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Biden news – live: Supreme Court says Trump must release tax records as president to mark 500,000 Covid deaths

Former Trump aide says Texas power outages are consequence of electing Biden

Joe Biden will mark the US crossing 500,000 Covid deaths with a moment of silence and candle lighting ceremony at the White House.

The country is expected to pass the grim milestone on Monday, just over a year after the first confirmed US fatality due to the novel coronavirus.

The White House said Mr Biden would deliver remarks at sunset to honour those who lost their lives. He will be joined by first lady Jill Biden and vice-president Kamala Harris and her husband, Doug Emhoff.

It comes as Donald Trump prepares to give his first speech since leaving the White House, in which he is expected to signal that he remains the GOP’s “presumptive 2024 nominee”, according to Axios.

The former president will make the reported “show of force” at the annual CPAC conference for conservatives on Sunday.

Key stories:

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Will Trump start his own party? How his ongoing popularity threatens Republican unity

The event held on the Ellipse near the National Mall in Washington, DC, on 6 January was staged not just to protest the reality TV star’s election defeat to Joe Biden, its attendees taken in by Mr Trump’s false claims that he was the victim of a massive voter fraud conspiracy at the polls, but to exert pressure on Republican senators meeting to formally ratify the Electoral College results in Congress.

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Joe Sommerlad22 February 2021 15:21
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Dominion files defamation lawsuit against Trump ally Mike Lindell

Lawyers for Dominion Voting, a voting systems company falsely accused by Donald Trump and allies of involvement in election fraud, have said the firm has filed a defamation lawsuit against MyPillow chief Mikel Lindell.

Mr Lindell, one of Mr Trump’s most high profile allies, was responsible for much of the misinformation that percolated in right-wing media following Mr Trump’s defeat by President Joe Biden.

“Despite repeated warnings and efforts to share the facts with him, Mr Lindell has continued to maliciously spread false claims about Dominion,” said John Poulos, CEO of Dominion.

Tom Embury-Dennis22 February 2021 14:59
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BREAKING: Trump bid to stop tax record being handed over to New York prosecutors declined by Supreme Court

The Supreme Court has declined a request from former President Donald Trump to withhold his tax records from the Manhattan district attorney after New York state prosecutors sought his personal and corporate tax returns. 

The move serves a post-presidency defeat to Mr Trump, who has for years battled to keep his tax records private, and paves the way for a New York grand jury to review his long-sought financial records.

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Tom Embury-Dennis22 February 2021 14:41
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Jeffrey Epstein ‘told reporter he had tapes of Donald Trump and Ghislaine Maxwell’

The apparent revelations were made by Ira Rosen, an ex-producer for the CBS show, who released a memoir called “Ticking Clock: Behind the Scenes at 60 Minutes,” which reveals details about his time on the award-winning programme.

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Gino Spocchia22 February 2021 14:27
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Biden to stick with Tanden nomination despite lack of Senate backing

The White House has said it is “continuing to work toward” Neera Tanden’s confirmation as director of Office for Management and Budget, following the announcement senator Susan Collins would not vote for her.

Ms Tanden has a history of prolific, and often excoriating, tweets aimed at lawmakers, an issue that is causing problems for her confirmation in the Senate.

Democratic senator Joe Manchin has already said he will not back the former government official, meaning the Biden administration needs at least one Republican vote they are yet to find.

“Neera Tanden = accomplished policy expert, would be 1st Asian American woman to lead OMB, has lived experience having benefitted from a number of federal programs as a kid, looking ahead to the committee votes this week and continuing to work toward her confirmation,” press secretary Jen Psaki has tweeted.

Tom Embury-Dennis22 February 2021 14:04
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Trump’s ongoing popularity threatens Republican unity

Tensions over the future direction of the Republican party continue, with a USA Today poll on Sunday finding that 46 per cent of Republican voters would be prepared to defect to a third party should Donald Trump choose to start one.

As Joe Sommerlad writes: “Republican elected officials have likewise largely stayed quiet on his prospects, although the likes of congressman Matt Gaetz have repeatedly pledged their loyalty while House minority whip Steve Scalise was still refusing to concede that Joe Biden had won the election fairly during an interview on ABC’s This Week on Sunday.”

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Gino Spocchia22 February 2021 13:38
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Ex-Florida police officer arrested after live-streaming Capitol riots

A former Florida cop who entered the US Capitol with the rioters and live streamed the trespass on Facebook from inside the building, has now been arrested.

Nicholes Lentz, 41, was arrested on Friday on charges of entering a restricted building and disorderly conduct, same as other rioters who were identified in the mob that entered the Capitol building on 6 January.

The FBI affidavit quoted byThe Miami Herald states that Mr Lentz posted a video where he can be seen saying: “America has spoken. You cannot stop millions of people.”

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Stuti Mishra22 February 2021 13:19
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Joe Biden’s public schedule for Monday

Joe Biden’s public schedule shows that the US president will this morning receive his presidential daily brief – which details America’s most sensitive national security issues – before he delivers a pair of remarks first concerning small businesses, then later regarding the country’s death toll due to coronavirus.

The US is expected to pass 500,000 confirmed deaths from Covid-19 later today – by far the highest confirmed total of any country.

Tom Embury-Dennis22 February 2021 13:01
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Trump ‘offered Kim Jong-un a ride on Air Force One’ after Hanoi summit

Mr Trump’s meetings with Mr Kim were among the most eye-catching moments of his presidency, culminating in the former president declaring his love for the North Korean leader after a summit in Singapore in 2018.

He told a crowd at a campaign rally: “He wrote me beautiful letters and they’re great letters. We fell in love.”

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Namita Singh22 February 2021 12:41
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Trump to send message he is ‘presumptive 2024 nominee’ during CPAC speech

Donald Trump will send a message that he is the “presumptive 2024 nominee” for the Republican Party during his first public appearance since leaving the White House, Axios has reported.

The former president is to appear at the annual CPAC conference on Sunday, and the US news outlet reports that one Trump adviser says he will make a “show of force” that will attempt to convey to the GOP that “I’m still in charge”.

Mr Trump is expected to organise 2022 primaries of Republican lawmakers he feels have been insufficiently loyal, and has not publicly ruled out running for the presidency again.

Tom Embury-Dennis22 February 2021 12:19