call For Special Prosecutor In Russia Probe

Rod Rosenstein, a top federal prosecutor nominated by President Trump to be deputy attorney general, testified that he was “not aware” of any reason he couldn’t oversee such a probe of Kremlin-led election interference.

March 8, 2017
travel ban

Travel Ban: Why Trump (And Bannon) Mirror ISIS So Perfectly

Bannon, Miller, Sessions, and presumably the president himself understand very well that the travel ban aimed at Muslims and Islam must exacerbate divisions between the West and the Muslim world, as well as between Muslim-Americans and the rest of American society. Intensified conflict is the only foreseeable result of their actions and outbursts — and appears to be the only result they want.

March 7, 2017
Sessions speaks with reporters ahead of the weekly Senate Republican caucus luncheon at the U.S. Capitol in Washington

Why Sessions’ Recusal Complicates Trump-Russia Probes

Now that Sessions has stepped aside, Lawyers and Justice Department officials are poring through statutes and scratching their collective heads over who has authority to sign warrants for the FBI’s electronic surveillance of the Russians and Trump associates implicated in the probe.

March 5, 2017
Coercion

‘Morning Joe’ Issues A Warning Jeff Sessions Can’t Ignore

For Joe Scarborough, the only thing more bizarre than Jeff Sessions’ press conference Thursday recusing himself from an ongoing White House investigation was its timing.

March 4, 2017
Trump, Cabinet, Sessions

5 Trump Cabinet Members Who’ve Made False Statements To Congress

As most of the world knows by now, Attorney General Jeff Sessions did not tell the truth when he was asked during his confirmation hearings about contacts with Russian officials. But Sessions isn’t the only one.

March 4, 2017
Marijuana

11 Senators Call On Trump Team To Allow Sale Of Recreational Marijuana

The senators wrote a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, reminding him that President Donald Trump said on the campaign trail that the issue of legalization should be left up to states.

March 3, 2017
Sergey Kislyak

How Did Sergey Kislyak Become The Hottest Meeting Ticket In Washington?

His diplomatic career has encompassed the Cold War, the collapse of the Soviet Union, and the inexorable-seeming rise of one Vladimir Putin. Now Sergey Kislyak, the Russian ambassador to the United States, finds himself in a harsh and unwanted spotlight over contacts with Donald Trump’s campaign team.

March 3, 2017
Sessions

Russian Election Interference Demands A Special Prosecutor

Certainly, we are in a hyper-partisan age. But does that mean partisans set aside every principle they ever held dear and watch democratic norms be destroyed just to protect a president from their party? Are institutional checks and balances meaningless?

March 3, 2017
Concerns over Sessions as Attorney General

Sessions Announces Recusal From Russia And Any Other Campaign Probes

Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a brief Thursday press conference that he will recuse himself from “any investigation” that involves last year’s presidential campaigns, including the probe of Trump connections with Russia.

March 2, 2017
Putin, Obama, Russia, Sanctions

How Obama Officials Fought To Preserve Evidence Of Russian Election Influence

Obama White House officials reportedly pursued a deliberate strategy aimed at preserving evidence of Russian election meddling for investigators to ensure this type of interference was not repeated.

March 2, 2017
Trump, Sessions, Preet Bharara

Kremlin Scandal: Did Sessions Lie About Meetings With Russian Ambassador?

Last year, when he was still a Senator, Jeff Sessions met with the Russian ambassador — twice. But he failed to mention those meetings when questioned about Russia during his confirmation hearing.

March 2, 2017
Voter ID laws, Texas

Justice Department Changes Position On Texas’ Discriminatory Voter ID Law

After arguing for nearly six years that Texas’ voter ID law intentionally discriminated against minorities, the Department of Justice — now overseen by Jeff Sessions — has informed the other plaintiffs in the case it has abandoned that position.

February 28, 2017
Schools

Why The Christian Right Is Rejoicing Under Trump’s Presidency

Few would have predicted Donald Trump’s stellar relationship with far-right Christians. But now that he’s won them over, benefited from their political support, and amassed a White House featuring many evangelical conservatives, LGBT protections, abortion rights, and public school funding are on the line.

February 24, 2017

Justice Department Rescinds Order Phasing Out Use Of Private Prisons

The new order reverses one issued by former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates that sought to eliminate the department’s use of private for-profit prisons, which hold slightly more than 10 percent of the current prison population. Civil rights and prisoner rights groups decried the Sessions’ decision, saying private prisons are not as cost-effective or as safe as government-run facilities.

February 24, 2017
Danziger ont the littlest bully

Danziger: The Littlest Bully

In Danziger’s vision, Attorney General Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III is the kind of small-minded Southern politician who brandishes “state’s rights” as an excuse to bully unpopular minorities — in the latest instance, defenseless trans kids needing to use a bathroom.

February 24, 2017
NIH

Trump Goes Full Nixon On The Drug War

In a sharp break with the Obama administration, which distanced itself from harsh anti-drug rhetoric and emphasized treatment for drug users over punishment, President Trump this week reverted to tough drug war oratory and backed it up with a series of executive orders he said were “designed to restore safety in America.”

February 13, 2017
Senate Majority Leader McConnell adjusts glasses while taking questions on the upcoming budget battleon Capitol Hill in Washington

Mitch McConnell’s Crime Of Passion Against Elizabeth Warren

There’s no question that the decision to silence Warren backfired — badly. The furor gained the Massachusetts senator far more attention than her otherwise routine speech would have if it hadn’t been interrupted. The result: The majority leader turned the confirmation vote on Sessions, a loss for the Democrats, into a vehicle they could use to rally their partisan base.

February 13, 2017
SNL featuring McCarthy, McKinnon, Baldwin

Melissa McCarthy Returns To SNL As ‘Spicy,’ Plus McKinnon As Sessions (And Baldwin Hosts!)

The February 12 edition marked Alec Baldwin’s record-breaking 17th appearance as SNL guest host. The actor showed up for the monologue as himself, although his Emmy-worthy portrayal of Trump does grace a later sketch, as the president attempts to defend his travel ban on The People’s Court (with a cameo by Beck Bennett as his “character witness” Putin).

It is frankly hard to get enough of Melissa McCarthy’s “Spicy,” the press secretary who performs a manic review of week three’s unfolding troubles, from the travel ban imposed on seven Muslim majority countries to Nordstrom’s rejection of the Ivanka fashion line.

February 12, 2017
Deutsche Bank

Why Deutsche Bank Remains Trump’s Biggest Conflict Of Interest

If you measure President Donald Trump’s conflicts of interest by the amount of money at stake, or the variety of dicey interactions with government regulators, one dwarfs any other: his relationship with Deutsche Bank. The bank hoped to eliminate the president’s personal guarantee on loans. But such a move would not eliminate the conflict of interest, since the president’s company, which Trump still owns, would remain on the hook to pay back the loans.

February 10, 2017
Sessions

Sessions Confirmed As Attorney General After Fierce Battle With Democrats

Jeff Sessions who has served two decades in the Senate from Alabama, was confirmed by a 52-47 vote after strong pushback from Democrats concerned about his record on civil rights. In a rare move for a senator recently confirmed to a Cabinet position, Sessions took to the floor of the chamber and called for members of Congress to have some “latitude” in their relationships with members of the other party.

February 9, 2017