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    January 6 hearing: former aide to Mark Meadows to testify – live

    It’s worth noting that Cassidy Hutchinson recently changed her legal representation in connection to the January 6 investigation.Hutchinson’s decision to replace her former lawyer, Stefan Passantino, with Jody Hunt of the law firm Alston Bird was interpreted as a signal of her increased willingness to cooperate with the January 6 committee’s requests for information.Politico reported earlier this month:.css-knbk2a{height:1em;width:1.5em;margin-right:3px;vertical-align:baseline;fill:#C70000;} Hutchinson’s former attorney, Stefan Passantino, has deep Trump World connections. Her new lawyer, Jody Hunt, is a longtime close ally of Jeff Sessions and served as his chief of staff when the former attorney general enraged Trump by recusing from the Russia probe. …
    Passantino, Hutchinson’s former attorney, was the Trump White House’s chief ethics lawyer. And Passantino’s firm, Michael Best, has Trump World connections; its president is former White House chief of staff Reince Priebus, and Justin Clark — also a top Trump World lawyer — is currently on leave from the firm, according to its website.Today’s testimony from Cassidy Hutchinson could also reveal more details about Donald Trump’s response to insurrectionists’ chants of “Hang Mike Pence!” on January 6.At the January 6 committee’s first public hearing earlier this month, Liz Cheney, the Republican vice-chair of the panel, said witness testimony indicated Trump was informed of the chants and reacted approvingly to them.“You will hear that President Trump was yelling and ‘really angry’ at advisers who told him he needed to be doing something more,” Cheney said at the first hearing. “And aware of the rioters’ chants to hang Mike Pence, the president responded with this sentiment, ‘Maybe our supporters have the right idea.’ Mike Pence ‘deserves it.’”According to CNN, Hutchinson was the witness who provided the committee with that information, so today’s hearing could give her an opportunity to offer valuable new insight into how Trump reacted as January 6 turned violent. The House committee investigating the January 6 insurrection is expected to hear live public testimony on Tuesday from Cassidy Hutchinson, a former top aide to Mark Meadows, the last chief of staff to Donald Trump, according to a source familiar with the matter.The committee on Monday abruptly scheduled a hearing for Tuesday, suggesting a sense of urgency to disclose what it said was “recently obtained evidence”. The committee had previously said it would not hold any more hearings until next month.It is the sixth public hearing held by the committee after a year-long investigation into the Capitol attack. Two more hearings are expected next month.The hearings next month are expected to delve into the role of far-right and paramilitary groups organized and prepared for the January 6 attack and Trump’s abdication of leadership during the hours-long siege of the Capitol.January 6 committee schedules surprise session to hear new evidenceRead moreJoe Biden will meet tomorrow with Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, the president of Turkey, as the two leaders attend the Nato summit in Madrid, Spain.The White House announced the planned meeting during the daily press briefing, which was held today aboard Air Force One as Biden flew from Germany, where he attended the G7 summit, to Spain.Biden has just arrived in Madrid, where he will soon meet with the Spanish prime minister, Pedro Sánchez, and King Felipe VI.The exact format and timing of the Erdoğan meeting is still unclear, but Jake Sullivan, Biden’s national security adviser, told reporters that the focus of the discussion would be on US-Turkish relations and the bids from Finland and Sweden to join Nato.Turkey has raised objections to Finland and Sweden’s bids, which were submitted in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Erdoğan has specifically accused Sweden of being a “hatchery” for terrorist organizations, per Reuters.The meeting tomorrow could give Biden an opportunity to press Erdoğan on those reservations and attempt to convince him to support Nato membership for Finland and Sweden.It remains unclear what new information Cassidy Hutchinson, former senior aide to Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, might provide in her testimony today before the January 6 committee.But according to Brendan Buck, a longtime adviser to former Republican House speaker Paul Ryan, Hutchinson joined every meeting that Meadows participated in as a congressman. (Meadows served in the House from 2013 to 2020.)“I don’t know Cassidy Hutchinson, and I can’t speak to how things worked at the White House, but when Meadows was on the Hill he always insisted that she be in *every* meeting he had, no matter how small,” Buck said on Twitter. “It was odd then, and [doesn’t] seem to be working out for him now.”I don’t know Cassidy Hutchinson, and I can’t speak to how things worked at the White House, but when Meadows was on the Hill he always insisted that she be in *every* meeting he had, no matter how small. It was odd then, and doesnt seem to be working out for him now.— Brendan Buck (@BrendanBuck) June 28, 2022
    The House select committee investigating the January 6 Capitol attack is closely focused on phone calls and conversations among Donald Trump’s children and top aides captured by a documentary film-maker weeks before the 2020 election, say sources familiar with the matter.The calls among Trump’s children and top aides took place at an invitation-only event at the Trump International hotel in Washington that took place the night of the first presidential debate on 29 September 2020, the sources said.The select committee is interested in the calls, the sources said, since the footage is understood to show the former president’s children, including Donald Jr and Eric Trump, privately discussing strategies about the election at a crucial time in the presidential campaign.House investigators first learned about the event, hosted by the Trump campaign, and the existence of the footage through British film-maker Alex Holder, who testified about what he and his crew recorded during a two-hour interview last week, the sources said.Read the Guardian’s full report:January 6 committee focuses on phone calls among Trump’s children and aidesRead moreGreetings from Washington, live blog readers.The House select committee investigating the January 6 insurrection will hold its sixth public hearing of the month at 1pm ET, after the panel surprisingly announced the event yesterday.According to multiple reports, the star witness for today’s surprise hearing will be Cassidy Hutchinson, a former aide to Mark Meadows, who served as Donald Trump’s White House chief of staff. (Punchbowl News first reported Hutchinson’s expected appearance.)Hutchinson has already spoken to investigators behind closed doors, and she provided the committee with some of its most damning evidence about the Trump White House’s ties to the attack on the Capitol.In a clip of her private testimony played at a hearing last week, Hutchinson named several Republican members of Congress who sought president pardons in connection to their involvement in the insurrection.Today could give Hutchinson her first opportunity to speak directly to the American people about what she witnessed in the White House on January 6 and in the aftermath of that violent day.The hearing will kick off in a few hours, and the blog will have updates and analysis once it starts. Stay tuned.And here’s what else is happening today:
    Joe Biden is traveling from Germany to Spain. Biden is participating in the final day of the G7 summit in Schloss Elmau, Germany, before traveling on to Madrid, Spain, for the start of the Nato summit.
    Karine Jean-Pierre will gaggle with reporters aboard Air Force One en route to Madrid. The White House press secretary will be joined by Jake Sullivan, Biden’s national security adviser.
    Today marks the 10th anniversary of the supreme court’s decision to uphold key portions of the Affordable Care Act. The anniversary comes as the country awaits the court’s final four decisions of the term, which has already seen conservative justices overturn Roe v Wade and deliver a major victory to gun rights groups.
    The blog will have more coming up, so stick around. More

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    Biden warns women’s lives in danger after supreme court overturns Roe v Wade – live

    President Joe Biden has decried the supreme court’s decision overturning the constitutional right to abortion, warning that it risks the health of women nationwide.“The court has done what it has never done done before: expressly take away a constitutional right that is so fundamental to so many Americans,” Biden said in a speech from the White House. “It’s a sad day for the court and for the country.”01:29“Now with Roe gone, let’s be very clear, the health and life of women in this nation are now at risk.”Amanda Gorman, first national youth poet laureate, wrote this in reaction to today’s ruling: We will not be delayed.We will not be masqueradeTo the tale of a handmade.We will not let Roe v. Wade slowly fade.Because when we show up today,We’re already standing upWith the tomorrow we made.Let’s get to work: https://t.co/BNVLVLM6Ji— Amanda Gorman (@TheAmandaGorman) June 24, 2022
    Lisa Murkowski, one of two Senate Republicans who supports abortion rights, said she would “work with a broader group” to restore rights. The Alaska senator said: .css-knbk2a{height:1em;width:1.5em;margin-right:3px;vertical-align:baseline;fill:#C70000;}I am continuing to work with a broader group to restore women’s freedom to control their own health decisions wherever they live. Legislation to accomplish that must be a priority.But the sentiment is unlikely to get her very far. Encoding abortion protections will require support from all the Senate Democrats and 10 Republicans. Dozens of elected prosecutors across the US have signed a letter pledging not to prosecute abortions, including officials in states with “trigger laws” that are in the process of banning abortion. DAs pledging not to prosecute abortion in states with trigger laws + bans include officials in St Louis, MO; Jefferson Co in Alabama; Dallas, Travis, Bexar, Nueces, Fort Bend counties in Texas; Genesee, Hinds, Washtenaw, Ingham, Marquette counties in Mich; and Hinds County, Miss pic.twitter.com/vGkUKnGJnG— Sam Levin (@SamTLevin) June 24, 2022
    A total of 83 district attorneys and state attorneys general agreed to the commitment, saying they were united in their belief that “prosecutors have a responsibility to refrain from using limited criminal legal system resources to criminalize personal medical decisions”, adding, “As such, we decline to use our offices’ resources to criminalize reproductive health decisions and commit to exercise our well settled discretion and refrain from prosecuting those who seek, provide, or support abortions.”In addition to commitments from officials in blue states that have laws defending abortion rights, the signatories include local district attorneys in Missouri, Texas, Michigan and Mississippi. Even with Roe in effect, prosecutors across the US have brought criminal charges against people for pregnancy loss and other outcomes, and advocates say this kind of criminalization will significantly escalate with the Roe decision overturned. She was jailed for losing a pregnancy. Her nightmare could become more commonRead moreWhere are abortions now banned?In nine states, bans on abortion took effect today, following the ruling. These states include: Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Utah and Wisconsin. In other states, bans on abortions in most cases will take effect in 30 days. And in some others, legislatures and legal bodies will determine how to proceed – convening to legislate new restrictions, or provide guidance on previously unenforceable abortion restrictions. Abortion deserts: America’s new geography of access to care – mappedRead moreIn a letter to Democratic colleagues, House speaker Nancy Pelosi acknowledged that Thomas’ concurring opinion was “of special concern”. She also said that when it comes to gun control and abortion access, “It is clear that the path forward will depend on the outcome of the upcoming midterm elections.”“The contrast between our parties could not be clearer: while Democrats are the party of freedom and safety, Republicans are the party of punishment and control,” she said. “We must ‘Remember in November’ that the rights of women, and indeed all Americans, are on the ballot.”The repercussions from the supreme court’s ruling overturning the constitutional right to abortion continue to be felt across the country. Here is what has happened today so far:
    President Joe Biden condemned the ruling, calling it “a sad day for the court and for the country”.
    Donald Trump, who as president installed three of the justices that voted to strike down Roe v Wade, reportedly doesn’t think the ruling is a good idea.
    States nationwide are scrambling to react to the decision, with many Republican-led governments moving to ban abortion immediately.
    West coast governors pledged their states would be havens for abortion access.
    A Republican senator said she was duped by two of the supreme court justices who she supported while insisting they would respect Roe v Wade.
    Protesters are gathering at the supreme court building in Washington DC.
    Among the conservative justices, there was a slight difference of opinion in how far the abortion ruling should go.
    Congress approved the bipartisan gun control compromise, sending the bill to Biden for his signature.
    The US politics blog is now in the hands of Maanvi Singh on the west coast, who will take you through the final hours of a day with massive consequences for the country.Dubbing it the “West Coast Offense”, the Democratic governors of California, Oregon and Washington have announced a push to preserve abortion access for their residents and people who come from neighboring states to seek the procedure.The Supreme Court has stripped women of their liberty and let red states replace it with mandated birth.This is an attack on American freedom.CA, OR and WA are creating the West Coast offensive. A road map for other states to stand up for women.Time to fight like hell. pic.twitter.com/jBrJcTQVa8— Gavin Newsom (@GavinNewsom) June 24, 2022
    The three governors have been vocal about the issue ever since the leak of the supreme court’s draft opinion overturning Roe v Wade. In 2021, California governor Gavin Newsom signed new laws protecting abortion providers and patients in the country’s most-populous state:Governor vows to make California a ‘reproductive freedom state’Read moreIn the end, there weren’t enough of them to stop the court’s conservative majority from overturning Roe v Wade, but the dissenting opinion from the court’s three liberal justices Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan acts as a requiem of sorts for the 49-year-old constitutional right to abortion, now overturned:Earlier this Term, this court signaled that Mississippi’s stratagem would succeed. Texas was one of the fistful of states to have recently banned abortions after six weeks of pregnancy. It added to that “flagrantly unconstitutional” restriction an unprecedented scheme to “evade judicial scrutiny.” And five justices acceded to that cynical maneuver. They let Texas defy this court’s constitutional rulings, nullifying Roe and Casey ahead of schedule in the Nation’s second largest state.And now the other shoe drops, courtesy of that same five-person majority. (We believe that the chief justice’s opinion is wrong too, but no one should think that there is not a large difference between upholding a 15-week ban on the grounds he does and allowing states to prohibit abortion from the time of conception.) Now a new and bare majority of this court – acting at practically the first moment possible – overrules Roe and Casey. It converts a series of dissenting opinions expressing antipathy toward Roe and Casey into a decision greenlighting even total abortion bans. It eliminates a 50-year-old constitutional right that safeguards women’s freedom and equal station. It breaches a core rule-of-law principle, designed to promote constancy in the law. In doing all of that, it places in jeopardy other rights, from contraception to same-sex intimacy and marriage. And finally, it undermines the court’s legitimacy.‘Fewer rights than their grandmothers’: read three justices’ searing abortion dissent | Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena KaganRead moreKevin McCarthy, leader of the Republicans in the House of Representatives, has cheered the supreme court’s ruling, calling it “the most important pro-life ruling in American history”..css-knbk2a{height:1em;width:1.5em;margin-right:3px;vertical-align:baseline;fill:#C70000;}The people have won a victory. The right to life has been vindicated. The voiceless will finally have a voice. This great nation can now live up to its core principle that all are created equal. Not born equal. Created equal.Republicans are viewed as favorites to take control of the House following this year’s midterm elections, and McCarthy would be a top contender for the job of speaker. In his speech, he alluded to what his priorities might be, should the GOP ascend to the majority. .css-knbk2a{height:1em;width:1.5em;margin-right:3px;vertical-align:baseline;fill:#C70000;}As encouraging as today’s decision is, our work is far from done. America remains one of only seven countries on earth that allows elective abortions in the third trimester, including China and North Korea. This is radical – but House Democrats continue to support it against the wishes of the American people. This Congress, every House Democrat has voted for extreme policies like taxpayer-funded abortion, on demand, until the point of birth. But Democrats’ radical agenda does not have Americans’ support.The largest association of African American physicians in the United States has warned that the supreme court’s decision to overturn abortion rights will harm racial minorities, particularly Black women. In a statement, president of the National Medical Association Rachel Villanueva said:.css-knbk2a{height:1em;width:1.5em;margin-right:3px;vertical-align:baseline;fill:#C70000;}This decision is unconstitutional, dangerous and discriminatory. It will not stop abortions from being performed, it will unfortunately only make the procedure more dangerous. Women of color, poor women and other disadvantaged individuals who don’t have the resources to travel to obtain the medical care they need will be disproportionately impacted. At a time when maternal mortality rates are worsening, particularly for Black women, it is deeply disappointing that our institutions are actively harming — not helping — women’s health. Abortion is part of total health care for a woman. Doctors should be able to provide medical care based on scientific fact and evidence-based medicine, and free from any political interference. The entire medical community should be gravely concerned about the precedent this decision sets.According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data from 2019, the most recent year available, Black women have the highest rates of abortion with 23.8 per 1,000 people. Hispanic women had 11.7 abortions per 1,000 people, while for white women, the ratio was 6.6.Will the supreme court’s conservative justices stop with Roe v Wade? As Joan E Greve reports, today’s decision in the Dobbs case contains signs that the Republican-appointed majority would like to go after other rights the court has established, such as same-sex marriage and access to contraception:Many Americans reacted to the supreme court’s decision to reverse Roe v Wade and remove federal abortion rights in the US with shock, but many also asked a terrified question: what might be next?The conservative justice Clarence Thomas appeared to offer a preview of the court’s potential future rulings, suggesting the rightwing-controlled court may return to the issues of contraception access and marriage equality, threatening LGBTQ rights.“In future cases, we should reconsider all of this court’s substantive due process precedents, including Griswold, Lawrence, and Obergefell,” Thomas wrote in his concurring opinion to the ruling on Roe.Contraception, gay marriage: Clarence Thomas signals new targets for supreme courtRead moreThe House of Representatives has passed the bipartisan gun control measure that the Senate approved yesterday. It now awaits action from President Joe Biden, who said he will sign it.234-193, House sends guns package to Biden’s desk. 14 Rs broke with their leadership: Liz Cheney, Adam Kinzinger, Tom Rice, John Katko, Maria Salazar, Chris Jacobs, Brian Fitzpatrick, Peter Meijer and Fred Upton; and Steve Chabot, Mike Turner, David Joyce and Anthony Gonzalez— Manu Raju (@mkraju) June 24, 2022
    While the bill tightens gun access for some Americans and funds mental health services, it is being passed just a day after a supreme court ruling that expanded the right to carry a concealed weapon nationwide.US supreme court overturns New York handgun law in bitter blow to gun-control pushRead moreMedical experts have also decried the Dobbs opinion as threatening the health and autonomy of patients nationwide.The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists released a statement condemning the supreme court opinion from its president, Iffath A Hoskins, MD, FACOG, reading in part: .css-knbk2a{height:1em;width:1.5em;margin-right:3px;vertical-align:baseline;fill:#C70000;} Today’s decision is a direct blow to bodily autonomy, reproductive health, patient safety and health equity in the United States.
    Reversing the constitutional protection for safe, legal abortion established by the Supreme Court nearly fifty years ago exposes pregnant people to arbitrary, state-based restrictions, regulations, and bans that will leave many people unable to access needed medical care.
    The restrictions put forth are not based on science nor medicine; they allow unrelated third parties to make decisions that rightfully and ethically should be made only by individuals and their physicians.
    ACOG condemns this devastating decision, which will allow state governments to prevent women from living with autonomy over their bodies and their decisions. The American Medical Association also released a statement denouncing the Dobbs opinion, with its president Jack Resneck Jr MD, writing: .css-knbk2a{height:1em;width:1.5em;margin-right:3px;vertical-align:baseline;fill:#C70000;} The American Medical Association is deeply disturbed by the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to overturn nearly a half century of precedent protecting patients’ right to critical reproductive health care—representing an egregious allowance of government intrusion into the medical examination room, a direct attack on the practice of medicine and the patient-physician relationship, and a brazen violation of patients’ rights to evidence-based reproductive health services.
    States that end legal abortion will not end abortion —they will end safe abortion, risking [devastating] consequences, including patients’ lives. More

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    Bipartisan gun control law sent for Biden’s signature after House vote

    Bipartisan gun control law sent for Biden’s signature after House voteFourteen Republicans vote with majority for first major gun reform legislation in nearly 30 years The US House on Friday passed a bipartisan bill to strengthen federal gun regulations, bringing an end to decades of congressional inaction and sending the historic legislation to Joe Biden’s desk.US supreme court overturns New York handgun law in bitter blow to gun-control pushRead morePassage of the bill came a day after the supreme court overturned a New York law regulating handgun ownership, a significant blow for proponents of gun reform.Nonetheless, advocates celebrated passage of the first major gun-control legislation passed by Congress in nearly 30 years despite hundreds of mass shootings happening in the US every year.Just last month, 10 people were killed in a racist attack at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, and 19 children and two adults were killed at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.The House passed the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act by a vote of 234-193, 14 Republicans joining every Democrat in supporting the bill. It came a day after the Senate approved the bill 65-33, following weeks of negotiations.The law will establish enhanced background checks for those under 21 attempting to buy a gun and expand restrictions for people convicted of domestic abuse.The law will also provide funding to implement crisis-intervention policies, including so-called “red-flag laws”, which allow courts to restrict gun access for those considered a danger to themselves or others.Additional funds will be made available for community violence intervention programs and mental health services for children and families.Democrats took a victory lap after the House vote, promising that the law, if not perfect, would help combat gun violence in America.“While it isn’t everything we would have liked to see in legislation, it takes us down the … path to more safety [and] saving lives,” said the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi. “Let us not judge the legislation for what it does not do but respect it for what it does.”Kris Brown, president of the gun-control group Brady, said: “This is a watershed moment for gun violence prevention and for the nation, and one that would not be possible if not for the decades of action from activists and organizers, particularly Black and brown activists, and the millions of voters who elected gun violence prevention majorities to both chambers of Congress.”Echoing Pelosi, Brown added: “While this bill is not perfect, it takes a comprehensive approach and is a significant and a meaningful step forward.”The bill falls far short of legislation passed by the House earlier this month, which would have raised the minimum age required to buy a semiautomatic rifle from 18 to 21 and implemented severe restrictions on buying and possessing large-capacity magazines.That bill, the Protecting Our Kids Act, was a nonstarter in the evenly divided Senate, where Democrats needed the support of at least 10 Republicans to pass gun-control legislation.The proposal sent to Biden’s desk represents the culmination of weeks of debate among a bipartisan group of senators that sought to craft a consensus gun-control bill in the wake of the Uvalde and Buffalo shootings.After the Senate passed the bill on Thursday night, the majority leader, Chuck Schumer, applauded the “amazing courage” of Republicans who helped lead the negotiations, despite the political risks of doing so.John Cornyn was booed at the Texas Republican convention last week over his role as one of the chief negotiators.“This is not a cure-all for all the ways gun violence affects our nation but it is a long-overdue step in the right direction,” Schumer said.“It was so, so significant that we let the process work instead of just having one vote which would divide us and not accomplish anything. And I hope that portends doing it again, on guns and on other issues as well.”On Friday, the significant accomplishment of passing the bipartisan bill was overshadowed by the release of the supreme court decision overturning Roe v Wade, the 1973 ruling that established the right to abortion.As the country braced for the end of nearly 50 years of federal protections for abortion access, Biden prepared to leave the US to attend the G7 summit in Germany and the Nato summit in Spain.When he returns, he will have a very significant bill to sign.TopicsUS gun controlUS CongressHouse of RepresentativesUS politicsJoe BidenUS SenatenewsReuse this content More

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    No One Is Above the Law, and That Starts With Donald Trump

    In a 2019 ruling requiring the former White House counsel Don McGahn to testify at a congressional hearing about former President Donald Trump’s alleged abuses of power, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson declared that “presidents are not kings.” If we take that admonition from our next Supreme Court justice seriously and look at the evidence amassed so far by the House select committee on the Jan. 6 attack, we can — and in fact must — conclude that the prosecution of Mr. Trump is not only permissible but required for the sake of American democracy.This week’s hearings showed us that Mr. Trump acted as if he thought he was a king, not a president subject to the same rules as the rest of us. The hearings featured extraordinary testimony about the relentless pressure to subvert the 2020 election that the former president and his allies brought against at least 31 state and local officials in states he lost, like Michigan, Arizona, Georgia and Pennsylvania. He or his allies twisted the arm of everyone from top personnel at the U.S. Department of Justice to lower-level election workers.The evidence and the testimony offered demonstrates why Attorney General Merrick Garland’s Justice Department should convene a grand jury now, if it hasn’t already, to consider indicting Mr. Trump for crimes related to his attempt to overturn the results of the election, before he declares his candidacy for president in 2024, perhaps as early as this summer.Although a Trump prosecution is far from certain to succeed, too much focus has been put on the risks of prosecuting him and too little on the risks of not doing so. The consequences of a failure to act for the future of democratic elections are enormous.There’s no denying that prosecuting Mr. Trump is fraught with legal difficulties. To the extent that charges like obstructing an official proceeding or conspiring to defraud the United States turn on Mr. Trump’s state of mind — an issue on which there is significant debate — it may be tough to get to the bottom of what he actually believed, given his history of lying and doubling down when confronted with contrary facts. And Mr. Trump could try to shift blame by claiming that he was relying on his lawyers — including John Eastman and Rudy Giuliani — who amplified the phony claims of fraud and who concocted faulty legal arguments to overturn the results of the election. Mr. Trump could avoid conviction if there’s even one juror who believes his repeated lies about the 2020 election.And yes, there are political difficulties too. The “Lock her up!” chants against Hillary Clinton at 2016 Trump rallies for her use of a personal email server while she was secretary of state were so pernicious because threatening to jail political enemies can lead to a deterioration of democratic values. If each presidential administration is investigating and prosecuting the last, respect for both the electoral process and the legal process may be undermined.That concern is real, but if there has ever been a case extreme enough to warrant indicting a president, then this is the case, and Mr. Trump is the person. This is not just because of what he will do if he is elected again after not being indicted (and after not being convicted following a pair of impeachments, one for the very conduct under discussion), but also because of the message it sends for the future.Leaving Mr. Trump unprosecuted would be saying it was fine to call federal, state and local officials, including many who have sworn constitutional oaths, and ask or even demand of them that they do his personal and political bidding.The testimony from the hearings reveals a coordinated and extensive plot to overturn the will of the people and install Mr. Trump as president despite Joe Biden winning the election by 74 Electoral College votes (not to mention a margin of about seven million in the popular vote). There was political pressure, and sometimes threats of violence, across the board. Mr. Trump and his cronies hounded poll workers and election officials to admit to nonexistent fraud or to recount votes and change vote totals.Wandrea Moss, known as Shaye, a former Georgia election worker, testified Tuesday about the harassment and violent threats she faced after Trump allies accused her and her mother of election fraud. As The Associated Press reported, one of Mr. Trump’s lawyers, Mr. Giuliani, pointed to surveillance video of the two women working on ballot counting and “said the footage showed the women ‘surreptitiously passing around USB ports as if they are vials of heroin or cocaine.’” The “USB ports” turned out to be ginger mints.It is no wonder that election workers and election officials are leaving their offices in fear of violence and harassment.Former top Department of Justice officials in the Trump administration testified on Thursday about pressure from Mr. Trump, in collusion with a lower-level department official named Jeffrey Clark, to issue a letter falsely claiming evidence of significant fraud in the elections. We heard in Thursday’s hearing that Mr. Trump, in a meeting that echoed his earlier role as boss on the television show “The Apprentice,” almost fired the attorney general, Jeffrey Rosen, to replace him with Mr. Clark, who had no experience in either criminal law or election law.The confirmation by the Department of Justice under Mr. Clark of this “fraud” would have served as a predicate for state legislators, also pressured by Mr. Trump and his allies, to “decertify” Biden electors and conjure up a new slate of electors supporting Mr. Trump.The pressure did not stop there. An earlier committee hearing recounted severe pressure from Mr. Trump on Vice President Mike Pence to manipulate the rules for Congress to count electoral votes, a plan that depended on members of Congress supporting spurious objections to the Electoral College votes in states that Mr. Biden won.Mr. Trump also whipped up the Jan. 6 crowd for “wild” protests and encouraged it to join him in pressuring Mr. Pence to violate his constitutional oath and manipulate the Electoral College count.In his testimony on Tuesday before the Jan. 6 committee, the speaker of the Arizona House, Rusty Bowers, described the intense barrage coming at him from calls from Mr. Trump and his allies, and from Trump supporters who protested outside his house and threatened his neighbor with violence. But Mr. Bowers compared the Trump crew to the book “The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight” because they failed to come forward with a plausible plan to overturn the election results in Arizona or elsewhere.Seeing the group as bumbling, though, minimizes the danger of what Mr. Trump and his allies attempted and downplays how deadly serious this was: As Representative Adam Schiff, a member of the committee, noted, the country “barely” survived Mr. Trump’s attempt at election subversion, which could have worked despite the legal and factual weaknesses in the fraud claims.What if people of less fortitude than Mr. Bowers and others caved? Consider Brad Raffensperger, the secretary of state in Georgia, who also testified on Tuesday about pressure from the Trump team. He described a direct phone call from a man who was then the sitting president prodding him to “find” 11,780 votes to flip Georgia from Mr. Biden to Mr. Trump. What if, instead of rebuffing Mr. Trump, Mr. Raffensperger declared that he felt there were enough questions about the vote count in Democratic counties in Georgia to warrant the legislature’s appointment of new electors, as Mr. Trump had urged?If even one of these officials had cooperated, the dikes could have broken, and claims in state after state could have proliferated.There’s no question that Mr. Trump tried to steal the election. Richard Donoghue, a top official at the Department of Justice serving during the postelection period, testified on Thursday that he knocked down with extensive evidence every cockamamie theory of voter fraud that Mr. Trump and his allies raised, but to no avail. He testified that there were nothing but “isolated” instances of fraud, the same conclusion reached by the former attorney general, Bill Barr.Mr. Bowers testified that when he demanded evidence from Mr. Giuliani, Mr. Giuliani said he had theories, but no evidence. The president appears to have known it too. According to Mr. Donoghue’s handwritten notes of his conversation with Mr. Trump, when confronted with the lack of evidence of fraud, the former president said, “Just say the election was corrupt” and “leave the rest to me” and the Republican congressmen. The president even talked about having the federal government seize voting machines, perhaps in an attempt to rerun the election.The longer Mr. Garland waits to bring charges against Mr. Trump, the harder it will be, especially if Mr. Trump has already declared for president and can say that the prosecution is politically motivated to help Democrats win in 2024. The fact that federal investigators conducted a search for evidence at the home of Mr. Clark shows that the department is working its way ever closer to the former president.What Mr. Trump did in its totality and in many individual instances was criminal. If Mr. Garland fails to act, it will only embolden Mr. Trump or someone like him to try again if he loses, this time aided by a brainwashed and cowered army of elected and election officials who stand ready to steal the election next time.Mr. Trump was the 45th president, not the first American king, but if we don’t deter conduct like this, the next head of state may come closer to claiming the kind of absolute power that is antithetical to everything the United States stands for.Richard L. Hasen (@rickhasen), who will join the University of California, Los Angeles, as a professor of law in July, is the author of “Cheap Speech: How Disinformation Poisons Our Politics — and How to Cure It.” In 2020, he proposed a 28th Amendment to the Constitution to defend and expand voting rights.The Times is committed to publishing a diversity of letters to the editor. We’d like to hear what you think about this or any of our articles. Here are some tips. And here’s our email: letters@nytimes.com.Follow The New York Times Opinion section on Facebook, Twitter (@NYTopinion) and Instagram. More

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    Court Ruling on Guns: The Legislature’s Options

    It’s now up to Albany to pass restrictions on gun ownership that would be allowed under the Supreme Court decision invalidating New York’s law.Good morning. It’s Friday. We’ll look at what the Legislature can do now that the Supreme Court has invalidated New York’s concealed-carry gun law. We’ll also look at how changing demographics are reflected in a House race in Manhattan.Michael Reynolds/EPA, via ShutterstockIn procedural terms, the Supreme Court decision striking down New York’s concealed-carry gun law sent the case back to lower courts. In practical terms, the decision sent the issue of gun control and gun violence to lawmakers in Albany, where Gov. Kathy Hochul called the ruling “shocking, absolutely shocking.”She was preparing to sign a school safety bill when the Supreme Court decision was announced and became visibly angry as she described the 6-to-3 ruling, which was built on a broad interpretation of the Second Amendment that is likely to make it harder for states to restrict guns. Hochul said she would call the Legislature back to Albany for a special session, probably next month, and that aides had already prepared draft legislation with new restrictions.She also said the state was considering changing the permitting process to create basic qualifications for gun owners, including training requirements. And she said New York was considering a system where businesses and private property owners could set their own restrictions on firearms.In New York City, Mayor Eric Adams said the decision was “just not rooted in reality” and “has made every single one of us less safe from gun violence.”“There is no place in the nation that this decision affects as much as New York City,” he said.But the question of the day was what the Legislature in Albany could do.“The hardest thing for the Legislature is to calmly write legislation that is not going to please everybody,” said Paul Finkelman, the chancellor and a distinguished professor at Gratz College in Philadelphia, who follows the New York Legislature. “It’s not going to please everyone who says we’ve got to get rid of firearms. That’s not where the world lives today.”He suggested setting an age threshold for gun permits, much like the ones for drivers’ licenses, and taxing firearms, much like gasoline or cigarettes.Vincent Bonventre, a professor at the Albany Law School, said the Legislature could restrict the possession of firearms by categories, putting guns out of the reach of convicted felons or people convicted of misdemeanors involving violence, for example. “It’s going to take some thought” to develop restrictions that would pass muster, “but not that much,” he said.Jonathan Lowy, the chief counsel of the gun control group Brady, has argued that letting more people carry hidden handguns would mean more violent crime — “in other words, more Americans will die,” he wrote in the New York University Law Review last year. On Thursday, the group estimated that more than 28,000 people had died from gun violence since the case was argued before the court last Nov. 3.Among those shot was Zaire Goodman, 21, who survived the May 14 supermarket massacre in Buffalo, N.Y. On Thursday his mother, Zeneta Everhart, said she feared the Supreme Court decision would contribute to more gun violence.“What else has to happen before this country wakes up and understands that the people in this country don’t feel safe?” she asked. “The government, the courts, the lawmakers — they are here to protect us, and I don’t feel protected.”WeatherIt will be mostly sunny, with temperatures reaching the high 70s. At night, it will be mostly clear with temps around the high 60s.ALTERNATE-SIDE PARKINGIn effect until July 4 (Independence Day).The latest New York newsBrittainy Newman for The New York TimesCoronavirus vaccinesMandates: Mayor Eric Adams has not enforced the city’s coronavirus vaccine mandate for private businesses, and has no plans to do so.Parents’ relief: Families seeking vaccine shots for their children under age 5 trickled into vaccine hubs in Harlem and the Bronx. One parent said vaccinating his 3-year-old after 18 months of waiting gave him “peace of mind.”More local newsPenn Station woes: Nearly everyone agrees that something must be done to fix the chaos at Penn Station. Now comes the hard part of devising a solution that will steer clear of controversy.Maxwell’s sentencing: Federal prosecutors in Manhattan asked a judge to sentence Ghislaine Maxwell to at least 30 years in prison for helping Jeffrey Epstein recruit and abuse girls.Why Jewish political power has ebbed in New YorkRepresentative Carolyn Maloney, left, and Representative Jerrold Nadler are running against each other.Mary Altaffer/Associated PressAs recently as the 1990s, about half of the lawmakers whom New York City voters sent to the House of Representatives were Jewish. Now there is one, Representative Jerrold Nadler, and he is fighting for political survival because his district was combined with parts of Representative Carolyn Maloney’s on the Upper East Side. She’s running against him in the Aug. 23 primary. (That’s the right date. The congressional primaries are not being held next Tuesday with the primaries for statewide offices like governor and lieutenant governor. A federal judge ordered the House primaries delayed after the congressional districts were redrawn.)Last month we looked at the collision course that Nadler and Maloney are on. This week I asked my colleague Nicholas Fandos, who covers politics in New York, to put the race in the context of a changing New York.New York was long the center of Jewish political power in the United States. As recently as the 1990s, lawmakers who were Jewish made up about half of New York City’s delegation in the House of Representatives. What changed?It’s a complicated story, but it largely boils down to demographic change. New York’s Jewish population peaked in the 1950s, when one in four New Yorkers were Jewish. Today, there are about half as many Jewish residents in the city, and they tend to vote less cohesively than they once did. The exceptions are growing ultra-Orthodox communities, primarily in Brooklyn.Redistricting over the years has really reinforced this pattern.At the same time, New Yorkers of Black, Latino and Asian heritage have been gaining seats at the table that they historically did not have. So where in the early ’90s, eight New York City House members were Jewish, today nine of the 13 members representing parts of the city are Black or Latino, and another is Asian American.How did redistricting help Nadler in the past, and what happened this time around?Nadler’s current district was that way by design. Mapmakers in the past intentionally stitched together Jewish communities on the West Side of Manhattan with growing Orthodox ones in Brooklyn’s Borough Park, sometimes going to great lengths to connect them.But this year, a court-appointed mapmaker severed the connection. The mapmaker, it seems, was not persuaded that the communities shared enough interests to remain connected in such a geographically counterintuitive way.What about Nadler’s opponent in the primary, Representative Carolyn Maloney. She’s a Presbyterian running in what’s believed to be the most Jewish district in the country.Maloney is competing hard for the Jewish vote. She has been racking up endorsements. On the campaign trail, she touts a bill she’s passed on Holocaust education and her opposition to President Obama’s Iran nuclear deal, which Israel’s government vehemently opposed at the time. (Nadler supported the deal.)What about pro-Israel political groups? Which one are they backing, Nadler or Maloney?So far, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, which has been quite active in Democratic primaries this year, is staying neutral, or supporting both candidates actually. J Street, the pro-Israel lobby that tries to be a liberal counterweight to AIPAC, is raising money for Nadler.METROPOLITAN diaryDoughnut manDear Diary:It was 1950. My grandmother would pick me up after school on Seventh Street near Avenue B and take me for ice cream and a pretzel rod or some other treat.On this particular day, she said we were going to the Second Avenue Griddle, my favorite place for jelly doughnuts. They were topped with crunchy sugar. You could bite into them anywhere, and real raspberry jam would ooze onto your fingertips.I could hardly contain my excitement as we walked the three long avenue blocks to Second Avenue. We walked into the store, and the counterman handed me a doughnut in wax paper. I bit into it and immediately had jelly all over my face. I was in doughnut heaven.The counterman motioned for me to come behind the counter. He pointed to a tray of freshly baked doughnuts and handed me a clean white apron that hung to my ankles. Then he handed me a doughnut in wax paper and showed me how to glide it onto the nozzle of the jelly machine.With my free hand, I was to push the handle of the machine slowly down so the jelly streamed into the doughnut without shooting out the other side. I became proficient enough to move things along, and soon all the doughnuts were filled.I washed my hands and handed the apron back when I was finished. My grandmother and I left for home.“Your Uncle Lenny must love you very much,” she said as we were walking. “If the owner of the store had come in, he would have been in a lot of trouble.”— Sandy SnyderIllustrated by Agnes Lee. Send submissions here and read more Metropolitan Diary here.Glad we could get together here. See you on Monday. — J.B.P.S. Here’s today’s Mini Crossword and Spelling Bee. You can find all our puzzles here.Melissa Guerrero More

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    Who Is Richard Donoghue?

    Richard P. Donoghue, who served as acting deputy attorney general in the Trump administration, was a crucial witness to President Donald J. Trump’s efforts to use the Justice Department to overturn the 2020 election results, and one of several officials there who pumped the brakes on the plan.Mr. Donoghue repeatedly pushed back on Mr. Trump’s claims of voter fraud in Georgia, Michigan, Nevada and Arizona, and he refused to go along when Mr. Trump insisted that the department simply “say that the election was corrupt” and “leave the rest to me,” according to notes Mr. Donoghue took of a Dec. 27, 2020, call with Mr. Trump and Jeffrey A. Rosen, the acting attorney general.On Thursday, Mr. Donoghue was appearing in person before the House committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol in a hearing at which aides said the panel would reveal new evidence of Mr. Trump’s bid to use the nation’s law enforcement apparatus to invalidate his defeat and stay in power.Much is already known about Mr. Trump’s efforts and the resistance by Mr. Donoghue and his colleagues, including that the president asked the Justice Department to send letters to state election officials warning them that there had been widespread fraud in the election and to file lawsuits to help his campaign.During a hearing on Tuesday, the House committee played audio of an interview with Mr. Donoghue in which he recounted telling Mr. Trump that there was no suitcase containing fraudulent ballots in Georgia, a popular conspiracy theory that was based on a video selectively edited and shared by Mr. Trump’s allies.Mr. Trump “kept fixating on this suitcase that supposedly had fraudulent ballots,” Mr. Donoghue said in the interview. “I said, ‘No, sir, there is no suitcase.’”Mr. Trump, in his final weeks in office, had also planned to oust Mr. Rosen, when it was clear that he did not have his support to send Georgia state legislators a letter wrongly stating that the department was seriously investigating accusations of voter fraud.Mr. Donoghue convened the department’s senior leaders over the phone, making a plan that the group would resign en masse should Mr. Rosen be fired.Mr. Trump ultimately allowed Mr. Rosen to stay. More

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    DoJ seeks delay in Proud Boys case as it collides with parallel January 6 inquiry

    DoJ seeks delay in Proud Boys case as it collides with parallel January 6 inquiryTwo cases had managed to steer clear of each other as the justice department and House panel pursued the same ground The US justice department’s criminal investigation into the January 6 Capitol attack collided with the parallel congressional investigation, causing federal prosecutors to seek a delay in proceedings in the seditious conspiracy case against the far-right Proud Boys group.The two January 6 inquiries had largely managed to steer clear of each other even as both the justice department and a House select committee pursued the same ground. But it all came to head on Wednesday.At a hearing in federal court in Washington, federal prosecutors and defendants in the justice department’s seditious conspiracy case asked a federal judge to delay the August trial date of the former Proud Boys national chairman Henry Tarrio, AKA Enrique Tarrio, and other top members of the far-right group.January 6 panel to focus on Trump’s relentless pressure on justice departmentRead more“It is reasonably foreseeable that information relevant to the defendants’ guilt (or innocence) could soon be released,” assistant US attorney Erik Kenerson wrote on Tuesday. “Inability to prepare their respective cases … is potentially prejudicial – to all parties.”The request was granted “reluctantly” by US district judge Timothy Kelly, who said the trial will now start in December, agreeing that the select committee’s report and witness transcripts that are slated to be made public in September could upend preparations.The justice department has run into the issue that because it is conducting a criminal investigation, its federal prosecutors are bound by strict rules requiring high standards of proof before they start issuing subpoenas and collecting evidence.By contrast, the select committee, in conducting a congressional investigation examining the circumstances surrounding the Capitol attack, can issue subpoenas for documents and testimony whenever and however it likes, given the approval of a majority of its members.That has meant the panel has amassed more than 1,000 transcripts of closed-door depositions conducted with key witnesses related to the January 6 inquiries, some of which the justice department believes are relevant to its cases but the panel had declined to share.In a letter last week, Matthew Graves, the US attorney for the District of Columbia, and assistant attorneys general Kenneth Polite and Matthew Olsen complained their inability to access transcripts was hampering criminal investigations, including in the Proud Boys case.“The select committee’s failure to grant the department access to these transcripts complicates the department’s ability to investigate and prosecute those who engaged in criminal conduct in relation to the January 6 attack on the Capitol,” they wrote in the letter.The select committee relented and suggested it would not even wait until September but start making transcripts public as early as July. But lawyers for the Proud Boys took issue with both dates, saying the contents of the transcripts could bias a jury ahead of trial.Not all of the defendants sought a delay. Tarrio opposed the request because “an impartial jury will never be achieved in Washington DC whether the trial is in August, December, or next year”. Ethan Nordean, another prominent Proud Boys figure, opposed the request unless he was freed from pre-trial detention.The potential for the transcripts to influence a jury pool has been a recurring complaint for the Proud Boys lawyers, who argue the January 6 hearings – which started three days after Tarrio and others were charged with seditious conspiracy – will irreparably taint a jury.Federal prosecutors have pushed back, contending that people in Washington were no more likely to have seen the hearings than people in New York or Miami. Still, the government agreed for the need for breathing space between the trial and transcripts being made public.The justice department, meanwhile, has its own concerns with the transcripts’ release and would seemingly prefer to get the transcripts in private to compare what witnesses have told the select committee and what they have secretly told a grand jury.At least two members of the Proud Boys have testified before the select committee in closed-door depositions: Tarrio, who has been charged with seditious conspiracy and other crimes, and Jeremy Bertino, who has been mentioned in court filings but is currently not charged.Also on Wednesday, the justice department issued new subpoenas to at least three people connected to the Trump campaign’s potentially illegal plan to send fraudulent election certificates to Congress as part of the effort to overturn the 2020 election results.The confirmed recipients of the grand jury subpoenas were Brad Carver, a Georgia Republican party official who was a Trump elector, Thomas Lane, a Trump campaign official in Arizona and New Mexico, and Sean Flynn, a Trump campaign aide in Michigan, the New York Times reported.TopicsUS Capitol attackJanuary 6 hearingsThe far rightHouse of RepresentativesUS politicsnewsReuse this content More

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    Feds seek delay in Proud Boys conspiracy case as it collides with parallel January 6 inquiry

    Feds seek delay in Proud Boys conspiracy case as it collides with parallel January 6 inquiryThe two cases had managed to steer clear of each other as the justice department and House panel pursued the same ground The US justice department’s criminal investigation into the January 6 Capitol attack collided with the parallel congressional investigation, causing federal prosecutors to seek a delay in proceedings in the seditious conspiracy case against the far-right Proud Boys group.The two January 6 inquiries had largely managed to steer clear of each other even as both the justice department and a House select committee pursued the same ground. But it all came to head on Wednesday.At a hearing in federal court in Washington, federal prosecutors and defendants in justice department’s seditious conspiracy case asked a federal judge to delay the August trial date of former Proud Boys national chairman Henry Tarrio, AKA Enrique Tarrio and other top members of the far-right group.January 6 panel to focus on Trump’s relentless pressure on justice departmentRead more“It is reasonably foreseeable that information relevant to the defendants’ guilt (or innocence) could soon be released,” assistant US attorney Erik Kenerson wrote on Tuesday. “Inability to prepare their respective cases … is potentially prejudicial – to all parties.”The request was granted “reluctantly” by US district judge Timothy Kelly, who said the trial will now start in December, agreeing that the select committee’s report and witness transcripts that are slated to be made public in September could upend preparations.The justice department has run into the issue that because it is conducting a criminal investigation, its federal prosecutors are bound by strict rules requiring high standards of proof before they start issuing subpoenas and collecting evidence.By contrast, the select committee, in conducting a congressional investigation examining the circumstances surrounding the Capitol attack, can issue subpoenas for documents and testimony whenever and however it likes, given the approval of a majority of its members.That has meant the panel has amassed more than 1,000 transcripts of closed-door depositions conducted with key witnesses related to the January 6 inquiries, some of which the justice department believes are relevant to its cases but the panel had declined to share.In a letter last week, Matthew Graves, the US attorney for the District of Columbia, and assistant attorneys general Kenneth Polite and Matthew Olsen complained their inability to access transcripts was hampering criminal investigations, including in the Proud Boys case.“The select committee’s failure to grant the department access to these transcripts complicates the department’s ability to investigate and prosecute those who engaged in criminal conduct in relation to the January 6 attack on the Capitol,” they wrote in the letter.The select committee relented and suggested it would not even wait until September but start making transcripts public as early as July. But lawyers for the Proud Boys took issue with both dates, saying the contents of the transcripts could bias a jury ahead of trial.Not all of the defendants sought a delay. Tarrio opposed the request because “an impartial jury will never be achieved in Washington DC whether the trial is in August, December, or next year”. Ethan Nordean, another prominent Proud Boys figure, opposed the request unless he was freed from pre-trial detention.The potential for the transcripts to influence a jury pool has been a recurring complaint for the Proud Boys lawyers, who argue the January 6 hearings – which started three days after Tarrio and others were charged with seditious conspiracy – will irreparably taint a jury.Federal prosecutors have pushed back, contending that people in Washington were no more likely to have seen the hearings than people in New York or Miami. Still, the government agreed for the need for breathing space between the trial and transcripts being made public.The justice department, meanwhile, has its own concerns with the transcripts’ release and would seemingly prefer to get the transcripts in private to compare what witnesses have told the select committee and what they have secretly told a grand jury.At least two members of the Proud Boys have testified before the select committee in closed-door depositions: Tarrio, who has been charged with seditious conspiracy and other crimes, and Jeremy Bertino, who has been mentioned in court filings but is currently not charged.Also on Wednesday, the justice department issued new subpoenas to at least three people connected to the Trump campaign’s potentially illegal plan to send fraudulent election certificates to Congress as part of the effort to overturn the 2020 election results.The confirmed recipients of the grand jury subpoenas were Brad Carver, a Georgia Republican Party official who was a Trump elector, Thomas Lane, a Trump campaign official in Arizona and New Mexico, and Sean Flynn, a Trump campaign aide in Michigan, the New York Times reported.TopicsUS Capitol attackJanuary 6 hearingsThe far rightHouse of RepresentativesUS politicsnewsReuse this content More