There's a fine line between investigating groups like this that arguably advocate violence and respecting their First Amendment rights to associate and speak short of violence. I don't know the details of the rhetoric of the various groups and how that compares to the activities of violent individual members. But in hindsight, it seems non-controversial to suggest that maybe someone should have been looking into them.
And since Booker is trying to run for President, where he would have the authority to set policies on such matters, it's worth pointing out about him.
San Francisco elects son of terrorists as District Attorney
I don't believe in laws that punish people for simply being related to other people, but in democratic elections there is room for a healthy skepticism about electing people whose parents were, to put it mildly, bad examples.
This seems like it would be remarkably constructive. Rather than have armies of functionaries in suits in DC deciding how we should live our lives, we can move those functionaries to places closer to their responsibilities.
Durham investigation expands to Office of Net Assessment
This is the office that was paying Stefan Halper significant money for "research papers" that were overpriced, not to spec, and possibly fraudulent (some of the people reported as coauthors don't remember working on the papers). If Halper was being paid by the US government for his already known activities related to the Trump campaign, Michael Flynn, and others... some of which predate the official start of the FBI investigation.. then who tasked him and authorized the pay?
I've previously pointed out that when Democrats take power in recent elections, they take immediate steps to rig the next election by changing the rules. Mostly, I was pointing to laws that would allow felons to vote (Florida, Virginia, Kentucky). But it's worse than that. Virginia has many more election-rigging changes. The gun control laws proposed actually also count as election-rigging; they want gun owners to leave the state because they can't exercise their rights.
First, the FISC advisor has been heavily criticized for arguing that the FBI did nothing wrong here. His advice to the FICS about reform proposals is critical, suggesting even more reforms and safeguards. That either surprising given his past opinions... or not surprising, given that he wants to preempt criticism while his appointment is under scrutiny. Put simply, he's likely not an honest player and can't be trusted; this play is the opening bid where he tries to claim he's not a Deep State stooge.
Remember when Mueller was described as a paragon of virtue and apolitical competence? Yeah, I'm betting it's like that.
Everyone involved here -- the FISC and their advisor Kris (above), Wray, IG Horowitz -- are all operating on the premise that the FBI and DOJ were acting honestly. They just screwed up. They "forgot" key facts. They failed to verify. And if they had had just one more training program, they would have known to do the right thing.
This was malice. And malice will ignore the rules, no matter what they rules are, except for one thing and one thing only: consequences.
Rosenstein admits authorizing release of Page-Strzok texts
It's interesting to know how they got released, but there are still some questions about timing. This doesn't make Rosenstein into a good guy. He believed their release was inevitable, and this forestalled releasing the complete and unredacted texts which would likely be even more damaging.
That's an aspect I had considered for Supreme Court nominations, but I hadn't thought it through to include the judicial nominations that Trump has been pushing through so rapidly. If the Dems can shut down the Senate's confirmations for the 2020 election year, that's a big win for them if Trump loses, even if the impeachment itself fails. They would have to drag out the impeachment for that, which would annoy their candidates, but it might be worth it. And even if not, six weeks of no more Trump judges is not nothing.
A little-reported guilty plea to a charge of leaking documents from Treasury about the Trump campaign and people of interest in the SpyGate scandal. The guilty plea includes illegally downloading and leaking to the press records on Manafort, Richard Gates, the Russian Embassy, Maria Butina, and Prevezon Alexander... along with thousands of other files containing sensitive government information.
Or rather, filed a motion to do so. It's awkward because it's so late in the process and the judge may be sort of pissed off. But aside from that he has a good case for his innocence, and likely even better once evidence is released.
The problem is that DOJ won't want to release it, and the judge has been sending mixed signals.
The immediate trigger for the motion appears to be a DOJ filing asking for prison time and saying Flynn did not cooperate, which is arguably a violation of their agreement. Of course, DOJ will argue Flynn broke the agreement first.
In my opinion, the malfeasance from DOJ invalidated any plea agreement.
Legislation is being introduced to protect travelers from gun laws in anti-gun states from being punished for just passing through. But we already have this legislation, albeit in an older form. We traded (I think mostly the NRA traded...) new NFA firearms for it. Now we have to "buy" (with lobbying, activism, tradeoffs against other legislation, and all the other things that go along with exercise your free speech rights and engaging in politics, etc...) it again?