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  #1  
Old 10-28-2017, 04:14 PM
ThelmaLou ThelmaLou is online now
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A Thread for the Mueller Investigation Results and Outcomes

In the Atlantic online today (not news to anyone here):
Robert Mueller's First Charges
Quote:
It’s the end of the beginning for the Russia investigation. Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team has reportedly filed the first criminal charges as part of the sprawling inquiry into Moscow’s interference in the 2016 presidential election, CNN reported Friday night.

Citing “sources briefed on the matter,” the network said a federal grand jury in Washington, D.C., approved the charges, which have been sealed by a federal judge. CNN did not indicate who had been charged, how many people had been charged, or what charges had been filed by Mueller’s team. An arrest could come by Monday. Reuters subsequently confirmed CNN’s reporting....
I'm proposing that we locate most of the Mueller discussion here instead of posting simultaneous, ninja'd comments in the several other threads where they would certainly fit. (Subject to Dopers going along with the idea, of course.) I stuck it in the Pit so that no one has to hold back on inflammatory language.
  #2  
Old 10-28-2017, 04:45 PM
friedo friedo is offline
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This shit show sure is going to be an entertaining circus. If only the main clown didn't have his finger on the button.
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Old 10-28-2017, 04:46 PM
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I believe the 2 most likely candidates I've heard so far are Manafort and Flynn. Any others that anyone wants to throw in the ring?
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Old 10-28-2017, 04:53 PM
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And the tangerine turd, no doubt, has a stack of pardons ready to be signed in the event it's one of his supporters.
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Old 10-28-2017, 04:59 PM
friedo friedo is offline
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Cheeto can't pardon state crimes. Word is Mueller has been working closely with Schneiderman in New York, especially re: Manafort.
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Old 10-28-2017, 05:02 PM
friedo friedo is offline
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Also interesting to note: A pardon removes jeopardy of conviction for a crime, which also means the pardonee can no longer refuse to testify about his knowledge of the crime(s) covered in other proceedings under the Fifth Amendment. IOW, Trump pardoning a Flynn, Manafort or Page might actually end up creating a powerful witness against a Kushner or Donny Jr.
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Old 10-28-2017, 05:19 PM
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War with North Korea just got a lot more likely. Trump knows the rule of law is after him, so he will use whatever power he has at his disposal to reverse the advantage. He will attempt (and may succeed at) the establishment of a Security State. War and national emergencies almost always result in an increase in executive power and a loss of civil liberties. And this Congress will not oppose him in doing so. Trump needs an emergency, a rason d'etre: North Korea might be it.
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Old 10-28-2017, 05:25 PM
Nars Glinley Nars Glinley is offline
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Originally Posted by Sunny Daze View Post
I believe the 2 most likely candidates I've heard so far are Manafort and Flynn. Any others that anyone wants to throw in the ring?
I’m guessing that the first indictment will be a second or third level player whose name we may not even be familiar with. This person will then be offered immunity for testimony against Manafort et al.
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  #9  
Old 10-28-2017, 05:32 PM
Aspenglow Aspenglow is offline
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Originally Posted by Sunny Daze View Post
I believe the 2 most likely candidates I've heard so far are Manafort and Flynn. Any others that anyone wants to throw in the ring?
The more I ruminate on it, the more I think it might be Flynn Jr. Close second is Manafort, because Mueller already told him the indictment was coming. Or maybe Manafort Jr.?

Some have speculated it might be someone more minor to the investigation, but I have a feeling Mueller doesn't roll like that. Depends on whether the leak came from Mueller's team or somewhere else. If not deliberately from his team, then I suppose it could be a minor player -- and Mueller won't be happy at all that it leaked.

But then, based on the hysteria coming from the Faux crowd, it could still be a bigger fish.
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Old 10-28-2017, 05:35 PM
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War with North Korea just got a lot more likely. Trump knows the rule of law is after him, so he will use whatever power he has at his disposal to reverse the advantage. He will attempt (and may succeed at) the establishment of a Security State. War and national emergencies almost always result in an increase in executive power and a loss of civil liberties. And this Congress will not oppose him in doing so. Trump needs an emergency, a rason d'etre: North Korea might be it.
Also, I expect that Sessions' DoJ will prosecute Hillary Clinton (and possibly Barack Obama) for...something. I'm not kidding.
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Old 10-28-2017, 05:45 PM
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Also interesting to note: A pardon removes jeopardy of conviction for a crime, which also means the pardonee can no longer refuse to testify about his knowledge of the crime(s) covered in other proceedings under the Fifth Amendment. IOW, Trump pardoning a Flynn, Manafort or Page might actually end up creating a powerful witness against a Kushner or Donny Jr.
Absolutely correct as to federal crimes.

But if the testimony would place the witness in criminal jeopardy for state crimes, then he may still assert a Fifth Amendment privilege.
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Old 10-28-2017, 05:51 PM
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Also, I expect that Sessions' DoJ will prosecute Hillary Clinton (and possibly Barack Obama) for...something. I'm not kidding.
Based on everything in the public record thus far, he's got no real way to do that.

Although . . .

. . . I'll direct your attention to earlier conversations on this board, in which several commentators asserted confidently that any time a foreign citizen contributed valuable information to a campaign, this was illegal.

You may remember that I disagreed, saying such a reading of the statute was violative f the First Amendment.

Now I am hearing reports that the "dossier" was prepared by a foreign citizen and used by the Clinton campaign against Trump.

I still say that such a use, if it indeed happened, would be perfectly legal and protected by the First Amendment.

Does anyone who felt it was illegal wish to revisit their analysis?
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Old 10-28-2017, 05:56 PM
Aspenglow Aspenglow is offline
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Originally Posted by Bricker View Post
Based on everything in the public record thus far, he's got no real way to do that.

Although . . .

. . . I'll direct your attention to earlier conversations on this board, in which several commentators asserted confidently that any time a foreign citizen contributed valuable information to a campaign, this was illegal.

You may remember that I disagreed, saying such a reading of the statute was violative f the First Amendment.

Now I am hearing reports that the "dossier" was prepared by a foreign citizen and used by the Clinton campaign against Trump.

I still say that such a use, if it indeed happened, would be perfectly legal and protected by the First Amendment.

Does anyone who felt it was illegal wish to revisit their analysis?
I don't believe I've ever made that assertion, but I do think that before you set anyone an exercise here, it's incumbent on you to show evidence that the Clinton campaign used any part of the dossier against Trump. To my best understanding, there is zero evidence of that.
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Old 10-28-2017, 07:23 PM
Locrian Locrian is online now
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Expectations? First guy on stand says, "I did it. Donny didn't. It's all my fault." Pardon issued, case closed, guy on stand is last seen wheeling a Trump-brand wheelbarrow filled with cash.

The dumbest and richest con man won the POTUS election. How am I supposed to expect an outcome of justice?
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Old 10-28-2017, 07:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Locrian View Post
Expectations? First guy on stand says, "I did it. Donny didn't. It's all my fault." Pardon issued, case closed, guy on stand is last seen wheeling a Trump-brand wheelbarrow filled with cash.

The dumbest and richest con man won the POTUS election. How am I supposed to expect an outcome of justice?
I don't think you have a very sophisticated understanding of how these kinds of investigations work.
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Old 10-28-2017, 07:43 PM
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I don't think you have a very sophisticated understanding of how these kinds of investigations work.
Friedo, you've got a boat ride to take. I won't be joining.

Then enlighten me, please. I bet one doper dollar that this investigation leads anywhere but to Dopey Don's impeachment.

Last edited by Locrian; 10-28-2017 at 07:45 PM.
  #17  
Old 10-28-2017, 08:22 PM
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Expectations? First guy on stand says, "I did it. Donny didn't. It's all my fault." Pardon issued, case closed, guy on stand is last seen wheeling a Trump-brand wheelbarrow filled with cash.

The dumbest and richest con man won the POTUS election. How am I supposed to expect an outcome of justice?
You assume Trump would actually pay someone.
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Old 10-28-2017, 08:52 PM
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You assume Trump would actually pay someone.
He'll say that the wheelbarrow is worth 100 million and he'll sue for that.
  #19  
Old 10-28-2017, 09:31 PM
friedo friedo is offline
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Friedo, you've got a boat ride to take. I won't be joining.

Then enlighten me, please. I bet one doper dollar that this investigation leads anywhere but to Dopey Don's impeachment.
I don't know whether it will lead to Trump's impeachment or not and wouldn't care to hazard a guess. Your post seems to imply that you think there is a single "it" that one person could confess to in order to stop the whole thing in its tracks. That's not how it works. Multiple people are being investigated for a wide range of possible crimes. Low-Level Flunky Number 42 going "I did it" in exchange for a pardon and a pile of rubles does not cause the whole machinery of the investigation to come screeching to a halt.
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Old 10-28-2017, 10:28 PM
Bayard Bayard is online now
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I’m guessing that the first indictment will be a second or third level player whose name we may not even be familiar with. This person will then be offered immunity for testimony against Manafort et al.
Maybe, but would filing the formal indictment be necessary? Wouldn't Mueller, et al., just say, "We have an indictment queued up. We can enter it, or you can take immunity in exchange for testimony."

Obviously this stuff is all way outside my area of expertise.
  #21  
Old 10-28-2017, 10:42 PM
friedo friedo is offline
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Sometimes you have to indict the guy to show that you're serious. Unless they're in actual risk of criminal penalties, they don't have a ton of motivation to work with you. Additionally, it may be easier to execute a search warrant on someone rather than slowly pulling teeth to get the information you need.
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Old 10-28-2017, 10:51 PM
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I don't believe I've ever made that assertion, but I do think that before you set anyone an exercise here, it's incumbent on you to show evidence that the Clinton campaign used any part of the dossier against Trump. To my best understanding, there is zero evidence of that.
No, it isn't imcumbent.

Why can't I ask it as a hypothetical? In fact, I did ask a similar question as a hypothetical during those discussions: I posited a Clinton campaign official interviewing Mar Lago employees and discovered that they were illegal immigrants being paid under the table, and using their testimony as part of an anti-Trump campaign ad. Surely, I said, it's clear that this is a substantial assist to the campaign, by a foreign national, but equally clear it's not a crime.
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  #23  
Old 10-28-2017, 11:46 PM
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My prediction: Trump is being indicted.

Only because if it does happen, I will be able to say "I CALLED IT!"
  #24  
Old 10-28-2017, 11:55 PM
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Indicting a sitting president is fraught with all sorts of complications and unknowns. If Mueller wanted to go directly after Trump, he would provide whatever evidence he has to Congress so they can begin impeachment proceedings.
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Old 10-28-2017, 11:57 PM
Aspenglow Aspenglow is offline
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No, it isn't imcumbent.

Why can't I ask it as a hypothetical? In fact, I did ask a similar question as a hypothetical during those discussions: I posited a Clinton campaign official interviewing Mar Lago employees and discovered that they were illegal immigrants being paid under the table, and using their testimony as part of an anti-Trump campaign ad. Surely, I said, it's clear that this is a substantial assist to the campaign, by a foreign national, but equally clear it's not a crime.
Oh, my goodness. I am certainly no arbiter of what sort of questions you can pose. You can pose any question you like in any form you choose, I imagine.

But isn’t it a bit of a stretch to say you posed it as a hypothetical? More of a, “Many people are saying…” type question. And while we libs are familiar with it, I’m not sure you can expect to be taken seriously with that approach unless you’re prepared to cite some evidence of Clinton’s campaign using the dossier. That’s all I meant, and I should have been more clear.
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Old 10-28-2017, 11:59 PM
Chimera Chimera is offline
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Doubtful it will start with Trump. I'm betting others on state charges which cannot be pardoned by the President. Leverage them toward state charges on Cheetolini, which he also cannot pardon.

The question would be what happens if state felony charges are levied against a sitting President. Obviously they couldn't just walk into the White House and arrest him. Then we have the fun of whether or not Congress would impeach him if he *is* convicted of a felony, or more likely, multiple felonies.

I think Congress would be more likely to do so once they ram their onerously damaging tax bill through and he signs it. In the manner of "Ok, we used him to get our 'pay off the rich' package through, now let Pence pick up the pieces and see if he can pay off the religious right".
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  #27  
Old 10-29-2017, 12:07 AM
Aspenglow Aspenglow is offline
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Indicting a sitting president is fraught with all sorts of complications and unknowns. If Mueller wanted to go directly after Trump, he would provide whatever evidence he has to Congress so they can begin impeachment proceedings.
I've heard there is actually a line of legal reasoning -- by Kenneth Starr, of all people -- that says a special prosecutor can indict a sitting president as an alternative to making a recommendation for impeachment.

I'm not familiar with the particulars. I'd be surprised if Mueller opted to use it and it would surely be litigated all the way to the SCOTUS. But considering this president's propensity to disregard the rule of law; the likelihood of Mueller getting fired by him; the Republican Congress's reluctance to do their duty, and some very real concerns about the lengths to which Trump might go in order to avoid facing consequences, the option may not be as far-fetched as previously thought.

Again, I doubt it, but it would be interesting as hell.

Constitutional crisis no matter what.
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Old 10-29-2017, 12:51 AM
GIGObuster GIGObuster is offline
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I posted this awhile ago.

This thing reminds me a lot about the last episode were Michael J Fox was officially a cast member in the show Spin City.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0707023/
Quote:
When Sheridan goes public about the Winston administration's links to organized crime, Mike decides to take the fall and save everyone else. He submits his resignation, leading everyone to drown their sorrows and say their goodbyes.
I think that, besides the message to be loyal and to be willing to be a fall guy for what you know it was caused by the naiveté of your boss (and Mike knew how important it was anyhow to help his boss to keep his position after he and the staff got rid of the bad influences), one message should not be lost: the politician did learn the lesson to avoid the mafioso that was influencing policy. It was, even though in fiction, an example of how shining light on conflicts of interest and suspicious connections is supposed to work in helping democracies to fight corruption in the near past.

Of course in real life nowadays I do not see anyone that is willing to take the blame, because Trump also has a knack for selecting people that are as conning (yes, not "cunning" but "conning") as he is. They only are loyal to themselves. And unlike Winston (the naive boss of Mike) Trump is not naive, he is too close to corruption. He is still looking to get close to undemocratic thugs, undemocratic leaders and other unsavory people that are not really thinking much about the well being of the USA.

In essence, I do think that the effort of forcing Trump to RTFM of what a president of the USA is supposed to be or to learn how to at least avoid bad connections or the appearance of bad conflicts of interest is a very worthy effort indeed.

That, and this helps us to find who are the rascals that continue to look the other way when they see the reprehensible behavior of Trump. It helps us to toss them out in the next elections.
  #29  
Old 10-29-2017, 08:37 AM
Ulf the Unwashed Ulf the Unwashed is online now
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My guess would be Manafort, probably plus a couple others few people have heard of.

I've read that Mueller likes to start on the outside (small fish) and work his way up, which argues against a Manafort at this stage of the game. But I think he risks the administration saying "see? Nothing there!" if all he announces at first are members of the Obscurati. And I think he'd prefer not to do that.
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Old 10-29-2017, 08:46 AM
JohnT JohnT is online now
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Both Manafort and Flynn's lawyers have categorically denied they have been notified of an upcoming indictment this Monday.

Possibilities:

1. The reports are wrong, and there are no indictments coming
2. The lawyers (one of them, at least) are lying
3. It's Flynn Jr., going to be indicted to get Dad to roll
4. Given his Friday night freak out, it's Roger Stone
5. It's Trump
6. Mueller wants to arrest someone, as he is worried about a flight risk

Last edited by JohnT; 10-29-2017 at 08:48 AM.
  #31  
Old 10-29-2017, 09:22 AM
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Any betting sites where I can put a dollar down on Hillary? I could use a gazillion bucks, buy Belgium, maybe.
  #32  
Old 10-29-2017, 09:25 AM
ElvisL1ves ElvisL1ves is online now
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Both Manafort and Flynn's lawyers have categorically denied they have been notified of an upcoming indictment this Monday.
Why would they be notified? They'd have to tell their clients, who would then be able to "prepare" (flee).
  #33  
Old 10-29-2017, 09:27 AM
ThelmaLou ThelmaLou is online now
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Any betting sites where I can put a dollar down on Hillary? I could use a gazillion bucks, buy Belgium, maybe.
Maybe here: http://politicalbetting.com/

It's British, but they'll probably take your money.

I found the site when I was searching for information on what odds bookmakers were giving WRT likely Mueller targets. Couldn't find anything. Maybe someone else can.

Last edited by ThelmaLou; 10-29-2017 at 09:28 AM.
  #34  
Old 10-29-2017, 09:45 AM
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Doubtful it will start with Trump. I'm betting others on state charges which cannot be pardoned by the President.
Does the FBI have the authority to bring state charges against someone? Perhaps one of our legal experts can answer that one.
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Old 10-29-2017, 09:53 AM
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Does the FBI have the authority to bring state charges against someone? Perhaps one of our legal experts can answer that one.
No. But then the FBI has no authority to bring federal charges against anyone.

The role of the FBI is to assemble evidence for the US Attorney, who presents the evidence to a federal grand jury, similar to the federal grand jury sitting here for Mueller's investigation.

As I suspect your intuition is telling you already, and probably what you meant by the question: a federal grand jury cannot possibly issue an indictment for state crimes.
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Old 10-29-2017, 10:06 AM
John Mace John Mace is online now
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No. But then the FBI has no authority to bring federal charges against anyone.

The role of the FBI is to assemble evidence for the US Attorney, who presents the evidence to a federal grand jury, similar to the federal grand jury sitting here for Mueller's investigation.

As I suspect your intuition is telling you already, and probably what you meant by the question: a federal grand jury cannot possibly issue an indictment for state crimes.
Yes. Thanks for the answer and the correction of the question. That is exactly what I was thinking.

So, no state charges here. That is not to say that the states can't start their own investigations if they are so inclined.

Last edited by John Mace; 10-29-2017 at 10:06 AM.
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Old 10-29-2017, 10:14 AM
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If I had to guess, it would be Manafort. He seems to be the key figure in this case whose last name doesn't start with T. While he no doubt deserves a life sentence, the intent is to pressure him to flip and give testimony against a certain orange-skinned cretin.

My second choice would be Flynn, and it is quite possible that both will be marched into court tomorrow.

Don Jr. would be awesome if only to watch the Twitter meltdown that would ensue.

My non-serious pick would be Melania, for plotting to kill moose and squirrel.
  #38  
Old 10-29-2017, 10:25 AM
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Why would they be notified? They'd have to tell their clients, who would then be able to "prepare" (flee).
Generally, in white collar crimes, the defendants atty's are notified of indictments so they can get their clients to court on time. Arrests happen when the DA/SP believe there is a flight risk.
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Old 10-29-2017, 10:27 AM
Fiveyearlurker Fiveyearlurker is offline
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Felix Sater? if you're gonna start flipping people, maybe a good idea to start with the guy who has a history of flipping.
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Old 10-29-2017, 11:08 AM
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Yes. Thanks for the answer and the correction of the question. That is exactly what I was thinking.

So, no state charges here. That is not to say that the states can't start their own investigations if they are so inclined.
Sure. And nothing prevents the FBI from walking into a state prosecutor's office with a bunch of files and saying, "This may save you some time."
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Old 10-29-2017, 11:11 AM
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My non-serious pick would be Melania, for plotting to kill moose and squirrel.
So stealing this.
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  #42  
Old 10-29-2017, 11:17 AM
Chimera Chimera is offline
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Yes. Thanks for the answer and the correction of the question. That is exactly what I was thinking.

So, no state charges here. That is not to say that the states can't start their own investigations if they are so inclined.
Except Mueller has been working with NY state grand juries and prosecutors as well. He has been actively pursuing state level charges.
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  #43  
Old 10-29-2017, 11:18 AM
Northern Piper Northern Piper is offline
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A Thread for the Mueller Investigation Results and Outcomes

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Originally Posted by Bricker View Post
Based on everything in the public record thus far, he's got no real way to do that.



Although . . .



. . . I'll direct your attention to earlier conversations on this board, in which several commentators asserted confidently that any time a foreign citizen contributed valuable information to a campaign, this was illegal.



You may remember that I disagreed, saying such a reading of the statute was violative f the First Amendment.



Now I am hearing reports that the "dossier" was prepared by a foreign citizen and used by the Clinton campaign against Trump.



I still say that such a use, if it indeed happened, would be perfectly legal and protected by the First Amendment.



Does anyone who felt it was illegal wish to revisit their analysis?


Bricker, I've not been following this closely, but my impression was that the current allegation is that the Clinton campaign paid the foreigners (i.e, the Brit ex-MI6 guy) to prepare the "Dossier".

If so, that wouldn't even raise the contribution issue, would it? It's not a contribution if you're hired to do a service for a political campaign.

But that's different from the allegation about the Russians offering dirt on Clinton to Donnie Jr in Trump Tower, isn't it? The allegation is that they contacted Donnie to give the Trump campaign the dirt.

If that's true, that raises the foreign contribution rule in a different way than the allegation of Americans paying foreigners to do oppo research, doesn't it?

Last edited by Northern Piper; 10-29-2017 at 11:22 AM.
  #44  
Old 10-29-2017, 11:23 AM
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Bricker, I've not been following this closely, but my impression was that the current allegation is that the Clinton campaign paid the foreigners (i.e, the Brit ex-MI6 guy) to prepare the "Dossier".

If so, that wouldn't even raise the contribution issue, would it?

But that's different from the allegation about the Russians offering dirt on Clinton to Donnie Jr in Trump Tower, isn't it? The allegation is that they contacted Donnie to give them the dirt.

If that's true, that raises the foreign contribution rule in a different way than the allegation of Americans paying foreigners to do oppo research, doesn't it?
Sure, I suppose that's an argument. I guess it would require determining the fair market value of the publicity the dossier gained for the campaign and then ensuring that the payment was on a general par with that value, though -- wouldn't it?
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  #45  
Old 10-29-2017, 12:18 PM
purplehearingaid purplehearingaid is offline
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My prediction: Trump is being indicted.

Only because if it does happen, I will be able to say "I CALLED IT!"
I am thinking it could be donald trump jr.
  #46  
Old 10-29-2017, 12:50 PM
John Mace John Mace is online now
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If I had to guess, it would be Manafort. He seems to be the key figure in this case whose last name doesn't start with T. While he no doubt deserves a life sentence, the intent is to pressure him to flip and give testimony against a certain orange-skinned cretin.

My second choice would be Flynn, and it is quite possible that both will be marched into court tomorrow.

Don Jr. would be awesome if only to watch the Twitter meltdown that would ensue.
Maanfort is high on the list, but people seem to be forgetting Kushner. I think JK is very vulnerable.
  #47  
Old 10-29-2017, 01:07 PM
BobLibDem BobLibDem is offline
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Maanfort is high on the list, but people seem to be forgetting Kushner. I think JK is very vulnerable.
You lock him up, then who's going to reinvent government, bring peace to the middle east, and solve the opioid crisis? The guy's irreplaceable.

I think Mueller is going to work his way around the circle, starting at the periphery and slowly working his way in. JK is way too close to the center to be the first one brought in.
  #48  
Old 10-29-2017, 01:11 PM
John Mace John Mace is online now
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You lock him up, then who's going to reinvent government, bring peace to the middle east, and solve the opioid crisis? The guy's irreplaceable.

I think Mueller is going to work his way around the circle, starting at the periphery and slowly working his way in. JK is way too close to the center to be the first one brought in.
We're all speculating at this point, so I won't argue with you. You could very well be right.

Question: Are we waiting for Monday to find out what the indictments are? If so, what is so magical about Monday? Why couldn't this be released on Friday?
  #49  
Old 10-29-2017, 01:16 PM
Sunny Daze Sunny Daze is online now
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In thinking about it more, I'm guessing it will be either Manafort, or someone even lower on the ladder that we've likely never heard of. It's been pointed out that Manafort is actually a fairly large fish. If Mueller is operating on the "little fish first" method, then Manafort would come later.
  #50  
Old 10-29-2017, 01:18 PM
asahi asahi is offline
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Maanfort is high on the list, but people seem to be forgetting Kushner. I think JK is very vulnerable.
Mueller's not going to touch Kushner now - absolutely not. If he does that, the investigation ends. It'll probably be Manafort for conduct that predated the campaign. This would be a legit prosecution and might give Trump a false sense of security - he can also pardon him if he wants and wouldn't be surprised if he did. I am beginning to doubt that Mueller will see the end of the investigation. Mueller will go one direction; Sessions will go another. More than ever, it's clear that there is a low-grade civil war brewing between the parties. Republicans will defend their guy to the end.

Last edited by asahi; 10-29-2017 at 01:19 PM.
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