The Rule Of Law Is The Only Thing That Matters In 2024

INSIDE: Jack Smith ... George Santos ... Derek Chauvin
COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA - NOVEMBER 25: Former U.S. President Donald Trump waves to the crowd on the field during halftime in the Palmetto Bowl between Clemson and South Carolina at Williams Brice Stadium on November... COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA - NOVEMBER 25: Former U.S. President Donald Trump waves to the crowd on the field during halftime in the Palmetto Bowl between Clemson and South Carolina at Williams Brice Stadium on November 25, 2023 in Columbia, South Carolina. Trump attended the rivalry game in a key early-voting state as he campaigns ahead of next year’s Republican presidential primary. (Photo by Sean Rayford/Getty Images) MORE LESS
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Our Last Thanksgiving Without Trump?

By the time we sit down for turkey again next year, Donald Trump may be the president-elect for a second time. That persistent thought soured my holiday like spoiled deviled eggs. If this was the last Thanksgiving before the end of democracy as we know it, I hope you made it a good one.

What Matters Most

The rule of law is on the ballot in 2024, and it trumps every other political and policy consideration.

It is the umbrella under which every other issue is addressed: Want to restore abortion rights? Want to openly debate Israel and Palestine? Want to accelerate the energy revolution to head off the worst of climate change?

Good luck. Because if Trump, as promised, harnesses the power of the federal government to attack his perceived political enemies, exact retribution for slights, overturn elections, eviscerate the right to vote, and continue the effort to lock in GOP minority rule, he will break the democratic mechanisms for adjudicating policy preferences, enacting new laws, and enforcing them.

Trump is promising a fundamental break with the rule of law and from that will flow a fundamental breakdown in democratic processes and institutions. It is as simple as it is hard to stay at maximum threat level for years on end.

If elections don’t count, if Trump and the GOP won’t accept defeat as an option, if a majority of the electorate can’t make its voice heard at the ballot box, then nothing else really matters. It’s as stark a choice as the United States has ever faced.

A Very Trump Thanksgiving

Hundreds Of Threats Targeting NY Judge And Clerk

Trump’s rhetorical attack on Thanksgiving came the day after a new revelation about the consequences of those kinds of attacks. The judge in the New York fraud case against him defended his gag order in a filing that revealed that he and his law clerk had received hundreds of credible threats in response to Trump’s attack. Among other things, the law clerk’s cell phone number and personal email address have been compromised.

Jack Smith Uses NY Threats To Boost Case For Gag Order

Special Counsel Jack Smith seized on the revelation in the New York fraud case to press the DC Circuit Court of Appeals to uphold the gag order in the Jan. 6 case against Trump. With the appeals court having already heard oral arguments and poised to rule any day now, Smith filed a rare Thanksgiving Day supplement to the appeal alerting the court to the New York filing detailing the threats against the judge and law clerk. Trump responded that the filing was “impermissible” and “irrelevant.”

What Trump Can Do With The Insurrection Act

AP: Trump hints at expanded role for the military within the US. 

I Can Never Get Enough About The Trump Pardons

NYT: A Troubling Trump Pardon and a Link to the Kushners

Trump Has Master Plan For Destroying ‘Deep State’

Donald P. Moynihan unpacks Trump’s three-part plan to transform the federal government into an instrument of his personal power:

  1. “put Trump loyalists into appointed positions”
  2. “terrify career civil servants into submission”
  3. “create a legal framework that would allow him to use government resources to protect himself, attack his political enemies and force through his policy goals without congressional approval”

A Primer On The Rule Of Law

Kim Wehle with part one of a four-part series on Trump and the rule of law.

Conservative Group Accidentally Reveals Its Secret Donors

Daily Beast: “A conservative nonprofit tied to a controversial ‘White House-in-waiting’ for a second Donald Trump presidency has apparently unintentionally revealed its top donors—and two of them are foundations famously associated with liberal causes.”

Congress Is Back This Week

Aid to Israel and Ukraine are the most pressing end-of-the-year matters.

Santos Expulsion Vote As Soon As This Week

Rep. George Santos (R-NY) is now expecting to be expelled by the House.

George Floyd Murderer Stabbed In Prison

Ex-cop Derek Chavin, convicted in the murder of George Floyd, was stabbed and seriously injured Friday by a fellow inmate at a federal prison in Arizona.

When All Else Fails … Fax It?

The Kansas state court filing system has been offline since a mid-October cyberattack, reducing lawyers to filing via fax and in-person visits to courthouses.

Trump Thinks He Can Run As An Abortion Moderate?

In a new Rolling Stone report, Trump is reported as having said he can pivot toward a more moderate position on abortion in the general election because anti-abortion leaders have no leverage over him.

COP Gets Underway This Week In Dubai

The spectacle of the UN’s annual climate change conference being hosted by a petrostate and taking place in a largely artificial man-made environment in the desert gets underway this week. Set your expectations low.

  • NYT: How Electricity Is Changing, Country by Country
  • WSJ: Costs for renewables have plummeted and growth is exceeding expectations
  • In a confirmation that no major news will be announced, President Biden will not be attending.

Arrest Made In Vermont Shooting Of Palestinian Students

Jason J. Eaton, 48, of Burlington has been arrested in the Saturday shooting of three students of Palestinian descent in front of his apartment building. Police have not yet publicly confirmed any motive for the shooting.

Self-Fulfilling Punditry

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