Donald Trump enjoys poll bump after Kim Jong-un summit

The majority of Americans believe Donald Trump’s summit with Kim Jong-un was a good idea, according to a new poll, sending the president’s approval rating to its highest point this year. Days earlier it emerged that Mr Trump’s popularity among Republicans after 500 days in office is second only to that of George W Bush,…

‘I guess I’m just an old-fashioned person’: a potted history of Bill Clinton’s disastrous book tour

President-turned-thriller-writer Bill Clinton has put his foot firmly in his mouth as he seeks to promote his novel, The President is Missing. He has repeatedly misspoke when asked the inevitable questions about his affair with intern Monica Lewinsky which overshadowed his time in the White House.  Even when the conversation moves away from that topic, Clinton…

Trump lawyer Giuliani says president can probably pardon himself

Rudy Giuliani, Donald Trump’s lawyer, said yesterday that the US leader «probably» has the power to pardon himself as the Russia investigation continues to dog his presidency. His remarks came after the publication of a leaked memo obtained and published by the New York Times on Saturday in which the president’s legal team argued that…

Google blames Wikipedia for linking California Republicans to Nazism

Google is blaming «vandalism» at Wikipedia for search results that incorrectly said the ideology of the California Republican Party included «Nazism.» The results appeared in a Google information box screen-captured by Vice Media on Thursday. Google quickly removed the section on ideology. Wikipedia’s publicly available change log shows that an anonymous user added the term «Nazism» to the entry for the California…

US justice department expands probe into origins of FBI’s Russia investigation after public pressure from Donald Trump 

The US justice department has expanded a probe into whether the FBI acted with political bias when investigating the Trump campaign’s ties with Russia after pressure from the president.  The department said its inspector general had been tasked with “determining whether there was any impropriety or political motivation” in how the FBI acted before the…

British-based academic and FBI informant ‘approached Trump campaign advisers about Russia ties before election’

A British-based US academic approached Donald Trump campaign figures before the 2016 election to investigate suspected Russia links for the FBI, according to American newspapers.  The New York Times and The Washington Post have both reported that the US informant made the approaches as suspicions rose in American intelligence community.  Carter Page and George Papadopoulos, two…

Donald Trump’s midterm election hopes surge amid foreign policy wins and booming economy

Donald Trump’s hopes of avoiding a Republican wipeout at the mid-term elections have markedly improved on the back of foreign policy wins and a booming economy.  One poll has put the Democrats just three points ahead of the Republicans, down from a 16-point lead in February, with the president’s approval ratings ticking up.  Meanwhile the turnaround…

John McCain does not want Donald Trump to attend his funeral 

John McCain, the ailing Republican senator, does not want President Donald Trump to attend his funeral, the White House has been told. Instead, his associates have requested Vice President Mike Pence be present for the ceremony when the time comes, with former presidents Barack Obama and George W Bush giving eulogies at the National Cathedral in…

Donald Trump suggests veterans affairs candidate could withdraw after ‘ugly and disgusting’ vetting process

President Donald Trump has suggested his embattled nominee to lead the veteran’s affairs department could withdraw his candidacy, after lashing out at the «ugly and disgusting» vetting process that saw serious concerns raised about Ronny Jackson’s drinking and management. Dr Jackson, 50, has found his candidacy to lead the second largest department in the federal…

Donald Trump urges senators to back Mike Pompeo ahead of crunch vote

Donald Trump has led a last-minute scramble for votes amid fears his choice for America’s top diplomat could be handed a once-in-a-century snub by a committee of senators.  Mike Pompeo, proposed as Mr Trump’s new secretary of state, was struggling to secure enough support on the Senate’s foreign relations committee to approve his nomination.  No…

Republican House speaker Paul Ryan announces retirement

Paul Ryan, the most senior Republican in the House, will not be seeking re-election in November, he announced on Wednesday. The departure of Mr Ryan, a close ally of Donald Trump, signals the tough uphill battle the Republicans have in the midterm elections.  Mr Ryan, who represents Wisconsin, got off to a rocky start with…

Russia boasts of practising shooting down missiles as US considers air strike on Syria

Russiahas boasted it is practising shooting down missiles as the country’s parliamentary hardliners demanded a military response to any US air strike on Syria.  The Russian defence ministry said that naval jets from its Pacific fleet had conducted exercises to “intercept and destroy a low-flying long-range cruise missile”. Two former Russian officers turned politicians called…

Retired Supreme Court judge calls for repeal of second amendment

A Republican retired Supreme Court judge has called on the United States to repeal the second amendment as a way of dealing with its staggering rates of gun violence. John Paul Stevens, who stepped down in 2010, said the nationwide series of gun control rallies this weekend, March For Our Lives, organised by the survivors…

US government adds controversial citizenship question to census

Americans will be asked about their citizenship in the US census for the first time since 1950, in a move which opponents fear will damage the process of fair elections. It comes after President Donald Trump claimed, without supplying any evidence, that millions of illegal immigrants fraudulently voted in the 2016 presidential election.  The US constitution…

Cambridge Analytica accused of breaking US election law

Cambridge Analytica has been accused of breaking US election law in a formal complaint by a government watchdog group. The data firm, which worked on President Donald Trump’s election campaign, has already been accused of harvesting up to 50 million Facebook profiles without permission. On Monday the US government watchdog group Common Cause filed two…

‘If you want peace, prepare for war’: John Bolton sets out strategy as Trump’s new national security adviser

Donald Trump’s new national security adviser has said America should “prepare for war” to secure peace amid signs a more hardline US foreign policy is emerging.  John Bolton, the former US ambassador to the United Nations, made the comment just hours after being appointed to the role via a tweet from Mr Trump.  «The surest…

Anti-gun campaigners declare ‘major breakthrough’ as US Congress opens the door research on gun violence

The US Congress has opened the door for America’s public health institute to carry out research into mass shootings in what anti-gun campaigners declared a «major breakthrough». It came as 500,000 people were set to descend on Washington today (Saturday) for a rally organised by survivors of the country’s worst high school massacre, which took…

Hillary Clinton says she never meant to cause offence by claiming white women voted Republican because of their husbands

Hillary Clinton has been forced to publish a lengthy explanation for recent comments that attracted the ire of Republicans and Democrats for suggesting that white women often voted the same way as their husbands. During a trip to India, she also described how her voters tended to come from more wealthy areas than Trump voters….

Trump floats ‘fake memos’ idea as FBI row intensifies 

US President Donald Trump intensified his attack on the FBI on Sunday calling for notes of conversations with him, written by former director James Comey and his recently fired deputy Andrew McCabe, to be dubbed «fake memos».  He also accused Mr Comey of lying under oath during evidence to a senate committee last year and condemned the…

Mississippi set to introduce America’s strictest abortion laws

Mississippi is set to adopt the strictest abortion laws in the US after the state’s lawmakers passed a bill banning the procedure after 15 weeks.  The Gestational Age Act was approved in Mississippi’s state Senate but must face a procedural vote in the House before it can formally be written into law. Phil Bryant, the…

EU ready to fight Trump trade tariffs with taxes on US goods

“Trade wars are hard to win and easy to lose,” Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council, warned today after the EU formally backed the use of retaliatory trade measures against the US. The former prime minister of Poland was delivering a direct riposte to US president Donald Trump, who risks triggering an EU-US…

America’s gun problem: does the answer lie with Wall Street?

In 1994, President Bill Clinton signed a ban on semi-automatic assault-style weapons into law. Eight weeks later the Democrats were out of office and pro-gun lobby group, the National Rifle Association (NRA), claimed it as a scalp. A decade later Congress let the ban lapse. Twitter is littered with the use of “#1994” – a…

MI5 downgrades mainland terror threat from dissident republicans

MI5 has downgraded the threat of a UK mainland terrorist attack by dissident republican groups. The Security Service lowered the assessment from substantial to moderate, which means intelligence officials consider an attack «possible but not likely». Dissident republicans’ chances of hitting the mainland are thought to have weakened after successful operations by police and counter…

US Democrats release counter-memo over Russia probe

Democratic lawmakers released a partially-redacted rebuttal on Saturday of a controversial Republican memo alleging bias and abuse of power in the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election. The Democrats’ document — which President Donald Trump dubbed a «political and legal BUST» — is the latest salvo in a partisan fight over the Russia investigation, which…

Florida Republican’s aide sacked after false suggestion shooting survivors are actors

A Florida lawmaker’s aide has been fired after spreading an untrue conspiracy theory about the Flordia school shooting. Benjamin Kelly, an aide to Republican state representative Shawn Harrison, sent an email to a Tampa Bay Times journalist claiming that two student survivors of the Parkland tragedy, speaking up after 17 of their classmates were killed…

Russian oligarch and Manafort patron Deripaska to step down from corporate positions

Oligarch Oleg Deripaska will step down as president of the EN+ energy company and Rusal, the world’s second largest aluminium producer, Russian and international media reported on Monday.  Mr Deripaska, whose 2008 meetings with Lord Mandelson and George Osborne on his yacht in Corfu caused controversy in the UK, owns controlling stakes in both companies….

Accusations of Moscow troll campaign to sway US election are ‘blabber’, says Russian foreign minister

Allegations that Moscow ran a hidden multimillion dollar troll campaign using social media to try to to sway the 2016 presidential election are “blabber”, Russia’s foreign minister has said. Sergey Lavrov on Saturday dismissed the extraordinary US indictment released on Friday that accused 13 Russians of an elaborate plot aimed in part at helping Republican Donald Trump…

Mitt Romney announces senate bid in Utah

Mitt Romney has announced he is running for the US senate seat in Utah in a move that could cause significant divisions within Donald Trump’s Republican Party. Mr Romney, who was the party’s presidential candidate in 2012, has regularly criticised the US president’s conduct and inflammatory remarks. He announced his senate bid with a dig…

White House in tumult as second aide resigns amid abuse allegations

A second White House staffer has resigned in the wake of abuse allegations, days after one of Donald Trump’s closest aides quit over domestic violence claims. David Sorensen, a speechwriter who worked under senior adviser Stephen Miller, resigned on Friday after the White House learned of the allegations against him, spokesman Raj Shah said. Mr Shah said…

Donald Trump blocks release of Democratic memo on Russia probe

Citing national security concerns, the White House on Friday formally notified the House intelligence committee that President Donald Trump is «unable» to declassify a memo drafted by Democrats that counters GOP allegations about abuse of government surveillance powers in the FBI’s Russia probe. White House counsel Don McGahn said in a letter to the committee that…

US congress votes to end brief shutdown with $300 billion funding deal

A brief US government shutdown ended on Friday after Congress passed and President Donald Trump signed into law a wide-ranging deal that is expected to push budget deficits into the $1 trillion-a-year zone. The bill was approved by a wide margin in the Senate and it survived a rebellion of 67 conservative Republicans in the House of Representatives…

Ex-British spy Christopher Steele ‘interviewed by Russia election investigators for two days’

The former British spy behind a controversial dossier about Donald Trump’s Russian links has spent two days talking to US investigators, it was reported on Wednesday.  Christopher Steele met behind closed doors with colleagues of Robert Mueller, the special counsel looking into Russian election meddling, according to The Washington Post. It means that investigators will…

US senate approves deal to avoid government shutdown

The US Senate has agreed a sweeping two-year budget agreement in a bid to avoid government funding running out on Thursday evening. In a rare bipartisan breakthrough, the Democratic and Republican Senate leaders agreed on a funding deal which could see funding approved for the next two years. The deal does not include immigration proposals,…

Republicans warn of more FBI ‘wrong doing’ as Democrats push to release their own memo

Republican congressmen are reportedly preparing up to five more memos calling out intelligence agency «wrongdoing» after a similar move last week dominated the headlines.   The party’s representatives on the House Intelligence committee are expected to produce new documents criticising the FBI, the Justice department and the State department of politically-motivated abuse of power.  Devin…

Republican voters turn against FBI according to new poll

More Republicans now have a negative view of the FBI than a positive one, a new poll has revealed in a sign that Donald Trump’s criticism is cutting through.  An online poll found that 47 per cent of Republicans have an “unfavourable” opinion of the FBI while just 38 per cent see it favourably.  It…

Donald Trump sexism: How I tracked every lewd comment 

On August 7, 2015, Fox News presenter Megyn Kelly grilled Donald Trump in the first televised Republican debate — and everything changed. At least it did for me. That night, Trump took a dislike to Kelly’s tough questions over his alleged sexist remarks. So he did what any potential President keen to improve his image…

The explosive secret FBI memo: What you need to know

The FBI secured a warrant to wiretap an official with Donald Trump’s presidential campaign by repeatedly concealing from a special court that they were relying on information paid for by Democrats, according to an explosive declassified memo. It suggested the bureau and Department of Justice relied heavily on a dossier provided by former British intelligence…

Donald Trump reveals in State of the Union that he has signed an executive order to keep Guantanamo Bay open

 Donald Trump announced he would be keeping Guantanamo Bay, the US prison in Cuba open during his State of the Union address, hinting he may send new prisoners there. The President announced that just prior to his speech he had signed an executive order on «protecting America through the lawful detention of terrorists”. The executive order revokes former President…

Donald Trump’s main State of the Union announcements — at a glance

Donald Trump’s first State of the Union address adopted a softer tone than many may have expected as he sought to gain Democratic support for his infrastructure and immigration policies.  The US president’s first year in office has been characterised by divisive rhetoric and frequent clashes with Democratic members of Congress.  But on Tuesday night Mr Trump said he…

State of the Union: Five takeaways from Donald Trump’s speech

1) Democrats don’t think much of Trump’s bipartisan pitch If Donald Trump was hoping for a wave of appreciation from his widely-briefed reach across the aisle during the State of the Union, he will be disappointed.  A sign of things to come was there within seconds of the president entering the chamber as dozens of Democrats remained…

State of the Union address: Donald Trump outlines his agenda — live

Donald Trump is expected to adopt a tone of bipartisanship during tonight’s address in a bid to gain Democrats’ support for his infrastructure and immigration policies.  The speech, one of Mr Trump’s most high-profile since taking office, will be themed around “building a safe, strong and proud America”.  White House officials have said the address…

Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JP Morgan to set up healthcare firm 

Three of the largest private employers in the US – Amazon, JP Morgan and Berkshire Hathaway – are setting up a business to provide healthcare to their employees, in a bid to enact change in a sector which has been mired in political bureaucracy.  In a joint statement, the firms, which together employ around 1.1 million people…

Republicans under pressure to return cash donated by scandal-hit casino mogul Steve Wynn

Republican politicians are being urged to return millions of dollars donated by Steve Wynn, the Las Vegas casino mogul engulfed in allegations of sexual harassment and assault. The 76-year-old billionaire has contributed nearly $2.4 million to candidates and party organisations since 2013 but was forced to resign as finance chairman of the Republican National Committee…

Donald Trump reportedly attempted to fire Robert Mueller

 Donald Trump attempted to fire the man leading the Russian election meddling investigation last June, The New York Times has reported. The US president ordered the sacking of Robert Mueller, the special council, but backed off after a resignation threat from a White House lawyer, the paper said. It cited “four people told of the…

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