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Trump warns Biden: ‘Be very careful what you wish for’: Live

Trump warns Biden: ‘Be very careful what you wish for’: Live

Donald Trump blamed Joe Biden for opening a “Pandora’s box” of tit-for-tat political retribution in a speech to party faithful in New York on Saturday night.

Speaking at a black tie dinner at the Cipriani Wall Street restaurant, the former president warned the country would never be the same after his indictments on 91 counts in four separate criminal cases.

“I can only say to Joe: Be very careful what you wish for, but (what) you have done is a terrible thing,” Mr Trump said to a raucous audience of 1,000 GOP officials, lawmakers and donors at the New York Young Republican Club’s 111th Annual Gala.

Mr Trump later doubled down on claims he would be a “dictator on day one” of a second term.

“You know why I wanted to be a dictator? Because I want a wall, and I want to drill, drill, drill,” Mr Trump said.

On Sunday, Mr Trump announced he would no longer testify at his civil fraud trial in New York on Monday.

In two all-caps posts on Truth Social, he wrote that he had already “SUCCESSFULLY & CONCLUSIVELY” testified and did not see any need to appear again.

Key Points

  • Trump backs out of testifying at New York fraud trial

  • Appeals court upholds Trump’s gag order in election conspiracy case

  • NY fraud trial: Bartov earning almost $900k for Trump defence testimony

  • Trump says he will be a dictator ‘on day one’ if elected

  • Megyn Kelly: ‘No question Trump has lost a step’

  • Six Republicans in Nevada charged in fake elector scheme to overturn Trump’s loss

Rudy Giuliani goes on trial for defaming election workers

11:07 , Rachel Sharp

A trial set to get underway in Washington on Monday will determine how much Rudy Giuliani will have to pay two Georgia election workers who he falsely accused of fraud while pushing Donald Trump’s baseless claims after he lost the 2020 election.

The former New York City mayor has already been found liable in the defamation lawsuit brought by Ruby Freeman and her daughter, Wandrea “Shaye” Moss, who endured threats and harassment after they became the target of a conspiracy theory spread by Trump and his allies. The only issue to be determined at the trial — which will begin with jury selection in Washington’s federal court — is the amount of damages, if any, Giuliani must pay.

The case is among many legal and financial woes mounting for Giuliani, who was celebrated as “America’s mayor” in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attack and became one of the most ardent promoters of Trump’s election lies after he lost to President Joe Biden.

Giuliani is also criminally charged alongside Trump and others in the Georgia case accusing them of trying to illegally overturn the results of the election in the state. He has pleaded not guilty and maintains he had every right to raise questions about what he believed to be election fraud.

He was sued in September by a former lawyer who alleged Giuliani only paid a fraction of roughly $1.6 million in legal fees stemming from investigations into his efforts to keep Trump in the White House. And the judge overseeing the election workers’ lawsuit has already ordered Giuliani and his business entities to pay tens of thousands of dollars in attorneys’ fees.

Moss had worked for the Fulton County elections department since 2012 and supervised the absentee ballot operation during the 2020 election. Freeman was a temporary election worker, verifying signatures on absentee ballots and preparing them to be counted and processed.

Giuliani and other Trump allies seized on surveillance footage to push a conspiracy theory that the election workers pulled fraudulent ballots out of suitcases. The claims were quickly debunked by Georgia election officials, who found no improper counting of ballots.

The women have said the false claims led to an barrage of violent threats and harassment that at one point forced Freeman to flee her home for more than two months. In emotional testimony before the U.S. House Committee that investigated the U.S. Capitol attack, Moss recounted receiving an onslaught of threatening and racist messages.

In her August decision holding Giuliani liable in the case, U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell said he gave “only lip service” to complying with his legal obligations and had failed to turn over information requested by the mother and daughter. The judge in October said that Giuliani had flagrantly disregarded an order to provide documents concerning his personal and business assets. She said that jurors deciding the amount of damages will be told they must “infer” that Giuliani was intentionally trying to hide financial documents in the hopes of “artificially deflating his net worth.”

Giuliani conceded in July that he made public comments falsely claiming Freeman and Moss committed fraud to try to alter the outcome of the race while counting ballots at State Farm Arena in Atlanta. But Giuliani argued that the statements were protected by the First Amendment.

The Associated Press

Trump is running out of ways to stall his federal election trial

10:30 , AP

Former President Donald Trump is appealing a ruling that found he is not immune from criminal prosecution as he runs out of time to delay or even derail an upcoming trial on charges that he plotted to overturn the results of the 2020 election.

Lawyers for the 2024 Republican presidential primary frontrunner filed a notice of appeal on Thursday indicating that they will challenge US District Judge Tanya Chutkan’s decision rejecting Trump’s bid to derail the case headed to trial in Washington DC in March.

The one-page filing, the first step in a process that could potentially reach the US Supreme Court in the months ahead, was accompanied by a request from the Trump team to freeze deadlines in the case while the appeals court considers the matter.

Trump is running out of ways to stall his federal election trial

Trump backs out of fraud trial testimony after failing to block gag order

10:00 , Rachel Sharp

Donald Trump announced he is canceling plans for his return to the witness stand hours before he was due to testify for a second time at his fraud trial in Manhattan.

In two furious, all-caps posts on his Truth Social on Sunday, the former president revived his familiar false attacks directed at the judge overseeing the trial and the state attorney general suing him as Mr Trump maintained he did nothing wrong after he was found liable for defrauding banks and investors for over a decade.

The frontrunner for the 2024 Republican nomination for president has broadly characterised the case as part of a grand Democratic conspiracy to prevent him from reaching the White House after next year’s election, while he faces several lawsuits and criminal indictments to hold him accountable for his attempts to overthrow the last one.

Read the full story:

Trump backs out of fraud trial testimony after failing to block gag order

Is Trump headed to prison?

08:30 , John Bowden

Donald Trump faces four criminal indictments in three separate jurisdictions. Nearly 100 felony criminal charges are leveled against the former president, who remains the odds-on favourite to win the 2024 Republican primary.

As his legal battles grow more complex by the day, a serious question has emerged: Whether Mr Trump will win the nomination and campaign for the general election as a convicted criminal.

That possibility, in turn, raises another, simpler question: Will the 45th President of the United States go to prison?

Will Donald Trump go to prison?

Five key takeaways from Republican debate

05:30 , John Bowden

The fourth Republican debate is over, and what did we learn? Not much, beyond how little these people seem to like each other.

Wednesday night’s showdown in Alabama touched on issues which previous debates skipped over — most glaringly, the GOP’s culture war against transgender Americans. But the main feature of the last meetup of the four underdog Republican candidates seems to have been the animosity which spilled out into view at multiple points.

Obviously, the frontrunner, Donald Trump, was once again absent. So none of this really mattered in the grand scheme of the 2024 Republican primary; he is the wide favourite to win the nomination, and remains so after tonight. But what tonight’s debate really did was illustrate the greater state of the modern Republican Party, and what kind of candidate everyone who is not Donald Trump, the Republican insiders, believe their party wants to see — if not now, then in 2028.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at the last Republican debate of the year, and probably the election cycle, as we prepare for the Iowa caucuses next month:

Key takeaways from GOP debate: Ramaswamy branded a ‘blowhard’ and Haley under attack

Could Colorado’s highest court kick Trump off the 2024 ballot?

02:30 , Oliver O'Connell

A legal effort to disqualify Donald Trump from Colorado’s ballots in 2024 elections could end up in front of the US Supreme Court after arguments in front of the state’s highest court on Wednesday.

The case in Colorado is among dozens of legal challenges across the country that throw Mr Trump’s eligibility into question, pointing to a constitutional amendment that prohibits anyone who “engaged in insurrection or rebellion” from holding public office.

So far, no courts have found Mr Trump ineligible. But after a week-long trial last month, a state judge in Colorado ruled that while the former president supported the insurrection, a ban from office doesn’t apply to presidents.

An appeal to the state’s Supreme Court, where all seven justices are Democratic appointees, challenges not only whether the former president was responsible for provoking his supporters to riot at the US Capitol on January 6, but also whether that should make him ineligible for returning to the White House.

Can Colorado’s highest court kick Trump off the ballot?

Fake electors: Wisconsin Republicans settle lawsuit and agree Trump lost in 2020

Sunday 10 December 2023 23:30 , Oliver O'Connell

A group of 10 Republicans who acted as “fake electors” in the 2020 presidential election and signed official-looking paperwork claiming Donald Trump won Wisconsin have settled a lawsuit against them.

They have agreed to withdraw their inaccurate filings, acknowledge Joe Biden won the presidency and not serve as presidential electors in 2024 or in any election where Trump is on the ballot.

The 10 fake electors will send a statement to the government offices that received the Electoral College votes saying that their actions were “part of an attempt to improperly overturn the 2020 presidential election results”.

Trump fake electors in Wisconsin settle lawsuit and agree Biden won in 2020

Trump backs out of fraud trial testimony after failing to block gag order

Sunday 10 December 2023 21:58 , Bevan Hurley

Donald Trump announced he is canceling plans for his return to the witness stand hours before he was due to testify for a second time at his fraud trial in Manhattan.

In two furious, all-caps posts on his Truth Social on Sunday, the former president revived his familiar false attacks directed at the judge overseeing the trial and the state attorney general suing him as Mr Trump maintained he did nothing wrong after he was found liable for defrauding banks and investors for over a decade.

Alex Woodward has the story.

Trump backs out of fraud trial testimony after failing to block gag order

Trump backs out of testifying at New York fraud trial

Sunday 10 December 2023 21:02 , Bevan Hurley

Donald Trump says he will no longer testify at his civil fraud trial in New York on Monday.

In an all caps post on Truth Social on Sunday, the former president wrote that he “VERY SUCCESSFULLY & CONCLUSIVELY” testified last month and did not see any need to appear again.

Mr Trump had been expected to return to the witness stand on Monday as the defence brings its case to a close.

The former president could face the forced break up of his his real estate empire after a judge ruled he had inflated the value of his businesses and properties in return for tax breaks and favourable lending terms.

Fake electors: Six Republicans in Nevada charged over scheme to flip Trump’s loss

Sunday 10 December 2023 20:30 , Oliver O'Connell

A grand jury in Nevada has voted to indict six Republicans, including the party’s state chair, after they falsely pledged the state’s electoral votes to Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election.

Nevada’s Democratic Attorney General Aaron Ford announced felony charges on Wednesday, marking another round of state-level criminal charges against participants of a so-called “fake elector” plot that sought to overturn Joe Biden’s victory, a scheme central to federal and state charges against the former president.

“When the efforts to undermine faith in our democracy began after the 2020 election, I made it clear that I would do everything in my power to defend the institutions of our nation and our state,” Mr Ford said in a statement.

“We cannot allow attacks on democracy to go unchallenged,” he added. “Today’s indictments are the product of a long and thorough investigation, and as we pursue this prosecution, I am confident that our judicial system will see justice done.”

Six Republicans in Nevada charged in fake elector scheme to overturn Trump’s loss

Trump allies defend his ‘day one’ dictatorship

Sunday 10 December 2023 17:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump was offered a chance to shut down warnings about his increasingly violent and authoritarian vision for his potential administration. Instead, he embraced it.

During an event on Fox News billed as a town hall on Tuesday, host Sean Hannity gave him a chance to clarify that “under no circumstances, you are promising America tonight, you would never abuse power as retribution against anybody.”

“Except for day one,” Mr Trump replied.

His supporters and campaign have framed his comments as a joke to attack his critics, a defence that has tried to rewrite and undermine his own words and actions over the last several months, including his explicit promises of a campaign of retribution and political vengeance against his rivals.

Trump allies defend his ‘day one’ dictatorship: ‘All he needs’

Trump tells Biden: ‘Be very careful what you wish for’

Sunday 10 December 2023 16:56 , Bevan Hurley

Donald Trump doubled down on claims he would be a “dictator on day one” of a second term, and blamed Joe Biden for opening a “Pandora’s box” of tit-for-tat political retribution in a speech to party faithful in New York on Saturday night.

Speaking at the black tie dinner at Cipriano restaurant on Wall St, Mr Trump said the country would never be the same after he was indicted on 91 counts in four separate cases.

“I can only say to Joe: Be very careful what you wish for, but you have done is a terrible thing,” Mr Trump said to an audience of 1,000, according to the New York Post.

Mr Trump delivered the keynote address for the New York Young Republican Club’s 111th Annual Gala.

He also addressed his claims to a Fox News town hall during the week that he wanted to be a dictator on day one.

“I said I want to be a dictator for one day,” , Mr Trump said. “You know why I wanted to be a dictator? Because I want a wall, and I want to drill, drill, drill.”

During an 80-minute speech, the Republican frontrunner claimed that being labelled as a threat to democracy was the Democrats’ “newest hoax” against him.

Former President Donald Trump speaks at the New York Young Republican Club Gala at Cipriani Wall Street on 9 December (Getty Images)
Former President Donald Trump speaks at the New York Young Republican Club Gala at Cipriani Wall Street on 9 December (Getty Images)

Young voters could deliver the fatal blow to Biden’s campaign

Sunday 10 December 2023 16:21 , Bevan Hurley

More good economic news doesn’t appear to be getting through to young voters, The Independent’s Andrew Feinberg writes.

They’re not happy with President Biden and it’s unclear whether his campaign is ready to win them back.

Full story below.

Young voters could deliver the fatal blow to Biden’s campaign

Appeals court upholds Trump’s gag order in election conspiracy case

Sunday 10 December 2023 14:30 , Oliver O'Connell

A federal appeals court has upheld key parts of a gag order that blocks Donald Trump from attacking witnesses in his election conspiracy case.

The gag order put in place by US District Judge Tanya Chutkan prohibited the former president from launching a “pretrial smear campaign” as he seeks the 2024 Republican nomination for president, the judge wrote in October.

Federal appellate court judges in Washington DC on Friday agreed that some of Mr Trump’s public statements “pose a significant and imminent threat to the fair and orderly adjudication of the ongoing criminal proceeding, warranting a speech-constraining protective order,” but said that the initial order “sweeps in more protected speech than is necessary.”

Mr Trump’s attorneys argued that the order unconstitutionally interferes with his “core political speech” as he runs for president while defending himself from several lawsuits and four criminal prosecutions, including two cases surrounding his alleged attempts to unlawfully overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.

Appeals court upholds Trump’s gag order in election conspiracy case

Media threatened with criminal charges if Trump re-elected

Sunday 10 December 2023 11:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump’s campaign of retribution and political prosecution is not merely “rhetoric” but a “dead serious” threat to his opponents and the media, according to his own allies.

On his War Room podcast on Tuesday, former White House adviser and far-right activist Steve Bannon asked Trump loyalist Kash Patel whether he can “deliver the goods” and “get rolling on prosecutions” should Mr Trump win election in 2024.

“And I want the Morning Joe producers that watch us and all the producers to watch us – this is not just rhetoric. We’re absolutely dead serious,” Bannon said. “The deep state, the administrative state, the fourth branch of government never mentioned in the Constitution, is going to be taken apart, brick by brick, and the people that did these evil deeds will be held accountable and prosecuted, criminal prosecutions.”

Trump allies threaten criminal charges against media if elected

Sunday 10 December 2023 08:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump claims his bizarre gaffes are sarcastic

Pence added to the witness list for Trump’s Georgia election trial

Sunday 10 December 2023 05:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Former Vice President Mike Pence has been added to the witness list for former President Donald Trump’s election interference trial in Georgia.

Prosecutors added Mr Pence to the list of those who could be called to testify at trial, CNN reported citing sources with knowledge of filings still under seal.

Mr Pence, who recently dropped out of the race for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, has appeared before a federal grand jury in the investigation led by Special Counsel Jack Smith into Mr Trump’s attempts to overturn the 2020 election, which the ex-president falsely argues was stolen. But the former vice president, Indiana governor and congressman has so far not played a large part in the Georgia proceedings.

While witness lists filed by the prosecutors in Georgia’s Fulton County haven’t been made public and are still under seal, CNN points to sources saying that the newest iteration of the witness list included about 150 names, with Mr Pence being one of them.

Mike Pence added to witness list for Trump’s Georgia election trial

Trump says he will be a dictator and abuse power ‘on day one’

Sunday 10 December 2023 02:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump has said he will be a dictator “just for day one” of his presidency if he is re-elected amid a spate of grim warnings over consequences if the twice-impeached and criminally indicted former president wins the 2024 presidential election.

Mr Trump appeared to duck the question twice during a Fox News townhall on Tuesday when Sean Hannity categorically asked him to say that he will not abuse presidential powers if he wins the elections.

“Do you in any way have any plans whatsoever, if re-elected president, to abuse power?” Hannity asked. “To break the law? To use the government to go after people?”

Trump says he will be a dictator ‘on day one’ if elected president again

Analysis: Was the DeSantis campaign doomed from the start?

Saturday 9 December 2023 23:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Ron DeSantis entered the Republican primary this spring as the preeminent challenger to former President Donald Trump and as the heir apparent taking on the old guard.

The Florida governor was “Trump without the baggage,” a far-right fighter ready to rumble with the “radical left” and govern more productively than the chaotic reality TV star, blustering real estate mogul and grievance-filled showman.

In a race against the oldest president in US history, being born in the late 1970s instead of the mid-1940s would also be helpful. Part of the thinking was that Mr DeSantis could win the White House by simply standing next to President Joe Biden on the debate stage and not looking old.

But was his floundering campaign always inevitable? Was Mr DeSantis always too awkward to be president?

Was Ron DeSantis lacklustre campaign doomed from the start?

Appeals court upholds Trump’s gag order in election conspiracy case

Saturday 9 December 2023 21:54 , Bevan Hurley

A federal appeals court has upheld key parts of a gag order that blocks Donald Trump from attacking witnesses in his election conspiracy case.

The gag order put in place by US District Judge Tanya Chutkan prohibited the former president from launching a “pretrial smear campaign” as he seeks the 2024 Republican nomination for president, the judge wrote in October.

Alex Woodward has the full story.

Appeals court upholds Trump’s gag order in election conspiracy case

Trump gaffes ‘not intentional’ and ‘no question’ he has ‘lost a step’, says Megyn Kelly

Saturday 9 December 2023 20:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Following her return as a moderator on 6 December, Megyn Kelly called into Glenn Beck’s show to talk about the fourth Republican debate and the current state of the GOP field.

After praising the performance of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis for having “his best debate yet” and saying that Nikki Haley did not do well because “she shrunk away” and giving her take on the more divisive figures of Vivek Ramaswamy and Chris Christie, Kelly was then asked about Donald Trump.

Beck asked whether the former president and current frontrunner in the race to be the Republican Party’s nominee for 2024 “has faded from where he was in 2020”.

Here’s how she responded:

Megyn Kelly says Trump gaffes intentional, ‘no question’ he has ‘lost a step’

Appeals court upholds Trump’s gag order in election conspiracy case

Saturday 9 December 2023 17:30 , Oliver O'Connell

A federal appeals court has upheld key parts of a gag order that blocks Donald Trump from attacking witnesses in his election conspiracy case.

The gag order put in place by US District Judge Tanya Chutkan prohibited the former president from launching a “pretrial smear campaign” as he seeks the 2024 Republican nomination for president, the judge wrote in October.

Federal appellate court judges in Washington DC on Friday agreed that some of Mr Trump’s public statements “pose a significant and imminent threat to the fair and orderly adjudication of the ongoing criminal proceeding, warranting a speech-constraining protective order,” but said that the initial order “sweeps in more protected speech than is necessary.”

Mr Trump’s attorneys argued that the order unconstitutionally interferes with his “core political speech” as he runs for president while defending himself from several lawsuits and four criminal prosecutions, including two cases surrounding his alleged attempts to unlawfully overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.

Appeals court upholds Trump’s gag order in election conspiracy case

Watch: Home Depot founder says time for Trump ‘has come and gone'

Saturday 9 December 2023 16:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Fox News star admits GOP has no ‘concrete evidence’ to impeach Biden

Saturday 9 December 2023 16:02 , Bevan Hurley

Fox News White House Correspondent Peter Doocy has admitted on air that House Republicans have no “concrete evidence” to impeach President Joe Biden.

Gustaf Kilander has the story.

Fox News star admits GOP has no ‘concrete evidence’ to impeach Biden

Watch: Trump lawyer Alina Habba previews Trump’s testimony on Monday

Saturday 9 December 2023 15:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Prosecutors want to use Trump’s embrace of rioters at his DC trial

Saturday 9 December 2023 14:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Federal prosecutors have given notice that they plan to introduce evidence of former president Donald Trump’s embrace of and support for charged and convicted January 6 rioters as a way to demonstrate what he intended to happen when a riotous mob of his supporters stormed the US Capitol to prevent certification of his 2020 election loss.

In a court document filed on Tuesday, prosecutors working under special counsel Jack Smith said that some of the evidence they intend to present is from before or after the criminal conspiracy in which the ex-president is charged with participating, but stressed that the evidence is admissible under rules allowing the government to use it to “establish his motive, intent, preparation, knowledge, absence of mistake, and common plan”.

In particular, prosecutors say they will use evidence that predates the alleged conspiracy at issue to demonstrate Mr Trump’s “encouragement of violence,” including his now-infamous exhortation to the extremist group known as the Proud Boys that they should “stand back and stand by” during his 29 September 2020 debate with now-president Joe Biden.

Prosecutors want to use Trump’s embrace of rioters at his DC trial

If Trump wasn’t running, Biden isn’t sure he would run again

Saturday 9 December 2023 11:30 , Oliver O'Connell

President Joe Biden has told a group of Democratic donors on Tuesday that he might not have decided to stand for re-election at 81 years of age if former president Donald Trump wasn’t seeking to reclaim the presidency in next year’s general election.

Mr Biden, the oldest person to ever serve as America’s chief executive, is looking to be elected to serve another four-year term in the White House, which would end when he is 86 years old. He announced his candidacy for re-election in April, approximately six months after Mr Trump launched his campaign for the Republican Party’s 2024 presidential nomination against the man he lost to three years ago.

The 46th president’s advanced age has led a small number of Democrats to call for him to stand aside in favour of a younger, presumably more vigorous candidate who, in his critics’ telling, would easily best Mr Trump.

But while speaking at a fundraiser outside Boston on Tuesday, Mr Biden said Mr Trump’s persistence on the political scene is why he is not stepping aside in favour of a new generation.

“If Trump wasn’t running, I’m not sure I’d be running. But we cannot let him win,” he said.

Biden ‘not sure’ he’d run in 2024 if Trump wasn’t running: ‘We cannot let him win’

Analysis: Nikki Haley’s star is rising. But can she catch up to Trump?

Saturday 9 December 2023 07:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Nikki Haley is known for a lot of firsts — the first Asian American woman to serve as governor in US history, the first Indian American member of a presidential Cabinet, the first woman of colour to run for the GOP nomination — but will she become the first woman to serve as US president?

Few think so.

Kelly Rissman reports.

Nikki Haley’s star is rising. But can she catch up to Trump?

Timeline: Donald Trump’s rivalry with Ron DeSantis

Saturday 9 December 2023 03:30 , Oliver O'Connell

A shaky start to Florida governor Ron DeSantis’ campaign has continued to disappoint even though he was predicted to be ex-president Donald Trump’s primary challenger for the Republican nomination.

Mr DeSantis has seemingly failed to rise to the occasion of challenging Mr Trump after months of an increasingly tense back-and-forth.

But there was a time when the two got along swimmingly.

During his own tenure in the White House in 2018, Mr Trump loudly cheered Mr DeSantis’s bid for the governor’s mansion, throwing his weight behind the former congressman and appearing at rallies to stump for him.

But as Mr DeSantis rose through the ranks and was soon perceived as a potential 2024 candidate, Mr Trump changed his tune.

The ex-president has yelled a steady stream of insults and barbed nicknames, most of which Mr DeSantis wisely allowed to pass without public comment, though in more recent months he’s returned a comeback.

Here is a timeline of their disintegrating relationship

Democrat megadonor throws in with Haley to help thwart Trump

Saturday 9 December 2023 01:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Just a week after JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon urged even liberal Democrats to help Nikki Haley’s campaign to give Republicans an alternative to Donald Trump, one Democrat megadonor has done just that.

Reid Hoffman, the billionaire co-founder of LinkedIn, donated $250,000 to a super PAC supporting the former UN ambassador’s 2024 campaign to be the GOP nominee in 2024.

The New York Times confirmed the donation had been made with Dmitri Mehlhorn, a political adviser to Mr Hoffman.

Democrat megadonor gives to Nikki Haley super PAC to help thwart Trump

Friday 8 December 2023 23:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Explained: When are the Iowa caucuses and why are they so important?

Friday 8 December 2023 23:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Gustaf Kilander writes:

The reason why the Iowa caucuses matter is the same reason why money has value: Because people believe it does.

Over just a few decades, the Iowa caucuses went from a local affair to a national circus, with some presidential candidates gambling their entire campaigns on their fortunes in the corn-covered Hawkeye State. The next iteration of the is set to take place on 15 January 2024.

Read on...

When are the Iowa caucuses and why are they so important?

Watch: Trump lawyer Alina Habba previews Trump’s testimony on Monday

Friday 8 December 2023 22:45 , Oliver O'Connell

‘That face’: Megyn Kelly panel caught on hot mic mocking DeSantis

Friday 8 December 2023 22:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Former Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly, one of the moderators of the fourth Republican presidential primary debate, was caught on a hot mic appearing to mock the appearance of Florida governor Ron DeSantis alongside her panellists.

Josh Marcus reports.

Megyn Kelly panel caught on hot mic mocking Ron DeSantis after GOP debate

Watch: Home Depot founder says time for Trump ‘has come and gone'

Friday 8 December 2023 22:23 , Oliver O'Connell

Friday 8 December 2023 22:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Congressman mocks Santos, McCarthy, McHenry [and others] with ‘In Memoriam’ video

Friday 8 December 2023 21:39 , Oliver O'Connell

RNC pauses participation in GOP primary debates

Friday 8 December 2023 21:30 , Oliver O'Connell

The Republican National Committee has paused its participation in the 2024 GOP primary debates.

a 16-member internal group made the decision on Friday. Any further debates will be hosted by networks without the committee’s involvement.

ABC and CNN have debates scheduled in Iowa and New Hampshire ahead of their respective caucus and primary.

“We have held four successful debates across the country with the most conservative partners in the history of a Republican primary. We have no RNC debates scheduled in January and any debates currently scheduled are not affiliated with the RNC,” the RNC’s Committee on Presidential Debates said in a statement. “It is now time for Republican primary voters to decide who will be our next President and candidates are free to use any forum or format to communicate to voters as they see fit.”

Trump reacts to DC gag order

Friday 8 December 2023 21:06 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump has reacted to a Washington DC court’s decision to largely uphold the gag order imposed on those involved in his federal election interference case trial.

The former president took to Truth Social on Friday afternoon to complain and restate his claim about the January 6 House select committee’s supposed deletion of evidence.

He wrote:

An Appeals Court has just largely upheld the Gag Order against me in the ridiculous J6 Case, where the Unselect January 6th Committee deleted and destroyed almost all Documents and Evidence, saying that I can be barred from talking and, in effect, telling the truth. In other words, people can speak violently and viciously against me, or attack me in any form, but I am not allowed to respond, in kind. What is becoming of our First Amendment, what is becoming of our Country? We will appeal this decision!

There was a more sober reaction from Steven Cheung, his official spokesperson: “Today, the DC Circuit Court panel, with each judge appointed by a Democrat President, determined that a huge part of Judge Chutkan’s extraordinarily overbroad gag order was unconstitutional. President Trump will continue to fight for the First Amendment rights of tens of millions of Americans to hear from the leading Presidential candidate at the height of his campaign. The Biden-led witch hunts against President Trump and the American people will fail.”

Nevada indicts six Republicans over fake elector plot

Friday 8 December 2023 21:00 , Oliver O'Connell

A grand jury in Nevada has voted to indict six Republicans, including the party’s state chair, after they falsely pledged the state’s electoral votes to Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election.

Nevada’s Democratic Attorney General Aaron Ford announced felony charges on Wednesday, marking another round of state-level criminal charges against participants of a so-called “fake elector” plot that sought to overturn Joe Biden’s victory, a scheme central to federal and state charges against the former president.

“When the efforts to undermine faith in our democracy began after the 2020 election, I made it clear that I would do everything in my power to defend the institutions of our nation and our state,” Mr Ford said in a statement.

“We cannot allow attacks on democracy to go unchallenged,” he added. “Today’s indictments are the product of a long and thorough investigation, and as we pursue this prosecution, I am confident that our judicial system will see justice done.”

Alex Woodward reports:

Six Republicans in Nevada charged in fake elector scheme to overturn Trump’s loss

ICYMI: Hunter Biden hit with new criminal charges by DOJ

Friday 8 December 2023 20:30 , Oliver O'Connell

The president’s son Hunter Biden has been hit with a set of nine new tax-related federal charges on Thursday.

According to court documents, the new charges were filed in the US District Court for the Central District of California by Special Counsel David Weiss.

Mr Weiss and his team are alleging violations of three separate portions of the US tax code, including failure to pay taxes, failure to file, evading assessment, and filing a fraudulent form.

According to the indictment, Mr Biden allegedly “engaged in a four-year scheme to not pay at least $1.4 million in self-assessed federal taxes he owed for tax years 2016 through 2019” and “spent millions of dollars on an extravagant lifestyle rather than paying his tax bills”

Read on...

Hunter Biden hit with new criminal charges by Department of Justice

Friday 8 December 2023 20:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Trump diagnoses another case of ‘derangement syndrome'

Friday 8 December 2023 19:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Former president Donald Trump — who should never be mistaken for a medical professional — has diagnosed another case of Trump Derangement Syndrome, having previously identified former Republican Rep Liz Cheney as suffering from the disease.

On Friday lunchtime he wrote on Truth Social:

Sloppy Chris Christie is not fit to run for President. He is suffering from Trump Derangement Syndrome. According to all, he came in LAST in the debate, and I came in FIRST, as I have in all of the debates, without even being there. MAGA!

Symptoms are believed to include frequent bouts of common sense, truth, and incredulity.

BREAKING: Appeals court upholds Trump’s gag order in election conspiracy case

Friday 8 December 2023 19:27 , Oliver O'Connell

A federal appeals court has upheld key parts of a gag order that blocks Donald Trump from attacking witnesses in his election conspiracy case.

The gag order put in place by US District Judge Tanya Chutkan prohibited the former president from launching a “pretrial smear campaign” as he seeks the 2024 Republican nomination for president, the judge wrote in October.

Mr Trump’s attorneys argued that the order unconstitutionally interferes with his “core political speech” as he defends himself from several lawsuits and four criminal prosecutions, including two cases surrounding his alleged attempts to unlawfully overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.

Alex Woodward has the details of the ruling by the court:

Appeals court upholds Trump’s gag order in election conspiracy case

Trump’s fake electors in Wisconsin agree he lost in 2020

Friday 8 December 2023 19:00 , Oliver O'Connell

A group of 10 Republicans who acted as “fake electors” in the 2020 presidential election and signed official-looking paperwork claiming Donald Trump won Wisconsin have settled a lawsuit against them.

They have agreed to withdraw their inaccurate filings, acknowledge Joe Biden won the presidency and not serve as presidential electors in 2024 or in any election where Trump is on the ballot.

The 10 fake electors will send a statement to the government offices that received the Electoral College votes saying that their actions were “part of an attempt to improperly overturn the 2020 presidential election results”.

Read the full article

The ‘most obnoxious blowhard in America’ — and no, it’s not the former president...

Friday 8 December 2023 18:40 , Oliver O'Connell

Chris Christie branded Vivek Ramaswamy the “most obnoxious blowhard in America” as he angrily slammed his Republican rival during the party’s latest debate.

The former New Jersey governor lost his cool and attacked Mr Ramaswamy over his stance on ending Russia’s unprovoked war in Ukraine, claiming he wanted to appease Vladimir Putin and trusted Moscow over China.

Graeme Massie has the story.

Christie dubs Ramaswamy ‘most obnoxious blowhard in America’ in GOP debate

Megyn Kelly says ‘America will burn’ if Trump is jailed before election

Friday 8 December 2023 18:20 , Oliver O'Connell

Towards the end of her discussion with Glenn Beck on his show, Megyn Kelly was asked if she thought Donald Trump was going to jail.

Here’s her reply:

I'm starting to worry. I didn't — he definitely will get convicted, in multiple jurisdictions. But Andy McCarthy, who is very smart on these things, was pointing out that Judge Chutkan in DC, in the federal case, on J6, you know she hates him. In DC, the jury is going to hate them.

That he thinks there's a — there's some pretty good odds, she will not release him from jail, pending appeal after his lengthy conviction.

Asked what that would do to the system, Kelly said that was why Republicans need “an undercard”, to which Beck added: “Somebody has to run all the way to the end”.

He then asked: “Is that just chaos in the streets?”

Kelly responded:

America will burn if they put Trump in jail before this election. It will burn. I don't want it.

...

I just see the reality, the same as you do. And we will need the National Guard city to city. You know, MAGA is going to rise up. And there will be a lot of sympathizers who understand it, and won't try to stop it.

They cannot be allowed to do that.

What did we learn from the fourth GOP debate?

Friday 8 December 2023 18:00 , Oliver O'Connell

The fourth Republican debate is over, and what did we learn? Not much, beyond how little these people seem to like each other.

Wednesday night’s showdown in Alabama touched on issues which previous debates skipped over — most glaringly, the GOP’s culture war against transgender Americans. But the main feature of the last meetup of the four underdog Republican candidates seems to have been the animosity which spilled out into view at multiple points.

Obviously, the frontrunner, Donald Trump, was once again absent. So none of this really mattered in the grand scheme of the 2024 Republican primary; he is the wide favourite to win the nomination, and remains so after tonight. But what tonight’s debate really did was illustrate the greater state of the modern Republican Party, and what kind of candidate everyone who is not Donald Trump, the Republican insiders, believe their party wants to see — if not now, then in 2028.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at the last Republican debate of the year, and probably the election cycle, as we prepare for the Iowa caucuses next month.

Key takeaways from GOP debate: Ramaswamy branded a ‘blowhard’ and Haley under attack

NY fraud trial: Bartov earning almost $900k for testimony

Friday 8 December 2023 17:50 , Oliver O'Connell

Eli Bartov, the accounting professor testifying as an expert for Donald Trump’s defence at his New York fraud trial, says he charges $1,350/hour and has worked on the civil fraud case for approximately 650 hours.

That means he’s getting at least $877,500 for his work, paid for by the Trump Organization and Trump’s Save America PAC.

Mike Sisak of the Associated Press notes that the meter is still running as cross-examination by counsel for the New York Attorney General’s office has only just begun.

Mr Bartov will return to the stand on Tuesday after Mr Trump testifies again on Monday.

Megyn Kelly: ‘No question Trump has lost a step’

Friday 8 December 2023 17:36 , Oliver O'Connell

Following her return as a debate moderator on Wednesday, Megyn Kelly called into Glenn Beck’s show to talk about the debate and who won and who lost (Ron DeSantis and Nikki Haley respectively).

Asked by Beck whether former president Donald Trump “has faded from where he was in 2020”, Kelly responded:

Yeah. I do.

I mean, I would take him over Joe Biden any day of the week.

I don't think he will fill out this term, never mind the second.

But there's no question that Trump has lost a step. Or multiple steps. He is confusing Joe Biden from Obama.

I know he's saying, he intentionally did that. Go back and look at the clips. It wasn't intentional. Anyone could have a slip of the tongue. It's happened to him repeatedly.

The reference about how someone will get us into World War II.

Confusing countries. Confusing cities where -- it's happening more and more. With all due respect to Trump. This is what happens when you're 77 years old. Trump seems inhuman, but he's not inhuman. He's a human. He's a man. DeSantis didn't lie — Father Time spares no one —was a good one.

So, look, if it's between Trump and Biden, I don't think there's any question who is more fit, more capable.

But are we really going to pretend that Donald Trump is just as vibrant and mentally sharp as he was [in 2016]? Well, okay.

‘Politically homeless’ Kinzinger will vote for Biden if Trump wins GOP nomination

Friday 8 December 2023 17:19 , Oliver O'Connell

Via The Takeout podcast from CBS News:

Former Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger describes himself as politically "homeless," at odds with a party he views as "anti-constitutionalist." He believes former President Donald Trump will be the 2024 Republican nominee — and if that's the case, Kinzinger intends to vote for President Biden.

...

"If a run as an independent for Liz Cheney damages Donald Trump, then I think it's smart. Go for it, right?" Kinzinger said. "The only concern I have, and this is with any third-party attempt is, you know, are you going to just take away from Joe Biden?...Donald Trump is the big threat to the country in 2024."

...

Asked about Trump's sizable polling lead in the race for GOP nominee, Kinzinger said, "If I was betting Vegas odds right now, I would put all my money [that] Donald Trump will be the nominee."

DC Circuit sets deadline for Trump team to file appeal paperwork

Friday 8 December 2023 16:49 , Oliver O'Connell

The District of Columbia Circuit clerk sets a 26 December 2023 deadline for filing various key pieces of paperwork in Donald Trump’s appeal of Judge Tanya Chutkan’s decision denying his motions to dismiss Special Counsel Jack Smith’s federal election interference case.

This is important considering the scheduled 4 March 2024 trial date and the timing of any appeal or Supreme Court case.

Here’s the background to the Trump team’s efforts to dismiss or delay the case:

Trump is running out of ways to stall his federal election trial

Could Colorado’s highest court kick Trump off the 2024 ballot?

Friday 8 December 2023 16:15 , Oliver O'Connell

A legal effort to disqualify Donald Trump from Colorado’s ballots in 2024 elections could end up in front of the US Supreme Court after arguments in front of the state’s highest court on Wednesday.

The case in Colorado is among dozens of legal challenges across the country that throw Mr Trump’s eligibility into question, pointing to a constitutional amendment that prohibits anyone who “engaged in insurrection or rebellion” from holding public office.

So far, no courts have found Mr Trump ineligible. But after a week-long trial last month, a state judge in Colorado ruled that while the former president supported the insurrection, a ban from office doesn’t apply to presidents.

An appeal to the state’s Supreme Court, where all seven justices are Democratic appointees, challenges not only whether the former president was responsible for provoking his supporters to riot at the US Capitol on January 6, but also whether that should make him ineligible for returning to the White House.

Alex Woodward reports.

Can Colorado’s highest court kick Trump off the ballot?

C is for Covfefe: The ABCs of Donald Trump

Friday 8 December 2023 15:50 , Kelly Rissman

Donald Trump is well-known for a lot of things: his divisiveness, his career in real estate, The Apprentice, his lawsuits, for being the only president to be impeached twice. But perhaps nothing has infiltrated society more than Mr Trump’s unique linguistic style.

Whether he’s posting on Truth Social, speaking at a campaign rally, or testifying in court, Mr Trump never seems to be at a loss for words — and sometimes, he even makes up new ones.

From uttering gaffes to tweeting typos (like “covfefe”) to misreading words (like “Nambia”) to dismissing his opponent with a harsh nickname, his terminology quickly turns iconic.

Here, The Independent offers a dictionary guide to the Mr Trump’s most memorable phrases:

C is for Covfefe: The ABCs of Donald Trump