Whitaker Hearing Open Thread

Courtesy of NBC’s YouTube channel, a live stream:

I hope it works. A brief on the hearing from The Post:

Acting attorney general Matthew G. Whitaker is scheduled to appear Friday morning before the House Judiciary Committee — a high-stakes confrontation that was nearly canceled a day earlier in a standoff with Democratic lawmakers.

Lawmakers are expected to grill him about his decision not to recuse from overseeing special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential campaign. They also plan to ask questions about Whitaker’s past businesses and his decision-making at the department since his appointment by President Trump in November.

Hope the Capitol maintenance crews finished digging the trenches and canals leading to the Flop Sweat Reservoir last night!

Do y’all expect fireworks from this committee hearing? I’m keeping my expectations low. Whitaker will be a footnote next week. But when Trump’s low-quality hires come before a committee, you never know — maybe he’ll blurt out all sorts of bald-faced lies and incriminating material.

Open thread!

221 replies
  1. 1
    Xboxershorts says:

    Is it too early to break out the Jamesons?

    ReplyReply
  2. 2
    Leto says:

    I’m keeping my expectations low.

    I feel like I need to keep mine low too because most of Trumpov’s nominees have basically just refused to answer questions, run out time by spewing word salads of bullshit, or just evaded the questions altogether. But I am sort of hopeful that now that Dems are leading the committes that they won’t put up with the bullshit and will actually get answers to questions. Fingers crossed I guess.

    ReplyReply
  3. 3
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Leto: Yeah, and this guy seems even dumber and less disciplined than the average Trump hire. Maybe that’s unfair (it IS a low bar), but that’s the impression I got from the few public words he’s uttered.

    ReplyReply
  4. 4
    waspuppet says:

    Three hours of “Nobody did nothing you filthy cop.” From the attorney general. Which our “liberal” media will describe as “fiery.”

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  5. 5
    japa21 says:

    Don’t expect anything to really come out. Then Trump will tweet how this hearing totally exonerates him and how the Dems are wasting the people’s money on Presidential harassment. Then the media will ask why the Dems are wasting their time on hearings instead of governing. You know, just like they did when the GOP held 70 gazillion hearings just on Benghazi. Oh, wait…

    ReplyReply
  6. 6
    chopper says:

    bald-faced lies

    heh

    ReplyReply
  7. 7
    mapaghimagsik says:

    Here’s hoping. I think they’ll need a naked guy with a mop to clean up the sweat and distract from the lies.

    ReplyReply
  8. 8
    Yutsano says:

    @Leto: @Betty Cracker: Your impression is not wrong. He’s barely got the legal acumen to be a federal attorney, much less the Department of Justice. The little tit for tat that happened was his whine to get let out of this please? Nahgunna happen Bubba. You have to sit just like the rest of them.

    Oh man the Kavanaugh oversight hearings are gonna be lit.

    ReplyReply
  9. 9
    Yarrow says:

    I don’t expect much but I do think his flop sweaty visage will again adorn memes.

    ReplyReply
  10. 10
    MJS says:

    Can’t watch, but I expect him to do poorly. No one in this maladministration can think on their feet, or come across as even remotely likeable, so all the evasions I anticipate will lead to a significant number of mockable moments.

    ReplyReply
  11. 11
    Jeffro says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    this guy seems even dumber and less disciplined than the average Trump hire

    I don’t think that’s unfair at all, Betty. And knowing Whitaker is dumb, and knowing trumpov is, well, trumpov, you KNOW they have already discussed how best to kneecap the Special Counsel’s investigation. Whitaker may well end up running out of the room.

    @Yutsano:

    Oh man the Kavanaugh oversight hearings are gonna be lit.

    I just want them to drill down on what quid was pro-quoed to get Kennedy to step down, and on who paid off Kavanaugh’s debts. Oh and then I want Brett “sure I respect precedent” Kavanaugh fucking impeached.

    ReplyReply
  12. 12
    Joey Maloney says:

    From downstairs, I just posted that in his opening statement Nadler is going right for the, ahem, nads.

    “The time for this administration to evade accountability is over.”

    ReplyReply
  13. 13
    Joey Maloney says:

    …I’m going to continue my practice of muting whenever a GOP member is speaking. Hypertension, donchaknow.

    Lemme know if any of them say anything spectacularly-more-than-normally dumb or treasonous.

    ReplyReply
  14. 14
    JPL says:

    So I guess Whitaker in his written response said the majority of drugs in entering from the southern border as is most crime. The guy needs to work for Charlie to port a potty guy.

    ReplyReply
  15. 15
    JPL says:

    @Joey Maloney: lol Can’t help you because I do the same.

    ReplyReply
  16. 16
    Mike R says:

    Just caught a glimpse of the republican minority guy saying that a subpoena is a bad idea, but he is in the minority so who cares. This has been the republican position whenever they have a majority that minority members don’t count, so it is his turn to eat a bag of shit, hope he gags on it.

    ReplyReply
  17. 17
    Walker says:

    @Jeffro:

    Impeachment is going to take a very different Senate — one that is at least a decade off. And if we ever get that Senate, heck we can go as far as making membership in the Federalist society grounds for impeachment.

    ReplyReply
  18. 18
    JTL says:

    They could start by asking him about all of the qualifications and experience he has that make him suitable to be acting AG of the US. That would be fun.

    ReplyReply
  19. 19
    Mary G says:

    @Joey Maloney: The ranking member is issuing a word salad about a travesty. “We ought to just set up a popcorn machine in the back.” “Dog and pony show.” “This is no way to run the railroad.”

    ReplyReply
  20. 20
    Leto says:

    @Yarrow: Flop sweat memes? Here you go. Here’s another.

    Hopefully Whittaker’s watery visage will adorn those most searched images.

    ReplyReply
  21. 21
    JPL says:

    What are they voting on and why?

    ReplyReply
  22. 22
    Joey Maloney says:

    OMG, Louiesparagus is on this committee,

    ReplyReply
  23. 23
    cope says:

    Expectations = 0 on my part. Even though the entertainment value of watching Whitaker suffer, sweat and stammer is enticing, I will not watch or listen.

    I must admit to a complete lack of understanding of how people like him think it is in any way in their best interest to clamber aboard the Trumptanic at this point.

    ReplyReply
  24. 24
    JPL says:

    @JPL: Motion to adjourn, otherwise known as a stalling tactic.

    ReplyReply
  25. 25
    Mary G says:

    @JPL: Republican moved to adjourn immediately because Whitaker isn’t going to be active past next week when Barr will be approved.

    ReplyReply
  26. 26
    NotMax says:

    Fireworks? No. Slow fuse? yes.

    ReplyReply
  27. 27
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Anybody else catch the little smirk on Whitaker’s face when he said, “So help me God.”

    I’m inviting him to poker night! Hope he brings a lot of cash.

    ReplyReply
  28. 28
    Mary G says:

    Gym Jordan looks awful.

    ReplyReply
  29. 29
    Mike R says:

    @cope: My take, nobody else will take him to play in the big leagues and he is so convinced he is special that he is blinded by ambition. Read something to the effect that the most dangerous people are half bright and wildly ambitious.

    ReplyReply
  30. 30
    Joey Maloney says:

    Omg, AAG Meatball just made a parity claim about Barr!

    (Omg, I started 2 posts in a row with “omg”. Calm the fuck down.)

    ReplyReply
  31. 31
    Raoul says:

    @Mary G: Those are a lot phrases that mean “I got nothing.”

    ReplyReply
  32. 32
    HeleninEire says:

    LOL. He’s making a case for WALL.

    ReplyReply
  33. 33
    Jeffro says:

    @Walker: Never say never, or ‘a long way off’. =)

    Considering what will come out about the trumpov crime cartel, it’s hard to say who will still stay on board post-SC report.

    ReplyReply
  34. 34
    NotMax says:

    “There is no doubt among our law enforcement community that the vast majority of illegal drugs are coming across our Southern border.”

    Hope he’s wearing asbestos trousers.

    ReplyReply
  35. 35
    Raoul says:

    @HeleninEire: He is testifying for an audience of one.

    ReplyReply
  36. 36
    Immanentize says:

    @NotMax: well the southern border stretches from Pacific to the Atlantic….

    ReplyReply
  37. 37
    Joey Maloney says:

    @Immanentize: If only we had WALL around Miami.

    ReplyReply
  38. 38
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Christ, Whitaker can’t even honestly answer if he has been briefed on Mueller’s report or not!

    ReplyReply
  39. 39

    @NotMax:
    My understanding is that it’s not just perjury if you’re lying about a crime?

    ReplyReply
  40. 40
    Joey Maloney says:

    Oh, this is going to be a loooooooong day.

    ReplyReply
  41. 41
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    But when Trump’s low-quality hires come before a committee, you never know — maybe he’ll blurt out all sorts of bald-faced lies and incriminating material

    isn’t that how Alexander Butterfield told the world about the tapes?

    ReplyReply
  42. 42
    NotMaxn says:

    Been a long time since I’ve seen him. Nadler must have dropped about 200 pounds.

    ReplyReply
  43. 43
    Just Chuck says:

    Does any of it matter even a little? He could stand up there and give his testimony in Russian about how he personally intends to destroy the United States of America and everyone will hem and haw and mutter and then move on to the next shiny object. We’re all just sitting around for Mueller to save our democracy, and I’m pretty fucking certain now there won’t be anything left to save. This is a show.

    ReplyReply
  44. 44
    Mary G says:

    Whitaker read his opening statement well, but now that he has to answer questions he is stalling and stammering.

    ReplyReply
  45. 45
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Whitaker is Lex Luthor’s stupid twin.

    ReplyReply
  46. 46
    HeleninEire says:

    @The Midnight Lurker: Yeah. He is fumbling 5 minutes in. He is gonna be worth shit in 5 hours in.

    ReplyReply
  47. 47
    NotMax says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist

    Except Butterfield didn’t blurt that out. It had been agreed to in behind the scenes negotiations prior that he would reveal the information during open testimony.

    ReplyReply
  48. 48
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Whitaker just told Nadler his five minutes is up. The gallery erupts in laughter.

    Whitaker: ‘Shut up! Shut up! I’m here voluntarily!’

    Ohhh, did you catch the way he just said ‘this committee’? Dripping with contempt.

    ReplyReply
  49. 49
    NotMax says:

    Doug Collins (R-Georgia) ticking off a laundry list of conspiracy memes.

    ReplyReply
  50. 50
    Sab says:

    How did he get through law school?

    ReplyReply
  51. 51
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    @Sab: Affirmative action.

    ReplyReply
  52. 52
    NotMax says:

    “This is not an oversight hearing, this is a rabbit chase.”

    Fax from FOX must have been received and read.

    ReplyReply
  53. 53
    JPL says:

    Well I need to leave in ten minutes so I count on my fellow jackals to keep updating.

    ReplyReply
  54. 54
    NotMax says:

    @Sab

    I you laid all the crappy lawyers end to end, you’d have lifetime job security.

    ReplyReply
  55. 55
    Kay says:

    According to a World Patent Marketing press release announcing Whitaker’s position on the board, Whitaker was quoted as saying, “World Patent Marketing has become a trusted partner to many inventors that believe in the American Dream,” and “I have always admired World Patent Marketing and its innovative products and dynamic leadership team.”
    In May, the company agreed to a settlement with the FTC amid allegations that World Patent Marketing used unfair tactics, including threats of legal action, when customers complained about the company or its services. The court banned the company from the invention promotion business; in addition, the judge ordered the $26 million judgment to be partially suspended as long as the company’s owner Scott Cooper paid about $975,000. Whitaker’s involvement was first reported by The Miami New Times.

    If we stopped giving white collar criminals a slap on the wrist there would be far fewer low quality Trump hires to worry about.

    The mechanism that is supposed to weed these people out and limit the damage they do is broken. That’s why the bad pennies keep turning up.

    Our rallying cry could be “do NOT settle”. You wouldn’t have to bring them all to trial forever. They’d self-police if they saw associates doing time and at the very least they would remain in the criminal underworld and under rocks, which solves a lot of problems. Just need to stop them before they rise in the ranks. Quality control.

    ReplyReply
  56. 56
    Anonymous At Work says:

    @The Midnight Lurker: Committee needs to take a party-line vote to modify the Chair’s “5 minutes” to fit whatever timeframe the Chair wants. Reminder the Possibly-Illegally Acting Attorney General who is in command.

    ReplyReply
  57. 57
    Jeffro says:

    @NotMax: Who said that? Surely not Whitaker???

    ReplyReply
  58. 58
    NotMax says:

    @Jeffro

    Rep. Collins, ranking member of the committee.

    ReplyReply
  59. 59
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Just Chuck: I am haunted by the same thoughts.

    ReplyReply
  60. 60
    Immanentize says:

    @NotMax: Or, just “rank” member depending on your view….

    ReplyReply
  61. 61
    Jeffro says:

    These #NeverTrumpers are starting to get on my nerves with their concern trolling. Even the usually on-point J-Rubs needs to go back to trumpov-bashing: 3 Rules for Dems to Keep From Falling off a Cliff

    …First, they shouldn’t have fights with de Blasio or anyone else over labels and ideological one-upmanship. (Socialists bad! No, centrists are losers!) This is entirely unproductive, indeed meaningless, when no one defines their terms…

    Second, don’t sign on to bumper stickers. (Medicare for All! The Green New Deal!) This only empowers the far left to set the terms of the debate and exempts the far left from explaining and defending flawed policies. Why not come up with their own ideas, ones designed to unify the party and appeal to non-Democrats?

    Um, we seem to be doing ok appealing to our party and a majority of (bless them) “Independents”, J. Our ideas DO unify the party, thanks.

    …Third, those who aren’t on the fringe of the party need to reject the tag that they are “mushy” moderates. Bold moderation and clear, fact-based reforms with wide support that get at the heart of our biggest problems shouldn’t be a bad thing. The goals that virtually everyone in the field has set — expanding health care, combating global warming, equalizing educational opportunities, passing comprehensive immigration reform, enacting gun safety laws — are very popular. What’s not popular is the most extreme, unrealistic incarnation of these goals.

    Oh ffs…”bold moderation”? THAT’LL win us an election, fer sure…

    We’re not LWNJs, Ms. Rubin. We’re the center-center party, and we’ve got this. But thanks for the concern…

    ReplyReply
  62. 62
    Immanentize says:

    @Just Chuck: So the 2018 elections were meaningless to you?

    ReplyReply
  63. 63
    NotMax says:

    @Immanentize

    Have no prior familiarity with him but he does come across as a consummate dunderhead.

    ReplyReply
  64. 64
    Immanentize says:

    @Jeffro: When I read an article like that, I think that they are seeing how far the Republicans have fallen and how much they have lost. Sure, Rubin couches it in bashing the “the Left” (while saying don’t sign on to bumper stickers), but the message is, at bottom, “Republicans got nothing.”

    ReplyReply
  65. 65
    Immanentize says:

    @NotMax: The cream is not rising….

    ReplyReply
  66. 66
    Cheap Jim says:

    @Jeffro: I’m old enough to remember when Ms Rubin got all het up one Friday night and exclaimed that the killer we all later learned was Anders Breivik MUST be a death squad of wicked Muslim jihadis. She may not like the president’s style, but she is still a Republican idiot.

    ReplyReply
  67. 67
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Immanentize: FYI, played the safe money yesterday and went to Regina, which was voted a good choice.

    ReplyReply
  68. 68
    Mary G says:

    @Kay: That is what was so infuriating about the Obama/Holder administration’s dealings with the banks after 2008. Instead of criminal proceedings they mostly just settled for big fines, which compared to the profits they made after ruining so many people’s lives were chump change. They said they didn’t think they could get convictions, but throwing the book at a couple of the worst offenders, even if there were acquitted in the end would have applied the disinfectant of shining a light on the motherfuckers and sent a message that they were on the side of the people. I think that was a factor in losing the 2010 and 2014 congressional elections, if not as big as the healthcare law, but still substantial.

    ReplyReply
  69. 69
  70. 70
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    OT: I may warm up to this Booker fella

    Dave Weigel @ daveweigel
    Like Brown, Booker points out that the ACA almost allowed a Medicare buy-in for people 55 and over. “If we had done that, it would have massively expanded health care for millions of Americans.” Brown shames Lieberman by name for this; Booker says “we were one vote short.”

    ReplyReply
  71. 71
    Immanentize says:

    @Gin & Tonic: I saw you were at the game! Woo Hoo — what a doozy to see. Regina is always good, but so are so many there.

    ReplyReply
  72. 72
    Mike in NC says:

    Does Whitaker even have a law degree? Trump is famous for impulsively offering jobs to unqualified morons. Maybe Whitaker was a heel at some WWE event and caught Fat Bastard’s gnat-like span of attention.

    ReplyReply
  73. 73
    Keith P. says:

    Anyone know if #bigdicktoilet is trending yet?

    ReplyReply
  74. 74
    dww44 says:

    @NotMax: Collins is from Northeast Georgia area and represents area around I-85 near Gainesville. In many respects North Georgia (north of I-85, I-20, and Atlanta), politically, has always been more vociferously red than other parts of the state. Largely because for most of the state’s history there weren’t very many African-Americans who lived there.

    Hence, the powers within the state GOP largely hail from that area. That’s where the recently ex governor Nathan Deal hails from. Albeit he seems, in retrospect, to be far less extreme and anti-democratic than the current governor,who was born in Athens, just south of I-85.

    ReplyReply
  75. 75
    Kay says:

    @Mary G:

    I do too. The argument fundamentally does’t make sense, from a broader “justice” view. If they can’t convict them of anything then they shouldn’t be fining them. They’ve managed to completely lose the point. They’ve detached the punishment from the wrongdoing. People aren’t wrong when they ascertain, even vaguely, this is a transaction completely detached from notions of guilt and innocence. The wrongdoers see it that way and so does the public, and they’re right! It’s a deal. That’s all it is. The defendants may as well pass them a bag of cash in a parking lot and call it day.

    Every single time they do it they erode the basic idea. The “institution” they all claim to value.

    And now we have a BIG ‘ol pile of bad pennies and they’re running the country.

    ReplyReply
  76. 76
    Just Chuck says:

    @Immanentize: I think the next couple years will show them to be meaningless. Hearings are not nearly enough, and legislation simply will not happen.

    ReplyReply
  77. 77
    joel hanes says:

    @NotMax:

    he does come across as a consummate dunderhead

    High school and college footballer: Iowa Hawkeye tight end.
    MBA.
    Likely brain damage; likely got academic preference based on athletic capability.

    ReplyReply
  78. 78
    Mary G says:

    Fahrenthold and a couple of other WaPo writers just put up a big investigative piece on Twitler’s years and years of hiring illegal immigrants and paying them bupkis.

    Angulo learned to drive backhoes and bulldozers, carving water hazards and tee boxes out of former horse pastures in Bedminster, N.J., where a famous New Yorker was building a world-class course. Angulo earned $8 an hour, a fraction of what a state-licensed heavy equipment operator would make, with no benefits or overtime pay. But he stayed seven years on the grounds crew, saving enough for a small piece of land and some cattle back home.

    Now the 34-year-old lives with his wife and daughters in a sturdy house built by “Trump money,” as he put it, with a porch to watch the sun go down.

    Fuck with our publisher? We buy ink by the barrel as the old saw went.

    ReplyReply
  79. 79
    Immanentize says:

    @Just Chuck:

    I’m pretty fucking certain now there won’t be anything left (of democracy) to save.

    This is the hyperbole with which I am taking issue .

    ReplyReply
  80. 80
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Immanentize: Belichick was at the game too. He had better seats than I did. So did Garnett, sitting courtside wearing a Rajon Rondo Celtics jersey, which was quality shade until the last half-second of the game.

    ReplyReply
  81. 81
    bemused says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    WH is down to D-/F team now.

    ReplyReply
  82. 82
    Barbara says:

    @Mary G: Look, I always hate to say this, but the scandal of 2008 isn’t that people got away with illegal behavior it’s that most of what they were doing that ultimately caused complete financial meltdown wasn’t illegal. Almost none of it. This constant drumbeat against Holder and Obama is totally misplaced. They would have prosecuted if they could. This is our kind of fabulism, where we persuade ourselves that all we need to combat out of control financial wizardry is better prosecutors.

    @Kay: You can fine banks and financial institutions for civil violations but prosecutors only go after criminal wrongdoing. The fines resulted mostly from violations of banking and securities regulations but criminal prosecution for such stuff requires violation of a criminal statute.

    ReplyReply
  83. 83
    Immanentize says:

    Just a perspective here — I really don’t think a cabinet member has to reveal any discussions with the President. But it is the President that has to claim executive privilege — the witness cannot. That was what was so squirrelly about Sessions when he testified. He claimed he was refusing to answrer because the President at a later time might claim privilege. That is not how it works.

    ReplyReply
  84. 84
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Albert Finney died. Can’t seem to post this comment though.

    There it is!

    The squeaky wheel…

    ReplyReply
  85. 85
    Turner Hedenkoff says:

    @Jeffro: I think there’s a better case for impeaching Gorsuch first. After all, receiving stolen property is a felony in DC.

    ReplyReply
  86. 86
    brendancalling says:

    @Jeffro: J-Rubs is a piece of shit who carried Mitt Romney’s water shamelessly. The only reason she’s anti-Trump is the same reason Broder/Parker/etc were anti-Clinton: “he trashed the place and it’s not his place to trash” (or whatever the comment was). Otherwise she is no different from the awful piece of shit she was in 2012.

    J-Rubs will be back to her old awful self the minute a Democrat is elected. She is, at best, like Stalin in WW2: a US ally of convenience.

    ReplyReply
  87. 87
    Immanentize says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Did Belichik give a presser afterwards? I like the shade. Games like that are so awesome at so many different levels. 129-128 — whoa!

    ReplyReply
  88. 88
    Mary G says:

    @Barbara: That may be so, but like Kay said why would they pay fines if they were so innocent? I’m talking about the message people took from that politically.

    ReplyReply
  89. 89
    Barbara says:

    @Mary G: Because there is a difference between agreeing to pay civil penalties and pleading guilty to a criminal charge.

    ReplyReply
  90. 90
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @The Midnight Lurker: Although I haven’t seen the film since it came out, I still remember his performance in Under the Volcano.

    ReplyReply
  91. 91
    Immanentize says:

    @Mary G: The fines were generally just considered a cost of doing business. Cheaper, if you will, then spending years fighting criminal charges. Also, when you pay a fine, Companies always state that they are admitting NO wrongdoing. Not one company was in any meaningful way hurt by the fines collected.

    ReplyReply
  92. 92
    Barbara says:

    @Mary G: Because editing is off, I couldn’t edit the above:

    Paying fines is definitely an acknowledgement of wrongdoing, however piously parties negotiate wording to the contrary, but “innocence” and “guilt” are constructs that apply to criminal statutes. You can violate regulatory requirements without being “guilty” of criminal violations.

    ReplyReply
  93. 93
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Mary G: @Barbara: Also, I’m not so sure that people who couldn’t figure out who was on whose side in the financial crisis would have been persuaded by trial transcripts written up in the NYT. And would those hypothetical trials have even started by Nov, 2010?

    ETA: and IANAL, but people on TV say Bob Menendez got off because Bob McDonnell’s acquittal set a precedent. Would those hypothetical acquittals been a gift to Wall St?

    ReplyReply
  94. 94
    Cheap Jim says:

    @The Midnight Lurker: Has anyone checked the movements of the passengers in the Calais coach?

    ReplyReply
  95. 95
    Barbara says:

    @Immanentize: The problem I have with the drumbeat of comments like Mary G’s (and I promise, I mean nothing personal to Mary G.) is that it diverted blame for the crisis to Obama and Holder for failing to prosecute rather than keeping the focus on the need for more and better regulation. To put it differently, Bush went gangbusters after Arthur Anderson for the Enron fallout and nothing changed because all the regulatory pieces that made Enron possible stayed in place — bamboozling conflicted rating agencies, debt accounting that didn’t provide a clear picture of an entity’s true financial status, and so on. Indeed, in my view, that criminal prosecution was calculated to avoid doing anything that would change the regulatory framework. If you want to make yourself sick read the Trustee in Bankruptcy’s report on Enron.

    ReplyReply
  96. 96
    Immanentize says:

    @Cheap Jim: That’s the version where Ingrid Bergman talks about “the little brown babies.”

    ReplyReply
  97. 97

    @Just Chuck: Your concern is noted.

    ReplyReply
  98. 98
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    @Gin & Tonic:
    @Cheap Jim:

    “STOP THAT TRAIN!!!”

    ReplyReply
  99. 99
    Cheryl from Maryland says:

    @The Midnight Lurker: I urge all Albert Finney fans to watch Gumshoe, Stephen Frier’s directorial debut. Finny plays a nightclub comedian who takes steps to fulfill his dream to emulate Sam Spade. With the great Billie Whitelaw and Frank Finlay.

    ReplyReply
  100. 100

    @Barbara: Why not both? Regulatory overhaul and criminal prosecutions for the most egregious offenders like Bank of America?

    ReplyReply
  101. 101
    Salty Sam says:

    @Just Chuck:

    I think the next couple years will show them to be meaningless. Hearings are not nearly enough, and legislation simply will not happen.

    So, I’m curious what you think would be the path forward from here?

    Or are you suggesting we just roll over and take our deserved licks from our Repub betters…?

    ReplyReply
  102. 102
    Immanentize says:

    @Barbara: I know what you were saying and I agree! But I think there is room for both to be correct. You are absolutely right that the regulatory structure was so weakened at that point that it was really hard to find (and try) the criminal acts. Also, I think the Obama administration was so focused on preventing collapse, that they may have treated the bad actors more lightly than necessary to keep the financial institutions on board and not jumping (figuratively, although….) I mean, everyone was saying that the failure to bail out Lehman brothers was what caused the crash (crazy, I know). But back to Kay’s bigger point — there need to be more and constant financial firm prosecutions NOT in the context of crisis. Look at Wells Fargo. Plenty of fraud there and no individual prosecutions? No one in prison? There are the tools to do that, for sure. Even if we went after the little guys (which seems unjust, I know), little people in those firms would stop taking those risks. Or at least that is how it is supposed to work.

    ReplyReply
  103. 103
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    @Cheryl from Maryland: Great picture! I own it!

    ReplyReply
  104. 104
    germy says:

    This is a long recess.

    Are we sure Whitaker didn’t climb out a bathroom window?

    ReplyReply
  105. 105
    Gelfling 545 says:

    @cope: I quess because they can’t get honest work?

    ReplyReply
  106. 106
    Immanentize says:

    @Cheryl from Maryland: For me, the Cohen Bros.’ Miller’s Crossing is the greatest Finney film.

    ReplyReply
  107. 107
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Just Chuck:

    If we were all sitting around waiting for Mueller to save us, the Republicans would still be running the House.

    ReplyReply
  108. 108
    Raven says:

    @Cheryl from Maryland: Orphans was really good too.

    ReplyReply
  109. 109
    Immanentize says:

    @germy: I am now going to call Whitaker “the five minute man.”

    ReplyReply
  110. 110
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Annnnd… we’re back!

    ReplyReply
  111. 111
    Joey Maloney says:

    Looks like we’re fixing to get started again. I hope Meatball powdered his head.

    ReplyReply
  112. 112
    Barbara says:

    @schrodingers_cat: I don’t think BOA was the worst offender 10 years ago.

    ReplyReply
  113. 113
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Jeffro:

    I dunno, I think she’s right about the first point, but that’s probably because “leftists” keep screaming that I’m an old centrist white woman whenever I ask them if Medicare For All will have the same monthly fee as current Medicare. 🤔

    ReplyReply
  114. 114
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    He’s turning red now.

    ReplyReply
  115. 115

    For entertainment, you can read Wonkette’s live blog of this hearing. A sample:

    You guys, bad news. The ruling Democrats have allowed Republicans to be on this committee….Meatball is giving his opening statement. Dunno, it’s probably “I am sitting in a Big Peener Toilet RIGHT NOW….
    WHOA, THIS ACTUALLY JUST HAPPENED.
    Meatball said, “Mr. Chairman, your five minutes is up.” TO JERRY NADLER. HE SAID THIS WITH HIS MOUTH.
    For the record, this made Jerry Nadler LOL.

    ReplyReply
  116. 116
    Emma says:

    @Immanentize:

    Plenty of fraud there and no individual prosecutions? No one in prison? There are the tools to do that, for sure. Even if we went after the little guys (which seems unjust, I know), little people in those firms would stop taking those risks. Or at least that is how it is suppred to work.

    IIRC, a lot of those issues can be traced to the “corporations are people” b_llsh_t.

    ReplyReply
  117. 117
    Barbara says:

    @Immanentize: I am not arguing that we shouldn’t prosecute corporate defendants and I agree that Wells Fargo was a missed opportunity. Obama went after BNP Paribas, although that was for its flagrant flouting of different laws, including protecting individual wrongdoing from criminal prosecution by essentially running out the statute of limitations.

    ReplyReply
  118. 118
    Mandalay says:

    @brendancalling:

    J-Rubs is a piece of shit who carried Mitt Romney’s water shamelessly.

    Indeed, but she is far worse than that. She is a vile, fucking racist, right up there with the David Dukes and Stephen Millers in her hatred, except her target is Arabs, and Palestinians in particular.

    Yet we have knuckle draggers here who cheerfully support her because she makes cogent arguments against Trump. Just as the oh-so-reasonable Steve Schmidt was gone in a New York minute the moment he had the opportunity to run the Schultz campaign, Rubin would immediately attack any Democrat who promoted policies supporting Palestinians if they had any danger of succeeding.

    Republicans who hate Trump are not your friends. They are Trojan Horse enemies who are more presentable and less stupid than Trump, who will stab Democrats in the back when the time is right. Don’t give any of these opportunistic scumbags the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval.

    ReplyReply
  119. 119
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Five point deduction for overuse of ‘stylish reading glasses’.

    And is he trying to hide behind the pile of water bottles?

    He should hide them under the table, like Trump. And then Pence a second later.

    ReplyReply
  120. 120
    WaterGirl says:

    @Keith P.: Hmm, at the risk of getting too specific, I will confess that I thought it was more of a big balls toilet. Am I wrong on that? I have clearly never given much thought to what happens to the dangly parts when a guy sits on a toilet.

    ReplyReply
  121. 121

    @schrodingers_cat:

    Regulatory overhaul and criminal prosecutions for the most egregious offenders like Bank of America?

    Because like Barbara said, you can’t criminally prosecute someone who didn’t commit a crime. All that lying to investors and selling crap mortgage bundles as A rank stuff? Not fraud. Yes, it sounds like fraud and morally is fraud. Legally, not fraud. Robosigning? Not a crime. Sure, a violation of procedure that threw the legality of the mortgages in doubt, but a judge decided to uphold them. Criminal penalties were never an option there. All the horrible stuff that caused the crash was 100% legal, because that’s the whole reason Republicans deregulate, to make things that should be crimes legal. There were a few crimes around the edges, but this ‘The bankers should have been thrown in jail to prevent further abuses’ is a fantasy, because there was never anything to throw them in jail for.

    You make new regulations so that you can throw them in jail in the future.

    ReplyReply
  122. 122
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Uh-oh! It’s Rep. Jackson-Lee (TX-18) asking questions! Now you’re going see some shit.

    She went to Yale.

    OMG! This is an ASS WHOOPIN’!

    ReplyReply
  123. 123
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @The Midnight Lurker: “Affirmative action?” For a Whitey deRighty-Whitest, more like deformative action.

    ReplyReply
  124. 124
    germy says:

    @Mnemosyne: I think the slogan is Improved Medicare For All

    I recall Hillary’s plan was to lower the Medicare age to 55. Which would have been a nice start.

    ReplyReply
  125. 125
    Mike E says:

    @WaterGirl: gravity is a beeyotch, and makes fools of us all

    ReplyReply
  126. 126
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Immanentize:

    That’s only because you’ve never seen Two For The Road with Finney and Audrey Hepburn.

    ReplyReply
  127. 127
    Immanentize says:

    @Barbara: I think most of the “white collar” prosecutions these days are for flagrant money laundering acts. That is probably because the law — because war on drugs — is so nicely settled. We could have had a better regulatory world emerging if Hillary had won and the CFPB was allowed to do its job. But I am hoping that is a setback rather than a complete fail, because the Republicans haven’t really messed with the CFPB legislation, on the theory, I guess, that just having control of the agency was enough. They missed their chance now.

    A boy can dream.

    ReplyReply
  128. 128
    tobie says:

    @Mnemosyne: I’m not sure she’s entirely wrong about the second point either. The GND is non-binding, and the original provision for a Select Committee was removed, but there’s still stuff in it about a universal basic income that will make life difficult for House members in swing districts and may do more damage than good in getting people to commit to decarbonization. Weaning ourselves of fossil fuels is absolutely necessary but claiming it’s cost free is absurd.

    ReplyReply
  129. 129
    The Moar You Know says:

    Republicans who hate Trump are not your friends. They are Trojan Horse enemies who are more presentable and less stupid than Trump, who will stab Democrats in the back when the time is right. Don’t give any of these opportunistic scumbags the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval.

    @Mandalay: Pretty sure most folks here know this. What Dems will have to learn is when is the right time to take your “ally of convenience” out for a short walk and shove a knife between their ribs. Republicans are much better at this than Dems are.

    ReplyReply
  130. 130
    Immanentize says:

    @Mnemosyne: Okay. I love that film too. In part because I have a big Audrey Hepburn crush — when I was a public defender in the 80’s I had a postcard picture of her on my desk and told people she was my GF. Only 1 in 10 were fooled, but that was a high ignorance rate, we thought.

    ReplyReply
  131. 131
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @Just Chuck: You coulda stopped after “I think,” because we all know that’s an untruth, asshole.

    ReplyReply
  132. 132
    misterpuff says:

    @joel hanes: Thomas “Herc” Hauk Clone.

    ReplyReply
  133. 133
    Mnemosyne says:

    @germy:

    We’re actually better off expanding Medicaid because it’s used to covering the kind of people who currently lack coverage (i.e. young people, some of whom may become pregnant) but what do I know? I’m just an old centrist white woman. 🤷‍♀️

    ReplyReply
  134. 134
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    @Immanentize: You we’re a PD in the 80’s?!! I was a PI!!!

    ReplyReply
  135. 135
    Fleeting Expletive says:

    Oh no, that little shit is dancing like a drop o’ grease on a hot griddle, ain’t he? Barbara Lee ain’t havin’ it, his stalling and chewing up her time. Nadler has already admonished him. Is he just trying for a contempt finding? I wish Nadler would either find him in contempt or suspend the five minute rule.
    Now, Gym Jordan’s gonna waltz.

    ReplyReply
  136. 136
    Doug R says:

    @Walker:

    Impeachment is going to take a very different Senate — one that is at least a decade off. And if we ever get that Senate, heck we can go as far as making membership in the Federalist society grounds for impeachment.

    Not when Individual 1 starts polling at 27%. Remember how happy Mitch was at the SOTU?

    ReplyReply
  137. 137
    eric says:

    @Mnemosyne: Big Fish. (Millers Crossing is in my top 5 favorite movies.)

    ReplyReply
  138. 138
    Gelfling 545 says:

    @Mnemosyne: Well said!

    ReplyReply
  139. 139
    germy says:

    @Mnemosyne: I agree with you about Medicaid.

    My hope, basically, is that when it comes time to go off our employer insurance, the person I sit down with to set up a plan isn’t there to extract as much profit from me as possible while providing me with as few benefits as possible.

    Whether they want to call it medicare or medicaid or universal healthcare is fine with me. As long as my experience trying to obtain health insurance isn’t like my experience at the car dealership.

    ReplyReply
  140. 140
    germy says:

    Whitaker: “Pay no attention to all the shit I said on the cable shows.”

    ReplyReply
  141. 141
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @WaterGirl: This toilet stuff is some kind of a joke, isn’t it? I mean, if your “dangly bits” are large enough that use of a standard toilet is a problem, you’re going to be unable to walk.

    Long shaggy dog story about two old farmers walking home after a night of drinking, stop on a bridge to pee. They whip it out, first one says “ooh, that water is cold” so the second says “yeah, it’s deep, too.”

    ReplyReply
  142. 142
  143. 143
    Kay says:

    @Barbara:

    The argument is that the facts they stipulated to in the settlements on the civil actions constitute enough to charge them with crimes or at least pursue a criminal investigation jumping off the civil violations, and that wasn’t done because there is a “too big to jail” mentality:

    In reaching every charging decision, we must take into account the effect of an indictment on innocent employees and shareholders, just as we must take into account the nature of the crimes committed and the pervasiveness of the misconduct. I personally feel that it’s my duty to consider whether individual employees with no responsibility for, or knowledge of, misconduct committed by others in the same company are going to lose their livelihood if we indict the corporation. In large multi-national companies, the jobs of tens of thousands of employees can be at stake. And, in some cases, the health of an industry or the markets is a real factor. Those are the kinds of considerations in white collar crime cases that literally keep me up at night, and which must play a role in responsible enforcement.

    There is no “livelihood” or “shareholder” analysis in prosecution of blue collar criminals. They knock down the door and drag them away.

    Year after year of avoiding disruption has led us here. We’re like lazy parents who won’t discipline the 10 year old because he’ll get mad at us and then 5 years later we wonder why the 15 year old is completely out of control. If the consequences of this behavior is people lose their jobs and shareholders lose value there will be less of the behavior. Putting that off forever isn’t going to work anyway. Instead we’ll just get a spectacular, systemic crash.

    ReplyReply
  144. 144
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Now it’s America’s stupidest Representative Louie Gohmert (TX -1).

    Watch your asperagus.

    And did you catch Whitaker’s response to Louie’s welcome?

    “Good to see you again, Congressman.”

    Gohmert is going to talk through his entire 5 minutes. AND HE DID!

    ReplyReply
  145. 145
    frosty says:

    @Kay:

    Quality control

    I never thought of it that way. Love it! Keep hammering on this theme, you’re absolutely right.

    ReplyReply
  146. 146
    dww44 says:

    @Mnemosyne: I loved that movie and never expected to. One of my favorites.

    ReplyReply
  147. 147
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    And@Barbara: And the difference is that The Plutocracy(R) can always find the $$$ so that they (or their trusted minions) can skate.

    This is the ground truth: The Plutocracy(R) is probably not a yooooge fan of the Handmaids’-Tale society the fundanazis want to install here, but they are serenely confident that a sufficient application of ca$h will always manage to buy them out of the ugly consequences. (E.g., abortion made illegal in all 50 states? Daddy’s little girl with child via an inconvenient male? Well hey, she’s off on an impromptu European vacation with a couple of days scheduled in Amsterdam resting comfortably after a “procedure.”)

    ReplyReply
  148. 148
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: Wow.

    ReplyReply
  149. 149
    tobie says:

    @germy: apparently Cory Booker said today that in 2009 Dems were one vote short for a Medicare buy-in at 55, and that one vote was Joe Lieberman. That sanctimonious prick should rot.

    Regarding ease of achieving universal coverage, I still think the German model would work best in the US, but it would rely on regulating the insurance market in ways private hospitals, insurance companies and big pharma would fight tooth and nail. The next fight on this is going to be epic. The GOP has dropped any pretense of caring about anything but sticking it to Democrats.

    ReplyReply
  150. 150
    oatler. says:

    @Fleeting Expletive: Shit’s gettin shouty and real!

    ReplyReply
  151. 151
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    The Republican’s want to talk about ANYTHING other than the Mueller investigation!

    If they’re going to carry this much water for Whitaker, they’re going to need a bigger boat!

    Or a ‘masculine toilet’.

    ReplyReply
  152. 152
    tobie says:

    @Uncle Cosmo: I think you’re right about the plutocrats. What gets me is the white working class’s diehard support for a group of fat cats that has nothing but contempt for those trying to make ends meet.

    ReplyReply
  153. 153
    Emerald says:

    @tobie:

    in 2009 Dems were one vote short for a Medicare buy-in at 55, and that one vote was Joe Lieberman

    And in fact, it was Joe Lieberman who originally proposed a Medicare buy-in at 55. Which shows you just how compromised Lieberman became.

    I still mourn that Al Gore’s presidency was stolen from him (it might have saved the planet), but I am heartily happy that Joe Lieberman did not become Vice President.

    ReplyReply
  154. 154
    Citizen Alan says:

    @Emerald:

    I actively blame Lieberman for Gore’s loss. There’s no way Gore loses FL by less than 600 votes with Bill Nelson as his running mate.

    ReplyReply
  155. 155
    WaterGirl says:

    @Gin & Tonic: I think maybe you mean that anyone who would actually buy the stupid toilet is a joke?

    Loved your joke. I have heard it before but I still laughed. It’s a good one.

    ReplyReply
  156. 156
    jacy says:

    @Immanentize:

    Agreed. Miller’s Crossing is one of those films that if I catch part of it for some reason, I’m compelled to stop and watch the whole thing. Finney was great.

    ReplyReply
  157. 157
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Congressman Deutch (FL-22): “First day of law school, they taught us to answer a yes or no question directly and not repeat the question – it makes you look like a bad lawyer.”

    Whitaker: “We didn’t go to the same law school.”

    ReplyReply
  158. 158
    germy says:

    @Citizen Alan: Whose idea was it to pick Lieberman? I’ve always wondered what Gore was thinking.

    ReplyReply
  159. 159
    Kay says:

    @Barbara:

    At least explain it to people. I’m no longer buying it but they could put forth an explanation for this jarring, gaping gulf between what relatively powerless individuals experience in the justice system and what powerful people experience or, alternatively, don’t explain, and lose all credibility.

    This thing runs on consent. It runs on voluntary compliance with laws and rules. 99% of people comply because that is the deal. If it isn’t the deal they will stop complying and then they won’t be able to hire enough cops and prosecutors to catch them all. When they worry about the shareholders of bad actors, what does that say to the shareholders of good actors? If Wells Fargo cheats and gets away with it why should their competitors voluntarily comply? Once they lose that kind of “herd immunity” to lawbreaking and it spreads they won’t be able to regain it, because it was grounded in trust.

    ReplyReply
  160. 160
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    I expect Trump to fire Whittaker next week because Trump doesn’t like bald men so not sure the point of these hearings. .

    ReplyReply
  161. 161
    Mike in NC says:

    Whitaker is one very thirsty liar.

    ReplyReply
  162. 162
    Another Scott says:

    @Barbara: +1.

    There wasn’t enough of people being frog-marched off to prison, but the Obama administration did go after a lot of financial fraud.

    The lesson is we need better laws, not that Obama was too easy on the banksters.

    My $0.02.

    Cheers,
    Scott.

    ReplyReply
  163. 163
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    …sip some water, fiddle with your glasses, ask them to repeat the question, sip some more water…

    PROPS to Whitaker!

    ReplyReply
  164. 164
    brendancalling says:

    @Mandalay: I believe J-Rubs has in fact left the GOP, but everything you say is spot on.

    Unlike many who have welcomed her (and troglodytes like Schmidt, Rick Wilson, Bill Kristol and the rest of the now-homeless Republicans who can’t stomach Trump), I trust her about as far as I can throw her, and my upper body strength ain’t so good.

    ReplyReply
  165. 165
    germy says:

    What just happened? They’re voting on a point of order?

    ReplyReply
  166. 166
    trollhattan says:

    @brendancalling:
    She’s…useful at present with a genuine ability to lay the wood to Trump and his minions. Before I believe that she’s had a permanent change of political stripe I want to hear her denounce Likud and Bibi. (Don’t think there’s any way to disrupt her girlcrush on Willard, but we all have our inexplicable soft spots.)

    ReplyReply
  167. 167
    RAVEN says:

    Orphans

    Matthew Modine (“And the Band Played On,” “Pacific Heights”) and Kevin Anderson (“In Country”) portray two orphans, a streetwise petty thief and his sheltered brother. They lure a stranger (Albert Finney) to their home to rob him, only to have the stranger “turn the tables” and dramatically change their lives. From the play by Lyle Kessler, featuring performances Leonard Maltin praises as “so powerful,” adding “Finney can do no wrong.”

    ReplyReply
  168. 168
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    @germy: Congresswoman Bass (CA-33) asked Whitaker why 46 Democrats have been targeted for ‘ethics violations’ but no Repubs. Chris Collins (NY-27) had a shit fit!

    Now a call for a five-minute break.

    Whitaker: “Only five minutes for lunch?”

    This is fucking awesome!

    ReplyReply
  169. 169
    germy says:

    “yes, no, maybe, I don’t know, can you repeat the question?”

    ReplyReply
  170. 170
    germy says:

    @The Midnight Lurker: I thought Chris Collins was going to punch his mic across the room.

    No offense to all Southern jackals, but why is most of the mischief in government done by white men with southern accents?

    Maybe the confederates should have been given their own country after all.

    ReplyReply
  171. 171
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    @germy:

    No offense to all Southern jackals…

    None taken. I say we hang those fuckers.

    ReplyReply
  172. 172
    burnspbesq says:

    @NotMax:

    There is no doubt among our law enforcement community that the vast majority of illegal drugs are coming across our Southern border.”

    That’s probably true, as far as it goes. But it’s so incomplete as to be severely misleading.

    ReplyReply
  173. 173
    dww4 says:

    @brendancalling:I’m not in your camp vis-a-vis the anti-Trumpers. I think that all along I’ve kept my inner belief that this is all temporary with them. However, I do think that Rubin has been better than many and her accolades in the WP op-ed the other day on Abrams’ SOTU Democratic response made me quite happy. Yes, the piece mentioned in this thread smacks once more of concern trolling. However there are any number of lifelong progressive centrists who are whistling the same tune.

    ReplyReply
  174. 174
    Salty Sam says:

    @germy:

    I thought Chris Collins was going to punch his mic across the room.

    It appears to me that the minority members of this committee don’t quite understand the meaning of the word “minority”, and what that means in terms of the rules in play here.

    ReplyReply
  175. 175
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    @Salty Sam: Oh, they understand the word ‘minority’ alright.

    Don’t let those nasty black women ask the po’ white boy any questions.

    ReplyReply
  176. 176
    raven says:

    @germy: sounds like a yankee now

    ReplyReply
  177. 177
    piratedan says:

    @Salty Sam: considering how they behaved when they had control of the House over the last four years, they’re lucky that they weren’t given wedgies and tape over their mouths when sitting on these committees, they sure had no issue dropping their rules and protocols hammers when they had the gavels.

    ReplyReply
  178. 178
    germy says:

    What type of nation deserves someone as incompetent as Matt Whitaker as its acting Attorney General?

    A nation that values a snide comeback over a reasoned response.

    A nation that values attitude over aptitude.

    A nations that values party loyalty over national interests.

    — Mrs. Betty Bowers (@BettyBowers) February 8, 2019

    ReplyReply
  179. 179
    Steeplejack says:

    Goddamn it, as if there weren’t enough reasons to hate Whitaker, he just referred to “General Sessions.”

    The attorney general is not a general. You can call him “Mr. Attorney General” or “Attorney General Sessions” or “the KKKeebler Elf.” But not “General Sessions”!

    ReplyReply
  180. 180
    raven says:

    Fucking broken down 66 year old man!!

    ReplyReply
  181. 181
    dww4 says:

    @Salty Sam: Well, sadly speaking, they’ve every reason to behave as if they were in the majority, if for no other reason than that they have so little experience in actually being the minority party. How many years in the 2000’s? 4 or 6, max, maybe?
    Plus, the modern GOP has behaved this way ever since the advent of Newt and his minions. There’s no going back to an era of comity, fairness, or reasonableness with them. They are simply mirroring their base by ginning up a continual frenzy. Now, if we could just perfect the technique of shutting them down.

    ReplyReply
  182. 182
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Salty Sam:

    Oh, they understand. That’s why they don’t like it. 😈

    ReplyReply
  183. 183
    raven says:

    @Steeplejack: This motherfucker couldn’t spell cat if you spotted him a C.

    ReplyReply
  184. 184
    germy says:

    “you know what? never mind. Let’s keep going”

    ReplyReply
  185. 185
    WaterGirl says:

    @raven: Is Whitaker 66? Or are you referring to someone else?

    ReplyReply
  186. 186
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Cedric Richmond (LA-2): “How many voter fraud cases have you investigated?”

    Whitaker: “I’ll get back to you.”

    ReplyReply
  187. 187
    Steeplejack says:

    Okay, had to turn it off. Almost as bad as Whitaker are the grandstanding and/​or inept questioners.

    Cedric Richmond (D-LA) was trying to get Whitaker to admit that the “DOJ” was founded in 1957? Clearly he meant something else—even Whitaker tried to help him out by suggesting “Civil Rights Division?”—but Richmond waved him off and plowed ahead.

    ReplyReply
  188. 188
    germy says:

    Oh good, a folksy lady republican: “Gosh, this whole thing is a waste of time”

    “Now let’s get to my one cause, forced birth.”

    ReplyReply
  189. 189
    Cheryl from Maryland says:

    @The Midnight Lurker: Me too! Also own Tom Jones. Best thing was, I saw Finney live at London’s National Theater as Macbeth, directed by Peter Hall.

    ReplyReply
  190. 190
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Congressman Jeffries (NY-8): “I want to know how the hell did you get to be Attorney General of the United States!”

    Whitaker: “I… I… I…”

    Jeffries: “That was a statement, not a question. Just so YOU know the difference.”

    OUCH!!!

    ReplyReply
  191. 191
    raven says:

    @WaterGirl: These punks keep talking about Stone.

    ReplyReply
  192. 192
    Steeplejack says:

    This is definitely justifying my time spent on Big Beach Builds as not a waste.

    ReplyReply
  193. 193
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    @Cheryl from Maryland:

    I saw Finney live at London’s National Theater as Macbeth, directed by Peter Hall.

    Okay… I’m jealous.

    ReplyReply
  194. 194
    germy says:

    @raven: I wish someone had explained Stone was all over social media shooting guns and waving guns and talking about federal agents. Maybe that’s why his arrest went the way it did.

    ReplyReply
  195. 195
    WaterGirl says:

    @raven: Oh. Got it, thanks.

    ReplyReply
  196. 196
    Salty Sam says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Oh, they understand. That’s why they don’t like it. 😈

    …and why *I* do like it.

    It’ll be quite awhile before I get tired of this much winning…

    ReplyReply
  197. 197
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Now David Cicilline (RI-1) is bringing the whip! He will NOT let Whitaker dodge or obfuscate.

    Whitaker is slinking down in his seat, his coat bunched up in the back. Heh.

    ReplyReply
  198. 198
    germy says:

    Sanctuary cities was the reason for this hearing?

    ReplyReply
  199. 199
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    I swear… I go to the bathroom and come back and a near fight has broken out. Can’t tell who’s yelling at who.

    ReplyReply
  200. 200
    Fair Economist says:

    This hearing is going to do wonders for Trump’s recruiting. Who wouldn’t want to enjoy excusing the inexcusable like dear Matt is having to?

    ReplyReply
  201. 201
    Yutsano says:

    @The Midnight Lurker: Do they get some kind of weird bonus for acting like even more petulant children than their immature sniveling boss? For serious: what kind of adult does that in the middle of a Congressional hearing?

    ReplyReply
  202. 202
    trollhattan says:

    @The Midnight Lurker:
    Bwa-ha-ha! I hope Colbert/Bee/Oliver snap that up and have a field day.

    ReplyReply
  203. 203
    Yutsano says:

    @germy: To quote Wonkette:

    Oh Christ, a Republican talking about sanctuary cities and immigrants murdering people, fuuuuuuuuuuuuck this.

    EDIT: Swalwell caused the fight? Oh damn I do NOT have enough popcorn in the office for this…

    ReplyReply
  204. 204
    Immanentize says:

    @The Midnight Lurker:

    Now David Cicilline (RI-1) is bringing the whip!

    I got a little excited that you meant that literally.

    ReplyReply
  205. 205
    NotMax says:

    Whitaker: “I am not a puppet.”

    ReplyReply
  206. 206
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    @trollhattan: To hell with those guys – next week will be their easiest ever. “Just roll the tape!”

    I want to see how Faux News is goin’ spin this shit.

    ReplyReply
  207. 207
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    @Yutsano:

    Oh damn I do NOT have enough popcorn in the office for this…

    Orville fucking Redenbacher doesn’t have enough popcorn for this shitshow!

    ReplyReply
  208. 208
    --bd says:

    @germy:

    “yes, no, maybe, I don’t know, can you repeat the question?”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zxjch16fSKk

    ReplyReply
  209. 209
    Ladyraxterinok says:

    @germy: IIRC he was a dem who’d spoken vs BillClinton during impeachment proceedings. Somebody (who??) thought picking him would mitigate against fact Gore was Bill’s Veep.

    All to throw sops to people who felt Bill was big bad sinner because of Monica. Some thought Liebermann came off super moral and countered the ‘immoral’ Bill!

    The GOPers weren’t going to vote for Gore anyway.

    And don’t forget–the ‘liberal’ media couldn’t stand the fact that Gore was/is super intelligent. Who’d want to drink a beer with a guy who’s smarter than you!?! You couldn’t catch his simplist references! And would lose stature in your own eyes.

    ReplyReply
  210. 210
    debit says:

    Did all the republicans leave the room?

    ReplyReply
  211. 211
    Brachiator says:

    @NotMax:

    Whitaker: “I am not a puppet.”

    Wow. He’s quoting his lord and master, Darth Donald.

    Trump to Clinton: ‘No, You’re the Puppet’

    ReplyReply
  212. 212
    germy says:

    @debit: It’s one Democratic questioner now after another. I love it.

    ReplyReply
  213. 213
    debit says:

    @germy: I get the impression that he’s been abandoned. He’s not getting a break with easy, fluffing questions. This has got to be brutal. Heh heh heh.

    ReplyReply
  214. 214
    NotMax says:

    @germy

    Was impressed by Ms Scanlon.

    ReplyReply
  215. 215
    germy says:

    @debit: @NotMax: Interesting questions now about cannabis.

    ReplyReply
  216. 216
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    @debit: Most have. Probably at lunch already, slapping themselves on the back for a job well done.

    Meanwhile… poor, poor Matt. All alone. With just his reading glasses and mountain of water bottles to comfort him.

    Putz.

    ReplyReply
  217. 217
    brendancalling says:

    I missed part 2. Yelling?? Who yelled?

    ReplyReply
  218. 218
    Tenar Arha says:

    @tobie:

    President Lyndon B. Johnson once said, “If you can convince the lowest white man he’s better than the best colored man, he won’t notice you’re picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he’ll empty his pockets for you.”

    Or, TLDR; racism is a helluva drug.

    ReplyReply
  219. 219
    NotMax says:

    Hearing ends with Nadler on the record laying the groundwork for a subpoena.

    ReplyReply
  220. 220
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Okay, Matt… that’s lunch.

    Five minutes!

    ReplyReply
  221. 221
    Brachiator says:

    @Tenar Arha:

    President Lyndon B. Johnson once said, “If you can convince the lowest white man he’s better than the best colored man, he won’t notice you’re picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he’ll empty his pockets for you.”

    Or, TLDR; racism is a helluva drug.

    Thanks for the LBJ quote. It’s sad to have to acknowledge that it is dead on what LBJ said, and sadder that it is an accurate assessment of racist fools.

    ReplyReply

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