August 5, 2018

The dishonesty of the Trump administration is unparalleled in American history, former White House Press Secretary Joe Lockhart argued on CNN's Reliable Sources Sunday.

"This has never happened before," Lockhart said. "We've had great presidents; we've had terrible presidents, Republicans and Democrats; but we've never had anything like this — where we have a president who is incapable of telling the truth." Lockhart worked in the administration of former President Bill Clinton, who was impeached along party lines for perjury by the House of Representatives and acquitted by the Senate.

Lockhart may be right that Trump's average of 6.5 false or misleading public claims daily, per The Washington Post's count, is unique. Still, as Politico documents, presidents have long lied about everything from their age to their opponents' religion to what they knew and when they knew it.

See Lockhart's comments in context below. Bonnie Kristian

12:36 p.m.

Who's been trolling Marvel fans? It's been Paul Bettany all along.

The WandaVision star on Thursday admitted he was just joking when he repeatedly hyped up a major cameo in the hit Disney+ show, as he was apparently just talking about himself.

The Vision actor during numerous interviews promoting the series teased that he got to work with "an actor that I really admire and that I've always wanted to work with," adding that "we have these explosive scenes" together. Fans spent weeks trying to figure out who he meant and getting excited for a massive surprise cameo, with one popular guess being X-Men star Patrick Stewart.

But then WandaVision in its penultimate episode last week revealed another Vision also played by Bettany, leading fans to ask if they just got pranked because the actor he was talking about was actually, well, Paul Bettany. While appearing on Good Morning America on Thursday, Bettany said that's, indeed, what happened.

"You know when you think something's gonna be funny, and you say it, and then you absolutely panic about it?" Bettany said. "Which is what I did, because fans started guessing who it might be, and they were guessing people like Benedict Cumberbatch or Patrick Stewart, and I was thinking, 'God, that's a good idea!' And they're going to be so disappointed when they find out it's me."

Then again, could it be that it's actually this interview that's a fake-out? Michael Strahan wondered whether "you could be trolling us right now" with the admission, and when he asked Bettany if the finale truly does have a surprise cameo, he wouldn't say. But fans perhaps shouldn't get their hopes up, and when asked recently whether Bettany was joking, WandaVision director Matt Shakman told HuffPost, "I'm gonna let Paul Bettany answer that question. He dug himself this hole. He can get out of it." Brendan Morrow

10:59 a.m.

Don't bet on former President Donald Trump traveling to campaign against Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) — and not because of any sudden change of heart.

A new report from The Washington Post discusses the Alaska Republican's influence during President Biden's administration, as well as the fact that Trump is "vowing publicly and privately to work to oust her" as she seeks a fourth Senate term in 2022. Murkowski was one of seven Republican senators who voted to convict Trump in his second impeachment trial, and she's reportedly "higher on his list of enemies" than other lawmakers, coming in just under Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.)

At the same time, the Post reports that while Trump "does want to spend money against" Murkowski, some "people in his circle doubt, though, that he will be as much of a potent force in the race because traveling to campaign against her would require such a long flight, which Trump generally avoids."

There's also the fact that, the Post says, Trump's advisers "recognize the complexity of winning in Alaska," which uses ranked-choice voting, though the report adds that it's likely Murkowski will face pro-Trump opposition in the race in some form.

Trump recently went after Murkowski during his first speech since leaving office at the Conservative Political Action Conference, naming her while he slammed a series of Republican "grandstanders" and called on supporters to "get rid of them all." Murkowski has defended her vote to impeach Trump, saying she couldn't "be afraid of" the political repercussions and that if Alaska voters decide that "because I did not support my party that I can no longer serve them in the United States Senate, then so be it." Brendan Morrow

9:42 a.m.

A suspect charged in the deadly Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol building is speaking from jail in a new interview — and offering a unique defense positioning himself as simply a savior of baked goods.

Jacob Chansley, the Capitol riot suspect who refers to himself as the "QAnon Shaman" and was photographed during the insurrection wearing fur and horns, spoke with 60 Minutes in an interview broadcast Thursday, in which he claimed his "actions were not an attack on this country" as he faces up to 20 years in prison for them.

"I sang a song, and that's a part of shamanism," he said. "...I also stopped people from stealing and vandalizing that sacred space, the Senate, okay. I actually stopped somebody from stealing muffins out of the break room."

Chansley neglected to mention the fact that, during the deadly insurrection, he allegedly left a threatening note for former Vice President Mike Pence warning, "It's only a matter of time, justice is coming." He was charged with "knowingly entering or remaining in" a restricted building and "violent entry and disorderly conduct," and prosecutors noted he carried around "a spear, approximately 6 feet in length," during the riot. Prosecutors have also said he "incited fellow Trump supporters rioting inside the Capitol building and disobeyed police orders," The Wall Street Journal reports.

Despite this, Chansley, who said he regrets "entering that building," bemoaned the fact that former President Donald Trump never pardoned him or any of the other Capitol rioters, telling 60 Minutes this "wounded me so deeply" and "disappointed me so greatly." Still, Chansley added that even though he didn't get the pardon he wanted, he still doesn't regret his loyalty to Trump. Brendan Morrow

7:51 a.m.

Meghan Markle is calling out Buckingham Palace for allegedly spreading "falsehoods" about her and Prince Harry in the latest clip from their highly-anticipated Oprah Winfrey interview.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will open up in an interview with Winfrey airing on Sunday after they stepped back as senior members of the Royal Family last year, and in a new clip from the discussion, Meghan accuses Buckingham Palace of playing an "active role" in spreading lies about them.

"I don't know how they could expect that after all of this time, we would still just be silent if there's an active role that the firm is playing in perpetuating falsehoods about us," Meghan said. "And if that comes at the risk of losing things, there's a lot that's been lost already."

"The firm" is a term used to describe the royal family, CNN notes.

Days before this interview, Buckingham Palace announced it would investigate a report from the Times of London on allegations that Meghan bullied staffers, saying it's "clearly very concerned about" these allegations in what The Washington Post described as a "highly unusual" statement. A spokesperson for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex blasted the report as a "calculated smear campaign based on misleading and harmful misinformation," adding that the allegations coming out shortly before the interview with Winfrey was scheduled to air is "no coincidence."

Asked by CNN about the newly-released clip, Buckingham Palace said it had "no comment." Brendan Morrow

1:53 a.m.

Fifteen years ago, as Victoria Johnson read a used book she had just purchased, a photograph that had been tucked inside fell out. This was the beginning of a mystery that she finally was able to solve last month, thanks to internet sleuths.

The picture was of a Black family, and Johnson, a professor in New York City, estimated by their clothes that the shot was taken in the 1960s. She would look at the photo often, wondering who they were and if they were still living. In February, Johnson asked for help on Twitter, and the picture was retweeted thousands of times.

The great-niece of the man in the photo messaged Johnson, to let her know it was a photo of Sheldon and Margaret Sudduth and their daughters, Valerie and Sharon. The picture was taken in 1964 at their home in Topeka, and mailed to relatives in New York City. While Sheldon and Margaret have died, Valerie and Sharon are both alive and reside in Texas.

During a phone call, Valerie Sudduth told Johnson that her mother, a nurse, was a widow, and met Sheldon at church. Sudduth explained to Johnson that in the picture, she "looks so happy because she was thrilled about her new dad. Sheldon was kind, funny, and gentle. He made her feel she could handle anything she set her mind to." The photo is now on its way to Sudduth. Catherine Garcia

1:01 a.m.

An abandoned lot in southeast Atlanta is now a vibrant free food forest, where neighborhood residents can learn about healthy eating while enjoying fresh fruits, vegetables, and nuts.

The food forest spans 7.1 acres, with 2,500 edible and medicinal plants. The land was originally used by pecan farmers, and then rezoned for townhouses. When the property entered foreclosure, the Conservation Fund bought it, and with grant money and help from other organizations, it was transformed into the Urban Food Forest at Browns Mill, the nation's largest free food forest.

The forest has nut trees, fruit trees, berry bushes, vegetables, and herbs, grown in a way that mimics nature, certified arborist Michael McCord said. McCord helps manage the forest, and told CNN everything in the space is "a teachable moment, whether it be trees, trails, bees or vegetables. That's what's most important to me — that we're raising awareness about sustainability and agriculture."

The city-owned and managed forest is in the Browns Mill neighborhood, a food desert where the closest grocery store is 30 minutes away by bus and 1 in 3 residents lives below the poverty line. More than 1,000 volunteers help keep the forest up and running by planting, watering, and harvesting crops. People are asked to only take as much food as needed, to ensure no one goes without. "It's really a park for everyone," Atlanta councilwoman Carla Smith told CNN. "Every time I go, there's a community there who respects and appreciates the fresh healthy foods." Watch the video below to get a look at the forest, pre-pandemic. Catherine Garcia

March 3, 2021

With a vote of 220-210, the House on Wednesday night passed House Resolution 1, a sweeping election reform bill that would eliminate partisan gerrymandering, expand early and mail-in voting, make voter registration automatic, and weaken voter ID laws.

Studies show that taking these steps would get more voters, especially those of color, to the polls. At Republican-controlled statehouses across the country, lawmakers are attempting to roll back voting access, citing former President Donald Trump's false claims that there was widespread election fraud in November. Trump lost Georgia, a state that saw record turnout, and on Monday the state House approved a bill that limits weekend early voting days, requires a photo ID for absentee voting, and restricts ballot drop box locations.

"You can win on the basis of your ideas and the programs you put forward, which is what we choose to do," Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.), an author of H.R. 1, said. "Or you can try to win by suppressing the vote, drawing unfair districts across the country, and using big money to spread disinformation."

The bill needs 60 votes in the Senate, where it faces Republican opposition, and some believe this might be the measure that ends the filibuster. "Voting rights is preservation of all other rights, and we have to do everything we can to preserve the voices of the people in our democracy," Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.) said. "I think the issues are urgent enough to leave all options on the table." Catherine Garcia

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