House GOP Hits The Launch Button On Its Most Corrupt Scheme

INSIDE: Mike Pence ... George Santos ... Ilhan Omar
Representative Jim Jordan, Republican of Ohio, asks questions of witnesses US Ambassador to Ukraine William Taylor and Deputy Assistant Secretary George Kent during the first public hearings held by the House Permane... Representative Jim Jordan, Republican of Ohio, asks questions of witnesses US Ambassador to Ukraine William Taylor and Deputy Assistant Secretary George Kent during the first public hearings held by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence as part of the impeachment inquiry into US President Donald Trump, on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, November 13, 2019. - Donald Trump faces the most perilous challenge of his three-year presidency as public hearings convened as part of the impeachment probe against him open under the glare of television cameras on Wednesday. (Photo by Andrew CABALLERO-REYNOLDS / AFP) (Photo by ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images) MORE LESS
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A lot of things happened. Here are some of the things. This is TPM’s Morning Memo.

Our First Look At Jim Jordan’s Bogus Subcommittee

Speaker Kevin McCarthy announced the members of Rep. Jim Jordan’s already notorious subcommittee that is running interference for coup plotters, Trump, and his own members under federal investigation by targeting the Justice Department, FBI, and other “Deep State” players:

A few notes:

  • Rep. Scott Perry (R-PA), whose phone was seized by the FBI as part of its Jan. 6 investigation and who has insisted he’s not too compromised to serve on the subcommittee, didn’t make the cut.
  • Democrats haven’t named their members of the subcommittee yet.
  • Politico reports that McCarthy plans to introduce a resolution to expand the number of subcommittee members and that Democrats will get a proportional increase in their representation on the subcommittee.

With a propagandistic name like the “Select Subcommittee on Weaponization of the Federal Government,” the subcommittee is tipping its hand, but that’s enough to fool some news outlets, our old friend Brian Beutler noted last week:

Pence Too

This is what enforcing the rule of law looks like. DOJ took a firm line on Trump’s mishandling of classified documents, and everyone else, including President Biden and former Vice President Mike Pence, is scrambling to comply. Not a bad thing!

A few notes on the discovery of classified documents in Pence’s home:

  • The outside lawyer who did the search for Pence was identified by the NYT as Matthew E. Morgan, who worked on the 2020 campaign.
  • About a dozen classified documents were found in the Pence home, CNN first reported.
  • Despite immediately initiating contact with the National Archives and Justice Department, Pence and his legal team seemed startled that the FBI showed up unannounced late one evening in Indiana to retrieve some of the documents.
  • A good thread on the dance between Pence’s legal team and DOJ:

Big Oops?

Rep. George Santos (R-NY) filed Tuesday a sweeping series of amendments to his campaign’s FEC reports, the Daily Beast first reported.

Of particular interest: Santos indicated on the new filings that he was not the source of the funds of personal loans he made to his campaign. But he doesn’t indicate who was?

The change was baffling to campaign finance experts:

The significance of the change … was not immediately clear to campaign finance experts. Mr. Santos’s lawyer, Joe Murray, said it “would be inappropriate” to comment given pending investigations.

The experts said they were struggling to interpret the change, especially because in filings from later in 2022, the box marking “personal funds of the candidate” remains checked.

“I have never been this confused looking at an F.E.C. filing,” said Jordan Libowitz, a spokesman for Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a nonprofit watchdog group.

Stay tuned.

So Much George Santos News

Grid News: Rep. George Santos’ earliest political backers faced financial misconduct investigations

MSNBC: Rep. Santos describes assassination attempt, mugging in new video

Politico: The improbability of George Santos’ $199 expenses

Josh Marshall: Santos Now Identifies as Straw Donor

Georgia Charging Decision Is ‘Imminent’

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis suggested indictments are “imminent” in her investigation of Donald Trump’s meddling in the 2020 election. That’s about all we learned in the court hearing yesterday over whether to release to the public the report of the Georgia special grand jury that investigated the 2020 election interference scheme.

Chastened Trump Backs Down Again

After getting slapped with nearly $1 million in sanctions last week, Donald Trump has withdrawn a second lawsuit against the New York attorney general, this one an appeal pending before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

Last week, Trump dropped a related lawsuit against AG Tish James that was pending before the same judge who imposed sanctions.

Compelling New Testimony In Proud Boys Trial

AP: Proud Boys expecting ‘civil war’ before Jan. 6, witness says

CNN: Proud Boys member testifies about group’s culture and celebration of violence

Payback Time

Speaker Kevin McCarthy officially blocks Democratic California Reps. Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell from the House intel committee.

Ilhan Omar Has A Chance

Politico reports that some House GOP defectors combined with staunch Democratic support may make it hard for Speaker McCarthy to boot Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) from the Foreign Affairs Committee.

Ukraine Gets Its Tanks

After days of what looked from the outside like a diplomatic stalemate, a big breakthrough for Ukraine in pursuit of heavy armor to repeal an expected spring offensive by the Russians:

  • The U.S. will supply Ukraine with some 30 M1 Abrams tanks.
  • After much initial resistance, Germany has finally agreed to provide Leopard 2 A6 tanks to Ukraine.

Can’t Fix This Fast Enough

The U.S. EV charging infrastructure, to use the technical term, sucks.

California is considering ways to hold charging networks accountable for reliability.

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