Good Wednesday morning everyone! I hope the Holiday Season is being good to all of you so far and you are enjoying family, friends, food, laughter and togetherness. I know someone who is not experiencing that, actually there are a lot of people who should be mightily worried and not sleeping well at night. Some of that is quite good for us…..
Jailed Russian national Maria Butina has reached a deal with federal prosecutors to plead guilty to a charge of conspiracy to violate a prohibition on undeclared foreign agents, ABC and the Daily Beast report.
In a version of the plea document to be filed with the court, Butina reportedly will admit that she “sought to establish unofficial lines of communication with Americans having power and influence over U.S. politics.” Butina will also reportedly cooperate with prosecutors in ongoing investigations.
The details of the plea deal are yet sketchy. According to ABC, Butina will admit to acting with “Person 1” — previously identified as her boyfriend, the GOP activist Paul Erickson — in a conspiracy “with a Russian government official… and at least one other person… to act in the United States under the direction of Russian Official without prior notification to the Attorney General.”
The Russian Official has previously been identified as the former senator and central banker Alexander Torshin. As Rolling Stone reported in April, Torshin and Butina worked together for years to infiltrate the NRA to gain access to Republican power players, politicians and the Trumps.
And the tRumps, all of them?? Cannot wait to find out. Plus Putie boy is denying he even knew of Butina’s existence. Right.
An attorney for Paul Manafort said Tuesday that the former Trump campaign manager chairman may not contest the allegation by Robert Mueller’s special counsel team that Manafort lied after reaching a plea agreement with prosecutors.
Manafort’s lawyer Richard Westling, appearing before U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson in a federal courthouse in D.C., said “the certainty of the hearing is less clear” following an earlier meeting with Mueller’s team. The decision about whether to contest the claims that Manafort lied, Westling said, may be influenced by “information we learned today about where this all goes.”
Judge Berman Jackson set a hearing for Jan. 25 to determine whether Manafort lied, which would impact his sentencing, as well as several deadlines for filings that will disclose more information.
Manafort’s sentencing is currently scheduled for March.
You, Mr. Manafort are chicken fried rice. There, done.
Your humor break, hold onto your coffee or should I say coveffe, covfe, coveefe, whatever just watch and enjoy the orange turd embarrass himself again:
— Deadspin (@Deadspin) December 10, 2018
Such a giant blowhard. Never would have dreamed we would even be talking about this kind of sh*t from an American President. Gawd.
You get yours, Heather got nothing, but her memory will always inspire us:
Neo-Nazi James Alex Fields Jr. was sentenced Tuesday to life in prison for killing Heather Heyer in a vehicular attack in Charlottesville, Virginia, last year.
A jury sentenced Fields to one life term for the murder, along with 419 years for another nine charges, according to NBC Washington. The jury also recommended he be fined nearly half a million dollars.
The 21-year-old extremist, who is associated with the hate group Vanguard America, was charged with first-degree murder and nine other felonies after he intentionally rammed his vehicle into anti-racist counter protesters following the “Unite the Right” rally on Aug. 12, 2017, killing one and injuring dozens more. Fields was found guilty of all 10 charges on Friday, and faces 30 charges in a separate federal case concerning the same attack.
He reportedly showed no emotion during his sentencing.
On Monday, Heyer’s mother, Susan Bro, said in emotional testimony that Fields tried to silence an activist by killing her daughter.
“Heather was full of love, justice and fairness,” Bro said, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch. “Mr. Fields tried to silence her… I refuse to let him.”
Let him rot, well I do not like being that person, it’s the human service worker in me, but the jury certainly made the right decision.
I know this may not be up there on the Good News list but the outcome will hopefully be Good News:
Prosecutors have dropped charges against a woman whose baby was wrenched from her arms while she was arrested by New York police officers after video footage of the incident went viral.
A judge on Tuesday ordered Jazmine Headley, 23, to be released from jail, where she has been locked up since Friday.
Headley was arrested at a Brooklyn benefits office, in a chaotic scene where officers wrestled her one-year-old son away from her, and has been locked up ever since. The Brooklyn district attorney, Eric Gonzalez, said he was dropping charges against her
“Like everyone who watched the arrest of Jazmine Headley, I was horrified by the violence depicted in the video and immediately opened an investigation into this case. It is clear to me that this incident should have been handled differently,” he said.
The whole story was disturbing. I keep hoping at some point this crap will stop then it is tomorrow….crap. Sorry, happy Good News! You get me, right?
This is a long read from Vox but voting rights fighters are so important. I will quote a bit, but the whole thing is worth a read. Our women in the House will kick some butt and make the old haggered rethugs look like, well old haggered rethugs:
Collective anger about restrictive voter ID laws is reaching a fever pitch.
Rep. Terri Sewell (D-AL) wants to do something about it. She has a bill that would restore key parts of the landmark 1965 Voting Rights Act, making it more difficult for states to discriminate against voters of color, and give the federal government a stronger ability to take action against states with a history of discrimination.
Sewell bluntly describes strict voter ID laws as “modern-day forms of voter suppression.”
Sewell’s bill, the Voting Rights Advancement Act, is designed to restore key provisions of the Voting Rights Act that were invalidated by the US Supreme Court’s 2013 Shelby v. Holder decision.
Even if the bill has little chance passing a Republican-controlled Senate, House Democrats want to ready it for 2020, after which they could have a greater chance to make it law.
“We want to establish an ironclad constitutional record when we pass it, which will be soon, but not as soon as moving HR 1,” House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who is poised to become speaker in January, told reporters last week.
For Sewell, this bill is rooted in a dark chapter of America’s history, one she does not want to see repeated.
“I’m a daughter of Selma. Nothing is more important to my constituency than restoring the Voting Rights Act,” Sewell said. “We first have to address the integrity of our elections.”
I am so looking forward to our new House!
New York State Democrats say they plan to quickly push reforms to the state’s antiquated voting laws when they take complete control of the state legislature in January, encouraging advocates in a state where reform has long been stymied.
Despite its reputation as a solidly Democratic state in presidential years, New York’s voting laws are among some of the most restrictive in the country. Voter turnout is consistently low. It is one of just 12 states where there isn’t an early voting period before Election Day to cast a ballot. If voters want to cast an absentee ballot, they have to give officials an excuse for why they can’t make it to the polls. When there’s a federal and state election in the same year, New Yorkers have to go to the polls on different days for primary contests, driving down turnout and costing the state millions of dollars. The state cuts off voter registration 25 days before an election. And if voters want to vote in a primary, they have to declare their affiliation with a party very far in advance ― in some cases, nearly a year.
“It is certainly at the top of the agenda for the new Democratic majority in the senate,” Gianaris said in an interview. “We are lagging the country, in an embarrassing way, on voting laws in large part because for years there was a majority in the senate that viewed increased voting participation as against their political interests.
I have to admit, I think I am Mrs. Smart A** know it all in NY politics but guess I was not paying close enough attention in my own state to know how sorry it was on voting rights. I just a**umed we are a pretty blue state we must be GRRRReat. Now maybe we will be.
I am rooting for this to be so:
Republicans in Wisconsin, Michigan and North Carolina suffered stinging losses in November, but the parties aren’t transferring power quietly, or at all in some cases. On the way out the door, “lame-duck” state legislatures are bringing in last-minute laws that will strip power from incoming Democrats, gut voter-approved ballot initiatives, or otherwise undermine the election results.
But some legal experts say the most alarming legislation the Republicans have passed is unconstitutional and unlikely to survive outraged Democrats’ legal challenges.
Among other issues, they contend many of the Republican laws blur the constitutionally mandated separation of powers among the executive, legislative and judicial branches of government.
“One of the fundamental principles of the American constitutional system is that the legislature is not the whole government,” said Richard Primus, a professor of law at the University of Michigan. “The point of the constitutional system is that no decision-making system gets to act for the whole political community – the powers are separated.”
“On the level of pure politics, I sometimes scratch my head over what they’re doing,” Weiner said. “In some ways, it’s very shortsighted.”
Time magazine on Tuesday announced a group of journalists it called “The Guardians” as 2018 Person of the Year, referring to individuals “who have taken great risks in pursuit of greater truths.”
Slain journalist Jamal Khashoggi was among several individuals named in the award, along with Filipina journalist Maria Ressa and Reuters’ Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo. The Capital Gazette, the Maryland media company that lost five staffers to a mass shooting in June, also was included in the honor.
Time editor in chief Edward Felsenthal announced the 2018 Person of the Year on NBC’s “Today” show, noting this was the first time the weekly newsmagazine chose someone who is no longer alive.
“As we looked at the choices, it became clear that the manipulation and abuse of truth is really the common thread in so many of this year’s major stories ― from Russia to Riyadh to Silicon Valley,” Felsenthal said.
— TODAY (@TODAYshow) December 11, 2018
Truth matters, love matters…HT CC!
Oh and this….so awesome, really really, oh just look:
Special counsel Robert Mueller has been chosen as Time magazine’s third-place runner-up for 2018 Person of the Year — a recognition of the significance of his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and possible collusion with the Trump campaign.
Even in his own domain, Robert Mueller is often silent. When witnesses arrive at the special counsel’s office in southwest Washington, they are ushered through an underground parking garage and up to an austere, windowless conference room. Mueller’s prosecutors do the talking. The man in charge, if he appears at all, greets visitors with a polite handshake and then retreats to a seat against a wall.
And so the Avengers are on it:
Bahahaha. Go Mueller! I think he is Hawkeye or maybe Captain Marvel? What do you think?
This is HYSTERICAL (also NSFW):
Y’all saw that crazy shit that happened at the White House today when Chuck ‘n’ Nancy went to visit Trump to talk about averting a government shutdown, and Chuck ‘n’ Nancy ended up playing foosball with Trump’s face while he screamed “WALL!” over and over again? It was so great.
During the meeting, Trump interrupted Pelosi a whole lot, and she responded by not giving a fuck and making fun of him to his face about how all she does is win, while Trump was left to whine about how nobody ever talks about how “he” won the Senate for the GOP. (The Senate election schedule, which heavily favored Republicans in the 2018 midterms, won the Senate for the GOP.)
When Pelosi walked out of the White House, she looked like some kinda badass spy walking away at the perfect moment, right before the building explodes. (We are not saying Nancy Pelosi blowed up the White House! OK fine, she did it WITH VOTES.)
Me leaving your Holiday Party after starting major drama pic.twitter.com/BRf98b9R2g
— phil (@PrettyGoodPhil) December 11, 2018
She is the sh*t right, am I right?
Links to more Good News:
All the winning is just too much for me!
Well that is it for me. Please share your good news in the comments! They add so much knowledge to our community.
This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.