Got 'Em: Proud Boys Guilty of Seditious Conspiracy - The Friday AM Quickie 5/5/23

I'm on the road so if there were some late-breaking stories last night I might've missed them. Apologies. Robert's got you covered Monday. - Corey

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Guilty, Guilty, Guilty, Guilty: Proud Boys Verdict Is In

HuffPost's Andy Campbell, who wrote the book on the Proud Boys, breaks down yesterday's verdict on the group's role in the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol insurrection:

After almost a week of deliberation, a jury in Washington, D.C., returned a partial verdict finding Proud Boys Enrique Tarrio — the gang’s chairman — Ethan Nordean, Joseph Biggs and Zachary Rehl guilty of seditious conspiracy, a rare charge historically brought against terrorists on American soil.
The jury was deadlocked on the seditious conspiracy charge for the fifth defendant, Dominic Pezzola, and various other charges lodged against each Proud Boy, including destruction of government property and assaulting law enforcement. But all five were convicted of obstruction charges and conspiracy related to delaying Congress on Jan. 6. Pezzola — the first to breach a Capitol window using a riot shield stolen from an officer — was the sole Proud Boy found guilty of robbery and assaulting an officer. ...
While prosecutors put together a strong case against these five defendants, several questions about the Proud Boys’ role in the events of Jan. 6 remain unanswered.
Notably absent at trial was a substantial examination of the gang’s connection to longtime Trump confidant Roger Stone, and other Trump allies, leading up to the attack. ... It’s also unclear what chilling effect, if any, the trial will have on the national Proud Boys organization or the growing extremist crisis under the Republican Party.

Seditious conspiracy carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, but the Proud Boys were also convicted of other felonies, so they could be looking at 50 years. Between this case and the related guilty verdicts in the Oath Keepers trial, the Justice Department is racking up wins, having now secured 14 convictions on that exceedingly rare sedition charge. Per the Washington Post, the guilty verdicts should help DOJ Special Counsel Jack Smith bring further criminal indictments in relation to Donald Trump's Jan. 2021 coup attempt, which is now a key part of his 2024 campaign mythology. As someone who reported on the earliest phases of the Proud Boys' campaign of street violence, which police largely failed to stop, it's gratifying to see these verdicts.

Harlan Crow Also Paid Tuition for Relative of Clarence Thomas

ProPublica's latest scoop on the corruption of a Supreme Court justice reveals that Clarence Thomas's billionaire buddy, Harlan Crow, picked up an estimated $150,000 private school tuition bill for a grandnephew Thomas was raising "as a son." As with Crow's other largesse, the justice failed to report the tuition payments from Crow on his annual financial disclosures. ProPublica interviewed the grandnephew, Mark Martin, as well as his former classmates, and former staff at the two schools Martin attended on Crow's dime; reporters also uncovered receipts of the transactions in unrelated court records. Senate Judiciary Committee chair Dick Durbin, the Illinois Democrat, said yesterday that the latest ProPublica report puts the reputation of the Supreme Court as well as Chief Justice John Roberts at stake; so far, however, only Connecticut Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal has called for subpoenaing Thomas and requested a Justice Department probe.

Trumpdates: Tucker Is in Post-Fox TV Talks with Donald

  • Trump Wants His Criminal Case Moved to Federal Court Even if a federal judge finds the request worthy of a hearing, "the state case will continue unhindered for now." via the New York Times.
  • Jurors in Trump Civil Rape Trial See Video of His Deposition Trump won't be testifying in the trial, but jurors yesterday saw a video where he confused his accuser, E. Jean Carroll, with his former wife Marla Maples; final arguments are scheduled for Monday. via NBC News.
  • Judge Throws Out Trump's Lawsuit Against New York Times New York Supreme Court Justice Robert Reed ruled that Trump's claims against the Times for publishing stories on his tax returns "fail as a matter of constitutional law." via the Times.
  • Tucker Carlson Lobbies Trump to Host Alternative GOP Debates Fox News is hosting the first official Republican primary debate, but its former star host wants to use Trump to make his comeback, perhaps through a new far-right media company. via the Washington Post.


  • U.S. Denies Russia's Claim It Ordered Apparent Drone Attack on Kremlin "Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy also denied that his country was behind the attack," and Russia supplied no evidence for its allegation. via NBC News.
  • Feds Investigating Goldman Sachs Role in Silicon Valley Bank Collapse The probe by "various governmental bodies" includes Goldman's advice that the bank sell an asset portfolio at a loss. via the New York Times.
  • Luxury Resort Planned on Jeffrey Epstein's Private Islands Billionaire Stephen Deckoff, who purchased the islands for $60 million, plans to develop a "state-of-the-art, five-star, world-class luxury 25-room resort" on the Caribbean properties. via the Washington Post and Forbes.
  • FDA Could Approve Over-the-Counter Birth Control This Summer Birth control pills are already sold without a prescription in more than 100 other countries. via the Post.



That would be the new federal minimum wage, up from $7.25 per hour, under a labor-backed bill introduced yesterday by Vermont socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders, who is also advocating for a 32-hour work week.


5/5: It's Casual Friday! Sam and Emma host Alex Pareene, Contributing Editor at the New Republic and proprietor of the AP newsletter on Substack, to round up the week in news. Then, they're joined by Tom Scharpling of The Best Show!


Former US Attorney General STUNS Senator, Argues Friendships Are More Important Than Judicial Ethics

The judiciary branch has a problem.

CNN Guest Shreds CNN Boss Over WGA Strike

Inflation being what it is, a 3 percent raise seems like a modest ask.


"If we don't strike for this right now, the AI technology will advance so quickly that it will no longer be possible to negotiate a fair contract in the context of AI—even three years from now when our contract will be up again. So we have to do it now or never."

-- Liz Hynes, a writer for "Last Week Tonight with John Oliver," and strike captain for the Writer's Guild of America, speaking to Vice News about why film, television and other union writers are demanding that employers agree to limits on the use of artificial intelligence.

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