A lot of things happened. Here are some of the things. This is TPM’s Morning Memo.
‘Beyond A Reasonable Doubt’
Mark Pomerantz, one of the two leading prosecutors who quit Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s stalled investigation into the Trump Organization, asserted in his Feb. 23 resignation letter (which was obtained by multiple outlets) that the former president is undoubtedly guilty of “numerous felony violations” despite Bragg’s decision not to pursue an indictment against him.
- “The team that has been investigating Mr. Trump harbors no doubt about whether he committed crimes — he did,” Pomerantz wrote in his letter to Bragg, who had reportedly decided against an indictment because he was skeptical the prosecutors could have Trump convicted.
- Pomerantz warned that Bragg’s decision “will doom any future prospects” of Trump getting prosecuted for his alleged crimes at the center of the investigation, including falsifying business records.
- The investigation is still continuing, according to Bragg’s office.
SCOTUS Confirmation Mess: Day 4
Yesterday was Supreme Court Justice nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson’s final round of questioning in her Senate confirmation hearings, and it got especially ugly when Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) flew off the handle during his allotted time.
Now questioning is mercifully at an end, and today is when expert witnesses will weigh in on Jackson’s qualifications as a SCOTUS justice.
Okay But Where Is Clarence Thomas?
Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, who was hospitalized on Friday over an infection, missed a third day of oral arguments on Wednesday, despite the Supreme Court stating on Sunday that he was expected to be released “in a day or two.”
- The high court’s public information officer wouldn’t say what Thomas’ status was on Wednesday, telling several outlets that she didn’t have any updates.
- Thomas doesn’t have COVID-19, the officer has previously said.
Russia’s Ukraine Invasion Reaches Full Month
It’s been four weeks since Russia first began its assault on Ukraine, and the Kremlin has become frustrated with the lag in its crusade to take over the country.
Idaho GOP Guv Signs Texas-Inspired Abortion Ban While Also Saying It’s Bad
Idaho Republicans’ anti-abortion measure, which was modeled after Texas’ six-week abortion ban, is now law after Idaho Gov. Brad Little (R) signed the legislation on Wednesday. Similar to Texas’ law, Idaho’s ban prohibits the procedure after six weeks of pregnancy and is enforced by private citizens who bring lawsuits against abortion providers.
- Under Idaho’s law, only family members of the so-called “preborn child” can file a lawsuit (in Texas, anyone can sue). But that also means that if the pregnancy occurred through rape, the rapist’s relatives can sue.
- Idaho’s ban doesn’t allow abortion for rape or incest victims unless they file a police report on the assault.
- Little himself criticized the law, which “will in short order be proven both unconstitutional and unwise,” he predicted in his letter announcing that he was … signing the law.
Pelosi Backs Cuellar Despite FBI Raid
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is going to bat for Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX), one of her most conservative members of the House Democratic Caucus, in his May runoff election against progressive challenger Jessica Cisneros, despite the fact that the FBI raided his home and campaign headquarters in Laredo, Texas in January.
- “I support my incumbents,” Pelosi told reporters during a press conference on Wednesday.
- The Democratic leader said she doesn’t know what the FBI probe is about and hasn’t “seen anything.” The FBI hasn’t said what exactly it’s investigating, nor has Cuellar, though he’s denied any wrongdoing.
- House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) was the only Democratic leader who had endorsed Cuellar until now, and he’s said he still stands by the Texas Democrat even after the raid.
McCarthy And 100+ Other House GOPers To Co-Host Event For Cheney’s Rival
The GOP’s intra-party Trump feud is getting uglier: House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and more than 100 other House Republicans are holding a fundraiser for Harriet Hageman, Rep. Liz Cheney’s (R-WY) Trump-endorsed primary challenger, on March 30, per Politico and the Daily Caller.
- McCarthy told the Daily Caller that it’s better to help defeat Cheney in the election than for him to straight-up kick her out of the House GOP conference.
Far-Right Anti-Abortion Lt. Guv Admits He Paid For An Abortion
North Carolina Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson (R), who went viral last October over a deranged rant about LBGTQ+ “filth,” confirmed on Wednesday that he had paid for an abortion in 1989 after WRAL and Axios discovered Facebook posts from 2012 in which he admitted to doing so.
- Robinson is a hardline abortion opponent who declared last year that once someone becomes pregnant, “it’s not your body anymore.”
- He’s said he’s “95 percent sure” he’s running for governor in 2024.
Madeleine Albright Dies
Madeleine Albright, the first woman to serve as U.S. secretary of state, died from cancer on Wednesday at 84 years old.
Former president George W. Bush paid tribute to Albright with this:
Correction: An earlier version of this post erroneously described Idaho’s abortion ban.
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