Trump news – live: Elon Musk praises ‘effective’ previous administration but leaves out ex-president

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As the 6 January committee prepares for a summer of what promise to be shocking and disturbing hearings about the Capitol riot, Donald Trump has laid into committee member Liz Cheney, claiming that she has taken her opposition to him to insane extremes.

“From what people tell me, from what I hear from other congressmen, she’s like a crazed lunatic, she’s worse than anyone else,” he told the Washington Post in an interview. “From what I’ve heard, she’s worse than any Democrat.”

The committee’s first public hearing since last year is set for 9 June.

Meanwhile, Mr Trump is facing a complex night of Republican primaries, as two of his most conspicuous endorsees, Madison Cawthorn and Mehmet Oz, await potentially career-changing results in North Carolina and Pennsylvania respectively.

Where Mr Cawthorn has become a paraiah in much of the GOP because of various recent scandals, Dr Oz is disliked and even despised by much of Mr Trump’s base because of his long record of liberal positions.

Key points

  • Fauci wouldn’t serve Trump again

  • Pelosi mourns judicial impact of “a creature like Donald Trump”

  • Ex-president’s endorsee Dr Oz faces difficult Pennsylvania primary

ICYMI: Trump shares QAnon imagery on Truth Social

18:40 , Andrew Naughtie

Since Joe Biden derisively called him the “great Maga king” in remarks last week, Donald Trump has begun semi-ironically embracing dark regal imagery – but a recent meme he’s shared on Truth Social takes things up (or down) a level.

According to screenshots of the meme shared on Twitter on Monday, a “Q” could be seen behind the former president, who was shown seated on a throne and sporting a gold crown in the style of Game of Thrones.

The words “Maga King” also appeared behind Mr Trump in the meme, in reference to US President Joe Biden’s recent remarks about his predecessor’s “Make America Great Again” (MAGA) slogan.

Gino Spocchia has the story.

Trump shares QAnon conspiracy about himself

Musk praises Trump administration – but not Trump himself

18:38 , David Taintor

Elon Musk had some positive things to say about the Trump administration, but not specially Donald Trump himself.

“The Trump administration, leaving Trump aside, there were a lot of people in the administration who were effective at getting things done,” said Mr Musk, at a conference in Miami, according to Insider.

Report: Trump official met with Jan 6 conspiracy-mongers

17:50 , Andrew Naughtie

The investigation into the events between the 2020 election and 6 January 2021 has focused in large part on meetings between Trump administration officials and outside figures who were specifically involved in “stop the steal” efforts of various kinds.

Now, another such meeting has come to light. The Washington Post has confirmed that on 6 January itself, Robert A. Destro, a senior Trump appointee at the State Department, met with podcaster Joe Oltmann and Michigan lawyer Matthew DePerno, both of whom claimed that a “coup” against Mr Trump was being mounted by the Biden team.

Read the report below.

2024 watch: Haley to Iowa

17:00 , Andrew Naughtie

Donald Trump is widely assumed to be all but certainly running for re-election in 2024, but it has long been clear that other top Republicans are laying the groundwork for their own campaigns – whether because they intend to challenge him or because they anticipate he might not be able to run.

Now, the Des Moines Register reports a long-expected presidential contender is making one of the de rigeur early-on visits to Iowa: Nikki Haley, the former South Carolina governor who served as UN ambassador under the Trump administration.

McCarthy shrugs off Jan 6 audio question

16:17 , Andrew Naughtie

CNN’s Manu Raju has been asking Kevin McCarthy about the audio recordings of him discussing communications with Donald Trump after 6 January – and specifically about inconsistencies between what he said on taped conference calls with his members and what Mr Trump has since denied.

Here’s what Mr McCarthy had to say...

Lauren Boebert slams companies for offering to help pay for abortions

15:25 , Andrew Naughtie

The uproar over the apparently imminent overturning of Roe v Wade has seen several major companies offer to pay travel costs for women seeking abortions who will have to travel across state lines to get them. In response, far-right Colorado Congresswoman Lauren Boebert had this message:

As many have pointed out, Ms Boebert herself has previously mocked people for taking parental leave after having children.

Trump shares QAnon meme on Truth Social

14:55 , Andrew Naughtie

Donald Trump has gaily seized on Joe Biden’s recent derision of him as the “Great Maga King”, sharing kitschy images of him in dark regalia knocked up by his more zealous fans. But in his eagerness to embrace the label, he has perhaps inadvertently offered up fuel to the fevered imaginations of dogged QAnon believers...

Report: Jan 6 committee preparing for hearings

14:25 , Andrew Naughtie

As the 6 January select committee gears up for what promises to be a dramatic set of hearings over the summer, one question is central to its members’ discussions: the extent to which they need to focus on former president Donald Trump as they piece together the chain of events that led to the worst attack on the Capitol in more than 200 years.

The Washington Post has released an excellent deep-dive report that includes this account of a discussion between two of the panel’s members last month:

Democratic Rep. Stephanie Murphy (Fla.), insisted the committee should focus less on former president Donald Trump and do more to examine the security and intelligence failures that led to the breach of the Capitol by a pro-Trump mob. She also urged the committee to look harder at what can be done to prevent another attack, according to people familiar with the matter.

The other member, Republican Vice Chair Liz Cheney (Wyo.), argued that the committee should keep an intense focus on the former president.

“Rep. Cheney’s view is that security at the Capitol is a critical part of the investigation, but the Capitol didn’t attack itself,” said Jeremy Adler, a spokesman for Cheney.

The tense discussion — which played out in a conference room tucked inside the world’s largest library, where members posed for pictures with historic texts such as the Gettysburg Address — reflected just one among numerous weighty questions the committee must resolve before nationally televised hearings kick off next month.

Read the report below.

Trump agrees to limit his Twitter engagement

13:52 , Andrew Naughtie

Many Trump fans are eager to see their leader back on Twitter, and Elon Musk has said that he thinks the former president’s account should never have been blocked. But according to financial filings from the company that will oversee the IPO of his own platform, Truth Social, the ex-president has agreed to limit what he can post on Twitter and when if he returns.

Under the agreement, Mr Trump must post anything unrelated to politics first on Truth Social, and can only post on another social media site six hours later, the federal securities filing shows.

But if Mr Trump wants to post on a personal social media account anything “related to political messaging, political fundraising or get-out-the-vote efforts” he can do so at any time.

Graeme Massie has the story.

Trump has agreed to limit himself from Twitter, according to financial filings

Ron DeSantis outlaws protest outside private homes

13:00 , Andrew Naughtie

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has signed a bill sent to him by state legislators that bans protests outside private homes, drilling down on the right-wing insistence that the law should not tolerate demonstrators who gathered outside the homes of conservative justices and senators to protest the imminent end of Roe v Wade.

Among those whose homes were visited by anti-abortion protesters was Maine Senator Susan Collins, who phoned the police over a message chalked on the sidewalk outside her house.

Stuti Mishra has more.

Ron DeSantis signs bill making it illegal to protest outside a private home

Trump phones in to Oz event in Pennsylvania

12:30 , Andrew Naughtie

Donald Trump is selective with his in-person appearances on the campaign trail these days, restricting himself mainly to rallies in carefully chosen states with candidates he has heartily endorsed. He held such an event for Dr Mehmet Oz not long ago, but since it became clear the TV medic is in danger of losing his primary, Mr Trump has not appeared in Pennsylvania again.

However, an Oz campaign event last night – billed as a “telerally” – saw the president dial in on speakerphone to address a roomful of supporters, reassuring them that the candidate was in fact pro-life and pro-gun. Dr Oz’s long record of relatively liberal positions on both issues is the main strike against him for many conservatives, who have been resistant to his entreaties despite Mr Trump’s backing.

Joe Biden reverses Trump's withdrawal of US troops in Somalia

11:45 , Andrew Naughtie

Reversing a decision taken by former President Donald Trump, Joe Biden has approved the redeployment of US troops in Somalia.

BBC reported that the deployment was requested by the Pentagon to support the fight against militant group al-Shabab.

In 2020, Mr Trump withdrew about 700 US troops from Somalia.

ICYMI: Pelosi calls Trump a ‘creature’ as she dubs Supreme Court ‘dangerous to US freedoms’

11:00 , Maroosha Muzaffar

House speaker Nancy Pelosi has claimed that former president Donald Trump’s Supreme Court appointees have made the bench “dangerous to the freedoms” of the country.

She criticised the judges as the court prepares to issue a ruling that could end decades of constitutional protections for abortion care and trigger a wave of laws making abortion illegal in roughly half the US.

Read the full story here:

Pelosi calls Trump a ‘creature’ as she dubs Supreme Court ‘dangerous to US freedoms’

With echoes of Trump, GOP splinters over $40B for Ukraine

10:00 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Signs of Republican resistance are mounting over a $40 billion aid package to Ukraine, a reemergence of the Trump-led isolationist wing of the GOP that’s coming at a crucial moment as the war against the Russian invasion deepens.

Read the full story here:

With echoes of Trump, GOP splinters over $40B for Ukraine

Ted Budd looks poised to coast to victory with Trump’s support

09:00 , John Bowden

North Carolina Congressman Ted Budd is poised to claim victory on Tuesday over the state’s former governor in the race to be the GOP nominee for the seat held by retiring Sen Richard Burr.

His ascendancy is being buoyed by Donald Trump’s endorsement as well as that of the affluent Club for Growth, which has poured millions behind Mr Budd after breaking with the former president and being burned by Josh Mandel’s defeat in Ohio.

Mr Budd’s success despite running against an opponent who started with far greater name recognition is a sign of the clear power that Donald Trump still wields.

Read more in this profile of the race from the Associated Press:

North Carolina Senate race tests Trump's endorsement power

‘Cancel culture’ reason PGA moved from Trump-owned course, says Jack Nicklaus

08:15 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Jack Nicklaus said that PGA Tour pulled its championship out of New Jersey in favour of Tulsa, Oklahoma because of Donald Trump.

He said that the PGA Tour pulled out because Mr Trump owns the course in New Jersey.

He said: “But this move is cancel culture. Donald Trump may be a lot of things, but he loves golf, and he loves this country. He’s a student of the game and a formidable figure in the game. What he does in the future in golf will depend on what the cancel culture will allow him to do.”

Mr Nicklaus has won 18 majors — the most in history. He also endorsed Mr Trump ahead of the 2020 election.

Can Madison Cawthorn survive Thom Tillis?

08:00 , John Bowden

Freshman Congressman Madison Cawthorn has no shortage of political foes but one of his most dangerous in his home state is Thom Tillis, the state’s junior Republican senator who will become the senior senator in January following the retirement of Richard Burr.

Mr Tillis is pouring his own super PAC’s money behind the effort to oust the Trump-endorsed Mr Cawthorn, who is beset by a myriad of scandals.

Read more from The Independent’s Eric Garcia:

This is the Republican Senator determined to bury Madison Cawthorn

Kathy Barnette organised 'buses' to DC on Jan 6

07:00 , John Bowden

Upstart Pennsylvania Senate candidate Kathy Barnette’s involvement in January 6 was much deeper than previously known.

A CNN KFile investigation published on the eve of Pennsylvania’s primary elections revealed that Ms Barnette organised Trump supporters to attend protests in DC on the day of the riot, even boasting that she would bring three buses of "pissed off patriots" to the city in an interview on 5 January 2021.

Read more at CNN:

Barnette said she was leading buses to DC for 'our 1776 moment' on January 6, 2021

US agrees to ease Trump-era sanctions on Cuba

06:13 , Maroosha Muzaffar

US has announced plans to ease sanctions imposed on Cuba by former President Donald Trump.

The restrictions on family remittances and travel to the island will be eased, it was reported.

State Department spokesman Ned Price said the move would allow Cuban citizens to pursue a life free from “government oppression.”

But US officials said that they will ensure such payments don’t reach “those who perpetrate human rights abuses” by using civilian “electronic payment processors.”

The processing of US visas for Cubans will also be speeded up.

ICYMI: Biden reverses Trump pullout of troops from Somalia

03:45 , John Bowden

Joe Biden has taken a step to reverse the withdrawal of hundreds of US troops from Somalia, where special ops forces were engaged in efforts to defeate Al Qaeda-aligned militants fighting for Al Shabab.

The move will mean the deployment of several hundred troops to the country where the US just withdrew the bulk of its forces in an effort that concluded three days before Mr Biden took office last year.

Read more in The Independent:

Biden approves ‘persistent’ US troop presence in Somalia after terrorist gains

Trump fan Ted Nugent tells people to go ‘berserk on the skulls of the Democrats’

02:45 , John Bowden

Musician Ted Nugent, an ardent Donald Trump supporter, is being accused of spreading hate speech after he told fans to go “berserk on the skulls of the Democrats” during an event in support of the former president in Texas just hours after the Buffalo shooting, a racist attack targeting a majority-Black neighborhood.

“So I love you people madly but I’d love you more if you went forward and just went berserk on the skulls of the Democrats and the Marxists and the communists,” he declared.

Read more from Phil Thomas in The Independent:

Ted Nugent tells Trump fans to go ‘berserk on the skulls of the Democrats’

Pennsylvania Senate candidate spotted marching with Proud Boys on 6 January, report says

01:45 , John Bowden

A candidate running for US Senate in Pennsylvania was in Washington DC to support the protests on January 6 that eventually led to a siege of the US Capitol.

Kathy Barnette does not have Donald Trump’s endorsement in the Pennsylvania Senate race but is surging behind frontrunner Dr Mehmet Oz in recent polling and is now within striking distance. Her campaign confirmed that she was in Washington DC on January 6, where she was seen marching alongside members of the far-right Proud Boys group, but denied that she had committed any illegal acts.

“Kathy was in DC to support President Trump and demand election accountability. Any assertion that she participated in or supported the destruction of property is intentionally false. She has no connection whatsoever to the proud boys,” her campaign said.

Read more from The Independent’s Eric Garcia:

Pennsylvania Senate candidate spotted marching with Proud Boys on 6 January

Elise Stefanik responds to criticism of her rhetoric

Tuesday 17 May 2022 00:45 , John Bowden

Blaming the media for spreading “dangerous” smears which she said amounted to blaming her for inspiring the racist mass shooting in her home state of New York over the weekend, Rep Elise Stefanik on Monday doubled down on her past comments about immigration policy and a supposed Democratic effort to bring “millions” of undocumented immigrants to America and grant them voting rights.

The congresswoman’s reelection campaign previously released an ad accusing Democrats of trying to “overthrow” the “current electorate”, which many critics said strongly resembled the racist beliefs of “replacement theory” adherents.

Video of Tucker Carlson promoting ‘Great Replacement’ resurfaces

Monday 16 May 2022 23:45 , John Bowden

As the fallout continues from the shocking racist attack in Buffalo, New York that left 10 people dead on Saturday furious critics of Fox News primetime host Tucker Carlson are pointing out the moments when America’s most-watched cable news host expressed views that bear at a minimum similarities to the Buffalo suspect’s ideology.

"So I know that the left and all the little gatekeepers on Twitter become literally hysterical if you use the term 'replacement', if you suggest the Democratic Party is trying to replace the current electorate, the voters now casting ballots, with new people, more obedient voters from the third world," Mr Carlson said in a clip from his show currently making the rounds. "But they become hysterical because that's that's what's happening actually. Let's just say it. That's true."

Read more from The Independent’s Greg Graziosi:

Video of Tucker Carlson promoting ‘Great Replacement’ theory surfaces again

Schumer accuses ‘MAGA Republicans and cable news pundits’ of spreading ‘echoes’ of Buffalo shooter’s ideology

Monday 16 May 2022 22:45 , John Bowden

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer joined the chorus of voices accusing the right of spreading the same ideology as the shooters in Buffalo, Christchurch, El Paso and other attacks motivated by the racist “White Replacement Theory” belief on Monday.

Speaking on the floor of the US Senate, Mr Schumer excoriated conservatives for spreading what he said were “echoes” of the same ravings that the suspect in the mass shooting that occurred over the weekend in Buffalo ranted about in a lengthy manifesto posted online before the attack.

“Unfortunately, with each passing year it seems harder and harder to ignore that the echoes of replacement theory and other racially-motivated views are increasingly coming out into the open, and given legitimacy by some MAGA Republicans and cable news pundits,” said the Democratic Senate leader.

Read more in The Independent:

Schumer says ‘MAGA Republicans’ spreading ‘echoes’ of Buffalo shooter’s ideology

Trump makes deal to stay exclusive on Truth Social

Monday 16 May 2022 21:45 , John Bowden

Donald Trump has signed a deal with the company looking to take Truth Social public,: Digital World Acquisition Corp, which will restrict him from making political statements on any rival social media platform in an attempt to boost his own site’s exclusivity.

The news amounts to a self-imposed Twitter ban, which would mean a victory for those who have said that the ex-president’s rantings about the 2020 election and other issues should continue to be kept off mainstream social media platforms following the January 6 siege of Congress.

Read more from The Independent’s Graeme Massie:

Trump has agreed to limit himself from Twitter, according to financial filings

Pompeo swipes at Biden’s Iran policy

Monday 16 May 2022 21:10 , John Bowden

Speaking with members of the Iranian resistance at Ashraf-3 in Albania, where Iranian members of the MEK live in exile and work to spread resistance against Iran’s government, former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo swiped at the Biden administration’s foreign policy stance towards Iran.

Mr Biden’s administration has shifted away from the “maximum pressure” campaign that the Trump administration pursued against Tehran, which included exiting the Iran nuclear agreement signed by the Obama administration.

“A serious missing factor in U.S. policy towards Iran is has been the lack of political support for the organized opposition,” Mr Pompeo said on Monday.

Trump ‘re-truths’ image with ‘Q’ in corner that dubs him ‘The Great MAGA King'

Monday 16 May 2022 20:43 , John Bowden

Ex-President Donald Trump took to his Truth Social platform on Monday and retweeted an image showing him on the Iron Throne from Game of Thrones and dubbing him “The Great MAGA King”.

And in the corner of the image was the letter “Q”, a symbol for the far-right conspiracy theory that the former president has never disavowed or repudiated.

Read more at Raw Story:

ICYMI: Expert explains racist ‘white replacement theory’ has extended roots

Monday 16 May 2022 20:15 , John Bowden

A professor who lectures in anti-racism studies and Black identity spoke with The Independent about the racist “white replacement theory” that is finding more and more purchase on the far right and was cited as the motive for an attack in a manifesto purportedly belonging to the suspect accused of killing 10 people at a supermarket in a majority-Black neighborhood in Buffalo, New York.

The theory’s central tenet, that Black people and other persons of colour are “replacing” whites in society, bears strong similarities to rhetoric used by conservative figures like Fox News’s Tucker Carlson and Congresswoman Elise Stefanik in recent months to contest the stance on immigration of the Democratic Party.

Dr Matthew Oware of the University of Richmond countered that the Anti-Defamation League and others calling for such rhetoric to be deplatformed were wrong, and that such views must instead be challenged in public.

Read more in The Independent:

Anti-racism experts condemn ‘great replacement’ conspiracy pushed by Tucker Carlson

Trump hammers Dr Oz’s rivals in Pennsylvania robocalls

Monday 16 May 2022 19:55 , John Bowden

Former President Donald Trump is pulling out all the stops for Dr Mehmet Oz ahead of Tuesday’s US Senate primaries in Pennsylvania, where the celebrity TV doctor is facing a handful of rival candidates.

Mr Trump hammered his favoured candidate’s two top rivals, Kathy Barnette and David McCormick, in a robocall that was going out to Republican voters in the state on Monday according to Politico:

GOP Senate candidate left scrambling to defend past comments about Barack Obama, Islam

Monday 16 May 2022 19:37 , John Bowden

Kathy Barnette, a far-right underdog candidate in the Pennsylvania GOP Senate primary who has surged in support in the primary’s final days was hard-pressed to defend her past statements about Barack Obama and Islam on Fox News Sunday this week.

She was grilled by the network’s Shannon Bream for her past claim that Mr Obama, a Christian, was secretly a “Muslim doing Muslim-like things”.

Ms Barnette wasn’t able to defend herself, and gave a meandering response that involved Syrian refugees and a number of other issues.

Read more from The Independent’s Andrew Feinberg:

GOP Senate candidate defends falsely claiming Obama was Muslim

Trump pleads for followers to ‘give Madison a second chance'

Monday 16 May 2022 19:00 , John Bowden

In his Truth Social statement calling for supporters to rally behind Madison Cawthorn on the eve of the North Carolina primary elections, Donald Trump implored his followers to give the embattled congressman a “second chance” and admitted that the 26-year-old had made “foolish” mistakes recently.

The tone of the statement suggested a desperation in the race that has grown more competitive in recent weeks amid a rash of scandals surrounding the youngest member of the House.

Read more in The Independent:

Trump pleads for voters to give Madison Cawthorn a ‘second chance’ in primary Tuesday

Biden reverses Trump’s Somalia withdrawal

Monday 16 May 2022 18:33 , John Bowden

President Joe Biden earlier this month signed an order redeploying hundreds of US ground forces to Somalia for efforts against Al Shabab, an Al Qaeda-aligned militant group based in the region.

His decision reverses a withdrawal of those forces ordered by former President Donald Trump and completed just three days before Mr Biden was sworn in last year.

Read more in The Independent:

Biden approves ‘persistent’ US troop presence in Somalia after terrorist gains

ICYMI: Donald Trump is developing a Netflix alternative

Monday 16 May 2022 18:05 , John Bowden

A media company started by former President Donald Trump is devloping a streaming service that it hopes will be able to challenge big services like Netflix and Hulu.

The Trump Media and Technology Group made the announcement in an advertisement on Wednesday, which stated that the streaming service currently titled “TMTG+” would “be the home for a wide variety of non-scripted, scripted, and original content” once it was up and running.

The company also runs Mr Trump’s fledgling social media venture, Truth Social, which struggled to clear a lengthy waitlist and get up and running earlier this year. The platform’s popularity has sank in recent weeks and last month ceased trending in the Apple app store.

Read more from The Independent’s Sravasti Dasgupta:

Trump media company hiring producers for ‘Maga version of Netflix’

Mike Pompeo visits Iranian resistance museum

Monday 16 May 2022 17:39 , John Bowden

Mike Pompeo was in Albania on Monday as the former secretary of State continues to establish his brand within the Republican Party and elevate his status as a potential 2024 candidate or even running mate for Donald Trump, his onetime boss.

A photo and video posted on the Twitter feed of Iranian opposition leader Maryam Rajavi, president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, showed her meeting with Mr Pompeo at a museum dedicated to opposition efforts against Iran’s government. Mr Pompeo has long supported the NCRI and has previously spoken at the group’s events along with other hawkish Republican figures like Ted Cruz, Mike Pence, and others.

The image is a reminder that Mr Pompeo is maneuvering to launch a 2024 primary bid if his former boss does not run again, while a person close to Mr Trump told NBC News in late March that the former secretary was on a shortlist of potential running mates for the former president, who has fallen out with Mr Pence following the latter’s refusal to support his bid to overturn the 2020 election.

Ted Cruz scores a campaign finance win

Monday 16 May 2022 17:10 , Andrew Naughtie

The US Supreme Court has ruled in favour of Ted Cruz in a case focused on the amount political candidates can lend their campaigns, removing limits on how much a candidate can pay themselves back when they loan their campaigns money.

The ruling stems from Mr Cruz’s 2018 re-election effort, during which the Texas senator loaned his campaign a total of $260,000. The campaign began to pay him back after his victory, but the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act stipulates that campaigns can only pay a candidate back for contributions for more than $250,000 within 20 days after an election, and then the money is treated as a campaign contribution. That meant that Mr Cruz’s campaign could not refund him $10,000 of his own money.

In a dissent signed by the court’s three liberals, Elena Kagan criticised the implications of the ruling. “The politician is happy; the donors are happy. The only loser is the public. It inevitably suffers from government corruption.”

Eric Garcia has the story.

Supreme Court lifts limit of how much candidates can lend themselves in Ted Cruz case

Kathy Barnette won’t support other PA candidates if they beat her

Monday 16 May 2022 16:44 , Andrew Naughtie

Kathy Barnette, the “ultra-Maga” Republican making a last-minute surge toward victory in the Pennsylvania Senate primary, has struck a combative tone against critics pointing to her long history of open Islamophobia – and now, she’s insisted she won’t be backing either of her leading rivals if they beat her.

Until Ms Barnette’s rise – largely fuelled by a dramatic rise in coverage in the hardcore right-wing media ecosystem – Dr Mehmet Oz was the prohibitive favourite for the Republican nomination. However, despite getting Donald Trump’s coveted endorsement, he has proven unable to pull away from the field, and many conservatives find his record of liberal positions impossible to stomach.

Read more from Andrew Feinberg on Ms Barnette’s controversial comments.

GOP Senate candidate defends falsely claiming Obama was Muslim

Man who staged bomb threat near Capitol to appear in court

Monday 16 May 2022 16:13 , Andrew Naughtie

Floyd Roseberry, who last year parked a truck on Capitol Hill that he claimed was carrying an explosive device, is set to appear in court today to ask for release from jail.

While he was found psychologically fit to stand trial, Mr Roseberry’s mental health at the time of the incident is a key part of the case. Scott MacFarlane reports that Mr Roseberry is claiming he was on the wrong medication at the time of the incident.

Poll: Should Trump be allowed back on Twitter?

Monday 16 May 2022 15:43 , Andrew Naughtie

While there have been some hiccups in his Twitter takeover lately, Elon Musk has confirmed that in his view, Donald Trump should be allowed back on the platform.

At a recent event, Mr Musk called the move to ban the ex-president after the 6 January insurrection “a morally bad decision”, saying that £it alienated a large part of the country and did not ultimately result in Donald Trump not having a voice.”

The Independent is keen to find out readers’ views. To let us know, vote in the poll below and feel free to tell us what answer you chose and why in the comments.

Should Donald Trump be allowed back on Twitter? Have your say

Trump announces a 2020 election book

Monday 16 May 2022 15:15 , Andrew Naughtie

Speaking at an event in Austin, Texas this weekend, Donald Trump was as ever full of complaints about the supposed theft of the 2020 election – and even announced to his assembled supporters that he will be penning a book about it.

The volume will be imperiously titled The Crime of the Century, a phrase Mr Trump has used to describe multiple separate actions he feels targeted him unfairly.

Read more from Indy100 here.

Tom Cotton sells book with ominous martial imagery

Monday 16 May 2022 14:45 , Andrew Naughtie

Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton, a hardline Republican who among other things called for troops to be sent into American cities to deal with Black Lives Matter protesters, is publishing a pre-presidential-run-style book railing against the left – and judging by the cover, its rhetoric will not exactly be conciliatory.

It comes at a time when concerns about the belligerence of right-wing rhetoric is increasingly viewed as a radicalisation threat, including among far-right-leaning former veterans who join groups such as the Oath Keepers.

Trump gets behind Madison Cawthorn

Monday 16 May 2022 14:15 , Andrew Naughtie

Posting on his bespoke platform Truth Social, Donald Trump has weighed in behalf of Madison Cawthorn, the embattled far-right congressman who faces a slew of Republican challengers in his primary tomorrow.

According to FiveThirtyEight, polling in the race has been scant, but Mr Cawthorn’s spending has topped $3m, giving him at least one edge. Depending on how he polls in the end, he may face a single Republican challenger in a July runoff.