Repub Venality Open Thread: Careful What You Wish For…

Devin Nunes this weekend, from the warm damp embrace of CPAC:

The House Judiciary Committee, today:

The requests are not at this point subpoenas, and some are likely to face vigorous objection from their targets. Some receiving the document requests are attorneys like Don McGahn and Jay Sekulow, the latter of whom Cohen testified was instrumental in misleading Congress on client Trump’s behalf. To mitigate likely objections of executive privilege, the letters sent to witnesses say they may limit the documents they provide the committee to materials already provided to Special Counsel Robert Mueller, the Southern District of New York and other judicial or legislative entities.

Some of the targets of the requests give indications of where the myriad congressional investigations into Donald Trump, also pursued by the House intelligence, ways and means and oversight committees, are headed.

Receiving document requests were Alexander Nix, Cambridge Analytica, parent entity the SCL Group, and Trump campaign data expert Brad Parscale. Among the materials sought by investigators are “discussions or attempts to provide or receive election information… with, to or from foreign entities or individuals in connection with the 2016 U.S. presidential primary or general elections.”…

From Blackwater founder and potential Trump diplomatic backchannel Erik Prince, as well as current Prince venture Frontier Services Group, any material about Russia, lifting U.S. sanctions on Russia, “the contents of meetings between President Trump and Vladimir Putin, and any contacts during the campaign or transition “with or regarding the Russian Federation, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, or Saudi Arabia.”

From Erickson and the NRA—which is also the subject of at least two Senate inquiries—information on “any loan, financing transaction or investment by the Russian Federation, any Russian national, any Russian business, or any other Russian entity to the Trump Organization, Donald Trump, Ivanka Trump, Jared Kushner, or any of their Business Interests.”…

And so many more!


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Late Night Eye-Roll Open Thread: Bernie Goes to Brooklyn

New York is always a high-stress venue, and the early 1970s was one of the rougher eras. Lots of natives fled for quieter climes — I was one of them! (And not ashamed I did, although I should not have persuaded my sweet freshman roommate from Iron Mountain that NYC had a secret lottery system requiring a certain percentage of city-born high school graduates to leave, in order to make room for all the Midwesterners who wanted to move into the Big Apple.)

Just a few years earlier, Bernie Sanders was another escapee, who went on to make a good life for himself in a whiter quieter place. But, one way and another, things have changed back in the nabe — and Bernie Is Back, Beyotches!…


But you just might be at Mirror-World CPAC, on the other leg of the political horseshoe. Different True Believers, same fevered enthusiasm for The Narrative!
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Paging Mr. Baron…Paging Mr. Miller…Norwegian Anti-Fraud Squad On Line One

Mr. Baron and Mr. Miller, you may recall, have a close relationship with the cheetoh-faced, ferret-heedit shitgibbon.

We don’t know the name of anyone who may have displaced Miller and Baron in the Orange One’s heart, but he is clearly keeping busy:

A total of 329 candidates — 217 individuals and 112 organizations — are being considered for this year’s prize, which will be announced in October…

But a wrinkle in this time-honored process — the peace prize was first awarded in 1901 — emerged on Tuesday, when the committee announced that it had uncovered what appeared to be a forged nomination of President Trump for the prize. The matter has been referred to the Oslo police for investigation.

Mr. Baron or whatever the alias now may be is, it seems, a recidivist:

…the forgery appears to have occurred twice: Olav Njolstad, the secretary of the five-member committee, said it appeared that a forged nomination of Mr. Trump for the prize was also submitted last year — and was also referred to the police. (The earlier forgery was not disclosed to the public at the time.)

What kind of person is at once so disdainfully fraudulent and so hilariously inept at his con?  Who could it be?

Well…Trump, recall, was the man who put his lens-shattering mug in fake Time Man of the Year covers, so there’s form here.

I’d file this one under “Point and Mock”…but then I remember that the entire GOP stands in thrall to this pathetic, hollow, terrified tosser.  And then I weep for the Republic, and worry, desperately, for my son.

(Also too:  I would so love an appendix to the Mueller Report dealing with all this.)

Image: Jacob Willemsz de Wet, Allegory of Peace triumphant over War1650



Michael Cohen’s House Oversight Committee Testimony Live Stream

Great googly-moogly!

Open thread!








Interesting Read: Iowa Does Not Look Like America the Democratic Party

Nor does New Hampshire. Philip Bump, in the Washington Post:

There’s a pretty obvious reason that white men make up the vast majority of Republicans elected to the House of Representatives in 2018 but only about 4 in 10 Democrats: The Democratic Party has a lot fewer white members than the GOP. Pew Research Center data indicates that, in 2017, about 83 percent of Republican and Republican-leaning voters were white, compared with 59 percent of Democratic and Democratic-leaning voters. In fact, the Republican Party is more heavily white now than the Democratic Party was in 1997 — by a fairly wide margin.

This data about the composition of each party allows us to run an interesting experiment. Which states have a racial composition that’s most like one party or the other? (Below, any non-Hispanic racial group excludes any Hispanic members.) To figure that out, we compare the density of each racial group to the density of each party. The closer the size of each group is to either party, the smaller the bar showing the deviation from that party…

It is February 2019, less than a year until the Iowa caucuses. As is the norm, Iowa will be the first state to weigh in on the Democratic Party’s presidential nominees next year, according to the primary-tracking website Frontloading HQ. It will be followed, as usual, by New Hampshire (barring some weirdness from New York that the link in the preceding sentence explains).

Why is that important? Because Iowa and New Hampshire have populations that look a lot more like the Republican Party than the Democratic Party. Of the 50 states, Iowa is 39th most like the Democratic Party. New Hampshire is the 44th most like the Democrats. New Hampshire is also the 13th most like the Republican Party in terms of racial composition — and Iowa is the third most similar to the GOP in the country, following only Wyoming and North Dakota.

In other words, the first two states to weigh in on who should be the Democratic nominee — undoubtedly helping narrow down the field of contenders — are states that are more likely to resemble the GOP racially…

Full tables at the link. Yet more reasons why the current cavalcade of primaries is harmful to everyone except a handful of hotel / restaurant profiteers — and the GOP.