Trump bats back claims on Rus­sia

Tampa Bay Times - - Front Page -

Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump calls a re­port that law en­force­ment of­fi­cials be­gan look­ing into whether he was work­ing with Rus­sia af­ter the fir­ing of for­mer FBI di­rec­tor James Comey “the most in­sult­ing thing I’ve ever been asked.”

Sen. Lind­sey Gra­ham, R-S.C., said Sun­day that Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump should agree to re­open the gov­ern­ment and con­tinue try­ing to ham­mer out a deal with Democrats on fund­ing his long-promised bor­der wall — but that the pres­i­dent should de­clare a na­tional emer­gency if no progress is made in three weeks. In an ap­pear­ance on Fox News Sun­day, Gra­ham main­tained that Trump is not go­ing to give up on his de­mand for more than $5 bil­lion in fund­ing for a wall along the U.S.-Mex­ico bor­der. But he ar­gued that re­open­ing the gov­ern­ment and at­tempt­ing to find a leg­isla­tive so­lu­tion, then declar­ing a na­tional emer­gency if those talks don’t bear fruit, is the best way for­ward. “I would urge him to open up the gov­ern­ment for a short pe­riod of time, like three weeks, be­fore he pulls the plug. See if we can get a deal. If we can’t at the end of three weeks, all bets are off. See if he can do it by him­self through the emer­gency pow­ers,” Gra­ham said. Wait­ing three weeks would take the ne­go­ti­a­tions past Trump’s State of the Union ad­dress later this month. A new Wash­ing­ton Post-ABC News poll shows that more Amer­i­cans blame Trump and Repub­li­cans in Congress for the shut­down than con­gres­sional Democrats. Fifty-three per­cent of re­spon­dents blame the pres­i­dent and Repub­li­cans, while 29 per­cent blame Democrats. Thir­teen per­cent blame both equally. More Amer­i­cans re­main op­posed to the idea of a bor­der wall than sup­port it, the poll found, although the mar­gin has nar­rowed over the past year. Trump con­tin­ued mak­ing his case for the wall in Sun­day morn­ing tweets, ar­gu­ing that it “will bring down the crime rate through­out the en­tire Coun­try!”

Gra­ham

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