The president has meanwhile been accused of spearheading a “descent into authoritarianism” by another possible rival, Elizabeth Warren, after admitting he asked his attorney general William Barr to intervene in the sentencing of Republican political trickster Roger Stone and refusing to rule out pardoning him.
Attorney General Barr warned that he won't be "bullied" by the president amid his attempts to make it "impossible" for him to do his job, he said. "I'm not going to be bullied or influenced by anybody ... whether it's Congress, a newspaper editorial board, or the president," Mr Barr told ABC News. "I'm gonna do what I think is right. And you know ... I cannot do my job here at the department with a constant background commentary that undercuts me."
Mr Barr has agreed to appear before the House Judiciary Committee next month to explain himself after chairman Jerrold Nadler wrote to him to express concern over his politicisation of the Justice Department at the president’s behest since taking office. “He’s an enabler,” commented Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer. “That’s a kind word.”
Another top prosecutor from the office overseeing the case of longtime political operative Stone has resigned from the administration, days after the president withdrew Jessie Liu's nomination to the treasury department. Several prosecutors have fled Justice Department after the president's intervention in the latest criminal case involving his political allies.
The president also attacked 2020 contender Michael Bloomberg on Twitter, calling him “a 5’4 mass of dead energy”, only for the Democratic candidate to hit back and label the president “a carnival barking clown”, deriding his chequered real estate career as one defined by “stupid deals and incompetence”.
Mr Trump met with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo on Thursday to seemingly establish yet another "quid pro quo" by attempting to reach a deal on the state's immigration policies if he agreed to drop all investigations of the president's personal life and businesses.
New York's trusted traveller and Global Entry programmes was suspended by the administration over the so-called "Green Light Law," which allows undocumented people to apply for state driver's licenses and ID and bans federal agents from looking at state motor vehicle records.
In a rare show of bipartisanship in the Senate, Democrats were able to narrowly pass a resolution that limits the president's war powers with Iran, establishing that Mr Trump must receive congressional approval before military action in the country.
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