The NRA Finds Itself Looking Down The Barrel Of A Gun

Ken AshfordCourts/Law, Gun ControlLeave a Comment

A wide-ranging investigation into the NRA announced this weekend by New York State Attorney General Letitia James threatens the very existence of the organization. James has the power to ask a judge to dissolve the gun-rights group if she finds evidence that the board engaged in serial violations of New York state charity law, as her office did with the Donald … Read More

Ben Wittes: Five Conclusions

Ken AshfordL'Affaire Russe, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

Lawfare’s Benjamin Wittes – a man not given to hyperbole – has finished reading the Mueller Report and created a nice crib sheet of his conclusions: The president committed crimes. There is no way around it. Attorney General William Barr’s efforts to clear President Donald Trump, both in his original letter and in his press conference the morning of the … Read More

Rod Rosenstein Announces His Departure

Ken AshfordTrump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

He is out on May 11. The Deputy Attorney General, the overseer of the Mueller probe for a while, seemed at one point to recognize the threat that Trump posed, but he quickly became the poster boy for the Republican’s capitulation to Trump, as Jonathan Chait explains: The most bizarre passage in Rod Rosenstein’s letter to President Trump resigning his … Read More

Trump’s Politics Of Hatred Has A Death Toll

Ken AshfordRightwing Extremism/Violence, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

Hatred, resentment, white supremacy and victimhood are deadly political tools. President Trump wields them with no thought to the consequences — and people die. The latest is Lori Gilbert Kaye, 60, shot and killed Saturday at the Chabad of Poway synagogue near San Diego. The shooter, a 19-year-old gunman armed with a military-style assault rifle, wounded three others. The assailant, who reportedly … Read More

Trump Stonewalling Is A Constitutional Crisis In Itself

Ken AshfordCongress, Courts/Law, Crime, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

Donald Trump, the Trump Organization, and Trump’s children with wife No. 1 have combined to sue Deutsche Bank and Capital One in an effort to force them to ignore a congressional subpoena. Among other things, the suit alleges that the subpoenas constitute “harassment” and makes the odd claim that the House Intelligence Committee failed to “negotiate” with Trump over the scope of the order. … Read More

Weekly List 128

Ken AshfordWeekly ListLeave a Comment

This week Trump’s White House refused all requests by House Democrats to interview current or former members of the regime, or to turn over records, including those requested by subpoena. The NYTEditorial Board noted Trump “is effectively declaring lawmakers powerless over him. This, warn the experts, puts the nation in uncharted territory and threatens to erode its democratic foundations.” With … Read More

Trump Doubles Down On Charlottesville “Both Sides” Comment

Ken AshfordRace, Rightwing Extremism/Violence, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

Trump tries to defend his Charlottesville response by praising Robert E. Lee. He claims the 'very fine people' remark was about people who "felt very strongly about the monument to Robert E. Lee. A great general, whether you like it or not."Via Politico — Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) April 26, 2019 Joe Biden’s presidential launch has again cast a spotlight … Read More

Breaking: Russian Gun Rights Activist Maria Butina Sentenced To 18 Months After Conspiring To Infiltrate The NRA

Ken AshfordBreaking News, Crime, Gun Control, L'Affaire Russe, RussiaLeave a Comment

Russian gun rights activist Maria Butina was sentenced to an 18-month prison term Friday in Washington after failing to register as a foreign agent for conspiring to infiltrate conservative U.S. political circles for the Kremlin. Butina, 30, pleaded guilty in December to conspiring with a senior Russian official to access the National Rifle Association among other groups from 2015 until she was … Read More

North Korea Billed U.S. The Sum Of $2 Million For The Return Of A Dead Hostage

Ken AshfordNorth Korea, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

What the hell? North Korea issued a $2 million bill for the hospital care of comatose American Otto Warmbier, insisting that a U.S. official sign a pledge to pay it before being allowed to fly the University of Virginia student from Pyongyang in 2017. The presentation of the invoice — not previously disclosed by U.S. or North Korean officials — … Read More

Trump Is Challenging Democrats On Many Fronts

Ken AshfordCongress, Trump & Administration, White House SecrecyLeave a Comment

President Donald Trump, while portraying himself as the victim in a political war, is foiling an aggressive House Democratic majority’s investigations with historic fervor by refusing to comply with many subpoenas and other oversight requests. On one level, this is nothing new. Prior Congresses and White Houses have certainly found themselves at odds over how much information to disclose. But … Read More

Trump Complains To Twitter About His Follower Count

Ken AshfordSocial Media & Networking, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

Imagine being the most powerful man in the world with access to intelligence and data that could make any human’s mind spin with amazement. Now imagine using that power to drag in the CEO of Twitter to complain that your follower count isn’t as high as the previous President. President Trump on Tuesday met privately with Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, … Read More

Trump’s Twitter Meltdown This Morning

Ken AshfordTrump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

Lord help us. Trump has tweeted or retweeted more than 50 times in the last 24 hours. — Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) April 23, 2019 Greg Sargant explains why he think Trump is so enraged: Democrats have now subpoenaed former White House counsel Don McGahn to appear before Congress and testify about his direct involvement in some of the most explosive revelations … Read More

Post-Mueller Report Polls Show Public Is Tepid On Impeachment

Ken AshfordL'Affaire Russe, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

Conventional wisdom in Washington, D.C., holds that impeachment would be a massive gift to President Donald Trump’s 2020 re-election effort. President Bill Clinton famously stayed popular throughout his impeachment proceedings, and since any effort to remove Trump would likely fail in the Senate, many people believe impeachment would be doomed from the start. But we really shouldn’t be so sure. … Read More

14 Tidbits Of The Mueller Report That May Have Gotten Lost In All The Analysis

Ken AshfordL'Affaire Russe, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

1. This was as much a counterintelligence investigation as a criminal one. One of the new details in the report is that the FBI “embedded” approximately 40 personnel in the Special Counsel’s Office. Their role was not to contribute to the criminal probe, but instead to pore over the collected materials and pass written summaries of key counterintelligence findings to FBI … Read More

Trump And His Businesses Go To Court To Block Oversight

Ken AshfordCongress, Trump & AdministrationLeave a Comment

What is he hiding? President Trump is seeking a court order to prevent his accounting firm from complying with what his lawyers say is an illegitimate use of congressional subpoena power by congressional Democrats.In a filing Monday morning, the president claims, “Democrats are singularly obsessed with finding something they can use to damage the President politically.” Last week, Rep. Elijah … Read More