Browsing the blog archivesfor the day Tuesday, December 18th, 2018.

Schadenfreude 4 U

Trump Maladministration

Jeanne Pirro had anticipated that Flynn’s guilty plea would be tossed out and the Trump Administration exonerated.

What actually happened: 

At Flynn’s sentencing, Sullivan made a point of making sure that Flynn stated (and restated) that he lied to the FBI, that he knew it was wrong to do so and that he accepted responsibility. Sullivan asked Flynn whether he knew that lying to the FBI was illegal, and Flynn said, “I was aware.” The judge gave Flynn several chances to withdraw his guilty plea, and Flynn opted to proceed.

Then Sullivan went big. “Arguably, you sold your country out,” he told Flynn, adding: “I’m not hiding my disgust, my disdain, for this criminal offense.” He even invoked treason, asking the government whether they considered such a charge. (The government said it had not.) Sullivan suggested Flynn was working as a foreign agent while serving in the White House — a claim which he later backed off.

Judge Jeanine had praised Sullivan as a man who does not tolerate injustice. I guess not. Sullivan also made it clear he wasn’t buying the claim that Flynn had been “entrapped.” Merry Christmas.

Also, too:

Judge Sullivan gave Mr. Flynn the option of delaying the sentencing until he had completed his cooperation agreement with federal prosecutors. “I cannot assure that if you proceed today you will not receive a sentence of incarceration,” Judge Sullivan told Mr. Flynn.

After a short recess, Mr. Flynn returned to the courtroom to take the judge up on his offer.

Mr. Flynn faces up to six months in prison, but federal prosecutors have recommended a lenient sentence, including the possibility of probation, because Mr. Flynn has provided “substantial help” with multiple criminal inquiries.



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Today’s Swamp News

Trump Maladministration

New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood got the Trump Foundation to agree to dissolve itself as of immediately. I doubt it had a choice.

New York Times:

The attorney general, Barbara Underwood, accused the foundation of “a shocking pattern of illegality” that was “willful and repeated” and included unlawfully coordinating with Mr. Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign.

“This amounted to the Trump Foundation functioning as little more than a checkbook to serve Mr. Trump’s business and political interests,” Ms. Underwood said.

The closure of the foundation is a milestone in the investigation. But the broader lawsuit, which also seeks millions in restitution and penalties and a bar on President Trump and his three oldest children from serving on the boards of other New York charities, is proceeding.

From the Attorney General’s statement:

“Our petition detailed a shocking pattern of illegality involving the Trump Foundation – including unlawful coordination with the Trump presidential campaign, repeated and willful self-dealing, and much more. This amounted to the Trump Foundation functioning as little more than a checkbook to serve Mr. Trump’s business and political interests.

“Today’s stipulation accomplishes a key piece of the relief sought in our lawsuit earlier this year. Under the terms, the Trump Foundation can only dissolve under judicial supervision – and it can only distribute its remaining charitable assets to reputable organizations approved by my office.

“This is an important victory for the rule of law, making clear that there is one set of rules for everyone. We’ll continue to move our suit forward to ensure that the Trump Foundation and its directors are held to account for their clear and repeated violations of state and federal law.”

Here’s the dissolution order. Whatever money was in the Foundation as of this morning is lost to the Trumps.  This may account for why Trump was having a major tweet tantrum this morning.  The White House is also making noises about backing down on the border wall. This comes after three days of relentless ridicule of Stephen Miller’s hair.

Meanwhile, the Michael Flynn sentence hearing is still going on. It doesn’t appear to be going well for Flynn.

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