News Roundup: Republicans threaten retaliations, revenge, civil war over Trump search warrant

The first-ever FBI search warrant served against a former U.S. president is still the big news in the country, but we still don't know much more about it than we did yesterday. Donald Trump took "classified national security documents" from the White House when he left; when those documents were discovered at Mar-a-Lago in early June, Trump seems to have refused to relinquish them, relying on his apparent political power to skirt consequences. Didn't work out for him.

Today's news, then, is an absolute boatload of seditionists, aspiring fascists, and Republican lawmakers insisting that this attempt to enforce laws that Donald Trump definitely broke is the precursor to civil war, the sign of a collapsing republic, or evidence of shocking, absolutely shocking (checks notes) politics inside the Department of Justice. Few are willing to declare that Trump didn't do a crime; Republicans are—as they were before, during, and after two Trump impeachments—instead shouting that consequences for Republican crime-doing are completely unacceptable. It's ... not a movement with a lot of principles. 

Here's some of what you may have missed:

In Ukraine:

John Eastman worried he wasn’t going to get paid for his work instigating a seditious coup

The New York Times has another mini-scoop from Trumpland, but the headline news is probably less interesting (and much less funny) than the details. The headline is that coup architect John Eastman, the lawyer who attached himself to an idea that Vice President Mike Pence could simply throw out electors on his personal say-so, was still at it even on Biden's inauguration day two weeks later.

That’s when Eastman sent an email to Trump's personal conspiracy promoter Rudy Giuliani proposing that the Trump team responsible for that violent coup turn their focus to challenging the Georgia runoff elections that had resulted in two new Democratic senators on Jan. 5.

Was it because Eastman had some evidence of supposed "fraud," you might ask? Not even close. Eastman wrote that "a lot of us have now staked our reputations on the claims of election fraud," and after the Trump team got their asses handed to them in every courtroom in the land when they presented their hoaxes about supposed fraud in the presidential election, challenging the Georgia results would give them a new opportunity to hunt for "fraud" in the Senate races.

"If we get proof of fraud on Jan. 5," wrote coup plotter Eastman, "it will likely also demonstrate the fraud on Nov. 3, thereby vindicating [Golfboy's] claims and serving as a strong bulwark against Senate impeachment trial."

Yet another fishing expedition, then. There was no non-ridiculous evidence that there was anything wrong with the Jan. 5 elections in Georgia, but Eastman and team had just inspired a violent coup, Eastman himself thought he might need to be pardoned for doing it, and since they had come up completely dry on every "fraud" claim in the November elections, this was a last-ditch attempt to hunt for fraud in a different election, which by the mathematical properties of transience would prove they were right all along or, you know, whatever.

But it's that "bulwark against Senate impeachment trial" bit that leads us to the more important motive for Eastman's email to Rudy Giuliani. The guy was still trying to get paid.

You know, for the coup.

The Times reports that the Eastman email also "asked for Mr. Giuliani's help in collecting on a $270,000 invoice he had sent the Trump campaign the previous day," and that among the invoiced charges was a $10,000-per-day fee for Eastman's work for Trump during eight days in January. Yes, John Eastman billed for each of the days he attempted to goad the vice president and his staff into supporting a seditious act to nullify the U.S. election. It was supposed to cost the Trump campaign $10,000 per day, and even after people died at the U.S. Capitol because an armed and violent crowd actually believed the erase-the-election bullshit Eastman was selling, Eastman was still trying to collect his fee for proposing it.

But Eastman wasn't done yet. He was also trying to get the Trump campaign to pay him similarly steep fees for a barely-related Georgia fishing expedition, and the way Eastman was attempting to sell the new project is to claim that it would be a "bulwark" against Trump's upcoming (second) impeachment trial. Not only was he billing for instigating violence at the Capitol, but he was also still pushing his services as a guy who could help Trump evade responsibility for the violence—and with the exact same invisible "fraud" that caused all of it the first time around!

That is extremely f--king galling, or would be if anyone still thought anyone within a mile of Donald Trump still had a human soul. This guy wanted to get paid for a seditious conspiracy. Here's a guy whose legal advice was so spectacularly terrible that it lead to multiple people's deaths, and he's getting anxious that maybe he's not going to be getting his invoices paid.

He wasn't attempting to overthrow the United States government and install Donald Trump as at least a temporary god-king out of patriotism, you say? He expected to be paid for instigating a violent coup? Oh, and also a pardon, pretty please?


The Times indicates that their own sources say Eastman never did get paid, and that John Eastman was looking to Rudy Giuliani, of all people, to pry money out of Trump shows a naivete that seems out of place for the architect of a failed fascist coup. Giuliani, who was charging Trump $20,000 for his own hair-dye melting performances, wasn't any likelier to get paid than Eastman was.

As for the implications of Eastman sending a bill for his attempts to coerce the vice president and his staff into staging a coup, there are probably lots, and I couldn't tell you what they are because, gotta be honest with you here, at the moment I don't even care. Eastman has long claimed he was working as Trump's lawyer, and that's why he doesn't have to testify about anything, But apparently he thought he was working as the Trump campaign's lawyer, not Trump's, and if Eastman ever succeeded in squeezing a dime or two out of the campaign then that would be another direct link between Trump's political team and the plotted coup attempt. The Department of Justice already has Eastman's phone communications, however, so we know whatever thin veneer of "I was just the lawyer" Eastman might be insisting on, it's not working.

For the moment, though, let's just revel in the sheer gall of this blazingly arrogant, irredeemably evil national seditionist being antsy about whether the violent coup's failure means he might not get paid. Just an A+ effort at villainy, Claremont Institute guy. Couldn't do it any better without a costume.


The net is tightening around John Eastman and Jeffrey Clark as DOJ closes in on heart of Jan. 6 plot

Garland says the DOJ will go after 'everyone, anyone' as new warrant goes out to John Eastman

Trump's direct role in attempted overturn under increasing scrutiny by DOJ prosecutors, sources say

New emails expose Trump advisers planning 'surprise' at Jan. 6 count

News roundup: Republicans reaffirm fealty to racist traitors, and a serial rapist is out of prison

In the news today: More than half of the Republican members of the House of Representatives voted to continue honoring racist traitors. And in other news, almost all of those House Republicans voted against an investigation into racist traitors who attacked the Capitol on Jan. 6. Are you sensing a pattern here? A truly appalling turn of events in Pennsylvania, where the state supreme court overturned serial rapist Bill Cosby’s conviction, and he is once again free to drug and rape women. It’s being reported that charges will be filed against the Trump Organization and its chief money-launderer. The Trumpian governor of South Dakota has turned the state’s National Guard troops into a mercenary force, all in the service of Donald Trump. And it will shock no one to learn that the police reform bill is in trouble because those needing reform are fighting it, and Republicans are listening to them. 

Here’s some of what you may have missed:

More than half of House Republicans stand with Confederate traitors in the U.S. Capitol

Trump impeachment lawyer gave the Pennsylvania Supreme Court its excuse to free Bill Cosby

Criminal charges coming against Trump Organization and its CFO could deal blow to Trump's wealth

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem's border deployment is being funded by used car billionaire megadonor

Shocking! Negotiations on police reform bill hampered by the very people who need to reform

And from the community:

We now have a clue as to why the Miami condo complex collapsed. But pics only tell part of story

Uproar over high school graduation speech

News Roundup: Republicans filibuster the commission, commission, commission

It is Friday! In the wee hours of the night, the Republican Party destroyed the chances for our country to investigate the closest our nation has come to a coup d’etat since the main form of visual media was the  daguerreotype. It’s not surprisng but it is a sad statement about where our country is at. But it is Friday! We have a long weekend to spend with loved ones and friends, and to think about the millions of those who have come before us and passed on after defending our country in its many battles these last 244 years, 10 months, and 24 days.

From the community:

Hatred is the coward's revenge for being intimidated.

—George Bernard Shaw