Doug Burgum drops out of 2024 presidential race – latest

Doug Burgum has become the latest Republican presidential candidate to suspend his campaign.

On Monday, Mr Burgum, the governor of North Dakota, announced he was dropping out of the race, just ahead of the fourth GOP debate which Mr Burgum did not qualify for.

In his statement, Mr Burgum criticised the Republican National Committee (RNC) for placing “arbitrary criteria” on candidates.

“None of their debate criteria relate to the qualifications related to actually doing the job of the president. This effort to nationalize the primary system is unhealthy for the future of the party,” Mr Burgum said.

The North Dakota governor joins former Vice President Mike Pence and South Carolina Senator Tim Scott in recusing themselves from the race.

The remaining GOP candidates are frontrunner and former President Donald Trump, former UN Ambassador and South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, biotech entrepreneur and anti-woke author Vivek Ramaswamy, former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, and former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson.

Key Points

  • Where the Republican candidates stand on Donald Trump

  • Democrat megadonor gives to Nikki Haley super PAC to help thwart Trump

  • Who qualified for the fourth GOP debate?

  • North Dakota governor Doug Burgum suspends his 2024 campaign

  • Dates and venues for three 2024 presidential debates announced

Where the Republican candidates stand on Donald Trump

18:07 , Gustaf Kilander

The field of Republican candidates has winnowed significantly since the beginning of the campaign, going from eight hopefuls appearing on the stage during the first primary debate to just four in the fourth showdown.

The frontrunner by a wide margin is former President Donald Trump, who has declined to appear at any of the debates so far, but his reticence to argue his case hasn’t had any impact on his strong primary poll numbers.

The four top remaining challengers have all used different tactics to take on Mr Trump.

Biotech entrepreneur and anti-woke author Vivek Ramaswamy has been mimicking him while at times struggling to explain why he’s running against a man he has called “the best president of the 21st century”.

Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has been creative in finding different ways to call Mr Trump a wildly incompetent and dangerous criminal.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has argued that he would be a more competent, and most importantly, younger, version of the ex-president who would be able to run again in 2028.

Former South Carolina Governor and UN Ambassador Nikki Haley initially instituted the “pro-having it and pro-eating it” cake policy of disgraced former UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson when it came to Mr Trump, attempting to remain on the fence and not annoy either Republicans supportive or critical of the former president. More recently, she has become slightly more outspoken in her criticism.

Here’s a rundown of what each of them have said about Mr Trump.

Democrat megadonor gives to Nikki Haley super PAC to help thwart Trump

16:24 , Oliver O’Connell

Just a week after JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon urged even liberal Democrats to help Nikki Haley’s campaign to give Republicans an alternative to Donald Trump, one Democrat megadonor has done just that.

Reid Hoffman, the billionaire co-founder of LinkedIn, donated $250,000 to a super PAC supporting the former UN ambassador’s 2024 campaign to be the GOP nominee in 2024.

The New York Times confirmed the donation had been made with Dmitri Mehlhorn, a political adviser to Mr Hoffman.

Mr Mehlhorn told the outlet that the pro-Haley super PAC SFA Fund Inc was specifically asked if it would take money from a Democrat who actively supports President Joe Biden, and they said yes.

SFA Fund Inc is one of the biggest actors in the 2024 Republican primary race, having spent more than $33m on advertising and other expenses.

Its biggest contributors up to mid-2023 were Jan Koum, a co-founder of WhatsApp, who gave $5m, and the venture capitalist Tim Draper, who gave $1.25m.

Previously Mr Hoffman helped fund E Jean Carroll’s lawsuit against the former president when she sued him for rape and defamation. Mr Trump was found liable for sexual abuse and defaming Ms Carroll.

He also hosted a fundraiser for Mr Biden in California earlier this year; donated to vocal Trump foe Liz Cheney in 2022; and gave $3.35m to the Republican Accountability Project during the 2022 election cycle.


Who qualified for the fourth GOP debate?

Monday 4 December 2023 21:30 , Gustaf Kilander

Three candidates have so far qualified for the fourth Republican primary debate, set to be hosted by NewsNation on 6 December.

Former Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, former UN Ambassador and South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, and biotech entrepreneur and anti-woke author Vivek Ramaswamy have all qualified for the Wednesday night showdown at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa.

The debate will be moderated by former Fox News host Megyn Kelly, now of SiriusXM, NewsNation’s Elizabeth Vargas, and Eliana Johnson, the editor of the Washington Free Beacon.

The debate will be broadcast on NewsNation, a subscription-based network, and it will be streamed online on Rumble, the video-hosting site mainly used by right-wing voters. The first three debates were hosted by Fox News, Fox Business, and NBC News.

To qualify, candidates had to acquire 80,000 donors – at least 200 from 20 states and territories – and at least six per cent support in at least two national polls or one national survey and two polls from the early states – Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada.

North Dakota governor Doug Burgum suspends his 2024 campaign

Monday 4 December 2023 17:30 , Ariana Baio

North Dakota’s Governor Doug Burgum ended his campaign for the presidency on Monday ahead of the fourth Republican primary debate in Alabama.

Mr Burgum, 67, had poured millions of his own money into his presidential bid but after an initial meetup of the candidates in August failed to reach the polling requirements necessary for attendance at successive GOP primary debates. He sought to run on his record as governor but had little name recognition at the national level.

John Bowden reports:

North Dakota governor Doug Burgum suspends his 2024 campaign

Doug Burgum suspends campaign

Monday 4 December 2023 16:08 , Ariana Baio

North Dakota governor Doug Burgum announced on Monday that he would be suspending his campaign for 2024 president.

In a lengthy statement provided by his campaign, Mr Burgum called out the Republican National Committee’s (RNC) new debate rules for forcibly “narrowing the field”.

“The RNC’s clubhouse debate requirements are nationalizing the primary process and taking the power of democracy away from the engaged, thoughtful citizens of Iowa and New Hampshire,” Mr Burgum said.

“These arbitrary criteria ensure advantages for candidates from major media markets on the coasts versus America’s Heartland. None of their debate criteria relate to the qualifications related to actually doing the job of the president. This effort to nationalize the primary system is unhealthy for the future of the party, especially for a party that proclaims to value leadership from outside of Washington,” he added.

Mr Burgum announced his campaign on 7 June.

Dates and venues for three 2024 presidential debates announced

Tuesday 21 November 2023 14:01 , Mike Bedigan

The dates and venues for the three 2024 presidential debates have been announced.

The debates, which will take place in September and October will be staged at US university campuses in the states of Texas, Virginia and Utah.

The news was announced by the nonpartisan, nonprofit Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) on Monday.

The first debate will take place on 16 September at Texas State University in San Marcos. It will be followed by the second at Virginia State University in Petersburg on 1 October.

The final debate will take place just over a week later at The University of Utah, in Salt Lake City, on 9 October.

Read more here:

Dates and venues for three 2024 presidential debates announced

Republican candidates wish Tim Scott well

Monday 13 November 2023 15:15 , Ariana Baio

After South Carolina Senator Tim Scott suspended his 2024 presidential campaign, his fellow political opponents wished him well.

Former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley said her home state was “blessed” to have Mr Scott as a senator and said the Republican primary “was made better by his participation.”

At times, Mr Scott and Ms Haley butted heads on the debate stage.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis commended Mr Scott for being courageous in running for president and thanked him for his service in Congress.

Chris Christie called Mr Scott a “friend” and said the US was better because of his service.

Vivek Ramaswamy said Mr Scott strikes him “as a good dude” and boasted about giving the senator a fist-bump on the debate stage.

Mr Ramaswamy said he hopes he can “convince” Mr Scott that giving Ukraine more financial aid “is an awful idea” as he resumes his work in Congress.

Asa Hutchinson, Doug Burgum and Mike Pence also thanked Mr Scott for his service and wished him well.

Tim Scott suspends campaign

Monday 13 November 2023 14:40 , Ariana Baio

South Carolina Senator Tim Scott made a surprise announcement on Fox News on Sunday, saying he is suspending his campaign.

“I am suspending my campaign. I think the voters, who are the most remarkable people on the planet, have been really clear that they’re telling me, ‘not now, Tim.’” Mr Scott told Trey Gowdy on Sunday Night in America.

“I don’t think they’re saying, Trey, ‘no.’ But I do think they’re saying ‘not now.’ And so I’m gonna respect the voters and I’m gonna hold on and keep working really hard and look forward to another opportunity,” he added.

Tim Scott staffers say he didn’t tell them about dropping out of 2024 race

Monday 13 November 2023 14:11 , Eric Garcia

Sen Tim Scott (R-SC) announced on Fox News on Sunday evening that he would suspend his presidential campaign after he failed to gain traction in the Republican primary.

Mr Scott made the announcement on the programme of former congressman Trey Gowdy, who came to Congress the same year he did in 2011.

Shortly after delivering the news on live TV, members of Mr Scott’s staff told Politico they were caught completely off guard.

The staffers said he made a call immediately after the interview and acknowledged that he “may have caught you by surprise” but said he “tried to be as strategic as possible dealing with this”.

Watch: Jill Stein announces 2024 presidential bid

Friday 10 November 2023 10:00 , Ariana Baio

Nikki Haley’s star is rising. But can she catch up to Trump?

Friday 10 November 2023 08:00 , Kelly Rissman

Nikki Haley is known for a lot of firsts — the first Asian American woman to serve as governor in US history, the first Indian American member of a presidential Cabinet, the first woman of colour to run for the GOP nomination — but will she become the first woman to serve as US president?

Few think so.

On paper, Ms Haley is arguably the ideal GOP candidate. She boasts impressive foreign policy experience amid the bloody conflict in Ukraine and the war between Israel and Hamas. She is the only woman in the race, giving her a sophisticated position to discuss reproductive rights as Republicans struggle to appeal to voters following the demise of Roe v Wade.

Still, the 51-year-old can’t seem to catch up to Mr Trump. Ms Haley’s candidacy demonstrates a larger problem with the 2024 Republican race — no one can touch him.

Kelly Rissman reports:

Nikki Haley’s star is rising. But can she catch up to Trump?

Looking back to 2016: Jill Stein’s affect on the election

Friday 10 November 2023 03:00 , Ariana Baio

During the 2016 election, the Green Party received votes that exceeded Republican Donald Trump’s lead over Democrat Hillary Clinton.

The number of votes the candidate, Jill Stein, obtained is largely considered to be a contributing factor to Mr Trump’s win – as the Green Party took votes away from Ms Clinton in key swing states like Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania.

Political analysts have said the votes Ms Stein, who advocates heavily for sustainable energy policies, would have likely gone Democratic had she not been an option in the election.

Five takeaways from the third GOP debate

Friday 10 November 2023 01:00 , John Bowden

The third Republican primary debate was an ugly slugfest reminiscent of the earliest Trump debates of 2015 — except the former president wasn’t even there.

A group of five candidates, minus their party’s frontrunner, appeared onstage Wednesday evening in Miami for what was billed as a presidential debate but in the end, may have just been an exercise in futility.

1. Ramaswamy unleashed and ‘unhinged’

The businessman and first-time candidate was eager to swipe at anyone onstage. He took a particular (and eyebrow-raising) interest in Nikki Haley, the former UN ambassador and governor of South Carolina. His continues jabs at Ms Haley lost him the goodwill of the crowd, who erupted in murmurs when he mentioned her “heels” derisively and outright boos (the only set of the night) when he mentioned her daughter.

2. DeSantis and Haley brawl for second place

Ms Haley was eager to score points against her rival on the issue of energy production, interjecting “you banned fracking!” as Mr DeSantis defended protecting the Everglades from drilling.

“You’re trying to make up for it and act like you weren’t a liberal when it comes to the environment,” Ms Haley claimed, addressing Mr DeSantis. “Just own it if that’s the case.”

3. Candidates greenlight Israel’s response to Hamas

The assembled Republicans called on Israel to “finish” Hamas and destroy the group entirely, calling it an existential threat to Israel’s existence.

4. The elephant not in the room

The main issue for the Republican pack of would-be runners-up remains unseating Mr Trump, and that means drawing blood and picking off the former president’s supporters.

5. Culture wars take a back seat

Foreign policy took a front seat for much of the debate, as the ongoing Israel-Gaza conflict and the war in Ukraine provoked a discussion about America’s role as a world leader, and what that tangibly means in terms of investments. Entitlement reform and energy policy were also on the table, with the latter devolving into accusations of being insufficiently pro-fracking and the former turning into an artful dance around the question of what America’s retirement age should be in 2023.

Tim Scott seems to ‘soft launch’ new girlfriend Mindy Noce at debate

Thursday 9 November 2023 23:15 , Gustaf Kilander

South Carolina Senator Tim Scott appeared to “soft launch” his girlfriend at the Republican debate in Miami.

Mr Scott, whose bachelor status has regularly been reported on during the campaign, brought Mindy Noce, an interior designer and a mother of three from Charleston, up on stage after the debate to pose for a photo.

Initially, it was unclear who Ms Noce was as she stood next to Mr Scott, but her appearance sparked online speculation that she could be his often-mentioned but never-before-seen partner.

Mr Scott, 58, told the press after the debate that they have been dating for “about a year”.

The senator has been mentioning a possible girlfriend as he campaigned this summer after he was questioned about being unmarried. James Buchanan, who served as president between 1857 and 1861 is the only president to never have been married, with the White House website describing him as “tall, stately, stiffly formal in the high stock he wore around his jowls”.

During the summer, Mr Scott chose not to share Ms Noce’s name or bring her to events, with his status as a single man becoming evident as his rivals Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and former UN Ambassador and South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley often mentioned their spouses

Who is Jill Stein?

Thursday 9 November 2023 22:30 , Ariana Baio

Jill Stein is a physicist and political activist associated with the Green Party.

Ms Stein, 73, unsuccessfully ran for president in 2012 and 2016 and ran for Massachusetts governor in 2002 and 2010.

She announced on social media she would be seeking out the Green Party’s nomination for the White House in 2024, positioning herself as an alternative to the current Republican and Democratic candidates.

"I’m running for president to offer a better choice for the people outside the failed two-party system,” Ms Stein wrote on X.

“Political insiders always smear outsiders like us, and try to shame voters who want better choices,” said Stein. “But without freedom of choice in elections, there is no democracy,” she added.

Ms Stein supports implementing clean energy and renewable energy in the US and has advocated for legislation to combat the climate crisis.

Regarding the economy, Ms Stein believes in student debt forgiveness, opposes raising the debt ceiling, advocates for increasing taxes on the wealthy, and reducing the military’s budget.

She has advocated for guaranteed housing and employment in the US as well.

Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein waits to speak at a news conference on Fifth Avenue across the street from Trump Tower December 5, 2016 (Getty Images)
Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein waits to speak at a news conference on Fifth Avenue across the street from Trump Tower December 5, 2016 (Getty Images)

Green party candidate Jill Stein announces 2024 campaign

Thursday 9 November 2023 21:45 , Josh Marcus

Jill Stein announced on Thursday that she is entering the 2024 presidential race as a candidate seeking to represent the Green Party, criticising the two major parties for their handling of issues like climate change and inequality.

“The political system is broken,” she said in an announcement video on social media. “The two Wall Street parties are bought and paid for. Over 60 per cent of us now say the bipartisan establishment has failed us and we need a party that serves the people.”

“We’ll put solutions to the crises we face,” she added. “Crushing inequality, endless war, and climate collapse...The ruling parties that got us into this mess aren’t getting us out.”

Josh Marcus reports:

Green party candidate Jill Stein announces 2024 campaign

Mike Pence suspends his presidential campaign

Saturday 28 October 2023 19:36 , Kelly Rissman

Former Vice President Mike Pence announced on Saturday that he is suspending his 2024 presidential campaign.

Mr Pence said with a heavy heart while speaking at the Republican Jewish Conference in Las Vegas: “I just couldn’t sit this one out.”

“But the bible tells us there is a time for every purpose under heaven.” He said that after traveling across the country for months, “It has come clear to me that this is not my time.” He said the suspension was effective Saturday.

“I’m leaving this campaign but let me promise you: I will never leave the fight for conservative values and I will never stop fighting to elect principled Republican leaders to every office in the land. So help me God,” Mr Pence said.

Read more:

Mike Pence suspends his 2024 campaign for president

How the 2024 candidates reacted to Maine shooting

Friday 27 October 2023 21:00 , Ariana Baio

After another tragic mass shooting occurred in the US on Wednesday, 2024 presidential candidates quickly responded to the incident offering their thoughts, prayers and solutions to America’s growing gun violence issue.

In Lewiston, Maine, a gunman opened fire at a bowling ally and a local restaurant killing 18 people and injuring 13 others.

President Joe Biden, who is seeking re-election, sent his thoughts and prayers to those affected by the shooting in a statement from the White House and referred to legislation he has enacted to reduce gun violence.

Republican candidates blamed mental health problems for the mass shooting – a tactic often utilised by conservatives to avoid assigning responsibility to guns. Historically, Republicans back the Second Amendment and defend their right to firearm ownership.

How the 2024 candidates reacted to Maine shooting

Before Dean Phillips announced campaign a bus with his face was spotted

Friday 27 October 2023 18:15 , Ariana Baio

Minnesota Congressman Dean Phillips has reportedly booked a campaign bus for what appears to be a primary challenge to President Joe Biden, setting the Democratic backbencher up for a long-shot bid that is likely to make him a pariah among his colleagues in the House of Representatives.

Radio station WCCO reported on Wednesday that a bus bearing custom wrapping with the message “Dean Phillips for President” was spotted along Ohio roads this week.

The third-term Democratic representative, an extremely wealthy owner of the Phillips Distillery liquor business, has served in the House since 2019.

Andrew Feinberg reports:

Democratic challenger to Biden has a branded campaign bus, report says

Dean Phillips announces Democratic run

Friday 27 October 2023 17:41 , Ariana Baio

Minnesota Representative Dean Phillips announced he is running for 2024 president, becoming the latest candidate to challenge incumbent President Joe Biden for the White House.

Mr Phillips, 54, has been a member of Congress since 2019 representing Minnesota’s 3rd district.

Mr Biden is largely aligned with Mr Biden on his political beliefs and voting record. However, for months, he has expressed doubt that Mr Biden could properly take on Mr Trump in the presidential election.

In a lengthy post on X, Mr Phillips said his campaign would focus on the economy, safety and “generational change.”

“I didn’t set out to enter this race. But it looks like on our current course, the Democrats will lose and Trump will be our President again. President Biden is a good man and someone I tremendously respect. I understand why other Democrats don’t want to run against him, and why we are here. This is a last-minute campaign, but desperate times call for desperate measures, and courage is an important value to me,” he wrote.

Trump says he ‘may’ also visit Israel after Biden wartime trip

Thursday 19 October 2023 17:56 , Rachel Sharp

Donald Trump has now suggested that he could also travel to Israel following President Joe Biden’s historic wartime visit on Wednesday.

The former president spoke to reporters during a break in his New York civil fraud trial on Wednesday – a case that threatens to topple his business empire in the Big Apple and land him with $250m in financial penalties.

“If I was president, Israel would not have been attacked. It was visually attacked. It would not have been attacked,” he said.

“Ukraine would not have been attacked. You take a look at what’s going on throughout the world. The world right now is a mess, it’s a mess. And it’s a very sad day.”

When asked if he plans to head to Israel, Mr Trump replied: “I may. I may go, I may go.”


DeSantis confronted by New Hampshire voter over claims babies are being beheaded by Israelis in Gaza

Friday 13 October 2023 19:52 , Martha McHardy

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis clashed with a voter while on the campaign trail in Littleton, New Hampshire, on Thursday, in a heated exchange over the Israel-Hamas war.

A local man, identified by The New York Times as local Arab-American ski shop owner Ron Lahout, confronted Mr DeSantis about unverified claims babies are being beheaded in Gaza.

Mr Lahout began by asking Mr DeSantis what he thought “about the annihilation and the decapitation of all the Palestinians in Gaza right now”.

“They are not decapitating babies’ heads,” Mr DeSantis can be heard saying of Israeli forces. “They are not intentionally doing that.”

It comes after unverified reports emerged of Palestinian militants decapitating babies during the attack by Hamas on Israel on Saturday.


Trump mocked for appearing to blame ‘hummus’ for attacks on Israel

Thursday 12 October 2023 20:00 , Martha McHardy

Donald Trump is being mocked for appearing to blame “hummus” for the attacks in Israel over the weekend.

At a rally in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Mr Trump mispronounced the name of the terrorist group Hamas several times, appearing to refer to it as “hummus”.

A clip of the speech went viral on social media and the former president was also mocked by TV host Jimmy Kimmel.

In the opening monologue of his show, Mr Kimmel joked that Mr Trump’s speech displayed the “deep well of insight he has into this ongoing conflict in the Middle East”.

“Could you imagine anyone else in the world doing anything even remotely like that?” Mr Kimmel asked.


White House slams ‘unhinged’ Trump for calling Hezbollah ‘very smart’

Thursday 12 October 2023 17:45 , Oliver O'Connell

The White House has condemned former president Donald Trump for calling the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah “very smart” in remarks on Thursday night in Florida.

His comments came less than a week after militant group Hamas launched a massive attack on Israel from the Gaza Strip.

Speaking at a “Club 47 USA” event in West Palm Beach on Wednesday (11 October), the former president said: “Can you imagine national defence people, and they said ‘gee, I hope Hezbollah doesn’t attack from the north because that’s the most vulnerable spot’.

“And I said ‘Wait a minute. You know Hezbollah’s very smart. They’re all very smart.’ The press doesn’t like it when I say that. You know, I said that about President Xi of China, 1.4 billion people, he controls it with an iron fist. I said ‘he’s a very smart man’.

“They killed me the next day… ‘He said he was smart’. What am I gonna say… But Hezbollah, they’re very smart.”


Biden has been interviewed by special counsel investigating classified documents found at his home

Tuesday 10 October 2023 18:00 , Andrew Feinberg

President Joe Biden has been interviewed by Department of Justice prosecutors who’ve been looking into how documents with classification markings ended up at his Delaware homes and a Washington, DC office he used while out of government, the White House has said.

In a statement, White House spokesman Ian Sams said the “voluntary interview,” which started on Sunday and finished on Monday, was part of the probe being overseen by Robert Hur, the former Maryland US Attorney who was tasked with investigating the documents at locations linked to Mr Biden.

Mr Hur, who was appointed by Attorney General Merrick Garland this past January, has spent the last nine months interviewing various figures connected with Mr Biden’s term as vice president, including Secretary of State Antony Blinken and a former assistant, Kathy Chung.

Both Mr Blinken and Mr Chung played roles in packing Mr Biden’s office in late 2008 and early 2009 during the transition between the Obama administration and the Trump administration.

Mr Sams, the White House spokesperson, referred questions from The Independent to the Department of Justice while noting that Mr Biden and the White House have cooperated fully with Mr Hur’s efforts.


VIDEO: Nikki Haley calls for Israel to ‘finish’ Hamas following attack on civilians

Tuesday 10 October 2023 16:00 , Gustaf Kilander

RFK Jr has a vision to change America. His family say he’s a crackpot

Tuesday 10 October 2023 14:03 , Bevan Hurley

As Robert F. Kennedy Jr took to the stage in front of Philadelphia’s Independence Hall on Monday to unveil his vision for ending hundreds of years of two-party rule, a technical hitch with the teleprompter briefly threatened to derail his big moment.

“I need my speech”, he complained as he disappeared from view, stage right. “It’s upside down.”

In the Netflix sci-fi hit Stranger Things, the “Upside Down” is the name given to a mysterious alternate dimension that exists parallel to the known world. In other words, an apt description for Kennedy’s presidential campaign.

Kennedy is often described as paranoid, delusional and dangerous. And that’s just by his own family.

But in his supporters’ eyes, a Kennedy presidency offers the chance to rewrite the rules in Washington, DC to create a more equitable system for all.


Former US general reminds GOP attacking Biden of time Trump leaked Israeli intel to Iran ally

Tuesday 10 October 2023 05:00 , Martha McHardy

A former US general took to Twitter on Sunday to remind Republicans laying blame on the Biden administration after Hamas militants launched the deadliest attack on Israel in decades that Donald Trump shared classified intelligence from Israel with Iran-allied Russia when he was president.

Retired army general Mark Hertling shared a story about allegations the former president told top Russian officials that Israel had successfully hacked Isis computers in order to gain intelligence about bomb plots against the West in a meeting at the White House in 2017.

At the time, the former president’s actions reportedly ignited fears by Israel that Russia could have passed the information to its ally Iran, which has long been a supporter of the Palestinian cause.

Mr Trump reportedly leaked the information in a meeting in the Oval Office in May 2017 with the Russian foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov, and the then-Russian ambassador to the US, Sergey Kislyak. Amid uproar over the revelation, Mr Trump insisted he had every right to give Russia the information.

He tweeted: “As president, I wanted to share with Russia (at an openly scheduled WH meeting) which I have the absolute right to do, facts pertaining to terrorism and airline flight safety. Humanitarian reasons, plus I want Russia to greatly step up their fight against Isis and terrorism.”


Pence accuses Trump, DeSantis and Ramaswamy of ‘appeasement’ over their isolationism

Tuesday 10 October 2023 03:00 , John Bowden

Mike Pence led the charge for the foreign interventionist wing of the 2024 Republican primary against their isolationist rivals this weekend as new hostilities erupted between Israel and the Hamas militants of the occupied Gaza Strip.

It was a banner weekend for that wing of the GOP, whose members among the 2024 primary field spent their hours one-upping each other with rhetoric endorsing an unmitigated Israeli response against the Palestinian militant group that launched attacks across the country.

Mr Pence made his remarks in Iowa, where he is battling for a surprise victory (or at least a decent-enough showing) in the first-in-the-nation caucuses. Calling out Donald Trump, Vivek Ramaswamy and Ron DeSantis by name, he accused them of supporting America’s retreat from a global military, diplomatic and economic footprint he argued was previously responsible for tamping down on unrest around the world.

His rebuke, he said, was directed at “voices of appeasement like Donald Trump, Vivek Ramaswamy and Ron DeSantis that I believe have run contrary to the tradition in our party that America is the leader of the free world.”

“This is ... what happens when you have leaders in the Republican Party signaling retreat on the world stage,” charged the former vice president.


News anchor schools Nikki Haley over false claims tying Hamas attack to $6bn Iran deal

Tuesday 10 October 2023 02:00 , Graig Graziosi

Former UN Ambassador and GOP presidential hopeful Nikki Haley has joined a chorus of Republicans accusing Iran of funding a terror attack against Israel despite there being no evidence to support their claims.

Republicans have been pushing the narrative as a way to tie the attack in Israel to Joe Biden.

Their claim goes like this: Joe Biden gave Iran $6bn to facilitate a prisoner exchange; Iran then used that money to fund Hamas‘s Saturday attack on Israel that left hundreds dead and wounded.

NBC News’ Kristen Welker challenged that narrative during an interview on Sunday with Ms Haley on Meet the Press.

Earlier in the show, Secretary of State Antony Blinken assured the public that the money given to Iran in the prisoner swap was frozen, and has remained frozen, until Iran withdraws it for use in humanitarian endeavors.

Republican lawmaker dismisses possibility Trump could be House speaker

Tuesday 10 October 2023 00:00 , Martha McHardy

A Republican lawmaker has dismissed the possibility that Donald Trump could replace Kevin McCarthy as House speaker.

Rep Ken Buck, who voted last week to oust Mr McCarthy as speaker of the House of Representatives, insisted the former president doesn’t stand a chance of taking the gavel after far-right Republicans including Marjorie Taylor Greene and Matt Gaetz floated the idea he could be appointed to the role.

When asked on ABC’s “This Week” about some Republicans calling for Mr Trump to become the next speaker, Mr Buck said “that’s not going to happen”.

“It shouldn’t happen, and we have a lot of talent inside the House,” he said.

“We’ll settle this inside the House Republican conference, and we will elect someone who’ll have the unity and the backing of the full conference.”

Authoritarianism expert has a warning about Nikki Haley’s refusal to condemn Trump

Monday 9 October 2023 22:00 , Alex Woodward

Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley has refused to say whether Donald Trump should be disqualified for the GOP’s 2024 nomination after his comments suggesting that the outgoing chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff should be executed for treason.

During NBC’s Meet the Press on 8 October, Ms Haley, a former South Carolina governor and US ambassador to the United Nations during the Trump administration, called his comments “irresponsible” but did not say whether she believes his comments are disqualifying.

“I think any man or woman who served our country deserves our highest respect,” she said. “They sacrifice a lot. Their families sacrifice a lot. And we should honour them every chance we get.”

Authoritarianism expert Ruth Ben-Ghiat of New York University said Ms Haley’s refusal to outright condemn Mr Trump’s increasingly violent rhetoric offers a grim warning of a growing tolerance for authoritarian violence.

“Apparently the idea of executing Milley is now the Party Line,” she wrote on X, formerly Twitter. “We are living through real-time preparation for an authoritarian crackdown. We are in phase of ‘getting the public used to the idea of violence.’ Having authoritative voices like Haley endorse violence is key.”


RFK Jr ends Democratic bid for White House and will run as independent

Monday 9 October 2023 20:03 , Graeme Massie, Mike Bedigan

Robert F Kennedy Jr has announced he will end his run for the White House as a Democrat and instead become an independent 2024 presidential candidate.

“I’m here to declare myself an independent candidate for President of the United States,” the anti-vaxxer scion of America’s most famous political family said on Monday.

“But that’s not all, I’m here to join you and make a new Declaration of Independence for our entire nation,” Mr Kennedy added. “We declare independence from the corporations that have hijacked our government.”

Mr Kennedy originally positioned himself to run against Joe Biden, but the Democratic National Committee is not holding debates and is fully supporting the president’s run for a second term in the Oval Office.

Mr Kennedy made the official announcement at Philadelphia’s Independence Mall, with campaign signs reading “Declare your Independence”.