President Biden is facing an alarming level of doubt from inside his own party, with 64 percent of Democratic voters saying they would prefer a new standard-bearer in the 2024 presidential campaign, according to a New York Times/Siena College poll, as voters nationwide have soured on his leadership, giving him a meager 33 percent job-approval rating. Widespread concerns about the economy and inflation have helped turn the national mood decidedly dark, both on Mr. Biden and the trajectory of the nation. More than three-quarters of registered voters see the United States moving in the wrong direction, a pervasive sense of pessimism that spans every corner of the country, every age range and racial group, cities, suburbs and rural areas, as well as both political parties. Only 13 percent of American voters said the nation was on the right track — the lowest point in Times polling since the depths of the financial crisis more than a decade ago. Voters on the Direction of … [Read more...] about Most Democrats Don’t Want Biden in 2024, New Poll Shows
Economics key players
+8 % Gross domestic product +6 +4 +2 0 –0.2% 2nd quarter 2022 –2 –4 –6 –8 ’06 ’08 ’10 ’12 ’14 ’16 ’18 ’20 ’22 +8 % Gross domestic product +6 +4 +2 0 –0.2% 2nd quarter 2022 –2 –4 –6 –8 ’06 ’08 ’10 ’12 ’14 ’16 ’18 ’20 ’22 A key measure of economic output fell for the second straight quarter, raising fears that the United States could be entering a recession — or perhaps that one had already begun. Gross domestic product, adjusted for inflation, fell 0.2 percent in the second quarter, the Commerce Department said Thursday. That drop followed a decline of 0.4 percent in the first quarter. The estimates for both periods will be revised in coming months as government statisticians get more complete data. News of the back-to-back contractions heightened a debate in Washington over whether a … [Read more...] about U.S. Economy Shows Another Decline, Fanning Recession Fears
It was about 2 p.m. on Jan. 6, 2021. Mark Meadows sat on a couch in his West Wing office, alone, scrolling through his cellphone. Across Washington from the White House, supporters of President Donald J. Trump were approaching the Capitol, protesting the certification of Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s Electoral College victory. “Are you watching the TV, chief?” Cassidy Hutchinson , a top aide to Mr. Meadows, the White House chief of staff, recalled asking him. “The rioters are getting really close. Have you talked to the president?” No, Mr. Meadows replied, his eyes fixed on his phone. Mr. Trump, he went on, “wants to be alone right now.” Ms. Hutchinson’s account of a chief of staff who was at best disengaged and at worst overwhelmed by the events around him was a key part of her public appearance on Tuesday at a hastily scheduled hearing by the House select committee investigating the Capitol riot, and what led to it. Another aide to Mr. Meadows, Ben Williamson, … [Read more...] about Testimony Paints Mark Meadows as Unwilling to Act as Jan. 6 Unfolded
At least half a dozen Republican members of Congress sought pre-emptive pardons from President Donald J. Trump as he fought to remain in office after his defeat in the 2020 election, witnesses have told the House Jan. 6 committee, the panel disclosed on Thursday. Mr. Trump “had hinted at a blanket pardon for the Jan. 6 thing for anybody,” Mr. Trump’s former head of presidential personnel, Johnny McEntee, testified. Representative Matt Gaetz, Republican of Florida, appeared to ask for a broad pardon, not limited to his role in Mr. Trump’s effort to reverse the outcome of the election. Mr. Gaetz even invoked the pardoned former President Richard M. Nixon as he did so, Eric Herschmann, a White House lawyer for Mr. Trump, testified. “He mentioned Nixon, and I said, ‘Nixon’s pardon was never nearly that broad,’” Mr. Herschmann recounted. Representative Mo Brooks of Alabama sent an email seeking a pre-emptive pardon for all 147 members of Congress who objected to the … [Read more...] about Panel Provides New Evidence That G.O.P. Members of Congress Sought Pardons
WASHINGTON — The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol painted a vivid picture on Thursday of how former President Donald J. Trump directed a wide-ranging bid to strong-arm the Justice Department into overturning the 2020 election, the most brazen attempt by a sitting president since Watergate to manipulate the nation’s law enforcement apparatus to keep himself in power. In a stunning display of evidence, including testimony from top officials who resisted the former president’s efforts, the committee laid out how Mr. Trump tried repeatedly to use the Justice Department to interfere in the election. In near-daily conversations, he badgered its leaders to act on unsubstantiated claims of election fraud, including wild internet hoaxes, accusing them of failing to do their jobs. He explored naming a conspiracy theorist who was circulating outlandish stories of voting irregularities to serve as a special counsel to look into possible election misdeeds. “Why … [Read more...] about Jan. 6 Panel Outlines Trump’s Bid to Coerce Justice Dept. Officials
The first night of the congressional Jan. 6 hearings was not an entertainment. It was deadly serious reality, offering a panorama and a terrifying close-up of a real nightmare: The attempt, through violence, to effectively end American democracy by overturning the will of the voters and keeping President Donald J. Trump installed in an office that he lost. But the hearings were also television, fighting for attention in a cacophonous media environment. This is not just me speaking as a TV critic. The committee itself acknowledged this by bringing on James Goldston, a former ABC News president and producer, to shape the broadcast, and by airing it, unusually, in prime time. This was not simply a dutiful time capsule for the historical archives. This was TV meant to break through, and to matter, now . What we saw in this first installment was impressive: a well-crafted, passionate and disciplined two-hour opening act. It made the committee’s case in miniature, that the … [Read more...] about The Jan. 6 Hearing Put a True-Crime Drama on Prime-Time TV
Comprehensive, compellingly scripted and packed with details, the eight hearings of the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack have laid out a powerful account of President Donald J. Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election. The select committee assembled a mass of evidence and testimony — provided in large part by Mr. Trump’s aides and other Republicans — not only for the judgment of history but for the purpose of two more immediate and related goals that the panel’s leaders highlighted during the hearing on Thursday night. One, as Representative Liz Cheney, the Wyoming Republican who is the panel’s vice chair, said explicitly, is to convince voters that Mr. Trump, who has made clear he is likely to run for president in 2024, should be disqualified from holding the office again. “Every American must consider this,” Ms. Cheney said. “Can a president who is willing to make the choices Donald Trump made during the violence of Jan. 6 ever be trusted with any … [Read more...] about The Jan. 6 Panel After 8 Hearings: Where Will the Evidence Lead?
Federal prosecutors have directly asked witnesses in recent days about former President Donald J. Trump’s involvement in efforts to reverse his election loss, a person familiar with the testimony said on Tuesday, suggesting that the Justice Department’s criminal investigation has moved into a more aggressive and politically fraught phase. Mr. Trump’s personal role in elements of the push to overturn his loss in 2020 to Joseph R. Biden Jr. has long been established, both through his public actions and statements and evidence gathered by the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack. But the Justice Department has been largely silent about how and even whether it would weigh pursuing potential charges against Mr. Trump, and reluctant even to concede that his role was discussed in senior leadership meetings at the department. Asking questions about Mr. Trump in connection with the electors plot or the attack on the Capitol does not mean the Justice Department has opened … [Read more...] about Justice Dept. Asking Witnesses About Trump in Its Jan. 6 Investigation
The biggest question set off by the special committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol attack has been: Will the Justice Department prosecute former President Donald J. Trump for his role in trying to overturn the election? The question has become even more prominent with the news that federal prosecutors have begun asking witnesses about Mr. Trump in their criminal investigation. Legal commentators, lawmakers and average Americans all seem to have an opinion. To better understand this question and the issues around it, The New York Times interviewed one of the last federal prosecutors to have led an investigation into Mr. Trump’s conduct. That prosecutor, Andrew Goldstein, was one of the lead investigators who examined whether Mr. Trump tried to obstruct the Russia investigation carried out by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III. In an interview with the New York Times podcast “The Daily,” Mr. Goldstein laid out the obstacles to a prosecution. Here are … [Read more...] about Is Trump in Legal Peril? This Ex-Prosecutor Would Know
At the eighth in a series of public hearings held by the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot, the panel accused former President Donald J. Trump of dereliction of duty for failing to act to stop the assault on the Capitol that was carried out in his name. The committee documented how, over 187 minutes, Mr. Trump remained in a small dining room off the Oval Office, watching the violence on television and rebuffing pleas by aides, congressional Republicans and family members to call off the mob even as he continued to call senators in the hopes of convincing them to stop the certification of his Electoral College defeat. Here are five takeaways. Trump Ignored a Torrent of Pleas to Call Off His Supporters Members of Congress, aides and his own daughter, Ivanka, made pleas to Mr. Trump to call off the violence as it unfolded in front of him on television. But witnesses told the committee that Mr. Trump not only ignored them but repeatedly signaled that … [Read more...] about Five takeaways from the eighth hearing of the Jan. 6 committee.