Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.

Nixonian rat fucker Roger Stone told George Stephanopoulos that he didn't talk to Julian Assange (except for those DM's leaked to the Atlantic), and that he's certainly not gunning for a presidential pardon. The double-speaking and self-described "dirty trickster" stated that he only "engaged in politics," and blamed Democrats for being labeled as a "dirty trickster," adding, "I've always made it clear that so-called dirty tricks come up to — but do not cross — the line into illegality."

Rep. Adam Schiff also went on Stephanopoulos to say Robert Mueller is using Michael Cohen to say that, "in the same way Michael Flynn was compromised, that the president and his business are compromised." LOLOL, lock 'em up! [Transcript]

Trump has decreed that Dec. 5 be a national day of mourning for former President George H.W. Bush. Bush 41 will lie in state at the Capitol Rotunda starting this evening so that Republicans can thank him one last time for being a great party loyalist, having the balls to use that Willie Horton ad, pardoning their crooked friends, kickstarting the civilian-military industrial complex, and creating an excuse to kick the can of government spending down the road for a few days while they figure out how to blame Trump for the next government shutdown. Fun Fact: Your FDF noticed Trump's White House screwed up their official statement AGAIN.

Former FBI Director James Comey cut a deal with the House Judiciary Committee to get bitched out over HER EMAILS (again). As per the deal, Comey will "sit in the dark" on Friday and remind a desperate GOP that, Lordy, there aren't any tapes. The full transcript is expected to be released Saturday, just enough time for Fox News to create some cockamamie scheme.

After Rep. Raul Grijalva told grifty bastard and Interior Sec. Ryan Zinke to "You're Fired" himself in an op-ed last week, Zinke acted like an adult and began shitposting on Twitter, calling Grijalva a drunk who can't "think straight from the bottom of a bottle," then bitching about Grijalva being a regular at Tune Inn, the only dive bar left on Capitol Hill. Note that Zinke calling anyone a crooked drunk is rich considering his shady quid-pro-quo scandal to build his own strip mall and brewery in Whitefish, Montana.

California Democratic Sen. Kamala Harris says she'll decide if #ShesRunning over the holiday season. Good thing we got all this sweet Kamala 2020 swag ready for you!

The North Carolina board of elections voted 7-2 to delay the certification of the election in the 9th Congressional District after it became pretty obvious the presumptive winner, Republican Mark Harris, was (ALLEGEDLY) stealing absentee ballots and stuffing them in mailboxes with his name on them.

Republicans in Tarrant County, Texas, are distancing themselves from bitchy rants against their new vice chairman, Shahid Shafi. After a whisper campaign calling Shafi a not-so-secret Muslim terrorist who wants to impose Sharia law became public, local Republicans became worried they'd appear as racist bigots.

Chicago's native son Chance the Rapper came out with a hilarious and absolutely BRILLIANT video on how Chicago's political system is a historically corrupt shitshow that disenfranchises poor and minority communities in favor of the wealthy and well connected. Watch the video! #ChicagoPolitics

Chicagoist TV Exclusive : Elderly Aldermen

Trump's G20 summit was a complete disaster. This morning Trump is already up and shitposting that he cut a deal to end the auto taxes tariffs he started with his idiotic trade war, and suspend the seemingly inevitable increase on tariffs on Chinese goods. The business pages note Trump's trade war is missing the mark, arguing it still does nothing for IP theft. Reuters reports that much of the language overhauling global trade had to be neutered so the WTO didn't offend the world's thin skinned man babies. If you haven't seen it yet, Robyn has the video of him aimlessly walking off stage during the middle of a photo-op with the President of Argentina.

There's panic on the streets of Paris after people began rioting following the third straight weekend of national protests against Emanuel Macron's planned increase of gas taxes. Protests have largely been led by working class people in their 30s and 40s wearing yellow safety vests who are pissed about low wages, while the rioting seems to have been kicked off by far-right extremists who wanted an excuse to burn things down and blame it on immigrants.

The WSJ is reporting the CIA has "medium-to-high confidence" Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman "personally targeted" journalist Jamal Khashoggi, and "probably ordered his death" after getting its hands on some super secret spy stuff. According to the Journal, MBS ALLEGEDLY was sending messages to his personal aide -- who oversaw Dr. Bonesaw and the rest of the kill team in Turkey -- hours before Khashoggi was murdered.

Israeli police are recommending the indictment of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on MORE bribery and corruption charges after it was revealed he cut a deal with the nation's largest telecom company to get favorable media coverage in exchange for the easing of regulations. Netanyahu says that there was NO COLLUSION, and is calling the investigation a witch hunt.

A Idiot in North Dakota pled guilty to trying to assassinate Trump with a forklift last year. Obviously his scheme didn't work; the court decided to lock him up through 2038.

Stormy Daniels has "sorted shit out" with Michael Avenatti, and the two are expected to "kick ass together," according to tweets from both Daniels and Avenatti. The Daily Beast is also reporting that Avenatti is gearing up for "two weeks of hell" in a litany of court cases. #HesRunning

Reuters is reporting that Nextstar Media Group will buy Tribune Media Co. for $4.1 billion. If the deal is approved, Nextstar would surpass Sinclair Broadcasting as the largest operator of local TV stations in flyover country.

Michelle Obama said a poopy word about the struggle of marriage and Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, and now the internet is clutching its pearls.

Buzzfeed got its hand on some of the oppo Facebook commissioned on George Soros. The info itself isn't as salacious as the notion that Facebook was so butthurt about being called a "menace" that it actually began menacing people.

SNL's cold open noted Trump had no friends at the G20 now that Michael Cohen is spilling his guts, and then poked fun at Mika and Joe banging in every closet inside 30 Rock.

Trump Argentina Cold Open - SNL

And here's your morning Nice Time! IT'S TOPI!

READY FOR XMAS! - Topi the Corgi

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Dominic Gwinn

Dominic is a broke journalist in Chicago. You can find him in a dirty bar talking to weirdos, or lying in a gutter taking photos.

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Yeah, that's definitely a repurposed animatronic Hillary (YouTube)

A whole bunch of protests were held today against the fake "president's" fake "emergency" declaration, with people turning out in cold crappy weather to call attention to the general nastiness of the guy who claims he absolutely had to do that declaration that wasn't necessary. Organizers with said over 250 rallies were planned nationwide. So far, the national State Of Emergency doesn't appear to have caused any of the rallies to be cancelled, despite the very real possibility that terrified Honduran refugees fleeing violence in Central America might suddenly show up and ask for asylum.

Are there still actions taking place in your area? Check at MoveOn!

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Before Manafort pleaded guilty and signed up as a cooperating witness who didn't actually cooperate, we wrote this:

We have always kind of figured that Paul Manafort is the one who knows the whole Trump-Russia conspiracy story. He was the first big fish indicted, and they hit him for A LOT. Also note that just about all the other prosecutions that have come from the Mueller investigation so far have been farmed out by Mueller to different jurisdictions. Manafort, on the other hand, Mueller has kept squarely in his office. There has to be a reason for that.

Perhaps it's because, as this Josh Marshall podcast suggests, Paul Manafort, a foreign agent who worked for Oleg Deripaska, AKA Putin's favorite oligarch, and who got sideways financially with Deripaska, was literally sent into the Trump campaign by the Kremlin to do its dirty work. Perhaps the Steele Dossier is right when it suggests that the entire Trump-Russia election-stealing conspiracy was run by Manafort on the Trump side, and that others like (perhaps!) Michael Cohen only had to take over when Manafort's shit started to stink and the news media started reporting on his weird-ass Russian connections in the summer of 2016.

If it's possible, we are beginning to suspect it may be even worse than that.

On Friday, special counsel Robert Mueller issued his sentencing recommendations for Manafort, after DC district court Judge Amy Berman Jackson ruled conclusively that the shady motherfucker very intentionally lied and blew up his cooperating agreement. Because Manafort defaulted, Mueller is no longer bound to recommend that Manafort's sentence be reduced, and is free to throw the book right at Manafort's face. HARD.

And that is what Mueller did! To be clear, the sentencing memo is harsh.

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