Picture this: You stand accused of conducting shadow diplomacy in a country your boss tried to strong-arm into influencing an election. A separate report also ties you to shadow diplomacy in Venezuela, which tracks with the previous reporting about your efforts to act on behalf of President Trump in the Ukraine. While discussing all this with your lawyers, they ask you about the steps you plan to take in the coming weeks, while your boss prepares to fight a looming impeachment. You pause, step outside to make a few calls with some other notable Crime Guys, come back in the room, and announce that you will be representing your boss against the impeachment. One of your lawyers shits his pants, while another turns around and throws up into the lap of her assistant. One asks for a moment of fresh air, and his assistant later finds him digging “GUILTY” into the walls of the office with his own fingernails, which are bloody and broken. Your name... is Rudy Giuliani.
At Trump’s New Year’s Eve celebration at Mar-A-Lago, Rudy Giuliani told Fox News reporters that he would do just about anything for his boss, including testify in a Senate impeachment trial. Even more stunningly idiotic, though, was his insistence that he would “love to try the case.” Yes, that is correct. Crime Guy Rudy Giuliani, who is most definitely doing some kind of crime, would like to act as President Trump’s off-white knight at an impeachment trial: “I would testify. I would do demonstrations. I’d give lectures. I’d give summations. Or, I’d do what I do best: I’d try the case. I’d love to try the case. I don’t know if anybody would have the courage to give me the case.”
I say—let him! According to Giuliani, he would defend Trump with a racketeering case, presumably against the Bidens or even the U.S. Government. And as he sees it, he “kind of invented” the racketeering case anyway. Unsure if that’s true, but he’s certainly acquainted with the concept of racketeering, both as a legislative strategy and a general ethos. What could go wrong? [USA Today]
While the rest of us were binging The Witcher, or drinking our way through New Year’s Eve, some rich people at Mar-A-Lago were high-fiving Trump in the buffet line. Sounds normal! Politico reports that the president’s annual gathering at the “Southern White House”—barf!—was full of some interesting characters, including anthropomorphic skid mark Alan Dershowitz, who chatted Trump up while the two waited to slop some iceberg lettuce onto their fine china. (CNN reports that the menu included Trump favorites: “iceberg wedge” and baked Alaska.) According to Dershowitz: “He was in a very good mood. People were talking to him, people were high-fiving him. These are his people.” Sure!
Attendees of the event, the same at which Rudy Giuliani signed up to tell on himself, usually include: “Palm Beach residents, wedding guests and the characters Trump invites down for a meeting or a round of golf.” Politico describes the atmosphere as “freewheeling,” while former press secretary has also described the event as lacking the “18 gatekeepers” usually placed around the actual White House. Glad to know Trump has (allegedly!) sold access to himself for the last four years—not like we have laws against profiting from the presidency, or anything!
Anyway, here are some of this year’s “characters.” It’s a real grab bag!
- Eddie Gallagher: A former Navy Seal who was accused of stabbing an unarmed “teenage ISIS prisoner,” posing with his corpse, and slaughtering innocent civilians. Trump later intervened on his behalf, and he received clemency.
- Rudy Giuliani: The crime guy!
- Alan Dershowitz: Jeffrey Epstein’s former lawyer who is suing one of his client’s accusers after she alleged Dershowitz sexually assaulted her.
CNN also reports that, when asked about her New Year’s resolution, a “stone-faced” Melania answered: “Peace on the world.” Unclear if this will come true for her or not, but I’m sure she found some respite while her husband shoveled iceberg lettuce into his mouth with Alan Dershowitz. [Politico]
- U.S. Defense Secretary rings in new year by beating the drums of war. [Politico]
- The Army officially declares TikTok a “security risk” and bans it from use on government issued devices. [The Hill]
- Yet another prisoner has died in ICE custody. [CNN]
- Sanders raised a bunch of money. [New York Times]
- Yang also raised a bunch of money. [New York Times]
- Warren wants to expedite disability benefits [Washington Post]
- Australia is still burning and their Prime Minister sucks. [Washington Post]
- I’m not joking, the Australian Prime Minister fucking sucks. [LA Times]
- He sucks so bad, he’s defending coal mining while his country burns down. [France24]