“Amid new signs that special counsel Robert Mueller is pursuing an obstruction of justice case against President Donald Trump, Republicans in Congress have intensified their own investigations of the Justice Department’s and FBI’s handling of inquiries into Trump’s ties to Russia.
Tuesday brought several dramatic developments in the Russia saga, including the news that Mueller recently interviewed Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the first Cabinet official known to be questioned in the investigation. The New York Times also reported that former FBI Director James Comey was interviewed by Mueller last year.” MORE
“The reason I say it’s revealing is that one phrase: “I am not supposed to be doing the kinds of things I would love to be doing.” Clearly, what Trump would love to be doing is persecuting his defeated political rival. Whether he would love to do that out of simple sadism or because he thinks it would effectively intimidate those who are investigating him or simply to muddy the waters is unknown. To do it based upon discredited disinformation created by Fox News and various Republican operatives, working together in what has basically become his personal propaganda operation, makes it all the more chilling. This is the work of a dictator in a banana republic, not the elected leader of a major Western democracy. MORE
“Attorney General Jeff Sessions released a memo this morning declaring that the Department of Justice does not interpret Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as offering protections to transgender individuals in the workplace. This is a sharp reversal from the Obama-era interpretation.
“Although federal law, including Title VII, provides various protections to transgender individuals, Title VII does not prohibit discrimination based on gender identity per se,” Sessions wrote. “This is a conclusion of law, not policy. As a law enforcement agency, the Department of Justice must interpret Title VII as written by Congress.” MORE
“The congressional Russia investigations are entering a new and more serious phase as lawmakers return from the August recess amid fresh revelations about contacts between the Trump campaign and Russia.
In the coming weeks, both intelligence committees are expected to conduct closed-door interviews with high-ranking members of the Trump campaign, and potential witnesses could include Michael Cohen, Paul Manafort and Donald Trump Jr.” MORE