June 20, 2020

Week 188

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

This week grave polling results revealed a downtrodden country feeling the impact of concurrent and intersecting crises, as national pride fell to its lowest level in two decades, while just 20% were satisfied with the direction of the country. Trump received poor marks for his handling of the coronavirus and for dividing the country amid social unrest.

The coronavirus was back with a vengeance this week, as several states experienced spikes and daily record highs, weeks after reopening and Memorial Day celebrations. Nonetheless, Trump denied the new surge, claiming the virus was “dying out” and it would “fade away.” Vice President Mike Pence also pivoted to get behind Trump as a denier, falsely claiming that cases “had declined precipitously” and blamed the media in an op-ed. Despite numerous warnings and pleas from Oklahoma officials to postpone, Trump planned what the campaign claimed would be a huge rally there for Saturday night — claiming as many as one million had registered to attend.

There was another Friday night firing this week, of U.S. attorney general for the SDNY Geoffrey Berman, who initially resisted late Friday and said he would not leave, leading to a standoff as the week came to an end. Berman’s SDNY has several investigations relating to people in Trump’s orbit, and there was much speculation about the abrupt departure of a Trump appointee. One explanation put forth was information gleaned from former NSA John Bolton’s book, which was released to the media, and pointed to Trump wanting to help out his dictator friends.

  1. On Monday, Gallup polling found U.S. national pride has fallen to its lowest level in two decades, with 42% extremely proud, down from a high of 69% in 2004. The number has fallen from 52% since Trump took office.
  2. The poll also found just 20% are satisfied with the direction of the country, the lowest in four years. Republicans’ satisfaction has fallen from 80% in February to 39%. 18% of Independents and 6% of Democrats are satisfied.
  3. On Tuesday, a NORC poll found Americans are the unhappiest they have been in 50 years, with just 14% saying they are very happy, down from 31% in 2018. Since 1972, no fewer than 29% have been very happy.
  4. On Saturday, AP reported public health officials working on the coronavirus face a growing threat. The AP found 27 state and local health leaders have resigned, retired, or been fired since April across 13 states.
  5. As the pandemic became increasingly politicized, many faced threats from armed protestors, even at times at their homes, as well as angry calls and posts on social media. Almost all of the 27 were women.
  6. On Saturday, the U.S. Secret Service issued a statement, correcting its claim that no pepper spray was used to clear protesters out of Lafayette Park, saying after further review “an agency employee used pepper spray.”
  7. On Saturday, Trump sent tweets indicating, “I won’t be watching much anymore!” in response to a tweet citing the U.S. Soccer Federation will allow its players not to stand for the national anthem.
  8. Trump followed it up with a tweet indicating the same for the NFL allowing players not to stand, tweeting, “And it looks like the NFL is heading in that direction also, but not with me watching!”
  9. On Saturday, WAPO reported the Lafayette Square clash has become an iconic episode in Trump’s time in office, and has come to represent Trump’s inability to meet the moment.
  10. While Trump hoped to appear strong and dominant, and dispel the narrative of hiding in the bunker, the photo op caused an extraordinary breach between Trump and the military, as well as religious leaders.
  11. The photo op also magnified Trump’s image as self-indulgent and overtly political, and forced Americans to evaluate his character. In the two weeks since, Trump’s poll numbers continued to fall, and he seemed rudderless.
  12. On Saturday, Atlanta Police Chief Erika Shields resigned after police shot and killed Rayshard Brooks, 27, a Black man who had fallen asleep at a Wendy’s drive-through, and tried to flee after a struggle with police.
  13. The officer who fired the fatal shots was fired, and the other was placed on administrative duty. Later that evening, at least 36 people were arrested after protests turned violent, including setting the Wendy’s on fire.
  14. On Saturday, videos emerged of Trump appearing to have difficulty walking down a ramp after his speech at West Point, and of him having trouble bringing a glass of water to his mouth during the speech.
  15. Later Saturday, Trump defensively tweeted, “The ramp that I descended after my West Point Commencement speech was very long & steep, had no handrail and, most importantly, was very slippery.”
  16. Trump added, “The last thing I was going to do is “fall” for the Fake News to have fun with. Final ten feet I ran down to level ground. Momentum!” There was no evidence the ramp was slippery, and it was a sunny day.
  17. NYT reported the videos again raised questions about Trump’s health. His aides have not fully explained his abrupt visit to Walter Reed in November. He provided only a short summary of an annual physical in May.
  18. Trump has frequently raised questions about his rivals’ health, including his 2020 opponent Joe Biden’s mental acuity, and had challenged Hillary Clinton’s “strength and stamina” in 2016. Trump turned 74 on Sunday.
  19. On Saturday, AP reported health officials are questioning Trump’s decision to hold a campaign rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma on Saturday, which will be held indoors, in a 19,000 seat arena that has cancelled all events until the end of July.
  20. Tulsa City-County Health Department’s director told the Tulsa World he wished Trump would hold it later, noting a “significant increase in our case trends,” and concern protecting people who attend “a large, indoor event.”
  21. Rally attendees usually stand outside in line for hours, and will be crammed inside, shoulder to shoulder. Attendees will come from neighboring cities and states, potentially carrying the virus back and spreading it there.
  22. On Sunday, Russian President Vladimir Putin told state-run TV channel Rossiya-1 TV that what is happening in the U.S. “is a sign of deep domestic crisis,” citing the pandemic and protests. He criticized scenes of looting.
  23. Contrasting to the U.S., Putin said, “we are exiting the coronavirus situation steadily with minimal losses.” Russians vote July 1 on whether to change their constitution to allow Putin to serve more than 2 terms.
  24. On Sunday, National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow told “State of the Union” that the $600 additional weekly unemployment benefit will end in July, claiming it is a disincentive: “we’re paying people not to work.”
  25. Kudlow also defended Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin not giving Congress data it requested on who received Paycheck Protection Program loans, falsely claiming the Trump regime never promised to do so.
  26. Axios reported the PPP application warns borrowers that their company names, loan amounts, and other information are public records. The Small Business Administration said in April it would post “individual loan data.”
  27. On Sunday, WAPO reported the regime has tried to protect Trump from the political fallout by suggesting the offensive to clear protestors from Lafayette Square was already planned, and not related to his photo op.
  28. However, several officials from other safety agencies said they did not have advance warning. D.C. Police Chief Peter Newsham said although there was a discussion about pushing the perimeter out, there was no set time.
  29. Another D.C. public safety official told the Post that Park Police’s plan to move the perimeter was “hurried up” just after 6:30 p.m., and Trump left the White House to walk to the church at 7:02 p.m.
  30. Gen. Joseph Lengyel, chief of the National Guard Bureau and a member of the Joints Chief of Staff, said, “I never heard any plan, ever, that police or National Guard were going to push people out of Lafayette Square.”
  31. Park Police acting chief Gregory Monahan claimed the timing and tactics were due to violence by protestors, and the operation “had been discussed as early as two days prior,” and was unrelated to Trump’s movement.
  32. Former U.S. Capitol police chief Terrance Gainer said the operation to clear protestors ran counter to “everything we train to do” to keep demonstrations peaceful and orderly.
  33. On Sunday, Dr. Anthony Fauci said in an interview with The Telegraph of spikes in several states, “it is not inevitable that you will have a so-called ‘second wave’…depending on whether approach it in the proper way.”
  34. Fauci added, “when you start to see increases in hospitalization, that’s a surefire situation that you’ve got to pay close attention to.” Fauci added it could take a year to return to normalcy.
  35. In an interview with TheStreet, Fauci admitted the reason the public was told not wear masks early on was because of concern that PPE, including the N95 masks and surgical masks, “were in very short supply.”
  36. Fauci added, “Masks are not 100 percent protective. However, they certainly are better than not wearing a mask. Both to protect you…. and to prevent you from infecting someone else.”
  37. On Sunday, U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams encouraged people to wear face masks, tweeting, “if more wear them, we’ll have MORE freedom to go out,” citing less asymptomatic spread helping more places to open.
  38. On Sunday, tens of thousands of protestors marched in cities around the country in support of Black transgender people, after two transgender women were killed in the span of 24 hours last week.
  39. On Sunday, as Trump turned 74, and the U.S. Army celebrated the 245th anniversary of its founding, First Lady Melania tweeted happy birthday to the Army, but did not mention Trump or spend the day with him.
  40. Trump spent the day in the White House, sending a flurry of tweets. He again focused on Seattle, saying, “Does anyone notice how little the Radical Left takeover of Seattle is being discussed in the Fake News Media.”
  41. Trump added, “That is very much on purpose because they know how badly this weakness & ineptitude play politically. The Mayor & Governor should be ashamed of themselves,” threatening, “Easily fixed!”
  42. Trump also again invoked antifa, tweeting, “Interesting how ANTIFA and other Far Left militant groups can take over a city without barely a wimpier from soft Do Nothing Democrat leadership.”
  43. Trump also tweeted, “THE SILENT MAJORITY IS STRONGER THAN EVER!!!” The “silent majority” phrase was first used by Richard Nixon. Notably, Trump’s approval continued to fall, and he never reached a majority approval.
  44. On Monday, the Tulsa World Editorial Board said in an op-ed, “This is the wrong time and Tulsa is the wrong place for the Trump rally,” citing the Covid-19 shutdown, social unrest, and the massacre 99 years ago.
  45. The board added, “We don’t know why he chose Tulsa, but we can’t see any way that his visit will be good for the city.”
  46. On Monday, Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale claimed the campaign had 1,000,000 ticket requests, and would provide temperature checks, hand sanitizer, and masks to each guest.
  47. On Monday, News4Jax reported a 40 year-old healthcare worker and 15 friends who went to a bar in Jacksonville for the first time out on June 6 all tested positive for coronavirus. The bar will reopen on Tuesday.
  48. On Monday, WAPO reported as coronavirus cases spike in several states, the Trump regime’s containment strategy has all but disappeared. Trump refuses to wear a mask, and contact tracing efforts were lagging.
  49. Trump is also moving ahead with indoor campaign rallies. Scores of his campaign workers have returned to work in their office cubicles. Neither Secret Service or White House staffers wear masks anymore.
  50. Trump is planning a series of rallies. Oklahoma Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt said he spoke with Trump, and he is considering moving the rally out of BOK Center, which has now canceled events through August, to outdoors.
  51. Trump cited protests as his rationale, tweeting, “Far Left Fake News Media, which had no Covid problem with the Rioters & Looters destroying Democrat run cities, is trying to Covid Shame us on our big Rallies.”
  52. Trump also tweeted, “Our testing is so much bigger and more advanced,” falsely claiming, “Without testing, or weak testing, we would be showing almost no cases. Testing is a double edged sword — Makes us look bad.”
  53. Public health officials in North Carolina, Arizona, and Alabama, where Trump plans to hold rallies, are also cautioning citizens about the dangers of attending indoor rallies, and asking Trump to wear a face mask.
  54. On Monday, Vice President Pence falsely claimed on “Fox & Friends” that the number of coronavirus cases “has declined precipitously,” saying, “they have flattened the curve.”
  55. On Monday, the FDA rescinded the emergency use authorization for hydroxychloroquine to treat hospitalized Covid-19 patients, saying the drug carries too many risks without any apparent benefits.
  56. On Monday, NPR reported Oklahoma saw a 185% increase in new cases in the past two weeks, South Carolina grew 156%, and Arizona by 145%. Arkansas, Oregon, Florida, and Nevada all increased by more than 100%.
  57. On Monday, the U.S. Embassy in Seoul, South Korea removed a Black Lives Matter banner and Pride flag from the building, after a request from the State Department’s 7th floor, where Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s offices are located.
  58. On Monday, the Supreme Court ruled 6-3 that workers cannot be fired for being gay or transgender, saying Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, which says employers cannot discriminate based on “sex,” also applies to sexual orientation and gender identity.
  59. The historic decision was written Justice Neil Gorsuch, a Trump appointee, saying, “An individual’s homosexuality or transgender status is not relevant to employment decisions.” Chief Justice John Roberts sided with liberals.
  60. On Monday, the Supreme Court refused to hear the regime’s challenge to a California “sanctuary” law, by a vote of 7-2, and without giving an explanation. The rules will therefore remain in place.
  61. The law prohibited state law enforcement from telling federal agents when undocumented immigrants will be released from jail, and restricts transfers of immigrants in state custody to federal immigration authorities.
  62. On Monday, ABC News reported the Trump regime is expected to file a lawsuit in the coming days seeking to block John Bolton’s book from being released in its current form.
  63. On Monday, WAPO reported Trump’s niece, Mary Trump, the daughter of Trump’s brother Fred Jr. who died of alcoholism, posted a description on Amazon of her book coming July 28 which could explode the image of a unified family.
  64. Mary, a clinical psychologist, said the book will describe “a nightmare of traumas, destructive relationships, and a tragic combination of neglect and abuse,” and the harmful relations between Fred and his two sons.
  65. On Tuesday, Daily Beast reported Trump is considering suing his niece over the book, exploring what could be done in the way of legal retribution, and claiming Mary had signed a non-disclosure agreement years ago.
  66. On Monday, Trump tweeted, “I’ve done more in less than 4 years than Biden’s done in more than 40 years, including for Black America,” citing Biden’s “Bad Trade Deals, Endless Wars, you name it.”
  67. On Monday, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany’s daily briefing, which was added earlier in the day, was canceled.
  68. On Monday, Trump held a roundtable at the White House, billed as a discussion on fighting for America’s seniors, a group he won in 2016, but trails Biden. Trump noted it was World Elder Abuse Awareness Day.
  69. Trump went around the table to his cabinet. Each took turns praising him, his work to get the country “back on track,” and his efforts “to protect” older Americans and help them lead “longer, healthier, more active lives.”
  70. Asked about the spike in coronavirus cases, Trump repeated his false claim that there were more cases because of testing, saying, “If we stop testing right now, we’d have very few cases, actually.”
  71. Seated beside Attorney General William Barr, Trump also said of Bolton, “I will consider every conversation with me as president highly classified,” adding, “So that would mean that if he wrote a book, and if the book gets out, he’s broken the law.
  72. Trump also said to a Fox News correspondent about the Seattle protest, “These are violent people that have taken over,” falsely claiming, “I saw on your network….the hitting and the punching and the beating.”
  73. On Monday, a Fox News’ on-the-ground reporter contradicted Trump’s tweets and statements about the Seattle protest, saying on air, “It remains and is, at least for the moment, overwhelmingly peaceful.”
  74. On Monday, NYT reported that on a call, Pence encouraged governors to accept the regime’s explanation that a rise in testing is behind the spike in cases, even as testing data showed that claim is misleading.
  75. Pence told governors to “encourage people with the news that we are safely reopening the country,” even as the number of positive cases in several states had outstripped the average number of tests administered.
  76. Echoing Trump, Pence claimed the virus’s spread was now well contained, and the “embers” can be quickly snuffed out. Dr. Deborah Birx advised governors to “call for the protesters to get tested.”
  77. On Monday, Paul Whelan, a former Marine from Michigan, was convicted in a Russian court of espionage, and sentenced to 16 years in prison, at a closed-door hearing that the U.S. denounced as a “mockery of justice.”
  78. Secretary of State Pompeo said in a statement, “We have serious concerns that Mr. Whelan was deprived of the fair trial guarantees…in accordance with its international human rights obligations.” Trump was silent on the matter.
  79. On Monday, WAPO reported in a letter to four congressional chairs last week, inspectors generals warned that the Trump regime is blocking their ability to oversee more than $1 trillion in coronavirus rescue programs.
  80. Republican Senate Appropriations Committee Chair Richard Shelby expressed concern Monday about the Treasury Department’s interpretation of the law and its impact on transparency in a statement.
  81. On Monday, Mnuchin seemed to reverse, tweeting, “I will be having discussions with the Senate @SmallBizCmte and others on a bipartisan basis to strike the appropriate balance for proper oversight.”
  82. On Monday, two top officials at Voice of America, director Amanda Bennett and deputy director Sandy Sugawara, resigned, after Senate Republicans pushed through Trump appointee Michael Pack.
  83. Pack is best known for making conservative leaning films. Some VOA journalists worry his appointment will interfere with the organization’s independent newsroom and turn it into a pro-Trump messaging machine.
  84. On Wednesday, Pack set off a round of firings, dismissing the heads of five organizations under the U.S. Agency for Global Media’s purview. Pack also replaced the bipartisan boards that govern five organizations.
  85. Pack was voted through the Senate along party lines despite recent disclosure of legal problems around him. He is a close ally of Stephen Bannon, who had urged Trump to take charge and reshape the USAGM.
  86. The moves drew ire from two House committee chairs, and the ranking Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, as well as criticism for certain firings by Republican lawmakers.
  87. Pack defended himself in a statement, saying, “Every action I carried out was — and every action I will carry out will be — geared toward rebuilding the USAGM’s reputation, boosting morale, and improving content.”
  88. On Monday, WAPO reported Minority Leader Charles Schumer wrote to Postal Service board of governors chairman Robert Duncan questioning Trump ally Louis DeJoy taking over the crisis-ridden U.S. Post Office.
  89. Schumer requested correspondence between the postal board and the regime, questioning whether DeJoy was “selected for reasons of politics or patronage.” His wife, Aldona Wos, is the ambassador-nominee to Canada.
  90. On Monday, Oklahoma State University star running back Chuba Hubbard tweeted, “I will not stand for this,” in reaction to a photo of head coach Mike Gundy wearing a One America News Network t-shirt.
  91. On Monday, Lara Trump defended Trump’s movement on the ramp, telling Fox News, “This was a ramp that, you know, had no steps, no handrails. The President had on leather shoes. Of course he’s going to take his time.”
  92. Later Monday, Trump was ridiculed on Twitter for quoting his own tweet from earlier in the day, saying “THE SILENT MAJORITY IS STRONGER THAN EVER!!!” and added “So true!” He also retweeted “LAW & ORDER!”
  93. On Monday, Fox News host Laura Ingraham referred to Fauci as “the medical deep state,” and said Trump and his campaign should ignore “this alarmist Covid drivel,” saying science “has become obscenely politicized.”
  94. On Monday, Fox News host Tucker Carlson warned, “Vandals are defacing our country. They’re destroying our cities, our institutions, our civil society.” The footage he showed was from more than two weeks ago.
  95. WAPO calculated from June 8 through June 15, the three prime-time Fox News hosts showed video clips of riots and looting from late May nearly two dozen times — falsely claiming the country is under threat.
  96. On Monday, a viral video showed a white couple in San Francisco confronting James Juanillo, who is Filipino, for stenciling ‘Black Lives Matter’ with chalk on the front retaining wall of his own property.
  97. Lisa Alexander, the CEO of a San Francisco-based skin care company, issued an apology. Her company website was taken offline. The white man with her was fired by investment bank Raymond James.
  98. On Monday, AP reported federal authorities will review the recent deaths of two young Black men in Southern California who died from hanging, to determine whether foul play was involved.
  99. On Monday, NYT reported a man was shot in Albuquerque in a clash between protestors demanding the removal of a statue of Juan de Oñate, the despotic conquistador of New Mexico, and others defending it.
  100. Police took several members of a right-wing militia dressed in camouflage with military-style rifles into custody, after reports of vigilante groups inciting violence. The mayor said the statue was temporarily taken down.
  101. On Monday, the small town of Bethel, Ohio implemented a curfew after 700 counterprotestors armed with baseball bats, clubs, and guns clashed with 80 peaceful Black Lives Matter protestors.
  102. The village administrator said there would be an independent inquiry into a police officer who stood and did nothing after witnessing a counterprotestor sucker-punch a protestor in the head.
  103. On Tuesday, LA Times reported Steven Carrillo, an Air Force sergeant who was charged last week in killing two police officers, had ties to a right-wing Boogaloo group that believes a second American Civil War is coming soon.
  104. A second suspect, Robert Alvin Justus Jr., charged with driving the van, was also linked to the Boogaloo movement. The two came to Oakland amid protest for George Floyd, for the purpose of killing cops.
  105. On Tuesday, the U.S. Census Bureau reported American shoppers ramped up their spending a record 17.7% from April to May, retracing some of the plunge in March (8.3%) and April (14.7%).
  106. On Tuesday, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell told Congress in his semiannual testimony “significant uncertainty remains about the timing and strength of the recovery,” and there is a long way to go.
  107. Powell added, “Much of that economic uncertainty comes from uncertainty about the path of the disease,” adding, “Until the public is confident that the disease is contained, a full recovery is unlikely.”
  108. On Tuesday, Bloomberg reported the U.S. slumped to 10th in the global competitiveness rankings, dragged down by Trump’s trade wars. The U.S. lost the top spot in 2018.
  109. On Tuesday, Politico reported Pence has made an abrupt shift on Covid-19, from playing the role of bridging the gap as head of the task force between Trump and scientists, to reinventing himself a coronavirus skeptic.
  110. On Tuesday, in a WSJ op-ed, Pence wrote, “There isn’t a coronavirus ‘second wave,’” saying, “we are winning the fight against the invisible enemy,” and claiming talk of a new surge is a media creation.
  111. On Tuesday, Fauci told the Daily Beast, “We are seeing infections to a greater degree” in new states, and adding, “I don’t like to talk about a second wave right now, because we haven’t gotten out of our first wave.”
  112. Asked if he would attend Trump’s Tulsa rally, Fauci said, “No. I’m in a high risk category. Personally, I would not. Of course not,” adding, “outside is better than inside, no crowd is better than crowd.”
  113. On Tuesday, at the Rose Garden, Trump signed an executive order on policing, while surrounded by law enforcement, all of whom except one were white. Trump also met with some families impacted by police brutality.
  114. In his speech, Trump again said the percentage of bad cops is “tiny,” and that chokeholds should be off limits unless an officer’s life is at risk, but provided no measure of how that would be enforced.
  115. Trump repeated his mantra of law and order, and said, “We want it done fairly, justly. We want it done safely,” adding, “But we want law and order. This is about law and order.” Critics said his order accomplished little.
  116. Trump touted what he claimed were his accomplishments with the African American community, while attacking Barack Obama and Biden for not taking strong action, saying, “they had no idea how to do it.”
  117. Trump also falsely claimed there was a vaccine for AIDS while addressing the pandemic, saying our scientists are “the best, the smartest, the most brilliant,” and “they’ve come up with the AIDS vaccine.”
  118. Trump closed saying, “We must build upon our heritage, not tear it down,” adding, “We must cherish the principles of America’s founding as we strive to deliver safe, beautiful, elegant justice and liberty for all.”
  119. On Tuesday, CNN reported Martin Gugino, the 75 year-old Buffalo activist knocked down by police while protesting, who Trump attacked on Twitter last week, has a fractured skull and is not able to walk according to his lawyer.
  120. On Tuesday, NYT reported career DOJ prosecutor Aaron Zelinsky, who quit the Roger Stone case after political appointees intervened to seek a more lenient sentence, will testify before the House Judiciary Committee.
  121. Zelinsky and DOJ official John Elias have agreed to testify on June 24 under subpoena about politicization of the DOJ under Barr. Chair Jerrold Nadler said Barr has refused to testify, so they are moving ahead without him.
  122. On Tuesday, a federal judge ordered Treasury Secretary Mnuchin to release the full amount of stimulus funding Congress set aside for Native American tribes, and was critical of his holding it back.
  123. On Tuesday, NYT reported in a shift from the 2016 election, Russian forces looking to interfere now find it easier to identify divisive content and conspiracy theories posted by Americans, and help spread it around.
  124. Russians are keeping a lower profile, creating social media personas with small followings, with more refined posts that look like Americans, and piggybacking off paranoia and distrust of government and science.
  125. On Tuesday, Google banned far-right websites ZeroHedge and The Federalist from its advertising platform, citing they profited from articles pushing unsubstantiated claims about the Black Lives Matter protests.
  126. On Tuesday, six states saw a spike of cases amid reopening. Arizona, Florida, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Texas reported record daily increases after reaching all-time highs last week.
  127. Nevada also reported its highest single day since a previous spike on May 23. The bump comes two weeks after reopening casinos. Gov. Steve Sisolak says the state will not advance to Phase 3 of its reopening plan.
  128. On Tuesday, NYT reported officials in Tulsa are pleading with the Trump campaign to cancel his event, with the state’s health director saying, “It’s the perfect storm of potential over-the-top disease transmission.”
  129. Epidemiologists expressed concern respiratory droplets hang in the air indoors, especially when people talk loudly, laugh, and sing, as well as share bathrooms and while waiting in line.
  130. Tulsa County had 89 new cases Monday, its highest so far. The county’s active cases climbed to 532 from 188 in a one-week period, and hospitalizations almost doubled.
  131. The county commissioner said, “There’s just nothing good about this, and particularly in an enclosed arena.” In addition to BOK Center, Trump also claimed they would host 40,000 overflow crowd at a convention center nearby.
  132. On Tuesday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she asked committee chairs to require masks at all hearings, and to have the sergeant at arms bar anyone who refuses. A small group of Trump allies have refused masks.
  133. The change came after Pelosi consulted with Brian Monahan, the attending physician of Congress, who advised face masks for anyone meeting “in a limited enclosed space…for greater than 15 minutes.”
  134. On Tuesday, NYT reported the House will vote on June 26 on making the District of Columbia a state, buoyed by Trump’s federal crackdown on protestors. The move would create the 51st state.
  135. Later Tuesday, for the second time in two days, Trump quoted his own tweet from earlier in the day, saying, “THE SILENT MAJORITY IS STRONGER THAN EVER!!!” and added, “So true!”
  136. On Wednesday, a Reuters/Ipsos poll found Trump’s approval falling to a seven-month low: 57% disapprove, 38% approve. The poll also found Trump trailing Biden by 13 points: Biden 48%, Trump 35%.
  137. On Wednesday, a Gallup poll found 66% of Americans are very or somewhat worried about exposure to Covid-19. Black and Hispanic Americans are most worried than white people.
  138. On Wednesday, WAPO reported according to a study by economists at the Brookings Institute, next year there will be 300,000-500,000 fewer births that will not be deferred — similar to a falloff during the 1918 pandemic.
  139. On Wednesday, Quaker Oats announced it would change the name and remove the 130-year old image of Aunt Jemima, saying, “We recognize Aunt Jemima’s origins are based on a racial stereotype.”
  140. On Wednesday, Senate Republicans unveiled their police reform bill. The Just and Unifying Solutions To Invigorate Communities Everywhere JUSTICE Act was introduced by the GOP’s one Black senator, Tim Scott.
  141. Scott added, “I don’t know how to tell people the nation is not racist. I’ll try again: we are not a racist nation.” Democrats said the bill lacked “teeth,” but hoped for negotiation.
  142. On Wednesday, the Miami Herald Editorial Board chastised Gov. Ron DeSantis for continuing to reopen the state despite a record number of new daily cases, and implored Floridians to act responsibly.
  143. On Wednesday, AP reported Tulsa’s Republican Mayor G.T. Bynum will not attend Trump’s rally on Saturday, citing his city’s infection rate is steadily rising as well as its deep racial wounds.
  144. Bynum signed an order imposing a three-night curfew at 10 p.m. starting Thursday in the area around the BOK Center. He said the city was expecting crowds “in excess of 100,000 people in the vicinity of the rally.”
  145. On Wednesday, AP reported the Trump regime has activated as many as 250 Oklahoma Army National Guard soldiers for his rally. Tulsa Police Chief Wendell Franklin said they will be used as a “force multiplier.”
  146. On Wednesday, CNN reported after the FDA revoked its emergency use of hydroxychloroquine, the U.S. is stuck with 63 million doses, plus another 2 million doses of chloroquine, in the U.S. stockpile.
  147. On Wednesday, in an interview with Gray TV, when asked about cases rising in 22 states, including Oklahoma, and was he concerned, Trump said “no” and falsely claimed that the coronavirus was “dying out.”
  148. On Wednesday, at the daily press briefing, McEnany compared Trump’s indoor Tulsa rally to a baseball game, saying, “When you come to the rally, as in any event, you assume a personal risk. That is just what you do.”
  149. McEnany held up a New York Post with the headline “SICK HYPOCRISY,” and accused the media of viewing demonstrations like March for Black Trans Lives differently than Trump’s rallies.
  150. Despite being asked several times, McEnany refused to answer which health experts the White House consulted with on holding indoor rallies like Tulsa, or if the regime thought outdoor events carried the same risk.
  151. On Wednesday, Bolton released advance copies of his book to the media, and wrote a WSJ op-ed about Trump’s chaotic trade policies with China, and the “scandal” of Trump’s self-serving policy.
  152. Bolton said at the 2018 Buenos Aires G20 summit, Chinese President Xi Jinping told Trump the U.S. had too many elections and he did not want to switch from Trump. Trump said the two-term limit should be repealed.
  153. At their meeting in Osaka on June 29, Trump noted China’s economic capability and pleaded with Xi to ensure he would win by purchasing soybeans and wheat from farmers in states Trump needed for 2020.
  154. Bolton said there was a “confluence in Trump’s mind of his own political interests and U.S. national interests,” noting Trump looked the other way on human rights, and granted favors in exchange for helping him.
  155. NYT reported Bolton wrote the impeachment inquiry should have been broader. He cited Trump intervening for his own political gain with dictators he liked, like ZTE with China and Halkbank with Turkey.
  156. Bolton claimed that Trump did not know that Britain was a nuclear power, and asked if Finland was part of Russia. Trump also consistently assailed allied leaders, and came very close to pulling out of NATO.
  157. Bolton also wrote Trump mimicked the authoritarian, saying journalists should be jailed so they divulge their sources, and said, “These people should be executed.” He also thought Xi should go ahead and build Uighur camps.
  158. Bolton also wrote during Trump’s 2018 meeting with Kim Jong-un, Pompeo slipped him a note, saying of Trump, “He is so full of shit,” and later said the North Korea diplomacy had “zero probability of success.”
  159. On Ukraine aid, Bolton wrote on August 20 Trump “said he wasn’t in favor of sending them anything until all the Russia-investigation materials related to Clinton and Biden had been turned over.”
  160. Bolton came under considerable criticism from multiple sources including Democratic leaders for not coming forward to testify with the information during impeachment, but rather penning a $2 million book deal.
  161. On Wednesday, Biden said of the book, “If these accounts are true, it’s not only morally repugnant, it’s a violation of Donald Trump’s sacred duty to the American people to protect America’s interests and defend our values.”
  162. Later Wednesday, after not tweeting all day, at 8 p.m Trump tweeted, “Joe Biden was a TOTAL FAILURE in Government. He “bungled” everything that he touched!” Trump also said he would appear on “Hannity” at 9 p.m.
  163. Later Wednesday, WAPO reported Trump’s DOJ will seek an emergency order blocking publication of Bolton’s book, although legal experts said it was unlikely to succeed, and more of a show to satisfy Trump.
  164. The DOJ filing notes, “Disclosure of the manuscript will damage the national security of the United States,” adding, “To be clear: Defendant’s manuscript still contains classified information.”
  165. On Wednesday, NYT reported aides wonder given Trump’s recent behavior if the truly wants to serve a second term. Aides say his repeated acts of self-destruction have hurt his chances, but he does not stop or correct them.
  166. Aides say Trump complains that nothing he does is good enough, and bristles at criticism of his response to the George Floyd killing. He is also once again consumed by leaks coming out of the White House.
  167. At a recent event in the Rose Garden, Trump seemed to drift off, saying of recreational vehicles, “I may have to buy one of those things, drive around town. Maybe I’ll drive back to New York with our first lady in a trailer.”
  168. Staffers describe Trump as lonely, and say the West Wing lacks a sense urgency or purpose. New chief of staff Mark Meadows, the fourth, has complained about an unwieldy atmosphere, and of infighting.
  169. On Wednesday, in a lawsuit brought by Karen McDougal, a Fox News lawyer said Tucker Carlson does not have an obligation to investigate the truth of his statements, saying his audience does not expect him to report facts.
  170. On Wednesday, AP reported civil rights groups, including Anti-Defamation League and the NAACP called on large companies to pause their Facebook ads in July, saying Facebook is not curtailing racist and violent content.
  171. Later Wednesday, Trump called in to Sean Hannity’s show, saying of Bolton, “he was a washed-up guy. I gave him a chance.” Trump also said Bolton “broke the law” without specifying in what way.
  172. Trump said of the George Floyd tape, “I couldn’t really watch it for that long a period of time…Who could watch that?” and the Rayshard Brooks killing was “a terrible situation,” adding, “you can’t resist a police officer.”
  173. Trump continued to defend police, saying the “vast majority” are “great people,” adding, “They do an incredible job…they keep us all safe and they love their country…But they’re under siege, there’s no question.”
  174. Trump said he is not opposed to Colin Kaepernick coming back to the NFL “if he has the ability,” but reiterated, “When the national anthem plays and our flag, the great American flag is raised, you should not be kneeling.”
  175. Trump also said of the coronavirus, “We’re very close to a vaccine and we’re very close to therapeutics,” falsely claiming, “But even without that, I don’t like to talk about that because it’s fading away. It’s going to fade away.”
  176. Later Wednesday, shortly after midnight, Trump tweeted, “Wacko John Bolton’s “exceedingly tedious”(New York Times) book is made up of lies & fake stories. Said all good about me, in print, until the day I fired him.”
  177. Trump also called Bolton “a disgruntled boring fool who only wanted to go to war. Never had a clue, was ostracized & happily dumped. What a dope!” and quoted a separate tweet, adding, “President Bush fired him also.”
  178. On Thursday, Trump continued attacking Bolton, tweeting, “Bolton’s book, which is getting terrible reviews, is a compilation of lies,” calling it “pure fiction,” and “trying to get even for firing him like the sick puppy he is!”
  179. Legal scholars noted for the DOJ to claim parts of the book are classified, they would then need to also be true. Trump continued to claim what Bolton wrote was false, without providing details on what was untrue.
  180. On Thursday, the Labor Department reported first time unemployment claims of 1.5 million, higher than the 1.3 million estimate. It was the 13th week of losses of more than 1 million jobs, now totaling 45.7 million.
  181. On Thursday, former FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb told CNBC parts of the U.S. “are on the cusp of getting out of control,” citing outbreaks in states like Arizona, Texas, Florida, Alabama, and Arkansas since Memorial Day.
  182. Gottlieb added, “I think these states still have a week or two to take actions to try to get these under control.” Arizona’s hospital beds are 85% full. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott blamed young people for not taking precautions.
  183. On Thursday, in another blow to Trump, the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 to block the regime’s attempt to dismantle the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
  184. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the majority opinion, siding with the lower court that the Department of Homeland Security did not properly weigh the procedures the agency would follow to end DACA.
  185. Shortly after, Trump tweeted, “These horrible & politically charged decisions coming out of the Supreme Court are shotgun blasts into the face of people that are proud to call themselves Republicans or Conservatives.”
  186. Trump said, “we need NEW JUSTICES,” and warned, “If the Radical Left Democrats assume power, your Second Amendment, Right to Life, Secure Borders, and Religious Liberty…are OVER and GONE!”
  187. Trump also mused, re-centering yet again on himself, “Do you get the impression that the Supreme Court doesn’t like me?”
  188. On Thursday, in an interview with WSJ, Trump said of systemic racism, “I’d like to think there is not,” adding, “but unfortunately, there probably is some. I would also say it’s very substantially less than it used to be.”
  189. Trump said of pushing his Tulsa rally back to June 20, “I did something good: I made Juneteenth very famous,” claiming, “It’s actually an important event, an important time. But nobody had ever heard of it.”
  190. Trump said he had polled many people around him, and no one had heard of it. When the reporter pointed out that White House put out a statement every Juneteenth in his first three years, he said, “Oh really?…Ok, ok. Good.”
  191. Trump claimed without evidence that the country was nearing the end of the pandemic, and that China spread the virus as a way to destabilize competing economies, saying, “There’s a chance it was intentional.”
  192. When pressed, Trump said he had no intelligence to support the claim, but rather his internal sense that there was a better chance of incompetence than a mistake, saying, “I don’t think they would do that.”
  193. Trump also claimed that testing for the virus was overrated, and suggested that some Americans wore facial masks not as a preventative measure but as a way to signal disapproval of him.
  194. Trump said he made the decision to walk to the church “very quickly,” and did not bring any Black supporters because there were none in the White House, and claimed he only held up the Bible because it was very noisy.
  195. On Thursday, Pelosi ordered portraits of four former House speakers who served the Confederacy to be removed from the U.S. Capitol on Friday, June 19, the Juneteenth holiday.
  196. Pelosi also told MSNBC on Trump, “This is a person who is ethically unfit, intellectually unprepared, and personally unqualified to be president….he says everything is about him and not our country.”
  197. On Thursday, an AP-NORC poll found nearly two-thirds believe Trump is making the country more divided, including 37% of Republicans. Also, 54% say he has made things worse during recent civil unrest.
  198. The polls also found that 24% believe the country is headed in the right direction, down from 33% last month and 42% in March. Just 37% approve of Trump’s handling of Covid-19, down from 44% in March.
  199. On Thursday, Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom made wearing masks in public spaces mandatory amid a rise in cases. None of the states with spikes in outbreaks run by GOP governors required masks.
  200. On Thursday, GOP Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said the state would move to Phase 3 of reopening, allowing amusement parks and carnivals to reopen at 50% capacity, despite a surge and record daily cases in the state.
  201. On Thursday, WAPO reported GOP sheriff Mark Lamb, who called the state of Arizona’s stay-at-home order unconstitutional, tested positive. He was tested ahead of being invited to Trump’s White House event this Tuesday.
  202. On Thursday, the WHO issued a warning, saying, “The pandemic is accelerating,” noting the more than a 150,000 new cases on Thursday were “the most in a single day so far.” More than 460,000 were dead.
  203. On Thursday, WAPO reported the BOK Center asked the Trump campaign for a detailed written plan outlining “health and safety” measures ahead of the rally. The campaign did not respond.
  204. Tulsa Health Department Executive Director Bruce Dart said at a news conference on Wednesday that the rally should be postponed, warning, “covid is not over.” Cases in Tulsa had spiked in recent days.
  205. A group of Tulsa residents and business owners, alarmed by the prospect of a large-scale outbreak, sued the venue manager to block the event unless it is held in accordance with CDC social distancing guidelines.
  206. A Tulsa county judge denied the request for a temporary injunction, and the group appealed the decision to the state’s Supreme Court. The court, which heard arguments on a conference call, said it would render a decision by Friday.
  207. On Thursday, Administrator Stephen Dickson told Congress that the FAA refuses to make wearing masks mandatory on flights to control Covid-19 spread, saying it is a public health issue, so it would be the CDC’s purview.
  208. On Thursday, the Baltimore Sun reported the oldest African-American nursing home did not lose a single person to Covid-19. When Trump said cases go from 15 to zero, they got alarmed, stopped visits, and masked up.
  209. On Thursday, Fauci told CNN football may not happen this year, saying, “Unless players are essentially in a bubble…insulated from the community and they are tested nearly every day,” it would be hard to imagine.
  210. Fauci added, “If there is a second wave, which is certainly a possibility and which would be complicated by the predictable flu season, football may not happen this year.”
  211. On Thursday, CNN reported the Senate confirmed Justin Walker, 38, who once was a McConnell intern and became a federal judge at 37 with no trial experience, to the D.C. Circuit — Trump 199th appointment.
  212. Trump’s 200th appointment and 53rd circuit judge is expected next week — an unprecedented number. Obama had just 55 in eight years. Most are in their 40s or 50s, meaning they will carry Trump’s legacy for a lifetime.
  213. On Thursday, Mary Elizabeth Taylor, assistant secretary of state for legislative affairs, resigned in protest of Trump’s response to social unrest around the country, in a scathing five-paragraph letter.
  214. Taylor wrote, “Moments of upheaval can change you,” adding, “comments and actions surrounding racial injustice and Black Americans cut sharply against my core values and convictions.”
  215. On Thursday, at a White House roundtable discussion with governors on reopening, Trump could be seen looking at his cell phone while others were speaking. Two minutes after he was seen using his phone a tweet was posted to his Twitter account.
  216. In the tweet, Trump said decoupling the U.S. economy from China was on the table, tweeting, “It was not Ambassador Lighthizer’s fault,” adding, “the U.S. certainly does maintain a policy…of a complete decoupling from China.”
  217. Near the end of the event, Trump was asked by CBS reporter Paula Reid “Why do you keep hiring people that you believe are wackos and liars?” A reportedly sour-looking Trump ignored the question.
  218. Later Thursday, Twitter labeled a video tweeted by Trump as “manipulated media” for the first time. The video had ominous music and a fake CNN headline that says, “Terrified [sic] toddler runs from racist baby.”
  219. CNN responded, tweeting, “CNN did cover this story — exactly as it happened. Just as we reported your positions on race (and poll numbers),” adding, we cover the facts and “invite you to do the same. Be better.”
  220. On Friday, both Twitter and Facebook removed the video, which had 4 million views on Facebook and 20 million on Twitter, after one of the children’s parents lodged a copyright complaint.
  221. On Thursday, WAPO reported the Trump campaign ran ads on Facebook as part of its online salve against antifa and “far-left groups” that included a red inverted triangle used by Nazis to designate political prisoners.
  222. Later Thursday, after queries by WAPO, Facebook removed the Trump campaign ads, which also appeared in paid posts sponsored by Trump and Pence, saying they violated is policy against organized hate.
  223. On Thursday, AL.com reported a Huntsville man, Benjamin Shapiro, 39, said Huntsville Police Chief Mark McMurray, in his explaining his use of teargas on peaceful protestors, labeled him as an “ANTIFA sympathizer.”
  224. On Thursday, a Fox News poll showed Biden’s lead over Trump had grown to 12 points (50–38), up from an 8 point lead last month. The poll found 32% approved of how Trump is handling race relations, 61% disapproved.
  225. The poll also found that 59% said it was a bad idea for Trump to hold big rallies, 23% said a good idea. On lockdown, 38% say they did not go far enough, 38% said about right, and 19% said they went too far.
  226. On response to Covid-19, Trump had the lowest approval at 44%, Fauci the highest at 72%, your state government at 68%, and Birx at 56%. The poll found 18% said they or someone in their household had been to a protest.
  227. On Friday, Trump started Juneteenth, a holiday dedicated to the end of slavery, by threatening protestors in Tulsa, who had been marching against systemic racism and may show up at his rally on Saturday.
  228. Trump tweeted, “Any protesters, anarchists, agitators, looters or lowlifes who are going to Oklahoma please understand, you will not be treated like you have been in New York, Seattle, or Minneapolis.”
  229. Trump threatened, “It will be a much different scene!” Notably, the threat was aimed in part at “protestors,” two weeks after peaceful protestors were tear-gassed near the White House.
  230. Shortly after, NYT reported the Tulsa Police Department would not comment on Trump’s tweet, but said, “We are allowing citizens to exercise their First Amendment rights in a peaceful manner.”
  231. On Friday, Trump said he would renew his efforts to end DACA, tweeting, “The Supreme Court asked us to resubmit on DACA,” claiming, “They ‘punted,’” and “hopefully they would stand for our great American Flag.”
  232. Trump also attacked Fauci for saying football may not take place, saying he “has nothing to do with NFL Football,” adding, “if they don’t stand for our National Anthem and our Great American Flag, I won’t be watching!!!”
  233. Trump also attacked Fox News for their poll, calling it “another of their phony polls, done by the same group of haters that got it even more wrong in 2016,” adding, “Watch what happens in November. Fox is terrible!”
  234. On Friday, Politico reported the Navy upheld the firing of Capt. Brett Crozier, the former commanding officer of the U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt, who was fired after raising alarms about a Covid-19 outbreak on board.
  235. The decision is a reversal from the findings of an initial inquiry completed in April, which recommended reinstating him. In Week 185, a testing sample showed 60% of sailors on board tested positive for antibodies.
  236. On Friday, at the daily briefing, McEnany was asked why Trump hires people who he views as “dumb as a rock,” “overrated,” “way over their heads,” “wacko,” and “incompetent.” Trump refused to answer Thursday.
  237. McEnany said Trump likes to hire people with “countervailing viewpoints,” adding, “He likes the model of having a ‘team of rivals’ like what we saw in President Lincoln’s administration.”
  238. On Friday, following athletes, the NCAA announced it would expand its ban on states with prominent Confederate symbols from hosting its sponsored events to include all sports.
  239. On Friday, Louisville Metro Police Officer Brett Hankison, one of the three officers involved in the Breonna Taylor killing, was fired. The mayor said he violated procedure when he fired 10 rounds into Taylor’s apartment.
  240. On Friday, numerous states including Texas, Florida, Arizona, Tennessee, and South Carolina reported record high daily cases. Florida Gov. DeSantis attributed it to Hispanic workers, and added, “As you test more, you find more.”
  241. On Friday, AMC Theaters, after facing a public outcry, reversed course and announced its theaters will require patrons to wear masks when they reopen, which will begin in mid-July.
  242. On Friday, a new study found the spike in new daily cases is not related to protests. During the week, the number of daily cases increased each day, reaching more than 33,000 on Friday, the highest since May 1.
  243. On Friday, NBC News reported top members of the White House coronavirus task force, Fauci and Birx, advised Trump against holding the Tulsa rally, but Trump and his campaign are moving ahead.
  244. On Friday, the Oklahoma Supreme Court denied a lawsuit seeking to enforce health measure and social distancing. Republican Gov. Stitt said people should stay at home if they have concerns.
  245. On Friday, NBC News reported as the crowd gathered outside Trump’s rally site in Tulsa on Friday, few had masks and there was no social distancing. Some huddled together in tents when it rained.
  246. Many said they were not worried about catching the virus and did not plan to take precautions inside. One supporter said, “I think [the coronavirus] has been hyped up more than it is.There’s flu, there’s cancer.”
  247. One 62 year-old supporter who drove from Arkansas said, “I don’t fear anything. If today is the day I die, today is the day I die.” Another, in her 70s, said “If Trump felt comfortable having it here, then I’m comfortable.”
  248. Trump hyped the rally, tweeting, “Big crowds and lines already forming in Tulsa. My campaign hasn’t started yet. It starts on Saturday night in Oklahoma!”
  249. On Friday, in an early clip of a Fox News interview that will air Sunday, AG Barr echoed Trump’s supposed concerns about mail-in voting, saying it could “open the floodgates of potential fraud.”
  250. On Friday, protesters in Washington, D.C., and in Raleigh, North Carolina, toppled Confederate statues. During the week, protestors in several other states had taken down statues.
  251. On Friday, Trump quoted Tucker Carlson’s show, tweeting he was “Ready, Willing & Able!” to take back Seattle from protestors, adding, “Ready to move quickly! Damage to various Democrat run Cities & States.”
  252. On Friday, the WAPO Editorial Board admonished Michael Pack for dissolving boards and bringing in Trump loyalists to lead positions in the USAGM, offering no explanation for the firings.
  253. The board warned the broadcast networks, which reach an international audience of 350 million people and in 61 languages, could for the first time engage in spreading propaganda.
  254. Late Friday, newly unredacted documents released by the DOJ revealed Trump was told in advance Wikileaks would be releasing Clinton campaign emails, and he subsequently said he expected more releases.
  255. The documents revealed Paul Manafort, Rick Gates, and Michael Cohen told investigators Roger Stone promised the campaign damaging releases by WikiLeaks, and Mueller was unsure if Trump lied in written testimony.
  256. Late Friday, Barr announced in a statement that Trump appointee Geoffrey Berman is stepping down as the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York after two years, effective July 3. It was unclear why.
  257. Barr had visited New York City Friday, and met with local police officials. Notably, Bolton’s book claimed Trump promised Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan he would help with the Halkbank case in the SDNY.
  258. Berman had sent former Trump attorney Cohen to prison and investigated Rudy Giuliani. Barr said Trump will nominate Jay Clayton, the chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission.
  259. Typically when the head of the SDNY steps down, their deputy takes over. Bringing in an outsider signaled there was some serious disagreement and Trump and Barr did not want anyone at SDNY running the office.
  260. Later Friday, Berman issued a statement, saying, “I learned in a press release from the Attorney General tonight that I was ‘stepping down,’” adding, “I have not resigned, and have no intention of resigning.”
  261. Berman wrote, “I will step down when a presidentially appointed nominee is confirmed by the Senate,” adding, “Until then, our investigations will move forward without delay or interruption.”
  262. Shortly after, House Judiciary Committee Chair Nadler tweeted, “America is right to expect the worst of Bill Barr, who has repeatedly interfered in criminal investigations on Trump’s behalf.”
  263. Nadler, who represents parts of Manhattan and Brooklyn, also addressed Berman, tweeting, “We have a hearing on this topic on Wednesday. We welcome Mr. Berman’s testimony and will invite him to testify.”
  264. On Saturday, a federal judge denied the Trump regime’s request to block Bolton’s book, saying the “horse is already out of the barn,” and the DOJ has not established that an injunction is an appropriate remedy.
  265. The judge added Bolton may have violated his employment contract, saying if the book contains classified information, he stands to lose his profits from the book and exposes himself to criminal liability.
  266. Shortly after, Trump tweeted, “Wow, I finally agree with failed political consultant Steve Schmidt, who called Wacko John Bolton ‘a despicable man who failed in his duty to protect America.’”
  267. Trump added Bolton “was all washed up until I brought him back and gave him a chance,” adding he “broke the law by releasing Classified Information,” and “He must pay a very big price for this.”
  268. Trump tried to claim victory, tweeting, “BIG COURT WIN against Bolton,” saying the book was leaked so “nothing the highly respected Judge could have done about stopping it.”
  269. Trump added, “Bolton broke the law and has been called out and rebuked for so doing, with a really big price to pay. He likes dropping bombs on people, and killing them. Now he will have bombs dropped on him!”
  270. On Saturday, in a letter to Berman, Barr chastised his “public spectacle” saying, “Because you have declared that you have no intention of resigning, I have asked the President to remove you as of today, and he has done so.”
  271. Barr added, “by operation of law,” Berman’s current deputy, Audrey Strauss, will become Acting U.S. Attorney, “and I anticipate that she will serve in that capacity until a permanent successor is in place.”
  272. Ask by reporters about Berman shortly after, Trump said, “I’m not involved,” adding it is “all up to the attorney general. Attorney General Barr is working on that,” and “That’s his department, not my department.”
  273. On Saturday, Sen. Lindsey Graham, Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said he will honor the blue-slip rule and give the home state of New York senators’ veto power over Trump’s new nominee Clayton.
  274. On Saturday, shortly before his rally was set to begin, the Trump campaign announced that six campaign staffers who came to Tulsa for rally set-up had tested positive for the coronavirus.
  275. The campaign said the staffers had been quarantined and “No COVID-positive staffers or anyone in immediate contact will be at today’s rally or near attendees and elected officials.”
  276. As the week came to a close, there were 8,705,724 worldwide cases and 461,037 dead from the coronavirus. The U.S. had 2,228,368 cases (25.6%), 119,241 deaths (25.9%), and a mortality rate of 5.4%.

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Copyright Amy Siskind, June 20, 2020

Safety barricade gates are opened for supporters to enter for President Donald Trump’s campaign rally Saturday, June 20, 2020 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.