Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Jason Miciak

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Jason Miciak is an author and attorney who splits his time between the Mississippi Gulf Coast and the Pacific Northwest. He has a wife, daughter and the most self-centered and smug dog to ever walk the Earth. Miciak's novels use science fiction to explore themes of morality and our current political environment.
Fox News / YouTube Rep Devin Nunes blasts DOJ FBI...

New Ethics Complaint Slammed Down Against Devin Nunes

It sure appears that Trump and his closest “advisors” rely heavily upon the presumption that nothing they do will ever see the light of day as evidence, and if it does they will just deny that reality’s existence, or application to this reality. It is the only explanation for how Nunes sat through the committee hearings without blurting out: “Before we go any further, I’d like the record to reflect that I’m ass deep in this shit.” Now it appears that Nunes might actually have to explain himself, as a new ethics complaint was filed against him Wednesday afternoon: “The House Intelligence Committee’s Trump-Ukraine Impeachment Report dated December 3, 2019 used a subpoena to obtain phone records which plainly demonstrate that ranking member Devin Nunes (R-CA) has an actual conflict of interest with an ongoing impeachment hearing he oversees … “That is because Rep. Nunes is currently engaged in overseeing aninvestigation in which it appears he is a fact witness, and which may examine his own activities and meetings with agents and lawyers of the President who solicited foreign election assistance, as well as potentially into his own contacts with foreign government officials.” The rule itself couldn’t be vaguer: “A member must behave at all times in a manner that shall reflect creditably on the House.” Now, because I personally don’t use “creditably” as a word, I looked it up: “Worthy of belief: a creditable story.” Guilty. With such a ridiculously general standard, it is no wonder that few complaints are filed. Still; “Under House Intel Committee rules, Rep. Nunes could have known that record production had revealed his phone contacts with the persons under subpoena before the general public was informed with the release of the Trump-Ukraine Impeachment Inquiry Report,” the complaint continues. “Yet, the Congressman never disclosed his potential conflict of interest overseeing the investigation to the public, nor did he recuse himself from any of its activities, including the drafting of an official 120-page HPSCI Minority report.” There is no doubt Nunes now has a terrible conflict of interest. We know what Trump thinks of “recusals.” Recusal is for pusssss, it’s a doctrine reserved for countries that follow laws. And now we move into troubled waters. Because Trump has near torpedoed the entire idea of a “conflict” or that recusal should ever be considered. He has normalized having conflicted interests as part of the American political landscape. Can you imagine Trump not having some kind of personal conflict in something? Do we even have laws or rules anymore? It seems perilous, in part because it is so obvious. When Nunes was caught, when the records came to light, he went on Hannity to say that he might have spoken to Parnas, but denied “knowing” Parnas. Turns out, Nunes spoke to the guy he doesn’t know at least four times. I don’t see anything in the media about Nunes resigning in shame, do you? Trump has forced the entire right into a corner where no facts or crimes matter. Nunes can say “I don’t know a guy” in spite of records showing at least four phone calls minimum, and no one on the right cares. It is like they have a group suicide pact they have with Trump, whereby if none of them turn on each other, they […]

Why Are Democrats NOT Using Turley’s Words AGAINST Trump?

We roasted Turley and his coif on a spit yesterday for his disingenuous argument that the House was moving forward without sufficient evidence to impeach Trump. Deservedly so. Yet in my anger, I didn’t focus near enough on those portions of Turley’s testimony that – much to his chagrin – could be used aggressively against Trump. I am wondering how it is that the Democrats seem to be making the same mistake by leaving much of Turley’s testimony unaddressed. First, as we see in Jennifer Rubin’s column, Turley did admit that Trump’s reference to Joe Biden in the call to Zelensky was not only not “perfect,” but also “highly inappropriate.” This must be a critical focus. It IS “highly inappropriate” to reference the Bidens specifically. Indeed, in the memo, Trump makes no mention whatsoever to Ukrainian corruption, and  only mentions the Bidens. The Republicans cannot deal with questions about why Trump never mentions Ukrainian corruption on the call: this answer is amazing https://t.co/K5aoBPPaM2 — Chris Hayes (@chrislhayes) December 5, 2019 Collins had no answer because no good answer exists. Turley’s admission allows Democrats to pound on the fact that Trump never talked about Ukrainian corruption. Trump focused solely upon the Bidens, which even Turley acknowledges to be utterly indefensible. Turley’s thesis is that Democrats don’t have sufficient evidence yet to impeach Trump, and we vaporized that pinata yesterday. The flip side, though, is that withholding military aid for a favor, the quid pro quo, is an impeachable act (“could be”)  if proven. according to Turley, the Republicans’ own witness. Democrats need to be shouting into microphones that even the Republican expert agreed that a financial quid pro quo for military aid is something worthy of possible impeachment. Schiff needs to have a press conference reminding people that we “prove” things at trial, which is in the senate, and have no doubt that they intend to prove that a quid pro quo existed. He can stand back from the microphone and say: “And when we do prove it beyond a doubt, even the Republicans’ witness admitted that such an act is worthy of possible impeachment. Democrats must also do what we did yesterday, and that is use Turley’s argument about insufficient evidence as the justification for demanding testimony from Mulvaney, Giuliani and Bolton. We are sitting here acting as though no direct evidence exists, when it most certainly does exist. It is just that Trump has blocked  everything.  Bear in mind, in U.S. v. Nixon the SCOTUS unanimously ruled that executive privilege doesn’t apply to secretely recorded tapes of people having intimate conversations with the president, tapes of people speaking who did not even know they were being recorded! Yet we’re acting as if Trump’s universal privilege blanket is in some way to be “respected.” Trump’s assertion of universal privilege or “absolute immunity,” especially in light of Nixon, is near impeachable in and of itself. Why are Democrats not unified around one or two key points today, admitted by the Republicans’ own witness? To me, it appears Democrats lack aggression in their messaging. This might have been what caused some pullback in impeachment polling during the first week of testimony before Congressman Schiff. It should not be allowed to happen again, and the Democrats have the Republicans’ own witness’s position to fall […]

Trump Says He Asked for Favor on Behalf of America, Not...

As we all know, the memo (it is not a transcript) from the “perfect call” referenced the critical line: “I need you to do us a favor, though,” as Trump spoke to Zelensky. It is Trump’s demand for the deliverable, the investigation of Biden. Now, today, Trump wants you to know that he was acting on “our” behalf. Yes, Trump was just looking out for you: ….”I would like to have the Attorney General (of the United States) call you or your people…..” This, based on what I have seen, is their big point – and it is no point at a all (except for a big win for me!). The Democrats should apologize to the American people! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 5, 2019 And it only took him three months to come up with this explanation! Bravo. Moreover, Trump forgets to add in his tweet that he also wanted Zelensky to speak to Rudy Giuliani, who is not a government official, does not work for us, but is Trump’s “personal lawyer.” The tweet is totally credible. Totally. The Tweet does, however, demonstrate why we so desperately need Bolton and Mulvaney’s testimony. We are arguing about the meaning of one word in a document that I am not convinced is an accurate a reference. I can easily see some words twisted; take out a “me” and insert “us,” leave out a clause of a sentence, reword a different sentence and “voila,” the perfect call. It would explain where Trump came up with the “perfect call” meme, would it not? If the White House went under an intense review of the memo and slyly altered just a few things, changing “me” to “us,” and leaving out just a couple clauses, one can see them convincing themselves it was “the perfect call,” especially compared to how it originally read. One can almost see a few people, including bad lawyers, talking about it after alterations: “There, it’s perfect now, it looks just fine …” and Trump picking up on it. I do not want to get too far out in speculation because none of the witnesses noted anything too obvious missing from the memo. Moreover, I don’t find Trump using the word “us” to be in any way less condemning. Trump thinks of himself as the King of the United States, and thus I can easily see where Trump would believe that Zelensky is doing the United States a favor by destroying Biden and doing Trump’s personal bidding. Given that Trump subsumed the entire nation into his ego, saying “us” doesn’t mean a thing to me. Regardless, the focus on the word “us” screams out for greater discovery into the evidence. I want to hear from Bolton and Mulvaney, even though I do understand the House’s reasoning. I feel like they’re just pushing ahead into a known outcome, and a dangerous aftermath. There has been some discussion about calling Mulvaney or Bolton at the trial in the senate, especially since Trump has talked about calling Schiff and Hunter Biden. That is some high stakes pool, there. As a general rule, you never ever call a witness if you don’t know the answer to every question you are asking, and can prove it should the witness choose to lie. Still, it does need […]

Have No Doubt, Prof. Jonathon Turley Is Full of S**t

Jonathon Turley will likely go down as history’s greatest concern troll. Have absolutely no doubt that Turley is a hired gun, called by the Republicans to help get Trump’s ass out of the sling while acting as if he’s maintaining some kind of intellectual standard and honesty. He is not. Anyone who supported the impeachment and removal of Bill Clinton, but not Donald Trump, is someone who is only out to hurt Democrats, period. If you didn’t believe it before today, you have far more evidence now. Turley wants you to believe that he is coming at you straight, no agenda at all. He just wants more evidence, and thinks that the “thin file” and rushed procedure are objectionable. His argument might have some weight if the Democrats specifically chose to only call the non-political staffers around Trump (Vindman, Taylor, Yovanovitch), while leaving the testimony of Bolton, Mulvaney and Giuliani waiting at the curbside. But Turley knows damned well that Trump has blocked, and will block, every single individual and document that he can. Facts are Trump kryptonite. In effect, Turley wants the Democrats punished for not having more evidence, knowing that Trump is going to take a year, minimum, in litigating each and every piece of evidence and individual that might come before the committee. Meanwhile, in the background, Trump will busily rig the fcking 2020 election and then – if he wins – declare the entire proceeding “Null and Void” because “the voters have spoken.” IF Turley were being intellectually honest, he would blast Trump for his blatant obstruction of the proceeding. It would be “semi-honest” to say; “Congress, you are going too fast. But, Mr. President, you are obstructing the proceeding without any good faith justification.” But Turley isn’t saying that, only Congress has done wrong, in his eyes. He got caught on it, too. In this questioning by Congressman Neguse, one can see the bullshit flow from Turley’s eyes. Transcript via Rawstory: “And you’re aware that President Trump has refused to allow his chief of staff or White House counsel to testify in this inquiry, correct?” “Yes, but various officials did testify and they are remaining in federal employment,” said Turley. So Turlely is expecting Congress to give Trump bonus points for not firing these people the moment after testifying? And, point of order, but Vindman was sent packing back to the Pentagon, and Ambassador Yovanovitch was fired prior to even testifying. “Am I right that President Clinton provided written responses to 81 interrogatories from the House Judiciary Committee and during that impeachment inquiry?” said Neguse. “And you’re aware that President Trump has refused any request for information  the president submitted by the president in this impeachment inquiry?” “I have, yes,” said Turley. At which point Turley did not die of embarrassment . “Are you familiar with the letter issued by White House counsel Pat Cipollone on October 8, written on behalf of President Trump, in effect, instructing executive branch officials not to testify in this impeachment inquiry?” “Yes, I am,” said Turley. The “You Can All Go Blow Me” letter? Yes, I have heard that it was issued. So? So what is Congress supposed to do when the president tells Congress to go blow itself? “And am I correct that no president in the history […]

The “BLT Team” Should Enter Our Lexicon: International Conspiracy

One of the reasons that I believe the House is going a little too fast with this impeachment proceeding is the ongoing revelations brought about by late-breaking evidence, though I strongly disagree with Trump apologist Prof. Turley, in that there is plenty of evidence to impeach now. One cannot help but be left breathless at the power of the revelations contained within the phone records released yesterday. It would seem we need to become very familiar with the “BLT club” and all it did on Trump’s behalf. The BLT club is made up of our favorite impeachment players. They are; Rudy Giuliani, Lev Parnas, “The Hill” reporter John Solomon, Joe DiGenova and Victoria Toensing as Trump’s official attorneys, and Devin “Moo” Nunes’s “chief aide.” Make no mistake, this club was formed to bury Biden, and was not going to be held back by law. From Rawstory: On the same day Joe Biden announced his presidential campaign, John Solomon wrote a falsehood-laden column “alleging that Ukraine had planted Russia collusion allegations against the Trump campaign,” according to the Post. “The column also described Biden’s efforts to oust a Ukrainian prosecutor and questioned whether Biden had acted to protect his son Hunter, who served on the board of a Ukrainian energy company facing an investigation, as the fired prosecutor has alleged.” That was back in April of 2019, long before Trump thought to hold-up Ukraine. The “BLT club” was so named for the second floor restaurant in the Trump Hotel in Washington DC where the group would meet. Back in April, they were conspiring to get out misinformation about Joe Biden: The very same day, April 25, Giuliani received a call from “-1” (i.e., Trump). Giuliani then called Sean Hannity at Fox. A while later, Trump appeared on Hannity’s show to comment on Solomon’s report in The Hill. “That sounds like big, big stuff,” he said. That sounds like a big big conspiracy to me. It sounds to me like the president of the United States was conspiring with his attorneys and congressional staff to put out known disinformation and spreading it around the media through The Hill and Fox News. It boggles the mind of ordinary Americans to contemplate the wide array of seedy underworld characters involved in a vast global conspiracy. (Another side of this involves another dirty former Ukrainian prosecutor who did a favor for a Ukrainian mobster fighting extradition to the US. Dmitry Firtash, the mobster, got Viktor Shokin, the prosecutor, to say Biden was dirty. That won Giuliani’s attention. His friends diGenova and Toensing went to the US Department of Justice to plead with the US attorney general to go easy on Firtash. People who read this column regularly are starting to see the pattern emerge. Some of the same names continue to come up, Firtash, Shokin, Lutsenko, and that is because this is the Putin-wing of the Ukrainian government, the criminal oligarch underworld. Rudy cannot keep himself away from that underworld, indeed just today (Today!) Rudy is in Europe, meeting with some of these same characters. Rudy cannot help himself. SCOOP: RUDY GIULIANI met Tuesday in Budapest with the fired Ukrainian prosecutor YURIY LUTSENKO, who pushed claims about the BIDENS, & Ukrainian involvement in '16. Giuliani is in Kyiv right now trying to meet with other fired prosecutors, SHOKIN & […]

Macron Uses Old Parenting Trick to Save NATO from Trump

This is perfect. Everyone knows that one of the few things Trump has on his “to-do list” as president is to weaken NATO to the greatest extent possible. Any self-respecting Putiphile planning a “Trump-Dump Moscow” would do the same thing in Trump’s shoes. Trump is transparent enough that all European leaders know that any NATO meeting with Trump could be the last. For this one, they planned accordingly. Emanuel Macron is quickly becoming one of my favorite world leaders. He is a dad, one can tell, because how else did he know to resort to the oldest child-psychology trick in the book? Macron pronounced NATO dead on arrival, getting out in front of Trump and thus denying Trump the opportunity to destroy it himself. Highlights brought to you by the Intercepter: The French president gave an interview last month decrying the “brain death” of NATO, which he said had failed to account for America’s shrinking commitment under Trump. Ha! Macron blames Euros for failing to “think” through the leadership vacuum created by Trump himself, effectively putting it on the Europeans that they allowed Trump to doom NATO. Any parent knows exactly where this is headed: And now Trump is lashing out at Macron. “NATO serves a great purpose,” he declared today. “And I hear that President Macron said NATO is ‘brain dead.’ I think that’s very insulting to a lot of different forces … When you make a statement like that, that is a very, very nasty statement to 28 — including them — 28 countries.” So easy to predict. We have discussed here in this column lately why many foreign governments want Trump re-elected. It is just so easy to predict and manipulate him. In this instance, that predictability worked in the U.S.’s long term interests, thanks to Macron – dad. Manipulating children into doing what you want by pretending to demand they do the opposite thing is a trick most parents learn to use. It usually stops working around the age of 5. Yes, it usually does. I can attest it doesn’t work with the average twelve year old. Had Macron tried that shit with my daughter she would have said something to the effect: “Your failure is your problem, Manny, I gave you every chance to convince me that NATO had a 21st Century mission …” Fortunately, Trump went with a less mature, instinctive and very very predictable reaction: “Na-uh! It is not dead! That is a mean, mean, nasty thing to say! I will say when NATO is dead! It is great!! And alive! NATO has never been aliver!” This entire incident does serve a useful purpose. It highlights our vulnerability to international manipulation. In this instance we get a good chuckle and a good result. However, if one considers the same dynamic and the trade issues with China, the end result doesn’t elicit a giggle. Because China has leaders that understand parenting and manipulation, too. So does Russia, all too well. **** Peace, y’all Jason jmiciak@yahoo.com and on Twitter @MiciakZoom
Washington Post / YouTube Trump addresses the 73rd U N...

The World Is Now Laughing at Trump, and it Is On...

Do not take this quite as lightly as you might initially be inclined. Video can tell a story or translate truths during times when words might fail. This could prove pretty powerful. Twitter brings us video of the world’s most respected leaders laughing at, and about, Donald Trump. This is powerful imagery. Note that Trump “friend” Boris Johnson is among the leaders yucking it up. Trump isn’t going to be able to toss this aside as no one but “deep state snobs” (whatever that is) like Macron and Trudeau. No, this is everyone, including Trump allies: .@JustinTrudeau, @EmmanuelMacron, @BorisJohnson and other VIPs shared a few words at a Buckingham Palace reception Tuesday. No one mentions @realDonaldTrump by name, but they seem to be discussing his lengthy impromptu press conferences from earlier in the day. (Video: Host Pool) pic.twitter.com/dVgj48rpOP — Power & Politics (@PnPCBC) December 3, 2019 If this video catches fire and gets around, and it likely will, it can change people’s opinions, quickly, especially with someone like Trump, who specializes in creating a fictional reality where he is all-powerful, “perfect.” Except video doesn’t lie. There is no covering this up. There is no context, or making it look less bad. It speaks for itself. He is being mocked and Trump is uniquely susceptible to potential humiliation that can come from this experience. The only way to disempower this type of thing is to join the laughter, to laugh at oneself and demonstrate some humility, maybe even apologize. He can’t do it. Can’t get over this video, both for the fact that POTUS hates the thought of anyone laughing at him and for the fact that he long used “other countries are laughing at us” as an attack against his predecessors. https://t.co/j2zmF27vBK — Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) December 4, 2019 We mock him all the time, for us it is normal. But some Republicans don’t see him in this light, ever. It is possible that this is the type of thing that can change Republicans, especially the senate/jury, perhaps seeing Trump in a new light. Play this video while referring to Trump as the “chosen one,” or describing the man who can destroy careers in two sentences thumbed out on the can. Some Republicans might see him as just some fat guy behind the curtain with a phone and temper. There is very little in the world that can shake faux strength with greater efficiency than laughter. Some Repubs are already doing the knee-jerk denial of reality, and it just doesn’t play: This is great news for Trump. Foreign leaders have been laughing at Republican presidents since Reagan. Media elites as usual miss America. https://t.co/ELE4n6NNxY — Laura Ingraham (@IngrahamAngle) December 4, 2019 I can feel it from all the way across the pond and I feel the weakness that comes about from being laughed at, being the joke, the butt. We were utterly humiliated today during the press conferences. But this is even worse, in my opinion. I can’t help but wonder if Republicans feel it, too. This is shameful, the once mighty and noble United States, reduced to a joke. It could lead to bigger changes than one might initially think. Or we could be at war by morning. **** Peace, y’all Jason jmiciak@yahoo.com and on Twitter @MiciakZoom    
CNN / YouTube Rudy Giuliani Trump Comey never discussed...

Rudy Gets Benched: Trump Won’t Allow Rudy on Fox

According to a new story in Vanity Fair, Ivanka and Jared have been telling Donald for over a year to get Rudy “off” the team, which is somewhat interesting since Rudy isn’t in the government or currently involved in any position. Regardless, Trump ignored the advice, even liking Rudy in interviews, “interviews” being the coin of the realm in the Trump White House, since it is all a reality-show. Rudy won’t be doing interviews anytime soon, though: The relationship has grown so strained that Trump has even directed Giuliani not to appear on Fox News, a Republican briefed on the conversations said. (A Fox source said Giuliani has declined producers’ requests to appear on the network in recent days). “Rudy is cut off from Fox News,” the Republican told me. One Republican close to Trump put it this way: “We had to do something, we don’t want Rudy out there. Every time he talks it’s bad for Trump.” But don’t go thinking that Trump watched Rudy go batshit insane and had a revelation that perhaps Rudy has lost his edge and needs to be walked back. No, don’t be silly, that’s not it. Rudy only got run because he did two things that Trump simply cannot abide. One, Rudy threatened Trump, no matter how obliquely: The turning point seems to be Giuliani’s Fox News interview on November 23 in which he claimed to have an “insurance policy” in case Trump throws him overboard. “Trump was pissed,” a source told me. Giuliani tweeted that his comment was “sarcastic” and later called Trump to apologize. You do not threaten or joke with Trump. He thinks of himself as a mob boss, and has fck-all sense of humor. Go ahead and spill the beans on your international criminal conspiracy to Jake Tapper, look insane, if needed. That’s all fine. Lightly threaten or “joke,” and you’re done. The other thing Rudy did? Got greedy: Then, on November 27, the New York Times reported that Giuliani tried to land business deals in Ukraine at the same time Trump assigned him to conduct a shadow foreign policy campaign to pressure Ukraine to investigate the Bidens. Trump, sources said, was furious. “Trump hates when people make money off working for him,” Ha! Leave it to Trump to make it such that I feel just slightly sorry for Rudy. Keep in mind, Trump wasn’t paying Rudy to go around the world and promote Trump’s criminal enterprise. So Trump was already getting Rudy’s “services” for free. But Trump is such an asshole that he objected to Rudy making money “off” working for Trump? Of course that upsets the mob boss. Only the bosses are supposed to make money off working for others! You might almost be tempted – if you’re Rudy – to think that Trump wouldn’t respect a person who didn’t figure out a way to monetize running one’s ass around Eastern Europe concocting crazy schemes that would get rejected as screen plays. Almost. I believe that I could almost see myself telling myself such a tale; “He’ll respect that I needed to make some money while …” No, “he” didn’t. Trump truly is a dick. Newsflash, I know. Ha ha. Yes, I’m over it. I no longer feel bad for Rudy. But damn, for just a moment […]

Want to See Propaganda in Real Time? Judicial Watch With a...

This is worthy of Pravda. Those of us of a certain age remember hearing of the old Soviet newspaper, formerly the official newspaper of the Communist Party. As kids in the 80s, we would occasionally come across Pravda articles in textbooks or on the real news. I recall them being “obvious” in their partisan hysteria and using just enough “facts” to confuse the real news entirely. Please keep all the above in mind when you see this Tweet, put out by the rightwing front group Judicial Watch. BREAKING: House Democrats somehow obtain @RudyGiuliani phone records in a remarkable abuse of @RealDonaldTrump's constitutional rights. — Tom Fitton (@TomFitton) December 3, 2019 They’re playing the propaganda game at a Pravda level. Do you see what they did there? The real “news,” indeed a blockbuster, is the fact that Rudy Giuliani was in constant contact with OMB and the White House during the days of decision-making on the Ukrainian money and extortion. Rudy Giuliani is not a government employee. He has no official duties or post. He doesn’t have a daughter who works at OMB. Thus Rudy has no reason to be placing calls to or receiving calls from OMB. None. Thus, it would appear that Trump did direct everyone working with the Ukrainian matter to “go through Rudy” with respect to releasing the funds. The records reveal that Giuliani played a critical role to something going on at OMB. It lends credence to Trump’s phone call with Zelensky, when Trump told Zelensky that he wanted him to “work with Rudy” on the matter. That is a massive story. But look at what Judicial Watch highlighted. Forget for a second that the Congress has subpoena power and oversight ability, and can thus get the documents legally. Forget that DOJ arrested Parnas and Fruman (a possible source of the records), and forget for a second that the Fourth Amendment protects people in criminal proceedings and not in an impeachment proceeding. Forget even the fact that the group is called Judicial Watch and should have a vague familiarity with legal principles! Instead, note that Judicial Watch is already shading the story as grossly unfair to Donald Trump. They have painted Donald Trump as the victim, already. Forget the real news. Feel bad for Trump because the House “cheated” by getting the evidence. Recall, to this point, the White House’s only real defnese is that the House hasn’t provided Trump ‘due process” in his impeachment. So now when more horrid evidence comes out directly contradicting Trump’s statements, the news on the Right isn’t about Rudy’s antics, or about Trump lying, it is about just how bad Trump is being abused in this process. Judicial Watch ignores that Rudy is caught red-handed and ignores what the evidence means. It makes Trump the victim of such damning evidence. That is propaganda. Trump has not had his constitutional rights abused. Congress is allowed to subpoena government records. If anything, Trump is the one abusing the process by denying Congress each witness and document sought. Trump is not a criminal defendant. He is the president of the United States, a person supposed to be above reproach, never one to fear a subpoena. Yet Judicial Watch expects its supporters to be outraged abot the process by which Trump is proven to be […]

House Releases Its Impeachment Report (Link)

Despite lacking the testimony of key witnesses, the Democrats continue to push forward. Today, the Select Committee on intelligence released its report on evidence obtained to this point, found here. This report will be broken-down over the next few news cycles, but I will highlight some aspects that appear critical to me. One is the tone, regretful but forceful. The House Democrats are SICK of foreign interference in our elections, and highlight that this is an ongoing theme with Trump: In making the decision to move forward, we were struck by the fact that the President’s misconduct was not an isolated occurrence, nor was it the product of a naïve president.  Instead, the efforts to involve Ukraine in our 2020 presidential election were undertaken by a President who himself was elected in 2016 with the benefit of an unprecedented and sweeping campaign of election interference undertaken by Russia in his favor, and which the President welcomed and utilized.  …With this backdrop, the solicitation of new foreign intervention was the act of a president unbound, not one chastened by experience.  It was the act of a president who viewed himself as unaccountable and determined to use his vast official powers to secure his reelection. “Unbound” – is the real fear. Trump doesn’t acknowledge or respect any limitations put upon him by law or custom. The Democrats are looking for some means to legally pin Trump to the constraints of law. By doubling down on his misconduct and declaring that his July 25 call with President Zelensky was “perfect,” President Trump has shown a continued willingness to use the power of his office to seek foreign intervention in our next election.  His Acting Chief of Staff, Mick Mulvaney, in the course of admitting that the President had linked security assistance to Ukraine to the announcement of one of his desired investigations, told the American people to “get over it.” In these statements and actions, the President became the author of his own impeachment inquiry. They were left without a choice in a very real sense. It is true, if they did not impeach Trump for this, there was nothing Trump couldn’t get away with. “Get over it” is not a defense to breaking the law. Congress was not fooled by Sondland’s “September 9th” second phone call and note that it is highly unlikely that such a call occurred. Both Ambassador Taylor and Mr. Morrison, relying on their contemporaneous notes, testified that the call between Ambassador Sondland and President Trump occurred on September 7, which is further confirmed by Ambassador Sondland’s own text message on September 8 in which he wrote that he had “multiple convos” with President Zelensky and President Trump.  A call on September 9, which would have occurred in the middle of the night, is at odds with the weight of the evidence and not backed up by any records the White House was willing to provide Ambassador Sondland.  Regardless of the date, Ambassador Sondland did not contest telling both Mr. Morrison and Ambassador Taylor of a conversation he had with the President in which the President reaffirmed Ambassador Sondland’s understanding of the quid pro quo for the military aid. As Ambassador Sondland acknowledged bluntly in his conversation with Mr. Holmes, President Trump’s sole interest with respect to Ukraine was […]

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