If Mueller Shows Trump and Stone Cheated to Win the Primary, Will Republicans Turn on Trump?

Before you answer, “no,” hear me out.

I’ve been obsessing about what else — besides repeatedly entertaining offers of help from Russians and changing his opinion about whether Russia hacked the DNC on a dime and thereafter magnifying propaganda that helped Russia’s plausible deniability, even while claiming some knowledge of it — Mueller is investigating Roger Stone. The subpoena challenge of his sometime assistant, Andrew Miller, makes it clear that at least part of the investigation focuses on Stone’s dodgy 527 and PACs. I’ve shown how the second (general election) incarnation of Stone’s Stop the Steal 527 engaged in voter suppression that paralleled the efforts Russia was making.

But we know from the reports of witnesses, including Michael Caputo, that Mueller’s interest in Stone’s activities go back before the general election. For example, he’s interested (in the wake of Rick Gates signing a cooperation agreement) in meetings Stone had with Gates. According to Stone, the only meeting he had with Gates during the election happened shortly after April 19, 2016; Gates was there because Manafort had to cancel at the last minute.

“I only have a record of one dinner with Rick Gates,” he said, adding that the guest list included two other political operatives: Michael Caputo, a former Trump campaign aide who was recently interviewed by Mr. Mueller’s investigators, and Paul Manafort, who soon after took over as chairman of Mr. Trump’s campaign. But Mr. Manafort canceled at the last minute, and Mr. Gates, his deputy, attended in his place.

Mr. Stone said the conversation during the dinner, which fell soon after the New York primary in April 2016, was about the New York State delegate selection for the Republican National Convention. The operatives expressed concern about whether delegates, at a time of deep division among Republicans, would be loyal to Mr. Trump’s vision for the party, Mr. Stone said.

The suggestion, then, is that Mueller’s star witness, Rick Gates, told the special counsel about Stone and Manafort getting the old gang back together. Which would have started in March, as Manafort was wooing Stone’s longtime associate Donald Trump. During the same month, Stone-style rat-fucking was putting the finishing touches to Ted Cruz’ presidential ambitions. That was precisely the period when former Young Republican John Powers Middleton was loading up Stone’s Committee to Restore American Greatness (from which Stop the Steal would get its initial cash infusion). Stone was tweeting out his Stop the Steal campaign, even if he had not yet registered it with the IRS. And not long afterwards, Russian hackers would still be searching Democratic servers for dirt on Cruz, even after he had been mathematically eliminated.

[O]n or about April 15, 2016, the Conspirators searched one hacked DCCC computer for terms that included “hillary,” “cruz,” and “trump.”

The possibility that Mueller’s interest in Stone (and Manafort) extends back to the primary is all the more interesting given how centrally some of Stone’s core skill-sets played out in the lead-up to the Convention. There were veiled threats of violence (and in the home of his dark money, actual violence), a smear story projecting on Cruz the infidelity more typical of Trump, and lots of money sloshing around.

It’s not entirely clear what crime that would implicate — besides potential campaign finance violations (particularly, given Trump’s repeated disavowals of any coordination between Stone and his old buddy Manafort).

And, given how rabidly Republican base voters support Trump, I could see why Republicans would let bygones be bygones. It’s not like the Republican party has ever before shown distaste for Stone’s rat-fucking. Plus, no one likes Ted Cruz, and he may not even survive his race against Beto O’Rourke. So, no, Republicans won’t be any more disposed against Stone if he is shown to have helped Trump cheat in the primary.

All that said, if Mueller indicts Stone in other crimes that Republicans would like to distance themselves from, any allegations about the primary may provide cover.

So, no, whatever dark money slush Mueller is looking at implicates Trump’s victory over the mainstream party won’t, by itself, turn Republicans against Trump. But down the road it may provide cover for the moment Republicans would like to turn on him.

Timeline

September 2, 2011: Pamela Jensen registers Should Trump Run 527 with Michael D Cohen listed as President

October 1, 2015: Pamela Jensen registers STOP RAPE PAC by loaning it enough money to pay for a mailbox

November 10, 2015: Jensen & Associates loans $2,398.87 to CRAG

November 10, 2015: CRAG pays Entkesis 2373.87

December 17, 2015: Corey Lewandowski disavows CRAG

December 24, 2015: CRAG pays Newsmax 10803.55

December 31, 2015: CRAG pays Newsmax 1585.76

February 1, 2016: Pamela Jensen sends out fundraising letter to World Net Daily pushing Kathleen Wiley’s mortgage fundraiser

February 4, 2016: Jensen & Associates loans $2,610 to CRAG

February 10, 2016: Loans from Jensen & Associates repaid

February 19, 2016: Roger Stone tells Alex Jones that Donald Trump has donated to the Kathleen Willey fundraiser, even though it had raised less than $4,000 at that time

February 29, 2016: Paul Manafort pitches Trump on managing his convention

March 1, 2016: John Powers Middleton Company donates $150,000 to CRAG

March 6, 2016: First tweet in spring Stop the Steal campaign

March 9, 2016: John Powers Middleton donates $50,000 to CRAG

March 11, 2016: John Powers Middleton donates $25,000 to CRAG

March 14, 2016: John Powers Middleton donates $25,000 to CRAG

March 23, 2016: National Enquirer publishes story, quoting Stone, claiming multiple Ted Cruz affairs

March 28, 2016: On recommendation of Tom Barrack and Roger Stone, Trump hires Manafort as convention manager, thereby bringing in “traditional” methods Stone resigned over in 2015

April 5, 2016: Stone threatens to send Trump supporters to disloyal delegates hotel rooms, also claims voter fraud in primaries Cruz won

April 6, 2016: Stone (Sarah Rollins) establishes Stop the Steal in same UPS post box as CRAG

April 6, 2016: CRAG gives $50,000 to Stop the Steal

April 6, 2016: CRAG pays Jensen & Associates $11,000

April 6, 2016: CRAG pays Jensen & Associates $9,000

April 6, 2016: Stone tweets Stop the Steal toll free line to “report voter fraud in Wisconsin” primary

April 8, 2016: Stone accused of menacing after threat of Day of Rage

April 12, 2016: John Powers Middleton donates $60,000 to CRAG

April 13, 2016: Stop the Steal pays Sarah Rollins $386.72

April 14, 2016: CRAG pays Tim Yale $9,000

April 14, 2016: Stop the Steal pays Jim Baker $1,500 in “expense reimbursements for rally”

April 15, 2016: GRU hackers search “one hacked DCCC computer for terms that included “hillary,” “cruz,” and “trump”

April 15, 2016: Stop the Steal pays Sarah Rollins $500

April 15, 2016: John Powers Middleton donates $15,000 to CRAG

April 15, 2016: John Powers Middleton donates $2,000 to CRAG

April 15, 2016: $1,000 refunded to John Powers Middleton

April 18, 2016: John Powers Middleton donates $1,000 to CRAG

April 18, 2016: CRAG pays Citroen Associates $40,000

April 19, 2016: CNN writes profile on “the Return of Roger Stone”

Shortly after April 19, 2016: Stone and Rick Gates meet in NY.

April 25, 2016: CRAG pays Paul Nagy $2,500

April 25, 2016: CRAG pays Sarah Rollins $500 plus $41.66 in expenses

April 28, 2016: Protest outside of Donald Trump rally in Costa Mesa turns violent

April 29, 2016: John Powers Middleton donates $50,000 to CRAG

May 1, 2016: Last Stone tweet in spring Stop the Steal campaign

May 2, 2016: CRAG pays Sarah Rollins $800

May 2, 2016: Stop the Steal fundraises and calls for march on Convention, even as Trump disavows any tie to it or other PACs/527s

May 4, 2016: CRAG pays Jensen & Associates $5,000

May 13, 2016: CRAG pays Sarah Rollins 93.50

May 15, 2016: Stop the Steal pays Sarah Rollins $500

May 16, CRAG pays Andrew Miller $2,000

May 16, 2016: CRAG pays Citroen Associates $10,000

May 16, 2016: CRAG pays Sarah Rollins $400

May 16, 2016: CRAG pays Kathy Shelton $2,500

May 24, 2016: Stone PAC RAPE PAC, aka Women v Hillary, announced

June 2, 2016: Pamela Jensen sets up Women v Hillary PAC out of a different mailboxes location in Costa Mesa (again, this only ever showed enough money to pay for the mailbox used as its address)

June 7, 2016: FEC informs CRAG it must submit filings by July 12, 2016

June 7, 2016: CRAG pays Jensen & Associates $4,790

June 8, 2016: Stop the Steal pays Paul Nagy $800 in “expense reimbursements for rally”

June 17, 2016: CRAG pays Andrew Miller $3,000

July 5, 2016: CRAG pays Jensen & Associates $14,500

July 6, 2016: CRAG pays Michelle Selaty $10,000

July 6, 2016: CRAG pays Drake Ventures $12,000

July 11, 2016: CRAG pays Cheryl Smith $4,900

July 12, 2016: Stop the Steal gives $63,000 to CRAG

July 12, 2016: CRAG pays Jensen & Associates $7,200

July 15, 2016: CRAG pays Jason Sullivan $1,500

July 18, 2016: CRAG pays Jensen & Associates $7,500

July 20, 2016: CRAG pays Jensen & Associates $3,000

July 29, 2016: CRAG pays Jensen & Associates $6,000

August 1, 2016: CRAG pays Andrew Miller $4,000; Stone flies from JFK to LAX

August 2, 2016: Stone dines with Middleton at Dan Tanas in West Hollywood

August 3, 2016: CRAG pays Jensen & Associates $9,500

August 3, 2016: CRAG pays Josi & Company $2,500

August 3-4, 2016: Stone takes a red-eye from LAX to Miami

August 4, 2016: Stone flip-flops on whether the Russians or a 400 pound hacker are behind the DNC hack and also tells Sam Nunberg he dined with Julian Assange; first tweet in the fall StopTheSteal campaign

August 5, 2016: Stone column in Breitbart claiming Guccifer 2.0 is individual hacker

August 9, 2016: CRAG pays Jason Sullivan $1,500

August 15, 2016: CRAG pays Jensen & Associates $19,500

August 29, 2016: CRAG pays Law Offices of Michael Becker $3,500

August 31, 2016: Robert Shillman gives $8,000 to CRAG

September 12, 2016: CRAG gives $8,000 to Donald Trump

September 14, 2016: CRAG pays $3,000 to Citroen Associates

September 21, 2016: Robert Shillman gives $8,000 to CRAG

September 22, 2016: CRAG gives $8,000 to Donald Trump

October 13, 2016: Stop the Steal pays Andrew Miller $5,000

October 23, 2016: Stone tweets out message saying Clinton supporters can “VOTE the NEW way on Tues. Nov 8th by texting HILLARY to 8888”

October 28, 2016: GRU officer Anatoliy Kovalev and co-conspirators visit websites of counties in GA, IA, and FL to identify vulnerabilities

October 30, 2016: Ohio Democratic Party sues Ohio Republican Party to prevent Stop the Steal voter suppression; Democrats also sue in NV, AZ, and PA

November 3, 2016: Filings in ODP lawsuit describing Stop the Steal (declarationexhibits)

November 4, 2016: Judge James Gwyn issues Temporary Restraining Order against Trump, Stone, and Stop the Steal

November 4, 2016: Guccifer 2.0 post claiming Democrats may rig the elections

November 7, 2016: Sixth Circuit issues a stay in OH TRO

December 14, 2016: Women versus Hillary gives $158.97 to CRAG

December 19, 2016: Stop the Steal pays $5,000 to Alejandro Vidal for “fundraising expenses”

December 19, 2016: Stop the Steal pays $3,500 to C Josi and Co.

December 21, 2016: Stop the Steal pays $1,500 to The Townsend Group

December 27, 2016: Stop the Steal pays $3,500 to Kristen [sic] Davis

December 28, 2016: Stop the Steal gives $94 to CRAG

December 29, 2016: Stop the Steal pays Jerry Steven Gray $4,000 for “fundraising expenses”

December 30, 2016: Stop the Steal pays 2,692 total to unnamed recipients

January 19, 2017: Stop the Steal pays $5,000 for fundraising expenses to Alejandro Vidal

February 8, 2017: Stop the Steal pays Kristen [sic] Davis $3,500 for “fundraising expenses”

February 15, 2017: Stop Steal pays Brad Boeck $862 for sales consultant consulting fee

As I disclosed in July, I provided information to the FBI on issues related to the Mueller investigation, so I’m going to include disclosure statements on Mueller investigation posts from here on out. I will include the disclosure whether or not the stuff I shared with the FBI pertains to the subject of the post. 

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135 replies
    • J R in WV says:

      Regarding Pigs in Flight, I saw a really cute video of a very small piglet in the lap of a pilot of a small Cessna-type private aircraft, thus proving that Pigs Can Fly!

      It was such a cute little pink piglet, obviously having a great time in the arms of its parent for the day, and probably being fed small treats all along to keep it seriously tamed.

  1. big fan says:

    Confused, do you mean Rick Davis in the third paragraph or Rick Gates? Tried to google Rick Davis as cooperating witness to no avail.

  2. Frank Probst says:

    I thought we’d agreed that it was “ratfucking” with no hyphen. (This is important. It’s likely to be the determining factor as to who wins future Scrabble games in my household.)

      • Avattoir says:

        10 letters, so “rat” would need to be there already. Optimally you’d want a triple word score credit tripled (i.e. cubed), but that’s not possible with this word and the standard 2 dimensional board, so: raw score with no blanks: 20, rising to 24 or 25 depending on which of the F or K falls on the dbl letter score, x 3 is 72 or 75, plus 50 for full 7 letter use bonus: 122 or 125.

        Family fun!

  3. obsessed says:

    I’m also confused, especially because of the DC Madame also having the Davis surname, but Rick Davis is definitely a player in this. Here’s some stuff from a US News story:

    >In 1995, Manafort set up a new lobbying firm with Rick Davis, who later helped Manafort establish his political contacts in former Soviet states, including Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska and Ukrainian oligarch Rinat Ahkmetov.

    >But after working with another Republican lobbyist, Rick Davis, Gates came back into Manafort’s fold. By the time that Davis took a leave from his partnership with Manafort to run John McCain’s presidential campaign, Gates joined Manafort’s new firm, Davis Manafort Inc and was working with Manafort to drum up business in former Soviet States.

    • bmaz says:

      Keep in mind that this is the one and same Rick Davis currently being lionized as the spokesperson for the suddenly deceased John McCain and his estate.

          • Avattoir says:

            So, tho not easy, definitely controversial, sure to be opposed, IMO it would be actually valuable for the jury to hear from both Black and Davis on their firm’s history and the Manafort ventures – but only if they suddenly were to go completely nuts and testify fully and objectively truthfully…

            which surely means this little fantasy I’ve been nurturing for 15 months now of some Evil Power Rangers type ring reunions, or Marvel Comix Antihero Inc. cosmic reunification, with the psychic energy of Atwater (and maybe even some college spirit juice leftover from Stone’s UCLA days with his buddy in ratfuckery, Donald Segretti, under the inspiration of UCLA alum and Nixon acolyte Harry Robbins Haldeman, a.k.a. “H.R. Haldeman”, a.k.a. “Bob Haldeman.).

             

            [One tell on you might be dealing with a former prosecutor is the tendency, in discussing those of suspect motives, to recite full names with aliases – indictment-style.]

            • greengiant says:

              Fact check. Stone and Manafort were partners in the combined lobbying/political action firm revolving cast of characters. Haldeman born 1922 was from UCLA. Segretti born 1941 was in the original USC Greek election ratfuckery crowd, a number of whom worked for Nixon and some have flown under the radar. Stone born 1952 is reported to only have attended George Washington University and probably met up with the crew in his work in Nixon’s 1972 election. Roy Cohn intersected Nixon, Trump in the 1970s, and Stone campaigning for Reagan.

    • Zardoz says:

      FWIW on Rick Davis and Manafort:

      In 2006, Davis helped set up the encounter between McCain and Russian aluminum magnate Oleg Deripaska in Switzerland during an international economic conference. Deripaska’s suspected links to anti-democratic and organized crime figures are so controversial that the U.S. government revoked his entry visa in 2006.[22]

      At the time, Davis was working for a lobbying firm and seeking to do business with the billionaire. Later that month, Deripaska wrote to Davis and his partner, political consultant Paul J. Manafort, to thank them for arranging the meeting. “Thank you so much for setting up everything in Kloster so spectacularly,” he wrote. “It was very interesting to meet Senators McCain, Chambliss and Sununu in such an intimate setting.”[22]  From: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rick_Davis_(politics)

      I believe I just saw Rick Davis make a weeping reading of the McCain family’s (or was that John McCain’s?) statement the other day.

      Now we have another Davis, Lanny, doing odd with Cohen, making a “mistake” about Trump’s foreknowledge of the Trump Tower meeting.

  4. Drew says:

    The Republicans would prefer not to be implicated in conspiracy with the Russians. They won’t abandon Trump until his power collapses, which might happen in one of several ways, not all of which involve full exposure of everything about l’Affaire Russe as Lawfare likes to name it.

    It’s easy to imagine in such a case, many Republicans rushing to direct attention to Trump’s cheating in the primaries, and victimizing THEM, rather than having the whole story play out in full. (I doubt that anybody will be that interested in protecting Dana Rohrabacker or Devin Nunes in this case, in fact, they may well be good people to blame along with Trump.

    • Bob Conyers says:

      One thing to consider is the fact that a number of the money men behind the GOP — Mercer and Singer, for example — are hedge fund/quant guys. They make their money betting on collapses, and even precipitating them.

      I wouldn’t rule out them deciding it’s time to short sell Trump. I can’t see this crop of GOP hedge funders going for the Democrats (although other hedge funders may) but I can see them deciding it’s time to find another stooge to prop up. These guys have a lot of money, they’re willing to make  Roger Stone style rat attacks, and if they do decide to turn on Trump, watch out.

  5. Pete says:

    So were Mueller to “[email protected] – ahem – the 60 day “rule” ( U know there isn’t one), might we expect to see a Stone action from Mueller just before 6 Sep or 1 Sep Rudy time?

    That’s not the Repubs or maybe even the base revolting but maybe the swing voters swing Dem?!

    Whats the over/under on that?

    • Doctor My Eyes says:

      The oh-so-important 60-day rule reminds me of the nuclear option for approving SC judges: unthinkable for Democrats but an easily ignored guideline for Republicans.

      • cat herder says:

        True. Also similar is how only a Republican is allowed to investigate other Republicans, and only a Republican is allowed to investigate Democrats, because only a Republican could do either without bias. Somehow Democrats have come to accept this framing as normal and appropriate like the sun rising in the east. It’s Stockholm syndrome or something.

  6. Willis Warren says:

    I don’t think the Republicans give a shit about Roger Stone. He’s a weirdo and looks like he belongs at a table reciting “one of us”

    I’d suspect they’d be more than willing to use him as the fall guy in this whole thing.

  7. Bob Conyers says:

    I would agree that the day the GOP turns on Trump, if it comes, may be preceded by fake indignation over something he does that is supposedly over the line (but in reality is less bad than things he’s done in the past and they themselves have done).

    There’s the case of Trent Lott being thrown out of the Senate GOP leadership in 2002 for saying he wished Strom Thurmond had won the presidency in 1948. I remember people like Charles Krauthammer howling about how their civil rights sensibilities were wounded to the core by Lott’s remarks, when none of them seemed to have a problem with Thurmond himself serving in the Senate.

    I just hope Mueller gives the GOP a reason so compelling they can’t do anything but turn on Trump, no matter what the collateral damage to their party.

      • Bob Conyers says:

        Lott had given variations on that praise for Thurmond and no Republican had ever complained before, and many had praised Thurmond themselves, along with plenty of other segregationists, just as they praise confederates to this day.

        They decided it was a convenient opportunity to install Bill Frist, who was far more willing to enforce party loyalty and push the Bush agenda. But for those few days, they sure waved that bloody shirt around. Lott was a miserable apologist, but Frist and the rest were no better.

    • Raven Eye says:

      At the fork in the road, which is perceived as being more dangerous to their individual interests:  (a) Staying with Trump, or (b) taking the Mueller route?

      Staying with Trump and keeping their agenda (and the agenda of their donors) alive is the easiest and has the strongest magnetic pull.  Imagine how strong Mueller would have to be to break the pull of self-interest and decades of relationships.

  8. bobby says:

    What are we supposed to make of the series of PAC transactions? More importantly, Marcy what do YOU make of them? Looks to me like an effort to shuffle money around, but can’t help notice that the sums aren’t that large in terms of political PAC spending.

    • SpaceLifeForm says:

      Ferdinand Marcos, FARA, backchannel, etc, etc, etc

      https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2016/06/2016-donald-trump-paul-manafort-ferinand-marcos-philippines-1980s-213952

      ‘It was circulating way back when, when people were out to just pass rumors and things about me. It’s old stuff that never had any legs anywhere,” said Manafort. “It’s totally fiction,” he said, asserting that every penny he received from Marcos’ allies was disclosed to the U.S. Justice Department in mandatory filings.

      Manafort’s international consulting career grew out of turmoil on Reagan’s 1980 campaign. A trio of young operatives had been working together in Reagan’s political shop — Manafort as convention director, Charlie Black as field director and Roger Stone as director of the Southern operation — until Black found himself out of a job when the campaign shuffled its hierarchy after the New Hampshire primary. So he started a political consulting firm, which Manafort and Stone joined in short order. The firm quickly began working for Reagan’s campaign, as well as the Republican National Committee and a handful of GOP congressional candidates.

      Black, Manafort, Stone and Kelly’s pitch to win the business from the ruling party of the Bahamas, which at the time was being accused of ties to drug trafficking, spelled out the approach of its principals. The firm’s relationships with State Department officials could be “utilized to upgrade a backchannel relationship in the economic and foreign policy spheres,” according to a portion of the pitch published by TIME magazine in 1986.

      Most of the investigations by U.S. and Philippine authorities appear to have paid little attention to charges that some of the cash was intended for illegal political contributions in the U.S.

      • SpaceLifeForm says:

        Funny how some links about Charlie Black that point to a *cough* MSM website *cough* have magically disappeared.

  9. Peacerme says:

    The republicans won’t turn on him unless (they) lose power. Right now, he is still able to influence things in their favor. That’s all they really care about. They believe they are entitled to this power by any means necessary. They will remain beside him as long as his influence remains. (That’s my judgement, theory hypothesis.) As I’ve said all along, their attraction to him is about power and control.

    • Doctor My Eyes says:

      Perhaps more precisely, he delivers to their obscenely rich constituents what they need to keep feeding the coffers.  Remember the ultimatum they faced on the tax bill? Deliver or the contributions dry up. The word “craven” comes to mind.

      • harpie says:

        NYT via Kyle Griffin:

         The Republican tax cuts gave Sheldon Adrlson [Adelson] a nearly $700,000,000 windfall earlier this year. Adelson has since given $30,000,000 to a Paul Ryan-linked super PAC.

        …to which Cheryl Rofer responds:

        https://twitter.com/CherylRofer/status/1033827108357726208 Sheldon Adelson’s tax cut is the equivalent of a yearly income of $50,000 for 14,000 people. // And that’s just the tax cut. The 1% is robbing the rest of us blind.

        And, just a little while ago, NYT reported:

        https://twitter.com/nytimes/status/1034573097490415617 An ex-CIA officer running for Congress in Virginia accused a GOP super PAC of leaking her security clearance papers for political purposes

        That super PAC is affiliated with Paul Ryan.

        To which Ned Price responds:

        https://twitter.com/nedprice/status/1034560772184174592  This raises lots of questions, but also the possibility the Trump administration is furnishing highly confidential personal information of public-servants-turned-Democratic-candidates to their political opponents. Have to get to the bottom of this.

         

  10. Tracy says:

    Thank you – Marcy, that is some timeline – I hope that the OSC has a Marcy Wheeler or is checking into your blog sometimes!! (Maybe each member of the OSC is a Marcy Wheeler in his/ her respective areas of expertise…)

    I’ve been thinking lately of the Republican obstruction and denials around this investigation, and recalled that the Russians hacked the RNC, wherein surely they gathered kompromat.

    Also (people had been commenting about Lindsey Graham’s remarkable about-face on Sessions – you probably all knew this, but) I just learned on the “Gaslit Nation” podcast that Russia hacked Graham, too. So other prominent Republicans may have been hacked and just not revealed it yet:

    https://www.cnn.com/2016/12/14/politics/lindsey-graham-hacking-russia-donald-trump/index.html

    Fear of losing seats if they oppose Trump is a motivator, but seems there could be more…

  11. GKJames says:

    Wouldn’t Republicans’ overriding concern still be about being flanked from the right? And, substantively, why would they turn on him? They’re getting the benefits of the president’s policies and constituents, by and large, show more annoyance with the crudeness of style than they do with policy.

  12. Rusharuse says:

    The Repomen need look no further than Charles K. for good reason to drop the Orangatang.
    Beyond narcissism.
    I used to think Trump was an 11-year-old, an undeveloped schoolyard bully. I was off by about 10 years. His needs are more primitive, an infantile hunger for approval and praise, a craving that can never be satisfied. He lives in a cocoon of solipsism where the world outside himself has value — indeed exists — only insofar as it sustains and inflates him.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/donald-trump-and-the-fitness-threshold/2016/08/04/b06bae34-5a69-11e6-831d-0324760ca856_story.html

    • SpaceLifeForm says:

      Initial thoughts.

      Fake news.

      Sneakers? Has the crowbar been dusted?

      Or did the crowbar that was never there fly away?

    • Trip says:

      The thief is a virtual spiderman; scaling a barbed wire fence from a roof and then happening upon an unlocked penthouse door. He only takes 3 items, no cash or jewelry, even though he managed his way into a hoity toity apartment.

      Rather than just quietly escaping, he slams shut the apartment door. Why? For fear they may get robbed if the door isn’t closed properly? lol

      Something is rotten in the state of Denmark. Or this is a very considerate burglar.
      https://nypost.com/2018/08/28/thief-breaks-into-penthouse-of-man-with-ties-to-paul-manafort/

      • Tracy says:

        That’s interesting (and I love Shakespeare!). It’s weird b/c it’s stealing Fallarino’s information – iPad, briefcase — but then sneakers?

        The info part reminded me of Manafort’s Russian mafia connections, and something I had read about Russians bludgeoning a guy to death in his hotel room, w/ cause of death said to be “a fall.” It made me think: boy, there’s something important in that laptop that Russians don’t want prosecutors to have! (Too much Apple device fixation, I guess… :-) )

        The sneakers part put in my mind the image of the bloody tread marks from OJ’s Bruno Magli shoes for some reason.

        So yeah, I guess my imagination is running away w/ me – but it does seem that something is rotten in the state of Denmark here.

  13. clairence says:

    Has anyone looked into whether there was a coordinated effort at systematically removing competitors earlier during the R primary? I don’t mean what is mentioned in this article, but did Trump publicly ‘target’ specific people with, say, a nickname or outlandish criticism that was then followed by, say, Russian-troll internet meme production to sway voter/public sentiment against that particular candidate?

    • SpaceLifeForm says:

      I have not researched it, but most certainly, the fascists would want the most pliable gop person available,

      Just fucking vote 2018-11-06 if you can.

      Take the day off. Stand in line for hours.

      Do *your* civic duty. Vote!

  14. der says:

    I hope Mueller is turning over all the rocks. It’s not the Trump cheating, or Jeb Bush cheating, or Fiorina cheating, the question I want answered. It’s this one: “Why was Mitch McConnell so sure that in holding off Merrick Garland’s SC hearing ‘so the people could decide’ that the next President would be a Republican who would give the base and the Koch’s what they wanted?” The Republican Party is in it up to their necks, and all of this “stuff, theatre”, is a distraction, to stop that bit from being found out. Mitch is starting to worry so Mueller is now on thin ice because the Koch’s worry. Trump is a tool.

    • Mulder says:

      Reply to der:

      What did Mitch know and when did he know it?!?

      I can’t believe he would gamble on it.

  15. Rusharuse says:

    Has anybody actually heard Mueller speak? (let alone shout!)

    The Shout.

    An asylum director begins telling a visitor to a cricket game the story of one of his “better” patients, Crossley (Alan Bates) who is able to compete. Some time previously, Crossley accosted Anthony (John Hurt), a composer, just after church and was for some reason invited to dinner. Once at the composer’s home, he tells the story of his unusual upbringing among Australian Aborigines, and of the awful and strange gifts this has left him with. Among them is the ability to bring about another’s death by using a certain kind of shout.

    https://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/the_shout/

  16. der says:

    Also too, Mother Nature will win, they are all, Dems, Rebups, Libs, shallow minded, selfish idiots, too the voter and those they elect to their representative government.

    • Tracy says:

      What I love best in here is: “The president focuses his attention when Flood talks to him” – what’s he doing the rest of the time???

      Welp, we know who McGahn thinks who should succeed him via another whitewashing.

      I also hope that the OSC is looking at him, and didn’t Marcy suggest that the 3rd meeting was likely about him and his own issues in all of this? One would hope…

  17. TheraP says:

    What would cause followers to leave Trump?

    I doubt it would ever be a timeline.  Or something they would have to use brainpower to understand.

    I think it would only involve the lizard brain, their gut neurons.  So, something that – in their eyes – proves he’s deflated, weak, flailing, hesitant, tippy.  (And would lead them to feel similarly.)

    To get to that point?  I would suppose we need even more scrambling for immunity or guilty pleas.  Along with shakiness of sycophants.  So anything that could cause Trump’s walls of denial and bluster to show cracks or crumbling, nothing to feed his constant neediness.

    I’m a tiny bit hopeful for three reasons:

    1.  Constant poking by all those investigators on Trump’s trail, whether official or people like Marcy.

    2.  Known or unknown intelligence and defense persons within the govt – alarmed and willing Patriots.  Ready to protect our Republic from a dangerous lunatic demogogue – at all cost.

    3.  Trump appears (slightly) weaker after last week (and month), going through this week.

    I’m just a simple, elderly retired person with no special powers or insights.  But many serious concerns for our Republic, the Rule of Law, Justice, the Planet and welfare of all on it. Also high ideals we may never reach. but should never cease keeping in mind.

    • Trip says:

      What would cause followers to leave Trump?

      1. A reasonable and compassionate approach to immigrants and immigration. Retracting statements about immigrants (all) being murderers and rapists.
      2. A statement of regret on treating women like meat and second class citizens.
      3. Medicare for all.
      4. Acknowledging that Black Lives do, in fact, matter.
      5. That the Radical Christian right has no business legislating religion and discriminating based on dogma.
      6. A call for a full investigation into Russian interference in elections, with updates on a massive federal program to protect voting.
      7. Actually taxing the rich instead of handing all of the money over to them. And further acknowledging that the trickle down economics theory is absolute bullshit.

      I could go on….

      • TheraP says:

        It has to be something *inside* of them that happens. Something that leaves them queasy. Real events that have that effect. Not pie in the sky.

        But good try! (Do you actually work? You’re always here. Wealthy scion with high ideals? These are not serious questions. None of my business.)

        • Trip says:

          That depends on how wealth is defined. If wealth is determined by amount of assets, cash, material items and the like, then no. Not even close.

          I come here often because I am in a literal panic about what is happening and what lies ahead. I suppose I should comment less.

          As to your other point in ‘pie in the sky’ revelations or changes, that is what it would take for the hardcore supporters, who each have something in it for themselves, as noted above. There may be crossover on these issues, or one or two that are the entire ball of wax which glues them together. Denying or ignoring the corruption or conspiracy is rationalization to keep the policies going. Except for the lunatics, who are invested in a cult of personality.

          • TheraP says:

            Unless EW or bmaz tells you to comment less, just carry on!

            As for panic, I can totally understand. It’s even worse if you’re old, because fleeing the country is much harder to contemplate or do. Friends of ours just left for Oxford yesterday – along with their 4 young children.

            Try to find things to do, along with checking here, that provide you some peace of mind or hopefulness. I lived through Nixon. And the other GOP disasters. But this is surely the worst! I’ve been reading novels from many parts of the world. And we’ve upgraded our stereo equipment – soon we’ll be able to stream music and store/play all our CDs digitially.

            Music soothes the soul. Meditation too. (EW goes to Yoga. We did Tai Chi classes for many years.)

            Funny story related to Tai Chi. I once told a patient I was taking Tai Chi. Her response: “I wish you wouldn’t take so many of those supplements!”

            I take long walks too. Just about every day. Spend time in nature, Trip!

            You have my best wishes. You have much longer to live. I hope! All my concerns relate to the future – for your generation and beyond. Be brave and ethical. Always.

            Now I’m off to take my walk…

            Peace be with you. And thanks for the answer. And your faithful support of this site!

            • Tracy says:

              I love this thread!

              I appreciate the generational breadth on this site, so thanks for sharing your words, TheraP! You know, my parents also say that this time is worse than Watergate.

              Some pundit said that while people are looking for ONE major day/ event like the Saturday Night Massacre, we live through perpetual obstruction and erosion day after day.

              I also appreciate Trip’s comments and his constancy! In an erratic time period, when everything is in a state of flux, this is important. It feels like a community on here.

              And let me just say… go yoga! The only lifeline in these times… :-)

              • TheraP says:

                It is a community!

                A very healthy open system.  Welcoming.

                You’re a really good addition!  Many good recent additions.

                And wow!  Reply works!  And includes textual assistance!

            • Doctor My Eyes says:

              Beautiful comment.  I want to add something that has meant a lot to me.  It’s from Sherri Mitchell, a Penobscot healer as well as lawyer and activist.  At a talk she recommended that we spend 10% or our energy educating ourselves on what is going on, 10% of our energy into resisting the negative forces, and 80% or our energy on our vision of the way the world should be.  If we could all unplug from the daily roller coaster of horrific and occasionally promising news and start creating what we know is needed, the world would rapidly become a better place.  What we focus on and think about matters a lot, we all possess great powers within is.  We are squandering far too much of our sacred energy. I am speaking to myself first and foremost.

      • orionATL says:

        you’ve covered a lot of the most important territory, trip.

        i’d add reign in corporations in various oft-noted ways, and legislatively change their primary responsibility to be to their society not their shareholders. senator warren has the right idea.

      • Doctor My Eyes says:

        Thanks for this thread, all participants.  I’m replying here in part to bring the margin back over for readability.

        I appreciate your presence here, Trip, short time as I’ve been here.  I’ve never felt you comment too much yet, but I am only a humble (I wish) newbie.  I sure hear you about the panic.  For me, at presumably more advanced age, it’s more a steady gnawing in the stomach.  I just feel most of us are underestimating the threat.  There are some things along those lines I want to put down on this site one day.  The summary is that I don’t feel people understand that the enemy is infiltration.  When people were debating the other day about what delay does for Manafort and the defense in general, I wanted to scream, “The longer the delay, the more infiltration of our systems.”  I need to write about it some day.

        I’m not sure if it’s the moderators or the size, but this site functions.  To the extent that they’re responsible, I say kudos to the moderators, and encourage them to err on the side of keeping things grounded and on point.

        As to what would cause Trump supporters to flip, two points.  We need to accept the there will always be some and that’s just how it always is. Hell, Hitler has his supporters in our country.  The other point is a lesson I took from the Manafort trial MAGA juror.  This person supports Trump, so she must be an unreachable idiot, the common thinking goes.  Well, she wasn’t unreachable–she considered evidence and formed a conclusion she did not want to reach.  I’m fairly certain she watches Fox News, and thinks she is getting facts from them, and therefore is forming conclusions about Trump that are more rationally based than they seem to be from the outside.  I’ve set a goal to always think of that juror when I feel dismissive of Trump supporters.  We need to think of them as reachable and as reasonable.  In short, unless they actively give up the right to being respected, say be engaging violence or screaming racists epithets, we need to think of them as actual viable people who should be treated with respect. Not easy, but I think important.  In fact, it’s part of the antidote to the intentional polarizing created by those who threaten to take our country down.

        Finally, the humor and with here helps tremendously.

        My two cents.  Thanks to all.

    • arbusto says:

      I may be overreacting but Trump and our current Congress are an existential threat to the Republic.  The Dems hold little no hope of intervention, especially with leaders Pelosi and Schumer.

      If Mueller is able to complete a report, will the PTB put it in a safe, never to see the light, or would Muller, a subordinate or Rosenstein believe the severity of the situation and leak it to the Press.

      Who knows, but I’m tired of expecting Congress to do their job or Trump acolytes to grow a cerebral cortex.

  18. RWood says:

    Almost forgot to answer the question.

    It depends on whether you are referring to Drump supporters as in voters, or Drump supporters as in members of Congress.

    Drump voters is easy. If they were Drumpsters in 2016 and are still Drumpsters now, even after all that’s been said and done and revealed in the last twenty months, the answer is no. They are too far gone and will follow whatever he says even if he and his entire family end up in federal prison. They live in an alternate world, but unfortunately they vote in this one.

    As for the Drump enablers in congress, the only answer is political pressure. FOLO. That will have to come in the form of lost votes and/or money. Whatever crimes are proven will only be weighed on a political scale.

    November 6th will be the day we come to the fork in the road.

    My 2 cents. Worth every penny.

    • Trip says:

      Agreed.

      Although don’t put it past Trump to say that the Russians meddled to cause the Dems to win and the GOP silently agreeing, by not countering the narrative.

    • TheraP says:

      Unfortunately the hard-core supporters (voters) have each other for an echo chamber. That’s a type of glue too.

      They won’t budge till the shame gets really huge. The shame of supporting a sadistic lunatic would-be tyrant. Then they’ll scurry for cover. Along with the enablers – by then worried they’ll lose their jobs, their shirts, their liberty.

      • RWood says:

        I doubt there is any amount of measurable shame that will move them. Much easier to continue the blame game than admit they were conned. When the Drump crime family goes down it will not be blamed on the fact that they are criminals, it will  instead be blamed on the “deep state” or some other nonsense conspiring against them, with the help of the fake media, fake judicial system, etc, etc. They will NEVER see Drump for what he is. He’s their Jim Jones, their David Koresh, and that will not change.

        I’ve classified them as “Unreachables” and waste no time on them.

    • alaura says:

      Rump supporters won’t change because he makes them feel like they are superior and more important, despite what his policies do to their lives.  They’re totally emotional, like a cult.

      The only thing that can make them blink, IMHO, is someone like Bernie, who makes it clear that we’re not talking about pie.  Bernie raises the common good issues.

      • TheraP says:

        Bernie and Elizabeth Warren are saying what we leftists of the 60’s were saying then and still think now. Not surprisingly, that’s their era too! To me it doesn’t sound anything but normal, everyday leftist thinking – as it’s been for a long time.

        I don’t think I’ve changed since we marched in the 60’s. Sounds to me like they haven’t either. But then there were plenty in Congress, both House and Senate who agreed.

      • J R in WV says:

        Senator Sanders is not on our side — he is not a Democrat, he did not release his tax returns, he did not support Democrats in general ever. He abandoned the Democratic Party the day after the 2016 election. I believe he was captured by the Soviets back in his younger days, and that the Russian Federation’s security people have that very information to use as a lever on him til this day. He isn’t as bold and out about his support for the Russian Federation, but he is probably at least as valuable to them as Trump is.

        All that said, I’m working hard for Democratic congressional candidates in multiple states, keeping informed about their races, contributing to those individual candidates I can when it seems important. I’m avoiding all the committees and advocacy groups, as I don’t want to help pay their overhead when I can go directly to candidates and help fund their work in their district or state.

        And hoping that soon it will be Mueller Time for the rest of the conspiracy!

        Finally, I was disappointed to see my local Democratic congressional candidate boosting Trump and his hatred for the EPA recently on his web site. That caused me to cancel my monthly ActBlue contribution to him. Very Sad! to quote someone…

    • RWood says:

      If Marcy doesn’t mind me drilling down a bit on her question:

      If the Broidy/PlayboyBunny/Abortion payoff turns out to be not Broidy’s but rather Trumps as suspected, will the evangelicals still stay with him?

  19. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Gotta hand it to Rick Wilson’s title: Everything Trump Touches Dies.  It’s almost as good as Trump Destroys Everything He Touches.

    Wilson might have had Puerto Rico in mind. Trump said Puerto Ricans should be proud of surviving hurricane Maria. (Well, most of them.)  But it’s not as if Maria was a real catastrophe, like Katrina [which hit the real Amurrika].  The passive-aggressiveness drips off of Trump like excess hairspray.

    And, sure, Trump should be proud of the job he’s doing.  It’s not as if he’s a real president – like Barrack Obama – but he is a real catastrophe.

    • Tracy says:

      Earl – Chris Hayes had a great podcast on Puerto Rico – it’s crazy!! I think they need statehood, personally – something Dems could be chipping away at over time.

  20. lefty665 says:

    Clinton and the DNC cheated to win the primary, but the Dems did not turn on them. No reason to think the Repubs have any more integrity.

    • orionATL says:

      lefty – this is just more of your contemptible, years-long, anti-clinton deceit and horseshit. whatever one can say of clinton, it can’t be said her large plurality of votes in the primary was due to cheating.

      say, lefty, have you heard the one about how clinton sold our uranium to russia? oh, yeah, that’s right. you’re the russian troll that tried to spread that story here.

  21. harpie says:

    bmaz, Thank you very much for retweeting this Will Bunch thread.

    What I watched 50 years ago tonight put me on a journey to become the person I am today […] There was violence between police and protesters at the Conrad Hilton Hotel […] It was a moment that – even at age 9 – demanded taking a side. You were with authority, using ruthless violence to suppress political dissent, or you were against them. I chose the hippies […] 14. Only years later did I understand that most Americans who saw what I saw that night were on the side of the cops – or why. That there is an authoritarian streak in this country, that people wanted tin soldiers and Nixon coming, and their children would vote for Donald Trump. […] 20. Even if you weren’t yet born on August 28, 1968, know that you are fighting a warthat, arguably, began on this very date. So here’s to my side – the dissenters, the revolutionaries – and here’s to our victory, even if wonder if I’ll ever live to see what that looks like. 

    I needed that.

  22. sboog says:

    Can someone please explain the Andrew Gillem – Tallahassee sting.
    Or point to an adequate analysis if it yet exists.
    I gather, the FBI established a deep cover operation over the course of three years to investigate corruption in local, civic re-development projects? This is something that happens?

  23. Allison Holland says:

    time llnes are so needed and valuable because the republicans are revisonists. its part of their emotional makeup. but today bill orre is being crucified by our pro russian probably blackmailed congress. he is the last witness to comeys verbal account immediately after trump tried to beknight him into the family. we will be even more unprotected from russian propaganda in our democracy after he is gone. he is a russian spy specialist and so must be purged. and will be. i have no doubt. gramm changed after a golf meeting with trump. i doubt the sway was intellectually persuasive and it being patriotic isnt even a funny possibility. i think the fbi needs to talk to gramm.

    • orionATL says:

      “bill orre”?

      if you are talking about department of justice prosecutor bruce ohr who is trump’s latest slander victim, i suspect that ohr’s real sin is that he is a specialist in russian organized crime, the same russian organized crime that trump has been playing footsie with for decades.

      trump may aver that it is ohr’s 2016 relationship with christopher steele and his “dossier” that upset’s him, but i don’t believe that’s all. taking ohr out of commission or discrediting him would take out a doj specialist in russian organized crime and make it more difficult for ohr to be a credible contributor to doj investigation of against any trump organization money laundering connected to the russian mob. christopher steele first worked with ohr on issues of russian organized crime, long before steele had any thoughts of a compiling a dossier of russian influence on trump and his campaign.

      ohr was said to be one of a group of doj officials that revoked the right to travel to the u. s. of russian hyperrich pal of putin and business associate of paul manaforte, oleg deripaska:

      https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/27/us/politics/bruce-ohr-trump-justice-department.html

      if you look at both former trump attorney/fixer michael cohen’s closeness to the russian mob and his travels to russia on trump’s behalf, and then at trump campaign associate and manager, paul manafort’s connections to russia thru billionaire oleg deripaska (“putin’s favorite oligarch”) and konstantin kilimnik (rumored to be associated with the russian army gru), you might double your wonder at the influence the russians might have had on trump as his presidential campaign was about to begin.

      trump may even turn out to be the first (russian) mobbed-up candidate and president we have ever had.

      with these possibilities in mind, you might understand why i say that it may not be bruce ohr’s connection to dossier author steele that bothers trump half so much as ohr’s and steele’s knowledge of russian organized crime and its relations with the trump business and the candidate himself.

  24. earlofhuntingdon says:

    By all means, let’s not monkey up the 2018 elections.  So keep Donald Trump away from them.

  25. Trip says:

    Sources: Second Trump Org employee discussed immunity deal
    https://www.cnn.com/2018/08/29/politics/trump-organization-employee-immunity-deal/index.html

    So, who is this, Cohen? He was, at some point, operating as a part of the Trump Org. I don’t see Eric, Junior, or Ivanka asking. There was (is) two others considered executives: Jim Petrus – Chief Operating Officer, and Cathy Hoffman Glosser-Executive Vice President of Global Licensing. Unless there is some grunt level employee who thought he was ‘in the know’? Sater had business cards which named him as part of the Trump Org at some point too. But I’m guessing they’d listen to him, as a past established asset.

    • Bob Conyers says:

      In theory it could be almost anyone. It could be a top exec who told the accountants to lie on tax forms, it could be some IT employee who made some records disappear from a server after getting an order to preserve everything.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      Interesting how the Trump Org grossed up the $130K Cohen paid to Daniels.  It agreed to pay Cohen $360K, plus a $60K “bonus”, for a total of $420K, paid at $35K/month for twelve months.  A lot of vig on a $130K debt.

      Trump could have paid $130K himself.  But then Trump was paying for two cut-outs – Cohen and the Trump Org – to hide his personal and/or campaign’s involvement, for what we are told is a single, novel event.

      The arrangement caused fraudulent corporate and personal accounting (for Cohen, Trump, the Trump Org and the Trump campaign) and associated local, state, and federal tax filings and election filings.

      How good a deal was that?  The top marginal rate for combined NY local, state and federal taxes is about 48%.  That assumes state and local taxes are itemized and deducted from federal taxes.

      At that rate, only $250K was required to give Cohen a net $130K.  The Trump Org agreed to pay $420K, for a net $218K.  An $88K premium to Cohen.  Round that out to $80K after deducting for the cost of the twelve-month payout.

      Cohen, on the other hand, lost the time value of his money, the cost of arranging and repaying a bank loan.  He courted bank and tax fraud charges for doing his master’s business.  Somebody also paid to set up and use the LLC.  And Mickey is likely to shortly lose his law license.

      A deal for Trump, pretty expensive for Cohen   I’d say Mickey has pretty much already taken a bullet for the Don.

      • Bob Conyers says:

        Do we know for sure that Cohen was getting paid back for just the Daniels hush money? I sort of assumed there was other stuff folded into that payment, which would account for the extra $80K or so, or else there are other dubious payments we just don’t know about.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          We don’t know.  But the $80K would not cover any of it, given the size of the payoffs we know about and the risks to Cohen for doing his thing.

      • TheraP says:

        Correction (of the spell-check gremlin):

        Her name is Rhona Graff (not Rhonda).

        She was interviewed recently somewhere and I thought… hmmmm.

  26. SPW says:

    What about the burglary today of the Citizens bank loan officer on the Manafort deals?  Who would have done that?

  27. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Which Charlie Brown wants to believe Lucy Graham will require any replacement for Sessions to pledge not to fire Rosenstein or Mueller?

    One, that would require believing Lucy Graham.  (See, football, Charlie Brown.)  Two, if he did mean it, the pledge would have about the same value as a Kavanaugh pledge to respect Roe v. Wade as settled law.  (See, football, Charlie Brown.)

    Nope, Graham has created a framing designed to permit Trump to fire Sessions without consequence and to get a replacement nominee in front of and voted on by the Senate.

    • Trip says:

      Trump has persistently (and consistently) complained about Sessions recusal from the Russia investigation. His greatest anger is that Sessions wouldn’t protect him from and stop the Russia investigation.

      So clearly, qualifications for the next appointee are: Protecting Trump and stopping the investigation.

      Lyndsay lap-dogging it and licking Trump’s boots doesn’t make this any less obvious. And since they have admitted this right out in the open, Mueller should have a chat with Graham.

    • Doctor My Eyes says:

      They have to lie about virtually everything they do.  Why?  Because almost everything they do is against the law, unethical, or against the best interests of the people.  It’s really quite astonishing when you take a step back, the necessity of lying about everything. How long can a nation-state withstand government based so fundamentally on bullshit?

    • orionATL says:

      da word on da street is dat smuck graham received 800 grand in ’16 from some russkie dat’s loaded.

      aright, aright. so i won’t be doing any dialogue in disney’s godfather remake.

  28. Tracy says:

    Re: the FL race and the midterms, I hope that the young people are having an impact! They’ve been bus touring to register voters, perhaps they helped the scales in FL.

    Could the polls in FL have been so off b/c people who don’t normally vote came out (young people, perhaps displaced Puerto Ricans)? The same pattern happened w/ Ocasio-Cortez.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2018/08/29/the-young-people-will-win-post-parkland-vote-in-florida-tests-youth-power/

    “But it was above all [Gillum’s] post-Parkland involvement in the movement against gun violence that appealed to young people, Hogg said.”

    (DeSantis has an A+ NRA rating, so we know where the kids will be pushing in Nov!)

  29. SoCalTony says:

    The GOP can never, ever turn on Trump. They now have neo-Nazis winning primaries and people making subtle comments about “monkeys” running against a black opponent. This is who about 65% of the Republican party is, and Russian hacking, manipulation of their primaries, or any other outrages will not sway or change things. It’s a suicide pact. The party thought they could just wink and nod and depend on the votes, they didn’t realize that these people would completely take over. And frankly, wasting our time trying to reach out to or wondering about that dead end of a political party is nonsense.

    Smart conservatives are already seeing the GOP is dead and are just now starting to figure out the future.

    • orionATL says:

      yeah. my beliefs too.

      i think this is why so many experienced republican congressmen have been leaving the ship (ignoring the scoundrels like fahrenthold who were forced to leave). they may hope they can lead the party after its abject demolition in the next two years.

      if republicans were smart, they would let mueller continue and do the work they need done on trump. but core republicans voters aren’t smart; they are loyal to a fault. and republican congressmen just want desperately to please voters so they can hold onto their office.

      psuedonymousinc had a norse name for what’s going on – ragnerok.

  30. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Donald Trump is doing his best schtick, describing the coming end of the Weimar American Republic, should his domestic political opponents win elections this Fall.

    Somehow coming up with Wagnerian imagery, [the famously illiterate] Trump tells his authoritarian followers that a vote for Democrats, a win for Democrats, would result in the end of the Volk and the end of time.

    Trump saying that is like the Vikings telling the prior of Lindisfarne that support for his Anglo-Saxon brethren might lead to the end of life as he knows it.  But those Long Ships strewn along the causeway, filled with shields, swords, axes, and men, will have nothing to do with bringing that end about.

    As usual, Trump means that HE will be in trouble if Democrats take control of either House or Senate.  Trump has the history of provoking violence, of offering to pay for the legal bills of those who beat up his critics (see, football, Charlie Brown), and of seeking help from America’s traditional enemy to help win his election.  If there is violence after this election, it will come from Trump.

    • posaune says:

      Good analogy, earl.   Yes, Trump wants his own Götterdämmerung, and now!    Are we up to the Sarah Sanders Immolation Scene?   When does that happen?

  31. Avattoir says:

    Read both the USAToday piece and the Tampa Bay Times piece.
    If the former were being narrated, it’d be inaudible for all the rodent fornication. The latter is relatively balanced, but just relatively: there’s nothing remotely revealing reported there OTHER than specific points that would serve to CLEAR Gillum: entries in the mayor’s official calendar, receipts from hotels etc showing he actually did NOT accept the various items being speculated as possible “bribes”, whether they came from undercover FBI agents OR from others (who for all anyone can tell themselves may be FBI plants or working with the FBI).
    Both pieces mention ABSCAM, but the former really goes to town on the comparables – tho UTTERLY MISLEADINGLY. For those who were around during ABSCAM, the thing was a ludicrously inconsistent fiasco & mess, indeed with way more questions ending up being raised about FBI adventurism & even corruption that the relatively meager conviction product could justify.
    Note in particular the USAToday piece is OVER ONE YEAR OLD – and still, no indictments. The TBT piece tries to make much out of a supposed moratorium on further investigative steps at this point, but even that way overstates the protocol: besides the year (really several years) that have passed by, all with NO indictments or formal charges of any kind being either filed or even specifically rumored, today is August 29, so were almost 3 weeks BEFORE any such moratorium would apply, and even that assumes it would apply to a STATE election. So it’s very tempting to simply conclude that the biggest difference between the USAT piece and the TBT piece is the latter derives from a better class of rats.

    For about half of the wild and whacky development mad ABSCAM flaky Reagan-GHWB years I was in private practice, and there was so much development activity in the west in particular that I actually wasn’t just involved as trial counsel in some of crazy real estate litigation that was characteristic of those over-heated times (In those days, certainly before Iran-Contra news heated up, a lot of Reagan fans in bidnitz, like Trumpsters in bidnitz do now, seemed inclined to believe that having ‘their guy’ in the White House meant the Rule of Law was basically suspended, so shit got overtly talked up and writ down with an astoundingly high hubris content.), that I found myself being called in a particular stages in various deals, mostly in land development, to serve as a kind of human version of a drug-sniffing canine. The theory was my background provided me a more acute nose for grifters and undercover LEOs (tho I suspect it was way more concerns over the second that was use to justify my fees.). SEVERAL of them involved meetings that had been set up between client developers and elected public officials; in 2 of those was a clear, overt effort to seek out a bribe, and one of those turned out to be an elected official working with the feds as honey to attract flies.
    Not that I’m suggesting a criminal attorney’s skeptical nose is really necessary here, but these 2 pieces purporting to turn up the smell-o-meter on Gillum bear that kind of aroma.

  32. Doctor My Eyes says:

    Who was it was going to save us again?  I keep forgetting. Your Democratic Party in action, making the Republicans look bad for slow-walking Obama judicial nominees by helping Trump’s get through faster.  Gosh, Democrats are so very much nicer than Republicans. Do they have any clue what is going on?

    https://twitter.com/sahilkapur/status/1034519956715720705

    Like Trip, I hope I’m not commenting too much.  Just went on a little spree.  My apologies if it’s too much.

    • TheraP says:

      You are a great addition here! Have at it! You’re on a roll. Sounds like you need it too.

      For a long time I’ve wished for a Parliamentary form of govt. Nothing’s perfect. But more parties would be better. More chances for people to be represented. Paper ballots please. Counted by persons in big rooms – they manage it abroad. Shorter elections. (6 weeks max) Paid for by govt. Universal health care. Child care. Maternal/Paternal leave. Education which lets children learn to live with diversity. Taxation which spreads the wealth. Consumer protection. Prison reform in every sense of the word. Care for the Earth! An understanding that being born on US soil is no proof of any kind of worth – it’s a simple accident of birth. Freedom of and from religion. There! That’s a start.

  33. orionATL says:

    comments are closed at “pecker ‘n pervy” so i’ ll put this thought here:

    i wonder if roger stone’s CRAG (committee to restore america’s greatness) is where the trump campaign got it’s MAGA (make america great again) slogan. seems likely.

    this could imply that roger stone was covertly involved in important planning details associated with the trump campaign, which in turn would argue strongly for the campaign’s complete insincerity, manipulative intent, and artificial concern for the well-being of the nation or some of its less fortunate citizens – in short, would argue for the trump campaign being another rightwing, big-money, fake-grass-roots campaign, astroturf from its very roots, arising from the “fake” quality that is the essence of donald trump’s personality, that quality trump now so obsessively projects to those media who accurately observe the emperor is wearing no clothes.

  34. greengiant says:

    Assume good operational security then these Trump campaigners have nothing to hide. They locked and deleted their twitter accounts. What are the GOP and Farage thinking, don’t they understand it is illegal for foreigners to campaign in US elections? Much less confirm the ties between (we can blackmail and bribe anyone ) Nix, Cambridge Analytica, Farage, NRA and Russia? Specially like suggestion of the back door communications via Camgirl twitter buddies web cam sites.

    Christopher Morris Trump’s Michigan data director aka @shoshnebut locked twitter account. Moved to Houston Texas B2B aka procurement firm.
    Jacob Daniels, @JacobDanielsOR deleted, worked the last 6 weeks of the campaign in Michigan, joined Stryk’s Sonoran Policy Group along with Stuart Jolly (President SPG) who ran Trump’s field operation during the Republican primary.
    Scott Hagerstrom @followscott, attorney, Michigan state director for Trump. Follows Russian? (@anonIwhitehat last tweet not deleted at this late date, June 23, 2016).
    Deleted and locked accounts lead to conservative scion’s mother’s posts of then 18 year old posing with NRA CEO and Nigel Farage in 2017.
    Sam Barke, @sambarkeOC deleted account, born 1998, Hillsdale college student, summer interned in 2017 as advance man for Trump executive such as Ag secretary Sonny Perdue.

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