It is beginning, and we may come to see that this was timed perfectly. Tell us all about it, mother Times: The House Judiciary Committee plans to vote this week to formalize procedures for a growing impeachment inquiry, clarifying its investigative authorities and granting President Trump new due process, a draft resolution shows. The Judiciary Committee took similar steps in the 1970s and 1990s when it conducted impeachment inquiries into Presidents Richard M. Nixon and Bill Clinton. Now, as then, Democrats believe the resolution, a copy of which was reviewed by The New York Times, will allow the panel to speed up its work and potentially elicit more information than it otherwise could about instances of possible obstruction of justice and abuses of power by Mr. Trump The story adds that the vote is not meant to just signal the inquiry, but also indicates that the House investigation is about to vastly intensify. They certainly have a list of impeachable “concerns” to choose from: The committee is preparing to rapidly broaden the substance of the inquiry this fall beyond the investigation into any role by Trump associates in Russia’s meddling in the 2016 presidential election. On the agenda for new scrutiny are Mr. Trump’s role in illegal hush payments to women who said they had affairs with him, reports that he dangled pardons to immigration officials and whether his hotels and resorts have illegally profited from government spending. Not covered in the above are the never-ending accusations that Trump continues to find new ways to enrich himself via the official Untied States government. Unbelievably, such huge concerns appear to be an afterthought. Second only to the Russian conflicts, I would list the ongoing pilfering of the public purse as the second-most impeachment worthy investigation. Credit Nadler and his team. They understand the gravity of the undertaking, and appear willing to do everything possible to negate accusations that the procedure is unfair: And, for the first time, Mr. Trump and his legal team would be afforded specific due process by the committee, allowing them to regularly offer input on the findings of the investigation… And, for the first time, Mr. Trump and his legal team would be afforded specific due process by the committee, allowing them to regularly offer input on the findings of the investigation. Of course, demonstrating tremendous sensitivity to the other side is infinitely easier when one knows that there is little defense to some of Trump’s actions. Trump has always, and always will, whine about it all being a partisan witch hunt, a “coup.” Yet there is no provision that I know of requiring the committee to grant the president’s legal team such a role. Still, some Republicans are already crying that this represents horrific abuse of a man whose character and behavior have always been above reproach. “If they really want to do this, they have to bring impeachment to the floor,” the top Republican on the committee, Representative Doug Collins of Georgia, said on Fox News on Sunday. “This is simply a show. It is a travesty. And, frankly, they should be ashamed.” “Democrats should be ashamed.” Lewis Carroll would have a fking field day with these people. Trump has engaged in behaviors never believed possible by a United States president; conflicts of interest, ties […]
Unfit To Lead
The only surprise here is the utter brazenness. Since April, the House Oversight Committee has been investigating why it was that crews from C-17 military transport planes make unusual stops on route to the Middle East, both coming and going. They crews stop to stay at Trump’s luxury Scotland resort, and the military has not answered the questions that have arisen surrounding this bizarre event. It is unknown whether this is now a routine practice or whether it was an isolated occurrence. From Politico, this is flat stunning: The inquiry is part of a broader, previously unreported probe into U.S. military expenditures at and around the Trump property in Scotland. According to a letter the panel sent to the Pentagon in June, the military has spent $11 million on fuel at the Prestwick Airport — the closest airport to Trump Turnberry — since October 2017, fuel that would be cheaper if purchased at a U.S. military base. The letter also cites a Guardian report that the airport provided cut-rate rooms and free rounds of golf at Turnberry for U.S. military members. In other words, part of that $11 million to “refuel” and land at the airport found its way into Trump’s pocket through official government use of his Scotland resort. Were that not bad enough, the Pentagon seems committed to hiding whatever it is doing: “The Defense Department has not produced a single document in this investigation,” said a senior Democratic aide on the oversight panel. “The committee will be forced to consider alternative steps if the Pentagon does not begin complying voluntarily in the coming days.” The most powerful, “executive agency,” the Defense Department, is now also ignoring Congress. Normally, military flights to the Middle East make their stopover at – surprise! – U.S. military bases, where the fuel is much much cheaper, the accommodations nice, but don’t approach the $300 to $400 a night required for a luxury resrot. But, for some strange reason, the planes have stopped at Glasgow and the crews stayed up the road at a resort that just happens to be owned by the man who has used his office to bilk the public out of every dollar he possibly can. And we can also feel some sympathy for the crews, who did not make the choice, and evidently had to shovel out some of their own money, because, well: One crew member was so struck by the choice of hotel — markedly different than the Marriotts and Hiltons the 176th maintenance squadron is used to — that he texted someone close to him and told him about the stay, sending a photo and noting that the crew’s per diem allowance wasn’t enough to cover food and drinks at the ritzy resort. The president’s greed created a situation such that a crew, on an official mission for our country, had to shell out some of their own money to cover the cost of meals and beverages, at a Trump resort, because Trump’s prices exceeded the government allotment. Let that settle in a bit. Let’s review. Other nations routinely book entire floors at Trump resorts and pay maximum price – no discounts – in order to gain favor with Trump who cares about money above all else, and rewards those who line his pockets. Trump often stays at his […]
Unfit To Lead
The Trump administration often states that his properties are “easier to secure” as justification for his never-ending visits to Trump resorts. As an example from just this week, VP Pence justified staying at Trump’s hotel in Ireland on the grounds that “it makes the Secret Service’s job easier.” Yeah, sure. More? Trump said that next year’s G7 meeting should be held at his Doral club, in part, because the property would be easier to secure. “They came back and they said, ‘This is where we would like to be,’” Trump explained last month. “Now we had military people doing it. We had Secret Service people doing it.” It is Trump’s habit to A) lie, and B) hide behind things “people say ..” never mentioning who “they” are, clearly referencing what he wants, and otherwise why mention the airport over and over? Of course this all patently absurd, but now we have people who would definitely “know,” validating our cynicism. Ex Secret Service members have come forward to state that there is no security benefit associated with using the same properties. According to Rawstory In fact, Wackrow said it would be irresponsible for the Secret Service to have preferred locations because “if we started to operate under that model, we’d not be following our protective paradigm,” which he described as “a very comprehensive advance process to build a security plan” for each location.” Right. As per usual, the professionals are making sense. No two events are identical, even if held in an identical location. It is logical that these most elite professionals would develop an individualized plan for each individual event, no matter where it is held. “Although it can be helpful to have protected a location before, even recurring locations of protection, like the U.S. Capitol, go through the same methodology each time due to situational changes,” he says. I am no professional security expert, but I do know conflicts of interest when I see them. IF there was a significant advantage in returning to the same locations, it doesn’t follow that Trump properties must be used. This is a large, rich, nation. There are plenty of nice places for rest and relaxation (or international meetings) that could be used and reused, but do not siphon off funds from the public treasury directly into Trump’s pockets. We all know what is going on here. We all know that Trump loves both advertising his properties, and billing the shit out of the U.S. taxpayer to use the site. The only difference is that the Trump supporters simply don’t care, indeed some find it admirable that Trump can game the system, while non-Trump supporters simply see what we already know. Even as sitting President of the United States, Trump will seek to enrich himself, to grift, to con, to “get over” on others. You will talk an owl of a tree before you get a current Secret Service agent to discuss his or her thoughts on the president’s use of his own properties. But some former agents are not afraid to call out the lies justifying it. When will we have Congressional hearings to put a dollar figure on the amount of public money put directly into Trump’s pocket? The pattern is one thing. A dollar figure, likely a huge one, would […]
We already knew that former Attorney General Bill Barr grossly misled Congress and the public about the findings of Special Counsel...