W

October 27, 2018

Week 102

Experts in authoritarianism advise to keep a list of things
subtly changing around you, so you’ll remember.

This was a heartbreaking week in America, after several domestic attacks left the country shaken, frightened, and on edge. On Monday, an explosive device mailed in a package to the home of George Soros was discovered. Then starting Wednesday, one by one, 13 more packages addressed to high profile Democrats, all of whom were Trump critics and people Trump had publicly and repeatedly attacked, were found. There was a deadly shooting of two Black Americans in a supermarket in Kentucky, minutes after the shooter was unable to gain access to a predominantly black church in Jeffersontown. Then, the week closed with mass shooting during Shabbat services at Pittsburgh’s oldest Jewish congregation, killing 11 and injuring 6, likely the deadliest attack on the Jewish community in U.S. history, which was charged as a hate crime.

Unlike his predecessors, Trump was unable or unwilling to rise to the occasion and seek to unite and comfort the country. Instead, he blamed the media, lightened but continued his attacks on political opponents, and complained these crimes were distracting from his messaging ahead of midterms. Trump also refused to call out hate or the rise of white supremacist groups, who view themselves as on his side and his defenders. Instead, Trump announced he is a “nationalist” — a term with historical connotations to white nationalism, seemingly a guiding philosophy behind much of his regime’s actions and policies. All the attacks this week were carried out by middle-aged white men.

  1. On Saturday, Trump warned of non-existent voter fraud, tweeting “All levels of government and Law Enforcement are watching carefully for VOTER FRAUD,” adding, “Cheat at your own peril.”
  2. On Sunday, Carl Bernstein told CNN that Trump is already having discussions at the White House for plans to call the midterms “illegitimate” if Democrats win the House by a small margin.
  3. Bernstein said his sources tell him Trump’s plan is to throw legal challenges into the courts, sow confusion, declare victory, and say that the election was illegitimate.
  4. On Saturday, at a rally in Nevada, Trump falsely claimed that Californians are “rioting” in protest of sanctuary cities, saying “They’re rioting now. They want to get out of their sanctuary cities.”
  5. Trump also claimed, without evidence, that the caravan of Central American migrants is full of criminals, claiming the group will bring waves of crime and drugs over the border, and “this country doesn’t want them.”
  6. Trump also claimed that the “fake news media” is the Democrats’ “single greatest ally.” The crowd then pointed to reporters at the rally and booed at them.
  7. Trump also promised a new “major tax cut” for middle-income people “just prior to November.” The House is out of session until November 13.
  8. On Monday, Trump told reporters that the regime plans to produce a “resolution” calling for a 10% tax cut for middle-income earners, leaving confused White House staffers scrambling to understand what he meant.
  9. On Monday, NYT Editorial Board wrote ahead of the election, Trump is “lyin’ up a storm,” both at this campaign rallies and on Twitter, noting Americans are “already exhausted” and this is “really bad for the country.”
  10. On Monday, Politico reported Trump is distancing himself from a possible GOP midterm thumping, telling confidants he does not see it as a referendum on himself and will blame Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
  11. On Sunday, the NYT reported the Department of Health and Human Services is leading an effort to change the legal definition of sex under Title IX and to narrowly define gender as determined by genitalia at birth.
  12. This marks the most dramatic move by the Trump regime yet in its efforts to roll back recognition and protections of transgender people under federal civil rights law and reverses policy by the Obama administration.
  13. On Thursday, the Guardian reported the Trump regime is seeking to eliminate the word “gender” from U.N. general assembly policy statement documents, most often replacing it with “woman.”
  14. Nelson Diaz, chair of the GOP of Miami-Dade County, apologized for “unbecoming” action after organizing a protest involving members of the “Proud Boys” outside congressional candidate Donna Shalala’s office.
  15. A Latina woman with family visiting from Guatemala was verbally harassed for speaking Spanish by a white woman at a restaurant in Virginia, saying “You get the f — out, back to your f ——  country.”
  16. On a Ryanair flight, a white man went on a tirade about sitting next to a black woman in a wheelchair. The flight attendant then asked the black woman and her daughter to move to a different row.
  17. David Thomas Sr., a Veterans Affairs official, took down a portrait of the KKK’s first grand wizard from his office after a WAPO reporter explained who the subject is. His senior staff is mostly Black Americans.
  18. Gay bars in Nashville received pamphlets with the acronym and images of the Statue of Liberty (L), a gun (G), a beer bottle (B), and Trump (T). The gun pictured is the one used in the shooting at Orlando nightclub Pulse.
  19. NBC News reported on a robocall in Florida targeting Andrew Gillum, in which a man impersonating him says, “Well hello there. I is the negro Andrew Gillum,” and “My state opponent, who done call me monkey…”
  20. ABC News reported Bruce Alexander, who is accused of touching a woman’s breast twice on an airplane flight, told authorities “the president of the United States says it’s OK to grab women by their private parts.”
  21. The FBI arrested Robert Rundo, the leader of Rise Above Movement, a violent California neo-Nazi gang, who fled the country for Central America, on a federal conspiracy charge.
  22. Rise Above Movement members were involved in violent activity at protests throughout California in 2017. Rundo and three other gang members were charged with inciting riots.
  23. On Sunday, CNN reported Gwinnett County, northeast of Atlanta, faces two federal lawsuits after rejecting hundreds of mail-in absentee ballots, disproportionately impacting Asian American and Black American voters.
  24. An analysis done by WAPO showed Georgia’s “exact match” policy could clear just 70% of eligible voters and disproportionately impacts Black American and Hispanic American voters.
  25. Rolling Stone reported on a leaked audio of a “Georgia Professionals for Kemp” campaign event last Friday in which Brian Kemp raised concern about his Democratic opponent Stacey Abrams’ voter turnout operation.
  26. Kemp can be heard saying it “continues to concern us, especially if everybody uses and exercises their right to vote.” Abrams’ campaign continued to call on Kemp to resign as Georgia’s Secretary of State.
  27. On Tuesday, USA Today reported the Georgia NAACP filed complaints with state election officials, alleging some voting machines mistakenly registered votes cast for Abrams as votes for Kemp.
  28. On Wednesday, a federal judge in Georgia sided with the ACLU, temporarily blocking the state from tossing out absentee ballots on which voters’ signatures do not match the ones on their voter registration cards.
  29. On Thursday, a federal judge in Georgia issued a formal injunction, stopping Georgia from rejecting absentee ballots because of signatures deemed not to match those on file.
  30. On Thursday, NYT reported Georgia state Democratic officials said more than 4,700 vote-by-mail applications were missing in DeKalb County, one the state’s most populous and liberal-leaning regions.
  31. On Thursday, police arrested Jason Donald Wayne, 28, in North Carolina after he threatened to assault a black GOP campaign worker who was working at an early voting location in Charlotte.
  32. On Thursday, AP reported after moving the sole polling place for 27,000 residents outside city lines in Week 101, Dodge City, Kansas, election official sent voters notices listing the wrong place to cast their vote.
  33. Kansas Director of Elections Bryan Caskey admitted that the notices were “confusing,” and said he informed Ford County Clerk Debbie Cox she needed to send another notice with the correct location.
  34. On Friday, the ACLU sued Dodge City over voter access. The lawsuit seeks a temporary restraining order that would force Ford County to open a second polling place in time for midterms in Dodge City.
  35. On Friday, ABC 13 reported at some voting machines in Texas, when voters selected the straight-party vote for Democrat, their vote for Senator, on the last page of the ballot, was changed to Republican Ted Cruz.
  36. On Monday, the Supreme Court shielded Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross from having to answer lawyers’ questions in a lawsuit challenging his decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 Census form.
  37. WAPO reported the Trump regime is politicizing the traditionally non-partisan Board of Veterans’ Appeals, judges who determine whether an injured veteran is entitled to lifetime benefits. This is unprecedented.
  38. The White House rejected half of the candidates selected by the board chairwoman, after requiring them to disclose their party affiliations. Of the four rejected, three were Democrats and one was an independent.
  39. On Tuesday, after meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow, national security adviser John Bolton announced Putin and Trump will meet in Paris one-on-one just five days after the midterms.
  40. The scheduled meeting marks another reversal by Trump. In July, after the controversial meeting between Trump and Putin in Helsinki, the White House said the two would not meet again until “after the Russia witch hunt is over.”
  41. Guardian reported in 2001, Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh lobbied to ensure Timothy Tymkovich would secure a lifetime appointment as a Colorado federal judge. Tymkovich is now handling Kavanaugh ethics complaints.
  42. A USA Today/Suffolk poll found the “Kavanaugh effect” makes Americans more likely to vote for Democrats (35%) than Republicans (27%) in the midterms.
  43. A study conducted at Arizona State University, and published in the Journal of American College Health, found 25% of college students have “clinically significant event-related distress” resulting from the 2016 election.
  44. The study argues event-related distress can predict future distress and diagnoses of PTSD, a mental health condition triggered by a terrifying event — either experiencing it or witnessing it.
  45. The most useful predictors of stress were sex, political party, and religion — more so than race or social class. The majority of students — 76% of Democrats and 59% of Republicans — said they were stressed.
  46. On Sunday, WAPO reported special counsel Robert Mueller’s team has been aggressively pursuing leads on whether Roger Stone, or any other Trump associates, had advance knowledge of the WikiLeaks’ plan to release hacked emails.
  47. In addition to Randy Credico, Mueller’s team is also examining Stone’s relationship with conspiracy theorist Jerome Corsi, and whether Corsi was a conduit between Stone and Julian Assange.
  48. Mueller’s team is also examining if Stone lied in his Congressional testimony about his contact with WikiLeaks.
  49. On Thursday, Mother Jones reported in early January, Stone sent a text message to Credico saying he was working to get a pardon from Trump for Assange, writing “It’s very real and very possible. Don’t fuck it up.”
  50. On Tuesday, NYT reported in recent days the United States Cyber Command has been targeting individual Russian operatives, telling them they have identified them and are being tracked, in order to deter them.
  51. On Thursday, House Republicans interviewed George Papadopoulos behind closed doors for roughly seven hours. Republicans claim his testimony raises questions about the start of the FBI’s Russia probe.
  52. Trump ally Rep. Mark Meadows said that Papadopoulos’ testimony shows the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia should never have been started.
  53. On Monday, in a series of tweets, Trump attacked the “caravan” of migrants from Central America, claiming without evidence, “Criminals and unknown Middle Easterners are mixed in.”
  54. Trump also tweeted, “every time you see a Caravan, or people illegally coming… blame the Democrats,” and he threatened again to substantially reduce foreign aid to Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador.
  55. On Monday, when asked by reporters for proof there are terrorists in the caravan, Trump said, “take your camera, go into the middle, and search. You’re going to find MS-13, you’re going to find Middle Eastern.”
  56. A WAPO journalist called out the media for amplifying Trump’s caravan messaging with non-stop coverage, using his words like “caravan crisis” and “onslaught,” employing false-equivalency, and not calling out his lies.
  57. On Monday, WAPO reported Trump has settled on a strategy of fear, laced with lies and racially tinged rhetoric, as a way to motivate Republican voters to get to the polls for the midterms, instead of touting his achievements.
  58. Trump is especially focused on the caravan, which he claimed is full of gang members, violent criminals and “unknown Middle Easterners.” Stephen Miller is one of the chief authors of Trump’s rally remarks.
  59. On Monday, at a rally in Texas, Trump delivered a speech laden with lies and fear mongering, reminiscent of his 2016 campaign. He also evoked nationalism directly.
  60. Trump told a string of lies, including that the Democrats will kick seniors off their health insurance, end coverage for pre-existing conditions, and destroy the Social Security retirement system.
  61. Trump also lied that Democrats will give illegal immigrants free cars and abolish our borders. Trump also said Democrats are behind the migrant caravan and lied the caravan includes people from the Middle East.
  62. Trump also told the crowd, “You know, they have a word. It sort of became old-fashioned. It’s called a nationalist,” adding “we’re not supposed to use that word. You know what I am? I am a nationalist. Use that word.”
  63. Trump also said “Radical Democrats want to turn back the clock. Restore the rule of corrupt, power-hungry globalists,” adding, “a globalist is a person that wants the globe to do well,” but not “our country so much.”
  64. On Tuesday, when pressed by reporters for proof that there are Middle Easterners in the caravan, Trump responded, “There’s no proof of anything. But there could very well be.”
  65. Trump also claimed, without evidence, that there will be forthcoming proof to show Democrats are paying for the caravan of migrants.
  66. On Tuesday, former KKK leader David Duke celebrated Trump saying he is a nationalist, tweeting Trump “Defends the Rights and Heritage of White People & White people love him for it!”
  67. On Tuesday, in an interview with the WSJ after another down day in the markets, Trump again attacked Fed Chairman Jerome Powell. There is no precedent for a U.S. leader publicly criticizing a Fed Chair.
  68. Trump said of Powell, “every time we do something great, he raises the interest rates,” adding it “almost looks like he’s happy raising interest rates.”
  69. Trump added, “To me the Fed is the biggest risk.” When asked if he regrets nominating Powell, Trump said it’s “too early to say, but maybe.”
  70. On Wednesday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged more than 600 points, continuing its correction. Year-to-date, the Dow is flat.
  71. On Wednesday, NYT reported when Trump calls old friends on one of his iPhones, Chinese and Russians spies often listen in and gather information on how to best work with Trump and affect policy change.
  72. Trump’s aides have warned him that his calls are not secure, but he refuses to stop using his cell phones. Officials who spoke to the NYT said they did so out of frustration with his indifference towards electronic security.
  73. China uses information from the calls to understand how Mr. Trump thinks, what arguments tend to sway him and which of his friends they can use to sway him in order to keep a trade war from escalating.
  74. Aides said Trump’s longtime paranoia about surveillance gives them hope that he is not discussing classified information on calls. They also take comfort that Trump rarely reads the intelligence he is shown.
  75. Trump is supposed to swap his two cell phones for new ones every 30 days but rarely does so, citing inconvenience. Last year, Trump left one of the phones in a golf cart at his Bedminster club and had to scramble to find it.
  76. On Thursday, Trump attacked the NYT in two tweets, saying it “wrote a long and boring article,” calling it “so incorrect” and “soooo wrong,” adding, “I only use Government Phones.”
  77. Hours later, Trump tweeted “the New York Times has a new Fake Story” saying “I rarely use a cellphone, & when I do it’s government authorized. I like Hard Lines.”
  78. On Thursday, several Democrats, citing the NYT report, called for an investigation into Trump’s cell phone use and whether he compromised classified information.
  79. On Thursday, WAPO reported CIA Director Gina Haspel briefed Trump about her trip to Turkey, where she reportedly listened to an audio recording capturing the killing of Jamal Khashoggi.
  80. On Thursday, Saudi Arabia acknowledged its agents had murdered Khashoggi in a “premeditated” operation. Trump has yet to take any action against the Saudis or condemn the killing.
  81. On Thursday, the judge overseeing the New York attorney general’s lawsuit against Trump’s foundation said she will wait to hear if a sitting president can be sued before proceeding with the state’s case.
  82. A New York appeals court is currently weighing that question in a defamation lawsuit against Trump brought by Summer Zervos.
  83. On Thursday, at a WAPO event, Newt Gingrich said if Democrats take the House and subpoena Trump’s tax records, likely forcing a Supreme Court fight, “we’ll see whether or not the Kavanaugh fight was worth it.
  84. On Thursday, Roberta Jacobson, who resigned as U.S. ambassador to Mexico in Week 68, said in an op-ed some chaos is normal at the start of an administration, but that under Trump “it has been extreme.”
  85. Jacobson also pointed out that about 30 ambassadorships still remain vacant, including those to vitally important countries.
  86. Jacobson also said the disconnect between the State Department and the White House seems intentional, leaving ambassadors in impossible positions and allies “infuriated, alienated and bewildered.”
  87. On Thursday, Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley referred Julie Swetnick and her lawyer Michael Avenatti to the DOJ for investigation over allegations they made false statements to Congress about Kavanaugh.
  88. On Monday, an explosive device was found in the mailbox of George Soros’s home outside New York City. Soros is a favorite target of right-wing groups, including Trump who recently claimed he paid for Kavanaugh protests.
  89. On Wednesday, in the early morning, reports came out in local New York media that a suspicious device was sent to the Clintons’ home near New York City. Shortly after, it was reported a package was also sent to the Obamas.
  90. Later that morning, the Time Warner Center was evacuated after a suspicious package was found. CNN anchors continued to provide coverage of what was happening from their cell phones on the streets near the building.
  91. By late morning, reporting indicated the packages contained a pipe bomb. The package sent to CNN was addressed to “JON BRENAN” [sic], a former CIA director under Obama and a frequent Trump critic.
  92. According to the FBI, all the devices were packed in envelopes lined with bubble wrap and bearing return addresses with the name “DEBBIE WASSERMAN SHULTZ” [sic], former chairperson of the Democratic National Committee.
  93. Rep. Wasserman Schultz’s offices were evacuated after a fifth device sent to former Attorney General Eric Holder, which was incorrectly addressed, was returned to her office.
  94. In the early afternoon, a sixth package addressed to Rep. Maxine Waters, whom Trump repeatedly refers to at his rallies as a “very low IQ individual,” was intercepted at a congressional mail facility.
  95. In the afternoon, speaking at the White House and reading off a teleprompter, Trump called the attempted bombings “despicable acts,” saying “we have to unify,” and “threats of political violence” have no place.
  96. In the afternoon, CNN President Jeff Zucker, in a statement, accused Trump of demonizing journalists, adding “The president, and especially the White House press secretary, should understand their words matter.”
  97. In the evening, a seventh package, also addressed to Rep. Waters was discovered at a mail facility near downtown Los Angeles. The facility was evacuated.
  98. On Wednesday, the FBI issued a statement to the public on the suspicious packages, describing the packages, who received them, and steps being taken to find who is behind them. Contact information was also given for tips.
  99. On Wednesday, House Republicans’ campaign committee launched a new ad attacking Soros as a “radical.” The ad is aimed at Minnesota House candidate Dan Feehan, who the ad says is owned by Soros.
  100. On Wednesday, AP reported, according to law enforcement officials, the pipe bombs that were sent to prominent Democrats and CNN were packed with powder and shards of glass.
  101. On Wednesday, CNN reported that the White House did not reach out to former President Obama, the Clintons, or any of the other Democratic officials who received packages.
  102. Trump also refused to mention CNN as a recipient of a package in any of his remarks, including his call for unity.
  103. On Wednesday, WAPO reported the targets of the bombs are all people who Trump has directly and repeatedly attacked, using his bully pulpit. Republicans largely stood by him, denying his rhetoric was the cause.
  104. Also Wednesday, several of Trump’s supporters advanced the “false flag” theory on social media and talk radio, arguing the bombs could have been sent by liberals in order to reverse the “mob” argument.
  105. On Wednesday, at a rally in Wisconsin, before Trump arrived, the crowd burst into chants of “Lock her up.”
  106. Trump refrained from attacking his regular targets like Hillary, Rep. Waters, and Joe Biden and commented repeatedly on his restraint, saying “I’m trying to be nice,” and “do you see how nice I’m behaving tonight?”
  107. Trump decried the threats of political violence, saying “we want all sides to come together in peace and harmony,” but called on the media to end its “hostility.”
  108. Trump also said, “The media also has a responsibility to set a civil tone and stop the endless hostility and constant negative and oftentimes false attacks.” Trump, however, did not take any responsibility.
  109. On Thursday, two additional pipe bombs were discovered that had been sent to former Vice President Biden. The packages were misaddressed and were intercepted at a U.S. Postal Service facility in Delaware.
  110. Also Thursday, a package to Robert De Niro was discovered. The package had been at the mailroom at his movie company, TriBeCa Productions, since at least Tuesday. De Niro has been a frequent critic of Trump.
  111. On Thursday, Trump again blamed the media, tweeting “a very big part of the Anger we see today” is caused by purposely false and inaccurate reporting” by the “Fake News,” and “Media must clean up its act, FAST!”
  112. On Thursday, John Brennan tweeted in response, “Stop blaming others. Look in the mirror. Your inflammatory rhetoric, insults, lies, & encouragement of physical violence are disgraceful. Clean up your act.”
  113. Press secretary Sarah Sanders said Trump is “certainly not responsible for sending suspicious packages” any more than Bernie Sanders is responsible for “shooting up a Republican baseball field practice last year.”
  114. Hours later, Sen. Lindsey Graham repeated the same false equivalency, tweeting, “I didn’t blame Bernie Sanders when a Bernie supporter shot Congressman Steve Scalise and I’m not going to blame Trump.”
  115. Fox Business host Lou Hobbs tweeted, “Fake News ― Fake Bombs,” adding “Who could possibly benefit by so much fakery?” Dobbs later deleted the tweet.
  116. On Thursday, at an Axios event in Washington, D.C., Newt Gingrich said he believes that the media has “earned” Trump’s attacks on them as “the enemy of the people.”
  117. On Thursday, more than 200 journalists, many well-known and most retired or semi-retired, signed a letter condemning political violence as a part of a “sustained pattern of attack on a free press.”
  118. The letter also accused Trump of “utterly failing” to uphold his oath of office and said he is “actively working not simply to undermine the press, but to incite violence against it as well.”
  119. On Thursday, Trump tweeted about the migrant caravan in the morning, saying “I am bringing out the military for this National Emergency,” adding: “They will be stopped!”
  120. The caravan is more than 1,000 miles away from the U.S. border. It is unclear when or if the migrants will arrive or how many will seek to cross into the U.S.
  121. On Thursday, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis was expected to sign deployment orders that could send 800 or more troops to the border of Mexico. The troops are expected to be in position next week.
  122. Later Thursday, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen told Fox News “everything is on the table” in response to the migrant caravan.
  123. Nielsen also echoed an afternoon tweet by Trump that said, “To those in the Caravan, turn around,” telling Fox News that any migrants who illegally cross the U.S. border “will be returned home.”
  124. On Thursday, NYT reported Trump is considering taking executive action to bar migrants, including asylum seekers, from entering the country at the southern border.
  125. An executive order would be a sweeping use of presidential power and would undoubtedly prompt legal challenges in federal courts.
  126. On Friday, Daily Beast reported Bolton pushed a plan with Trump to send U.S. troops to the southern border to keep migrants out, circumventing Nielsen, Chief of Staff John Kelly, and other White House officials.
  127. Bolton also rejected a proposal by the Department of Homeland Security to enlist the U.N. Refugee Agency (UNHCR) to set up migrant camps in Mexico.
  128. Officials say Bolton was responding to Trump’s tweet, saying “CLOSE OUR SOUTHERN BORDER.” One senior official told the Daily Beast, “John Bolton is yelling fire in the crowded movie theater that is Trump’s mind.”
  129. In the middle of the night at 3:14 a.m. Friday, Trump attacked CNN, tweeting, “Funny how lowly rated CNN” and others can criticize him, but when he criticizes them back, “they go wild and scream, ‘it’s just not Presidential!’”
  130. On Friday morning, an eleventh package was found addressed to Sen. Cory Booker, another Trump critic, which the FBI said was “similar in appearance to the others,” was found in Florida.
  131. Also Friday morning, a twelfth package addressed to former director of national intelligence James Clapper, another Trump critic, was discovered. It was addressed to the New York offices of CNN, where he works as an analyst.
  132. The package to Clapper was intercepted at a mail facility in Midtown Manhattan, where a worker recognized it as similar to other suspicious packages discovered this week and “froze it in the system.”
  133. Appearing on CNN shortly after the package was discovered, Clapper said “This is definitely domestic terrorism, no doubt about it in my mind,” adding, “This is not going to silence the administration’s critics.”
  134. After the two additional bombs had been reported, Trump took to Twitter, to complain first about the government spending “Billions of Dollars a year on Illegal Immigration. This will not continue.”
  135. Trump also complained “Twitter has removed many people from my account,” saying the company has “seemingly done something that makes it much harder to join,” and asking, “Total Bias?”
  136. Trump also complained “Republicans are doing so well in early voting, in the polls,” but that now “this ‘Bomb’ stuff happens and the momentum greatly slows,” asking “Very unfortunate, what is going on.”
  137. By late morning Friday, NYT reported a man in Florida was arrested by federal authorities in connection with the pipe bombs sent to Trump critics.
  138. The pipe bomb suspect, Cesar Sayoc, Jr., 56, was taken into custody. Sayoc’s white van was plastered with stickers of Trump and Pence, Democrats with bulls-eyes on them and, one with “CNN SUCKS.”
  139. Sayoc worked formerly as a pizza deliveryman and strip-club worker, and he is a Trump superfan. He was very active on social media, frequently posting conservative talking points and conspiracy theories.
  140. Charges against Sayoc revealed a thirteenth package had been sent to Sen. Kamala Harris, which was discovered at a Sacramento mail facility. Sen. Harris has also been a vocal critic of Trump.
  141. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Sayoc was charged with five federal crimes, including the mailing of explosives. Charges could carry a maximum of 58 years in prison. He will be tried in the Southern District of New York.
  142. Sessions also said it is not yet known why Sayoc sent pipe bombs to prominent Democrats and CNN, but said Sayoc “appears to be a partisan.”
  143. FBI Director Christopher Wray said 13 pipe bombs were sent to prominent Democrats and CNN, and that they were “not hoax devices.
  144. On Friday, speaking to reporters on the South Lawn, when asked if he planned to reach out to the two former presidents, Trump said, ”If they wanted me to, but I think we’ll probably pass.”
  145. Trump says he knows the pipe bomb suspect was a supporter but says he bears “no blame” for the suspect’s actions. Trump again evoked the shooting of Rep. Scalise by a Bernie Sanders supporter.
  146. Later Friday, the FBI said a fourteenth package seized near San Francisco was sent to billionaire political activist Tom Steyer, an outspoken critic of Trump who has led a charge to have him impeached.
  147. On Friday evening, at a rally in North Carolina, Trump opened his remarks by pledging to do “everything in my power to stop” politically motivated attacks, and that “we must unify as a nation in peace love and harmony.”
  148. Trump then shifted to blame the media, saying “we do not blame the Democrat party for the radical, leftists,” adding “the media try to attack incredible Americans who are trying to support our movement.”
  149. Trump talked about sending troops to the border, “Watch next week what’s going to happen.” The caravan is still weeks from the U.S. border, and this week the number of migrants dwindled from 7,200 to 3,000.
  150. Trump also attacked Democrats, using old refrains including “Crooked Hillary” and “Cryin’ Chuck Schumer.” He also evoked Maxine Waters then stopped himself, saying “I want them to say, ‘He was so nice tonight.’”
  151. On Friday, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said in a statement, “While we cannot say that Trump’s speech directly incites violence, it is clear that some people are influenced by it.”
  152. CPJ called on Trump to dial back the rhetoric: “Journalists across the country feel unsafe because of the constant hostility and belittling of their role in our democracy by the head of state. It needs to stop.”
  153. Central European University, a university founded by the philanthropist George Soros, has announced it has been forced out of Hungary by the government of Viktor Orbán after 26 years.
  154. On Wednesday, Gregory Bush, 51, fatally shot two Vicki Lee Jones, 67, and Maurice E. Stallard, 69, at a Kroger supermarket in Kentucky. Bush did not know either victim. They were both Black Americans.
  155. Jeffersontown, Kentucky police said Bush had first tried to enter the First Baptist Church, a predominantly black church, minutes before the supermarket shooting, but was unable to gain access.
  156. On Saturday, Robert Bowers, 46, armed with an assault rifle and at least three handguns, went on a shooting rampage at the Tree of Life synagogue, the city of Pittsburgh’s oldest Jewish congregation.
  157. Eleven adults were killed in the attack, which the Anti-Defamation League called “likely the deadliest attack on the Jewish community in the history of the United States.” Six were wounded, including four police officers.
  158. Bowers, who has a history of making virulently anti-Semitic statements online, burst into the synagogue shortly after Shabbat services began, and was yelled “All Jews must die,” then started shooting.
  159. On his social media, Bowers blamed Jews for caravans of “invaders,” citing Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, known as HIAS, which works with the federal government to resettle refugees in American communities.
  160. Also on his social media, Bowers posted several messages supporting Trump’s political agenda, but others implying that Jews were manipulating Trump. The DOJ said it would file hate crime charges.
  161. In his first remarks on the shooting, Trump told reporters, “It’s a terrible, terrible thing what’s going on with hate in our country, frankly, and all over the world,” adding, “The results are very devastating.”
  162. When asked by reporters about stricter gun laws, Trump said “this has little to do with it” and asserted that if they had “protection inside, the results would have been far better.
  163. Speaking to the press shortly after, the public safety director on Pittsburgh, holding back tears said, “It’s a very horrific crime scene — one of the worst that I’ve seen, and I’ve been on some plane crashes. It’s very bad.”

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Law enforcement officials, including a bomb disposal technician, respond to a suspicious package at a U.S. Post Office facility at 52nd Street and 8th Avenue in Manhattan, October 26, 2018, in New York City. The latest package bomb device intercepted in New York City this morning was addressed to former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper at CNN’s offices.