Patterico's Pontifications


CIA: Yeah, the Crown Price Sho ‘Nuf Did Order Khashoggi’s Murder

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 6:14 pm

As any good American knows, this is the Deep State trying to embarrass Donald Trump (eyeroll):

The CIA has concluded that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman ordered the assassination of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul last month, contradicting the Saudi government’s claims that he was not involved in the killing, according to people familiar with the matter.

The CIA’s assessment, in which officials have said they have high confidence, is the most definitive to date linking Mohammed to the operation and complicates the Trump administration’s efforts to preserve its relationship with a close ally. A team of 15 Saudi agents flew to Istanbul on government aircraft in October and killed Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate, where he had come to pick up documents that he needed for his planned marriage to a Turkish woman.

In reaching its conclusions, the CIA examined multiple sources of intelligence, including a phone call that the prince’s brother Khalid bin Salman, the Saudi ambassador to the United States, had with Khashoggi, according to the people familiar with the matter who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the intelligence. Khalid told Khashoggi, a contributing columnist to The Washington Post, that he should go to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to retrieve the documents and gave him assurances that it would be safe to do so.

It is not clear if Khalid knew that Khashoggi would be killed, but he made the call at his brother’s direction, according to the people familiar with the call, which was intercepted by U.S. intelligence.


Those who doubted this, keep digging your hole. Here’s another shovel for ya.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

ABC Begins Early Campaigning For Trump 2020

Filed under: General — Dana @ 1:08 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Really? This is the best they can do? would be my normal response for such a poor choice of words, but then I stop and remind myself that they really, really don’t see a problem here:

ABC has put into development a half-hour comedy from Nashville-based comedian Dusty Slay, Santa Clarita Diet writer/executive producer Chadd Gindin, Levity Live! and ABC Studios.

Written by Gindin, the untitled comedy is inspired by Slay’s childhood, growing up the youngest of three in an Alabama trailer park. The story centers on a middle-aged single mother, who despite her blue collar lifestyle strives to give her loved ones all the joys of a normal life.

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)


White House Ordered To Restore Jim Acosta’s Press Pass (UPDATE ADDED)

Filed under: General — Dana @ 9:57 am

[guest post by Dana]

This morning, Judge Timothy Kelly ordered the White House to restore Jim Acosta’s press pass , which had been revoked after a heated exchange with President Trump at last week’s press conference. In granting CNN’s request, Kelly specifically focused on a lack of required due process:

A federal judge on Friday ordered the Trump White House to immediately restore the press pass of CNN Chief White House Correspondent Jim Acosta as the case progresses after the network filed a lawsuit suit claiming that revoking it violated the First Amendment.

The judge repeatedly emphasized that his decision was based on the Fifth Amendment and that Acosta was denied his right to due process.

“If at some point after restoring the hard pass the government would like to move to vacate the restraining order on the grounds that it has fulfilled its due process obligations then it may, of course, do so and I will promptly address that and then the remaining basis of the (temporary restraining order),” U.S. District Judge Timothy J. Kelly said.

Speaking after the ruling, Ted Boutros, an attorney for CNN said the news organization is “extremely pleased with the ruling today.”

“A great day for the First Amendment and journalism,” he said. “We’re very excited to have Mr. Acosta be able to go back and get his hard pass and report the news about the White House.”

Judge Kelly was nominated by President Trump, and confirmed by a 94-2 vote. By noting this, does it help lay to rest claims made by those on the left side of the aisle that Trump only appoints judges that will protect his interests? Or does it simply demonstrate that Kelly is a judge who recognizes his duty to not be politically motivated and to act as a neutral arbiter who applies the law to the facts?

As far as Jim Acosta’s return to the White House press conferences, I’m curious to know who actually controls these events? It appears as if there is no mechanism in place for the White House to give a reporter their due process at the time and revoke their pass. And if that is the case, by not having control (or a mechanism in place), the door has been left wide open for further grandstanding by Acosta (and maybe others). If he was able to dominate a presser like he did last week, by refusing to accept that his turn was over and sit down, then what recourse does the White House have at its disposal now? And given Acosta’s evidenced persistence, even if Trump didn’t call on him, what would stop him from acting out, or sidling up to a colleague and co-opting the microphone? Because clearly, he didn’t care that he was stepping on other reporters’ opportunities to question the President last week.

The White House has not issued a response to the judge’s ruling, nor has President Trump tweeted about it.

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)


UPDATE: President Trump spoke to reporters after today’s ruling was announced. He said that people have to behave, and as such, the administration is currently writing up rules and regulations to line up with that position. When asked specifically about what those rules and regs might look like, the President said that it was all about reporters practicing decorum. Further, he stated that while he believes in “total freedom of the press. It’s very important to me. It’s more important to me than anyone would believe,” it must exercised respectfully with regard to staffers. He also added that if the reporters don’t follow the rules and regulations, they would end up back in court, claiming that “we would win.” The President also pointed out that the White House retains the option of simply walking out of a press conference if proper decorum is not demonstrated.

As a reminder, this is the same president who recently said of the press:

“What a stupid question that is”
“I know you’re not thinking. You never do”
“You are a rude, terrible person”
“You’re creating violence by your question”
“That’s such a racist question”

Broward County Misses Recount Deadline by Two Minutes — Cui Bono?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 6:50 am

Broward County was late by two minutes:

The top election official in Florida’s heavily Democratic Broward County said late Thursday that the county had uploaded the results of its recount two minutes after the state’s 3 p.m. deadline – making its machine recount tally void. Instead, the county’s results from last Tuesday’s election will stand until manual recount totals in the state’s closely contested Senate race come in Sunday at noon.

In an amazing coincidink, the revised results that Brenda Snipes submitted late would have helped the Republican:

GOP Senate candidate Rick Scott’s campaign charged that embattled Broward County Supervisor of Elections Brenda Snipes intentionally submitted late results so that they would be invalidated. In the recount, Scott’s Democratic opponent, incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson, lost more votes than Scott — meaning Scott would have seen a net gain of 779 votes if Snipes hadn’t been late.

How about that.

A cynic might say that if the benefit went to Nelson, they would have found a way to submit the votes on time. What with the involvement of Brenda Snipes, with her partisan tendency to mess with elections.

Good thing we’re not cynics here!

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

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