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Josh Marshall

Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.

Articles by Josh

In the first week of our annual Prime sign-up drive we were able to sign up just over 1,000 new Prime members, which is great. Our goal for this drive – and it’s a critical one – is to sign up a total of 2,000 new members. This isn’t just an arbitrary goal or something that sounds cool to get to. As I’ve described in my earlier posts, it’s a critical benchmark in our efforts to transform TPM’s business model from one based primarily on ads to one based primarily on membership. This is a critical part of that equation.

So if you’re a regular reader and haven’t yet signed up for Prime, please consider doing so today. It costs only 14 cents a day, $4.99 a month or $50 a year, depending on which option you choose. You get a site with dramatically fewer ads, you get all the Prime only content. There are a bunch of other features. And with all that you become part of making TPM possible and, more than possible, a robust and vital organization that can continue doing the work our team does every day with a relative independence from the storms from the advertising, tech and social platform industries which are battering and in some cases destroying so many publications. Please, if you’ve been considering it, thinking that you would, make the moment now. Just click right here.

We’ve now seen that a growing list of top Trump administration officials are denying that they wrote the New York Times op-ed. There’s much less here than meets the eye. Let me explain.

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If you’re reading this post on the TPM front page, you must be a Prime member. It’s not behind our Prime paywall. It doesn’t even show up on the site unless you’re a Prime member who is logged into the site.

What’s the point?

I don’t imagine we’d use this very often. But the main issue is that as we’ve steadily built our number of Prime subscribers – now at just shy of 29,000 members – we’ve realized that it’s probably annoying to hear pitches to join Prime when you’re already a member. So this system let’s me have some posts show only to non-members and others only to members. All of which is to say that you won’t have to see anywhere near as many of those Prime pitch posts. I still may occasionally do one that everyone sees if we hit some big milestone or something else that might be relevant to current members. But mostly not.

This will also make it possible for me to share news about relevant updates to Prime or news that for whatever reason is only relevant to members.

We’ve just released the third installment in our 2018 special editorial series on Voting Rights and Democracy. In installment three, Rachel Cohen looks at the critical issues of gerrymandering, redistricting reform and other reforms like automatic voter registration to see whether the various progressive groups who are now dedicated to fighting on these issues will be successful in making them top tier issues not just in the abstract but for voters when they enter the ballot box.

When this New York Times oped was released yesterday afternoon I was in the process of having a wisdom tooth removed. So I didn’t hear anything about it until the early evening. So when I got to reading it we were already into people’s 2nd or 3rd impressions of what to make of it. I’ve been reading it over and I want to share a few thoughts about its potential authorship.

First, a few points of context. I say ‘faux-resistance leader’ because I see this exercise primarily as one of anticipatory self-exculpation. As things look darker and darker for the President we are beginning to see the first glimmers of the argument that those who should be tainted forever by their association with President Trump may actually be “unsung heroes” who were resisting from within.

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I wanted to follow up on my post below about Kavanaugh being a made to order Justice, courtesy of the Federalist Society and the rest of the conservative judicial incubation infrastructure. One highly knowledgeable reader of ours, who comes out of the DC legal world, notes more specific points: specifically, the way Kavanaugh’s grooming and incubation was conducted for the specific purpose of a) being absolutely certain that he was a strict right-wing ideologue, with no hidden dimensions of possible heterodoxy unexamined and b)that he was clean as a whistle, not only with no scandals but no paper trail that would cause undue problems. No more emerging heterodoxy like Kennedy and Souter. No more flame-outs like Bork.

From TPM Reader XX (true initials witheld) …

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For all the talk about Kavanaugh’s judicial extremism, what stands out to me most about him is that he was essentially raised in a test tube for the purposes of serving on the Supreme Court. Of course, these two facts are not exclusive of each other. They are more the means (test tube incubated Justice) and the end (made to spec conservative maximalist Justice). But he is uniquely this way. He was born and bred in Republican DC. He was given the right education. He has been guided from his twenties through a cursus honorum of titles, clerkships, offices, Republican political appointments, judgeships and more.

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