History’s Rhyme: Nixon’s Articles of Impeachment
[NB: Byline check, please. /~Rayne]
History, as they say, doesn’t repeat itself, but it rhymes.
By now many of us have heard or read discussions comparing the actions of Trump and his administration with those of Richard Nixon — actions for which Nixon was nearly impeached.
(Bill Clinton’s impeachment surfaces only as an example of what a joke impeachment can be when a partisan hack investigator is intent on creating a mountain out of a consensual blowjob molehill.)
Though he resigned before the House could vote on them, Articles of Impeachment were drafted against Nixon. The first three of five had been passed by the House Judiciary Committee:
Article I: Obstruction of Justice
Article II: Abuse of Power
Article III: Contempt of Congress
Article IV: Cambodia bombing
Article V: Failure to pay taxes
Article I outlined a list of obstructive behaviors Nixon engaged in the lead up to and during the Watergate scandal. They read like a list of indictable offenses with the exception of an abuse of power in seeking the CIA’s efforts to interfere with the FBI.
Article II outlined Nixon’s abuses of power; the behaviors were unethical.
Article III charged Nixon with contempt after he refused to cooperate with Congress’s investigation into Watergate.
The third article has drawn the most reconsideration in the last 24-48 hours after Trump announced “We’re fighting all the subpoenas,” saying the administration would not comply with House committees’ requests for witnesses and documents.
While Trump hasn’t an unauthorized bombing of Cambodia under his belt addressed by the fourth article in 1974, he does have ongoing violations of international treaties for which he should answer, and for which the Republicans in Congress should be held accountable by a vote on an article about crimes against humanity.
We don’t yet know if a fifth article related to taxes may yet be needed but we shouldn’t be surprised if the tax returns Trump is so desperate to hide do not provide grounds for one.
What a lot of familiar rhyming. One might wonder what Articles of impeachment would look like against Trump. Let’s take a look at a possible Article I.
~ ~ ~
RESOLVED, That Donald J. Trump, President of the United States, is impeached for high crimes and misdemeanours, and that the following articles of impeachment to be exhibited to the Senate:
In his conduct of the office of President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, in violation of his constitutional oath faithfully to execute the office of President of the United States and, to the best of his ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States, and in violation of his constitutional duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed, has prevented, obstructed, and impeded the administration of justice, in that:
Beginning March 2016, and prior thereto, agents of Russia knowingly accessed computers without authorization belonging to or used by U.S. presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton and volunteers (“Clinton Campaign”), of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (“DCCC”), and the Democratic National Committee (“DNC”) in Washington, District of Columbia, for the purpose of securing political intelligence.
In April 2016, Conspirators including agents of Russia and persons know and unknown to a Grand Jury began to plan the release of materials stolen from the Clinton Campaign, DCCC, and DNC.
Beginning in or around June 2016, the Conspirators staged and released stolen materials. The Conspirators continued their U.S. election-interference operations through in or around November 2016 with the intent to support the campaign of Donald J. Trump and deter the Clinton Campaign.
Subsequent thereto, Donald J. Trump, using the powers of his high office, engaged personally and through his close subordinates and agents, in a course of conduct or plan designed to delay, impede, and obstruct the investigation of such unauthorized access and use of stolen materials; to cover up, conceal and protect those responsible; and to conceal the existence and scope of other unlawful covert activities.
The means used to implement this course of conduct or plan included one or more of the following:
1. making false or misleading statements to lawfully authorized investigative officers and employees of the United States;
2. withholding relevant and material evidence or information from lawfully authorized investigative officers and employees of the United States;
3. approving, condoning, acquiescing in, and counseling witnesses with respect to the giving of false or misleading statements to lawfully authorized investigative officers and employees of the United States and false or misleading testimony in duly instituted judicial and congressional proceedings;
4. interfering or endeavoring to interfere with the conduct of investigations by the Department of Justice of the United States, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Office of Special Counsel, and Congressional Committees;
5. approving, condoning, and acquiescing in, the surreptitious payment of substantial sums of money for the purpose of obtaining the silence or influencing the testimony of witnesses, potential witnesses or individuals;
6. endeavoring to misuse the Department of Justice, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and the Office of White House Counsel of the United States;
7. disseminating information received from officers of the Department of Justice of the United States to subjects of investigations conducted by lawfully authorized investigative officers and employees of the United States, for the purpose of aiding and assisting such subjects in their attempts to avoid criminal liability;**
8. making or causing to be made false or misleading public statements for the purpose of deceiving the people of the United States into believing that a thorough and complete investigation had been conducted with respect to allegations of misconduct on the part of personnel of the Presidential Campaign and on the part of the personnel of the executive branch of the United States, and that there was no involvement of such personnel in such misconduct: or
9. endeavoring to cause prospective defendants, and individuals duly tried and convicted, to expect favored treatment and consideration in return for their silence or false testimony, or rewarding individuals for their silence or false testimony.
In all of this, Donald J. Trump has acted in a manner contrary to his trust as President and subversive of constitutional government, to the great prejudice of the cause of law and justice and to the manifest injury of the people of the United States.
Wherefore Donald J. Trump, by such conduct, warrants impeachment and trial, and removal from office.
** Did Trump share/receive material through the Joint Defense Agreement not for the purposes of defense but to obstruct the Special Counsel’s investigation?
~ ~ ~
Well now…the potential parallels are quite striking. Because there’s so much to ponder in this one possible Article, I’ll leave evaluation of other possible Articles to another post to follow.
What do you think? Is there more which an Article focused on obstruction might include? Is there wording which needs revision based on what we now know?
This is an open thread.
Oh this? No reason. :-)
My comments regarding Trump trying to quash subpoenas to Deutsche Bank and Capital One citing The Right to Financial Privacy Act:
It is important to note that under the RFPA covered customers are individuals or partnerships of 5 or fewer individuals. Corporations, trusts, estates, unincorporated associations such as unions, and large partnerships are not covered by the RFPA. Therefore, the availability of RFPA protection depends on the type of person or entity whose records are sought.
The RFPA does not apply to a request for orders for information by state and local government entities. While, the Act does not contain explicit provisions regarding its effect on state law, the legislative history of the RFPA indicates that Congress intended to regulate access to customer records by federal agencies and departments only, without precluding states from regulating access of state and local agencies to such records.
United States v. Wilson, 571 F. Supp. 1417 (S.D.N.Y. 1983)
The RFPA grants bank customers a limited right to challenge subpoenas served by federal officials on banks and other financial institutions. If a customer is properly notified of the subpoena, as was the case here, the subpoena must be upheld if it complies with three requirements. First, the subpoena must “reasonably describe” the financial records to be produced. Second, the subpoena must be “authorized by law.” Third, there must be “reason to believe that the records sought are relevant to a legitimate law enforcement inquiry.”
Trump’s tactics here are to delay, delay, delay.
8:32 PM – 29 Apr 2019
2] NBC has a statement from Deutsche:
8:26 PM – 29 Apr 2019
And here’s Katie Porter, 15 minutes ago on CNN:
5:32 AM – 30 Apr 2019
Excellent comment REG. And you are right, it is about delay. Can’t believe a lower court like SDNY or is going to bite on this. But, potentially, four conservatives on SCOTUS might. Which, if so, would leave it up to Roberts. And that is just on the stay, not the merits.
Rayne, nicely done. Impeach this carpetbagger now.
Ianal but I say don’t change a thing. I trust bmaz and others will chime in on the legal niceties. Good work.
Thanks for doing the hard work of getting this started, Rep. Rayne (D-EW).
I can’t think of the right wording right now, but am feeling it needs to include a couple words denoting IRA influence ops, since the investigation of that was also thwarted by his obstruction of the whole probe. But I get why you focused where you did, on the crimes that you did. I gotta think about this.
Are you/we going to later have a category for issuing illegal orders?
Thanks. I need to shoehorn in a paragraph explaining the hush money arrangement with Cohen for Stormy Daniels or Item 5 doesn’t fit.
I hear you about the IRA influence ops but this article need to focus less on the damage they did and more on Trump’s obstruction especially since his relationship and actions were closer to the ‘persons known and unknown’ and not the IRA. I pulled pieces from the IRA indictment to write the description of what happened and when wrt Russian interference so I feel fairly confident the streamlined explanation works.
I want to point out here for other readers who are still up in the air about collusion/conspiracy/coordination that the ‘speaking’ indictment of the Russian IRA team tells us the Special Counsel’s Office referred to ‘Conspirators’ including ‘persons know and unknown to the Grand Jury’.
(Indictment pdf: https://www.justice.gov/opa/press-release/file/1035562/download)
Gotcha. Also (cued by mention of conspiracy), I think the airing of the conspiracy part pre-oath/ potentially up to inaugural is part of the hold up with dems moving to impeachment (especially as it _may_ implicate some post-oath stuff). It’s been my general impression that they want to get the full MR/CI/evidence and litigate some ‘quality control’ issues (e.g. Barr) first. For a few reasons, the Mueller investigation materials (provide) transit through a liminal space to clearer focus on his other actions while in office.
This is just the read I’m getting; nobody hate on the messenger. My question is what they’ll do when Barr withholds on them next week.
Oh, hey Michigan– I hear you’ve got a de-gerrymandered party coming in 2020. Cheers!
(I know, don’t count the cows ’til they come home. But it seems like your legal footing to get and keep your new maps is surer than it was here.)
I wish this was sure to affect my district which is one of the largest by area and represented by a guy as dumb as a fence post. But the districts which need to be rejiggered are in the Detroit Metro area.
That type of district is a once-and-future pain I know, and it can McSuck.
I’d like to highlight some of the fascinating ‘Science’ stories that appear on foxnews.com. Today’s feature: Australian officials killing millions of feral cats with poisoned sausages. (https://www.foxnews.com/science/australia-feral-cats-poisoned-sausages)
Seriously, go to foxnews.com for the science. It is amazing.
Here’s one from yesterday:
Huge alligator devours snake at PGA tournament in Louisiana (https://www.foxnews.com/science/alligator-snake-pga-tournament-louisiana).
This was seriously posted under the heading “Science,” “Alligators.” If they kept the kids from take-your-kid-to-work-day around, they could probably come up with better content. Also, the kids would have properly put the alligator story under “Sports” with Tiger.
Thanks but no. I’m not giving on’e of the worst things to happen to democracy any of my clicks. Whatever science stories they publish are available at different, and/or original publications.
Weird and interesting science, from other sources:
Prehistoric crab with “wrench-like” claws and huge eyes:
Pilots get US Navy to stop ignoring UFO reports – has one interesting photo:
Slowest known radioactive decay spotted (it’s an isotope of xenon, half-life much longer than age of universe):
Off of one of those cool links I found this story:
It looks like Ol’ Ollie lost his cushy NRA gig and is unemployed again.
If that doesn’t persuade the Senate (the current one or the next), all 50 states (plus territories) can secede and go form a more perfect union, right? Or, for 2020’s ballots, the states can list “Individual No. 1” instead of Trump’s name.
Some may want to mention this to their Senators, if on Commerce:
Thread by “Pat Toomey is troubled by [HOM]”: “Amid this mind-numbing rehash of #charlottesville, may I remind everyone that @SenBobCasey has a bill to study online proliferation of hate & radicalization. It’s sitting in committee & has no GOP cosponsors yet. #StopHATEAct (links to Senate Bill 917)”
“While it’s generally pooh-poohed to contact legislators not your own, you absolutely may contact them in their role as Committee leadership. In this case @SenatorWicker is Chair of Commerce, Science, & Transportation Cte; @SenatorCantwell is ranking minority member. #StopHATEAct”
“Also, if you have a Senator on it, tell them you want the #StopHATEAct passed out of committee. They are: @SenJohnThune @RoyBlunt @SenTedCruz @SenatorFischer @JerryMoran @SenDanSullivan @SenCoryGardner @SenCapito @MarshaBlackburn @SenMikeLee @SenRonJohnson (links to list on Commerce)”
“@SenToddYoung @SenRickScott @SenAmyKlobuchar @SenBlumenthal @brianschatz @SenMarkey @SenatorTomUdall @SenGaryPeters @SenatorBaldwin @SenDuckworth @SenatorTester @SenatorSinema @SenJackyRosen #StopHATEAct #Charlottesville #TreeofLifeSynagogue” / end thread
(sigh) Given what’s known* about the “domestic terrorist” who attacked the Poway synagogue, there may be more interest in this bill introduced to Senate (917), and its identical counterpart in the House (HR 1934), so here is more info on the “Stop Harmful and Abusive Telecommunications Expression Act of 2019” or the “Stop HATE Act of 2019.”
Text – S.917 – 116th Congress (2019-2020): Stop HATE Act of 2019 | Congress.gov | Library of Congress
Text – H.R.1934
The legislation would require periodic reports (first one to occur within one year of enactment; else no longer than five years thereafter– which is probably too long a gap in this era), by the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications and Information with AG assistance, about the roles of various forms of media (“telecommunications”) in hate crimes. In other words, it might document radicalization inter-weavings from Fox to gab.
To be clear, I’m not sure of the ultimate utility of this leg., either absent or actually enforcing related hate-crimes stuff we have on the books, or compared to what public interest research and reporting groups can produce. Just sharing/airing:
*links in next comment
* re what is known:
Justin Miller: “Synagogue shooter’s apparent manifesto accused Jews of using immigration to destroy white race, the same motive as the Pittsburgh synagogue shooter (links to DB article)”
Max Kennerly: “Now where could the shooter have gotten a crazy idea like that?(quote tweets Josh Marshall, next) ”
Josh Marshall (10-27-18): “Straight out of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. Just moments ago, Lou Dobbs guest Chris Farrell (head of Judicial Watch) says Caravan is being funded/directed by the “Soros-occupied State Department” (10-27-18 tweet of embedded Fox video clip)”
Josh Marshall: “Yep, standard messaging on Fox News for years.… ”
Further discussion of the GOP’s ‘women-evil’ strategy addressed here periodically, this time as seen through 2020-related abortion rhetoric. To state the obvious, political abortion talk is generally about more than abortion per se, and often about controlling the populace by controlling women.
Ai-jen Poo: “Important piece by @ilyseh on a new line of attack on the humanity of women. “It is a new breed of misogyny…reinforcing the idea that many, if not most, women are villainous monsters, deserving of hatred at worst & needing to be controlled at best. (links to Rewire article below)”
Campaign Questions, Campaigning Against Women: GOP Abortion Talk Reveals Its Misogynistic Hand
The 2020 strategy has become increasingly clear: peddle disinformation and vilify women.
Hogue opens by noting that dems on the campaign trail are being asked about abortion “up until the moment of birth,” with that direct quote applying to a Q Fox asked Bernie at his recent Fox Town Hall. She then gives a mini-course in GOP tactics:
(Internal links removed)
Hogue continues by summarizing the spate of state legislation attempts to render women perpetrators and criminalize very early termination, then rests these issues in the broader context of women’s rights.
To continue on the “GOP’s ‘women-evil’ strategy” thought:
On 2/25/19 Trump tweeted:
https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1100211495223218176 5:50 PM – 25 Feb 2019
This is the Bill and Vote he must have been referring to:
S.311 – Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/senate-bill/311
CRS writes the summaries…and this one is something to behold. [see link above]
On 02/25/2019 Cloture on the motion to proceed not invoked in Senate by Yea-Nay Vote.
Record Vote Number: 27. https://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=116&session=1&vote=00027 (CR S1422)
Yea: 53 [All R’s +Casey (D-PA); Jones (D-AL); Manchin (D-WV)]
Nay: 44 [All D’s +2 I’s].
Not voting: 3 [Cramer (R-ND); Murkowski (R-AK) Scott (R-SC)]
The related Bill in the House:
RELATED BILL: H.R.962 – Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/962
It was introduced in the House on
02/05/2019 by Sponsor: Rep. Wagner, Ann [R-MO-2]
Cosponsor statistics: 189 [!!!] current [4/27/19] [3 Dem’s] – includes 48 original
[Dems: Rep. Peterson, Collin C. [D-MN-7]; Rep. Lipinski, Daniel [D-IL-3]; Rep. Cuellar, Henry [D-TX-28]
On 03/22/2019, it was referred to the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security, by the Committee on the Judiciary
Lipinski and Cuellar are DINOs. They need to be primaried, at the least.
And WTF do they buy into this, without demanding numbers for this claimed-to-be-occurring problem?
This is Senator Mazie Hirono’s response to Trump’s 2/25/19 tweet, linked above:
6:07 AM – 28 Feb 2019
When Trump spoke at CPAC on 3/2/19, in what Daniel Dale said was
“100% the weirdest Trump speech I’ve ever heard.”
[and THAT’s saying something, because he’s heard a lot of weird shit!]
10:29 AM – 2 Mar 2019
This is what happens when you’re of orange-health status and you get to know people from hate-watching chirons instead of IRL. All the IOO/OIOs flow together. Figures, given his legendary overspending, that he’d be buying vowels.
Thank you, harpie, for documenting-out this thread (I felt remiss not mentioning this stuff) and also your next one. And I love your editorializing inserts throughout ;)
Here’s video of Trump at CPAC attacking Hirono between rants about AOC [the GND] and Elizabeth Warren: [Aaron Rupar’s live video-tweeting]
10:37 AM – 2 Mar 2019
Here’s Sarah Sanders on 3/4/19:
Fear mongering is the GOP’s way to whip up the right wing religious right with misleading and false statements.
Democracy Now on Friday addressed women’s rights:
How about making men accountable?
Here is what a Georgia lawmaker proposed.
Watch the history video, March 12, 2019 on CNN.
Here’s Trump at a rally in Wisconsin yesterday:
6:31 PM – 27 Apr 2019 [VIDEO]
This is the how the NYT fact checker responds:
Trump Repeats a False Claim That Doctors ‘Execute’ Newborns president has made “executing babies” part of his refrain on abortion, but the evidence does not back him up.
The fucking evidence “does not back him up”.
Here is a real response from an RN on a Bereavement Team helping parents with their babies. Read the thread.
NO ONE ever, in any hospital, nor any mother who has just given birth, is conspiring with a doctor on whether or not to commit infanticide. This is perhaps one of the sickest accusations levied by this deranged dictator yet. Don’t believe a word he says about anything important//
Julie Pulver, RN
Thank you, Jenny. A tough read from a woman of great compassion.
There is an article about her and this thread at
Michigan NICU nurse Julia Pulver’s tweets on Trump’s abortion lie go viral
Susan J. Demas – April 28, 2019
There’s a short interview with her.
who ever thought the name of that bill up must be some sort of nut job or drama queen/king, really. this passes for proposed legislation in the Congress of the United States of American?
Are these people even part of this century or the last? You’d think they might be a little more concerned about the living, like seniors without proper housing, families without proper resources, or Gold Star families who are being taxed at higher rates than before.
You do sit and wonder how these people even thing this type of stuff up. And they were elected to more than class clown??
The dangerous WH con man whips up his followers with words like “execute the baby,” so the crazies come out of the woodwork. He is a pathological liar, cruel and clueless.
NY Times article:
The Medical Profession needs to step up and call him out on this!!!
Thanks Harpie. Oops, I added the same link as you. In my state of wanting to scream out the window about this topic, I missed yours. Too many lies to keep up with from con man on a daily basis.
However, this is worse than a lie plus extremely disturbing in so many ways.
I plan to give more money to Planned Parenthood this month.
The majority of the world’s politicians at one time or another “stretch” the truth, but these types of weird outrageous lies Trump tells, like killing a baby after birth in hospitals? Not only is he crazy for saying it, but you do have to wonder about the intelligence of those believing it. If that were truly happening, there would be police forces all over the country, in hospitals, charging doctors and others. Too bad some one hasn’t asked trump what evidence he is basing his statements on.
Abortion has been legal in Canada since 1969. There are generations of people who have known nothing else. Even politicians who do not support abortion because of religious reasons are clear, they aren’t going to try to change any of the laws in Canada regarding abortion. Perhaps what made it easier in Canada, was abortion was legalized on a national level.
Its a matter of Choice.
One of the things which leaves me shaking my head, is its O.K. to have “stand your ground” laws and kill people but people object to a female deciding what to do with her own body.
One way to respond might be to ask, “Who have you prosecuted for murdering a baby at birth?” When they answer “no one” You can ask “you mean you are letting people get away with murder?” That would shame you or I. Our problem is that they are incapable of shame.
Doesn’t just rhyme, it harmonizes…. in matching iambic pentameter
A rhyming limerick?
The Dishonest Broker
An AG by the name of Barr
Took more liberties than Ken Starr
To exonerate is fine
On impeachment I’ll decline
The rest of the report is bizarre.
Thank for this excellent article
We need to hear from Mueller….
Once the courts are hijacked, we’re done
Thank you Rayne. Great post. Get this impeachment process started.
“A president cannot defend a nation if he is not held accountable to its laws.”
“Failing to indict a criminal sitting president sends the message that those in power are above the law.”
― DaShanne Stokes
I look forward to the day when America STARTS sending a different message than the one that says “Presidents are not above the law”–well, particularly Republican presidents. I mean the crimes that Nixon, Bush Sr. and Jr. Reagan, and now this one have gotten away with is insane for a country that says “no man is above the law”. Really? Oh, except ANY white man at the top of whatever pyramid he happens to be sitting on, that’s all!
Whatever happens at the end of this recent ‘rinse and repeat’ Republican Crime Family Fest if anyone says “we need to ‘look forward and not backward’, etc.” I’m going to light myself on fire in a crowded intersection!!!! Jesus!
A minor point perhaps, but in ARTICLE 1 second paragraph above, shouldn’t it read “Russian Federation” instead of just “Russia”? And I tend to agree that the longer the House Democrats take to get their waterfowl in a linear formation before beginning formal impeachment proceedings, the more the present situation will become solidified in the public’s mind as ‘the new normal’; i.e., the President’s recent claim to have been the victim of an attempted coup and an attempt to overthrow the government. If you’re going to let the Executive get away with stonewalling the Congress with impunity, then you might as well ask for the return of the House of Hanover (but they’ll probably smell pretty bad.)
I apologize for all this, Rayne, but I’ve been chomping at the bit for an open thread since the other day, when Marcy retweeted the following thread, and it really hit home. [I’m excerpting, but really read the whole thing.]:
8:01 AM – 23 Apr 2019
Kate Manne on why female candidates get ruled “unelectable” so quickly “Electability isn’t a static social fact; it’s a social fact we’re constructing.”
@ezraklein Apr 23, 2019, 9:10am EDT
At this point, see:
8:50 AM – 22 Apr 2019
This is a great thought experiment from AR Moxon:
7:31 PM – 23 Apr 2019
AFAIK divorce has not been illegal in the US as a whole at any time. Some states made it very difficult to get one – but I’ve seen people getting divorces before 1920. Most of the problems are with churches that refuse to recognize them, and those are usually blamed on the woman, even if the man was doing all the misbehavior.
OK, thanks. I wasn’t sure about that.
The joys of doing genealogy…. (I ran into one family where, when the wife left, they had a funeral, complete with cemetery marker – a Catholic cemetery – but I found a couple of the kids living with her in the next census. It makes me wonder how they managed the funeral. Closed casket, and a log for weight?)
…looking back at family history and finding no skeleton in the…casket? lol!
YES. That was really effective. Sadly, I don’t recall seeing men sharing it in my timeline, only women. ~sigh~
You should see the conversation he had with some guy in response to the thread…OY!
My impression of your thought experiment is that it was terrific. The span of years in your examples forces the point and cannot be argued. Each one made me stop…and think. Well done.
As for your conversation with “some guy”, he is marching with the army that can’t tolerate AOC and doesn’t know (or won’t admit) why. What they say to each other must be far worse than what they muster up to say in public. I catch astonishing little glimpses from time to time from people I thought I knew. You must really have pissed him off to tease him out.
Again, well done.
I suspect it’s like the comments on news stories about measles, where you get one or two intelligent comments, and a larger number by people whose reading comprehension and numeracy are limited at best.)
Pablo, thanks, but I’m sorry this wasn’t clear…the thread I excerpted above is written by AR Moxon…I only *wish* I could write like that! :-)
I see that now, duh.
Ah, Virginia Slims– meta ‘morbidity capitalism’ at its finest: while the sociopolitical issues you’re trying to resolve kill you softly, enjoy our product for a double-shot! Vicarious victory, tastes great!
Thanks Rayne, a good start.
Another numbered article could be built on the administration’s horrendous practice, torture really,of immigrants seeking asylum in the U.S.: forced family separation. The practice is illegal under U.S. law (torture) and international law as an element of genocide. Drugging children, caging them, depriving of medical care, and housing in cages with inadequate heating or cooling is completely unforgivable. A source for further language is here: http://blog.cyrusmehta.com/2018/06/how-trump-administration-officials-can-be-found-criminally-culpable-for-separating-children-from-parents.html
His orders to ICE staff to ignore judges orders, and continue the practice, is contempt for the law and justice (article component or another article entirely). Its been a long and downward road for U.S. law and ethics in the torture area, and will end in fascism if not curtailed. Women now another target, but the rest of us may soon follow.
When I referred in the post to a fourth article addressing “ongoing violations of international treaties” and “crimes against humanity” it was Trump’s unlawful zero tolerance policy and its equally unlawful enforcement I was thinking of. Still debating whether the unlawful Muslim travel ban including detentions and deportations related to its enforcement also fall under this article — a little reading required or feedback from others necessary to determine if the ban infringed on human rights under a treaty by curtailing free movement based on religious criteria.
My opinion is that yes, it is. He didn’t extend it to countries that should qualify, like KSA, and he included non-Muslims in the ban because it’s by country.
I’m reminded of an article I read recently, don’t recall where, they talked about the Republican’s long-standing habit of crying that Dems are “criminalizing policy differences” every time they blatantly violate some law or other and get called out on it! And how indicative of the Republican’s propensity toward PROJECTION is that!?
So be prepared to listen for that little jewel as we proceed into naming the Trump Crime Family sins, “Criminalizing Policy Differences” wait for it…
With regard to Judges, on 4/2/19, Trump advocated that we “get rid of” them:
11:37 AM – 2 Apr 2019
Then the Washington Post published this, yesterday:
7:47 AM – 26 Apr 2019
Yeah, and Trump-inspired racist, armed militia are patrolling my state’s border with Mexico and detaining immigrants (even today). Seems CPBP are ‘colluding’ (-;) with them to make apprehension. The leader was recently arrested by FBI for felon in possession of firearms and ammunition. Trumps base, these militias form the para-military that will always be willing to do as ordered, lawful or not, as ‘patriots.’ Ordering military to the border does not make his policies more legit, just another high crime and misdemeanor.
According to the October 31, 2018 issue of Military Times, U.S. Army and National Guard units deployed to the southern border were concerned about the presence of these citizen militia groups as they have a history of stealing weapons & ammo from regular Army and National Guard forces.
How are they getting access to those weapons and ammo? Shouldn’t those be locked up and guarded?
You would think so, wouldn’t you, but the story in Military Times and a few other websites only referred to incidents of theft and “pilfering” without going into details. The story also spoke of the army authorities warning Texas landowners not to be surprised if they find these militia groups wandering over their property.
how come white people roving as armed groups are called militia and when its people of colour roving around while armed, they’re called criminal gangs. Sometimes both groups are doing illegal things.
if I were in a government military group, doing my job, and ran into these armed white gangs, I’d be concerned we might get shot.
How silly is that, patrolling the border. they aren’t police, they aren’t a branch of the government. If they wanted to do something for society, they could go work at a food bank or work with Habitat for Humanity, etc. Walking around with a gun in your hand hardly seems like contributing to society.
His orders to ICE staff to ignore judges orders, and continue the practice, is contempt for the law and justice ….
Yes, that was the one I wanted to point out. Specifically telling government employees to break the law, don’t worry I will pardon you, is the ultimate conptempt for the rule of law. And the fact that it was to promote a policy that violated human rights, doubles the contempt.
Good thing the employees asked their boss….”is this a real thing?”
wouldn’t that come under obstruction of the law? the man is clearly an idiot, telling federal government workers to break the law. Governments have non political government workers so governments can function in a more non partisan manner.
Don’t know about you, but I’m ready for the opening act – Contempt of Congress resolutions – for the Munchkin, Wilbur, Carl Kline, et al., as we get ready for the main event.
There’s been some talk of jailing administration officials that ignore their subpoenas (get’s my vote), there’s just one problem – Congress hasn’t got a jail.
[ https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-congress-subpoena-explainer/explainer-congress-no-longer-runs-a-jail-so-just-how-powerful-are-its-subpoenas-idUSKCN1S02K8 ]
And while Congress hasn’t actually jailed anyone going back to 1935, hopefully the oversight Committees will be issuing Contempt of Congress resolutions at a healthy rate in the months to come as Administration officials choose to ignore requests for testimony, documents, etc. A majority vote of just one chamber is sufficient to pass a contempt resolution. And that’s where it gets interesting:
“Following a contempt citation, the person cited is arrested by the Seargent-at-Arms for the House or Senate, brought to the floor of the chamber, held to answer charges by the presiding officer, and then subjected to punishment as the chamber may dictate…” Fines, probation, etc., are not uncommon, but the public humiliation, for starters, works for me.
So what are we waiting for?
For more about the process: [ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contempt_of_Congress ]
OT: just heard that Oliver North resigned from the NRA presidency. How about Harry Whittington for NRA pres? After all, he knows both ends of the barrel.
ps sorry Rayne for the cap on the “p” doing this on my phone.
Tim Mak is live tweeting:
7:01 AM – 27 Apr 2019
Five minutes ago:
She’s only just noticed what others saw 30 years ago?
(They weren’t listening in 1994. It took multiple letters to get them to notice my father had died and to stop sending him stuff.)
From the Annals of the Rhyming Rhapsody For Hope.
The next female President will advocate for a new Public Law, consistent with the following:
“Governments–federal, state, county and municipal governments–are prohibited in interfering in a woman’s reproductive rights.” Thus, the sixteen notes for decency personified!
I’m getting quite frustrated with the press for not educating the public on the difference between a Standard House Investigation and a Formal Impeachment Investigation. They have no problem reporting on Trumps many delays and his voiced plan to stonewall every subpoena, but there’s nothing on how to stop that behavior.
This article in Politico is the closest I’ve seen (outside of blogs and websites run by lawyers) to someone mentioning it. They spend several paragraphs leading up to the issue, and then swerve around it at the last second.
“And some also say that legal precedents suggest the House could bolster its claim to testimony from McGahn and others by formally opening an impeachment inquiry, which Speaker Nancy Pelosi has been reluctant to do.”
That’s it. From there it turns back into a history lesson. Opportunity missed. I’m about ready to just go into a self-induced media blackout until I hear that Pelosi has finally pulled the trigger. Nothing of any substance is going to happen until she does.
Well, maybe not a total blackout. Hard to resist a Rayne Open Thread.
Would be interested in the thoughts of more expert people than I on this Murray Waas article.
“Prosecutors working for Special Counsel Robert Mueller concluded last year that they had sufficient evidence to seek criminal charges against President Donald Trump for obstruction of justice… Privately, the two prosecutors, who were then employed in the special counsel’s office, told other Justice Department officials that had it not been for the unique nature of the case… they would have advocated that he face federal criminal charges.”
My personal first response is that those of us who were paying attention and reading carefully had pretty much figured this already, but it’s good to see it said more explicitly. The third-hand, anonymous nature of the claim is frustrating, because of course that’s going to be used to dismiss it by Trump defenders. I don’t suppose we can expect that Mueller would confirm this when called in for questioning by the House – doesn’t seem like his style, or maybe even his ethics.
With the caveat IADefinitelyNAL…I think the twenty plus references to Congress’ powers of Impeachment in the report, together with explicit statements like “…while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” reflect Mueller’s view that there was indeed sufficient evidence – were it not for the “unique nature” of the case – to pursue tRump on obstruction charges.
The fact that Mueller also referenced the need to “preserve the evidence when memories were fresh and documentary materials were available,’ indicates that prosecution on obstruction charges against tRump and/or associates, after his term expires, was a consideration.
The report’s Executive Summary of Volume II (obstruction of justice) goes into painful detail concerning DOJ prosecution/declination issues – the OLC opinion that “the indictment or criminal prosecution of a sitting President would impermissibly undermine the capacity of the executive branch to perform its constitutionally assigned functions,” or “…no adversarial opportunity for public name-clearing,” etc. Mueller played it straight up and by the (DOJ) book. My guess is that he’d be confident with “my report speaks for itself…” in public testimony.
As to tRump defenders (and confused independents, alike), they would be well-served listening to what Faux News’ (for now, at least) Judge Napolitano had to say about the case for obstruction, as presented in Mueller’s report:
https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2019/04/25/napolitano_why_was_president_trump_not_charged_with_obstruction_of_justice_is_the_president_above_the_law.html (skip to ~0:56 mark)
Sure, that’s what those around these parts figured out, but like I said, you have to read carefully to see that, which is what too many reporters and pundits won’t do, let alone ordinary voters. But I’m wondering if, asked point blank by a Democratic House member (as he surely will be), Mueller would state right out, “I would have indicted anyone else but the president for actions like this, but I didn’t because of the DOJ guidance.” Somehow I think he wouldn’t, because if he were comfortable doing so, he would have done so in the report. But, IANALOMR (“… Or Mind Reader”).
The best quote on the Mueller report was on Harry Shearer’s fine radio show opener last week when he said that Mueller could’ve saved us two years if he’d told us up front he wasn’t going to prosecute based on that DOJ memo:
Representative Adam Schiff on Bill Maher last night.
He quotes his 91 year old father. Great line.
Thank you for the link, Jenny. Adam Schiff is the one white male I would work for in a Presidential campaign. I look forward to him replacing Diane Feinstein in the Senate when she retires.
My pleasure Molly. Schiff is a conscious congressman. I too would like to see him run for President or become a Senator. We are on the same page.
What he is saying is that dems cannot impeach Trump yet because that would give Trump too much publicity, basically playing in Trump narrative, and the result is known to fail in Senate.
Trump should be impeached, even if he may not be convicted, but I agree that it matters the way is done. I am with bmaz that the clock is running out. Also, we really don’t know for sure if the impeachment will fail.
Now I see why Mueller wanted to rush to complete the investigation, to allow congress to act.
Just hoping there are some people left in the US government that will do what’s right.
Yes, I always liked Adam S. He is an intelligent man.
Well, since this is an open thread, just to get some relief and lighten up I checked out a nice piece on BF re: author-owned book stores. I love indie bookstores. A beauty is City Lights in SF co-founded by Lawrence Ferlinghetti. His “belief in the surreality and wonder of life” is so bloody apropos right now.
It’s hard to believe we’re here, but we are. We have to fight to keep what little pure freedom and privacy we have left. We have to impeach the bastard.
Relief…yeah, I can relate. Interesting that you note Ferlinghetti’s “belief in the surreality and wonder of life” – a favorite escape of mine is to the world of uber-realist/fantasy painter Arantzazu Martinez, something like “Absolute Trust.”
[ http://www.arantzazumartinez.com/images/Absolute_trust.jpg ]
I love secondhand book stores, especially ones that are large, rambling, and not tremendously well organized. You can never tell what long sought after treasure may turn up in a dark, dusty corner.
Lawrence’s 100th Birthday was just last month on March 24th. It was quite the literary event in The City . Accolades from all over the world for him.
He is among the last of the original beatniks. So much of what made The City unique and weird and wonderful is disappearing under the stampede of tech people. I am glad that a trust has been set up to preserve City Lights.
on the guy who ran into the pedestrians in Sunnyvale: see coverage at SFGate, because it’s (approximately) in their area. (It’s about 45 miles south of S.F.) One of the pedestrians is in a coma because of head injuries.
(They also have some coverage of a synagogue shooting in Poway, from this morning. The shooter is in custody; four injured, one of whom may have died.)
fpo – don’t get me started on owls. There’s a reason that one’s in that piece.
“And yesterday the bird of night did sit
Even at noon-day upon the marketplace,
Hooting and shrieking. When these prodigies
Do so conjointly meet, let not men say,
These are their reasons. They are natural.”
For I believe they are portentous things
Unto the climate that they point upon.”
Shakespeare, “Julius Caesar”
Any owls in D.C.?
~ Please watch this powerful speech by Rep. Barbara Jordan from the 1974 Impeachment Hearings about Nixon and think carefully about the health of our democracy and your place in this moment of history in 2019. ~ The Watergate charges pale in comparison to Trump’s charges and have “patience” because Trump’s Impeachment “will happen”. ~
Sinclair v US
“6 There is no merit in appellant’s contention that he is entitled to a new trial because the court excluded evidence that in refusing to answer he acted in good faith on the advice of competent counsel.
The gist of the offense is refusal to answer pertinent questions. No moral turpitude is involved. Intentional violation is sufficient to constitute guilt.
There was no misapprehension as
to what was called for. The refusal to answer was deliberate.
The facts sought were pertinent as a matter of law, and § 102 made it appellant’s duty to answer. He was bound rightly to construe the statute. His mistaken view of the law is no defense. Armour Packing Co. v. United States, 209 U.S. 56, 85. Standard Sanitary Mfg. Co. v.
United States, 226 U.S. 20, 49.
7. The conviction on the first count must be affirmed. There were ten counts, demurrer was sustained as to four nolle prosequi was entered in respect of two, and conviction was had on the first, fourth, fifth and ninth counts. As the sentence does not exceed the maximum authorized as punishment for the offense charged in the first count, we need not consider any other count. Abrams v. United States, 250 U.S. 616, 619.”
Judgment affirmed. *300”
For those who missed it:
Barr is refusing to talk to the committees in Congress if the sessions are more than 30 minutes long OR if the questions are asked by lawyers.
Nadler isn’t happy.
6:43 AM – 28 Apr 2019
B.W., thank you so much for this. I have been thinking about Barbara Jordan for months now. To me, this is just as inspirational now as it was then. People were listening with rapt attention. Her speech is riveting!
Rayne, thanks so much for drawing the connection with Nixon! In fact, what may be Nixon’s most famous impeachable offense, the “Smoking Gun” tape of June 23, 1972, where he and H. R. Haldeman discussed how to get the CIA to direct the FBI to call off its Watergate investigation on supposed “national security” grounds, is a good sanity test today.
With the caution that I am not an attorney, I might offer this analysis of how the Giulana-Barr defense for Trump would have applied to Nixon’s smoking gun tape.
Argument 1. “No Prior Knowledge!” Since it was not established that Nixon had any prior knowledge of the Watergate break-in, there was no “underlying crime” of his own to obstruct! Therefore the smoking gun tape could not be impeachable.
Argument 2. “Unitary Executive.” In his discussion with Haldeman, Nixon did not propose destroying or manufacturing evidence; he was simply using his Article II powers to stop an investigation by his executive branch, which as Barr has shown us, cannot be obstruction.
Argument 3. “No Harm, No Obstruction!” Since in fact Richard Helms and Vernon Walters of the CIA refused to order the FBI to call off or limit its Watergate investigation — as various officials refused Trump’s orders or inducements to obstruct — there was really no obstruction, and thus no crime or impeachable offense.
In fact, of course, the release of Nixon’s smoking gun tape induced even the President’s staunchest defenders on the House Judiciary Committee, who had demanded “specificity” and “evidence,” to change their position and unite behind at least one article of impeachment. And this was the development that led the Republican leaders to visit the White House and let Nixon know that he would lose in a Senate trial, should he not resign, as he did within a few days. So the smoking gun tape may be a good sanity test to rebut the curious logic of Trump’s defenders.
Since I seem unable to use the Edit option, which gives me a screen with a single “0” character (and about the same when I try to view HTML source), I should clarify my reference to the “Giuliani-Barr” arguments.
OT, about census citizenship question that is in front of the supreme court.
One reason could be considered unconstitutional, IMO, is related to the green card holders.
They pay taxes, they have permission to work legally, are contributing members of society, just cannot vote.
With the new proposed census citizenship question they will be counted as non-citizens, I think.
If so, it kind of proves the census citizenship question is politically motivated.
And I assume the federal help is based on citizens in the state.
Historian Ron Chernow is a modest public speaker. He is more renowned as a court historian. In my view, his work is voluminous and popular, in the vein of David McCullough, but he is not much given to challenging received wisdom.
Chernow, however, did an adequate job in a difficult assignment for an often pearl clutching audience at the White House Correspondents’ Association dinner: standing in for the president and the usual court jester-cum-visiting comedian. Doing double duty was necessary owing to Donald Trump’s refusal to attend and the WHCA’s reluctance to expose his onionskin ego – even in absentia – to a professional comedian’s wit.
Chernow’s best line was his last. He quoted Mark Twain, to the effect that politicians and diapers should be changed often, and for the same reason.
Stevie Nicks is a musical genius.
(apropos of open thread, sanity, and R&R HoF Inductions airing)
Whoa…Elizabeth Warren, Barbara Jordan & Stevie Nicks,
all in the same EW thread…how’s that song go?
Let us put men and women together
See which one is smarter
Some say men, but I say no
The women got the men like a puppet show
It ain’t me – it’s the people that say
That the men are leading the women astray
But I say that the women today
Are smarter than the men in every way
Little boy sit on the corner and cry
Big man come and he ask him why
Says I can’t do what the big boys do
Man sat down and he cried too
It ain’t me – it’s the people that say
That the men are leading the women astray
But I say that the women today
Are smarter than the men in every way
That’s right, the women are smarter
That’s right, the women are smarter
That’s right, the women are smarter
Smarter than the men in every way…
(Robert Palmer, the Dead, etc.)
Barr is no better than John Mitchell who is no better than than the brother of a USAG who obstructed justice.
Decided in 1927 by a SCOTUS..
Great SCOTT! Throw them all in jail for obstruction before all of America gets the dreaded Dred Scott treatment.
Americans have no standing to confront fascists?
Yesterday on Twitter, Trump congratulated the overall #2 NFL draft pick, Nick Bosa:
5:06 AM – 27 Apr 2019
Then, in the evening, he again congratulated Bosa at the rally in Wisconsin:
6:35 PM – 27 Apr 2019 [VIDEO]
Here’s The SF Chronicle’s Scott Ostler on 4/26, before Bosa was drafted by SF:
Nick Bosa’s news and views make him risky 49ers pick
And here’s Jane McManus of NYDN on 4/27, after the draft:
Trump drafts Nick Bosa with the top pick in his culture war
BWAHAHAHAHA! The rest is good, too.
Thought of Marcy’s post while watching Samantha Bee’s speech from last night’s NotWHCD dinner — right at 02:20.
Thanks Rayne. LOL. Spot on Samantha Bee.
Barr threatens to snub the Judiciary committee. Nadler can run it the way he chooses.
Who the hell does Barr think he is Trump’s personal lawyer? Does he think he is entitled to something different? I was good enough for Comey.
Ugh!!! I need another glass of wine.
It is almost like that guy who has been saying all along that if the House wants to consolidate and enhance its investigatory power, they ought open an impeachment inquiry….might have been right.
Who was that guy anyway??
I know the answer. Starts with b.
This is going to play well with Trump’s base, but again Trump’ base is a minority in this country.
Looks like Trump wants these fights to show he is doing something.
It worked with Bret K. hearing, with 2016 campaign, with everything else.
Dems need to do something different, not sure what.
If they open impeachment hearings, I hope they are prepared to do the questioning.
Some good news, it looks like Trump is loosing tweeter followers, because tweeter is flushing bots, so it kind of proves he is a fake.
a treat for people: google “Thanos”, then click on the gauntlet in the right sidebar.
It was nice to read what the articles of impeachment would be like, if only in our dreams. Gee I do wish they were real, LIKE if I woke up tomorrow morning and the CBC was saying this was happening. Oh, well its a nice thought to go to sleep on. Thank you.
Article One with the so-called Russian hack is nothing but a polished turd. I grew up in Nixon’s district and I did call for his Impeachment as a senior in High School and I am not willing to be snookered by anyone. You cannot use Nixon to beat up Nixon which is what this looks like towards Trump I have asked politely and have only been vilified for asking about the nature and VIP argument about a LEAK. They are experts in Intelligence and on Russia and none of you are. So get up out of your armchairs and give me a fair, reasoned, and rational explanation of why the VIP take should be rejected. That is all. You have essentially redacted before the redacted report came out. Believe me I WANT a solid Article One to stick it to this asshole for a President. Assange needs to be heard in this regard too. Now comes like I posted about FISA being declassified by Trump. To wit: “HANNITY: Mr. President, I’m going to — I have to ask you about the New Green Deal, Biden and the media. But one last, last question. Will you declassify the FISA applications, Gang of Eight material, those 302s, or, you know, what we call on this program the “bucket of five”? TRUMP: Yes. Everything is going to be declassified and more, much more than what you just mentioned. It will all be declassified. I’m glad I waited because I thought that maybe they would object struck if I did it early and I think I was right.” OK gentlemen?
Clever Evans but never was interested in the cracker jack box decoder stuff you play with. Almost as bad as Nixon calling up the night before the election and claiming Jerry Voorhis (my friend) is a communist. Wow impressed.
Yesterday, Jamie Dimon’s Chase Bank sent out a Tweet, mocking people for spending money on coffee and cabs, with a hashtag #MondayMotivation [Screenshot in the link below].
Among many mocking and pointed responses is Senator Elizabeth Warren‘s:
1:01 PM – 29 Apr 2019
According to Business Insider, Chase has deleted the tweet.
[hahahaha! the smug fckrs]
Dimon [and others] was questioned at an April 10 Congressional Hearing.
2:25 PM – 10 Apr 2019
11:11 AM – 10 Apr 2019
Later that day, Porter tweeted:
Later that week, Sarah Sanders said:
8:58 AM – 14 Apr 2019
bmaz has Porter’s response here:
4:50 PM – 14 Apr 2019
The haves could care less about the have-nots. More exposure of an imbalanced system.
After Representative Katie Porter’s stellar exchange with Dimon, I called her office to thank her. New outspoken representatives in the house – impressive.
Thanks Harpie for pointing out the strong women confronting the banks.
Watched Senator Warren take down Well’s Fargo. She is direct, knowledgeable and strong. Go Elizabeth!
We now have Generation Lockdown. Powerful video PSA from March for Our Lives.
“When will be ever learn? When will we ever learn?” Peter Seeger
It would be good if the President were to express as much anger, outrage, and zero tolerance towards white supremacists as he does towards women and children seeking asylum on the southern border.