Day 669


(Matt Kiser) #1

Updated 11/19/2018 10:35 AM PST

1/ The CIA concluded that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman ordered the assassination of Jamal Khashoggi, contradicting the Saudi government's claims that he was not involved in the killing. The evidence included an intercept showing a member of the 15-person team calling an aide to Prince Mohammed and saying "tell your boss" that the mission was accomplished. Trump called Saudi Arabia a "truly spectacular ally," telling senior White House officials that he wants Prince Mohammed to remain in power as a check on Iran. Trump also claimed that the CIA "haven't assessed anything yet," but "as of this moment we were told that [Prince Mohammed] did not play a role." (Washington Post / New York Times / CNN / Politico)


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://whatthefuckjusthappenedtoday.com/2018/11/19/day-669/

#2

A full day has passed with no correction so, yes, it was intentional. What a disgrace. Yet an aggregate of polls consistently shows that about 4 in 10 Americans approve of our President and only about 5 in 10 disapprove. I try to be optimistic and focus on our recent Blue victories and on what the House Democrats will be able to accomplish beginning January 3, but sometimes the nation’s apathy about who is occupying the White House is disheartening. :pensive:


#3

The military troops sent down to the Mexican border are coming back by Christmas. All for show, with the Defense dept stepping in and making sure our troops work was to stop an invasion, but support the efforts at the border.

T flexing the Military muscle, but the Military knowing their job, does just enough.

But the general overseeing the deployment told POLITICO on Monday that the troops will start heading home in the coming days as some are already unneeded and others complete the mission they were sent for. The returning service members include engineering and logistics squads whose jobs included placing concertina wire and shipping containers to limit access to ports of entry at the U.S.-Mexican border.

All the troops should be home by Christmas, as originally expected, Army Lt. Gen. Jeffrey Buchanan said in an interview Monday.


#4

Looks like one of Roger Stone’s aides, Andrew Miller is trying to utilize the thinly constructed argument that Mueller can not subpoena him because, Mueller was not approved by Congress to be in the position he is in, as Special Prosecutor.

The Dem’s are working the same angle to say that Matt Whitaker should not be considered Acting AG without Congressional approval.

Andrew Miller is trying at any cost not to have to speak to Special Counsel Mueller, which is also a BIG TELL.

The appointment of acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker two weeks ago should have no effect on an ongoing court challenge that questions the constitutionality of special counsel Robert Mueller’s appointment, the Justice
argued in a new court filing Monday.

“The President’s designation of Acting Attorney General Matthew G. Whitaker on November 7, 2018, has no effect on this case,” which deals with an attempt to force a Roger Stone associate to testify before a grand jury, the special counsel’s legal team wrote in the filing.

“Whitaker’s designation neither alters the Special Counsel’s authority to represent the United States nor raises any jurisdictional issue,” the prosecutors wrote. “Nothing exceptional about this case warrants a departure from standard procedure.

The case involves Andrew Miller, an associate of Stone’s who was subpoenaed earlier this year. He refused to testify before the grand jury, even after a trial-level judge ordered he must. The judge held Miller in contempt of court, so he has taken his case to the federal Court of Appeals. Generally, Miller seeks to invalidate Mueller’s work. He argues that Mueller cannot subpoena him because the special counsel was not appointed by the President nor confirmed by the US Senate.


(Robert Max Rees, II) #5

You forgot the best part of his California visit - during a presser in the Northern California town hit hardest, he called it the wrong name - twice. It’s “Paradise”, not “Pleasure”.


#6

Ivanka’s use of personal email for government correspondence will be getting some scrutiny from the Democrats this upcoming year. Here it comes, T 'n Co.

Politics
Ivanka Trump used a personal email account to send hundreds of emails about government business last year

By Carol D. Leonnig and
Josh Dawsey
November 19 at 6:56 PM

Ivanka Trump sent hundreds of emails last year to White House aides, Cabinet officials and her assistants using a personal account, many of them in violation of federal records rules, according to people familiar with a White House examination of her correspondence.

White House ethics officials learned of Trump’s repeated use of personal email when reviewing emails gathered last fall by five Cabinet agencies to respond to a public records lawsuit. That review revealed that throughout much of 2017, she often discussed or relayed official White House business using a private email account with a domain that she shares with her husband, Jared Kushner.

The discovery alarmed some advisers to President Trump, who feared that his daughter’s practices bore similarities to the personal email use of Hillary Clinton, an issue he made a focus of his 2016 campaign. Trump attacked his Democratic challenger as untrustworthy and dubbed her “Crooked Hillary” for using a personal email account as secretary of state.


Mentionable News
#7

The Blue Wave rolls on!!! This is an unexpected and very welcome surprise (until very recently his opponent held the lead). We’re now up to 233 seats in the House! :ocean: :dancing_women: :man_dancing::muscle:

P.S. Earlier today I submitted a post in which I was a bit despondent over the state of our nation (not my usual attitude – I think I was accidentally served decaf). Well, I should have been focusing on news like this! :tada:

P.P.S. I should add that the final vote count is not official, but according to McAdams:

Democratic Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams declared victory Monday in his race against GOP Rep. Mia Love — after he gained a 739-vote lead in ballot updates from Utah and Salt Lake counties.

Love did not immediately concede as a few votes still remain uncounted in the two big counties before their vote canvasses Tuesday formally conclude two weeks of tallying votes.

But McAdams said even his small lead is insurmountable with the few votes remaining to be counted.


#8

This is just my conjecture, but I believe Mueller has been waiting to serve another round of indictments until he received these.


#9

Attempt by Trump to get the Justice Dept to prosecute Comey and Clinton, but was discouraged by WH lawyer Don McGahn. If T had succeeded in this, it would have been an impeachable offense.

We know that Don McGahn has spoken with Mueller for over 30 hours, so obviously Mueller knows this.

Now that the President’s responses are into Mueller, wonder what would happen now.

WASHINGTON — President Trump told the White House counsel in the spring that he wanted to order the Justice Department to prosecute two of his political adversaries: his 2016 challenger, Hillary Clinton, and the former F.B.I. director James B. Comey, according to two people familiar with the conversation.

The lawyer, Donald F. McGahn II, rebuffed the president, saying that he had no authority to order a prosecution. Mr. McGahn said that while he could request an investigation, that too could prompt accusations of abuse of power. To underscore his point, Mr. McGahn had White House lawyers write a memo for Mr. Trump warning that if he asked law enforcement to investigate his rivals, he could face a range of consequences, including possible impeachment.


#10

I believe you are right on this. One other little wrinkle is that Mueller’s team delayed the sentencing meeting with the judge for a 10 day period, and the 10th day will be this upcoming Monday, Nov 25th. I heard this confirmed this am by a former proscecutor Mimi Rocah.

Not sure if we are waiting for some kind of discussion with a judge because of ‘ongoing investigations’ for Gates or Manafort, or Flynn.


#11

This is a follow up to the post above – McAdams announcing his victory – but at that time, the results had not been declared official – now they are. And the winning margin is just big enough to rule out a recount.

Final vote counts Tuesday showed that Democrat Ben McAdams did not jump the gun when he declared victory a day earlier over two-term Republican Rep. Mia Love.

He won by 694 votes, or a margin of 50.129 percent to 49.871. That margin of 0.258 was just barely outside the 0.25 percent that would have allowed Love to request a recount. :raised_hands:

Here’s a great info-graphic by HuffPost that shows where we stand on the House and Senate races. (They haven’t updated with McAdams’ win as of this posting, but I’m sure they will soon.)


#12

The pundits/lawyers (ex prosecutors) on MSNBC tonight have said that the next shoe to drop which might reveal the ‘domestic’ connection with the Russian interference and what Mueller might have could be one or all of these…

  1. Manafort update - within the week we will know a bit more about his cooperation level.

  2. Hearing on Dec 4th re: Flynn

  3. Corsi (Stone’s associate) may be soon be indicted.

"What worries me is that we have a president who is savage to the rule of law"…Chuck Rosenberg - fmr Senior FBI Official, lawyer for the Eastern District of VA

"Now that we’ve seen the president turn in his answers, we’re getting closer to the end. It is still a mystery to where that end lies. I’ll say this, Brian, as we continue to get new reporting about the president’s own conduct, as much as he wants this to end fast, his own conduct could be keeping this going, as Mueller could be exploring more evidence of obstruction. The whole are of obstruction is a grey area. Could we see more indictments this week, yes, indeed. but that necessarily be the end. We need to stay tuned to what’s happening. It would not surprise me if we see something slipped into on the Friday, after Thanksgiving, because Mueller’s team continues to keep working at it. "…Frank Figliuzzi, former Assistant Dir/FBI for Counterintelligence.

:man_dancing: :statue_of_liberty: :man_dancing: :statue_of_liberty: :man_dancing:


Day 676
#13

Thanks for the info about what could unfold – I didn’t realize that Flynn has a hearing scheduled in just a couple weeks!

I have two hunches for indictments (in addition to Corsi, Stone, Trump Jr., Kushner, and others who have figured more prominently in the news):

  • Ilya Bykov – The New York accountant/financial advisor who created a shell company for Aras Agalarov shortly before the Trump Tower meeting and 11 days after the meeting helped him move $19.5m to the U.S. from offshore. (Agalarov is the Putin-connected Russian oligarch who set up the Trump Tower meeting and hosted Trump’s Miss Universe pageant in Moscow). Bykov is the “go to guy” for Russian oligarchs buying real estate in New York. He also has connections to Trump’s business associate, Felix Sater, and to Natalia Veselnitskaya, the Russian lawyer at the center of the Trump Tower meeting. For more, see these articles in The Guardian and Medium.
    .
  • Irakly Kaveladze – Aras Agalarov’s long-time associate and his representative at the Trump Tower meeting. Kaveladze has a history of money laundering:
    .

#14

And here’s the legal note on

  1. Manafort update - status report due on Nov 26th. Monday. :slight_smile:

(David) #15

This CNN article argues only that Mueller’s appointment was accomplished legally and is not a relevant question as Roger Stone associate Andrew Miller advances his fight against a subpoena by appealing to a higher court.

While mildly interesting, it does not discuss the effects that Whitaker could have on the Mueller effort by denying certain avenues of investigation which are important to America discovering the “whole truth”. Sen. McConnell refuses to protect Mueller from possible White House shenanigans making the independence of our “nonpartisan” judiciary, including SCOTUS, critical in determining the outcome.

I fear that the appointments of Whitaker and Kavanaugh are part of a coordinated effort to undermine the Mueller probe. Both are unqualified right wing hacks with little personal respect for the law or truth…perfect for such an effort.


#16

I agree that these very partisan appointments are meant to give T protection in any legal jeopardy he may face from Mueller.

But the bypassing of Andrew Miller’s argument that Mueller has not been authorized, etc still recognizes Mueller’s preeminent position as top legal dog here.

But you are right, the appointment of Whitaker and Kavanaugh will skew the judicial system way right, and it is part of T’s/McConnell’s supreme effort to stack the courts.


(Matt Kiser) #17

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