Late Night Russiagate Open Thread: He’s Doing This for Future About-to-Be Indicted Presidents!

Raise your hand if you’re old enough to remember still-nominally-President Nixon, at the height of the Watergate investigation, insisting that he was only stonewalling release of various CREEPster conspiratorial documents and RNC receipts to professional bagmen because he “feared” setting a precedent that would “unduly restrict” the actions of future Oval Office residents. The rest of you can easily infer that the tactic didn’t work — but also, it was widely mocked at the time, even by otherwise sympathetic centrist-right critics.

If the squatting Oval Office Occupant’s legal team is trying the same tactic, I’m convinced that (a) They’re desperate enough to be reading up on Watergate, and (b) They’re not smart enough — or have so few other choices available — that “trying the case in the media” has become their last resort.

Part of a most informative twitter thread from Renato Mariotti, who is a lawyer, and from all reports a damned good prosecutor:

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Late Night Schadenfreude Open Thread: All Hail the Goddess of Consequences


Could not have happened to a more deserving Malevolent Leprechaun…



(click on either tweet to read the whole thread)

Open Thread: Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III Attempts to Thumb the Scale, Again

There’s been talk all week that Sessions “ought” to fire Mueller, and replace him with a (Repub-) “trustworthy” prosecutor. I personally doubt that’ll happen, because the blowback would be intense, and Sessions is having way too much fun pursuing his dreams of returning American society to the Fifties — the 1850s, for preference.

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Uncivil Liberties Open Thread: Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III Feeling Pretty Good About His Chances

I piously hope that Mr. Mueller’s investigators are taking notes at the Federalist Society, because the Malevolent Leprechaun spelled out why he’s going to all that trouble playing Blanche DuBois in front of unsympathetic Democrats…

Sessions had a bounce in his step Friday as he took aim at “judicial activism” of judges legislating from the bench and took a moment to tick through the changes he’s made to return Justice Department to the “rule of law” in a wide-ranging speech at Federalist Society’s national convention.

“Elections really do have consequences,” Sessions said with a smile…

Despite the fact that four of President Donald Trump’s judicial nominees have received a rare “not-qualified” rating by the American Bar Association and come under fire for controversial blog postings, Sessions said Trump has been appointing “extremely well-qualified” lawyers who will be “neutral umpires, calling balls and strikes.”…

“I get frustrated, too,” Sessions said, but vowed his “department will not make decisions based on politics” and will not confirm investigations to get a few “cheap headlines.”…

(Mike Luckovich via

Per the Washington Post:

Sessions has been under fire in recent weeks for his shifting account of his and other Trump campaign aides’ dealings with Russia. On Tuesday, he spent more than five hours before the House Judiciary Committee answering questions about the matter.

Sergey Kislyak, Russia’s former ambassador to the United States, is a key figure because Sessions had long ago denied having any communications with Russians, only to have The Washington Post reveal he had twice met with Kislyak during the campaign.
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You’re Not Helping Brosef

Sitting Ohio state Supreme Court Justice and soon to be former Democratic candidate for Governor Bill O’Neill:

So basically a Supreme Court Justice doesn’t know the difference between consensual sex and sexual assault/harrassment/rape. Awesome.

Heterosexuality needs no defense. It’s quite popular. But as I have said elsewhere, no one is trying to stop you from being heterosexual or a “man” or even a disgusting general pig. If you’re girlfriend or wife wants you to simulate feeling her up while wearing body armor and pretending to be asleep, go fucking crazy. We’re just trying to stop you from inflicting it on uninterested and unwilling others.

Russiagate Open Thread: Are We Sure Carter Page Isn’t A Mole?

Former Trump foreign policy adviser Carter Page privately testified Thursday that he mentioned to Jeff Sessions he was traveling to Russia during the 2016 presidential campaign — as new questions emerge about the attorney general’s comments to Congress about Russia and the Trump campaign.

During more than six hours of closed-door testimony, Page said that he informed Sessions about his coming July 2016 trip to Russia, which Page told CNN was unconnected to his campaign role. Page described the conversation to CNN after he finished talking to the House intelligence committee.

Sessions’ discussion with Page will fuel further scrutiny about what the attorney general knew about connections between the Trump campaign and Russia — and communications about Russia that he did not disclose despite a persistent line of questioning in three separate hearings this year…

Page told CNN after the interview that he informed Sessions about the trip during a group dinner in Washington, and that he mentioned it in passing.

“Back in June 2016, I mentioned in passing that I happened to be planning to give a speech at a university in Moscow,” Page told CNN. “Completely unrelated to my limited volunteer role with the campaign and as I’ve done dozens of times throughout my life. Understandably, it was as irrelevant then as it is now. If it weren’t for the dodgy dossier and all the chaos that those complete lies had created, my passing comment’s complete lack of relevance should go without saying.”

Page said it was the only time he met Sessions….

Somebody on Team Trump should’ve made it their business to explain to Young Carter that discretion is very much the better part of valor, when it comes to criminal conspiracy. But then, if any of these mopes had the sense God gave a weasel, why would they have sold their futures to the mercies of Donald Effing Trump?
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Late Night Horrorshow: Republicans (Once Again) Thirsting for A Dictatorship

Trump’s comments, made during a White House Cabinet meeting Wednesday, malign the justice system for a lack of toughness. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the head of the so-called ‘laughing stock’ justice system, was in the room for this comment — sitting across from Trump.

The President also said he would consider sending the attacker to the controversial prison at Guantanamo Bay.

“We also have to come up with punishment that’s far quicker and far greater than the punishment these animals are getting right now,” Trump told reporters. “They’ll go through court for years. And at the end, they’ll be — who knows what happens.”

He added: “We need quick justice and we need strong justice — much quicker and much stronger than we have right now. Because what we have right now is a joke and it’s a laughing stock. And no wonder so much of this stuff takes place.”

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders, defending the President, claimed during her Wednesday briefing with reporters that Trump said “the process has people calling us a joke and calling us a laughing stock” — which is not what Trump said.

Trump’s call to get tougher on terrorism fall in line with the same rhetoric he used during the campaign trail, where he called the Geneva Convention — a 1949 agreement that dictates international rules on torture and humanitarian treatment of prisoners — a problem that the United States had to move past…

Legal scholars are divided on whether Trump could actually send people to Guantanamo, with most acknowledging that such an action would set up an unprecedented constitutional showdown…

The good news is, this seems to have been preempted (for now):

But not before a couple of prior offenders jumped in front of the cameras…

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