Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Last Call For Georgia On My Mind, Con't

I'm glad to see Fulton County, Georgia DA Fani Willis taking security in the Trump RICO case seriously. As with any organized crime boss on trial, the possibility of witness tampering and jury tampering is extremely high, and DA Willis made her case to Judge Scott McAfee to protect the identities of the jurors until the trial is over.
A judge granted Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis' request to restrict identifying information about jurors in the Georgia election interference case, a new court filing shows.

In a two-page order Monday, Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee imposed strict limits regarding the identities of jurors involved in any trial in the case against former President Donald Trump and 18 co-defendants.

The court’s standing rules restrict using photographic or electronic equipment without a judge’s consent. McAfee’s order offers additional protections by prohibiting drawing in an identifiable manner or otherwise recording images, statements or conversations of jurors or prospective jurors.

He further ordered that jurors and prospective jurors be identified only by their numbers in court filings while the trial is pending, and he prohibited disclosing juror information that would reveal their identities, including names, addresses, telephone numbers or identifying employment information.

McAfee allowed exceptions for recording audio of the jury foreperson’s announcement of a verdict or questions to the judge.

The order applies to the trial of Kenneth Chesebro and Sidney Powell, whose joint trial is scheduled to begin Oct. 23, and a subsequent trial for the 17 other defendants, including Trump.
Given Trump's usual m.o. it means he'll have a source "accidentally" leak the identities of the jurors to FOX News sometime during the proceedings, but really Trump only has to get one juror for an acquittal. Besides, how many Atlanta cops are Republicans? Only would take one.

We're not ready for a Trump trial at this point. The system's not designed for it. When, not if, Trump violates this order, what will the consequences be?

Threats against grand jurors that indicted Trump in Georgia are still being investigated. We know what's coming.

Orange Meltdown, Con't

New York Judge Arthur Engoron has found Donald Trump liable for years of inflated property values resulting in fraudulent Trump Organization loans in NY AG Tish James's $250 million civil fraud case against Trump.
A judge ruled Tuesday that Donald Trump committed fraud for years while building the real estate empire that catapulted him to fame and the White House.

Judge Arthur Engoron, ruling in a civil lawsuit brought by New York Attorney General Letitia James, found that the former president and his company deceived banks, insurers and others by massively overvaluing his assets and exaggerating his net worth on paperwork used in making deals and securing financing.

Engoron ordered that some of Trump’s business licenses be rescinded as punishment, making it difficult or impossible for them to do business in New York, and said he would continue to have an independent monitor oversee the Trump Organization’s operations.

Trump’s lawyer and spokesperson Alina Habba said they intend to appeal the decision, calling it “an affront to our legal system” and “fundamentally flawed at every level.”

Trump has long insisted he did nothing wrong. His son, Eric, railed against the decision Tuesday in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter, calling it “an attempt to destroy my father and kick him out of New York.”

“Today, I lost all faith in the New York legal system,” said Eric Trump, an executive in his father’s company and a defendant in the lawsuit. “Never before have I seen such hatred toward one person by a judge — a coordinated effort with the Attorney General to destroy a man’s life, company and accomplishments.”

The decision, days before the start of a non-jury trial in James’ lawsuit, is the strongest repudiation yet of Trump’s carefully coiffed image as a wealthy and shrewd real estate mogul turned political powerhouse.

Beyond mere bragging about his riches, Trump, his company and key executives repeatedly lied about them on his annual financial statements, reaping rewards such as favorable loan terms and lower insurance costs, Engoron found.

Those tactics crossed a line and violated the law, the judge said, rejecting Trump’s contention that a disclaimer on the financial statements absolved him of any wrongdoing.

“In defendants’ world: rent regulated apartments are worth the same as unregulated apartments; restricted land is worth the same as unrestricted land; restrictions can evaporate into thin air; a disclaimer by one party casting responsibility on another party exonerates the other party’s lies,” Engoron wrote in his 35-page ruling. “That is a fantasy world, not the real world.”
Trump is pretty well fucked, innit he? 

Well, he would be if I didn't expect the entire case to be overturned on statutes of limitations issues on appeal, and Trump won't have to pay a dime, but otherwise, he's fucked. If Judge Engoron's ruling holds, the Trump Organization is effectively done in the state of New York.

With Judge Engoron's decision made, we'll see what the NY appellate court now says about the statue of limitations on the fraud charges, possibly as soon as Thursday.

Stay tuned.

Ridin' With Biden, Con't

Polls taken this far out from next year's election are....meaningless. But apparently they are enough to cause Doomsday+1 meltdowns and bring out the worst political takes ever--both from the right and the left.

The polling methods are crap. And let's not forget the polls last year said that the GOP would win in a blowout and there would be "red wave".

That never happened.

And the polls today are flawed because they also do not take into account the Dobbs decision, which took a major right away from over half of the US population. And the fallout from that decision has led to the GOP getting their asses kicked in several special elections.
NY Times writer Reid Epstein has reached a similar conclusion: Dems win anyway and have been winning when the rubber meets the road in special elections across the board over the last 18+ months.

For nearly two years, poll after poll has found Americans in a sour mood about President Biden, uneasy about the economy and eager for younger leaders of the country.

And yet when voters have actually cast ballots, Democrats have delivered strong results in special elections — the sort of contests that attract little attention but can serve as a useful gauge for voter enthusiasm.

In special elections this year for state legislative offices, Democrats have exceeded Mr. Biden’s performance in the 2020 presidential election in 21 of 27 races, topping his showing by an average of seven percentage points, according to a study conducted by the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee, the party’s campaign arm for state legislative races.

Those results, combined with an 11-point triumph for a liberal State Supreme Court candidate in Wisconsin this spring and a 14-point defeat of an Ohio ballot referendum this summer in a contest widely viewed as a proxy battle over abortion rights, run counter to months of public opinion polling that has found Mr. Biden to be deeply unpopular heading into his re-election bid next year.

Taken together, these results suggest that the favorable political environment for Democrats since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade has endured through much of 2023. Democratic officials have said since the summer of 2022, when the ruling came down, that abortion is both a powerful motivator for the party’s voters and the topic most likely to persuade moderate Republicans to vote for Democratic candidates.

Dobbs absolutely changed the way that people thought about and processed things that they had perceived as a given,” said Heather Williams, the interim president of the D.L.C.C. “We continue to see voters recognizing what’s at stake in these elections.”

Democrats are now using abortion rights to power races far down the ballot — an extension of how candidates in special elections at the congressional level have long used prominent national issues to fuel their campaigns.

In January 2010, Scott Brown won a shocking upset in a Senate special election in deep-blue Massachusetts by running against President Barack Obama’s health care push. In March 2018, Conor Lamb won a special election to fill a House seat in a deep-red Pennsylvania district by campaigning as a centrist voice against Mr. Trump.

Both the Brown and Lamb special elections served as indicators of the wave elections their parties won in subsequent midterm elections.

Some of the special elections won by Democrats this year have involved relatively few voters: Under 2,800 ballots were cast in a New Hampshire State House contest last week.

“The best evidence that a special election produces is whose side is more engaged on a grass-roots turnout level,” Mr. Lamb said in an interview on Monday. “That gives you some signal about who is bringing their turnout back next year.”
Right all the way around. Dems are winning in the age of Dobbs. They will continue to win. If you think Biden is an albatross on the nicks of Dems, you should see the other team dealing with Trump, DeSantis, and Dobbs

President Joe Biden made history Tuesday when he visited a picket line in Michigan in a show of loyalty to autoworkers who are striking for higher wages and cost-of-living increases.

Biden is looking to polish his pro-labor persona, becoming the first sitting president to appear on a picket line.

Speaking through a bullhorn, he told the striking autoworkers in Wayne County, "You deserve what you earned, and you've earned a helluva lot more than you're getting paid now."

Simply by showing up, Biden set a new precedent for American presidents about how to respond to future strikes. Union officials and their congressional allies may now expect a president who purports to be pro-labor to join them on the picket lines, invoking Biden as an example.

“It is indeed a historic move on Biden’s part to walk a picket line — especially in as high profile a strike that is captivating both the economy and broader public attention,” said Tejasvi Nagaraja, an assistant professor of history at Cornell University’s ILR School.

The UAW strike against the Big Three auto companies — General Motors, Ford and Chrysler maker Stellantis — has entered its 11th day. In traveling to Wayne County at the invitation of union president Shawn Fain, Biden positioned himself squarely on the side of striking workers, after the White House spent weeks quietly seeing whether it could play a more neutral role in mediating the dispute between labor and management.
Gonna side with the guy with the guts to show up for workers as the first sitting president to do so on a picket line.
We all should side with him.

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