Today’s Trump Scandal News

Today there are reports that the Trump Organization ordered replicas of the presidential seal to be used as markers on his golf courses. This is probably illegal.

Yesterday we learned that former Trump campaign officials are being subpoenaed by Bob Mueller for all communications — meaning emails, texts, handwritten notes, etc. — they received from the following people: Carter Page, Corey Lewandowski, Donald J. Trump, Hope Hicks, Keith Schiller, Michael Cohen, Paul Manafort, Rick Gates, Roger Stone, and Steve Bannon, beginning November 1, 2015. I don’t know that anyone has figured out why that date is significant.

Today we learned that one of these officials, Sam Nunberg, is going to defy the subpoena.

Sam Nunberg, one of President Trump’s earliest campaign advisers, has been subpoenaed to appear in front of a grand jury Friday as part of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe, The Washington Post reports. Nunberg told the newspaper he will not comply with the subpoena and plans to tear the document up during an appearance on Bloomberg TV.

Good luck with that, Mr. Nunberg. I hope they give you a nice jail cell. See also Wonkette and Martin Longman.

Nunberg appears to be a five-alarm nutcase. Aaron Blake writes at WaPo that Nunberg told CNN that Trump “may very well have done something during the election with the Russians.” He also said that he hated Trump, and that Trump treated him “like crap.” But he’s going to go to jail for Trump? One wonders whether to fetch Nunberg in the Paddy wagon or a padded wagon.

Charles Pierce, on the subpoenas:

Here’s what all this means. This means that Mueller and his staff have likely concluded now that the entire Trump For President campaign was a corrupt enterprise in one way or another almost since the moment it was first conceived and that the same can be said of the Trump presidency*. It’s the money. It’s the Russians. The whole damn dirty deal is one great writhing ball of poisonous snakes and Mueller seems to be perilously close to untangling it.

At the New Yorker, Jane Mayer writes that there is evidence Trump allowed Putin to veto his cabinet picks.

One subject that Steele is believed to have discussed with Mueller’s investigators is a memo that he wrote in late November, 2016, after his contract with Fusion had ended. This memo, which did not surface publicly with the others, is shorter than the rest, and is based on one source, described as “a senior Russian official.” The official said that he was merely relaying talk circulating in the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, but what he’d heard was astonishing: people were saying that the Kremlin had intervened to block Trump’s initial choice for Secretary of State, Mitt Romney. (During Romney’s run for the White House in 2012, he was notably hawkish on Russia, calling it the single greatest threat to the U.S.) The memo said that the Kremlin, through unspecified channels, had asked Trump to appoint someone who would be prepared to lift Ukraine-related sanctions, and who would coöperate on security issues of interest to Russia, such as the conflict in Syria. If what the source heard was true, then a foreign power was exercising pivotal influence over U.S. foreign policy—and an incoming President.

See also Wonkette, again.

Finally, be sure to see this piece by John Harwood that walks us through all the ties between Trump and Russia that are already in the public record.