One of Republican presidential hopeful Donald J. Trump’s early campaign promises was to refuse to take his salary. It was one he repeated often. For example, in September 2015, Trump tweeted:
“As far as salary is concerned, I won’t take even one dollar. I am totally giving up my salary if I become president.”
As we know, Trump went on to win the 2016 U.S. presidential election, and opponents were quick to condemn the new American leader for breaking his word. A feisty headline ran two weeks before the close of the first annual fiscal quarter. On March 13, 2017, an unhappy and impatient observer griped:
“Trump continues to take salary despite promise, says he’ll donate money later – This isn’t the first time he’s broken that promise.”
Quoting the president-elect’s first big interview in November 2017, Trump had gone on record again about his federal paycheck:
“No, I’m not gonna take the salary. I’m not taking it.”
It turns out that the president could not legally keep his campaign pledge because the U.S. Constitution (the law of the land) contains a Compensation Clause. Article 2, Section 1, Clause 7 says the president must receive a fixed salary during his time in office, which cannot be changed, eliminated, or refused during the duration of his presidency.
The idea behind this law, according to Founding Father Alexander Hamilton, was to keep the nation’s top leader financially free from outside forces because, “They can neither weaken his fortitude by operating on his necessities, nor corrupt his integrity by appealing to his avarice.”
Billionaire Trump has shown everyone through many progressive actions that his fortitude is just fine – and he honestly does not need the extra income to maintain his lifestyle in the fashion to which he has grown accustomed.
The job of U.S. President has an annual salary, before taxes, of $400,000 a year. Upon learning of the constitutional requirement to accept payment for his services in office, Trump announced that “he would accept $1 and either give the rest back to the U.S. Treasury or donate it to charity.”
The nation’s leader has honored that promise in spirit, if not to the letter, by making donations to help fund a variety of federal projects each and every three months he gets paid.
Here’s a breakdown of President Trump’s salary donations since he took office through the first quarter of 2018:
2017Q1 $78,333 (his $100,000 salary for that quarter, after taxes) to the U.S. Department of the Interior’s National Parks Service towards two projects at Antietam National Battlefield in Maryland.
When officials from the U.S. Interior Department met with Sean Spicer on April 3, 2017, they acted a bit surprised when President Trump’s Press Secretary announced:
“I want to just give you a quick update on something I know in the past there’s been several questions about the President donating his salary to charity…To that end, the President has spoken with Counsel and made the decision to donate his first-quarter salary, in total, to a government entity, and he has chosen this quarter to donate it to the National Park Service.”
Spicer went on to cite the Park Service’s contribution to the preservation of our nation and its national security since 1916. He said the President was proud to help out. Spicer then got to the point:
“So it is my pleasure, on behalf of the President of the United States, to present a check for $78,333 to the Secretary of the Interior, Ryan Zinke, and Superintendent of the Harper’s Ferry Park site, Superintendent Brandyburg.”
Someone in the room quipped, “After taxes?” and when Spicer answered that the offer was “straight up,” he got as far as, “It is every penny that the President received from the first quarter since the day he was —” someone said, “But it’s not a full quarter.” Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke was quick to jump in with, “We think it will cash, though.”
Critics like the Executive Director of the Sierra Club, Michael Brune, looked a gift horse squarely in the mouth and called Trump’s “giant fake check” a “publicity stunt” and “sad consolation prize” because Trump’s new budget proposed to cut Interior’s budget by $1.5 billion (12 percent).
2017Q2 $78,333 to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) camp for children, overseen by the U.S. Department of Education.
At a White House press briefing held on July 26, 2017, Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos accepted the cash gift. At the time, no firm plans were in place and Trump asked around for suggestions to make a winning program.
A year later, DeVos visited the Smithsonian’s “She Can” STEM Summer Camp where “students learned about the science of flight and were exposed to a wide array of aviation-related activities and career paths.”
The Secretary of Education worked alongside sixth- through eighth-grade girls “to build and fly their own drones, was a passenger in an FAA-certified flight simulator and toured the Boeing Aviation Hangar.”
Pretty cool, huh?
2017Q3 $78,333 to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for a public awareness campaign about opioid addiction.
The Initiative to Stop Opioid Abuse was introduced in March 2018 as a new plan with several goals targeting public awareness and legal consequences.
Among the program’s highlights:
• Launch a nationwide evidence-based campaign to raise public awareness about the dangers of prescription and illicit opioid use, as well as other drug use.
• Keep dangerous drugs out of the United States by securing land borders, ports of entry, and waterways against illegal smuggling.
• Reduce the over-prescription of opioids which has the potential to lead Americans down a path to addiction or facilitate diversion to illicit use.
• Fund research and development efforts for innovative technologies and additional therapies to combat addiction and manage pain from drug withdrawal. Develop a vaccine against opioid addiction.
• Enforce the existing death penalty against hard-core drug dealers.
2017Q4 $78,333 to an infrastructure grant program overseen by the U.S. Department of Transportation.
Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao broke the news that President Trump would donate his net fourth quarter 2017 salary to help fund a new grant program for public and private physical improvements – like roads, bridges, tunnels, water supply, and sewers.
The project, called Infrastructure for Building America, “will reward state and local governments that have raised their own funds before asking for federal help.”
The new program has a planned $1.5 billion budget to distribute free grant money to Make America Great again by fixing the roads and bridges.
2018Q1 full salary to the Department of Veterans Affairs to assist caregiver programs.
On May 17, 2018, Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced that President Trump would continue his salary donation into the New Year. The recipient of his generosity was the VA (Department of Veterans Affairs).
Then-acting Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert Wilkie added more detail. The Commander-in-Chief’s first quarter 2018 salary donation would help “caregiver support in the form of mental health and peer support programs, financial aid, education training, and research.”
There you have it. President Donald J. Trump is a man who tells it like it is. What a refreshing change from the White House.
As for the nay-sayers and boo-hooers, remember the famous words of President Abraham Lincoln who was quoting poet John Lydgate:
“You can please some of the people all of the time, you can please all of the people some of the time, but you can’t please all of the people all of the time.”
All we know is that honesty and generosity are their own rewards. And midterms are coming.
History tells us that while Obama was personally able to be elected and then reelected to the presidency – his coat-tails were nonexistent. During the 8-years of his presidency, Democrats lost 1,030 seats within state legislatures, governorships and within Congress.
The Democratic Party had long languished in Obama’s shadow for years, so why are they taking another bite of the apple?
Daniel Galvin, a political science professor at Northwestern University and the author of a book on presidential party building, explained the apparent disconnect between Obama and the Democratic Party. “Obama just figured his important actions on policies like immigration and health care would solidify support, but that hasn’t really materialized,” he wrote.
Adding, “He’s done basically the minimal amount of party building, and it’s been insufficient to help the party.”
Many Democrats in hindsight blame Obama for an executive agenda that prioritized social wedge issues such as transgender rights and access to birth control rather than “bread and butter’ issues and other mainstream economic anxieties.
“The backlash to the Obama presidency was perhaps bigger than any of us really realized,” said Simon Rosenberg, president of the New Democratic Network, a Democratic think tank.
So the question once again, why Obama?
Within his two brief outings, Obama has already demonstrated that it’s still all about “him” rather than helping the party find its way.
Obama’s reemergence on the campaign trail is more about attempting to salvage his tattered legacy by attempting to reinvent himself and arrogantly rewrite history.
“When you hear how great the economy is doing right now, let’s just remember when this recovery started,” an arrogant Obama reminded his young minions at the University of Illinois.
His comment once again gave critical thinking voters watching at home an opportunity to reexamine the facts. At one point during his speech, Obama referenced that his numbers regarding “new jobs created” matched that of his rival – and indeed he was correct.
What Obama cleverly omitted was the type and quality of those jobs. While the numbers were almost the same, Obama’s new jobs were almost all (94%) low wage, part-time jobs with little growth and no benefits.
Democrats should once again be extremely concerned with an angry narcissist attempting to patch up his legacy by giving a 64-minute speech and referencing himself over 100-times.
Remarkably, even with the massive decline of Democrats holding elective office during his presidency, Obama had the gall to suggest he would have been successful if allowed to seek a third term.
“I am confident in this vision because I’m confident that if I had run again and articulated it, I think I could’ve mobilized a majority of the American people to rally behind it,” Obama told ex-adviser David Axelrod for “The Axe Files” podcast.
Of course, the left-wing media is attempting to run interference for Obama, hoping history won’t be repeated for the Democrats come this November.
“Justice delayed, is justice denied,” and although this is a small victory for the thousands of men and woman targeted by the IRS under the Obama régime, it’s a victory nevertheless. While there was sparse news coverage of what actually took place under the Obama Administration – targeting conservatives because of their political points of view is one of the darkest chapters within America’s history. Reminiscent of the tragic events in Benghazi, the media fell silent.
Obama and his minions (with the help of the media) are masters at covering their numerous acts of malfeasance.
The Chattanooga Times Free Press initially reported that conservative groups were the subjects of illegal and unwarranted scrutiny by the federal agency solely for political purposes.
“It shows that when a government agency desires to target citizens based on their viewpoints, a price will be paid,” said Edward Greim, a lawyer who led the class-action case in federal court in Cincinnati.
The IRS agreed to a declaratory judgment, stating that “it is wrong” to purposely scrutinize a tax return because of a taxpayer’s name or political philosophy, the report said. Along with the favorable judgment, the conservative groups received a “sincere apology” from the IRS…
Under the tutelage of former President Obama, then-senior executive of the IRS, Lois Lerner, became aware of the targeting in 2011 of conservative groups legally applying for tax exemptions – however encouraged auditors to target them.
And yet Lerner, a former IRS senior executive, requested that her testimony be sealed – and it was.
Her lawyers claimed that there was “exceedingly low” public interest in having their depositions released, and they said tea party groups are pushing for disclosure out of “spite.”
“The public disclosure of this personal and sensitive information and details of the harassment would further no legitimate end while undermining substantial privacy and physical safety interests,” the women said in briefs filed by their lawyers.
The settlement appears to be a “pay-off” or perhaps more bluntly a “bribe” not to pursue any further with the class-action lawsuit.
The Justice Department under then President Obama personally cleared Lerner of any wrongdoing, even praising her in a public statement for stopping the targeting of conservatives when she learned of the infraction. In Leftist World, the fact that this version contradicts the sworn testimony of others just doesn’t matter.
Just days ago, on August 27, Jonathan Moffa threw a big rock at the hornet’s nest called the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). It seems that the accusers have become the accused.
During closed-door testimony before the House Judiciary and Oversight committees, Moffa “made it clear to the committee that the FBI routinely uses media reports to corroborate analytic work product. We have emails and texts plainly showing the FBI leaks to the media, raising major red flags. If FBI executives want the American people to believe they haven’t used leaks to their advantage, they are not being honest,” stated House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows (R-NC).
At 9:20pm that evening, Rep. Meadows tweeted about Moffa’s disclosure:
“We’ve learned NEW information suggesting out suspicions are true: FBI/DOJ have previously leaked info to the press, and then used those same press stories as a separate source to justify FISA’s.”
Never heard of FISA, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act? This federal legislation was enacted in 1978 to establish “procedures for the physical and electronic surveillance and collection of ‘foreign intelligence information’ between ‘foreign powers’ and ‘agents of foreign powers’ suspected of espionage or terrorism. The Act created the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) to oversee requests for surveillance warrants by federal law enforcement and intelligence agencies.”
As we reported last October 2017 in an article titled “FBI Busted Over Trumped-Up Dossier”! the FBI used a Democrat-purchased fictional file (or dossier) written in 2016 before the fall U.S. presidential election by a British ex-spy named Christopher Steele.
It didn’t take long for observers to cry shenanigans on the FBI’s spy program to collect political dirt on Page using illegal wiretap monitoring. In April 2017, Alice Greene reported in Punching Bag Post that the “FBI Used Fake Report to Obtain Warrant on Carter Page” and that “the agency used the infamous Trump dossier, published last January, as proof in obtaining the warrant.”
The MEMO which made headlines in January this year, written by Rep. Devin Nunes, contended that “the warrant for Page was improperly obtained using information from the Russia Dossier.”
The FBI cited an article written by Michael Isikoff for Yahoo! News. According to Fox News:
“The Isikoff article was published on Sept. 23, 2016, focusing on Page’s July 2016 trip to Moscow. According to a House GOP memo earlier this year, the Isikoff article did ‘not corroborate the Steele dossier’ as the article was derived from information leaked by Steele himself to Yahoo News.’ Yet the subsequent FISA application to spy on Page cited the Isikoff article, among other pieces of evidence.”
Now Moffa, former work associate of FBI officials Strzok and Lisa Page, has said on record that his agency is setting people up for a fall. Meadows observed:
“We know that some people at the Department of Justice and the FBI actually gave information to the media, then the stories were reported. Then they used those reports to justify further investigations…that’s like saying, we’re going to incriminate on one hand, and be the jury on the other. It just doesn’t work that way.”
But who actually provided the dodgy dossier to the FBI? Testimony given by former FBI operative Peter Strzok points to then-associate deputy attorney general Bruce Ohr who happens to be married to Nellie Ohr who happened to work as a senior official for Fusion GPS at the time Steele turned in his salacious dossier. When the public became aware that Justice employee Ohr was linked to the Steele dossier – Ohr had meetings with Glenn Simpson, co-founder of Fusion GPS – the ADA was demoted to a DOJ human resources job.
What a tangled web those co-conspirators wove: leaking this, spying there, hurling accusations right and right.
What a perfect no-lose system the Democrats, Justice Department, and Federal Bureau of Investigation had going: the Dems hire left-wing political muck-rakers to write published articles with false and purposely misleading information provided by the FBI, which then uses those fake news stories to spy on anyone the Dems consider to be a threat – and all of these illegal activities operate under the approving eye of the DOJ.
Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) confirmed what many have suspected since 2016:
“Hillary Clinton and the Democrats [were] funneling money to the Perkins Coie law firm who then paid Fusion GPS, and then Glenn Simpson contracting out with Chris Steele, and then Steele paying whoever the heck he needed to pay to try to get some of the garbage that he got, and then they’re bringing these reports back, and Nellie Ohr, from Fusion GPS, is giving that to her husband, Bruce Ohr, and then Bruce is giving it to people like Strzok in the FBI.”
According to Fox News, an unnamed source said that FBI whistleblower Moffa “admitted the leak-and-reuse tactic at least ‘had been a practice in the past.'”
“He more or less admitted that the FBI/DOJ have previously leaked info to the press and then used stories from the press as justifications for FISA warrants.”
Will We the Taxpayers stand a federal justice system that has created a culture of leaking for their own gain, as one source called it, that uses fake news media reports they themselves distribute to persecute their political opponents.
From our Department of We Told You So: …
Well. Enough said.
Within the course of approximately 24-hours, the hysterical drumbeat by the rabid media on CNN, MSNBC, CBS, and ABC for “IMPEACHMENT” was uttered over 300-times. No doubt the left is salivating like hungry jackals circling the mighty bull, hoping to bring down the Trump Administration with another bogus claim that’s as transparent as Mueller’s Russian hoax.
The issue of campaign finance law violation has become the latest saga stemming from the Mueller probe. While the rabid response from the Left might make one think they are living through the second coming of the Watergate scandal, campaign finance violations are nothing new.
For instance, President Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign was fined $375,000 by the Federal Election Commission for campaign reporting violations – the largest amount ever imposed on a presidential campaign.
However, the pro-Obama media considered the violation to be little more than a technical infraction – an innocent oversight, barely worth mentioning. This simply illustrates the double-standard exhibited by the media along with the one-sided Mueller probe.
The fine against the Obama campaign by the FEC lays out the audit outlining the infraction committed by the campaign.
Apparently breaking campaign finance laws, regardless of the unabashed drama exhibited by the unhinged left towards President Trump, does occur and is usually remedied with a fine.
Perhaps the more sinister occurrence regarding egregious violations of campaign laws – which of course hasn’t received any attention by the leftist media – took place in 2012. Facebook voluntarily provided privileged information on millions of their subscribers to the Obama re-election campaign, which is an illegal corporate campaign contribution.
Federal law prohibits corporations from making “direct or indirect” contributions to candidates running for federal office. That ban extends beyond cash contributions to “any services, or anything of value.” In other words, corporations cannot provide federal candidates with free services of any kind. Under the Federal Election Commission’s regulations, “anything of value” includes any “in-kind contribution.”
The most troubling aspect of the Obama Facebook is the disinterest shown within the mainstream media to investigate one of their own. No doubt this should be investigated by the Federal Election Commission and potentially the U.S. Department of Justice – if the Attorney General ever decides to finally do his job.
In a stunning decision, a New Mexico judge on Monday granted bond to 4-adults who were charged with 11-counts of child abuse each. The police, after initially looking for 39-year old fugitive Siraj Wahhaj and his kidnapped son, raided a compound in New Mexico last week. Along with Wahhaj, 11 malnourished children and one decomposed body were found in the filth riddled desert compound.
The compound was allegedly used as a Muslim training facility, for the sole purpose of training some of the starving children in the use of firearms – with the intent of committing a terrorist attack on an American school.
After several hours of testimony and overwhelming evidence being presented by prosecutors, activist Judge Sarah Backus somehow made the bizarre and convoluted determination to grant bail, saying the state failed to meet the burden of showing the suspects were a danger to the community.
The compelling evidence presented, aside from the obvious mistreatment of the children, was the physical evidence of the compound itself – which mirrored terrorist training camps found in the Middle East. The complex even had its own firing range.
The prosecutors also provided additional information to the judge from two of the older children, regarding their training in the use of firearms and tactical terrorist techniques. Moreover, a scribbled manifesto against law enforcement and other institutions was also found in the compound. The letter, written by one of the suspects, contained pleas to fellow Muslims to come to the compound and “die like a martyr.”
Even the FBI testified on behalf of the prosecution, allowing their agent Travis Taylor to take the stand and reveal his “sources and methods” in conducting his interview between the FBI and the two teens from the compound. The interview revealed that Siraj Wahhaj would lead rituals that included reading from the Quran and were centered on his epileptic son.
“During these rituals, per witness statements, the victim, Abdul (Ghani Wahhaj) would begin to choke and have white foam or slime come from his mouth and then pass out,” Taylor said.
According to Taylor, the children were led to believe that Abdul-Ghani Wahhaj “would become Jesus” when his demons were exorcised. He added that once the child “became Jesus,” he would instruct the others of the property or the family what corrupt institutions to get rid of.”
A decomposing body believed to be that of a child was found buried in a shallow grave within the compound. However, investigators have yet to determine if the body is that of 4-year old Abdul-Ghani Wahhaj. What is known is none of the 11-children rescued within the compound is Abdul-Ghani Wahhaj.
The defense attorney representing the suspects immediately turned the bond hearing into a debate regarding the suspect’s Muslim religion, tagging investigators as perhaps suffering from “Islamophobia.”
The attorney declared that there’s a “double-standard” where Muslims are concerned, stating that if the suspects were Christian and white, “we might not be here today.”
It’s noteworthy to acknowledge that Chief District Judge Sarah C. Backus graduated from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, and was a Public Defender in the sanctuary city of San Francisco.
The good judge is also a lifelong Democrat – and was appointed by the Democratic Party of New Mexico in 2008 and again in 2010 to head the election protection efforts for the Democratic Party.
In a statement sent to KOB following the hearing, Gov. Susana Martinez said she “strongly disagreed” with the hearing’s outcome and Backus’s decision.
“Unfortunately, it highlights how extreme the New Mexico Supreme Court has been in dictating pretrial release for all kinds of dangerous criminals,” she said.