Defamation

Gabbard v. Clinton

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard is filing a defamation suit against Hillary Clinton

|The Volokh Conspiracy |

Last fall, former Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton suggested that current Presidential candidate Representative Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) was a "russian asset." Rep. Gabbard called upon Clinton to retract the statement, but no retraction or apology was forthcoming.

Not to be outdone by other litigious members of Congress, Rep. Gabbard has now filed a defamation suit against Clinton. From Gabbard's press release:

Tulsi Gabbard, a United States Congresswoman, Army National Guard Major, and 2020 presidential candidate, today filed a defamation lawsuit against Hillary Rodham Clinton. Gabbard, a U.S. Representative for Hawaii's 2nd congressional district, asserts in her complaint that Clinton deliberately and maliciously made false statements in an attempt to derail Rep. Gabbard's campaign, by alleging that Gabbard is a "Russian asset." The complaint was filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York by Brian Dunne and Dan Terzian, Rep. Gabbard's legal counsel and partners at Pierce Bainbridge Beck Price & Hecht LLP.

Clinton was the 2016 Democratic Party nominee for President of the United States, United States Secretary of State from 2009 until 2013, a United States Senator for the State of New York from 2001 to 2009, and the First Lady of the United States from 1993 to 2001. On October 17, 2019, she publicly stated in an interview that "somebody who is currently in the Democratic primary … [is a] favorite of the Russians… Yeah, she's a Russian asset." The press extensively republished and disseminated these statements, which were interpreted widely as Clinton asserting that Gabbard is a Russian asset.

The complaint seeks compensatory damages and an injunction prohibiting the further publication of Clinton's defamatory statements.

It's often said that when one files a defamation suit, one is only asking for more attention, and given her low standing in the polls, perhaps that is precisely what Gabbard has in mind. We'll see whether the suit gets anywhere on the merits. (I'm quite skeptical.)

A copy of the complaint will be downloaded here.

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  1. The very idea that Tulsi Gabbard, a United States Congresswoman, Army National Guard Major, is a Russian kind of anything is preposterous.

    1. Nonsense. I doubt she is a Russian asset, but I bet the Russians would give their eye teeth if she was.

      1. Hillary is far more likely to be a russian asset or at least highly compromised.
        Consider her Uranium one deal, the pay for play with the foundation and the speaking fees Bill got while she was sec of state, along with the bathroom server.

        1. Maybe that’s Hillary’s beef — the Russians dropped her once she was no longer a viable asset, and now she’s flailing around trying to find her replacement.

        2. There was no “her Uranium One deal.” You’ve been misled by Fox News.

          1. “There was no “her Uranium One deal””

            As if all that money flowing in was totally innocent – yeah right

            1. Money flowing into what for what? Having what to do with what? You are just throwing random phrases at the wall because you don’t know any actual facts about anything.

    2. She appears to be a Russian stooge — beneficiary of Russian online operations — much as she is the favorite Democrat of FreeRepublic, Stormfront, Vladimir Putin, and Fox.

      Hiring a Bybee clerk — right-wing torture pedigree — to advance a silly, censorious civil claim likely ensures she has no political future, so this seems a very public audition for a spot at Fox.

      1. Quite apart from the merits of the Gabbard lawsuit, I think something is worth saying here.

        I don’t think a lot of liberals appreciate how McCarthyite Hillary Clinton’s statement was. This is EXACTLY what Joe McCarthy and his ilk used to do to communists and socialists. Make all sorts of insinuations that they were Soviet agents, or objectively pro-Soviet, or helping the Soviets, or the Soviets’ pawns or dupes. This is exactly how redbaiting worked. And then when people lost jobs, couldn’t get new ones, and had their lives ruined, the smear artists had just enough plausible deniability.

        You do not say that someone is working for Russia, or assisting Russia, or is Russia’s tool, or whatever else, just because you don’t like a politician’s position on Russia. That sort of thing has a long history, and Hillary is old enough and educated enough to know that history. She knew exactly what she was doing.

        If you want to say Gabbard isn’t tough enough on Russia, say that. Don’t say the other crap.

        1. I think she was referring to the point that Tulsi Gabbard’s candidacy was promoted by Russia’s online trolls and funded by Stormfronters.

          1. And part of McCarthyism was people saying that liberals and leftists were promoted by the Soviets, backed by them, were the candidates favored by them, that they were doing the Soviets’ bidding, etc.

            This sort of political rhetoric is extremely dangerous and not particularly edifying- the fact that an adversarial country finds a certain politician’s views to be more favorable doesn’t mean that the politician is in any way wrong. It’s just a smear.

            1. Just a quick reminder: When the KGB archives were opened up for a while after the fall of the USSR, it was confirmed that the US government, particularly the State Department, actually HAD been lousy with Soviet moles. This is not to say that McCarthy’s famous “list” was real. Just that he wasn’t wrong in general terms.

              Oh, and the Rosensteins were guilty as hell.

              But at this point in history, if somebody in our government/politics were a foreign agent, it would probably be for the ChiComs, not Russia. Which is probably why there’s so much talk about Russian infiltration, and next to none about Chinese, when you get down to it. Why would people bought off by China warn anybody about Chinese infiltration?

              All this is a side note, though. Gabbard is almost certainly not a foreign agent, it’s just that past experience has told Hillary that Democrats are real suckers for a good conspiracy theory, so, why not?

              1. Wasn’t Bill Clinton bought off by the Chinese?

                1. IIRC It was VP Gore that was funded by the Chinese.

                  1. There’s some circumstantial evidence that Clinton was bought off. He flip-flopped from a China hardliner to supporting Most Favored Nation status for the dictatorship after receiving huge amounts of soft money channeled through financers like Johnny (“the White House is like a subway, you have to put your token in to get in”) Chung.

              2. “past experience has told Hillary that Democrats are real suckers for a good conspiracy theory”

                . . . says the birther.

                Conservatives appear to conclude that a conspiracy theory steeped in racism becomes legitimate.

                1. Clinton’s own conspiracy theory. She managed to successfully convince a lot of Democrats that her decades long reputation for corruption was nothing but a systematic smear campaign, which the GOP had begun when they recognized her as a future political powerhouse way back when she was a nobody in Arkansas.

                  They bought it. She knows for a fact they’re fond of conspiracy theories.

              3. I know about the Rosenbergs, but who are the Rosensteins?

                (BTW, Alger Hiss was also guilty as hell.)

                1. The anti-communists were right that there were some Soviet spies in the government. That’s not surprising. Why wouldn’t there be?

                  But the thing is, they ruined many people’s lives by using exactly the tactic Clinton used here- using rhetoric to insinuate that anyone with lefty politics or who supported a less-hard line against the USSR was on the Soviet payroll or was working on their behalf.

          2. Not saying this is the case, but I would like to see further analysis. Rotten organizations loudly jumping on someone’s bandwagon can be a planned way to destroy them. It can benefit the opposition to have something to poke at.

        2. McCarthyites and Birchers. The reason the Birchers were drummed out of the conservative movement is because they were claiming that Eisenhower was a Russian asset. Now Pelosi repeatedly makes the same claim about Trump, but not in the impeachment of course, because then she’d have to offer evidence.

      2. This is what mental illness looks like.

      3. She appears to be a Russian stooge — beneficiary of Russian online operations — much as she is the favorite Democrat of FreeRepublic, Stormfront, Vladimir Putin, and Fox.

        The technical term you’re groping for is “dupe” or “fellow traveler.”

    3. “Russian kind of anything”

      William Cohen was raised as a Russian Jew and he was also a Congressman. Ben Cardin is a Senator and also a Russian Jew.

      More to the point, I don’t see how being a politician makes you immune to being a Russian asset. Even the fact that she has military experience doesn’t mean she couldn’t be: Lee Harvey Oswald was a ex-Marine who defected, though he wasn’t much of an asset, but Glenn Souther was a useful asset who tried to defect while in the Navy and spied for six years before the Soviets allowed him in.

      I don’t think she is, but her employment isn’t the reason I doubt it.

      1. Except that I don’t think she’d have the security clearances she has or be allowed to serve on some of the committees that she does if someone as well informed and “in the know” as the former Sec of State, knew she was a Russian asset.

        1. Thank you. I sometimes wonder WTF happened to common sense. A sitting member of Congress a Russian asset….that should provoke peals of derisive laughter. That this accusation does not is a sign of our times.

        2. “I don’t think she is, but her employment isn’t the reason I doubt it.”

      2. What makes most people immune to being a Russian asset is that Russia is a fallen power with an economy smaller than most US states, which people only take seriously because they still have nuclear weapons. Russia doesn’t have the budget to extensively compromise foreign governments anymore. They’re a joke with hydrogen bombs.

        The other thing that makes it unlikely is that, if you’re in Washington and open to being a foreign agent, you’re more likely to be working for the Chinese.

        1. I don’t think Tulsi is a Chinese kind of anything, either.

          Bill Clinton, OTOH…took a shitload of Chinese money.

        2. Russia proudly passed California in economic power a few years back, with barely 3 times the population.

          1. Russia proudly claimed to pass California a few years back. And as you note, with 3 times the population. Then oil prices collapsed. Latest numbers I have say they’ve got half the economy, and their per capita GDP is less than that of Costa Rica.

            Meaning they’ve barely got anything left after just paying for basic services.

            The only reason they rank as a world power at all is that they’ve still got nuclear weapons.

        3. I’m totally in agreement on this. At least there were potential ideological reasons during the Cold War, but there certainly aren’t any now.

          I will also say, though, that much of Russia’s foreign operations budget is dark money and we simply don’t know how much they have available – most of it is instead in the hands of corporations and oligarchs that either run their business on the activities (like the mercenaries throughout Africa) or owe Putin’s regime in some way. Such money is way too risky for first world politicians to take, though.

      3. William Cohen was raised as a Russian Jew

        I thought he was raised (for a time) as an American Jew. And then became an American protestant.

        Ben Cardin is a Senator and also a Russian Jew.

        Pretty sure he is also an American Jew.

        1. Turns out that you can be both. It’s the neat little difference between ethnicity and nationality. Perhaps with a bit of thinking you can puzzle it out.

          1. “Russian Jew” is not an ethnicity.

  2. Claiming someone is a “Russian asset” would seem to be the type of provably false statement of fact that would be actionable, but this doesn’t seem to be a serious attempt to claim that Gabbard was a Russian asset, it was just Hillary making a fool of herself.

    1. I don’t think it is something that can be provably false. One can be an unwitting asset, after all. Jehovah’s Witnesses in Russia aren’t an American asset in that they’re literally double agents, but they are assets in that they help to spread American cultural values.

      1. I think that’s a colorable argument. But there’s also a colorable argument the other way- that “asset” means something in statecraft and foreign affairs, and it doesn’t mean someone who is simply unwittingly helpful to the other nation. It means someone who works for or with the other nation’s foreign service or spy agency.

        If the latter is a reasonable reading of Clinton’s statement, then it is falsifiable.

        1. An asset can still be unwitting, though, even in espionage. That’s what a “useful idiot” really is, for instance, which you mentioned above. Jane Fonda was not working with or for the Vietnamese communists and yet was still a valuable asset for them. People who have access to confidential information but don’t take the proper precautions with that information are also considered assets. The Allies cracked the various Engima machine encodings largely due to operators like this.

          1. The thing is she didn’t say useful idiot.

            Indeed, if Gabbard can get into discovery, Clinton could be made to look extremely bad in deposition. She chose that word DELIBERATELY for Joe McCarthy style deniability- so she could pretend she didn’t mean an asset in the espionage sense while implying it.

            1. “The thing is she didn’t say useful idiot.”

              “Useful idiot” is a synonym for one of the intelligence/espionage meanings of “asset.”

              1. It isn’t the connotation of the term.

                This entire business is disgusting. She clearly wanted people to hear that she was working for the Russians. Your sort of argumentation pushes me towards the position that this is a jury question- because people are parsing to try and legitimatize Joe McCarthy tactics.

                1. What’s “[my] sort of argumentation?” The sum of my commentary has been to say you made a semantic assertion which appears to be incorrect. I’m agnostic about what Hillary intended.

                  1. “Hypertechnically, a term clearly meant to sound as if Gabbard had a relationship with Russia could be construed to mean she was just a dupe.”

                    That’s EXACTLY how McCarthy operated. Throw around insinuations of relationships with Russia and then hiding behind parsing of words.

                    1. Are you attributing the quoted part to me?

                    2. No. I’m saying that’s the argument I don’t like.

                      To be clear, if Clinton’s defense is “this is an opinion, I think she’s too close to Russia and used florid rhetoric to say it”, that seems like a totally reasonable defense that may win under defamation law.

                      In contrast, if Clinton’s defense is “well, technically I never said she was actually working for Russia, because you can look up in dictionaries and find broad definitions of asset”, well, I hope Gabbard takes her for millions of dollars. Because that’s basically the defense of McCarthy tactics.

                      (The other argument I dislike- and here I think defamation law is more clear cut in rejecting it- is the argument that she never mentioned Gabbard’s name.)

                2. The connotation (to you, it shouldn’t be necessary to point out; it doesn’t have the same to me) doesn’t actually matter if you want to argue that it can be found false on the definition in “statecraft and foreign affairs.” The problem here is that you’re just wrong on what is and isn’t an “asset.” Any source of information is an asset, whether they know it or not, whether they’re relaying the information or just mishandling it. Most assets (perhaps until recently) have known they were assets but by no means is it all.

                  1. Defamatory meaning is based on how readers or listeners will understand the term. You can lose a case despite having four different dictionaries supporting a super-technical argument as to what your term means.

                    And that’s how it should be, by the way. You can certainly escape defamation law by using opinion or hyperbolic rhetoric that nobody would take as an assertion of fact (and as I said, that may be a good definition here), but not by lying about what you meant and saying you really didn’t want anyone to think you meant what everyone thought you meant.

                    Here’s an analogy. There are people out there who, whenever the term “anti-Semite” is said, replies that it doesn’t mean anti-Jew because Arabs are Semites too.

                    But if that were an issue in a defamation case, the only issue would be how readers actually understood the term “anti-Semite”. Not any technical dictionary definitions.

  3. I’m skeptical too, but probably a bit less skeptical than most commentators.

    Clinton has a strong claim that that her statements were opinion or rhetorical hyperbole. And Gabbard wouldn’t like discovery, which would probably include all of her contacts with the Russian Federation.

    But this isn’t impossible to win. The actual malice and of and concerning arguments are actually fairly strong, if she can prove falsity. And there is a colorable argument that there was enough factual content in Clinton’s statements that they could actually be taken as claims that Gabbard was a Russian agent. It’s certainly got enough there that had I been advising Clinton, I would advised her not to make the statements that she did and that she risked potential exposure.

    1. I am more or less with you on where the case is.

      One question in my mind. How do you go about determining whether a statement is fact or opinion, when it is in the grey areas.

      “Tulsi Gabbard is a Russian asset.” To my mind that means she is an agent working for Russia, probably for pay or some other favor.

      But I can see someone understanding it to mean, she is inadvertently helping their cause. (Which you could also say about opponents of domestic oil drilling and fracking, for example.)

      So how is a court supposed to decide this? Take a poll? Make its own decision? Leave it up to the jury?

      What if 50% would understand it as factual and 50% as opinion? Still actionable as defamation?

      1. It is not precise. Reasonable reader standard.

  4. The normalization of spite defamation suits by politicians is bad both substantively and as a symptom of where we are heading speech-wise.

    1. Gabbard is in her 30’s. She had a promising political career. Hillary’s statement was a pretty substantial smear. Even if it was protected by the First Amendment it was basically the sort of thing Joe McCarthy would say, using artful language to try and draw a false connection between Gabbard and Russia.

      I don’t necessarily see the great threat to free speech here. Honestly, it wouldn’t have done any great harm to free speech if McCarthy and his ilk had faced defamation suits for falsely linking their political opponents with the Soviet Union.

      We would actually probably be in a better place, “speech wise”, as you put it, if criticism directed at the Tulsi Gabbards of the world were not phrased in the language of McCarthyism. Would anything really be harmed if the next person in Hillary Clinton’s position has to say “she’s too soft on Russia” rather than falsely stating that she is a Russian asset?

      1. Tulsi Gabbard was a rogue with clinger tendencies, disliked by most active Democrats. She had a documented record as a bigot. Where was the promise for a political career? A chance to become a relatively well paid Democrat-bashing beard for Fox, sure. But a future in Democratic politics? Ask someone who is familiar with Democratic Party operations. She was viewed as a low-ceiling, unreliable aggravation.

        1. Seems strange that someone like that would get enough support from the membership to serve as vice chair of the DNC.

          1. And she’s still polling ahead of some other Democrats in the presidential primary. Plenty of not-Extremely Online Dems, especially on the anti-war left, like her.

            1. She’s struggling for one percent in better polls. “[S]he’s still polling ahead of some other Democrats” is an accurate statement, though, because there are tens of millions of Democrats in America, at least a few of whom would not defeat Tulsi Gabbard in a presidential primary.

              She’s toast. A walking, sputtering political corpse.

          2. Or get elected several times in that clinger bastion known as Hawaii. You know, the same place that produces noted conservative intellectual luminaries like Schatz and Hirono. /sarc

          3. “Seems strange that someone like that would get enough support from the membership to serve as vice chair of the DNC.”

            I asked about that and was told that most Democrats who pushed or supported Tulsi Gabbard’s DNC candidacy were unaware of her gay-bashing record. It appears she cloaked her bigoted beliefs and actions while a candidate for that office. Her fringe positions and rogue actions developed later, too.

            Now she’s just a disaffected loner with a low ceiling.

            1. You know the Clintons gay bashed too.

    2. True, but I think it reflects more the media environment which revels in these kind of untrue statements.

  5. There’s another reason Gabbard is filing the lawsuit. 50 million of them to be precise.

    A “Russian asset” is rather close to the exact sort of statements that look like slander and not necessarily opinion. Fool, idiot, etc… defendable opinion. But “Russian Asset”?? That looks like “fact” not opinion.

    Moreover, Gabbard gave Hillary the option to retract the statement as just a “mistake”. Hillary refused.

    Not Hillary never exactly “named” Gabbard, so there’s enough grey area there that she might slip by. Still…..

    1. Legal insights from clingers, birthers, and ‘lock her up’ chanters are always fascinating.

      1. You might not like Armchair Lawyer’s politics, but his points aren’t totally wrong. Gabbard isn’t getting $50 million in damages, and it’s possible to find Clinton’s statement to be protected opinion, but he’s totally right that a Russian asset is potentially a fact-bound claim.

        1. Give our good Reverend a break, he’s been ornery lately.

          But in regards to your point, probably not $50 Million. Odds are Clinton would settle first. And Clinton calling Gabbard a “favorite of the Russians”….that’s more opinion. But “Russian Asset”. Well….depends on how it’s defined. And Clinton may get by on using the definition of asset as
          ” A useful or valuable quality, person, or thing; an advantage or resource.” Maybe….

          But the context looks more like the alternative definition: ” A spy working in his or her own country and controlled by the enemy.”

          Which would be slander. I find it highly unlikely that discovery would find anything of value to indicate that on Gabbard’s behalf.

        2. This attention-whore litigation deserves as much respect as a class action by Hillary Clinton against all of the conservative rubes who chanted ‘lock her up’ would have merited.

          I nevertheless wouldn’t mind observing discovery with respect to Russian support of the Gabbard campaign and Stormfront fundraising for her candidacy. Let’s let people see the type of support a disaffected, stale-thinking elected official such as Tulsi Gabbard attracts.

      2. You’re not.

      3. Yes, Armchair Lawyer should learn from his “betters.”

        Limit your posts to:

        (1) Insults of posters.
        (2) Ad hominem attacks.
        (3) Irrelevant political ramblings.

        Make sure to include no legal or factual analysis to the case at hand.

        I mean this is only a legal blog, and we all know that legal arguments and analysis are irrelevant. Insulting the politics of posters and others is all that counts.

  6. Ah, yes, Hillary “Reset” Clinton, the woman who approved the Uranium One deal, continuing to do favors for the Russians out-of-office just like she did in office.

    1. Hillary did not approve the Uranium One deal.

  7. I find it hilarious how the same people crying over and writing poignant histories about the horrors of the first Red Scare are leading the charge for the 2nd Red Scare without a hint of irony.

    1. As though the right isn’t trying to redbait Bernie Sanders.

      1. He is a Red. But he’s a homegrown American Commie, not a foreign controlled type like Gus Hall. And it’s pretty clear a lot of his supporters are communists too.

        You don’t make statements like food lines for everyone are good because it’s the only way to feed the poor unless you are a communist

      2. Doesn’t he take it as a compliment?

      3. Sarcastr0, The Bern does a wonderful job ‘Red-ding’ himself. The Right doesn’t have to do anything other than let The Bern open his mouth.

      4. “redbait Bernie Sanders”

        True statements aren’t “redbait”.

        1. That’s great! Four replies to Sarcastr0, and they all exactly prove his point. Well done.

  8. The full statement in which Hillary Clinton referred to Tulsi Gabbard as a Russian asset makes clear that all Clinton was saying was the Russians preferred Gabbard and they would engage in activities to promote her. Clinton never claimed that Gabbard was working with or at the behest of the Russians. Clinton’s statement is likely true. Among the Democratic candidates, the Russians would prefer Gabbard.

    1. It doesn’t make that clear at all. It was carefully phrased so she could say that was what she meant later. But that sort of thing is bad, not good, for Clinton in this case.

      1. I understand your points here. But the fact is that Clinton never actually said she was talking about Gabbard. And the words she used were vague enough to be characterized as political hyperbole, similar to the tweets of President Trump or many other politicians today.
        I’m assuming anti-SLAPP laws are weak/non-existent in New York? This suit would seem to be a prime candidate.

  9. Not being particularly well-read on tort law in general or defamation law in particular, I hope to read more analysis about why this case is so absurd beyond, “I’m quite skeptical”. There is no shortage of older cases stating that imputations of disloyalty is defamation per se when suggesting one is unfit for her profession, and I’m sure that all would agree that a “Russian asset” is unfit to be a congressperson or a military officer, especially in these recent years in which the Democrat party has decided to engage in wholesale dime-store McCarthyism.

    1. There was an intervening Supreme Court case that established a special burden of proof if the plaintiff is a ‘public figure.’ That special burden of proof is so high it makes it practically impossible to ever win.

  10. While I agree that Ms. Clinton’s comment was McCarthyesque, I would not dismiss the notion that she has a pipeline in the State Department, and that knows whereof she speaks. But the suit should fail before we get that far.

  11. How long before Tulsi Gabbard suffers a fatal weight-lifting accident?

  12. This is a bit off topic but how is it that Forbes has an article about how Tulsi is now proposing legalizing all drugs and yet there’s been no coverage here at Reason? https://www.forbes.com/sites/tomangell/2020/01/19/tulsi-gabbard-endorses-legalizing-drugs/#72fc1ee36ed4

  13. Accusing someone of being a “Russian asset” is just the latest and greatest smear.

    1. Yep. Per the Liberal commenters in the Washington Post, I’m a Russian asset named Boris because I disagree with them – except when I’m an incel, or a goober, or a gun clutcher. They have lots of names for those insufficiently doctrinaire.

    2. ICBW, but I believe “Russian asset” can refer to useful idiots (think Matt Gaetz) and not just people who actually are getting rubles laundered through the NRA or elsewhere.

        1. That’s wrong, because that’s not the way people who aren’t engaging in McCarthyism use the term “asset” as a political attack.

          1. If I valiantly parse that triple negative into a single negative plus a positive statement that political animals like HRC use asset in its balance sheet meaning of bought and paid for, then I concede that position has the better of the argument in civil proceedings such as the VC. But I also do not foreclose other possibilities.

            1. I don’t either. Hillary can win. The opinion issue is close. But “technically she could be a useful idiot” is a bad argument.

          2. That’s wrong, because that’s not the way people who aren’t engaging in McCarthyism use the term “asset” as a political attack.

            Not clear who made you the finder of fact.

  14. Oct. 29, 2019: https://www.marketwatch.com/story/turns-out-hillary-clinton-said-republicans-not-russians-were-grooming-tulsi-gabbard-2019-10-24

    Plouffe: “So [Trump’s] gonna try and drive the people not to vote for him but just to say, ‘you know, you can’t vote for them either.’ And that seems to be, I think, to the extent that I can devine a strategy, their key strategy right now.”

    Clinton: “Well, I think there’s gonna be two parts and I think it’s gonna be the same as 2016: ‘Don’t vote for the other guy. You don’t like me? Don’t vote for the other guy because the other guy is gonna do X, Y and Z or the other guy did such terrible things and I’m gonna show you in these, you know, flashing videos that appear and then disappear and they’re on the dark web, and nobody can find them, but you’re gonna see them and you’re gonna see that person do these horrible things.’

    “They’re also gonna

    1. “They’re also gonna do third party again. And I’m not making any predictions but I think they’ve got their eye on somebody who is currently in the Democratic primary and are grooming her to be the third party candidate. She’s the favorite of the Russians. They have a bunch of sites and bots and other ways of supporting her so far, and that’s assuming Jill Stein will give it up. Which she might not, ‘cause she’s also a Russian asset.”

  15. I do find the wails over this from people who regularly accuse their fellow citizens, both generally and specifically, of hating America, of loving its enemies, and of being beholden to this that or the other of History’s Greatest Monsters to be mildly amusing. And as unsurprising as anything can be.

    1. “beholden to this that or the other of History’s Greatest Monsters”

      Beholden to Jimmy Carter?

    2. There’s a difference between History’s Greatest Monster and Russian Asset. The first is pure rhetoric. The second isn’t.

      1. That is a ridiculous distinction and you should feel ridiculous for making it.

        1. No it isn’t.

          Compare “Joe is evil” and “Joe is a mafioso”. The first is pure opinion. The second might be actionable.

          1. What specific facts are you arguing is implied by the term “Russian Asset?” It seems pretty vague to me. Lots of people have said it about President Trump, and I’m not really sure it has any specific meaning in that context either.

    3. The leftists, the deep statists, and the Alinskyites consistently accuse everyone else of the very things they are doing.

      1. Take your act on the road, you dope.

        1. 😉 Just saying, this explains why such dynamics are unsurprising.

          Most regular people on the left and right mean well. But there’s a lot of malevolence and deception in the core centers of power, and this isn’t limited to “left” or “right” but is characterized by the common denominator of ever-increasing centralization of power.

          1. “Just say” somewhere else. You are useless and tedious.

  16. Who are/were the Rosensteins? Do you mean Julius and Ethyl Rosenberg? And what reputable historian maintains that Ethyl was guilty? Please cite evidence to support your claim.

    Clinton’s shot at Gabbard is qualitatively different from McCarthy’s evil redbaiting that he engaged in with the help of Trump’s mentor, the scumbag or scumbagss Roy Cohn, from whom he learned so much, until he was exposed and forced from office.

    Now, has any serving politician ever won a libel lawsuit against another politician, especially since Sullivan v NYT? I think it extremely unlikely Gabbard with her affinity for Assad will. But it will be fun to see her try.

    But how about Putin’s catamite? Yes, the guy who believes Glad rather than our own intelligence services. He may be the greatest foreign assets, ar least the greatest American one, the Ruskies have ever had or will ever have.

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