To the Leningrad Station: Putin’s American Auxiliary Has An Official Comedian

Wonder how many other GOP turncoats will use the summer recess to slip away & join ol’ GriftGawdGuns’n’Gravytrain at Vlad’s summer resort? Dana Rorabacher? Devin Nunes?… Kevin McCarthy is too busy ‘acting’ as head to various department Trump wants destroyed. Doubt #MoscowMitch’s spouse will let him avoid his financial duties to the PLA. And Rand Paul is already supposed to be hiding out in Canada for ‘lung surgery’ consequent to losing the lawn-care argument with his neighbor…








Open Thread: Oh, Look, Another GOP (Alleged) Felon!

Can’t throw an ore-bearing rock around the Peepot Dome Gang without hitting one. From the NYTimes, “Investigation Intensifies Into Top Trump Fund-raiser”:

Federal prosecutors have intensified their wide-ranging federal investigation into Elliott Broidy, a top fund-raiser for President Trump, signaling the Justice Department’s continued interest in questions about foreign influence on the administration.

In recent months, federal authorities have searched Mr. Broidy’s Southern California office and subpoenaed records related to him from a onetime business partner and from Mr. Trump’s inaugural committee. They have reportedly asked the authorities in Romania for assistance investigating associates with whom Mr. Broidy worked to win military intelligence contracts potentially worth as much as $64 million.

They have also charged four people who worked with Mr. Broidy on plans to influence the administration, including on behalf of interests in Asia, the Middle East and Europe. While the charges against three of his associates were unrelated to their work with Mr. Broidy, most have been asked about their relationships with him, according to several people familiar with the investigation.

Taken together, the steps suggest mounting pressure on Mr. Broidy. And they underscore the legal questions raised by his efforts to parlay his access into business advantage in the frenetic weeks after Mr. Trump’s election, and then to influence the new administration’s policies toward the Middle East, where he was pursuing contracts worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

The scrutiny comes as the Justice Department has stepped up its enforcement of foreign lobbying laws and continues to investigate whether foreign money was illegally funneled into Mr. Trump’s super PAC or inaugural committee.

Mr. Broidy’s lawyers have contended that he did not do anything that would require him to lobby. One of the lawyers, Chris Clark, said in an email on Monday that he dismissed as “utterly false” the idea that his client used his connections to Mr. Trump to drum up business…

We never had to *ask*, Your Honor. Once we’d inserted our guy into office, we could count on him doing what was best for The (GOP) Family…

The AP story is more painstaking with the details:

Broidy, a 61-year-old Los Angeles businessman, made a fortune in investments before moving into defense contracting and has played prominent roles in GOP fundraising, including as finance chairman of the Republican National Committee from 2006 to 2008 and vice chair of the Trump Victory Committee in 2016.
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Repub Venality Open Thread: Still Laboring to ‘Make America White Again’

The Washington Post, this morning:

There are two likely explanations for the Justice Department replacing its legal team in the census citizenship question case. Neither of them is good, and one could signal something much worse lying ahead.

The Justice Department announced the moves Sunday, as The Post’s Matt Zapotosky reported, and there is at least some indication that it was because the lawyers had qualms about the direction in which this was heading…

Another not-mutually-exclusive possibility is that the lawyers had seen their credibility shot by changing their minds about how to proceed. The old legal team told a judge last week that they were done, and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross waved the white flag publicly too, before President Trump reversed the administration’s course in a tweet…

Or as Nancy Pelosi frames it, per Bloomberg:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi accused President Donald Trump’s administration Monday of wanting to “make America white again” with its plan to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census.

“You know his hat? ‘Make America white again.’ They want to make sure that people, certain people, are counted,” Pelosi said at a press conference on election security. “It’s really disgraceful and it’s not what our founders had in mind.”

Pelosi said the goal of the Trump administration is “self-evident” to have “a chilling effect” so certain populations will not respond to the census…

She added that Democrats were fighting for an accurate census count and are seeking enough funding for outreach to ensure everyone is counted.

Democrats are also seeking to enforce subpoenas for information on the census. The House Oversight and Reform Committee voted last month to hold Attorney General William Barr and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in contempt for withholding documents.


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Ted Lieu Live Tweets Hicks Testimony

They are on a lunch break. You can follow along here when they return.

ETA: Adam says Hicks has left the building. So you’ll have to make do reading Lieu’s old tweets here.

 








Monday Morning Open Thread: The Struggle Continues