• Giuliani Makes Up Date Mueller Probe Will End

    Rudy Guiliani
    Rudy Guiliani

    The president’s “lawyer” Rudolph W. Giuliani said the special counsel plans to wrap up its investigation of whether President Trump obstructed the Russia inquiry by September 1.

    Guillani made his remarks Sunday, according to the New York Times, saying “that waiting any longer would risk improperly influencing voters in the midterm elections in November.”

    Somehow I don’t believe Rudy Guiliani, nor do I believe that Robert Mueller’s primary concern is the midterm elections.

    Rudy doesn’t pass the smell test, again.

    How did he come up with the date of September 1? Likely he said it many times during the “negotiations” with Mueller’s team, finally convincing himself that the special counsel’s office agreed to that date.

    In short, he made it up.

    The NYTimes reports:

    The office of the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, shared its timeline about two weeks ago amid negotiations over whether Mr. Trump will be questioned by investigators, Mr. Giuliani said in an interview. A spokesman for the special counsel’s office declined to comment.

    Mr. Giuliani’s comments were an apparent attempt to publicly pressure Mr. Mueller amid their interview negotiations.

    Most relevant from this report?

    “A spokesman for the special counsel’s office declined to comment.”

    That’s all we need to know. Guiliani runs at the mouth every time he gets before a camera or microphone. No doubt this time he is simply playing parrot to what President Trump would like to be true. Mr. Mueller works in a political void — so it seems to me. Let his work continue until it has reached its natural conclusion, and a real report can be prepared.

    Bring on the midterms.


  • North Korea Is Pulling Out: How Will Trump Trump Obama’s Nobel Now?

    Crazy Donald TrumpThe talks between North and South Korea have collapsed.

    The summit between President Trump and Kim Jong-un are collapsing as we write.

    How will Donnie T. trump President Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize now?

    It’s all going up in smoke.

    For a while, I was thinking, “Only Nixon could go to China. Maybe only Trump can go to North Korea.” Except that appears less and less likely as time goes on.

    From the New York Times:

    North Korea threw President Trump’s planned summit meeting with its leader, Kim Jong-un, into doubt on Wednesday, threatening to call off the landmark encounter if the United States insisted on “unilateral nuclear abandonment.”

    The statement, made by the North’s disarmament negotiator, came hours after state media warned that the summit meeting might be canceled to protest a joint military exercise between the United States and South Korea that began this week.

    The warnings caught Trump administration officials off guard and set off an internal debate over whether Mr. Kim was merely posturing in advance of the meeting in Singapore next month or was erecting a serious new hurdle.

    Sic transit gloria mundi.

    And I didn’t even know Gloria was sick. (h/t Mel Brooks)


  • White House Deletes Key Line From Transcript Of Jared Kushner’s Speech In Jerusalem

    Jared Kushner, Amy Siskind, Other 98
    Amy Siskind and the Other 98.

    For some reason, Jared Kushner spoke on behalf of the United States today at the opening of the United States Embassy in Jerusalem.

    Jared Kushner, who was elected to nothing.

    Jared Kushner, who has no background, training, or education at all to be the voice of the United States.

    Jared Kushner, who has no security clearance.

    That Jared Kushner spoke on behalf of the United States today at the opening of the United States Embassy in Jerusalem.

    And the White House edited a key line from his talk from the official transcript.

    From Alternet:

    The White House on Monday released an official transcript of President Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner addressing the opening ceremony for the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem. In the version submitted to reporters, however, the administration neglected to include an important—and controversial—line from the top Trump aide.

     

    “As we have seen from the protests of the last month and even today, those provoking violence are part of the problem and not part of the solution,” Kushner said during his remarks in Jerusalem. At least 52 Palestinians were killed on Monday in Gaza by Israeli security forces.

    For some reason, the White House removed Kushner’s line saying, “…those provoking violence are part of the problem and not part of the solution.”

    Besides the 52 Palestinians killed attempting to enter Israel — Israel fired on them with live ammunition — besides the 52 killed, at least 1,000 Palestinians were injured.

    No more than 40 miles away.

    From where Jared Kushner, a man with no background, elected to no office, a man with no security clearance, spoke on behalf of the United States.


  • Donald Trump’s Dangerous Reality Show

    Rex Tillerson
    Rex Tillerson, official portrait.

    Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is the latest to find himself outside the revolving door of the Trump White House. CIA Director Mike Pompeo will replace Tillerson, according to reports.

    Trump treats his White House as a reality TV show. He treats national security as a TV reality show. The number of firings, resignations, etc., of the “best people” is staggering. The number of positions not yet filled, numbering in the hundreds, is very troubling.

    The federal government employs 2 million civilian workers nationwide, but many positions at the top of the food chain remain empty a year into the Trump presidency. Of more than 600 key jobs filled by presidential nomination, more than half of them are currently vacant awaiting confirmation or have no nominee.

    We are in crisis. Our government is in crisis. Our national security is in crisis. The man at the top thinks he is running a TV reality show.

    I must say it again. I have no other explanation. He thinks this is all about him.

    And we are suffering, will suffer, for this.


  • Get To Know Conor Lamb, The Next Dem To Upset A GOP Dark Red District

    Conor Lamb, Democratic candidate for Congress in Pennsylvania's 18th.
    Conor Lamb, Democratic candidate for Congress in Pennsylvania’s 18th.

    Conor Lamb has as real shot at upsetting a dark red GOP district that includes Houston, PA.

    Lamb speaks on, wait for it, Jesus, as only a young man of faith who knows the teachings of Jesus can:

    “Jesus always started out by going and being with a certain group of people,” says Conor Lamb as we’re winding down hilly back roads to the Washington County Gun Show.

    Jesus, Lamb tells me, tried to get to know people as people before he tried to win them over with arguments. He “wasn’t asking people where they stood on abortion before they came and sat down with them.”

    Lamb, the Democratic candidate in a neck-and-neck special election on March 13, has to hope the people of Pennsylvania’s 18th Congressional District will likewise listen to what he has to say before judging him by his party affiliation.

    Described as a “square-jawed 33-year-old Marine Corps officer who resigned from his job as a federal prosecutor in Pittsburgh to run, has a chance to upend the district’s politics—as long as he can avoid being labeled a liberal without discouraging the district’s not inconsiderable Democrat base from turning out. A devout Catholic, Lamb is pro-union and pro-gun, backs bipartisan deals for fixing Obamacare and the nation’s infrastructure, wants more job training and less college debt, and says he’s pro-fracking but pro-environment, too. And he’s betting that this mix of economic populism and moderate social politics can win the predominantly blue collar district.”

    And I couldn’t be happier for him. Or for Pennsylvania’s 18th, which, currently, begins northwest and west of Pittsburgh, south to the state line, and explodes east into Westmoreland County.

    Let’s see what the district looks like after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court is done redrawing it.

    Pennsylvania's 18th Congressional District
    Pennsylvania’s 18th Congressional District (Since 2013)


  • Round And Round: The Web Spins ‘Round Trump

    Nick gates to change plea
    Nick Gates will change his plea to guilty, testify against Paul Manafort.

    The web spins ever more tightly, creeping closer and closer to Donald Trump.

    From the LA Times:

    A former top aide to Donald Trump’s presidential campaign will plead guilty to fraud-related charges within days — and has made clear to prosecutors that he would testify against Paul Manafort, the lawyer-lobbyist who once managed the campaign.

    The change of heart by Trump’s former deputy campaign manager Richard Gates, who had pleaded not guilty after being indicted in October on charges similar to Manafort’s, was described in interviews by people familiar with the case.

    Gates will change his plea to guilty within the next few days, according to the report.

    And this:

    Gates, 45, who is married with four children, does not appear to be well positioned financially to sustain a high-powered legal defense.

    “He can’t afford to pay it,” said one lawyer who is involved with the investigation. “If you go to trial on this, that’s $1 million to $1.5 million. Maybe more, if you need experts” to appear as witnesses.


  • Video: President Trump Booed at NCAAF National Championship

    When a Republican President is booed in the a Deep South, that’s not a sign of popularity.


  • Undocumented Immigrant Trump Trashed Acquitted in Killing of Kate Steinle

    Jose Ines Garcia Zarate
    Jose Ines Garcia Zarate (SFPD)

    An undocumented immigrant from Mexico who Donald Trump trashed in an August 2016 campaign speech has been found not guilty of murder and manslaughter charges in the killing of Kathryn Steinle.

    The man on trial, Jose Ines Garcia Zarate, was found guilty only of possession of a firearm by a felon.

    The jury also found him not guilty of assault with a firearm.

    From the New York Times:

    The backlash to his release into the community crescendoed when Donald J. Trump invoked Ms. Steinle’s killing as he campaigned for president. Mr. Trump rallied national support for his hard-line immigration agenda, which ultimately helped to catapult him into office.

    In a major speech on immigration in August 2016, Mr. Trump argued that “countless innocent American lives have been stolen because our politicians have failed in their duty to secure our borders and enforce our laws.”

    Mr. Trump then named several young people who he said had become victims of policies he considered failures. Among those he named was Ms. Steinle, who Mr. Trump said had been “gunned down in the sanctuary city of San Francisco, by an illegal immigrant, deported five previous times.”

    “And they knew he was no good,” Mr. Trump said of the man who had shot her.

    Except The Donald was wrong.

    Again.

    And again.


  • Donald Trump Betrays America. He Must Be Stopped.

    The GOP must get on board with stopping Donald Trump. The man is selling out this country piece by piece.

    He must be impeached. As soon as possible.

    From his Twitter rants today.

    Trump’s latest Tweets
    Trump’s latest Tweets

    Why does Trump want to be Kim Jong-un’s friend?

    why does he trust Putin over American intelligence?

    Why is he still obsessed with Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama? Why does he feel so inadequate?

    Why is he still in office?


  • New Jersey First Lady Nabbed In Distracted Driving Crackdown

    New Jersey First Lady Mary Pat Christie
    New Jersey First Lady Mary Pat Christie. (NJ.GOV)

    Mary Pat Christie, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s wife, was nabbed during a “statewide crackdown on distracted driving,” according to NJ.COM:

    A statewide crackdown on distracted driving ordered by Gov. Chris Christie’s attorney general earlier this year led to a surprising catch in New Jersey’s first lady, Mary Pat Christie, NJ Advance Media has learned.

    To her credit, unlike others with influence in Trenton, the first lady did not play the “Do you know who I am?” card after being pulled over, dash cam video of the traffic stop shows.

     

    As it turns out, how the first lady wound up getting that ticket is perhaps more interesting than why.

     

    After New Jersey traffic fatalities jumped 8 percent in 2016, state Attorney General Christopher Porrino requested and received $1.2 million in federal grant money to launch a campaign against texting and other distracted driving that was behind the rise.

    Bloomberg also has the story:

    NJ Advance Media reports Mary Pat Christie was stopped while driving with a cellphone in her hand on April 10 in Bernardsville by a police officer assigned to the grant-funded program that targeted texting and other distracted driving.

    She didn’t identify herself as Republican Gov. Chris Christie’s wife. But she did tell the officer she wasn’t making a call. The officer told her she could not have the phone in her hand while driving.

    The officer told her she was getting a ticket because he was on the distracting driving grant detail.

    She pleaded guilty and paid a $250 fine.