A lot of things happened. Here are some of the things. This is TPM’s Morning Memo. Sign up for the email version.
Damning New Evidence
Jennifer Little, a former Trump attorney, has told Special Counsel Jack Smith that she warned Trump that if he did not comply with a federal grand jury subpoena for all classified documents at Mar-a-Lago it would be a crime, according to new reporting from ABC News.
Sources said the lawyer, Jennifer Little, told investigators Trump “absolutely” understood the warning, which came during a pivotal meeting at Mar-a-Lago with Trump and another attorney, Evan Corcoran, who had recently joined Trump’s legal team.
The subpoena came after months of demands from the National Archives for Trump to return government documents that he took with him from the White House to Mar-a-Lago. Little says she was trying to impress upon Trump that a grand jury subpoena was different and more serious. “You’ve got to comply,” she allegedly warned Trump.
Again, these are the purported words of Trump’s own lawyer. Little and Trump attorney Evan Corcoran were forced to testify to the grand jury after U.S. District Judge Beryl A. Howell ruled that attorney-client privilege did not apply because their legal advice was used in furtherance of a crime.
It looks like the DC Circuit Court of Appeals inadvertently unsealed a filing that it should not have. It came in the case of Rep. Scott Perry’s phone, which was seized by the FBI back in August 2022. Months of litigation ensued over whether Perry, a Pennsylvania Republican, was protected by the Constitution’s Speech or Debate Clause, and Perry won a partial though significant victory when he appealed the case. Those records had been under seal but they were briefly unsealed Wednesday afternoon, only to be resealed and blocked from public view later in the evening.
Politico’s Kyle Cheney has a good rundown on what the inadvertently unsealed documents show about Perry’s communications between Election Day 2022 and Jan. 6, 2021.
Arizona Prosecutes Election Deniers
Two county supervisors in Cochise County, Arizona, have been criminally charged by the state attorney general for refusing to certify 2022 election results.
The Henry Kissinger remembrances:
Spencer Ackerman: Henry Kissinger, War Criminal Beloved by America’s Ruling Class, Finally Dies
David Corn: Dead at 100, Henry Kissinger Leaves Behind a Bloody Legacy
Speaking Of Diplomats …
The headline really does say it all: “Tucker Carlson, Trump’s shadow diplomat”
India’s Alleged Assassination Plot In U.S. Is BONKERS
I can’t speak to the broader geopolitical implications, but in spy thriller terms the alleged Indian plot to assassinate a Sikh separatist in New York is heady – and comical – stuff.
It’s probably easiest to explain by separating what was real from what was law enforcement subterfuge, as alleged in the new federal indictment:
Nikhil Gupta, the defendant charged with acting as an intermediary between Indian intelligence and would-be assassins
Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, the victim, who is not named in the indictment but matches the description as a vocal Sikh critic of India based in New York
Unnamed Indian government officer who has claimed to work in intelligence and recruited Gupta in the plot to assassinate Pannun
The confidential source, an unnamed “criminal associate” who Gupta contacted for help in hiring a hitman but who turned out to be a U.S. government informant
The hitman, who turned out to be an undercover U.S. law enforcement officer
As you can see, this started as an assassination plot and ended up as a sting. And, man, do they have the receipts: communications, photos and video as it all played out, with Gupta fooled into thinking he was dealing with real bad actors.
As funny as that is, the stakes were real. As this sting was unfolding, the alleged Indian assassination plot on Canadian soil took place and was even referenced in the communications between Gupta and his Indian handler.
John Ganz: Israel Has Already Lost
Josh Marshall: Decision Time
Kevin McCarthy Got Tough With Trump … Really?
In two separate private conversations being reported on by the WaPo, Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) claims to have said “Fuck you” to Donald Trump after his ouster as speaker last month. McCarthy’s office now denies that he swore.
Short Honeymoon For Speaker Johnson?
Politico: “Johnson has antagonized conservatives most acutely by engaging in policy talks with fellow leaders, rather than pushing exclusively for base-pleasing wins that won’t survive in the Senate. That traditional approach won’t hurt Johnson with most of the House GOP — but as McCarthy’s ouster made clear, it only takes a handful of fed-up members to make a speaker’s life difficult.”
SCOTUS Flexes Its Anti-Regulatory Cred
TPM’s Kate Riga on oral arguments yesterday in a case the high court may use to chip away at the administrative state.
The Man Is Not Well
A revealing, disturbing, and inexplicable public outburst by Elon Musk:
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