World: Impeachment shadow on Trump as he hits world stage - - PressFrom - US
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World Impeachment shadow on Trump as he hits world stage

08:50  03 december  2019
08:50  03 december  2019 Source:   nbcnews.com

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As Donald Trump meets with world leaders at the NATO summit in London this week, his moment on the international stage is at risk of being upstaged by an intensifying impeachment inquiry back home. For Trump , it's an opportunity to distill for voters the argument that he 's doing his job while

But the impeachment inquiry has cast a shadow over Trump 's already tumultuous presidency and sharpened a divide among Americans that is likely Wednesday's hearing, while academic in nature, will set the stage for the Judiciary Committee to begin determining whether Trump should face formal

U.S. President Donald Trump and U.S. first lady Melania Trump arrive at Stansted Airport in England, Monday, Dec. 2, 2019. US President Donald Trump will join other NATO heads of state at Buckingham Palace in London on Tuesday to mark the NATO Alliance's 70th birthday. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein) © ASSOCIATED PRESS U.S. President Donald Trump and U.S. first lady Melania Trump arrive at Stansted Airport in England, Monday, Dec. 2, 2019. US President Donald Trump will join other NATO heads of state at Buckingham Palace in London on Tuesday to mark the NATO Alliance's 70th birthday. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

LONDON —  This is the contrast President Donald Trump wanted — at least, in theory. 

On this side of the Atlantic, he'll be representing the United States in high-level talks with Western leaders about the rising threats of Russia, China and perpetual turmoil in the Middle East. On the other, in his telling, his domestic political rivals in the House Democratic majority will be busy indicting him in absentia in an impeachment investigation he calls a "hoax" designed to undermine his presidency.

Poll: Majority of Republicans think Trump a better president than Lincoln

  Poll: Majority of Republicans think Trump a better president than Lincoln A majority of Republicans believe President Trump is a better leader than Abraham Lincoln, who guided the nation through the Civil War. © Provided by Washington ExaminerThe Economist and YouGov conducted a poll from Nov. 24-26 of 1,500 American adults. In the wide-ranging poll, researchers asked Americans to compare Trump to past U.S. presidents.Fifty-three percent of Republicans said that Trump is a better president than Lincoln. For Democrats and Independents, Lincoln is considered to have been the better president with 94% and 78%, respectively.

WASHINGTON — President Trump set off to London on Monday, admonishing “radical” Democrats for continuing their impeachment inquiry while he attends a NATO summit — “one of the most important journeys that we make as president.”.

Impeachment inquiry shadows Trump as he heads to NATO leaders meeting. LONDON (AP) — Crying foul over timing, President Donald Trump on Monday accused Democrats of scheduling this week’s impeachment hearing to undercut him during his trip abroad for a NATO summit playing out

For Trump, it's an opportunity to distill for voters the argument that he's doing his job while Democrats are ignoring the needs of the American public so they can hurt him politically.

"The Democrats, the radical-left Democrats, the do-nothing Democrats decided when I'm going to NATO — this was set up a year ago — that when I'm going to NATO, that was the exact time," he said of the House Judiciary Committee's first impeachment hearing, which is scheduled for Wednesday and is on track with long-standing Democratic plans to bring a vote to the House floor before Christmas. "This is one of the most important journeys that we make as president."

But as Trump meets with world leaders at the NATO meeting here this week, his moment on the international stage is at risk of being upstaged by the intensifying impeachment inquiry back home.

Trump says impeachment inquiry is a 'hoax' being used for political gain

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But the impeachment inquiry has cast a shadow over Trump 's already tumultuous presidency and sharpened a divide among Americans that is likely Wednesday's hearing, while academic in nature, will set the stage for the Judiciary Committee to begin determining whether Trump should face formal

Trump insists he ’s solely focused on scoring domestic and foreign policy wins, including revamping NATO so that allies spend more on defense. White House aides say the summit offers Trump an opportunity to counter the impeachment narrative in Washington and demonstrate to voters that he ’s

Likewise, any portrait of him as the leader of a free world confronting the alliance's common adversaries is mottled by his withdrawal from the climate and Iran nuclear deals, his chummy relationships with Russian President Vladimir Putin and other autocrats, and the fact that the impeachment is centered on his decision to freeze vital military aid to Ukraine .

The House Intelligence Committee was due to deliver to the Judiciary Committee on Monday its report on the president's dealings with that nation , which included witnesses testifying to the particulars of Trump freezing aid to that country while directing top lieutenants to work through his personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, to pressure officials in Kyiv to open investigations into the Bidens and a conspiracy theory that claimed Ukraine framed Russia for interfering in the 2016 election.

Trump administration officials delivered the message to anxious Ukrainian officials that the military support would flow again if President Volodymyr Zelenskiy publicly announced that the investigations would be launched — a boon to Trump's re-election campaign in the form of harming rival and former Vice President Joe Biden and creating a cloud around what intelligence experts have said is the certainty that Russia ran a sophisticated effort to intervene on Trump's behalf in his first bid for the presidency.

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The House Judiciary Committee will begin proceedings in the impeachment inquiry, and have invited President Donald Trump to give testimony.

But the impeachment inquiry has cast a shadow over Trump 's already tumultuous presidency and sharpened a divide among Americans that is likely Wednesday's hearing, while academic in nature, will set the stage for the Judiciary Committee to begin determining whether Trump should face formal

Video provided ny MSNBC

A report of dissenting views circulated by House Intelligence Committee Republicans on Monday contends that the president pursued investigations not for his personal or political benefit but because he had legitimate concerns about possible corruption in Ukraine and the fabricated case that Ukraine conspired with Democrat Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election — a claim that former National Security Council aide Fiona Hill dismissed as a Russian disinformation campaign during her testimony.

As the full Intelligence Committee report lands in Washington on Tuesday, Trump is scheduled to spend the day meeting with French President Emanuel Macron, having tea with Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, and attending a reception with world leaders at Buckingham Palace.

On Wednesday, the day of the Judiciary hearing, Trump is slated to participate in a series of NATO ceremonial events followed by meetings with world leaders, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

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LONDON (AP) — Crying foul over timing, President Donald Trump on Monday accused Democrats of scheduling this week’s impeachment hearing to undercut him during his trip abroad for a NATO leaders’ meeting playing out at a crucial moment for the 70-year-old military alliance.

Trump impeachment inquiry: key moments from Sondland's explosive testimony – video. “They are trying to impeach President Trump because some unelected bureaucrats chafed at an elected President’s ‘outside President Trump has said publicly and repeatedly that he exerted no pressure.”

He'll have a chance to address global issues — and the impeachment hearing slated to take place at the same time — at a press conference planned before his return to Washington.

Before he even arrived, it already seemed clear that Trump would have a hard time leaving domestic politics behind him.

“Democrats purposely scheduled an Impeachment Hoax hearing on the same date as NATO. Not nice!” he tweeted moments after departing for London, including a video of his plane taking off in the tweet.

While over the Atlantic, he tweeted that “the Impeachment Scam” was only bringing Republicans closer together and sent out his support for Rep John Kennedy, R-La., who critics say was echoing Russian propaganda talking points about Ukraine during an appearance on NBC’s "Meet the Press" on Sunday.

Beyond the facts of the impeachment case, there are problems with Trump's portrayal of House Democrats neglecting their legislative work to focus on investigating him.

On the same day of the public release of a whistleblower report detailing allegations of impropriety in his Ukraine dealings — Sept. 26 — Trump signed into law a bill written by Rep. Elaine Luria, D-Va., that would provide a cost-of-living adjustment for disabled veterans for fiscal 2020. The next day, Trump signed a House-passed measure keeping the government running on a short-term basis and ensuring that Ukraine's defense money would get out the door before expiring.

Trump: Giuliani 'wants to go before Congress' about Ukraine trip

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Trump heads to London as impeachment threat looms. Good morning, live blog readers! It will be a busy (and nerve-wracking) week for Donald Trump as the president heads to London for a Nato summit and awaits the release of the House intelligence committee’s report on the impeachment inquiry.

Trump has denied any wrongdoing and says a July 25 phone call with Zelenskiy, in which he Speaking to reporters as he departed the White House on Monday en route to London for a NATO But the impeachment inquiry has cast a shadow over Trump 's already tumultuous presidency and

Overall, 20 of the 77 bills that became law since Democrats took control of the House in January did so between the date of the whistleblower report's release and now.

On this side of the Atlantic, Trump has a tangible accomplishment to promote.

He's had some success in getting countries to boost military spending; if he can break through the noise of impeachment, he may get some credit for that. Member countries are now projected to increase spending by about $130 billion between 2016 and 2020, higher than previously forecast, Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said last week. NATO also said it would reduce the U.S. contribution to its budget.

But it also provides the potential for more pitfalls than positives with relationships between Trump and the other leaders fractured and allies divided over how to handle trade, China, Syria and Iran.

Trump has had a tumultuous past with the alliance. At his first summit, he shocked leaders when he failed to reaffirm a core principle of the alliance — that an attack against one member is an attack on all. During last year’s gathering, he threatened that if members didn’t immediately increase their defense spending, the U.S. would pull out of the alliance.

And while spending by member countries has increased, 22 of the 29 NATO allies, including Germany, currently aren’t reaching the recommended spending level — despite Trump’s repeated demands. Last year he accused Germany of being “captive” to Russia because of an energy deal it had struck.

Biden, a leading contender for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination whom Trump pushed Ukraine to investigate while withholding that defense funding over the summer, said Monday that the existence of the NATO coalition is in peril if Trump wins re-election.

"Just take a look at what he's done so far," Biden said in response to a question from NBC's Mike Memoli. "The way he has, you know, embraced Putin. The way he's embraced oligarchs. The way he's poked his finger in the eye of NATO and maybe — you know, look there's always time for redemption but up until now he's treated NATO like it's a protection racket."

In the case of Ukraine, which is not a member of NATO but is getting support from Western nations that would prefer it not fall back under Russian control, the allegation against Trump is that he abused his powers as president to create a protection racket aimed at disabling Biden's candidacy.

That issue will be inescapable for Trump as he rubs elbows with foreign leaders here.

Shannon Pettypiece reported from London, and Jonathan Allen from Washington.

Trump's approval dips among independent voters amid impeachment .
President Trump’s approval rating dipped among independent voters as Democrats move forward on impeachment, according to the latest Hill-HarrisX poll released Tuesday. © Greg Nash Trump's approval dips among independent voters amid impeachment The survey shows 39 percent of independent voters approve of Trump's job performance, while 56 percent said they disapprove.© Provided by The Hill The new approval rating among independent voters is down from 44 percent in early November.Trump's job approval rating also saw a dip among Republican voters, dropping 3 points to 85 percent compared to the previous poll.

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