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Trump's Walls are Closing in

Trump search warrant updates, Giuliani a criminal target, Lindsey Graham forced to testify, MAGA candidates flop in matchups against Dems, and MORE! Watch the new MeidasTouch Podcast LIVE with guest @MuellerSheWrote at 8p ET/5p PT!

This is important because it includes the Trump Org and because of the Weisselberg plea deal announced later in the day:

"Jury selection will take place on Oct. 24."

NEW: Allen Weisselberg will plead guilty in NY tax case -- but won't cooperate, NYT reports

"His plea deal would bring prosecutors no closer to indicting the former president but would nonetheless brand one of his most trusted lieutenants a felon".

Here’s what @AWeissmann_ says about possible silver linings of the five month Weisselberg deal.

This plea would do two things-- Put a ton of pressure on Trump Org,, which is still a defendant, and also permit the DA to put Weisselberg in the GJ (even though he says he is not cooperating) and force him to testify.

Weisselberg NY Plea Deal

explained by a friend if he pleads guilty he can no longer plead the 5th per self incrimination in a grand jury because he is already guilty

1. Giuliani Is Told He Is a Target of Trump Election Investigation in Georgia

2. ATLANTA — Lawyers for Rudolph W. Giuliani have been told that he is a target of a criminal investigation in Georgia into election interference by Donald J. Trump and his advisers, one of Mr. Giuliani’s lawyers said on Monday.

3. Mr. Giuliani, who spearheaded efforts to keep Mr. Trump in power as his personal lawyer, emerged in recent weeks as a central figure in the inquiry being conducted by Fani T. Willis, the district attorney of Fulton County, Ga., which encompasses most of Atlanta.

4. Earlier this summer, prosecutors questioned witnesses before a special grand jury about Mr. Giuliani’s appearances before state legislative panels in December 2020, when he spent hours peddling false conspiracy theories about secret suitcases of Democratic ballots and

5. corrupted voting machines.

For Mr. Giuliani, the former mayor of New York, the developments are the latest in a widening swath of trouble, though he got some good news recently when it emerged that he was unlikely to face charges in a federal criminal inquiry into his ties

6. to Ukraine during the 2020 presidential campaign. Mr. Giuliani is scheduled to appear before the 6. special grand jury on Monday at a downtown Atlanta courthouse. His lawyer, Robert Costello, disclosed in an interview that prosecutors told him Monday

7. that Mr. Giuliani was a target.

Mr. Costello said Mr. Giuliani would probably invoke attorney-client privilege if asked questions about his dealings with Mr. Trump. “If these people think he’s going to talk about conversations between him and President Trump, they’re

8.delusional,” Mr. Costello said. Also on Monday, a Federal District Court judge in Atlanta, Leigh Martin May, rejected efforts by South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham to avoid appearing before the special grand jury. Mr. Graham is set to testify on Aug. 23. The judge found

9. that prosecutors had shown that there is “a special need for Senator Graham’s testimony on issues relating to alleged attempts to influence or disrupt the lawful administration of Georgia’s 2022 elections.”

ATLANTA — The legal pressures on Donald J. Trump and his closest allies intensified further on Monday, as prosecutors informed his former personal attorney, Rudolph W. Giuliani, that Mr. Giuliani was a target in a wide-ranging criminal investigation into election interference in Georgia.

The notification came on the same day that a federal judge rejected efforts by another key Trump ally, Senator Lindsey Graham, to avoid giving testimony before the special grand jury hearing evidence in the case in Atlanta.

One of Mr. Giuliani’s lawyers, Robert Costello, said in an interview that he was notified on Monday that his client was a target. Being so identified does not guarantee that a person will be indicted; rather, it usually means that prosecutors believe an indictment is possible, based on evidence they have seen up to that point.

Mr. Giuliani, who as Mr. Trump’s personal lawyer spearheaded efforts to keep Mr. Trump in power, emerged in recent weeks as a central figure in the inquiry being conducted by Fani T. Willis, the district attorney of Fulton County, Ga., which encompasses most of Atlanta.

Earlier this summer, prosecutors questioned witnesses before the special grand jury about Mr. Giuliani’s appearances before state legislative panels in December 2020, when he spent hours peddling false conspiracy theories about secret suitcases of Democratic ballots and corrupted voting machines.

For Mr. Giuliani, the former mayor of New York, the developments are the latest in a widening swath of trouble, though he got some good news recently when it emerged that he was unlikely to face charges in a federal criminal inquiry into his ties to Ukraine during the 2020 presidential campaign.

Mr. Giuliani is scheduled to appear before the special grand jury on Wednesday at a downtown Atlanta courthouse. His lawyer, Mr. Costello, said in the interview that Mr. Giuliani would probably invoke attorney-client privilege if asked questions about his dealings with Mr. Trump. “If these people think he’s going to talk about conversations between him and President Trump, they’re delusional,” Mr. Costello said.

The rejection of Senator Graham’s effort to avoid testifying came in a written order from a Federal District Court judge in Atlanta, Leigh Martin May. Mr. Graham, a Republican of South Carolina, is now set to testify on Aug. 23.

The judge found that prosecutors had shown that there is “a special need for Mr. Graham’s testimony on issues relating to alleged attempts to influence or disrupt the lawful administration of Georgia’s 2022 elections.”

Lawyers for Mr. Graham have said that he was informed by prosecutors that he was a witness, not a target.

Prosecutors want his testimony for a number of reasons. Among them are two phone calls that Mr. Graham placed just after the 2020 election to Brad Raffensperger, the Georgia secretary of state, in which Mr. Graham inquired about ways to help Mr. Trump by invalidating certain mail-in votes.

In another development on Monday, newly released court records provided fresh details about the lengths Mr. Trump’s allies went to as they tried to overturn the results in Georgia and other states. One batch of documents showed that a forensics team working with lawyers aligned with Mr. Trump successfully gained access to critical election infrastructure in Coffee County, Ga., obtaining information about voting machines and software.

The revelation, detailed through emails and texts obtained by The New York Times, is the first confirmation that the rural county’s electoral system had been breached by an unauthorized outside group. The news of the breach was reported earlier by The Washington Post.

The infiltration of Coffee County’s electoral system is one of several examples in states across the country, including Pennsylvania, Michigan, Arizona and Colorado, where a loosely connected network of technical experts and lawyers have sought to obtain sensitive information about voting equipment in a sprawling attempt to show that the 2020 election was corrupted by fraud.

Mr. Giuliani’s postelection activities on Mr. Trump’s behalf have created problems for him on a number of fronts. The House committee in Washington investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol has highlighted video footage of Mr. Giuliani’s activities in Georgia, and the scheme to create rival slates of presidential electors is also the subject of an intensifying investigation by the Department of Justice. Mr. Giuliani is among the subjects of civil suits by two makers of voting machines, Dominion and Smartmatic, that seek billions of dollars in damages.

Much of Mr. Giuliani’s conduct in Georgia was laid out last year by the New York State appellate court that suspended his law license. The court issued a 33-page report that mentioned Georgia 35 times and described “numerous false and misleading statements regarding the Georgia presidential election results” made by Mr. Giuliani. The court noted, for instance, that Mr. Giuliani had falsely claimed that tens of thousands of underage teenagers had voted illegally in Georgia, even though an audit by Georgia’s secretary of state found that no one under the age of 18 had voted in the 2020 election.

Mr. Giuliani was also a central figure in the Trump campaign’s plan to urge lawmakers in swing states to appoint different slates of electors than those chosen by voters, which is part of the Georgia inquiry as well as the Justice Department investigation.

A spokesman for the Fulton County district attorney’s office declined to comment on Monday. It is unclear what charges Mr. Giuliani might face, should he be indicted. But in the past, Ms. Willis has said her investigation could result in racketeering or conspiracy charges involving multiple defendants.

Norman Eisen, a lawyer who served as special counsel to the House Judiciary Committee during the first impeachment and trial of Mr. Trump, said he believed that identifying Mr. Giuliani as a target could mean that Mr. Trump will eventually be a target as well.

“There is no way Giuliani is a target of the D.A.’s investigation and Trump does not end up as one,” Mr. Eisen said in an interview Monday. “They are simply too entangled factually and legally in the attempt to use fake electors and other means to overturn the Georgia election results.”

Lawyers for Mr. Giuliani have said that he did nothing improper in Georgia, and that he has been willing to cooperate. But they have been sparring with Ms. Willis’s office over her efforts to get him to testify before the grand jury. Mr. Giuliani’s lawyers have said a doctor recommended that Mr. Giuliani not travel by air because of a procedure he underwent in early July to insert cardiac stents, and they have sought to delay his testimony or have it conducted by video conference, an idea the district attorney’s office has resisted.

Judge Robert C.I. McBurney of Fulton County Superior Court said last week that Mr. Giuliani could travel to Atlanta “on a train, on a bus or Uber,” and set a date for Wednesday, after agreeing to delay his appearance for more than a week. Mr. Giuliani’s lawyers indicated that in any case, their client would have little to say if he was designated as a target of the investigation.

“I think it would be meanspirited to make — as a target, to make him travel down here, particularly by these alternative means, when there likely would not be very much testimony before the grand jury,” another Giuliani attorney, William H. Thomas Jr., said after a court hearing.

At least 17 other people have already been designated as targets who could face charges in the investigation, including two state senators and the head of the state Republican Party.

Lawyers for Mr. Graham had based their argument that he should not be forced to testify on the Constitution’s speech and debate clause, which shields lawmakers from being questioned over things they say that are related to their official duties. Among other things, the lawyers argued that Mr. Graham, as a high-ranking official, could only be called under “extraordinary circumstances.”

Judge May ruled that prosecutors had shown that such extraordinary circumstances exist.

Mr. Graham has argued that his phone calls to Mr. Raffensperger were protected under the speech and debate clause because they were investigatory in nature, and were related to his position, at the time, as chairman of the Judiciary Committee. But the judge, in her order, noted that “individuals on the calls have publicly suggested that Senator Graham was not simply engaged in legislative fact-finding,” and was “seeking to influence Secretary Raffensperger’s actions” to benefit Mr. Trump. (Mr. Raffensperger has said that Mr. Graham seemed to suggest to him that he find a way to discard legally cast ballots.)

Judge May’s ruling essentially left it to the state court to determine which elements of Mr. Graham’s calls should be shielded in accordance with the speech and debate clause.

But she also noted that, beyond the phone calls, there were numerous other items of interest to the special grand jury that were unquestionably fair game, including Mr. Graham’s “potential communications and coordination with the Trump campaign and its postelection efforts in Georgia.”

Prosecutors are demanding that two other lawyers for the Trump team, Jenna Ellis and John Eastman, appear before the special grand jury as well. The participation of Ms. Ellis, a Colorado resident, will be addressed in a court hearing scheduled for Tuesday in Fort Collins, Colo. A similar hearing will be held for Mr. Eastman, a New Mexico resident, at a courthouse in Santa Fe, N.M. on Wednesday.

Mr. Costello, the lawyer for Mr. Giuliani, was asked by a reporter on Monday what means of transportation his client would use as he made his way to Atlanta from New York.

“No comment,” Mr. Costello said.

Alexandra Berzon and Nick Corasaniti contributed reporting.

BREAKING: Rudy Giuliani has been told that he is a target of the criminal investigation in Georgia into election interference. He is scheduled to testify in Atlanta later this week.

/2 Here's my story w/ @RichardFausset from June about how he had emerged as a central figure in the investigation.

/3 “If these people think he’s going to talk about conversations between him and President Trump, they’re delusional.” Our latest story on Giuliani being told he is a target, w/ @RichardFausset

New: Forensic experts directed by Trump-allied lawyers copied sensitive data from election systems in Ga. as part of a multistate effort to access voting equipment that was broader and more organized than was previously known

NEW: Under subpoena, computer experts turn over docs showing Sidney Powell and an attorney for the Trump campaign directed and paid for them to copy election system software in Georgia, Michigan and Nevada. By @emmersbrown @jonswaine @AmyEGardner & me.

Long thread from 2017 so click and scroll up:

P.P.S. NOTHING in this thread should be taken to support or refute any notion that votes were changed in the 2016 or 2012 elections.

A team of computer experts directed by lawyers allied with President Donald Trump copied sensitive data from election systems in Georgia as part of a secretive, multistate effort to access voting equipment that was broader, more organized and more successful than previously reported, according to emails and other records obtained by The Washington Post.

As they worked to overturn Trump’s 2020 election defeat, the lawyers asked a forensic data firm to access county election systems in at least three battleground states, according to the documents and interviews. The firm charged an upfront retainer fee for each job, which in one case was $26,000.

Attorney Sidney Powell sent the team to Michigan to copy a rural county’s election data and later helped arrange for it to do the same in the Detroit area, according to the records. A Trump campaign attorney engaged the team to travel to Nevada. And the day after the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol the team was in southern Georgia, copying data from a Dominion voting system in rural Coffee County.

The emails and other records were collected through a subpoena issued to the forensics firm, Atlanta-based SullivanStrickler, by plaintiffs in a long-running lawsuit in federal court over the security of Georgia’s voting systems. The documents provide the first confirmation that data from Georgia’s election system was copied. Indications of a breach there were first raised by plaintiffs in the case in February, and state officials have said they are investigating.

“The breach is way beyond what we thought,” said David D. Cross, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, who include voting-security activists and Georgia voters. “The scope of it is mind-blowing.”

A drumbeat of revelations about alleged security breaches in local elections offices has grown louder during the nearly two years since the 2020 election. There is growing concern among experts that officials sympathetic to Trump’s claims of vote-rigging could undermine election security in the name of protecting it.

The federal government classifies voting systems as “critical infrastructure,” important to national security, and access to their software and other components is tightly regulated. In several instances since 2020, officials have taken machines out of service after their chains of custody were disrupted.

State authorities have opened criminal investigations into alleged improper breaches of equipment in Michigan, a case that involves several people who appear in the new records. In Mesa County, Colo., a local elections official, Republican Tina Peters, was indicted on felony charges including conspiracy to commit criminal impersonation and attempting to influence a public servant.

In two counties, SullivanStrickler’s examinations were permitted by courts, though many details surrounding those efforts have not been public. The records show how Powell’s group discussed, exchanged and paid for elections-system data. The plaintiffs intend to bring them to the attention of the judge in the case and provide them to the FBI as well as state and local elections authorities in Georgia, Cross told The Post.

Emails reviewed by The Post show that Powell told SullivanStrickler to share data obtained by the firm with other pro-Trump operatives, some of whom continue to openly push conspiracy theories about the 2020 election.

Powell did not respond to messages seeking comment. SullivanStrickler also did not respond.

The documents shed new light on one front in the wide-ranging battle by Trump and his allies to overturn the 2020 election. The small team of lawyers and security contractors worked quietly to get their hands on the county-level equipment while others around Trump filed legal challenges, deployed protesters to Washington and lobbied Congress and Vice President Mike Pence to reject Joe Biden’s victory.

Trump and his advisers had quickly seized on voting machines as the sites of supposed fraud, making wild allegations of plots involving the makers of the machines and shadowy foreign forces. Numerous recounts and reviews have confirmed the accuracy of the machines used in 2020. Two manufacturers say their systems are secure and have filed billion-dollar defamation lawsuits that are pending against prominent sources of the disinformation.

Powell spearheaded the claims with lawsuits filed in swing states, some with fellow pro-Trump attorney L. Lin Wood Jr. Soon after the election, Powell huddled with other Trump associates for strategy talks around Thanksgiving at Wood’s South Carolina estate.

The following Monday, the documents show, Jim Penrose, a former intelligence official who had been at Wood’s estate, emailed two senior SullivanStrickler executives and others. Penrose helped arrange for people from the firm to travel by private jet to Nevada for what Penrose called an urgent “forensics engagement” and an “opportunity in NV.” The documents do not specify what the work entailed.

Earlier that day Jesse Binnall, an outside counsel to Trump’s campaign who was suing to overturn the result in Nevada, won a court order granting limited access to “testing equipment and programs” in Clark County, which includes Las Vegas.

Binnall replied to the email group asking for a formal agreement that he could sign to authorize the work in Nevada. Among those copied on Binnall’s email were Powell, retired Army Col. Phil Waldron, who later circulated a PowerPoint presentation proposing the seizure of ballots, and Doug Logan, whose company Cyber Ninjas led a Republican review of the election in Arizona.

Binnall promptly signed the engagement agreement, the new records show, and investigators began work in Las Vegas the following day. But the day after that, Binnall complained in a court filing that his team had not been allowed to access certain equipment. He attached a supporting statement from SullivanStrickler’s director of forensics, Gregory Freemyer, though the statement did not identify Freemyer’s employer.

On Dec. 3, SullivanStrickler’s chief operations officer, Paul Maggio, sent Binnall an invoice for “the 2 days we spent in Las Vegas, NV in support of this matter.”

Binnall’s efforts to compel access to additional equipment were rejected by the judge in the case. The case was later dismissed. Binnall declined to comment for this story.

Also copied on some of the emails about Las Vegas was Brian T. Kennedy, a fellow at the Claremont Institute, a conservative think tank. The day after Maggio invoiced Binnall, Kennedy replied: “I spoke to Jesse and he said the payment is in process.”

Later, after Maggio also copied Binnall on another email about data examinations elsewhere, Penrose emailed him to say: “Please do not communicate about any additional forensics work in AZ to the other legal teams. Keep that in confidential channels with me, Sidney, and Doug only.” It is unclear what work in Arizona he was referring to.

Trump’s campaign and political action committee have paid Binnall’s law firm more than $1.5 million for legal consulting since the election, federal campaign filings show. Binnall is now representing Trump in litigation relating to the Jan. 6 attack.

Wood told The Post on Monday that he had no involvement in contracting SullivanStrickler. Penrose, Kennedy, Maggio and Logan did not respond to messages seeking comment.

Network data purportedly obtained from Clark County, which includes Las Vegas, were presented at an August 2021 election-fraud symposium held by MyPillow chief executive Mike Lindell in Sioux Falls, S.D., as The Post previously reported. That data was captured through a county guest wireless network, according to officials, and contained no sensitive information.

A Lindell ally who spoke at the symposium, Peters, the clerk in Mesa County, was later indicted on charges relating to an alleged breach of the voting system. Sensitive data from the system was leaked online. Peters denies wrongdoing. Authorities have not accused Powell’s group of involvement in the case.

‘I am authorizing payment’

While Maggio was awaiting payment for Nevada, SullivanStrickler’s forensics team was called on again, this time for work in Michigan.

On Dec. 4, 2020, a judge in rural Antrim County surprised local officials by ordering them to allow the plaintiff in an election lawsuit to take images of county vote tabulators. The lawsuit was filed by Matthew DePerno, a lawyer who is now the Trump-backed Republican nominee for Michigan attorney general.

State officials made moves to oppose the inspection, but the Trump allies saw their opening and moved swiftly. The county was already under intense scrutiny after initially reporting inaccurate vote tallies that showed Biden beating Trump in a Republican stronghold. The Post and others previously reported that investigators from SullivanStrickler flew to Antrim on a private jet for the inspection.

The new records show Maggio wrote to Binnall the following evening that his team had made it to Antrim and would begin work the next morning. “It is our assumption that we will be working under our existing agreement and maintain the same daily rate / conditions” as in Nevada, Maggio wrote.

A report based on purported findings from the Antrim examination was promoted publicly by Trump and circulated to Attorney General William P. Barr as evidence of fraud. Independent analysts said the report was badly flawed.

Barr told the congressional committee investigating the Jan 6. attack that Trump had said the report was “absolute proof that the Dominion machines were rigged” and that it meant he was “going to have a second term.” Barr said that the report was “amateurish,” and that Trump would have to be “detached from reality” to believe it.

The new records reveal it was Powell who authorized SullivanStrickler’s investigators to work on Antrim — and arranged to pay for their first day’s work. “I am authorizing payment today for Michigan,” Powell wrote to Maggio on Dec. 8, 2020. Maggio replied two days later to say the firm had received a check, adding, “thanks for executing.”

The Michigan judge’s order granting access to the machines had barred the “use, distribution or manipulation of the forensic images and/or other information gleaned from the forensic investigation without further order of this court.”

The new records show that after SullivanStrickler investigators copied the hard drive of an elections server in Antrim on Dec. 6, 2020, Maggio emailed Powell and Penrose, who were not involved in the local lawsuit. Maggio told them the Antrim files would be made available to download from a secure online folder once the firm was paid.

The Antrim data was later publicized during the same Lindell symposium where the Nevada data was shared.

“There’s no real control of this data once it gets copied,” said Kevin Skoglund, an expert retained by plaintiffs in the case. “It’s just loose and out in the world.”

Both Dominion and independent experts have said that, even with the release of data copied from election equipment, there are many safeguards in place to prevent attempts to alter results. Accuracy testing ahead of an election and post-election audits that include the hand-counting of ballots are among the measures intended to detect any such activity.

Two weeks after SullivanStrickler’s team went to Antrim, it began working for Powell in Wayne County. An expected wide margin of victory for Democrats in the county, home to majority-Black Detroit, had propelled Biden to victory in the state.

Trump’s campaign unsuccessfully sought to challenge Wayne County precinct tallies, and then tried to stop certification of the state’s results. The campaign cited alleged irregularities in absentee-vote counting, largely in Detroit.

On Dec. 21, Maggio sent an invoice described as “the retainer for the Wayne County, Michigan work, starting tomorrow. The expectation is that this will be paid prior to any work commencing,” Maggio wrote.

Powell responded a few minutes later, saying her employee would “transfer money promptly, with the understanding that I and Phil Waldron and Todd and Conan will receive a copy of all data immediately.” Powell’s employee was to send a check via FedEx, according to emails.

The emails are the first public indication that Trump allies sought to obtain Wayne County election data.

Wayne County elections officials did not respond to messages seeking comment Monday.

Allegations that machine data had been accessed in Coffee County, Ga., first surfaced in February this year as part of the long-running lawsuit. In a recording of a March 2021 telephone call filed in court, pro-Trump businessman Scott Hall said he had arranged for a plane to take people to Coffee County and joined them as they “went in there and imaged every hard drive of every piece of equipment” and scanned ballots. “We basically had the entire elections committee there,” Hall added. “And they said: ‘We give you permission. Go for it.’ ”

Former local elections official Misty Hampton told The Post earlier this year that she had allowed Hall and other outsiders into her office in the hope that they could identify machine vulnerabilities and show the “election was not done true and correct.”

Hampton resigned under pressure last year because she falsified time sheets, according to county officials.

Until now, it was unclear whether those involved in the Coffee County effort successfully obtained data from voting machines. Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s office said in April that it was investigating the possibility of a breach but had found no evidence it had occurred.

The new records show that on the morning of Jan. 7, 2021, as Washington reeled from the attack on the Capitol, Maggio emailed Powell to say his team was “on our way to Coffee County Georgia to collect what we can from the Election/ Voting machines and systems,” adding later that the job was “going well.”

The data obtained by the investigators included copies of virtually every component of the county voting system, including the central tabulation server and a precinct tabulator, according to a directory of file names that Maggio’s lawyer sent the plaintiffs in the Georgia case.

Gabriel Sterling, Georgia’s interim deputy secretary of state, told The Post: “Rogue election officials will not be tolerated in Georgia. Prior to this latest disclosure, the Georgia Secretary of State’s office and the State Election Board had already looped in appropriate authorities, including criminal law enforcement agencies, to assist in the investigation into the alleged unlawful access in Coffee County. That investigation continues and any wrongdoers should be prosecuted.”

A Jan. 7 retainer agreement sent by SullivanStrickler, covering the first day of work in Coffee County by four employees, said the firm was to be paid $26,000 upfront. Maggio noted to Powell in an email that this was in line with “our existing agreement.”

Maggio told Powell the following day that his team would again share the data it had collected. But more than three months then apparently passed, with no explanation given in the emails. In late April 2021, Penrose asked Maggio to send the data and to bill Stefanie Lambert, a lawyer who has represented Powell. Once this was agreed, Lambert replied, “Thank you!”

Maggio later emailed again with a password for accessing the data online and said that a physical copy was to be sent overnight by FedEx.

Lambert was identified this month by Michigan’s attorney general as one of nine people under investigation for an alleged scheme to improperly access voting machines in the state’s Roscommon, Barry and Missaukee counties. The alleged breaches involved machines made by Dominion and Election Systems & Software. Also named in the investigation were Logan of Cyber Ninjas; Penrose, the former intelligence official; and DePerno, the lawyer whose Antrim lawsuit secured access to the machines there.

In an email to The Post, Lambert denied wrongdoing and said the Michigan investigation was politically motivated.

The plaintiffs in Georgia have accused Raffensperger of failing to adequately examine the allegations, alleging in a court filing that his office tried to “avoid revealing that this extraordinary breach occurred and that a real investigation has not.”

Raffensperger’s lawyers responded in court this month by criticizing the plaintiffs for not revealing the Scott Hall telephone recording sooner. They said his office had conducted a “fruitful” forensic review of the county’s election management system and sought assistance from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

In June 2021, state officials replaced Coffee County’s election management system server, the central computer used to tally election results.

Attorneys for Raffensperger have told the court that the secretary of state’s office took possession of the old server because a former elections official, whom they did not name, changed a password, making it impossible for others to get into the machine. Hampton told The Post she did not change any passwords.

Hampton’s successor said during a deposition for the lawsuit that his understanding was the server and another piece of equipment were replaced out of concern that they may have been compromised. He also said he was troubled to find a business card for Logan of Cyber Ninjas on Hampton’s desk after he arrived in April 2021, and that he reported this to state authorities but did not hear back about it.

Alex Halderman, a University of Michigan computer scientist who has studied security vulnerabilities in voting machines used in Georgia, is working as an expert for the plaintiffs. He said he feared political actors granted unfettered access to the machines could exploit such vulnerabilities, especially when their access went undetected for more than a year after the election, as it did in Coffee County.

“Where else that we don’t yet know about has this same kind of access been given?” Halderman said. “That’s the real danger.”

In May, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) issued an advisory detailing security flaws it found in Dominion voting systems but emphasizing that there was no evidence those flaws had been exploited. CISA was responding in part to a report by Halderman and another researcher.

CISA, an arm of the Department of Homeland Security, flagged the vulnerabilities to election officials in more than a dozen states that use the machines, and notified them of measures that would aid in detection or prevention of attempts to exploit the vulnerabilities.

Bruce P. Brown, a lawyer who represents the nonprofit Coalition for Good Governance, one of the plaintiffs in the Georgia lawsuit, said the state should institute hand-marked paper ballots immediately to protect the 2022 midterm elections.

“These Georgia counties are not equipped to protect their software from attacks from people bent on disrupting the democratic process,” Brown told The Post.

Ellen Nakashima contributed to this report.

HMMM: The judge presiding over the Fulton County grand jury probe of Donald Trump and his allie has instituted a set of redacted "security procedures" regarding the "Grand Jury's report drafting work."

@FaniWillisForDA is looking @ RICO

@RudyGiuliani buddy @BernardKerik confirmed reimbursement for Willard “War Room” from CAMPAIGN

DIRECTLY LINKS Seditious Conspiracy $ to Trump/Trump Org &, via Joint Fundraising Committees/PACs finalized by @GOP Chair @Reince 5/17/16, to RNC/GOP

This could get really ugly, really fast as Trump et al have lots of history intimidating/threatening witnesses Grand Jury members and/or witnesses must be protected

According to a newly obtained SEC filing, Trump's social network Truth Social reported a net loss of more than $59 million between February 8, 2021 and December 31, 2021.

They wanted Twitter so bad, and now look, all caving in on them.

The Chinese business interests behind Trump's social media site

According to SEC documents, the current CEO of Trump Media and Technology Group, Patrick Orlando has also been serving as the CEO of Yunhong Inter, Chinese-based company. Yunhong notably operates out of Wuhan which has been the center of right-wing conspiracy theories about C-19

Remember how Trump stole nuclear secrets, held a golf tournament for the Saudis, then the next week Xi and the Chinese visited Saudi ?

(Reuters) - Former President Donald Trump's media and technology company must turn over information about ex-Congressman Devin Nunes' employment as its chief executive officer, a federal judge ruled on Friday.

The ruling stems from a $75 million defamation lawsuit brought by Nunes, a former Republican U.S. Congressman from California, against Hearst Magazine Media Inc and journalist Ryan Lizza.

U.S. Magistrate Judge William Matthewman in West Palm Beach, Florida, ruled that Trump Media and Technology Group Corp has 10 days to comply with the defendants' subpoena and provide information regarding Nunes' employment as CEO. Trump Media owns Truth Social, Trump's social media startup.

Nunes is suing Hearst and Lizza in Iowa federal court over a 2018 Esquire magazine article, which Lizza wrote, that said the Nunes family dairy cow farm had moved from California to Iowa. The judge's ruling addressed Hearst's bid for information that the media defendants want to use to counter Nunes' claim that the article caused him to suffer reputational harm. Hearst and Lizza have denied Nunes' defamation claims.

Trump's company is not a plaintiff in the case. A lawyer for the company, Scott Allen of Lippes Mathias, did not immediately respond to messages on Monday seeking comment. A spokesperson for Trump's company did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment, and there was no immediate response from Nunes to a request for comment.

Nunes, who joined Trump's media company in January from the U.S. House of Representatives, had been the top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee. A lawyer for Nunes, Steven Biss, did not immediately return a message seeking comment on Monday.

Hearst and Lizza, a former Esquire correspondent who was hired at Politico in 2019, are seeking information that includes Nunes' onboarding at Trump's media company and copies of any employment agreements and contracts. Lizza did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment, and a representative for Politico declined to comment.

Hearst's lawyers said they anticipate the subpoenaed documents will show Nunes "maintains a sterling reputation."

Trump's company argued the requested information was irrelevant to Nunes' defamation case and that complying with the demands would be burdensome.

The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals last year upheld the dismissal of Nunes' "express" defamation claims but revived allegations of "defamation by implication" based on a tweet Lizza sent in 2019 linking to the Esquire article.

Nathaniel Boyer, a Hearst legal department attorney who argued before Matthewman for Esquire and Lizza, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The case is Ryan Lizza and Hearst Magazine Media Inc v. Trump Media & Technology Group Corp, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida, No. 9:22-mc-81070-DMM.

For plaintiff: Deanna Shullman and Rachel Fugate of Shullman Fugate; Nathaniel Boyer of The Hearst Corporation

For defendant: Alessandro Apolito and Scott Allen of Lippes Mathias

Read more:

PS: the subpoena for Devin Nunes' employee records as CEO of Truth Social comes from defendants in HIS defamation suit against them HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

All those times these idiots sue someone & we say "discovery is gonna be lit" - well this is one of those and I'm super here for it

#TruthSocial is a fraud .

You would think with the intensity of Trump in the news right now, and with 3.8M followers, that he would get more than 36K likes after 9 hours.

It’s all empty accounts and another scam that will collapse and become a legal issue for him.

That guy Garland isn’t doing a thing. Oh wait…Justice Department subpoenas former Trump White House lawyer Eric Herschmann - POLITICO

A federal grand jury investigating the Jan. 6 attack has subpoenaed Trump White House lawyer Eric Herschmann for documents and testimony, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Herschmann represented Donald Trump in the former president’s first impeachment trial and later joined the White House as a senior adviser. He did not work in the White House counsel’s office, but did provide Trump with legal advice. Because of that responsibility, there will likely be litigation over the scope of the subpoena and over how executive and attorney-client privileges may limit Herschmann’s ability to comply.

Herschmann is not the first former Trump White House lawyer to receive a DOJ subpoena. Pat Cipollone, who served as White House counsel, and Patrick Philbin, who served as deputy counsel, have also been subpoenaed.

During the tumultuous final weeks of Trump’s term, Herschmann clashed with other aides and advisers who pushed the defeated president to fight the election results. He was also present for many of the most consequential meetings in that period of time. Among them was a high-stakes meeting where most of the Trump Justice Department’s top brass threatened to resign rather than work under a colleague who wanted to advance spurious claims of widespread voter fraud.

Herschmann also sparred with Sidney Powell and Michael Flynn when they urged Trump to have the military seize voting machines. The Jan. 6 select committee has aired numerous portions of his testimony to their panel, which is blunt and sometimes darkly amusing.

A spokesperson for Herschmann declined to comment. The Justice Department declined to comment.

In his testimony to the select committee, Herschmann described lambasting Jeffrey Clark, then a top Justice Department lawyer, during a White House meeting on Jan. 3, 2021. At that time, Clark was urging Trump to remove then-Acting Attorney General Jeff Rosen and give him the job.

Clark had encouraged his DOJ colleagues to send letters to state legislators saying the department had found concerning evidence of voter fraud in the 2020 election. Former Attorney General Bill Barr, however, had said the department found no evidence of fraud that could have swung the election. Under those circumstances, Clark’s plans so concerned his colleagues that many of them warned Trump in that Jan. 3 meeting that they would quit if he gave Clark the top job.

Herschmann later recalled to the select panel that he found Clark’s idea to be “asinine” and dryly brought up Clark’s past as an environmental lawyer.

“I thought Jeff’s proposal — Clark’s proposal was nuts,” Herschmann told the committee. “I mean this guy, at a certain point, ‘Listen, the best I can tell is the only thing you know about environmental and elections challenges is they both start with E. And based on your answers tonight, I’m not even certain you know that.’”

Herschmann also told the select panel about a contentious phone call he had on Jan. 7, 2021, with Trump-allied lawyer John Eastman. In the call, Eastman discussed plans to keep pursuing Trump’s efforts to reverse the election — despite the violence of the previous day’s Capitol riot.

“And I said to him, ‘Are you out of your F-ing mind?’” Herschmann told the panel. “I said, ‘I only want to hear two words coming out of your mouth from now on: orderly transition.’”

Eastman finally said those words, according to Herschmann.

“I said, ‘Good, John. Now I’m going to give you the best free legal advice you’re ever getting in your life: Get a great F-ing criminal defense lawyer. You’re going to need it,’” Herschmann added. “And then I hung up on him.”

CORRECTION: Due to an editing error, a previous version of this report misspelled Sidney Powell’s first name.

Sometimes patience is really frustrating, especially in light of what he did. We still have no clue, just how bad it’s going to get. I applaud the AG and his team. He’s a judge, not a lawyer. He’s building an air tight case, which as we’re learning has many, many layers.

Have we reached the threshold where we can replace the suffix “-gate” with “-a-Lago” for all scandals (related to Trump or not) moving forward?


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