Will Hurd

The Entire Republican Party Owns Trump’s Crimes Going Forward

Both articles of impeachment just passed Congress, with the only non-partisan votes coming from Justin Amash (voting yes on both), Tulsi Gabard (voting present on both), Jeff Van Drew and Collin Peterson (no on both) and Jared Golden (who split his vote). In spite of a pretty damning speech about Republican lack of courage from Steny Hoyer, no Republican had the courage to support the Constitution.

President Trump will be shown to have committed more crimes, even more grievous ones than withholding duly appropriate aid to cheat in an election. It probably won’t be that long from now. And the entire Republican party will own those crimes.

The Republican party favors cheating over the national security of the United States.

224 replies
  1. Anvil Leucippus says:

    I hope when Bolton, Pompeo, etc do testify (and they will now end up testifying even closer to the election than if they had just showed up when they were supposed to), and we find out it is even worse than we know today, then every single Trump enabler gets to wear it around their necks for the rest of their lives. No bed of money and graceful retirement for any of them. Disgrace.

    • Stephen says:

      Only if an actual trial is held. Majority Leader McConnell is strongly opposed to doing so, would rather limit the House Managers to their initial presentation, then hold a simple majority vote to dismiss the charges. Unless 4 Republican senators insist on a proper trial, it may not happen at all.

    • bmaz says:

      I will be stunned if there is any real live testimony. There was none of that even in Clinton, it was deposition excerpts at best. Even that is unlikely to occur under the Pelosi rocket docket scheme, and if it does, it will be incredibly limited in scope because that is what Pelosi has set up.

      My hope is that, some day, people wake up to exactly how cravenly Pelosi has played this, and how bad the public has been jobbed by her insistence on political expediency over the protection and defense of the Constitution.

      • Katherine M Williams says:

        I read Pelosi is considering slowing things down a bit. Doing a couple or three or four more investigations before handing over the kittenkabootle to Moscow Mitch. O please let it be true!

      • allison holland says:

        I find your comment craven and jobbed. Its always up to women to clean the space while simultaneously getting blamed as they do so. In my small perhaps craven and johnned opinion she has done well under the circumstances of a weak and “coddling to the president ” media and an extremely loud, lying and unpatriotic Republican sham of a party that does corruption so well. .

        • Marinela says:

          If Pelosi just worries about her majority in 2020, it is a problem. We don’t know why she is not taking the time to document all Trump’s wrongs.
          For sure there are stuff out there that the public doesn’t know yet.
          If she is just reading polls that is also a problem. She should lead and do the deep dive investigations that Mueller was constrained and could not touch but we know there is more out there. The courts need to rule at least on some of the WH stone walling.
          If Trump gets re-elected, it really doesn’t get us much if the house is under democratic control.

        • d4v1d says:

          pelosi (the house) doesn’t have the power to remove the president – but she is will now force senators to defend (or not) the constitution on the record. my feeling is her strategy could unseat a republican senator or two. no sense litigating trump’s style or political malfeasance and incompetence. Those are not unconstitutional. Doing surgery with a scalpel is better than doing it with a ball peen hammer.

        • timbo says:

          Uh “Those are not unconstitutional.”?! WTF? What is not unconstitutional? Certainly this President has broken many laws and Constitutional prohibitions… for instance his willingness to stymie the Congress when it is conducting an impeachment investigation certainly looks like someone who isn’t interested in having checks and balances whatsoever.

        • Katherine M Williams says:

          Hmm. Young Turks are saying Pelosi will wait till its vital that Warren and Sanders be out campaigning and then, POW! hand impeachment over to Moscow Mitch, thereby ruining the chances of Sanders & Warren.

      • Matthew Harris says:

        Explain, in concrete terms, what Nancy Pelosi should have done differently, and what would have happened if she had acted differently. Give me a percentage for how much this alternative strategy would have succeeded.

        • bmaz says:

          Lol, do your own research. I have laid that out here relentlessly since even before the Mueller testimony. How about YOU tell me why this bullshit Pelosi rocket docket “strategy”, on arguably the least compelling case, a phone call, is so fucking brilliant. She cravenly waited until September 24 to even open the inquiry, and then effectively ended it barely two and a half months later. She could not even competently let the court actions proceed under their strongest footing. So, spare me your demands.

    • Mulder says:

      It won’t happen but Rick Perry needs the opportunity to perjure himself, too. His name doesn’t get enough airtime when witnesses are discussed.

  2. rip says:

    Programmed to fail.

    They (the repuglicans) were programmed to support a failure and thus to fail themselves and to try to fail the country.

    Some may have known they were being bought or coerced. Many may have been too naive (nice word) to realize that they were walking into a den of treason.

    The forces against our attempts at democracy have struck a powerful blow. I hope we can survive it.

    • P J Evans says:

      “too naive … to realize that they were walking into a den of treason”
      They’ve had three years to figure it out. If they haven’t done so by now, they’re too dim to be in any elected office.
      It isn’t like they haven’t been told, frequently, about the party’s Big Anvil.

      • Mitch Neher says:

        Is “the party’s Big Anvil” an allusion to the old saying about what to throw your opponent when he’s drowning???

    • Mona Williams says:

      “The forces against our attempts at democracy have struck a powerful blow.”

      And last night a powerful blow was returned.

  3. Rayne says:

    I don’t think Democrats’ Yea votes were partisan; it was the Republicans’ rejection of the rule of law and their oath of office which made votes apart from Amash’s appear partisan.

    But Democratic voters in Van Drew’s, Peterson’s, and Golden’s districts need to support candidates who will respect their oath of office. Fortunately Gabbard’s district need look no further than Kai Kahele since Gabbard isn’t running for re-election. Kahele is a good choice for HI-2.

    • Anvil Leucippus says:

      Did we ever find out where Gabbard was hiding all day today? Her staff said she was “in DC” and that was about all they knew.

        • harpie says:

          Tulsi had this to say on Twitter today:
          5:12 AM – 19 Dec 2019

          A house divided cannot stand. And today we are divided. Fragmentation and polarity are ripping our country apart. Today, I come before you to make a stand for the center, to appeal to all of you to bridge our differences and stand up for the American people. #StandWithTulsi [VIDEO]

        • Vicks says:

          Too soon?
          I’m sorry, if I offend anybody but IMHO this woman is sketchy as hell and she rubs me the wrong way.
          How does she justify her failure to do the right thing when she doesn’t even have a seat to defend?
          Not only does she not possess the strength, honor and integrity required to stand up to corruption, she is giving the finger to those who do. A finger on hands that are just as dirty as anyone else providing cover for Trump and the criminal he brought into our white house.

        • Ruthie says:

          I agree that there’s something off about her.

          I live in NH, and on Sling TV, at least, her commercials are ever present – and super annoying. She touts her “soldier’s values” as if no civilian could possibly be as courageous and moral as a soldier, which I personally find offensive. There’s another about Trump, and although I don’t remember the details (I like to tune her out), she at least says he’s dangerous. It just doesn’t jive with her vote yesterday.

        • P J Evans says:

          If Trmp’s that dangerous, she should have voted to impeach, instead of trying to get the house to censure him. (Really – she introduced that one after the impeachment votes.)

        • Vicks says:

          She talked the talk,and then ducked and took cover when the time came to do her duty.
          F her.
          Now she is trying to benefit from the spoils of those who did what needed to be done despite the risk.
          “Bridge our differences” my ass Trump was impeached because his personal agenda is a menace to our country NOT because of freaking political differences.
          F running as an independent, the only place she belongs is with the party formerly known as republicans.

        • Eureka says:

          If you ever actually pay attention to what she says (and I have, for the purposes of lightly deprogramming the propagandized*), Gabbard generally says a whole lot of _nothing_. Especially when she is pressed with ‘hard’ questions, she has a talent for sounding like she has answered them. People ‘hear’ her rather horoscopically, which is no accident. So she can sound appealing to people from diff POVs.

          *Tulsi is boosted by channels (like certain youtube and other media figures) which target esp. white men of a certain age who think they’re good people ( i.e. not GOP racists), and military folk as well (also an IRA target per article I recently posted here).

        • Rayne says:

          I thought of a line from a Lois McMaster Bujold novel that fits here:

          “Between justice and genocide there is, in the long run, no middle ground.”

          There’s no bridging where we are to where Trump is, he being a genocidal monster.

          Gabbard called Hillary Clinton “the queen of warmongers, embodiment of corruption” but she thinks we’re supposed to meet a proven criminal who cages babies after ripping them from their parents, concentrating a hundred thousand asylum seekers in tents in winter? We’re supposed to make nice with the guy who sold out the Kurds? Gabbard can fuck all the way off.

        • P J Evans says:

          She lied about Hillary, too.
          I don’t know who she thinks she’s winning votes from, but it’s not going to get her elected.

        • General Sternwood says:

          I started seeing billboards for her in NH last summer, long before other candidates. If we had campaign finance transparency, I think it would tell an interesting story about her backers.

        • milestogo says:

          Josh Marshall in a podcast regarding her debate performance commented that there was something “malevolent” about her. How I would love to know the backstory behind her behavior. She strikes me as hiding her true intent but that quickly gets one into conspiracy land. I just don’t get (and don’t like) her. The sooner she disappears from public life, the better.

      • Matthew Harris says:

        I hope I am not a broken record repeating this, since I have made comments like this before, but I don’t understand Jeff Van Drew or his district.

        I grew up in the Pacific Northwest, and have lived in Montana. I know lots of hardcore, rural, conservative places. I understand how Republican they can be.

        But Van Drew’s district is urban and suburban, diverse, and part of a major metropolitan area. I don’t have experience with places like that being Republican: the Seattle and Portland suburbs are not as liberal as Seattle and Portland, but are still not exactly Trump country. I don’t understand how people on the suburban east coast end up strongly Republican. I have nothing really to compare that to. (Other than Jaime Herrera Beutler, who managed to win 53% of the vote in the last election, representing suburban SW Washington, across from Portland).

        • Drew says:

          Having recently worked in New Jersey, the thing that I think more about is that it includes Cape May. Lovely beaches & bird watching etc. But people I know who live there tell me and the attitudes of my colleagues who work there remind me that there is a lot of conservative money throwing its weight around in those parts in some pretty ugly ways.

          I don’t have proposals of how this would directly link with Van Drew, but my inclination is to wonder whether individuals or groups got to him with social pressure (or worse). In other words his calculations & knuckling under might very well have little to do with electoral calculations and more to do with continuing to live & function in the area.

          (Not that I think he’s that bright, but dimwits often look more to comfort than to principle)

        • Matthew Harris says:

          And this might sound like I am making stuff up, but I don’t really understand “conservative money” as a voting demographic, although I certainly know a few examples.

          In the Pacific Northwest, I grew up with the following groups:

          1. Very leftist urbanites.
          2. Moderate Democratic suburbanites
          3. “Socially liberal, fiscally conservative” moderates or libertarians
          4. Suburban or rural evangelicals, usually not well educated and lower to middle class.

          Of course, these are broad groups, and I am kind of talking in stereotypes, in general, “rich, suburban Republicans” aren’t a big voting block in Oregon, and of the ring of suburban counties around Portland and Seattle, Trump either lost, or won by a plurality. I don’t understand those types of places being a strong Republican voting block.

        • vicks says:

          “Conservative money” is rich people that want to stay that way.
          They want minimal taxes and minimal government oversight into their kingdoms.
          It starts as a reasonable theory and then you realize we have this spectrum thing going on, we have the Bill and Melinda Gates, the Buffets, many of your friends and neighbors on one end who seem to not have a problem parting with quite a bit of what they have been blessed with and then we have the “others”

        • P J Evans says:

          Zuckerberg (and FB), Thiel (who reportedly has a lot of influence at FB), Bezos, the lesser magnates of Silicon Valley and other “tech” companies (most of which, as far as I can tell, are about profiting off tech that others develop, like FB, Uber, Lyft).

        • roberts robot double says:

          America’s prevailing culture is not conducive to fostering wisdom; no, quite the opposite. Wisdom requires seeking the truth above all else, starting most essentially with one’s own self. This culture has never contemplated that while they’re eating their delivery and binge-watching more vapid fiction, there is probably a homeless person within a mile of them.

          This is to say that our entire political system implements nothing but selfishness for one’s own group. Sure, we all need to vote Dem (and I do), but most Dem voters are still unwilling to confront the ugly realities America has created (here and abroad) in its never-ending service to moneyed power. Most people simply can’t be bothered so long as they get to live their bourgeois life; the rest of us are too poor to do anything about it.

          Wisdom requires effortful, universal compassion. Lacking that ethos, we default to our mammalian competitiveness and reap all the suffering that comes along for the ride when we eschew our humanity for selfish creature comforts.

          Amazon, this GOP, Microsoft, Uber, Dr. Ben Carson — all these f*ck*rs and their ilk are the fruit of this callous, selfish culture. Necessarily, the vast majority of people — as well as the Earth, itself — are hurting.

        • Vicks says:

          The easiest way to build power is to take it from someone else.
          Use religion, use the legal system, use racism, use whatever the corrupt, greedy and tragically mediocre need to keep any/all potential competition from getting equal footing.
          You know, “make america great again” and all that.

        • roberts robot double says:

          Indeed; but that’s not *real* power. Real power is sleeping well at night because your conscience is clear, not because you’ve never made mistakes, but because you’ve worked hard to honestly understand and manifest perfect personal morality such that you make fewer and fewer mistakes.

          No one starts out anything but flawed, but very few of us make the effort to root out and correct our own problems in the interest of being a better influence on those around us.

          Ultimately, I’d say that Trump”s supporters excuse his behavior because they, themselves, wish they could have the same power to make the same decisions. They truly are deplorables and I refuse to sup with the willfully ignorant who support systemic evil.

        • Vicks says:

          I disagree.
          I believe that we all start out “perfect” and then proceed to figure out ways to protect ourselves when we are frightened or scared.
          It is the dysfunction that is created when we have moved from child to adult but continue to respond to triggers that make us afraid or ashamed the same way we did at four, six or ten yours old.
          If adults don’t get a grip on the fact that the behavior that made them feel more in control as a child; lashing out, blaming, finger pointing, disruptive distraction behavior, crying, withdrawing, lying, running away, ignoring, passive aggressive retaliation, etc has, no place in adult dealings or relationships, these reactions and responses will up controlling them instead.
          It’s how we handle the moments when we feel cornered, afraid or embarrassed that ultimately define our character.
          A person who runs away from problems, or attacks, lies or makes elaborate justifications when they are caught being naughty (or making a mistake) means most humans are walking around with piles of negative and unresolved “business“ that effects our judgement and relationships and ultimately our ability to sleep at night because of the anxiety not dealing with our shit creates.

        • roberts robot double says:

          The things you speak about are merely symptoms of the disease, which starts with our choosing the vices of our hearts instead of the virtue part of the pair (e.g. hatred over love, lying over the truth, ingratitude over gratitude, …).

          What defines our character is how we choose to treat our fellow human beings. Are we greedy at their expense (hey corporate America)? Do we hate them (there are no reasons for hatred, only excuses)? And every person is evolving each and every day either further into selfishness/vice or selflessness/virtue.

          Everything starts and ends with our heart and if we don’t first seek to understand the truth of our own selves, then we don’t know how to fight against our own negative impulses. That seeking will lead one to learn from others how to permanently transform one’s heart’s vices to their corresponding virtues, which is the entire purpose of human life. The state of our world is the result of nothing less than the vast majority of human beings not giving a crap about this personal mandate to self-evolution.

          Trump was taught from a young age to use others for his personal pleasure and gain (via his parents and Roy Cohn). And that’s why he is so unhappy: he is living the result of a lifetime of nothing but brutal selfishness. We reap what we sow, every single time and in perfect proportion. That Law exists at a far more subtle level than, e.g., gravity or the propagation of EMR. It’s only for humans because only we have the sense of morality and the duty to choose the good of the whole over the selfish good for ourselves.

          This world in 2019 is a testament to our collective ignorance, which is just one of the 19 vices of the human heart. But, Oh!, how ignorance drives the Trump supporters to even greater depths! Thus, their hatred and lying grow by the day. It is nothing less than the direction they have chosen to drive their free wills, but their destination is not what they think it is because the worst lies they tell are the ones they tell themselves.

        • Ruthie says:

          I don’t know that district at all, but I lived in district 5 in northwest NJ, which at least at the time was very evangelical/conservative. Our rep, Scott Garret, was horrific.

        • Geoguy says:

          I might be able to shed a little light on the Van Drew district. It’s not really that urban because it is the southern most district in NJ. It covers about 1/4 of the area of the state but has only about 1/10th of the population. Parts of it are quite isolated even today. There are large agricultural areas and state lands protected from development. Most people live around the edges on the Atlantic and Delaware bay coasts. Cape May is nearly at the same latitude as Washington D.C.

          Most of it is below the Mason Dixon line ( not the actual line but the projection of the PA – MD border. ) NJ wasn’t a slave state but Delaware was. Some slaves did escape to and through NJ. Slavery was formally abolished in 1846 but former slaves were still “apprenticed” to their masters until the Thirteenth Amendment was adpoted in 1865. It’s not unusual to see the Confederate battle flag in those parts.

          The area was originally settled by pirates, privateers, Torys escaping the Revolution, English, Welch, Scots, Quakers, Quaker misfits and assorted other people wishing to stay away from the law. The Mob was in Atlantic City especially during Prohibition and Al Capone had at least two hideouts in the area. Today, the population is growing with people from more urban areas but it trends more conservative than the north jersey working and middle class areas.

          Disclosure: I’m not from NJ so if you are, feel free to pile on!

        • vvv says:

          How about Spokane? Google, ” Washington Rep. Matt Shea ” and yesterday’s Seattle times article, blow yer mind.

        • roberts robot double says:

          One major problem is that people don’t know how to understand the truth of someone else because they refuse to acknowledge the truth about themselves. That is why “know thyself” is so utterly important: only by understanding, admitting and working to correct one’s own faults can one see the tells in our less than honorable fellow human beings.

          The primary problem, however, is that most people don’t give a crap about the welfare of anyone outside their group, no matter how they choose to draw those lines. Why should it surprise anyone when they elect ignorant, selfish, callous bastards to represent them?

          The real trick is to convince the populace that “The System” itself as constructed from the get-go is the problem, for those forces contrive to deliver us candidates that will only do Its bidding. God bless AOC and Warren for seeking deep and real change in the system itself. They and their ilk are our only hope, but only if more of our populace decides to educate themselves on all the truths.

        • cavenewt says:

          “One major problem is that people don’t know how to understand the truth of someone else because they refuse to acknowledge the truth about themselves. That is why “know thyself” is so utterly important: only by understanding, admitting and working to correct one’s own faults can one see the tells in our less than honorable fellow human beings.”

          That still does not help me understand Mitch McConnell.

        • roberts robot double says:

          Oh, that’s easy: he’s an evil, lying, white-supremacist bastard. And his constituents, like well over half of America, are a combination of ignorant and ill-intentioned.

          On a more serious note, we each — each and every day — are faced with decisions where we can manifest selfless, loving service to others or selfish, callous taking of what we can get from others without respect to their well-being. Those decisions create inertia within our personalities and they make us who we are; for we all practice some religion, even if it’s just being a selfish bastard.

          And when you add copious amounts of money to the equation, few people pass the test.

        • P J Evans says:

          It’s all about *him* – the registration deadline is tomorrow at noon, and no one who signed up to run for another office can register as a candidate for that seat.

        • Rayne says:

          First, his district may be affected by the court decisions regarding partisan gerrymandering in NC as well as fall out from the cases related to vote tampering/theft.

          Second, internal polling may have reflected anti-GOP/anti-Trump sentiment. We haven’t seen internal polling from GOP anywhere recently, which suggests the party is worried. Trump’s campaign ditching pollsters this summer also suggest Trump himself is a key drag.

          Third, while there were three other Democrats running in the primary, the entrance of Moe Davis as the fourth Dem probably was the kicker. He’s got name recognition as well as qualifications Meadows doesn’t have, and Davis is more moderate than at least one of the other Dem candidates in the primary.

  4. BobCon says:

    It’s up to the Democrats now to make this point stick.

    The NY Times is signalling with their lead article tonight where they stand — they’re going with the perspective from Mt, Olympus, gods viewing the petty squabbles of mere mortals. They can’t be bothered to discuss the facts or truth, just the buzzing they perceive from miles above the fray.

    But as haphazard as this has been at times, I’m inclined to still view it as a net positive for the Democrats. I think the overwhelming choice by the caucus will drain a lot of dithering from Pelosi, and she is much better when she is on point.

    I also think a non trivial number of the GOP rank and file members will find this a millstone around their necks during the general election. They’ll find questions taking up time and energy they would rather use to demogogue in other issues.

    I am still deeply upset that the Democrats didn’t start sooner, on more fronts, and with a much bigger dedicated staff. They are going to find issue after issue bubbling up which will have the obvious question of why they Democrats didn’t use them as part of impeachment, and why they weren’t pursued sooner.

    But still, I think the Demicrats are a bit better off for having gone through this exercise, even if it is just a glancing blow.

    • P J Evans says:

      NYT still considers itself to be the “paper of record”, even though they’ve been enabling the GOP-T for years. I think they should get outsiders – real outsiders – to look at their record and tell them how much of it is obviously-partisan crap.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        As did other Olympians, the NYT will soon discover it has long outlived the supposed feats on which its mythology is based. It never published all the news that’s fit to print, and it withheld some of the good stuff.

        The faintest of breeze will waft away Dean Baquet’s pixie dust, leaving a colder reality that even the sheltered owners of the NYT will be able to see.

        • Theodora30 says:

          I seriously doubt that the Times will soon get its comeuppance. They have been allowing their news site to be used as a mouthpiece for right wing pseudo scandals for decades without paying the price. Whitewater, Travelgate, Chinagate/Wen Ho Lee, Filegate, Clinton Cash, Biden-Ukraine all were right wing concoctions that the Times promoted. The rest of the media follows their lead because “newspaper of record”. The only time they got hammered was over WMD.
          The Clinton Foundation and Biden-Ukraine smears were created by Peter Schweitzer who works for Bannon’s Government Accountability Institute as well as for Breitbart. The Times swallowed his allegations whole. They were easily debunked by other media outlets but the Times has had little pushback.
          Just the other day a woman I know who voted for HIllary told me she had done it reluctantly because the Clinton Foundation is so corrupt. She proceeded to repeat the lies from Schweitzer’s book “Clinton Cash” (the Uranium One fairytale for one). When I told her those things were made up by Steve Bannon she refused to believe me. Like many Democrats the Times is revered and trusted.

        • BobCon says:

          Baquet is due to retire in a couple of years, and there are supposedly three top candidates to replace him.


          One is James Bennet, editor of the opinion pages, who would be a disaster. Most of his cadre of writers are tired civility scolds, and he would no doubt infect the news operation with his lame brained 1990s thinking.

          Cliff Levy of the Metro section sounds like he is actually from this decade. The third, Joe Kahn, sounds like continuity of the Baquet model.

          The problem is the publisher, AG Sulzberger, seems committed to the longterm faults of the Times, seeing them as virtues despite their obvious, crazy inconsistencies.

          One slightly hopeful sign is that many younger reporters are said to be sick of the path the Times is on. They are less invested in pretending that the Times is the best of all possible worlds, and aware that the internal logic at the paper doesn’t hold water.

        • Eureka says:

          One is James Bennet, editor of the opinion pages, who would be a disaster. Most of his cadre of writers are tired civility scolds, and he would no doubt infect the news operation with his lame brained 1990s thinking.

          So you’re saying it’ll be Bennet. /s (is there a /r ‘realism’ tag?)

          Sulzberger is like the Jerry Jones of the newspaper biz, Baquet is Garrett, and the NYT is the Cowboys: codependent/ ill-aimed eyes-on-prize- at- all- costs publ. (owner) and editor (coach), but lots of talented players not havin’ it.

          Paper of Record, meet America’s Team. Once (allegedly) beloved, now “both sides” bemoaned.

    • Smeelbo says:

      I am afraid that the election will not proceed as previous modern elections have. It appears to me that the Republicans have gone “all-in” on winning the election, and that there is no limit to the depths they will sink to do so. I anticipate “unprecedented” irregularities on Election Day, and I fear all kinds of crazy, from obviously hacked results in multiple jurisdictions to State Legislatures overriding results, naming alternate slates of electors, even choosing Senators.

      Their only chance of avoiding justice is win no matter the cost.

      They may not succeed. But we must ask ourselves what we might do to defend the legitimate results of our election in the face of naked fraud.

  5. pdaly says:

    Between now and the Senate trial, I hope the NYT and Fox make it clear to Trump’s narcissistic brain that the Democrats, and only the Democrats, identified the fact that Trump committed not pedestrian “low” crimes but rather elite and special “HIGH crimes,” and that he, Trump, did it PERFECTLY.

    I hope that the NYT and Fox inform Trump that only powerful persons can achieve an impeachment of high crimes, the best-of-the-best crimes and that 100% of the Republicans are unable to appreciate his greatness.

    • PeeJ says:

      PERFECTLY… there’s that word again. I’ve finally figured out why Trump keeps repeating the same lies over and over. It struck me as odd why he would keep doing it, but I realize now that the word PERFECT has been ruined for me. Every time I read or hear the word PERFECT, I immediately think of Trump. It must be some form of psychological manipulation, as I can’t help it. I can’t believe, that as much as everything about Trump repulses me, I have now associated the word PERFECT with Trump. This must be how he controls those that support him. No matter how often he keeps repeating his lies over and over, even if you know they are lies, your subconscious associates them to Trump, not as lies, but as belonging solely to Trump. I’m proof that Goebbels was right…

      • Katherine M Williams says:

        I’ve been mulling the constant “perfect” mantra from Trump, and I’m visualizing he and a couple of cohorts planning out the conversation ahead of time, being verrry careful to not say anything incriminating, managing to signal their extortion to Zelensky without anyone listening in suspecting a thing! Such brilliance! Such perfection!

        Imagine them at a conference table (Trump probably in the attached bathroom admiring his golden hair and golden tan in the mirror) working out their cunning stable-genius strategy, scripting everything Trump would say during the phone call (rehearsed? no. written down? no) explaining it with puppet show to his Royal Godship.

        Explains why Trump was so eager to show the transcript to the world. Why he just can’t understand why everyone thinks the perfect phone call is so … deplorable.

        • Troutwaxer says:

          The perfect Mantra for Trump. How about “Vote For Trump, Go To Fail, Go Directly To Fail, Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect 200 Dollars?”

          Or just “Vote For Trump, Go To Fail.”

        • P J Evans says:

          The last one will fit on a bumper sticker. Maybe even with Trmp’s face on the guy’s body, from that Monopoly card.

        • Troutwaxer says:

          Then I will put it into the public domain. Everyone in the world can feel free to use “Vote For Trump, Go To Fail” in whatever manner they please. No attribution is necessary, thanks.

      • cavenewt says:

        The meaning of words…

        “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”

        Time to re-read some Orwell.

  6. Nehoa says:

    Next time I see Tulsi Gabbard in person, I will tell her that she is a coward. I have a very long history with her family’s cult.
    The only issue now is whether Democrats acknowledge and embrace that they are in a fight to the death with the current GOP over our democratic republic. There needs to be a 20 year commitment to killing off the current version of the party. I don’t speak from aspiration, I speak from experience. I played a role in killing the GOP in my state. You contest every district. You welcome every defection. You register voters in the districts you want. You never give up. And never let voters forget how the GOP hurt them.

    • MB says:

      How much do her family’s cult affect her current political views, do you think? A not oft-discussed topic in relation to her…

    • Eureka says:

      Last month, due to persistence of the types you cite, one of the counties in my state went to dem control for the first time since the Civil War. One of the party leaders who had worked tirelessly for decades had retired before this election, but of course was recognized at the celebrations. Persist unrelentingly all across the land, and believe that it will pay off.

    • taluslope says:

      What’s up with Gabbard? When I heard her in the debates (I haven’t seen them all) she didn’t sound that unreasonable. But then she goes and pulls this.

      And apparently she is making plans for making an independent run for the presidential election. To what effect? Is she only in it for notoriety?

    • Nehoa says:

      After getting an email from Tulsi’s campaign giving her reasons for voting “Present” I decided to not wait to say my piece. My message, “Voting yes or no on what was probably the most important vote in your life was not about partisanship, it was about your responsibility to your constituents and the American people. What you did was cowardly.” Signed with my real name so she knows who it came from.

  7. John Forde says:

    Pelosi should not send the articles to the Senate until the Supremes rule congress gets to see Trump’s taxes.

    • K-spin says:

      Yes, I was wondering how much pending decisions are influencing her decision to delay…

      Bmaz or others with their fingers on the pulse, can we expect any such decisions in the coming 4-6 weeks?

    • taluslope says:

      I’ve heard comments suggesting Nancy Pelosi has leverage over Senator McConnell via when she delivers the articles of impeachment. Sounds good in theory but the Senate is Mitch’s domain and he is too wily to allow Pelosi any leverage.

      What is to stop Mitch from saying tomorrow morning (at 9:30 I believe) that this impeachment in unprecedented as it had no bipartisan support and in order to save the constitution from such egregious actions in the future the senate will accept the houses recorded vote on impeachment and on Thursday poll the jury and deliver a verdict of not guilty.

      The only thing controlling Moscow Mitch is four senators who may in fact want to be seen as supporting the semblance of a real trial.

      • taluslope says:

        The advantage I see in Pelosi holding on to the articles of impeachment (given the likely sham trial run by Moscow Mitch) is that this would allow the courts to force testimony and documents from the White House and allow the trial to effectively occur in the House. Of course it wouldn’t remove the President from office but may further expose his actions to the light of day before the 2020 election.

      • bmaz says:

        Nope, she doesn’t have any leverage in that regard.

        As to the thought of the “advantage” in the court cases, maybe not that either. See my standalone comment below.

      • P J Evans says:

        Trmp is suggesting that the trial can be held without the Articles of Impeachment being presented.
        I don’t think he understands how it works.

    • Stephen says:

      The tax returns are irrelevant to the articles of impeachment. They may reveal strong hints of tax fraud, emoluments clause violations, other dubious dealings, even money laundering, but only enough to launch proper investigations (which assumes a proper Attorney General ha ha) – and none of the findings would bear on the issues at hand: the accusation that POTUS abused his power in multiple ways vis a vis Ukraine and that he obstructed legitimate Congressional investigations. It would be a whole new round of impeachment. Which, to be frank, wouldn’t be a bad idea!

      • bmaz says:

        This is total bunk as long as there is a proper and formal impeachment inquiry ongoing. It is arguable that the tax returns are not germane to the current articles, the question is the future. Please see the previous comments in relation to the DC Circuit orders.

  8. icelanterns says:

    Agreed–hang this vote and every vote around their necks from here till eternity–really shocking the number of GOP house members who were basically threatening physical violence

  9. Sandwichman says:

    “The Republican party favors cheating over the national security of the United States.”

    Because the “national security” of the United States has been, since the start of the Cold War, about cheating. Republicans could always bludgeon Democrats with being soft on communism, terrorism, illegal immigration. Democrats could always be expected to “reach across the aisle” to collaborate in Military-Industrial pork barrel. As Smedley Butler wrote, “War is a Racket” and the august national security state laid the corrupt foundations for the eventual mob/cult buy out. The U.S. has been an imperial power masquerading as a “republic, if you can keep it” all my life. Now it is an imperial power in decline, not a “democracy” in peril.

    And make no mistake, when push comes to shove, John Bolton will cover for Trump just as all the so-called “adults” have.

    • Smeelbo says:

      Major General Smedley Darlington Butler has long been a personal hero of mine. Once they had marched on Washing, he led the “Bonus Army” encamped there to demand the payment of their bonuses. He exposed the plot to stage a fascist coup against FDR. He broke up the corruption of the Philadelphia Police Department. He handled his commands in the Boxer Rebellion and various Marine Actions in Central America with as much honor as was possible, and was well regarded the locals where he was sent. And he was a very clear speaker and writer.

  10. Marinela says:


    This should be the headline of all printed papers tomorrow.

    • dude says:

      The Democrats have ignored campaigning against the entire Republican party for years. Their national leaders have always preferred ‘rifle targeting’ individual targets of opportunity as the news cycles roll by, but they have never taken on what the Republicans stand for as a whole unless you consider their marginal voices like Bernie Sanders. And what happens when Bernie makes waves? Or AOC? Instead of speaking ambiguously about issues, tie them directly to the Republican Party. Make it a drumbeat. The impeachment might be an opportunity to focus the minds of voters and hang it around the necks of Republicans, but frankly I doubt it. I am more concerned about how how the pathological Trump is going to react from here on out. He has moved from buffoon to authoritarian. He has moved from “who’s gonna stop me?” to “you ain’t seen nothing yet”. And the Republicans are entirely on board and want to pick this fight.

      • dude says:

        One other thing: the Republicans are right to criticize Democrats for being single issue oriented—-issue de jour. It’s true. There isn’t a unified philosophy expressed by the Democratic party, at least not one that is consistent and memorable and repeatable.

        • P J Evans says:

          The GOP-T has most of the single-issue voters: for them it’s guns or abortion. Most of the country doesn’t want more guns, and abortion is seen (rightly, IMO) as more about control of women than about “saving babies” (they’re not babies until they’re born, but it’s all about emotional appeal).

        • dude says:

          I don’t agree entirely with that. Republicans do highlight some issues a lot, but the cohesive response of their followers suggests to me that these issues resonate because there is better understood philosophy behind it. I am not a fan of that philosophy, but they can weave together and express theirs better than Democrats can present their own. Democrats seem to rise in response,ad hoc, to issues (single issues like gay rights or immigration). They leave the scene too quickly. They react to next assault on something else. They don’t even try to talk about why a Democrat is a Democrat, and why the issue fits into a bigger worldview or philosophy. That is my observation over the years. Right now, the Trump hurricane makes things hard to do anything but react. But the Dems have to find a way to present what the party believes as-a-party before the next election.

      • Katherine M Williams says:

        The democratic party leaders aren’t liberals or progressives. They’re supporters of corporate power and a dominant military establishment; they just don’t support the outright criminality and fascism of republicans. They draw the line at treason.

        • Katherine M Williams says:

          That’s what I said. Big difference between the parties, but the democratic leaders aren’t liberal or progressive.

        • dude says:

          I don’t doubt what you say about Dems, at least about the leadership. Maybe all of them, I don’t know. But they are really poor at expressing what they ARE for as a party, and the Republicans are much better at it. Now, the hypocrisy of the Republican philosophy versus Republican behavior has been exposed clearly under Trump like no other time before. The Dems have a chance to offer an incisive critique; however, they need to be prepared to contrast their own philosophy with the Republicans, not merely call out hypocrisy.

        • orionATL says:

          katherine –

          i find your comments generally thoughtful and interesting, but this is blathering nosense – blathering when it comes to “…They’re supporters of corporate power and a dominant military establishment; ..)”.

          this is just the kind of silly labeling that we find in true believers of any sect on the american political spectrum. there are military activities and military campaigns to support and others to reject. democratic congresscritters pick and chose their support for military endevors according to the voters in their district. if elected, that leaves them free to support important social and spending legislation. go to newport news, va. and rail about a dominant military establishment or to air force reserve base district in georgia, and see what the voters (not the reps) tell you.

          sen. elizabeth warren is leading the nation – its voters and reps and senstors – away from vorporate powerl

  11. Mitch Neher says:

    Ms. Wheeler wrote, “President Trump will be shown to have committed more crimes . . .”

    Yes, and Trump will commit fresh crimes, too. There are plenty of days left on the calendar. People will inevitably run out of flimsy excuses for Trump. Although, it is hard to believe that Trump has lasted this long. I still don’t get it.

    • OldTulsaDude says:

      This is not Democrats vs Republicans. This is Americans vs Mobsters.
      It is not easy to get mobsters to flip once they have joined. Goodfellows is probably as good of description of Trump voters as anything else – they are part of something. And all they have to do is give their total loyalty.

      • Mitch Neher says:

        They say that certain bank robbers were popular during The Great Depression.

        Maybe some of the Trump voters are anti-hero worshippers.

  12. jaango says:

    Yesterday’s vote tally and what follows in January of next year and relative to Trump’s “Trail” is a gentle reminder to myself as to why I support the establishment of the National Monument/Museum of Criminal Stupidity. Thus, the Unassailable Fact that Authoritarianism and Fascism, will be with us for many years to come.

    So, bring on the Cold One in lieu of the heavy-hitting Cactus Juice.

  13. bmaz says:

    Lol, for those of you who have scoffed at my complete disgust with Pelosi’s idiotic warp speed narrow focused rocket impeachment “strategy”, the problems started manifesting themselves tonight barely one hour into the big vote. The DC Circuit wants answers on impact of impeachment. At issue is whether the impeachment votes affect ongoing legal cases.

    The House’s vote to impeach President Donald Trump drew an immediate reaction from the federal judiciary Wednesday night as a federal appeals court demanded answers about what impact the historic move may have on ongoing legal efforts to obtain records and testimony bearing on alleged misconduct by Trump.

    Less than an hour after the first impeachment vote was gaveled to a close, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals issued a pair of orders directing House lawyers to indicate whether lawmakers are still seeking testimony from former White House counsel Don McGahn and portions of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report containing information gleaned from secret grand jury testimony.

    Both orders raised the issue of whether the pending appeals may be moot and whether the cases, set to be argued on Jan. 3, should still be considered on an expedited basis. The court is demanding answers, and views from the Justice Department, by Monday afternoon.

    Now, frankly, the House may can overcome this question, but they have seriously shot themselves in the foot even if they are allowed to proceed. And if you think this is not significant, keep in mind that appellate judges do not generally issue orders like this late at night, this is VERY notable.

    The orders also show exactly why I relentlessly argued the necessity of a formal impeachment inquiry as the strongest footing for court action and expedited consideration as opposed to common legislative purpose footing. Maybe that will actually sink in for more folks now.

    Pelosi has fucked up every single aspect of “impeachment”. What a clown show.

    • Teddy says:

      Well, I (unsurprisingly) beg to differ, sirrah.

      Nothing is stopping Chair Waters, Chair Neal, Chair Maloney and Chair Schiff from continuing their investigations when Congress returns from the holiday break. Their subpoenas must be honored, their document requests met, and their court cases won. Upon conclusion of depositions and public testimony, they can write up reports just like Schiff did, and transmit their Committees’ reports on Trump’s malfeasance to Nadler at the Judiciary Committee.

      Who can then, as the outrage mounts throughout America that this president continues his crime spree, craft NEW Articles of Impeachment based on new facts revealed, new crimes committed, new witnesses deposed. Judiciary will then vote on these new Articles. These can be referred to the full House for a vote, and then held or transmitted depending upon the Senate’s responsiveness to US revulsion at Trump. And dependent on the Speaker’s strategy for transmittal.

      Impeachments are utterly unpredictable. We have no reliable data set for precedent.

      Let’s see how this one pans out before issuing such harsh judgments on She Who Must Be Obeyed. Or else you’ll get that “grandma sez no applause” LQQK from the Speaker–and from me!

      • bmaz says:

        Sir! This is kind of true. The germane question is, however, as it has always been, on what foundation such action occurs. Is it common legislative purpose basis, or is it the ultimate foundation of Constitutional impeachment?

        Riddle me that Batman. And, naw, I will stick by what I have argued from even before the Mueller Report dropped.

        • BobCon says:

          The point I’ve been making for a long time is that there are two resources Pelosi has squandered. The first and most precious is time. The less time on the clock, the easier it is for Trump to obstruct and lie, and the easier it is for his allies in the Senate and the courts to collude with him.

          The second is staffing. I’ve noted more than once that the House brought on a dedicated staff of 100 attorneys, investigators and support staff for Watergate. There has been nothing of this scale for impeachment, and as a result it has been almost preordained that investigations into Trump’s impeachable offenses — as opposed to regular oversight — will be strictly hobbled.

          Talk about letting the regular oversight procede ignores these basic constraints. This is not an FBI investigation that has a much longer timeline and much deeper resources to draw upon.

          Pelosi has a few more cards to play, but she is a poker player who walked up to the table 15 minutes before the game wraps up and with only $20 in her pocket. There is only so much you can win, even when you’re playing against stooges.

      • Badger Robert says:

        The evidence of other acts of obstruction may go to intent and impair the credibility of spurious defenses. There is good reason to think that Mr. McGahn will erode Trump’s credibility. It isn’t over, its just beginning.

        • bmaz says:

          Other than the fact that even the DC Circuit Court of Appeals is asking questions as to whether it is over. And did so within an hour of the first impeachment vote.

          This shit does not play out on this blog, it plays out in courts and Congress, none of which sport the rose colored glasses view so many here express, and as you have here in this comment.

          To be very blunt, people need to get their heads out of their asses. This is NOT working the way you blithely think it is, and it has not been for a long time going back to at least late February to early March of 2019.

        • Mitch Neher says:

          Excerpted from the emptywheel post linked above:

          Ms. Wheeler said, “[T]he President of the United States should not be able to hide his unwillingness to cooperate with an investigation into his own wrong-doing by claiming it’s grand jury material.”

          Nor then announce his bid for reelection to a second term of office as president. It’s one or the other. But not both. After all, there’s nothing wrong with proudly and publicly exercising one’s constitutionally-protected civil rights even if one is running for president.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        As with Rose Kennedy, it would be a mistake to imagine Ms. Pelosi as a kindly grandmother. She may be in another life, but in Congress she is a predator and a fierce acquirer of power. In Congress, that’s the difference between surviving and enduring.

        As regards impeachment, however, and economic policy in general, some of us strongly disagree with her priorities, which are as plain as a pikestaff. Your waiting for all the facts to come in is as needless in this circumstance as it was for General Turgidson in the war room.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Your “nothing is stopping” various chairs from continuing their investigations ignores the will of Ms. Pelosi, the iron fist in the iron glove, as Roddy Martindale might say.

        Mr. Neal, in particular, has been as slow as molasses in December in enforcing his statutory right to obtain the president’s tax returns. An apparent act of strategery rather than sloth, that pace would have been directed by Ms. Pelosi. If it had not been, Mr. Neal would quickly have found himself sitting on a hot poker.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Now the House as a body will need to make that clear to the DC Circuit. Would be interesting to be a fly on the wall, to see whether telling the court of course, full investigations are continuing, is a no brainer or a hot debate.

        • bmaz says:

          Yeah. Investigating what? And under what authority? This seriously matters. And, again, why I have been constantly carping about the difference between legislative purpose footing and true impeachment inquiry footing.

        • timbo says:

          Aren’t the Supreme Court and other decisions around this though pretty clear? I thought the gist was that the Court did not want to hamstring the ability of the Congess to investigate anything that might lead to changes to laws, period…

        • Mitch Neher says:

          About legislative purpose footing . . .

          If Barr improperly redacted declarations of intent to invoke The Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination, or assertions of executive privilege, for Rule 6(E) Grand Jury information, then wouldn’t prospective reform of Rule 6(E) furnish the requisite legislative purpose for producing Mueller’s GJ info to Congress?

          Or would Congress have to initiate impeachment proceedings against Barr in order to provide true impeachment inquiry footing for the Congressional subpoenas at issue?

      • K-spin says:

        I’m with you @harpie.
        And while I understand that the actual ‘articles’ won’t change when Nancy passes them to the Senate, my question remains…

        Is she hoping (does she know) that further evidence of DJT’s corruption will come to light, in the next month or so, that will persuade Senate Republicans to distance themselves from him?

    • orionATL says:

      oh come on, bmaz –

      this seems a blatantly sophistical legal argument of the kind lawyers make every day.

      the only serious issue would seem to be the “need for speed”. and even that argument may be mooted by, guess who? Moscow mitch and his rocket docket, or better put, his evasion maneuver. put that in your portmantoeau and smoke it 😉. mais assez de francais for the moment.

      • orionATL says:

        or maybe standing, and any chair in either house surely has standing. refiling might be the only “penalty”, but there a need for speed would also be justified given mitch’s panicked retreat.

  14. Vinnie Gambone says:

    “My candle burns at both ends;
    It will not last the night;
    But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends—
    It gives a lovely light!”

    ― Edna St. Vincent Millay

    Maz, your position makes all the sense in the world if you had all the time in the world. The cost of the clown show is losing access to White House records, plus deprivation of future prerogative. You are right, if the charge is obstruction of congressional investigation, then by plowing ahead at 90 mph through the cornfield the dems just invited the court to moot active inquiries. Dumb, I agree. Don’t shoot the messenger. He’s going to shoot himself.

    It’s not just Pelosi, one would think. Must not have Schiff considered the law-fare consequences of accelerated impeachment? The calculus must have been they couldn’t wait without risking losing base. Maybe they have other cans of whoop-ass to follow up with. Maybe this is just one inning.

    The election to a large degree will be settled over the Christmas holidays. The seas are going to part and they are going to stay parted. No one on either side, and I mean ordinary working Americans, are ceding anything, not one point.

    No election is going to salve the disgust both sides seem to be feeling.

    The whole thing is eating at people. Personal relationships are fissuring. Everyone feels strongly, but the feelings are not good ones. It’s the three cancer causing D’s- Dismay,Disdain,Defeat. Both sides are feeling it. Will we ever tire of the divide and the ugliness it engenders, or are we stuck with mutual contempt as a national reflex? No matter who wins the election, it seems this is now a fact of life. Putin must be thrilled.

      • DAT says:

        OT but…
        bmaz, I’ve followed your principled crusade to see the word treason used only in the way it is used in a court of law. In my experience a word’s meaning can shift, depending on the context of its usage. However, in deference to your position, I promise to use only the law court definition of that word on any blog moderated by you. Having established that DJT is not a “traitor,” can we agree that he is a betrayer of the Constitution of the United States of America, and a betrayer of its people?

        • bmaz says:

          Yes that is more than fair. Sometimes words are just semantics and don’t matter so much, sometimes, especially in delicate legal contexts, they do. This is one of those, and you are doing fine.

        • Areader2019 says:

          “…who knows but that millions more of innocent people may pay the price of your treason. Indeed, by your betrayal, you undoubtedly have altered the course of history to the disadvantage of our country. No one can say that we do not live in a constant state of tension. We have evidence of your treachery all around us …” (Judge Kaufman).

          Yes, the criminal charge the Rosenbergs were convicted of was conspiracy to commit espionage. But the judge did use words like ‘treason’, ‘betrayal’ and ‘treachery’ to describe what they did.

          I do strongly feel that Trump has altered the course of history to the disadvantage of our democracy and country as a whole.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          That judge also held inappropriate ex parte hearings with the prosecution, in which he heard allegations about defendant’s conduct based on nothing more than, “Trust me, I’m with the government.” It never produced that evidence in court.

          The prosecution overcharged both defendants, expecting a plea, which never came. It stuck with the death penalty because it was politically expedient. It’s not a prosecution I would hang my hat on.

        • Katherine M Williams says:

          Russia has been attacking (waring against) the US for a long time; their open, boastful interference in the 2016, and now the 2019 elections, is paramount to a declaration of war. Does war have to have been officially declared by Congress for it to be “real”? If Russia bombed an American city would the military have to wait for a congressional declaration of war to respond?

          Is it legal, or at least not-treason, for an American to help an enemy country succeed in undermining the security and freedom of the USA? Surely there must be some sort of law against this.

        • Rayne says:

          You’re struggling with the existing laws of war which are centered on armed conflict and traditional kinetic warfare which require formal recognition and/or declaration under specific criteria. Laws of war do not yet fully reconcile asymmetric and hybrid warfare; to date, most asymmetric attacks have been addressed by other laws. Example: the Internet Research Agency was charged for the hacking of DNC emails under existing laws for conspiracy to defraud the U.S., conspiracy to commit wire and bank fraud, aggravated identity theft.

          It’s simply not treason until a formal declaration of war has been made and an enemy declared in the process. A U.S. citizen can be a traitor to their country but not have engaged in treason — a good recent example is Michael Flynn to whom Judge Emmet Sullivan said, “[a]rguably you sold your country out.”

        • orionATL says:

          rayne –

          thank you. this is the best answer i have seen yet to my question some months back (repeated) about why sending russian sappers in the form of gru personnel who worked over time to influence the u.s. election were not coming acts of war.

        • orionATL says:

          katherine –

          this is a very important question; one i have also asked about.

          rayne below provides the first answer i have ever seen. i suppose the national security cognoscenti already knew the answer but didn’t consider it worth spreading about to inform hoi polloi.

          obviously laws have to be instituted to prevent this sort of stuff being continuing.

          see this reporting about Russian interference in the recent madagascar election:



          bloomburg analyzes, including ukraine:


  15. Jenny says:

    Thank you Marcy.
    GOP enabling an Abuser in Chief. He is cruel and fear is the parent of cruelty.

    As for Pelosi, Rep. Debbie Dingell on Twitter says it all in the picture: 11:13 AM – 18 Dec 2019
    The times have found us. Thank you for strong leadership and an empathetic hand @SpeakerPelosi.

    Agree with Pelosi or not, she is compassionate. Our world could use more compassion.

  16. Bobby Gladd says:

    I’m still recovering from my last night’s GOP floor speech drinking game: “Sham-Witchhunt-To-Remove-The-Doolie-Elected-Best-President-Ever.”

    Ran out of Quervo by mid-afternoon.

  17. Badger Robert says:

    Each impeachment is different. The post Civil War Republicans were not willing to share power with the former Confederates in 1866, though they probably knew they would have to in the future. Nixon has prolonged an unpopular war, and the press hated Nixon, who was a west coast outsider. Clinton’s impeachment was about his acknowledged personal shortcomings, which seemed to have little impact on governance.
    This impeachment is not a legal proceeding or even supported by the media. It feels more like a popular uprising against a President who was never well liked. He was a military hero, a successful governor, or successful at business. No one is defending his character. His character was hidden by TV studios and punditry, but exposure has made him less secret and more obviously ridiculous.
    He is only liked by a fraction of the country, and I am not even sure they like.
    Trump’s crimes are real enough. But his underlying problem is that no one thinks he is a good person. He has Clinton’s sexual proclivities combined with Nixon’s known proclivity to lie.

    • pjb says:

      That widespread disgust may be palpable but voters seem to have a tremendous capacity to overlook it when they are terrified into it. Propaganda works. In any event, his national unpopularity should not blind us to the very real – maybe even likelihood – of his reelection. It all turns on a handful of states whose demographics give him a serious advantage. There is much hard work ahead.

    • Mosey says:

      You are correct but I want to add that as long as Facebook operates unregulated and unchecked, democracy is seriously compromised. They already gave the world Brexit, then Trump, not to mention enabling genocide in different parts of the world, etc. etc. Because of FB, I believe that the impeached one will ‘win’ a second term regardless of how widespread the disgust. (Presuming that the Senate does not convict him.) Hope I’m wrong, but it would be insane to overlook this malignant force that is Facebook who will do anything for profit. I recommend “Zucked” by Roger McNamee if anyone wants to comprehend just how deep the shit we are wading in is.

  18. jaango says:

    The Pelosi, Nadler and Schiff “triangulation” was doomed from the start.

    The Republicans wanted a “minority day” and in order to bring forth a table ‘witnesses’ supporting their self-enabling nonsense. I, on the other hand, was supportive of somewhat more of a political precision, that being the “Three-Day Minority Vacation.”

    To wit, three days of testimony from each of the members from the National Association of Elected and Appointed Officials. Therefore, the over 7,000 members could speechify for the respective and obvious 3-minute discourses. Consequently, our progressive America would see for itself that ‘listening’ to Chicanos Talking to Chicanos, would have a more partisan impact and where this impact would challenge the Republican-oriented Senators as they ‘talk’ among themselves.

    But then, “demographics” is slowly arriving and the death-knell among the Republicans,writ large, would create the overt dimension that is and will challenge the Big Donors, from both sides of the political aisle. And be so advised and subsequently, delivered to the “vendidos” amongst us all.

  19. M. Smith says:

    Now that Trump is impeached, Pelosi can now simply not present the Articles to the Senate until such time as McConnell agrees to a ‘fair’ process in the Senate or whatever. She can wave the documents in her hand as she complains about the Republicans in the Senate. The people will hear the pleas for fairness and some may come around. The Republicans will look worse and worse every day. Trump will go apoplectic and may stroke out with the Articles being waved at him. He will say and do even more outrageous things and upset even more voters. He will prove his unfitness and the case for Impeachment over an over again, and all Pelosi has to do is wave some paper at him as he cooks himself until he’s done.
    Meanwhile, the Impeachment Investigation can chug along digging up more dirt. They can add to the current Articles, or, if it’s already gone to the Senate they can draft new ones.

    That’s the Christmas present I hope we just got. I think that’s what we will see in the next couple of weeks.

  20. Dave Karson says:

    I’ll confess, my lack of Washington Political knowledge in general and impeachment strategy in particular and I feel like a Ping-Pong ball reading this blog between the different opinions about what is the best strategy to remove Trump. I feel like Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof. “He’s right, —no–your right.” “Hey, they both can’t be right.” “And your right”. :) I will say that I see the advantages of a trial that brings out all of Trump’s misdeeds, but I worry that Trump has a knack for the diabolically unpredictable. I will say that I was listening to FOX talk radio yesterday, and boy, it is going to be ugly. Basically, it’s no longer that the press is the enemy of the people, now they are saying that the entire Democratic Party is the enemy of the people, because the Dems, “hate America”. Which I guess makes sense to Fox and their supporters, because Trump, in his psychotically bizarre six page diatribe to Nancy Pelosi, said the Dems have declared “War on Democracy”. Fox Talk Radio is already counting down to 11/03/2020 and urging their followers to not only vote, but to call up their friends Now, this month, to encourage them to vote–it isn’t even 2020 yet! I did listen to Steny Hoyer’s speech yesterday and I thought it was great, it should have been given more press coverage today. As much as I would like to see Bolton, Mulvaney, Pompeo, Perry, Giulani, etc. testify, that is one Xmas present that I don’t expect to get. Or even more fanciful, have John Roberts recuse Lindsey Graham as a biased juror. Happy Holidays to all. Best, Dave Karson

  21. orionATL says:

    this wapo article does what many media representations of the impeachment drama have done, and are doing following impeachment, present the entire process as a futile activity, fundamentally partisan. this is the typical purblind, low-brow media analysis of contemporary history being made that we have come to expect from our leading media corporations. here note that one of wapo’s white house correspondents is in in the story. whitehouse-correspondent-in-on-the-story is a key to this type of biased reporting masquerading as fair and balanced:


    so what was the critical importance of this particular act of one part of our congress?

    i have not seen it mentioned but from my viewpoint the critical contribution of speaker pelosi and 279 other house democrats was to stop a american king in the making in his tracks, to stop an american president with a severely authoritarian personality from behaving as if he could do anything he wanted.

    i hope this impeachment will prove to be the point in his presidency when trump stopped acting like a spoiled child king – stomping his feet and pitching fits, acting as if he could do anything that crossed his mind with no thought of being seriously challenged: with regard to american laws and customs as with immigration; with regard to seperation of powers as with congressionally mandated rules for using funding and with decisions of the federal judiciary; with regard to constitutional mandates and customs involving self-enrichment and gifts (emolluments); with regard to expectations for defending andvprotecting our security as a nation from despots and oligarchs as with the russian government; with regard to our common laws involving political campaign funding, and nepotism; and with regard to our expectation of our president displaying a general air of respect for his fellow politicians and citizens, among others.

    • Pajaro says:

      I don’t think Trump is capable of learning, certainly not going to stop being what he is. And with the support of the privileged male fan club senate he will feel even more impowered. Expect him to conceal more and use more devious methods to hide what he does from the American people. Alas, I think our only hope is to pursue his wrong doing with sunlight and hope his mental state tanks.

      • orionATL says:

        pajaro –

        i am talking about power, about power that generated fear. i am talking about fear and secret shame having been put in the mind of our would-be king. i am not about his depending on remorse and a happy salvation.

        remember, trump runs over people; he rarely if ever gets run over. this time he has got run over. he is pretending he didn’t get punched. he is pretending it didn’t hurt at all. but it did and he is radiating hurt, viz his emotional tantrums on twitter.

        remember his memorialists recount that he has been lying about his accomplishments since he was a teenager. one can guess he has built a fantastical internal picture of himself which he continually burnishes with fantasies about his accomplishments. now suddenly a large proportion of the federal-level political class, politicians and opinion leaders (including many intellectual leaders of his own party), are saying ever more loudly that his presidency has been tainted by his secret scheming in ukraine and his colluding (aka running on parallel tracks) with putin once again.

        i expect trump will deny the hit while continuing to hurt and maim, but he has learned enough about politics to know he himself is badly wounded with an election less than a year away. keep an eye on what he says and does speaker pelosi; she is the one he fears. more generally, let’s see if he backs off of his kingly politics or continues to be a knucklehead about political basic.

        • orionATL says:

          i’m always interested in the intersection of politics and religion. both, like family, sub-culture closeness and sports, are based for many of us in a very deep feeling of the primal emotion we call “loyalty”.

          the trump shield of loyalty appears to be breaking up:


          “… To use an old cliché, it’s time to call a spade a spade, to say that no matter how many hands we win in this political poker game, we are playing with a stacked deck of gross immorality and ethical incompetence. And just when we think it’s time to push all our chips to the center of the table, that’s when the whole game will come crashing down. It will crash down on the reputation of evangelical religion and on the world’s understanding of the gospel. And it will come crashing down on a nation of men and women whose welfare is also our concern.

          Mark Galli is editor in chief of Christianity Today… ”

          if i knew more about this media organization i would say more, but whatever christian groups “christianity today” represents (and I read this is a large and important organization founded by the reverend billy graham) this editorial
          is a crack in the wall of trump support that belies our mainstream secular media’s beloved and endlessly told tale that trump’s troops never waiver in their loyalty or flee from his banner.

          “… It will crash down on the reputation of evangelical religion and on the world’s understanding of the gospel… ” there are some things more important than supreme court appointments for some evangelical christians.

          now on to fixer michael cohen and his role in jerry falewll’s jr.’s unsuspected support of trump in 2016.

  22. Bay State Librul says:

    The Man with a blind eye, a drawl, a clock, and a calendar
    Did Collins pilfer this quote from HGW?

    Here’s the kicker

    “We must not allow the clock and the calendar to blind us to the fact that each moment of life is a miracle and mystery.”
    ― H. G. Wells

    Collins was a Navy Chaplain and then an Army Reserve Chaplain.
    What a disgrace to the cloth.
    What a moron

  23. P J Evans says:

    I’m hoping that the House will produce a report on this impeachment, the way they did for Nixon’s impeachment hearing.

  24. Molly Pitcher says:

    bmaz, would it be possible to impeach McConnell based on his statements in the press that he has been coordinating with the White House on how he is going to run the impeachment trial ? How is that possibly fulfilling his responsibility to ‘protect and defend the Constitution’ when he is abdigating the oversight responsibilities of a co-equal branch of the government ?

    • earlofhuntingdon says:


      It’s not.

      It’s up to the Senate to discipline its members, as it is the House and the Supreme Court. That’s why elections have consequences.

      • P J Evans says:

        Are members of Congress “civil officers of the United States”? Because they’re subject to impeachment.

        • Savage Librarian says:

          My guess is that might mean appointed officials, not elected ones. Thus, Barr would be subject to impeachment but McConnell would not. And civil servants could simply be fired or red-lined.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        The consensus is that members of Congress are not civil officers, but members of the Article I branch. They can be removed by their respective house by a 2/3 vote.

        Article III judges and civil officers of the executive branch – which excludes military officers – can be impeached and removed on conviction.

        Generally, civil officers are Article II employees appointed by the president and subject to Senate confirmation.

    • timbo says:

      This has never been adjudicated in the US Courts as far as I can recall. Basically, the one instance in which a US Senator was being impeached by the House, the Senate expelled the Senator (I think it was done the same day that the article of impeachment vote was supposed to be held in the House but my memory is fuzzy on the whole thing). Since then, it has been assumed that the Senate and House may only remove their members by expulsion, not by impeachment. However, as I said above, this has never been adjudicated in US courts AFAIAA.

  25. Frank Probst says:

    To @bmaz:

    Serious question here. The House basically gets to make up a lot of the rules on Impeachment as they go along. The House has voted (far too late, in both of our opinions) to authorize an Impeachment inquiry. Now they’ve voted to Impeach on two counts. Is there any rule that says that the inquiry automatically ends after the first Impeachment votes occur? Can’t Pelosi just say that there’s no rule that says the inquiry is done after the first votes occur, and there was nothing in the Articles themselves that said or even implied that the inquiry is over. In fact, if you consider that one of the two Articles was for Obstruction of Congress, there’s an implication there that additional evidence would be considered if and when it came available. Under that scenario, the inquiry would logically stay open until formally closed or until this session of Congress ends, whichever comes first.

    • bmaz says:

      No there is no such rule. But remember when I said that “impeachment inquiry” was not valid just because Jerry Nadler mouthed the words? Courts never took it seriously until Pelosi made it official. So, again, it is back on Pelosi. She very much does not want it to continue, and the courts understand as much as I do. How Pelosi responds will arguably be everything.

      • Marinela says:

        Please keep us informed about what you find out in case some of us misses these developments.

        Also what happens with the state of the union? If Trump is impeached, does he get invited by the house or the upcoming State of The Union is not going to happen?

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Impeachment is the first stage in a two-stage process. Now that the House has impeached Trump, he remains president unless and until the Senate votes to convict and remove him from office. The odds of that happening are not good. So Trump remains obligated to update Congress on the State of the Union.

        • Marinela says:

          Can the house pass a new round of impeachment articles?
          As far as timing, how is this going to work if it overlaps, as far as Senate process, with the first set of two?
          So confusing…

        • P J Evans says:

          They could add more articles, if they need to – they’d also have to be voted on, just like the two this week.

        • bmaz says:

          Are you sure Pelosi has left this kind of extended action “on the table”?

          I have seen nothing to so indicate. Maybe she can, like the only action to date, be forced into that, but considering it a given after Pelosi’s reticence to do the right thing to date, seems very wrong.

        • P J Evans says:

          I don’t think we’ve been in this situation before. It *is* a good question.
          (I’d like to have seen more articles, but I’m not in charge. I think Pelosi *should* allow more as evidence permits.)

  26. 200Toros says:


    WELL this looks pretty freaking fishy – the third-largest social media content provider is owned by Russians, and run from Cyprus. And it came up out of nowhere, in 2016, and is now #3 behind Disney and WarnerMedia. Started out with silly crafting vids and is now pushing Russian propaganda, like projections of Russia in 2099, with a map of them expanding to cover Europe, China, and Mongolia.

    Seems like every time you turn around, you run smack into Russia, in one way or another.

  27. punaise says:

    a fissure in the monolith?:


    Evangelical editorial admonishes ‘grossly immoral’ Trump

    Christianity Today, a publication founded by the late evangelical leader Rev. Billy Graham, made a rare political statement in an editorial calling President Donald Trump’s character “grossly immoral,” writing that he should be impeached and removed from office.

    • Rugger9 says:

      I’m surprised Franklin let this happen. But, perhaps the sadists (“the cruelty is the point”) that are the current face of fundamentalism have come to the opinion that Individual-1 has outlived his usefulness and it’s time for President Pence who was so unpopular that he declined to run for re-election as Governor in deep-red Indiana.

      They have their judges entrenched now.

      • P J Evans says:

        Franklin [Phineas Hophni] Graham apparently isn’t associated with CT. His latest Big Lie is trying to convince people that Billy (who is blind, among other things) actually voted for Trmp in 2016.

        • AndTheSlithyToves says:

          From May 2016: I’ll bet Ole Bill did vote for the Donald/Jesus 2.0
          Anne Graham Lotz, the daughter of famed evangelist Billy Graham, appeared on right wing pundit Steve Deace’s radio show this week to remind listeners that God has forsaken the U.S. because of transgenders, the teaching of evolution, the gays, etc.

          Lotz said she hopes that “some of this craziness would settle down” in the U.S., which, according to her, “seems to be shaking its fist in God’s face and telling him to get out of our politics, get out of our schools, get out of our businesses, get out of our marketplace, get off the streets…”

          She warned that when people abandon God, “God abandons us and he backs away and takes his hand of favor, blessing, his hand of protection away from us and he abandons us.”

          According to Lotz, the only way there will be “peace on the streets” is if people repent and accept Jesus as their savior. Only then can God “reveal the plots of our enemies and terrorists before they are carried out” and “control the weather patterns and protect us from these violent storms that are taking human life.”

          She added that “God allows bad things to happen” like the September 11 attacks and the San Bernardino shootings “to show us that we need him, you know, we’re desperate without him.”

          If America does not return to God, she said, we’ll keep seeing “just the chaos at every level”… such as the Justice Department’s lawsuit against North Carolina for its new discriminatory anti-LGBT law,” which she said is “evidence that God has backed away and he’s removed His hand of blessing, favor, protection, and he’s just turning us over to ourselves.”

        • Cathy says:

          “…turning us over to ourselves”…a.k.a. allowing us to grow up?

          Different perspectives I suppose, one based in fear the other in faith. Why so different? Maybe:

          “We mostly see what we have learned to expect to see.”
          – Betty Edwards

    • jplm says:

      I tried to write a book ‘100 ways Trump was like Christ’. Six months ago I re -titled it ’10 ways Trump was like Christ’. Three months ago I decided there wasn’t enough for a book, so I thought it might be a chapter that could be part of a wider book about Trump. As of last week I’m still stuck on the first likeness. Did Christ eat buckets of fried chicken or ask the Romans for dirt on Pilate? Maybe he turned water into Cola? Did he sleep with fallen women and pay them off or ridicule those possessed by devils? Whoever would have thought it but ‘writer’s block’ is a real thing?

  28. Hahnizona says:

    Maybe someone has already stated this, or not, but I think Trump will be our first president to be impeached twice. I think it’s coming.

    • Rugger9 says:

      It’s something I had mentioned as a possibility, and I think this might be due to the coming attempt to delay and/or cancel the 2020 election by the Palace once they realize the GOP will suffer another wipeout like they did in 2018, only worse.

      Remember the Shrub White House briefly floated the idea that it was too dangerous to hold the 2004 election until shamed by the memory of those who voted during all of our wars, even when they were on American soil. I can’t see the current WH missing an idea like that one given how they stretch every other legal theory.

  29. Chelle says:

    Comment re: GeoGuy at 12:31 a.m.: You may not not be from NJ, but you nailed it! I live in South Jersey, with a view of the Philadelphia skyline 5 miles west across the Delaware River, but I can drive 10 miles east and see a Confederate Flag or two outside homes there. Parts of South Jersey can be very rural and economically stressed. And all of South Jersey feels very disconnected with North Jersey – we marvel when the governor of that other “state” bothers to visit our region.

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