As it happenedended1599336933

Trump news: President’s niece slams him over reports he called war dead ‘losers’ and ‘suckers’ as ex-FBI agent says agency wondered if he was ‘Manchurian candidate’

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Kate Ng,Danielle Zoellner
Saturday 05 September 2020 21:11
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Trump denies calling war dead 'losers' and 'suckers'

Donald Trump's niece Mary Trump has become the latest to slam the president for a report that said he allegedly mocked American veterans as "losers" and "suckers". In a tweet, Ms Trump shared a picture of her father, Mr Trump's brother, who served in the National Guard.

This comes after Captain Chelsey "Sully" Sullenberger posted a series of tweets calling Mr Trump "disgusting" for allegedly speaking against war heroes. Mr Sullenberger, who is known for saving 155 passengers on a commercial flight by landing the plane on the Hudson River, spoke about how both he and his father served for the US.

Democratic candidate Joe Biden also reacted negatively to The Atlantic's report, saying he believed the report to be true and thought Mr Trump was "unfit" for the presidency.

Mr Biden told reporters on Friday that Mr Trump’s comments, if true, are “deplorable”. The Trump administration has dismissed the report as false.

Following the report, a Fox News reporter independently confirmed key points from The Atlantic's report. Mr Trump slammed the reporter and called for them to be fired.

But Mr Trump found support among Osama bin Laden's niece on Saturday, after she gave her first public interview. Noor bin Ladin told the New York Post that she believed another 9/11-inspired attack could happen if Mr Biden were to win in November. Mr Trump, in her opinion, would be the only one to prevent that type of attack.

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Good morning, and welcome to The Independent's liveblog following the latest news and developments on US President Donald Trump.

Kate Ng5 September 2020 09:04
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Biden slams Trump's alleged comments on war veterans as 'deplorable'

(AP)Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden has said Donald Trump is "unfit" to be the president following a report that alleged Mr Trump mocked American war veterans as "losers" and "suckers".

Mr Biden told reporters on Friday that Mr Trump’s comments, if true, are “deplorable” and said he had “never been as disappointed” in his whole career with any leader he’s worked with, “president or otherwise”.

He added that “the president should humbly apologise to every Gold Star mother and father, to every Blue Star family that he’s denigrated… Who the heck does he think he is?"

Kate Ng5 September 2020 09:15
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Trump blames former White House Chief of Staff John Kelly for leak

The president said on Friday night that John Kelly, his former Chief of Staff, “could have been” a source for a report by The Atlantic that alleges Mr Trump mocked American war veterans as “losers”.

During a White House press briefing, Mr Trump was asked if he thought Mr Kelly, who served as a Marine general, was one of the unnamed sources quoted in the article.

The Atlantic alleged that Mr Trump trashed a visit to an American military cemetery in France in 2018 and said: “Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers.”

Mr Trump told reporters: “It could have been a guy like a John Kelly. You look at some of his news conferences, what happened to him, he got eaten alive.

“He was unable to handle the pressure of this job.”

Kate Ng5 September 2020 09:23
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Trump mocks Biden for wearing face masks

Donald Trump has mocked his Democratic opponent for being “a man who likes a mask”, as the president himself has avoided wearing masks in public despite the coronavirus pandemic.

His comments came as he appeared to abuse coronavirus restrictions on outdoor events of more than 250 people in the state of Pennsylvania.

A large number of attendees at the event, organised by the Trump campaign, did not wear face masks or practice social distancing, reports Gina Spocchia.

Get the full report below:

Kate Ng5 September 2020 09:30
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Kanye West seeks place on presidential ballot in Kentucky

(The Associated Press)

Rapper Kanye West has filed to run for US president on Kentucky’s ballot, it has been revealed.

Secretary of State Michael Adams posted part of West’s application in a tweet, adding: “Our staff are diligently reviewing this filing, including an estimated 19,000 petition signatures, to determine whether Mr West has qualified to appear.”

It comes after West was barred from appearing on Arizona’s ballot earlier this week, saying a voter who challenged his candidacy had shown he would probably prevail in the legal dispute.

Mr West announced his presidential bid in early July, after announcing he would no longer support Donald Trump. His campaign filed paperwork on 15 Jul with the Federal Election Commission.

He has qualified to appear on the ballot in states including Arkansas, Idaho, Iowa, Tennessee and Utah, but not in Ohio, Montana, West Virginia, Wisconsin and other states.

Kate Ng5 September 2020 09:45
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White House press secretary slams media over ‘suckers’ report, storms out of press conference

(AFP)

Donald Trump’s press secretary Kayleigh McEnany ranted at the media on Friday over the report alleging the president mocked American war veterans, saying “no one loves and cares” about those who serve in the military more than him.

Ms McEnany said: “Here is the one truth: No one, and I mean no one, loves and cares for our servicemen and women more than President Donald J. Trump.”

She spoke of the president’s previous encounters and visits with war veterans, adding that they were “America’s greatest generation and the president holds them in the highest of regards”.

Mr Trump has previously made disparaging comments about military veterans, called the late Senator John McCain, who was captured and tortured during the Vietnam War, a “loser” and said he likes people who “weren’t captured”,

After her tirade at members of the press, Ms McEnany walked out of the press conference without taking questions.

Kate Ng5 September 2020 10:00
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The Independent answers your questions about the 2020 US elections

When is the 2020 US election? Will it be going ahead amid the coronavirus pandemic?

My colleagues Louise Hall and Gina Spocchia tackled all your questions about the US elections later this year:

Kate Ng5 September 2020 10:15
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Trump rails against anti-racism training as ‘anti-American propaganda’

Donald Trump has labelled anti-racism training sessions for governmental agencies “divisive. anti-American propaganda”.

The comments were contained in a memo as the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) was directed to crack down on spending related to learning about subjects such as white privilege.

Russell Vought, director of the OMB, asked federal agencies to identify spending related to any training on “critical race theory” or any other material that teaches or suggests that the United States or any race or ethnicity is “inherently racist or evil”.

The memo concluded: “The President has a proven track record of standing for those whose voice has long been ignored and who have failed to benefit from all our country has to offer, and he intends to continue to support all Americans, regardless of race, religion or creed.

“The divisive, false and demeaning propaganda of the critical race theory movement is contrary to all we stand for as Americans and should have no place in the Federal government.”

Kate Ng5 September 2020 10:30
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Judge orders Trump administration to stop detaining migrant children in hotels

A federal judge has ordered the US government to stop detaining unaccompanied migrant children in hotels before expelling them without the chance to seek refuge in the country.

US District Judge Dolly Gee said the practice, which was put in place under an emergency declaration citing the coronavirus pandemic, skirted “fundamental humanitarian protections”.

She ruled that the use of hotels as long-term detention spaces violates a two-decade-old settlement governing the treatment of immigrant children in custody and ordered border agencies to stop placing children in hotels by 15 September and to remove them from hotels as soon as possible.

Since March, immigration agencies have expelled 148,000 people crossing the US-Mexico border.

The Trump administration says unauthorised border crossings threaten public health and must quickly be forced out of the country, but advocates for immigrants argue the government is using the pandemic to side-step federal anti-trafficking laws and asylum protections.

At least 577 unaccompanied children have been taken to hotels since March, where they are detained and deported from the US.

Ms Gee wrote that the Trump administration “cannot seriously argue in good faith that flouting their contractual obligation to place minors in licensed programs is necessary to mitigate the spread of Covid-19”.

Kate Ng5 September 2020 10:45
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Why this South Dakota voter supports Joe Biden

Our correspondent in New York, Chris Riotta, spoke to South Dakotan Natalie LaFrance-Slack to talk about why she supports Joe Biden despite her state’s Republican leadership.

Read about her views in our weekly Polarized series, featuring Americans from all 50 states sharing their opinions on the 2020 elections.

Kate Ng5 September 2020 11:00

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