Supreme Court Justice Kagan questions Colorado ruling to disqualify Trump
On Friday, Former President Donald J Trump gave a rambling speech in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, where he told a crowd of supporters he recently killed the border security deal, saw a migrant stealing a refrigerator and claimed the state’s name would be changed if he isn’t elected president.
The remarks followed a speech Mr Trump gave the night prior in Las Vegas, Nevada, in which he told the crowd he wished the general election could be held on Tuesday after he won the state’s Republican caucus. Former UN ambassador Nikki Haley lost to “none of these candidates”.
Her campaign spokesperson said the election was rigged in Mr Trump’s favour and Ms Haley is focused on winning the election in her home state of South Carolina. Mr Trump is currently leading the polls in that contest.
In Pennsylvania, the former president boasted about his record of doing “nothing” on guns during his administration, while speaking at the National Rifle Association’s Great American Outdoor Show, his first campaign stop in the state. The former president has previously said that mass shootings are a mental health problem.
The next two primary elections are in South Carolina and Michigan at the end of the month.
Everything you need to know about Super Tuesday but were afraid to ask
Super Tuesday, the biggest day of the US presidential primary season, arrives early next month and promises to have a decisive if perhaps somewhat anticlimactic impact on the respective Republican and Democratic races.
All but one of his challengers have fallen away, leaving only the well-funded but under-performing ex-UN ambassador Nikki Haley still swinging.
But even she may not make it to Super Tuesday (although she has promised she will), as the next Republican primary takes place in her home state of South Carolina and current polling indicates the Palmetto State’s former governor could be in for another trouncing on her home turf, a further humiliation after she scored fewer votes than the “none of these candidates” box on Nevada ballot papers.
“Is there any way we can call the election for next Tuesday?” a cocky Mr Trump gloated on stage in Las Vegas after that result.
“That’s all I want. I want to call the election for next Tuesday.”
However, if Ms Haley can somehow conjure a surprise victory in either South Carolina on 24 February or Michigan on 27 February, it will be game on for Super Tuesday and we could find ourselves with a very interesting evening indeed.
The Democratic contest is looking equally one-sided, with President Joe Biden seemingly nailed-on to be his party’s candidate again as he seeks a second term in the White House, despite concerns about his advanced age and consistently poor polling.
Here’s everything you need to know about Super Tuesday in good time for its arrival:
Mr Trump says Pennsylvania will change its name if he isn’t elected president
While speaking at a National Rifle Association event in Pennsylvania, Mr Trump told a crowd of supporters that the state would change its name if he isn’t elected president.
See the remarks below:
Recap: Trump wins uncontested Nevada caucuses after Nikki Haley is beaten by ‘no one’
The former president was going to end the evening with more than 90 per cent of the vote, his highest margin of victory by far, thanks to his lone competitive rival Nikki Haley choosing to participate in a state-sanctioned primary on Tuesday which did not award any delegates. As a result, Mr Trump will leave the state with 26 more delegates to add to his total as he builds up his support for the Republican National Convention this summer.
Wait until you hear who Ryan Binkley is and how he did…
Careful candor needed from Biden campaign after candidate age moves to centre stage
Eric Garcia writes:
President Joe Biden probably hoped that the 388-page report from special counsel would put a lingering question — the one of his handling of classified documents — to bed.
And indeed, while Special Counsel Robert Hur’s report said that Biden “willfully” held onto classified materials at his home in Delaware and the office of a think tank, it also said it would not recommend crimiminal charges for the president.
The good news ended there for the president. It should be noted that Attorney General Merrick Garland nominated Hur, a Republican whom Donald Trump nominated to serve as the US Attorney for Maryland. Garland did so after Trump sought to use the entire department as his personal legal defense arm. It was supposed to be a show of impartiality toward the current president.
But nominating Hur might have given Republicans their most potent weapon yet. It forced a conversation on Biden’s age and whether it makes him fit to be the president for another term into the foreground. The report became the equivalent of a rubber hose beating: it may not be fatal, but it will bruise him up a bit.
ANALYSIS: Trump’s four ‘wins’ in one day means chaos for everyone else
Alex Woodward writes:
For what felt like the first time in weeks, Thursday was a day of “good news” for the former president, who has spent years baselessly portraying himself as a victim of a Democratic conspiracy to keep him out of the White House.
Even when his rivals get the same treatment, Mr Trump tells his supporters he’s the victim of a “weaponized” Justice Department and a “two-tiered system of justice,” ignoring thousands of pages of evidence against him. He’ll take the victories in elections he won and call any loss “rigged” against him. His own attorney stood in front of the nation’s highest court to call a violent attack that risked tossing out millions of Americans’ votes “criminal,” and none of the justices blinked.
Seen another way, a firehose of news on a “good” day for the likely Republican nominee for president – leaning into his autocratic campaign built on “retribution” – is a big red flashing light for our deteriorating democracy, its institutions too slow or ill-equipped to respond.
Kamala Harris defended Joe Biden after an unflattering report on his conduct was released by a Republican special prosecutor. The report from Robert Hur, the former Maryland U.S. Attorney, questioned the President’s ability to remember key moments and facts. The Vice-President said the report and the comments made about the President’s age and memory were “gratuitous, inaccurate, and inappropriate.” Ms Harris remarked on her own experience as a prosecutor when discussing the report and called it “clearly politically motivated.” “And so, I will say that when it comes to the role and responsibility of a prosecutor in a situation like that, we should expect that there would be a higher level of integrity than what we saw,” she added.
So, was January 6 ‘beautiful’ or ‘criminal’?
Donald Trump and his lawyer appear to differ in their opinions…
Alex Woodward explains why that might be a problem:
Trump’s hypocrisy on Supreme Court ballot eligibility hearing called out by Seth Meyers
“We didn’t concede that it’s an effort to overthrow the government,” Mr Mitchell said during the hearing.
“Something tells me Trump isn’t exactly going to be thrilled with that argument,” Mr Meyers reacted. “It doesn’t really fit on a baseball cap: shameful, criminal, violent, but still eligible!”
Amelia Neath has the story:
Profile: Jonathan Mitchell — the conservative lawyer arguing for Trump at Supreme Court
Mr Mitchell, 47, is a law professor, legal theorist and the former solicitor general of Texas known for finding loopholes to aggressively litigate in favour of his clients – often with conservative agendas.
Trump motion for mistrial in E Jean Carroll case fails
A federal judge has denied Donald Trump’s motion for a mistrial in E Jean Carroll’s defamation case against him.
Mr Trump lost the case and was ordered to pay $83m last month after Judge Lewis Kaplan ruled he had defamed the writer after she publicly accused him of sexual assault.
Attorneys for the former president called for a mistrial, arguing that death threats Ms Carroll deleted constituted the destruction of evidence.
But in a court filing on Wednesday, Mr Kaplan rejected the motion, saying it had been a fair trial and to allow a mistrial would be “entirely pointless.”
Julia Reinstein has the details: