Jun 11, 2017

Preet Bharara: enough evidence to open obstruction case against Trump

Dave Lawler, author of World

Preet Bharara, the federal prosecutor fired by Trump in March, has weighed in on Trump's legal liability amid the Russia investigation.

  • Evidence Trump obstructed justice? "I think there's absolutely evidence to begin a case. I think it's very important for all sorts of armchair speculators in the law to be clear that no one knows right now whether there is a provable case of obstruction. It's also true I think from based on what I see as a third party and out of government that there's no basis to say there's no obstruction."
  • Trump's outreach: Bharara says Trump called him three times between winning the election and firing him in March. "So they're unusual phone calls... when I've been reading the stories of how the president has been contacting Jim Comey over time, felt a little bit like deja vu. "

Jay Sekulow, one of Trump's attorneys, on whether Trump would considering firing special counsel Robert Mueller:

"I can't imagine that that issue's going to arise, but then again it's an issue that the president with his advisers would discuss if there was a basis... the president has authority to take action, whether he would do it is ultimately a decision the president makes."

Go deeper: Special counsel Robert Mueller has been hiring the type of legal team that you'd expect if criminal charges were looming.

Go deeper

Biden: George Floyd's last words are "a wake-up call for our nation"

Former Vice President Joe Biden meets with clergy members and community activists during a visit to Bethel AME Church in Wilmington, Del. on June 1, 2020. Photo: JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images

Vice President Joe Biden is calling George Floyd’s dying words “a wake-up call for our nation,” and criticized President Trump’s decision to unleash tear gas on peaceful protesters outside the White House, in a civil rights speech from Philadelphia on Tuesday.

Why it matters: Biden in the address drew a sharp contrast between himself and Trump, whose first remarks addressing nationwide unrest Monday highlighted law and order, extreme demonstrations of militarized “strength” and other blustery threats.

Updated 9 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 11 a.m. ET: 6,302,318 — Total deaths: 376,322 — Total recoveries — 2,716,924Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 11 a.m. ET: 1,812,125 — Total deaths: 105,192 — Total recoveries: 458,231 — Total tested: 17,340,682Map.
  3. Public health: Protests against police brutality threaten coronavirus response.
  4. Business: Coronavirus could lower GDP by $15.7 trillion — More than 1 in 6 black workers lost jobs between February and April.
  5. Climate: The alarm over climate financial risk gets louder because of coronavirus.
  6. Media: Interest in the George Floyd protests has soared past the coronavirus.

The business of tear gas

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

U.S. forces yesterday used tear gas on peaceful protesters outside the White House gates, prior to a declared curfew, clearing a path for President Trump to visit a riot-damaged church for a photo opportunity.

The state of play: Two of the largest U.S. producers of tear gas are owned by private equity firms, but those firms have no interest in discussing their ownership.