Oct 26, 2019

Secret Service interviewed rapper Eminem over Trump lyrics

Rapper Eminem. Photo: Kevin Mazur / Contributor/Getty Images

Secret Service agents interviewed Eminem about lyrics "threatening" President Trump, according to documents newly obtained by BuzzFeed News.

The state of play: The lead track on an August 2018 album attracted social media buzz because of the lyrics, in which Trump critic Eminem claimed he was visited by the Secret Service: "'CauseAgent Orange just sent the Secret Service / To meet in person to see if I really think of hurtin' him / Or ask if I’m linked to terrorists / I said, 'Only when it comes to ink and lyricists.'"

Fast-forward: The agency overturned documents this week that illustrate agents interviewed the rapper, describing him as "exhibiting inappropriate behavior" and suggesting his music, "threatens protectee."

What they found: Per the documentation, on the day the musician's album was released "a concerned citizen reported Marshall Mathers the rapper 'Eminen' had a new song called 'Framed' with an inappropriate comment towards President Donald Trump and a threatening comment towards Ivanka Trump."

  • The documents indicate the "concerned citizen" was a TMZ employee.
  • Hours before the complaint, TMZ published a story about Eminem’s lyrics criticizing Trump.
  • The agency's Protective Intelligence and Assessment Division completed a background check on the artist and an interview took place in early 2018 with Eminem and his legal team.

The impact: "[I]t was determined that this case will be NON-REFERRED" to federal prosecutors, per the documentation.

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We tend to think of our favorite music as unchanging, but streaming's rise to become our dominant form of consumption could begin to erode that norm.

Why it matters: Music's move to the cloud means that changes — sparked by creative, legal or other issues — can now easily be pushed out around the globe in a matter of seconds in a way that was impossible when the industry relied on CDs and vinyl records.

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Newly published documents reveal contact between Giuliani and Pompeo

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Ethics watchdog American Oversight published a trove of State Department documents on Friday night that the group says present a "paper trail" between Rudy Giuliani and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and that the two were in contact as early as March.

Why it matters: The documented interactions between Pompeo and Giuliani further link Pompeo to the impeachment inquiry of President Trump and validate the public testimony of European Union Ambassador Gordon Sondland, who claimed this week that senior administration officials were aware of efforts to dig up dirt on former Vice President Joe Biden.

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New Mueller documents link Russia probe and impeachment inquiry

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Newly released documents from special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation link the Russia probe and the current impeachment inquiry into the president, the Washington Post reports.

What's new: Digital news platform BuzzFeed successfully sued for the documents. Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort suggested in 2016 that Ukraine could have been responsible for hacking the Democratic National Committee instead of Russia, the newly released internal memos show.

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