Aloha, my peeps! A few days ago I wrote an article in which I laid out, as I understood it at the time, the format for the upcoming open impeachment hearings. In the article, I admitted that I did not have access to an “official” guide, so this was my best understanding. Well, about an hour or so ago, Ali Velshi on MSNBC laid out the official format, soup to nuts, so here we are.
The Chairman of the committee, Adam Schiff, will gavel the hearing into session and call the witness. The witness will be sworn in. The witness, the Chairman, and the ranking member will all make opening statements. So far this matches my original article. Here comes the slight change. After the opening statements, Schiff as the Chairman, as well as Devin Nunes, as the ranking member will each have 45 minutes to question the witness, with Schiff leading off. Here’s the McGuffin. They can either question the witness themselves, let the staff attorney for their side do it, or I would assume, split the time into a combination of the two. At that point the hearing will be considered completed. Unless.
These “rules of the road” are in strict compliance with the rules set out that the House voted on recently. And in those rules, Schiff, and/or Pelosi showed once again that they have more political brains before breakfast than the Republicans do all damn day. They took into account that the GOP may attempt to resort to some childish form of pecksniffery, so they kept stoppers.
After the Chairman and the ranking member, or their surrogates complete their allotted time for questioning. Unless the committee chair determines that additional time is required, or warranted, and will be granted. If Schiff allows additional time, then it will revert to the standard committee spectacle we’re all painfully used to, with each committee member having 5 minutes to mug for the cameras to WOW the people back home.
This is why that rule is so important, and why Schiff and Pelosi are so smart. Even if Nunes were dumped, inserting Jim Jordan onto the committee does not allow the GOP to name him the ranking member. That honor is reserved for the senior tenured member of the party on that committee. So, with one tiny, procedural step, Pelosi and Schiff have basically denutted Jordan.
Jordan will not get 45 minutes of hysterical shenanigans as the ranking member. If Schiff allows extra time, Jordan will only get the standard 5 minutes everybody gets, unless other GOP members donate their time to Jordan. And if Schiff doesn’t allow more time, then Jordan basically becomes a “process” pain in the ass. All Jordan will be able to do is to clog up the early part of the hearing, with endless nuisance motions to dismiss, protest motions, all shit designed to get people to turn off the hearing in disgust, and do the job they’re being paid to do. But his attempts to interrupt or disrupt the hearing will be largely curtailed.
That’s it. I told you that if I was able to lay my hands on something official, I’d let you know. And now you know. See ya in the funny papers, all!
To know the future, look to the past. before the insanity of the 2020 election, relive the insanity of the 2016 GOP primary campaign, and the general election, to see how we got to where we are. Copies of President Evil, and the sequel, President Evil II, A Clodwork Orange are available as e-books on Amazon, at the links above. Catch up before the upcoming release of the third book in the trilogy, President Evil III: All The Presidents Fen