Biden news – live: Republicans refuse to support Gaetz over trafficking allegations as Trumps attack Facebook

Related video: California Democrat Ted Lieu says Matt Gaetz should be removed from House Judiciary Committee

Florida’s Republican congressman Matt Gaetz, the subject of a US Justice Department investigation into allegations he was involved in a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl, appears to be struggling for support within his own party, with one former staffer from the Donald Trump White House reportedly describing him as “the meanest person in politics”.

Lara Trump, the former president’s daughter-in-law, has meanwhile accused Facebook of removing a video interview she conducted with Mr Trump, declaring on Instagram: “Just like that, we are one step closer to Orwell’s 1984. Wow.”

Elsewhere, Joe Biden has expressed optimism that his “once-in-a-generation” $2trn infrastructure spending bill can make it through Congress. “We can get it done,” the president said on Wednesday.

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Trump Organisation chief subpoenaed in potential criminal probe

Prosecutors in New York have subpoenaed personal banking records for the Trump Organisation’s chief financial officer, according to The New York Times.

Long-time company chief Allen Weisselberg has supervised Donald Trump’s company finances for several years.

Prosecutors working alongside Manhattan district attorney Cyrus Vance Jr – who is engaging in a wider probe into the former president and his company – are reportedly investigating whether Trump and his associates falsely inflated property values and whether Weisselberg and his family received questionable gifts from him, according to the newspaper.

Alex Woodward has more.

Joe Sommerlad1 April 2021 10:45

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California office shooting kills four, including child, as suspect wounded in gunfight with police

As the gun control debate stirs once again following the recent massacres in Georgia and Colorado, the west coast state became the latest to suffer a mass shooting when four people were shot dead in Orange County yesterday.

Shots were fired at around 5.30 pm at a two-story office building on Lincoln Avenue in the city of Orange, south east of Los Angeles, according to local police.

A suspect in the shooting has been taken to hospital with injuries.

Shweta Sharma has the latest.

Joe Sommerlad1 April 2021 10:20

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Analysis: Biden pursues his own ‘Great Society’ with historic infrastructure proposal

What’s the thinking behind the new president’s hugely ambitious and costly spending plan?

He’s backing his beloved Senate to embrace a spirit of bipartisan co-operation in order to realise a national remodelling effort not attempted on this scale since Lyndon Johnson in the mid-1960s, says Griffin Connolly.

There’s no questioning its vision but how popular is it likely to be across the aisle, given that it relies on hiking taxes for corporations and households pulling in more than $400,000 a year, essentially undoing one of his predecessor’s defining legacies?

Joe Sommerlad1 April 2021 09:55

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Biden pledges $2trn ‘once-in-a-generation’ infrastructure spending

Stepping away from conservatives nurturing their own sense of victimhood just briefly, Joe Biden has expressed optimism that his “once-in-a-generation” $2trn infrastructure spending bill can make it through Congress.

His proposals are intended to usher the US into the 21st century, creating millions of jobs and put the nation on a footing to compete with an ascendant Chinese economy.

Even more expensive than Biden’s $1.9trn Covid relief package, which was passed last month, the new bill would provide government spending across four main categories:

  • $621bn for traditional transportation infrastructure projects such as roads, bridges, and public transit.
  • $650bn for “modern infrastructure” that will affect Americans “at home”, meaning broadband internet expansion, revamped water systems and electricity grids, massive investments in public schools facilities.
  • $400bn for “care infrastructure” projects such as schools, childcare facilities, veterans’ hospitals and other federal welfare buildings.
  • $580bn for research, development and training projects, including providing incentives for companies to keep manufacturing jobs in the nation’s “industrial heartland”.

“It’s big, yes. It’s bold, yes. And we can get it done,” the president said yesterday.

Griffin Connolly has more.

Joe Sommerlad1 April 2021 09:30

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Lara Trump claims ‘Orwellian’ Facebook removed her interview with father-in-law

The former president’s daughter-in-law has accused Facebook of removing a video interview she conducted with Mr Trump, declaring on Instagram: “Just like that, we are one step closer to Orwell’s 1984. Wow.”

Ms Trump, who is married to the president’s second son, Eric Trump, publicised links to the 18-minute clip of her speaking with her father-in-law in Florida on Tuesday on various social media platforms before it was allegedly taken down “in line with the block” placed on his accounts in the wake of the Capitol riot.

Louise Hall has this report.

Joe Sommerlad1 April 2021 09:10

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Republicans refuse to support under fire Matt Gaetz

Florida’s Republican congressman Matt Gaetz, the subject of a US Justice Department investigation into allegations he was involved in a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl, appears to be struggling for support within his own party, with one former staffer from the Donald Trump White House reportedly describing him as “the meanest person in politics”.

Insider interviewed a dozen current and former party and White House sources regarding group text chains exchanging gossip about the news of Gaetz’s legal woes – which were first reported by The New York Times – and found plenty of open gloating on display.

“Republican leadership will likely watch him completely implode in a matter of days without having to do a thing,” one aide told the publication.

Oliver O’Connell has the latest.

Joe Sommerlad1 April 2021 08:50

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Good morning and welcome to The Independent’s rolling coverage of the Joe Biden administration and the wild world of American politics.

Joe Sommerlad1 April 2021 08:39

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