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  • Trump Campaign CEO Steve Bannon Repeatedly Failed To Disclose Breitbart News’ Financial Ties To Egyptian Businessman

    Blog ››› ››› OLIVIA KITTEL

    Undisclosed ties to an Egyptian businessman and former political official are just the latest disclosure issues for Stephen Bannon, chief executive for Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s campaign.

    Bannon, who is also the executive chairman of Breitbart News, “is known to stay,” according to The Guardian, in a Washington, D.C., town home owned by Egyptian businessman and former politician Mostafa El-Gindy. Gindy’s home also reportedly serves as the Breitbart News D.C. headquarters. Breitbart News has not disclosed its financial ties to El-Gindy in numerous pieces that cite him favorably, while Bannon and Breitbart News have baselessly accused Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton of engaging in pay-for-play deals with foreign countries as secretary of state and spread false smears shared discredited book Clinton Cash.

    Bannon, whom Trump hired on August 17 to help head Trump’s presidential campaign, used his position as Breitbart News’ executive chairman to run the conservative website as a propaganda arm of the Trump campaign.

    The Guardian reported August 26 that Bannon is “is known to stay” in a Washington, D.C., town home, known as the “Breitbart embassy,” that’s owned by “Mostafa El-Gindy, an Egyptian businessman and former member of parliament.” Breitbart has reportedly operated its Washington, D.C., bureau from the Gindy-owned home since 2011. From the Guardian’s report:

    Bannon also co-owns a condominium in Los Angeles and is known to stay at the so-called “Breitbart embassy”, a luxurious $2.4m townhouse beside the supreme court in Washington DC, where his website’s staff work from basement offices. A Bloomberg profile of Bannon published last October, with which he cooperated, stated that Bannon “occupies” the townhouse and described it as being “his”.

    But according to records at the DC office of tax and revenue, the Breitbart house is actually owned by Mostafa El-Gindy, an Egyptian businessman and former member of parliament. Gindy has received favorable coverage from Breitbart News, which styles him as a “senior statesman”, without an accompanying disclosure that he is the website’s landlord.

    As the Guardian report noted, “Gindy has received favorable coverage from Breitbart News, which styles him as a ‘senior statesman’, without an accompanying disclosure that he is the website’s landlord.” Breitbart News has consistently refused to disclose its financial ties to Gindy.

    Ironically, Bannon and his conservative website have long led a smear campaign against Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation by making discredited and false attacks and spreading the baseless smears hyped in the discredited book Clinton Cash, which was written by Breitbart editor-at-large Peter Schweizer. (Trump has also predictably adopted their unfounded attacks on Hillary Clinton.) Bannon wrote and produced a documentary film that accompanied the error-filled book, both of which made a series of baseless allegations of corruption and quid pro quo by the Clinton Foundation and Hillary Clinton that have been widely discredited. Bannon is also the executive chairman and co-founder of the Government Accountability Institute, of which Schweizer is president.

  • Rachel Maddow Rips Trump After "Stunning" And "Profound Rejection" From Reputable Economists

    Blog ››› ››› ALEX MORASH

    MSNBC host Rachel Maddow ridiculed Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump after a Wall Street Journal survey found not a single former member of the White House Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) would support his presidency.

    Maddow opened the August 25 edition of her program by blasting Trump over a Wall Street Journal survey that revealed that no former CEA members would state support for the GOP nominee. Maddow reported that while this “very diverse group” of 45 economists had served eight different presidents -- including five Republicans -- “the one thing they all have in common is that not a single one of them supports Donald Trump for president.”

    According to the Journal, no Democratic or Republican advisers expressed support for Trump. Two former Republican advisers (Matthew Slaughter and Richard Schmalensee) crossed party lines to offer support for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. And two GOP advisers (former Reagan appointees William Poole and Jerry Jordan) even stated their support for Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson over their own party’s nominee. Maddow called the survey result “stunning,” and compared the economists’ “profound rejection” of Trump to being passed over at a dance. Maddow noted that it was like asking someone to dance, “and everybody in the world decides they will never dance again because of you” (emphasis added):

    RACHEL MADDOW (HOST): It's one thing to have, you know, some dissident Republicans rejecting a party's presidential nominee. It happens here and there. It happens, to a greater or lesser extent, with almost every nominee from both major parties every election cycle. There's always a dissenter here or there, but when it's everyone alive who has ever worked for any American president as an economic adviser including the last five Republican presidents, and they all reject you. That’s not like, you ask somebody to dance and they say, “no I don't want to dance with you.” That's like, you ask someone to dance and everybody in the world decides they will never dance again because of you. I mean, this is just -- this is profound rejection. I find that just stunning.

    During the segment, Maddow also highlighted a bitingly critical indictment of Trump that Harvard economist Martin Feldstein, a former CEA chairman under President Reagan, told to The Wall Street Journal:

    “I have known personally every Republican president since Richard Nixon. They all showed a real understanding of economics and international affairs. The same was true of Mitt Romney. Donald Trump does not have that understanding and does not seem to be concerned about it. That alone disqualifies him in my judgement.”

    The revelations from the Journal’s survey were also a topic of conversation on the August 26 edition of CNN’s New Day, during which Trump booster Steve Forbes dismissed the revelation and pivoted to highlight the supposed strength of Trump's advisers: Stephen Moore and Larry Kudlow. Moore and Kudlow have been dogged for making inaccurate statements and failed predictions over the years. Moore was accused of having “a troubled relationship with facts” by Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman, who went on to say that Moore may be maintaining a career in conservative economics only because “incompetence is actually desirable at some level” in those circles. Meanwhile, Kudlow recently lectured single parents that they are partly to blame for poverty even though he admitted to having "virtually no knowledge in this field.”

    The Journal's failure to find a single Democratic or Republican supporter of Trump among 45 former presidential economic advisers follows an August 22 report from the paper that hundreds of business economists overwhelmingly prefer Clinton as the best candidate on the economy. Clinton received the support of 55 percent of 414 economists surveyed by the National Association of Business Economics (NABE). Trump drew votes from just 14 percent of NABE members, once again registering less support on the economy than Gary Johnson, who garned 15 percent.

    The almost complete lack of support for Trump on the economy comes despite months of the GOP nominee being the dominant force in cable news discussions of the economy -- thanks in part to appearing on Fox News’ Hannity 24 times during the first six months of 2016.

  • Fox Host Tries, Fails To Convince Anyone That Trump Didn't Call Hillary Clinton A "Bigot"

    Karl Rove: “Go Back And Replay Your Own Piece Of Film. He Said Hillary Clinton Is A Bigot”

    Blog ››› ››› BRENDAN KARET

    Fox News’ Eric Bolling repeatedly suggested that Donald Trump was not personally calling Hillary Clinton a bigot during speeches, but was roundly rebuked on back-to-back segments with guests who had him replay the footage of Trump directly calling Clinton a “bigot.”

    In an exchange with Fox contributor Karl Rove, Bolling asked, “Well, Karl, is he calling Hillary Clinton a bigot?” Rove responded “Go back and replay your own piece of film. He said Hillary Clinton is a bigot.” From the August 25 edition of Fox News’ The O’Reilly Factor:

    ERIC BOLLING (GUEST HOST): He went and try and paint the picture -- draw a line between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton with the "bigot" line. 

    KARL ROVE: Yeah, but look, that's the opening part of the argument, look at what's happened to you for the last 60 or 70 years. But the second part of it is not to call her a bigot, but to say "Here is what I would do to make your life better." And it is in that second part that he advantages himself. He doesn't advantage himself by calling her a "bigot" in my opinion. It's unhelpful.

    BOLLING: Well Karl, is he calling Hillary Clinton a bigot? Because earlier today he said, and I'm quoting him --

    ROVE: No, no.

    BOLLING -- "Every policy HRC supports is a policy that has failed and betrayed communities of color." I understand it as --

    ROVE: That's fine --

    BOLLING: She's a Democrat, therefore -- but African-Americans aren't being helped under Democrats, and therefore they’re bigoted.

    ROVE: Eric, that's the kind of language you should have, not what he said last night. Go back and replay your own piece of film. He said Hillary Clinton is a bigot. Those are her words. Not mine. So, yeah, he did call her a bigot. That was a mistake.

    In a subsequent discussion with economist Austan Goolsbee, Bolling asked, “Is [Trump] saying she is a bigot, or is he saying the Democratic policies are bigoted?” Goolsbee replied “Well, when his quote was ‘Hillary Clinton is a bigot,’ I think he is saying Hillary Clinton is a bigot”:

    AUSTAN GOOLSBEE: You see him launching the "you're a bigot," and it kind of reminds me of the old, the first guy that accused everyone of being a cheater is the guy who's the cheater.

    ERIC BOLLING (GUEST HOST): Yeah, but Austan, later on -- earlier today, this was after the original bigot comment, earlier today he said -- and I'm quoting his words, "every policy that Hillary Clinton supports is a policy that has failed and betrayed communities of color." Is he saying she is a bigot, or is he saying the Democratic policies are bigoted?

    GOOLSBEE: Well, when his quote was "Hillary Clinton is a bigot," I think he is saying Hillary Clinton is a bigot.