Up is down and Lies are “rhetorical hyperbole”

By PatD, a Trail Mix Contributor

Our enemies are friends and our friends are our enemies. War is peace. What climate change?

Washington Post: A federal judge on Monday dismissed a lawsuit from adult-film actress Stormy Daniels that claimed President Trump defamed her when he suggested she had lied about being threatened to keep quiet about their alleged relationship.

U.S. District Judge S. James Otero in Los Angeles ruled that Trump’s speech was protected by the First Amendment as the kind of “rhetorical hyperbole” normally associated with politics and public discourse in the United States.” He ordered Daniels, whose given name is Stephanie Clifford, to pay Trump’s legal fees.
Otero, who was appointed to the court by President George W. Bush, had indicated during a late-September hearing that he was skeptical of Daniels’s claim on free-speech grounds. He said Monday that Daniels has presented herself as Trump’s “political adversary” in public and in court filings and that Trump has the right to respond to her claims.

“If this Court were to prevent Mr. Trump from engaging in this type of ‘rhetorical hyperbole’ against a political adversary, it would significantly hamper the office of the President,” Otero wrote.

“Any strongly-worded response by a president to another politician or public figure could constitute an action for defamation. This would deprive this country of the ‘discourse’ common to the political process,” he wrote.

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108 thoughts on “Up is down and Lies are “rhetorical hyperbole””

  1. star tribune:

    In a string of comments, Housley wrote that then-first lady Obama should “at least stand up straight.” After referencing a Ronald Reagan movie that features a chimpanzee, Housley continued: “I think even that chimp stood up straighter than Michelle. Uh-oh, someone is going to make a comment.”

    Housley also targeted former first lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, calling her a “porker in a blue pantsuit” in response to a friend’s comment that Clinton “seems to be eating well.”

  2. Dems once again attack each other with a viciousness which should be reserved for attacking the other party.  I am floored by so many Dems attacking Warren for doing a DNA test and revealing that she does in fact have Native American ancestry.  Good grief. What the hell is wrong with her doing something many of us have done in the last couple of years, doing the DNA testing?  I did not know I had NA ancestry and am delighted to know that.  She had family stories and just backed up what she heard.

    At what point will Dems be happy and go forward, united, against the greedy old perverts?

  3. 23 & me, baby. Stuff it dot’, you lying POS. Oh, and Sen. Warren, the POS doesn’t pay anything unless a judge puts it in an order.

  4. You gotta be pretty damn stupid to think the Turks are all just out there wondering what they’re doing in there……

  5. I wonder how the Turk’s looking through the Saudi embassy are doing?  They must be looking for the bugs they planted to see how many have been found or compromised.

    I just read the screed from the Cherokee Nation attacking Sen. Warren.  A sad commentary by them.  The protectionism is astounding.  The abject hate is terrible.  I am disappointed in their response.

    Also the thing about the average American having more NA ancestry than her is a breitbart pile of hooey.  If you are Latinx in the Southwest, you would have a lot more NA ancestry, possibly close cousins, but your average white racist in the mid-west forget it.

  6. Think I agree with judge in Pat’s post: “Any strongly-worded response by a president to another politician or public figure could constitute an action for defamation.” He was ruling for the presidency, not Trump.

    Thought it was a dumb move when Avenatti filed it, the courts aren’t about to let the likes of him turn them into a political weapon.

  7. The only issue I have with the decision is the basis for the award of attorney’s fees.  Defamation suits are difficult anyway, but attorney’s fees in federal court are generally limited to those provided for in the Rules of Civil Procedure, a statute or the Court’s inherent power to sanction bad behavior.  I want to see the decision and see what the basis for the attorney’s fee award is.

  8. Avenatti probably knows when he’s making a dumb move, and also probably knows why he’s making it.

  9. OK, I read the decision.  The attorney’s fees award is under the Texas TCPA (Texas Citizen Participation Act), which under NY choice of law provisions was the basis for the lawsuit.  It is not a federal defamation action but rather a state law action heard by the federal court under 28 USC §1332 diversity jurisdiction – citizens of different states suing under state law with damages of more than $75,000 at stake.  Bad choice of law for a defamation suit.  The “rhetorical hyperbole” standard is from two Texas state court decisions – Bentley v. Bunton and Milkovich v. Lorain Journal Co. – that provide the Bentley/Milkovich framework the court used to analyze Clifford’s claim and determine that it did not meet the requirement to proceed.  I guess that in his game of chess Avenatti just sacrificed a rook.


    eugene, eugene, what lies? rhetorical hyperbole, man, he can say anything he wants…. he’s the prez remember

    robinson op ed in wapo
    Trump subverts our democracy with his lies

    President Trump’s constant, relentless, remorseless lying is a central feature of his presidency, an unprecedented threat to our democracy and — in my view — an impeachable offense.
    I realize it does not qualify as news that Trump lies all the time. I also realize it is not always possible to draw a bright line between untruths Trump knows are untrue and conspiratorial nonsense he might foolishly believe. But never before have we had a leader who so pollutes the national discourse with garbage that he at least ought to know is false — and I fear the consequences will be with us long after Trump is gone.
    … “Lesley, it’s okay. In the meantime, I’m president — and you’re not.”
    And that is the point.
    When Trump insists on his own invented “facts,” he makes reality-based political dialogue impossible. His utter disregard for truth is a subversion of our democracy and a dereliction of his duty as president. The founders considered themselves men of honor whose word was their bond. They left us the vague, encompassing phrase “high crimes and misdemeanors” for just such an emergency.

  11. pogo & craig, is there no red line with regard to a president lying?  no red line for a political figure using his office to enhance his wealth thru false statements against competitive companies or which affect stock prices to help friends or which ruin an accused chances for a fair trial?
    or which obstruct justice???

  12. vanity fair:
    “He Is Trying to Make It Right”: As the Midterms Approach, Michael Cohen Is Doubling Down on His Civic Duty
    As Trump campaigns, Cohen has willingly talked to government investigators for more than 50 hours.

  13. patd, “is there no red line with regard to a president lying?”  Apparently not – short of being impeached (fat chance) or defeated at the ballot box.

  14. The only really legitimate case of presidential righteous indignation (no hyperbole) that I can recall was Harry Truman’s anger at the NY Times after that publication panned daughter Margaret in a performance review. He may have fired MacArthur over nukes on Chinese troops, but he might have ruled differently with the Times as the Target.

  15. The equivalency I was trying to establish up above was Avenatti as the father (Truman) against the Times (president). What power did the father/daughter have other than through the courts?

  16. Way back when, we used to call it the ‘credibility gap’. In the era of Trump the gap has become a chasm that is too wide and deep to bridge. This is made possible in part by a media that now seems to consider presidential lying to be routine, and a Republican Party that embraces and apologizes for those lies. Yes, by all means blame Trump , but equal scorn should be reserved for his enablers both inside and outside of government.

    Thank heaveans for the Gene Robinson’s of the world.

  17. I remember still how disappointed my grandmother was when it became apparent that Ike of all people had fudged the facts on the U2 spy planes. That would not even merit a mention in today’s culture of lies and deceit.

  18. I had a hard time giving a shit about Stormy Daniels when the story first broke.  I was convinced it would do damage to trump by some on this blog.  But at this point…  I see it as nothing more than a quaint little story with much sound and fury that went nowhere.

    What I do care about is that 3 weeks from today we can do something about the asshole in chief.

  19. Renee, to be clear, the Clifford lawsuit dismissal is only with respect to the defamation claim – and it has nothing to do with the non-disclosure contract suit. Looking in from the outside I didn’t think the suit had much in the way of legs, and upon closer examination, I don’t think the dismissal was wrong. I don’t believe she ever could have proved her damages.

  20. So fat the golfing president calls Warren Pocahontas

    we should call him Pinocchio  ( as seen in my facebook feed)

  21. “’Federal Judge throws out Stormy Danials [sic] lawsuit versus Trump. Trump is entitled to full legal fees.’ @FoxNews Great, now I can go after Horseface and her 3rd rate lawyer in the Great State of Texas. She will confirm the letter she signed! She knows nothing about me, a total con!” Trump tweeted on Tuesday.
    But Avenatti, who is mulling a 2020 presidential run and is one of the president’s most-vocal critics, swiftly fired back at the latest tweet, blasting Trump as a “shyster” and a “liar.”
    “You are a disgusting misogynist and an embarrassment to the United States. Bring everything you have, because we are going to demonstrate to the world what a complete shyster and liar you are. How many other women did you cheat on your wife with while you had a baby at home?” Avenatti replied.

  22. newsweek:
    Avenatti on Tuesday also tweeted at Trump: “Tens of millions of Americans are tired of your fraud, lies, and corruption. They are equally tired of your attacks on women, especially the ones who you have had sex with while cheating on your wives. We (and the UN) are laughing AT YOU, not with you. #Basta.”
    Trump’s alleged sexual affair with Daniels apparently took place in July 2006, four months after Melania Trump gave birth to their son Barron. Donald and Melania Trump had wed the prior year.
    Avenatti continued to fire attacks at the president on Tuesday. The lawyer wrote, “Don’t mess with @Stormy Daniels,” and quoted his client’s tweet on Trump stating, “Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present your president. In addition to his…umm…shortcomings, he has demonstrated his incompetence, hatred of women and lack of self control on Twitter AGAIN! And perhaps a penchant for bestiality. Game on, Tiny.”

  23. the guardian:

    Last stand in the swamp: activists fight final stretch of Dakota pipeline

    The 160-mile Bayou Bridge pipeline, as the section of DAPL is known, will cross Native American land and 700 bodies of water, terminating in St James, a tiny African American community in Louisiana’s “Cancer Alley”, where some residents are already so hemmed in by industrial infrastructure that they lack an emergency evacuation route.
    In a last-ditch effort, one group of activists is staging an unprecedented and divisive physical protest campaign. They have locked themselves to construction equipment, forced construction stoppages by kayaking up to worksites and dangling from trees on makeshift platforms to delay clearcutting.
    The Bayou Bridge pipeline (BBP) provides the final link between fracked oil from the Bakken shale fields of North Dakota and the refineries and export facilities of the Gulf coast.

    “Thousands of acres are just lost,” said Meche, who is also a member of Atchafalaya Basinkeeper, a local not-for-profit group founded by fishermen that is working to restore and protect the area from further destruction. “Big oil, they’ve gotten away with it.”
    Dean Wilson, executive director of Atchafalaya Basinkeeper, charges that oil and gas companies operate with impunity and face little pushback from a state that needs jobs.
    “There is no way for us to stop the oil industry,” Wilson said. “The question is … what can I do that is feasible, to save the swamps? Either I do what I’m doing or do nothing. Or just go back to fishing and let them destroy everything.”
    Meche puts it even more bluntly: “The people that were supposed to be looking out for me and my interests and my environment sold me out, no doubt.”
    “They’re billin’ us for killin’ us.”

    “Frustrations are high, tensions are high,” said Meche. “If these issues don’t get addressed, then I am fearful that the Cajun people that rely on the Atchafalaya basin for their way of life are going to resort to drastic measures.”

  24. Sideshow may be helpful to Dems in 3 weeks. I kinda doubt it.

    russia. Now that’s the ticket : hollow out trump’s angry white male cult.

  25. Avenatti is not your friend, just like Trump he is in it for the money, hug him at your own risk.

    BTW I would just as soon never hear the name again.



  26. Although I would feature Trumps “horse face”  comment on a constant loop. remind republican women who their candidate is supporting.




  27. PatD — “pogo & craig, is there no red line”

    Sure there is, that’s why God made Impeachment and Election Days. A frivolous Stormy Daniels defamation lawsuit just aint it.

  28. Stormy was mere entertainment and no one should treat her or her lawyer as anything more.

    She was properly slapped down by the judge, imo.

    Mean while instead of Stormy, why does Trump protect the Saudis and the Russians. Only his tax accountant know for sure……….


  29. Jack,
    I would phrase it as, “Ms Daniels was a sex worker who decided enough was enough. She engaged a lawyer to pursue a defamation suit against our president. She lost phase one of that suit. Her pro-bono counsel acknowledges his agenda to dismount the president from his throne. That complicates the case at Ms Daniels expense.”

    Does being a sex worker deprive an individual of fundamental protections under law?

  30. She may have been prostituted, but as Ms Ivins would write if she were with us, Stormy’s now an Arthur.

  31. Sex worker. A euphemism for a prostituted person. Sex worker makes it sound as if it weren’t sexual abuse.

  32. I don’t believe Stormy Daniels is a sex worker, she is an entertainer.  At one time like many in her profession she many have combined the two but now she is at a level where she no longer has to.

    What  she is, is a self promoter and she saw more money promoting herself using Donald Trump than taking his money to be quiet.

    From what I’ve seen she has had more than adequate protections under the law. and then some.

    If you want to defend her and die on that hill , have at it.


  33. I’m really not sure what her occupation has to do with anything.  While distasteful to some, pornography is legal and in my opinion it does nothing to diminish her claims against IMPOTUS.  Her suit was probably properly dismissed – as I explained above.  I believe she has done the country a service by exposing what a shit our “president” is. Plus, she’s gotten Michael Avenatti on the tube to provide hours of entertainment.

  34. gentlemen, please, the purpose of the thread was not to defend ms Clifford nor promote her counsel.  it was to bemoan the further (and now judicially approved) disregard for truth and the acceptance of lies by persons of power without accountability or penalty.    so is it now acceptable in a public forum to knowingly say untruths, falsely accuse and discredit another person under the rubric of rhetorical hyperbole?

    the new norm?

  35. KGC, one difference is that one plaintive is a porn star (sorry, make that an adult film professional) and the other is not.

  36. KGC, not sure but I think the difference between Summer Zarvos’ defamation suit and Clifford’s is that his verbal attacks on Zarvos were before becoming president.

  37. I wish ms Clifford and Avenatti well in their quest to torment him.

    And GOP are the sleaze bags here.

  38. Trump does have a tendency to repeat things 3 times

    Can we assume that means he lying almost all the time

    How can people let him treat them with such contempt

    Speaking of contempt –  Yertle on the deficit is stunning – it’s all the fault of medicare and social security says the man who claimed the tax bill would increase revenue more than enough to make up the shortfall

  39. Filming a prostituted woman being abused for money does not transform the act from prostitution and abuse into legitimate labor, or change the position of abused woman into a legitimate career.

  40. x-r, nor should it be okay for a john to abase said abused woman and lie about laying with her

    or for a judge to encourage/condone such behavior by labelling it “rhetorical hyperbole”

  41. Any attempt to normalize SFB will fail because the small hands guy is low intelligence, suffering with symptoms outlined in several sections of the DSM 5, a hatefilled bastard of a person; a racist and going down with senile symptoms and Alzheimer’s.  He is not normal and if he did not have his father’s money he would have been on the streets pushing a shopping cart.

  42. Heads up! Yertle says Republicans are coming for Social Security and Medicare benefits.  Not in so many words, of course.

    Darned, entitled seniors.

    Vote Dem if you are between the ages of 18 and 108.

    Back from Trump country.  Nope, TX is not Trump country compared to the Ozarks.  Missed Beto/Tedious round two, last night.

  43. BiD, the debate according to this morning’s NY Times:
    SAN ANTONIO — Representative Beto O’Rourke of Texas, who has fallen behind Senator Ted Cruz in the polls in their hotly contested Senate race, turned sharply aggressive in their second debate on Tuesday night as he attacked Mr. Cruz’s honesty and character while the two clashed over abortion, climate change and other red-versus-blue divides.
    Using phrases like “Ted Cruz is for Ted Cruz” and “all talk and no action,” and questioning whether the senator had delivered any results for Texas, Mr. O’Rourke took his most personal shot at his opponent when Mr. Cruz expressed skepticism about climate change and argued that Mr. O’Rourke supported higher taxes on oil. The congressman invoked an attack line that Donald J. Trump had used against Mr. Cruz in the 2016 presidential race.
    “Senator Cruz is not going to be honest with you,” Mr. O’Rourke said. “He’s dishonest, and it’s why the president called him Lyin’ Ted, and it’s why the nickname stuck — because it’s true.”
    “It’s clear Congressman O’Rourke’s pollsters have told him to come out on the attack,” Mr. Cruz replied.
    In their first debate last month, Mr. O’Rourke was largely reserved and anything but aggressive. He had trouble boiling down his expansive responses into memorable zingers, and his just-good-enough performance most likely played at least some role in Mr. Cruz’s recent lead in the polls. On Tuesday, however, Mr. O’Rourke was far sharper and edgier. He sweated more, used his hands and arms to punctuate his arguments and repeatedly cast Mr. Cruz as dishonest, ineffective, more focused on running for president than representing Texas and beholden to corporate interests.
    In one exchange, Mr. Cruz was asked about Mr. Trump’s trade war. Mr. Cruz said he was against it, and pivoted to talk about Mr. O’Rourke’s remarks about impeaching the president, calling his opponent “the only Democratic Senate nominee in the country who has explicitly come out for impeaching President Trump.” He added that if Mr. O’Rourke had his way, there would be “two years of a partisan circus” aimed at ousting the president.
    Mr. O’Rourke replied, “It’s really interesting to hear you talk about a partisan circus, after your last six years in the U.S. Senate.”…..

    The displays of fireworks aside, there was no single significant moment in the debate that seemed certain to help or hurt the two candidates with about three weeks to go to Election Day. Mr. O’Rourke was clearly aiming to energize his base of voters and trying to remind Texas independents and moderates of misgivings they may have about Mr. Cruz.

    On Tuesday night, Mr. O’Rourke was lucky to have made it into the studios at all. Before the debate, the parking attendant outside the KENS 5 television station was surprised when Mr. O’Rourke pulled in driving his own vehicle. He regularly drives himself campaigning around the state. Debate night was no different.
    “If you don’t have a pass, I don’t know how to get you through,” the attendant told Mr. O’Rourke. His wife, Amy O’Rourke, sat in the car, joined by staff members. They were live-streaming the drive to the debate on his Facebook page.
    “This is how you know it’s real,” Mr. O’Rourke said. After some consultation, the parking attendant sent Mr. O’Rourke in.
    “Thank you,” Mr. O’Rourke said. “Thank you for your service.”
    He rolled up the window.
    “We passed the first hurdle,” Mr. O’Rourke added.

  44. also in NY Times with regard to Florida senate GOP candidate scott:
    TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Rick Scott had been governor of Florida for barely three months when questions first mounted about conflicts of interest. Fabulously wealthy but a newcomer to politics, Mr. Scott mandated random drug testing for state workers in March 2011, and was pushing the legislature to require it for welfare recipients. The Republican governor, who had made his fortune as a health care executive and investor, also proposed reorienting the state’s Medicaid system toward managed care.
    As it happened, those moves would have created vast potential markets for the chain of 32 urgent-care clinics that Mr. Scott had co-founded a decade earlier, after his forced resignation as chief executive of the hospital company Columbia/HCA. News reports about the governor’s personal stake in the Solantic clinics, which he transferred to his wife shortly before taking office, stifled the momentum of his first months in office.
    To shield himself from future conflict charges, Mr. Scott, who is now running to unseat the incumbent senator Bill Nelson, created a $73.8 million investment account that he called a blind trust.
    But an examination of Mr. Scott’s finances shows that his trust has been blind in name only. There have been numerous ways for him to have knowledge about his holdings: Among other things, he transferred many assets to his wife and neither “blinded” nor disclosed them. And their investments have included corporations, partnerships and funds that stood to benefit from his administration’s actions.
    Only in late July, when compelled by ethics rules for Senate candidates, did Mr. Scott disclose his wife’s holdings. That report revealed that his wife, Ann Scott, an interior decorator by trade, controlled accounts that might exceed the value of her husband’s. Their equity investments largely mirrored each other, meaning that Mr. Scott could, if he wanted, track his own holdings by following his wife’s.
    The filing revealed that the Scotts together were worth between $254.3 million and $510 million. (The Senate requires that assets be valued only in ranges.) They own a beachfront mansion in Naples, Fla., valued at $14.1 million (along with a $147,000 boathouse) and a Montana residence on 61 acres worth $1.5 million. The governor, who has banked more than $200 million in investment income while in office, forgoes his $130,000 state salary and jets across Florida in his own plane.
    If he wins a tight race for the Florida seat, which is central to control of the Senate, Mr. Scott could well become the richest member of the next Congress. His broad menu of investments might regularly present conflicts that require recusal. He has declined to say whether he would use a blind trust in the Senate, where the rules controlling them are far more stringent.
    Mr. Nelson, a 76-year-old Democrat who is serving his third term, has made campaign issues of Mr. Scott’s wealth and the blindness of his trust. “Governor Scott has been in public service for himself,” he charged in August.


  45. jack, mother Teresa was well-known for her work with the so-called untouchables — the twit certainly falls in that category


    “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” ― Mother Teresa

  46. She’s not mother anything…..just another stand-up kid, doing what she can, trying to make it in this wacky kooky old world.

  47. Yes, and “the standup kid” is using her connections to Trump to promote her business, her celebrity stripper tour, her book ect.ect.ect.

    But if this is the person you want to make the face of the Democratic party, go for it.


  48. NY Daily News reports that the FBI is looking into what can only be called bribery and influence peddling in the NY DA’s office – wanna guess who was doing the bribery and influence peddling?  The article focuses on large campaign donations by Harvey Weinstein’s attorney and (gasp) Marc Kasowitz for Ivanka and Don Jr.

    Manhattan’s top prosecutor came under fire last year after questions surfaced about his office’s 2015 decision not to go after ex-Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein after model Ambra Battilana accused him of groping her breasts in his Tribeca office.

    A lawyer hired by Weinstein at the time had given Vance $24,000 and another attorney sent him $10,000 after the decision to spare the powerful producer an arrest.

    In another case, the DA also failed to bring criminal charges against two of President Trump’s children in an alleged real estate scam.

    Vance’s office cleared daughter Ivanka Trump and son Donald Trump Jr., who were being looked at for allegedly defrauding Trump SoHo investors and would-be buyers by lying about the number of condos that had been sold.

    In 2012, Vance met with an attorney for the pair, Marc Kasowitz, who had previously given him $25,000. An additional $32,000 was donated after the office declined to prosecute Ivanka and Trump Jr.

    Vance returned Kasowitz’s first installment prior to the sit-down. He gave back the second sum of cash in October 2017 after he was criticized for not going forward, and for taking the lawyer’s money.

    What’s that last paragraph sound like?  SSDD.

  49. She never billed herself as the Virgin Mary. She asked for a fair shake from a man who she felt had taken fiscal advantage of her. As a Democrat, I’ll side with the person I perceive as the victim every time.  In this instance, I don’t perceive President Trump as the victim.

  50. Other than a mutual loathing for SFB, what makes Clifford the face of the Dem party, Jack?  The fact that her lawyer has political ambitions and is pretty clearly a dem?  I have no doubt that Clifford is a Dem, but then again, the pugn party has its share of sex industry members – one of the more prominent of whom – Dennis Hof, the “trump from pahrump” died after partying with two other prominent republican sex workers – Ron Jeremy and Joe Arpaio.

    And while we’re talking about stupid shit, Joe Arpaio is suing the NYT for queering his re-election bid.  Being convicted of a felony is apparently not disqualifying in pugn world.

    Joe Arpaio, the former Arizona sheriff who finished a distant third this year in a Republican Senate primary, filed a libel suit Tuesday night against the New York Times and a member of its editorial board, arguing that they had undercut his chances for another run.

    In a complaint filed with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Arpaio took issue with an opinion piece written after the August GOP primary titled, “Well, at Least Sheriff Joe Isn’t Going to Congress: Arpaio’s loss in Arizona’s Senate Republican primary is a fitting end to the public life of a truly sadistic man.”

    Arpaio is seeking $147.5 million in damages from Michelle Cottle, the author of the piece, and the Times, as well as attorneys’ fees and other costs.

    The suit is so wrong on so many levels it makes Stephanie Clifford’s suit against Arpaio’s benefactor SFB look like a textbook case of how to sue for defamation.  A gofundme account should be set up for Cottle’s defense – it would probably break records. Maybe Sheriff Joe should add NBC news to the suit to make it even more stupid – I’m just sayin’…

  51. Flatus you demonstrate the biggest problem with modern politics.

    She is not a victim by any stretch of the imagination. She is a pure user,  from the time she took an easy $130,000 to when she broke that contract because she aw the opportunity for much larger money. It has always been about the money and self promotion.

    Why this place is so ready to defend and embrace this huckster/con artist is both amazing and amusing.

    (of course the same thing could be said about the conservative Christians and the huckster/con artist, Trump.)

    There is book in this phenomenon, the problem will be where to list it, in the political section or as a psychology book


  52. Jack, I suppose you’re correct. When I was an elected city commissioner and vice mayor I always had time to listen to citizen complaints of developer encroachment and unfair utility billings, etc. And I listened to the small business people when they were being elbowed by major businesses. Everyone has facts supporting their position.

  53. Wow setting up Stormy Daniels as the face of the Democratic Party — sounds like a straw man argument to me

    no one is making her the face of the party or Avenattti either — that is so lame

  54. Just because someone isn’t pristine, doesn’t mean they can’t also be a victim.

    If she was harassed in that parking garage (which I suspect she was based not only on her claim, but on Trump’s need to comment on it), it doesn’t make her the Dem poster child.   Who said it does?

    However, her history (and yeah, she is a “user”) doesn’t discount anything SFB and/or his handlers may have done.

    jack – How do you live up there with all of those Trump-ites?   TX isn’t that bad, basing it on the campaign ads.

  55. KCG,
    Not one individual nor a group of individuals are the face of the Party. I see our face as the reflection of all Americans who believe in a version of the 10 Commandments, who work to house, feed, educate, heal and raise their young to be proud Americans serving the greater good. Who will defend our Country when the need arises, who will exercise their franchise, will serve on juries when called, and will keep their grass cut and do their neighbors’ yards when they can’t.

  56. She’s been abused and is now an abuser. That’s the way the sex industry, and other forms of abuse, work. It is a heartless remorseless business.

    Ms Pat, regarding yours of 6:03 am. I agree. I tend to think that the only good john is a dead one.

  57. Now we know, Trump will have sex with a “horse face”

    Yup, and it’s time that someone dumped the entire horse head in his bed. Maybe after the election kelly will go postal, and wipe out the entire building, pence first.

    What a pleasant thought.

  58. Story is told about Charlie Pride when he started to make it bought a house in a nice upscale area in Texas somewhere…..he was out on his riding mower soon after he moved in, cutting his lawn,  and his new neighbor came home, saw him cutting the grass, and not knowing who he was asked Charlie how much to cut his yard too, so Charlie told him 50 bucks and cut the guy’s yard…..

  59. Republicans candidates are pretending to be Democrats and lying about their position on health care and pre-existing conditions — how come that is not a big news story

    Sleazy Scott Walker is trying to pretend that he cares and Martha McSally despite the fact she votes against pre-existing condition requirements   said she was in favor of keeping the requirement  –and then she lied about her opponent saying she supported terrorism   where is the national outrage news story on that


  60. KGC

    it is hard to have outrage when the outrageous has become routine.

    No remedy for it that I can see except to vote

    Dems need to capture at least one one chamber of Congress.Along with control comes subpoena power and the ability to investigate some of these outrages.


  61. jack, dems will canonize anyone who successfully gets trump to testify under oath.  so far that’s about as likely as winning the lottery.

    my my, all this fuss and fume over my outrage that “rhetorical hyperbole” has become with judicial blessings the euphemism for “lies”

  62. Jace

    I will be very unhappy if they don’t take the house because it will mean more people are like Trump

  63. KGC

    I think that the house is the more likely of the two.my sense is that the senate is slipping away.

    The house will be fine with me if it happens. They have lots of standing committees with investigative authority.

  64. the guardian:
    More than 10m tweets sent by state actors attempting to influence US politics have been released to the public, forming one of the largest archives of political misinformation ever collated.
    The database reveals the astonishing extent of two misinformation campaigns, which spent more than five years sowing discord in the US and had spillover effects in other national campaigns, including Britain’s EU referendum.
    Twitter announced on Wednesday that it was making the tweets available to researchers and the public to support broader analysis of how misinformation campaigns operate.
    The archives contain tweets sent between 2013 and 2018 by 3,800 accounts associated with the St Petersburg-based Internet Research Agency, which generated 9m tweets; and 700 accountsassociated with a smaller misinformation campaign backed by Iran, which produced 1m tweets. Including the videos and images the political trolls uploaded, the database comes to more than 350GB in size.
    The focus of both campaigns was on the US, but their “opportunistic” nature meant that others found themselves in the firing line, according to the Washington DC-based Digital Forensic Research Lab (DFRLab).
    “The Russian trolls often chose targets of opportunity, especially elections and terrorist attacks, in their attempts to interfere in local politics,” the lab said after analysing the database. “This included promoting anti-Islam hashtags after the Brussels terror attacks, a pro-leave hashtag on the day of Britain’s Brexit referendum, and leaks targeting the French president, Emmanuel Macron, before his election.
    “On June 23, 2016, as Britain held its Brexit referendum, the troll farm’s accounts posted #ReasonsToLeaveEU 1,102 times, a mixture of authored tweets and retweets. They were apparently spearheaded by @WorldOfHashtags, which posted, ‘Everybody is obsessed with #EUref today. So let’s play #\ReasonsToLeaveEU.’
    The trolling was not confined to social media. As a previous Guardian analysis has shown, Russian trolls were cited in more than 100 UK news articles by unknowing authors, who incorporated their tweets as examples of humour, “on-the-ground” reporting, and public opinion.
    One account, @KaniJJackson, posed as a Black Lives Matter activist and tweeted under the names “Kanisha J” and “Remove Trump Now”, with a profile picture of Michelle Obama. That was cited nine times by publications including BuzzFeed, the Daily Mail and the Daily Express. Another, @SouthLoneStar, pretended to be a US white supremacist and was cited by the Metro, the Telegraph and the Sun over provocative tweets sent in the wake of the Westminster Bridge terrorist attack.

  65. KGC

    They could have the House select committee on presidential tax returns.

    that is a pipe dream that makes me smile 😊

  66. Fun facts:

    There is a certain part of a certain dinosaur’s anatomy which has been named by the scientists as the “thagomizer”. It was actually called that by the scientists after this cartoon.

  67. I know these things can change quickly, but fivethirtyeight has the chances for a Dem pickup of the house at 8 in 9 – up from 4 in 5 earlier this week.

  68. All the key economic indicators would seem to work in favor of a status quo election. There must be some very strong undercurrents that are beginning to make themselves felt. Would look for Trump and company to really ratchet up the rhetoric between now and election. Extremism is his new watch word and it seems to be getting a little traction . Look for fear, loathing and lies to be on the upswing during the next three weeks.

  69. As in Alabama, turn-out is going to upside down this thing.

    They’re going to be buried by the decent honest folks of this nation.

    (Speculation alert)

    and if not……I quit, because I’ve had it with those bastards, and I’ll watch em burn themselves up from Yellowknife, Yukon Territory. Or maybe just south of Montreal…..shorter commute to my Catskills Jewish Comedian gig.

  70. Cruz will be hammered.   I know the theorizing and the beer-orizing, but Cruz loses.   Cause whatever else, texans know a loser when they see one…..nickel-plated phony.

  71. In this one……don’t watch the polls……watch the people.

    Motto of my little 19th C. military high school:   WATCH

  72. Just a a quick question for any body.

    has anyone heard a peep from the DNC during this election cycle?Do they still exist or do they just pay the salaries of their employees and let the electoral chips fall where they may?

    Sorry that was two questions.

  73. Every Texan knows that Willie ain’t just bumpin’ his gums…..down in Texas Willie cuts a wide swath.

  74. I think Cruz is lining up his next gig……he knew he was a goner when he saw Willie shootin’ him the bird wearing a Beto T-shirt.

    the oil guys will try to swing it, but it just aint gonna wash…..and when you cross that old red river, Hoss, Bob Wills is still the king…..and Willie is a direct link.

    yay Willie.

  75. Willie: “Take it home with you, spread it around.”
    Willie Nelson’s live premiere of Vote ‘Em Out performed 9/29/18 at the rally for Beto O’Rourke.

  76. with love from willie, sturge


    [Verse 1] If you don’t like who’s in there, vote ’em out
    That’s what Election Day is all about
    The biggest gun we’ve got Is called “the ballot box”
    So if you don’t like who’s in there, vote ’em out

    [Chorus] Vote ’em out (vote ’em out)
    Vote ’em out (vote ’em out)
    And when they’re gone we’ll sing and dance and shout
    Bring some new ones in
    And we’ll start that show again
    And if you don’t like who’s in there, vote ’em out

    [Verse 2] If it’s a bunch of clowns you voted in
    Election Day is comin’ ’round again
    If you don’t like it now
    If it’s more than you’ll allow
    If you don’t like who’s in there, vote ’em out

    [Chorus] Vote ’em out (vote ’em out)
    Vote ’em out (vote ’em out)
    And when they’re gone we’ll sing and dance and shout
    Bring some new ones in
    And we’ll start the show again
    And if you don’t like who’s in there, vote ’em out

    [Outro] Vote ’em out (vote ’em out)
    Vote ’em out (vote ’em out)
    That’s what Election Day is all about
    The biggest gun we’ve got Is called “the ballot box”
    So if you don’t like who’s in there, vote ’em out
    If you don’t like who’s in there, well vote ’em out

  77. Sturgeon

    I hope Cruz is Texas toast but this is the state repeatedly sends Louie Ghomert back to congress. That does not bode well for sound rational candidates.

    Praying for heavy turnout in the big cities to offset the reactionary vote in the hinterlands.

    Whenever Texas has the chance to do the right thing they usually don’t.

  78. Sturg, in the past week I’ve gotten emails from Biden, Hillary, Perez & Schumer. I think I’ve heard from the DNC. BTW, listen to Jace. He’s right- Gohmert tells you all you need to know about Texas. Add Cruz and you know more than you’ll ever need to know about Tx.

  79. Pogo,

    I would dearly love to be wrong in the case of Texas.

    What gets lost in all the shouting is that Cruz is every bit as bad asTrump right down his ability to tell a lie even when the truth would do him more good.He easily qualifies as one of the least principled most dangerous men in DC and that is saying something in the current climate.

  80. Folks voted for a Trump in the prez primary just because they hated Tedious so much, per man-on-the-Street interviews st the time.   Yes, they were Republicans and said they actually preferred Kasich, but couldn’t risk a Cruz prez’duncy.

    My neighborhood, based on signage, is heavily Beto.  Many Beto signs & zero Cruz signs except a big one on a stretch of road that gets littered with signs every election season.

    Statewide, IDK.

  81. Did Julie Annie die or defect to Kiribati ? his disappearance may account for trump’s numbers improving slightly. Alternatively, the russian puppet may be doing better because he hasn’t been shrieking, WITCH HUNT !!! for two weeks. I think trump should go back to reminding folks that he works for putin, not for the American public.

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