As Robert Mueller writes his report, a potential battle brews over obstruction of justice

As special counsel Robert Mueller wraps up his Russia probe, investigators have focused on conflicting public statements by President Donald Trump and his team that could be seen as an effort to influence witnesses and obstruct justice, according to people familiar with the investigation.


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Robert Mueller Grand Jury Gets More Time to Consider Evidence, Issue Indictments

Robert Mueller’s grand jury in Washington, D.C., has received an extension of up to six months from the head judge of the D.C. district court to consider evidence and bring indictments. The grand jury was empaneled on July 6, 2017, and would have expired on Sunday without the extension.

Special Counsel Mueller, appointed by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to investigate whether and how Russia meddled in the 2016 presidential election, has indicted 33 people and three companies since his work began. He’s secured several convictions and guilty pleas, and some parties have already been sentenced or have completed their sentences. President Donald Trump consistently downplays the investigation, labeling it a “witch hunt,” and denying any “collusion” occurred between his campaign and Russian representatives.

Mueller’s indictments, accepted pleas, and convictions include:

Although other indictments have also been issued, it’s unclear how much work remains for the grand jury to sift through. But the judge’s action indicates that it’s not yet finished.

The special assistant to Chief Judge Beryl Howell confirmed to several media outlets, including The Hill, that a grand-jury extension past the original 18-month period had been granted, but denied a CNN report that the period was six months. Six months is the longest the judge can extend the special counsel’s grand jury.

A prosecutor presents evidence and examines witnesses before a grand jury, the deliberations of which must be kept secret by the participants, though those testifying may reveal their participation. The members of the grand jury can then vote whether an indictment should be issued. A prosecutor can bring charges even if the grand jury doesn’t agree, or can choose not to pursue an indictment a grand jury agrees on.

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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BroadwayRadio Special: Interview with Jason Robert Brown

James Marino and talks with Jason Robert Brown about his new album, “How We React and How We Recover” on the Ghostlight Records label. Guest: Jason Robert Brown Jason: Website | IBDB | IMDB | Twitter | Facebook Ghostlight Records Bio: JASON ROBERT BROWN is the ultimate multi-hyphenate – an equally skilled read more
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Robert De Niro, Grace Hightower Split After More Than Two Decades

Tribeca Film Festival - 'For The Love Of Cinema' Gala Dinner - Arrivals

Source: Dennis Van Tine/Future Image/WENN.com / WENN

via TV One:

It’s over for Robert De Niro and his wife Grace Hightower. The 75-year-old actor married Hightower in 1997 after dating for a decade. The pair share two children together, a 20-year-old son named Elliott and a 6-year-old daughter named Helen Grace, whom they had via surrogate.

According to PEOPLE, this isn’t the first time the couple has separated. In 1999 the “Meet The Fockers,” actor publicly engaged in a custody dispute over their son, but the two eventually worked things out and the divorce was never finalized.

2018 hasn’t been kind for a few celebrities in the love department. CNN’s Van Jones, Wendy Raquel Robinson‘s husband Marco, “Cosby Show” actor Joseph C. Phillips, Kevin Garnett‘s wife Brandi “Soul Food” star , Vanessa A. Williams, and Tisha Campbell-Martin all filed for divorce this year.

 


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WATCH: World News 11/18/18: Trump Says He Has Completed His Answers for Special Counsel Robert Mueller

The Senate race is officially over after a mandatory recount in Florida; Monica Lewinsky opening up about her affair with President Bill Clinton
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The True Story Behind Outlaw King: What to Know About Scottish Independence Hero Robert the Bruce

Warning: Contains spoilers for the movie Outlaw King

Increasing anxiety about the U.K.’s preparations for leaving the European Union has some Scots talking about how, in a world of Brexit, they might be able to actually pull off independence.

And whenever talk of Scottish independence ramps up — not infrequently; a referendum on the topic failed in 2014 — people look for lessons in the story of the legendary king who led Scotland to independence in the 14th century: Robert I, also known as Robert the Bruce (Bruce being his family name). So it’s perhaps fitting that, amid the ongoing political turmoil, a dramatization of his story is in theaters and becomes available for streaming on Netflix on Friday. Outlaw King stars Chris Pine (and, yes, all of Chris Pine) and is based on a pivotal period in Scottish history.

The film begins with the English siege of the Scots’ Stirling Castle in 1304, as a Warwolf — a huge medieval trebuchet — lobs boulders at the stronghold, in a motion similar to “an overarm pitch,” explains one of the film’s historical advisors Tony Pollard, Professor of Conflict History & Archaeology at the University of Glasgow (who also served as historical advisor to the TV series Outlander). At that time, most of Scotland’s castles were already occupied by English garrisons, and the King of England, Edward I, was flexing his power as overlord of Scotland and demanding the Scottish elites give him their fealty.

A succession crisis in Scotland had empowered Edward I. There were no heirs to the Scottish throne left after the death of the King of Scots Alexander III in 1286, so the Scottish nobility put together a committee of guardians to keep the government running. After the death of the Queen of Scots Margaret, Maid of Norway, in 1290, the guardians asked Edward I to come serve as an independent arbitrator to evaluate claims to the Scottish throne. As a result, John Balliol became King of Scotland in 1292.

But his reign didn’t last long. After Balliol sought an alliance with France, England’s enemy back then, Edward I himself came back to invade Scotland and drive out Balliol in 1296.

Now the independent kingdom of Scotland was facing direct rule by the English crown. Hard up for cash after the invasion, having “stretched his resources to a breaking point,” Edward I tried to shake down the Scots — including seizing their wool, the country’s main export at the time, according to Dauvit Broun, a professor of Scottish History at the University of Glasgow, who wasn’t involved in the film.

That’s when Robert the Bruce decided that enough was enough. He declared himself King of Scotland.

But in order to rule, Robert had to eliminate the competition. Scottish nobles who backed Balliol had been keeping a government going in his name. To be king, Robert the Bruce would have to get rid of anyone who challenged his own claim to the crown. So in February of 1306 at the church of Greyfriars in Dumfries, Robert the Bruce met with John “The Red” Comyn, one of the most powerful nobles in Scotland, who had been spearheading the effort to establish a Balliol kingship. Comyn didn’t walk away from the meeting alive.

There’s debate about whether Robert the Bruce killed Comyn himself or whether accomplices did, but he’s thought to have been in on it — and in the film, he’s depicted as murdering John “The Red” Comyn himself, which is what many people think happened. Robert the Bruce and his wife Elizabeth de Burgh were inaugurated King and Queen of Scots at Scone shortly after. Not a lot is known about de Burgh, and later in the year she was taken prisoner in England.

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But, though the murder of John Comyn secured his power in one way, it also made Robert the Bruce — who by then called himself King Robert I — a toxic figure in Scottish society. Soon enough, he was forced to flee.

“The most powerful nobles of Scotland treat him as a terrorist,” says Broun. “Not only is Robert I trying to establish an independent Scotland, but [also] he’s facing a civil war.”

In June of 1306, he struggled to keep up with the English army in the Battle of Methven, depicted in the film. “He’s basically an outlaw and the English are trying to bring him to book,” says Pollard. “[Robert the Bruce] comes close to being captured and beaten.”

His time as a fugitive is a mystery to historians.

“Nobody knows where he went when he was fugitive, but it looks like he thought hard about strategy,” says Broun. “He stayed out of a battle until he knew he’d have a better chance of winning, and that was controversial because kings were meant to be military heroes. He resolved that every castle he took he would destroy because he reckoned that, for the King of England to win, he would need to garrison Scotland, and you can’t do that unless you’ve got castles. It’s a bit like taking a bomb and destroying Buckingham Palace. But Robert I took the view that if he was going to win, it was only going to be because he had the support of the people, so he didn’t need castles.”

The film aims to depict Robert I’s military genius by highlighting the guerrilla tactics he used to overthrow the superior military force that was Edward I’s English army. One aspect of that involved creating what Pollard calls a “human porcupine” of sorts, with hundreds of men in one big group holding nearly 20-foot-long spears straight out in front of them.

The Scots also had a home turf advantage in terms of navigating the boggy, marshy battlegrounds. “Bruce deliberately picks land where the strength of the English Army can’t be brought into play,” says Pollard. “The English are knights in armor on horses, and Scots were men on foot, who didn’t have much in the way of cavalry.”

Robert’s first victory as king came in May of 1307 at the Battle of Loudoun Hill, close to his longtime family stronghold of Carrick (now part of Ayrshire).

“It’s significant because it means that he’s no longer just a fugitive,” says Broun. “But he’s still only someone who controls a small region of Scotland, his home region, which is not very different from being a noble — except he claims to be king.”

So the most famous and most important battle in Robert the Bruce’s career came even later, after the period of time covered by the film.

It was the Battle of Bannockburn, in June of 1314 that really paved the way for Scottish independence. Edward I had actually died shortly after the battle of Loudoun Hill, but at Bannockburn, Robert I defeated his successor Edward II.

“The Battle of Bannockburn is really the conclusion of the civil war,” says Broun,”[and] shows everyone who isn’t an inveterate opponent of Robert I that he’s in charge, that he can defeat the King of England. The few nobles who are still swithering say, ‘Okay, the reality is Robert I is in charge.’”

Elizabeth de Burgh is said to have been returned to Robert I after the battle as part of a prisoner exchange. Scotland’s independence from England would be official until the two nations signed the Treaty of Edinburgh in March of 1328. Robert I died the following year but Scotland would remain independent until James VI of Scotland inherited the kingdom of England after the death of Elizabeth I in 1603 and became James I of England. Oliver Cromwell conquered Scotland completely in 1650, and the Scottish and English parliaments merged in May of 1707.

And yet Robert the Bruce’s reputation as a national hero endured.

“He was reduced to being a fugitive and yet managed to restore Scotland as a fully-functioning independent kingdom. This makes his achievement even more remarkable,” Broun says. “He had to improvise constantly and had to work really hard to be king, as opposed to being born into it and not having to struggle for it.”


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Patti Smith details her wild, artsy, broke days with Robert Mapplethorpe in revised book

The myth of the starving artist is no myth.

When Patti Smith got off the bus in the Port Authority in 1967, all she had were some art supplies and a book of poems. She slept in doorways. She scrounged for food.

Eventually, she got a job at Brentano’s, where she met another desperate artist, Robert…

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‘People Must Vote!’ Robert De Niro Responds After Police Intercept Suspicious Package

Robert De Niro is thanking “security and law enforcement people” after police intercepted a suspicious package mailed to his New York City restaurant on Thursday.

“I thank God no one’s been hurt, and I thank the brave and resourceful security and law enforcement people for protecting us,” De Niro said in a statement Friday. “There’s something more powerful than bombs, and that’s your vote. People MUST vote!”

The actor was an intended recipient of one of at least 13 packages allegedly sent by Florida man Cesar Sayoc, who was arrested by federal agents on Friday afternoon. Attorney General Jeff Sessions confirmed at a press conference Friday that Sayoc was specifically targeting Democrats. “He appears to be a partisan,” Sessions said.

De Niro has publicly condemned President Trump multiple times, most famously saying “f**k Trump” at the Tony Awards this year.

Law enforcement officials are still investigating the packages, many of which were addressed to high-ranking Obama Administration officials, including former President Barack Obama, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former CIA Director John Brennan and former Attorney General Eric Holder.

Other intended recipients have also spoken out against the attacks. One of them, James Clapper, the former Director of National Intelligence and frequent critic of President Donald Trump, said on CNN he believed the packages were a form of domestic terrorism.

Another intended target, former Vice President Joe Biden, said Thursday that he hoped the country would pull together after the incidents. “My hope is this recent spate of who knows what they were, pipe bombs being mailed, might wake everybody in my business up a little bit and we will begin to put this nation back together again.” he said.

Congresswoman Maxine Waters, also a target, said in a statement that she is “appreciative of the law enforcement entities who intercepted the package and are investigating this matter.

“I unequivocally condemn any and all acts of violence and terror,” Waters added.


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