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Bad news for everybody who enjoys watching GOP congressmen play with chew toys and yell and scream and bark and poop and whatever else Jim Jordan and Mark Meadows and Louie Gohmert do, we don't even know. They had been all set to haul Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in front of the House Judiciary and Oversight committees, but first of all, you weren't going to get to see it anyway, because it was going to be behind closed doors. Second of all, it has been canceled, because today is apparently not a good day to yell at Rosenstein about whether he was being serious when he said he wanted to put a "wire tapp" inside Donald Trump's fanny so he has PROOF the president is totally fucking crazy, so they can do the 25th Amendment to him.

According to the Washington Post, Congress just couldn't come to an agreement with the Justice Department on the precise plan for punching Rod Rosenstein in the face. Would Jim Jordan be required to loudly say he's ignoring college wrestlers being sexually abused before he throws a weird conspiracy theory he just made up at Rosenstein? We assume they were all WRESTLING with questions like that, if you know what we mean. Anyway, now, due either to scheduling issues or perhaps due to the fact that Congress isn't as good at calendars as Brett Kavanaugh is, the committees might not even get to punch Rosenstein in the face until AFTER the election.

Next those idiots are totally going to forget about going to Beach Week with Squi.


But that doesn't mean nobody has gotten punched in the face over these questions this week! First of all, last week, former FBI general counsel James Baker told congressional investigators that Rosenstein's statements -- which he did not witness personally, but which he was told about, and which are memorialized in former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe's memos, which have been subpoenaed by the House Judiciary Committee -- were meant totally seriously and not in jest at all. Regardless, it wasn't taken as something that was officially under consideration and we guess everybody forgot about it.

OR DID THEY?

On Wednesday, FBI Director Christopher Wray got pulled into the Senate to answer a bunch of questions and oh man, the GOP officials in that body were lit! They were also idiots, as usual. First of all, Senator Ron Johnson (R-SECRET SOCIETY) yelled at Wray about whether his Senate committee was going to get the memo from Andrew McCabe describing what a terrible horrible person who wire tapps the president Rod Rosenstein is. (We kind of sense McCabe is doing a vendetta against Rosenstein, and we're all being held hostage to it, but we could be wrong about that. UPDATE: The Washington Post seems to suggest we are right about that!)

Then Rand Paul absolutely lost his shit (if you could ever believe such a thing) at Wray, demanding to know if the FBI is already doing wire tapps to Donald Trump. And Chris Wray wouldn't say!

Now, while Fox News might latch onto that like a bunch of morons, what Paul was actually asking about was the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which allows the US to gather intel on what foreign leaders and agents are saying. And when one of those leaders under surveillance talks to the president, it's not like the NSA sticks its fingers in its ears like "I CAN'T HEAR YOU! I CAN'T HEAR YOU!" What the intel community does do, though, is "minimize" the US Person who ends up on tape, to protect their privacy. We learned this last year when Devin Nunes embarked on his giant freakshow over allegedly improper unmasking of US persons.

In point of fact, if an intel official needs to unmask a US person, they'd better have a good damn reason for it, and they have to go through proper channels to make those requests. It's not like the NSA is just putting these clips on YouTube for anybody who wants to listen.

Here is some of Rand Paul's whining:

It's been reported in the Washington Post about two years ago there were 1,500 times when the president–this is when Obama was president–was minimized meaning that, yes, you are gathering up so much information–you, the NSA, the intelligence community–that actually the president's conversations are caught up in there. Do you think it's possible that Congress–that members of Congress are in the FISA database if we talk to international leaders?

Yeah OK whatever.

And Chris Wray wasn't refusing to answer because he wanted to keep a secret from Rand Paul, but rather because they were in an open setting and we don't talk about classified shit like that on C-SPAN, Senator.

If you'd like to watch a video of Rand Paul erroneously believing he is being smart and clever and backing Chris Wray into a corner, then you're a pretty weird person, but here you go:

The point of this post is that Republican idiots are yelling about a thing and they are going to keep yelling about that thing until they get some ANSWERS, DAMMIT, and then after that they will find a new thing to yell a lot about.

Think that's a pretty poor exercise of democratic representative government? We do too. FUCKING VOTE IN NOVEMBER.

[Washington Post / Law & Crime]

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Evan Hurst

Evan Hurst is the senior editor of Wonkette, which means he is the boss of you, unless you are Rebecca, who is boss of him. His dog Lula is judging you right now.

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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 MoveOn.org 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.

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WHAT. IS. PAUL. MANAFORT. HIDING?

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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