President Trump, long considered a master at keeping track of his lies, is starting to get his lies confused with one another and making mistakes that are uncharacteristic of him, aides say.
“I don’t know if it’s the pressure of the job or his age or some combination of the two, but the President is not the guy who could make up stories on the fly anymore,” one aide said on the condition of anonymity so the person could speak freely about the President’s mental state.
The aide cited the current messaging challenge posed by former White House secretary Ron Porter, who resigned two weeks ago after allegations arose that he abused his two ex-wives and also an ex girlfriend. “The President said in a meeting that he never paid hush money and we had to correct him that the hush-money he never paid is about the affair with the porn star he never had and not the wives his former top aide never beat,” the aide said.
Another aide said the President’s increasing confusion over which lie applies to which story is taking a toll on his chief spokesperson, Sarah Huckabee Sanders. “Sarah really blew up in a meeting last week about this,” the aide said. “I can’t remember her exact words, but it was something like, ‘If the President can’t keep his lies straight, how in the hell am I supposed to?’ She was pretty frustrated about it.”
The aide said it was funny but also not. “I mean, we’re talking about serious matters that can lead to important consequences if we don’t keep the President’s lies straight,” the aide said.
Sources said there’s been a concerted effort in the White House this week to keep the President’s lies straight because the Russian collusion investigation is heating up at the same time that the misinformation campaign to undermine confidence in the FBI and Justice Department is reaching a peak.
“We’re at an inflection point,” the aide said. “If there was ever important time for the President to keep his lies straight, it’s now, because we’ve got Mueller breathing down our necks just when we’re trying to get Americans to think our law enforcement agencies pose a bigger threat to our country than the Russians. If the President can’t keep his lies straight about these things, we’ll never be able to lie our way out of this. Then what are we going to do? I guess we’ll have to lie about it.”
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In what is expected to be a fresh blow to the presidency of Donald Trump, The New York Times today plans to disclose the identity of the president’s top advisor, “many people,” potentially making it more difficult for the president to demonstrate support for his policies. “After an exhaustive investigation by our team of dedicated journalists, we have learned that “many people” is Jeff Banks, a former marketing associate who now works from home as a consultant, although he doesn’t list any clients at the present time,” Times Executive Editor Jean Paquet says in a statement. According to the forthcoming Times report, Trump referred to Banks, 36, as “many people” after Banks tweeted in 2015 that Donald Trump would make a great president and should run for office. More.
President Donald Trump this morning says hell probably lie about it, although he’s not sure if he’ll use the lie he’s been planning to use or a different lie, including one he hasn’t thought of yet. “We’ll see how it goes when we get to that point,” Trump told reporters outside the White House. “One thing I think I’ve made clear is, I don’t like to give away my plan. I like to keep people guessing.” Trump said he will probably lie later this week given the decision he made last week. “You know, we have to deal with the fake news like you wouldn’t believe,” he said. “I’m just going to see what the expedient thing to say is, and, frankly, I don’t know what that will be yet—or maybe I do. Maybe I don’t want to tell you.” He said part of what he says might be truthful. “Maybe there’s an expectation I’ll lie completely,” he said. “We just don’t know, but there could be some truth to what I say. More.
House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) probably aren’t going to say anything about it, according to the two congressional leaders’ aides. Max Phillip, McConnell’s chief of staff, said it’s the Majority’ Leader’s intent not to say much about President Trump’s tweet comparing his nuclear button to the nuclear button of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. “Would he plan to comment on that anytime soon?” Phillip said. “I wouldn’t expect that.” Phillip said there’s always a temptation to say something when the President’s son is accused of treason by a person who was the President’s top aide just a short while ago, but the Majority Leader will probably not address it. “You have to think about what you remark on and what you don’t remark on, and I think the Majority Leader will probably choose not to remark on that,” he said. More.
President Donald Trump said it was a lie when a man he said was lying about him called him a liar. “The liar who lied about my lying is a liar,” the president said in remarks to reporters this morning. Trump said the liar lied about his lying even after lying about being a liar. “When a liar lies about his lying, you know it’s a lie,” he said. “It’s a lie to think you can lie about a lie, because people know it’s a lie and I’m not lying about that.” Trump said he had to call the liar a liar after he lied about him lying about his lying. “What he said was a lie, because he said I was lying.” More.
President Donald Trump is expected to blame his 2016 Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton later today. An administration official this morning said the President will be saying it’s Clinton’s fault and that Clinton’s actions raise questions. “Let’s not forget that questions remain unsettled over what Clinton did and what she didn’t do,” said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to speak candidly about the President’s intentions. The official said Trump plans to assign the blame to Clinton and will likely point to unanswered questions as well. “He will be clear that the Democratic nominee he ran against is at fault, but whether he will pivot to unanswered questions in her past isn’t clear,” the official said. “We’re talking about the President. He goes off script sometimes.” More.
White House Communications Director Hope Hicks, after testifying in a closed-door hearing of the House Intelligence Committee, said she’s launching a movement called #WhiteLiesMatter to protect President Trump’s ability to lie on behalf of the American people. “No one should be telling this President and this White House what they can and cannot say to forward the agenda of the American people,” she said. Hicks accused Democratic members of the House Intelligence Committee of repeatedly challenging her about what’s true and what’s not after she admitted she tells white lies on behalf of the President. “Democrats want to tell the President and his White House what to say,” she said in a tweet last night. “We must not let them. #WhiteLiesMatter.” More.
Reporters from national news outlets were mystified today as presidential spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders talked about concern in the White House over a “brain drain” of senior staff in the new year. “She said the White House was concerned that many senior aides were talking about leaving this year, but no one could figure out how that connected to a brain drain,” said Major Garrett, chief White House correspondent for CBS News. Jake Tapper, chief Washington correspondent for CNN, said he was equally mystified by the comment even though he knows of “a lot of senior staff” who plan to leave. Sanders’ comment left reporters so confused that the White House press office was flooded with calls after the briefing, but no one was able to get clarification about a brain drain. More.
Republican voters across the country say the tax returns of Donald Trump that no one has seen make it clear he will personally take a big financial hit once he signs tax reform into law. “You’ve got to hand it to the president,” said Joe Carter, a retired accountant in Biloxi, Miss. “Based on the tax returns he’s refused to share with the American people, he’ll lose millions of dollars from the bill that he himself is going to sign. What a selfless act on the part of our president. Not too many people would of that, but he’s doing that for us.” Since the race between Richard Nixon and John F, Kennedy in 1959, presidential contenders have made their tax returns available so the public can get a picture of their finances and analysts can determine if the laws they sign as president benefit them personally. More.
House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) says the trial balloons he’s been floating about retiring after tax reform passes have nothing to do with his plans to run against Donald Trump for the 2020 Republican presidential nomination. “I am not planning and will not plan to offer Republican voters an alternative to the crazy man in the White House today,” Ryan said. Ryan said there’s no truth to the rumor that he would seek to give an alternative to Republican voters who don’t want to see Trump reelected but also don’t want to see a Democrat take the White House. “I know there’s speculation that I would put myself out there as a safe vote for Republicans who don’t want another Roy Moore-type debacle in 2020, but that is not the case,” he said. More.
Influential Republican strategist Stephen Bannon wasted no time after his party’s big loss in the Alabama Senate race this week to unveil a plan for losing in South Carolina, Texas, and other deep-red states in coming elections. “We have that rare opportunity to hand over Republican states to Democrats next year and in 2020 if we’re ready to seize the moment,” Bannon said in remarks to Republican supporters last night. “After decades of Republican control, we can hand these states over to Democrats by draining the swamp of the mainstream, establishment conservatives who people are willing to vote for and replace them with people that many mainstream conservatives aren’t willing to vote for.” More.
Sassy, the brown and white horse that Republican candidate Roy Moore rode to vote in the Alabama Senate election yesterday, says she voted for Moore’s opponent, Doug Jones. “I’m a lifelong Republican but my party’s just become too extreme and I’m afraid the man who rode on my back to the polls is part of the problem,” said the horse, who also admitted she doesn’t like her name, Sassy. “It’s kind of sexist and derogatory.” Sassy says she considers herself a true libertarian and today’s Republican party is anything but that. “A true libertarian believes government should have a small foot print and not just in the economic sphere,” she said. “That applies equally in the way people live their lives. Republicans don’t seem to get this part. More.
Alabama Republicans say they’re being inundated with robocalls by someone whose slurred speech makes it hard to understand what he’s saying but they believe he’s asking them to vote for Roy Moore, the Republican candidate for Senate. “Several times a night we’ll get this call and it’s this guy who sounds like he’s about 70 who’s saying something about Roy Moore but exactly what he’s saying is anyone’s guess because of how badly he slurs his speech,” says Rebecca Jackson, a retired teacher in Birmingham. “We think he’s saying ‘the United States needs a senator like Roy Moore’ but it sounds like ‘the yoo-nerted shnates needs a shneterer like roymer.'” Bill Davis, an insurance salesman in Montgomery, says he just lets the call go to voice mail now. “We’ll be having dinner and it’ll be like, ‘Here’s that drunk guy again!’ More.
Child molesters throughout the United States say they are waiting with bated breath at the outcome the Alabama Senate election next week, which pits an alleged child molester against a Democratic federal prosecutor. “It’s . . . it’s just the happiest day of my life—or will be,” said a child molester in Tucson, Ariz., who asked that his name not be used to protect his privacy. The child molester says he’s waiting for the day that he can “say my name loud and proud,” and he thinks that day will be much closer should the election win go to Roy Moore, the Republican candidate for Senate who is alleged to have molested half a dozen girls when they were teenagers and he was in is 30s. “I’d like to be able to tell the world, ‘I’m John Doe and I’m a proud child molester.’ More.
Americans say there’s no comparison between the insults North Korea leader Kim Jong-un hurls at President Donald Trump and the ones Trump hurls at Kim Jong-un. In a Marist poll released this morning, 74 percent of Americans say Kim’s insults, which include calling Trump a dotard, are “far and away” better than Trump’s insults, which include calling Kim Rocket Man and Little Rocket Man. “You would think Trump, given his experience insulting people, would be more effective at insulting Kim than he has been, but Americans say they’re just not impressed with what Trump has come up with,” says Terry Norton, director of public polling at Marist. More.
President Donald Trump urged voters in Alabama to to put Roy Moore in the U.S. Senate because the former state Supreme Court judge will be needed as a reliable no vote should impeachment get taken up in the next year or two. “We only have two more Republicans in the Senate than Democrats,” Trump said at a rally on behalf of Moore, who is running neck and neck in the polls with Democrat Doug Jones. “We can’t afford to lose one seat if the Democrats illegally and corruptly try to vote for my impeachment, which they’re going to do, I promise you.” Responsibility for impeachment lies with the House but the Senate must vote on it once it comes out of the lower chamber. More.
President Donald Trump has charged the Democratic party with already having rigged the 2020 presidential election and he says his Democratic opponent has already cheated. “Loser Dems haven’t even waited until my first year as president is over before rigging the 2020 elections because they can’t win on their own,” Trump said today. He also accused his Democratic opponent of cheating. “My Democratic opponent, who had the help of the crooked and corrupt DNC, is already getting dead people, immigrants, criminals to vote in New Jersey and other unAmerican, socialist states.” Trump vowed to “lock up” his Democratic opponent “who is totally corrupt, by the way” after the election. “We must SAVE USA the beautiful from liberal elite who will EXPAND the deficit and cut the Regs for liberal Wall Street and sexual harassers in Hollywood who don’t represent America.” More.
Republican lawmakers in the Senate say they urgently must pass tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy before the end of the year because of pressure coming from Russia Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation. “Would it be better to slow down and better think through our tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy? Of course,” says John Thune (R-S.D.), the Senate whip. “Right now our own analysis is showing a $1 trillion addition to the budget deficit even after projected growth in the economy. So, if we had more time we could craft changes that address that and still give our wealthy donors what they want. Unfortunately, time is a luxury we don’t have.” That’s because Mueller’s investigation is winding down. More.
Pedophiles across the United States are coming out of the shadows and testing the waters for making deeper inroads into mainstream American society now that Republicans are defending accused child molester and Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore. “I knew when Donald Trump won the Republican nomination in 2016 we would start to see great things happening in our country for sexual predators because he was sending signals that he had our backs,” says Tom Clark, a pedophile in Houston. “What I didn’t expect was this path to mainstream acceptability to open before his first year in office was out. I’m so stunned I have to make sure I’m really alive and not caught in a very, very good dream.” Clark and other pedophiles in the United States say they never thought they would live to see the day when their sexual perversion would become something other than the most heinous sexual act a person could commit. More.
It’s Plan B time at Time magazine. The editors of the once-important news publication are going back to their discard pile to select their Person of the Year for 2017 now that their first choice, Donald Trump, has spoiled the surprise. “I can’t confirm or deny that we were planning to name Donald Trump Person of the Year but I can say that we never tip our hand about who it’s going to be,” says Nancy Gibbs, editor of the storied magazine that’s now searching for relevance in today’s news-saturated world. Magazine sources say Trump was indeed going to be named Person of the year for the second time in a row, an unusual but not unprecedented editorial decision for the magazine, but no longer. “Our end-of-the year issue, in which we name the year’s most significant person, is one of the few remaining chances we have to be relevant, so of course we would never dilute this moment by naming Trump now that he’s blurted out our plan,” said one editorial source, who asked not to be named so he could speak frankly. More.