Jun 11, 2017

Preet Bharara: enough evidence to open obstruction case against Trump

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.

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Coronavirus kills 2 Diamond Princess passengers and South Korea sees first death

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. U.S. numbers include Americans extracted from Princess Cruise ship.

Two elderly Diamond Princess passengers have been killed by the novel coronavirus — the first deaths confirmed among the more than 600 infected aboard the cruise ship. South Korea also announced its first death Thursday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed more than 2,200 people and infected over 75,465 others, mostly in mainland China, where the National Health Commission announced 118 new deaths since Thursday.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 6 mins ago - Health

SoftBank to cut its stake to get T-Mobile's Sprint deal done

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

T-Mobile and Sprint announced a revised merger agreement that will see SoftBank getting a smaller share of the combined company, while most shareholders will receive the previously agreed upon exchange rate. The companies said they hope to get the deal as early as April 1.

Why it matters: The amended deal reflects the decline in Sprint's business, while leaving most shareholders' stake intact and removing another hurdle to the deal's closure.