The White House told Democratic lawmakers on Sunday that U.S. President Donald Trump and his lawyers would not participate in a congressional impeachment hearing this week, citing a lack of “fundamental fairness.”
White House counsel Pat Cipollone wrote to Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, according to a copy of a letter.
Trump’s aides responded defiantly to the first of two crucial deadlines he faces in Congress this week as Democrats prepare to shift the focus of their impeachment inquiry from fact-finding to the consideration of possible charges of misconduct over his dealings with Ukraine.
The Democratic-led House of Representatives Judiciary Committee, tasked with considering charges known as articles of impeachment, had given Trump until 6 p.m. (2300 GMT) on Sunday to say whether he would dispatch a lawyer to take part in the judiciary panel’s proceedings on Wednesday.
“We cannot fairly be expected to participate in a hearing while the witnesses are yet to be named and while it remains unclear whether the Judiciary Committee will afford the President a fair process through additional hearings,” Cipollone said.
Cipollone – while citing a “complete lack of due process and fundamental fairness afforded the president” in the impeachment process – did not rule out participation in further proceedings.
But he signaled that Democrats would first have to make major procedural concessions.
Nadler has given the White House a Friday deadline to say whether Trump will mount a defense in broader impeachment proceedings.
The Judiciary Committee’s Democratic staff did not immediately reply to a request for comment on the White House’s refusal to participate in the hearing, which would have been the first direct involvement by the Trump camp in a process he has condemned as a partisan “witch hunt.”
Democratic U.S. Representative Don Beyer said on Twitter in response to the White House letter: “Not one process complaint made by the President and his Republican allies in Congress so far has turned out to be genuine.”
Congressional investigators have been looking into whether Trump abused his power by pressuring Ukraine to launch investigations of former Democratic Vice President Joe Biden.
Biden is running to unseat him in the 2020 presidential election, and a discredited conspiracy theory that Ukraine, not Russia, interfered in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
The first in a series of expected Judiciary proceedings will hear testimony on the impeachment process established under the U.S. Constitution from a panel of legal experts that has yet to be named.
Hearings before the committee, which has responsibility for crafting any formal charges against Trump, are a major step toward possible charges.
Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who will make the final decision, has not yet said whether the Republican president should be impeached.
But in a letter to supporters last week, she called for him to be held accountable for his actions.
Trump has denied any wrongdoing, calling the impeachment inquiry a sham.
Why I Was Taken To White House Underground Bunker — Trump
United States President, Donald Trump, has spoken about his brief stay at the underground White House bunker, called Presidential Emergency Operations Center (PEOC).
The facility serves as a shelter and communications center for U.S. Presidents and others in case of an emergency.
On Friday night, Donald Trump was taken to the bunker by the Secret Service when protesters of George Floyd’s death gathered outside the White House.
The American leader, wife and son were reportedly in the bunker for a little under an hour but Trump claims he went there for an “inspection” dismissing reports that it was for protection from the protesters..
“It was much more for the inspection. I was there for a tiny, little period of time. They said it would be a good time to go down and take a look because maybe sometime you’re going to need it”, he told Fox News Radio.
Trump reiterated his threat of military action in New York if the protests persist.
“If they don’t get their act straightened out I will solve it. I’ll solve it fast,” he said.
State Of Minnesota Files Civil Rights Charge Against State’s Police Department Over George Floyd Killing
The state of Minnesota on Tuesday June 2, filed a civil rights charge against the Minneapolis Police Department over the death of George Floyd.
Governor Tim Walz who made the announcement, said the state’s Department of Human Rights will also launch an investigation against the Minneapolis Police Department following the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died in police custody last week.
He said the investigation into the police department’s policies, procedures and practices over the past 10 years will determine if the force has engaged in systemic discrimination toward people of color, and work out how to stop it. State Human Rights Commissioner Rebecca Lucero will lead the investigation.
“Silence is complicity. Minnesotans can expect our administration to use every tool at our disposal to deconstruct generations of systemic racism in our state.
“I think the thing I’m hearing from the protesters is: ‘We’re not watching and we don’t care what you say. We care what you do.”
Lucero’s department will seek an agreement from Minneapolis city leaders and the police department to immediately implement interim measures, followed by long-term measures to address systemic discrimination.
The announcement is coming five days after the Hennepin County Attorney filed criminal charges against Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis officer seen on now-viral video with his knee on Floyd’s neck. The three other officers on the scene of Floyd’s arrest have yet to face charges.
The FBI is also investigating whether police willfully deprived Floyd of his civil rights. The Department of Justice announced last week that they are also investigating whether Chauvin and the other officers violated federal civil rights laws.
It was further learnt that the Minneapolis Police Department has faced decades of allegations brutality and other discrimination against African Americans and other minorities, even within the department itself. Critics say its culture resists change, despite the elevation of Medaria Arradondo as its first black police chief in 2017.
Arradondo himself was among five black officers who sued the police department in 2007 over alleged discrimination in promotions, pay, and discipline.
“Trump Is A Fool And Racist” — Lady Gaga Says As She Calls For Change Following George Floyd’s Murder
Popular singer and Grammy Award winner, Lady Gaga, has called for change following the murder of George FLoyd as she called President Trump a fool and racist.
Mr Floyd was an unarmed black man who died after a Minneapolis police officer kneeled on his neck for more than eight minutes as he told them “I can’t breathe”.
Floyd’s death has sparked mass protests across the US, with governors in several states calling in National Guard troops in an attempt to maintain order.
Reacting to the death of George Floyd and the protests that followed thereafter, Lady Gaga in a lengthy statement hit out at the President for what she described as ‘fueling racist activity’.
‘I have a lot of things to say about this, but the first thing I want to say is I’m afraid to say anything that will incite further anger, although that is precisely the emotion that’s justified.’
‘I do not wish to contribute to more violence, I wish to contribute to a solution. I am as outraged by the death of George Floyd as I have been by the deaths of exponentially too many black lives over hundreds of years that have been taken from us in this country as a result of systematic racism and the corrupt syst.pems that support it
‘The voices of the black community have been silenced for too long and that silence has proven deadly time and time again. And no matter what they do to protest, they are still met with no compassion by the leaders that are meant to protect them.
Everyday people in America are racist, that’s a fact. ‘Right now is a critical time for the black community to be supported by all other communities so we can put a stop to something that is intrinsically wrong by the grace of God or whatever creator you do or do not believe in.’
‘We have known for a long time that President Trump has failed. He holds the most powerful office in the world, yet offers nothing but ignorance and prejudice while black lives continue to be taken.
‘We have known he is a fool, and a racist, since he took office. He is fuelling a system that is already rooted in racism, and racist activity, and we can all see what is happening.
It’s time for a change. I urge people to speak gently to each other, speak with passion, inspiration, and impress the importance of this issue until the systems that keep us sick die, instead of people we love.’
‘We MUST show our love for the black community. As a white, privileged woman, I take an oath to stand by that. ‘We haven’t, as a privileged community, done enough to fight racism and stand up for those people who are being killed by it. ‘This isn’t justice. This is an epic tragedy that defines our country and has for a long time. I am sad. I am angry.
And I will use the words that I can find to communicate what needs to change in as an effective and non-violent way as possible for me.’
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