Zainab Shah

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Zainab Shah is TPM's Director of Audience. She was previously the strategy and operations lead at BuzzFeed.

Ukraine: A Live Conversation

Earlier today TPM’s executive editor David Kurtz and Ukraine specialist/TPM reporter Josh Kovensky hosted a live conversation on Twitter. Here is the link in case you missed it: https://twitter.com/i/spaces/1jMJgeAEYrYKL

Where Things Stand: Jan. 6 Developments Coming Fast And Furious Prime Badge
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No overarching Jan. 6 news today but a lot of incremental developments over the last 24 hours to catch up on, in no particular order:

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Where Things Stand: At What Point Do We Say BBB Is Dead? Prime Badge
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I don’t really know what it means to “punt” BBB until next year. I’m serious.

We’re going to hear that phrase a lot, with a certain baked-in assumption that it means something. But it’s not like the assurance that I’m going to finish my homework tomorrow, or complete my term paper this weekend, or turn in this client project by the end of next week. There’s no certainty that this will ever get done.

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Where Things Stand: There’s No Other Shoe Left To Drop Prime Badge
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We keep running into a relatively new and unfamiliar dynamic where the tools of investigative journalism as they are usually deployed wind up obscuring the truth rather than illuminating it.

It’s playing out now in the coverage of the Jan. 6 attack, especially over the last few days. First with the controversial PowerPoint presentation that’s been circulating, and since last night with the Mark Meadows texts.

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Where Things Stand: DOJ Needs To Step Up
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As the first anniversary of the insurrection approaches, the Jan. 6 committee will probably vote later this evening to refer Mark Meadows for prosecution for contempt of Congress. It’s a proper and necessary step. But it is also singularly unsatisfying and insufficient.

A contempt conviction and a modest jail term for Meadows or Steven Bannon or any other Trumpster determined not to cooperate with Congress doesn’t produce either justice or a warm feeling of schadenfreude. Only a criminal investigation by the Justice Department can bring to bear the resources and stiff punishments that will do justice to the severity of what happened in 2020 and culminated on Jan. 6.

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Where Things Stand: Trump Did Chris Christie So Damn Dirty Prime Badge
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I could read and write all day every day about those days in late September 2020 when Trump became the superspreader-in-chief. It almost feels like an obligation to do so, that we may inoculate ourselves against the potential claims of future historians that we were a blind, gullible, clueless people. Yes, we were, but not nearly as much as this episode suggests. We knew. We got it. The White House COVID outbreak with Trump at its center was very, very bad, and we understood that much in real time, not only in retrospect.

But now we have a new or more precisely an updated account of the shitshow, from someone who was neck deep in the shit at the time. Poor Chris Christie. He was done wrong so many times by Trump. He was the toadiest toady. There was the hostage video. There was this unforgettable headline: “Trump Uses Chris Christie As ‘Manservant’ To Fetch His McDonald’s.” There was Christie being unceremoniously dumped as the head of the transition. But in none of those episodes did Trump try to kill Christie.

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It’s Time For The 2021 TPM Reader Survey

Hey TPM Readers! It’s time for our annual survey.

The objective of this survey is for us to get to know you — our readers — better. Whether you’re a member, a long-time TPM reader or this is your first time on the site we’d like to hear from you and learn more about your preferences. The survey takes about 5 to 10 minutes and is a huge help. Your answers will help us make key decisions, shape the future of TPM, and in the process serve you better. 

You can find it here.

Thank you! We really appreciate your time and your feedback.

Where Things Stand: Now Look What We’ve Gone And Done Prime Badge
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Jake A, 33, aka Yellowstone Wolf, from Phoenix, holds a QAnon sign, as he presents himself as a shamanist and consultant for the Trump supporters gathered in front of the Maricopa County Election Department where ballots are counted after the US presidential election in Phoenix, Arizona, on November 5, 2020. - President Donald Trump erupted on November 5 in a tirade of unsubstantiated claims that he has been cheated out of winning the US election as vote counting across battleground states showed Democrat Joe Biden steadily closing in on victory. (Photo by OLIVIER  TOURON / AFP) (Photo by OLIVIER  TOURON/AFP via Getty Images)

It’s all Matt Shuham’s fault.

Back in May, Matt interviewed the lawyer for the most high-profile Jan. 6 defendant of them all: Jacob Chansley, the QAnon shaman. The quotes from the lawyer were enough to peel your hair back.

Now they may*** be the basis for an ineffective assistance of counsel appeal from Chansley, who has already pleaded guilty and been sentenced.

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Where Things Stand: Schrödinger’s Sinemanchin Prime Badge
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WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 26: U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) is followed by a swarm of reporters as he leaves a meeting between a group of bipartisan Senators in the basement of the U.S. Capitol Building on July 26, 2021 in Washington, DC. The group of Senators are trying to come to an agreement on the Infrastructure Bill before Congress heads into their August recess after the initial agreement fell apart. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Joe Manchin

A lot happened today, and, at the end of it, it’s not clear how far we’ve come from where we were when we started.

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