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Poor baby. Maricopa County Recorder Complains That Following Signature Verification Law Will Require More Work.

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Poor baby. Maricopa County Recorder Complains That Following Signature Verification Law Will Require More Work.

The county recorder ( a never Trumper ) is crying because he got caught taking the easy way out when he, Hobbs, and the Arizona AG took the easy way out on signature verification.

It looked as if they skirted Arizona law and decided to use any form for verification. I guess you could even use a note from your teacher and that would count ( I think you get my point. ). We have this from The Arizona Independent.

The additional responsibility for county recorders became clear after Yavapai County Superior Court Judge John Napper declared in ruling last week that the 2019 Election Procedures Manual (EPM) by Hobbs “create[d] a process that contradicts” the law. That ruling rejected Secretary of State Adrian Fontes’ motion to dismiss an Arizona Free Enterprise Club lawsuit alleging that Fontes’ interpretation and enforcement of signature verification law, which aligned with that of Hobbs, did not match the actual statute’s language.

In response to Napper’s ruling, the press raised alarm among voters in its coverage featuring Richer. Arizonans were warned their early vote may not count because election officials would be required to verify signatures using registration records only, versus signatures from other documents or past ballots. Echoing Richer, their reporting speculated signatures could be rejected en masse due to the signature on file being an older variation, or warped by MVD digitization.

That means for two major elections, an unlawful signature verification process was enforced. Napper reminded Secretary of State Adrian Fontes that he has a “non-discretionary duty” to properly instruct county recorders on lawful vote tabulation.



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The Most Embarrassing “Facebook Files” Revelation? The Press, Exposed as Censors.

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The Most Embarrassing “Facebook Files” Revelation? The Press, Exposed as Censors.

The “Facebook Files” show the press is part of the censhorship establishment, but that’s not the worst part

The most embarrassing revelation of the “Facebook Files” released by House Judiciary Chair Jim Jordan yesterday (described in more detail here) involves the news media:

In one damning email, an unnamed Facebook executive wrote to Mark Zuckerberg and Cheryl Sandberg:

We are facing continued pressure from external stakeholders, including the White House and the press, to remove more Covid-19 vaccine discouraging content.

We see repeatedly in internal communications not only in the email above, but in the Twitter Files, in the exhibits of the Missouri v Biden lawsuit, and even in the Freedom of Information request results beginning to trickle in here at Racket, that the news media has for some time been working in concert with civil society organizations, government, and tech platforms, as part of the censorship apparatus.

In the summer of 2021, the White House and Joe Biden were in the middle of a major factual faceplant. They were not only telling people the Covid-19 vaccine was a sure bet — “You’re not going to get Covid if you have these vaccinations” is how Biden put it — but that those who questioned its efficacy were “killing people.” But the shot didn’t work as advertised. It didn’t prevent contraction or transmission, something Biden himself continued to be wrong about as late as December of that year.

If you go back and give a careful read to corporate media content from that time describing the administration’s war against “disinformation,” you’ll see outlets were themselves not confident the vaccine worked. Take the New York Times effort from July 16th, 2021, “They’re Killing People: Biden Denounces Social Media for Virus Disinformation.” You can see the Times tiptoeing around what they meant, when they used the word “disinformation.” In this and other pieces they used phrases like, “the spread of anti-vaccine misinformation,” “how to track misinformation,” “the prevalence of misinformation,” even “Biden’s forceful statement capped weeks of anger in the White House over the dissemination of vaccine disinformation,” but they repeatedly hesitated to say what the misinformation was.

Any editor will tell you this language is a giveaway. Journalists wrote expansively about “disinformation,” but rarely got into specifics. They knew that they couldn’t state with certainty that the vaccine worked, that there weren’t side effects, etc., yet still denounced people who asked those questions. This is because they agreed with the concept of “malinformation,” i.e. there are things that may be true factually, but which may produce political results considered adverse. “Hestiancy” was one such bugbear. Note the language from the unnamed Facebook executive above, which describes the press lashing out “Covid-19 vaccine discouraging content,” not “disinformation.”

This is total corruption of the news. We’re supposed to be in the business of questioning officials, even if the questions are unpopular. That’s our entire role! If we don’t do that, we serve no purpose, maybe even a negative purpose. Moreover, think of the implications. News outlets wail about “disinformation” when they’re aware the public has tuned them out. When people don’t listen to reporters, it’s usually because they suck. You can do the math, as to why the current crop embraces censorship. A more embarrassing outcome for our business would be hard to imagine.


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Hunter Biden Admits in Court He Made $664K from CEFC China Energy, Contradicting Joe Biden’s Claims.

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Hunter Biden Admits in Court He Made $664K from CEFC China Energy, Contradicting Joe Biden’s Claims.

By Wendell Husebø

Hunter Biden’s lawyer, Chris Clark, admitted in court Wednesday the president’s son received $664,000 from CEFC China Energy Co. in 2017, contradicting President Joe Biden’s claim Hunter Biden never received money from a Chinese entity.

During a hearing before U.S. District Judge Maryellen Noreika, Clark revealed Hunter made over one million dollars in foreign business transactions, including $664,000 from CEFC, a company linked to the CCP and Chinese intelligence. Also got money from Romania and Ukraine.


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Putting the cart before the horse? The FBI is furious Chuck Grassley released an internal document that makes unverified claims about Hunter and Joe Biden accepting bribes

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Putting the cart before the horse? The FBI is furious Chuck Grassley released an internal document that makes unverified claims about Hunter and Joe Biden accepting bribes. Just putting this out there. Republicans may have jumped the gun, but if not, this is very damaging to Joe.

The FBI on Thursday blasted two top Republican lawmakers for supporting the release of an internal investigative document that contains unverified allegations that President Joe Biden and his son Hunter accepted bribes from a Ukrainian gas company — claims the White House called “dishonest” and which even some Republicans have cast doubts on.

“The safeguards the FBI placed on the production of this information are necessary to protect the safety of confidential sources and the integrity of sensitive investigations,” the bureau said in a statement to Insider. “Today’s release of the 1023 [form] – at a minimum – unnecessarily risks the safety of a confidential source.”

Earlier Thursday, Sen. Chuck Grassley, who has helped lead the Senate’s probes of Hunter Biden, decided to publish a sparingly redacted copy of the FBI document, which details claims made by a confidential informant who said a Burisma executive boasted about how he used Hunter Biden to protect the company.

The informant also claimed that Burisma CEO Mykola Zlochevsky claimed that he was “coerced” into discussing $10 million bribes to the Bidens, though the informant was unclear if the money was ever paid or how; Joe Biden was the US vice president at the time.

The informant also claimed, without evidence, that Zlochevsky made 17 recordings and kept documents that would substantiate the bribery allegations. Last month, Sen. Ron Johnson, who has teamed up with Grassley on the Biden probes, cautioned that such recordings may not exist.

“This could be coming from a very corrupt oligarch who could be making this stuff up,” Johnson said on the Vicki McKenna Show, per PunchBowl News. “You have to suspend your judgment until you know more.”

Grassley’s office disputed the bureau’s claim that the release could endanger the confidential informant.

” Democrats and the media sought to link the FD-1023 to the Bidens’ activity in Ukraine long before this document became public, citing information that only the FBI and DOJ could have known,” Grassley spokesperson Taylor Foy said in a statement to Insider. “The FBI can’t cite risks to sources while thwarting congressional oversight in one breath and leak selective information to the news media in another.”

The release of the FBI document come days after former President Donald Trump, the 2024 GOP frontrunner, got a letter informing him that he’s a target in the DOJ’s investigation into the January 6, 2021 Capitol riot.

The FBI initially turned over the document to Republicans in June in response to a subpoena. At the time, House Oversight Chairman James Comer had pressured the bureau to turn over information even though it involved a confidential source.

The FBI allowed only a few lawmakers and their aides access to the document. It is unclear how Grassley obtained the copy. In a statement, the Iowa Republican said it came to him “via legally protected disclosures by Justice Department whistleblowers.” Both Grassley and Comer argued Thursday that publicly releasing the document was a necessary step.

“While the FBI sought to obfuscate and redact, the American people can now read this document for themselves, without the filter of politicians or bureaucrats, thanks to brave and heroic whistleblowers,” Grassley said in a statement.

Republicans have long alleged that when he was vice president, Joe Biden inappropriately meddled in a criminal investigation into Burisma Holdings — whose board Hunter Biden served on from 2014 to early 2019 — led by Viktor Shokin, who was then Ukraine’s prosecutor general.

When he visited the country in March 2016, Joe Biden pressed hard for Shokin to be fired for corruption.

Biden represented the US’s official position on the matter, one that was shared by many other Western governments and anticorruption activists in Ukraine. But Republicans have alleged, without evidence, that Biden pushed for Shokin’s ouster because he wanted to stymie the investigation into Burisma.

However, government officials and Ukrainian anticorruption advocates point out that Shokin had hampered the investigation into Burisma long before Biden even stepped into the picture, The Wall Street Journal reported.

In other words, Biden was doing the opposite of what Republicans have implied: he was trying to oust a prosecutor who was slow-walking the investigation into Burisma, rather than actively targeting the company.

Bloomberg also reported that the Burisma investigation was largely dormant when Biden called for Shokin to be fired.

The White House put out a statement after Republicans released the document, saying that the claims in it “have reportedly been scrutinized by the Trump Justice Department, a Trump-appointed U.S. Attorney, and a full impeachment trial of the former President that centered on these very issues, and over and over again, they have been found to lack credibility.”

“It’s clear that congressional Republicans are dead-set on playing shameless, dishonest politics and refuse to let truth get in the way,” the statement added.


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News. DOJ Tipped Off Hunter Biden Before a Search of His Storage Unit, IRS Whistleblowers Say.

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News. DOJ Tipped Off Hunter Biden Before a Search of His Storage Unit, IRS Whistleblowers Say. In a article printed the other day, we touched on this. Here’s Gateway Pundit’s article.

A recent executive meeting of the Ways and Means Committee resulted in a decision to release to the public testimony from two whistleblowers. The whistleblowers, both IRS employees, made shocking revelations about misconduct and abuse of power by Biden’s Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and Department of Justice (DOJ) during the investigation of Hunter Biden’s tax evasion case.

The whistleblowers claim that the Department of Justice (DOJ) tipped off Hunter Biden prior to a federal search of his storage unit.

The information revealed during the Ways and Means Committee’s executive meeting shows that Hunter Biden appears to have received preferential treatment in the investigation of his tax crimes.


Despite IRS officials recommending that Hunter Biden be charged with criminal activity for attempts to evade or defeat taxes, fraud and false statements, and willful failures to file returns, supply information, or pay taxes for over $8.3 million in income, the testimony alleges that Hunter Biden received preferential treatment during the investigation.

Further allegations point to the DOJ interfering in the investigation, deploying a strategy of “Delay, Divulge, and Deny” to shield Hunter Biden, according to the news committee’s press release.

Delays in the investigation were allegedly unjustified and pervasive, the DOJ was accused of divulging information about the investigation to Hunter Biden’s lawyers in advance, and there were several denials of attempts to bring charges or achieve special counsel status from the DOJ.

The Department of Justice interfered in the investigation into Hunter Biden’s clear tax issues with a “Delay, Divulge, and Deny” campaign – that ultimately shielded him by allowing the statute of limitations to pass on his tax crimes.

  • DELAY: Recurring unjustified delays pervaded the investigation, including in authenticating the message between Hunter Biden and Chinese officials. Investigators were told by U.S. Attorney Lesley Wolf that “there is no way” a search warrant for evidence would get approved because the evidence of interest would be found in the guest house of former Vice President Biden.
  • DIVULGE: Investigators found out that attorneys for Hunter Biden were tipped off about actions relating to the investigation in advance. For example, even as investigators had probable cause to search a Northern Virginia storage unit in which Hunter Biden had stored files, attorneys for Biden were tipped off.
  • DENY: U.S. Attorney of Delaware David Weiss tried to bring charges in District of Columbia around March 2022 and was denied. Weiss sought special counsel status from DOJ in the Spring of 2022 and was denied. Weiss sought to bring charges in the Central District of California in the Fall of 2022 and had that request denied in January 2023.

The testimony also details the retaliation against IRS employees who blew the whistle on this misconduct. These employees reportedly faced hostility after raising concerns up their chain of command. Actions were taken to cut the IRS investigative team out of the process, and in some cases, unrelated investigations were hampered with limits and pauses. The whistleblowers and their entire team were eventually removed from the investigation on May 15, 2023, after blowing the whistle to Congress.

The testimony of two whistleblowers puts the DOJ and IRS under intense scrutiny and highlights the urgent need for investigation and accountability within these agencies.

Ways and Means Committee Chairman Jason Smith (MO-08) released the following statement:

“Today, the Ways and Means Committee voted to make public the testimony of IRS employees blowing the whistle on misconduct at the IRS and the Biden Department of Justice regarding unequal enforcement of tax law, interference and government abuse in the handling of investigations into criminal activity by President Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, and retaliation against IRS employees blowing the whistle on this abuse.

“The American people deserve to know that when it comes to criminal enforcement, they are not on the same playing field as thewealthy and politically connected class. The preferential treatment Hunter Biden received would never have been granted to ordinary Americans.

“Whistleblowers describe how the Biden Justice Department intervened and overstepped in a campaign to protect the son of Joe Biden by delaying, divulging, and denying an ongoing investigation into Hunter Biden’s alleged tax crimes. The testimony shows tactics used by the Justice Department to delay the investigation long enough to reach the statute of limitations, evidence they divulged sensitive actions by the investigative team to Biden’s attorneys, and denied requests by the U.S. Attorney to bring charges against Biden.

IRS employees who blew the whistle on this abuse were retaliated against, despite a commitment IRS Commissioner Werfel made before the Ways and Means Committee to uphold their legal protections. They were removed from this investigation after they responsibly worked through the chain of command to raise these concerns.

“The Committee has acted in good faith with participation from both Democrats and Republicans, as the issues raised today ought to be a bipartisan concern. Hopefully we can find a path forward to continue to go where the facts lead us. If the federal government is not treating all taxpayers equally, or if it is changing the rules to engineer a preferred outcome, Congress has a duty to ask why and to hold agencies accountable and consider appropriate legislative action. The scales of justice must not be skewed in favor of the wealthy and the politically connected.”

The transcripts for the whistleblower testimony are posted below via Ways and Means Committee:




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Looking. The Biden Investigation interfered with constantly.

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Looking. The Biden Investigation interfered with constantly. I’ve decided to post three different articles on the same Biden scandal. Fox goes first.

Hunter Biden investigators limited questions about ‘dad,’ ‘big guy’ despite FBI, IRS objections: whistleblower

IRS decisions ‘at every stage’ of probe ‘had the effect of benefiting the subject of the investigation,’ a whistleblower said.

Justice Department investigators were “trying to limit” questioning related to President Biden as part of the investigation into Hunter Biden, despite objections from FBI and IRS officials, a whistleblower alleged.

The House Ways and Means Committee on Thursday released testimony from two IRS whistleblowers who said officials at the Justice Department, FBI and IRS interfered with the investigation of the tax evasion case against Hunter Biden. The whistleblowers said decisions in the case seemed to be “influenced by politics.”

One whistleblower, Gary Shapley Jr., who was the supervisor of the investigation at the IRS, said that “at every stage” of the probe, decisions were made that “had the effect of benefiting the subject of the investigation.” He cited several examples involving apparent references to Hunter Biden’s father.

Shapley pointed to text messages and emails obtained from Hunter Biden’s former business partner Tony Bobulinski, which Fox News Digital first reported before the 2020 presidential election and before it was known that Hunter was under federal investigation.


Hunter Biden gets off plane with president

President Biden has snapped at reporters who have asked him about alleged corruption involving him and his son, Hunter Biden. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

In December 2020, Shapley said investigators were preparing to interview Biden business associate Rob Walker.

“Among other things, we wanted to question Walker about an email that said: ‘Ten held by H for the big guy,’” Shapley said. “We had obvious questions like who was H, who the big guy was, and why this percentage was to be held separately with the association hidden.”

But Shapley said Assistant U.S. Attorney Lesley Wolf “interjected and said she did not want to ask about the big guy and stated she did not want to ask questions about ‘dad.’”

It has been reported that Joe Biden is referred to as “the big guy.”

“When multiple people in the room spoke up and objected that we had to ask, she responded, there’s no specific criminality to that line of questioning,” Shapley said. “This upset the FBI, too.”

Shapley said that “basically everyone in the room except for the prosecutors had a big problem with” not asking questions about President Biden.

The “Ten held by H for the big guy” message is an email from May 13, 2017, which included a discussion of “remuneration packages” for six people in a business deal with a Chinese energy firm. The email appeared to identify Biden as “Chair / Vice Chair depending on agreement with CEFC,” in an apparent reference to now-bankrupt CEFC China Energy Co.


Joe and Hunter Biden

President Biden, left, and Hunter Biden (Getty Images)

The email includes a note that “Hunter has some office expectations he will elaborate.” A proposed equity split references “20” for “H” and “10 held by H for the big guy?” with no further details.

Shapley said that on Oct. 22, 2020, the team and Wolf stated that U.S. Attorney David Weiss had “reviewed the affidavit for search warrant of Hunter Biden’s residence and agreed that probable cause had been achieved.”

“Even though the legal requirements were met, and the investigative team knew evidence would be in these locations, AUSA Wolf stated that they would not allow a physical search warrant on Hunter Biden,” Shapley said.

Shapley said IRS and FBI agents conducting the Walker interview “tried to skirt AUSA Wolf’s direction” to avoid questions on “dad” and “the big guy.”

“And they were like, ‘How can we not ask?’ Like, that was wrong. We got to ask. We got to ask,” Shapley said. “And so they basically decided that they would ask the question without saying the words ‘big guy,’ and that then they would somehow be doing what they were asked to do.”

Shapley repeatedly testified that there were “multiple times where Lesley Wolf said that she didn’t want to ask questions about dad.”

“And dad was kind of how we referred to him,” Shapley said. “We referred to Hunter Biden’s father, you know, as dad.”


Shapley said Joe Biden was referred to in that way “so that we could speak more openly without yelling, ‘President Biden.’”

He also discussed an instance in December 2020 when Hunter Biden vacated the Washington, D.C., office of his Owasco firm and put all of his documents into a storage unit in northern Virginia.

“The IRS prepared an affidavit in support of a search warrant for the unit, but AUSA Wolf once again objected,” Shapley said.

According to Shapley, Weiss was leading the investigation into Hunter Biden and agreed that if the storage unit wasn’t accessed for 30 days, “we could execute a search warrant on it.”

“No sooner had we gotten off the call then we heard AUSA Wolf had simply reached out to Hunter Biden’s defense counsel and told him about the storage unit, once again ruining our chances to get evidence before being destroyed, manipulated, or concealed,” Shapley said.

He also said a message in which Hunter Biden refers to his father in a message to Chinese energy company CEFC executive Henry Zhao made it clear a search of the guesthouse at the Bidens’ Delaware home was needed. But he said Wolf said that the “optics were a driving factor in the decision on whether to execute a search warrant.”

These revelations come just days after the Justice Department announced that Hunter Biden will plead guilty to two misdemeanor counts of willful failure to pay federal income tax as part of a deal that is expected to keep him out of prison. The president’s son also agreed to enter into a pretrial diversion agreement with regard to a separate charge of possession of a firearm by a person who is an unlawful user of or addicted to a controlled substance.


In response to the whistleblower allegations, the Justice Department said in a statement: “As both the Attorney General and U.S. Attorney David Weiss have said, U.S. Attorney Weiss has full authority over this matter, including responsibility for deciding where, when, and whether to file charges as he deems appropriate. He needs no further approval to do so. Questions about his investigation should be directed to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for Delaware.”

The White House has repeatedly said President Biden has never been involved in his son’s business dealings. They also maintain the president never discussed them with him.


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Why are employers being forced to pay off California’s defaulted loans?

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California business owners received an unpleasant surprise in filing their taxes this year — the state of California has defaulted on its $18.5 billion federal unemployment insurance loans, and as a result, every employer in California is being forced to pay additional federal taxes to make up the difference until the loan is repaid in full. If you found this news baffling, you’re not alone. I did too.

Federal unemployment insurance loans were essential to helping Californians weather the COVID-19 pandemic, and in fact, most states participated in the federal loan program. As the state mandated business closures for months on end, these payments helped Californians who were out of work to put food on the table and keep the lights on. However, out of the 22 states that were forced to take federal loans during the pandemic, California is one of only four to fail to repay its loan, and it owes the largest amount of any state by far.

When states across the country received loan-free federal aid as a result of the federal government’s unprecedented emergency spending packages, most chose to use at least a portion of those funds to pay back the federal loans they’d been forced to take to support their unemployment programs. California received $15.3 billion in federal Coronavirus Relief Funds, but allocated none of it to repaying its outstanding loans.

Even more baffling is the fact that last year California declared a historic $97.5 billion budget surplus after passing a $300 billion budget in May. That budget surplus was enough money to repay the federal government loan more than five times over. Instead of making the fiscally prudent decision to pay off the debt with part of this vast surplus, California has instead allowed its loan obligations from the Federal Unemployment Trust Fund to go unfulfilled for two years in a row, triggering a provision that transfers responsibility for repaying the debt from a state government to that state’s employers.

As a result of California’s failure to repay its debt, millions of our state’s employers will be required to pay penalties to the federal government this month in the form of higher Federal Unemployment Act (FUTA) taxes. FUTA imposes a 6% gross federal unemployment tax rate on the first $7,000 paid by employers for each employee. This results in a maximum federal tax of $420 per employee per year. Typically, California employers receive a credit which reduces the tax paid per employee to only $42 per worker per year.

When a state fails to repay federal unemployment insurance loans it takes from the Federal Unemployment Trust for two or more consecutive years as California has done, the FUTA credit is reduced for that state, meaning every businesses in the state is forced to pay progressively more in FUTA taxes for each year the state remains delinquent on its loans. After five years, a different FUTA credit reduction calculation kicks in, levying an even bigger penalty on the state’s employers and its economy.

The last time California was in arrears on these Title XII loans, it took seven years to repay them, meaning that in the final year of repayment (2017), every employer in California was forced to pay an extra $147 per employee in FUTA penalties. That amounted to thousands of dollars for the average small business that could have instead been used to grow employment in our communities.

Small and large companies in California alike are already reeling from economic instability, high interest rates, and skyrocketing inflation. They’re also still struggling with supply chain fluctuations and recovering from one of the longest state-mandated COVID-19 economic shutdowns in the country. Forcing a higher tax burden on our employers as a result of California’s gross fiscal mismanagement will undermine job creation and drive prices even higher.

To add insult to injury, it is notable that better fraud enforcement by the Employment Development Department alone could have repaid the state’s federal loans.

A LexisNexis data analysis performed by the reporters at KCRA showed that California paid out at least $32.6 billion and counting in fraudulent disability and unemployment compensation during the pandemic, much higher than the department’s publicized $20 billion number. But by either statistic, the state would have had more than enough to repay its loans from the federal government if it had only administered its programs correctly.

It was the state’s own actions that shut down businesses and caused much of the resulting unemployment that California faced, and yet it is our small businesses that will once again be forced to pay the penalty for California’s mismanagement. Forcing Californians to pay higher federal taxes because of the state’s failure to either prevent rampant fraud or repay its debts in a year when the state had a multibillion-dollar budget surplus is nothing short of theft.
This baffling mismanagement of our state’s finances is totally unacceptable, and our small businesses and employers should not be forced to pay the price. I am leading eleven members of the California congressional delegation in sounding the alarm on this issue and calling on Gov. Gavin Newsom and the California Legislature to act immediately and repay California’s outstanding federal unemployment insurance loans to prevent this burden from unfairly falling on California employers. It is the state’s duty to take fiscal responsibility for its actions. Failure to do so could jeopardize the financial stability of millions of California’s small employers.


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Get ready for Manhattan DA’s made-for-TV Trump prosecution.

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Thanks to The Hill for this article. Another view on the Witch Hunt.

Get ready for Manhattan DA’s made-for-TV Trump prosecution.

“The moment that we are waiting for, we made it to the finale together” — those familiar words from “America’s Got Talent” — could well be the opening line for Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg next week, when he is expected to unveil an indictment of former President Trump. With Trump’s reported announcement that he expects to be arrested on Tuesday, it would be a fitting curtain raiser for a case that has developed more like a television production than a criminal prosecution. Indeed, this indictment was repeatedly rejected only to be brought back by popular demand.

Trump faces serious legal threats in the ongoing Mar-a-Lago investigation. But the New York case would be easily dismissed outside of a jurisdiction like New York, where Bragg can count on highly motivated judges and jurors.

Although it may be politically popular, the case is legally pathetic. Bragg is struggling to twist state laws to effectively prosecute a federal case long ago rejected by the Justice Department against Trump over his payment of “hush money” to former stripper Stormy Daniels. In 2018 (yes, that is how long this theory has been around), I wrote how difficult such a federal case would be under existing election laws. Now, six years later, the same theory may be shoehorned into a state claim.

It is extremely difficult to show that paying money to cover up an embarrassing affair was done for election purposes as opposed to an array of obvious other reasons, from protecting a celebrity’s reputation to preserving a marriage. That was demonstrated by the failed federal prosecution of former presidential candidate John Edwards on a much stronger charge of using campaign funds to cover up an affair.

In this case, Trump reportedly paid Daniels $130,000 in the fall of 2016 to cut off or at least reduce any public scandal. The Southern District of New York’s U.S. Attorney’s office had no love lost for Trump, pursuing him and his associates in myriad investigations, but it ultimately rejected a prosecution based on the election law violations. It was not alone: The Federal Election Commission (FEC) chair also expressed doubts about the theory.

Prosecutors working under Bragg’s predecessor, Cyrus Vance Jr., also reportedly rejected the viability of using a New York law to effectively charge a federal offense.

More importantly, Bragg himself previously expressed doubts about the case, effectively shutting it down soon after he took office. The two lead prosecutors, Carey R. Dunne and Mark F. Pomerantz, resigned in protest. Pomerantz launched a very public campaign against Bragg’s decision, including commenting on a still-pending investigation. He made it clear that Trump was guilty in his mind, even though his former office was still undecided and the grand jury investigation was ongoing.

Pomerantz then did something that shocked many of us as highly unprofessional and improper: Over Bragg’s objection that he was undermining any possible prosecution, Pomerantz published a book detailing the case against an individual who was not charged, let alone convicted.

He was, of course, an instant success in the media that have spent years highlighting a dozen different criminal theories that were never charged against Trump. Pomerantz followed the time-tested combination for success — link Donald Trump to any alleged crime and convey absolute certainty of guilt. For cable TV shows, it was like a heroin hit for an audience in a long agonizing withdrawal.

And the campaign worked. Bragg caved, and “America’s Got Trump” apparently will air after all.

However, before 12 jurors can vote, Bragg still has to get beyond a series of glaring problems which could raise serious appellate challenges later.

While we still do not know the specific state charges in the anticipated indictment, the most-discussed would fall under Section 175 for falsifying business records, based on the claim that Trump used legal expenses to conceal the alleged hush-payments that were supposedly used to violate federal election laws. While some legal experts have insisted such concealment is clearly a criminal matter that must be charged, they were conspicuously silent when Hillary Clinton faced a not-dissimilar campaign-finance allegation.

Last year, the Federal Election Commission fined the Clinton campaign for funding the Steele dossier as a legal expense. The campaign had previously denied funding the dossier, which was used to push false Russia collusion claims against Trump in 2016, and it buried the funding in the campaign’s legal budget. Yet, there was no hue and cry for this type of prosecution in Washington or New York.

A Section 175 charge would normally be a misdemeanor. The only way to convert it into a Class E felony requires a showing that the “intent to defraud includes an intent to commit another crime or to aid or conceal the commission thereof.” That other crime would appear to be the federal election violations which the Justice Department previously declined to charge.

The linkage to a federal offense is critical for another reason: Bragg’s office ran out of time to prosecute this as a misdemeanor years ago; the statute of limitations is two years. Even if he shows this is a viable felony charge, the longer five-year limitation could be hard to establish.

Of course, none of these legalistic problems will be relevant in the coming frenzy. It will be a case that is nothing if not entertaining, one to which you can bring your popcorn — so long as you leave your principles behind.

Indeed, some will view it as poetic justice for this former reality-TV host to be tried like a televised talent show. However, the damage to the legal system is immense whenever political pressure overwhelms prosecutorial judgment. The criminal justice system can be a terrible weapon when used for political purposes, an all-too-familiar spectacle in countries where political foes can be targeted by the party in power.

None of this means Trump is blameless or should not be charged in other cases. However, we seem to be on the verge of watching a prosecution by plebiscite in this case. The season opener of “America’s Got Trump” might be a guaranteed hit with its New York audience — but it should be a flop as a prosecution.

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at The George Washington University.



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An American Hero takes a stand. Kyle Rittenhouse. Leftists, be afraid be very afraid.

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We see that another person will be taking on the media. The odds are against him and he most likely will not prevail in many of the lawsuits. But the good news is that he will force many from the left to defend themselves in court. Remember the Kentucky Hero Nicholas Sandmann? CNN, The Washington Post and NBC News all made settlements with Sandmann so far.

Kyle Rittenhouse went on Tucker Carlson’s Fox News program to announce that he’s launching a “Media Accountability Project” to make sure no one experiences the grief he endured after shooting three people at a Black Lives Matter protest in 2020.

On Tuesday Kyle Rittenhouse posted a Promotional Video for His New Foundation, The Media Accountability Project (TMAP). Below is his first commercial and a interview with Tucker. Here’s the link to his homepage.

It is EPIC!




Corruption Reprints from others. Stupid things people say or do. The Courts

Just got booted. Alabama Judge Who Called Colleagues ‘Uncle Tom,’ ‘Heifer,’ and ‘Fat B****’ Booted from Office

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Law and Crime article is here.

An elected judge was removed from the bench in Alabama by the state’s judicial oversight authority late last week over a series of unprofessional comments and other unbecoming actions.

Recently former judge Nakita Blocton of Jefferson County, Ala. was relieved of her duties and ordered to pay the costs of the proceedings that eventually ousted her from the court, according to a Dec. 10 special court order that resulted from a May complaint that was filed by the Yellowhammer State’s Judicial Inquiry Commission.

Noting a pattern and practice of “making inappropriate comments,” the nine judges on the panel highlighted instances in which Blocton referred to one judge as an “Uncle Tom,” called another judge a “fat bitch” and called an employee who worked for her a “heifer.”

Some of the former judge’s comments, the panel said, actually constituted “a pattern of abuse” directed towards her staff, attorneys who appeared before her and litigants in her courtroom. The “heifer” remark was cited again in this context, and the report says she also “belittled another employee” — without going into details.

And, when faced with the prospect of discipline over her behavior, Blocton apparently attempted to cover it up — albeit unsuccessfully.

“Judge Blocton also ordered employees to allow her to see their private cellphones so that information that might be relevant to the Commission’s investigation could be deleted and she instructed them to provide to her their private login information to their work computers,” the findings section of the order says.




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