Legal experts are weighing in on the bombshell news that federal agents on Wednesday raided former Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani’s home and office in New York City. The New York Times, which broke the news, says the execution of the search warrants are linked to the investigation into the former New York City mayor’s activities in Ukraine.
George Conway, noted attorney and spouse to former Counselor to President Trump says the bar for a search warrant for Giuliani had to be extremely high:
This is such an important point. The predicate for this search of the premises of a lawyer who represented a president must, as a practical matter, go way beyond probable cause. https://t.co/NZbE8SdcFb
— George Conway (@gtconway3d) April 28, 2021
Conway was responding to remarks from Richard Signorelli, a former Asst. U.S. Attorney in the Southern District of New York (SDNY), who also said:
As Chuck Rosenberg is making clear right now on @mitchellreports, the staleness doctrine requires the feds to have probable cause that evidence of criminality can be found in the electronic devices/apt/office, at the present time, though they can also go way back in time too.
— Richard Signorelli (@richsignorelli) April 28, 2021
LA Times Legal Affairs Columnist and former US Attorney Harry Littman says Attorney General Merick Garland and Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco had to have signed off on the search warrant applications:
Yes. Monaco too https://t.co/Y4Io1b5zWg
— Harry Litman (@harrylitman) April 28, 2021
Former Dept. of Justice Inspector General:
I doubt this has ever happened before — a former US Attorney having his residence searched in an investigation conducted by the office he once headed. A judge had to conclude that there was probable cause that evidence of crime(s) would be found there. https://t.co/i4lgrjrSxP
— Michael R. Bromwich (@mrbromwich) April 28, 2021
Former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti says the fact that the DOJ raided Giuliani’s home “indicates that the criminal investigation of Giuliani is very far along.”
He notes that, based on the Times’ reporting, “senior political appointees in the Trump Justice Department sought to block these warrants.”
10/ So one interesting aspect of this investigation is that it is related to the first impeachment inquiry. The Trump White House’s efforts to obstruct that inquiry, while unlikely to be chargeable, may have been meant in part to stymie an investigation of Giuliani. /end
— Renato Mariotti (@renato_mariotti) April 28, 2021
NBC News and MSNBC Legal Contributor:
The fact that Rudy is a lawyer and a judge signed off on this search warrant is HUGE. Can you imagine what kind of information was included in that warrant to support obtaining it?
— Katie S. Phang (@KatiePhang) April 28, 2021
Conway also, with his typical sense of humor, “responded” to an old Giuliani tweet:
are in deep, deep s**t https://t.co/O9VwaNLLtn
— George Conway (@gtconway3d) April 28, 2021
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‘Shouting Into the Void’: Trump’s Social Media Launch Laughed Off by Experts
On Saturday, Business Insider profiled the ways that former President Donald Trump’s banishment from social media has affected the viability of his message on the national stage — and the halfhearted way he is trying to make up for what he has lost.
“Former President Donald Trump’s new ‘communication platform’ launched this week was widely mocked as little more than a ‘glorified blog,'” reported Thomas Colson. “The site — revealed on Tuesday — followed Trump’s longtime adviser Jason Miller promising that Trump would soon create a social media platform that would ‘completely redefine the game’ on social media.”
“‘A challenge for Trump is that the most effective online engagement requires interaction,’ Peter Loge, associate professor school of media and public affairs at the George Washington University, told Insider,” continued the report. “‘Fans want to feel as if they have a relationship with their favorite celebrity. These ‘parasocial relationships’ are what keep fans coming back and buying more stuff,’ he said. ‘At this point, Trump is just shouting into the void. He isn’t letting anyone shout back.'”
This week, Facebook’s independent oversight board, commonly referred to as the social network’s “Supreme Court,” upheld the former president’s ban from the platform following his conspiracy theories that contributed to the violent invasion of the U.S. Capitol. However, the board also urged Facebook to create more workable standards for issuing such bans, and revisit the Trump case in six months.
Epic Rachel Maddow Explainer Shows How Bill Barr and Donald Trump Just Got Caught
Tuesday, federal Judge Amy Berman Jackson issued a scathing order about Attorney General Bill Barr falsifying documents to cover up why the Justice Department refused to prosecute former President Donald Trump for obstruction of the Mueller investigation.
In her analysis, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow walked through the shocking decision and the extent to which it will not only open the door to reexamine the obstruction cases, but it also essentially calls Barr a bad-faith liar in federal court.
“I was having a little bit of deja vu, a little bit like being back to the battle days, with whole big sections of the judge’s ruling redacted,” said Maddow referring to Jackson’s decision. “That’s because those redacted parts of her ruling actually show what’s in this document that she just ordered the Justice Department to release. She redacted those portions of her rule, and she didn’t just go ahead and release the document today because she’s allowing a couple of weeks to allow for the possibility that the Justice Department, under new management, may appeal her ruling and still try to keep this thing under wraps.”
Calling it “a heck of a thing,” Maddow explained that the new White House has made it clear that they want to look forward, not back. At the same time, the new White House has also said that they have no intention of meddling with the Justice Department’s decisions or cases.
“Merrick Garland is the attorney general now, all new leadership at the Justice Department, all new priorities, moving forward with a million things at once, and here’s a judge saying, you know, your immediate predecessor in this job lied to me, lied to the court and lied to the American public about something as freaking serious as why the former president was not charged with crimes,” Maddow continued. “You cool with the evidence of all of that being released to the public? Because it’s coming out in two weeks unless you want to appeal my ruling.”
The question then becomes, since the former attorney general lied and falsified a paper trail to a decision not to prosecute Trump, will the new Justice Department review that case for another decision.
See Maddow’s explainer below:
Stunning Confession From Matt Gaetz’s Wingman Was a ‘Signal’ to Trump: Legal Expert
On CNN this Friday, legal analyst Elie Honig was asked about the recent bombshell news story surrounding a confession letter reportedly written by friend of Florida GOP Congressman Matt Gaetz.
In the letter, which was written in the final months of Donald Trump’s presidency, former Seminole County Tax Collector Joel Greenberg admits that he and Gaetz paid for sex with a girl who was 17-years-old at the time. The confession was sent to Roger Stone, a supporter of Trump.
“Why on earth would Joel Greenberg, who at the time was charged with very serious federal crimes but not yet convicted, write out a confession and send it in to the government?” Honig said. “Here is the only possible way I can make sense of this … this was an effort by Joel Greenberg and Roger Stone to try to send a signal to the White House: you better pardon him or else, because he has the goods on your buddy, President Trump, Matt Gaetz.”
“So I think the message is: pardon him, you’re gonna save Gaetz — don’t pardon him, he’s gonna do what he’s gotta do,” Honig added.
Watch the video below:
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