News Round-Up: May 14, 2019

Dan Tai

Some news items you might have missed:

Instagram: Dan Tai shields his eyes from the sun (…or is he just flexing for us?…) #InstaHunk

NY Times: Donald Trump Jr. and the Republican-controlled Senate Intelligence Committee reached a deal on Tuesday for the president’s eldest son to sit for a private interview with senators in the coming weeks.

• Daily Telegraph: Former Newcastle Jets player, Andy Brennan, becomes the first Australian male soccer player to come out as gay.

JoeMyGod: Televangelist Pat Robertson says God will destroy America if The Equality Act passes. Just like when she was going to wipe us out after marriage equality and Gay Days at Disney.

Bloomberg: Trump Tower, the 36-year-old Manhattan residence, is now considered one of the least desirable luxury buildings in New York City. Over the past two years, sales of condo units in the building have taken losses of up to 20 percent.

• New digital series Model Boy explores “the lives of the wide-eyed young men lured into New York’s notoriously fickle high fashion modeling world.”

Check out the first episode below.

Trump Junior: “There Are No Crimes, Only Things People Did In ‘Past Lives'”

During an appearance on Fox & Friends this morning, Donald Trump Jr. repeated his father's claim that the Mueller investigation is a 'witch hunt' and said folks like former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort were 'regular guys' who couldn't afford large lawyer fees.
Donald Trump Jr.

During an appearance on Fox & Friends this morning, Donald Trump Jr. repeated his father’s claim that the Mueller investigation is a ‘witch hunt’ and said folks like former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort were ‘regular guys’ who couldn’t afford large lawyer fees.

He added that ‘no actual crimes’ have been found by the investigation, only “things that people did in past lives.”

“I’ve been hearing this for two years — everyone is going to jail. Meanwhile, they haven’t actually found anything that relates to this. What they did was put incredible pressure on regular guys that couldn’t afford a million dollars in legal fees, and got them to slip up, say something incorrectly. They pretended they were their friends. There are no actual crimes. There’s only things that people did in past lives, in 2006 before we even thought we ever get into this crazy world, and that’s what it is. They’re touting these things as victories — it’s not; and it has been a total farce, the greatest witch hunt in American history.”

I’m not really sure what ‘past lives’ he’s referring to, but if you broke the law, you broke it. And they have found crimes, and folks have pleaded guilty to them.

And the dates of these crimes range from the mid-2000s to as recent as 2016. So, ‘past lives’ sounds a lot longer ago than reality shows.

Plus, if the mid-2000s is too far back to consider crimes, why do the Trumps keep bringing up Bill Clinton’s alleged affairs in the 1990s?

Financial experts say Manafort is worth upwards of $50 million, so I don’t know that I would call him a ‘regular’ guy who can’t afford his legal fees.

Junior also claimed there are “more hoax hate crimes” than there are actual hate crimes.

Congresswoman-Elect Claps Back At Trump Junior

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

After one of the biggest upsets in the political world, Democratic Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (N.Y.) is not shy about clapping back at any detractors.

For some reason, Donald Trump Jr. thinks he can take shots at the soon-to-be Congresswoman.

She took a moment to point out to the Junior Trumpster the illogic of such moves.

News Round-Up: November 9, 2018

InstaHunk Joel Green leads off this installment of "News Round-Up"
Joel Green (via Instagram)

Some news items you might have missed:

• Whether it’s ‘fitness motivation’ or a bribe to get you to come read this news round-up, you have to admit InstaHunk Joel Green (above) is crushing it.

• Kansas’ New Democratic governor has announced she will restore protections for LGBTQ folks that her predecessor repealed.

• One more LGBTQ victory from Tuesday night’s elections – Hennepin County chose openly gay Dave ‘Hutch’ Hutchinson to be its next Sheriff over incumbent anti-immigration, pro-Trump incumbent Rich Stanek.

• Many were stunned when Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum came up short Tuesday night in his bid to become the next governor of Florida considering he was an average of 6 points ahead of his opponent in the polls. It now appears his and the high-profile race for U.S. Senator are headed for recounts.

• Last year, Donald Trump Jr. testified that he never informed his father about the now-infamous meeting at Trump Tower with a Russian government attorney. New York Magazine reports the Special Counsel investigation has obtained proof that Junior might have lied. Don Jr. has apparently been telling close confidants he expects to be indicted any day now.

• ‘Gays for Trump’ founder Peter Boykin lost his North Carolina House race Tuesday bigly.

• International superstar Andrea Bocelli proves he’s still at the top of his game as his new album ‘Sì’ debuts at #1 on the Billboard 200 chart.

His duet “Fall On Me” with his (gorgeous) son, Matteo, is exquisite.

And here’s his collaboration with pop star Dua Lipa  – “If Only” – from the new collection.

Trump Allegedly Called Junior A “F*ck-Up” For Revealing Trump Tower Russian Meeting

Don Trump Jr. (L) and Donald Trump(R)

According to the New York Daily News, Donald Trump was uber-angry at his junior namesake for releasing emails about his Trump Tower meeting with a Russian government attorney.

President Trump blasted his firstborn son as a “f–kup” after learning he had released emails about a controversial Trump Tower meeting attended by a Kremlin-connected lawyer who had promised dirt on Hillary Clinton, according to Omarosa Manigault Newman’s forthcoming book.

Manigault Newman, who was unceremoniously fired from the White House last December, says the President erupted in anger after she met with him last July and told him she was “sorry to hear” Donald Trump Jr. had posted screengrabs on Twitter of his email exchanges with British publicist Rob Goldstone.

“He is such a f–kup,” Trump said of his son, according to Manigault Newman’s tell-all book, a copy of which was obtained by the Daily News. “He screwed up again, but this time, he’s screwing us all, big-time!” A White House spokeswoman did not immediately return a request for comment. A spokesman for Trump Jr. did not immediately respond either.

White House Lawyers Admit Trump Dictated Cover-Up Letter For His Son

Don Trump Jr. (L) and Donald Trump (R)

Wow.

In a newly released memo, Donald Trump’s lawyers admitted for the first time that Trump dictated a statement to deceive the public about his son’s June 2016 Trump Tower meeting with a Russian government lawyer.

From CNN:

In a confidential letter to special counsel Robert Mueller in January, President Donald Trump’s legal team acknowledged for the first time that Trump “dictated” the first misleading statement put out about his son’s controversial 2016 meeting with Russians at Trump Tower.

“You have received all of the notes, communications and testimony indicating that the President dictated a short but accurate response to the New York Times article on behalf of his son, Donald Trump, Jr.,” the letter said, according to The New York Times, which published a copy of it. “His son then followed up by making a full public disclosure regarding the meeting, including his public testimony that there was nothing to the meeting and certainly no evidence of collusion.”

Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow, NBC interview, 7/16/17: “The President was not — did not — draft the response. The response came from Donald Trump Jr. and — I’m sure — in consultation with his lawyer. … Let me say this — but I do want to be clear — that the President was not involved in the drafting of the statement and did not issue the statement. It came from Donald Trump Jr.”

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders, daily press briefing, 8/1/17: “He certainly didn’t dictate, but he — like I said, he weighed in, offered suggestion like any father would do.”

The White House has denied any involvement in the misleading statement which originally described the meeting was about child adoption. Instead, emails showed Russian actors were offering dirt on Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Trump Jr. took the meeting after responding, “I love it!”

Vanessa Trump Files For Divorce From Donald Trump Jr.

The New York Daily News reports that Donald Trump Jr. and wife Vanessa are heading to divorce court:

Like father, like son.

Donald Trump Jr.’s wife has filed for divorce.

Vanessa Trump married Trump Jr. in 2005. They have five children.

President Trump has been divorced twice.

The reasons for the divorce filed Thursday in Manhattan Supreme Court were not clear. The divorce was listed as “uncontested,” indicating the split was amicable. Trump Jr. has been traveling extensively while running his father’s business with his brother, Eric.

The “uncontested” aspect means she’s not expecting a legal battle over custody of the couple’s five children or their assets.

I get no glee from this. I don’t think we should make fun of the parents of five children divorcing.

One last thing, though.

Some folks on Twitter have suggested the possibility that this could be a ploy to move assets out of the family name in case serious legal action against the Trumps were to occur.

Hmm…

Publicist Says He Used “Hot-Button Language” To “Puff Up” His Email Regarding Russian Lawyer Meeting To Trump Jr.

Donald Trump Jr.

Rob Goldstone, the British publicist who was instrumental in setting up the now infamous meeting between Donald Trump Jr. and a Russian government lawyer, now says he used “hot-button language” to “puff up” his email to Trump Jr. in order to get him to respond.

From The Hill:

“I should have listened to that little voice in my head. But I never thought in a million years that an email I wrote in about three minutes to Don Jr. would be examined by the world many times over. I just needed to get him to respond,” Goldstone told The Sunday Times in London.

Goldstone, a former tabloid journalist who is now living in Thailand, is the manager for Emin Agalarov, an Azerbaijani-Russian entertainment artist who has boasted of having a close relationship with President Trump.

“If I’m guilty of anything, and I hate the word guilty, it’s hyping the message and going the extra mile for my clients. Using hot-button language to puff up the information I had been given,” Goldstone said. “I didn’t make up the details, I just made them sound more interesting.”

Goldstone exchanged a series of emails with Trump Jr. in 2016 to set up a meeting with a Russian lawyer who was said to have damaging information on then-Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

“If it’s what you say I love it especially later in the summer,” Trump Jr. responded to Goldstone, regarding the meeting.

Goldstone, Trump Jr., White House adviser Jared Kushner and then-campaign chairman Paul Manafort all attended the meeting.

Virginia: Trump Jr. Urges Republicans To Vote For Republican On Wrong Day – TWICE

Donald Trump Jr.

As voters in Virginia are heading to the polls today to vote, Donald Trump Jr. thought he would do his part to help the Republican candidate for governor, Ed Gillespie.

The junior Trump tweeted out messages like, “Let’s take @EdWGillespie across the finish line tomorrow! Virginia: get out and vote for Ed  & entire GOP ticket #VAGov #VA.”

The only problem is: today is the election, not tomorrow.

And Jr. tweeted the wrong day TWICE!

Needless to say, the Twitterverse had a field day:

Bloomberg: Trump Jr. Hinted At Repealing Russian Sanctions “If We Come To Power”

Don Trump Jr. (L) Donald Trump (R)

Bloomberg reports that Natalia Veselnitskaya, the Russian government lawyer who met with Donald Trump Jr. at Trump Tower last year, says Don Jr. indicated a Trump administration would be open to re-examining a law targeting Russia if they “came to power.”

Veselnitskaya said she went to the New York meeting to show Trump campaign officials that major Democratic donors had evaded U.S. taxes and to lobby against the so-called Magnitsky law that punishes Russian officials for the murder of a Russian tax accountant who accused the Kremlin of corruption.

“Looking ahead, if we come to power, we can return to this issue and think what to do about it,’’ Trump Jr. said of the 2012 law, she recalled. “I understand our side may have messed up, but it’ll take a long time to get to the bottom of it,” he added, according to her.

Veselnitskaya also said Trump Jr. requested financial documents showing that money that allegedly evaded U.S. taxes had gone to Clinton’s campaign. She didn’t have any and described the 20-minute meeting as a failure.

A lawyer for Trump Jr., Alan Futerfas, said the president’s son had no comment about the interview, the first time Veselnitskaya has offered details about what was discussed at Trump Tower in Manhattan. In the past, Trump Jr. has said that he had wasted his time seeing the lawyer because she provided no useful information.

You’ll recall Junior took the meeting having been told Veselnitskaya had dirt that would incriminate Clinton.

Trump Jr. agreed to the meeting saying, “If it’s what you say I love it especially later in the summer.”