Opinions, Context & Ideas from the TPM Editors TPM Editor's Blog

It Just Got Weirder, Folks. A Lot Weirder.

The House released a bundle of new Parnas documents this evening. I’ve been working my way through at home. The most interesting to me are copies of exchanges between Robert Hyde – the landscaper from Connecticut – and an unidentified man in Belgian, or at least with a Belgian country code number. A lot of those reports, allegedly about Yovanovitch’s whereabouts and actions, seemed to come from this guy in Belgium. In many cases, Hyde was just copying and pasting what the guy in Belgium was telling him. It was hard to make sense of. But NBC just published a report that clarifies at least who is who. It’s very weird and very dark. I just recommend reading the NBC report.

Trump's Legal 'Dream Team'

President Trump’s decision to put Ken Starr, Alan Dershowitz and Robert Ray on his impeachment defense team is a good illustration of Trump’s mindset and strategy and the very different approach of Mitch McConnell.

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Parnas Before Rudy

There’s an interesting catch here from Marcy Wheeler. I’m not sure I entirely agree with her on what it means. But I think she’s on to something. It has to do with Lev Parnas’ explanation of his efforts to get U.S. Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch fired. It’s a bit in the weeds but a pretty big deal.

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Where Things Stand: Even Trump's Impeachment Team Is Reminiscent Of The Clinton Era

The Republican majority in the Senate has maintained for weeks that it wants to conduct impeachment proceedings following the precedent set by the impeachment of former President Bill Clinton. Now President Trump’s legal team appears to be following suit. Multiple outlets are reporting this morning that Trump’s team will include Ken Starr, the independent counsel who led the investigation into Clinton, and Robert Ray, who eventually took over the probe. Here’s more on that and other stories we’re following.

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'Three Way Attorney Client Privilege'

There’s a lot of big new information in the various documents given to Congress by Lev Parnas. His interview with Rachel Maddow is a little fuzzier. There’s at least a lot there that seems spun to the hopes of his current audience, which is largely people opposed to Donald Trump. This is hardly surprising. Parnas appears to be a conman, basically. He’s trying to save himself. So we should be cautious about any claims not backed by corroborating evidence, of which there is quite a lot. But here’s one passage worth watching in the second part of his interview that aired tonight on Maddow’s show.

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Where Things Stand: Parnas Lights A Match

In the last 24 hours, Lev Parnas, the indicted pal of Rudy Giuliani, made waves with the release of evidence he’s provided the House Intelligence Committee and explosive claims he made during two cable news hits on Wednesday evening. Among many, many other things, Parnas’ latest remarks place President Trump and his top officials directly in the center of the effort to get Ukraine to probe the Biden family. Here’s more on that and other stories we’re following.

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