Cha-Ching! Leonard Leo Banks $1.6B Donation To New Conservative Nonprofit

INSIDE: Lindsey Graham ... Mike Pence ... Rudy Giuliani
WASHINGTON DC - APRIL 23 Leonard Leo speaks at the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast in Washington DC on April 23, 2019. Leo is an Executive Vice President with the Federalist Society and a confidant of President Tr... WASHINGTON DC - APRIL 23 Leonard Leo speaks at the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast in Washington DC on April 23, 2019. Leo is an Executive Vice President with the Federalist Society and a confidant of President Trump. He is a maestro of a network of interlocking nonprofits working on media campaigns and other initiatives to pressure lawmakers and generate public support for conservative judges. (Photo by Michael Robinson Chavez/The Washington Post via Getty Images) MORE LESS

A lot of things happened. Here are some of the things. This is TPM’s Morning Memo.

The Judicial Kingmaker

The New York Times has an important story out this morning on an unusual and ginormous donation by a conservative businessman to a new nonprofit group run by Leonard Leo, the co-chairman of the Federalist Society.

In his role at the Federalist Society and at the nexus of the conservative dark money network, Leo is the judicial kingmaker on the GOP side.

Now Leo’s vast influence will be boosted by the $1.6 billion donation to his new group: the Marble Freedom Trust.

The Times explored the series of transactions in which the electronics manufacturing mogul Barre Seid donated 100% of the stock of his company to Leo’s group right before the company was sold to an Irish conglomerate.

Leo has been deeply involved in the nomination and confirmation of every Republican-appointed Supreme Court justice since Clarence Thomas.

Lindsey Graham Succeeds In Stalling His Grand Jury Testimony

A federal appeals court has handed Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) at least a partial victory in his effort to quash a Georgia grand jury subpoena in the state criminal investigation into 2020 election subversion.

Will Mike Pence Testify?

Some signs the Jan. 6 committee may yet hear from the former vice president.

Consistency Is The Hobgoblin Of Small Minds?

A good rundown at the contradictory, internally inconsistent grab bag of defenses, rationales, and justifications Team Trump has come up with attack to the FBI’s search of Mar-a-Lago.

Good One

The NYT Is Well Conditioned To Bogus GOP Attacks

An otherwise helpful story on the massive $350 billion in loans and guarantees for clean energy and automobiles included in the Inflation Reduction Act gives way to pearl-clutching over the kind of bogus narrative Republicans might come up with to attack the program. So well-conditioned is the Times to GOP bad faith attacks that it goes ahead and preemptively draws the comparison to Solyndra:

But like all government efforts to aid industry and advance new technologies, the expansion of the loan authority carries risks for Mr. Biden and the Democrats, who passed the bill without any Republican votes. About a decade ago, conservatives seized on the failure of Solyndra, a solar company that had borrowed about $500 million from the Energy Department, to criticize the Obama administration’s climate and energy policies.

Oh noes! It “carries risks.”

LOLOL

NYT: The gambit to get Rudy Giuliani a pardon AND a Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Must Reads

WaPo: ‘It’s a rip-off’: GOP spending under fire as Senate hopefuls seek rescue

Politico: White coats in the state capital: OB-GYNs become political force in abortion wars

Kansas Recount Preserves Win For Abortion Rights

Results of the Kansas vote against a constitutional amendment targeting abortion is confirmed in partial hand recount.

A Sneak Peek At How Abortion May Play In November

Dave Weigel takes a close look at tomorrow’s special House election in New York’s 19th Congressional District.

How Corporate America Responds To Dobbs

Walmart expands abortion coverage for employees.

Leading The News This Week

Two Arkansas sheriffs deputies have been suspended after a sickening video of a police beating of a suspect on Sunday.

Remember This One?

Closing arguments are set for Monday in the retrial of two men charged in the 2020 kidnapping plot against Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D).

CNN’s New Look

CNN’s Reliable Sources signs off after three decades.

Do you like Morning Memo? Let us know!

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