News & Politics

The Morning Briefing: Subpoena Madness! Women Cry for It, Men Die for It!

House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., directs the final vote to hold Attorney General William Barr in contempt of Congress after last-minute negotiations stalled with the Justice Department over access to the full, unredacted version of special counsel Robert Mueller's report, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, May 8, 2019. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Good Wednesday morning.

Here is what’s on the president’s agenda today:

  • The president meets with congressional Democrats on infrastructure
  • President Trump participates in the Public Safety Officer Medal of Valor presentation ceremony
  • The president participates in a roundtable discussion with supporters
  • President Trump delivers remarks at a fundraising committee reception

SUBPOENA MADNESS: Women Cry for It, Men Die for it

The House Judiciary Committee continues issuing their nuisance subpoenas, this time demanding that former White House aide Hope Hicks and Annie Donaldson, an aide to former White House Counsel Don McGahn, appear for a congressional Hokey Pokey dance.

The subpoenas direct Hicks to turn over documents by June 4 and testify on June 19.

Another subpoena requires Annie Donaldson, McGahn’s former chief of staff, to hand over the documents by June 4 and appear June 24.

The House Judiciary Committee voted to authorize the subpoenas for Hicks and Donaldson in April the same time it sought subpoenas for Attorney General William Barr to release to Congress a full, unredacted version of special counsel Robert Mueller’s 448-page report.

McGahn did not show up yesterday at the clown hearing. The White House has claimed executive privilege and instructed McGahn not to appear. “As I said earlier today, the Judiciary Committee’s investigation into obstruction of justice, public corruption and abuse of power by President Trump and his Administration will continue,” Nadler said in a statement.

Ranking member Rep. Doug Jones had some words for Nadler at the pretend hearing.

That move has eninsured the witness will not testify. This is becoming a pattern. The chairman knew this when he sent the subpoena last month but instead of inviting him to testify voluntarily the chairman rushed to maximize headlines by issuing a subpoena. That subpoena was the third in just four months. More subpoenas than the prior chairman issued in six years. The chairman has several ways out here. He took none of them. The chairman could have invited the witness to testify voluntarily. That was the practice in the ’90s when the White House’s counsel testified before Congress.

The chairman launched a subpoena at the witness without any consultation or follow-up with the witness’s lawyer. The chairman could have invited the witness to testify behind closed doors but that wouldn’t have been politically expedient and you wouldn’t have been here and the show wouldn’t have been as exciting. Even gaveling in today’s hearing without a witness is theatrical. The cameras love the spectacle. I just am glad today to see that we don’t have chicken on the dais.

If Nadler is really serious, why doesn’t he start filing lawsuits to get the information he is demanding? Why isn’t he challenging the White House’s claim of executive privilege? He just wants a fight. He doesn’t want information.

Lynch: I didn’t tell Holy James Comey to call the Clinton email investigation a “matter”

ME-OW. One of the transcripts released by Rep. Doug Collins earlier this week was that of former A.G. Loretta Lynch’s testimony before the House Judiciary and Oversight committees. Lynch denied telling Twitter personality and fired FBI Director James Comey to call the Clinton email investigation a “matter.”

“I did not,” Lynch responded when asked if she had “ever” told Comey to call the investigation a “matter.”

“I have never instructed a witness as to what to say specifically. Never have, never will,” Lynch continued. “In the meeting that I had with the Director, we were discussing how best to keep Congress informed of progress and discuss requesting resources for the Department overall. We were going to testify separately. And the concern that both of us had in the meeting that I was having with him in September of 2015 was how to have that discussion without stepping across the Department policy of confirming or denying an investigation, separate policy from testifying.”

“Obviously, we wanted to testify fully, fulsomely, and provide the information that was needed, but we were not at that point, in September of 2015, ready to confirm that there was an investigation into the email matter — or deny it,” Lynch added. “We were sticking with policy, and that was my position on that. I didn’t direct anyone to use specific phraseology. When the Director asked me how to best to handle that, I said: What I have been saying is we have received a referral and we are working on the matter, working on the issue, or we have all the resources we need to handle the matter, handle the issue. So that was the suggestion that I made to him.”

Working on the matter? Which liar is lying here? I think Comey is lying more. He has displayed a tendency to interpret people’s remarks in a “one-off” manner that is useful to his self-understanding as a moral martyr. I can believe Lynch said “we are working on the matter” and Comey’s sensitive and finely-tuned moral antenna went haywire. “Matter?!?! How dare you!”

I read the Lynch testimony and found another notable thing: Dossier? What’s a dossier? Lynch claimed to be out of the loop on the dossier, which wasn’t called a dossier in the sacred DOJ halls. She repeatedly said she didn’t know any specifics about the Trump-RUSSIA-counterintelligence operation or FISA applications, which seems strange, since an FBI investigation involving a presidential campaign seems to me, like, to be a really big deal that the AG might be monitoring.

Biden offers rich white guy menu at fundraisers

Joe “middle class” Biden, the front runner for the party of diversity’s presidential nomination, offers quite an experience at his fundraisers.

Described as “lavish affairs” by the Times, the story mentioned some fundraisers have featured “a live jazz band,” while another featured “langoustine tail and caviar.”

Langoustine tail is “a rare and expensive delicacy,” according to the Browne Trading Company, one of the premier providers of fine caviar in the United States, which also describes the seafood as “a cross between a crayfish and a lobster.” Sometimes referred to as “Norway lobster,” langoustines generally “cost more than twice as much as lobster,” even though they yield less than half of the meat of a traditional lobster.

Unlike his more virtuous competitors, Biden has not banned high-dollar donors from his campaign’s treasure chest.

On another Biden note, North Korean lunatic Kim Jung-un responded to one of Biden’s taunts.

North Korea issued a list of criticisms against former Vice President Joe Biden, calling the presidential candidate “a low IQ idiot” and saying his “candidacy should not carry high expectations.”

Additionally, the North Koreans referred to Biden as someone “who likes to stick his nose into other people’s business and is a poor excuse for a politician.” The published commentary also said he “is misbehaving.”

Kim Jung-un’s words were a response to Biden’s remarks describing the dictator: “This is a guy with his uncle’s brains blown out, sitting across a table. This is the guy who’s a thug.”

Other morsels:

Pompeo: We Will Not Allow Iran to Hide Behind Its Proxy Forces

California sues Trump administration over withholding high-speed rail funds

Guardian: How long will the US tolerate the rule of ‘rich white men’

Tillerson meets with House Foreign Affairs Committee

Who cares? O’Rourke explains why he livestreamed himself getting a haircut

Get used to the violence. Burger King Appears To Endorse Chucking Milkshakes At Conservatives

Beto Spreads Falsehoods About Trump In CNN Town Hall

Trump campaign and Senate GOP clash over president’s pollster

Former Trump opponent Cuccinelli may land key immigration post

Matt Bevin, Andy Beshear set for Kentucky clash

Disgusting. Trash heaps in downtown Los Angeles continue growing months after multiple typhus cases: report

Cannes movie poster depicts decapitated Trump in ‘MAGA’ hat

Julianna Margulies’ Trump nightmares had her waking up ‘screaming,’ she tells Colbert

Plea deal for serial online harasser fits lenient pattern

US closes Texas processing center amid flu outbreak after teen migrant’s death

Amazon Studios pulls show out of Georgia due to abortion bill

And that’s all I’ve got, now go beat back the angry mob!