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All worrying about today's WaPo claim that "prosecutors recommended against charging" Matt Gaetz - it's actually good news; it's by @Devlin Barrett who wrote that FBI found "no grand [Jan 6] conspiracy" the week before the 1st seditious conspiracy charge 1/…

Career prosecutors have told superiors they don't think Rep. Matt Gaetz should be charged with sex trafficking, citing concerns about witness credibility.…

Career prosecutors recommend no charges for Gaetz in sex-trafficking probe

The WaPo source on Gaetz is an anonymous "people familiar with the matter" - not prosecutors. Not only would it be illegal for DOJ to leak, absolutely no one at DOJ is going to talk to Barrett since his previous story about the Mar-a-Lago docs was used against DOJ in court. 2/

@Devlin Barrett's Mar-a-Lago "leak" was used by both Trump and Judge Cannon to justify shutting down the FBI's investigation of Trump - because there were leaks. Barrett almost derailed the whole DOJ investigation - no one there would talk to him now. 3/…



Sep 16View on Twitter

UPDATE: a big part of the "playing press for patsies" story that I'd missed. * Sep. 6: Trumpworld (likely) leaks to WaPo * Sep 12: Trump cites the WaPo leak as a reason FBI should not keep the documents It's footnote #1, right there in print! 12/…

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The two recent WaPo stories use identical language to describe their anonymous sources: "according to people familiar with the matter". Those people are not DOJ. They're on the other side, people who want this story in the press now, for some reason. It's planted propaganda. 4/

What do the familiar anonymous sources like to tell @Devlin Barrett about DOJ prosecutions? They like to tell him what DOJ is unlikely to do. This week that "a conviction [of Gaetz] is unlikely". In January, that "charges for Trump ...seem unlikely". 5/…

The Jan 5 WaPo story on the Capitol attack claimed FBI found no ' grand conspiracy', and painted attackers as "mostly everyday Americans including community leaders and small-business owners". The source: Jonathan Turley, who testified for Trump during his 1st impeachment. 6/

One week after that Jan 5 WaPo story, the DOJ finally made an announcement - that they'd indicted militia leader Stewart Rhodes and ten of his Oath Keepers for seditious conspiracy. The WaPo story seems meant to undercut this news. 7/…

A federal grand jury in the District of Columbia returned an indictment yesterday, which was unsealed today, charging 11 defendants with seditious conspiracy and other charges for crimes related to…

Leader of Oath Keepers and 10 Other Individuals Indicted in Federal

A federal grand jury in the District of Columbia returned an indictment yesterday, which was unsealed today, charging 11 defendants with seditious conspiracy and other charges for crimes related to

The WaPo language pooh-poohing a 'grand conspiracy' is oddly similar to that in a Reuters article 6 months prior, that cited anonymous sources saying FBI found no 'grand scheme'. It mentioned Alex Jones by name - and 3 days later FBI arrested Alex Jones' partner Owen Shroyer. 8/

The upshot: many stories seem planted. It feels awful to think that, but the pattern is undeniable. And big arrests are often preceded by planted stories that try to undercut that news. So if Gaetz is nervous enough now to plant one, be joyful- something big is likely coming. 9/

What IS distressing, though, is that blue-checked accounts are amplifying this latest planted story, the same way they amplified others. (Here's the Sep 6 fallout.) Please, do your homework before posting! Don't let yourself be manipulated so easily. 10/…

@Devlin Barrett & @Carol Leonnig owe the US an answer: was their source from Trumpworld? But all major media also ran the story. It had almost no new info, but it SOUNDED big, and went big. We need to learn from this, together, or we'll lose everything - the stakes are so high. 9/

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Good journalists - you've got to police your own, or your reputation gets sullied. Other fields have anonymous peer review, where bs & self-deception & mistakes can be quietly purged. Without that it has to be public, which is awkward & uncomfortable - but has to be done. 11/



helping organize crowdsourced information about the 1/6 Capitol attack

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