Biden news – live: Trump taxes finally handed to authorities as president overturns his ‘harmful’ visa ban

Watch live as Biden’s press secretary Jen Psaki holds White House briefing

Donald Trump has given his tax returns to prosecutors in New York after the Supreme Court this week rejected the ousted president’s attempt to prevent them from being handed over.

Just hours after the court ruling the district attorney’s office confirmed they now have the documents, which DA Cyrus Vance Jr has been fighting to obtain for more than a year and a half as part of a criminal grand jury investigation into Mr Trump’s business dealings.

It comes as President Joe Biden on Wednesday revoked a Trump-era policy that blocked most green card applicants from entering the US.

Mr Trump issued the ban last year, saying it was needed to protect workers amid high unemployment due to the coronavirus pandemic.

However the President rejected that reasoning and rescinded the visa ban, saying it had prevented families from reuniting in the United States and harmed US businesses.

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Biden administration ‘not focused’ on Trump’s CPAC speech, says White House

Asked if the White House would be watching Donald Trump’s CPAC speech expected to focus on the looming migrant crisis, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the former president wasn’t in a position to speak with moral authority on immigration policy.

“We’re not looking to former president Trump or any of his advisers as a model for how we’re approaching immigration, in fact we’re in the circumstance we’re in because not only was their approach inhumane, it was ineffective,” she says.

“So we’re going to forge our own path forward, we’ll see what he says, but our focus is certainly not on what Mr Trump is saying at CPAC.”

Justin Vallejo25 February 2021 18:01

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‘It breaks my heart that it is necessary’: Pelosi visibly upset with Marjorie Taylor Greene

Speaker Nancy Pelosi grew visibly upset at her weekly press conference on Thursday discussing Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene’s latest publicity stunt to rile up liberals over rights for trans people.

Ms Pelosi’s chamber is poised to pass legislation known as the Equality Act on Thursday that would explicitly protect LGBTQ people in the US from discrimination from businesses, employers, and the government.

“It is necessary. I wish it weren’t. It breaks my heart that it is necessary,” Ms Pelosi told reporters of the Equality Act on Thursday.

Griffin Connolly reports.

Justin Vallejo25 February 2021 18:00

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White House will work with Andrew Cuomo despite sexual allegation charges and calls for probe of nursing home deaths cover-up

Asked if Andrew Cuomo’s presence as meeting of governors would be a distraction, Jen Psaki said he was still the governor of one of the largest states that needed to be worked with in response to the pandemic.

“The president has been consistent in his position, when a person comes forward they deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, their voice should be heard not silenced, and any allegation should be reviewed,” Psaki said.

“Governor Cuomo is also the governor of one of the largest states in the country, that has been one of the hardest hit with millions of people still suffering from an ongoing pandemic and economic crisis. Our focus is to continue working with governors from across the country from a range of states on how we’re helping people in their states.”

Justin Vallejo25 February 2021 17:59

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BREAKING: Rand Paul attacks Biden’s transgender health secretary over her support for gender reassignment surgery for minors

Senator Rand Paul, a Republican, has criticised one of President Joe Biden’s health nominees for her support of gender reassignment surgery and hormone therapy for minors.

Dr Rachel Levine, the Pennsylvania secretary of health and Mr Biden’s pick for assistant secretary of health if confirmed by the Senate, faced a line of questioning from senators on Thursday that compared genital mutilation to children taking medication or undergoing surgery in order to transition to the opposite sex.

“American culture is now normalising the idea that minors can be given hormones to prevent their biological development of their secondary biological characteristic,” Mr Paul said.

“We should be outraged that someone’s talking to a three-year-old about changing their sex.”

Danielle Zoellner reports.

Justin Vallejo25 February 2021 17:40

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Watch: White House daily briefing

Press secretary Jen Psaki is expected to being today’s media briefing shortly.

Follow live with The Independent.

Watch live as Biden’s press secretary Jen Psaki holds White House briefing

Justin Vallejo25 February 2021 17:30

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Nancy Pelosi gives surprise call up to the Senate for the honorable representative for Miami, Don Johnson

Nancy Pelosi has given Miami Vice actor Don Johnson a surprise commission to the senate to lead the country’s fight against domestic terrorism.

“Don Johnson, was his first name Don? What is it Ron? Well senator, let me call him. Not Miami Vice or anything like that,” she said.

“Ron Johnson seems to be taking the lead of what the scope would be on how we look at protecting our country from domestic terrorism.”

If the streets of the United States were as safe today as the streets of Miami were in the 1980s, Mr Johnson, either of them, gets the peoples’ vote.

‘Miami Vice’, Don Johnson, Philip Michael Thomas, 1984-1989.

(Everett Collection/REX)

Justin Vallejo25 February 2021 17:19

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Republicans that turn on Trump are ‘fools’, says MTG

Marjorie Taylor Green has lashed out at Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger for turning their backs on Trump, who is expected to announce a 2024 run this weekend.

“Liz Cheney and any other Republican that wants to make statements against president Donald J Trump is a fool, they are disconnected with the base. They are disconnected with Republican voters,” she said.

“Many of these Republicans that are turning their back on Trump, who they ran on his coat tails, have really lost themselves. They don’t represent Republicans, they don’t represent Republican voters, and the people are speaking out and they know it.”

Justin Vallejo25 February 2021 17:02

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Watch: Stephen Miller calls Biden immigration policies ‘cruel and inhumane’

“These young, illegal immigrants are being put in harm’s way, all because of a policy choice Joe Biden made to restore catch and release, that is cruel, that is inhumane, and we are seeing the results of that right now. He took a secure border. A humane border. A safe border. And he’s turned it into this.”

Stephen Miller calls Biden’s immigration policies ‘cruel’ and ‘inhumane’

The architect of the Trump administration’s immigration policy is receiving backlash after calling Joe Biden’s immigration policies “cruel and inhumane”.

Stephen Miller, who supported the “zero tolerance” policy that separated migrant children from their parents, told Fox News that the growing crisis on the Mexico border was the result of policies “enriching smugglers and traffickers who profit off of human misery”.

Justin Vallejo25 February 2021 17:00

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BREAKING: GameStop trading repeatedly halted after shares surge again

Shares in retailer GameStop surged again on Thursday possibly heralding a further rally for stocks heavily-shorted by Wall Street, but favoured by amateur traders.

Trading had to be halted shortly after the opening bell in New York, and several times after that, with shares trading up approximately 50 per cent.

Investors had already pushed up the price by 104 per cent on Wednesday before trading was halted.

It is not certain what caused the surge, but most point to the reported exit of chief financial officer Jim Bell.

Oliver O’Connell reports.

Justin Vallejo25 February 2021 16:39

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Biden CIA nominee Burns to focus on ‘authoritarian adversary’ China

President Joe Biden‘s nominee to be director of the CIA, William Burns, told a Senate committee on Wednesday that he saw competition with China – and countering its “adversarial, predatory” leadership – as the key to U.S. national security.

Burns, 64, a former career diplomat during both Democratic and Republican administrations, is expected to easily win confirmation to be director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

The Senate Intelligence Committee will likely vote on his confirmation late next week or the week after, to allow time for members to send more questions, a congressional official said.

Testifying to the committee, Burns outlined his four top priorities – “people, partnerships, China and technology” – if he is confirmed.

He called China “a formidable, authoritarian adversary,” that is strengthening its ability to steal intellectual property, repress its people, expand its reach and build influence within the United States.

China’s foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said, when asked about Burns’ comments, that he hoped the U.S. could “cast aside its zero sum mentality … and adopt a positive and constructive policy towards China.”

Joe Middleton25 February 2021 15:52

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