The greatest conceit in public life today is the notion that we don’t already know President Trump is guilty. Guilty of what? Conspiring, by whatever level of directness, with a foreign power to win the Presidency and then continuing to cater to that foreign power either as payback for the assistance or out of fear of being exposed. In other words, collusion, a national betrayal that may break some statute laws but which far transcends them and isn’t in the past but is rather on-going.
The Pentagon announcement: “We originally targeted November 10, 2018 for this event [the parade] but have now agreed to explore opportunities in 2019.”
On its face that’s a postponement. But exploring opportunities next year sounds vague to the point of possibly not even happening at all.
Juries are notoriously difficult to predict. Anything could happen in the Manafort deliberations. But after its first day of deliberations, the jury sent out very specific questions to the judge, tied very closely to some of the key points of dispute in the trial.
One of Paul Manafort’s lawyers is anxiously pacing around a hotel lobby. The other is charging his phone. Reporters are sitting around the same hotel or circulating in and out of the courthouse. After a three-week-long period of daily action during Paul Manafort’s financial crimes trial, now the lawyers, reporters and spectators are stuck in Alexandria, Virginia, with nothing to do but wait as the jury deliberates. It could take hours, or it could take days. Read Caitlin MacNeal’s reporter’s notebook (Prime access) with the latest →
I think this point, from a former federal public corruption prosecutor, gets to the heart of what’s happening between Paul Manafort and Robert Mueller …
The GOP nominee for Governor in California compares the Holocaust to long lines at the DMV. “You know, I met a Holocaust survivor in Long Beach. He survived concentration camps, and he said this was worse. He’s 90 years old and he had to wait four hours down in Long Beach. Can you imagine that?” Story here.
I’ve mentioned a few times that something does not seem quite right about Simona Mangiante, the wife of George Papadopoulos, a central figure in the Mueller probe as we currently understand it. It was a report about Papadopoulos’s drunken admissions about conversations with an alleged Russian intelligence asset named Joseph Mifsud that triggered the original Russian collusion probe. He pled to one charge of lying to government investigators late last year and became a cooperating witness. But a couple months ago, his wife, Mangiante began a press tour denying or appearing to recant on his behalf most of what he’d admitted to in his plea agreement. She made various claims that lined up with the general Fox News “deep state” conspiracy theories advanced by various Trump apologists.
Last night Mangiante went on Twitter and ask for a lawyer to come forward to take over her husband’s defense.
Good morning. Paul Manafort’s future is in a jury’s hands today following both sides’ closing arguments, which wrapped up yesterday afternoon. Here’s more on that and on the other stories we’re following.
From TPM Reader JO …
Great job by Tierney and Caitlin covering the Manafort trial. Their dispatches were every bit as good as Wapo, and generally better than the NYTimes. In particular, they showed a great touch for identifying the evidence that illustrated the prosecution’s game plan of corroborating Manafort’s knowledge and complicity with a thousand small lies and deceptions. Many news orgs just focused on the “drama” of provacative questions. Tierney and Caitlin recogized the broader patterns.
It would be truly shocking if Manafort is not convicted of many if not most counts. Of course, juries do crazy things, so we know until we know.
Again, fabulous job by the team.
When I wrote this post about Trump’s pre-Twitter, 2011-12 video blog I went back and watched a decent number of the mini-episodes. One of the things I watch for in watching these – just can’t help it – is his verbal focus and precision. (Here’s the video series I’m talking about.) Watch video of Trump from twenty years ago and it’s very, very different from the guy you see now. There was some of this in these videos from less than a decade ago. But there was something else that I noticed, something that took me a while to quite put my finger on because it’s the absence of something.