Cup of Joe – August 29, 2023

“We are getting a glimpse into how much the next year may be completely dominated by the trials of Donald Trump,” Politico reports.

“What are routine motions in other criminal cases merit wall-to-wall news coverage in these Trump cases. By Thursday, an entire week will be burned up just on two motions (the protective order and the trial schedule) and discussion of a third (the recusal and change of venue) that hasn’t been filed yet, and is highly unlikely to be granted.”

“And, remember, this is just one of seven trials — four criminal and three civil — that Trump will be enmeshed in before election day, all of which will be brimming over with fascinating legal angles, salacious details and profound constitutional questions.”

Playbook: “Get used to a lot more days like this: The most momentous happenings in national politics won’t be happening inside the White House or Capitol or on the stump in Iowa or New Hampshire. They’ll take place instead inside East Coast courtrooms, where the trials of Donald Trump and his alleged co-conspirators are already being shaped.”

“A federal judge in Washington, D.C. is set to decide on Monday when former President Donald Trump will stand trial in the 2020 election-related case brought by special counsel Jack Smith, a ruling that will set the stage for what could be the first of the former president’s four pending criminal cases to go to trial,” CBS News reports.

“Ahead of the hearing, prosecutors and Trump’s lawyers have proposed trial dates that straddle both sides of the 2024 election and underscore the differences between the two sides in how quickly they believe the pretrial process can move.”

“Lawyers for former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis are expected to clash Monday in federal court over whether his charges in Donald Trump’s election racketeering indictment should be moved to federal court from a county court in Georgia,” USA Today reports.

“The hearing before U.S. District Judge Steve Jones could offer a preview of how two key witnesses will testify at trial. Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and his office’s chief investigator, Frances Watson, were subpoenaed to testify.”

Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-GA) called on the White House to return several transcripts of interviews conducted by the House Jan. 6 committee “without alteration or redaction,” NBC News reports.

“Loudermilk wrote that the transcripts he’s requesting include testimony from ‘Secret Service agents or employees who were assigned to former President Trump on January 6, 2021’ and who testified to the select committee at the end of 2022.”

“California Gov. Gavin Newsom is increasingly being viewed as a nuisance to some of President Joe Biden’s political advisers,” NBC News reports.

“Though Biden’s camp no longer sees the California governor as a wannabe challenger to the president — and some in the president’s orbit praise him for acting as a top campaign surrogate — Newsom’s plan to debate Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on television carries more risk than potential reward, these people say. ”

“That’s caused consternation within Biden’s operation and among Vice President Kamala Harris’ allies.”

Donald Trump issued an ultimatum to House Republicans, angry that their talk of an impeachment inquiry against President Biden has not yet amounted to meaningful action.

Said Trump: “Biden is a Stone Cold Crook-You don’t need a long INQUIRY to prove it, it’s already proven.”

He added: “These lowlifes Impeached me TWICE (I WON!), and Indicted me FOUR TIMES – For NOTHING! Either IMPEACH the BUM, or fade into OBLIVION. THEY DID IT TO US!”

Wall Street Journal: “For many foreign capitals, the possibility of a second Trump administration is a source of anxiety. Allies from Paris to Tokyo regard Trump as an erratic leader with little interest in cultivating long-term ties to counter Russian and Chinese expansionism.”

“Others, including Beijing and Moscow, see potential benefits from Trump, whom they view as a transactional leader who might be willing to strike deals to ease tensions in hot spots such as Ukraine and Taiwan, according to analysts. Nationalist and populist politicians also voice support for Trump’s ambitions.”

 “The late-summer surge in gasoline prices is heightening the risks that inflation poses for President Joe Biden, and offering Republicans a new chance to pin the blame on his green agenda,” Politico reports.

“The GOP narrative has a major hole: U.S. oil production — already the highest in the world — is on track to set a new record this year, and will probably rise even more in 2024. But the ever-increasing flow of U.S. crude has failed to keep a lid on gasoline prices, showing once again that a global market drives the fuel prices that shape presidents’ political futures.”

“Every year, New York City’s Department of Transportation collects tens of millions of dollars from property owners in return for permission to place street furniture on, over or under city sidewalks. This includes, but is not limited to, signs, filigreed lampposts, benches, bollards, planters, permanent trash receptacles, delivery ramps, underground vaults and just about anything else imaginable, including ornamental clocks,” the New York Times reports.

“Set smack on the sidewalk at 725 Fifth Avenue is just such a clock: 16 feet tall and made of aluminum with gold and black accents, it has four faces. Each bears the surname of its owner, Donald J. Trump.”

“It was installed without permission more than a dozen years ago. No permit was applied for. No permission was granted. Belatedly, the City of New York would like to be paid for allowing the Trump Tower clock to occupy part of a public sidewalk.”

New York Times: “Extolling Ronald Reagan used to be the safest of safe spaces for an ambitious Republican. Yet here was an upstart candidate, with no record of public service, standing at center stage in a G.O.P. debate and invoking Mr. Reagan’s famous 1984 “morning in America” theme not as an applause line, but to mock one of the party’s staunchest conservatives — an original product of the Reagan revolution — as out of touch with America’s true condition.”

“The moment captured a rhetorical and substantive shift inside the G.O.P. that accelerated during the Trump era and is now being fed to the base in a purer form by Mr. Ramaswamy, who in late July overtook the former vice president in national polling averages. It is a shift to the so-called new right — often younger, often very online — that rejects the sunny optimism of Mr. Reagan’s acolytes as the delusional mutterings of ‘boomers.’”

“In the new right’s overheated vernacular, these older, more established Republicans — a group that includes Mr. Pence but also most of the Republican conference in the United States Senate — have no idea ‘what time it is.’ They don’t understand that the Republic is on its last legs.”

 “French Education Minister Gabriel Attal announced on Sunday that France will ban the Islamic garment known as the abaya in schools,” Politico reports.

“The abaya is a long, flowing dress commonly worn by Muslim women as it complies with Islamic beliefs on modest dress — but it’s also worn by other communities in North Africa and the Middle East. In 2004, France banned religious symbols in schools, including large crosses, Jewish kippahs and Islamic headscarves. But the abaya occupies a gray zone and hasn’t specifically been banned.”

Delaware politics from a liberal, progressive and Democratic perspective. Keep Delaware Blue.

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