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Tipsheet

You Are Fake News: Trump Hits NBC News Over Story About Pardoning Acting DHS Secretary

AP Photo/Susan Walsh

The situation on the border is out of control. Port of entry cannot process any more people. Detention centers are filled to capacity. Border enforcement authorities I have been apprehending close to 100,000 people a month. The number of apprehensions has been around six-figures since the start of the year. President Trump has threatened to shut down the border, while continuing to push for his border wall initiative. This is one of the reasons why he was elected, folks. He has to follow through on solid border enforcement measures, especially the wall. That was a key campaign promise. With Democrats now in charge of the House, it makes accomplishing that goal all the more difficult. Yet, first things first, Trump has shaken up the Department of Homeland Security, firing Kristjen Nelsen as DHS Secretary. Kevin McAleenan is serving as interim DHS head. He was the Commissioner for U.S. Customs and Border Protection. While I don’t think Nielsen wasn’t terrible, it was time for a change—what to do as far as the border situation was stuck in neutral.

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Yet, NBC News peddled a story about Trump promising to pardon McAleenan if he were to shut down the border. Cue the gasps from the mainstream press. Cue the talking heads on MSNBC stirring up hysteria over how this White House is out of control. That is until you get past the lede (via NBC News):

President Donald Trump told acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan last week to close the southern border and that he would pardon him if he faced any legal challenges, according to The New York Times.

The paper, citing three people briefed about the conversation, reported that they spoke when Trump visited the border town of Calexico, California, last week shortly before he named McAleenan acting homeland security secretary.

One of the officials briefed on the conversation said they did not know whether the president was joking. But Trump's remarks alarmed officials at the agency who were briefed on it, The Times said.

NBC News has not independently confirmed the report.

Tyler Houlton, a spokesman for DHS, denied Trump had asked McAleenan to do anything illegal.

At no time has the president indicated, asked, directed or pressured the acting secretary to do anything illegal. Nor would the acting secretary take actions that are not in accordance with our responsibility to enforce the law,” said Houlton in a statement to the news organization. So, this was another story that wasn’t true. It’s another story that wasn’t verified. It’s another time anonymous sources were wrong. And yes, Trump went after NBC on social media, as he should. 

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