Monday, July 9th. I’m back.
THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION
- Is the president scared to sit down with Mueller?
- Mueller team asks judge to stop Manafort from using ‘selective prosecution’ argument
- White House close to refusing interview with Russia investigation
- ‘I want to see all their texts’: Giuliani claims with no evidence that messages sent by Mueller’s team could show anti-Trump bias
- Trump and Giuliani talking about “truth” is an “oxymoron,” Michael Cohen’s new lawyer says
- Giuliani: Trump Told Comey To Give Flynn ‘A Break’ During Probe
- Oops: Giuliani slips up and confirms Trump asked Comey to give Flynn ‘a break’ — even though Trump denies it
- The Senate Intelligence Committee reaffirmed that Russia meddled. But Trump is in denial.
Yeah, the Senate Intelligence Committee confirmed what I’ve been saying for a year; that the Russians interfered in the 2016 election on behalf of Donald Trump.
Michael D. Cohen, the former personal lawyer to President Trump who is under investigation by federal prosecutors in Manhattan, has hired Lanny J. Davis, the Washington lawyer and public relations consultant best known for serving in the Clinton White House, to represent him.
The pairing is unusual. Mr. Davis has tried to position himself as a key defender of Bill and Hillary Clinton — particularly Mrs. Clinton, whom Mr. Trump defeated in the 2016 presidential election and continues to attack as “totally crooked.” Mr. Cohen was once a fierce defender of Mr. Trump.
- ACLU: Less than half of child reunions will meet deadline
- Journalist Held by ICE Speaks: ‘Without a Doubt’ I Was Targeted for My Work
- Year-Old Baby Appears In Immigration Court, Cries Hysterically
- Trump Admin Tells Court They Have Only Returned 2 Out Of 102 Immigrant Kids Under 5 Years Old
- Illinois governor profits off ICE detention center contracts
A sealed legal complaint against GOP mega donor Elliott Broidy by his former mistress contains “troublesome claims that he wouldn’t want to become public,” a source with knowledge of the situation told The Daily Beast.
Broidy is being sued by former Playboy Playmate Shera Bechard, who became pregnant with his child before having an abortion. Bechard sued Broidy on Friday, alleging he violated their non-disclosure agreement when he stopped paying her installments totaling $1.6 million earlier this month. A source close to Broidy told The Daily Beast, “a cursory review of the lawsuit indicates it is full of falsehoods.”
On Tuesday, Michael Avenatti will ask a Los Angeles court to unseal the complaint that he said names him.
“You don’t sue someone and refuse to give them a copy of the complaint, unless you are playing a game,” Avenatti told The Daily Beast.
He currently represents porn actress Stormy Daniels in her lawsuit against Michael Cohen, who negotiated her non-disclosure agreement to keep quiet an alleged affair with Donald Trump. Cohen also negotiated Bechard’s NDA.
On April 12, Avenatti tweeted: “In last 18 mos, Mr. Cohen negotiated yet another hush NDA, this time on behalf of a prominent GOP donor who had a relationship with a LA woman, impregnated her and then made sure she had an abortion. The deal provided for multiple payments across many months.”
TRUMP ORG CORRUPTION
- Donald Trump’s son linked to £10,000 US State Dept payments to Turnberry resort
- Donald Trump’s Scottish resort paid by US taxpayers for ‘VIP visit’
Donald Trump’s flagship Scottish resort received thousands of pounds in US taxpayers’ money to host VIP visits by officials from his administration, an investigation by The Scotsman can reveal. The US president’s resort at Turnberry received more than £5,600 in federal funds to provide accommodation for the trip earlier this year.
According to a source at the South Ayrshire hotel and golf course, the stay was in connection with Mr Trump’s official visit to the UK scheduled for this July, which is expected to include Scotland in the itinerary. The payment, sanctioned last month by the US State Department, represents the first time one of Mr Trump’s Scottish businesses has received direct federal funding from his own government.
- Lauralitvan: Trump’s Personal Driver Suing for Lost Wages
- Trump’s Personal Driver for 25 Years Sues for Unpaid Overtime
- Some Mar-A-Lago Members Appear To Have Been Invited To An Air Force One Tour
- Ivanka Trump’s Chinese-Made Products Conveniently Spared From Dad’s Tariffs
COLD WAR 2.0
- ‘Those are stupid people’: Trump reportedly tried to calm Putin after he complained that White House officials were trying to stop them from speaking
- The Washington Post: Trump’s combative words on NATO put Mattis in an increasingly tough spot
- Dawn Sturgess, British Woman Poisoned by Novichok, Dies
- UK woman dies after being exposed to nerve agent novichok | UK news | The Guardian
- Bill Browder: Time to get tough on Putin
- Trump considered invading Venezuela. We should talk about it.
- Theresa May struggles to keep her government together after resignation of ‘Brexit minister’
- The Washington Post: Britain’s Brexit secretary suddenly resigns
- The Washington Post: British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson resigns amid turmoil over Brexit
- Kaz Weida: SCOTUS Picks, Reality Show Style
- Trump to tap federal appeals court Judge Brett Kavanaugh for Supreme Court
- Trump’s Supreme Court pick weighed in on 2 thorny issues that could be pertinent to the president
By the way, Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement a couple weeks ago. The very next day, it comes out that his son Justin underwrote a billion dollar loan for Trump Organization in 2009 while working at Deutsche Bank. DB has been caught laundering money from Russian Oligarchs, and no one in their right mind would loan money to Trump under normal circumstances in a good economy. 2009 was the height of the housing bubble, Trump Org had the corporate equivalent of a 350 credit score, and Eric Trump was already on the record talking about how they got all the funding they needed from Russia.
I’ll cover that in more detail over the next week or so.
TRUMP HATES WOMEN, PART 792: ATTACKS ON BREASTFEEDING
- US stuns world health community by opposing breastfeeding
- Trump Sided With Formula Manufacturers to Try to Stop a Pro-Breastfeeding Resolution at the United Nations
- ‘It was blackmail’: US ‘bullied other countries to stop WHO promoting breastfeeding’ | South China Morning Post
TRUMP THE SEX OFFENDER
A few days before President Trump heads to the U.K. to meet the queen and the prime minister, a BBC investigative program has revealed fresh allegations of sexually inappropriate actions by Trump during the 1980s and 1990s, comparing him to a “predator” at parties with girls as young as 14.
The report featured Monday on the BBC Panorama investigative documentary series, entitled “Trump: Is the president a sex pest?” included testimony from two women who said they encountered Trump at parties during his time as a real estate magnate and operator of beauty pageants.
Trump’s behavior toward younger women was described by a man who attended the same parties as like that of a “predator.”
One of the women, Barbara Pilling, said she met Trump at a party in New York in the late 1980s while she was a young model. She alleged that then-businessman Trump asked her how old she was and approved when she said she was 17, allegedly responding: “Oh, great. So you’re not too old and not too young. That’s just great.”
Pilling said she was not the youngest girl at the party, claiming there were girls as young as 14 attending. “I felt I was in the presence of a shark,” Pilling said, describing Trump.
Another woman, Heather Braden, told Panorama that she saw Trump at a party in Miami in the 1990s attended by only four men and 50 female models.
“I felt like a piece of meat in a market,” Braden said. “I could have been auctioned off in some sort of a sex slave ring.”
One anonymous male source speaking to the show claimed to have been at many of the same events as Trump during the same time frame and described drug- and alcohol-fueled parties attended by older men and younger women.
Trump, in particular, was “notorious” for his behavior toward younger women, the man said.
“This guy was like a predator in action. The next day or days after we would hear about it, he would brag about it to his friends and it would get around that he scored. Maybe one or two girls at a time, which is what he loved to do.”
- Twitter Thread about talking to Open Carry People at a March for our Lives protest
- Shannon Watts: NRA Silent on Black Man Legally Carrying Shot by Police
THE PROPAGANDA MACHINE
- Fox’s Napolitano: Trump pleading the Fifth to Mueller would be ‘catastrophic’ | TheHill
- Conservative columnist: Kim ‘has really fleeced Donald Trump’
NAME AND SHAME
- ‘Where are the babies, Mitch?’: McConnell pursued from restaurant by angry crowd
- The Social Shaming of Racists Is Working
- Stephen Miller Threw Away $80 Worth Of Sushi When Confronted
- Steve Bannon Called ‘Piece of Trash’ by Heckler at Bookstore
- Stephen Miller Owned the Libs by Throwing Away His Own Sushi
- The Washington Post: From Kellyanne Conway to Stephen Miller, Trump’s advisers face taunts from hecklers around D.C.
- Michelle Wolf Absolutely Nails Pro-Life Hypocrisy: They ‘Do Not Care About Life’
- ‘Self-induced abortion’ searches on Google reflect a dark reality for many women
- Elizabeth Warren fires back at Trump: A ‘bully’ going after ‘women all across this country’
- Overturning Roe v. Wade could hurt job growth in many U.S. states
WHITE HOUSE CHAOS
- Fox News host Howard Kurtz criticizes his network for ‘barely’ covering Scott Pruitt’s resignation
- Acting EPA chief promises ‘change in tone,’ new emphasis on transparency
Oh, by the way, Scott Pruitt is gone. I’ll cover that soon.
GOP: THE PARTY OF LINCOLN IS DEAD
- The Washington Post: As Trumpism takes hold, Republicans face increasing pressure to embrace policies they once opposed
- The Republican Party is no longer the party of conservatism. It’s the party of fear.
- Nazis and white supremacists are running as Republicans. The GOP is terrified.
- Ex-White House ethics chief files complaint demanding probe into Jim Jordan sex abuse coverup claims
This is another story I need to cover that broke recently. Rep. Jim Jordan was a former wrestling coach at Ohio State University in the 80’s and 90’s. At the same time, they had a very handsy and rapey doctor who molested the members of the wrestling team. This doctor had a locker right next to Jim, and Jim’s team told him about the handsy doc. Jim denied ever knowing anything about the alleged abuse. Since his denial, 7 of his former wrestlers, including UFC Champion Mark Coleman, have come forward calling bullshit on Jim.
I hope they go full JoePa on his ass.
- ‘Populist’ Trump Turns Up Nose at Public University Graduates
- The Washington Post: America, 2018: If they win this game show, young people can have their student debt paid off
CRIME AND PUNISHMENT
- Harvey Weinstein Pleads Not Guilty to Additional Sexual Assault Charges
- A.G. Underwood Announces Settlement With Niagara Falls Landlord Who Provided Tenants With Illegal Leases | New York State Attorney General
- MAGA hat-wearing teen may have spewed racist remarks before Texas Whataburger assault – NY Daily News
- Boston weighs giving legal, non-US citizens voting rights
- Michigan Supreme Court will decide redistricting battle
The state’s high court issued an order Friday saying it would hear oral arguments on the contentious case July 18. The fiercely contested measure pits the group, Voters Not Politicians, which supports redistricting reform, against a Republican and business-backed group challenging the validity of the measure.
At issue is whether the redistricting petition merely seeks to amend the state’s constitution or instead is a far broader revision to the constitution, which can only be made through a more formal constitutional convention?
- Russian bots are back: #WalkAway attack on Democrats is a likely Kremlin operation
- Democrats ignore the left at their peril. Midwesterners aren’t scared of socialism — they’re hungry for it.
- Nancy Pelosi: “Civilization as we know it today is at risk in this election.”
- Beto-mania Sweeps Texas
- On trade, Trump promised win-win. He’s delivering lose-lose.
- Iran: Trump’s Tweets Have Added $10 a Barrel to Cost of Oil
- Trump, In First Meeting With Merkel: ‘You Owe Me One Trillion Dollars’
- Amazon warehouse workers need a union — a heavy lift in America
- Companies used Trump’s tax cut for record stock buybacks, not wages
- The Washington Post: An oxygen machine was keeping an ailing woman alive. Then the power company shut off her electricity.
- The Washington Post: Trump’s fight with federal employee unions gets real on Monday
PROGRESS IS PROGRESS
- 20committee: Trump a Russian asset since the 80’s
- John Schindler: -No, President Trump, the KGB Is Not ‘Fine’
- What If Trump Has Been a Russian Asset Since 1987?
The unfolding of the Russia scandal has been like walking into a dark cavern. Every step reveals that the cave runs deeper than we thought, and after each one, as we wonder how far it goes, our imaginations are circumscribed by the steps we have already taken. The cavern might go just a little farther, we presume, but probably not much farther. And since trying to discern the size and shape of the scandal is an exercise in uncertainty, we focus our attention on the most likely outcome, which is that the story goes a little deeper than what we have already discovered. Say, that Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, and Paul Manafort told their candidate about the meeting they held at Trump Tower with a Russian lawyer after they were promised dirt on Hillary Clinton; and that Trump and Kushner have some shady Russian investments; and that some of Trump’s advisers made some promises about lifting sanctions.
But what if that’s wrong? What if we’re still standing closer to the mouth of the cave than the end?
Welcome to the party, pal! We’ve been spelunking this traitorous cave for a year, and we’re just getting started.
Seriously, take the time to read this article. It looks at the whole Trump/Russia conundrum from a skeptical point of view, yet doesn’t discount the coincidences as “conspiracy theories” or “kooky.”
That’s it for today. I’m working on a “What’d I Miss” post covering the major events from June 23 to July 8. There was a lot of big stories that happened in that time, and I wanted to cover them, but needed to get back to daily posts. I figure it will take at least a couple days to get caught up, but if I worked on that first, I’d fall behind further. This way, I can get caught up faster.
Thank you, and have a good one.
“Without Journalists, it’s just propaganda.”
– Katy Tur