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If you had Jeff Bezos's dick as the First Amendment hero of 2019, then order us a double of whatever you're having, because we did not see this one coming at all. Okay, here's where we stand as of Monday morning -- one of two batshit crazy things must be true:

  1. Either Jeff Bezos's girlfriend Lauren Sanchez conspired with her brother Michael to leak her own half naked selfies to the National Enquirer; or
  2. Michael Sanchez is the worst person in America not currently serving in the White House.

Last night, The Daily Beast confirmed that Michael Sanchez was, in fact, the source of texts and emails between his sister and Bezos leaked to The National Enquirer. You know, in case there was anyone left who hadn't worked that one out after the Enquirer's lawyer Elkan Abramowitz went on ABC's "This Week" and told George Stephanopoulos:

ABRAMOWITZ: What happened was the story was given to The National Enquirer by a reliable source who had been giving information for years prior to the story. It was a source that was well known to both Mr. Bezos and Miss Sanchez.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Was it Michael Sanchez?

ABRAMOWITZ: I can't discuss who the source was. Just -- it's confidential within AMI, so I'm not going to answer who the source was. It was somebody close to both Bezos and Miss Sanchez.

The Enquirer is a very serious news outlet that protects its sources by making it clear exactly who they are, and by giving a timetable for their tabloid blabbing. Abramowitz continued by saying that Sanchez, OOPS, whoever the source might be, since Mr. Abramowitz couldn't possibly say, had been leaking to them for seven years. He then went on to undercut his client's claim that the pictures were newsworthy, thus available for fair use under copyright law, and not simply being used to extort Bezos to publicly vouch for AMI's continued compliance with its immunity agreement by staying out of politics.

STEPHANOPOULOS: If you believe the photos are newsworthy, how is it journalism to say, we won't publish this?

ABRAMOWITZ: Is it journalism to decide not to print the story three times? The story was out there. There may be a different argument if we were talking about prior to the first publication or hypothetically somebody could say, you give me a million dollars and we won't publish this. That's not what this is. The story was already there. The issue was how much -- how much wasn't printed in the first story. You can make journalistic decisions as to how many times you're going to write the same story. That's not the job of the prosecutors or anybody else to determine.

See, after Bezos ruined the magazine's scoop by announcing his divorce, the pictures wouldn't move as many issues, so they became more valuable as extortion material. Oh, has Mr. Abramowitz said too much? (Watch out, Rudy, Mr. A is hot on your trail!)

Abramowitz then went on to defend the National Enquirer's decision to put a 97-page, thirteen-dollar, ad-free, glossy paean to the Saudi Crown Prince on newsstands in March of 2018 as a legitimate business decision, not at all intended to curry favor with the dictator and get him to share some of that sweet crude oil money.

There is nothing illegal about it. It has nothing to do with anything that this investigation is about.

UMMM, WHAT INVESTIGATION? The Mueller investigation? The SDNY investigation? Because no one was talking about an investigation here.

Abramowitz then went on to insist AMI is the real victim, since mean old Jeff Bezos libeled it so hard by suggesting the National Enquirer might be spilling dirt on him to get in good with the Saudis, which is fucking rich coming from a magazine that routinely publishes shit like this.

Anyway, congratulations to David Pecker on his unbroken string of excellent business decisions. Sending Abramowitz out there will really put this story to bed once and for all! The richest man in the world is no doubt shaking in his loafers.

But back to Brother of the Year Michael Sanchez, who told the Washington Post that AMI planned to "do a takedown [of Bezos] to make Trump happy." The Daily Beast reports:

Documents reviewed by The Daily Beast show that Michael Sanchez believed the Enquirer pursued its story about Bezos with "President Trump's knowledge and appreciation"—a chase encouraged, in Sanchez's estimation, by Republican operatives "who THINK Jeff gets up every morning and has a WaPo meeting to plot its next diabolical attack on President Trump."

Did Sanchez have inside knowledge of the magazine's motivations, since he was, you know, the one feeding them the stolen texts? Or is he just a liarfuckingliar? Or is it both? (Spoiler alert: It's BOTH.)

As to whether he is a lowdown piece of shit, however, there is no doubt. Knowing what those tabloid jackals would do with them, this guy handed over photos of his own sister, "wearing a plunging red neckline dress revealing her cleavage and a glimpse of her nether region," as AMI's chief content officer Dylan Howard put it in his cringey email to Bezos's lawyer. Unless Sanchez is an even bigger idiot than his pal Carter Page ...

UHHHHH .... okay, maybe there's a third possibility we hadn't yet considered.

[Edit: Perhaps we should have pointed out that "I am the storm!" is a Qanon tagline. Wonkette regrets the assumption that all out readers speak fluent wingnut.]

[Daily Beast / ABC / Bezos Post Medium / WaPo]

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