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Robert Mueller Indicts 13 Russians for election meddling

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  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    MSNBC's breaking news is that Robert Mueller has indicted 13 Russians by name charging them with various criminal acts against the United States including election fraud and impersonating a US citizen.

    One of the MSNBC analysts noted that this is significant because it was an action taken by Mueller and not the Justice Department, not Congress and not the President. Mueller is taking action where these other entities should have acted a long while ago.

    The named Russians of course will never see a US court room, but their travel will be limited to Russia and it's allies. If they choose to travel to France, for example, they can be detained and sent to the USA for trial.

  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    Okay after listening to Rob Rosenstein read a summary of the indictment plus all the expert analysts on MSNBC, I will make one observation: THIS IS A BIG FUCKING DEAL.

    I don't know where to begin. I am still absorbing it.

    Washington Post has more.

  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Yes, this is a pretty big fucking deal. Trump can no longer claim the Russians didn't meddle in our election. Well, that is unless he decides to believe Putin over his own DOJ.
  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    jaredsxtn Wrote: Yes, this is a pretty big fucking deal. Trump can no longer claim the Russians didn't meddle in our election. Well, that is unless he decides to believe Putin over his own DOJ.
    Schmidt and Jared; I told you so many times. The worst shit is still to come; "Jesus" is not coming to save this country of its stupidity. The world around us is shaking their heads in total un-believe. This was the country "who knew it all"; forget it; it is dumber than shit. Congratulations. Where are all the "checks and balances" ????
  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    Here is the complete text of Robert Mueller's indictment compliments of the Washington Post:

    The Indictment

    It makes for interesting reading. Of course the media and their experts are all over this, but I'll make just a few observations without getting into the technical detail.

    1. Trump can no longer call the Robert Mueller investigation a hoax. This is real...not fake news...not a witch hunt. Trump cannot fire Rod Rosenstein after he presented the indictment. It would appear he is obstructing justice.

    2. The indictments reveal that the depth of investigation was very deep including getting inside the Russian organizations participating. The names of the organizations and individuals are real.

    3. Trump people are claiming that the indictment vindicates Trump. No it doesn't. It makes no finding on any collusion charges. Those could come later.

    4. The Robert Mueller team has been very thorough in this indictment. No loose ends.

    5. The month June 2016 is significant. More on this later.

    6. The indictment only touches on one part of the Mueller investigation. There is much more to come.

  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    New York Times: Meet Yevgeny Prigozhin, the Russian Oligarch Indicted in U.S. Election Interference

    Meet "Putin's Cook" who ran the Russian "Troll Factory" also known as "the Internet Research Agency, which waged “information warfare against the United States” by creating fictitious social-media personas, spreading falsehoods and promoting messages supportive of Donald J. Trump and critical of Hillary Clinton."

    Good article...

  • Independent
    Washington
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    This a very smart move by Mueller. Indict the Russians before indicting the top Americans who worked with them.

    In the end, this could lead to WH. However, we have to be prepared that Mueller could release a final statement that trump's campaign was involved, but there is no clear evidence that trump was personally aware his campaign has been working with Russians. It very well could be that Russian intentionally did not want trump to know the they were helping him so that he could have plausible denial.

    Let's hope he is able to get trump on money laundering.

  • Center Left
    Independent
    Central, FL
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    This is a very nice start. Hopefully more details follow. Trolls were everywhere leading towards the election. Substance would be nice. Will anyone pay a price ?
  • Independent
    Washington
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    So will trump use the sex abuse claim that the "Russians are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law" while at the same time saying "These indictments proves that there is no collusion"
  • Independent
    Washington
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    Schmidt Wrote:

    One of the MSNBC analysts noted that this is significant because it was an action taken by Mueller and not the Justice Department, not Congress and not the President. Mueller is taking action where these other entities should have acted a long while ago.


    Rachael Maddow teared upped during her show on this very issue. "Finally, the National government has done something"

    What I still wonder about: What is the FBI's bar to charge a sitting president?

    It's very likely that if trump were a private citizen, the FBI already has enough evidence to charge him, but because he is president, they might feel the amount of evidence required to indict trump needs to be "Overwhelming". Not just one smoking gun with 1000 pages of evidence, but 10 smoking guns and 10,000 pages of evidence.

  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    Okay after listening to all the various expert analysts in their respective fields, I am feeling like Mueller is going to be able to take this investigation to its full conclusion. Some of the analysts and journalists (including Rachel Maddow) are asking why now and why go after the Russians first instead of say the WikiLeaks hackers?

    First, putting Rod Rosenstein up front as the spokesperson, takes much of the heat off Rosenstein himself to be fired or resign. This is not a Nunes type of sloppy memo...this is a highly researched professionally done indictment with all the i's dotted and the t's crossed. I expect that in the next several months when additional and the final indictments are read, Rosenstein will be there again and again at the front. Trump cannot fire him...he'll be bullet proof. That takes away one of my biggest worries that I have written about here...that Trump will be able to slow or stop the investigation by getting rid of Rosenstein. He would be crazy to do that now. The investigation has real legitimacy for all the doubters. Nothing fake about it.

    Second, by going after the Russians now in a big way, while deliberately not going after the big fish in the Trump administration (at least not yet), it plays to our sense of patriotism. More of the Trump supporters will feel isolated if they start questioning the legitimacy of indicting Russians. Public opinion on the FBI will shift back to the FBI's favor. Who wants to defend the Russians? Let that narrative soak for a few weeks. It's a shrewd move by Mueller and Rosenstein.

    Third, by saying that the indictment does not implicate anyone on Trump's team it gives some breathing room for Trump to relax. Trump and Fox News are playing up the 2014 start of the investigation and twisting Rosenstein's words to mean that Trump is vindicated. Not true. But it keeps the "collusion politics" off the front page a while longer. It's all about the Russians for now.

    Next will probably be Manafort and those associated with him...Rick Gates and others, much of it perhaps unrelated to the previous Russian indictments.

    Then I would expect the Russian hackers to be the subject of the next round of indictments, including the WikiLeaks collaborators. This could get into a Donald Trump Jr indictment, but Mueller may hold off on that big fish for a while yet.

    Somewhat lost in the news is that Steve Bannon "told all" in 20 hours of testimony to Mueller. Rick Gates will collaborate much of what Bannon said, assuming he flips as expected. The noose tightens on Kushner in this round.

    At some point later in the investigation, the meat of the investigation will come out...the money laundering and cover up. That's when the shoe drops on Trump. Ideally it will be right before the midterm elections to give everyone something to think about...all those Republicans running for office who have steadfastly supported Trump. Make it an election issue on impeachment.

    This is getting to be fascinating to me now. Mueller is playing a game of chess. Mueller is the master and Trump's band of lawyers are just rooks and pawns in the game.

    I feel good. Our democracy is working now.

  • Independent
    Washington
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    Schmidt Wrote:

    This is not a Nunes type of sloppy memo...this is a highly researched professionally done indictment with all the i's dotted and the t's crossed.

    This is true and factual. What is interesting is that for for trump's base, who are either evangelicals or have the same thought processes as evangelicals, it does not matter. Nothing matters except what they "Believe" to be true. In their mental perception of how the world works, facts only matter if those facts support what they believe. Facts that do not support their personal beliefs are "fake facts" which they will rationalize away illogically or explain as being an explainable act of God. "Its' God's will, nothing more is required"

    I point this out because rational people get very frustrated when the "evangelical mind" is shown something that is valid\logical\true\fair\unbiased\etc, yet they will still reject it because it does not align with what they currently believe.

    For trump's base, Nune's memo is the word of god (symbolically). Mind closed; all other facts bounce off it like bullets hitting Superman's chest, because those facts are fake facts.

  • Independent
    Washington
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    Schmidt Wrote:

    First, putting Rod Rosenstein up front as the spokesperson, takes much of the heat off Rosenstein himself to be fired or resign. This is not a Nunes type of sloppy memo...this is a highly researched professionally done indictment with all the i's dotted and the t's crossed. I expect that in the next several months when additional and the final indictments are read, Rosenstein will be there again and again at the front. Trump cannot fire him...he'll be bullet proof. That takes away one of my biggest worries that I have written about here...that Trump will be able to slow or stop the investigation by getting rid of Rosenstein. He would be crazy to do that now. The investigation has real legitimacy for all the doubters. Nothing fake about it.

    This indeed demonstrates that the FBI understands how to deal effectively with unhealthy politics. By releasing these indictments that target hostile countries , and known foreign criminals, but not indicting the American counter parts, makes it far harder for criminals (and those who support them) to generate a false political narrative.Trump likes to create a false narrative in advance of what he knows will happen, so that when the facts are released his false narrative has already created a huge mental wall for his base. Something akin to "Mueller and Rosenstein just want to get revenge on... bs,lies, etc". The way the FBI has handled this makes it extremely difficult for trump to make the claims he is being targeted and the indictments are based on falsified evidence.

  • Center Left
    Independent
    Central, FL
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    The dirty lying cheating FBI dropped the ball when given a tip about the "professional school shooter" line on YouTube. The base will miss the serious issues because their alternative facts will point to their presidents innocence.

    If the ferocity pointed towards the FBI (now calling for investigations and everything) was pointed towards the political liars and manipulators - we might have shown improvement. Instead we marinate in the typical partisan bullshit.

  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    wwjd -- Yes with respect to Trump's evangelical base you hit the nail on the head. Yesterday I had one of those door hangers hanging on my outside door. It was from a local church inviting me to attend a service as "their guest". On the back of the door hanger were five quotes from the Bible, which were meant to entice me to attend. The fifth one caught my eye: ""Finally, pray and ask Jesus Christ to be your Savior, and claim his promise of eternal life." I added the bolding.

    It reminded me why so many (not all) of these faith leaders can con so many people into giving them money. They promise something they never have to visibly deliver on, eternal life. They only have to make people of the flock believe that they indeed delivered when the poor person died and went to "heaven". They are con artists in that respect to varying degrees.

    But the eternal life promise also reminded me of the other master con artist, Donald Trump. The only difference with respect to his con game is that he is expected to deliver. He said so himself in his book:

    You can't con people, at least not for long. You can create excitement, you can do wonderful promotion and get all kinds of press, and you can throw in a little hyperbole. But if you don't deliver the goods, people will eventually catch on." – Donald Trump, The Art of the Deal, 1987

    Unlike his fellow con artists in his evangelical base, Trump either needs to deliver on his promises or alternatively perpetuate the con game by deflection and lies...forever...eternally. He is a masterful liar in that respect, even better than many of the faith healers.

    I have worried deeply that he might just be able to pull off his con game by getting rid of Rosenstein and putting his own lackey in his place. However, he has met another master in Robert Mueller who has just made an absolutely brilliant move in his indictment of 13 Russians and three related organizations, and by putting Rosenstein on the podium to explain those indictments. Trump's planned firing of Rosenstein was in effect Trump's "Trump Card" and that possible move has now been neutralized...taken off the table so to speak.

    Trump didn't know this was coming. As several of the analysts on MSNC explained yesterday, the customary protocol in making such a move of indicting 13 Russians would be to include not only the president in the planning and execution but also the State Department and the other department heads. It didn't happen that way. Instead they along with Trump were briefed by Rosenstein and Wray on the morning right before it happened. Trump was caught totally unaware. He couldn't answer any questions to the media, who shouted out to him the word "Russia"as he made the long walk to the helicopter..alone. He was dumbfounded.

    Now he will brood down in Mar-a-Lago for the long weekend contemplating his fate. Maybe he'll try find some comfort mixing with his billionaire friends at Mar-a-Lago...but perhaps not. Maybe he will be left to golf alone as his billionaire friends too can see the writing on the wall. The end is near. Trump is a loser. He cannot deliver anymore on his promises. The people are catching on.