If President Trump was watching his favorite show Tuesday morning, he probably didn't like what he saw.
Even the normally Trump-friendly hosts of Fox & Friends had some harsh words for the president the day after his disastrous Monday meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, which politicians and pundits on both sides of the aisle have derided after Trump publicly sided with Putin, and against U.S. intelligence agencies, on the topic of Russia's 2016 election meddling.
Co-host Steve Doocy questioned why Trump refused to denounce Putin when "there have been a number of times where the president has said 'I think it was Russia,' ... 'I think there was meddling.'" Abby Huntsman elevated the critique, saying Putin's "ultimate goal in life is to undermine our democracy" and Trump blew the "one moment that you had to stand up for your own country, stand up for your intelligence community."
Brian Kilmeade brought up fellow conservatives who've spoken out against Trump, saying that "when Newt Gingrich, when General Jack Keane, when Matt Schlapp say the president fell short and made our intelligence apparatus look bad, I think it's time to pay attention." But Kilmeade also made some excuses for Trump's performance. "Nobody's perfect, especially [after] 10 intensive days of summits, private meetings, and everything on his plate," he said. "But that moment is the one that's going to stand out unless he comes out and corrects it.”
Watch the whole clip below. Kathryn Krawczyk
President Trump fires back at critics over his meeting with Putin pic.twitter.com/Ycb1pkls9f
— FOX & friends (@foxandfriends) July 17, 2018
CNN's Anderson Cooper blasts Trump for one of history's 'most disgraceful performances by an American president'
He may not have been on camera, but Anderson Cooper couldn't hide his displeasure with Monday's U.S.-Russia meeting.
The second President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin shook hands after a post-summit press conference, the CNN anchor slammed the American president. "You have been watching perhaps one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president at a summit in front of a Russian leader that I've ever seen," Cooper declared.
Anderson Cooper cold blooded. pic.twitter.com/dvrF1junfK
— Jimmy Traina (@JimmyTraina) July 16, 2018
Cooper's harsh words came in response to a joint press conference with Putin and Trump, held Monday after the two leaders held a closed-door meeting. Both Trump and Putin disputed claims of Russian meddling in American elections during the conference, with Putin vehemently denying interference in 2016 and Trump refusing to believe American intelligence over Putin. Instead of holding Putin accountable for alleged interference, Trump pivoted to his favorite topic: Hillary Clinton's emails.
Cooper called out Trump for fixating on this one topic, "like in Rain Man," where Dustin Hoffman plays the title character with autism.
Anderson Cooper compares Donald Trump’s obsessive rambling about Hillary Clinton’s emails to “Rain Man.” pic.twitter.com/LAkkGnmFXK
— Adam Best (@adamcbest) July 16, 2018
CNN's Chris Cuomo: Trump is being 'petty,' won't lower flags for Capital Gazette victims because he 'doesn't like the media'
CNN's Chris Cuomo blasted President Trump on Monday night for declining the mayor of Annapolis' request to lower American flags in honor of the five Capital Gazette newspaper employees shot and killed last week.
"Is there a protocol that would make it weird to respect the dead journalists?" Cuomo asked on Cuomo Prime Time. No, he answered, because it was done for the victims of the Las Vegas and Parkland shootings. It's not a numbers thing, either, as flags were lowered following the recent deaths of former first lady Barbara Bush and Billy Graham. "Why was the Annapolis mayor turned down with such a no-brainer request?" Cuomo said. "I'm afraid I know the answer, and it's because President Trump doesn't like the media."
Cuomo said it sounds "extraordinarily petty and callous," but Trump is the same man who mocked Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) for being captured during the Vietnam War and let a staffer stay at the White House who ridiculed his health. "Trump unfortunately is entirely capable of disrespecting people no matter their predicament if it suits him or his interests," Cuomo said. "Yes, Trump did say he respects journalists after the mass murder, but why would you believe that? Why would you believe he's not lying again?" Catherine Garcia
Why was the Mayor of Annapolis turned down by the White House on his request to lower flags to mark the lives of fallen journalists?
.@ChrisCuomo: I am afraid I know the answer. Its because President Trump doesn’t like the media #CuomoPrimeTime https://t.co/8oj5vraNr2 pic.twitter.com/bmJ3Niti5a
— Cuomo Prime Time (@CuomoPrimeTime) July 3, 2018
Religious leaders want Trump hotel's liquor license revoked because he's 'not a person of good character'
Under District of Columbia law, only people of "good character" can hold a liquor license, and a group of religious leaders and former judges argue that the license issued to the Trump International Hotel should be revoked because President Trump "is not a person of good character."
The District of Columbia Alcoholic Beverage Control Board received a complaint about the hotel from several rabbis, pastors, and retired judges who live in D.C. "The board owes it to the public to investigate the owner's lack of good character now," the complaint said, noting that "good character investigations typically occur at the time of license application or renewal," but Trump has engaged in "egregious conduct."
The complaint asks the alcohol licensing board to focus on Trump's "long history of lies," as well as "his involvement in relevant fraudulent and other activity demonstrating his lack of integrity, and his refusal to abide by the law or to stop associating with known criminals." He's been accused of sexual assault by several women, and fleeced people out of money through Trump University, the complaint continues, and the hotel should be ordered to "show cause why its license should not be revoked." Read the entire complaint here. Catherine Garcia
President Trump publicly bashed his attorney general, Jeff Sessions, on Twitter on Wednesday after The New York Times reported he had pressured Sessions in March 2017 to reverse his decision to recuse himself from the Russia investigation.
Trump quoted Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), who had appeared on Fox News to defend the president, saying: "[If] I picked somebody to be the country's chief law enforcement officer and they told me later 'oh by the way, I'm not going to be able to participate in the most important case in the office,' I would be frustrated too ... There are lots of really good lawyers in the country, he could have picked somebody else!"
Trump added his own comment after Gowdy's quote: "And I wish I did!"
The president has made no secret of his irritation with Sessions, telling The New York Times last summer: "Sessions should have never recused himself, and if he was going to recuse himself, he should have told me before he took the job and I would have picked somebody else." Jeva Lange
Stephen Bannon viciously skewers outgoing White House lawyer Ty Cobb as 'a mistake, totally incompetent'
Stephen Bannon blasted White House lawyer Ty Cobb on Wednesday after news broke that Cobb, the point person for dealing with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, was stepping down at the end of the month. "Cobb was a mistake, totally incompetent and in over his head," Bannon told The Washington Post. "He was obsessed with this radical fantasy of waiving executive privilege … It was truly stupid."
Less than two months ago, President Trump tweeted that he was "VERY happy with my lawyers, John Dowd, Ty Cobb, and Jay Sekulow." Dowd has since resigned and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who has since joined as Trump's lead personal attorney, told the Post that Cobb was not forced out. "It was just time for him to go, but he's still going to be available to us," Giuliani said. He added that Jay Sekulow "had the most to do with it" and that he "felt that he needed someone that was more aggressive. That's not a criticism of Ty, but it's just about how we're going to do this."
Cobb believed Trump ought to cooperate with the probe to bring it to an end, something Bannon — who left the White House last year after having formerly served as Trump's campaign chief executive — disagreed with. Cobb "failed to realize that there would never be, could never be a special relationship" with Mueller, Bannon said.
Et tu, mom and dad?
In July, Kevin Nicholson announced he would seek the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate in Wisconsin, looking to replace the incumbent, Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin. Last week, Baldwin's campaign reported its quartely donations to the Federal Election Commission, and it turns out, Nicholson's parents, Donna and Michael, both gave Baldwin the maximum allowed under the law: $2,700 each. They will both be able to donate $2,700 again during the general election.
Nicholson, a former president of College Democrats of America, told CNN he's not taking it personally. "My parents have a different worldview than I do, and it is not surprising that they would support a candidate like Tammy Baldwin, who shares their perspective," he said. Nicholson said he became a conservative in 2007 after serving with the Marines in Iraq, and "regardless of who may disagree with my life decisions, I would not trade these experiences for anything, and they will always guide my views as Wisconsin's next U.S. senator." Catherine Garcia
Sorry, bitcoin, but you're no longer welcome among the puppy pictures, faceless cooking videos, and life updates from your aunt's friend's son-in-law.
Facebook announced Tuesday that it is banning ads for cryptocurrencies, the encrypted digital currencies whose turbulent fortunes have inspired many an impulsive investment. They've also been known to be fodder for several fraudulent get-rich-quick schemes — a con Facebook is hoping to help its users avoid. In a blog post Tuesday, Product Management Director Robert Leathern wrote that the company does not want its users to fall for scams "frequently associated with misleading or deceptive promotional practices such as binary options, initial coin offerings, and cryptocurrencies."
There are legitimate cryptocurrencies that advertise on Facebook, as Recode noted. But skeptics warn that cryptocurrencies are fool's gold and that investors will end up with empty pockets. Bitcoin, perhaps the most famous of these digital treasures, has been particularly volatile: Its price per coin reached nearly $20,000 in December, but now is hovering around $10,000. At the beginning of 2017, it was priced around $1,000.
Leathern concedes that credible cryptocurrencies will get swept up by Facebook's "intentionally broad" guidelines for now, but he said that these restrictions would be at least somewhat temporary. "[Facebook] will revisit this policy and how we enforce it as our signals improve," he wrote. Kelly O'Meara Morales