Walt Nauta Testified to the Grand Jury before DOJ Obtained Surveillance Video

DOJ has turned over the first tranche of unclassified discovery in the Trump stolen documents case. It includes recordings, plural, of interviews Trump did, complete copies of the surveillance footage DOJ obtained, and pictures even beyond those included in the indictment.

The second part includes a reproduction of “key” documents and photographs included in Production 1 that are referenced in the Indictment and others determined by the government to be pertinent to the case. The third part consists of complete copies of closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage obtained by the government in its investigation. To facilitate review, the government also identified and separately produced for the defense “key” excerpts from the CCTV footage, including excerpts referenced in the Indictment or otherwise determined by the government to be pertinent to the case.

As I’ve suggested, DOJ would prefer to get Trump to plead out. It’s possible there is discovery that will make him decide going to trial will be more damaging for him than pleading out.

The discovery memo also reveals that Walt Nauta testified to the grand jury on June 21 of last year.

The June 21, 2022 grand jury testimony of Defendant Nauta.

This was days before DOJ subpoenaed surveillance footage on June 24. That puts the alleged conflict between Jay Bratt and Nauta’s attorney, Stan Woodward, in different light.

Nauta was not charged with perjury for that appearance, suggesting he already fixed his testimony before DOJ obtained the surveillance footage.

But not before his alleged lies in May helped Trump abscond to Bedminster with more classified documents.


261 replies
    • ExRacerX says:

      Counterpoint: Trump appears more confused & terrified by the day, and the squeezing has barely begun. He’s a coward at heart, so I can totally see him capitulating once the pressure becomes intolerable.

      • Chris Bellomy says:

        Noting that DOJ did nothing to restrain his international travel, I speculate that they would rather see Trump run than put him on trial. Self-imposed exile solves a lot of headaches for them and the country as a whole.

        • Rugger_9 says:

          Aside from being an admission of guilt (to be spun furiously by the RWNM), cutting and running would buy time for the political landscape to shift in his favor. If he does go, it will follow the preliminary wave of rulings by Cannon if they do not gut the indictment’s evidence.

          However, post-Dobbs the trend in political life is not favorable for Defendant-1, which is why the GOP has also been resorting to the voter suppression and other skeevy tricks to maintain power. He’d have to stay away for a long time, well past 2024 IMHO.

          • Brandon_22JUN2023_1501h says:

            I’ve often expected him to flee to Russia or Saudi Arabia, but the more I think about it the more it seems unrealistic. It’s not the logistics or resources that’s the problem – it’s the Secret Service detail. Sure, he may have worked to surround himself with some agents that more loyal to him than the country, but all of them? All it would take is someone alerting DOJ that something fishy is happening.

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            • earlofhuntingdon says:

              It might have an impact on how many voters vote for him, especially has he might attempt to conduct his presidency from there, too.

              • boloboffin says:

                Well, once he’s president, he can pardon himself and then come back in Triumph. I’d imagine that any pending legal cases against him would be delayed until after the second term anyway, since he would then be a sitting president…

                And why Oman? Putin has a nice Black Sea villa picked out for his retirement… it would be a shame for that to go to waste.

                Edit: Also, the Ecuadorian embassy in London has a suite open, I’ve heard.

            • nord dakota says:

              I don’t see why not, would they fly Air Force One to Riyadh (I think he’d be scared out of his pants to be in Russia, you just never know over there and with the Wagner business. . . . ) so he could take the oath of office? I assume it’s possible given that a President could die in office while the VP was on a foreign visit). He could probably even govern from there. Specially if SCOTUS decided self-pardon is not a thing.

        • xyxyxyxy says:

          I keep wondering about the international travel and letting him run rather than put him on trial considering he may still have the original and/or copies of classified docs.
          Even national travel.

        • P J Evans says:

          You’d have work hard to convince his cult that it’s because he’s afraid of a trial in a district friendly to him.

        • Matt___B says:

          They could re-purpose Ginni Thomas’ Gitmo prison barge…(L. Ron Hubbard lived on various large boats at the end of his life)… Perhaps being exiled to live in international waters?

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          A little tin foil hat for my taste. The US is not 1960s Britain and Trump is not Kim Philby.

          Letting Trump escape abroad would make Biden and the DoJ laughing stocks. More relevant, a cursory review of Jack Smith’s career – his work at the Manhattan DA’s sex crimes unit, at the Hague, and with the DoJ’s Pubic Integrity section – make mincemeat of the suggestion. Ditto for Merrick Garland.

          Nor would Trump contemplate running. It would be an admission of guilt, though he would style it as escaping a kangaroo court. It would ruin his brand and trash the value of his remaining businesses. The USG would attempt to seize his assets, Interpol would issue a red notice, and he’d be a hunted man.

          Having lost his value to Putin and others, he’d be limited to whatever grace and favor accommodations, servants and health care a brutal authoritarian might offer him. That’s why DoJ is not worried about Trump doing a runner.

          • MyraBoByra says:

            Totally agree EarlOfH. He won’t run. And he won’t do jail time. His current strategy is to try to push the trial to after the election. Then he would test legal limits via a self pardon or use the 25th amendment loophole to get his Veep to pardon him. If he’s not elected its obvious he’s trying to foster enough doubt in the public arena to increase the likelihood of A hung jury. If they believe that they could have a trial completed, and convict before the election, perhaps they could amend the indictment to add the federal charge that bars the guilty party from ever again holding public office.

            • bmaz says:

              Running is Trump’s only protection, and best argument as to a “political prosecution”. Seriously, where do people come up with this kind of Rube Goldberg reasoning? When you say “the trial”, what trial you talking about? Cause there are two, and likely two more on the offing.

              “If they believe that they could have a trial completed, and convict before the election, perhaps they could amend the indictment to add the federal charge that bars the guilty party from ever again holding public office.”

              Seriously, how far off into abusive prosecution, and bastardization of the criminal justice system, land do you think things should go? What would be enough for your avaricious self? Is there ANY level of abuse of prosecutorial discretion that would be enough to satisfy the rabid minds here??? Serious question, how much shit do you want to blithely inject into the criminal justice system in perpetuity for your own little petulant fee fees as to Trump? This discussion is getting seriously gross.

            • PJB2point0 says:

              Why do we spend time on the fanciful notion of a self-pardon? If Trump becomes President, doesn’t the OLC memo of no prosecution of the sitting president apply?

        • Jed_22JUN2023_1330h says:

          Although federal law would guarantee continued Secret Service protection no matter where he lives, there would be logistical and legal issues in a foreign country.

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                • ExRacerX says:

                  Carlos Ghosn fled Japan hidden inside a box loaded onto a private jet, so it can happen, but yeah, unlikely. Ghosn was also 5’7″ and about 170. What kinda box would they have to use for Trump, and who would carry it?

                  • Just This Once says:

                    Trump has an employee named Waltine Nauta who is well acquainted with moving boxes, perhaps you’ve heard of him.

                    • ExRacerX says:

                      It was a rhetorical question, but it would be pretty funny watching Nauta try to move his packaged boss onto a plane. It’s pretty difficult to picture Trump willingly getting into a box in the first place, though.

                    • bmaz says:

                      WTF does an enema have to do with anything? Do you really think that comment helped the conversation? Because it did not.

        • Southern Exposure says:

          I don’t think DOJ or anyone in government wants him to run abroad. He still possesses a lot of knowledge that could be useful to nefarious people. We cannot afford to let him outside our control with nothing to lose from sharing what he knows or still may possess. If it looked like he were running, I believe he would be physically prevented from doing so.

        • David F. Snyder says:

          Trump won’t flee since it puts his assets at risk. He’s held by a golden chain.

          • Kope a Pia says:

            Wouldn’t that leave his assets in the hands of Jr. and Eric, what could possibly go wrong?

        • Patient Observer says:

          Years ago I predicted we’d see a new reality TV show set in a luxury Moscow high rise and featuring an Odd Couplish pairing of two famous fugitives from American justice.

          The name of the show: “Snowed In.”

      • boatgeek says:

        I just can’t see him admitting guilt in any manner. He’s definitely terrified, but I don’t think that he can take the way out. I’d believe fleeing the country and running for president in absentia before pleading out.

        • Knox Bronson says:

          Yes, Trump is a victim of a campaign by the Deep State and Joe Biden’s DOJ and corrupt FBI to remove him from contention in the 2024 presidential race, which he would win hands down—for the third time—and thoroughly drain the swamp once and for all. He would be fleeing the country, not because he was guilty, but, rather, so he could fight another day.
          That’s how that would be spun and they would swallow it.

        • PJB2point0 says:

          Hard to imagine at present, I agree. But, let’s say the legal events of the next 8 months take a real toll on the Republican primary electorate and Trump manages to lose IA and NH. So, in his heart, he then knows he’s likely to lose the nomination, better to claim the whole thing is rigged and drop out. If he does that, he loses his assurance of a “political solution” (whether that is self-pardon or just making sure the DOJ ceases prosecution). What’s he to do but plead to avoid a long federal sentence?

          Things we can’t imagine today seem to become realistic in the course of time. Who would think Musk and Zuck would get in a steel cage, after all!

          • BrokenPromises says:

            Talk IS cheap. Only one of the three has a chance in hell of getting in a cage. In the current course of events of course.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Admittedly, Trump lost money running casinos, an arithmetically difficult thing to do. But his best bet is still running for president.

        • Rayne says:

          You’re still assuming after all this time that losing money running a casino isn’t an ultimate aim, just as Musk collapsing Twitter is a social media failure.

          If the aim is criminal, rolling up a money laundering operation with bankruptcy is perfectly logical — and yet his base can’t see that as problematic because they’re unable to do anything but fall in unthinking lockstep with their authority figures.

          • earlofhuntingdon says:

            Actually, that was a throwaway. I agree with your hypothesis about Trump’s probable lifelong addiction to money laundering.

              • Ginevra diBenci says:

                And that Oman deal is just the one that’s public. Then there’s the two billion large that floated into Jared Kushner’s account for his purported investing expertise.

      • Bobby Gladd says:

        Yeah. My Bad.

        In the multidimensional game of Prisoner’s Dilemma Trump now has to consider, I confess to having no clue as to how he might come down. This is not like caving on Trump university.

        Put Owen Hendricks on it. 🤣

    • JVOJVOJVO says:

      He will appear old, feeble, and insane at trial BEFORE he ever thinks of running away. Mobsters gonna mob! cite: Vincente “Chin” Gigante, The Odd Father!

        • RipNoLonger says:

          Great job! Maybe add a long red tie dragging between his legs as he play-pretends senility.

          • Bobby Gladd says:


            I didn’t put much time into that. But yeah, the long red tie, that would be entirely appropriate.

            Maybe I’ll find a usable shot of him with his long red tie and clip it out and put it on that one. It would be funny.

      • Raven Eye says:

        Although there are several key events in the trial process where the defendant is required to be present, it looks like he can waive the right to be present during the main part of the proceedings.

        I would not be surprised if Trump chose to be absent from the courtroom to the maximum extent allowed.

        • xyxyxyxy says:

          If he was present for the whole trial, he would lose time from campaigning and his opponents would push that he’s not campaigning because he’s overly busy…

          • Leu2500 says:

            “lose time from campaigning”? He’s spending more time golfing than campaigning. He seems to campaign once a week, if that.

            But boy is he trying to fund raise.

      • Ginevra diBenci says:

        I can’t imagine Donald Trump willingly appearing weak, even for jury-manipulation purposes, except under one circumstance: the 2024 election is over, he lost, and the legal stakes are so high he can subvert his ego to the cause of self-preservation.

    • ItTollsForYou says:

      He CAN’T plead out. His only path to beating this is through political avenues. Any plea would surely include an agreement not to run for public office again. His (theoretical) ability to pardon himself is the only thing that could possibly save him. I think it would be too risky for him to throw himself at the mercy of the corrupt judges he installed.

      • BobBobCon says:

        His polling numbers could be bad enough at some point that he takes a deal, or he could still lose the nomination.

        He could still win next year, but on the flip side we don’t know that he won’t crater. We really don’t know how this plays out.

        • Pat Neomi says:

          Trump could also see falling polling numbers as a sign to drop out of the race and endorse someone who would promise to pardon him. That way he can fight the charges and still get out of it (provided the GOP takes the White House next year, of course—a big if). Trump’s endorsement would go a long way for any candidate—probably enough to get them to accede to his terms.

          • BobBobCon says:

            Or a promise of a Trump pardon could be viewed as toxic by the time the primaries come along. Or maybe irrelevant.

            We really don’t know, and I think people should be careful about assuming too much. As MW has suggested, there may even be more coming on the documents front, and the shape of other cases may have a huge impact as well on any plea deal here.

            We really don’t know — it’s the curse of the apocryphal saying about interesting times.

            • Pat Neomi says:

              Your point is well taken. The fact that we can identify so many plausible eventualities already—to say nothing of what may be true with respect to what’s coming down the pike—speaks to the fact that attempts at prediction are not worth much.

        • paulka123 says:

          He’s not going to plea because he has NY and soon GA on his tails. That is assuming any plea even accounted for the other federal crimes.

          • bmaz says:

            Glad someone is finally catching on as to what a complete clusterfuck preening jerks like Alvin Bragg and Fani Willis are creating. By the way, did you see Rachel Mitchell, the Maricopa County Attorney (you might remember from the Kavanaugh SJC hearing) through self aggrandizing herself the same way the idiot Willis has? No. And the “fake electors” were present here in AZ too. But Mitchell did not preen around screaming RICO like the unprofessional and inappropriate Willis, nor making noisy relentless public announcements and warning cops to be ready in two months. What a completely asinine thing Willis is doing.

            But here we are, because more people are rabid about piling on instead of doing things in a sane and orderly fashion. That was never the way the prosecution of Trump should have ever gone. If past is prologue though, rabid folks here will now clamor for state level prosecution in AZ too. What a complete joke.

            And Paulka, how can there be a comprehensive (we call it global) plea on the federal crimes when people keep screaming for them to be strung out abusively? Would YOU plead to one case when people are screaming for the next one you could still be charged with, and have no disclosure on?

            But, hey, that is what folks here are dying for. Thanks for wishing to fuck up the entire criminal justice system for decades, if not longer, to come. That is exactly where the derangement syndrome is headed.

        • ItTollsForYou says:

          The only corollary I can think of is Spiro Agnew; and those were vastly different circumstances.
          Even if it WERE appropriate and legal, such an agreement would be a non-starter for Trump.

          It’s so difficult to imagine any of the possible outcomes. Him backing someone who promised to pardon him seems pretty likely to me, but still completely ludicrous and fanstastical.

          • Legonaut says:

            Especially if it were Pence. Watching all the MAGA heads asplode from the cognitive dissonance would be hysterical.

  1. Lee_22JUN2023_1019h says:

    What could the terms of a potential plea deal possibly be?

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    • Schychka says:

      My second favorite would be house arrest at ML with an ankle bracelet, no internet or phone access and limited visitation for life. My first favorite would be death by suicide within one week of sentencing.
      Yes, I’m vindictive and angry.

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        • Schychka says:

          So, justly chastised. Tried to edit too late for the five minute rule.
          But, since you are here, what would you think would be an appropriate plea bargain for Trump in this situation?

          • emptywheel says:

            Here’s a hypothesis.

            First, imagine that the video shows something really damaging–like someone else accessing the classified docs. Meaning if this went to trial it would become clear how much damage Trump did.

            Then imagine that Smith is also working on a 2071 case, showing that Trump stole documents, including classified ones, to benefit his PAC.

            So one plea deal Smith could offer is that Trump plead guilty to one count of 793 and also to 2071 in DC, and gets sentenced for 2071 (and also agrees he can’t run again).

            • GeeSizzle says:

              I would imagine that team Trump has reviewed every minute of the available tape, plus the missing bits, so they already know how screwed they are in this respect. So I feel like maybe there wasn’t any major incursion into the files by a drunk guest or sober international spy conveniently buying access to MAL.

              But then again…maybe this is why Trump appears so flustered of late. Could be the invisible (to us) noose tightening. He appears to be, um, let’s say “flailing” in recent interviews.

            • bmaz says:

              If Smith has a secret plan to string out charges and later upping the ante in an effort to force Trump into a 18 USC 2071(b) plea to be ineligible for office, it would be a gross abuse of prosecutorial discretion and disgusting to the point I would hope every citizen would be outraged.

              Smith’s initial indictment was well crafted, elegant and thorough. There was plenty of time for him to charge 2071 without pulling out shenanigans by later doing so. To pull such a plan as you described under these circumstances to attempt to force a plea would be the complete antithesis of a professional prosecutor.

              It would trash the speedy trial idea. And it would be a complete admission by Smith that he should have brought everything in DC to start with. If he does that, Smith is an abusive prosecutor and should be scorned up one side, and down the other, of the courthouses in both SDFL and DC. Cases against Trump ought be brought cleanly and appropriately. Not piecemeal and abusively. That would play right into the argument that what Smith is doing is, indeed, a political persecution.

              • BrokenPromises says:

                I understand what you are saying about this 2071 idea related to the documents case. But does Smith not have an ongoing investigation into J6 and the fake electors? And could that not lead to charges where a plea deal to both documents and that are combined as appropriate prosecution of the law(s).

                I wrote this before I saw the succeeding comments. I assumed that a J6 indictment could occur before start of the docs trial and that even if during a plea deal could be made before that goes to a jury at least.

    • obsessed says:

      I would whinge inconsolably if a plea agreement included preventing the public from learning about the evidence they’ve accumulated about the J6, false elector, and donor grift.

      • Tech Support says:

        A plea on the documents charges shouldn’t have any bearing on other investigations currently in progress, right?

        • bmaz says:

          Oh, heck yes it would. It would mean Trump has a prior conviction that would be used to substantially enhance any sentencing on any subsequent conviction.

  2. Waldo Pepper says:

    Unless DOJ is able to convincingly say the deal gets worse (actually much, much worse) the longer he stays in the race, it would seem that unless and until he loses the primary or the general he is disincentivized to take a plea. And I don’t see how DOJ convincingly says that. He is still an ex-president and DOJ is still worried about fomenting violence by dealing with him harshly. He is going to get a sweetheart deal whether he takes it now or when he gets beaten again. So if you are Trump, why not take a shot? You might get lucky (e.g., Biden dying or becoming incapacitated), you might be able to get enough state and local officials to engage in fuckery on your behalf, who knows what can happen?

    • ExRacerX says:

      “Unless DOJ is able to convincingly say the deal gets worse…he is disincentivized to take a plea. And I don’t see how DOJ convincingly says that.”

      Don’t forget Trump’s in potential jeopardy elsewhere, so the odds that things improve—or even remain static—for him are low.

    • jdmckay8 says:

      speaking from observation, not condemnation: Trump is a very unstable, unpredictable, dishonest man filled with vengeance and rage. Seeing him get BrentBaire’d the other night was pitiful. Lie after lie after lie, obvious to all. I’d bet a lot of MAGA’s finally thought that was too much. The dire consequences of having that mentality make critical decisions for the country are just a little too obvious now. A lot of people are leaving him, and sticking the knife in deep.

      The walls are closing in and he knows it. At some point having him go on suicide watch seems likely to me.

      He may have a few more hail Mary’s in him, but he just keeps doubling down and making things worse for himself. His pathology seems 100% in control.

      • nord dakota says:

        He reminded me a great deal of an elderly serious hoarder I know when he was talking about his boxes of interspersed paper and he had to go through them all before returning any and he was very busy the whole time.

  3. CoolHandCox says:

    Is there any indication that a wiretap recording of someone not Trump or Nauta was part of the discovery materials turned over?

    • EricMariposa says:

      It’s hard not to infer wiretap recordings from multiple well-known and lesser known sources in the indictment. As for a plea deal, Trump has a long history of settling cases after much sound and fury—recall the Trump University fraud case he settled for $25 million in 2016.

      If Trump could move beyond all of Jack Smith’s casework this summer, it would be ancient history to GOP primary voters by next year, and Trump will feel no compunction about bragging about how smart he was to beat the “Deep State” that he will smash as soon as he is re-elected (to protect the rest of us).

    • DavidStarr says:

      Per the government’s first discovery response, on p. 4:

      I. The defendants are not aggrieved persons, as defined in Title 18, United States Code, Section 2510(11), of any relevant electronic surveillance that was authorized pursuant to 18 U.S.C. §2516 and 18 U.S.C §2518 and that has been unsealed in accordance with 18 U.S.C §2518.

      Can some subject matter expert shed light on whether that’s a definitive disavowal of having any wiretap evidence in hand?

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      • Tech Support says:

        My understanding of the timing of events is that any wiretap during this time period would have to have been authorized beforethe June meeting that provided the grounds to obtain the search warrant.

        Which would suggest any theoretical wiretap that could have existed was authorized for something other than the documents investigation.

        So I don’t think any wiretap evidence will be presented in this case per the discovery response… but it doesn’t rule out the possibility that there are wiretaps in relation to other investigations of different crimes that are still ongoing. The wording of that response certainly leaves that possibility open, though I suspect the language is more boilerplate rather than a careful evasion.

    • Ginevra diBenci says:

      I would never rule out subjects of this investigation getting caught on wire taps initiated as part of completely unrelated (or at least separate) investigations. I would be surprised, however, if DOJ relied on these, certainly not centrally.

      Why use wire taps when your target has a penchant for incriminating himself in publicly available (recorded) audio and video? And almost everyone around him, increasingly paranoid about their own exposure, seems to have started recording or taking timely notes on their interactions with the hot potato?

    • Rwood0808 says:

      “Is there any indication that a wiretap recording of someone not Trump or Nauta was part of the discovery materials turned over?”

      I have what may be a silly question in regard to that.

      One for the lawyers here. (I’m sure if this had happened in this case we would know about it already)

      What is the protocol if the subject of an investigation speaks to, or just about, a sitting judge? One that may end up presiding over their case?

      What kind of conversation would it take to show that the judge should not be involved?

      • bmaz says:

        Give it up. You inject as much or more “just asking questions” beyond speculative bullshit here than anyone. Stop with factless garbage.

        • Rwood0808 says:

          I thought you might say that so I did a bit of googling first in an attempt to find the answer. It’s not easy as the first 20 pages are clogged with trump BS. The closest I could find was a case where the defendants were caught talking about a judge that they had influence over. Most of those cases involved outright bribery. That’s not what I’m asking or alluding to here.

          I understand she was not the subject of the warrant but given her involvement in the previous ruling, I find it hard to believe her name didn’t come up in a conversation or two. Would something as casual as “I hope Judge X gets our case” be enough to influence that judge presiding?

          If that’s still speculative BS than fine, I’ll drop it, but that was not my intention.

  4. Bay State Librul says:

    Be aware
    Be vigilant.
    As we speak, Trump is plotting something
    There will be plenty of bombshells (metaphorically speaking) in the works.

  5. paulka123 says:

    So, how many chickens are in each of these basket of eggs you are holding? I ask each of the many posters positing that Trump will take a plea and what that plea will look like.

      • Purple Martin says:

        We choose to go to a prediction this month and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard…

        …that said, I have absolutely no idea what kind of plea would be both realistic enough for Jack Smith to offer and compelling enough for Donald Trump to accept. But I’d be interested in informed speculation from those knowledgeable and experienced enough to have a credible opinion.

        • bmaz says:

          I have none at this point. Now Nauta could take a count of §1001 false statements, and probably walk off with no incarceration IF he cooperates and testifies. Not sure he will do that either, but something along those lines would be possible I would think.

          • earlofhuntingdon says:

            Nauta has to consider that his employment with Trump will end sooner that he might like, in any case. Might as well try to do it on his own terms.

            • bmaz says:

              There is a plea in the offing for Nauta I would think. But he needs a truly independent counsel to pull it off.

                • Rugger_9 says:

                  No. If he retired under honorable conditions, the book is closed unless it can be proven Nauta did this while under UCMJ authority. Flynn’s case provides an example as well.

                  One exception to rule is the Arlington tomb guard badge, but that’s one of the very few awards that can be yanked back.

                  • cmarlowe says:

                    From Military.com:
                    “Can a Veteran Receive Retired Military Pay While in Prison?
                    Generally, yes. Being convicted of a crime almost never jeopardizes a federal pension – the rare exception to this rule are charges relating to criminal disloyalty to the United States: espionage, treason, sabotage, etc.”

                    Since Nauta was not charged under 793, he may be OK. But his charges are related to Trump’s 793 case. Really I don’t claim to know the answer here.

                    • BRUCE F COLE says:

                      So charging him under the Espionage act is a very potent lever. Hope they threaten to use it on him. I would love to be a fly on the wall when Woodward tries to talk him out of flipping, if that were to happen – if they have the goods on him.

                    • bmaz says:

                      So, like others as to Trump, you are in favor of serially upping the ante on defendants to force a plea? You are in favor of abusive prosecutorial antics? Good grief. How bad of precedent are you willing to set because you have an internet hard on as to this case? That is puke inducing, and would be an enduring blight on the criminal justice system writ large.

                    • Rugger_9 says:

                      Unless Nauta can be shown as passing along the files or managing the communications to the foreign power, I can’t see how section 793 can be charged.

                      Also, this is post-DD214 so any pension attack would be challenged.

                    • BRUCE F COLE says:

                      Replying to bmaz and Rugger 9 through CMarlowe’s post above since no reply function is provided for the other 2 posts:

                      I don’t know about pension revocation procedures, but as to the relevant 793 subsection:
                      (b)Whoever, for the purpose aforesaid, and with like intent or reason to believe, copies, takes, makes, or obtains, or attempts to copy, take, make, or obtain, any sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, document, writing, or note of anything connected with the national defense;

                      The mere copying of a document of that type, on Trump’s order and commentary in Nauta’s presence of intent “to be used for the advantage of any foreign nation” (could be Israel, for instance) would put him in legal jeopardy in that regard. He only needs to be following orders with understanding of an illegal end use for the coping he’s doing. which is my reading of that text.

                      Given the danger that this ongoing intransigence from Trump poses to national security, I’m assuming that they are likely surveilling Bedminster to make sure containment of the problem is being monitored.

                      When I posted “if they had the goods on him,” I was noting that possibility, not suggesting that Smith make something up.

                      It was indeed a faux pas on my part to use the word “threaten.” If they have the goods, they should simply charge him and offer a plea deal in return for flipping, not threaten. My bad.

                      As to hard ons, this mess gives me no joy whatsoever. None.

                    • bmaz says:

                      Or, you know, charged it from the get go. As opposed to serially stringing it out to force a plea. That is called “upping the ante” by the way, and is seriously craven for a prosecutor to do when he or she had the facts to start with and just decided to piecemeal it out for tactical advantage to force a plea.

                    • BRUCE F COLE says:

                      Again, probably poor choice of words on my part. “If they were to get the goods on him” was what I was trying to convey, not that they were sitting on a chargeable 793 offense as a surprise tactic, say. The surveillance that I suggest is ongoing would be the hypothetical source of such a hypothetical charge.

  6. Savage Librarian says:

    “Nauta was not charged with perjury for that appearance [6/21/22], suggesting he already fixed his testimony before DOJ obtained the surveillance footage.”

    “But not before his alleged lies in May helped Trump abscond to Bedminster with more classified documents.”

    My WAG is that Trump may now be getting hot under the collar about who his PACs are paying and who is getting paid legal advice from team Trump. He may now begin to have reservations about more members of his campaign team, too, not to mention about Nauta and some Trump family members.

    • RipNoLonger says:

      For the poor little rich boy already infused with paranoia, these nagging innuendos must pierce his little id like a million voodoo needles.

      Donald, who can you trust? But since you are already smarter than anybody, why bother worrying? Maybe you have some acquaintances in other worlds that will take care of you. Doubt your family or “friends” will.

  7. West Coast Castaway(GG) says:

    Nope…Trump won’t plead out……Trump will never admit crimes….In fact Trump is, and has been attempting to rewrite history(with help from his many in government enablers)…Trump trying to remove Pulitzer prize awarding…MTG has introduced articles to remove Trump’s impeachment…Durham testimony was more GOP gaslighting attempts to throttle the Mueller report…

    One must understand Trump’s inner derangement…and, he’s quite old, lots of money…Trump wants to rewrite history…Thus Trump proclaims he’ll bring in patriotic education…Kash Patel’s children’s book..”The Plot against the King”….Mike Huckabee book..”A guide to president Trump”

    Trump has very few priorities left..make money…Retribution on everyone who disparaged him, slighted him., and…Rewrite the history books to paint himself as a legend….Yes, Trump is quite mad…..and as I wrote in this article….

    “Donald J Trump, what does he want, why does Trump want to be president?

    To be clear, Trump doesn’t care about faith, he doesn’t care about the well being of average Americans, those are the people Trump robbed and ripped off for decades, little people without the financial means to fight back, no, Trump could care less, in fact, I don’t believe Trump even cares about his own family, even at Trump’s advanced age, it is still about him, and money and more importantly…

    There’s an old saying, and I believe it to be true, although, in today’s day of instant inter-connectiveness and instant worldwide reach I don’t believe its possible anymore…That old saying is..

    “History is written by the victors”

    Donald J Trump wants to be president again for four reasons, but number four reason dwarfs one, two and three by miles..

    Trump’s wants to profit from the presidency, he can’t help himself, its ingrained, secondly, Trump wants to shield himself from prosecution for his countless criminal acts, three, he wants retribution on any and all who he thinks weren’t loyal or tried to hold him accountable…and four…

    Donald J Trump’s most important reason why he wants to be president again is to rewrite history and make himself out to be a hero, a messiah, Trump’s narcissist ego is his driving force…”

    https:// powellriverpersuader. blogspot. com/2023/04/the-usa-is-on-collision-course-with.html

    I’m not trying to advertise or promote my little blog here……It’s a good red…Cheers Eyes Wide Open

    • Rayne says:

      You just spent an excessive 360 words and 26 ellipses of varying length and inappropriate use to promote your blog because there’s virtually nothing else new in those 360 words/26 ellipses about this post’s topic.

      Knock it off. If you want to dump your emotions about Trump, do it in your blog and without plugging it here. Further more, I’m “breaking” the URL to your blog with blank spaces because we don’t have the time to vet your site and community members should visit it with all due caution.

      • West Coast Castaway(GG) says:

        Wrong ….and rude, I wrote that article 2 months ago…I don’t spam my articles and don’t give a fyck if anybody reads them….I write because I enjoy writing.

        All you do is attack…..And anybody who can’t see Trump’s attempted history rewrite is blind, Trump won’t plead because he’ll never admit fault and…Trump knows even if convicted he can use his financial flex to stay out of jail until he’s dead.

        Have a great day…phhh

        • Rayne says:

          [A]nybody who can’t see Trump’s attempted history rewrite is blind, Trump won’t plead because he’ll never admit fault and…Trump knows even if convicted he can use his financial flex to stay out of jail until he’s dead.

          Wow, 37 words in this summation. Amazing, the concision you can demonstrate. Now go phhh yourself.

          • West Coast Castaway(GG) says:

            Rewrite history….That is was Trump ordered his minions in government to do, and yes, Trump is quite mad/insane…..They are obliging…..

            Anywho…..Try looking above the rim…..No plea coming…Can’t change history by pleading.

            MTG’s words……………………

            “Trump’s impeachments were so egregious and wrong that they need to be erased from history.

            That’s why I’m working to expunge President Trump’s impeachments.”


        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          This isn’t the site on which to have a bout of logorrhea, reciting observations that are years, not months, old.

  8. Rwood0808 says:

    I was hoping to see an indication that Meadows had flipped.

    Is there one and I missed it or are we still waiting?

  9. Ebenezer Scrooge says:

    I’m in the “Trump won’t plead” camp. He was trained too well by Roy Cohn: never back down; never apologize. A reasonable person in Trump’s situation might plead guilty; I don’t know. But Trump runs on narrow behavioral rails. He is not a reasonable person.

    • 2Cats2Furious says:

      A reasonable person would have sent the boxes of “beautiful mind papers” directly to NARA in accordance with the PRA.

      Alternatively, a reasonable person would have had the boxes sorted and all Presidential Records and classified documents sent to NARA within a year of leaving office.

      A reasonable person would have, at a minimum, fully responded to a grand jury subpoena requiring the production of all documents bearing classification markings, rather than hiding boxes and lying to his own attorneys.

      There were any number of opportunities for Trump not to have been charged with 37 federal felonies. But as you say, he is not a reasonable person.

  10. TimothyB says:

    My read of the DOJ’s submission about discovery was that the main point was to appear to be together, confident, highly cooperative with defense counsel, and by-the-book.

    Marcie always sees more, of course, like the timeline points. Thanks! The tricky bit for trying to figure out any deeper purposes — freak out Trump or Nauta, make trial look terrible to defendants, etc., is that the content of this non-classified discovery dump is not visible to us.

    The submission does repeatedly point out they have flagged “key” docs/vids/etc. to make it easy on def. counsel. Sounds like a straight-up claim of holding all the high cards.

    Am I wrong that they promise completeness of this and later discovery only for witness statements and notes on them, transcripts, etc. and _not_ on documents? Trump keeps saying in public that he wants to know what are all the “other” (non-classified) documents that were seized from him are. (Why? Of all the things to want.) So this might get under his skin by complying with, over-complying with they say, the law, and blowing off his request.

    • bmaz says:

      The main purpose of discovery is to comply with discovery edicts. And, here, in a timely manner to keep the trial track going as fast as possible. Which is not only what DOJ/Smith said they would do, it is smart in a rocket docket district.

      • TimothyB says:

        Agree with that, bmaz. I left the speed part out because I was convinced by Marcy’s argument that the current schedule is unlikely to hold. The compliance with court’s order definitely makes them look together.

        • bmaz says:

          Oh, it will likely get delayed a little bit, but maybe not by that much. It can get done this year

        • TimothyB says:

          Oh! Now I have posted twice and both times forgotten something important.

          Thank you mods, for working to keep this blog civil and on point for this post, one where that has been difficult.

    • cldellow says:

      > Trump keeps saying in public that he wants to know what are all the “other” (non-classified) documents that were seized from him are.

      That’s on offer, isn’t it? Bullet point A5 of the discovery response says:

      > Defense counsel can contact the government to arrange for inspection of unclassified items seized at Mar-a-Lago on August 8, 2022.

      • Ginevra diBenci says:

        Do you know if they need clearances to see those? Or could they start on them while waiting for clearance?

        Not sure what value Trump’s counsel will see in going over these (aside from billable hours), but their client seems determined to force it.

  11. Schychka says:

    I have to wonder if there is something even more damaging to Trump’s ego in those boxes than, say, nuclear secrets. Maybe it’s his contract with Putin. Maybe it’s copies of the bribes he paid. Maybe it’s his detailed plans for turning the US into a dictatorship. Maybe it’s his porn stash.
    Why is he so compulsive about the non secret materials in those boxes?
    Can’t be that he wants his missing golf shirt.

    • John Paul Jones says:

      He isn’t. The point is to propagate to the faithful the bogus idea that the boxes are the kind of ordinary stuff you would find in any citizen’s garage/basement.

    • Ravenclaw says:

      Not buying that. If he did cut a deal with Putin, it will have been spoken word only: nothing in writing, anywhere. Ditto with bribes, except that there would be some evidence in corporate records (disguised as ordinary business expenses, as was done with Cohen). I may be missing something, but I’ll venture to say that the only thing potentially more damaging to him than the military and nuclear documents in those boxes would be similar documents known to have been in the boxes but now missing – especially if they contained information valuable to a foreign power known to have made lucrative deals with him.

    • Rwood0808 says:

      I don’t think Putin related docs are that hard to consider.

      The single most valuable thing Putin could have gotten from trump is action regarding the Magnitsky Act and Bill Browder. I’ve always been convinced that this was the subject of their closed-door meeting in Helsinki. Why the translator in that room was never questioned is something I’ll always wonder.

      No evidence to support that of course, but I would bet good money on it.

  12. punaise says:

    Waltine might tell (duh), Waltine might tell (duh)
    You’ll come a Waltine might tell (duh) with me
    And he sang as he stowed the sheafs in his banker’s box
    “You’ll come, Waltine – might I tell ya? – with me”

    Down came the G-men brandishing subpoenas
    Up came the troopers one, two, three
    “What’s that jolly document you’ve got in your banker’s box ?
    “You’ll come, Waltine – might I tell ya? – with me”

    • bmaz says:

      Lol, the Dubs traded for Chris Paul?? The Suns were desperate to get rid of him. He is never there when it counts. Poole needed to go, but I don’t know about Paul. Don’t play him very much!

      • punaise says:

        Yeah, oooof. Nice work, new GM Dunleavy. That CP3 rumor was floated a few weeks ago to general derision on sports talk radio here.

        The water cooler talk around the office today is hardly more enthusiastic. Poole did need to go, but CP3 is old and in the way.

      • iamevets says:

        disagree. the financial implications open up a lot for the future (perhaps staying under the apron), and poole really had to go. if healthy for the playoffs (and still on the team) then he helps more than poole with his no defense, poor shooting and mind boggling dumb plays. now the scowl will be directed at the opponents rather than whinging about playing time. team first.

        with basketball and the finances it’s hard to figure out, but this is a plus. now we can go to the playoffs with most playoff games and most playoff games missed due to injury on our squad. now if we can trade Kuminga for another 35 year old we can be the most experienced team ever…..

        • bmaz says:

          Paul is NEVER healthy for the playoffs. He is old and slow. If Paul was what people thought he was, the Suns would have one championship, maybe two. But he NEVER is all that. It is a wast for the Dubs. He just never could be there when it counted. He was a waste of years here. And his defense is maybe even slower than his offense now. I love Golden State, so good luck. But they could have gotten a LOT better return for Poole. Shows just how much Poole had to go though.

          • Ginevra diBenci says:

            The 19th pick next year? They missed the bus on that one for this year.

            I’m a little sore about this draft: UCONN lost a big piece of its championship (and super fun to watch) team to it.

      • Rugger_9 says:

        IIRC CP3 doesn’t do defense either so why trade one one-trick-pony for a more expensive one? I’d say the same thing about Harden.

        FWIW the Dubs are most dangerous when they defend well, and for all their offensive prowess the Splash Brothers take that part of the game seriously so I see trouble coming in the locker room especially if the Dubs figure out how to reel in Draymond.

  13. David F. Snyder says:

    I dunno. I could see a plea happening if the evidence is just solid. Then the judge would have an excuse to go easy on him?

    • bmaz says:

      As to Trump or Nauta? If Trump, people seem to be lulled into some fantasy land that he is a normal defendant. He is not. The facts contained in Smith’s complaint are already solid and getting more so by the day. And the judge has a reason to go easy on him? Seriously? NO judge would go that easy on Trump the defendant absent a stipulation from the prosecution. Doubt that is forthcoming with no incarceration. It is very hard to see any espionage and/or obstruction plea being sentenced too lightly, even by Cannon.

      I highly suggest people pay more attention to the actual pleadings and conduct of the case, and, for the time being at least, quit losing their shit on Aileen Cannon. And, despite all the clamoring here for A Case in New Jersey! A Case in DC! All on the same document5s case. No credible defense attorney would even think about pleading Trump without a global settlement to all. People are absolutely foaming at the mouth mad over strung out serial prosecution of Trump. It really has become Trump Derangement Syndrome in these comments, and that is truly sad and disappointing.

      Do it right and cleanly or don’t do it. Since Smith insisted on trotting his fantastic indictment to SDFL as to the docs case, it should remain there and anything further as to DC involve only J6. I’ve said this many, many, times but the allegations as to documents as to NJ, and arguably DC too, are already in the SDFL case by the indictment. It may be as uncharged conduct, but if you don’t understand how that works upon conviction in SDFL, go look it up.

      • oldtulsadude says:

        I’m just trying to understand: are you saying if chargeable crimes with sufficient evidence are discovered at Bedminster they would be added to the Florida charges? Thank you.

        • bmaz says:

          No, I am saying the only pertinent Bedminster allegations I am familiar with are already baked into the SDFL indictment as related conduct and are already sitting there for sentencing enhancement purposes should there be a conviction. Same as documents conduct in DC. Smith personally chose SDFL, wrap up all the documents issues there. Go to DC for J6 charges if the special counsel thinks they are appropriate to bring.The Oath Keepers and Proud Boys trial convictions really solidified how that could be done, although Trump would have defenses those other defendants struggled to assert.

          • Rwood0808 says:

            Would that include any monetization activities related to the documents if those activities happened in New Jersey or elsewhere?

          • PJB2point0 says:

            Agree with your views on the inappropriateness of raising the ante and thought the Andrew Weissman speculation about a plan B in federal court in NJ to be a bit silly. But, do you have a sense as to why Smith did not charge Trump with dissemination? The indictment takes pains to lay out all the predicates on 2 occasions and they’ve got him on tape on one. Retention is serious but it seems quite strange not to charge the more serious crime, especially if Smith is as aggressive a prosecutor as reported.

            • bmaz says:

              My guess is they did not have sufficient facts to insure they could prove it beyond a reasonable doubt. But that is pure speculation.

              • PJB2point0 says:

                That would be my first thought too but then why lay it out like that. It isn’t necessary to establish retention.

                • bmaz says:

                  Because it sets the stage for an allegation of relevant conduct to increase the sentence upon any conviction obtained. It is yet another sick component in the federal criminal justice system. And, yes, it can be conduct from another venue, it can even be extraterritorial conduct in another country. It can even be conduct for which a defendant was charged and acquitted of. It is a wholly bogus concept, but it is there and available.

                  • PJB2point0 says:

                    So dissemination, which is not alleged also does not have to be proven at trial to be a potential sentence enhancement? How can increased punishment without allegation or proof be constitutional?

                    • bmaz says:

                      You are asking the wrong person, I have always hated it. Yet there it is and such relevant conduct sentence enhancement happens pretty much every day in one federal court or another. To be clear, there was more than sufficient reference to it in Smiths SDFL indictment, even though it was not specifically charged.

                • timbozone says:

                  They’re signalling that anyone who can provide more info about what happened to documents in Bedminster should tell the government what they know. Also, maybe, the allegations around things that happened in Bedminster in the indictment make it more likely that the defense counsel can make an unforce error if they >or their client< attempt to address that in court.

                  • bmaz says:

                    Bullshit. You have no idea what they are doing.And what you just said is almost certainly bullshit.

            • bmaz says:

              And, as folks can probably guess, I have a very long term bug up my butt about upping the ante. There is a decision out there that makes it not illegal, but certainly does not condone it. I was into the countermanding arguments for 20+ years before I wrote this post ten years ago.

              • -mamake- says:

                Thanks. bmaz. This is great background info.

                And ditto on comment above (or elsewhere) – much appreciation for the attention and diligence of the moderators. Excellent containment.

              • jdmckay8 says:

                Thanks for that, bmaz. That is “stuff” I (and I guess most who are active citizens) always knew, but never had layed out as your 10 yr old post (and links there) define.

                I was struck by this, from your link to Popehat:

                So it wasn’t on the radar of the computer geeks until one of their own was the target? They weren’t aware of how daunting it was for all the others who came before Aaron Swartz, some younger than the 26-year-old, some with children whose lives would be ruined because of a parent’s stupidity, some who, like Swartz, did wrong but certainly nothing wrong enough to justify the government laying waste to their lives?

                IMO that’s at the core of a lot of what allows injustice to perpetuate. EG. people will fight like hell to correct a wrong when it touches them or those they run with. If they succeed, and a core injustice was exposed, it seems rarely to get extended/discussed thoughtfully/corrected systemically.

                I saw this at play a lot in our environmental efforts in NM.

                Anyway, again… thx again for that post.

      • David F. Snyder says:

        I only meant that if a convict shows some sort of acknowledgement of the error of their ways, there’s room for a shorter sentence. At least, that’s how it seemed to play out for some of the PB and OK defendants. I didn’t mean to imply that a shorter sentence is going easy on them (even though I did), though it seems leniency is allowed if the defendant pleas and accepts responsibility. You made a wrong assumption, assuming I’m ragging on Cannon — you already convinced me of your point of view. But she can still be lenient in sentencing should the defendant own up. I think that’s something Trump would consider. Of course, that’s out of character for him, but looking at a certain prison sentence can make some persons think (maybe not Trump).

        • BRUCE F COLE says:

          Trump’s personality/mental disorders will not permit him to admit error in any sense, whether it’s a guilty plea or during sentencing. He’s a malignant, grandiose narcissist, completely unable to grok any imperfection in himself, of any kind.

          If he goes to prison, he will compare himself to Jesus, and use it as a fundraiser (unless that’s prohibited in the sentencing process, which I’d hope it would be). I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he started calling Jack Smith “Pontius Pilate” any time now.

  14. posaune says:

    OT question:
    How does admiralty law apply to the recovery of the submersible?
    Since it’s also a joint US-CA effort, who is responsible for the recovery?
    And, will insurance cover it?

      • bmaz says:

        If you were a family member, would you want it brought back up for remains? I would not. They cared enough about the Titanic to go there, now they are all interned in the same Davy Jones’ locker. Remains at sea has been a thing forever, maybe that is the right place? I dunno, whole thing is just sad.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Agree. Burial at sea has been a thing since humans took to the sea. It would be consistent with the passions of the passengers and crew. It’s unknown at what depth the 22′ hull imploded. But if it imploded at the bottom – two and a half miles or about 380 atmospheres of pressure – there would be little to recover.

          Salvage rights seem moot. What’s of interest is whether enough evidence remains and is recoverable to conduct a hull failure analysis. Governments should consider making a few safety items mandatory. I read nothing in the media, for example, about whether the guy who chose to use a game controller to operate his deep sea submersible installed a transponder. While death at sea is always a risk, millions have been spent on search and rescue. It would be useful to lower those costs on a per event basis.

          • bmaz says:

            Totally uneducated guess, but if I had to bet, my bet would be the implosion happened at the 1.5 hour mark where all communication was lost. They were pretty far down already by then. And that the debris took a little longer to get separated and on the bottom as it was found.

          • P J Evans says:

            Apparently there’s a debris field. It’s more than 3km down, so good luck retrieving anything.

            • earlofhuntingdon says:

              Pity OceanGate seems to have waited eight hours after losing contact with the submersible, almost ten hours into an eleven-hour dive, to notify the Coast Guard. Not an obviously logical process. Not that it would have apparently affected the outcome, but OceanGate should not have known that at the time.

              • earlofhuntingdon says:

                The engineering choices apparently made for the Titan remind me of the scene in the Right Stuff, where the astronauts have to explain to Wernher von Braun’s team that they need a window and a hatch they can open themselves. The Titan had a window, but it’s not clear what it’s rated depth was.

                Passengers paid a quarter million to dive two to three miles deep, 400 miles offshore, in an untethered vessel whose max speed was 3.5 mph, and which possessed no transponder or onboard nav equipment. It relied on its chartered support vessel to navigate, and communicated with it via DM. The support craft seems not to have had sonar capable of tracking the Titan over the course of its dive.

                There were problems with hull integrity over multiple dives. How these were addressed is unknown. The deep dive into this tragedy seems likely to get ugly.

                • BrokenPromises says:

                  The plexiglass window was rated to 1300 m on a dive to 4000 m. I think this is one of the reasons an original passenger bowed out giving up an $83,000.00 deposit.
                  This vessel had been on a number of dives beyond the depth of that window (and perhaps a second one) encountering I’m sure cumulative stress on it’s hull integrity. The window or it’s titanium housing was the first debris spotted with a long path of debris. Article said that had it happened at the bottom the debris would have all been in one place. My take was though that the pattern suggested implosion was near the bottom.

                  • Rugger_9 says:

                    I have zero doubt this will be dug into with a thorough report, most likely by the USCG since they were the lead agency on this response.

                    When one looks at the history of the DeHavilland Comet the flexing that occurred between surface and stratospheric pressures play a large role in the planes coming apart. In this case the pressure changes were orders of magnitude larger, and I will speculate that the carbon fiber or its interface to titanium sections will come up as a key factor. Wait for the report. Whether this will lead to international agreements remains to be seen as well in standards and search and rescue responsibilities.

                    In the mean time, my condolences to the families of the lost crew.

                    • bmaz says:

                      Well, OceanGate Expeditions is located in Everett Washington, so that is a potential forum. Not clear if they are incorporated there, but can’t find anything to the contrary. Despite all the yakking on TV and whatnot, the liability wai9ver as to the passengers looks pretty strong on its surface. As of now, the better question may be not what the families can recover, but what could the company get slammed with as to all the cost of the search, attempted rescue and salvage? That may be a bigger problem. Too early to know about any of it.

                  • !noromo' says:

                    There’s also a lot of chatter on the interwebs about the strength of carbon fiber vs. steel.

                    Carbon fiber is much stronger than steel in terms of weight:strength — that weight seems to have been a factor in the design of the sub. But steel, especially under that kind of pressure at depth, is much, much stronger.

                    P.s. Rayne, et al., new 8-char username.

                    • P J Evans says:

                      They use titanium because weight vs strength problems. On most of the really deep-diving subs, the crew chamber is spherical, because the pressure is the same all the way around. Cylinders are weaker in the middle.

              • Rugger_9 says:

                Reminds me of the Kursk as well. They had the horror of waiting while the authorities dithered over calling in help. One can imagine the same sort of conversations going on at OceanGate about how bad it looks to get help on a stricken vessel.

                Since Titanic rests in international waters, licensing is moot. That kind of regulation comes from nations imposing their maritime laws, and every chart has the lines marked where those are in effect.

                I don’t doubt that the implosion happened beyond any depth where Titan could be saved. Unlike Kursk the passing would be almost immediate and probably the crew never knew what hit them.

          • Ginevra diBenci says:

            Did the Titan have a black box recorder that might reveal what went wrong? I haven’t seen anyone mention this.

            • timbozone says:

              Seems unlikely. They had a wireless game controller (for example) as the control for the submersible for heavens sake! On the other hand, a blackbox are generally rated to withstand deep water depths and are cheap relative to the overall costs of the submersible that was crushed. Whether normal commercially available blackboxes can handle a sudden implosion, possibly with splintered jaggies hitting from multiple directions at 3000+ psi at once is beyond my ken.

            • earlofhuntingdon says:

              Yes, improbable. OceanGate chose not to use a location transponder at all, which made finding the Titan difficult.

              The Titan also had no onboard navigational equipment. For it to find the support ship or an object on the seabed, it needed nav directions from a support ship – sent via text message.

        • Rugger_9 says:

          There is no way it would be anything but closed casket. If the implosion didn’t trash the corpses the fish will. But I think they’ll try for ‘closure’ reasons.

          OTOH, bringing up the Titan would provide some useful data on the design so there is that.

    • Rayne says:

      I’m going to insert here that I’m sickened by the intense interest bordering on ghoulishness surrounding the OceanGate submersible.

      There was a teenager aboard and everybody picking apart the figurative pieces in the aftermath and posting celebratory memes of billionaires’ deaths has either forgotten or ignored this young person’s plight.

      Azmeh Dawood — the older sister of Pakistani businessman Shahzada Dawood — told NBC News that her nephew, Suleman, informed a relative that he “wasn’t very up for it” and felt “terrified” about the trip to explore the wreckage of the Titanic.

      But the 19-year-old ended up going aboard OceanGate’s 22-foot submersible because the trip fell over Father’s Day weekend and he was eager to please his dad, who was passionate about the lore of the Titanic, according to Azmeh.

      Source: NBC News

      It nauseates me to have to watch this stuff as a moderator, especially when it’s not on topic.

      • -mamake- says:

        Thank you for citing the account told by the aunt, Rayne. I remembered reading it but didn’t recall where. This young man’s reluctance followed by paternal ‘coercion’ (implicit or explicit) is indeed sickening. His entire life was aheard of him, and his father’s folly is disgusting.

  15. clyde g says:

    I’m on the West Coast and last evening I heard the news that the DOJ has turned over unclassified discovery, including Grand Jury testimony, so I thought that this morning I would hear about Trump whining about the ‘rats’ who had betrayed him. But here it is later afternoon and nothing. Have they sedated Trump?

    [Welcome back to emptywheel. Please choose and use a unique username with a minimum of 8 letters. We are moving to a new minimum standard to support community security. With only (23) comments at this site to date as “clyde g” and “clyde,” you will not be grandfathered to keep your existing username. Thanks. /~Rayne]

    • grossman says:

      Sorry about that. I think I forgot to use the “g” once or twice, but to follow the new standard I’ll use “grossman”.

      [Thanks for updating your username to meet the 8 letter minimum. /~Rayne]

  16. harold hecuba says:

    Right wing radio is starting to come apart. I sometimes listen to the crazies on late night drives home (my anger helps keep me awake) and though the polling shows the vast majority of Republicans are behind Trump, there’s some nitpicking re: Trump’s recent behavior and interviews on Fox that indicate the seams are starting to show.

    No idea if Trump pleads or not, but I agree with others re: polling number going down, chances of a plea deal going up.

    • Rugger_9 says:

      When one has a 35+ point lead over the nearest rival and the MAGA base willing to do anything, I would not waste too much time waiting for Defendant-1 to cop a plea. If someone passes him, maybe but until then I don’t see anything but digging in.

      Which lawyers got the materials?

    • RipNoLonger says:

      That’s an interesting way to stay awake (listening to RW media.) I would be so wound-up that I’d probably be a danger on the hi-way.

  17. Unabogie says:

    For my part, I continue to be gobsmacked by the fact that we can’t ever be sure which investigation people might be referring to because Trump just won’t stop committing crimes. He’s incapable of playing it straight, even when his freedom is on the line. Is it akin to a gambling addict? I don’t know. But historians will absolutely love writing their theses on the Trump era.

    • GSSH-FullyReduced says:

      “…because Trump won’t stop committing crimes.”
      UnaBog, don’t ya think the burner-phones he has Walt keep buying are being carefully monitored for who’s been promised those MAL doc secrets?

    • Rugger_9 says:

      He also won’t STFU which has already affected his hopes for a legal team that will help him out of a jam.

    • bmaz says:

      Oh, yes, he has. I am getting really tired of people plying substantive law through civil defamation suits. But Richer’s may be quite valid, and he would make an extremely compelling plaintiff and witness. He is extremely bright and very well spoken. And Richer’s attorneys are substantial, while Lake will most likely be represented by the same right wing clowns that have continuously lost just about everything they have touched here. Civil suits move pretty slowly in Maricopa County Superior Court though, so don’t expect any quick resolution.

  18. Susan D Einbinder says:

    I think Trump will never, ever stop: He will not agree to a guilty plea because he believes he is immune. He will continue to obfuscate and lie to his base and stir up discontent, and things will just get crazier and crazier until the election. He may be able to run the clock and prevent any case from getting finished before the election (sorry if I’m using the wrong terms). The Republican “leadership” is captive to him: They just formally sanctioned Adam Schiff for prosecuting Trump’s 1st impeachment, two of them are fighting over which one will get to file an unjustifiable impeachment against Biden, another Republican (can’t remember which one) is putting forward legislation to literally erase both impeachments from the records. It is upside-down world.

    If he wins, well… terrifying.

    • ButteredToast says:

      Yep, the Republican caucus has chosen to bind itself to Trump and in the case of leadership, shows no sign whatsoever of reversing that decision. The representatives putting forward resolutions to “expunge” the Trump impeachments are Marjorie Taylor Greene and Elise Stefanik. Just another dumb display of fealty that also does nothing. It doesn’t even remove the impeachments from the Congressional Record.

  19. harpie says:

    Exclusive: Special counsel trades immunity for fake elector testimony as Jan 6 probe heats up https://www.cnn.com/2023/06/23/politics/special-counsel-fake-electors-immunity-testimony-jan-6/index.html Katelyn Polantz, Sara Murray, Zachary Cohen and Casey Gannon, CNN
    Updated 12:16 PM EDT, Fri June 23, 2023

    Special counsel Jack Smith has compelled at least two Republican fake electors to testify to a federal grand jury in Washington in recent weeks by giving them limited immunity, part of a current push by federal prosecutors to swiftly nail down evidence in the sprawling criminal investigation into efforts to overturn the 2020 election. […]

      • Rugger_9 says:

        Were these GA electors or the ones from NV we already heard about talking to the J6 probe on the 14th? Also, we had ones in WI, MI and AZ with varying levels of exposure with how their petitions were phrased. I also note that NV Governor Lombardo (R) shot down a measure that would have made fake electors into criminals.

        As for GA, we’ll see what drops in August by Willis, and whether Kemp and/or Raffensberger let her continue. If it’s the NV case, Willis isn’t involved with those. If it’s not either one of those sources, then this is pretty serious news indeed, and FWIW that attempt would be properly charged in DC since that is where the phony certifications would be or were presented. Another reason for SC Smith to conduct distinct GJ probes.

        A full list of 84 ‘electors’ is found here:


        • bmaz says:

          I don’t know. But at least 8 of the 16 “fake electors” in Georgia have already received immunity for testimony from Willis, so I would say that would be a good place to start looking.

          “What breaks from Willis in August”. The fact that such a sentence can be known or uttered exhibits what a two bit unprofessional hack Willis is.

        • jdmckay8 says:

          Were these GA electors or the ones from NV we already heard about talking to the J6 probe on the 14th?


          I’m sure it will be all over the news in the morning. Chris Hayes said tonight that Smith seized their phones a while back. He showed texts from Macdonald showing direct communication with (among several others) Meadows & Trump wrt the fake electors. This was (or implied it was) same conversation Cassidy testified, involving Meadows.

    • timbozone says:

      Ugh. “comes after a year of relative dormancy around the fake electors portion of the investigation”… Huh—guess they miss all the stuff in Georgia through the end of 2022…

      Thanks for the link post, Harpie! It’s good to see Smith’s team zeroing in on this in a more public way. Seems like he’s moving quickly to finish investigating this aspect of the Jan 6 insurrection plot.

  20. Robot17 says:

    I think his best play is to drum up as much support he can that he can pass over to an eventual Republican nominee. If he is convicted (still a big if) his best result would be a Republican president willing to pardon him. That candidate would most likely have to be a centrist but may “for the good of the country” pardon him. I doubt any of the wing nuts will capture enough independents to win the general.

    I really doubt Trump could win a general election.

    • bmaz says:

      I figured early November as a realistic target. I would never cede December 11, because nobody does shit in December. Heck, might have well just admitted nothing will substantively happen until January. That is foolish beyond belief. Make the defense move for that, and any, delay. This is just stupid.

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