Crooked Media - What A Day: Rewarder in the Court

Monday, November 13, 2023

- Trump lawyer Alina Habba talking about Don Jr., Ivanka, and Eric Trump: ages 45, 42, and 39, respectively.

In terrible news for Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito, the Supreme Court issued an ethics code for the nine justices on Monday, after one too many reports of undisclosed gifts and ultra-luxurious fishing trips. 

  • The move comes after ProPublica spent most of the summer detailing the many ways Conservative billionaires like Harlan Crow and Leonard Leo have purchased the favor of some particularly-unethical Supreme Court Justices, namely Clarence Thomas. Chief Justice John Roberts and his eight colleagues signed a statement asserting that the absence of such a code “has led in recent years to the misunderstanding that the Justices of this Court, unlike all other jurists in the country, regard themselves as unrestricted by any ethics rules.” The joint statement implied that this new code of conduct was for the benefit of the public, not necessarily the Justices themselves. 

  • The code is broadly-worded and in some places downright vague. It includes sections  on the justices’ interpersonal relationships, and restricting participation in cases that could financially benefit themselves or family members. It reiterates limits on participating in fundraising activities for special interest groups and accepting gifts. Justices will continue to make their own decisions about recusals and speaking engagements, a surprising continuity considering the fact that this “honor system” has been the source of so much controversy already.  

  • Crucially, there is no enforcement mechanism for compliance violations, and the new code largely leaves such determinations to the Court itself. One of the lead sponsors of ethics legislation for the Court, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), called the document important, but insufficient. “This is a long-overdue step by the justices, but a code of ethics is not binding unless there is a mechanism to investigate possible violations and enforce the rules…The honor system has not worked for members of the Roberts Court.”

Without a system in place to provide accountability—coupled with the fact that the Court will remain the central arbiter of its own ethics practices—the “new code” looks like little more than lip service to stave off pressure the Court has been under for increased transparency. Until the highest court in the United States is subject to the same ethics standards as any member of Congress or other lower-level judge, they can keep this recycled pinky-promise in the attic next to the rest of Harlan Crow’s gifts.

Join Jon, Jon, Tommy and Dan along with more Crooked talent and staff on Thursday, November 30th for the biggest showdown that no one asked for! That’s right, we’re gearing up for another monster Group Thread event, this time covering the baffling-but-unmissable debate between Gavin Newsom and Ron DeSantis. Your favorite Crooked hosts and staff will be on Discord to provide real time commentary on the action. To get access to this and more events like it, make sure you’re subscribed to Friends of the Pod. Head to to learn more.

Conditions in Gaza continued to worsen throughout the weekend, as Israeli airstrikes and dwindling stores of essential supplies left the already-threadbare medical system in the enclave in dire straits. Israeli forces advanced to the gates of the besieged Al-Shifa Hospital, where Israel claims its forces are targeting Hamas fighters, but doctors warn of a humanitarian catastrophe. Inside Al-Shifa—Gaza’s largest hospital—patients are dying and corpses are decomposing without electricity or fuel, according to medical staff and health officials who spoke to The New York Times. Doctors are scrambling to keep premature babies warm now that incubators have been rendered useless. Three newborn babies have died, according to the Gaza Health Ministry. The United Nations High Commissioner for Human rights said on Monday that the Israeli government’s decision to cut power in Gaza has led to at least 12 deaths. 


The head of the World Health Organization warned on Sunday that Al-Shifa is “not functioning as a hospital anymore” and is struggling to provide basic care to patients after three days “without electricity, without water, and with very poor internet.” Israeli officials claim that Hamas has built a large underground command complex under the hospital. Hamas has called the claim “propaganda.” Israeli forces have also moved in near the Al-Rantisi Hospital for Children, Al-Nasr Hospital, and Al-Quds Hospital. President Biden said on Monday that hospitals in Gaza “must be protected.”

UNRWA, the U.N. agency that aids Palestinian refugees, said on Monday that a residential U.N. compound in Southern Gaza was hit by three direct strikes from Israeli naval forces on Sunday morning, causing extensive damage. Israel’s military told the Times that it “carried out a strike based on operational requirements, adjacent to a U.N. building,” without providing additional details. UNRWA commissioner-general Philippe Lazzarini said, “The disregard for the protection of civilian infrastructure including U.N. facilities, hospitals, schools, shelters and places of worship is testament to the level of horror that civilians in Gaza are living every day.” UNRWA also reported that the fuel depot in Gaza has run dry and that within a few days the agency will no longer be able to resupply hospitals, renew sewage, or provide drinking water. In an interview with NBC’s “Meet The Press,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated that he envisions “overall military responsibility” in Gaza to be handled by Israel after the war, and sees no role for the Palestinian Authority in its current form. This puts him at odds with the Biden administration, which has said Israel must not reimpose its occupation of Gaza, which ended in 2005, and that Gaza must be governed by the Palestinian Authority.

Because of Republican incompetence and nihilism we once again find ourselves staring down the barrel of a possible government shutdown. This could have major adverse consequences for millions of Americans traveling for Thanksgiving—the busiest domestic travel time of the year—and could force air traffic controllers and TSA employees to work without pay(!). 


Secret Service agents assigned to President Biden’s granddaughter Naomi opened fire on Sunday night near her home after three people tried to break into an unmarked Secret Service vehicle.


Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) is uncertain if he will run for his seat again after a year of unceasing personal and professional humiliation! (C’mon! Two more years, Kev!) 


British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has brought back former Prime Minister David Cameron to serve as foreign minister on Monday after he sacked interior minister Suella Braverman over her inflammatory criticism of British police and their handling of pro-palestinian protests. 


The man who became infamous as the “Q-Anon Shaman” on January 6, Jacob Chansley, is—you guessed it—running for Congress in Arizona next year. We’re sure he will be GOP Speaker by 2026.


Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) spuriously accused the only Palestinian-American member of Congress, Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), of having “alleged ties to Hamas,” and “calling for genocide against the Jewish people.” Accusing another member of Congress of being a terrorist based only on her ethnicity sure does seem like the kind of thing that should actually result in a censure!

Protestors clashed with police over Atlanta’s controversial “Cop City” project. More than 400 people marched against the $90 million law enforcement training center, and were met with flash-bang grenades and tear gas. What better way to reassure everyone this big new police compound is here to serve and protect?

Donald Trump Jr. took the stand again in his father’s (disgraced former president Donald Trump’s) grueling $250 billion fraud lawsuit in New York City on Monday. The ex-President’s dumbest eldest son spent much of the day praising his dad. “He’s an artist with real estate,” Jr. said, referring to one property as “a canvas.” Presiding judge Arthur Engoron dismissed this performance as “a whole morning of irrelevance.” But in spite of himself, Jr. did make an important point, when he said the future of the Trump Organization will largely depend “on what happens next November.” Trump is banking his freedom from criminal jeopardy on his return to the White House. And, Jr. seems to be saying, Don Sr. may hope to save his business empire that way, too. In yet another way, Trump’s campaign has become his legal strategy, and his legal strategy has become his campaign. 

On top of hundreds of deals on beautiful, modern furniture, Article is offering our readers $50 off their first purchase of $100 or more! To claim, visit and the discount will be automatically applied at checkout.

When Sen. Kirsten Sinema (I-AZ) left the Democratic Party in a blaze of dark money glory, so too did her Democratic donors, but she hasn’t picked up that much GOP or Independent support to make up for it, either. 

Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) suspended his presidential campaign on Sunday, surprising even his staff, and probably his Very Real Girlfriend, too (aka, the only remotely thought-provoking issue  raised by his doomed campaign).

. . . . . .

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