White House Defends Trump's Congratulatory Call To Putin

Shortly after he was elected, President Trump required his White House staff members to sign nondisclosure agreements that last past his presidency, a new report says.

The draft agreement says staffers could be fined as much as $10 million for unauthorized release of confidential information.

News of the NDA came as the White House fended off reports of senior staff shakeups.

Mark Zaid, who co-founded the nonprofit law firm Whistleblower Aid, announced via Twitter on Monday that his firm would represent any White House staffer who signed Trump's nondisclosure agreement. "Those so-called NDAs are unconstitutional and unenforceable".

"What's happened is that a lot of these prominent evangelical Christians have gone from making a prudential judgment to being the sword and shield for Donald Trump".

The president has suggested it was done by "the deep state", they said.

Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, told CNN, "I wouldn't have a conversation with a criminal". There are some important caveats to point out. Sources familiar with the final document do not remember a similarly large penalty, she said.

The Associated Press and other outlets are now reporting the quote as "an official White House statement".

I understand that the United States Government or, upon completion of the term (s) of Mr. Donald J. Trump, an authorized representative of Mr. Trump, may seek any remedy available to enforce this Agreement including, but not limited to, application for a court order prohibiting disclosure of information in breach of this Agreement.

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But that original figure was most likely lowered, according to the Post.

Trump: "I think they should".

"This is insane", said attorney Debra Katz, who has represented numerous government whistleblowers and negotiated nondisclosure agreements.

Update: Updated with White House denial.

In his 21-page ruling, Cooper concluded the White House isn't a federal agency subject to the Federal Administrative Procedures Act, as CREW claimed, and that the actions it sought to compel - such as issuance of guidelines barring the use of Confide and Signal - were too discretionary to satisfy applicable legal standards. Putting a gag order on these officials would leave the public in the dark about how the government works, preventing the kind of informed debate that is critical to democratic accountability.

Rather what Trump is trying to prevent is people talking about him after they leave the White House or he leaves office. When we have a normal president again, this situation will hopefully not persist.

The president, whose unorthodox governing style has included the use of Twitter as a primary means of communicating with the public, also defeated a NY federal court lawsuit asserting he's allowed foreign governments to enrich him, in violation of the U.S. Constitution.

"This is the way Trump is", the official said. "But it's just not going to happen".


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