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Sunday, Jun 24th

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Kushner gets permanent security clearance, lawyer says

Kushner gets full clearance

Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, has attained a permanent security clearance, his lawyer confirmed on Wednesday.

The move marks the end of a protracted, yearlong wait that raised questions about whether Kushner, the husband of Ivanka Trump, the president’s elder daughter and and also a White House adviser, hit a snag in the clearance process over complications from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation. Mueller is looking into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia related to the 2016 election.

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Trump lawyer Cohen secretly received $400,000 to set up White House talks with Ukraine president

Cohen reeived $400K to set up WH talks with Ukraine

Trump's personal lawyer received a secret payment of at least $400,000 to arrange talks between Trump and his Ukrainian counterpart, according to a report Wednesday.

The hefty half-a-million payment was made to Michael Cohen by intermediaries acting on behalf of Ukraine's leader, Petro Poroshenko, the BBC reported.

Poroshenko met briefly with Trump at the White House last June.

The Ukrainian leader had described the Oval Office sit-down as part of a "substantial visit" while the White House called it a "drop-in."

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Details of new NFL national-anthem policy appear to show league caved to Trump

NFL caves to TrumpThe NFL approved a new national-anthem policy on Wednesday in response to ongoing player protests that took over the 2017 season, and the league appears to have caved to the wishes of President Donald Trump and others who stressed the importance of "respecting the flag."

ESPN's Adam Schefter tweeted out the expected details of the policy.

Colin Kaepernick garnered national attention for his protests two seasons ago, kneeling during the anthem to bring attention to issues including police brutality and racial inequality in the justice system. While Kaepernick was out of the league in 2017, protests of a similar nature became more common across the NFL, with players including Michael Bennett and Marshawn Lynch taking part.

TVNL Comment:  Another erosion to the US Constitution.  The same people who demand their right to own assault weapons by citing the Second Amendment refuse to respect the First Amendment's right to freedom of speech.

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Judge rules Trump can't block users on Twitter

Twitter posters can't be blocked by TrumpA federal district court judge on Wednesday ruled that President Trump can't block people from viewing his Twitter feed over their political views.

Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald, of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, said President Trump’s Twitter account is a public forum and blocking people who reply to his tweets with differing opinions constitutes viewpoint discrimination, which violates the First Amendment.

The court’s ruling is a major win for the Knight Foundation, which brought the lawsuit on behalf of seven people who were blocked from the @realDonaldTrump account because of opinions they expressed in reply tweets.

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American Novelist Philip Roth, Author Of 'Portnoy's Complaint,' Dies At 85

Phillip Roth dies at 85

Philip Roth, whose novel American Pastoral won a Pulitzer in 1998 but who was best-known for the controversial and explicit 1969 Portnoy's Complaint, has died at age 85.

Roth's biographer Blake Bailey, who confirmed his death to NPR, says the author was surrounded by friends and family.

Roth was born in Newark, N.J., on March 19, 1933, and began a literary career in college. After briefly attending Rutgers University, he went to Bucknell University, where he started a magazine called Et Cetera, which featured some of his early short stories, according to Biography.com.

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Bannon says Rosenstein could be fired 'very shortly'

Bannon says Rosenstein is outPresident Trump’s former chief strategist Stephen Bannon predicts that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein could be fired “very shortly,” in an interview that will be broadcast Wednesday evening in the United Kingdom.

Bannon said that Rosenstein “either … is going to take the direct order of the president of the United States or I think Rosenstein will be fired.”

Bannon also said that the president should give evidence in writing — but not in person — to special counsel Robert Mueller. Bannon praised Mueller as an “honorable guy.”

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Cohen’s business partner strikes plea deal: report

Evgeny Freidman flips; makes a plea deal with fedsA longtime business associate of President Trump’s personal attorney Michael Cohen has reportedly agreed to cooperate with government prosecutors as part of a plea deal.

The New York Times reported on Tuesday that Evgeny Freidman agreed to cooperate with state and federal prosecutors, potentially raising pressure on Cohen to assist in the special counsel investigation into Russia's 2016 election meddling.

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Michael Avenatti Accuses Cohen’s Lawyers of Leaking Audio Recordings Featuring Stormy Daniels

Michael Avenatti accuses Cohen lawyer of leakingThe legal team for President Donald Trump’s former personal attorney may be leaking audio recordings that were seized in FBI raids last month, including some featuring an adult film star who claimed to have a sexual encounter with Trump, according to a federal court filing Tuesday.

The attorney for Stormy Daniels, Michael Avenatti, issued a letter to the U.S. Southern District Court and claimed that either Michael Cohen, Trump’s self-proclaimed “fixer,” or his lawyers had “begun to leak select audio recordings to the media that were seized in the FBI raids."

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Republicans, no Democrats, to attend meeting on FBI campaign surveillance: White House

No Dems to attend meeting on FBI surveillanceTwo Republican lawmakers, and no Democrats, are expected to attend a meeting that has been scheduled for Thursday to allow them to review classified information relating to claims the FBI used an informant to gather information on Trump’s presidential campaign, the White House said on Tuesday.

House of Representatives Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes and House Oversight Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy, both Republicans, are expected to attend, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told a regular news briefing. FBI Director Christopher Wray, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and Acting Principal Associate Deputy Attorney General Ed O’Callaghan are also expected to attend, she said.

TVNL Comment: This is, by far, the most egregious move by the felon in the White House, whose conspiracy-theory demands on the DOJ are a frontal attack on our democracy.  Wake up, America.

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