Nov 26, 2019

Ousted Navy Secretary Richard Spencer hits back at Trump on CBS

Ousted Navy Secretary Richard Spencer told CBS News Monday that President Trump’s intervention in a case involving disgraced Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher sends the message "that you can get away with things."

Details: In his first TV interview since he was fired Sunday for his handling of Gallagher's case, Spencer told CBS journalist David Martin that Trump shouldn't have tried to stop the Pentagon review of the Navy SEAL's case and that he doesn't think he "really understands the full definition of a war fighter."

  • "A war fighter is a profession of arms, and a profession of arms has standards that they have to be held to, and they hold themselves to," Spencer said.

He also defended his conduct as Navy secretary.

SPENCER: Well, what do I stand for as secretary of the Navy? Good order and discipline of the United States Navy. That's a prime tenet. This, in fact, erodes that. 
MARTIN: What's wrong with following a lawful order from the commander in chief? 
SPENCER: Nothing. Everyone should follow a lawful order. That's good order and discipline. I could not in my conscience do this. 

The big picture: Gallagher was acquitted of a murder charge in the stabbing death of an Islamic State militant captive, but a military jury convicted him of posing with the corpse while in Iraq in 2017. Spencer was advocating for a peer-to-peer review process that could have stripped Gallagher of his Trident Pin, which designates him as a Navy SEAL.

  • Trump tweeted Thursday: "The Navy will NOT be taking away Warfighter and Navy Seal Eddie Gallagher’s Trident Pin. This case was handled very badly from the beginning. Get back to business!"
  • Defense Secretary Mark Esper said during a press conference earlier Monday that the president ordered him to allow Gallagher to retire with his Trident. This allows the chief petty officer to retire as a SEAL instead of being expelled from the elite unit.

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 8 a.m. ET: 5,945,737— Total deaths: 365,368 — Total recoveries — 2,515,675Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 8 a.m. ET: 1,747,087 — Total deaths: 102,836 — Total recoveries: 406,446 — Total tested: 16,099,515Map.
  3. Supreme Court: Chief Justice Roberts sides with liberals in denying challenge to California's pandemic worship rules.
  4. Public health: Hydroxychloroquine prescription fills exploded in March.
  5. 2020: North Carolina asks RNC if convention will honor Trump's wish for no masks or social distancing.
  6. Business: Fed chair Powell says coronavirus is "great increaser" of income inequality.

Deaths without consequences

Community organizations and activists demand police accountability at a rally in Grand Central Terminal to commemorate the 5-year anniversary of Mike Brown's death by Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson. Photo: Erik McGregor/Getty Images

Seven years after the launch of the Black Lives Matter movement, it's still rare for police officers to be charged in the deaths of African Americans — and even more rare for an officer to go to jail.

The big picture: The Minneapolis police officer who was captured on video kneeling on George Floyd's neck has been charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter — which is already a step beyond the consequences other police officers have faced. But it's no guarantee that he will face jail time.

Teenager killed after shots fired at protesters in Detroit

Detroit police during protests on Friday night. Photo: Matthew Hatcher/Getty Images

A 19-year-old man was killed on Friday night after shots were fired into a crowd of demonstrators in downtown Detroit who were protesting the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody, per AP.

Details: The teenager was injured when shots were fired from an SUV about 11:30 p.m. and later died in hospital, reports MDN reports, which noted police were still looking for a suspect. Police said officers were not involved in the shooting, according to AP.

Go deeper: In photos: Protesters clash with police nationwide over George Floyd