Charges for Trump and His Cronies in Georgia? - The Friday AM Quickie 2/17/22
I saw some liberals online saying John Fetterman's health issues make him unfit to serve in the U.S. Senate. I hope that if these people stopped to think about it for a minute, they might realize what they're really saying is his honesty about his health issues makes him unfit to serve, which is not a defensible position. - Corey
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THE BIG NEWS
Georgia Grand Jury Recommends Charges in GOP 2020 Plot
The Fulton County, Georgia special grand jury investigating Republican Party efforts to overturn the 2020 election and install Donald Trump as a dictator yesterday released a five-page excerpt of its nine-page final report. The grand jury found that some unidentified witnesses lied under oath and recommended that criminal charges be filed -- although the specifics remain unclear, including whether Trump himself or merely some of his cronies -- including Rudy Giuliani and John Eastman -- might face charges, and what those charges would be. According to the Washington Post, Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis would need to present her case to a regular grand jury in order to file charges. Other intricacies of Georgia law govern the timing of any future charges, as well. It's also worth noting that the special grand jury in Georgia found no evidence of the voter fraud Republicans claimed as a justification for their attempted coup.
In related news:
- Appeals Court Rejects Kari Lake's Bogus Election Claim The Arizona Court of Appeals said the failed Republican gubernatorial candidate presented no evidence to back up her lies. via the Associated Press.
- Fox News Hosts Knew 2020 Election Lies Were 'Nuts' Text messages disclosed through litigated show even Rupert Murdoch called the phony fraud claims from Trumpworld "really crazy stuff." via the New York Times.
- Proud Boys Lawyers Hope to Subpoena Trump in Seditious Conspiracy Case "U.S. District Court Judge Tim Kelly didn't give any indication Thursday about whether he would permit the subpoena of the former president." via Politico.
- More Details on Proud Boys' Police Pal Now you can read the text messages I told you about yesterday between Proud Boys leader Enrique Tarrio and DC Metro Police Lt. Shane Lamond. via the Southern Poverty Law Center.
- Mike Pence Plans to Fight Subpoena from DOJ Special Counsel The former vice president "told reporters that while Trump acted recklessly on Jan. 6, 'it's also wrong to establish a precedent where a legislative official can be called into court by the executive branch.'" via HuffPost.
- Trump National Security Adviser Makes Grand Jury Appearance It's unclear whether Robert O'Brien's court appearance was related to his knowledge of Trump's stolen classified documents or the Jan. 6, 2021 coup attempt. via CNN.
- Alex Jones Is Holding Firearms for Jan. 6 Rioters The Infowars host made the disturbing disclosure in a bankruptcy filing. via the Washington Post.
MORE STORIES TO WATCH
John Fetterman Checks Himself Into Hospital for Depression
The Pennsylvania Democratic senator's office announced yesterday that on the advice of his doctor he will receive inpatient treatment for severe clinical depression at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. "After examining John, the doctors at Walter Reed told us that John is getting the care he needs, and will soon be back to himself," Fetterman's chief of staff Adam Jentleson told reporters in a statement. Not all reactions were sympathetic, as you might expect, but some journalists took care to note that Fetterman is not the first senator to suffer from depression, only the first to state publicly that he was getting treated for it. Fetterman was hospitalized last week after feeling lightheaded but doctors ruled out that he'd suffered a second stroke. "Millions of Americans, like John, struggle with depression each day. I am looking forward to seeing him return to the Senate soon. Sending love and support to John, Gisele, and their family," Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer wrote.
Another Norfolk Southern Train Derails, This Time in Michigan
The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy yesterday released a statement saying "initial reports indicate no threat to the public from the derailment" of a Norfolk Southern train in Van Buren Township. Local police claimed "none of the train cars containing hazardous materials were compromised." Meanwhile in East Palestine, Ohio, where a Norfolk Southern train derailed and released toxic chemicals last week, company reps backed out of a town hall on Wednesday, citing "the growing physical threat to our employees." According to the Associated Press, East Palestine residents "booed or laughed each time they heard the village mayor or state health director assure them that lingering odors from the the huge plumes of smoke aren't dangerous and the water is fine to drink." Hard to fault their skepticism, also directed at the visiting head of the Environmental Protection Agency, Michael Regan.
- House GOP Pushes Work Requirements, Benefit Cuts for Food Stamps "The emerging GOP campaign arrives at a pivotal moment for the nutrition program, which is set to cease providing emergency pandemic payments this March." via the Washington Post.
- Biden on Balloons: "We're Not Looking for a New Cold War, But..." In formal remarks yesterday, the president admitted the three objects shot down by U.S. military jets over the weekend were likely not Chinese spy craft but rather "balloons tied to private companies, recreation, or research institutions, studying weather or conducting other scientific research." via NBC News and the Associated Press.
- Massive Tesla Recall Follows Union-Busting Reports Federal regulators say the company's "self-driving" software, now subject to a recall, may cause crashes; meanwhile, workers at the company's Buffalo, New York factory say they were fired for organizing. via CNBC and the New York Times.
- Brits Tipped Off Yanks to Top FBI Agent's Secret Meeting with Russian Contact Charles McGonigal was the FBI's head of counterintelligence in New York, now he's accused of taking covert cash from a sanctioned Russian oligarch. via Insider.
- Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren Take on Kroger Over Wage Theft The senators warned the grocery chain in a letter this week that worker complaints over wage theft could endanger its plans to merge with Albertsons. via HuffPost.
That's how much of the earthquake-affected area in northwest Syria, home to 4.4 million people, has yet to be searched by aid groups, according to Bahia Zrikem of the Norwegian Refugee Council.
ON THE SHOW TODAY
2/17: It's Casual Friday! Sam and Emma host Ryan Grim, DC bureau chief at The Intercept, to round up the week in news. Then, they're joined by Chapo Trap House's Matt Christman, to discuss his new podcast project Hell On Earth.
DON'T MISS MR CLIPS
Republicans in Chaos Over Plan to Cut Social Security
Trust us, we are firmly against what we stand for!
Republican Bigot Asks Trans Woman if She Has Male Genitals During Hearing
New York Times management would like you to consider both sides here.
"An Arab who commits an offense is a conditional citizen. If a Jew commits the same offense or a more serious one, they don't even think of revoking his citizenship."
-- Palestinian-Israeli lawmaker Ahmad Tibi explaining to NBC News why he opposed a bill that overwhelmingly passed the Knesset this week giving Israeli authorities the right to revoke citizenship and residency rights from Palestinians convicted of "acts of terror," which can include "harm to property" or "public safety or health" or even "a threat to carry out such an act."
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