Year 4, Week 4 (February 9-15)

Welp, the impeachment process has been over for about a week and a half, and I definitely think it’s fair to say we have a new constitutional crisis corner. Funny how Trump never closes one investigation door without opening a new crimetimes window, amirite?

Standard standing reminders apply: I am no journalist, though I play one in your inbox or browser, so I’m mostly summarizing the news within my area of expertise. NNR summaries often contain some detailed analysis that’s outside my expertise–I’m a lawyer, not a dubious budget proposal!–but all offroad adventures are marked with an asterisk. And, of course, for the things that are within my lane, I’m offering context that shouldn’t be considered legal advice. Okay, I think that’s about it for the disclaimers.  Onward to the news!   

Constitutional Crisis Corners:

Well folks, after a week and a half of this nonsense it is my sincere displeasure to introduce you to yet another form of Constitutional Crisis Corner, which I’m tentatively calling Attorney General Overreach.  Here’s what has been happening:    

  • Parnas Implications.It would already be hard to know what all of the above means for the ongoing investigation into Lev Parnas, who is a Rudy Giuliani associate–it’s being led by DOJ officials in New York while Barr accepts Giuliani info on potentially related matters in PA, and that’s kind of an inherent conflict. But news also broke that the NY branch is considering adding new charges that would impact Giuliani, and that just throws gasoline on a department already on fire.  The potential for misconduct here is really high, so we should keep an eye on this.

We also have a final few death rattles of Whistleblowing Ukraine Biden Bingo, which I think still deserve a separate section.  Here’s the mop-up of the old scandal:

Your “Normal” Weird

The Bad:

The Good:

  • Clearing the Playing Field. In the wake of the New Hampshire results, we have a new crop of 2020 hopefuls with low numbers who have decided to drop out. It’s bittersweet for the strongest of the contenders (you had a good run, Andrew Yang), but less so for candidates like Michael Bennet and Deval Patrick, who never broke 1% in the early primaries. And whatever your opinion, it furthers consolidation and coalition-building at a time when we really need it. So it’s certainly far from terrible to have a smaller playing field as we head into the Nevada caucuses on February 22.  

So that’s what I have for this week, and I’m sorry, there are no news refunds. For making it through, you deserve this hedgehog being enticed by a snack and an eventual better government.  I’ll be back next week with more (and hopefully better) news, and I hope you will be back as well–but in the meantime, feel free to ping the National News Roundup ask box, which is there for your constructive comments.  Send me questions! Send me feedback! Send me hot cocoa for bedtime!

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