Confirmed: John Durham Has Withheld Discovery That DOJ Already Disproved His Claims of Political Malice

In his reply filing in the fight over what evidence will be submitted at his trial, Michael Sussmann confirmed something I’ve long suspected: John Durham has not provided Sussmann with the discovery Durham would need to have provided to present his own conspiracy theories at trial without risking a major discovery violation.

Were the Special Counsel to try to suggest that Mr. Sussmann and Mr. Steele engaged in a common course of conduct, that would open the door to an irrelevant mini-trial about the accuracy of Mr. Steele’s allegations about Mr. Trump’s ties to Russia—something that, like the Alfa Bank allegations, many experts continue to believe in, and about which the Special Counsel has tellingly failed to produce any significant discovery.

Sussmann dropped this in the filing without fanfare. But it is clear notice that if Durham continues down the path he is headed, he may face discovery sanctions down the road.

I explained why that’s true in these two posts. A core tenet of Durham’s conspiracy theories is that the only reason one would use proven cybersecurity methods to test certain hypotheses about Donald Trump would be for malicious political reasons. Here’s how Durham argued that in his own reply.

As the Government will demonstrate at trial, it was also the politically-laden and ethically-fraught nature of this project that gave Tech Executive-1 and the defendant a strong motive to conceal the origins of the Russian Bank-1 allegations and falsely portray them as the organic discoveries of concerned computer scientists.

There’s no external measure for what makes one thing political and makes another thing national security. But if this issue were contested, I assume that Sussmann would point, first, to truth as a standard. And as he could point out, many of the hypotheses April Lorenzen tested, which Durham points to as proof the project was malicious and political, turned out to be true. They were proven to be true by DOJ. Some of those true allegations involved guilty pleas to crimes, including FARA, explicitly designed to protect national security; another involved Roger Stone’s guilty verdict on charges related to his cover-up of his potential involvement in a CFAA hacking case.

DOJ (under the direction of Trump appointee Rod Rosenstein, who in those very same years was Durham’s direct supervisor) has already decided that John Durham is wrong about these allegations being political. Sussmann has both truth and DOJ’s backing on his side that these suspicions, if proven true (as they were), would be a threat to national security. Yet Durham persists in claiming to the contrary.

Here’s the evidence proving these hypotheses true that Durham has withheld in discovery:

The researchers were testing whether Richard Burt was a back channel to the Trump campaign. And while Burt’s more substantive role as such a (Putin-ordered) attempt to establish a back channel came during the transition, it is a fact that Burt was involved in several events earlier in the campaign at which pro-Russian entities tried to cultivate the campaign, including Trump’s first foreign policy speech. Neither Burt nor anyone else was charged with any crime, but Mueller’s 302s involving the Center for National Interest — most notably two very long interviews with Dmitri Simes (one, updated, two, updated), which were still under investigation in March 2020 — reflect a great deal of counterintelligence interest in the organization.

The researchers were also testing whether people close to Trump were laundering money from Putin-linked Oligarchs through Cyprus. That guy’s name is Paul Manafort, with the assistance of Rick Gates. Indeed, Manafort was ousted from the campaign during the period researchers were working on the data in part to distance the campaign from that stench (though it didn’t stop Trump from pardoning Manafort).

A more conspiratorial Lorenzen hypothesis (at least on its face) was that one of the family members of an Alfa Bank oligarch might be involved — maybe a son- or daughter-in-law. And in fact, German Khan’s son-in-law Alex van der Zwaan was working with Gates and Konstantin Kilimnik in precisely that time period to cover up Manafort’s ties to those Russian-backed oligarchs.

Then there was the suspicion — no doubt driven, on the Democrats’ part, by the correlation between Trump’s request to Russia for more hacking and the renewed wave of attacks that started hours later — that Trump had some back channel to Russia.

It turns out there were several. There was the aforementioned Manafort, who in the precise period when Rodney Joffe started more formally looking to see if there was a back channel, was secretly meeting at a cigar bar with alleged Russian spy Konstantin Kilimnik discussing millions of dollars in payments involving Russian-backed oligarchs, Manafort’s plan to win the swing states, and an effort to carve up Ukraine that leads directly to Russia’s current invasion.

That’s the kind of back channel researchers were using proven cybersecurity techniques to look for. They didn’t confirm that one — but their suspicion that such a back channel existed proved absolutely correct.

Then there’s the Roger Stone back channel with Guccifer 2.0. Again, in this precise period, Stone was DMing with the persona. But the FBI obtained at least probable cause that Stone’s knowledge of the persona went back much further, back to even before the persona went public in June 2016. That’s a back channel that remained under investigation, predicated off of national security crimes CFAA, FARA, and 18 USC 951, at least until April 2020 and one that, because of the way Stone was scripting pro-Russian statements for Trump, might explain Trump’s “Russia are you listening” comment. DOJ was still investigating Stone’s possible back channel as a national security concern well after Durham was appointed to undermine that national security investigation by deeming it political.

Finally, perhaps the most important back channel — for Durham’s purposes — was Michael Cohen. That’s true, in part, because the comms that Cohen kept lying to hide were directly with the Kremlin, with Dmitri Peskov. That’s also true because on his call to a Peskov assistant, Cohen laid out his — and candidate Donald Trump’s — interest in a Trump Tower Moscow deal that was impossibly lucrative, but which also assumed the involvement of one or another sanctioned bank as well as a former GRU officer. That is, not only did Cohen have a back channel directly with the Kremlin he was trying to hide,  but it involved Russian banks that were far more controversial than the Alfa Bank ties that the researchers were pursuing, because the banks had been deemed to have taken actions that threatened America’s security.

This back channel is particularly important, though, because in the same presser where Trump invited Russia to hack his opponent more, he falsely claimed he had decided against pursuing any Trump Organization developments in Russia.

Russia that wanted to put a lot of money into developments in Russia. And they wanted us to do it. But it never worked out.

Frankly I didn’t want to do it for a couple of different reasons. But we had a major developer, particular, but numerous developers that wanted to develop property in Moscow and other places. But we decided not to do it.

The researchers were explicitly trying to disprove Trump’s false claim that there were no ongoing business interests he was still pursuing with Russia. And this is a claim that Michael Cohen not only admitted was false and described recognizing was false when Trump made this public claim, but described persistent efforts on Trump’s part to cover up his lie, continuing well into his presidency.

For almost two years of Trump’s Administration, Trump was lying to cover up his efforts to pursue an impossibly lucrative real estate deal that would have required violating or eliminating US sanctions on Russia. That entire time, Russia knew Trump was lying to cover up those back channel communications with the Kremlin. That’s the kind of leverage over a President that all Americans should hope to avoid, if they care about national security. That’s precisely the kind of leverage that Sally Yates raised when she raised concerns about Mike Flynn’s public lies about his own back channel with Russia. Russia had that leverage over Trump long past the time Trump limped out of a meeting with Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, to which Trump had brought none of the aides who would normally sit in on a presidential meeting, looking like a beaten puppy.

Durham’s failures to provide discovery on this issue are all the more inexcusable given the fights over privilege that will be litigated this week.

As part of the Democrats’ nesting privilege claims objecting to Durham’s motion to compel privileged documents, Marc Elias submitted a declaration describing how, given his past knowledge and involvement defending against conspiracy theory attacks on past Democratic presidential candidates launched by Jerome Corsi and Donald Trump, and given Trump’s famously litigious nature, he believed he needed expertise on Trump’s international business ties to be able to advise Democrats on how to avoid eliciting such a lawsuit from Trump. (Note, tellingly, Durham’s motion to compel doesn’t mention a great deal of accurate Russian-language research by Fusion — to which Nellie Ohr was just one of a number of contributors — that was never publicly shared nor debunked as to quality.)

There are four redacted passages that describe the advice he provided; he is providing these descriptions ex parte for Judge Cooper to use to assess the Democrats’ privilege claims. Two short ones probably pertain to the scope of Perkins Coie’s relationship with the Democratic committees. Another short one likely describes Elias’ relationship, and through him, Fusion’s, with the oppo research staff on the campaign. But the longest redaction describing Elias’ legal advice, one that extends more than five paragraphs and over a page and a half, starts this way:

That is, the introduction to Elias’ description of the privilege claims tied to the Sussmann trial starts from Trump’s request of Russia to hack Hillary. Part of that sentence and the balance of the paragraph is redacted — it might describe that immediately after Trump made that request, the Russians fulfilled his request — but the redacted paragraph and the balance of the declaration presumably describes what legal advice he gave Hillary as she faced a new onslaught of Russian hacking attempts that seemingly responded to her opponent’s request for such hacking.

Given what Elias described about his decision to hire Fusion, part of that discussion surely explains his effort to assess an anomaly identified independently by researchers that reflected unexplained traffic between a Trump marketing server and a Russian bank. Elias probably described why it was important for the Hillary campaign to assess whether this forensic data explained why Russian hackers immediately responded to Trump’s request to hack her.

As I have noted, in past filings Durham didn’t even consider the possibility that Elias might discuss the renewed wave of hacking that Hillary’s security personnel IDed in real time with Sussmann, Perkins Coie’s cybersecurity expert.

It’s a testament to how deep John Durham is in his conspiracy-driven rabbit hole that he assumes a 24-minute meeting between Marc Elias and Michael Sussmann on July 31, 2016 to discuss the “server issue” pertained to the Alfa Bank allegations. Just days earlier, after all, Donald Trump had asked Russia to hack Hillary Clinton, and within hours, Russian hackers obliged by targeting, for the first time, Hillary’s home office. Someone who worked in security for Hillary’s campaign told me that from his perspective, the Russian attacks on Hillary seemed like a series of increasing waves of attacks, and the response to Trump’s comments was one of those waves (this former staffer documented such waves of attack in real time). The Hillary campaign didn’t need Robert Mueller to tell them that Russia seemed to respond to Trump’s request by ratcheting up their attacks, and Russia’s response to Trump would have been an urgent issue for the lawyer in charge of their cybersecurity response.

It’s certainly possible this reference to the “server” issue pertained to the Alfa Bank allegations. But Durham probably doesn’t know; nor do I. None of the other billing references Durham suggests pertain to the Alfa Bank issue reference a server.

Durham took a reference that might pertain to a discussion of a correlation between Trump’s ask and a renewed wave of Russian attacks on Hillary (or might pertain to the Alfa Bank anomaly), and assumed instead it was proof that Hillary was manufacturing unsubstantiated dirt on her opponent. He never even considered the legal challenges someone victimized by a nation-state attack, goaded by her opponent, might face.

And yet, given the structure of that redaction from Elias, that event is the cornerstone of the privilege claims surrounding the Alfa Bank allegations.

Because of all the things I laid out in this post, Judge Cooper may never have to evaluate these privilege claims at all. To introduce privileged evidence, Durham has to first withstand:

  • Denial because his 404(b) notice asking to present it was late, and therefore forfeited
  • Denial because Durham’s motion to compel violated local rules and grand jury process, in some ways egregiously
  • Rejection because most of the communications over which the Democrats have invoked privilege are inadmissible hearsay
  • The inclusion or exclusion of the testimony of Rodney Joffe, whose privilege claims are the most suspect of the lot, but whose testimony would make the communications Durham deems to be most important admissible

Cooper could defer any assessment of these privilege claims until he decides these other issues and, for one or several procedural reasons, simply punt the decision entirely based on Durham’s serial failures to follow the rules.

Only after that, then, would Cooper assess a Durham conspiracy theory for which Durham himself admits he doesn’t have proof beyond a reasonable doubt. As part of his bid to submit redacted and/or hearsay documents as exhibits under a claim that this all amounted to a conspiracy (albeit one he doesn’t claim was illegal), Durham argues that unless he can submit hearsay and privileged documents, he wouldn’t otherwise have enough evidence to prove his conspiracy theory.

Nor is evidence of this joint venture gratuitous or cumulative of other evidence. Indeed, the Government possesses only a handful of redacted emails between the defendant and Tech Executive-1 on these issues. And the defendant’s billing records pertaining to the Clinton Campaign, while incriminating, do not always specify the precise nature of the defendant’s work.

Accordingly, presenting communications between the defendant’s alleged clients and third parties regarding the aforementioned political research would hardly amount to a “mini-trial.” (Def. Mot. at 20). Rather, these communications are among the most probative and revealing evidence that the Government will present to the jury. Other than the contents of privileged communications themselves (which are of course not accessible to the Government or the jury), such communications will offer some of the most direct evidence on the ultimate question of whether the defendant lied in stating that he was not acting for any other clients.

In short, because the Government here must prove the existence of client relationships that are themselves privileged, it is the surrounding events and communications involving these clients that offer the best proof of those relationships.

Moreover, even if the Court were to find that no joint venture existed, all of the proffered communications are still admissible because, as set forth in the Government’s motions, they are not being offered to prove the truth of specific assertions. Rather, they are being offered to prove the existence of activities and relationships that led to, and culminated in, the defendant’s meeting with the FBI. Even more critically, the very existence of these written records – which laid bare the political nature of the exercise and the numerous doubts that the researchers had about the soundness of their conclusions – gave the defendant and his clients a compelling motive, separate and apart from the truth or falsity of the emails themselves, to conceal the identities of such clients and origins of the joint venture. Accordingly, they are not being offered for their truth and are not hearsay.

This passage (which leads up to a citation from one of the Georgia Tech researchers to which Sussmann was not privy that the frothers have spent the weekend drooling over) is both a confession and a cry for help.

In it, Durham admits he doesn’t actually have proof that the conspiracy he is alleging is the motive behind Michael Sussmann’s alleged lie.

He’s making this admission, of course, while hiding the abundant evidence — evidence he didn’t bother obtaining before charging Sussmann — that Sussmann and Joffe acceded to the FBI request to help kill the NYT story, which substantiates Sussmann’s stated motive.

And then, in the same passage, Durham is pointing to that absence of evidence to justify using that same claimed conspiracy for which he doesn’t have evidence to pierce privilege claims to obtain the evidence he doesn’t have. It’s a circular argument and an admission that all the claims he has been making since September are based off his beliefs about what must be there, not what he has evidence for.

Thus far the researchers’ beliefs about what kind of back channels they might find between Trump and Russia have far more proof than Durham’s absence of evidence.

Again, Durham doesn’t even claim that such a conspiracy would be illegal (much less chargeable under the statute of limitations), which is why he didn’t do what he could have had he been able to show probable cause that a crime had been committed: obtaining the communications with a warrant and using a filter team. Bill Barr’s memoir made it quite clear that he appointed Durham not because a crime had been committed, but because he wanted to know how a “bogus scandal” in which DOJ found multiple national security crimes started. ”Even after dealing with the Mueller report, I still had to launch US Attorney John Durham’s investigation into the genesis of this bogus scandal.” In his filing, Durham confesses to doing the same, three years later: using his feelings about a “bogus scandal” to claim a non-criminal conspiracy that he hopes might provide some motive other than the one — national security — that DOJ has already confirmed.

An absolutely central part of Durham’s strategy to win this trial is to present his conspiracy theories, whether by belatedly piercing privilege claims he should have addressed before charging Sussmann (even assuming he’ll find what he admits he doesn’t have proof is there), or by presenting his absence of evidence and claiming it is evidence. He will only be permitted to do if Judge Cooper ignores all his rule violations and grants him a hearsay exception.

But if he manages to present his conspiracy theories, Sussmann can immediately pivot and point out all the evidence in DOJ’s possession that proves not just that the suspicions Durham insists must be malicious and political in fact proved to be true, but also that DOJ — his former boss! — already deemed these suspicions national security concerns that in some cases amounted to crimes.

John Durham’s entire trial strategy consists of claiming that it was obviously political to investigate a real forensic anomaly to see whether it explained why Russia responded to Trump’s call for more hacks by renewing their attack on Hillary. He’s doing so while withholding abundant material evidence that DOJ already decided he’s wrong.

So even if he succeeds, even if Cooper grants him permission to float his conspiracy theories and even if they were to succeed at trial, Sussmann would have immediate recourse to ask for sanctions, pointing to all the evidence in DOJ’s possession that Durham’s claims of malice were wrong.

Update: The bad news I’m still working through my typos, with your help, including getting the name of Dmitri Simes’ organization wrong. The good news is the typos are probably due to being rushed out to cycle in the sun, so I have a good excuse.

Update: Judge Cooper has issued an initial ruling on Durham’s expert witness. It limits what Durham presents to the FBI investigation (excluding much of the CIA investigation he has recently been floating), and does not permit the expert to address whether the data actually did represent communications between Trump and Alfa Bank unless Sussmann either affirmatively claims it did or unless Durham introduced proof that Sussmann knew the data was dodgy.

Finally, the Court takes a moment to explain what could open the door to further evidence about the accuracy of the data Mr. Sussmann provided to the FBI. As the defense concedes, such evidence might be relevant if the government could separately establish “what Mr. Sussmann knew” about the data’s accuracy. Data Mot. at 3. If Sussmann knew the data was suspect, evidence about faults in the data could possibly speak to “his state of mind” at the time of his meeting with Mr. Baker, id., including his motive to conceal the origins of the data. By contrast, Sussmann would not open the door to further evidence about the accuracy of the data simply by seeking to establish that he reasonably believed the data were accurate and relied on his associates’ representations that they were. Such a defense theory could allow the government to introduce evidence tending to show that his belief was not reasonable—for instance, facially obvious shortcomings in the data, or information received by Sussmann indicating relevant deficiencies.

Ultimately, Cooper is treating this (as appropriate given the precedents in DC) as a question of Sussmann’s state of mind.

Importantly, this is what Cooper says about Durham blowing his deadline (which in this case was a deadline of comity, not trial schedule): he’s going to let it slide, in part because Sussmann does not object to the narrowed scope of what the expert will present.

Mr. Sussmann also urges the Court to exclude the expert testimony on the ground that the government’s notice was untimely and insufficiently specific. See Expert Mot. at 6–10; Fed. R. Crim. P. 16(a)(1)(G). Because the Court will limit Special Agent Martin’s testimony largely to general explanations of the type of technical data that has always been part of the core of this case—much of which Mr. Sussmann does not object to—any allegedly insufficient or belated notice did not prejudice him. See United States v. Mohammed, No. 06-cr-357, 2008 WL 5552330, at *3 (D.D.C. May 6, 2008) (finding that disclosure nine days before trial did not prejudice defendant in part because its subject was “hardly a surprise”) (citing United States v. Martinez, 476 F.3d 961, 967 (D.C. Cir. 2007)).

This suggests Cooper may be less willing to let other deadlines slide, such as the all-important 404(b) one.

123 replies
    • Fraud Guy says:

      Again, Durham doesn’t even claim that such a conspiracy would be illegal (much less chargeable under the statute of limitations)

      Just statute?

  1. Yogarhythms says:

    “…That entire time, Russia knew Trump was lying to cover up those back channel communications with the Kremlin.” Johnny #2 pencil’s, SC is coming for Michael Sussman guns blazing. Ooopsie “… He’s doing so while withholding abundant material evidence that DOJ already decided he’s wrong.” Withholding redacting evidence isn’t the best look for SC. Tom Waits has some advice for Johnny “… Things are tough all over
    When the thunder storms start
    Increasing over the southeast
    And south central portions
    Of my apartment,”

  2. John Colvin says:

    Typo: “the researchers beliefs” needs an apostrophe.

    The post does a good job of exploring the Very Brady Quagmire that Durham may find himself in should he prevail in his bid to present a full throated political conspiracy claim. Most lawyers (myself included) focus on winning the immediate battle, rather than thinking two or three moves in the future. Your field vision is non pareil.

    • TJ says:

      I agree with this. Durham is focused on lying to the FBI. If, a big if, Durham wins this round most of the items discussed in this article will be less relevant.

    • FL Resister says:

      All who read this blog seriously can appreciate Dr. Marcy Wheeler’s fortitude and courage to slog through the many-worded and deep-passaged goings on to present us, her unworthy audience, their succinct essence in her excellent missives written in frames we can comprehend.
      For her invaluable gifts of plumbing and excising nuggets of reason from the legal labyrinth depths she plunges regularly, we are inestimably grateful and contribute as generously as we can to her noble work, monthly.

  3. LN says:

    I don’t know how you do it or how you find the time to juggle all these issues and then write these excellent posts but I am truly in awe and appreciative of your extraordinary skill set and your willingness to do so.

    • Tippi’s G says:

      Which is why I don’t understand the commenters—not you—who note typos. I’m a grammar and punctuation freak but wouldn’t dream of correcting Marcy or any of the major players here. We all know what she means to say in the above examples, apostrophes or not.

      • emptywheel says:

        I really appreciate the corrections. I write at a very fast pace with no editor, and typos are one of the consequences. If you’re willing to help out, I’m more than happy to take it. Especially here where I admitted ran off for a bike ride after I posted.

        • John Colvin says:

          “admittedly” :)
          Sorry, I couldn’t resist.
          My understanding is that the commentators who point out typos were attempting to help polish the product. No criticism was intended. I know that the initial drafts of almost everything that I write contain more typos per line than Dr. Wheeler’s posts.

        • I Never Lie and am Always Right says:

          “Typography” – The study of the art of correcting typos and misspelings

        • P J Evans says:

          Back in the mid-70s I read a story where they left in a typo, partly because they weren’t sure what it was supposed to be. A tradition, by then, it was, to reprint and not fix that one. (It was “denonstarting”.)

        • bmaz says:

          I mean, seriously. There is a subset of us that remember it like it was yesterday. 15 years of yesterdays maybe, but still like yesterday.

        • Dmbeaster says:

          If we are going to look outside the blog, my favorite was Lin Wood’s “plenty of perjury” typo in his court filing for Trump.

  4. Anonymous Poster says:

    As I’ve stated previously, I used to be friends with Durham’s lead counsel. He firmly believed all of these conspiracy theories at the time this was happening so it’s no surprise he’s so gung ho to keep pushing them on this case despite no evidence. I find it interesting you mentioned Nellie Ohr. I haven’t followed the filings on this but the lead prosecutor used to talk incessantly about Bruce Ohr being a huge part of the conspiracy. He should not be prosecuting this case as he has a massive pre existing bias.

    • emptywheel says:

      Right. And he was on (tho was not responsible for) a case that involved one of the most epic discovery violations in recent memory. So it’s not that he can plead ignorance.

      I honestly think he is so far down a rabbit hole that that he doesn’t know these details exist. Sadly for him, he’s legally on the hook for knowing what is in DOJ’s possession.

      • BobCon says:

        I’d be awfully curious if there’s a connection between the dumb and erratic work he’s doing and the stuff coming out of the trolls.

        Sometimes trolling is just sophistry that is so vague it’s impossible to precisely disprove. But this trolling is flat earth stuff, weirdly specific and easy to disprove. And in that way it bears a ton of similarities to the Durham team’s work product.

        If there is a connection, I’d be curious if Durham’s team is the source for the stream of trolls, or if it’s more that they’re all drinking from a common source upstream.

        • emptywheel says:

          There are right wing operatives, most notably Foggy and Margot Federalist Faceplant, whose job it is to sustain the froth. Foggy got big by treating Sidney Powell as credible.

          That said, there’s a somewhat organic effort by self-radicalized nutjobs that gets pushed from time to time, it appears.

        • John Colvin says:

          Twitter handle: @Techno_Fog

          Margot “Federalist Faceplant” Cleveland
          Twitter handle: @ProfMJCleveland

          These are two right wing commentators whose tweets Dr. Wheeler regularly takes apart on the emptywheel twitter account.

        • Desider says:

          The thong and grinding road?
          Thongs for the memories?
          Yes, remarkable the blog’s stayed professional. Even I’m forced to (usually) show self-restraint.

      • ThomasH says:

        The standard caveat; IMNAL. What legal consequences do you think Durham faces for all of his sloppiness and bad faith? Is the immunity deriving from being a SC enough to keep him from suffering from anything more than professional embarrassment?

        I am both grateful and awed that you, Bmaz and Rayne are here, letting me look over your shoulders so to speak. Thankful as well for the other commentators who are here. In appreciation of the dogged policing to chase the trolls away and the good humor that shines through.

        • bmaz says:

          None. This is not a traditional DOJ process, but Durham still has every bit of the usual (even if gross) absolute prosecutorial immunity.

        • emptywheel says:

          If he is sanctioned for discovery violations he will be shut down, do not pass go, do not get to release a report.

          But such a decision would have to come from the judge, not Lisa Monaco. As I understand it she’s sitting on a heap of complaints about Durham’s prosecutorial abuses. But thus far she has not used them to fire him.

        • bmaz says:

          And, to be clear, Marcy is right, there could be court sanctions. Other than normal rulings, likely not, but who knows? That is still very open and the conduct very bad.

        • BobCon says:

          I’m curious if there is any likelihood of repercussions in the general legal community for Durham and his team outside of formal sanctions in terms of reputation or job opportunities outside of right wing hack outfits.

          They seem to be violating a foundational norm of the profession by punishing a fellow attorney for defending the interests of a client on purely ideological grounds. But I don’t know whether this kind of thing gets swept under the rug and major firms go ahead and hire them anyway, or Ivy League schools happily take their recommendations for law school applicants.

        • Artemis says:

          So if I am interpreting correctly, the judge might throw out the privilege review bc of lateness or delay the trial to allow review, and might either throw out the Steele portion of conspiracy theory or allow and delay the trial for additional discovery but there is little chance of any disciplinary sanction that would shut Durham down. It is more likely that the judge will delay the trial to remedy discovery violations, and the prosecution’s attempt to delay will probably work? I have been doing some supplemental reading on sanctions for discovery violations and it seems very rare to impose sanctions, and usually only in *extremely* egregious situations like using explicitly fraudulent evidence while not disclosing that the prosecutor knew the evidence was fraudulent/likely fraudulent. From my reading, if it is only arguable that the undisclosed evidence is exculpatory (and you can argue almost anything), then the prosecutor is usually given the benefit of the doubt and no sanctions/relief are typically imposed other than a delay (if pre-trial), and usually that only occurs if the defense requests the evidence, as Sussmann’s lawyers did in their response to Durham (noted above in the article). If brought up post-trial,the prosecutor can usually successfully argue materiality…that the undisclosed evidence wasn’t so important and probably wouldn’t have affected the jury’s verdict. But that’s just my cursory interpretation. So no matter what, the prosecutors in this case are probably going to get a free pass on discovery violations and the trial will probably be delayed to remedy? Wouldn’t most or all of Durham’s conspiracy need to be excluded for the trial to continue on schedule?

        • John Colvin says:

          I’m not convinced the trial will be delayed if the court finds discovery violations on the part of the government. Given Durham’s multiple late disclosures, the judge may be inclined to believe that Durham was seeking to conduct trial by ambush, and be far less willing to give the government the benefit of the doubt.

        • emptywheel says:

          I don’t expect a delay. Durham was REALLY late, and he has not exhibited any need to air his conspiracy theory, which was also late.

        • Joe G says:

          Oh he’ll get off without sanction for the discovery violations. No professional repercussions for that. But he will suffer the biggest smack of his life: He’s gonna LOSE the case.

        • bmaz says:

          Disclosure, not discovery. And, yes, there are sometimes repercussions. But, hey, it is easy to say that on the internet, isn’t it?

        • Leoghann says:

          It’s not as if he’s worried about the repercussions on the next thirty years of his career.

        • bmaz says:

          No, and that may be a significant part of why Durham is flailing so wildly. This is the coda to his career as a prosecutor unless he makes it in a Trump the second Presidency. Obstruction, sedition, whatever knock yourself out, but it’s not “treason”.

      • John Colvin says:

        If the DeFilippis case that you’re thinking about is the one that I am aware of, the bulk of the problem was that the SDNY prosecutors were not aware of everything the investigative agencies (and the Manhattan DA’s office) had known about, and tried to throw some previously undisclosed stuff in as trial exhibits. This was not good practice, but I don’t think it was intentional. The court was more upset with how the SDNY USAO tried to “bury” the offending documents in a document dump (without flagging that they had not previously been produced) and how they tried to avoid responsibility when the defense and the judge called them on it. (It was the cover-up rather than the Brady violation per se.)
        In this case, it is hard not to see the Brady violations as intentional from inception, given Durham’s theory of the case (which has only been revealed in court filings over the last couple of months).

        • emptywheel says:

          Yes. Nejad. No prosecutors ultimately held responsible. But the kind of thing that would make any failure to turn over discovery in a subsequent trial inexcusable.

          Tho in this case I honestly think the prosecutors are so far down their rabbit hole they don’t realize there are actual facts out there.

  5. Doctor Biobrain says:

    Conservatives always start with their conclusions and work backwards. They already know Democrats are guilty of whatever they’re accused of. The fact that they won’t confess to everything and provide the proof that any crime had been committed is yet another of their crimes.

    Similarly, even if there’s proof Trump worked with Russia to win the election, it was for a good cause and therefore anyone investigating this is working for a bad cause. And if Russia hacked the Democrats and released their emails, that’s ok because America had the right to see those emails. It’s all just good versus evil and Democrats are always evil so Russia did nothing wrong.

    • gmoke says:

      My recollection is that the Republicans were hacked at the same time as the Democrats by, presumably, the same people but only the Democratic data was released. I guess “America” has no right to see those emails while the Democratic ones, of necessity, MUST be public ./snark

  6. greenbird says:

    from First Amended Complaint:
    “39. Since the passage of H. Res. 503, Speaker Pelosi and members of the Select
    Committee have made countless public statements explaining the purposes of the Select Committee, including but not limited to improper purposes such as law enforcement and exposure for its own sake.”

    Dr. Wheeler, if you anticipate a twitter review thread of this doc, it would help to clarify new content such as the above … which confusing me as to ‘purposes’ (twice used). [The filing remains PACER, and the DEF did answer, so proceeding accurately is difficult w/o the filed doc. But I will try!]

    … and, to commenters here, I apologize for OT interruption.

  7. Rapier says:

    I suggest that quisling, Vladimir Putin’s quisling of course, be a term to use for Durham, Barr, and so many others.

  8. Artemis says:

    I’ve always been of the mind that this trial should remain focused on the alleged crime. However, kind of reading between the lines here, but it sounds like you think the best outcome is to kind of put the entire fight over Trump-Russia to rest by fully airing grievances on both sides. If Durham presents his full conspiracy theory that Trump-Russia was manufactured, and Sussmann rebuts with all the evidence that Trump-Russia was real and a big scandal, and this done in a public forum—more particularly in a court of law rather than a dry document (Mueller Report) or performative partisan hearings in Congress—then it will finally clear things up for the public, silence the froth, and essentially put an end to Durham’s investigation. If, on the other hand, Durham’s mistakes & weak theory force the judge to limit the scope of the trial to exclude much of Durham’s conspiracy theory, the frothers will continue to claim unfairness/sketchiness and continue their search for conspiracies whether or not Sussmann is found guilty or innocent. Thus, bc Sussmann’s chances are decent in either scenario, the greater good might come from a more expansive trial. I can understand that logic and I guess I could see the judge going either way…seeing the benefit in both a more limited scope and a full litigation of the broader scope. However, it seems that a delay of the trial is inevitable if it is allowed to cover a broader scope, correct? It sounds like the privilege review, decisions about Rodney Joffre testimony, and additional discovery of mueller/DOJ materials would take another 6 months at least. And If the judge really thinks it is best for the two sides to fully air everything, it seems unlikely that Durham would receive any sanctions and he would essentially get a pass on all his rule violations/sketchiness. But that would also sort of reflect badly on the judge and give the defense a strong case for appeal, no? I’m not sure if I have a question, but I guess I’m trying to understand the likelihood, larger implications, and timeline for each path. I guess I’m curious as to what everyone else thinks- preferring limited scope or broader scope trial, which one the judge might prefer, and potential implications of each for the larger Durham investigation? I realize any response would be pure speculation, but it’s kind of an interesting thought-exercise to compare/contrast how each path may play out.

    • emptywheel says:

      No, the best outcome is that Sussmann is allowed to present his exculpatory evidence, Cooper limits what comes in to stuff that could actually be relevant, and the jury decides.

      • Artemis says:

        Fair enough. It seems as though the (primary) exculpatory evidence regarding the FBI killing the NYT article is already allowed, since those 37 emails were provided in discovery. Will be interesting to see what the judge decides in terms of Durham’s theory of the (legal) conspiracy. I guess the most obvious answer is the judge will probably allow some but not all of it. Perhaps I was too focused on the two opposing extremes and forgetting the middle ground.

        • emptywheel says:

          Right, but thus far Joffe is not given immunity. From my vantage Durham’s game-playing w/Joffe should seem obvious to Cooper. Durham is at once saying he’s the most important witness but doing everything he can to keep him out of the trial.

        • John Colvin says:

          If I were Cooper, I would make Durham file something (maybe under seal if I were feeling charitable) explaining what potential charges Joffe might be facing and what the statute of limitations might be on those charges.

        • emptywheel says:

          Sussmann in this filing asked Cooper to require Durham to file an ex parte filing about why he is still investigating Joffe.

        • John Colvin says:

          Thanks. I only skimmed the briefing. If I saw the ask, I forgot about it. The way Joffe’s attorneys described the Durham trial team’s approach makes it seem like a very cynical effort to ensure that Joffe will not testify.

        • Artemis says:

          Thanks for the reminder about Joffe’s testimony. I know you wrote a post about it, but with everything else in the filings, the potential importance of it was lost to me. Perhaps there will be some resolution this week. Although didn’t you also note that if the judge was seriously considering forcing the issue with the prosecution, Cooper could have already requested the ex-parte filing? I guess based on that note I assumed the judge might ignore the Joffe issue. Either way, I’ll pay more attention to Joffe-related news now. Thanks!

        • Thomas says:

          But I have been binge watching Perry Mason
          How can Durham keep Joffe out of the trial if Durham has introduced a conspiracy theory about Joffee as background for the charge against Sussman?
          It seems the defense has a right to fully question that.
          Dr Wheeler, you seem to be saying that the DOJ exculpatory evidence that rebuts the “political malice” theory is sufficient, and the whole false narrative about the intentions of Joffe and the techs can be taken out of any presentation to the jury.
          If Judge Cooper decides to take that position and rule on it, then Sussman can, in effect, turn the tables on Durham, and use Joffe’s testimony to show that there was a different and legitimate purpose for presenting the tech evidence to the FBI. Namely, that there were legitimate reasons at that time to investigate Trump’s ties to Russia, regardless of any political purpose.

          I have questions. Is it not possible to bill two clients in one day? Is it not possible to bill a client, and then also do pro bono work as a citizen and a lawyer concerned with matters of national security? Sussman’s relationship with the FBI was not confined to this one matter. It was not unusual for him to bring them tips and evidence.

          Durham’s going to be looking like Hamilton Burger here

    • Hoping4Better_Times says:

      What you are describing would make a suspenseful Hollywood movie complete with trial scenes, ultimately ending in an acquittal for Sussmann. Tom Hanks to star as Sussmann. The movie prospects go away if Judge Cooper dismisses the case.

      • Artemis says:

        Lol! I would watch that movie. The real-life suspense of waiting for the judge to rule on all the motions has been eating at me. I actually thought to myself that it feels like I’m reading a novel and I’m dying to turn to the back of the book to find out what happens. But I realized my post sounded pretty dramatic as soon as emptywheel replied. Feeling more grounded now and definitely relieved to get some word from the judge because it’s very clarifying on where the trial is likely headed (on a sensible path). And more info soon to come on Wednesday with another hearing! Finally! Lol. Can’t help myself so I have to ask, but do you think the judge might dismiss the case? Seems a bit late in the game for that to happen, but I have very little background knowledge about how criminal cases work. I always feel like I need to do a lot of extra reading to keep up with this crowd. :)

  9. Eureka says:

    Why are the Durham trolls not flooding the site asking what on earth is that ugly ass graphic which serves as the photo for this post (at home page/ thumbnail). Why, that looks like the plans for Trump Tower Moscow!

    That the proposed Trump-branded building is a relatively-detailed sharp elongated pe obelisk amidst a pile of ice boxes should have been the first two clues.

    Speaking of imagery, I see *Rudy’s got on his garanimals — that pretense to jingoism flag-code-violation of a jacket — so he can recall which country he’s purporting to represent (so many airports, so little time…). Doubt he wears this when meeting with misc. overseas dictators, for ex.

    *yesterday in Grand Rapids:

  10. klynn says:

    I have an OT question about MI politics Rayne. Where should I post it? Dob’t want to ruin this post’s thread.

    • Thomas says:

      On Fox News they are claiming that ALL Trump/Russia ties were invented by Hillary Clinton.
      How did she arrange the framing of Manafort?
      And what about the other 140 contacts between Trump associates and Russian spies, Russian gangsters, Russian oligarchs, Russian officials? Why, she must be an archvillian mastermind! 😆
      How about that meeting in Trump Tower with Manafort and Don jr and Jared Kushner and AN AGENT OF THE KREMLIN?
      I do not understand why the entire Trump crime family and their associated criminal minions are not deep inside a military prison.
      Aside from the espionage, money laundering and kompromat operations against the Republican Party, what about the countless grand larceny schemes? What about the obstruction RACKET that they created to systematically attack the rule of law?
      They made Republican Party stooges spend the Fourth of July in Moscow ahead of the 2018 midterms! And THEN Trump threw the entire western alliance and all of our intelligence agencies under the bus to publicly fellate Putin while standing next to him.
      AND he did that the same week that Mueller indicted Russian intelligence for interfering in the 2016 election.
      AND he did that to prop up Sean Hannity’s vicious lies about Seth Rich, a cover story for the Russians invented by Roger Stone.
      But Hillary invented ALL of that? WOW!

      I haven’t even covered the entire tip of the iceberg of material that rebuts that Fox News claim. But, the FBI allows them to commit millions of counts of wire fraud and racketeering daily, covering up for the liars in the criminal Republican Party.
      And I guess that’s Hillary’s fault too.

  11. Cosmo Le Cat says:

    In my very limited experience, judges seem inclined to keep trials as short as possible, so they have less work to do. By not allowing a mini-trial on an uncharged conspiracy, the court’s workload is reduced and its schedule maintained.

    On the other hand, most judges I have observed would rule for the prosecution.

    I am once again astounded by the brain that wrote this article and still found time for a bike ride..

    • emptywheel says:

      Add in, however, the DC precedents that make false statements very much an issue of state of mind.

      There might be evidence somewhere else about what Sussmann’s state of mind was. But Durham himself admits he doesn’t have the proof of his conspiracy theory to claim hearsay documents formed part of Sussmann’s.

      I think whatever you believe, the fact is that Durham doesn’t have the evidence to make these demands, not least bc this is not a crime.

    • bmaz says:

      “By not allowing a mini-trial on an uncharged conspiracy, the court’s workload is reduced and its schedule maintained.”

      Yes, that is also how judges comply with both the intent, and letter, of Rule 403. And, as you noted, keeps the trial shorter, less complicated and the record cleaner.

  12. Agnieszka says:

    Thank you, Dr Wheeler. Your analysis is invaluable in following the Durham probe, as well as good training for reading court filings. Never expected to do that for leisure.

  13. WilliamOckham says:

    In the ruling, Cooper describes the government’s theory of materiality:

    that Mr. Sussmann’s alleged statement that he was not representing a client caused the FBI to handle the subsequent investigation differently than it otherwise would have.

    That seems to be a stricter standard than Durham has argued for. As I recall, he asserted the statement was material if it might have caused the FBI to handle the tip differently. Am I reading too much into this?

    • bmaz says:

      Eh, long time to go. We shall see. Irrespective of early rulings, it can easily change at trial.

  14. WilliamOckham says:

    I would also like to express my deepest gratitude for the graphic that accompanies this post on the main page. I don’t think my sanity can withstand too many more of those Durham pictures.

  15. harpie says:

    Building the “Big Lie”:
    Inside the Creation of Trump’s Stolen Election Myth
    Internal emails and interviews with key participants reveal for the first time the extent to which leading advocates of the rigged election theory touted evidence they knew to be disproven, disputed or dismissed as dubious.
    Doug Bock Clark, Alexandra Berzon and Kirsten Berg April 26, 5 a.m. EDT

    [paraphrased]: This begins with the story of Leamsy SALAZAR, who claimed to know that the 2020 U.S. presidential election had been rigged — and how, and gave sworn testimony on 11/13/20 to TEXAS lawyer Lewis SESSIONS, brother of newly re-elected TEXAS representative Pete SESSIONS.

    SALAZAR says he worked formerly as a Venezuelan special operator and as chief of security for Hugo CHAVEZ, and that he had for years been an informer about drug trafficking to American law enforcement agencies, which helped him defect.

    Sessions emailed ProPublica that he “conducted the interview at the request of a person working with Sidney POWELL’s legal team.” […] Salazar said in a subsequent court filing that he had taken his concerns about the election to “a number of reliable and intelligent ex-co-workers of mine that are still informants and work with the intelligence community.” (He did not specify whether he meant the U.S. or Venezuelan intelligence community.) From there, sources told ProPublica, his concerns reached a former intelligence officer active in Republican politics and then the conservative lawyer Sidney Powell.

    Powell was on the hunt for just such information. […]

    • harpie says:

      11/11/20 TRUMP tweets:

      Nov 11th 2020 – 11:17 PM
      It attempted to alter our election and got caught? [LINK to] >>>

      [broken tweet link] /madisongesiotto/status/1326726533273292803 10:20 PM · Nov 11, 2020
      What do we know about Dominion?
      [current BIO: Wife | Trump-Endorsed Candidate for Congress in OH13 | Attorney | Small Business Owner | Former Miss Ohio, TV Commentator & Team Trump]

      11/12/20 [J. Miller says] TRUMP calls both MILLER AND Justin [CLARK?] “to complain” about “Dominion [] Dem/Soros conspiracy connections” [SEE 11/13/20]

      11/13/20 [AM] Leamsy SALAZAR interviewed by TEXAS lawyer Lewis SESSIONS, brother of newly re-elected TEXAS Rep. Pete SESSIONS

      11/13/20 J. MILLER to MEADOWS:

      Emailed you Dominion backgrounder. Lots there re: functionality problems, not much there on Dem/Soros conspiracy connections. Will defer to you on whether or not to share full report with POTUS. POTUS is clearly hyped up on them, not just from his tweets, but he also called me and Justin [CLARK?] separately last night to complain. JM [SEE 11/12/20]

      • harpie says:

        [A sampling of TRUMP Tweets from 11/11/20 – 11/13/20 that mention DOMINION ]

        – 11:17 PM It attempted to alter our election and got caught? RT:
        [Madison GESIOTTO: What do we know about Dominion?]

        – 11:34 AM RT:

        – 10:46 PM Must see @seanhannity takedown of the horrible, inaccurate and anything but secure Dominion Voting System which is used in States where tens of thousands of votes were stolen from us and given to Biden. Likewise, the Great @LouDobbs has a confirming and powerful piece!

        – 1:35 PM Heartwarming to see all of the tremendous support out there, especially the organic Rallies that are springing up all over the Country, including a big one on Saturday in D.C. I may even try to stop by and say hello. This Election was Rigged, from Dominion all the way up & down!

        – 3:38 PM Now it is learned that the horrendous Dominion Voting System was used in Arizona (and big in Nevada). No wonder the result was a very close loss!

        – 5:21 PM RT:
        [Lou DOBBS; [This says “live” at 5:35P ET] [link] Dominion Voting Systems: Toronto based @dominionvoting was rejected by Texas Secretary of State in 2019 for major flaws in their software. Why was it used this election in 6 battleground states and 22 others? #MAGA #AmericaFirst #Dobbs [VIDEO]]

        – 6:06 PM RT:
        [@kylenabecker: DOMINION. [Siren emoji] Back in 2016 a Princeton prof demonstrated exactly *how* to hack a Dominion machine. “I figured out how to m…[…]]

        – 11:51 PM RT:
        [@danielchaitin7: Democratic senators warned of potential ‘vote switching’ by Dominion voting machines prior to 2020 election Experts i…]

        • Leoghann says:

          I was about to ask if there was a citation for the claims in the 11/12 message, but then realized it was from Chanel Rion. LOLZ

        • Eureka says:

          Let’s say hello to Roger Stone, Guccifer 2.0, and other aspects of the 2016 operation continuing here through today.

          It’d be easier if I could link to one of my 500k comments on some of this but let’s roll.

          re Trump’s 11/12/2020 retweet:

          – 6:06 PM RT:
          [@kylenabecker: DOMINION. [Siren emoji] Back in 2016 a Princeton prof demonstrated exactly *how* to hack a Dominion machine. “I figured out how to m…[…]]

          While Kyle Becker’s since-deleted tweet [11/11/2020] embeds a Brett Baier Fox News clip, by “back in 2016” and a “Princeton prof” they are referring to the work of Princeton professor Andrew Appel (his team did this on some Sequoia AVC Advantage machines; Sequoia was acquired by Dominion years prior to the 2016 election).

          *However* Appel et al. did this waywayback in 2007 & ca. So why are the RW disinfo agents claiming this happened “back in 2016”? That’s because Politico wrote about it in 2016, Roger Stone and Guccifer 2.0 amplified it, and the deeper-past dates aren’t at all apparent — the article makes it sound current — unless you click through the links or otherwise have knowledge.

          Roger Stone’s The Hill piece — “Can the 2016 election be rigged? You bet by Roger Stone, contributor – 08/16/16 9:27 AM ET” — prominently features this Politico article (“How to Hack an Election in 7 Minutes By BEN WOFFORD August 05, 2016”); nodding to their selective anti-expertise bent, the “Princeton Professor” goes unnamed here, too, hijacked authority being all that matters:

          POLITICO profiled a Princeton professor — who has demonstrated how the electronic voting machines that are most widely used can be hacked in five minutes or less!

          Quite germane to 2016, 2020, the Politico article itself prominently features some important counties in Pennsylvania (where Trump would increasingly lose, and among other content).

          As I’ve detailed prior, I believe that Stone’s piece with outlinks such as this contained detailed asks of Russia, as follow-ups on the August 2, 2016 polling data and strategy transfer meeting.

          This The Hill (–>Politico centipede) article is what Guccifer 2.0 retweeted for Roger Stone on 8/17/2016, “paying u back”.


        • harpie says:

          EUREKA! THANK YOU!!! for connecting that!
          I’m so sorry that I can’t keep track of the whole tangle…:-{
          That’s why it’s SO WONDERFUL to ALL be here TOGETHER.

        • Eureka says:

          Lol was just counting the clock to beerthirty. This is fixing to be a stressful evening for Philly fandom. Either Doc shuts down the chance to make NBA history (or should I say Glenn — folks’ve been using his government name for months now; 143-0 so far on teams starting 3-0…just you wait!) or the misery is drawn out. And Howie has two picks, will be trying to move around. Lots to track. #cantankerous times, we will see…

        • Eureka says:

          But as I’ve said since his debut, Tyrese Maxey is joy. A hot night from him will go a long way towards bathing the metro in oxytocin-laced happiness.

        • bmaz says:

          Maxey is really good. Also, assuming can stay healthy, Ja Morant is maybe a once in a generation talent. I love that guy.

          It is only 3:12 here. Mrs. bmaz not even home yet. Got a long time to go…..

        • Eureka says:

          That was one of the best games this season, Grizzlies @: it was the Ja and Maxey (or ‘Rese) show. Just delightful end-to-end.

          My Maxey Minutes are coming up in :30 … time for dinner asap (Mr. has to work, portends a good game via reverse-jinx).

          If JoJo can get unfreaked-out about his thumb, it’s on.

        • Eureka says:

          Wow didn’t realize yours was in the early slot (also). That _is_ a long day for actual westerners.

        • Eureka says:

          CURVEBALL Eagles trading #18 for Titans WR AJ Brown. I do not have my head wrapped around this yet at all.


          1- Fire Drake, Nick Nurse, and Raps fans who cheer injuries into the sun
          2-Kittehs stole our WR (but see curveball)
          3-But Jordan Davis, tho
          4-I’m sure there’s more

        • Eureka says:

          4-Suns TCB’d as well, good news.

          5- Fav Maxey moves tonight = that sequence where he recovered near-steals x2 and sunk that deep 3. Generally prefer speedy Maxey but that was a great display of his chill. Unflappable when he’s on.

          6. Looking forward to Heat, actually not a bad matchup depending and this seems to be the year of healing ’19 wounds +/- unresolved issues

          6.5 Speaking of 2019, have I mentioned that absent Ben Simmons, Jimmy Buckets w/have stayed a 76er?

          3.5 pre-draft I saw Davis’ video on how he’d be honored to sack the goat and I figured pretty much that meant he’d be an Iggle because we just cannot escape dealing with that guy. We shall see…

        • Eureka says:

          Bonus for the Durham era:

          The Smoking Gun has a screenshot of Stone and Guccifer 2.0’s public interaction about this article which includes some of the replies.

          Take a look (in context) at the reply by “Annie Webber @awebberaz” to G2 & Stone:

          Annie Webber @awebberaz · 17 Aug 2016

          @GUCCIFER_2 @RogerJStoneJr Elias P&C. That’s all?

          I believe “Elias P&C” stands for Elias Perkins [and] Coie.

          Currently (and apparently at least by May 9, 2019), the “Annie Webber @awebberaz” account “doesn’t exist”. However via the archive you can see that this was an account devoted to Assange (/the Russian project): the 25 August 2017 capture shows a RT of Posobiec at the top, followed by a RT of Assange, commentary on the WL-as-hostile-service issue, and tons of other Assange-WL related and adjacent-characters content. (Plus some standard/leading-edge RWNJ fare.)

          Congratulations John Durham and Team! /the company you keep/

      • harpie says:

        This from the ProPublica article, might be the 11/13/20 “backgrounder” MILLER is referring to:

        TRUMP campaign staffers prepare an internal memo with section headings that read:
        – “Dominion Has No Company Ties To Venezuela,”
        – “Dominion And Smartmatic Terminated Their Contract In 2012” and
        – “There Is No Evidence That Dominion Used Smartmatic’s Software In The 2020 Election Cycle.”


        • harpie says:

          LOOK what POWELL/FLYNN et al were pushing on 11/15/20:

          10:20 AM · Nov 15, 2020

          One of Trump’s lawyers, Sidney Powell, is on Fox News lying that Trump actually won the election by “millions of votes.” These people are out of their minds. [VIDEO]

          POWELL: Because we’re fixing to overturn the results of the election in multiple states, and President Trump won by not just hundreds of thousands of votes, but by millions of votes that were shifted by this software, that was designed expressly for that purpose.



        • Eureka says:

          Powell was also going on about a preliminary version of this on Fox shows on Fri 11/6 and Sun 11/8/2020. LOL, “Coup 5.0”:

          And now, Trump allies want voters to believe [Dennis] Montgomery’s claims about the election.

          “I think there are any number of things they need to investigate, including the likelihood that 3 percent of the vote total was changed in the pre-election voting ballots that were collected digitally by using the Hammer program and the software program called Scorecard,” Sidney Powell, the attorney for former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn, said Friday in an appearance on Fox Business. “That would have amounted to a massive change in the vote.”

          “That’s called intervention in our elections,” host Lou Dobbs said.

          “This is Coup 5.0, Lou,” Powell said.

          Powell repeated her computer voter fraud claim Sunday on Fox News, with no pushback from host Maria Bartiromo.


          Infamous ‘Hoax’ Artist Behind Trumpworld’s New Voter Fraud Claim
          He tricked the Bush administration into thinking he could detect terrorist signals in al Jazeera broadcasts. Now Dennis Montgomery has a new set of believers.
          Will Sommer Updated Nov. 09, 2020 3:14AM ET / Published Nov. 08, 2020 9:04PM ET

      • harpie says:

        11/12/20 Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) Director Chris KREBS starts website dedicated to debunking election-related disinformation [he is fired on 11/17/20]

        11/12/20 PERRY to MEADOWS: From an Intel friend: DNI needs to task NSA to immediately seize and begin looking for international comms related to Dominion [] “And Gina is still running around on the Hill covering for the Brits who helped quarterback this entire operation” [] “DNI needs to be tasked to audit their overseas accounts at CIA – and their National Endowment for Democracy. “

        11/12/20 RAIKLIN Tweet:

        Ivan’s [RAIKLIN] Projection [American flag] Trump 305, [Chinese flag] Biden 233 NOV 12 PM update still projected

        11/13/20 FLYNN retweets 11/12/20 RAIKLIN tweet [above]:

        Follow @Raiklin a true American Patriot and #DigitalSoldier…he is working to make sense out of this disastrous fraud of an election.

        CNN: Perry, a five-term congressman, is a retired Brigadier General with nearly 40 years of military service, including flying combat missions in Iraq. Given his extensive background, he is likely familiar with the inner-workings of government intelligence.


    • harpie says:

      11/13/20 THOMAS to MEADOWS: “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?!?”

      [CONTEXT for ^^^ 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.) […]

      11/14/20 TRUMP tweets:

      Nov 14th 2020 – 10:11 PM I look forward to Mayor Giuliani spearheading the legal effort to defend OUR RIGHT to FREE and FAIR ELECTIONS! Rudy Giuliani, Joseph diGenova, Victoria Toensing, Sidney Powell, and Jenna Ellis, a truly great team, added to our other wonderful lawyers and representatives!

      11/14/20 THOMAS to MEADOWS: [seeming to quote TEXAS Rep. GOHMERT CoS Connie HAIR’s belief that]: “the most important thing you can realize right now is that there are no rules in war.” [] [HAIR]: “This war is psychological. PSYOP. It’s what I did in the military. They are using every weapon they have to try to make us quit… It is fake, fraud and if people would take a deep breath and look at things through that filter we will see this through and win.”

      11/14/20 TRUMP campaign already KNOWS that POWELL/GIULIANI’s allegations against Dominion/Smartmatic that will be made at 11/19 news conference are FALSE.

      11/14/20 First MILLION MAGA MARCH

      11/XX/20 WALDRON begins working with FLYNN [“by the second week of November”]

      • WilliamOckham says:

        harpie, could you contact me via email? I have some questions about how you store your timeline information.

        The email domain I use is outlook[.]com. The username should be obvious, if you interpret the following quote boldly:

        The court will be adjourned shortly after nine, according to the judge.

        As always, do as I request only if you can do so with joy of a small child feeding a hungry duck.

        • harpie says:

          Well, it’s not very sophisticated, I can tell you that much!
          I can give it a try…but not till maybe later tonight or tomorrow.

        • Rayne says:

          Copy me, too, I’m interested in any suggestions WO has about this. I’m stumped about format and searchability which is also readable in post format. :-)

  16. harpie says:

    I’m working on a Timeline COMPILATION of the information in these articles:
    [I guess it has mostly to do with COMMUNICATIONS]

    White House aide [ZIEGLER] relayed information from Giuliani research team to Trump during campaign to overturn 2020 election April 11, 2022

    ‘We control them all’: Donald Trump Jr. texted Meadows ideas for overturning 2020 election before it was called April 8, 2022


    • harpie says:

      ‘We need ammo. We need fraud examples. We need it this weekend.’ What the Meadows texts reveal about how two Trump congressional allies lobbied the White House to overturn the election.
      April 15, 2022

      >>> READ: Mark Meadows’ texts with Mike Lee and Chip Roy April 15, 2022


    • 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

      Building the “Big Lie”: Inside the Creation of Trump’s Stolen Election Myth Internal emails and interviews with key participants reveal for the first time the extent to which leading advocates of the rigged election theory touted evidence they knew to be disproven, disputed or dismissed as dubious. April 26, 2022


    • harpie says:

      Mark Meadows’ 2,319 text messages reveal Trump’s inner circle communications before and after Jan 6 April 25, 2022

      >>> READ: Text messages Sean Hannity, Marjorie Taylor Greene, Ivanka Trump and others sent to Mark Meadows April 25, 2022 [The communications below are the messages cited in the story. // Note: CNN has removed personal information from the texts. Errors in spelling and grammar reflect the messages as they were sent, which in some cases include profanity.]


    • harpie says:

      I’ll be adding new info as we get it, so this is from last night:

      CNN Exclusive: Meadows’ texts reveal new details about the key role a little-known GOP congressman [Scott PERRY] played in efforts to overturn election
      Updated 10:42 PM ET, Tue April 26, 2022

      […] Perry, a five-term congressman, is a retired Brigadier General with nearly 40 years of military service, including flying combat missions in Iraq. Given his extensive background, he is likely familiar with the inner-workings of government intelligence. […]


      • harpie says:

        PERRY pushed for Jeffrey CLARK to become Attorney General…and the 1/3/21 [what I’m calling] The Showdown at DOJ Corral

        • Eureka says:

          Can Father Judge High School graduate – per – DOJ – bio Clark’s parenthetical be ~ Jeffrey [“we’ll call you when there’s an oil spill”] Clark?

          After Donoghue’s retort, of which we were recently reminded:

          How about you go back to your office, and we’ll call you when there’s an oil spill

      • WilliamOckham says:

        Has anybody identified Jim DeMint as a key member of the coup? Well, he is and has managed to keep a pretty low profile.

        Let’s start with this overlooked tidbit from the Meadows text trove:

        December 31, 2020
        Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene to Mark Meadows

        Good morning Mark, I’m here in DC. We have to get organized for the 6th. I would like to meet with Rudy Giuliani again. We didn’t get to speak with him long. Also anyone who can help. We are getting a lot of members on board. And we need to lay out the best case for each state. I’ll be over at CPI this afternoon.

        CPI is the Conservative Partnership Institute. CPI is run by, you guessed it, Jim DeMint. The CPI staff is a veritable who’s who of the coup, including Mark Meadows, Cleta Mitchell, and numerous lesser known players.

        There’s a great video from October 2018 of Jim DeMint at a Council for National Policy (CNP) meeting explaining how the Conservative Action Project (CAP) coordinates the “inside game” of the CPI’s work with Trump, Mike Lee, Jim Jordan, and Mark Meadows with the “outside game” of the CNP members (FreedomWorks, Federalist Society, Tea Party Patriots, etc.) to create consensus for action.

        If you watch that video, you’ll start to understand how the coup planning and execution worked.

  17. harpie says:

    Another set of messages we recently got is:

    Text message trove shows Oath Keepers discussing security details for Trump associates Roger Stone and Michael Flynn were among them. KYLE CHENEY 04/18/2022 09:43 PM Updated: 04/18/2022 11:10 PM DOC:

    This was amusing, from [pdf134/337] :

    1/6/21 11:05 AM RHODES: “ALCON: The ““Freedom Rally”” with Latinos for Trump (that we are securing) is at the intersection of First Street and M street. Right next to the Senate office buildings. In “”Lower Senate Park”” Anyone who is trying to link up with me or [redacted] [Whip?], go there. We are working security for that event all day.”
    11:06 AM RHODES: “[Response to [redacted] message sent at 10:32a.m.] FIRST Street and M Street”
    11:30 AM [Redacted user name]: At first and m not seeing anything but a bad neighborhood
    11:33 AM RHODES: “[Response to [redacted] message sent at 11:30am] Look for the park. We are at stage in park. Right next to Senate building.”
    11:33 AM [Redacted user name]: [Map of Washington, DC]
    11:34 AM [Redacted user name]: The red dot is the location.
    11:34 AM RHODES: “CORRECTION: First STREET NE. and C street Sorry about mix up”


  18. harpie says:


    – ROY to MEADOWS: This is a sh*tshow [] Fix this now.

    [< – M: We are]

    2:28 PM Rep. GREENE to MEADOWS: Mark I was just told there is an active shooter on the first floor of the Capitol Please tell the President to calm people This isn’t the way to solve anything

    – MULVANEY to MEADOWS: Mark: he needs to stop this, now. Can I do anything to help?

    – Rep. LOUDERMILK to MEADOWS: It’s really bad up here on the hill. [] They have breached the Capitol.

    [< M: POTUS is engaging
    < L: Thanks. This doesn’t help our cause.]

    – Rep. William TIMMONS to MEADOWS: The president needs to stop this ASAP

    [< M: We are doing it]

    – JUNIOR DON to MEADOWS: He’s got to condem this shit. Asap. The captiol police tweet is not enough. [] This his one you go to the mattresses on. They will try to fuck his entire legacy on this if it gets worse.


    – [Approx] 3:50 PM ? J. MILLER to MEADOWS and SCAVINO:

    Call me crazy, but ideas for two tweets from POTUS:
    1) Bad apples, likely ANTIFA or other crazed leftists, infiltrated today’s peaceful protest over the fraudulent vote count. Violence is never acceptable! MAGA supporters embrace our police and the rule of law and should leave the Capitol now!
    2) The fake news media who encouraged this summer’s violent and radical riots are now trying to blame peaceful and innocent MAGA supporters for violent actions. This isn’t who we are! Our people should head home and let the criminals suffer the consequences!

    3:52 PM Rep GREENE to MEADOWS: Mark we don’t think these attackers are our people. We think they are Antifa. Dressed like Trump supporters.

    – Rep. GOHMERT to MEADOWS: Cap Police told me last night they’d been warned that today there’d be a lot of Antifa dressed in red Trump shirts & hats & would likely get violent. Good that Trump denounces violence but could add & well demand justice for those who became violent & well get to the bottom of what group they’re with. [LOLOLOL!]

    – KUSHNER to MEADOWS, MILLER, SCAVINO: Why don’t we post on his Facebook page since he isn’t locked out there…


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