Saturday in the wake of their massive error I teased CNN about the definition of “Newsworthy”. Yesterday I told the story of a special election that took place last week in Massachusetts, a State where Hillary won by 27 points and where they hold super-majorities in both houses, where a GOP State Senate Candidate flipped a seat that Democrats have held for over 25 years and suggested this story is a good example of what is Newsworthy.

However while I’ve done lots of shoe leather reporting over the last 8 years I’ve never actually worked for a newspaper or in a newsroom, nor have I exercised editorial control over anything larger than this blog.

So what would experienced reporters who have done journalism for a living all their lives and have to sell their product elsewhere, what would such folks lives think?

So I contacted several professional reporters current and former and asked them, without giving any details if he would consider a pro-life 2nd amendment republicans flipping a seat held by democrats for over 25 years in a special election in Massachusetts newsworthy.

As you might guess my first stop was Robert Stacy McCain. He has decades of experience as a reporter in papers large and small from his early twenties. He concluded it was for the following reasons:

“It points to the direction of politics as we head to the midterm elections and it is a possible indicator that the Trump momentum will continue despite the usual trend of off-year elections favoring the party out of power.”

He game an example from recent history as well.

“When democrats had a very good result in Virginia elections in November and this was made national news…the election of a transgender Democrat to a formerly republican held seat (also in Virginia) it made national news.”

And he cited the upcoming special election in Alabama as something that elevates the newsworthyness of the story further:

“If Trump really has momentum nationwide this result in a special election in Massachusetts might point to what we are looking at in Alabama.

That agenda has encouraged the Republican base. It’s about who can get out and mobilize their base. Republicans flip a Democrat seat in Massachusetts that tells you that despite what the pols might indicate and despite what the media might tell you to believe Trump remains popular with his base. So when you come to Tuesday, Democrats have tired to nationalize the Alabama senate race but it will be a base election.”

I also spoke to Don Surber author of Trump the Press and Trump the Establishment the same question. While currently retired he like Stacy McCain has decades of experience in the newsroom. To him the answer to the question would really depend on location.

“If I’m in Massachusetts it’s newsworthy because it has proximity, it has prominence, it’s timely, it’s odd because Gop doesn’t win there it has consequence because it will affect legislation.”

With the GOP only up to 7 senators that last one point is unlikely although you can’t get to 21 without getting to 7 first. So if he was in charge at the Boston Globe

“It has front page newsworthiness below the fold right hand corner.”

The Globe apparently disagreed with Mr. Surber. Tran’s victory didn’t make the front page but a search of their web site for Dean Tran did have a result in the Metro region.

linking to this seven sentence story by Jake Johnson from Wednesday including this quote from the Mass GOP Chair Kristen Hughes:

“The MassGOP is proud to congratulate [Tran] on his victory, which is a testament to the fact that voters stand with Governor Baker’s vision of fiscal discipline and common sense reform,” Kirsten Hughes, chairwoman of the MassGOP said in a statement announcing Tran’s victory.

Based on Don Surber’s stated opinion the Massachusetts paper of record definitely undersold a newsworthy story in the state, but when asked if it rises to the level of a national story , his opinion was very different.

“It’s not really national news I’d probably report it on some level If I ran it on AP I’d run it as a small 3 paragraph story.”

And he explained why: “I’d blog about it, for partisans it has impact. it’s not a national story because you have fifty state senates, most of them are republican. Space is a limited thing…you have to pick and choose your spots, AP would have it, same with Bloomberg news, three paragraphs”

A search of AP showed that while they didn’t have any original reporting they had picked up the Sentinel articles quoted in this piece

While a search of Bloomberg produced plenty for “Dean” results on colleges and “tran” on transgerder issues they had nothing on the special election in Massachusetts.

But that’s newspapers, Should we have seen something on Fox for example?

“Would I expect it to be on Brett Baier’s special report, no.”

And apparently Fox news agrees

How about CNN?

“If you are doing a political hour you might mention it but to the audience CNN is serving it’s not a national story.”

and apparently CNN agrees there as well

Of course part of what makes a story news is the attempt of people to push it. For example If I was the GOP chair national chair, particularly if I was the daughter of the former governor of Massachusetts, I’d have made it a point to mention this election to force coverage of a GOP win in a democrat stronghold and if I was the National GOP I’d at least have a mention of this result on my page

Here again Surber disagrees. “Democrats went with their minor victories because they had nothing else to brag about.” Surber cited the Tax bill, news reports on manufacturing jobs and President Trump move on Jersualem as stories of a much higher priority for the national party to push. But even if the national party decided to push the story, if it was up to him Surber wouldn’t bite saying bluntly: “It’s just not a national story.”

So maybe I shouldn’t be as hard on CNN as I was yesterday.

Closing note.  I had planned to have a third reporter for this post, unfortunately for me and him Dave Weigel became rather tied up this weekend.  Ironically he became more newsworthy than my story or this post.

By:  Pat Austin

SHREVEPORT – Are you trying to get into the Christmas spirit?  Already IN the spirit?  Here’s a list of things to do because it is Christmas (inspired by British Logic):

  1. Bake some fruitcake cookies (fruitcake is awful; fruitcake cookies are wonderful).
  2. Watch Love Actually.
  3. Mix up some spicy Bloody Marys and an assortment of garnishes. Invite friends over.
  4. Go to a really crowded shopping center. You don’t have to buy anything.
  5. Avoid every WalMart.
  6. Bake and decorate sugar cookies.
  7. Build a gingerbread village.
  8. Drive around and look at Christmas lights.
  9. Listen to Christmas music on Pandora, especially the traditional tunes.
  10. Hang tiny white lights around your kitchen.
  11. Make four batches of Chex Mix. Throw in whatever sounds good.  Distribute what you can’t eat to friends at the office.
  12. Wear Christmas socks.
  13. Go see Santa. Count how many children cry when their picture is taken with him.
  14. Put up a live Christmas tree.
  15. Have an argument with someone about white v. colored lights.
  16. Watch Christmas Vacation.
  17. Buy one really extravagant gift for someone who would least expect it but really deserves it.
  18. Write out Christmas cards: not the obligatory Xerox Christmas letter and not a Shutterfly photo of your perfect family – real cards with glittery Christmas scenes.
  19. Buy Christmas stamps for your Christmas cards.
  20. Stand in a really long line at the post office at absolutely the last possible minute.
  21. Put a red tablecloth on your table. Find some holly to use as decoration.  Bonus points if it has red berries.
  22. Postpone all of your gift wrapping until the last minute. Spread it out across the living room floor and do all of your wrapping in one evening.
  23. Forget where you hid at least one gift.
  24. Put antlers or a reindeer nose on your car.
  25. Attend a performance of The Nutcracker.
  26. Read a great Christmas book.
  27. Attend a local performance of Christmas music.
  28. Make a killer rum cake.
  29. Buy at least one present for yourself.
  30. Buy an advent calendar.
  31. Hang a live wreath on your door.
  32. Donate to the charity of your choice. Bonus points if it’s a local animal rescue or a homeless shelter.
  33. Watch A Charlie Brown Christmas.
  34. Attend a small-town Christmas parade.
  35. Eat your weight in Brach’s peppermint nougat.
  36. Make a pot of seafood gumbo. Serve with hot French bread.
  37. Watch the A Christmas Story
  38. Find some live mistletoe growing in a tree; knock it down and hang a sprig in a doorway. Do not do this at the office.
  39. Roast pecans. Add sugar and butter.
  40. Take your next door neighbor a plate of Christmas cookies.
  41. Treat yourself to a shot of really fine bourbon.
  42. Buy a poinsettia. Or two.  Or three.
  43. Build a bonfire.
  44. Go sledding. Unless you live in Louisiana.
  45. Play upbeat Christmas tunes over your outdoor speakers while doing yardwork. Look at how many neighbors come outside.
  46. Visit with neighbors.
  47. Have a really good cry for those you miss so badly it hurts.
  48. Check out the list of top 100 Christmas movies. Watch a few you’ve never seen.
  49. Make cheese straws. They are best with a cold bourbon over ice.
  50. Go to the midnight Christmas service at your church. Or someone else’s church.
  51. Attend a Christmas play.
  52. Go ice skating.
  53. Watch The Bishop’s Wife.
  54. Call your mother, if you can.
  55. Read ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas with a child.
Sheriff-Lew-Evangelidis-Dean-Tran-Charlie-Baker-and-friend 2016

This story is what we call “News”

Robert Stacy McCain The Power of Simple Sentences May 31st 2011

Yesterday I promised an example of a Newsworthy story it now follows:

On Tuesday morning before I was headed off to what would be, unknown to me, my last day of work before I was laid off, I headed to the St. Bernards activity center in Fitchburg Ma’s ward six with my son to vote in a special election for the Massachusetts State Senate vacated by Democrat Jennifer Flanagan of Leominster after Governor Charlie Baker appointed her to the Massachusetts Cannabis Commission.

If this had been the US Senate the idea of a GOP governor appointing a Democrat Senator from a district that went for Scott Brown in the past might have made some waves, but as Flanagan had successfully defended her seat both during the 2010 big red wave and the smaller 2014 red wave that elected Charlie Baker Governor (I covered the debates back then) and the fact that a republican hadn’t held that seat since the first George Bush was president (Mary Padula) there wasn’t a lot of worry over it in Democrat circles.  Particularly since her GOP opponent Dean Tran had previously lost a special election for State Rep in Fitchburg where he was a longtime city counselor even though popular GOP sheriff Lew Evangelidis and Governor Charlie Baker had appeared on his behalf then and would do so in this race too.

The primary was held on the day of the General election and despite two wild cards longtime Leominster city counselor Claire Freda (a self described Conservative Democrat / Liberal Republican) running as unenrolled and Green / Rainbow candidate Charlene DiCalogero the smart money was on Susanne Chalifoux Zepher who had won a three way Democrat primary on election day and had outspent Tran by more than 6-1 .

But election day Tran’s supporters turned out:

Leominster resident Sarah Tatro said she was more swayed by Tran’s Republican convictions, which she said were more in line with her own views.

“He’s way more of a conservative than Sue Chalifoux Zephir and he lines up with a lot of the policies I care about and my beliefs,” she said, referring to his pro-life stance and support of the Second Amendment.

And when I got home that night after midnight I was delighted to find out that Dean had won with 46% of the vote in the four way race to Chalifoux-Zephir’s 42% Freda picked up 10% of the vote (lower than I expected) and green candidate DiCalogero 1%. This gives the GOP its seventh seat out of forty in the Massachusetts senate and gets them half way toward the 14 seats needed to break the Democrat senate super majority.

Now I will grant you in terms of the composition of the Massachusetts senate it’s not going to make a huge difference this year.

But it seems to be that a Republican candidate,  and not just a republican but a Minority pro-life 2nd Amendment republican, flips a senate seat, and not just a senate seat but a seat that Democrats have held since 1992, to represent three cites (Fitchburg Leominster & Gardner) that all went for  Hillary in a state she won by over 27 points  might, just might, be a Tad newsworthy.

But in fairness that’s the opinion of a blogger who has never been employed in the MSM.  What would professional reporters say?  Tomorrow I’ll share with you the opinions of a few I spoke to on the subject.


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Finally might I suggest my book  Hail Mary the Perfect Protestant (and Catholic) Prayer and would make an excellent Gift for the person of faith on your Christmas list.

There was such high hopes for Republicans going into 2017. A GOP-controlled House and Senate putting legislation on a Republican President’s desk is exactly what they’ve been asking for since Barack Obama first took office. Voters delivered. All was well in the world. 2017 was going to be the year the GOP finally got stuff done.

I don’t have to tell you the punchline. It’s more like a punch in the gut. I know there are readers who will have valid excuses why Obamacare wasn’t repealed, Planned Parenthood wasn’t defunded, the wall wasn’t funded, and DACA is on its way to becoming law. I also know there are plenty of readers who will point fingers at this faction, that branch, or this person about why we don’t have anything of substance after nearly a year of trying. I’ll nod in agreement with pretty much all of the excuses and finger-pointing because all will likely be valid to some extent. The only one I won’t accept is that the Democrats obstructed. That would be false. They didn’t have to. The GOP obstructed itself just fine.

All of this leads me to the current dilemma. The GOP must pass tax cuts before the end of year. Why? Because the aforementioned utter failures at everything else they’ve attempted have forced them into a position where they might get literally nothing big accomplished in their entire first year with full control. That label is too much for them to want to carry, so they’re doing everything they can to get something they can call tax “reform” on the books. This should terrify us all.

Not only is the plan not what most Republicans would have wanted, it actually does worse by some of the people who wanted it. The effects on the middle class are debatable, but one thing that’s very clear is a huge mistake they have to get fixed before they can pass it. As reported by the Wall Street Journal:

That means a business owner’s next $100 in earnings, under certain circumstances, would require paying more than $100 in additional federal and state taxes.

As lawmakers rush to write the final tax bill over the next week, they already are looking at changes to prevent this from happening. Broadly, House and Senate Republicans are trying to reconcile the bills they passed, looking for ways to pay for eliminating the most contentious proposals. The formal House-Senate conference committee will meet Wednesday, and GOP lawmakers may unveil an agreement by the end of the week.

The possible marginal tax rate of more than 100% results from the combination of tax policies designed to provide benefits to businesses and families but then deny them to the richest people. As income climbs and those breaks phase out, each dollar of income faces regular tax rates and a hidden marginal rate on top of that, in the form of vanishing tax breaks. That structure, if maintained in a final law, would create some of the disincentives to working and to earning business profits that Republicans have long complained about, while opening lucrative avenues for tax avoidance.

In reality, this is should be pretty easy to fix. I’m not going to blow this out of proportion like so many in the media will, but it demonstrates a reality: these tax bills were rushed with the sole purpose of getting something passed in 2017. Had they repealed Obamacare, they would have been much more careful and methodical about putting out a tax cut package that wasn’t loaded with glaring holes and fiscal irresponsibility. Had they gotten the wall funded and started building it in full force, they might have held the tax bill a little longer to make sure they weren’t making huge mistakes with the nation’s economy.

We are riding a wave when the economy is in great shape. By rushing a mistake-ridden tax plan through to the President’s desk, they’re putting all of that at risk. This economy would be strong with very few risks of backsliding if it weren’t for Capitol Hill’s arbitrary deadline prompted by their failure to accomplish anything in 2017. For the sake of their majority, the GOP is willing to put the economy at risk with a sloppy tax plan.

We need tax cuts badly, but I’d rather wait a little longer and get the right tax plan in place instead of rushing it to protect a few politicians fighting for their careers.

Jeanne Ives

By John Ruberry

At my own blog and here at Da Tech Guy, I enthusiastically backed the candidacy of Bruce Rauner, the current Republican governor of Illinois.

Count me as an ex-supporter. I’ll be voting for state Rep. Jeanne Ives (R-Wheaton) in next spring’s primary.

Rauner was a political newcomer when he narrowly defeated unpopular incumbent governor Pat Quinn three years ago. He became the first gubernatorial candidate in the Land of Lincoln to win a majority of the vote–albeit a very small one–since Rod Blagojevich’s first victory in 2002.

Rauner’s campaign slogans were “Bring Back Illinois” and “Shake Up Springfield.” He hasn’t done either which is why, in its upcoming cover story, National Review is calling Rauner “the worst Republican governor in America.”

After Quinn’s own narrow win in 2010, he and House Speaker Michael Madigan (D-Chicago), by far the most powerful politician in Illinois,  ramrodded through the General Assembly what was called a temporary income tax increase, which would expire shortly after the 2014 gubernatorial election. At that point, after Quinn’s presumed next win, the tax increase would be voted on again and made permanent.

But fed-up Prairie State voters, most of whom are corralled into gerrymandered legislative districts created by Madigan, who is also the chairman of the state Democratic Party, have no other way to fight back except at the top of the ticket every four years. They chose Rauner to stop the bleeding.

In his previous career Rauner was a venture capitalist. When he took over a company he could fire the CEO. He can’t do that with Madigan. So what followed was a game of chicken. Rauner, as part of his Turnaround Agenda, supported such common sense reforms as term limits for legislators, later changed to term limits for legislative leaders, which was clearly aimed at Madigan, who has been speaker of the House for an unprecedented 32 of the last 34 years. It’s Madigan who Reuters calls “the man behind the fiscal fiasco in Illinois.”

Other Turnaround Agenda items included tort and pension reform–Illinois has one of the worst-funded public pension systems in America–a ban on public sector unions contributing to state political campaigns, an option for local governments to enact right-to-work laws, as well as a two year property tax freeze.

Rauner said he was not averse to an income tax increase–but in exchange for his support of a tax hike he wanted his Agenda Turnaround agenda passed.

For thirty months the game of chicken continued, and that included an unprecedented two years without a budget. Illinois’ pile of unpaid bills tripled, reaching a level of over $16 billion. In the end Boss Madigan won. Overriding Rauner’s veto and some Republican legislative defections–who provided cover for Democrats in unsafe seats to vote “No,” Madigan’s 32 percent income tax hike became law.

Rauner and the GOP didn’t see a single part of the Turnaround Agenda included in that tax hike. Its passage was a colossal failure for the Republicans and long-suffering Illinois taxpayers.

And Rauner has been a colossal failure too. Yet he’s still running for reelection. In his video announcement Rauner dons a leather jacket and rides a Harley-Davidson motorcycle, which is ironic as southeastern Wisconsin, which is where Harley-Davidson is based, has been a direct beneficiary of Illinois’ decline.

The failures of Rauner don’t end with Madigan winning the tax increase war. Breaking a promise he made Cardinal Blase J. Cupich of Chicago, Rauner, who is pro-choice, signed into law a bill that keeps abortion legal in the state even if the US Supreme Court overturns the Roe vs. Wade decision. The bill also allows Medicaid funding of abortion as well as funding of abortions for state employees. And Rauner also signed into law a bill, weeks before California did, making Illinois a sanctuary state.

Ives, who is Rauner’s only declared Republican opponent, voted against both bills when they were up for vote in the House.

Last week the governor drove home the gist of his own failures when he said of Illinois, “I’m not in charge.” Who is? Madigan, because he has “rigged the system,” Rauner says. Is that true? Probably. But Rauner has had three years to unrig it. That’s why voters hired him.

What expectation do we have that Rauner can unrig it in a second term?

In her campaigns announcement Ives said that she wants to “realign public sector salaries and benefits to be commensurate with their private sector counterparts who finance it all.” Specifically she favors 401(k) plans for new state hires. Ives, a West Point graduate and a mother of five, also backs property tax reform and in an acknowledgement to one of President Trump’s campaign themes, vows to fight for the “forgotten people in Illinois” Of which there are plenty, including me.

In that campaign introduction Ives refers to the governor as “Benedict Rauner.” While I don’t view Rauner as purposely traitorous to the voters who supported him, he has been a spectacular disappointment as governor. I apologize to anybody who took my advice and voted for him.

Rauner says he is “not in charge” of Illinois yet he still wants four additional years of not being in charge. Who in their right mind can get behind that? Rauner says “it’s time to finish the job.” But he hasn’t even started it yet. Imagine Rauner as a homebuilder and three years after hiring him all that he has to show for his efforts is an unkempt pile of bricks paid for with money borrowed from you.

That’s Illinois, which leads the nation in negative net-migration. Its bond rating is the lowest ever for a state.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

Mighty Mouse frowns on all your bogus Superhero hijinks.

by baldilocks

SJW Nonsense? I repeat myself.

CNN takes a break from tanking the stock market by promoting fake news to feature some SJW Superheroes of the Caucasian persuasion.

White Nonsense Roundup is a social media watchdog group with about 100 white volunteers. Its goal: to relieve people of color from the emotional labor of engaging with a person’s racist or racially insensitive thoughts.

Say, a person of color makes a post about Black Lives Matter. Then others respond with ignorant or offensive comments. That person can tag White Nonsense RoundUp to snatch some edges — or, better put, to educate people with context and fact-based views.

“It’s really unfair that we expect people of color to experience racism, but then also explain it to us,” the group’s co-founder Terri Kempton, a book editor and college instructor, told CNN.

From the White Nonsense website:

We believe it is our responsibility to call out white friends, relatives, contacts, speakers, and authors who are contributing to structural racism and harming our friends of color. We are a resource for anti-racist images, links, videos, artwork, essays, and voices. These can be used by anyone for a DIY white nonsense roundup, or by the WNR team to support people of color upon their request.

That’s mighty white of them.

So black people are too inferior to pimp-slap their own trolls now?

Personally, I like trolls. They taste good with carrots, potatoes and tomatoes. And let’s not forget garlic! Leave it to a bunch of Leftists to try and deny black people the pleasure of eating tasty troll carcass for lunch.

Jokes aside, I’ve talked about this phenomenon before. Such people want to be the heroes of black folk and, thereby, assuage their own white guilt, but it’s more than that.

These people what to be able to say the following to black persons who hate whites.

“See what I did for you people?”

Take it from a black conservative, blacks who hate whites will not give a rat’s. They hate you poor souls almost as much as you hate yourselves and feel absolutely no guilt about it.

Pointing and laughing at the impotence of these poor souls is easy. Their best bet would be to turn all their guilt –white and otherwise — over to God. But, I’d wager that many of these don’t believe He exists — a primary condition for fooling oneself.

(Thanks to The Daily Wire)

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. (Her older blog is located here.) Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2012. Her second novel tentatively titled Arlen’s Harem, will be done one day soon! Follow her on Twitter and on Gab.ai.

Please contribute to Juliette’s JOB:  Her new novel, her blog, her Internet to keep the latter going and COFFEE to keep her going!

Or hit Da Tech Guy’s Tip Jar in the name of Independent Journalism!

Well…sorta. Somehow I missed this gem from Vox in November:

The US needs more babies, more immigrants, and more integration

I did a double take, then read the article. Not surprisingly, rather than propose doing things like promoting families that might create stable conditions for raising children, we instead get more government:

Continue reading “Did Vox just say we should have more babies?”

Last Thursday morning, I was planning to go cover the G8 Summit at Camp David. Instead, I saw Aaron Worthing’s story, immediately recognized it as newsworthy and . . . well, God’s got a great sense of humor, doesn’t he?

Robert Stacy McCain ‘He has no F—ing Soul May 23rd 2012

In my effort to improve journalism in the United states in general and on CNN in particular let me offer this tidbit of info for the editors CNN via the Merriam Webster online Dictionary:

Definition of newsworthy

interesting enough to the general public to warrant reporting

And in the interest in setting an example of using more than one source for a story, here is the definition from Dictionary.com

  1. of sufficient interest to the public or a special audience to warrant press attention or coverage.

Now let’s use “newsworthy” in a sentence:

CNN’s misreporting of the date of an email to the Trump campaign in order to make it appear that that they were being offered documents from Wikileaks before they were released publicly and promoting this false narrative for hours on the air is a very newsworthy story.

I hope that this will be of use to the editors of CNN  as an extra bonus tomorrow morning at DaTechGuy blog we will give an example of a newsworthy story that neither CNN nor the national press bothered to cover.


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Finally might I suggest my book  Hail Mary the Perfect Protestant (and Catholic) Prayer and would make an excellent Gift for the person of faith on your Christmas list.

While driving down Route 55 in Lagrangeville, New York (about 60 miles north of New York City) on the way to a medical appointment yesterday, I spotted a sign outside of Kelly’s Steaks and Spirits that sure lifted mine! The sign announced that they DO NOT air NFL games in that establishment and the sign further went on to say:

MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN

If I were not driving at the time I would have taken a picture.  I do not have the resources to go out for dinner, but that sign alone (in NEW YORK) is enough reason for me to want to check that place out if the opportunity to dine out should ever present itself to me. Predictably, the Trump Derangement Syndrome afflicting people has caused an outbreak of hatred and poor reviews for this establishment.  At the top of their page, Facebook highlights certain words they think we need to know people are using:

*******

MJ Stevenson, AKA Zilla, is best known on the web as Zilla at MareZilla.com. She lives in a woodland shack near a creek, in one of those rural parts of New York State that nobody knows or cares about, with her family and a large pack of guardian companion animals. 

Mueller:
First,
Last Wednesday I posted that Special Counsel Robert Mueller had spent $3.2 million in his first four months investigating Russian meddling in last year election and any links between President Trump and Russia.

But that’s not the real number: the Department of Justice spent $6.7 million, saying it’s not “legally required to figure out this total”(emphasis added),

according to a report released Tuesday.

Of the total, only $3.2 million was spent directly by Mueller on salaries, travel, rent and equipment through September.

The other $3.5 million was spent on DOJ operations and would have been spent on its own pre-existing Russia investigations if Mueller hadn’t been tapped to take over in mid-May. DOJ said it wasn’t legally required to figure out this total, and past special counsels didn’t tabulate it.

Second,
Peter StrzokAndrew Weissmann, and now Jeannie Rhee,

. . . this week, details of Rhee’s client relationships emerged, revealing that she representedObama Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes during the House Select Committee on Benghazi’s investigation of the 2012 Benghazi terrorist attack.
. . .

Also this week, it was reported that Rhee represented the Clinton Foundation in 2015 against a racketeering lawsuit brought by conservative legal activist group Freedom Watch in 2015. Rhee also represented former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in a lawsuit seeking access to her private emails.

You read that right: The Clinton Foundation was her client, and Rhee represented Hillary in a lawsuit involving the missing emails. As if that were not enough, her husband served as special assistant to then-Deputy Attorney General Eric Holder.

You can’t make this up.

Hey, when you’re hiring Dem buddies from WilmerHale, they don’t come cheap. No wonder Mueller’s spending big bucks.

Conflict of interest, your name is Mueller.

UPDATE
MUELLER’S “RIGHT HAND MAN” IS THE GUUY WHO TOOK A HAMMER TO HILLARY’S BLACKBERRIES:
Debra Heine finds yet another Dem defender on Mueller’s team,

Aaron Zebley served previously as Mueller’s chief of staff at the FBI and as a senior counselor in the National Security Division at the Department of Justice.

. . . in 2015 when he was a lawyer, he represented Justin Cooper, the IT staffer who personally set up Hillary Clinton’s unsecure server in her Chappaqua home

Zebley went the whole nine yards, and, are you sitting down?

is also the aide who destroyed Clinton’s old BlackBerries with a hammer.

CORRECTION WITH APOLOGY: ZEBLEY WAS THE LAWYER FOR COOPER, THE AIDE WHO HAMMERED THE BLACKBERRIES.

Deb points out that he is often referred to in the media as Mueller’s “right-hand man.”

John Le Carré could not make this up.


The economy: Three headlines, 1 news (emphasis added)

WaPo neutral: The U.S. economy added 228,000 jobs in November, showing strong growth amid historically low unemployment

WSJ stats: U.S. employers hired workers at a strong rate in November and the unemployment rate held at a 17-year low, signs the economy is on its firmest footing in at least a decade.

NYT nostalgic: The U.S. economy added 228,000 jobs in November, a sign that hiring remains strong eight years into the current recovery.


Fausta Rodríguez Wertz writes on U. S. and Latin America at Fausta’s blog