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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration




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Peter

"When it comes to humility, I'm the greatest." - Bullwinkle Moose
10/25/2019, 8:52 pm Link to this post PM streamline2001
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


President Trump will stop at nothing to win a second term
Opinion by Julian Zelizer, CNN Political Analyst
Updated 5:06 PM EDT, Fri October 25, 2019

(CNN) The Justice Department is reportedly conducting a criminal investigation into its own probe of Russian interference in the 2016 election — a decision that seems to be a brazen effort to politicize the department.

Democratic Reps. Jerry Nadler and Adam Schiff released a press statement expressing their concern about how the department had "lost its independence and become a vehicle for President Trump's political revenge."

But the news should not come as a surprise to anyone who has been paying attention. The investigation is just a small taste of the kind of campaign the nation will experience in the run up to the 2020 election. The combination of Trumpian politics — character assassination, smears, conspiracy theories, and smashmouth attacks on opponents — combined with his use of presidential power will be unlike anything we have seen before. This will be a whole new kind of ugly.

While some political experts seem to be making horse race prognostications based on the assumption that this election will be business as usual, we should expect a campaign that is far nastier than the norm. We should expect all the remaining guardrails to fall away. Assuming President Trump survives the impeachment process, he will undoubtedly unleash a fierce assault on whoever his opponent ends up being. To overcome his weak standing in the polls, the President will try to tear everyone and everything else down so that he is the only one left standing.

What might the campaign look like? Official investigations into anything tied to the Democratic Party that Trump can find a way to publicly justify will certainly be a key part of the strategy. As the new DOJ criminal investigation reveals, the president is not above using the formal apparatus of government to conduct probes that aim to delegitimize his opponents.

In the past, we have a seen a few other examples when presidents were willing to take this route, such as President Richard Nixon's infamous use of the IRS to dig up dirt on his enemies. But based on his record of total disrespect for norms and institutions, we can expect that Trump will be willing to go much further than any predecessor. The Democratic nominee should assume that the executive branch will be used against him or her.

Disinformation, disseminated through the awesome channels of the bully pulpit, will likely be integral to Trump's reelection campaign. Since the 2016 campaign, the President has expended an enormous effort to try to tear down the public image of his opponents. It started with Trump mocking his Republican primary rivals with cruel nicknames and spreading theories of criminal behavior to discredit Hillary Clinton. Anyone who stood between Trump and the Oval Office was fair game. When President Trump does more of the same in his 2020 campaign, however, he will have many more tools at his disposal.

The bully pulpit affords a platform to spread his messages to a much bigger audience. New technology will provide greater opportunities to devastate and destroy his opponents. We've already witnessed Trump retweeting a doctored video that made Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi appear to be inebriated and now Trump will have the capacity to promote all sorts of devastating images, audio and innuendo about those he deems threats. The president's reelection campaign has already invested heavily in social media and amassed a sizable war chest outpacing any Democrat. Whoever the Democratic nominee turns out to be, he or she will confront a torrent of political attacks and low blows that will require a constant scramble to correct the public record.

Then, there will be public policy. To be sure, most American presidents have made public policy decisions in election years with an eye toward the campaign. Franklin Roosevelt was always cognizant of how public works programs would help him politically and President Nixon was eager to prime the pump going into 1972.

When President Lyndon Johnson announced a temporary bombing halt in Vietnam on October 31, 1968, he understood that some evidence of a breakthrough weeks before the presidential election could help his Vice President Hubert Humphrey, who was the Democratic nominee.

But being cognizant of how presidential policy positions can help win over supporters is different than manipulating federal funds and pressuring foreign beneficiaries for specific forms of election assistance. The Ukraine scandal has exposed something far more troubling than what we have seen in the past. The evidence has revealed a president willing to withhold massive amounts of money until foreign leaders give him what he wants for his political campaign. One can easily imagine how this would play out in other realms of policy, including on the domestic front.

The 2020 election is going to be tough terrain, both for the Democratic nominee and for US democracy more broadly. The impeachment investigation has already exposed just how far the president is prepared to go in pursuit of victory. He has shown he is willing to do almost anything to achieve his goals. That means that he will draw on every power that is available to him to crush his opponents, devastate the Democratic Party, and improve his odds of securing a second term.

https://tinyurl.com/y33dobkb

10/26/2019, 7:30 pm Link to this post PM Birdz
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


quote:

President Trump will stop at nothing to win a second term
Opinion by Julian Zelizer, CNN Political Analyst
Updated 5:06 PM EDT, Fri October 25, 2019



This is very scary stuff, and all too likely to be true.

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10/26/2019, 7:44 pm Link to this post PM Miz Robbie
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


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10/31/2019, 1:43 pm Link to this post PM CooterBrown44
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


I'm trying to put a timeline together based on what we've heard so far. Please add to it.

1. Previous Ukraine administration was corrupt. American Ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch, was making a lot of public noise about it in Ukraine.

2. Previous Ukraine prosecutor general, Yuriy Lutsenko, was contacted by Rudy Giuliani to get (or manufacture) dirt on Joe Biden and his son, Hunter. He agreed to do so, but only if the US recalled Yovanovitch. Lutsenko also promoted the discredited conspiracy theory that Ukraine had taken actions to help Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign. Trump loved that theory.

3. In April, 2019, Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko lost his bid for reelection to Volodymyr Zelensky, who ran on an anti-corruption platform. When Trump talked with Zelensky in July he lamented the removal of Lutsenko as prosecutor general and pronounced former US Ambassador Yovanovitch as someone bad.

4. A close associate of Trump's personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, is claiming Trump was directly involved in the effort to pressure Ukraine to investigate Democratic rival Joe Biden. Lev Parnas says he delivered an ultimatum in May, at Giuliani's behest, to the incoming President of Ukraine that no senior US officials would attend his inauguration and vital American security aid would be withheld if an investigation into Biden wasn't announced. He said Trump was aware of Giuliani's efforts to secure an investigation and that Trump was briefed regularly.

5. The day after Parnas said he delivered the message, the State Department announced that Vice President Mike Pence would no longer be attending the inauguration of Ukrainian President Volodymir Zelenskiy. Parnas alleged that Trump ordered Pence to stay away at the behest of Giuliani to send a clear message to the incoming Ukrainian administration that they needed to take seriously the demand for an investigation into Biden, a Democratic presidential candidate seen as a potential threat to Trump's 2020 reelection.

6. Parnas said he also heard Giuliani and another Trump-aligned defense lawyer, Victoria Toensing, briefing Attorney General William Barr by phone about their efforts to pressure the Ukrainian government to announce the investigation into Biden and his son Hunter's business dealings. "Barr was basically on the team," Parnas said. Parnas also said Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and former Energy Secretary Rick Perry played roles in the scheme. The new accusations came as House Democrats made public a trove of documents, text messages and photos from Parnas' smartphones that appear to verify parts of his account.

7. Among the newly disclosed materials are text messages that have raised questions about the possible surveillance of former Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch before she was ousted by the Trump administration last spring. The messages show that Robert F. Hyde, a Republican candidate for Congress from Connecticut, disparaged Yovanovitch in messages to Parnas and gave him updates on her location and cell phone use.

8. Mike Pompeo denies knowing Parnas and knowing anything about the surveillance of Ambassador Jovanovich.

9. Trump also has denied knowing Parnas or anything about the surveillance of Yovanovich. Yet there are multiple photographs readily available online showing Trump and Parnas together. Next, Trump will deny knowing Rudy Giuliani, Mike Pence, Rick Perry, WIlliam Barr and Mike Pompeo.

Last edited by Miz Robbie, 1/17/2020, 9:29 pm


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1/17/2020, 12:16 pm Link to this post PM Miz Robbie
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


quote:

Miz Robbie wrote:

I'm trying to put a timeline together based on what we've heard so far. Please add to it.

1. Previous Ukraine administration was corrupt. American Ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch, was making a lot of public noise about it in Ukraine.

2. Previous Ukraine prosecutor general, Yuriy Lutsenko, was contacted by Rudy Giuliani to get (or manufacture) dirt on Joe Biden and his son, Hunter. He agreed to do so, but only if the US recalled Yovanovitch. Lutsenko also promoted the discredited conspiracy theory that Ukraine had taken actions to help Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign. Trump loved that theory.

3. In April, 2019, Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko lost his bid for reelection to Volodymyr Zelensky, who ran on an anti-corruption platform. When Trump talked with Zelensky in July he lamented the removal of Lutsenko as prosecutor general and pronounced former US Ambassador Yovanovitch as someone bad.

4. A close associate of Trump's personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, is claiming Trump was directly involved in the effort to pressure Ukraine to investigate Democratic rival Joe Biden. Lev Parnas says he delivered an ultimatum in May, at Giuliani's behest, to the incoming President of Ukraine that no senior US officials would attend his inauguration and vital American security aid would be withheld if an investigation into Biden wasn't announced. He said Trump was aware of Giuliani's efforts to secure an investigation and that Trump was briefed regularly.

5. The day after Parnas said he delivered the message, the State Department announced that Vice President Mike Pence would no longer be attending the inauguration of Ukrainian President Volodymir Zelenskiy. Parnas alleged that Trump ordered Pence to stay away at the behest of Giuliani to send a clear message to the incoming Ukrainian administration that they needed to take seriously the demand for an investigation into Biden, a Democratic presidential candidate seen as a potential threat to Trump's 2020 reelection.

6. Parnas said he also heard Giuliani and another Trump-aligned defense lawyer, Victoria Toensing, briefing Attorney General William Barr by phone about their efforts to pressure the Ukrainian government to announce the investigation into Biden and his son Hunter's business dealings. "Barr was basically on the team," Parnas said. Parnas also said Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and former Energy Secretary Rick Perry played roles in the scheme. The new accusations came as House Democrats made public a trove of documents, text messages and photos from Parnas' smartphones that appear to verify parts of his account.

7. Among the newly disclosed materials are text messages that have raised questions about the possible surveillance of former Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch before she was ousted by the Trump administration last spring. The messages show that Robert F. Hyde, a Republican candidate for Congress from Connecticut, disparaged Yovanovitch in messages to Parnas and gave him updates on her location and cell phone use.



8. Mike Pompeo denies knowing Parnas and knowing anything about the surveillance of Ambassador Jovanovich.

1/17/2020, 5:02 pm Link to this post PM bricklayer
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


Added. Thanks, Brick.

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1/17/2020, 5:44 pm Link to this post PM Miz Robbie
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


quote:

bricklayer wrote:

quote:

Miz Robbie wrote:

I'm trying to put a timeline together based on what we've heard so far. Please add to it.


8. Mike Pompeo denies knowing Parnas and knowing anything about the surveillance of Ambassador Jovanovich.




9. Trump also has denied knowing Parnas or anything about the surveillance of Jovanovich. Yet there are multiple photographs readily available online showing Trump and Parnas together. Next, Trump will deny knowing Rudy Giuliani, Mike Pence, Rick Perry, WIlliam Barr and Mike Pompeo.
1/17/2020, 7:36 pm Link to this post PM MsSusieQueue
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


Thanks, Susie. I've added it, and changed the spelling back to Yovanovich.

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1/17/2020, 9:31 pm Link to this post PM Miz Robbie
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


quote:

Miz Robbie wrote:

Thanks, Susie. I've added it, and changed the spelling back to Yovanovich.



Thanks for correcting my error!
J and Y are not adjacent on the keyboard, so it was more than just a typo. I obviously was in a different space when I posted. LOL!

1/20/2020, 8:31 pm Link to this post PM MsSusieQueue
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


Bill Barr learns that Trump is a crafty badger

By Dana Milbank
Feb. 14, 2020

In the early days of the Trump administration, a time when weighty decisions had to be made about war and peace, the president maintained a singular focus — on badgers.

A new book by Daily Beast journalists Lachlan Markay and Asawin Suebsaeng reportedly describes President Trump’s obsession with the beloved mascot of Reince Priebus’s home state of Wisconsin.

“Are they mean to people?” he would ask Priebus, then his chief of staff. “Or are they friendly creatures?” Trump asked Priebus for photos of badgers and to explain how badgers “work.” Does it have a “personality,” or is it boring? How aggressive is it when threatened?

Markay and Suebsaeng write: "An obviously enthralled president would stare at Priebus as the aide struggled for sufficiently placating answers, all the while trying to gently veer the conversation back to whether we were going to do a troop surge.”

Priebus should not have been so dismissive of this line of questioning. Trump might have been offering clues into his way of thinking. Consider some of the traits the 45th president has in common with the wily mammal:

Badgers are “gruff and grumpy,” “burly” and “slow and awkward.”

The badger is a “voracious eater” and has a distinctive fur pattern on its head.

The badger is “solitary,” but the male “may mate with more than one female.”

The badger “has lots of different dens and burrows.”

Under attack, the badger “hisses, growls, squeals and snarls.”

Its ferocious cousin, the honey badger, is an Internet celebrity for having “no regard for any other animal … It just takes what it wants.”

Most intriguing: Badgers “are known for their bad attitudes, but they’re willing to work alongside other animals if it benefits them.” In fact, the American badger has a transactional relationship with the coyote, in which they hunt together. But the relationship of convenience ends in the winter, when the badger finds its own food underground and “has no need for the fleet-footed coyote,” the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service reports.

Is there a better description of Trump? He profits from alliances then leaves his partners in the cold when he no longer needs them.

Winter is coming for Bill Barr.

“I’m not going to be bullied,” the attorney general told ABC News Thursday — after surrendering his lunch money to Trump for the last year. “I cannot do my job here at the department with a constant background commentary that undercuts me.”

Trump, in a tweet Friday morning, showed his contempt for Barr’s bid for independence. Quoting Barr’s claim that the president “has never asked me to do anything in a criminal case,” Trump added that he has “the legal right to do so … but I have so far chosen not to!”

It’s too late for Barr to rehabilitate his independence now. He misled the public about the findings from special counsel Robert S. Mueller III, cleared Trump of obstruction of justice, embraced Trump’s claim that the FBI was “spying” on him, worked to discredit the Russia probe, disputed the inspector general’s finding that the probe had a proper basis, commissioned another probe in pursuit of his desired outcome, declined to investigate the Ukraine allegations and announced softened sentencing recommendations for Trump pal Roger Stone after Trump demanded it. Now he’s investigating the prosecution of another former Trump aide, Michael Flynn.

Now, the moment Barr shows a hint of dissent, the president makes clear he will abuse him the way he abused his predecessor, Jeff Sessions. This coyote will be out in the cold as soon as he ceases to be useful to Trump.

Retired Gen. John Kelly, likewise, is now telling us what a dreadful character Trump is — after two years of enabling him as Cabinet secretary and White House chief of staff.

This week, as reported by the Atlantic, Kelly praised Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman (ousted by Trump from the National Security Council as impeachment retribution) because Vindman declined to follow “an illegal order.” Kelly also quarreled with Trump’s description of the media as “enemy of the people,” Trump’s treatment of North Korea, Trump’s intervention in the case of a Navy SEAL convicted of posing for photos with a detainee’s corpse /and Trump’s characterization of immigrants.

Too bad Kelly didn’t speak up when it would have done more good — and when, on his watch, the administration put migrant children in cages.

Now Kelly’s out in the cold. “When I terminated John Kelly, which I couldn’t do fast enough, he knew full well that he was way over his head,” Trump tweeted in response to Kelly.

Many other former Trump officials have spoken up too little, too late: John Bolton, Jim Mattis, Rex Tillerson, H.R. McMaster, Michael Cohen, Rick Gates, Steve Bannon, Anthony Scaramucci, Omarosa Manigault Newman, Richard Spencer and more.

They all learn, eventually, that they were wrong to think they could work with Trump and it would turn out well. It never does. Invariably, the badger returns to his burrow, leaving his erstwhile partners alone to face the harsh winter.

https://tinyurl.com/sjxjzrv
2/15/2020, 6:45 am Link to this post PM Bellelettres
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


quote:

Bellelettres wrote:

Bill Barr learns that Trump is a crafty badger

By Dana Milbank
Feb. 14, 2020




Ouch. Nailed it.

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2/15/2020, 10:02 am Link to this post PM Miz Robbie
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


More than 1,100 ex-Justice Department officials call for Barr’s resignation

By Devlin Barrett
Feb. 16, 2020

More than 1,100 former Justice Department employees signed a public letter Sunday urging Attorney General William P. Barr to resign over his handling of the case of President Trump’s longtime friend Roger Stone — and exhorted current department employees to report any unethical conduct.

The letter is the latest sign of a crisis of confidence inside the department. Four prosecutors quit the Stone case last week after Barr and other Justice Department leaders pushed for a softer prison recommendation for Stone, who is due to be sentenced this week.

“Mr. Barr’s actions in doing the President’s personal bidding unfortunately speak louder than his words,” the Justice Department alumni wrote in the letter posted online. “Those actions, and the damage they have done to the Department of Justice’s reputation for integrity and the rule of law, require Mr. Barr to resign.”

Signatures for the letter were gathered by Protect Democracy, a group that has been critical of Barr’s handling of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s investigation into Russian election interference and Trump.

The letter acknowledges there is little chance the signatories’ criticism will lead to Barr’s departure, adding, “because we have little expectation he will do so, it falls to the Department’s career officials to take appropriate action to uphold their oaths of office and defend nonpartisan, apolitical justice.”

The letter calls on every Justice Department employee to follow the “heroic” example of the four prosecutors who quit the Stone case “and be prepared to report future abuses to the Inspector General, the Office of Professional Responsibility, and Congress; to refuse to carry out directives that are inconsistent with their oaths of office; to withdraw from cases that involve such directives or other misconduct; and, if necessary, to resign and report publicly — in a manner consistent with professional ethics — to the American people the reasons for their resignation.”

The letter calls for similar vigilance in other government agencies, adding, “The rule of law and the survival of our Republic demand nothing less.”

https://tinyurl.com/updrsyz
2/16/2020, 3:13 pm Link to this post PM Bellelettres
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


Which will, of course, only strengthen their determination for him to stay.

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Just one voice.... Singing in the darkness....
2/16/2020, 3:18 pm Link to this post PM JustLis
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


quote:

Miz Robbie wrote:

quote:

Bellelettres wrote:

Bill Barr learns that Trump is a crafty badger

By Dana Milbank
Feb. 14, 2020




Ouch. Nailed it.



Don't let Ol' Perf see this. As a U of Wisconsin grad, he is particularly fond of badgers, and I don't think he would appreciate the comparison of Trump to a badger...
2/17/2020, 7:28 pm Link to this post PM MsSusieQueue
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


Court Allows Emoluments Case Against Trump Over D.C. Hotel To Proceed
Brett Neely - NPR - May 14, 2020

President Trump will not be able to shake off a lawsuit that accuses him of violating the Constitution by continuing to own his businesses while serving as president, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday.

The 9-6 decision by the full 4th Circuit Court of Appeals opens the way for the governments of Washington, D.C., and Maryland to get documents and financial records in the case.

In a 21-page decision, Judge Diana Gribbon Motz described some of the Department of Justice's arguments on behalf of Trump as "puzzling."

"n the United States, every person — even the President — has a duty to obey the law," wrote Motz.

The case centers on the once-obscure emoluments clauses of the Constitution, which prohibit the president from receiving gifts or favors from foreign and state governments. Trump's downtown Washington hotel, which occupies a building leased from the federal government, has been at the epicenter of the ethics disputes around the president.

Officials from Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and other countries have collectively spent hundreds of thousands of dollars at the hotel, just a few blocks from the White House. The lawsuit's plaintiffs say those profits are funneled directly to Trump's business coffers.

The District of Columbia and Maryland say planners of major events are booking gatherings at Trump's hotel over their own taxpayer-owned facilities, making them lose profits because, they allege, doing business at Trump's hotel is now seen as a way to curry favor with the president.

A smaller panel of the court's judges had initially ruled against D.C. and Maryland.

The case involving Trump's hotel is one of multiple lawsuits that seek to pry open Trump's business records in light of his decision to neither divest his assets nor disclose his financial records.

After his 2016 election, Trump broke with decades of practice by past presidents and decided to maintain ownership of his businesses, which include hotels, resorts and office buildings around the world. He says his sons manage the day-to-day operations, however.

Amid the legal challenges, the Trump Organization had been trying to sell the hotel. However, the economic downturn brought about the coronavirus pandemic has shelved those plans for now.

The 4th Circuit's decision comes the same week that Trump's attempts to prevent his tax and financial records from being released to Congress and New York state investigators were the subject of arguments in the U.S. Supreme Court. A decision in those cases is expected this summer.

"We disagree with the decision of the Fourth Circuit. This case is another example of Presidential harassment. We will be seeking review at the Supreme Court," said Jay Sekulow, one of Trump's personal lawyers.

If the U.S. Supreme Court takes the case, the arguments could potentially take place this fall, right at the peak of presidential campaign.

---
Peter

"When it comes to humility, I'm the greatest." - Bullwinkle Moose
5/14/2020, 4:00 pm Link to this post PM streamline2001
 
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Re: Trump's Criminal Administration


In a 21-page decision, Judge Diana Gribbon Motz described some of the Department of Justice's arguments on behalf of Trump as "puzzling."

"In the United States, every person — even the President — has a duty to obey the law," wrote Motz.



Well, this is encouraging. Thanks, Streamline.

---
Lis

Just one voice.... Singing in the darkness....
5/14/2020, 4:12 pm Link to this post PM JustLis
 


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