When Donald Trump tasked Rudy Giuliani with spearheading his legal effort to overturn the results of the 2020 election, it was obviously the final nail in the coffin of this extremely sad attempt to overthrow democracy. While Giuliani started his career as a federal prosecutor, of late his professional activities have involved trying and failing to take Joe Biden down via hard drive, appearing in a Sacha Baron Cohen movie with his hands down his pants, and unironically holding a postelection press conference between a crematorium and a sex shop running a sale called “DILDO MADNESS.” This is not the person you turn to when you need help getting out of a parking ticket, let alone convincing federal courts to give you a second term despite decisively losing the presidential election. Unfortunately for Trump, no reputable law firm wants anything to do with him. Also unfortunately for Trump, both he and Giuliani became untethered from reality several decades ago. So despite the fact that their odds of success are on par with those of Biden nominating Jared Kushner as Secretary of State or replacing Kamala Harris with Ivanka Trump on the 2024 ticket, they’re apparently intent on not only dragging this thing out as long as possible, but doing so in the most unhinged, mortifying fashion possible.
Which brings us to the press conference held by Giuliani on Thursday, an appearance that seemingly had no chance of topping his performance in court earlier this week but somehow did, by leaps and bounds. And that’s not just because, at one point, sweaty beads of what appeared to be hair dye dripped down the side of his face as though they were trying to flee the scene:
Hair and makeup malfunctions aside, the first thing you need to know about this press conference, in which Giuliani and company alleged they have evidence of mass, coordinated voter fraud, is that despite such claims, they told reporters they can’t actually provide any evidence of them at this time. “It’s not a singular voter fraud in one state,” Giuliani said, speaking from the Republican National Committee headquarters. “This pattern repeats itself in a number of states, almost exactly the same pattern, which any experienced investigator prosecutor, which suggests that there was a plan—from a centralized place to execute these various acts of voter fraud, specifically focused on big cities, and specifically focused on, as you would imagine, big cities controlled by Democrats, and particularly if they focused on big cities that have a long history of corruption.” He added: “I know crimes, I can smell them. You don’t have to smell this one, I can prove it to you, 18 different ways. I can prove to you that he won, Pennsylvania, by 300,000 votes. I can prove to you that he won Michigan, probably 50,000 votes,” Giuliani continued. And yet, he didn’t prove anything, not 18 different ways or even one way. He did, however, act out a scene from My Cousin Vinny:
Later, he claimed that more than 600,00 ballots in Pennsylvania weren’t inspected, rendering them “null and void,” which is false; that Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito had said ballots coming in Pennsylvania after 8 p.m. couldn’t be opened, which is also false; and that votes have not been certified in Wayne County, Michigan, which, you guessed it, is also false.
Incredibly, the award for the most batshit-crazy portion of the presser didn’t even go to Giuliani. Instead, it was clinched by attorney Sidney Powell. Taking over from the former mayor, Powell, who previously represented disgraced National Security Adviser Mike Flynn, told reporters she was here to talk about “Massive influence of communist money through Venezuela, Cuba, and likely China and the interference with our elections here in the United States. The Dominion voting systems…were created in Venezuela at the direction of Hugo Chavez to make sure he never lost an election after one constitutional referendum came out the way he didn’t want it to come out.”
Then she remembered to work in George Soros and the Clintons, like any conspiracy theorist worth her salt:
And in a feat no one thought possible, she made Giuliani sound lucid.
Jenna Ellis, a senior legal adviser for the Trump campaign, took to the podium to yell at the press assembled, telling them: “This is basically an opening statement so the American people can understand what the networks have been hiding and what they refuse to cover because all of your fake-news headlines are dancing around the merits of this case and are trying to delegitimize what we are doing here.”
Also, at one point Powell told reporters, “this is the 1775 of our generation and beyond,” which definitely sounds like a threat of revolution involving muskets and bayonets, though one truly never knows.
Anyway, as a reminder, Giuliani reportedly wants $20,000 a day for his legal services.
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Correction: it might not have been hair dye:
The New York Times is on the case:
Many online commenters assumed that Mr. Giuliani was the victim of a bad dye job that was now seeping out under the bright lights of television. But several Manhattan hairdressers said that what was dripping down the face of the president’s lawyer was likely not hair dye. “Hair dye doesn’t drip like that, unless it’s just been applied,” said David Kholdorov of the Men’s Lounge Barbershop and Spa, on Manhattan’s Upper East Side.
He explained that hair dye is typically mixed with peroxide during the dyeing process, and that once the solution oxidizes, the color adheres to the hair. No one, he said, would leave the solution in place in its raw form, he said, because the solution would irritate the scalp and could burn the hair or cause it to fall out.
Mirko Vergani, the creative color director at the Drawing Room, a salon in downtown Manhattan, said it was far more likely that Mr. Giuliani had used mascara or a touch-up pen to make sure his sideburns matched the rest. “Sideburns are more gray than the rest of the head,” he said. “You can apply mascara to touch the gray side up a bit so it looks more natural.”
Still, one colorist wasn‘t convinced. Gene Sarcinello told reporter Jonah Engel Bromwich that in his professional opinion, the offending brown blob was the result of a bad dye job. “If it’s not washed out properly, that’s what’s going to happen,” he said, adding that the dye could have been spray-on. “Not knowing exactly what he has on his hair, it’s hair-color related definitely…. In some of the pictures I’m seeing, it looks glossy. Which looks like a product in his hair.”
Trump invites GOP legislators to the White House to explain why they should help him overthrow Democracy
“This is the Lincoln bedroom and hey, what if we invalidate the results of the 2020 election?” Per the New York Times:
After failing repeatedly in court to overturn election results, President Trump is taking the extraordinary step of reaching out directly to Republican state legislators as he tries to subvert the Electoral College process, inviting Michigan lawmakers to meet with him at the White House on Friday. A source with knowledge of the trip said that Mr. Trump would meet with Michigan’s Senate majority leader, Mike Shirkey, and speaker of the House, Lee Chatfield, late Friday afternoon. Both lawmakers are Republicans who have said that whoever has the most votes in Michigan after the results are certified will get the state’s 16 electoral votes.
The White House invitation to Republican lawmakers in a battleground state is the latest—and the most brazen—salvo in a scattershot campaign-after-the-campaign waged by Mr. Trump and his allies to cast doubt on President-Elect Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s decisive victory. It comes as the Trump campaign and its allies have been seeking to overturn the results of the election in multiple states through lawsuits and intrusions into the state vote certification process, often targeting cities like Detroit, Philadelphia, Milwaukee and Atlanta with large and politically powerful Black populations.
After Trump reached out to the two Republicans on the four-member canvassing board in Wayne County on Wednesday night, the individuals said they wanted to “rescind” their votes to certify the county’s results, wherein Biden won 70% of the vote. So it’s not clear what Trump thinks he’s going to accomplish on Friday, though he presumably hasn’t ruled out trying to to “win” the election by giving away portraits of George Washington or the Oval Office’s Resolute Desk.
Tyson foods manager has a COVID pool: lawsuit
There are P.R. disasters, and then there’s this:
Tyson Foods said on Thursday that it had suspended the employees named in a lawsuit that alleged the manager of a Tyson pork plant in Waterloo, Iowa, organized a betting pool among supervisors to wager on how many workers would get sick. The lawsuit, filed by the son of Isidro Fernandez, a meatpacking worker who died in late April, said the betting pool was a “cash buy-in, winner take all.” The plant was the site of a deadly coronavirus outbreak this spring.
Those accused of being involved in the betting pool have been suspended without pay, Dean Banks, the president and chief executive of Tyson Foods, said in a statement on Thursday. Tyson also enlisted the law firm Covington & Burling to conduct an independent investigation, which will be led by Eric H. Holder Jr., the former U.S. attorney general. “If these claims are confirmed, we’ll take all measures necessary to root out and remove this disturbing behavior from our company,” Mr. Banks said.
At the time of Fernandez’s death, the Waterloo plant was a virus hot spot, with workers being told to continue coming in even if they were showing symptoms, and one reportedly being told to stay on the production line after he vomited, the lawsuit alleges. In all, roughly 1,000 workers, or one third of the workforce, ended up testing positive for the coronavirus, which shouldn’t have come as a surprise given that in late April Trump signed an executive order declaring the meat supply “critical infrastructure” and shielding companies from liability.
Moderna’s CEO says vaccines aren’t a “silver bullet,” people must still social distance and wear masks (Business Insider)
Mnuchin cuts off Federal Reserve’s emergency aid programs, sparking unusual rebuke from Fed (Washington Post)
Lara Trump considers run for Senate in North Carolina (Politico)
Trump International Hotel Washington DC sale put on indefinite hold (CNBC)
250,000 lives lost: How the pandemic compares to other deadly events in U.S. history (Washington Post)
Dear Joe Biden, Are you kidding me? (Guardian)
Harvard graduate students start petition to ban Trump officials from school (NYP)
Ponzi Scheme Suspect Uses Underwater Scooter to Flee FBI (NYT)
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