ethics

Analysis: At Trump Rally, It Was 2016 Again
President mixes fear with bold promises, big boasts before friendly crowd

President Donald Trump speaks during the annual Days of Remembrance Holocaust ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda on April 25, 2017. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

President Donald Trump, echoing his populist 2016 campaign, mixed the politics of fear and bold promises as he returned to the campaign trail Tuesday evening in Ohio.

As he delivered parts of his remarks in Youngstown, it well could have been July 2016 with then-Republican nominee Trump at the podium. The world is more unsafe than ever. The United States has been run for too long by “stupid” politicians. People who wish to Americans harm are pouring over the southern border. Other countries are taking advantage of U.S. workers and consumers.

‘Disappointed’ Trump Holds Cards Close on Firing Sessions
AG’s recusal from Russia probe ‘unfair to the presidency,’ Trump gripes

Then-Sen. Jeff Sessions campaigns last year with then-GOP nominee Donald Trump. President Trump would not say Tuesday if he intends to fire now-Attorney General Sessions. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file)

President Donald Trump is holding his cards close on whether he intends to fire Jeff Sessions, his hand-picked attorney general he now worries is too “weak” and “beleaguered” to do the job.

“I am very disappointed with the attorney general,” Trump said in the White House Rose Garden during a joint news conference with his Lebanese counterpart. “He should not have recused himself” from the Justice Department’s Russia election investigation “almost immediately after he took office.”

Sessions on the Cusp of Martyrdom or Oblivion
If he’s fired, will former Senate GOP colleagues draw a line against Trump?

Attorney General Jeff Sessions has been the target of almost daily taunting from President Donald Trump. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

When Jeff Sessions was preparing last fall to begin a third decade in the Senate, his future as a rock-ribbed conservative legislative force looked limitless, but just three seasons later, he’s been pushed to the precipice of his career.

The almost daily taunting he’s taking from President Donald Trump points toward one of two probably quick endings to his brief run as attorney general, quitting or getting canned.

Jared Kushner, After Intel Meeting, Denies Russia Impropriety
Trump son-in-law says no collusion with Kremlin during 2016 race

Jared Kushner, son-in-law and senior adviser to President Donald Trump, leaves the Hart Senate Office Building on Monday after his interview with the Senate Intelligence Committee staff. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

UPDATED 5:15 p.m. | Following nearly three hours of testimony before Senate Intelligence Committee staffers on Monday, senior presidential adviser Jared Kushner stood outside the White House and denied colluding with Russian officials during the 2016 campaign, saying all of his actions were both legal and proper.

President Donald Trump’s son-in-law defended himself during rare public remarks just outside the executive mansion’s West Wing, saying: “I did not collude with Russia, nor do I know of anyone else in the campaign who did so.”

Kislyak Leaves His Post With Russiagate in His Wake
Russian ambassador’s communications with Trump advisers at center of investigations

Russian Ambassador to the United States Sergey Kislyak leaves after a farewell reception in Washington on July 11 hosted by the U.S.-Russia Business Council. (Alex Wong/Getty Images file photo)

Sergei Kislyak, the Russian ambassador to Washington who was in contact with multiple U.S. officials in Donald Trump’s administration during the 2016 presidential campaign and the lead-up to Trump’s inauguration, left his post over the weekend, the Russian embassy announced in a Saturday morning tweet.

Kislyak was replaced in the interim by Minister-Counseler and Deputy Chief of Mission Denis V. Gonchar until his successor arrives from Moscow.

Liberal Group Offers Trump White House Staff Free Legal Advice
‘Lifeline’ comes as president boasts of ‘complete’ pardon powers

President Donald Trump, shown here with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, in March at the White House, with son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner and daughter and senior adviser Ivanka Trump, tweeted this weekend he can pardon anyone. (Courtesy Shealah Craighead/White House)

A liberal group will offer Donald Trump’s White House staffers free legal advice amid his ongoing Russia scandal — but if the president’s legal analysis is correct, they might choose to decline it.

Tax March is poised to announce an initiative the organization described as a “lifeline” to those who chose to take positions in Trump’s embattled White House. Under the program, lawyers working on a pro bono basis will provide any White House staffer a “free gateway” to legal advice.

Capitol Ink | Pardon Party

After Spicer Quits, Scaramucci Vows Aggressive Communications Shop
New communications director took job due to 'love' for president

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer resigned on Friday, refusing to work for new Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci. His replacement, however, said he “loves” Spicer. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Longtime Wall Street investment banker Anthony Scaramucci made his White House debut Friday, expressing his “love” for Donald Trump and promising a much more “aggressive” strategy of communicating the president’s message.

On a day of upheaval at the executive mansion, Sean Spicer resigned as press secretary and acting communications director amid reports he told Trump he believed Scaramucci’s hiring was a major mistake. What’s more, Scaramucci made his first major announcement as part of Trump’s team when he announced Spicer’s top deputy, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, will be the new press secretary.

Opinion: The Freewheeling John McCain — An Appreciation
Flawed, but still the embodiment of honor, civility, patriotism and bipartisanship

Arizona Sen. John McCain deserves to be ranked among the two or three leading Senate figures of the last quarter-century, Shapiro writes. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

For all their outward cynicism, campaign reporters tend to be closet idealists who dream of covering a candidate who will summon forth the better angels of the American people. Such a mythic candidate is not aloof like Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama, but rather is a flawed figure who transforms himself in the act of running for president.

The doomed Bobby Kennedy of 1968 was that kind of uplifting candidate for an earlier generation of reporters. For a few short months during the primaries, Kennedy rose above his life of privilege and his reputation for ruthlessness to become the tribune of the poor and the dispossessed of all races.

Labrador Takes Wife Off Campaign Payroll
Idaho Republican is a candidate for governor

Idaho Rep. Raúl R. Labrador announced his campaign for governor in May (Bill Clark/Roll Call file photo)

Idaho Rep. Raúl R. Labrador took his wife off his campaign payroll this year for the first time since taking office in 2011, a review of the congressman’s FEC reports shows.

The (Spokane) Spokesman-Review confirmed that Rebecca Johnson Labrador, who has kept the books for her husband since his first term in 2011, has not been paid this year by Labrador’s House campaign fund or the GOP lawmaker’s campaign for governor, which he launched and filed with the FEC in May.