You can file this under: Projection, Desperation, Gaslighting, and Sweating Hair Dye.
Before we get into these new text messages, let’s start off with a reminder that a Republican-led Senate report confirmed the Special Counsel’s findings and definitively found that Russia interfered in the 2016 election on Trump’s behalf. It said the Trump campaign chairman had regular contact with a Russian intelligence officer while other Trump allies were eager to exploit the Kremlin’s assistance.
So the Russians did their best to “rig” the 2016 election for Trump, and Trump’s campaign chairman was in regular contact with Russian intelligence. You know what that means. It’s time for Projection.
Flashforward to December 2020, courtesy of newly released text messages, as Trumpland was getting more and more desperate. Rudy’s hyperbolic and sweaty rants had turned up nothing. Trump was unwilling to respect democracy. Something had to give.
In stepped Rudy Giuliani’s reported girlfriend and/or associate Maria Ryan.
Ryan was texting Republican former Trump White House chief of staff and former North Carolina Representative Mark Meadows with bonkers conspiracy theories peppered with huge rants she meant as talking points for Trump and suggesting Meadows tell the Intel Community that the election had been rigged by “foreign interference.”
Yes, there it is. The projection and the false conflation and weaponizing reality against those who tried to establish that it actually happened by denying it when it was real and then using it as an accusation when it was not. That is vintage Trump.
In text messages exclusively obtained and vetted by Talking Points Memo, Maria Ryan, Giuliani’s reported girlfriend and associate, texted Mark Meadows on December 19, 2020 at 12:41 pm (mind you none of her claims about the “media” saying x, etc. has a basis in fact):
Dear Mark, I hope you are doing well. I am very happy POTUS has such a smart and honest man as you by his side. I strongly believe in a special counsel for election integrity. I strongly believe it CANNOT be Powell who leads it . K. Cuccinelli or someone of equal prominence. Powell can be named lead investigator or given another title. Also the issue with cyber security. Strongly recommend Radcliffe put out a statement that it was foreign interference, likely cast of characters is China, Iran and maybe Russia. ( unfortunately the media is saying definitively it was Russia but my sources say it is just as likely China- Radcliffe could shed light on this) Our President has been tough on all these nations and we will continue to seek to hold them accountable. These opinions expressed are my own. If I can be of help to you or our President please let me know . Dr Maria Ryan (sic sic sic)
For some context here about Ken Cuccinelli, text messages pertaining to January 6th from Donald Trump’s acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf and acting Deputy Secretary Ken Cuccinelli have apparently vanished.
So the man whose January 6th text messages mysteriously disappeared is who Giuliani’s girlfriend/associate is suggesting is of prominence who should be special counsel for “election integrity” - by which they mean, undermining the most secure election in U.S. history so that Donald Trump can seize power that voters did not willingly give him.
Cuccinelli was likely hired by Trump due to his infamy as a bad lawyer who filed a lawsuit against President Obama’s healthcare law without standing and his GiftGate scandal. These seem to be prerequisites for being a close Trump associate. Oh, he also tried to make sodomy a crime in Virginia as Attorney General and pushed for a 2012 Personhood Bill meant to outlaw abortion and birth control. He’s very interested in other people’s sex lives, as you can see.
It’s also relevant that in late December of 2020, Arizona State Rep. Mark Finchem asked Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency to do a “a full spectrum forensic examination” of Arizona’s voting machines.
We only know this because American Oversight filed a Freedom of Information Act request, which resulted in emails showing Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani and his allies trying to use the levers of government to help Trump steal an election he had resoundingly lost.
OK, so there’s more. And really, this is exactly what you would expect from someone who spends any amount of time with Rudy Giuliani.
Shot: On Jan. 4, 2021, the text isn’t viewable, but the title is: “GA dead voters ”
Rudy Giuliani and other Trump allies, including Fox News, blamed “dead people” voting for Trump’s losses in Pennsylvania and Georgia, among other states. But election experts say that while dead people occasionally vote, it’s “most often with votes cast by a spouse, it is exceedingly rare, and would not likely affect the outcome even in a relatively close race…”1
Then Ryan sent Meadows texts under the claim that Trump had asked her for talking points. She ended up sending “a 1,429-word rant arguing that ‘the Presidential election of 2020 will go down in history as the most fraudulent election…a direct assault on the American people.’”
In this context, the Four Seasons Total Landscaping disaster might be seen as a prophecy of things to come. Incompetent legal advice combined with feverish conspiracies and a fascist entitlement to holding power at any cost.
The mere fact that Donald Trump had to rely upon Rudy Giuliani to peddle his election lies should have been a warning. But it takes intelligence, unmarred by delusion, to see and interpret clear signals of mistakes. And while Donald Trump is wily and manipulative and very crafty at leveraging power for money, he is not a person who is comfortable with reality or good at reading a room.
So it is that their grand plan to steal millions of votes from Americans fell to pieces and left them relying upon the ghoulish rantings of Rudy Giuliani’s rumored girlfriend texting about dead voters and claiming the election had been stolen by foreign interference.
None of us should miss the fact that they intended to use foreign interference claims as a reason to delegitimize the 2020 elections, when they were deeply invested in denying the fact that the election that put Trump into the White House in 2016 had in fact been “rigged” by the Russians.
It has never been reported to what extent this interference went and if it rose to the level of determining the election. The experts have all said that it didn’t. Trump lost the popular vote by almost 2.9 million votes. But what we do know is it happened, and the Trump campaign accepted the help, which in and of itself should have been disqualifying.
This is Sarah Jones on the Politicus Pod for PoliticusUSA’s The Daily.
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