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New Ad: Justice Thomas Can’t Call Balls & Strikes With Wife In The Game



Justice Thomas Must Resign or Be Impeached

(Washington, DC) – MoveOn, Demand Justice, and Working Families Party ran a new ad this morning calling out Justice Thomas for not being able to impartially call “balls and strikes”—as Chief Justice Roberts said the Supreme Court must do—when his wife is in the game. 

“Ginni Thomas aided and abetted an insurrection against America to throw out the results of an election, and then Justice Thomas tried to help cover it up by not recusing himself from the case where Trump tried to hide White House documents, including Ginni Thomas’s texts,” said MoveOn Executive Director Rahna Epting. “Justice Thomas has clearly demonstrated he is not fit to serve on the Supreme Court and must resign or be impeached.”

“Justice Thomas has plunged the Supreme Court into an ethics crisis, and there is no reason to believe the Republican-dominated court will do anything but let its legitimacy continue to erode,” said Demand Justice Executive Director Brian Fallon. “If Thomas will not step aside, it’s up to House Democrats to begin impeachment proceedings.”

“Justice Thomas’s wife actively conspired to overthrow a free and fair election,” said Working Families Party National Director Maurice Mitchell. “At a minimum, Justice Thomas should have recused himself from any of the cases with which Donald Trump and his lawyers flooded our nation’s highest court. Instead, he effectively covered for his wife’s association with an attempted coup. No one can ever again look at him as an impartial arbiter of justice or the law. Let’s be clear: This isn’t about being a progressive or a conservative. Not taking part in a coup should be a bipartisan value. Even though he committed this dishonorable act, we know Justice Thomas won’t do the honorable thing and resign. It’s incumbent on both parties to impeach him, and the vote in the Senate should be 100-0.”


MoveOn is one of the largest independent progressive advocacy groups in the United States that mobilizes millions for a better society—one in which everyone can thrive. Whether through supporting candidates, passing legislation, or changing our national culture, MoveOn members are committed to mobilizing together for an inclusive and progressive future marked by equality, sustainability, and justice.

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Things are likely to get a lot worse for Pennsylvania Republicans with no end in sight



But that’s not all. The New York Times reports that McCormick recently hired GOP consultant Mike Roman, who specializes in election challenges and helped Trump push a series of unfounded fraud claims in Pennsylvania. Federal elections records show that McCormick’s campaign hired Roman as a consultant on April 21, suggesting his team very much expected a potentially contentious post-election period.

The Daily Kos Elections Team talks with Joe Sudbay about the big primaries and all of the redistricting nonsense on The Downballot podcast

But even as Team McCormick and a former Trump henchman prepped to unload on the election’s administration, Trump urged Oz to simply “declare victory” the day after the election.

“It makes it much harder for them to cheat with the ballots that they ‘just happened to find,’” Trump wrote on his sputtering Truth Social website, taking an early swipe at the remaining mail-in ballots that could flip the race in McCormick’s direction.

Whatever the outcome of that hot mess, the open arms of Mastriano await the victor.

Whether it’s Oz or McCormick, the GOP Senate nominee will be dogged by Mastriano’s every utterance. If either one of them thought they might tone down their right-wing rhetoric on abortion, 2020 election fraud lies, or the Jan. 6 insurrection in order to broaden their appeal in the general election, Mastriano will be there to resurrect the issues anew.

Local reporters will surely take great joy in developing a dialogue between the two high-profile statewide GOP campaigns, playing them off one another. Oz and McCormick both MAGAed it up in the primary to make a play for Trump’s endorsement, but Mastriano is an evangelical 2020 truther through and through—he’s the genuine article. Moderation isn’t in his DNA, which is exactly why he was so appealing to the basest authoritarian instincts of MAGA voters.

Whether the topic du jour is enacting book bans and no-exception abortion bans or advancing 2020 election conspiracy theories, Mastriano will be hungry to dive in with the certainty of a zealot, while the GOP Senate nominee will be left holding the bag.  

But only after they are done litigating the mail-in ballots, a likely recount, and a series of potential legal challenges. At that point, the GOP Senate nominee will emerge bruised, battered, and limping along, having won less than a third of the GOP primary vote.

It will be glorious.

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Russia Cuts Natural Gas to Finland



“Russia will cut natural gas supplies to Finland on Saturday, the latest salvo in a growing confrontation between the two countries over the war in Ukraine,” the New York Times reports.

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U.S. Senate Candidate Alan Grayson Loses Libel Lawsuit



The Second Amended Complaint also alleges that the same content appeared online, alongside other statements that Plaintiff: “used international government travel to drum up business for his hedge fund”; “used Congressional staff to work for the fund” (omitting the fact that the staffer worked for the fund when Plaintiff was not a member of Congress); and called for a reporter’s arrest after the reporter asked Plaintiff some questions (omitting the fact that Plaintiff called for the reporter’s arrest because the reporter repeatedly chest-bumped him in an ambush interview)….

Both mailers cite to a December 18, 2015, report by the Office of Congressional Ethics (“OCE”) and encourage readers to review it themselves and “check the facts” in three different places. As is relevant here, the nearly 1,000-page OCE report, also attached to Defendants’ brief, finds “substantial reason to believe” that: Plaintiff “improperly allowed the use of his name by four entities connected to [his] hedge fund,” including entities in the Cayman Islands, “and received compensation through management fees”; Plaintiff “improperly omitted information related to his assets, unearned and earned income, reportable agreements and positions from his [annual financial] disclosure statements”; and “[Plaintiff’s] congressional staffer improperly used official resources for unofficial purposes, including the use of staff time and resources to perform work for [his] hedge fund.”

In addition to the OCE report, one of the mailers cites to a June 30, 2015, Politico article, “Grayson hedge funds skirt ethics rule,” and Defendants attach the article—which they assert has not been retracted and remains available online—to their brief. In it, Politico reports that Plaintiff managed “hedge funds that use his name in their title[s],” “two of which are based in the Cayman Islands,” “a practice prohibited by congressional ethics rules designed to prevent members from using their elected post for financial gain.” Defendants also attach a February 11, 2016, New York Times article, “Alan Grayson’s Double Life: Congressman and Hedge Fund Manager,” to their brief, again asserting that it has not been retracted and remains available online:

This highly unusual dual role—a sitting House lawmaker running a hedge fund, which until recently had operations in the Cayman Islands—has led to an investigation of Mr. Grayson by the House Committee on Ethics. The inquiry has become public, but emails and marketing documents obtained by [The New York Times] show the extent to which Mr. Grayson’s roles as a hedge fund manager and a member of Congress were intertwined, and how he promoted his international travels, some with congressional delegations, to solicit business.

As to their statements regarding the incident between Plaintiff and the reporter, Defendants attach July 2016 articles by Politico, The Washington Post, Orlando Weekly, and Vanity Fair,totheirbrief,oncemore asserting that these reports have not been retracted and remain available online. Thus, Defendants correctly contend that their reasonable reliance on previously published reports from these independent, reputable sources for all their advertisements, as well as their citation to some of these sources in the mailers,rebutsthepresenceofactualmalice….

[Plaintiff’s] purported “proof” of actual malice consists of:


  • No Labels, ‘s boast to donors that it could destroy Plaintiff’s political career.


  • An overview of the donations received by and the transfers among Defendants during the 2018 election, accompanied by Plaintiff’s speculations that Defendants used this money to publish the allegedly defamatory statements against him.


  • Plaintiff’s observation that he and one of Defendants’ major donors, Fox News, “had attacked each other for “


  • Emails from Defendants’ counsel and opposition researcher evaluating various advertisements for potential defamation liability, most of which advise the qualification of certain statements and the accurate quotation of source materials, and Plaintiff’s commentary that Defendants failed to heed this advice in numerous allegedly defamatory publications.


  • Plaintiff’s statement that although Defendants were aware that the OCE report does not contain final conclusions regarding his guilt or innocence of the ethical violations alleged against him, their allegedly defamatory publications “indicate the opposite.”


  • Plaintiff’s counsel’s cease and desist letter to Defendants, “informing them that their attacks were false and defamatory,” and Plaintiff’s remark that “[t]here is no indication that the Defendants did anything to check … their facts after this.”


As a preliminary matter, Plaintiff’s various theories and conjectures regarding Defendants’ liability are insufficient at the summary judgment stage of this proceeding to carry his case, and Plaintiff’s counsel’s cease and desist letter characterizing Defendants’ publications as defamatory does not make them so. And, as to the actual pieces of evidence referenced, Plaintiff’s disorderly citation to the record makes it impossible for the Court to locate them. The Court is under no obligation to sift through the record and, in fact, doing so would be improper, as the Court cannot remediate haphazard advocacy.

But, even accepting Plaintiff’s professions at face value, this is far from a demonstration of actual malice. At most, this “evidence” merely shows ill will in the ordinary sense of the term and, perhaps, a deviation from professional publishing standards. Thus, there is no clear and convincing proof that Defendants published the first category of allegedly defamatory statements with actual malice, and summary judgment in favor of Defendants as to these publications is proper.

[B.] The Second Category: Allegations of Abuse Against Plaintiff by Lolita Carson-Grayson, His Ex-Wife

Next, the Second Amended Complaint generally alleges that Defendants knew Lolita Carson-Grayson’s charges of abuse against Plaintiff were false and, nonetheless, published her statements, omitting her recantation of those allegations. However, the Second Amended Complaint does not state what allegations of abuse were recanted by Lolita Carson-Grayson, attach the challenged publications, or otherwise describe the allegedly defamatory statements at issue with any specificity.

In their brief, Defendants list the allegedly defamatory statements (apparently) at issue and attach the (supposedly) challenged publications: “Her  husband came up behind her and hit her on the back of the head with a large book”; “Mr. Grayson … hit her in the back of her head … and told her ‘I’m gonna kill you'”; “Alan Grayson’s ex-wife repeatedly reported Grayson to police for verbally and physically abusing her over two decades”; “Alan Grayson, serial abuser”; “Two decades of reported abuse. Alan Grayson: enough is enough.” Again, many of the challenged publications cite to articles by independent, reputable sources and encourage readers to review these sources themselves and “check the facts.” And, again, Defendants assert that they reasonably relied on these previously published reports of Lolita Carson- Grayson’s allegations against Plaintiff, particularly a July 26, 2016, Politico article titled “Grayson’s ex-wife claimed domestic abuse over two decades.” As part of the article, Politico published police reports and medical records provided by Lolita Carson-Grayson that seem to corroborate her allegations.

In response, … Plaintiff then provides a completely irrelevant narrative of the tumultuous annulment proceedings between him and his ex-wife, announcing that “[w]ithout question Lolita Carson-Grayson is a vicious, violent, world-class liar.” Plaintiff’s opinion of his ex-wife’s veracity is immaterial to the question of Defendants’ state of mind when publishing this undefined category of allegedly defamatory statements.

As evidence that Defendants knew Lolita Carson-Grayson is a “liar,” Plaintiff cites to an opposition research report and an email exchange between Christine Dolan, a consultant for No Labels, Inc., and Nancy Jacobson. Once again, Plaintiff’s citations to the record are incorrect and incoherent. Even so, the highlighted excerpts from this “evidence” in Plaintiff’s brief only discusses an altercation in 2014 between Plaintiff and Lolita Carson-Grayson in which a video proved that she was the aggressor. Thus, at most, Plaintiff’s “evidence” shows that Defendants were aware that Lolita Carson-Grayson instigated the domestic violence incident in 2014 and lied about her role in the event; it does not show that Defendants were aware she was the aggressor in every domestic violence incident between herself and Plaintiff or that she lied about all allegations of abuse.

Defendants’ reply highlights this point. They argue that Plaintiff’s response brief relies on an outdated September 2015 opposition research report. They also state that they based the challenged publications on the 2016 Politico article, which included police reports and medical records spanning over 20 years, some of which seem to corroborate Lolita Carson-Grayson’s allegations of abuse. This position adds some clarity to Plaintiff’s comment that, “[h]ad Defendants updated their research on the annulment proceedings, they would have learned” of Lolita Carson-Grayson’s allegedly incessant deception.  However, there is no indication that Defendants “purposefully avoided further investigation with the intent to avoid the truth,” and “a failure to investigate, standing on its own, does not indicate the presence of actual malice.” Thus, there is no clear and convincing proof that Defendants published this amorphous second category of allegedly defamatory statements with actual malice, and summary judgment as to these publications is proper.

{Most of Plaintiff’s response brief is in single-spaced, bullet-pointed, 12-point font. Normally, the Court would strike this filing as a blatant violation of Local Rules 1.08 and 3.01, but it suffers through this headache-inducing format in the interests of judicial efficiency.}

Congratulations to Raymond Michael Rufat and Todd R. Legon of Legon Fodiman, P.A., who represented defendants. Grayson was represented by Brittany Michelle Wages and Tucker H. Byrd of Byrd Campbell, P.A.

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