Mary Trump Releases Recording Of Trump Sister As Source For SAT Allegation

The answer is that it is not a crime, just crass.  You do not go to jail for being crass in a one-party consent state.  Even without knowing that she was being recorded, Barry expressed concern that she was “talking too freely” but then again she was talking privately with her niece. Right?

It is a truly rotten thing to do to a family member, but this family is not exactly the Waltons. Indeed, Mary seems to show the same consequentialism or relative morality that she ascribes to her uncle.

The recording is devastatingly blunt and embarrassing. Judge Trump responded to the comment by her brother that he might have to send her to the border to deal with all of the immigration issues. Barry was is recorded saying “All he wants to do is appeal to his base. He has no principles. None. None. And his base, I mean my God, if you were a religious person, you want to help people. Not do this.”  She goes on lament President Trump’s penchant for lying: “The change of stories. The lack of preparation. The lying. Holy shit.” She notes that “he doesn’t read” and lacks any sense of compassion or comprehension: “It’s the phoniness of it all. It’s the phoniness and this cruelty. Donald is cruel.”

It also appears that his niece fits much of the same bill.

Now for the torts question. The SAT allegation appears to have been raised without prompting by Barry who was explaining how she got President Trump into college: “He was a brat . . . I did his homework for him” . . . “I drove him around New York City to try to get him into college.” Then she said this:  “He went to Fordham for one year [actually two years] and then he got into University of Pennsylvania because he had somebody take the exams.”

Mary Trump responds “No way! He had somebody take his entrance exams?” Barry then confirms it and says “SATs or whatever … That’s what I believe. I even remember the name.” She identified that person as Joe Shapiro.

Mary Trump then writes the following in her book:

“Donald worried that his grade point average, which put him far from the top of the class, would scuttle his efforts to get accepted. To hedge his bets he enlisted Joe Shapiro, a smart kid with a reputation for being a good test taker, to take his SATs for him. That was much easier to pull off in the days before photo IDs and computerized records. Donald, who never lacked for funds, paid his buddy well.”

As noted earlier, the problem with this account is that Shapiro, who died of cancer in 1999, met Trump at the University of Pennsylvania, at least according to his family. His widow, former tennis champion Pam Shriver, was outraged by the allegation against her late husband who she said was known as a person of the highest integrity.

Let assume for the purposes of tort analysis that the story is untrue.  Would the secret recording meet that standard for defamation?

When it comes to the Shapiro family, there is no risk of a defamation lawsuit. That raises the issue of “defaming the dead” and a common law doctrine. The common law rule is that “you cannot defame the dead,” which of course means in practical terms that you can defame the dead. Once again, I have long been a critic of that rule, here.  Publishers and movie producers often wait for figures to die to have full license to defame them with no recourse to the family.  As I said in 2007:

“Indeed, while most people are raised not to speak ill of the dead, the law fully supports those who do. Under the common-law rules governing defamation, a reputation is as perishable as the person who earned it. It is a rule first expressed in the Latin doctrine actio personalis moritur cum persona (“a personal right of action dies with the person”). The English jurist Sir James Stephen put it more simply in 1887, “The dead have no rights and can suffer no wrongs.” In other words, you’re fair game as soon as you die — even if writers say viciously untrue things about you and your life.”

The current controversy highlights the unfairness and harm caused by this common law rule.

However, President Trump could sue.  The standard for defamation for public figures and officials in the United States is the product of a decision decades ago in New York Times v. Sullivan. President Trump would have to prove that his niece had “actual malice” where she had actual knowledge of the falsity of a statement or showed reckless disregard whether it was true or false.  The failure to confirm these facts of when the two men first met would be a compelling claim despite the high burden created by the Supreme Court.

But she had a source.  Not only did Judge Barry say that this was a fact but that she had personal knowledge of the scheme. Mary Trump then confirmed that there was a “Shapiro” who was at Penn and friends with President Trump. Is this enough?

Most newspapers require at least two sources for such an allegation.  Mary Trump had only one. However, this was a close family member claiming personal involvement in his education. Yet, she does not state that she was personally involved in this scheme. She recalls a common name and says that Trump “had somebody” take the exam.  That would not appear first-hand knowledge or direct involvement by Barry. Yet, the book states it as a fact without even saying that this was according to one witness or rumor.

Under these circumstances, most courts would likely let this go to a jury to determine if Mary Trump showed reckless disregard in relying on one source without personal knowledge.

President Trump has not pursued his signature litigious approach to this publication.  There is good reason to be cautious. First, “truth is a defense to defamation.” Thus, Mary Trump would be allowed full discovery to prove that, regardless of her lack of sourcing beyond Barry, the statement was true. Second, there may be further sources available to support Barry’s account or Barry herself may have more to share.

Notably, at the end of the article, Mary Trump notes that Barry has never spoken to her since the book and “if she never contacted me, and I think that’s fair. I understand why she would not want to.” That may be the most objectively true point of the entire affair.

204 thoughts on “Mary Trump Releases Recording Of Trump Sister As Source For SAT Allegation”

  1. Speaking of Trumps being recorded:

    “Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, the former friend of Melania Trump who helped produce the 2017 Presidential Inauguration, taped the First Lady making disparaging remarks about the president and his adult children according to two sources. Wolkoff plans on sharing the First Lady’s comments about her family in her forthcoming book ‘Melania and Me: The Rise and Fall of My Friendship with The First Lady’ which will be published by Simon & Schuster’s Gallery Books on September 1.” (Yashar Ali)

    1. Our despicable publishing industry needs a haircut. These offensive tell-alls usually accomplish nothing besides humiliation of public figures. They are defamatory and operate within the lame carveout of Sullivan v NYT which should be over-ruled by SCOTUS or specifically stripped from SCOTUS jurisdiction as an article III matter.

  2. As a fan of the Bill of Rights but not a Trump fan, is there a 6th Amendment case for 1st Amendment defamation cases? The logic for the 6th Amendment’s “speedy trial clause” is that memories fade over time, witnesses pass away and material evidence becomes lost. For example: you may remember what you were wearing and had for dinner from yesterday but what about 30 years ago. Just delaying justice ruins credible investigations and fair justice. Intentionally waiting, to game the justice system, is the premise behind the 6th Amendment.

  3. FFS…

    “RESOVLVED, That the 2020 Republican National Convention will adjourn without adopting a new platform…
    “RESOLVED, That any motion to amend the 2016 Platform or to adopt a new platform, including any motion to suspend the procedures that will allow doing so, will be ruled out of order.”
    https://prod-cdn-static.gop.com/media/documents/RESOLUTION_REGARDING_THE_REPUBLICAN_PARTY_PLATFORM.pdf

    I guess the platform is “Support Trump no matter what, even though Dear Leader is so inept that he and the RNC can’t formulate a platform.”

  4. Trump has proved in the last 3 and half years what his sister and most of the nation have known, he is unfit for the office.

    1. Fish Wings:
      And yet he’ll win again, Fishy. Maybe time to consider that the one calling others unfit just might not be fit to judge. Just a thought for your scholarly consideration. Chuckles.

  5. A thread from Gregg Gonsalves:
    “Let’s leave everything else on the table. In my field, public health, @realDonaldTrump is a menace. He botched the response to COVID19. 1/ …”
    https://twitter.com/gregggonsalves/status/1297641213764472835

    Click to see the full thread and the linked articles. For example, the first entry in the thread links to a BMJ editorial, “Donald Trump: a political determinant of covid-19 — He downplayed the risk and delayed action, costing countless avertable deaths.” The BMJ is a medical journal, previously known as the British Medical Journal.

    Gonsalves’ account header says “I work @Yale focusing on operations research/epidemiology for infectious disease. In the real world: been an AIDS activist for ~30 yrs. Asst Prof YSPH [Yale School of Public Health],” and it has a link to more info on his Yale Medical School page with more background.

    Over 175,000 Americans are dead from COVID-19, and many more now have serious longterm health effects (e.g., lung damage). We have one of the worst per capita death rates in the entire world.
    Trump was literally left with a pandemic playbook, which he and his team initially ignored.
    Trump was literally left with a pandemic response team as part of the National Security Council, but Bannon disbanded it with Trump doing nothing to prevent that.
    The list of the Trump Admin’s mistakes in response is long. For a good overview of their failures: https://www.justsecurity.org/69650/timeline-of-the-coronavirus-pandemic-and-u-s-response/

    1. Needs to be committed:

      Health care is a state issue and we all (including SCOTUS) know it. Trump did what he could and we have one of the lowest case-fatality ratios in the industrialized world. Bleat away.

      1. I noticed her pumping out those lies awhile back. She is an internet version of the Volkischer Beobachter for the Democrats.

      2. Actually, Mespo, pandemic response is BOTH a state AND federal issue.

        “Trump did what he could”

        If he isn’t capable of more than he did, then he’s unfit for office.

        He COULD have read his PDB’s, but apparently he doesn’t.
        He COULD have used the DPA to order production of sufficient PPEs early on — even producing masks in such numbers that they were simply available for whoever needed in the community — but he didn’t.
        He COULD have provided a model for everyone by consistently wearing a face mask and called on everyone who was medically able to make that tiny sacrifice for the country, but he didn’t.
        He COULD have chosen not to create super spreader events at the international airports when he enacted the European travel restrictions, but he didn’t.
        He COULD have quarantined the tens of thousands of Americans who were returning here from China, but he didn’t.
        He COULD have chosen to overrule Bolton’s desire to do away with the NSC pandemic response team, but he didn’t.
        He COULD have provided support for sufficient testing early on, but he didn’t.
        He COULD have paid attention from the get-go to the pandemic playbook that the Obama Admin. left for him, but he didn’t.
        He COULD have chosen not to eliminate the U.S. public health position in Beijing, aimed at detecting and containing disease outbreaks in China, but he didn’t.
        He COULD have checked annually whether the federal emergency supplies were well-stocked, but he didn’t.
        He COULD have been honest with the American public — well, no, he’s such a pathological liar that maybe he truly isn’t capable of that.

        There’s a long list of things that he COULD have done but didn’t.

        “we have one of the lowest case-fatality ratios in the industrialized world”

        a) We don’t. We’re actually in the middle. Plenty of industrialized countries have lower case-fatality rates: Austria, Greece, Chile, Norway, Australia, Japan, South Korea, Russia, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Iceland, Singapore, …
        b) The case-fatality rate isn’t all that matters. FFS, over 175,000 of our fellow citizens are dead, and we have one of the worst deaths per capita in the entire world. More of our fellow citizens have longterm health problems, and 10% of the population is unemployed. It didn’t have to be this way.

        I would tell you to take your own advice, but I’d actually rather that you stop “bleating.”

        1. Committed Commissar:
          The masks are a joke like your commentary. A 12 micron rated mask never stopped a 2 micron Virus except in your addled mind. And a .024% death rate isn’t a tragedy in a pandemic. It’s a miracle. Or maybe it wasn’t a pandemic at all..

          1. Mespo, you’re so desperate to protect Dear Leader. Educate yourself.

            “[Exhaled] viral particles are known to be encapsulated in globs of mucus, saliva, and water, and the fate/behavior of globs in the environment depends on the size of the globs. Bigger globs fall faster than they evaporate so that they splash down nearby in the form of droplets … Smaller globs evaporate faster in the form of aerosols, and linger in the air, and drift farther away than the droplets do” (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7293495/), so that focusing on the size of the *virus particles* is not key to understanding how masks can be effective with *globs, droplets, and aerosols* that contain virus particles.

            And the U.S. doesn’t have a “.024% death rate.” Our case fatality rate is currently 3.1%, and the deaths per capita is .054%, which is indeed a tragedy, as it translates to over 175,000 of your fellow Americans dead.

            “It’s a miracle. Or maybe it wasn’t a pandemic at all.”

            You’re delusional.

              1. No, US deaths per capita is ~54 per 100,000, which is 0.054%. But our population is ~330 million, so even though the percentage is small, the number it represents is large: over 175,000 people.

              2. P.S. BtB, I’ve now looked up the data that your article was referring to (which is linked in the Bloomberg article that the Denver Post reprinted): https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/planning-scenarios.html#table-1

                Note that that’s an estimate of the infection fatality ratio (IFR), which is different than either of the two ratios I was talking about: case fatality ratio (CFR) and total deaths per capita. The infection fatality ratio estimates the proportion of deaths among all infected individuals, whereas the case fatality ratio estimates the proportion of deaths only among known confirmed cases.

                Of course, Mespo only said “death rate” without specifying which rate he was referring to. If he meant the IFR, then you’re right, the current best estimate from the CDC is 0.65%, not Mespo’s claimed “.024% death rate.”

          2. Doofus, drop the zero or the % sign. Can’t have both. The death rate – wherever you got that one – is at least 10 times that for seasonal “flu”. And Mespo, don’t wear a mask! I repeat: Don’t wear a mask!.

            Everyone else: wear a f..king mask!

            “The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention upwardly revised its “best estimate” of the fatality rate in July to 0.65% from 0.26%. An occasionally updated “meta-analysis” by Australian researchers Gideon Meyerowitz-Katz and Lea Merone of all relevant studies on the disease has it at 0.68%….”

            https://www.denverpost.com/2020/08/06/justin-fox-the-not-so-great-covid-19-versus-flu-comparison/

        2. It’s the flu. As of July 14th of this year, more people died from pneumonia than covid-19.

          Shutting the Nation down over a .01% death rate was stupid no matter how you look at it. You might want to also consider why just 3 cities represent 40% of ALL covid-19 deaths.

          Asymptomatic numbers for covid are between 36% to 86%; the low end number represents 121 million Americans who got covid and suffered no adverse result. we’re close to the death stats for the ’57 Asian Flu; don’t see that the country was shut down over that.

          1. “It’s the flu”

            It isn’t. You may think that we should trust the opinion of some rando commenter, but if I want to understand a health issue, I’ll turn to a reliable source like the CDC (e.g., “Influenza (Flu) and COVID-19 are both contagious respiratory illnesses, but they are caused by different viruses”). The infection fatality ratio for SARS-CoV-2 vs. a standard flu is currently estimated to be 10 times higher; that is, if you become infected, you’re about 10 times more likely to die from SARS-CoV-2 vs. a standard flu (see the link that By the Book provided).

            You make claims, but provide no links to back up your numbers. For the record, the CFR and deaths per capita rates I gave above (where I said “Our case fatality rate is currently 3.1%, and the deaths per capita is .054%,”) came from https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/data/mortality

            1. “you’re about 10 times more likely to die from SARS-CoV-2 vs. a standard flu”

              A foolish and ignorant statement from CTHD. If one is young the chances of dying from a standard flu are greatly less than dying from Covid. It is said that 92% of deaths are above 55 years of age meaning the outlook for those younger is quite good and much better than from the standard flu. Though the exact number is unknown because all the counting from all the states hasn’t been done, 1/2 of the deaths (a guess, maybe more) are from nursing homes so suddenly the number changes drastically. The actual years lost from nursing home deaths and many of the sick are low for many are already dying or soon to die.That doesn’t mean we should let them die and that is why we have to consider isolating that group.

              Most younger people that die have underlying disease. This tells us that the elderly and sick need to be isolated voluntarily. The total number of deaths likely has been considerably elevated. Some say the overcount is in the vicinity of 25%. Many said to have died of Covid actually died of something else. Medicare added a bonus for Covid care and some states have stated that anyone dying with a positive Covid test is a Covid death. These actions increase the number of Covid deaths and make them much higher than they are.

      3. Rights, freedoms, privileges and immunities provided by the Constitution cannot be denied by states.

        California cannot abrogate the freedom of speech.

        California cannot deny citizens their constitutional immunity from unconstitutional taxation.

        Congress has the power to tax for “…general Welfare…” omitting and, thereby, deliberately excluding any power to tax for individual welfare, specific welfare, charity or any form of redistribution of wealth.

  6. What did Sister Mary and the nefarious niece have to say about the far more expansive and deplorable “vast [left]-wing conspiracy,” The Obama Coup D’etat in America?
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    The Obama Coup D’etat in America is the most egregious abuse of power and the most prodigious crime in American political history.

    The co-conspirators are:

    Kevin Clinesmith, Bill Taylor, Eric Ciaramella, Rosenstein, Mueller/Team, Andrew Weissmann,

    James Comey, Christopher Wray, McCabe, Strozk, Page, Laycock, Kadzic,

    Sally Yates, James Baker, Bruce Ohr, Nellie Ohr, Priestap, Kortan, Campbell,

    Sir Richard Dearlove, Christopher Steele, Simpson, Joseph Mifsud,

    Alexander Downer, Stefan “The Walrus” Halper, Azra Turk, Kerry, Hillary,

    Huma, Mills, Brennan, Gina Haspel, Clapper, Lerner, Farkas, Power, Lynch,

    Rice, Jarrett, Holder, Brazile, Sessions (patsy), Nadler, Schiff, Pelosi, Obama,

    Joe Biden, James E. Boasberg et al.

  7. Democrats likely are trying to delay cures for Covid until after the election. The President will speak about this at ~6PM.

    1. The communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats, RINOs) called their Dear Leader, Xi Jinping, and requested the release of “The China Flu, 2020” as a last resort of desperation, knowing they were facing an inexorable, historic, landslide win by President Trump in November. Their base was under imminent threat of being overrun so they called in “danger close” fire support. Smart. It worked.

    2. ALAN TELLS US: “Democrats likely are trying to delay cures for Covid until after the election”.

      Here Alan asserts that Democrats are somehow immune to the virus. Alan also suggests that no Democrat has elderly parents or grandparents to worry about. Nor do any Democrats, according to Alan, suffer from obesity or medical preconditions.

      In short, Alan would have us believe that all Democrats are in perfect health and have no reason whatsoever to fear the dreaded virus.

      1. Democrats seem to think so. They feel they are immune when they riot, loot and beat up grandma. Democrats will do almost anything to gain power and they attract the stupid.

        1. Alan, ‘who’ was president during these riots? And ‘what’ actions did that president take to calm tensions in the run-up to said riots?

          Alan would have us believe that we are somehow safer retaining Donald Trump as president. Like somehow riots are ‘less likely’ to happen if Trump is reelected. But this argument is utterly illogical. All these riots occurred ‘while’ Trump was president! So where is the logic in believing we are ‘safer’ with Trump???? His presidency has been chaotic from the start.

          1. In case you hadn’t noticed, about 90% of the police manpower in this country is in the hands of state and local officials, not to mention the National Guard. You have riots in Minneapolis because Mayor Frey is a diphead who has no clue how to secure public order. You have them in Portland because the Mayor and the DA are in cahoots with the rioters. You don’t need federal intervention. You need for local officials to quit undermining the police and get out of the way while they enforce the law.

            1. Absurd, I don’t totally disagree with your points here.

              But presidents must serve ‘all’ Americans, not just a narrow base. And that’s the biggest problem with Donald Trump; he only cares about his narrow base of angry, older Whites in small towns. Trump routinely thumbs his nose at the rest of America, acting like he has no intention of serving us in any way, shape or form.

              Had Trump been a true statesman and leader, he might have gone to Minneapolis after the Floyd killing. He could have made a speech there calling for unity, calm and justice. He could have beseeched the people of Minneapolis to give justice a chance to work. Moments like the Floyd killing can be viewed as opportunities to give speeches that make a difference.

              But after polarizing America for 3 1/2 years, Trump had no moral authority or credibility as a statesman. Therefore Trump was incapable of calming tensions at a crucial moment.

              Instead Trump issued a bellicose statement saying, “When the looting starts, the shooting starts”. No statement could have been more irresponsible! Within 48 hours of that statement, the looting indeed started. Call it a ‘backlash effect’. Trump essentially dared the masses to riot!

              So this idea that only Trump can keep us safe is like saying that Syria was ‘keeping the peace in Lebanon’.

              1. But presidents must serve ‘all’ Americans, not just a narrow base. And that’s the biggest problem with Donald Trump; he only cares about his narrow base of angry, older Whites in small towns. Trump routinely thumbs his nose at the rest of America, acting like he has no intention of serving us in any way, shape or form.

                I sometimes think you’re perfectly unself-conscious when you make utterances like this.

                1. Absurd, one thing we seem to know: ‘You’re an angry, older White in a small town”. So that’s your perspective.

              2. “But presidents must serve ‘all’ Americans, not just a narrow base.”

                Citation please.

                Let’s start here: “Crazy Abe” Lincoln not only illegally and unconstitutionally served “a narrow base” but he brutalized, jailed and killed his wide and vast opponents, both in the North and the South, inexplicably in a nation that had just completed secession from the British Empire. “Crazy Abe’s” irrational, schizophrenic, illegitimate and unconstitutional aberrations dazed, twisted and plague America to this day.

                Then we may proceed to the wholly unconstitutional machinations of Wilson, FDR, LBJ and Obama who diminished the Constitution and freedom, and increased the grip of the “narrow base” of communism.

          2. You complain when the President sends federal law enforcement to protect federal property and you complain when he doesn’t send federal officials to help the states.

            We have a federalist system. Pick up a book and read about it. You complain Trump is a tyrant but he has not overstepped his bounds where the states are concerned. The governor and mayors have control over huge numbers of law enforcement. Instead of using them these democrat governors and mayors are telling the police to stand down. Trump has offered federal help but hasn’t overstepped his boundaries. He should be congratulated for such restraint.

            The ones permitting this crisis are democrats.

    3. I am not a Democrat nor a Republican nor sympathethic to the extreme Left or the extreme Right. It appears that “Operation Warp Speed” shows a committment by responsible scientists to produce not just one but several COVID-19 vaccines unprecedentedly quickly.

      The medicinal chemistry blog “In The Pipeline”has been following vaccine development worldwide and specifically in the US. While political commentary on the blog has been largely critical of the President’s touting of hydroxychloroquine as a cure for pestis sinica no one there is advocating for putting the brakes on clinical trials of developmental vaccines when there’s no sign of human toxicity and even slight activity as a vaccine (say, requiring more than one dose to reach desired antibody levels.

      Quite the opposite, when responsible Big Pharma houses with vaccine experience (say, Pfizer or Glaxo Smith Kline) are talking about putting a new vaccine (less than a few months old) into Phase II/III human trials (Phase II gives the trial drug to patients to check for signs of activity against the target disease and/or toxicity, Phase III is an expanded trial in many patients, looking, again, for safety and effectiveness) are even cautiously being cheered on by people regardless of their politics, it’s not a sign of resisters sabotaging trial results.

      We’re all tired of the lockdown and people dying.

      1. I believe there are some that would put a wrench in for political gains. That is typical of the left and I am not in love with Republicans.

        One question I have about HCQ is why so many attacked the drug in a fashion not normally seen. I don’t know if it works one way or the other but.

        Many attacked because Trump thought it was a good idea

        HCQ has no patents and there is a fortune to be made even with drugs that might not work very well. Could it be that if HCQ were found to work as well as the new drug that a lot of money would be lost? A large number of those that decided HCQ should be withdrawn from special use for Covid own stock in Gilead?

  8. OT

    November 3, 2020 is the only presidential election day.

    “THE TUESDAY AFTER THE FIRST MONDAY IN NOVEMBER”

    “FROM 1848 ONWARD, EVERY PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION HAS BEEN HELD ON THIS DATE.”

    It is unconstitutional and illegal for citizens to obtain and/or cast ballots before election day.

    Citizens must present themselves, be identified, be certified and cast their ballots at a polling place on election day.

    Absentee ballots may not be mailed before election day.

    Candidates must be allowed time to campaign BEFORE AN ELECTION and absolute notice of an election must be provided.

    Democrats intend to dilute, corrupt, “harvest” and cheat the vote through unconstitutional and illegal vote-by- mail.

    If “The China Flu, 2020” presents an intractable situation, the election must be delayed.
    _____________________________________________________________________

    Presidential Election Day Act

    On January 23, 1845, the 28th US Congress passed “An act to establish a uniform time for holding elections for electors of President and Vice President in all the States of the Union. The act selected “the Tuesday after the first Monday in November” as the day on which all states must appoint electors. This standardization greatly increased the speed of Presidential elections; the previous election of 1844 lasted from November 1-December 4. From 1848 onward, every Presidential election has been held on this date.

    – Wiki
    _____

    “PRESCRIBED INTERVALS”

    Election
    Scheduling

    The nature of democracy is that elected officials are accountable to the people, and they must return to the voters at prescribed intervals to seek their mandate to continue in office. For that reason most democratic constitutions provide that elections are held at fixed regular intervals.

    – Wiki

    1. “CRAZY ABE” LINCOLN WON 1860 WITH 39.8% OF THE VOTE AND 1864 WITH BRUTE MILITARY FORCE

      Traveling to Baltimore in the fall of 1864, Orville Wood had no way of knowing he would soon uncover the most elaborate election conspiracy in America’s brief history.

      Wood was a merchant from Clinton County in the most northeastern corner of New York. As a supporter of President Abraham Lincoln, he was tasked with visiting troops from his hometown to “look after the local ticket.”

      New York legislators had only established the state’s mail-in voting system in April with the intent of ensuring the suffrage of White troops battling the Confederate Army.

      The results of the 1864 elections would heavily affect the outcome of the war. Lincoln and his supporters in the National Union Party sought to continue the war and defeat the Confederacy outright. Meanwhile antiwar Democrats, also referred to as Copperheads, looked for an immediate compromise with the Confederate leaders and the end of the abolition movement.

      Troops from New York were allowed to authorize individuals back home to cast a vote on their behalf. Along with their mail-in ballots, troops would assign their power of attorney on slips that required four signatures: the voter’s, the person authorized as a recipient, a witness to the signed affidavit and a fellow officer. These documents would be sealed in an envelope and shipped back home to be counted in the final vote. This was the process that Orville Wood intended to uphold, he would testify in court later. He quickly found out what a challenge that would be.

      Wood arrived at Fort McHenry in Baltimore to visit with the 91st New York Regiment. There, an Army captain suggested that there had been some “checker playing” when it came to the gathering of soldiers’ mail-in ballots. These suspicions of fraud were echoed when Wood visited wounded men at the Newton University Hospital. The rumors of wrongdoing led Wood to the office of Moses Ferry in Baltimore.

      Ferry had been selected by New York Gov. Horatio Seymour to help oversee the voting process for New York’s enlisted men. Seymour had vetoed the initial bill to establish mail-in voting and would go on to run against Ulysses S. Grant in the 1868 presidential election.

      Wood masked his suspicions as he entered Ferry’s office, portraying himself as a strong supporter of Lincoln’s opponent, George McClellan. This was enough to gain Ferry’s trust, he testified later.

      Ferry told Wood that the votes from New York’s 91st Regiment had already been tallied: 400 for McClellan and 11 for Lincoln.

      Wood returned to the office later and, following Ferry’s instructions, began forging signatures of the 16th New York Cavalry. Meanwhile, a clerk sat across the room signing ballots from the roster of names Wood had brought with him from home. Wood asked to personally deliver these fraudulent ballots, but Ferry said they would have to receive final approval from his colleague in Washington – Edward Donahue Jr.

      Donahue soon arrived in Baltimore and met with Wood. It was revealed during this conversation that around 20 co-conspirators were already at work in D.C. to aid in the plot to deliver votes to McClellan. The following day Wood watched as Donahue and his crew formed a sort of assembly line, passing blank papers along to one another to be signed with the names of active enlisted men, wounded and dead soldiers, and officers who never existed.

      In addition to operations in D.C. and Baltimore, the scheme extended back to New York. Donahue had received rosters of soldiers from military officials and members of law enforcement. A letter from Gen. J.A. Ferrell read, “Inclosed in this package you will find tickets, also a list of names of the actual residents of Columbia County, now members of the 128th Regiment. With my best wishes for your success.”

      A letter from Albany Sheriff H. Cromdell offered to send additional men to assist in Baltimore. The letter read, “All is well here, and we are confident of complete success. It is unnecessary to say that all here have entire confidence in your skill and abetting, and hope you like your help.”

      Also discovered in Ferry’s office was a list of around 400 names belonging to sick and wounded soldiers under treatment at a nearby hospital. In reference to the roster, Ferry joked, “Dead or alive, they all had cast a good vote.”

      Ferry, Donahue, and their fellow conspirators found humor in their work. One accomplice mocked the outcry he expected from abolitionist newspapers following the corruption of the election. The men bragged about their past successes in fixing local elections back home.

      Together, the men had shipped crates of fraudulent votes back to New York. But their scheme was over. Wood reported the operation to authorities. Ferry’s office was searched, and on the morning of Oct. 27, 1864 – less than two weeks before the election – he and Donahue stood trial before a military commission.

      Ferry offered a full confession that same day, even offering up the names of others involved in the scheme. Donahue proved more of a challenge.

      Following the first day of the trial, a reporter for the New York Times wrote, “The honest electors of the state of New York have escaped an extensive and fearful fraud, a fraud in keeping with the proclivities of the party in whose behalf it was initiated, but one that, if unexposed might have subverted the honest will of the people and left the state and the nation at the mercy of those who would make peace with rebellion and fellowship with traitors.”

      Arrests in New York and Washington continued to mount as Donahue returned to trial. Following Wood’s damning testimony and supporting evidence, Donahue begged for mercy from the court. He was a young man, newly married, with no previous record. He visibly wilted as he realized the weight of his current situation, no longer expressing the defiance with which he had entered the proceedings.

      The judge advocate addressed the tribunal, saying that Donahue had engaged in one of the most gigantic frauds ever attempted in America – “a fraud which, if it shall be successful, will, in my opinion, have produced a disruption of our entire country, and our war for the preservation of the Union will be practically at an end and futile.”

      In the months following Lincoln’s victory – he won 221 electoral votes to McClellan’s 21 – anti-abolitionist newspapers attacked his legitimacy, calling the trial another aspect of a conspiracy conducted by the president to ensure his reelection.

      The commission that oversaw Ferry and Donahue’s trial recommended life in prison for the two men who sought to corrupt the election by mail. The president, who would soon be slain, approved.

  9. Jonathan: If Mary Trump is not guilty of “wiretapping” and Pam Shriver can’t sue because dead people can’t tell tales what are we left with? No much. Just your unfounded allegations that Mary is guilty of being “crass”, “a truly rotten thing to do to a family member” and a person who exhibits a “relative morality that she ascribes to her uncle”. In 2000 Mary and her brother sued in a dispute of their inheritance from Donald’s father, Fred Trump Sr. What did Trump do in response? He cancelled Mary and her brother’s health insurance. Don’t you think that was an equally “rotten thing to do to a family member”? I guess not.

    Anyone who has followed Trump’s career, past and present, knows that Maryanne Trump Barry’s comments about her brother ring true. Mary Trump also knows about her uncle’s sordid past. When she first attempted to get her tell all book published Trump had his brother, Robert Trump, now deceased, file the lawsuit. The president didn’t want to appear vengeful! The suit failed on First Amendment grounds. Mary is a clinical psychologist and her professional training no doubt gives her some insight into the toxic mind of her uncle and why she characterizes him as a “sociopath”.

    And does anyone doubt Donald Trump would get someone else to take his SAT to gain admittance to the Wharton business school. He has cheated his entire life. Trump always claims he is “very smart” and “graduated first in his class” from Wharton. Many of Trump’s classmates say he was not a very good student. The school released a list of 56 students who were on the Dean’s list in 1968 (the year Trump graduated) and Trump’s name was not on the list. The wealthy and powerful often try to cheat or pay bribes to get their children into elite universities. But cheating has consequences.Just ask Lori Loughlin who was just sentenced to two months in prison.for paying hundreds of thousand in bribes to get her daughters into USC.

    My gut tells me (as Trump’s often tells him) that Mary and Maryanne are simply relating facts about their uncle and brother’s history of cheating and lying that he would prefer remain in the closet. But you prefer to attack the messenger.

    1. Mary is a clinical psychologist and her professional training no doubt gives her some insight into the toxic mind of her uncle and why she characterizes him as a “sociopath”.

      She couldn’t pass her licensing exams, so she hung out a shingle as a ‘life coach’.

      The wealthy and powerful often try to cheat or pay bribes to get their children into elite universities.

      If they did, the scandals you’re reading about wouldn’t be in the papers. You’re reading about it because it isn’t routine.

      He cancelled Mary and her brother’s health insurance. Don’t you think that was an equally “rotten thing to do to a family member”? I guess not.

      Mary and Fred III were 36 and 38 at the time. Ordinarily, they’d have employer-provided insurance. Some odd ducks are in the individual market at that age (as you might expect of two people with asset income). I believe New York was a guaranteed-issue state at the time.

      1. “She couldn’t pass her licensing exams”

        You keep saying this.
        And you keep failing to present evidence that it’s true.

        “You’re reading about it because it isn’t routine.”

        You’re reading about it because they were indicted. Maybe the underlying behavior isn’t routine, OR maybe the underlying behavior is routine but seldom indicted. People are rarely ticketed for jay-walking, but that doesn’t imply that the underlying behavior is rare.

        “Ordinarily, they’d have employer-provided insurance.”

        The Trumps aren’t an ordinary family: https://www.nydailynews.com/archives/news/trumps-bitter-battle-nephew-ailing-baby-caught-middle-article-1.888562

        1. And you keep failing to present evidence that it’s true.

          She has a LinkedIn profile up. The New York State Department of Education and Department of State have a searchable database of licensed professionals. She’s not in it.

          1. “She has a LinkedIn profile up.”

            Does it say “I couldn’t pass my licensing exams”? If not, then it’s not evidence for your claim.

            “The New York State Department of Education and Department of State have a searchable database of licensed professionals. She’s not in it.”

            You claiming it isn’t actually evidence. Do you even know her ex-wife’s last name to see if that’s the name she was licensed under instead? (I don’t.)

            It’s easy enough to find news articles stating that she’s “a licensed clinical psychologist.”
            An example:
            https://lawandcrime.com/awkward/publisher-moves-up-release-of-mary-trumps-book-her-spokesman-asks-what-is-donald-trump-so-afraid-of/

            Unless you have actual evidence, I’ll go with the published news sources.

          1. That “It was a guaranteed issue state” is irrelevant to the existing arrangement about who would pay for their health insurance and additional medical costs.

            1. Stupid or dishonest?

              A woman of 36 and a man of 38 are generally expected to arrange for their insurance coverage through their employer or through the individual market. They weren’t home health aides working per diem.

              1. She is both stupid and dishonest.

                I didn’t read the book. Why was Trump obligated to pay for her health insurance?

              2. Ask your question of yourself, and add alternatives like “too lazy to read the relevant info” to the list.

    2. Did you say IF as in hypothetical?

      If Kamala Harris IS a “natural born citizen,” who IS NOT?

      And why are “natural born citizen” and “citizen” in the Constitution, separately and distinctly?

      Of course, Kamala Harris is not a “natural born citizen” and is not eligible for president because her parents were NOT U.S. citizens at the time of the candidate’s birth.

      Why don’t you ask “Jonathan” that?

  10. The Constitution does not say, “Do anything you like.” It is very specific in the provision of extensive rights, freedoms, privileges and immunities of individuals, while it severely limits and restricts Congress and government. Understanding that “…persons, houses, papers, and effects,…” including telephone calls, are electronic and digital in the year of our Lord, 2020, it would appear that Mary Trump, retired federal judge Maryanne Trump Barry et al. denied and violated the constitutional rights of President Trump and should be serving time in prison. But then, that’s all the rage isn’t it – egregious crimes of statute and fundamental law being arbitrarily legalized on an ad hoc basis so long as the perpetrators are communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats, RINOs). When do Americans begin to enjoy the benefits of the Constitution per a judicial branch which assures them?
    ________________________________________________

    4th Amendment

    The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

  11. “THERE’S A LOT ABOUT [OBAMA] WE DON’T KNOW”

    – Tom Brokaw

    Below is a clip of Charlie Rose and Tom Brokaw trying to figure out who Obama is. Note that neither of them asks the obvious question. Why?
    _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    ROSE: I don’t know what Barack Obama’s worldview is.

    BROKAW: No, I don’t, either.

    ROSE: I don’t know how he really sees where China is.

    BROKAW: We don’t know a lot about Barack Obama and the universe of his thinking about foreign policy.

    ROSE: I don’t really know. And do we know anything about the people who are advising him?

    BROKAW: Yeah, it’s an interesting question.

    ROSE: He is principally known through his autobiography and through very aspirational (sic) speeches.

    BROKAW: Two of them! I don’t know what books he’s read.

    ROSE: What do we know about the heroes of Barack Obama?

    BROKAW: There’s a lot about him we don’t know.

  12. Larry Sinclair stated that Obama smoked crack cocaine, had homosexual relations with him and implied that Obama had homosexual relations with a “Donald Young” who was murdered on Dec. 23, 2007, and was the openly gay choir director for Reverend Wright’s Trinity United Church of Christ.

  13. Barack Obama & Larry Sinclair:: Cocaine, Sex, Lies & Murder? Jun 15, 2009
    by Lawrence W. Sinclair , Jeff Rense
    ( 190 )
    $9.99
    The Book rights have been sold to Movie Skool LLC and will be offered via Amazon Kindle under their name and copyright which became effective on May 1, 2014.

    The biggest untold story of the 2008 U.S. Presidential Election… Finally, the no-holds-barred, 100% true story of Barack Obama’s use and sale of cocaine; his homosexual affairs and the December 23, 2007 murder of Barack Obama’s former lover and choir director of Obama’s Chicago church of 20 years, Donald Young, just days before the 2008 Iowa Caucus. This searing candid story begins with Barack Obama meeting Larry Sinclair in November, 1999, and subsequently procuring and selling cocaine, and then engaging in consensual, homosexual sex with Sinclair on November 6th and again on November 7, 1999. You’ll read in riveting detail how Sinclair, in 2007, repeatedly contacted and requested that the Obama campaign simply come clean about their candidate’s 1999 drug use and sales. You learn how the Obama campaign, David Axelrod and Barack Obama used Donald Young (the homosexual lover of Barack Obama) to contact and seek out information from Sinclair about who he had told of Obama’s crimes and actions. You’ll read how the Obama campaign used internet porn king Dan Parisi and Ph.D. fraud Edward I. Gelb to conduct a rigged polygraph exam in an attempt to make the Sinclair story go away. The Obama team and the controlled media – specifically MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, Keith Olbermann, the New York Times, CNN, Politico’s Ben Smith, The DailyKos, The Huffington Post and others – attacked the National Press Club for making its facilities available to Larry Sinclair for a news conference to present his evidence and allegations to the world media. You’ll read how Vice President Joe Biden’s son, Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden, issued an arrest warrant on completely false, fabricated charges to attempt to discredit Mr. Sinclair’s National Press Club news conference. This is a staggeringly true story of how the sitting U.S.President with the help of the Mainstream Media, the Chicago Police Department, the FBI, the Delaware Attorney General and others got away with murder and more….

  14. Trump’s Sister Regards Brother as Untrustworthy

    This Morning Twitter Agreed With That Assessment

    Twitter on Sunday flagged a tweet in which President Trump suggested voters could contract the coronavirus by placing their mail-in ballots in drop boxes, calling his message misleading and in violation of the platform’s rules.

    “We placed a public interest notice on this Tweet for violating our Civic Integrity Policy for making misleading health claims that could potentially dissuade people from participation in voting,” the company said in a tweet Sunday afternoon.

    It added that Trump’s tweet “will remain on the service given its relevance to ongoing public conversation” and that users “will be able to Retweet with Comment, but not Like, Reply, or Retweet it.”

    The move came after Trump kicked off his Sunday morning by tweeting two familiar lines of attack — one against mail-in voting and another against some Democrats at last week’s convention who omitted the word “God” when saying the Pledge of Allegiance.

    “So now the Democrats are using Mail Drop Boxes, which are a voter security disaster. Among other things, they make it possible for a person to vote multiple times,” Trump tweeted. “Also, who controls them, are they placed in Republican or Democrat areas? They are not Covid sanitized. A big fraud!”

    Despite the claim, states and localities check ballots against voter rolls, making it difficult for one person to “vote multiple times.” Covid-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, can be spread by exposure to surfaces but is more often spread by person-to-person contact, according to experts.

    Edited from: “Twitter Flags ‘Misleading’ Tweet In Which Trump Suggested Voters Could Contact Coronavirus From Ballot Drop Boxes”

    Today’s Washington Post

  15. SELECT PASSAGE FROM TAPE:

    Mary questioned Barry about what he had accomplished on his own.

    “I don’t know,” Barry said.

    “Nothing,” Mary responded.

    “Well he has five bankruptcies,” Barry said. (Trump’s companies filed for six corporate bankruptcies but he has never declared personal bankruptcy.)

    “Good point. He did accomplish those all by his self,” Mary said.

    “Yes, he did. Yes, he did. You can’t trust him,” Barry said.
    ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

    Trump ran for president on the premise that he is a ‘business genius’. Yet here his older sister is hard-pressed to recall Donald’s “accomplishments”. She can only cite his “five bankruptcies”. Which makes us wonder ‘how much’ of the Trump family fortune was lost in Atlantic City.

    For years rightwing media pushed the idea that a ‘businessman’ might be ‘more qualified’ for president than career politicians. And lacking any experience in public office, Trump ran for president on the premise that his ‘business genius’ was so incredibly self-evident. But here his older sister suggests that Donald was more of a failure than anything.

    1. Over-rule NYT v Sullivan and obnoxious screeds like this go away

      SCOTUS can do it or failing that, the SCOTUS can be stripped of jurisdiction to hear any sort of challenge to defamation laws on 1st amendment grounds— By a simple majority.

      Its coming. sooner or later, it will come

  16. Jonathan Turley wrote:

    ‘The recording is devastatingly blunt and embarrassing. Judge Trump responded to the comment by her brother that he might have to send her to the border to deal with all of the immigration issues. Barry was is recorded saying “All he wants to do is appeal to his base. He has no principles. None. None. And his base, I mean my God, if you were a religious person, you want to help people. Not do this.” She goes on lament President Trump’s penchant for lying: “The change of stories. The lack of preparation. The lying. Holy shit.” She notes that “he doesn’t read” and lacks any sense of compassion or comprehension: “It’s the phoniness of it all. It’s the phoniness and this cruelty. Donald is cruel.”’

    Let that stand alone.

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