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2020 Democratic Contenders

Let’s pin this to the front page and keep a running list. Hit up the comments any time you come across important updates on the intentions of any of these folks:

*Legitimate Candidates*
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (Minnesota)
Sen. Sherrod Brown (Ohio)
Sen. Kamala Harris (California),
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (New York)
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (Massachusetts),
Former VP Joe Biden

*Legitimate Longshots Worth Following*
Beto O’Rourke (Texas)
Mayor Eric Garcetti (Los Angeles)
Gov. John Hickenlooper (Colorado)
former Gov. Deval Patrick (Massachusetts) withdrew Dec 2018.
Sen. Corey Booker (New Jersey)
Mayor Mitch Landrieu (New Orleans)
Gov. Steve Bullock (Montana),

*Candidates Who are Running for Reasons Other Than to Win*
Sen. Bernie Sanders (Vermont),
former Gov. Terry McAuliffe (Virginia)
Gov. Andrew Cuomo (New York)
Rep. Tim Murphy (OH)
Rep John Delaney (Maryland)
former Attorney General Eric Holder

*Irrelevant Candidates Who Will Be Ignored by Everyone But the Press*
Howard Schulz (Starbucks CEO),
Tom Steyer (billionaire),
former Mayor Michael Bloomberg (New York City),
Michael Avenatti (obnoxious lawyer) withdrew Dec 2018
Richard Ojeda (Trump supporting WV Democratic activist)

As you read this, recall that Barr said that suborning perjuryis an impeachable offense

BuzzFeed go BOOM

President Donald Trump directed his longtime attorney Michael Cohen to lie to Congress about negotiations to build a Trump Tower in Moscow, according to two federal law enforcement officials involved in an investigation of the matter.

Trump also supported a plan, set up by Cohen, to visit Russia during the presidential campaign, in order to personally meet President Vladimir Putin and jump-start the tower negotiations. “Make it happen,” the sources said Trump told Cohen.

And even as Trump told the public he had no business deals with Russia, the sources said Trump and his children, Ivanka and Donald Trump Jr., received regular, detailed updates about the real estate development from Cohen, whom they put in charge of the project.

Cohen pleaded guilty in November to lying about the deal in testimony and in a two-page statement to the Senate and House intelligence committees. Special counsel Robert Mueller noted that Cohen’s false claim that the project ended in January 2016 was an attempt to “minimize links between the Moscow Project and Individual 1” — widely understood to be Trump — “in hopes of limiting the ongoing Russia investigations.”

Now the two sources have told BuzzFeed News that Cohen also told the special counsel that after the election, the president personally instructed him to lie — by claiming that negotiations ended months earlier than they actually did — in order to obscure Trump’s involvement.

The special counsel’s office learned about Trump’s directive for Cohen to lie to Congress through interviews with multiple witnesses from the Trump Organization and internal company emails, text messages, and a cache of other documents. Cohen then acknowledged those instructions during his interviews with that office.

SOURCE: https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/jasonleopold/trump-russia-cohen-moscow-tower-mueller-investigation

Rudy Giuliani Is Now Essentially Admitting That Collusion Happened During the Campaign

He’s now essentially saying “sure, it happened during the election, but Trump wasn’t involved, and anyway, that Manafort guy was only the campaign manager for five months, so who cares?”

I wonder what’s coming later this week? Must be something for him to suddenly reappear and backpeddle like this.
— Read on www.buzzfeednews.com/amphtml/claudiakoerner/rudy-giuliani-trump-campaign-collusion-russia

For the Record: Only 95 of the 229 Annual Messages/State of the Union Addresses Have Been Delivered In Person.

In case you do not know the full history, some facts, courtesy of your United States House of Representatives:

Origins and Authorization

The formal basis for the State of the Union Address is from the U.S. Constitution:

  • The President “shall from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the Union, and recommend to their Consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient.” Article II, Section 3, Clause 1.

The constitutionally mandated presidential address has gone through a few name changes:

  • It was formally known as the Annual Message from 1790 to 1946.
  • It began to be informally called the “state of the Union” message/address from 1942 to 1946.
  • Since 1947 it has officially been known as the State of the Union Address.

Earlier Annual Messages of the President included agency budget requests and general reports on the health of the economy. During the 20th century, Congress required more-specialized reports on these two aspects, separate from the Annual Message.

  • Budget Message, required by the National Budget and Accounting Act of 1921 (42 Stat. 20) to be delivered to Congress no more than two weeks after Congress convenes in January.
  • Economic Report, required by the Employment Act of 1946 (60 Stat. 23), with a flexible delivery date.

Over time, as the message content changed, the focus of the State of the Union also changed:

  • In the 19th century, the annual message was both a lengthy administrative report on the various departments of the executive branch and a budget and economic message.
  • After 1913, when Woodrow Wilson revived the practice of presenting the message to Congress in person, it became a platform for the President to rally support for his agenda.
  • Technological changes—radio, television, and the Internet—further developed the State of the Union into a forum for the President to speak directly to the American people.

Technological Change

Source: https://history.house.gov/Institution/SOTU/State-of-the-Union/

Also see: Hoyer: ‘The State Of The Union Is Off’ Until Government Reopens – Talking Points Memo

Imagine you’re a FBI Agent working Russian counterintelligence in 2016 and you witness the following:

I’ve been waiting for someone to do this. This started as a thread by Clint Watts that’s been rolled up by Thread Reader and reposted here in full for easy future reference.

– you witnessed Russian hackers targeting a wide swath of Americans including the DNC, DCCC, former Secretary of State & a Presidential candidates staff

– someone previously targeted by Russian Intelligence joins the Trump campaign and then appears on a stage in Moscow supporting Russia policy and speaking negatively of US policy

– A Presidential candidate hires a new campaign manager whose not been in the business in the states for years, but has been seen pushing a Russian agenda in Ukraine and has Russian intel contacts

– an Australian official contacts you and says the Russians have stolen emails of a Presidential candidate & may want to give them to the candidate’s competitor

– a Russian lawyer & others tied to Russian government visit a Presidential candidate’s son in the candidate’s building in NYC

– Candidate Trump stands on a stage and calls out Russia and asks about emails from his competitor, says they will be rewarded if they have them and release them

– website that’s released sensitive & classified documents from US for years, helped deliver a US insider to The Kremlin, begins publishing document & emails during Dem convention, content you know was stolen by Russia. Site administrator once hosted a TV show on Russia State TV

– A strange, unexpected policy change occurs at RNC convention, the change is a less supportive position toward Ukraine and is advantageous to Russia

– candidate’s campaign manager goes on CNN and asserts a false terrorist attack in Turkey, one tied to and advanced by Russian propaganda

– during this time, you watch a campaign associate tweet with a Russian account that’s pointing people to stolen documents from the opposing campaign. The campaign associate predicts something will happen to the opposing campaign manager- his emails are later released

– as Election Day approaches, Presidential candidate makes allegation, without evidence, voter Fraud & Election Rigging, Russia propaganda echoes this, social media accounts associated Kremlin do the same, at same time, you watch Russian Hackers hit state election infrastructure

– After election, current President issues sanctions against Russia, but the incoming National Security advisor makes calls to Russian officials from 3rd country, when approached for clarification post inauguration, the advisor lies about contents of phone call w/Russian officials

– During summer fall leading into the election, you receive raw intelligence from highly reliable source whose proven invaluable on other investigations. source provides intelligence on Russia’s efforts to support a presidential candidate, the info is consistent with other info

– Before inauguration your bosses, your leaders from all intelligence agencies brief president elect on classified info showing Russia influenced the election on behalf of President elect. President elect rejects intelligence from all your superiors and suggests Russia innocent

= From the summer of 2015 all the way through the election and after inauguration, you watch as the candidate, president elect and now president offers overt effusive support for Vladimir Putin who you know has been helping the President get elected.

– Shortly after inauguration, your new commander-in-chief spouts false information about Polish aggression toward Belarus. This is not supported by the Intelligence community you are in, and the only source for this viewpoint is Russian propaganda

– After firing of National Security Advisor that lies to you agencies investigators, the President corners your boss 1-1 asks him to go easy on National Security Advisor who lies about his conversation with Russians.

SOURCE; https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1084498964114821120.html

SOURCE; https://twitter.com/selectedwisdom

The Freedom Caucus now supports asset forfeiture and presidential emergency declarations. Remember this next time

It’s all fraudulent, the invocations of freedom and limited government and “don’t tread on me” hatred of government. They mean none of it. They never have

Had a Democrat done any of this, they would’ve pretended to object on principle, but that was always a lie. What’s changed is that’s now been made obvious.

And yet,,,here’s one of the leaders of the House Freedom Caucus enthusiastically endorsing the second of emergency powers to seize private property inorder to advance their public policy agenda. By definition, whatever principles he has, they don’t prohibit this.

twitter.com/repmarkmeadows/status/1083733171106209792

Don’t forget this next time. Take none of their “principled” complaints seriously. They mean none of it. None. Of. It.

Trump has ordered his interpreters to conceal notes from his meetings with Putin?!?

Things have gotten to the point that I don’t even know what to say anymore. I’m at a loss for words.

President Trump has gone to extraordinary lengths to conceal details of his conversations with Russian President Vladi­mir Putin, including on at least one occasion taking possession of the notes of his own interpreter and instructing the linguist not to discuss what had transpired with other administration officials, current and former U.S. officials said.

Trump did so after a meeting with Putin in 2017 in Hamburg that was also attended by then-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. U.S. officials learned of Trump’s actions when a White House adviser and a senior State Department official sought information from the interpreter beyond a readout shared by Tillerson.

The constraints that Trump imposed are part of a broader pattern by the president of shielding his communications with Putin from public scrutiny and preventing even high-ranking officials in his own administration from fully knowing what he has told one of the United States’ main adversaries.

As a result, U.S. officials said there is no detailed record, even in classified files, of Trump’s face-to-face interactions with the Russian leader at five locations over the past two years. Such a gap would be unusual in any presidency, let alone one that Russia sought to install through what U.S. intelligence agencies have described as an unprecedented campaign of election interference.

SOURCE: https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/trump-has-concealed-details-of-his-face-to-face-encounters-with-putin-from-senior-officials-in-administration/2019/01/12/65f6686c-1434-11e9-b6ad-9cfd62dbb0a8_story.html

Hey Democrats, some advice: Notify everyone right now that if Trump declares an emergency to build a wall, you’ll do it to fight climate change

Be proactive. Don’t bank on vague claims of slippery slopes. Get out in front of this. Y’all want this to be how things work now? Fine. Then it’s how things work now. Be specific. Be proactive. Announce exactly how you will use this precedent the next time a Democrat holds the presidency.

Either they go ahead with it anyway, in which case you’ll be able to point back to that when they later pretend to be outraged, or they will stop entirely with this talk of “national emergencies.”

This is a win-win position for you. Be smart. Act now. They already see the potential in this. Make it real.

The Wall Street Journal’s editorial board issued a warning on Thursday, arguing that while the courts could potentially step in on Trump’s emergency declaration, there’s no guarantee that would happen.

“If Mr. Trump did win in court, a President Elizabeth Warren might take the precedent as a license to circumvent Congress whenever it is political expedient,” the editorial board wrote. “Rising carbon emissions or even income inequality could be declared national emergencies.”

Even Fox News has cautioned against a national emergency declaration. Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade on Thursday said it would “be a disaster in the big picture, and it would show us at being inept and unable to govern around the world.” He added that it would set a “terrible precedent.”

Source: Trump’s national emergency: Republicans worry about precedent for Dems – Vox