CNN has an exclusive this evening that is explosive but also requires some important context: some of those Russian ‘diplomats’ who were expelled as spies were tracking Russian emigres or defectors in the U.S. Let me share some thoughts on what to make of this revelation.
We appear to have a minor diplomatic incident unfolding at the former Russian consular residence in Seattle.
Very revealing move here by Facebook. Many companies try to have some balance in Republicans and Democrats in who runs their DC offices – which is to say, they’re lobbying operation. Top person from one party, second at the other. That’s by no means always the case. It depends on the company. But Facebook is moving toward having two Republicans running its DC lobbying operation – Joel Kaplan and Kevin Martin.
“I feel like the GOP broadly really wants to make it look like in-person voter fraud is a real thing. The numbers have shown that it’s not, but if they can drum up enough cases like this, then they have the ability to at least make the claim that it exists. Stories like this will scare people away from voting and it will make us a less democratic country.”
That’s what the lawyer for Crystal Mason told TPM’s Nicole Lafond, and it’s exactly right. Mason is the Texas woman who was sentenced to five years in jail for illegally voting when she was on supervised release for a felony conviction. Mason, who pretty clearly appears to have made an honest mistake, is now asking for a new trial.
Almost two years ago, as President Trump stood on the threshold of securing the Republican nomination, he stumbled into a nuisance level scandal over hard sell email money solicitations to parliamentarians in countries from Australia and the UK to Iceland and Denmark. The inboxes of elected officials from various countries around the world were stuffed with requests for money and promises to jail “Crooked Hillary”, Make America Great Again and more.
But apparently Trump never stopped.
This new New York Times report on an NFL player/owner meeting back in October is painful reading and not at all pretty. This passage stands out …
The New England Patriots owner Robert K. Kraft pointed to another “elephant in the room.”
“This kneeling,” he said.
“The problem we have is, we have a president who will use that as fodder to do his mission that I don’t feel is in the best interests of America,” said Kraft, who is a longtime supporter of Mr. Trump’s. “It’s divisive and it’s horrible.”
It’s not altogether clear to me what Kraft was calling “divisive” and “horrible.”
It looks like Alek Minassian, the man who, police say, killed ten people in a van attack in Toronto Monday, had written a Facebook post praising Elliot Rodger earlier that day. Rodger, of course, is the young California man whose 2014 shooting rampage came after he left a hateful and misogynistic manifesto lamenting his failures with women.
It wouldn’t be surprising if Minassian was inspired by Rodger. As Allegra Kirkland reports, Rodger has become an icon of sorts for some of the more extreme members of the online men’s rights and “incel” (“involuntarily celibate”) communities, who have hailed him as “the only one who ever stood up for us,” by being willing to violently avenge the crime of women not wanting to have sex with them. And this rancid subculture increasingly has ties to the broader alt-right.
Good morning. Here’s what the TPM team has its eyes on today.
The head of that ridiculously large security detail EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt created for himself also does ‘investigations’ for The National Enquirer, specifically for Trump buddy/protector David Pecker, CEO of Enquirer parent company AMI.