Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Thanas » 2018-04-26 04:27pm




30 minutes of unhinged crazy
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A decision must be made in the life of every nation at the very moment when the grasp of the enemy is at its throat. Then, it seems that the only way to survive is to use the means of the enemy, to rest survival upon what is expedient, to look the other way. Well, the answer to that is 'survival as what'? A country isn't a rock. It's not an extension of one's self. It's what it stands for. It's what it stands for when standing for something is the most difficult! - Chief Judge Haywood
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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-03 06:38pm

So, in Mueller news:

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/30/us/p ... ussia.html

Not going to post the whole article, because it is very, very long, but I've broken it down question by question, along with some of the more pertinent/interesting commentary/context.
The special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, recently provided President Trump's lawyers a list of questions he wants answered in an interview. The New York Times obtained the list; here are the questions, along with the context and significance of each. The questions fall into categories on four broad subjects. They are not quoted verbatim, and some were condensed.
What did you know about phone calls that Mr. Flynn made with the Russian ambassador, Sergey I. Kislyak, in late December 2016?

These questions revolve around weather Mr. Trump tried to obstruct justice to protect Mr. Flynn from prosecution.
What was your reaction to news reports on Jan. 12, 2017, and Feb. 8-9, 2017?

In January, the Washington Post columnist David Ignatius revealed Mr. Flynn's phone calls with Mr. Kislyak. Mr. Ignatius questioned whether those conversations had violated a law prohibiting private citizens from attempting to undermine American policies. In February, The Washington Post revealed the true nature of Mr. Flynn's conversations with Mr. Kislyak.

Mr. Mueller wants to know, among other things, whether Mr. Trump feared that his national security adviser had broken the law and then tried to shield him from consequences.
What did you know about Sally Yate's meetings about Mr. Flynn?
How was the decision made to fire Mr. Flynn on Feb. 13, 2017?
After the resignations, what efforts were made to reach out to Mr. Flynn about seeking immunity or possible pardon?

The Times recently revealed that, when Mr. Flynn began considering cooperating with the F.B.I., Mr. Trump's lawyers floated the idea of a pardon. Mr. Mueller wants to know why.
What was your opinion of Mr. Comey during the transition?

The questions about Mr. Comey relate to weather Mr. Trump fired Mr. Comey last year to shield Mr. Flynn, or anyone else, from prosecution. Mr. Trump has denied that, saying he fired Mr. Comey because of his mishandling of the F.B.I.'s investigation into Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server.

This question is important because, if Mr. Trump truly was upset about the Clinton investigation, he would have shown an early distaste for Mr. Comey.
What did you think about Mr. Comey's intelligence briefing on Jan. 6, 2017, about Russian election interference?
Edit: For some reason the computer cut off a large chunk of my post. I'll repost it separately.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-03 07:42pm

What was your reaction to Mr. Comey's briefing that day about other intelligence matters?

This question addresses documents written by a retired British spy, Christopher Steele, who said that Russia had gathered compromising information on Mr. Trump. The documents, which became known as the Steele Dossier, also claim that the Trump campaign had ties to the Russian government. Mr. Comey privately briefed Mr. Trump about these documents.
What was the purpose of your Jn. 27, 2017 dinner with Mr. Comey, and what was said?
What was the purpose of your Feb. 14, 2017, meeting with Mr. Comey, and what was said?
What did you know about the F.B.I.'s investigation into Mr. Flynn and Russia in the days leading up to Mr. Comey's testimony on March 20, 2017?
What did you do in reaction to the March 20 testimony? Describe your contacts with intelligence officials.
What did you think and do in reaction to the news that the special counsel was speaking to Mr. Rogers, Mr. Pompeo and Mr. Coats?

It is not clear whether Mr. Mueller knows something specific about Mr. Trump's reaction to these interviews, but the question shows that Mr. Mueller is keenly interested in how Mr. Trump responded to each step of his investigation.
What was the purpose of your calls to Mr. Comey on March 30 and April 11, 2017?
What was the purpose of your April 11, 2017, statement to Maria Bartiromo?

While the White House ultimately said Mr. Comey was fired for breaking with Justice Department policy and discussing the Clinton investigation, Mr. Trump expressed no such qualms in an interview with Ms. Bartiromo of Fox Business Network. "Director Comey was very, very good to Hillary Clinton, that I can tell you," he said. "If he weren't, she would be, right now, going to trial."
What did you think and do about Mr. Comey's May 3, 2017, testimony?
Regarding the decision to fire Mr. Comey: When was it made? Why? Who played a role?

Over the past several months, Mr. Mueller has asked White House officials for the back story, and whether the public justification was accurate. He will be able to compare Mr. Trump's answers to what he has learned elsewhere.
What did you mean when you told Russian diplomats on May 10, 2017, that firing Mr. Comey had taken the pressure off?
What did you mean in your interview with Lester Holt about Mr. Comey and Russia?

Shortly after firing Mr. Comey, Mr. Trump undercut his own argument when he told NBC News that he had been thinking about the Russian investigation when he fired Mr. Comey.
What was the purpose of your May 12, 2017, tweet?
What did you think about Mr. Comey's June 8, 2017, testimony regarding Mr. Flynn, and what did you do about it?
What was the purpose of the September and October 2017 statements, including tweets, regarding an investigation of Mr. Comey?
What is the reason for your continued criticism of Mr. Comey and his former deputy, Andrew G. McCabe?
What did you think and do regarding the recusal of Mr. Sessions?

Mr. Trump has criticized Mr. Sessions's recusal from the Russia investigation. The Times reported that Mr. Trump humiliated him in an Oval Office meeting and accused him of being disloyal. Mr. Sessions ultimately submitted his resignation, though Mr. Trump did not accept it. Along with the next two questions, this inquiry looks at whether Mr. Trump views law enforcement officials as protectors.
What efforts did you make to try to get him to change his mind?
Did you discuss whether Mr. Sessions would protect you, and reference past attorneys general?
What did you think and what did you do in reaction to the news of the appointment of the special counsel?
Why did you hold Mr. Sessions's resignation until May 31, 2017, and with whom did you discuss it?

Mr. Trump rejected Mr. Sessions's resignation after aides argued that it would only create more problems. The details of those discussions remain unclear, but Mr. Trump's advisers have already given Mr. Mueller their accounts of the conversations.
What discussions did you have with Reince Priebus in July 2017 about obtaining the Sessions resignation? With whom did you discuss it?
What discussions did you have regarding terminating the special counsel, and what did you do when that consideration was reported in January 2018?

Again, Mr. Mueller's investigation intersects with its own existence. The Times reported that, in June 2017, Mr. Trump ordered Mr. McGhan to fire Mr. Mueller. Mr. McGhan refused. Though Mr. Trump's own advisers informed Mr. Mueller about that effort, Mr. Trump denied it: "Fake news," he said. "A typical New York Times fake story."
What was the purpose of your July 2017 criticism of Mr. Sessions?
When did you become aware of the Trump Tower meeting?

This and other questions relate to a June 9, 2016, meeting at Trump Tower with a Russian lawyer who offered political dirt about Mrs. Clinton. Mr. Trump's eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., arranged the meeting. He said he did not tell his father about it when it happened.
What involvement did you have in the communication strategy, including the release of Donald Trump Jr.'s emails?
During a 2013 trip to Russia, what communication and relationships did you have with the Agalarovs and Russian government officials?
What communication did you have with Michael D. Cohen, Felix Sater and others, including foreign nationals, about Russian real estate developments during the campaign?
What discussions did you have during the campaign regarding any meeting with Mr. Putin? Did you discuss it with others?

Journalists and lawmakers have uncovered several examples of Russian officials trying, through intermediaries, to arrange a meeting between Mr. Trump and Mr. Putin. Senior campaign officials rejected some overtures, but Mr. Trump's involvement has been a mystery.
What discussions did you have during the campaign regarding Russian sanctions?
What involvement did you have concerning platform changes regarding arming Ukraine?
During the campaign, what did you know about Russian hacking, use of social media or other acts aimed at the campaign?

This is a key question. Mr. Trump praised the release of hacked Democratic emails and called on Russia to find others. Mr. Mueller's investigation has unearthed evidence that at least one member of Mr. Trump's campaign-George Papadopoulos-was told that Russia had obtained compromising emails about Mrs. Clinton. But Mr. Trump has repeatedly said there was "no collusion" with the Russian government.
Edit: Again, the last bit got cut off. One more post to come.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-03 07:58pm

What knowledge did you have of any outreach by your campaign, including by Paul Manafort, to Russia about potential assistance to the campaign?

This is one of the most intriguing questions on the list. It is not clear whether Mr. Mueller knows something new, but there is no publicly available information linking Mr. Manafort, the former campaign chairman, to such outreach. So his inclusion here is significant. Mr. Manafort's longtime colleague, Rick Gates, is cooperating with Mr. Mueller.
What did you know about communication between Roger Stone, his associates, Julian Assange or WikiLeaks?

Mr. Stone, a longtime adviser, claimed to have inside information from WikiLeaks, which published hacked Democratic emails. He appeared to predict future releases, and was in touch with a Twitter account used by Russian intelligence. This question, along with the next two, show that Mr. Mueller is still investigating possible campaign cooperation with Russia.
What did you know during the transition about an attempt to establish back-channel communication to Russia, and Jared Kushner's efforts?
What do you know about a 2017 meeting in Seychelles involving Erik Prince?
What do you know about a Ukrainian peace proposal provided to Mr. Cohen in 2017?
There. Finally.

Now, its my understanding that in investigations such as this, the investigators don't like to ask questions that they don't already have answers for (and Mueller clearly does have other peoples' testimony on a number of these points). I can't say for certain, of course, but between that, the fact that he now is pushing to interview Trump himself, and the taboo against investigations interfering in elections (which Comey broke, and which the notoriously by-the-book Mueller will likely not want to violate, especially as it would give Trump a pretext to fire him and impede the investigation), I think that we're likely nearing the endgame for the Mueller investigation.

I won't venture a prediction as to the final outcome, but the questions provide some insight into the direction of Mueller's investigation, and it appears to me as though he is building an obstruction case, and possibly a case for quid pro quo with Russia during the campaign, against Trump and members of his inner circle.

The article also provides a fairly good summary of a lot of major points of the story up to this point, in my opinion.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Elheru Aran » 2018-05-03 08:06pm

I've heard the notion floated that Mueller released these questions mostly to gauge Trump's reaction and isn't particularly planning on interviewing Trump himself, particularly considering it's unlikely he would get a straight answer out of Trump anyway, much less being able to interview him under oath (and thus catch him out in perjury).
It's a strange world. Let's keep it that way.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-03 08:11pm

Elheru Aran wrote:
2018-05-03 08:06pm
I've heard the notion floated that Mueller released these questions mostly to gauge Trump's reaction and isn't particularly planning on interviewing Trump himself, particularly considering it's unlikely he would get a straight answer out of Trump anyway, much less being able to interview him under oath (and thus catch him out in perjury).
Where did you hear that?

Its possible, I suppose, but IIRC, Mueller has a reputation for hating leaks to the press, and he's generally kept things pretty tightly under wraps until it was time to lay down an indictment, so I'm skeptical that he'd use that tactic.

I've also heard it rumored that he may subpoena the President and spend the next year arguing weather he's allowed to do that all the way to the Supreme Court. :wink: Damned if I know what's actually going to happen at this point.

Edit: Is there a rule that the President can't be interviewed under oath? I don't think so. After all, lying under oath was what they impeached Bill for.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Civil War Man » 2018-05-03 09:39pm

Elheru Aran wrote:
2018-05-03 08:06pm
I've heard the notion floated that Mueller released these questions mostly to gauge Trump's reaction and isn't particularly planning on interviewing Trump himself, particularly considering it's unlikely he would get a straight answer out of Trump anyway, much less being able to interview him under oath (and thus catch him out in perjury).
The story I've heard is that the list was actually written by Sekulow, based on a meeting with Mueller's team, and then leaked to the press by Trump's people for a number of possible theoretical reasons. Mueller's run a really tight ship so far, while Trump's been leaking like a sieve, the list is more a list of topics than questions, and, as Michael Zeldin, who used to work for Mueller when he was FBI director, pointed out, the list contains several grammatical errors.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-03 09:46pm

Civil War Man wrote:
2018-05-03 09:39pm
Elheru Aran wrote:
2018-05-03 08:06pm
I've heard the notion floated that Mueller released these questions mostly to gauge Trump's reaction and isn't particularly planning on interviewing Trump himself, particularly considering it's unlikely he would get a straight answer out of Trump anyway, much less being able to interview him under oath (and thus catch him out in perjury).
The story I've heard is that the list was actually written by Sekulow, based on a meeting with Mueller's team, and then leaked to the press by Trump's people for a number of possible theoretical reasons. Mueller's run a really tight ship so far, while Trump's been leaking like a sieve, the list is more a list of topics than questions, and, as Michael Zeldin, who used to work for Mueller when he was FBI director, pointed out, the list contains several grammatical errors.
Source?

I'd ask why Trump's team would release something that makes Trump look so bad, except they do that all the fucking time.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Civil War Man » 2018-05-03 09:53pm

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2018-05-03 09:46pm
Source?

I'd ask why Trump's team would release something that makes Trump look so bad, except they do that all the fucking time.
Washington Post
In a tense meeting in early March with special counsel Robert S. Mueller III, President Trump’s lawyers insisted he had no obligation to talk with federal investigators probing Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential campaign.

But Mueller responded that he had another option if Trump declined: He could issue a subpoena for the president to appear before a grand jury, according to four people familiar with the encounter.

Mueller’s warning — the first time he is known to have mentioned a possible subpoena to Trump’s legal team — spurred a sharp retort from John Dowd, then the president’s lead lawyer.

“This isn’t some game,” Dowd said, according to two people with knowledge of his comments. “You are screwing with the work of the president of the United States.”

The flare-up set in motion weeks of turmoil among Trump’s attorneys as they debated how to deal with the special counsel’s request for an interview, a dispute that ultimately led to Dowd’s resignation.

In the wake of the testy March 5 meeting, Mueller’s team agreed to provide the president’s lawyers with more specific information about the subjects that prosecutors wished to discuss with the president. With those details in hand, Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow compiled a list of 49 questions that the team believed the president would be asked, according to three of the four people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk publicly. The New York Times first reported the existence of the list.

The questions focus on events during the Trump campaign, transition and presidency that have long been known to be under scrutiny, including the president’s reasons for firing then-FBI Director James B. Comey and the pressure he put on Attorney General Jeff Sessions to resign.

Now Trump’s newly reconfigured legal team is pondering how to address the special counsel’s queries, all while assessing the potential evidence of obstruction that Mueller might present and contending with a client who has grown increasingly opposed to sitting down with the special counsel. Without a resolution on the interview, the standoff could turn into a historic confrontation before the Supreme Court over a presidential subpoena.

Sekulow and Dowd declined to comment. Joshua Stueve, a spokesman for the special counsel, declined to comment.

The president has repeatedly decried the investigation as a “witch hunt.”

“Oh, I see . . . you have a made up, phony crime, Collusion, that never existed, and an investigation begun with illegally leaked classified information. Nice!” Trump tweeted Tuesday.

Trump’s remade legal team is now led by former New York mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani, who told The Washington Post on Tuesday that he views Mueller as the utmost professional, but is still reviewing documents and considering conditions he might set before deciding whether to recommend that Trump agree to an interview.

“Hopefully we’re getting near the end. We all on both sides have some important decisions to make,” Giuliani said. “I still have a totally open mind on what the right strategy is, which we’ll develop in the next few weeks.”

In the meantime, Trump’s lawyers are also considering whether to provide Mueller with written explanations of the episodes he is examining. After investigators laid out 16 specific subjects they wanted to review with the president and added a few topics within each one, Sekulow broke the queries down into 49 separate questions, according to people familiar with the process.

Paul Rosenzweig, who worked as a senior counsel on independent counsel Kenneth W. Starr’s investigation during the Clinton administration, predicted that the president would face a long interview if the special counsel hewed to the list Sekulow compiled.

“This isn’t a list of 49 questions. It’s 49 topics,” Rosenzweig said. “Each of these topics results in dozens of questions. To be honest, that list is a two-day interview. You don’t get through it in an hour or two.”

For his part, Trump fumed when he saw the breadth of the questions that emerged out of the talks with Mueller’s team, according to two White House officials.

The president and several advisers now plan to point to the list as evidence that Mueller has strayed beyond his mandate and is overreaching, they said.

“He wants to hammer that,” according to a person who spoke to Trump on Monday.

“Mueller is in Kenny Starr territory now,” said another Trump adviser, referring to how the controversial independent counsel investigation of Bill and Hillary Clinton’s real estate deals in Arkansas ended up examining the president’s lies about his sexual relationship with a White House intern.

Trump advisers are particularly frustrated by the Mueller team’s focus on whether Trump was obstructing justice by trying to push last summer for Sessions to resign. If the attorney general had stepped down, Trump could have chosen a replacement who was not recused from running the Russia investigation.

Dowd has repeatedly argued that the president has ultimate authority under the Constitution to fire or demote any of his appointees and that his firing decisions cannot be used as evidence of obstruction.

The revelation of the scope of the questions before the president’s team could further complicate recently renewed talks between the special counsel and Trump’s attorneys about a possible interview.

Last week, Giuliani met with Mueller to reopen negotiations over a presidential interview.

Giuliani conveyed the ongoing resistance of Trump and his advisers to a sit-down but did not rule out the possibility. Still, Trump remains strongly opposed to granting Mueller an interview — resistance fueled largely by the raids last month on the office and residences of his personal attorney Michael Cohen.

[Giuliani reopens negotiations about presidential interview but cautions special counsel that Trump remains resistant]

Trump’s anger over the Cohen raids spilled into nearly every conversation in the days that followed and continues to be a sore point for the president. One confidant said Trump seems to “talk about it 20 times a day.” Other associates said they often stay silent, in person or on the phone, as he vents about the Cohen matter, knowing there is little they can say.

Alan Dershowitz, a well-known lawyer and Trump advocate, said Tuesday that it would be dangerous and unwise for the president to agree to an interview.

“The strategy is to throw him softballs so that he will go on and on with his answers,” he said. “Instead of sharp questions designed to elicit yes or no, they make him feel very comfortable and let him ramble.”

In that setting, Dershowitz said, prosecutors could catch Trump in a misstatement.

Should Mueller seek to compel Trump’s testimony using a subpoena, a legal battle could ensue that could delay the investigation and force the issue into the courts, potentially to the Supreme Court.

Trump’s team could argue that Mueller was seeking information about the president’s private conversations that are protected by executive privilege or that a grand jury interview would place an unnecessary burden on the president’s ability to run the country.

Judges have generally held that the president is not above the law and can be subjected to normal legal processes — but the issue of a presidential subpoena for testimony has not been tested in court. Starr subpoenaed President Bill Clinton for grand jury testimony in 1998 but withdrew it after Clinton agreed to testify voluntarily. He was interviewed at the White House, appearing before the grand jury via video.

Rosenzweig, a senior fellow at the R Street Institute, a nonpartisan think tank, said judges generally like to accommodate a president because he has to be free to “manage the affairs of the world and deal with nuclear war without having to worry about whether he has to show up for an interview the next day.”

But, he added, courts are loath to say the president can’t be investigated.

“The opposite argument is that no man is above the law, and if it’s a lawful investigation, then he must respond,” Rosenzweig said.

Some legal experts believe that two Justice Department opinions prohibit federal prosecutors, including Mueller, from charging a sitting president with a crime. Instead, they said, the Constitution relies on Congress’s power to impeach as the route to hold a president accountable for potentially criminal behavior.

Trump’s lawyers could then argue that he cannot be forced to testify under subpoena, unless his testimony is necessary to indict someone else.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-03 10:17pm

A bit ambiguous, but you could be right.

Its still baffling to me why Trump's lawyers would do that, though.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by SCRawl » 2018-05-03 11:26pm

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2018-05-03 10:17pm
A bit ambiguous, but you could be right.

Its still baffling to me why Trump's lawyers would do that, though.
If public opinion -- at least, the public that matters to the current administration -- is that Mueller's investigation is exceeding its mandate, then there could be enough sympathy to justify ending it. Perhaps leaking this list of questions was meant to do this.
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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by bilateralrope » 2018-05-04 12:26am

Elheru Aran wrote:
2018-05-03 08:06pm
I've heard the notion floated that Mueller released these questions mostly to gauge Trump's reaction and isn't particularly planning on interviewing Trump himself, particularly considering it's unlikely he would get a straight answer out of Trump anyway, much less being able to interview him under oath (and thus catch him out in perjury).
The theory I've heard was that they were leaked by Trump's legal team in an attempt to get Fox News to convince Trump to refuse to testify. Although that is only speculation.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by LaCroix » 2018-05-04 07:47am

1. Make up your own set of questions you think the prosecution will ask.
2. Use these fabricated questions to accuse the prosecution of overstepping their mandate.
3. ????
4. Profit ???
A minute's thought suggests that the very idea of this is stupid. A more detailed examination raises the possibility that it might be an answer to the question "how could the Germans win the war after the US gets involved?" - Captain Seafort, in a thread proposing a 1942 'D-Day' in Quiberon Bay

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-04 01:32pm

SCRawl wrote:
2018-05-03 11:26pm
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2018-05-03 10:17pm
A bit ambiguous, but you could be right.

Its still baffling to me why Trump's lawyers would do that, though.
If public opinion -- at least, the public that matters to the current administration -- is that Mueller's investigation is exceeding its mandate, then there could be enough sympathy to justify ending it. Perhaps leaking this list of questions was meant to do this.
I suppose, but they've been pulling that shit for months, and right now, its hard to see them swaying a lot of people with this that weren't already swayed. The "Fake News" crowd will say that regardless, the people who don't give a damn will keep not giving a damn, and the rest of us are ready to take to the streets in protest the day Mueller or Rosenstein is fired.
bilateralrope wrote:
2018-05-04 12:26am
Elheru Aran wrote:
2018-05-03 08:06pm
I've heard the notion floated that Mueller released these questions mostly to gauge Trump's reaction and isn't particularly planning on interviewing Trump himself, particularly considering it's unlikely he would get a straight answer out of Trump anyway, much less being able to interview him under oath (and thus catch him out in perjury).
The theory I've heard was that they were leaked by Trump's legal team in an attempt to get Fox News to convince Trump to refuse to testify. Although that is only speculation.
Yeah, I can see that.

His lawyers would be insane to want to let him in a room with Robert Mueller, guilty or innocent. He'll be guilty of lying to the FBI inside of five seconds, because that's who he is.
LaCroix wrote:
2018-05-04 07:47am
1. Make up your own set of questions you think the prosecution will ask.
2. Use these fabricated questions to accuse the prosecution of overstepping their mandate.
3. ????
4. Profit ???
Thing is, I can't see many, if any, of these questions overstepping Mueller's mandate. They're pretty much all clearly related to either the Obstruction investigation into Flynn and Comey's firing, or into Russian interference and collusion allegations during the election. Ie, the two main things Mueller was specifically appointed to investigate.

Edit: Granted, I may be overestimating how aware the average member of the public is about the investigation.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Elheru Aran » 2018-05-31 06:33pm

It's been slow in this thread lately. Saturation, I suppose. Here's the latest.

Trump pardons Dinesh D'Souza, right-wing troll and election fraudster
CNN.com wrote: Washington (CNN)President Donald Trump announced unexpectedly Thursday that he is granting a full pardon to Dinesh D'Souza, the conservative author and filmmaker who pleaded guilty to violating federal campaign finance laws in 2014 after he was indicted earlier that year on charges that he illegally used straw donors to contribute to Republican Senate candidate Wendy Long in New York in 2012.
"Will be giving a Full Pardon to Dinesh D'Souza today. He was treated very unfairly by our government!" Trump tweeted.
Trump, who signed the paperwork formally pardoning D'Souza before announcing it on Twitter, had never met or spoken with D'Souza before this week. He told reporters aboard Air Force One Thursday that he called him for the first time Wednesday night to inform him that he would be pardoning him. The two spoke for nearly three minutes, according to the President.
"He almost had a heart attack," Trump said.
In a tweet celebrating his pardon, D'Souza said "(President Barack) Obama & his stooges tried to extinguish my American dream & destroy my faith in America. Thank you @realDonaldTrump for fully restoring both(.)"
Though Trump said no one had asked him to pardon D'Souza, a source familiar with how things unfolded told CNN that Sen. Ted Cruz, among others, personally lobbied him to consider doing so.
D'Souza's wife confirmed Cruz's role on Twitter.
"I want to thank @realDonaldTrump for giving my husband a pardon but I particularly want to thank @SenTedCruz for putting it on his radar and helping make it happen! So grateful!" Debbie D'Souza tweeted.
The official White House statement on D'Souza's pardon said he was, in the President's opinion, "a victim of selective prosecution for violations of campaign finance laws."
"Mr. D'Souza accepted responsibility for his actions, and also completed community service by teaching English to citizens and immigrants seeking citizenship. In light of these facts, the President has determined that Mr. D'Souza is fully worthy of this pardon," the statement said.
Trump said Thursday that he is also considering pardoning Martha Stewart and pardoning or commuting the sentence of former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich. Both were stars with Trump on NBC's "The Apprentice" franchise.
The President told reporters that Blagojevich had said something "stupid" but that it was similar to what other politicians have said and called the 18-year sentence "really unfair." He added that "plenty of other politicians could have said a lot worse."
D'Souza was sentenced to five years of probation, including eight months living under supervision in a halfway house and a $30,000 fine.
"I knew that causing a campaign contribution to be made in the name of another was wrong and something the law forbids," D'Souza had said at his plea hearing. "I deeply regret my conduct."
D'Souza is a contentious figure who once accused then-President Barack Obama of adopting "the cause of anti-colonialism" from his Kenyan father in a 2010 Forbes magazine cover story when Obama was in office. In the piece, he referred to Obama's father as a "philandering, inebriated African socialist, who raged against the world for denying him the realization of his anticolonial ambitions." He also once argued that Adolf Hitler was not "anti-gay."
"Dinesh D'Souza is an individual who, you know, has made restitution and accepted responsibility for his actions, but these are infractions and crimes that are rarely prosecuted, and many believe that he was the subject of some selective prosecution from the previous administration," White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah said on Fox News Thursday.
"Nonetheless, he's accepted responsibility and the President believes it's appropriate that he receive a pardon after community service, paying a fine, and doing other things that the judge has required," Shah said.
D'Souza once called on comedienne Rosie O'Donnell to be prosecuted for violating campaign finance laws in a fashion similar to his case.
A Justice Department spokesperson confirmed Thursday that Trump's pardon of D'Souza did not go through the department's Office of Pardon Attorney.
In the past, the Office of the Pardon Attorney has assisted the White House on clemency petitions -- though it is not constitutionally required.
Fox News host and former judge Jeanine Pirro called D'Souza's pardon "fantastic news."
"Obama's political prosecution null and void," she added.
Preet Bharara, who brought charges against D'Souza when he was US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, asserted that there was no unfairness in the case.
"The President has the right to pardon but the facts are these: D'Souza intentionally broke the law, voluntarily pled guilty, apologized for his conduct & the judge found no unfairness. The career prosecutors and agents did their job. Period," Bharara, a CNN senior legal analyst, tweeted, along with a link to D'Souza's guilty plea.
Though past presidents have waited until the end of their term for controversial pardons, Trump has granted clemency to four people during his first 16 months in office. His pardons include former Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, who was convicted of perjury and obstruction of justice in an investigation into leaking the identity of a CIA officer, and former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was convicted of criminal contempt in a case related to his hard-line tactics with undocumented immigrants.
The President did not use the Office of the Pardon Attorney for the pardons for Arpaio or Libby.
Trump was visibly irked last month when a reporter asked if he would consider a pardon for Michael Cohen, his longtime attorney who is now under federal investigation for possible bank fraud, wire fraud, and campaign finance violations.
"Stupid question," Trump responded.
And, to boot, he's considering pardoning Rod Blago...whatever, the crooked Illinois governor, and fricking Martha Stewart. I mean, who the fuck cares about Martha Stewart?

Someone who's throwing bones to former Apprentice contestants and is signaling to people that he's got their back so they don't flip on him to the FBI, apparently. Gee, wonder what piece of orange smegma that could be?
It's a strange world. Let's keep it that way.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by U.P. Cinnabar » 2018-05-31 08:20pm

D'Souza has been a darling of the right wing(and the misogynist wolves in left-wing trappings), since his "book" Illiberal Education was published back in 1990/91(and was one of the assholes who made "political correctness " the train but that it is today).

Of course, Donnie Pump would pardon him.
"Beware the Beast, Man, for he is the Devil's pawn. Alone amongst God's primates, he kills for sport, for lust, for greed. Yea, he will murder his brother to possess his brother's land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home and yours. Shun him, drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of Death.."
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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Raj Ahten » 2018-05-31 09:25pm

Trump's just testing the water so that when his lawyer I mean bagman is indicted he'll be immediately pardoned and no one will react.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-05-31 09:38pm

U.P. Cinnabar wrote:
2018-05-31 08:20pm
D'Souza has been a darling of the right wing(and the misogynist wolves in left-wing trappings), since his "book" Illiberal Education was published back in 1990/91(and was one of the assholes who made "political correctness " the train but that it is today).

Of course, Donnie Pump would pardon him.
That and basically send a message that violating election laws by the Right is sanctioned by the President.
Elheru Aran wrote:
2018-05-31 06:33pm
And, to boot, he's considering pardoning Rod Blago...whatever, the crooked Illinois governor, and fricking Martha Stewart. I mean, who the fuck cares about Martha Stewart?

Someone who's throwing bones to former Apprentice contestants and is signaling to people that he's got their back so they don't flip on him to the FBI, apparently. Gee, wonder what piece of orange smegma that could be?
There's also speculation that Stewart would be partly a fuck-you to Comey, since Comey was behind Stewart's prosecution (he discusses it at some length in his book*).

*Which by the way I strongly recommend- whatever ones' opinion of Comey, its a fascinating insight into both the behind-the-scenes events of recent American history, and the thought processes of a man who was involved in a lot of the major stories of American law and politics over the last thirty years- I started reading it around midnight and stayed up until 9:00 the next morning to binge-read the entire thing, something I haven't done with a book in years.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-06-02 06:14pm

https://www.apnews.com/984c6851c25f48e5 ... s-subpoena

Interesting developments from Trump. If by "interesting", you mean "appalling".
WASHINGTON (AP) - President Donald Trump's lawyers composed a secret 20-page letter to special counsel Robert Mueller to assert that he cannot be forced to testify while arguing that he could not have committed obstruction because he has absolute authority over all federal investigations.
Well, there you have it. The President of the United States has literally declared himself above the law.

"absolute authority over all federal investigations". In other words, the law is merely an extension of the President's will. Whatever your party, whatever your opinion on the legitimacy of the Russian investigation, those words from a President should be absolutely terrifying. He has all but declared himself dictator of America.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by U.P. Cinnabar » 2018-06-02 07:10pm

This has been building a long time, Rommie, in the fertile soil of executive privilege four previous Presidents have invoked to protect themselves.
"Beware the Beast, Man, for he is the Devil's pawn. Alone amongst God's primates, he kills for sport, for lust, for greed. Yea, he will murder his brother to possess his brother's land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home and yours. Shun him, drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of Death.."
—29th Scroll, 6th Verse of Ape Law

"The Constitution's a piece of paper. A kick in the head is a jolt."
—Stanley "Ray" Kowalski
"Accuse the other side of that which you are guilty."
---NRA motto

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-06-02 07:33pm

U.P. Cinnabar wrote:
2018-06-02 07:10pm
This has been building a long time, Rommie, in the fertile soil of executive privilege four previous Presidents have invoked to protect themselves.
Oh, its been building longer than that. Remember Richard Nixon's "When the President does it, its not illegal"?

But that doesn't change the fact that Trump is trying to take Presidential immunity to a new level. He is pushing the boundaries in a very dangerous way. And people need to realize that this is NOT normal. And if it is, it damn well shouldn't be.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by U.P. Cinnabar » 2018-06-02 09:54pm

I vaguely remember Nixon. He was President when I was born. Carter, I remember fondly. Before the dark times...
"Beware the Beast, Man, for he is the Devil's pawn. Alone amongst God's primates, he kills for sport, for lust, for greed. Yea, he will murder his brother to possess his brother's land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home and yours. Shun him, drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of Death.."
—29th Scroll, 6th Verse of Ape Law

"The Constitution's a piece of paper. A kick in the head is a jolt."
—Stanley "Ray" Kowalski
"Accuse the other side of that which you are guilty."
---NRA motto

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by bilateralrope » 2018-06-03 12:27am

So Trump's lawyers have given Mueller's team most of their arguments. Letting Mueller have all the time he needs to find counterarguments before he makes a move against Trump.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Pelranius » 2018-06-03 01:20am

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2018-06-02 06:14pm
https://www.apnews.com/984c6851c25f48e5 ... s-subpoena

Interesting developments from Trump. If by "interesting", you mean "appalling".
WASHINGTON (AP) - President Donald Trump's lawyers composed a secret 20-page letter to special counsel Robert Mueller to assert that he cannot be forced to testify while arguing that he could not have committed obstruction because he has absolute authority over all federal investigations.
Well, there you have it. The President of the United States has literally declared himself above the law.

"absolute authority over all federal investigations". In other words, the law is merely an extension of the President's will. Whatever your party, whatever your opinion on the legitimacy of the Russian investigation, those words from a President should be absolutely terrifying. He has all but declared himself dictator of America.
And I'm sure they won't stop at just obstruction of justice.

probably take the next logical step and open investigations into political opponents...
Turns out that a five way cross over between It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, the Ali G Show, Fargo, Idiocracy and Veep is a lot less funny when you're actually living in it.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2018-06-03 10:59pm

U.P. Cinnabar wrote:
2018-06-02 09:54pm
I vaguely remember Nixon. He was President when I was born. Carter, I remember fondly. Before the dark times...
I saw Jimmy Carter on Colbert recently. Still very sharp, considering he's what, 93? Colbert, jokingly, suggested that he could run in 2020 (since he only served one term). If only...
bilateralrope wrote:
2018-06-03 12:27am
So Trump's lawyers have given Mueller's team most of their arguments. Letting Mueller have all the time he needs to find counterarguments before he makes a move against Trump.
Hey, no one ever said they were smart assholes. :wink: Stupid Watergate remains stupid.

But I don't think they're really thinking in terms of a legal defense, to be honest. The way I see it, there is no legal defense that's going to save Trump's ass from Obstruction charges (considering he, you know, publicly admitted to trying to obstruct the investigation when he fired Comey), but at the same time, as long as he's President, its doubtful that he'll ever be indicted. It comes down to impeachment, which means it comes down to who wins the 2018 Congressional elections. This isn't a legal defense- its a political defense. Everything is for consumption by the electorate, to convince them that the Mueller investigation is a "witch hunt" and mobilize the base.

That or his lawyers are just desperately trying to stroke Trump's ego so he won't fire them, too.
Pelranius wrote:
2018-06-03 01:20am
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2018-06-02 06:14pm
https://www.apnews.com/984c6851c25f48e5 ... s-subpoena

Interesting developments from Trump. If by "interesting", you mean "appalling".
WASHINGTON (AP) - President Donald Trump's lawyers composed a secret 20-page letter to special counsel Robert Mueller to assert that he cannot be forced to testify while arguing that he could not have committed obstruction because he has absolute authority over all federal investigations.
Well, there you have it. The President of the United States has literally declared himself above the law.

"absolute authority over all federal investigations". In other words, the law is merely an extension of the President's will. Whatever your party, whatever your opinion on the legitimacy of the Russian investigation, those words from a President should be absolutely terrifying. He has all but declared himself dictator of America.
And I'm sure they won't stop at just obstruction of justice.

probably take the next logical step and open investigations into political opponents...
They already went there with "Lock her up" during the election. And beyond that, when Trump suggested that the Second Amendment would be needed to deal with the Supreme Court if Hillary Clinton won. Hell, Republicans went there when they initiated investigation after investigation that went nowhere into Benghazi, in the hopes of digging up dirt on Clinton.

And now they're trying to push another special counsel to investigate the Obama/FBI "spy" in the Trump campaign that Trump made up.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.

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