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TFG's Legal Woes Mount; Dems Make Strides on Another Primary Night

By Dustin Rowles | Politics | August 24, 2022 |

By Dustin Rowles | Politics | August 24, 2022 |


Let’s start with the best news of the day, if only for what it might mean for the midterms: Democrat Pat Ryan won a special election against a Republican for a House seat in a district that was a tossup (and where his GOP opponent had been leading in the polls). It seems that the decisive issue in this race may have been abortion, which again shows that the Supreme Court’s misguided, legally nonsensical decision to overturn Roe might just salvage the midterms for Democrats.

I expect the Democrats will still lose in the House (and that the House will ramp up a bunch of needless investigations against Joe Biden and/or Hunter Biden), but at the moment, they are favored to hold the Senate. If enough moderate Republicans pull out victories in the House, and if Trump is finally sent to prison, maybe Biden won’t be completely stonewalled over the next two years (I know, I know: Fat chance, but if Democrats can perform better in the midterms, maybe TFG’s hold over the party will further wane).

Speaking of TFG, there isn’t a lot new in this The Washington Post piece, but it does provide a comprehensive timeline on the Mar-a-Lago search and, like a NYTimes piece, incorporates what was learned from the John Solomon letter. The gist is that, outside of the Presidency, TFG has lost his layers of lawyers and advisors and is basically running his own defense, and he is doing a terrible job. Even his own advisors are gobsmacked by his decision to release that damning letter to John Solomon — both the Times and the Post seem to be equally bewildered about TFG’s decision.

The Post also outlines TFG’s inexplicably stonewalling efforts, which went against the advice of his own advisors. No one really knows what was in those highly classified docs except TFG himself, but the Post does say that they are very sensitive.

Some material recovered in the search is considered extraordinarily sensitive, two people familiar with the search said, because it could reveal carefully guarded secrets about U.S. intelligence-gathering methods. One of them said the information is “among the most sensitive secrets we hold.”

Meanwhile, the judge overseeing the special master motion doesn’t seem to understand what Trump is doing, either.

Judge Aileen M. Cannon, who was appointed by Mr. Trump, asked the lawyers to respond by Friday about whether she even had jurisdiction to hear Mr. Trump’s request, and what precisely his motion was asking her to do. This came hours after Judge Cannon informed the lawyers about their basic paperwork mistake.

I suspect that more information will continue to trickle out slowly but that Merrick Garland will quietly and meticulously build his case until he’s ready to make a move. For political reasons, he may also wait until after the midterms to bring charges.

But back to the Democrats: As the Post points out, in one of the last rounds of primaries last night in Florida and New York, most of the Democrats who won were established, mainstream candidates who often beat back progressive challengers. If this helps Democrats in the midterms, great, but I’m not crazy about the fact that the old white dudes won against women and POC in many of those pivotal races (Jerry Nadler in New York, Charlie Christ in Florida. One bright spot in that regard is that Rep. Val Demings won her primary in Florida and will take on Marco Rubio for his Senate seat. Most, but not all polls have Rubio leading there in an increasingly red state, but I’d love to see a surprise come out of Florida in both this Senate race and perhaps even in the Governor’s race. I am hopeful, but not holding my breath. Just remember that DeSantis barely beat Andrew Gillum in 2018, and it’s possible that DeSantis and Rubio have incurred a deep backlash that could fire up Democrats.