Friday, October 18, 2019

Last Call For But Her Emails

After nearly four years, the internal State Department investigation of Hillary Clinton's emails found that no deliberate wrongdoing occurred.

A multiyear State Department probe of emails that were sent to former secretary of state Hillary Clinton’s private computer server concluded there was no systemic or deliberate mishandling of classified information by department employees, according to a report submitted to Congress this month.

The report appears to represent a final and anticlimactic chapter in a controversy that overshadowed the 2016 presidential campaign and exposed Clinton to fierce criticism that she later cited as a major factor in her loss to President Trump.

In the end, State Department investigators found 38 current or former employees “culpable” of violating security procedures — none involving material that had been marked classified — in a review of roughly 33,000 emails that had been sent to or from the personal computer system Clinton used.

Overall, investigators said, “there was no persuasive evidence of systemic, deliberate mishandling of classified information.” The report cited “instances of classified information being inappropriately” transmitted, but noted that the vast majority of those scrutinized “were aware of security policies and did their best to implement them.”

The release comes as Trump continues to raise the Clinton email issue to attack Democrats, even as new evidence has emerged of apparent security lapses by senior officials in his own administration.

Diplomats involved in pressuring Ukraine to pursue investigations that would politically benefit Trump used private phones and texting apps to trade messages about their efforts, according to records released by leaders of the House impeachment inquiry.

The State Department probe focused on internal communications that were up to nine years old.

So, that's it.  Four wasted years, three under the Trump regime, and they couldn't find any reason to lock her up.  Of course, it cost her the election anyway, as I've said multiple times, thanks to our worthless media, but she didn't do anything wrong.

Oh well.

The Blue Wall Rises

Democrats are ready to defend their 2018 House gains in Trump districts and they have the resources to win even more in 2020.

Democrats are building a financial bulwark around their House majority that’s going to be tough for Republicans to breach in 2020.

Thirty-three of the 44 most vulnerable House Democrats have stashed an impressive $1 million or more in the bank well before the election year even begins. And their fundraising pace is not slowing down as they gear up to defend the chamber.

Federal Election Commission reports filed this week illustrate Democrats’ formidable advantage: The 44 Democrats in the most competitive seats banked a collective $59 million so far. Nearly 30 raised $500,000 or more in the third quarter, according to a POLITICO analysis of the fundraising filings. And all but six of the so-called “frontliners” have at least half a million more banked than their challengers, if they have any challenger at all.

Last cycle, there were a lot of people talking about this massive Democratic online fundraising as if it was somewhat of an aberration," said Cam Savage, a veteran GOP operative. "I think it’s the new normal.

The GOP is struggling to adapt to a changing landscape; They can no longer dismiss the strong fundraising as an anomaly when it has remained steady throughout the first three quarters of 2019. And while operatives insist the disparity is not insurmountable, Democrats have undoubtedly amassed a head start in a battle that will be waged in suburban districts that lie in the most expensive media markets in the country.

For comparison, only nine the 30 Republican incumbents who lost reelection last November had more than $1 million in the bank after the third quarter of 2017.

Still, top Republican strategists remain undaunted, citing the potential for impeachment backlash to motivate voters and lessen the potency of their opponents’ cash advantage. They acknowledged the Democratic cash influx may continue but brushed aside concerns it would derail their shot at taking back the House.

“Their base is fired up, and ActBlue has done a brilliant job. But I think we’re going to close that gap,” said Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.), a former National Republican Congressional Committee chairman. “People know it’s going to be a very consequential election so there’s going to be plenty of money moved behind our challengers.”

The GOP isn't giving up of course, but it's about time that Democrats realized that they didn't have to reinvent the wheel every two years either.  And impeachment is going to hurt Trump in the suburbs, not the Dems.

It's starting to come together for Team Blue here.

A Syria's Mistake

Bloomberg's Eli Lake doesn't beat around the bush, calling the phony "ceasefire" deal negotiated by VP Mike Pence and Turkish President Erdogan as "total capitulation" by Trump, and oh yeah, it opens the door to the ethnic cleansing and genocide of millions of Syrian Kurds.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been open about this. Just this week, he outlined his plans: “We will secure the area extending from Manbij to the Iraqi border and then facilitate 1 million Syrian refugees’ return home in the first phase and, later on, the return of 2 million people.”

But this safe zone is an area that is for the most part historically Kurdish. If the Turkish military and its allied militias are allowed to dominate the area, then it is a near certainty that Kurdish civilians will suffer
And while it’s hard to confirm early reports in the fog of war, that appears to be exactly what is happening. New York Times reporter Rukmini Callimachi tweeted the grisly autopsy report of a murdered Kurdish politician. Public violence like this is meant to send a message that all civilians are targets. In essence, America has agreed to let Turkey solve its Syrian refugee problem by creating a new Kurdish refugee problem
Then there is the message this sends to Erdogan himself. The Turkish leader has humiliated Trump and the U.S. in recent weeks and months. He went ahead with the purchase of a Russian S-400 air defense system this summer, over several U.S. objections, and has faced no sanctions. He ordered his military to violate an earlier safe-haven agreement that to which Turkey had previously agreed. His forces fired artillery on a U.S. outpost last week. And he has metaphorically — and literally, according to the BBC — thrown Trump’s “Don’t be a tough guy” letter into the trash. 
In exchange for this disrespect and petulance, Erdogan got what he has wanted all along. He started a war to create a buffer zone in northern Syria, then got the U.S. to agree that he be allowed to keep it. Trump is even now repeating Erdogan’s talking points, claiming (without evidence) that the Syrian Kurds have launched attacks into Turkey. “In all fairness they’ve had a legitimate problem with it,” Trump said Thursday, referring to the safe zone. “They had to have it cleaned out. But once you start that, it gets to a point where a tremendous amount of bad things can happen.” 
That point has already been reached. Bad things are indeed happening, and will continue to happen. And there’s little reason to believe Trump’s capitulation in Ankara will do much to stop them.

And let's remember, Trump is doing this because Vladimir Putin has told him to do it.  We're firmly on the side of Putin, Erdogan, Bashar al-Assad, and other dictators and strongman.

America is no longer the good guys, folks.

And the rest of the world will eventually stop tolerating us.


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