2016

There’s a Good Reason Trump Will Rally Supporters in Phoenix
After a rough few weeks, president could use a boost from friendly crowd

Then-presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks to a crowd of supporters during a campaign rally in June 2016 in Phoenix, Arizona. Trump campaigned seven times in Arizona before Election Day last year. (Ralph Freso/Getty Images file photo)

President Donald Trump on Monday gave a somber address about his strategy in America’s longest-running war in Afghanistan. But that tone will likely change as he holds a campaign-style rally Tuesday night in Phoenix — where Trump has tossed out some of his more visceral rhetoric — and feeds supporters samples of what made them love him in the first place.

It could be a pep rally for Trump after the criticism he got last week from many Republicans for the way he appeared to give a nod to white supremacists after the racial violence in Charlottesville, Virginia. The president has also come under heavy criticism for the disarray in the White House that has led resignations and firings in his team’s top tier, and for having no major legislative accomplishments to show for his seven months in office.

On Afghanistan, Trump Bets On Generals He Once Criticized
President says ‘my original instinct was to pull out’

U.S. Army Gen. John Nicholson (right) shakes hands with troops ahead of a handover ceremony at Leatherneck Camp in Lashkar Gah in the Afghan province of Helmand on April 29, 2017. (Wakil Kohsar/AFP/Getty Images)

Candidate Donald Trump often said he knew more when it came to the country’s foes than America’s top military leaders. But by siding with retired and current four-star generals on Afghanistan, Trump placed a big bet on a group he once believed had been “reduced to rubble.”

Trump announced Monday night at Joint Base Fort Myer Hamilton Hall in Arlington, Va., he will keep thousands of U.S. troops in Afghanistan despite his long-held disdain for the operation there. The president’s decision came after a months-long review by his national security team, and reports indicate he will raise the American military presence there to around 12,000.

Trump Is Quickly Running Out of GOP Factions to Alienate
Republican strategist: ‘He’s basically crossing out all of his allies’

President Donald Trump’s ouster of White House chief strategist Steve Bannon is seen by some as his first major slight to his conservative base. (SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump is running out of Republican Party factions to offend and alienate after firing Steve Bannon, the White House chief strategist who was a bridge to the president’s conservative base.

Along with Friday’s blow to his base, a defensive and sometimes erratic Trump in the past few weeks alone has attacked once-supportive business leaders, GOP lawmakers and voters eager to distance themselves from far-right and white supremacist protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia. He’s also lashed out at Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a key player in any effort to push forward his legislative agenda.

Democrats Say Bannon’s Ouster Not Enough
Jeffries says ‘things won't change if Grand Wizard remains in Oval Office’

Democrats say the ouster of White House adviser Steve Bannon is a good first step. (Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)

Democrats are glad President Donald Trump’s chief strategist Steve Bannon is gone,  but they say change is needed from the top down.

Democratic members of Congress hammered the president for choosing Bannon, the former Breitbart executive, to plot strategy in the White House in the first place. And they said if the president wants to repair the damage he has done, he should look inward.

Florida Republican Rooney Says Trump Needs to Show ‘Moral’ Leadership
Says past presidents have ‘referred to our moral principles’

Rep. Francis Rooney, R-Fla., said past presidents have used a unifying and healing tone in times of crisis. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Florida Republican Rep. Francis Rooney said the country is “crying out” for moral leadership from President Donald Trump after last weekend’s racial violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, and Trump’s response to it.

Rooney, a former U.S. ambassador to the Vatican and a devout Catholic, told the Naples Daily News that previous presidents used a unifying and healing tone after similar incidents.

Trump Hits Lindsey Graham Over Alleged ‘Disgusting Lie’
Graham: President suggested ‘moral equivalency’ between KKK, Heyer

President Donald Trump speaks Tuesday about white supremacist groups and the violence in Virginia. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Updated at 9:11 a.m. Accusing Sen. Lindsey Graham of a “disgusting lie,” Donald Trump warned the South Carolina Republican voters will punish him for criticizing the president’s response to the racially tinged violence in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Graham in a Wednesday statement said Trump, during an impromptu press conference Tuesday, “took a step backward by again suggesting there is moral equivalency between the white supremacist neo-Nazis and KKK members who attended the Charlottesville rally and people like Ms. [Heather] Heyer,” referring to the young woman killed in a car attack by a Nazi sympathizer.

Paul Ryan Primary Opponent Promotes Debunked ‘Pizzagate’
Paul Nehlen said he believes conspiracy theory about Hillary Clinton and child sex ring

Wisconsin Republican Paul Nehlen lost to House Speaker Paul D. Ryan by 68 points in last year’s 2016 Republican primary. (Courtesy Nehlen for Congress Facebook page)

The primary challenger to House Speaker Paul D. Ryan said he believes the debunked conspiracy theory known as “Pizzagate.”

Wisconsin Republican Paul Nehlen made the disclosure while attempting to connect with voters through an online question-and-answer session on Reddit earlier this month, The Associated Press reported.

Corrine Brown Gets Hearing Over ‘Holy Spirit’ Appeal
Seeks to overturn fraud conviction over bogus charity

Former Congresswoman Corrine Brown, center, is escorted to the Federal Courthouse in Jacksonville, Fla., in May during her trial on federal fraud and tax charges. (Bob Self/The Florida Times-Union via AP file photo)

Former Florida Rep. Corrine Brown will be in court Monday for a hearing about attempts to overturn her being found guilty on fraud charges.

Brown was found guilty on charges of fraudulently using money from a bogus charity for personal reasons in May.

Wasserman Schultz Defends Keeping Fired IT Worker
‘I believe that I did the right thing, and I would do it again,’ Florida congresswoman says

Florida Democratic Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz said she believes fired IT worker Imran Awan is getting additional scrutiny because he is Muslim. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz defended keeping a fired IT worker on her payroll despite the fact he was banned from the House network and fired by another member of Congress. 

Wasserman Schultz said it would have been easier to fire Imran Awan.

Trump Again Lashes Out at Congress Over Russia Sanctions
U.S. president sees relations with Moscow at ‘dangerous’ low point

Russian President Vladimir Putin shakes hands with President Donald Trump at a G-20 summit in Germany. Trump is blaming Congress for what he calls an "all time" low in U.S.-Russia relations. (Wikimedia Commons)

Lashing out at Congress yet again, President Donald Trump blamed the 517 lawmakers who voted for a bill he signed Wednesday slapping new sanctions on Russia for what he calls a “dangerous low” in U.S.-Kremlin relations.

Trump used a morning tweet, after laying off his post-dawn social media blasts for two days, to continue his days-long Twitter assault on members of Congress — including his fellow Republicans — amid signs of growing intra-party tensions as the forced marriage strains under an unproductive legislative session.