John Durham’s Top Prosecutor, Andrew DeFilippis, Allegedly Miffed that DARPA Investigated Guccifer 2.0

Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and the sanctions imposed as a result has led lawyers in the US to drop the now-sanctioned Alfa Bank and its owners, leading to the dismissal of the John Doe, BuzzFeed, and Fusion GPS lawsuits filed by Alfa Bank or its owners. That has, for now, brought an end to a sustained Russian effort to use lawfare to discover “U.S. cybersecurity methods and means” (as some of Alfa’s targets described the effort).

But the dismissal of the Alfa Bank suits hasn’t halted the effort to expose US cybersecurity efforts in the guise of pursuing right wing conspiracy theories. Both Federalist Faceplant Margot Cleveland and “online sleuths” goaded, in part, by Sergei Millian have picked up where Alfa Bank left off. In recent days, for example, documents obtained via a Federalist FOIA to Georgia Tech exposed the members of a cybersecurity sharing group, including a bunch at Three-Letter Agencies, which has little news value but plenty of intelligence value to America’s adversaries (these names were released even while someone — either Georgia Tech or the Federalist — chose to redact the contact information for Durham’s investigators, some of which is otherwise public).

Even while doing her part to make America less safe (raising the perennial question of who funds the Federalist), Cleveland has continued to do astounding work misrepresenting Durham’s investigation. From the same FOIA release, she published a document in which research scientist Manos Antonakakis described that chief Durham AUSA Andrew DeFilippis insinuated to him that it was abusive for DARPA to try to discover the network behind the Guccifer 2.0 persona.

Finally, I will leave you with an anecdote and a thought. During one of my interviews with the Special Counsel prosecutor, I was asked point blank by Mr. DeFilippis, “Do you believe that DARPA should be instructing you to investigate the origins of a hacker (Guccifer_2.0) that hacked a political entity (DNC)?” Let that sync for a moment, folks. Someone hacked a political party (DNC, in this case), in the middle of an election year (2016), and the lead investigator of DoJ’s special council would question whether US researchers working for DARPA should conduct investigations in this matter is “acceptable”! While I was tempted to say back to him “What if this hacker hacked GOP? Would you want me to investigate him then?”, I kept my cool and I told him that this is a question for DARPA’s director, and not for me to answer.

Assuming this is an accurate description, this is a shocking anecdote, a betrayal of US national security.

It suggests that Durham’s lead prosecutor doesn’t believe the government should throw its most innovative research at a hostile nation-state attack while that nation-state is attempting to influence an election. Sadly, though, it’s not surprising.

It is consistent with things we’ve seen from Durham’s team throughout. It’s consistent with Durham’s treatment of a loose tie between an indirect and unwitting Steele dossier source and the Hillary campaign as a bigger threat than multiple ties to Russian intelligence (or Dmitry Peskov’s office, which knew that Michael Cohen and Donald Trump were lying about the former’s secret communications with Peskov’s office). It is consistent with Durham’s more recent suggestion that the victim of such a nation-state attack must wait until after an election to report a tip that might implicate her opponent.

I almost feel like DeFilippis will eventually say Hillary should have just laid back and enjoyed being hacked in 2016.

DeFilippis, and Durham generally, have consistently treated Hillary as a far graver threat than Russia, even now, even as Russia conducts a barbaric invasion of a peaceful democracy.

But Antonakakis’ anecdote is all the more troubling because it suggests that DeFilippis seems to misunderstand what happened with the DARPA contract in question in 2016. The Enhanced Attribution RFP’s description of the hacking campaigns it was targeting — “multiple concurrent independent malicious cyber campaigns, each involving several operators” — pretty obviously aims to tackle Advanced Persistent Threats, of which APT 28 and 29 (both of which targeted the DNC) were among the most pressing in 2016. DARPA presumably didn’t ask Antonakakis to focus on Guccifer 2.0 — a persona which didn’t exist when the contract was put up for bid in April 2016, much less in the months earlier when it was originally conceived. Rather, by description, they were asking bidders to look at APTs, and looking at APT 28 would have happened to include looking at Guccifer 2.0, the DNC hack, and a number of hacks elsewhere in the US and the world.  The reason DARPA would ask Georgia Tech to look at APT 28 is because APT 28 was hacking a lot of targets in the time period, all of which provided learning sets for a researcher like Antonakakis. DeFilippis, then, seems miffed that the APT that DARPA wanted to combat happened to be one of two that targeted Hillary.

That’s a choice Russia made, not DARPA.

While I think Cleveland did serious damage with some of her releases, I’m glad she released this document because it provides a way for Michael Sussmann to make DeFilippis’ troubling views on national security a central issue at trial, something that normally is difficult to do.

It also provided Cleveland another opportunity to faceplant in spectacular trademark Federalist fashion. Cleveland used this document to rile up the frothers by suggesting this is proof that Durham is investigating the DNC attribution.

Exclusive: Special Counsel’s Office Is Investigating The 2016 DNC Server Hack

The U.S. Department of Defense tasked the same Georgia Tech researcher embroiled in the Alfa Bank hoax with investigating the “origins” of the Democratic National Committee hacker, according to an email first obtained by The Federalist on Wednesday. That email also indicates the special counsel’s office is investigating the investigation into the DNC hack and that prosecutors harbor concerns about the DOD’s decision to involve the Georgia Tech researcher in its probe.


The public storyline until now had been that CrowdStrike, the cybersecurity firm Sussmann hired in April 2016, had concluded Russians had hacked the DNC server, and that the FBI, which never examined the server, concurred in that conclusion. Intelligence agencies and former Special Counsel Robert Mueller likewise concluded that Russian agents were behind the DNC hack, but with little public details provided.

It now appears that DARPA had some role in that assessment, or rather Antonakakis did on behalf of DARPA, which leads to a whole host of other questions, including whether DARPA had access to the DNC server and data and, if so, from whom did the DOD’s research arm get that access? Was it Sussmann?

There’s no reason to believe this and every reason to believe that — as I said — DeFilippis is pissed that DARPA prioritized their research on a target that was badly affecting national security (and not just in US, but also in allied countries) in 2016, one that happened to attempt to help Trump get elected.

But look how many errors Faceplant’s Cleveland made in the process:

Cleveland repeats the Single Server Fallacy, imagining that the DNC, DCCC, and Hillary had just one server between them to be hacked and all the servers that got hacked were in the possession of one of those victims. That’s, of course, ridiculous. The server that GRU hacked to get John Podesta’s emails belonged to Google. The server that GRU hacked to get Hillary’s analytics belonged to AWS. There was a staging server in AZ; I have been told that the FBI seized at least one US-based server that did not belong to the DNC (that server is why the frothy right’s focus on what Shawn Henry testified to HPSCI is so painfully ignorant — because it ignores that the FBI had access to servers that Henry did not that did show exfiltration).

Cleveland apparently doesn’t know that FBI knew who was hacking the DNC when they warned them starting in September 2015 they were being hacked. The FBI’s awareness of that not only explains why APT 29 and 28 would have been included in DARPA’s targets for EA, but proves that the government was tracking these hacking groups above and beyond the attack on Hillary. This was never just a reaction to the election year hack.

Cleveland claims Mueller’s attribution of the DNC hack to the GRU provided “little public details,” when in fact the Mueller Report showed 29 sources other than CrowdStrike, including:

  • Gmail
  • Linked-In
  • Microsoft
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • WordPress
  • ActBlue
  • AWS
  • AOL
  • Smartech Corporation
  • URL shortening service
  • Bitcoin exchanges
  • VPN services

According to Mueller’s report, all these sources also corroborated the GRU attribution. And Mueller’s list doesn’t include a number of other known entities that corroborated the attribution, including NSA and Dutch intelligence, which couldn’t be named in a public DOJ document. Mueller’s list doesn’t include Georgia Tech either, but it wouldn’t need to, because there was so much other evidence.

The Mueller Report described obtaining almost 500 warrants, but the released list — from which FBI’s Cyber Division successfully withheld those pertaining to the GRU investigation — only includes around 370-400 warrants (based on an 156 pages of warrants with roughly three per page), suggesting there may be 100 warrants tied to the GRU attribution alone.

By the time Antonakakis started looking at the DNC hack as part of EA, multiple entities, including several Infosec contractors, non-US intelligence services, and non-governmental entities like tech giants (including at least three of the ones on Mueller’s list), had plenty of evidence that the Guccifer 2.0 campaign was run by the APT 28. Including Guccifer 2.0 as part of the research set would simply be part of the existing targeting of a dangerous APT.

But apparently neither DeFilippis nor Cleveland understand that 2016 was part of an ongoing identified threat to US national security.

One thing Putin did in 2016 was to use disinformation to train the frothy right to favor Russia more than fellow Americans from the opposing party. Even as Russia attacks Ukraine, that still seems to be true.

59 replies
  1. gmoke says:

    “While I was tempted to say back to him ‘What if this hacker hacked GOP? Would you want me to investigate him then?’”….

    If memory serves, the GOP got hacked around the same time the DNC got hacked during the 2016 election. There has never, to my knowledge, been any release of said hacked info from the GOP and the hacking itself seems to have dropped into the memory hole.

    • Thomas says:

      I’ve often wondered if the hacked GOP info was one of the means by which Trump blackmailed Republicans.

    • Doctor Biobrain says:

      I haven’t forgotten that the Republicans got hacked. Whenever Nunes did anything dumb including his defamation lawsuits where he suggested he was really trying to uncover a secret cabal against him, I wondered what the Russians found in his emails and if he was either doing that on their behalf or secretly trying to expose who was blackmailing him.

      It always bothered me when people mocked Nunes for suing his cow, because he made it clear that he didn’t think that was just a parody account making silly cow puns but part of a secret network conspiring against him; which is even funnier than suing his cow.

    • Silly but True says:

      Buzzfeed / Daily Beast / Indie journo Wendy Seligman had about the best deep dive on the IL election attacks; the Russians were merciless and trying to hoover up everything they could get & had a targeted assault:
      https://twitter .com/ WendySiegelman/ status/880578848542347264?s=20

      Essentially, IL was the Russians’ first and model attack on States which was then expanded to other State election and campaign organizations.

  2. klynn says:

    “One thing Putin did in 2016 was to use disinformation to train the frothy right to favor Russia more than fellow Americans from the opposing party. Even as Russia attacks Ukraine, that still seems to be true.”

    This. Thank you for writing that closing paragraph.

    If any GOP want to help Ukraine they will pull their heads out of the propaganda sand.

  3. viget says:

    Oh, no, they understand just fine. They’re being tasked by their paymasters to expose this previously unknown framework, which isn’t technically classified, but wasn’t really public either. At best, they’re just living embodiments of the Upton Sinclair observation about pay and understanding; at worst they are witting accomplices.

    Maybe DeFillipis is pissed that he wasn’t read in to this program and wants his pound of flesh in exposing it, I dunno. But then again there was likely a very good reason this was developed over on the DoD side as a cybersecurity tool, perhaps to minimize 4A concerns? Not sure…

  4. Doctor Biobrain says:

    It sounds from that Federalist “exclusive” like they think blaming the DNC hack on Russia is part of the Russiagate Hoax invented by Democrats to smear Trump and that’s what made it political for DARPA to be involved. Like they think there was no hack and Seth Rich leaked the emails before Hillary had her John Wick assassin crew execute him like Hannity was saying at the time; so just the investigation of a hack is an attack on Trump and coverup for Hillary.

    As for Russia getting Republicans to trust them over our own government and media, I think that happened years earlier when they were promoting the Obama birther stuff that made them trust Putin over Obama and is linked to Christian nationalists and anti-government kooks who loved Trump more than anyone. By 2016 Russia had their network of rightwing influencers fully operational and it’s still going.

    That’s why the same people defending Russia now were saying Russiagate was a hoax and includes people who pretend they’re on the left but only bash Democrats and not Republicans. And if a Republican does something wrong, they’ll blame both sides; just like they’re doing with Ukraine.

    • Leoghann says:

      I agree with most of your reasoning, except the modicum of respect you give “Russiagate.” That is, and always was, an invention of Steve Bannon, Stephen Miller, Trump, and the Russian sympathizers at FauxNuze. I.e,: it’s pure horseshit.

  5. WilliamOckham says:

    The level of ignorance and stupidity in the mindless nattering of Cleveland, et. al. is just too much for me to deal with. Besides, in my view, they’re pretty ineffectual in their attempts to undermine global network security.

    The blinkered blundering of Durham and DeFilippis, on the other hand, really is dangerous. They are so obviously out of their depth and unable and/or unwilling to incorporate newly learned facts that it might be time for someone at DOJ to get their attention like Truman did with the mule (look it up). Metaphorically of course, no calls for violence here.

    • Leoghann says:

      Durham is blundering, for sure, and DeFiilippis seems to be making his share (although he could just be following orders). But I’m beginning to seriously doubt that these seemingly bizarre faults of reasoning that we’re seeing are just outgrowths of Durham’s general lack of competence.

      That’s part of doing the job they were tasked with by Bill Barr–continued rehabilitation of Putin and Russia’s reputation, denial of any damage they might have done to American democracy, and maintenance of secrecy around the influence they have bought in the Republican party and, specifically the Trump administration and the MAGA movement.

  6. WilliamOckham says:

    I have a few things to say about “hacking a server”. The word server can mean a lot of different things in that context and the least likely meaning is a single physical computer. Usually, it would refer to either a virtual server or a server application. A virtual server has its own operating system and is equivalent to a physical server in every way except that it’s not tied to a specific physical machine. A server application is just application software that “serves” multiple client applications (e.g an email server or a database server).

    In any event, “hacking a server” is not what matters. From a network security perspective, it’s the equivalent of describing someone robbing your house as “breaking a window”. “Breaking a window” is what happens when someone throws a rock through your window and runs away. If someone is exfiltrating data from your network, that’s the main thing that matters, not how they got in.

    • Leoghann says:

      This seems to me to be an attempt at dumbing down the reporting. On one hand, it makes a fairly complicated situation easy to refer to. But that oversimplified description began with the manufactured outrage at Hillary Clinton’s use of a private server while she was Secretary of State. A thorough description would have shown the American people that there was really no “there” there.

      • Scott Johnson says:

        But everyone speaks of “Hillary Clinton’s server” as though as it is a specific machine that is sequestered in a closet somewhere, or perhaps at the bottom of the Potomac. It might be in the cloud somewhere, or it might be a cluster of interchangeable machines in a data center somewhere (and the only really important thing are the disks), or might not really exist at all.

        • Rayne says:

          If it wasn’t clear before this comment, it is now: you’re trolling. You are literally amplifying the stupid, fallacious myth of the “single server.” Knock it off.

          ADDER: Your reply in which you offered an apologia for your racist remarks about a Chinese American has been deleted because I told you to knock it off and you merely ignored me and expanded on your racism.


  7. Eureka says:

    This is really pissing me off (not your post, which is excellent, but the content). At what point does [Russia’s > GOP’s >> Barr’s >>>] Durham’s project to damage our national security get reined in? Letting it run to the point of auto-extinguish might soon be jumped by [further] cyberattacks — or even a declaration of war. Or are those stakes included in a let-it-play-out plan? Any chance the intel agencies are throttling Durham with the delayed CIPA production?

    Relatedly and longer-term, I’ve thought that the well-meaning paternalists’ default (as opposed to that of plane-landers &c.) was to quell Putinist Trumpism via the downfall of Putin himself (a la Russian revolution as the cascading consequences of e.g. his fresh war in Ukraine; his natural expiration; etc.). All we got en route to this maybe-perhaps incipient purge was 1/6, demolished voting and other rights across our states, comfort with entertaining thy neighbor as the enemy, rape as a boon — a reproductive luxury … and supplicant displays like these, carotid exposed.

    • Eureka says:

      The GOP portions of KBJ’s hearings are a national embarrassment {in re supplicant displays besides Durham [underling(s)], Cleveland (et al.) in this post}.

      • CD54 says:

        Horseshit’s all they got. That’s all they ever had. That’s all they ever will have.

        The current GOP rejects any duty to honesty or good faith — do not fathom either to them.

      • Scott Johnson says:

        Current tea leaves seem to think that the nomination will pass; Manchin has not indicated otherwise, nor has Sinema. We’ll see, of course; but I doubt the clown show of the past week will have much of an affect.

  8. Fraud Guy says:

    “But apparently neither DeFilippis nor Cleveland understand that 2016 was part of an ongoing identified threat to US national security.” Or they do understand, and choose to ignore that for partisan purposes, or for other reasons.

  9. harpie says:

    MANAFORT taken off plane in MIAMI which was headed toward DUBAI.
    10:48 AM · Mar 23, 2022

    AP has corroborated this report. [link]
    Remember that Manafort’s pardon did NOT cover his efforts, made with an alleged Russian spy, to carve up Ukraine to Russia’s liking.

    Things Manafort was not pardoned for:
    – His seeming exchange of campaign strategy for $19M in financial benefit and a commitment to carve up Ukraine
    – His pursuit of that for 2 years
    – His involvement in WHATEVER it is Rudy was doing in Ukraine thru 2020

    • harpie says:

      From the AP link:

      Miami-Dade Police Detective Alvaro Zabaleta confirmed that Manafort was removed from the Emirates Airline flight without incident Sunday night but directed further questions to U.S. Customs and Border Protection. That agency did not immediately respond to an email Wednesday seeking comment.
      Manafort’s removal was first reported by the website

  10. Doctor My Eyes says:

    The implications of this treasonous behavior are deeply disturbing. I do not believe for a minute that this crazy talk springs from ignorance or incompetence, which is why it is so disturbing. What other less visible elements within our own government are working to undermine our society? i hope and believe that a secretive and thorough internal investigation has been underway since Biden took office. This hope is based on the skillful way he has handled Russia’s invasion and the apparently excellent intel supporting that skillful response.

    Perhaps this horrifyingly apt line was meant as a bit of a throwaway: “I almost feel like DeFilippis will eventually say Hillary should have just laid back and enjoyed being hacked in 2016.” I have been thinking that rape is the best overall metaphor for describing the behavior of Russia under organized criminals. They truly think of their invasion as an “operation”, something like a bank robbery, abducting of children for the slave trade, or rape. Just as the mafia will threaten your family, the Russian military kills civilians. Their goals in Ukraine and the rest of the world are more akin to rape than to traditional state goals.

    Finally, I would like to bring a peeve of mine here for feedback. It bothers me that the focus is on Putin as a madman rather than on the network of organized criminals of whom Putin is just a part. Viewed in this way, the war crimes in Ukraine are a natural part of criminal behavior that has been going on for two decades.

  11. harpie says:
    8:23 PM · Mar 23, 2022

    [THREAD] Oh my… this is GLORIOUS.
    More Ziklag beneficiaries just ID’d as receiving funding from UiP [United in Purpose].

    One is former DHS acting deputy secretary Ken Cuccinelli’s Election Transparency Initiative!

    Remember Flynn/Waldron tried to get DHS to seize machines? /63 [LINK] [screenshot]

    Links to:
    7:37 PM · Mar 23, 2022

    […] Seriously, man. Check this sh*t out.
    [>unitedinpurpose[dot]org [broken here] /210990 + (archived: [LINK])

    Ken Cuccinelli, the former Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security from 2019 to 2021, had been bullseye’d and identified as a key figure among the insurrectionist inner-circle. Can I collect my prize yet? […]

    • harpie says:

      Here is a visionsurreal THREAD from 1/27/20 about
      Ken ELDRED and Seven Mountains Dominionism
      12:24 PM · Jan 27, 2020

      One man, his fortune, his nonprofits, & a pro-Trump PAC seek to “transform” American culture in accordance with his biblical worldview.

      Ken Eldred, a champion of “Seven Mountains Dominionism.”
      Mastermind of an operation to take over America one mountain at a time. /1
      Eldred is the Chairman of United in Purpose Education (UiPE), the research arm of UiP–a Christian voter operation with data on up to 200 million American voters. /4 [THREAD]

      • harpie says:

        12/10/20 Cleta MITCHELL writes letter for Conservative Action Project [CAP]:

        CONSERVATIVES CALL ON STATE LEGISLATORS TO APPOINT NEW ELECTORS, IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONSTITUTION December 10, 2020 // December 10, 2020 // Washington, DC // Signatures updated: 12/14/20 […]

        One of the listed signatories is:

        Rebecca Hagelin CEO United in Purpose

        • Rayne says:

          They don’t make spools of red yarn big enough for this murder board to link all the entities and money behind January 6 insurrection.

          Thanks for all your hard work, harpie.

            • Rayne says:

              Some day, long into the future when archaeologists decide to unwind the World’s Largest Ball of Yarn to determine the trigger which began its accumulation, they’ll find your comments at emptywheel at the core. LOL

        • Ginevra diBenci says:

          Thank you, harpie. Once again I recommend Anne Nelson’s Shadow Network for anyone interested in these organizations and more important their funders. Sheldon Whitehouse’s “dark money” chart sketched outlines, but the actual history is so, so much darker, and Nelson narrates it in clear and riveting fashion.

          • harpie says:

            Thank YOU, Ginevra, for reminding me again…I had every intention of following your recommendation last time…the days seem so short, etc…

    • harpie says:

      [This might not be the most informative comment…
      it is copy/pasted directly from my TL doc…lol!]

      12/17/20 [>

      […] Giuliani had called the Department of Homeland Security’s Ken Cuccinelli and asked if it was possible for DHS to seize voting machines, according to two sources familiar with the call. Cuccinelli, the senior official performing the duties of the DHS deputy secretary, told Giuliani it wasn’t within the authority of the department’s cybersecurity agency to seize voting machines, according to one of the sources, who said the call took place Thursday. [> 12/17/20] The call was first reported by the New York Times. […]]

      Reached earlier this month, [January 2022] Cuccinelli said his discussion with Giuliani “never developed to the point of talking about an executive order including such action that I recall.”

      • harpie says:

        Some context:

        12/15/20 Carissa KESHEL sends an e-mail on behalf of FLYNN asking a Michigan sheriff to seize voting machines

        12/16/20 DRAFT EXECUTIVE ORDER is written “Presidential Findings to Preserve Collect and Analyze National Security Information Regarding the 2020 General Election”

        [It is discussed at the 12/18/20 craziest mtg;
        there’s evidence of KERIK discussing this as early as 11/28/20;
        KERIK refused to turn this doc over to J6 Committee]
        [For more, see: ]

        12/16/20 THREE PERCENTERs say they “stand ready and [are] standing by” [] “to answer the call from our President” and they “are ready to enter into battle with General FLYNN leading the charge.”

        12/17/20 FLYNN to Greg KELLY Reports, NewsMax:
        “[TRUMP] could immediately on his order seize every single one of these machines around the country on his order. He could also order, within the swing states, if he wanted to, he could take military capabilities and he could place them in those states and basically rerun an election in each of those states. It’s not unprecedented […]”

  12. harpie says:

    Virginia Thomas urged White House chief to pursue unrelenting efforts to overturn the 2020 election, texts show In messages to Chief of Staff Mark Meadows in the weeks after Election Day, the wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas called Biden’s victory “the greatest Heist of our History” and told him that President Donald Trump should not concede. Bob Woodward / Robert Costa 3/24/22 5:15 p.m.

    11/5/20 [THOMAS] [linking to a YouTube video labeled “TRUMP STING w CIA director Steve Pieczenik, The Biggest Election Story in History, QFS-BLOCKCHAIN.”]: “I hope this is true; never heard anything like this before, or even a hint of it. Possible???” [] “Watermarked ballots in over 12 states have been part of a huge Trump & military white hat sting operation in 12 key battleground states.”
    [Quoting a passage that had circulated on right-wing websites]: “Biden crime family & ballot fraud co-conspirators (elected officials, bureaucrats, social media censorship mongers, fake stream media reporters, etc) are being arrested & detained for ballot fraud right now & over coming days, & will be living in barges off GITMO to face military tribunals for sedition.”

    11/6/20 [THOMAS]: “Do not concede. It takes time for the army who is gathering for his back.”

    11/10/20 [THOMAS] “Mark, I wanted to text you and tell you for days you are in my prayers!! Help This Great President stand firm, Mark!!!…You are the leader, with him, who is standing for America’s constitutional governance at the precipice. The majority knows Biden and the Left is attempting the greatest Heist of our History.” [MEADOWS should] “Listen to Rush [Limbaugh]. Mark Steyn, [Dan] Bongino, Cleta [Mitchell]”
    [MEADOWS – One minute later]
    “I will stand firm. We will fight until there is no fight left. Our country is too precious to give up on. Thanks for all you do.”
    [THOMAS – Nine minutes later] “Tearing up and praying for you guys!!!!! So proud to know you!!”
    [THOMAS – Later that night] “Van Jones spins interestingly, but shows us the balls being juggled too.” [] “House and Senate guys are pathetic too… only 4 GOP House members seen out in street rallies with grassroots… [Louie] Gohmert, [Jim] Jordan, [Paul] Gosar, and [Chip] Roy.” [] “Where the heck are all those who benefited by Presidents coattails?!!!” [She then told him to watch a YouTube video about the power of never conceding.]

    11/13/20 [THOMAS]: “Just forwarded to yr gmail an email I sent Jared [KUSHNER?] this am. Sidney Powell & improved coordination now will help the cavalry come and Fraud exposed and America saved.” [] “Don’t let her and your assets be marginalized instead…help her be the lead and the face?!?”

    • harpie says:

      11/14/20 [THOMAS] [seeming to quote GOHMERT Chief of Staff Connie HAIR’s belief that “the most important thing you can realize right now is that there are no rules in war.”]: “This war is psychological. PSYOP.”

      11/19/20 [THOMAS]: “Mark (don’t want to wake you)… Sounds like Sidney and her team are getting inundated with evidence of fraud. Make a plan. Release the Kraken and save us from the left taking America down.”
      “Suggestion: You need to buck up your team on the inside, Mark.”
      “The lower level insiders are scared, fearful or sending out signals of hopelessness vs an awareness of the existential threat to America right now. You can buck them up, strengthen their spirits.”
      “Monica Crowley may have a sense of this [from] her Nixon days.”
      “You guys fold, the evil just moves fast down underneath you all. Lots of intensifying threats coming to ACB [Justice Amy Coney BARRETT] and others.”
      “The intense pressures you and our President are now experiencing are more intense than Anything Experienced (but I only felt a fraction of it in 1991).”
      [MEADOWS] “Thanks so much.”
      [THOMAS]: “Tears are flowing at what Rudy is doing right now!!!!”
      [MEADOWS]: “Glad to help.”

      11/22/20 [THOMAS] “Trying to understand the Sidney Powell distancing.”
      [MEADOWS]: “She doesn’t have anything or at least she won’t share it if she does.”
      [THOMAS]: “Wow!”
      [MEADOWS does not respond.]

      11/24/20 [MEADOWS]: “This is a fight of good versus evil. Evil always looks like the victor until the King of Kings triumphs. Do not grow weary in well doing. The fight continues. I have staked my career on it. Well at least my time in DC on it.”
      [THOMAS]: “Thank you!! Needed that! This plus a conversation with my best friend just now… I will try to keep holding on. America is worth it!”

      11/24/20 [THOMAS shares a video from Parler referring to Glenn BECK]: “If you all cave to the elites, you have to know that many of your 73 million feel like what Glenn is expressing.” [TRUMP risks his supporters growing disenchanted to the point of walking away from politics.]: “Me included.”
      “I think I am done with politics, and I don’t think I am alone, Mark.”
      [MEADOWS – three minutes later]: “I don’t know what you mean by caving to the elites.”
      [THOMAS]: “I can’t see Americans swallowing the obvious fraud. Just going with one more thing with no frickin consequences… the whole coup and now this… we just cave to people wanting Biden to be anointed? Many of us can’t continue the GOP charade.”
      [more back and forth]
      [MEADOWS]: “You’re preaching to the choir. Very demoralizing.”

      [Almost seven weeks between currently known texts]

      1/10/21 [THOMAS]: “We are living through what feels like the end of America.”
      “Most of us are disgusted with the VP and are in listening mode to see where to fight with our teams. Those who attacked the Capitol are not representative of our great teams of patriots for DJT!!”
      “Amazing times. The end of Liberty.”

      • Eureka says:

        re 11/24, I think the first listed volley:

        11/24/20 [MEADOWS]: “This is a fight of good versus evil. Evil always looks like the victor until the King of Kings triumphs. Do not grow weary in well doing. The fight continues. I have staked my career on it. Well at least my time in DC on it.”
        [THOMAS]: “Thank you!! Needed that! This plus a conversation with my best friend just now… I will try to keep holding on. America is worth it!”

        (or something very much like it) might actually come last, as a makeup / reassurance after her/their spiral that Meadows ends with “Very demoralizing.”

        I’m aware that WaPo shared that exchange first — but separate from the others, near outset of article, before they start sharing in what appears to be chronological order. WaPo does, though, transition from the 22nd to the 24th by saying Thomas “engaged Meadows again” with the re Glenn Beck Parler video like that’s when their convo resumed from the 22nd. This phrasing also suggests that the Meadow’s “This is a fight of good versus evil….” volley comes later.

        Plus on each of the other days, Thomas is the one who texts first.

        Also could be missing comms within the 24th (or any of the dates, for that matter) or which occurred on the 25th to have made this “repair”, but I believe Meadows would have made one, that he wouldn’t have left things with her dour/sour/”quitting”.

        He was, after all, Chief of Lability Management.

        • Eureka says:

          Why this matters: he might be trying to keep her (and her SCOTUS-ties) reeled-in. *The fact that she offers a Clarence/SCOTUS crumb* in response to (what I see as) this repair is highly significant. Likely more meaningful than her throwing around her own weight, pointing to something (else) they (can) share.

    • harpie says:

      [Here is the IMPROVED 11/24/20 entry]:

      11/24/20 [THOMAS shares a video from Parler referring to Glenn BECK]:
      “If you all cave to the elites, you have to know that many of your 73 million feel like what Glenn is expressing.”
      [TRUMP risks his supporters growing disenchanted to the point of walking away from politics.]: “Me included.”
      “I think I am done with politics, and I don’t think I am alone, Mark.”
      [MEADOWS – 3 minutes later]: “I don’t know what you mean by caving to the elites.”
      [THOMAS]: “I can’t see Americans swallowing the obvious fraud. Just going with one more thing with no frickin consequences… the whole coup and now this… we just cave to people wanting Biden to be anointed? Many of us can’t continue the GOP charade.”
      – [more back and forth]
      [MEADOWS]: “You’re preaching to the choir. Very demoralizing.”

      11/24/20 [MEADOWS]: “This is a fight of good versus evil. Evil always looks like the victor until the King of Kings triumphs. Do not grow weary in well doing. The fight continues. I have staked my career on it. Well at least my time in DC on it.”
      [THOMAS]: “Thank you!! Needed that! This plus a conversation with my best friend just now… I will try to keep holding on. America is worth it!”

      • harpie says:

        Some of what happened the next day,
        [besides NO as-yet KNOWN TEXTS between these two]:

        11/25/20 Sham Hearing in Gettysburg, PA (Rudy, Jenna, Trump via phone)
        11/25/20 TRUMP grants full PARDON to FLYNN
        11/25/20 POWELL posts links to legal documents on her website:
        “The Kraken is released on Georgia!” and “The Kraken is released on Michigan!”
        11/25/20 Bad redaction on a court filing reveals POWELL’s key “military intelligence expert”, Spider to be Josh MERRITT, who is NOT a “military intelligence expert” [MERRITT works for Russell RAMSLAND’s Allied Security Operations Group (a 1AP partner) as “part of the management team” since 2017; also helped Pete SESSIONS re-election]

    • harpie says:

      Adding this info from William Ockham:

      […] Where was Ginni Thomas on 11/13/20? I’m reasonably certain she was at a Center for National Policy meeting at the Ritz Carlton, Tysons Corner in MacLean Virginia. In fact, from 3:30-5:00pm, I think she was in the Ritz-Carlton Ballroom, Salon I, Fifth Floor attending “Action Session I, Election Results and Legal Battles: What Now?” (which was sponsored by her employer, CNP Action, Inc.) […]
      That session was facilitated by Ken Blackwell with a panel that consisted of J. Christian Adams, Cleta Mitchell, and Hans Von Spakovsky.

      [LOTS MORE there]

  13. harpie says:

    Ginni Thomas pressed for GOP lawmakers to protest 2020 election results The conservative activist and wife of a Supreme Court justice said in a Nov. 2020 email that Republicans weren’t doing enough to help Trump and needed to be “out in the streets.” Scott Wong March 25, 2022, 5:13 PM

    Shortly after the 2020 election, Virginia “Ginni” Thomas, the conservative activist and wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, sent an email to an aide to a prominent House conservative saying she would have nothing to do with his group until his members go “out in the streets,” a congressional source familiar with the exchange told NBC News.

    Thomas told an aide to incoming Republican Study Committee Chairman Jim Banks, R-Ind., that she was more aligned with the far-right House Freedom Caucus, whose leaders just two months later would lead the fight in Congress to overturn the results of Democrat Joe Biden’s victory.[…]

    • harpie says:

      Interesting FACT [wikipedia]:
      MEADOWS chaired the House Freedom Caucus from 2017 to 2019. He was considered one of President Donald Trump’s closest allies in Congress before his appointment as chief of staff. […]

      3/31/20 Mark MEADOWS becomes TRUMP’s Chief of Staff
      10/13 and 10/14/20 BARRETT SCOTUS confirmation hearings.
      MEADOWS and CIPOLLONE are there.
      11/4/20 Mark MEADOWS asks Cleta MITCHELL to work on
      TRUMP’s lawsuits in Georgia

      ALSO: ALL this time he’s in the Administration, NOT the campaign.

    • harpie says:


      The RSC was long representative of the most conservative House members, but in the past several years, it has been replaced by the tea party-driven Freedom Caucus.

      Thomas wrote to the aide that Freedom Caucus members were tougher than RSC members, were in the fight and had then-President Donald Trump’s back, according to the source familiar with the email contents. Until she saw RSC members “out in the streets” and in the fight, she said, she would not help the RSC, the largest caucus of conservatives on Capitol Hill.

      Her November 2020 email came in response to a request from the RSC to offer policy recommendations as Banks was set to take the helm of the group in early 2021. But when Thomas portrayed the RSC as soft in its support for Trump and told its members to take to the streets, the aide thanked her for her suggestions and moved on. […]

      SEE 11/10/20 THOMAS to MEADOWS late night text:

      only 4 GOP House members seen out in street rallies with grassroots… [Louie] Gohmert, [Jim] Jordan, [Paul] Gosar, and [Chip] Roy.”[] “Where the heck are all those who benefited by Presidents coattails?!!!” [She then told him to watch a YouTube video about the power of never conceding.]

      • Eureka says:

        “…in response to a request from the RSC to offer policy recommendations…”

        I swear there was a good article several years back explaining how her “policy recommendations” worked, had kind of a mafia boss feel to it — do you remember this? I can’t unearth it from the more current news deluge.

        Also her tracking of loyalists — personnel recommendations.

        Update (listening to Biden): found the “loyalist” clickhole, will add. Her and Barbara Ledeen, among others.

        UGH people with boundary issues…

        • harpie says:

          This from 2/23/20, is about the tracking:

          7:21 PM · Feb 23, 2020

          Ginni Thomas, wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, is working to identify members of the “deep state” who are “disloyal” to Trump so he can replace them with toadies. [link] [screenshots] [THREAD]

          Going through docs searching on “Ginny Thomas” to find that was a deeply yucky experience. What a POS.

        • harpie says:

          Then, there’s this bit of PR effort:

          10:12 PM · Mar 24, 2022

          One day before the bombshell news broke about Clarence Thomas’s incredible conflicts of interest, the dark money group Judicial Crisis Network announced a $1.5M ad buy promoting a glowing documentary about Thomas. [“Created Equal”]
          [LINK to promo / VIDEO]
          [Narrator: “Watch it for free at Justice Thomas dot com”]

          • Eureka says:

            Oh that’s interesting (for purposes of how they’d play ventriloquist; otherwise who cares but for their donors so what’s the real point of this vanity project — shades of Imelda Marcos’ shoe budget on steroids — unless they all fear more 1/6-ing coming out).

            Also I’m glad you added that Stern thread @ 2:31 PM, nice to have the screenshots (there is too much to abstract from that Axios article — besides that sketchy shenanigans were afoot to _truly_ nutify our government. Nice illustration of how governance under Trump was ever-more divorced from any notion of representativeness with all the extra layers of interested actors off the street).

        • Eureka says:


          (1) Mainly a society column (where is my hazard pay) where the authors fail to make the reciprocal/attending points that it’s even more inappropriate, then, for _Trump_ to have taken this meeting — much less follow-up on any of her recommendations or advice :

          Trump Meets With Hard-Right Group Led by Ginni Thomas – The New York Times

          By Maggie Haberman and Annie Karni Jan. 26, 2019

          It is unusual for the spouse of a sitting Supreme Court justice to have such a meeting with a president, and some close to Mr. Trump said it was inappropriate for Ms. Thomas to have asked to meet with the head of a different branch of government.

          A central focus for Ms. [Connie] Hair [then the chief of staff to Representative Louie Gohmert, a fact apparently concealed ahead of the meeting] and Ms. Thomas was administration appointments that they wanted made and that they accused the president’s aides of blocking.

        • Eureka says:

          (3) We’ve gone from “some say” it’s inappropriate for GT to have asked for that 2019 Trump meeting to:

          Administration officials have routinely sent aides to attend weekly Groundswell [Ginni Thomas’ group, to which Ledeen belonged/s] meetings held at the offices of Judicial Watch, another conservative group led by a vocal defender of the president, Tom Fitton.


          Among Those Pressing Trump to Weed Out Disloyalty: Clarence Thomas’s Wife
          A group led by Ginni Thomas has targeted officials in the administration, and lobbied for its own preferred choices. As the president’s distrust in those serving him has grown, so has its sway.

          By Maggie Haberman Published Feb. 24, 2020 Updated May 3, 2021

          This mainly expands upon some of the Axios material. Don’t know how or why it was updated over a year later. Also makes clear that Trump was very mindful of GT’s relationship to CT/ a sitting SCOTUS justice:

          White House officials have privately questioned Ms. Thomas’s lobbying on personnel, and have said Mr. Trump — who is facing several decisions before the Supreme Court personally and in terms of administration policy — has made clear he is conscious of whom she is married to.

          Still, in the last year, as Mr. Trump has grown more mistrustful of his government, the sway held by Ms. Thomas and her group has increased.

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