legal-affairs

Closing Arguments for Manafort Trial Set for Wednesday, if Jurors Can ‘Pay Attention’
Jury could decide former Trump campaign chairman’s fate as early as that evening

The closing arguments for the trial against former Donald Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort are set for Wednesday. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

Closing arguments for the Paul Manafort trial are set to begin Wednesday morning, Judge T.S. Ellis III said in court Tuesday.

The Eastern Virginia jury could decide as early as Wednesday evening whether the former Trump campaign chairman is guilty of any of the 18 counts he is facing on tax evasion and bank fraud.

3 Takeaways as Prosecution Rests Case in Paul Manafort Trial
Trial has put potential tax reporting loophole under the microscope

Media outlets set up microphones on July 31 in front of the United States District Court in Alexandria, Va., where President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, is standing trial. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

Special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s prosecution team on Monday rested its case against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, wrapping up its evidence and witness testimony in just 10 days.

The defense will decide whether it will call any witnesses Tuesday morning. If it does not, both sides are expected to deliver closing arguments. Then the jury will decide Manafort’s fate.

Three Men Sentenced in 2015 Killing of Intern for Rob Portman
Matthew Shlonsky was caught in crossfire shooting

Three men who pleaded guilty to killing Matthew Shlonsky were sentenced in D.C. Superior Court on Monday. (CQ Roll Call file photo)

The three men who pleaded guilty to the 2015 killing of 23-year-old Matthew Shlonsky, a former Sen. Rob Portman intern, were sentenced in D.C. Superior Court on Monday.

Andre Dudley, 22, Marcus King, 22, and Christopher Proctor, 28, each were sentenced for single counts of voluntary manslaughter while armed and two counts each of assault with a dangerous weapon. The sentences carry 18.5 years, 15-20 years and 12-14 years, respectively.

Goodlatte’s Son Says Father’s ‘Political Grandstanding’ Ruined Strzok’s Career
Bobby Goodlatte calls hearing over Strzok’s text messages ‘a low point for Congress’

House Judiciary Chairman Robert W. Goodlatte, R-Va., conducts a committee markup of the so-called POLICE Act of 2017 in May. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Judiciary Chairman Robert W. Goodlatte’s son on Monday criticized the firing of former FBI counterintelligence official Peter Strzok, blaming his father’s “political grandstanding.”

Bobby Goodlatte tweeted that Strzok was “a patriot” and called the joint hearing for Stzrok that his father chaired last month a “low point for Congress.”

FBI Agent Peter Strzok Fired For Anti-Trump Texts
Counterterrorism official had been in the hot seat since anti-Trump texts with alleged mistress were discovered

FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok was fired for his text messages criticizing President Donald Trump. (CQ Roll Call file photo)

Peter Strzok, the senior FBI counterintelligence official who has been in the hot seat since the Justice Department’s inspector general discovered his anti-Trump text messages with DOJ lawyer Lisa Page, has been fired from the bureau, his lawyer told multiple news outlets.

Strzok, 48, was one of the main targets of a faction of House Republicans who have sought information on anti-Trump bias in the upper reaches of the DOJ.

Rep. David Cicilline’s Sister Let Off Hook on ‘Live PD’
Some viewers say she caught a break because of political connections

Officer Matt Moretti administers a field sobriety test to Susan Cicilline-Buonanno, sister of Rhode Island Democratic Rep. David Cicilline, during Friday’s broadcast of “Live PD.” (A&E)

A local Rhode Island police officer let Rep. David Cicilline’s sister, Susan Cicilline-Buonanno, go home without any troubles after pulling her over and administering a sobriety test — on television.

The encounter was broadcast on A&E’s “Live PD,” a program that follows roughly six police officers from around the country as they feed delayed video to the show.

Police, Opponents Criticize Warren’s Remarks on ‘Racist’ Justice System
Democratic senator said system was ‘racist ... I mean, front to back’

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., was criticized for her remarks calling the criminal justice system “racist.” (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Sen. Elizabeth Warren was criticized by her Republican challengers and law enforcement in Massachusetts after declaring in a speech that the criminal justice system is “racist.”

Speaking at New Orleans’ Dillard University last week at an event hosted by Congressional Black Caucus Chairman Cedric Richmond, the Massachusetts Democrat said “the hard truth about our criminal justice system: It’s racist ... I mean, front to back.”

Road Ahead: Senate Returning to DC for the Ides of August
Floor agenda will look familiar: judicial nominations and appropriation bills

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I.,left, jokes with Sen. Jim Risch, R-Idaho, as he walks down the Senate steps on Aug. 1 after the chamber’s last vote of the week. Risch was posing for photos with interns on the steps. Senators return Wednesday from their truncated district work period. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Thank goodness the Senate has “manufactured weather.”

That’s what Carrier called the system that was first installed to cool the chamber in the early 20th century. The modern air conditioning will be in full use this week as the Senate returns for a rare mid-August session.

3 Takeaways as Second Week of Manafort Trial Ends
Procedural hiccup pushed Friday’s start to middle of afternoon

The entrance to the United States District Court in Alexandria, Va., where President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, is standing trial is seen in a puddle on July 31. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

The second week of the tax evasion and bank fraud trial of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort is in the books with special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s team expecting to call its final witness to the stand Monday afternoon. After that, the prosecution will rest its case.

After a procedural hiccup Friday morning that pushed the start of the day’s testimony to the middle of the afternoon, three of the prosecution’s witnesses took the stand to discuss the bank fraud charges against Manafort. Two employees from The Federal Savings Bank testified about a pair of loans Manafort secured from the bank in 2016. A ticket sales executive for the New York Yankees also testified.

Kavanaugh Hearing Date Set for September 4 in Senate
Republicans want a floor vote on Trump’s pick by the midterms

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh meets with Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, last month. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Updated at 4:19 p.m. | The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a three- or four- day confirmation hearing for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh starting Sept. 4, Chairman Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa, announced on Friday.

That means the marathon hearing will begin the Tuesday after Labor Day.