Tuesday, December 11, 2018

I believe in the idea that is the Republic. No one said lifting humanity out of darkness would be easy, quick, or cheap. But it’s the duty we’ve been blessed with by being citizens of this great experiment. Standing up to tyrants is in our DNA.

JUST IN: Federal judge orders Stormy Daniels to pay President Donald Trump $293,052.33 in attorneys' fees in her defamation case against the president, which the judge tossed out

The Senate confirmed Jonathan Kobes as an appeals court judge. The American Bar Assoc. said he was unqualified, citing an inability to provide writing samples that were "reflective of complex legal analysis" or showed sophisticated "knowledge of the law."

Kelly to remain as White House chief of staff through Jan. 2 or longer, official says

After @SteveKingIA raises inscrutable concerns about iPhones, Google CEO Sunday Pichai patiently informs him, "Congressman, iPhone is made by a different company."

Judge sets January hearing for Manafort lying allegations

The White House just called for pool reporters to gather on short notice. That means we will see Trump again on camera soon, which was not expected. We don’t know what this will be, but watch these comments to see if POTUS tries to reframe his earlier shutdown comments.

Is that Butina in this photo with Rogozin, Torshin, and NRA officials?

CONGRESS: "When I type in the word 'idiot' images of Donald Trump appear." GOOGLE: "Yeah, we told you it works."

Putin: No one knows of alleged Russian spy Maria Butina

Jeffrey Epstein's slap on the wrist raises a lot of questions. The DOJ needs to get answers.

Jury recommends life in prison plus 419 years for James Alex Fields. The judge accepted their recommendations, but will not formally sentence Fields until March for killing Heather Heyer and injuring dozens

US intel officials have spent the past year trying to adapt to a dysfunction without precedent: a president who seems impervious to the information they spend billions -- and risk lives -- gathering. A lot of "writing for the record."

WATCH: Full video of heated Oval Office meeting between President Trump and Democratic leaders Schumer and Pelosi over border security and a potential government shutdown

As Nancy says, the American people recognize that a shutdown *is not* worth anything. But Trump now blatantly admits that he is "proud to shut down the government" and harm our nation's economy.

Pence checking his nonexistent watch for 2020

NEW: A former Trump campaign staffer was ordered to pay nearly $25,000 for violating a nondisclosure agreement. She's now in court trying to fight the award, which came out of non-public arbitration proceedings

Is that why the Russian gov has conducted 6 consular visits to Butina, passed 4 diplomatic notes to State about her case, and had Lavrov personally speak to Pompeo twice about her prosecution? (The official Kremlin Twitter account changed its avatar to a picture of her, too.)

House Minority Leader Pelosi to President Trump on vote for border wall in the House: "You will not win."

"I am proud to shut down the government for border security ... I will take the mantle. I will be the one to shut it down. I’m not going to blame you for it," President Trump tells Senate Minority Leader Schumer in the Oval Office.

Inside China's audacious global propaganda campaign

Hardcore Trump fans rattled by Mueller disclosures and no longer buying president's 'witch hunt' claims: report

Jimmy Dean recalls more than 29,000 pounds of sausage over metal fears

John Kelly is said to be furious with Ivanka and Jared. One official told NYT that Kelly was known to have kept written notes about Ivanka and Jared and the things they had done or requested, which he conspicuously left on his desk in view of his staff.

What a thing to jot down

Former Canadian diplomat reported missing in China following arrest of Huawei executive

"Why would anybody want to be Donald Trump's chief of staff unless you want to steal the office supplies before they shut the place down?" said Chris Whipple, who wrote the book on chiefs of staff. "If you're coming into that job, you've got to lawyer up."

Maria Butina has flipped. So what can prosecutors get from her that her "sloppy spycraft hasn't already leaked?"

"Trump’s defense of Khashoggi’s Saudi murderers will stain him (and America) forever"

Trump Administration Paid Firm Nearly $14 Million To Recruit Just 2 Border Agents

NEW: Joe Arpaio files suit against CNN, Jeff Zucker, Chris Cuomo, Kevin Robillard, Huffington Post, Tessa Stuart & Rolling Stone. The complaint against CNN cites “defamatory publications that falsely refer to and defamed him per se as a convicted felon”.

Accounts, which in the last several months had been tweeting about hot-button American topics like the Texas Senate race, the migrant caravan, George Soros, and Nancy Pelosi, abruptly switched to tweeting about the ongoing Russian-Ukrainian naval conflict

"The #Kremlin launched a year-long #disinformation campaign to soften up public opinion before its recent seizure of three #Ukrainian ships and their crews in the Sea of #Azov, the #EU’s security commissioner has alleged," writes @Guardian.

Capital Gazette staff among "The Guardians" named Time’s Person of the Year

Trump to roll back Obama-era policy protecting wetlands and streams across US

Over 200 religious leaders and advocates gathered at the border on Human Rights Day to send a message to the Trump admin, arguing that migrants who have not been allowed to enter the U.S. have a right under international law to seek asylum.

North Carolina's 9th district reportedly counted early votes before Election Day

Remember this? Back in July Mueller said a 2016 "congressional candidate" sought Russian help. We don't know who, or whether they won and are in Congress right now. But whoever it was knows Mueller is on their trail

Donald Trump Owns This Stock Market

GOP opens door to new NC election amid fraud claims

Trump threatens to make military build his wall in latest meltdown

Republicans still control the House, the Senate and the White House. If the government shuts down, Trump and the GOP own it

Whos accountable for late GI Bill payments for struggling vets?

TIME has chosen Jamal Khashoggi and other journalists as 2018's ‘Person of the Year'. Others: The staff of Maryland’s Capital Gazette; Reuters journalists Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo; Maria Ressa, CEO of a news outlet in the Philippines targeted by Duterte.

GOP Milwaukee County Sheriff & featured RNC speaker David Clarke went on an NRA delegation visit to Russia. Maria Butina, who plead guilty today to conspiracy, founded the Russian group that helped pay his expenses.

So, @SheriffClarke, when you go to jail for espionage and seditious conspiracy with @DeripaskaOleg, @Torshin_RU @Maria_Butina.... do you think they'll remember to keep the water on in your cell?

Trump has reportedly expressed concern that he could be impeached when Democrats take over the House. A source said Trump apparently sees impeachment as a "real possibility."

BLUF: "Donald J. Trump is 72 years old. His conviction on serious felonies could be tantamount to a death sentence. Yet that may be his future if the president doesn’t rapidly come to some sort of agreement with Bob Mueller and his prosecutors."

Iowa considers ethics complaint against Trump's acting attorney general Matthew Whitaker, a former attorney in Iowa, was involved in a patent company found to be cheating investors of millions

Periodic reminder that Michael Cohen was Hannity’s lawyer

“The U.S. along with Saudi Arabia are playing a clear and calculated spoiling role in the climate change negotiations,” said Ian Fry, the lead negotiator for Tuvalu.

How the IRS Was Gutted

She will be under protective custody for the rest of her life. Shows just how scared she is to go back to Moscow.

White House reporter says Republicans are privately discussing abandoning Trump

Chinese firms exporting goods to the U.S. may be altering customs codes to circumvent tariffs, UBS report says

NEW: Accused spy Maria Butina implicates US lover in Trump-Russia conspiracy, says he helped her and boss Alexander Torshin meet NRA and GOP leaders including Donald Trump in 2015 and a dinner with Donald Trump, Jr. in 2016 in Kentucky.

Just finished a visit to Saudi Arabia where I had productive meetings with Saudi Minister of Energy @Khalid_AlFalih and energy industry stakeholders operating in the Middle East. Saudi Arabia is a strategic ally, especially in the energy space.

The organization that runs the largest network of detention centers for immigrant children has tripled its revenue in three years. It's supposed to be a charity, but has been funneling millions to top executives and friends.

Dear @NRA: Now I know why you refused to answer the letter I wrote with other Members of Congress in March about Russian efforts to influence you. Will the Maria Butina plea expose what you are hiding in your clenched fist? Oh, and I have 3 words for you: January is coming.

BREAKING: Epstein sex abuse victims press judge for decision on tossing his lenient plea deal

Trump administration finalizes rollback of school lunch regulations championed by former first lady Michelle Obama.

Moulton Likely to Get Primary Challenge in 2020

Virginia's consumer affairs office found that Pat Robertson “willfully induced contributions from the public through the use of misleading statements” secretly using funds for cargo planes to aid refugees from Rwanda to transport diamond-mining equipment for his business venture.

Fmr CIA Director Brennan: Trump Knows It’s ‘Impossible’ for Him ‘To Escape American Justice’

U.S., China executives grow wary of travel after Huawei arrest

Scientists say that beef consumption must fall drastically to avert a climate catastrophe. But even if you're not ready to give it up entirely, you still have plenty of options that will make a big difference:

The global turmoil Trump fueled is poised to haunt him as markets fluctuate

Dear #MAGA Twitter, Think armed insurrection against the lawful functions of FedGov is a good idea? ... Bust out the Ouija board and ask Tim McVeigh about it.

44 fmr. senators urge Senate to defend democracy as Mueller probe intensifies

BREAKING--This is why we sued and the case remains pending for 2020: Thousands of mailed ballots in Florida were not counted.

This morning on @Morning_Joe we discussed Kushner taking Acting AG Whitaker (now in charge of the investigation Kushner is a subject of) along on a flight, which makes Loretta Lynch's happenstance tarmac conversation with Bill Clinton pale in comparison

Jared Kushner’s startup sought 100 million in funding from a Saudi-backed fund. Why is he chatting in private with the Saudi prince after Khashoggi’s murder.

'Massive power grab': Trump EPA readies new clean water rule to roll back Obama regulation

Orrin Hatch on Donald Trump directing Michael Cohen to commit a federal crime: “I don’t care.”

A look at where investigations related to President Trump now stand.

Laurence Tribe: Trump can be indicted for federal crimes

The House is going to need to conduct a robust investigation and hold public hearings into the depths of the NRA’s work with a Russian spy.

Law unsettled on if or how long the presidency can protect Trump

House GOP minority leader Kevin McCarthy states that if campaign finance crimes are a violation then lots of Congressmen (probably in his caucus) will have to go.

Butina's GOP operative boyfriend eyed on news of cooperation deal

Noting that she had attended the conference of an unnamed gun rights group—known to be the NRA—she said she had “laid the groundwork for an unofficial channel of communication with the next U.S. administration,” which she predicted would be Republican

44 former senators urge Senate to avoid “partisanship or self-interest” ahead of a “dangerous period”

Butina takes plea deal, cooperating with investigators:

Fox News legal analyst says he can’t imagine Trump not being indicted

Cohen sentencing, other key milestones set for court this week