Crooked Media - What A Day: In fraud daylight

Monday, November 6, 2023
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), making an extremely-rare excellent point!

Snide remarks cometh before the fall.

  • Disgraced former president Donald Trump testified in his $250 million New York civil fraud trial on Monday, and he played all the hits. As he was bragging about being a smarter real estate expert than anyone, Trump admitted that he helped assemble the documents stating the (fraudulently-inflated) values of his properties. He said he was “probably” involved in the decision to change the valuation of his Manhattan Trump Tower triplex but with the caveat that he thought he was covered by all valuations including a disclaimer clause. 

  • Judge Arthur Engoron has already decided that the financial statements provided by the Trump Organization were fraudulent, which Trump’s lawyers have appealed. Attorney General Letitia James (D-NY) brought the lawsuit, accusing Trump and his co-defendants of manipulating the statements to get favorable loans and other agreements from banks and insurance companies. But he also suggested that he did not intervene in such work, and tried to convince the judge that financial statements are not actually that important…not a very convincing argument for the head of a real estate corporation to make. 

  • The trial has already featured high-profile testimonies from Trump’s adult children Don Jr. and Eric. Judge Engoron has had to try to rein in Trump throughout the trial, and Monday was certainly no different. Worse, in fact. The former president filled his testimony with asides about what he called a “very unfair trial” and accusing the judge of “election interference.” Lol. He has been fined twice in recent weeks for violating a gag order barring him from making statements about court employees.

Trump and his legal team seem determined to run afoul of the judge’s guidelines and warnings, a particularly confounding move considering this is a bench trial—the outcome of which entirely hinges on the judge.

  • Judge Engoron repeatedly had to ask Trump—who is famous for his incoherent rambling—to keep his remarks short, at one point telling the former president “Please, no speeches,” and “This is not a political rally.” One of Trump’s main lawyers in the case, Alina Habba, criticized the judge for his attempts to get her client back on track, saying, “The only thing they want are facts that are bad for Trump…That’s why [Engoron is] silencing him.” The gag order Engronon imposed on Trump’s lawyers on Friday barring them from commenting on the judge’s private communications with his court staff appeared to be working well, with the former president’s legal team seen proceeding cautiously in their questioning. 

  • Towards the end of his testimony, one of the prosecutors pressed Trump about his trust in the longtime finance chief Allen Weisselberg, who oversaw the Trump family finances for half a century before retiring as he faced jail time for an unrelated tax fraud case. Last year, Weisselberg pleaded guilty to tax fraud and other charges in connection to a scheme to enrich himself and other top Trump Organization executives. Weisselberg testified as part of a plea agreement, but maintained that Trump did not know about the scheme. Trump said, “I feel very badly for him.” After his fraught day of testimony concluded, Trump left the courtroom and addressed cameras and reporters (his favorite pastime) calling it “a sad day for America,” and stating that the case should be immediately dismissed. 

Court will resume on Wednesday for Ivanka Trump’s testimony. The trial, which will decide whether her father will be barred from doing business in the state of New York, is slated to end just before Christmas. A very special time of year indeed!

Congratulations to the Lovett of Leave It team on their editor’s pick selection on Amazon Music! If you agree with the very very smart people over at Amazon, consider dropping the show a review on Amazon Music, Apple or wherever you get your podcasts!

Tens of thousands of protestors from around the United States marched on Washington on Saturday demanding a ceasefire and an end to American economic and military aid to Israel. Similar rallies took place in London, Berlin, and other major cities. United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres said on Monday that Gaza is becoming “a graveyard for children” as the death toll in the enclave has now exceeded 10,000 people according to Palestinian health authorities. Guterres told reporters, “Ground operations by the Israel Defense Forces and continued bombardment are hitting civilians, hospitals, refugee camps, mosques, churches, and U.N. facilities—including shelters. No one is safe.” He called for a ceasefire as well as the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages held by Hamas. 


The Israeli government reported that 31 soldiers have been killed since it launched its ground invasion in Gaza on October 27. Israeli officials have repeatedly accused Hamas of hiding in tunnels or other structures beneath or near Gaza’s hospitals. Hamas has called the claim a “false narrative that the U.N. should verify.” International aid organizations have reported that Gaza’s heavily damaged hospitals cannot sufficiently treat the thousands of wounded Palestinians due to dwindling supplies of food, clean water, and fuel to power the facilities. Doctors in Gaza’s hospitals reported being continually forced to choose which patients will get ventilators, which will be resuscitated, and which will not receive any medical treatment. Evacuations of foreign passport holders in Gaza were temporarily suspended after an Israeli airstrike hit an ambulance convoy transporting civilians along the Rafah border crossing on Friday, but three Egyptian security sources told Reuters that a few dozen foreign nationals crossed into Egypt on Monday. 

The oversight agency for the National Science Foundation is sending investigators to a U.S. research base in Antartica after hearing concerns about a “pervasive problem” of sexual violence there


South Africa recalled its ambassador to Israel on Monday in condemnation of the continued bombardment of Gaza, calling it a “genocide.” 


Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and Rich McCormick (R-GA) introduced two new House resolutions on Monday to censure Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), the only Palestinian-American member of Congress, for her criticisms of the Israeli government. The House voted to kill Greene’s initial attempt to censure Tlaib last week. 


Over 400 activists with the group Jewish Voice for Peace staged a sit-in at the Statue of Liberty on Monday demanding an immediate ceasefire in the Israel-Hamas war. 

The Philippines is one of only two nations in the world (the other being the Vatican) where divorce is illegal. A growing human rights campaign in the country is on the cusp of changing that.

A number of battleground states across the country will head to the polls on Tuesday in elections where abortion rights will once again take center stage. Gov. Andy Beshear (D-KY) faces a fierce reelection fight in Kentucky, a state Donald Trump carried in both 2016 and 2020. His GOP nominee is Attorney General Daniel Cameron (R-KY), who said he supports the state’s hyper-restrictive abortion law. Although he has said he would support expanding exceptions to the abortion ban for cases of rape and incest (the current law has neither) Cameron has also backtracked, saying he’d support the changes, “if the courts made us change that law.” (What?) Beshear won the 2019 gubernatorial election by less than half of a percentage point. 

Ohio voters will decide whether to enshrine abortion protections into their state Constitution in one of the nation’s most-watched ballot measures. In Virginia, both chambers of the state legislature are up for grabs, with slim majorities currently held by Republicans in the House and Democrats in the state Senate. If Republicans gain full control of the state government in the Old Dominion, Gov. Glenn Youngkin (R-VA) will be able to pass the sweeping abortion ban he has long promised. Gov. Tate Reeves (R-MS) will also battle for a second term against Democrat Brandon Presley, a state utility regulator who is, weirdly, Elvis’s cousin. If elected, Presley would be the first Democratic governor of the Magnolia State in 20 years. As we like to say here at Crooked, there are No Off Years, and a lot is poised to happen before 2024.

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This holiday season, unwrap’s gift guides and receive 15% off select books! Use code Holiday23 at checkout to receive your gift of 15% off*.


*Sale ends Monday, December 18th. Happy holidays and happy reading!

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) proposed legislation to end unlimited corporate donations to political action committees, which would gut the infamous 2010 Citizens United Supreme Court decision. Hawley hates corporate America not for its pernicious waste, greed, and tax avoidance, but because it is too “woke”—but I guess we will take any help in this fight we can get. 


The United Kingdom’s “loneliest sheep” (okay I’m already crying) was finally rescued after being stuck at the foot of a remote cliff in Scotland for over two years


A new climate tech startup called Circ in Virginia is tackling textile waste, and is an Earthshot Prize finalist. The fashion industry is one of the world’s largest polluters. 

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