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Josh Marshall

Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.

Articles by Josh

We’ve had a great response in the last few days for our on-going, annual membership drive. We are trying to sign up 500 members by the of the month – actually we need 514 to get to a total of 22,000 subscribers. That’s a lot by June 30th. But it’s just barely doable. If you’ve been waiting for the right moment. THIS IS THE RIGHT MOMENT. Why is it important? I explain here and here.  Seriously, if you’re a regular TPM Reader, take this moment to become a member. Just click here. And thanks.

Mike Flynn has been out at the White House for more than four months. He is, we are told, in the most serious kind of legal trouble. Yet the political ghost of Mike Flynn still seems to be a hidden hand driving outcomes in the Trump White House. Maybe it’s even Flynn himself.

Allow me to explain.

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I got an email from a TPM Reader and Prime member on Friday evening who said we shouldn’t put our longform articles behind a paywall. This is a minority opinion among subscribers, at least as far as I can tell. But TPM Reader JG isn’t the only one. And it’s an issue we’ve given a lot of thought to ourselves. So I wanted to answer the question for everyone because I want readers and subscribers to understand our goals, thought process, reasons, etc.

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Today we are apparently having a discussion about whether the President is in fact under investigation. Or perhaps it’s better to say, Trump’s lawyers (or his TV lawyer, legal activist Jay Sekulow) are having this discussion since no one else seems to have any question that he is. What makes this discussion so weird is that not only does the President appear to be the subject of an investigation but as a factual matter there’s almost no question that he’s guilty. As far as I can see, the real question isn’t factual but rather constitutional.

Here’s what I mean.

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Early this week, Time Inc. laid off 300 employees across its properties. On Wednesday, Huffpost laid off 39 employees. Then later that day Vocativ, another digital media site, laid off its entire editorial staff. Huffpost’s layoffs were part of a much larger retrenchment (2,100 layoffs) at Oath, the new company which combines what used to be Yahoo and AOL. Both are now owned by Verizon. Yet, while this is happening, TPM is expanding.

I’ve been doing this for almost 17 years. In that time I’ve seen all the challenges of this very challenging business, digital news publishing. So I want to be crystal clear that this is anything but gloating or taking the remotest pleasure in the challenging transitions that others are having. I’ve been there. My point in raising this is that the difference – why we’re here and they’re there – is no coincidence. And the reason is you.

Allow me to explain.

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“God, this is going to make me sound pathetic, but it feels a little bit like getting dumped by your girlfriend. It feels a little like that.” That’s “alt-right” leader Richard Spencer describing the experience of getting jilted by Trump when he went all Goldman Sachs and went low energy on mass deportation. It’s our latest Prime longform. Definitely check it out. You’ll love it.

It is very difficult to get my head around the question of whether President Trump will fire Robert Mueller. Trump’s personal attack on Mueller yesterday followed by a personal attack on Rod Rosenstein this morning portends a trajectory that ends with the firing of both men. We don’t know that will happen. The consequences of it happening are so dire that it is hard to imagine it will happen. Yet that appears to be more or less precisely what happened with James Comey. Trump is a man of anger and predictable habits. It would be naive in the extreme to assume Trump won’t eventually fire both men.

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Below, I wrote about yesterday’s WaPo blockbuster which confirmed what seemed likely: that Special Counsel Robert Mueller is investigating whether President Trump obstructed justice by firing James Comey and taking other actions with the aim of ending or diverting the Russia probe. Two other articles came out yesterday evening – one in the Times and another in the Journal – which added a few more details.

The pieces mainly follow and rehash the WaPo piece. But let me focus on a couple points.

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This seemed pretty clear based on circumstantial evidence and James Comey’s testimony last week. But The Washington Post is reporting that Special Counsel Robert Mueller is now investigating President Trump for possible obstruction of justice. That’s zero to obstruction in under 5 months, amazing and genuinely impressive in the sense of achievement in corrupt behavior and malicious intent.

Donald Trump. He’s doing great work. And people are noticing.

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