John Wright

Trump attacks his own SCOTUS appointee Brett Kavanaugh after Jan. 6 decision

Former president Donald Trump ripped into his own Supreme Court justices on Saturday after they declined to block the House Select Committee investigating Jan. 6 from obtaining his White House records.

Trump was particularly hard on Justice Brett Kavanaugh — suggesting that he's afraid to do the right thing because Democrats might impeach him over sexual assault allegations.

The former president said that "at any cost," Supreme Court justices "don't want to be impeached."

"Please don't impeach me. I don't want to be impeached," Trump said, mocking the justices. "Don't impeach me, please, for being with women that I've never heard of before — women that he didn't know, women that a particular justice, Kavanaugh, had no idea who they were but you know what, he's lived through hell, and he's afraid, I believe he's afraid, I believe he's afraid to do the right thing, I really do."

"They said not so long ago, we're going to impeach him for something, and then they found out, the woman got up and said he never did anything wrong," Trump added. "They said, 'We don't care, we're going to impeach him anyway.' These are vicious people, and we can't let this go on. They (Supreme Court justices) have to gain strength. They have to gain new courage, and they have to stand up for freedom and stand up for what is right. They can no longer be afraid of the radical left, our Supreme Court."

Later, Trump vowed that Republicans will "stop the radical Democrats from packing the Supreme Court with far-left justices."

"Although the way the Supreme Court is behaving, perhaps the Republicans should pack the Supreme Court," Trump said, "They are behaving not the way we think is appropriate for our country."

Trump also referred to Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, President Joe Biden's nominee for the Supreme Court, as "a radical left zealot."

Watch below.



Fox News staffer made up story about Canadian protester getting trampled — and duped Ted Cruz: report

Fox News contributor Sara Carter has retracted an "entirely fictitious" story about a Canadian "freedom convoy" protester getting trampled by a police horse, the Daily Beast reported Saturday.

“Reports are the woman trampled by a Canadian horse patrol just died at the hospital ... #Trudeau #FreedomConvoyCanada,” Carter tweeted on Friday.

Carter has 1.3 million Twitter followers, and her post was amplified by conservatives including Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Fox Nation hosts Diamond and Silk. But on Saturday morning, Carter — who claims to be an "award-winning correspondent" and is frequently called upon by host Sean Hannity — admitted the story was false.

“The Reports I was given earlier yesterday from sources on the ground that someone may have died at a hospital during the trampling was wrong,” Carter tweeted, adding that “someone was taken to a hospital with a heart condition - not due to trampling. I want to clarify this again and apologize for any confusion.”

Carter subsequently deleted her original tweet — but only after being contacted by the Daily Beast on Saturday evening. And not until after Cruz deleted his retweet – in which he had written above Carter's original post, "This...is...horrific."

"I deleted my retweet about a Canadian protestor being trampled to death because the journalist who first reported it now says it was in error," Cruz wrote on Saturday afternoon. "I remain deeply concerned about the abuse—seizing money & employing violence against peaceful protesters—that we’re seeing in Canada."



Trump suggests Clinton campaign staffers should be put to death — and demands 'reparations'

Former president Donald Trump issued a statement Saturday suggesting that unnamed members of Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign staff should be put to death.

“The latest pleading from Special Counsel Robert Durham provides indisputable evidence that my campaign and presidency were spied on by operatives paid by the Hillary Clinton Campaign in an effort to develop a completely fabricated connection to Russia,” Trump said in the statement from his Save America PAC. “This is a scandal far greater in scope and magnitude than Watergate and those who were involved in and knew about this spying operation should be subject to criminal prosecution. In a stronger period of time in our country, this crime would have been punishable by death. In addition, reparations should be paid to those in our country who have been damaged by this.”

Former president Donald Trump issued a statement Saturday suggesting that unnamed members of Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign staff should be put to death.

“The latest pleading from Special Counsel Robert Durham provides indisputable evidence that my campaign and presidency were spied on by operatives paid by the Hillary Clinton Campaign in an effort to develop a completely fabricated connection to Russia,” Trump said in the statement from his Save America PAC. “This is a scandal far greater in scope and magnitude than Watergate and those who were involved in and knew about this spying operation should be subject to criminal prosecution. In a stronger period of time in our country, this crime would have been punishable by death. In addition, reparations should be paid to those in our country who have been damaged by this.”

Trump was responding to allegations put forth by Durham in a court filing this week.

“Lawyers for the Clinton campaign paid a technology company to ‘infiltrate’ servers belonging to Trump Tower, and later the White House, in order to establish an ‘inference’ and “narrative’ to bring to government agencies linking Donald Trump to Russia, a filing from Special Counsel John Durham says,” Fox News reported Saturday. “Durham filed a motion on Feb. 11 focused on potential conflicts of interest related to the representation of former Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussman, who has been charged with making a false statement to a federal agent. Sussman has pleaded not guilty.”

More below.

'What are they doing in our town?' Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner struggle to get along with Florida neighbors

Some of Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner's new neighbors aren't exactly pleased to have them in the town of Surfside, Florida.

"All but banished from Washington after January 6, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner have been hiding out in a little no-frills town in South Florida," the Washingtonian reported this week. "Its Trumpy mayor couldn’t be more thrilled, but the former First Kids have had a frostier welcome from another set of locals."

One Surfside resident, who asked to remain anonymous because she continues to live near the couple, told the magazine she first encountered Ivanka Trump last June. The former White House adviser was walking her little white dog Winter (believed to be a Pomeranian mix) near the couple's seaside condo building. The resident said she watched as Trump "led the dog off the pathway toward the beach, right past a sign that clearly said dogs weren’t allowed."

"The resident, a beach activist who finds high purpose in protecting Surfside’s loggerhead sea turtles during nesting season, mobilized," the Washingtonian reported, adding that Ivanka Trump must have walked past the large beach rules notice saying "no dogs allowed" scores of times before then.

“I was speed-walking at her and yelling at her,” the resident recalled. “I just opened my mouth and said, ‘You can’t go out there with the dog!’”

“Oh-uh, I didn’t realize,” Trump responded.

“You’re standing right next to the sign,” the neighbor told Ivanka. “Look, it says ‘No dogs.’”

The resident encountered Ivanka and Jared again a few months later, on the beach with their five-year-old son, Theodore. "The neighbor reminded Jared, in swim trunks, and Ivanka, in a 'cute ruffled outfit,' to watch out for jellyfish," according to the Washingtonian. After Theodore hurried into the ocean, the neighbor immediately became concerned.

“I’m thinking, Why is this boy in the water alone on a boogie board with this moderate rip current? I’m a mother, and I would never let my child alone in the water like that," the resident said.

Moments later, Kushner had to run into the water after Theodore, who had started drifting away from the shore. According to the Washingtonian, the neighbor's encounters with Ivanka only reinforced a long-held impression.

“She seems to be about — ‘I live in this little cocoon where the rules don’t apply to me’ — in her own little world," the resident said.

The resident referred to Kushner as "slenderman" and took this dig at Ivanka's appearance: "She’s well put together. She’s had a lot of work done, and it’s good plastic. It’s Miami, and there’s a lot of bad plastic here. She has good plastic.”

Surfside, a town of only 6,000, has largely managed to stay off people's radar, which is fine with many residents, the Washingtonian reported.

"Eliana Salzhauer, a town commissioner, likens her reaction upon hearing Javanka was arriving to a scene in 1980s The Jerk in which Steve Martin’s absurdist character is ecstatic to find his name listed in the phone book while an unhinged killer picks Martin’s name randomly from the same directory," the magazine reported.

“It was, ‘Oh, good, the town is getting recognition,’" said Salzhauer, a Democrat. “Then it was, ‘Oh, no, the psychos are coming.’"

According to the Washingtonian, "the last thing Salzhauer wants is to become an enabler of the couple’s reinvention act in South Florida, which makes the whole situation rather frustrating."

“What are they doing in our town?” the commissioner said.

The Washingtonian concluded its deep dive into Kushner and Trump's new life with an anecdote from Surfside's Halloween Spooktacular event, where even Salzhauer was impressed with how well the family managed to blend in.

"As the Kushners were leaving the event, Ivanka bent down to pick a large pumpkin off the ground and started to walk off with it. Families were allowed to take one gourd home with them. Ivanka handed hers to Jared, who carried it the rest of the way. Their bodyguard, who followed Ivanka, also walked out with one," the Washingtonian reported. "The double-pumpkin takeaway may not have fallen strictly within the rules, but what’s a pumpkin or two in the scheme of things? This was Ivanka and Jared attending not some White House event or private-school recital or exclusive soiree in the Hamptons. It was just small-town life in South Florida, where they could easily slip out with their pumpkins and disappear into the night."

Read the full story.

DOJ confirms probe of fake Trump electoral certificates: 'Our prosecutors are looking' at referrals

The Department of Justice confirmed for the first time Tuesday that federal prosecutors are investigating fake pro-Trump electoral certificates submitted by Republicans in several states in December 2020.

The certificates were submitted to the National Archives by GOP electors in Georgia, Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Nevada and New Mexico.

Trump campaign officials, led by the former president's personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, reportedly oversaw efforts to put forward the fake electors. Last week, a former Trump aide appeared on national TV and admitted to his role in organizing the fake electoral certificates.

At least two state attorneys general have said they referred investigations into the fake electoral certificates to the Department of Justice. Michigan AG Dana Nessel, a Democrat, has said she believes those responsible for the fake electoral certificates violated multiple state and federal laws.

On Tuesday, Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco told CNN: "We've received those referrals. Our prosecutors are looking at those and I can't say anything more on ongoing investigations."

"Monaco did not go into detail about what else prosecutors are looking at from the partisan attempt to subvert the 2020 vote count," CNN reported. "She said that, more broadly, the Justice Department was 'going to follow the facts and the law, wherever they lead, to address conduct of any kind and at any level that is part of an assault on our democracy.' This is the first time that the Justice Department has commented on requests from lawmakers and state officials that the it investigate the fake certifications."

Read the full story.

Trumps could 'turn on one another' as investigations 'go up the food chain': MSNBC analyst

Former president Donald Trump and his family are facing “existential” threats from ongoing criminal investigations in New York and Georgia, according to MSNBC political analyst and Trump biographer Tim O’Brien.

“I think you’re going to start to see this vice squeeze in,” O’Brien said Saturday. “The Trumps will happily throw underlings under the bus as this gets hotter. I think the question is whether or not the family members will turn on one another as it goes up the food chain.

“The Manhattan DA’s case has existential consequences to it,” O’Brien added. “Donald Trump and perhaps his children could end up in orange jumpsuits if that case goes the full route. That’s not going to be the case with (New York AG) Letitia James’ prosecution, that’s a civil case. I also think the Georgia case has an existential threat. Donald Trump acting like a 19th-century ward heeler, called up the secretary of state and said find me some votes, and there’s proof of that, there’s evidence.”

Watch the full interview below.

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'Why is that so hard to answer?' GOP candidate squirms as CNN host forces him to admit Trump lost

A Republican congressional candidate from Alaska finally conceded that former president Donald Trump lost the 2020 election on Friday — but not until after being asked the question no fewer than four times by CNN host Alisyn Camerota.

Camerota was following up on a story about another candidate for Alaska's only House seat, Greg Brelsford, who recently left the GOP to become an Independent, citing "attacks on democracy."

On Friday, she interviewed GOP candidate Randy Purham.

"So you heard one of your opponents, who was saying that basically he's tired of all the re-litigating of Donald Trump's election loss," Camerota told Purham. "Are you one of the Republicans he was speaking of who believes Donald Trump did not lose the 2020 presidential election?"

"I'm not going to say that he did not lose, but we realize there are some irregularities with the election," Purham responded, before Camerota cut him off.

"Just to be clear, do you think he lost?" the host said.

"Marginally," Purham responded.

"But you believe that Donald Trump lost the election, and Joe Biden is the rightful president of the United States?"

"To a degree," Purham said.

"Why is that so hard to answer?" Camerota asked.

"It's not hard to answer," Purham responded. "There's a lot of issues that we've seen with the election, and we see how things are turning out right now with this administration, so —"

"But that's different, Mr. Purham," Camerota said, again cutting him off. "That's different if you don't like certain policies in the administration, it's different than whether or not you can say definitively that Donald Trump lost and Joe Biden won."

"I can, and I have," Durham said, finally appearing to acknowledge Trump's defeat.

Watch below.

Trump’s unhinged statement suggests Georgia prosecutors may be close to indicting him: MSNBC legal analyst

Prosecutors in Georgia likely informed Donald Trump's lawyers during a meeting last month that the former president is about to be indicted, according to former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner.

On Monday, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow broke the news that Trump's lawyers met with Georgia prosecutors who are investigating him for election meddling, based at least partly on phone calls he made to the governor and secretary of state demanding that they overturn President Joe Biden's victory.

Maddow linked the meeting to an unhinged statement Trump issued on Dec. 18, alleging among other things that "all Democrats do is put people in jail."

On Tuesday night, MSNBC host Joy Reid asked former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner whether it sounds like Georgia authorities are building a conspiracy to commit election fraud case against Trump.

"Absolutely," Kirschner responded, noting that Trump not only asked Georgia officials to overturn the election results, but also threatened them with retribution if they didn't. "It is mind-boggling the crimes he committed. When I heard Donald Trump's unhinged statement ... the first thing this old prosecutor heard, and I said it back then, is someone just told Donald Trump's defense team he's about to be indicted."

Kirschner, who spent 24 years as a prosecutor with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, said he believes he's had many meetings like the one between Trump's lawyers and Georgia prosecutors.

"What we do is, right before we take that final trip into the grand jury and ask them to vote on criminal charges and return an indictment, we invite the defense team in," Kirschner said. "We say, 'Listen, maybe we're looking at this wrong. If you have any exculpatory evidence, if you have any evidence that could exonerate your client, if we're barking up the wrong tree, maybe we didn't hear what we heard on the recorded call with (Secretary of State) Brad Raffensperger — unlikely, but still — we are inviting you to provide that exonerating information. And then, you know what, we'll look at it and we'll assess it before we walk into the grand jury that one last time and ask them to indict Donald Trump.'"

"That likely happened, as we've now seen based on the reporting," Kirschner added. "That's what set Trump off. And it feels like the Georgia state prosecutors might be the first ones out of the blocks on the race for justice against Donald Trump."

Watch below.

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‘He can’t mention the election again’: Text messages reveal Sean Hannity’s frantic efforts to rein in Trump

Fox News host Sean Hannity repeatedly tried to rein in former president Donald Trump in text messages to his chief of staff, Mark Meadows, in the days before and after the Jan. 6 insurrection.

In a letter requesting Hannity's testimony on Tuesday, the House select committee investigating the Capitol insurrection revealed several of the Fox News host's text messages to Meadows and others.

"We can't lose the entire WH counsel's office," Hannity wrote to Meadows on Dec. 31, apparently referring to White House lawyers' threats to quit over Trump's efforts to overturn the election.

"I do not see January 6 happening the way he is being told," Hannity wrote of Trump, before effectively encouraging the former president to accept defeat.

Hannity wrote that after the certification of electoral college votes on Jan. 6, Trump "should announce (he) will lead the nationwide effort to reform voting integrity."

"Go to Fl (Florida) and watch Joe (Biden) mess up daily. Stay engaged. When he speaks people will listen," Hannity wrote.

On Jan. 5, Hannity wrote to Meadows that he was "very worried about the next 48 hours."

Apparently referring to efforts by Trump and his allies to pressure Vice President Mike Pence into blocking certification of Biden’s victory, Hannity warned, "Pence Pressure. ... WH counsel will leave."

Following the insurrection, Hannity appeared to be struggling to convince Trump to accept his defeat.

“Guys, we have a clear path to land the plane in 9 days,” Hannity wrote in a message to Meadows and Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) on Jan. 10. “He can’t mention the election again. Ever. I did not have a good call with him today. And worse, I’m not sure what is left to do or say, and I don’t like not knowing if it’s truly understood. Ideas?”

According to Politico, Hannity's text messages are "the latest indication that some of the former president’s closest allies grew increasingly alarmed by his actions in the aftermath of his defeat, despite not saying so publicly."

"Hannity was one of Trump's staunchest media allies throughout his candidacy and presidency and he has often relied on Hannity for his counsel and conservative media megaphone," the site noted.

The committee previously released a text message from Hannity to Meadows on the day of the insurrection, calling on Trump to "ask people to peacefully leave the [C]apit[o]l."

"Hannity was not the only Fox News host urging Meadows to get Trump to take action," CNN reports. "According to documents on file, the committee has a message from Laura Ingraham to Meadows saying, 'Mark, the President needs to tell people in the Capitol to go home. This is hurting all of us. He is destroying his legacy.' Fox News' Brian Kilmeade texted Meadows stating, "'Please get him on TV. Destroying everything you have accomplished.'"

‘Do you realize you’re describing a coup?’ Peter Navarro gets schooled during train wreck MSNBC interview

Former Trump trade adviser Peter Navarro appeared on MSNBC on Tuesday night to explain his plan to overturn President Joe Biden's victory — "dubbed the Green Bay sweep."

It didn't go well for Navarro.

Asked by host Ari Melber to explain the "Green Bay sweep," Navarro claimed he compiled a report beginning in late November 2020 that "proved that the election was in all likelihood stolen through fraud and election irregularities."

"That's false!" Melber responded, cutting off Navarro. "The question is, what was the plan itself and who was in on it?"

Navarro went on to explain that 100 GOP lawmakers were prepared to "implement the sweep," by challenging the election results in six battleground states on Jan. 6.

Melber eventually cut him off again.

"You just described this plan as a way to take an election where the outcome was established by independent secretaries of state, by the voters of those states, and legal remedies had been exhausted, with the Supreme Court never even taking let alone siding with any of the claims you just referred to," Melber said. "So legally they went nowhere. Then, you will use the incumbent losing party's power — that was the Republican Party that was losing power — to overtake and reverse that outcome. Do you realize you're describing a coup?"

Navarro denied Melber's allegation, claiming that some secretaries of state "were put in power by George Soros with the express purpose of shifting the playing field."

"We were following the Constitution and rules of the Senate to simply get a recount of what the votes were," Navarro claimed.

Melber then noted that Trump adviser Steve Bannon is "risking going to jail rather than just provide testimony about" the plan to overturn the election.

"You by contrast are describing it in your book, some of the same stuff," Melber said. "I don't know what he's afraid of that you're not. But when you describe in your book a system where after all the legal remedies are exhausted, the people who lost just make noise and say that they won and seize power, don't you understand that if that actually were the system, it would be dumb and dangerous?"

"We have an entire system designed to thwart — and I want to say this respectfully, but it's the truth — people like you," Melber added. "To stop people like you who think that you can anoint themselves the reviewers of the voters, of the American people, of what they lawfully did, that you trump the Supreme Court. People like you are what the Constituions is designed to stop, and it worked, it did stop you."

Watch the full interview in two parts below.

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Peter Navarro on MSNBC, Part II www.youtube.com

Trump 'clearly violated' federal law when Scottish golf courses claimed COVID relief: David Cay Johnston

Trump's Scottish golf courses lost $9 million in 2020 despite claiming $4 million in pandemic relief from the UK government, according to recent reports.

MSNBC host Jonathan Capehart noted Wednesday night that even though the UK pandemic relief funds were designed to prevent job losses, Trump's Scottish golf courses still laid off employees. Capehart also noted that the former president's son, Eric Trump, blamed some of the losses on Brexit, which his father fervently supported.

However, there's also a much bigger problem with the Trump Organization's decision to claim the UK pandemic relief funds, according to Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist David Cay Johnston.

"The receipt of that money is I think a very clear violation of the foreign emoluments clause, which says you can't get any money, gift, etc., unless Congress explicitly gives you permission to do so, and Congress clearly never did that," Johnston told Capehart. "Do I think the courts will do anything about it? No. We saw every federal judge presented with an emoluments case run and find other work to focus on rather than address this assault on our Constitution."

Johnston, author of The Big Cheat: How Donald Trump Fleeced America and Enriched Himself and His Family, also weighed in on reports that that the Chinese firm helping the former president with his new social media company has been the target of investigations by federal regulators. Johnston said it's "not normal" for "a former and would-be president of the future to engage in this kind of behavior."

"It's consistent with how the Chinese, the Russians, the Saudis and others have played Donald Trump like a two-dollar ukulele," he said.

Finally, Johnston sounded the alarm about Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner’s ongoing business dealings with Saudi Arabia.

"That should be the biggest concern of the things we've talked about," Johnston said, adding that while serving in the White House, Kushner convinced Trump to line up the Saudis and the Emirates against Qatar, which is home to the most important U.S. military base in the Middle East.

"The Trump family has no problem undermining the national security interests of the United States if there's money in it for them," Johnston said.

Watch below.

Trump submits Washington Post article to Supreme Court as proof that Jan. 6 probe is a ‘witch hunt’

Former President Donald Trump has repeatedly called the Washington Post "fake news."

However, Trump is now relying on a WaPo article in his bid to get the Supreme Court to keep his Jan. 6 White House records secret.

According to Courthouse News, Trump is asking the justices to review the article, which he claims proves that the House select committee investigation the Captiol insurrection is engaged in a "political witch hunt."

"The article — published hours after the former president asked the high court to review his case — contains an interview from the committee’s chairman, Democratic Congressman Bennie Thompson of Mississippi, where he says the committee wants information that could determine if they will make a criminal referral to the Justice Department," Courthouse News reports. "According to the Post’s reporting, Thompson is particularly interested in different versions of a video Trump recorded asking his supporters to stand down. The committee thinks this information might lead to answers on why it took the former president so long to call off his supporters. In the new filing, Trump claims these statements prove the committee is acting outside its authority."

Last week, Trump asked the high court to reverse a DC appeals court panel's unanimous decision rejecting his claims of executive privilege in the Jan. 6 probe. Legal experts have panned Trump's legal arguments, and said it's unlikely the high court will even take up the case.

In a supplemental brief filed Wednesday, Trump attorneys Justin Clark and Jesse Binnal "staked out a new claim," according to Courthouse News, arguing that "the Washington Post has confirmed what was already apparent — the Committee is indeed seeking any excuse to refer a political rival for criminal charges, and they are using this investigation to do so."

“The committee cannot make a mockery of Congress’s constitutional mandate that its requests and investigation be supported by a ‘valid legislative purpose,’” the brief states. “It cannot embark on what is essentially a law enforcement investigation with the excuse that it might legislate based on information it turns up in the course of the exploration.”

In addition to Chairman Thompson, the brief also singles out Reps. Adam Schiff (D-CA) and Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) as being "overt in their vendetta against" Trump.

“A vague recitation of some amorphous legislative goal is insufficient to meet statutory or constitutional muster, especially since committee members have been speaking so freely about their true goals of exposure for its own sake and criminal prosecution,” the brief states.

WATCH: Profanity-spewing anti-vaxxer denied service at Trump Grill for not showing vaccine card

An anti-vaxxer reportedly was denied service at Trump Grill inside Trump Tower in New York City for failing to show proof of vaccination.

"Let's try this out. I'm out here at Trump Tower. I have not been inside since before COVID," the unidentified person says in a video posted to Twitter on Friday by PatriotTakes, a site dedicated to exposing right-wing extremism.

"Let's see what's going to happen, if they will let me eat at the grill," the person says in the video, which was apparently shot with their cell phone.

Once inside, the mask-less anti-vaxxer shows viewers a sign outside the grill stating that New York City requires indoor restaurant patrons to be vaccinated.

As the person wanders the lobby, a Trump Tower employee appears to ask them to put on a mask, warning that they could face a $1,000 fine from the city.

The person points out that there is a police officer nearby who's not wearing a mask.

"I'm talking to you," the Trump Tower employees responds. "Just put your mask on, that's all you have to do."

"I'm so pissed," the person says into the camera after putting on their mask.

When the person approaches the restaurant, another employee asks them for proof of vaccination. "You need to be vaccinated. It's the law," the employee says.

"It's a mandate; it's not a law," the person responds. "So I'm not allowed to sit if I choose not to take an experimental drug? ... There you have it, everyone, proof that at Trump Tower, at Trump Grill ... unfortunately I cannot sit in here."

While heading for the exit, the person takes off their mask and says, "They're choosing to comply, when you have businesses in New York City ... that are not complying ... not asking for masks, not asking for vaccination."

"But here at Trump Tower, they do," the person says. "I'm so f*ckin' pissed."

As the person is walking out, a Trump Tower employee can be heard saying, “You got a mask with you?”

"I'm leaving," the person responds. "Unbelievable."

Watch it in five parts below.






‘You’ve been served!’: Jan. 6 organizer hit with civil lawsuit as he leaves House deposition

Jan. 6 organizer Ali Alexander reportedly was served with a civil lawsuit on Thursday as he left a closed-door deposition before the House select committee investigating the Capitol insurrection.

Alexander was flanked by his attorneys and surrounded by reporters as he walked out of the building on Thursday evening, according to video captured by the Daily Beast's Zachary Petrizzo.

A man approached Alexander holding out documents and said, ""Mr. Alexander, I have a summons for you. This is a valid service of process."

Alexander ignored the man and continued walking. But the man followed him toward a waiting vehicle and said: "I have a summons for you. Please take it or I'm just going to have to leave it on the hood of your car."

"That's an Uber," Alexander responded.

One of Alexander's attorneys then asked the man, "What is that for? ... Don't throw anything at him. Treat him with respect."

After Alexander got in the back of the vehicle, the man placed the documents on the seat next to him and said, "You've been served sir," before walking away.

Watch below.

Reclusive Publix heiress became obsessed with Alex Jones — and wound up funding Jan. 6: report

The reclusive heiress of the Publix supermarket chain helped finance former president Donald Trump's Jan. 6 rally after she became obsessed with conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, according to a report from the Washington Post.

Julie Fancelli, 72, contributed $650,000 to three organizations that helped stage and promote the "Stop the Steal" rally that preceeded the Capitol insurrection, making her the largest publicly known donor to the event.

"In the weeks leading up to the rally, Fancelli frequently emailed to her relatives and friends links to Jones’s talk show, according to two people with knowledge of the emails who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private communications," the Post reports. "Jones was a leading proponent of false claims that Trump’s reelection had been foiled by election fraud and that Congress could refuse to certify Biden’s victory."

Fancelli, who reportedly splits her time between Florida and Tuscan, Italy, had planned to attend the Stop the Steal rally and stay at the Willard hotel in Washington, but ultimately opted not to travel due to COVID-19.

"Fancelli was a regular listener to Jones’s show and had an assistant make contact with him at his office in Austin to find out how she could support Trump’s attempt to undermine Biden’s victory, the person said," the Post reports. "She and Jones talked by phone at least once between Dec. 27 and Jan. 1, the person said."

Jones, who did attend the rally, has received a subpoena from the House select committee investigating the Captiol insurrection.

Fancelli’s brother-in-law Barney Barnett, a retired Publix executive who describes himself as a conservative Republican, told the newspaper: “I am not tantalized by that fellow (Jones), but apparently she is, and a lot of other people are addicted, to the detriment of the country. Julie is one of the finest people I know, and I am sorry she got tied up with this guy.”

Fancelli’s sister, Nancy Jenkins, added: “He’s kind of a rabble rouser, and I don’t listen to that. I listen to the regular news. That guy is crazy. Everybody knows Trump lost.”

With some shoppers threatening boycotts, Publix has tried to distance itself from Fancelli, saying in statement that the company is "deeply troubled" by her involvement in Jan. 6.

Fancelli, who rarely speaks to the media, previously told the Post in a statement: “I am a proud conservative and have real concerns associated with election integrity, yet I would never support any violence, particularly the tragic and horrific events that unfolded on January 6th.”

One prominent Republican fundraiser from Florida questioned whether Fancelli even knew she was "writing checks for Jan. 6." But the narrative of an innocent grandmother who unwittingly bankrolled an insurrection is undercut by Fancelli's continued donations to far-right causes this year.

"In September, she gave $5,800 to Rep. Matthew M. Rosendale of Montana, who was among 21 House Republicans who opposed awarding the congressional gold medal to police officers who defended the U.S. Capitol on Jan 6," the Post reports. "In July, Fancelli gave $1,000 to an unsuccessful candidate for mayor of Lakeland, Fla., who thanked the right-wing One America News for 'correctly' referring to Trump as the president after Biden’s inauguration."

Read the full story.

Trump 'not worried about anything' because he isn't being charged for inciting Capitol riot: former RNC chair

While the "foot soldiers" of the Capitol insurrection are being arrested and prosecuted, federal authorities don't appear to be "building cases" against the people who sent them — including former president Donald Trump, the Atlantic's Barton Gellman reported Monday.

Appearing on MSNBC on Tuesday to discuss Gellman's story — titled "Trump's Next Coup Has Already Begun" — former Democratic Sen. Claire McKaskill said Steve Bannon's recent indictment appears to be as close as investigators have gotten to "the control center" of Jan. 6.

"One thing our country's always had is faith in the rule of law," McKaskill said. "We've always known it was frayed around the edges. We've always known that justice was not applied equally, depending on who you are, where you live, and how much money you have. But ultimately, we thought when somebody did something really bad, something really bad would happen to them. Instead, this guy [Trump] is sitting at his golf resort picking out his cabinet secretaries for the next administration."

Michael Steele, the former chair of the Republican National Committee, echoed McKaskill's remarks, adding that he believes both the press and the American public need to take Gellman's story to heart.

He said it's the press's responsibility to call "out the crap that is filling the airways and the sinews of our public discourse," while the American people need to ask themselves, "Do you want more of this?"

"Because you're about to put men and women in charge in the United States Congress in 2022 who will give you that with an ugly cherry on top," Steele said. "If you think you don't like a Nancy Pelosi as speaker, wait until you embrace Kevin McCarthy, or better yet Jim Jordan, who is likely more in line to be the speaker than McCarthy."

Steele went on to note that people like Jordan, McCarthy and Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell "have not distanced themselves from Donald Trump, they've leaned into him."

"As was just said, he's sitting in Mar-a-Lago filling out his cabinet form for the next election," Steele said. "He's not worried about anything that we're talking about, because Donald Trump has always believed, 'I'm going to do it until you stop me,' and no one has stopped him, and that's why we are where we are. It's going to be up to those two players, the press and the people, to decide just how much more of this crap we're going to tolerate."

Watch below.

Claire McKaskill and Michael Steele on Trump's new coup www.youtube.com

'He did nothing!': Video shows Minneapolis cop throwing 64-year-old Black man to the ground

A Minneapolis police officer is under investigation after he was caught on video throwing a 64-year-old Black man to the ground inside a grocery store for unknown reasons.

"In the almost five-minute video, officer Christopher Lange is seen aggressively grabbing Troy Lee Billups and pushing him onto the ground in an attempt to arrest him" inside an Aldi store on Wednesday, according to a report from Fox Channel 9.

"The person recording the video is heard telling officer Lange that it was 'two people having a conversation together, and you decided to escalate the situation by shoving him,'" the station reported.

"You’re supposed to de-escalate. How is this de-escalating?" the person recording can be heard saying. "What are you doing? Why is he under arrest?"

After Lange says "You're under arrest," Billups can be heard responding "For what?" and yelling "Let me go."

"When Lange did let go, Billups rebuked him for apparently shoving a young man in the store earlier," the Star Tribune reported.

"You gotta keep your hands off him," Billups told Lange. "You don't put your hands on no young kid."

Lange eventually escorted Billups outside before handcuffing him.

"All I did was tell him, 'Don't touch the kid,'" Billups told another nearby officer as Lange emptied his groceries on the hood of a squad car.

Billups was charged with obstructing legal process with force, and later released without bail. Minneapolis police said the matter is being evaluated by the Office of Police Conduct Review.

"Department policy and training continues to emphasize the importance of de-escalation efforts to stabilize and resolve situations when safe and feasible," MPD spokesperson Garrett Parten said.

Watch below.


Trump lawyer threatens to sue Kyle Rittenhouse attorney for calling him an 'idiot'

Trump "stop the steal" lawyer Lin Wood, who once represented Kyle Rittenhouse, is threatening to sue the Kenosha shooter's current attorney after he called Wood an "idiot" on CNN on Friday night.

As we reported, Rittenhouse defense attorney Mark Richards ripped into Wood, accusing him of treating his client like a cash cow — and allowing him to languish in jail for fundraising reasons — during an appearance on Cuomo Prime Time.

"You know, Lin Wood and I went head to head and you know, he'll probably sue me for it, but he's an idiot who let him [Rittenhouse] talk to The Washington Post while he was under charges for murder," Richards said at one point in the interview with host Chris Cuomo.

On Saturday, Wood sent a message to Richards disputing his claims.

"You publicly stated in an interview on CNN that I was an idiot. False, I am not," Wood wrote, before blaming another right-wing former Rittenhouse attorney, John Pierce, for allowing Rittenhouse to speak with the Washington Post, among other decisions.

"You should be ashamed of denigrating me and #FightBack for our legal and good faith efforts to help Kyle," Wood wrote. "Demand is hereby made that you immediately retract and correct your false accusations against me. If you do not do so, I will prove that you are right on one point you made on CNN - I will sue you."

Read the full message below, and watch Richards' CNN interview.


Defense Attorney For Kyle Rittenhouse, Mark Richards Speaks On The Verdicts www.youtube.com

Watch: Jim Acosta unleashes expletive-laden takedown of Tucker Carlson, Ted Cruz and Fox News

CNN anchor Jim Acosta repeatedly called "b*llshit" on the air Saturday, in a commentary blasting Fox News host Tucker Carlson and his network, as well as frequent guest Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX).

"It's that time of the year, the days are getting shorter, it's cold outside — it's also when we start looking back at the past year," Acosta said. "And what a year it was over on Fox — or, as I've described it this year, the bullsh*t factory. Just in the last week, they've churned out so much BS it's hard to keep up."

After playing clips from Fox News' Laura Ingraham and Jesse Watters, Acosta turned to Carlson.

"We once honored you with the distinction of bullsh*t factory employee of the month, but now that 2021 is coming to an end, we decided to honor you as our first-ever BS factory employee of the year," Acosta said, noting that among other things Carlson has served as a mouthpiece for white supremacists, spread a false flag conspiracy theory about the Capitol insurrection, and most recently embedded a camera crew with Kyle Rittenhouse during his murder trial.

"This was a tough decision because we had to limit the award to current employees of Fox, not aspiring ones," Acosta said, before taking aim at Cruz, along with Reps. Paul Gosar (R-AZ), Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and Matt Gaetz (R-FL).

Finally, Acosta referenced comments this week from Rupert Murdoch, whose family controls Fox News' parent company, in which he suggested that former president Donald Trump should get over the past and focus on the future.

"Fox News can't run away from Trump or Trumpism. Fox is Trump, and Trump is Fox," Acosta said. "This idea that Rupert Murdoch is suddently going to change course, pull the plug now, I'm calling bullsh*t on that one, too."

Watch the full commentary below.

Jim Acosta slams Fox News youtu.be

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Mike Lindell associates linked to another attempted election breach: report

Alleged associates of MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell have been linked to an attempted breach of an election network in Ohio in May.

The attempted breach in Lake County, Ohio — which is now under investigation by federal and state authorities — "bears striking similarities to an incident in Colorado earlier this year, when government officials helped an outsider gain access to the county voting system in an effort to find fraud," according to the Washington Post.

"Data obtained in both instances were distributed at an August 'cyber symposium' on election fraud hosted by MyPillow executive Mike Lindell, an ally of former president Donald Trump who has spent millions of dollars promoting false claims that the 2020 election was rigged," the Post reports. "Together, the incidents in Ohio and Colorado point to an escalation in attacks on the nation's voting systems by those who have embraced Trump's false claims that the 2020 election was riddled with fraud. Now, some Trump loyalists pushing for legal challenges and partisan audits are also targeting local officials in a bid to gain access to election systems — moves that themselves could undermine election security."

The attempted breach in Ohio reportedly occurred in the office of John Hamercheck, the Republican chair of the Lake County commission. Prior to both breaches, local officials in Ohio and Mesa County, Colorado — including Hamercheck — discussed allegations of election fraud with Douglas Frank, who has done work for Lindell and claims to have uncovered secret algorithms used to rig the 2020 vote. But Lindell told the Post he knows nothing about the breaches. "I have no idea what you're talking about," he said.

In Colorado, Frank met with Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters, who is now accused of sneaking an outsider into Mesa County election offices to copy the hard drives of Dominion Voting Systems machines. This week, the FBI raided the homes of Peters and several associates, including Sherronna Bishop, a former campaign manager for U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO). Bishop introduced Frank at a public speech about election fraud in Colorado in April, when he also met privately with Peters.

"In a statement to The Post, Bishop accused the FBI of using 'brute force' in executing the search warrant at her home, including using a battering ram to open her door and handcuffing her in front of her children. She said she had been 'available and transparent to any organization that wanted to speak with me' and accused the Justice Department of 'terrorizing parents,'" the newspaper reports.

According to the Post, another Lindell associate linked to the breaches is Conan James Hayes, a "white hat hacker" who works for the MyPillow CEO. At Lindell's symposium, QAnon influencer Ron Watkins announced that Hayes may have stolen the hard drives from Mesa County. According to metadata, the Mesa County hard drives were copied by someone using the identifier "cjh," which matches Hayes' initials.

"In both Lake and Mesa counties, the data were captured by the same type of gaming laptop, using the same software and same Windows operating system, metadata shows," according to the Post.

Read the full story.

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‘Something is just not right’: Reporter expresses deep concern about Trump's reflections on Jan. 6

Former president Donald Trump shows "no remorse" for the Capitol insurrection, according to ABC News reporter Jonathan Karl.

Appearing on MSNBC on Thursday night to discuss his new book, "Betrayal," Karl talked about his interview with Trump in March at the former president's Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.

"I was looking for something," Karl said. "I wanted to see any hint of regret, any hint of remorse for what happened on Jan. 6. ... Absolutely none."

Karl added that Trump was in "a good mood" — and got "excited" when talking about the "terrible things" that fellow Republicans had done to him, including former Vice President Mike Pence and former Attorney General Bill Barr.

Host Joy Reid later asked Karl whether Trump came across "as somebody who is rational (or) mentally all there."

"It's a very strange thing," Karl responded. "He comes out — he's gregarious. He's got a way of trying to charm you. He doesn't seem like he's somebody who's completely insane at all. He conducts himself, he conducts his business. But it's the lack of any sense of remorse, I think, that really comes across as, there's something that's just not right."

Watch below.

Jonathan Karl on MSNBC with Joy Reid www.youtube.com

Dan Crenshaw slams Marjorie Taylor Greene's 'stupid' plan as 'messy internal spats' plague House GOP: report

House Republicans are "embroiled in messy internal spats" and suffering from "self-inflicted wounds" that could hurt their chances of regaining the majority in 2022, Politico reported Wednesday night.

The latest example came earlier Wednesday, when far-right Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) was censured for posting a cartoon video of him murdering Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY).

"At the same time, some rank-and-file Republicans are still pushing to punish their own colleagues for backing a bipartisan bill reviled by former President Donald Trump," Politico reported. "That turmoil is no longer an anomaly for the GOP. The party's emboldened conservative agitators have repeatedly stoked controversies that threaten to become all-consuming distractions, leaving House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to seek out a fire extinguisher."

Rep. Daniel Meuser (R-Pa.) told Politico it's "unfortunate" and "a shame these self-inflicted injuries occur," while several other Republicans reportedly said privately that Gosar's "antics brought Republicans an unneeded diversion in an otherwise upbeat month." When House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy tried to stage a news conference Wednesday criticizing President Joe Biden's social spending plan, the first question was about Gosar, prompting him to end the event.

Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.), who has been the target of death threats after voting for the infrastructure bill, seemingly undercut party leaders' defense of Gosar when he told Politico that former Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) doled out harsher punishments for lesser offenses. "You don't wear your tie right, John Boehner was going to go after you," Upton said.

Upton is among those who've received death threats after voting for the infrastructure bill, after Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene posted their phone numbers on Twitter. Greene and others are now calling for Upton and the other 12 Republicans who voted for the infrastructure bill to be stripped of their committee assignments.

"But other Republicans have grown exasperated with GOP members going after each other," Politico reported.

Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas) told the site, "I never even saw the video Gosar posted. It's probably stupid. And this movement to punish those 13 Republicans is also stupid."

Read the full story.

Ted Cruz launches his own 'Sesame Street' — featuring Marjorie Taylor Greene — in SNL's Cold Open

Texas Republican Sen. Cruz launched his own version of Sesame Street on the "Newsmax Kids" network, in SNL's Cold Open on Saturday.

"I'm Texas Senator — and the last one invited to Thanksgiving — Ted Cruz," Cruz, played by cast member Aidy Bryant, says at the start of the skit. "For 50 years, I stood by as Sesame Street taught our children dangerous ideas like numbers and kindness, but when Big Bird told children to get vaccinated against a deadly disease, I said enough and I created my own Sesame Street called Cruz Street. It's a gated community where kids are safe from the woke government."

The skit features an appearance by Republican Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene, toting an AR-15 and spouting QAnon conspiracy theories. Big Bird himself also shows up, experiencing negative side effects from the COVID-19 vaccine. But "resident medical expert" Joe Rogan comes along to provide Big Bird with zinc and ivermectin.

The letters of the day on Cruz Street are "CRT" — which stand for either "critical race theory" or "caucasian rights trampled," Cruz says.

Later, he introduces "the Proud Boys" — Bert and Ernie — mistaking the gay couple for members of the right-wing militia.

There's also Oscar the Slouch, whom Cruz says has been trained by the Democrats to "suck off the teet of the government," and "the recount Count," who will explain how Donald Trump really won the election.

Watch it below.

Ted Cruz Sesame Street Cold Open - SNL www.youtube.com

'We should brace ourselves': Experts warn Bannon's indictment will inflame Trump's dejected base

Trump adviser Steve Bannon's indictment on Friday was necessary to preserve the rule of law, according to former FBI special agent Clint Watts.

However, the downside is that Bannon will undoubtedly use the indictment to fire up former president Donald Trump's supporters, according to Watts, an MSNBC national security analyst.

"It had to be pushed to this level, and I'm thankful that it (was)," Watts told the network's Deadline: White House program on Friday afternoon. "What I would say, though, is while it seems dumb legally, in terms of politics, for Steve Bannon's orbit and the information environment, this is what they were hoping for in some ways, which is now they have a new war they can fight. It's always looking to poke a fight or provoke a fight and develop a new war in the social media space and the information space to rally a base that does not have much to cheer about."

Watts noted with former president Donald Trump banned from major social media platforms, the conversation around the country is "just not what it was one or two years ago."

"I don't care what you think the electoral outcome was, the enthusiasm has been dying," Watts said. "So this gives them one more thing, and this is Steve Bannon's war, and he's always said 'the war on the administrative state,' and he's trying to provoke that war, and I'm sure we're going to see a continuation of this, and it won't go quietly."

Princeton University professor Eddie Glaude, an MSNBC contributor, agreed that Bannon will be "imagined as a political martyr and that will then inflame these folks."

But Glaude added, "In some ways, our worry about inflaming the opposition has led to us being cautious, but it seems to me that this is a step necessary in order to protect our democracy, and if we didn't do it, we would in some ways seal our fate."

David Rohde, executive editor of the New Yorker magazone, said we are "entering a dangerous phase."

"The polarization in this country will deepen as this investigation continues," Rohde said. "There's no choice. This subpoena had to be issued, this subpoena had to be enforced, and Steve Bannon needs to be prosecuted for defying it. But we just should brace ourselves. It's inevitable that this will be seen as proof of some giant conspiracy by the courts, the media and the 'deep state' to silence Trump and his supporters."

Watch below.

Bannon's indictment gives Trump’s base something 'to cheer about’: Former FBI agent www.youtube.com

Kyle Rittenhouse judge is 'putting his thumb on the scale in every way possible': MSNBC analyst

The judge presiding over Kyle Rittenhouse's murder trial is a "racist' who's "putting his thumb on the scale in every way possible" in favor of the defendant, according to MSNBC legal analyst Elie Mystal.

Mystal, an attorney who serves as the Nation magazine's justice correspondent, said Kenosha County Circuit Court Judge Bruce Schroeder has "a history of disregarding civil rights information and rulings."

"If you look at his specific history in this case, all of his pretrial motions tended to favor Kyle Rittenhouse, even leading up to this trial, and then certainly his behavior in the trial as the presiding officer of the trial, has just been grotesque in terms of his combativeness with the prosecution, his willingness to let the defense slide on many issues, his American flag tissue box, his cell phone ringtone that is actually the same song that is played at the beginning of Trump rallies," Mystal said.

"It's never just one thing," he added. "It's not just one issue or one decision. I'm not saying one plus one equals two. I'm saying one plus one plus one plus one plus one equals five, and while you can try to defend any individual decision, when you look at the totality of his actions, what you have is a racist, biased judge who is putting his thumb on the scale in every way he can for the defense and for Rittenhouse in this case."

Host Jason Johnson responded by noting that if a judge's ringtone played a "Black Lives Matter anthem," people would likely take issue, but Schroeder is "getting away with it."

Johnson also played a clip of Schroeder's inappropriate comment from Thursday about "Asian food" coming for lunch.

"Who actually says that?" Johnson said. "This sort of speaks to what you're talking about. It's this sort of off-color, insensitive racist commentary."

Unfortunately, Mystal told Johnson there's not much that can be done.

"The judge is the king of his or her own courtroom," Mystal said, adding that even if the prosecution sought a mistrial, it would be up to Schroeder to decide whether he's too biased to conduct the proceeding fairly.

"Once you draw a biased, prejudiced judge in our state court system, there is very little you can do about it, and quite frankly, every African-American attorney I know, knows that," Mystal said. "I don't know that this prosecution team was ready to deal with fighting not just Rittenhouse's defense lawyers, but also the judge. It's a huge problem."

Watch below.

Elie Mystal on Rittenhouse judge www.youtube.com

Trump faces loss of NYC golf course as Capitol riot 'continues to haunt him': report

Former President Donald Trump's company is facing the loss of its New York City golf course due to the former president's role in the Capitol insurrection.

"The City of New York will not be associated with those unforgivable acts in any shape, way or form," Mayor Bill de Blasio said days after Jan. 6 when the city terminated the Trump Organization's licensing deal for Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point Park in the Bronx.

The Trump Organization has sued to reinstate the licensing deal, which is set to expire Sunday, with Trump alleging that the decision stemmed from animus against him on the part of de Blasio.

CNN reported Thursday that even though a judge has agreed to delay the termination, the golf course appears to be "another likely casualty to stem from former President Donald Trump's actions on January 6 before rioters stormed the US Capitol."

"The case highlights how Trump's activities during the final days of his presidency continue to haunt him as he navigates numerous criminal investigations and business challenges linked to the Capitol riot," the network reported. "The fight over the golf course is one of the latest examples of Trump's political rhetoric clashing with his business interests."

The NYC golf course, which the Trump Organization has operated since 2012, brought in more than $8 million in revenue in the first 10 months of this year, according to court filings. The Jack Nicklaus-designed course reportedly features a presidential seal imprinted on the grass. In addition to the golf course, the city terminated the Trump Organization's management of the Central Park Carousel and two ice skating rinks.

In terminating the golf course deal, the city cited the PGA of America's decision, in the wake of Jan. 6, to cancel an agreement to host its 2022 championship tournament at Trump's Bedminster resort, saying it would be "detrimental" to its brand.

One city official wrote, in denying Trump's appeal of the termination, that the PGA's decision provided "irrefutable evidence that the Ferry Point course's ability to draw tournaments of the requisite caliber has been significantly impaired by the Trumps' actions leading to the events of January 6. That is a material breach of the License."

The city has has also accused Trump's lawyers of trying to intimidate potential bidders for the licensing rights to the golf course. In September, Trump's lawyers allegedly sent a letter to one bidder advising them to "proceed at your peril."

Whitney Crouse, a founding partner from Bobby Jones Links, which was awarded the bid to take over the NYC golf course, told CNN he is "aware of the risk that Trump could use his pulpit to go after them, but said they bid for the contract because they are confident New York will prevail in the litigation."

"We've thought long and hard about that," Crouse said. "I'm sure something will be said, and it will be in the press, and it will be controversial but six months from now or next year when golf season begins, golfers will have forgotten the issue."

Crouse added, "The world will move on as it has with other things with Mr. Trump."

Capitol riot probe headed for 'monumental' Supreme Court ruling on whether to 'protect Trump': reporter

A House committee's investigation of the Capitol insurrection appears to be on a collision course with the U.S. Supreme Court, which could ultimately decide whether the American public ever learns the full truth about the events of Jan. 6, according to Washington Post reporter Robert Costa.

"If this ends up at the Supreme Court, it will be perhaps one of the most monumental decision the court has made," Costa told MSNBC on Friday.

During the Watergate scandal, president Richard Nixon was forced to release audio tapes by Chief Justice Warren Berger, because a crime had taken place — and "no president can have confidentiality when it comes to documents when a crime has taken place," Costa noted.

"That was the threshold for Berger," Costa said. "What's the threshold for this Supreme Court? That's the lingering question."

Costa said justices will have to decide whether they're going to "protect" Trump even though he is no longer in office and an insurrection occurred. If they allow Trump to keep the documents secret, it's possible "we might never have a clear answer" about what happened, especially if Republicans take control of the House in 2022.

"And that's why (Trump adviser Steve) Bannon and so many others, including (former DOJ official Jeffrey) Clark, seem to be in this wait-and-see game — just wait and hope conservative justices on the Supreme Court somehow don't have a Warren Berger moment and prompt Trump (and the release of) these documents, and especially those phone logs from Jan. 5 and 6," Costa said.

"It's almost depressing to hear the echoes of history," host Nicole Wallace responded. "I don't think a lot of people have a lot of hope or confidence that the institutions are in the same condition they were then."

Watch below.

Robert Costa on Jan. 6 probe www.youtube.com

Civil suits emerge as 'most powerful weapon' to stop Trump from 'destroying democracy': report

A defamation lawsuit filed against former President Donald Trump this week shows how civil courts are becoming "the most powerful weapon" against the former president's efforts to "destroy democracy," according to Slate.

"That's in part because the Select Committee investigating Jan. 6 has stalled due to obstruction from Steve Bannon and others under investigation, and because the Department of Justice has refused to go after the ringleaders of the mob that rioted at the Capitol," the magazine reports.

On Tuesday, Politico reported that James Savage, a voting machine warehouse custodian in the Philadelphia area, is suing Trump, his personal attorney Rudy Giuliani and others, alleging they defamed him by falsely suggesting he added votes to President Joe Biden's total in Pennsylvania.

"This newest suit follows similar lawsuits by voting companies Dominion and Smartmatic, and at least one Dominion employee," Slate reports. "It is further evidence that defamation law, which has 'historically been employed by the powerful to silence critics,' according to University of Utah law professor RonNell Andersen Jones, is beginning to play an outsized role in confronting the Big Lie."

Professor Anderson Jones told Slate: "It has been less obvious to us that defamation law can be useful as a pro-democracy, anti-disinformation tool. But it feels like we might be standing on the cusp of a set of cases that are trying to do this."

"Basically, plaintiffs in these defamation suits are looking to flip the script," Anderson Jones added. "They are asserting that some aspects of the disinformation campaigns sufficiently targeted them and their reputations that they warrant relief in tort law. It is really interesting that defamation, of all things, could turn out to at least sometimes be the mechanism we use to combat disinformation from authoritarian influences."

Read the full story.

Trump pleads with judge to 'slow down' Jan. 6 probe — falsely claiming the FBI ruled out 'coordination'

Former president Trump is asking a federal judge to conduct a document-by-document review of White House records sought by the House Select Committee investigating the Capitol insurrection.

Trump "is pleading with a federal judge in Washington to slow down" the House Select Committee's efforts to obtain more than 700 pages of records from his presidency, Politico reported Tuesday night, adding that such a review "could take months."

In a 33-page filing Tuesday, Trump lawyer Jesse Binnall also falsely claimed that "both the FBI and Senate have confirmed that there was no coordinated effort, including at the White House, to overturn the election on January 6," according to Politico.

"Reuters reported in August that the FBI had so far found 'scant' evidence that there was a broader conspiracy beyond small pockets of militia groups, and Binnall cited that report, sourced to 'four current and former law enforcement officials' as evidence of his claim," the site reported. "But the FBI has not affirmed this conclusion, and the Jan. 6 committee explicitly rejected this contention."

U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan has scheduled a hearing for Thursday in a lawsuit brought by Trump alleging that the documents are shielded by executive privilege. Binnall's reply brief filed Tuesday is the last scheduled written argument in the case prior to the hearing, according to CNN.

"Trump's lawyers also attempt to make a political slam against Biden, for the Justice Department defending the (National Archives and Records Administration's) decision that the Trump records should be turned over to the House this month," CNN reported.

Binnall wrote: "It is curious that Department of Justice has submitted a brief in this case on behalf of the Archivist and NARA when those parties ostensibly have no interest in whether the records at issue here are disclosed or not. One can only assume that President Biden has endorsed the naked politicization of the Justice Department in the service of his own political ends."

But according to CNN: "Trump, however, had named the Archives as a defendant in his lawsuit, necessitating that it respond in court, represented by the Justice Department."

Trump caught in a lie about being invited to World Series game by MLB commissioner: report

Former President Donald Trump reportedly lied when he claimed Saturday that he was invited to attend Game 4 of the World Series by New York Yankees president Randy Levine and Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred.

"Looking forward to being at the World Series in Atlanta tonight," Trump said in a statement from his Save America PAC on Saturday. "Thank you to the Commissioner of Baseball Rob Manfred, and Randy Levine of the great New York Yankees, for the invite. Melania and I are looking forward to a wonderful evening watching two great teams!"

New York regional sports network SNY notes that Trump's statement "ran counter to a Wednesday report in USA Today, in which Braves CEO Terry McGuirk said, 'He called MLB and wanted to come to the game. We were very surprised. Of course, we said yes.'"

According to SNY, "two officials directly involved in the process said that McGuirk's comments were accurate, and that neither Manfred nor Levine had reached out to extend an invitation."

"[Levine] has nothing to do with who attends a World Series in Atlanta," one of the officials said.

Read more.

Trump is trying to hide Jan. 6 docs because they are 'probably' incriminating: former GOP lawmaker

Former president Donald Trump is attempting to block a House committee from obtaining White House documents related to Jan. 6 because they are "probably" incriminating, according to one former GOP congressman.

Rep., Carlos Curbelo, who represented Florida in Congress from 2015 to 2019 and now serves as a political analyst for MSNBC, is one of two dozen Republican former lawmakers who signed a brief opposing Trump's lawsuit claiming the documents are protected by executive privilege.

"The reason Donald Trump is claiming executive privilege is because he doesn't want people to know the truth, because whatever is in those documents is surely embarrassing and probably indicting, so he doesn't want people to see it," Curbelo told MSNBC's Deadline: White House on Friday. "Plus, he probably thinks it will make it harder for him to run in 2024 if he ultimately decides to do that."

Curbelo also discussed Illinois Republican Congressman Adam Kinzinger's announcement Friday that he will not seek re-election. Curbelo told host Nicole Wallace that he believes the GOP will "burn to the ground" naturally if it doesn't move away from Trump.

"More and more, especially with young generations of voters, there is not a market for Trumpism," Curbelo said. "So the Republican Party will ultimately fail if it doesn't not move away from this one-man rule inside the party."

"Trump lost Congress for Republicans," he added. "He lost the presidency for Republicans. He went out of his way to make sure Republicans lost two seats in Georgia, pushing Mitch McConnell into the minority in the Senate, yet Republicans who are fearful of a primary challenge ... find a need to continue returning to the altar of Donald Trump to get a blessing and get another two years in Congress. And at the end of the day, these people have to ask themselves, is it worth it? Look at everything that's at stake. I very rarely sign public documents or letters these days, but I thought I had to do this, because this is about the truth. This is about defending our country's democracy."

Curbelo, the son of Cuban exiles, added that his parents "lost their country" because "there was no rule of law."

"We don't want that to happen here, and that's why I signed that letter, and that's why I hope even as Adam Kinzinger leaves Congress, that more Republicans will wake up and understand that this is a lot bigger than another few years in the House of Representatives," he said.

Carlos Curbelo on Trump Jan. 6 suit www.youtube.com

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