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More Questionable Behavior from Trump, T Admin, DOJ, and R's vs Dems, Press, Justice


:eyes: there’s nothing there!


Glenn Greebwald of the Intercept likes to twist the facts…he is rebutted here by on the Flynn case dismissal.

Worth a read. @Pet_Proletariat

Glenn Greenwald’s Invented Claims in Defense of Bill Barr and Mike Flynn | emptywheel


Long thread from former Prosecutor and MSNBC legal contributor.

Yes, why would Flynn lie? KT McFarland knows…because she blurted out to T that Flynn spoke about sanctions to Kislyak making T culpable and more layers of reasons why.

What a ‘freakin’ web of deceit…


Here comes the revolving doors - opening doors too quick in confined spaces makes for a new spread of the virus in two states - Georgia and Texas. Go figure. :woman_facepalming:

If ever there was a time to social distance and believe that virtual experiences are the answer, it is now…:pray:

Two churches in Georgia and Texas that reopened recently amid the novel coronavirus pandemic have since closed their doors again after churchgoers and religious leaders tested positive for the virus, according to multiple media reports.

A representative for the Catoosa Baptist Tabernacle in Ringgold, Ga., told The Christian Post in a statement on Monday that the church decided earlier this month to no longer offer “in-person worship services for the foreseeable future” after confirming some of its families were “dealing with the effects of the COVID-19 virus.”

The church said it had initially resumed in-person services weeks back as Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp began to ease coronavirus restrictions on nonessential businesses in April. At the time, the church said it had also made sure to adhere to social distancing guidelines advised to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

“Seating was marked to only permit sitting within the six foot guidelines, all doors were open to allow access without the touching of doors, and attendees were asked to enter in a social distancing manner and were dismissed in a formal manner as well to ensure that the social distancing measures were adhered by all,” the church told the outlet.

However, the church said it ultimately decided to discontinue all in-person services last week “until further notice in an effort of extreme caution for the safety and well-being of our families.”

Days after the move by the church in Georgia, ABC News reported that Houston-based Holy Ghost Parish also did the same after it was discovered multiple members of the organization had contracted the novel coronavirus and one leader had died.

The Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston said the church, which had also reportedly begun hosting mass at the start of May as some coronavirus restrictions on certain businesses in Texas had begun to ease, decided to reclose last week after the death of Father Donnell Kirchner, 79


Republicans to recruit “pro-Trump” doctors for TV

“Republican political operatives are recruiting ‘extremely pro-Trump’ doctors to go on television to prescribe reviving the U.S. economy as quickly as possible, without waiting to meet safety benchmarks proposed by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to slow the spread of the new coronavirus,” the AP’s Michael Biesecker and Jason Dearen reported Tuesday. According to Biesecker and Dearen, who obtained a leaked recording of the meeting, a senior staffer for the Trump campaign discussed the plan on a May 11 conference call.

The AP reported that the Trump campaign isn’t concerned that the messaging might contradict advice from government experts. “Our job at the campaign is to reflect President Trump’s point of view,” Trump campaign spokesperson Tim Murtaugh said. “We are his campaign. There is no difference between us and him.”

>> Big picture from NBC News health analyst Dr. Irwin Redlener: “[Trump] himself has become a personal public health hazard to citizens of this country. It’s just astounding. And I’m hoping that somebody can talk some sense into him…”
Brian Stelter - CNN Reliable newsletter

(David Bythewood) #228

I remember this coming up months ago. The timing for finally going through with it couldn’t be more blatant.

Trump Will Withdraw From ‘Open Skies’ Arms Control Treaty

President Trump’s decision, the third major retreat from arms control agreements, will be viewed as evidence that he also plans an exit from the last major arms treaty with Russia: New START.


I probably spend WAY too much time with Trump Bots on Twitter, and hopefully they’re not a good sampling of our current voting public. But, at least there’s this:

If Biden CAN pull this out, he’d better not F it up; as it’s going to take a lot longer than four years to clean up the mess that the Trumpster will leave behind.


Sec of State Pompeo has a lot of side hustles with the Republican donor class - Koch, his Madison Dinners, etc. He’s a man who is positioning himself and his job now as a launching pad for future positions.

Pompeo was a Congressman from Kansas, Tea Party memberwho is famous for his multiple Benghazi investigations on Hilary Clinton before he was tapped for a WH position as a T loyalist.

WASHINGTON — Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made a secretive trip in January to a Florida retirement enclave populated by prominent Republican donors while on the tail end of a diplomatic trip to Latin America.

He held the same kind of quiet meeting in December with Republican donors over a hotel dinner on a State Department trip to London.

And last October, he huddled with Charles G. Koch, the Republican billionaire and a longtime supporter of his, while on an official visit to Kansas aboard a government aircraft.

In each of those instances, Mr. Pompeo did not put the visits on his public schedule. He and his aides avoided telling the reporters traveling with them about the meetings, though some news organizations reported them afterward. And they took place as Mr. Pompeo was considering a run for the Senate from his adopted home state of Kansas and as he nurtures plans for a presidential bid in 2024.

American Oversight, a liberal legal watchdog group, has demanded that the State Department turn over details of all of Mr. Pompeo’s domestic trips.

“It’s becoming increasingly clear that Secretary Pompeo is using the State Department to support his political career, and is using the position of secretary of state to collect a Rolodex of powerful people to support him for whatever venture he sees next,” said Austin Evers, the group’s executive director, who worked at the State Department during the Obama administration.

Congressional aides said they had noted Mr. Pompeo’s unannounced side visits while on diplomatic business. Senator Bob Menendez, Democrat of New Jersey, [called for a special counsel investigation](Menendez Calls for Hatch Act Review Into Pompeo Travel to Kansas | United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations) last year into the legality of Mr. Pompeo’s frequent Kansas trips. The Hatch Act forbids federal employees from using their official positions to carry out partisan political activities, with the exception of the president and vice president.

(David Bythewood) #231

Republicans issue first subpoena in probe of Biden and Burisma — to company that claims it’s already cooperating

‘At every opportunity we have indicated to the Committee that it is our intention to cooperate,’ CEO of company with ties to Hunter Biden tells Homeland Security panel


Rachel Maddow suggested that the OAN Network is just like Russian Progaganda, and the judge dismissed the case Ok…glad that newscasters are allowed their informed opinions.

A federal judge on Friday dismissed a lawsuit filed against Rachel Maddow, finding she did not defame One America News when she said it was “Russian propaganda.

Herring Networks, the parent company of OAN, claimed that Maddow had defamed the company in July 2019, when she discussed a Daily Beast article reporting that an OAN contributor was also on the payroll of Sputnik, a Kremlin-backed news site.

“For the foregoing reasons, the Court finds that the contested statement is an opinion that cannot serve as the basis for a defamation,” the judge concluded.

The suit was dismissed under the California anti-SLAPP statute, which protects speech on matters of public interest from frivolous suits. As the victor, Maddow will now have the opportunity to seek attorneys’ fees from OAN.

Maddow said OAN “really literally is paid Russian propaganda.” Herring Networks alleged that she made a false statement, in that OAN is not paid by the Russian government.

In dismissing the suit on Friday, U.S. Judge Cynthia Bashant ruled that Maddow was giving her opinion based on an accurate summation of the article.

“A reasonable viewer would not actually think OAN is paid Russian propaganda, instead, he or she would follow the facts of the Daily Beast article; that OAN and Sputnik share a reporter and both pay this reporter to write articles,” Bashant wrote. “Anything beyond this is Maddow’s opinion or her exaggeration of the facts.

Attorney Theodore Boutrous, who handled the case for Maddow, NBC and parent company Comcast, urged the judge in a hearing on Wednesday to look at the remark in its full context.

Bashant noted that Maddow’s tone “could be described as surprise and glee at the unexpectedness of the story,” and said that weighed in favor of dismissing the suit.


An example of the synergy is between the WH and OAN.




Federal judge hires high-powered D.C. attorney to defend his actions in Flynn case

Judge Emmet G. Sullivan (Dominic Bracco II/For The Washington Post)

May 23, 2020 at 11:56 a.m. PDT

The federal judge who refused a Justice Department request to immediately drop the prosecution of former Trump adviser Michael Flynn has hired a high-profile trial lawyer to argue his reasons for investigating whether dismissing the case is legally or ethically appropriate.

In a rare step that adds to this criminal case’s already unusual path, U.S. District Judge Emmet G. Sullivan has retained Beth Wilkinson to represent him in defending his decision to a federal appeals court in Washington, according to a person familiar with the hire who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter. The U.S. District Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit is now examining the judge’s actions and the larger case against Flynn after lawyers for President Trump’s former national security adviser asked the court to force Sullivan to toss Flynn’s guilty plea.

(David Bythewood) #235

Trump threatens to crack down on social media platforms after Twitter labels his tweets



McEnany is a piece of work…turning the tables back on the reporter and re-spinning any story. She presents high levels of righteous indignation, and will not zero in on what the questions really are…Par for the course with this admin.

“No, you’re wrong.” - is the main refrain.

Even if you somehow accept that McEnany wasn’t trying to seed doubt about Scarborough’s supposed role in the former aide’s death, though, it’s a striking bit of whataboutism: Yes, the president is trafficking in this baseless theorizing about a murder plot, but look at what Scarborough said about this!

McEnany saved perhaps her biggest whopper for late in the briefing. After being pressed on these things, she sought out a more friendly line of questioning from One America News Network’s Chanel Rion, a pro-Trump reporter who has flouted White House press corps social distancing guidelines and has trafficked in conspiracy theories that the coronavirus began in the United States.

Rion asked McEnany about former CIA director John Brennan, at which point McEnany lodged a baseless claim about the Steele dossier full of unverified claims about Russia and Trump.

“John Brennan probably has the most to answer, because it was John Brennan who sat before Congress and said the Steele dossier — paid for by Hillary Clinton, paid for by the [Democratic National Committee] — that document played no part of the role in opening the Russia probe, when in fact we know it did — when in fact, we know it was the impetus,” McEnany said, “and testified before a [Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act] court for its truthfulness to spy on the Trump campaign.”

There’s a lot to unpack there. First, the claim that the document played a part in opening the Russia investigation is false. That investigation began in the summer of 2016, while the dossier came later in the fall. Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz has reported that, in fact, “Steele’s reports played no role in the Crossfire Hurricane opening.” (Crossfire Hurricane is the code name for the Russia investigation.)

The idea that the CIA spied on the Trump campaign is also highly suspect. The target of the FISA warrant was Carter Page, who was no longer a foreign policy adviser to Trump’s campaign at the time.

Whatever the faults of the Steele dossier — and we’ve known from the beginning that it was full of unconfirmed claims about Trump and Russia — it was not used to launch the Russia probe. McEnany’s decision to promote this long-debunked claim would seem to lay bare exactly how much she intends to adhere to the facts to defend her boss. There were strikingly few used Tuesday.

@MissJava or @Pet_Proletariat - can you put this in More Questionable Behavior please?? Thanks! :grinning:


Trump press secretary Kayleigh McEnany has voted by mail 11 times in 10 years

Mentionable News
(David Bythewood) #237


In letters copied to the U.S. president, a Turkish businessman who partnered on the Trump Towers Istanbul deal implored White House cabinet members to sizably boost trade with Turkey in response to the novel coronavirus.

Three White House cabinet members received pitches last week to dramatically increase trade with Turkey. Capitalizing on the coronavirus pandemic, the letters came from Mehmet Ali Yalçındağ, the chairman of Turkey’s oldest state-sponsored trade group who partnered with Ivanka Trump and the president on the Trump Towers Istanbul deal.

“Well before Covid-19 and the new set of economic and partnership needs created by this crisis, President Trump and President Erdogan spoke in November 2019 of expanding annual trade between our countries to $100 billion dollars,” Yalçındağ wrote to Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue on May 20. “Dramatically increased agriculture exports from the US to Turkey would be a major step to delivering this.

“I have copied this letter to President Trump,” Yalçındağ’s letter concludes.

Appointed by Erdogan to lead the state-sponsored Turkey-U.S. Business Council, Yalçındağ sent two similar letters to Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, who was one of the “distinguished guests” at a lavish U.S.-Turkey Conference that the foreign business group hosted at Trump International Hotel in Washington last year.

For Yalçındağ, the pandemic provided an opportunity to pitch Ross on turning to Turkey for personal protective equipment, efforts he said were already underway.

“With export financing in place, Turkey would be in a position to increase its role in a diverse and reliable global supply chain,” Yalçındağ wrote. “During the current crisis, Turkish manufacturers demonstrated the nimbleness and skill needed to quickly adapt to market needs. Turkish companies have manufactured and exported Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) to more than 80 countries — with a significant shipment donated and exported to the United States.”

The letter to Brouillette focused on the liquefied natural gas supply.

(David Bythewood) #239


Big S-storm coming out of ex DNI acting head Richard Grennell -
and various Dems - Rep Swalwell, lawyers who worked on the Mueller report or the questioning

@Windthin adding to your Twitter recounts…


Is T trying to get taken off social media so he can blame them for no free speech? Is he pushing the limits and provoking violence, so to enrage the Dems?

What is the motive here…?

Divert attention from the 100K dead.

President Trump has retweeted a video where a supporter declares “the only good Democrat is a dead Democrat” — and the man’s explanation behind the comment is even more violent.

Trump retweeted a video from the account Cowboys for Trump at midnight Thursday, in which the leader of the group Couy Griffin declares “the only good Democrat is a dead Democrat.” Griffin then explains he doesn’t mean it “in the physical sense,” but rather “in the political sense” because “the Democrat policy and agenda is anti-American right now.” A generous interpretation of the video would suggest Griffin is trying to compliment Democrats of the past, but he never quite makes that point.

Thank you Cowboys. See you in New Mexico!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 28, 2020

The Cowboys for Trump tweet comes in response to a Daily Beast article covering Griffin’s rally at a New Mexico church, which he held to defy the state’s COVID-19 social distancing orders. The Daily Beast asked Griffin to clarify his “dead Democrat” comment in an interview after the Tuesday rally, but he only repeated the statement and suggested that top Democrats enforcing social distancing will “get to pick your poison: you either go before a firing squad, or you get the end of the rope.” Kathryn Krawczyk


Interesting question. Along those lines, how about his trying to take action against twitter for calling him out on his lies?

Personally, I really don’t think he gives a rip about the 100k dead, he’s just trying to divert attention from all the other crap he’s doing, some of which is stretching what the limits of his authority really are.