Russia Russia Russia
Special counsel Robert S. Mueller III is now directly gunning for President Trump — and not just on one front. It appears that Mueller is investigating whether Trump himself committed misconduct or possible criminality on two fronts, and possibly more.
NBC News is now reporting that Mueller has sent a subpoena to an unnamed witness that appears to hint at just how wide a net Mueller has cast. NBC reports that the subpoena suggests Mueller is focused, among other things, on determining what Trump himself knew about Russian sabotage of the 2016 election as it was happening.
The subpoena indicates that Mueller may be focused not just on what Trump campaign aides knew and when they knew it, but also on what Trump himself knew.
Indeed, this feeds into the second way that Mueller is investigating Trump — for possible obstruction of justice. We learned last week that Mueller is closely scrutinizing Trump’s state of mind during his repeated efforts to push out Attorney General Jeff Sessions, to determine whether the goal was to replace him with someone who would better protect him from the Mueller probe (Sessions had recused himself, enraging Trump). Mueller is trying to determine whether this conduct, along with Trump’s firing of his FBI director, establishes a pattern that constitutes obstruction of justice. As I have argued, we know beyond any doubt that Trump has acted methodically, again and again and again, to constrain or derail the investigation and pulled back only after those efforts were foiled.
Beyond all this, we also know Mueller is scrutinizing whether any White House policies might have been shaped by Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner’s business discussions with foreigners during the transition. And who knows where that might lead.
Oh and he is ALSO looking into shady deals with other foreigners.
There is a lot of circumstantial evidence that Trump and his buddies are making foreign policy decisions based on their own interests. Looks like Mueller is on the path to some more solid evidence:
The special counsel investigation has broadened beyond Russian election meddling to include Emirati influence on the Trump administration. The focus on Mr. Nader could also prompt an examination of how money from multiple countries has flowed through and influenced Washington during the Trump era.
Mr. Trump has closely allied himself with the Emiratis, endorsing their strong support for the new heir to the throne in Saudi Arabia, as well as their confrontational approaches toward Iran and their neighbor Qatar.
According to the report, in late November 2016, Steele relayed information from his Russian sources that senior Kremlin officials had intervened to block Mitt Romney as President-elect Trump’s choice for secretary of State.
let’s see something else happened too…. What was it???? OH YAH Sam Nunberg lost his mind
When MSNBC’s Katy Tur asked, “Do you think that they have something on the president?” Nunberg responded: “I think they may. I think that he may have done something during the election, but I don’t know that for sure.”
Ultimately, Nunberg told CNN that Trump “may very well have done something during the election with the Russians.”
Nunberg seemed to admit he was speculating, but he has also been interviewed by Mueller’s team already, and he worked on the Trump campaign until August 2015 and is close to Stone. That suggests he may not totally be freelancing.
He said/speculated that Trump was aware of the Trump Tower meeting beforehand
“You know he knew about it,” Nunberg said. “He was talking about it a week before. … I don’t know why he went around trying to hide it.”
During his interview with CNN’s Erin Burnett, he reiterated his belief that Mueller has something on President Donald Trump. After telling Burnett that he thinks it may have something to do with Trump’s businesses, Nunberg took the opportunity to take a shot at pro-Trump cable news hosts.
“I just got a feeling he did something,” he told Burnett. “By the way, you’re going to be fine when it comes out what he did but people like Sean Hannity, Lou Dobbs, Jeanine Pirro — they’re gonna be very embarrassed.”
Great Election News
Top Republicans sound increasingly resigned to losing a special House election in Pennsylvania Trump Country a week from today, after party-affiliated groups spent more than $9 million on a race that should be a “gimme.”
It’s one of the increasingly bearish signs for the GOP ahead of November’s midterms, with mammoth stakes for the West Wing: If Dems take the House and there’s a Speaker Pelosi, President Trump faces endless subpoenas and perhaps impeachment proceedings.
Statistical Dead Heat in PA 18th Congressional Special Election. Democrat Conor Lamb leads Republican Rick Saccone 48% to 45%, 10 days out from election
It’s voter excitement that might put Lamb over the top. Whenasked about level of excitement among voters about the election, 63% of Lamb voters reported being very excited compared to 53% of Saccone voters.
The rising activism among scientists is a turnaround for a group that has traditionally seen politics as “grimy and grubby,” said G. Terry Madonna, a professor of public affairs at Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Pa. Many of these candidates have been recruited by 314 Action, a political action committee founded in 2016 to support policymakers who have scientific or technical backgrounds.
While a few scientist-candidates are running as independents, most are Democrats making their first foray into party politics. (More than 80 percent of scientists in a 2014 Pew survey identified as Democrats or Democrat-leaning.)
President Donald Trump’s threatened trade war has opened a rift within the Republican Party that some lawmakers and strategists believe could undermine their effort to keep their majorities in Congress.
Republicans plan to brag about the economy in midterm campaigns in hopes of countering Trump’s unpopularity, touting a strong stock market, low unemployment rate and — most importantly — their increasingly popular tax legislation. But Trump’s suggestion Saturday that he might slap penalties on European cars, in addition to the tariffs on aluminum and steel he already promised, could upend that strategy completely, Republicans say.
“We’re definitely seeing unbridled enthusiasm among Democrats.”
There are Democratic candidates running in all of the state’s 36 congressional districts for the first time in 25 years.
There’s a popular Democratic Congress member, Rep. Beto O’Rourke, challenging (and out-fundraising) Sen. Ted Cruz in the race for US Senate
In 1964, as the National Review was trying to determine which Republican to support for president, the magazine’s leader, William F. Buckley, articulated what would become known as the Buckley Rule: They would support “the rightwardmost viable candidate.” While “viable” didn’t necessarily mean “electable” in the way we now understand it, that’s how the rule is remembered, as a balancing of ideology and practicality.
Now something similar is happening among progressive Democrats.
the effort from the left, on the whole, is quite restrained, and arguably could have a positive impact on the party over the long term. Indeed, the left is following its own version of the Buckley rule — and while there is a lot of anger at President Trump, we haven’t seen the kind of enraged revolt against the party’s own leaders that took hold of the GOP in 2009.
The Democratic Party as a whole is undoubtedly moving left, and there are certainly going to be candidates in some places who test the willingness of general election voters to support liberal positions. But there are far fewer primary challenges than you might have expected, and the point doesn’t seem to making Democratic representatives terrified of straying from dogma the way the Tea Party did to Republicans.
In other words, the Tea Party struggled to find the right balance between ideology and practicality, because they convinced themselves that maximalism was always the best strategy. At the moment it looks like Democrats are steering a more pragmatic course. It might leave them with a few more moderates in their caucus next year, which could make opposing President Trump more complicated. But it could also help them win the House — which would make it all worth it.
Mississippi risks being yet another state where Republicans have to play whack-a-mole to knock down insurgent candidates, who have had a run of it lately. When these candidates win, the best-case scenario for Republicans is they end up being a pain in the neck for party leaders and unreliable votes on big legislation. (See Ted Cruz circa 2013 and the government shut down.)
Worst-case scenario, those untested candidates end up losing winnable seats for Republicans. (See Roy Moore in Alabama.) Moore’s loss to Doug Jones even opened up the door for Democrats to take back the Senate this fall.
A Child Will Lead Them
Democratic leaders are working closely with rank-and-file lawmakers and activists, taking steps to stay unified on guns and avoid the kind of strategic lurches that fueled the failed fight over Dreamers.
So Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi are acknowledging that big-ticket gun control is probably a non-starter in Congress, given entrenched opposition among Republicans. Instead, they’re working to seize on the mounting public outrage and press their advantage by stoking big turnouts to demonstrations later this month planned by survivors of the Feb. 14 school shooting in Parkland, Florida.
And unlike with immigration, Democrats aren’t feeling the pressure of hard deadlines, either to act on Dreamers or fund the government.
Democratic pollsters say it’s still too soon to know whether gun safety will strike a strong chord in November. But they have seen a notable shift in voters’ views on gun issues after Parkland compared with other recent mass shootings — likely giving Democrats more confidence to press the matter in Washington.
The findings, while limited, point in one direction: Gun control can save lives.
Trump isn’t cut out to be a dictator (thank God)
Though Trump may admire the world’s authoritarians, he has proved to be a singularly incompetent one himself. Certainly, he has the requisite bluster and demagogic instincts for the job, but he’s been too undisciplined to be a self-respecting autocrat. He talks like Mussolini but governs like Mr. Bean.Being a dictator is hard work, after all, and Trump, who has more than once remarked on how difficult his job already is, needs his executive time. Being a dictator requires discipline, and Trump thrives on chaos, his White House lurching between scandals and beset by constant turnover.
How can a leader so enamored of authoritarianism be so allergic to order?Trump seems utterly incapable of ruling even the 18-acre kingdom of the White House. Recent reports describe “chaos,” “tumult,” “disarray” and “pure madness.” With the policy process completely broken, staffers seem to occupy their time with blood feuds, leaking and legal consultations. Trump himself — “brooding,” “isolated and angry,” “mad as hell”The president’s self-generated governing crisis is disturbing. But when paired with authoritarian envy, it is pathetic. An exercise in autocratic jock-sniffing. Other would-be strongmen have turned to Karl Marx for inspiration; for Trump, it is more like the Marx Brothers. Absurdly stereotyped characters — Anthony Scaramucci, Sebastian Gorka, Stephen K. Bannon — pop randomly in and out of well-appointed rooms, while the main character feeds chaos all around him. It is the Duck Soup dictatorship.
Other Good News
Alex Jones, the shrieking maniacal Trump-supporting conspiracy-theory-spewing mouthpiece of InfoWars, has gotten himself into the barrel three times over.
First off, on February 28, the Daily Mail reported that two former InfoWars staff members were suing Jones for inappropriate sexual behavior and racial slurs.
Next, as CBS reports, Jones freaked out on the night of Mar. 3, claiming that YouTube was about to terminate his account on Mar. 4, though YouTube says they have no plans to do that—yet. In December, YouTube announced it would hire 10,000 moderators to remove fake or misleading videos. It has a three-strike policy with an appeals process.
Next, CNN piled on by contacting advertisers who had no idea their ads were being shown on InfoWars, causing a number of them to cancel.
That is it. Lots of good news. Remember, the only way they can win is by cheating. it is why they suppress votes and gerrymander. We have to do all we can to stop them. If you are looking for action, call your reps and DEMAND that they do something to stop Russian meddling in our election before the midterms. Tell them that you know that the State Dept. Was Granted $120 Million to Fight Russian Meddling and Has Spent $0. Demand that this change!