Saturday, July 13, 2019

Briefly Noted: No Collusion, More Winning

No Collusion

We wrote earlier about Judge Dabney Friedrich's ruling against Mueller (and Barr) in the Concord Management case in New York, and what it means. From Consortium News via Zerogate we have another nice summary of that. It's not news to you, but it's a a great commentary. Excerpts:

Concord Management And The End Of Russiagate?

Don’t look now, but a federal judge in Washington, D.C., has just shut down half of Robert Mueller’s Russian-interference case.
In February 2018, the special prosecutor indicted a St. Petersburg troll farm called the Internet Research Agency along with two other companies, their owner, Yevgeniy Prigozhin, and 12 employees.  The charge: fraud, traveling to the United States under false pretenses, and using social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter to “sow discord” and “interfere in US political and electoral processes without detection of their Russian affiliation.”

Judge Dabney Friedrich has ordered Mueller to stop pushing such stories [about people with "ties" to Putin] because they’re unfair to Concord Management and Consulting, another Prigozhin company, which astonished the legal world in May 2018 by hiring an expensive Washington law firm and demanding its day in court.  
It’s a case of trial by press clip that should have been laughed out of court – and now, more or less, it is.  Without the IRA, the only argument left in Mueller’s brief is that Russia stole some 28,000 emails and other electronic documents from Democratic National Committee computers and then passed them along to WikiLeaks, which published them to great fanfare in July 2016.  
Bottom line: Russiagate is going up in smoke.  The claim that Russian military intelligence fed thousands of emails to WikiLeaks doesn’t stand up to scrutiny while Mueller is not only unable to a prove a connection between the Internet Research Agency and the Kremlin but is barred from even discussing it, according to Friedrich’s ruling, without risking a charge of contempt.  After 22 months of investigating the ins and outs of Russian interference, Mueller seems to have finally come up dry.

Should be lots of great material here for questioning Mueller.

More Winning

These next two are via the invaluable Don Surber--Trump is pushing issues in the courts and slowly but surely accumulating victories. There's more winning to come:

9th Circuit sides with Trump over Planned Parenthood

The 9th Circuit Court ruled that taxpayers may abort funding for Planned Parenthood. 
Our money, our choice. 
Reuters reported, "A federal appeals court on Thursday rejected emergency bids to temporarily set aside its recent decision allowing the Trump administration to enforce a 'gag rule' that could strip Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers of federal funding for family planning. 
"By a 7-4 vote, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals let stand its June 20 decision lifting injunctions blocking enforcement of the rule, which makes clinics ineligible for Title X family planning funds if they provide abortion referrals." 
The 7 judges in the majority were appointed by Republican presidents including two Trump appointees. The other 4 were Democrat appointees

9th Circuit sides with Trump on sanctuary cities

"The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday ruled in favor of the Trump administration's efforts to prioritize federal dollars for local policing to towns and cities that complied with certain immigration policies. 

"The ruling, a split 2-1 decision, said the Department of Justice (DOJ) was within its rights to withhold Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) grants from sanctuary cities and states over their refusal to work with federal immigration enforcement authorities and instead prioritize agencies that focused on unauthorized immigration and agreed to give Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) access to jail records and immigrants in custody. 
"The city of Los Angeles first sued the administration after it was denied a $3 million grant on the grounds that it did not receive the money because it did not focus on immigration for its community policing grant application. The decision reversed a district court’s ruling."

Betcha haven't heard of this one recently. What a surprise--NOT! All the resistance narratives are slowly but surely going up in smoke. Which will only lead to more distrust of the Fake News Media. More winning--for all of us!

Prosecutors unlikely to charge Trump Org executives, sources say

(CNN) A federal investigation into whether Trump Organization executives violated campaign-finance laws appears to be wrapping up without charges being filed, according to people familiar with the matter. 

For months, federal prosecutors in New York have examined whether company officials broke the law, including in their effort to reimburse Michael Cohen for hush-money payments he made to women alleging affairs with his former boss, President Donald Trump. 
In recent weeks, however, their investigation has quieted, the people familiar with the inquiry said, and prosecutors now don't appear poised to charge any Trump Organization executives in the probe that stemmed from the case against Cohen. 
In recent weeks, however, their investigation has quieted, the people familiar with the inquiry said, and prosecutors now don't appear poised to charge any Trump Organization executives in the probe that stemmed from the case against Cohen.


  1. An attorney who uses the pen name Adam Mill suggests that Robert Mueller did his press conference on May 29 in order to state publicly that his report did not assert that the Russian company Concord Management acted on behalf of the Russian Government.

    Mill pointed out the following passage of Mueller's oral statement:

    [quote; emphasis added]

    As the grand jury alleged in a separate indictment, A PRIVATE RUSSIAN ENTITY engaged in a social media operation, where Russian citizens posed as Americans in order to influence an election. These indictments contain allegations, and we are not commenting on the guilt or the innocence of any specific defendant. Every defendant IS PRESUMED INNOCENT unless and until proven guilty.

    [end quote]

    Mill explains why Mueller was compelled to appear publicly and make this statement on May 29:


    A newly released transcript reveals details of a humiliating hearing that took place the day before Mueller’s puzzling press conference. The judge asked the prosecutor, “Can you address also the specific tie to the Russian government, which is the overarching comment that the attorney general made tying both this case and then the case involving the hacking and the release of the e-mails, the GRU case, to the Russian government?”

    Buckle up, buttercup, because you’re not going to believe DOJ’s response: “The report doesn’t say that.”

    What? I thought we “knew” that the Russian government committed an act of war by posting politically charged information on the internet. Now the DOJ is backing away from any tie between the internet troll farm and the Russian government?

    The DOJ has now admitted that the Mueller report “itself does not state anywhere that the Russian government was behind the Internet Research Agency [and Concord] activity.” Whoa. The judge then asked, “So it is the government’s position that tying Concord and its co-defendants to the Russian government is not prejudicial?”

    In the subsequent order, Judge Freidrich wrote: “On May 29, 2019, following the Court’s hearing, the Special Counsel held a press conference…[in which he] carefully distinguished between the efforts by ‘Russian intelligence officers who were part of the Russian military’ and the efforts of” Concord. This, the Judge found, made the criminal contempt proceedings she contemplated against Mueller’s team “unnecessary and excessive under the circumstances.”

    [end quote]

    I think that Mueller made his public statement on May 29 in order to delay the imminent, embarrassing collapse of his abusive, absurd prosecution of Concord Management.

    Not only was the judge going to charge Mueller's gang with contempt of court, the judge might have thrown the case out entirely, with prejudice.

    By making his statement on May 29, Mueller bought himself some more time. Of course, Mueller's prosecution of Concord Management will collapse eventually, but Mueller did not want it to happen already before the end of May 2019.

    In particular, Mueller still hopes that the Democrats' effort to impeach President Trump will maintain some momentum for a while. A public, embarrassing collapse of Mueller's abusive, absurd prosecution of Concord Management already in May 2019 might have dunked the impeachment effort straight down to the bottom of the ocean.

    1. Thank you so much for the re-post. And now read this!

  2. Yeah, I read that and totally agree. Mueller and the Dems may think they're buying a bit more time, but who's actually paying attention to their impeachment theater? The longer they delay the day of reckoning--which is surely coming--the rougher it will be.

  3. Thanks to Mike for the reference to Adam Mill's excellent Federalist article.

    My only comment is that Judge Freidrich really let Mueller off too easy, IMHO. He was allowed to make a thoroughly cryptic, pseudo-correction to wrongdoing that was judged as amounting to criminal contempt, when something much more explicit was rightfully called for. The veiled correction to the record went, as planned, right over everyone's head, whereas the message sent by the original falsehood was not only shot to the public from a cannon but then turned into gospel truth via endless repetition.

    Now just imagine the effect it might have had on the public debate if Mueller had been made to come right out and say - even if still in lawyerly, gobbledygook fashion - the undisputed truth that the Report was mistaken to have made the tie to the Russian government, that in reality the tie was merely assumed without any evidence to back it up.

    I can't see where this would have been in any way an unreasonable demand by the Judge, and both the Defendant and the public deserved at least as much as what such a tiny little shred of transparency and candor would have provided them.

    1. It's possible that Mueller got off the hook with his after the fact clarification because Barr was also named by the defense team in their criminal contempt motion. I'm not sure I can even think of a past instance of a judge holding an AG in criminal contempt. That's a lesson for Barr. I assume he was trying to play it safe, just going along with the narrative while investigating aggressively. Better not take anything for granted!


    In the small world category of upside down things Judge Friedrich is the wife of Matthew Friedrich. Matthew Friedrich is one of the Enron Task Force members identified by Sydney Powell in Licensed to Lie as among the core group of federal prosecutors who (paraphrasing Powell) broke the rules, made up the crimes, hid the evidence, and sent innocent people to prison. Powell's indictment of Friedrich himself is scathing...

    As they say, its hard to tell the players without a scorecard. And even then...

    1. Right. She also happens to be a Trump appointee.

  5. Yes she does.

    I'm enjoying imagining (perhaps in a slightly exaggerated imagination) Louie Gohmert asking Mr. Mueller (when he appears before Congress) what the basis is for the Special Counsel's conclusion that the Russian government interfered in the 2016 presidential election in a sweeping and systematic fashion. "I'm afraid I can't discuss that", Mueller will have to answer. "Well what does your Report say?", Gohmert might ask. "I'm afraid I can't discuss that", Mueller will have to answer. "Do you stand by your Report, Mr. Mueller?", Gohmert might say. "I'm afraid I can't discuss that", Mueller will have to answer.

    I also can't help wondering what will be left of the Mueller Report when it is conclusively established that Wikileaks did not obtain the DNC emails from the Russian government. I would have thought that Julian Assange could answer this question, but I guess he has good reason to hold his cards.

    In case you or any of your readers are interested, here is a link to Judge Friedrich's order: