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Josh Marshall

Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.

Articles by Josh

We can’t necessarily say support is growing over the last two weeks since it’s the first survey from this poll since the Ukraine story broke. But this poll from the Post shows a substantial majority of the public supporting House Democrats’ decision to open an impeachment inquiry against the President. 58% support the decision, 38% oppose.

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Jerry Falwell Jr has settled the lawsuit tied to the “pool boy”/Miami dive hostel story. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the terms of the settlement are not being disclosed. To remind everyone, the suit was brought by yet another guy, Gordon Bello, a high friend of Giancarlo Granda, the pool boy. He claimed that he’d been promised 25% of the hostel business.

One additional complexity: Bello originally sued under the name Jesus Fernandez, Jr., which was his name. Be and his father changed their names to Gordon and Jett Bello during the litigation allegedly because of threats against them tied to the lawsuit.

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Since last night I’ve been trying to get my head around President Trump’s abrupt announcement that he has green-lighted a Turkish invasion of northern Syria. Like so many Trump decisions there are multiple and overlapping potential motivations and consequences. It seems to play into the hands of regional adversaries – Russia, Iran and erstwhile treaty ally Turkey. It appears rooted at least in part in President Trump’s hostility not so much to foreign military involvements but in any commitments (military or not) that are not narrowly transactional or of benefit to him.

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We’d be in a great place if we could get to 800 net new members today. We’re currently at 729. Maybe you’ve been thinking about it. Make it today. Just take a moment, pull out your wallet and join. You’ll be glad you did. Just click right here.

This afternoon we learned that Gordon Sondland, Ambassador to the EU and GOP megadonor, will appear for a closed door deposition before House committees on Tuesday, October 8th. According to CBS News it will be the “same format” as Ukraine Envoy Kurt Volker’s testimony yesterday. (I take this to mean that he will appear without a government lawyer.) This seems to me to be a development of great importance.

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There was of course a lot of craziness, lies and invective in President Trump’s appearance on the White House lawn a few moments ago. But remember what I’ve been saying. The centerpiece of what Trump, Giuliani and Barr are after is trying to push the conspiracy theory that he and Russia were set up. That the real collusion was with Ukraine and other allied countries plotting to frame him during the 2016 election. And here he is, during this press availability, going on a rant about the United Kingdom, Australia and Italy plotting against him during the 2016 election.

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New episode of the podcast. Taintor, Riga, Kovensky and I try to make sense of the fast unfolding Trump-Ukraine story.

It’s hard to keep track of the gross abuse of power. But here’s the critical thing to keep an eye on through this. We know about election interference of targeting the Biden’s. What was even clearer in those texts is demand that Ukraine “get to the bottom of” collusion between the DNC and Ukraine in the 2016 election. That is code for the conspiracy theory that Russia was framed for the DNC hack and actually didn’t interfere in the 2016 election at all. The “real collusion” was between Ukraine and the Democrats. The big aim here – right in front of our faces, right in the texts and transcripts – is to clear Russia of the crime.

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The phrase “deep state” originally comes from Turkey, where a “deep state” run by the military and security services allowed democratic politics to operate within prescribed bounds — but no further. The real government wasn’t the president or prime minister of the day but this “deep state.” It was autonomous and dominant and self-perpetuating.

In the first weeks of the Trump administration this phrase was taken up by the President and his entourage and applied to the U.S. Over three years it has become the catch-all term for unnamed enemies of the President plotting against him from within the federal bureaucracy.

And so it was this phrase, migrated and domesticated in the U.S., that we took up to describe one of the key features of American government in the late 20th and early 21st century — what we’ve called the “Conservative Deep State.”

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