Second Impeachment Ahead: Articles Have Been Drafted [UPDATE-3]

[NB: Update(s) at the bottom of this post. /~Rayne]

Representatives David Cicilline, Ted Lieu, and Jamie Raskin have drafted articles of impeachment against Trump which are now circulating among House members.

Here’s a transcript:

         Resolved, That Donald John Trump, President of the
United States, is impeached for high crimes and mis-
demeanors and that the following articles of impeachment
be exhibited to the United States Senate.

Article of impeachment exhibited by the House of
Representatives of the United States of America in the
name of itself and of the people of the United States of
America, against Donald John Trump, President of the
United States of America, in maintenance and support of
its impeachment against him for high crimes and mis-


          The Constitution provides that the House of Rep-
resentatives “shall have the sole Power of Impeachment”
and that the President “shall be removed from Office on
Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or
other high Crimes and Misdemeanors”. In his conduct of
the office of President of the United States—and in viola-
tion of his constitutional oath faithfully to execute the of-
fice 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—
Donald J. Trump engaged in high Crimes and Mis-
demeanors by willfully inciting violence against the Gov-
ernment of the United States, in that:

On January 6, 2021, pursuant to the Twelfth
Amendment of the United States Constitution, the Vice
President of the United States, the House of Representa-
tives, and the Senate met at the United States Capitol
for a Joint Session of Congress to count the votes of the
Electoral College. Shortly before the Joint Session com-
menced, President Trump addressed a crowd of his polit-
ical supporters nearby. There, he reiterated false claims
that “we won this election, and we won it by a landslide”.
He also willfully made statements that encouraged—and
foreseeably resulted in—imminent lawless action at the
Capitol. Incited by President Trump, a mob unlawfully
breached the Capitol, injured law enforcement personnel,
menaced Members of Congress and the Vice President,
interfered with the Joint Session’s solemn constitutional
duty to certify the election results, and engaged in violent,
deadly, destructive, and seditious acts.

President Trump’s conduct on January 6m 2021 was
consistent with his prior efforts to subvert and obstruct
the certification of the results of the 2020 presidential
election. Those prior efforts include, but are not limited
to, a phone call on January 2, 2021, in which President
Trump urged Georgia Secretary of State Brad
Raffensperger to “find” enough votes to overturn the
Georgia presidential election results and threatened Mr.
Raffensperger if he failed to do so.

In all of this, President Trump gravely endangered
the security of the United States and its institutions of
government. He threatened the integrity of the democratic
system, interfered with the peaceful transition of power,
and imperiled a coordinate branch of government. He
thereby betrayed his trust as President, to the manifest
injury of the people of the United States.

Wherefore President Trump, by such conduct, has
demonstrated that he will remain a threat to national se-
curity, democracy, and the Constitution if allowed to re-
main in office, and has acted in a manner grossly incom-
patible with self-governance and the rule of law. President
Trump thus warrants impeachment and trial, removal
from office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any of-
fice of honor, trust, or profit under the United States.

It’s narrow in scope, doesn’t require investigation and subsequent hearings, because the act of incitement occurred in public and was recorded on video, distributed over broadcast and cable television as well as the internet.

The inclusion of the phone call to Georgia’s Secretary of State illustrates in most minimal fashion a pattern of behavior and intent.

These articles aren’t the only approach being taken to remove Trump. Earlier today both Sen. Chuck Schumer and Rep. Nancy Pelosi called VP Mike Pence to ask for the invocation of the 25th Amendment:

They’ve since made public statements reiterating their demand for the 25th Amendment, and for impeachment leading to removal if the 25th isn’t invoked.

NBC reported earlier that Trump is fragile and feeling betrayed:

Fuck that. Trump is not the United States; Congress is not elected to fluff one delicate snowflake’s dementia-addled ego.

The United States, however, is now fragile, made so by the gross failings of a malignant narcissist in decline, who has spawned an attack on his own country with seditious incitement.

It’s time for Mike Pence to honor his oath to defend the Constitution by invoking the 25th Amendment.

If Pence should fail the republic yet again, it’s time for Congress to impeach, convict, and remove Trump before he does any further damage to this fragile democracy.

~ ~ ~

UPDATE-1 — 8:20 PM ET —

This is not good. It’s been wholly predictable to those who’ve assumed Trump suffers from a progressive neurological disorder like frontotemporal dementia on top of his malignant narcissism — but still not good.

It’s also increasingly urgent.

We need to hold Trump’s cabinet members accountable — including the “principal officers” of departments like the Acting Director in cases where the Director has left the government — for not demanding the invocation of the 25th Amendment. Pence may be resisting invocation but he’s not the only person responsible for its application and execution.

And if Pence and the cabinet aren’t going to address this, then it’s up to Congress to remove Trump from the ability to hurt this country.

All of them — Pence, the cabinet members and principal officers, members of Congress — have sworn an oath to the Constitution. It’s time to protect and defend it by removing Trump from office immediately.

Call your representative and ask them to support articles of impeachment because Trump has incited seditious behavior against the U.S. and he is acting increasingly unstable.

Call your senators and ask them to convict and remove Trump from office upon the presentation of the articles of impeachment from the House because Trump has incited seditious behavior against the U.S. and he is acting increasingly unstable.

Congressional switchboard: (202) 224-3121 — or use

Time’s of the essence. Go. Leave word in comments if you’d care to share your experience.

~ ~ ~

UPDATE-2 — 10:42 PM ET —

Update on status of impeachment:

House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerry Nadler supports impeachment and wants it to go directly to the House floor:

Head count is mounting.

The number 200 without context means doodley squat. We need two very specific numbers.

We need 218 House votes, or one more than half of 435. (This may be lower because there are two seats still open IIRC.)

We need 67 Senate votes, or two-thirds of the total 100 seats.

If you manage to reach your representative or senators, ask where they stand on impeaching Trump. Then ask them to support it if they don’t, or thank them if they do.

I hope we have the numbers by morning. What could go wrong the longer Congress drags its feet is incalculable.

~ ~ ~

UPDATE-3 — 12:52 AM ET 08-JAN-2021 —

Two cabinet members, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, have tendered their resignations. Chao’s exit is effective January 11; I haven’t checked DeVos’s exit date. Her resignation could have been effective immediately. Former White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney resigned from his role as Special Envoy for Northern Ireland. Four national security aides quit.

A police officer has died of injuries sustained during the Capitol Building riot. That’s more dead police than the entirety of George Floyd/BLM protests during the summer of 2020.

A family member acknowledged the death of a 34-year-old woman who participated in the Capitol Building riot but was crushed to death. She was likely one of the three accidental deaths tallied so far.

Displeased cabinet and staff members, dead police and mob member…not good, but there was something worse afoot.

Read this entire Twitter thread. And then recall the conspiracy against Michigan’s Gov. Whitmer.

Several accounts on Twitter have noted the rioters could be sorted into two groups: the tourist mob who did sightseeing and some vandalism, and some crypto-paramilitary persons who were prepared to do more than simply take selfies and smash furniture. They came armed with knives and zip ties and may have had more weapons on their persons. They were better masked than most of the tourist rioters.

There have been videos shared which appear to show Capitol Police actively encouraging the mob. Off-duty officers may not only have participated in the rioting but aided the paramilitary participants.

And there have been repeated remarks about coming back on the 19th — “I’d do it again, and I’d have a gas mask next time.

We should not forget there were two IEDs found, one at each of the RNC and DNC offices, as well as a suspicious vehicle which has been characterized as mobile bomb factory.

There were elements inside the rioters who wanted to do more damage and possibly seize and hurt members of Congress along with VP Pence.

We don’t know if they left any preparatory materials behind or whether law enforcement did an adequate sweep considering how poorly prepared they were for the breach of the Capitol Building by rioters.

Trump must be impeached before he can encourage worse. His statement this evening suggests he is willing to encourage more seditious acts, like those at statehouses across the country yesterday while a mob rioted inside the Capitol Building.

193 replies
  1. Rayne says:

    Really angry about that NBC article. The man isn’t competent, hasn’t been, and probably worse after COVID. His family is abusing him and the country by extension, by failing to encourage him to leave office sooner than the 20th.

    Get them all out of the White House immediately.

    • Duke says:

      I thoroughly enjoy all the posts, comments, quotes and references by all associated here. Rayne, your passion, pain, and humanity come to the surface. Thanks.

      Having said that….evil is what 45 is.

      • Pat says:

        I’m curious as to the rapid response by Betsy DeVos to these criminal acts. I wonder if employees of her brother, Erik Prince, may have been some of the crypto-paramilitary goons.

  2. Chris.EL says:

    apologies for off topic, does anyone have thoughts on what Chad Wolf was doing in Bahrain on January 6, 2021, yesterday?

    Wolf is tweeting thank yous!
    “Acting Secretary Chad Wolf
    Jan 6 [2021]
    “Thank you to
    for hosting me in the Kingdom of Bahrain. Looking forward to working together to bolster our collaboration in cybersecurity, infrastructure security, counterterrorism, law enforcement, and other priorities for both of our great nations.”

    • silcominc says:

      I would assume Chad is negotiating huge contracts either for trump or himself or some other entity. All the trump enablers are grifters and they want to cash out now.

  3. General Sternwood says:

    >Congress is not elected to fluff one delicate snowflake’s dementia-addled ego

    But Messieurs Jordan, Nunes, Meadows and Graham no longer appear able to imagine any mission besides fluffing POTUS!

    • BobCon says:

      Hogan is saying he wanted to send the Maryland National Guard into DC but the White House blocked him.

      • Eureka says:

        Yeah, and then the order/permission finally came through via an unusual channel. I only saw a blurb so remain unsure if this was a netherworld ultimately opened by congressional leadership contacts or Pence or what.

    • vvv says:

      I think you refer to Rep IL, Adam Kinzinger, a veteran and Repub but the apparent polar opposite of the eye-patched idiot.

  4. jerryy says:

    Ahh, it was only yesterday that Rep. Omar was being gently chastised for tweeting that she was drawing up impeachment articles. What a difference a few hours makes.

    • Rayne says:

      If you are referring to remarks I made here about Rep. Omar drafting the articles and then tweeting about it, fuck off. The point wasn’t that she drafted them, it was that she didn’t think about the next step and how to successfully execute impeachment, conviction, and removal. GOP members of the Senate must cooperate if a majority of Democrats are not available to pass the articles, and GOP members will be reluctant to sign a bill Omar has submitted whether we want to admit the GOP is virulently anti-Muslim or not, let alone the base which supports them.

      Now there’s articles submitted by a team of reps including an Air Force JAG and a public defender which may have a chance of complete execution. For all we know Omar could have written them and found other reps to front and submit it.

      • jerryy says:

        A bit touchy.

        The point was that she was not being given any credit. Not that it is easy to explain a complete plan in a tweet, but she did let the country know that actions were in motion.

        • Rayne says:

          You had better fucking believe I am touchy. This is not a time for representatives to worry about buffing their cred, especially if taking cred will backfire.

          I see that she was the sponsor on articles which Lieu, Raskin, Cicilline have co-signed. This had better not fucking blowup because she insisted on having cred because there’s no second chance at this.

          As The Wire’s Omar Little said, “You come at the king, you best not miss.” Especially this mad king with the goddamned nuclear football.

        • jerryy says:

          The country was under attack. If this was about taking credit, any member of the House could have walked onto the House Floor and introduced Articles of Impeachment and cobbled something together that would last long enough to get us out of the line of fire long enough for the next administration to pick up the pieces.

          This was about answering a threat to this country.

          She showed leadership. She and the others will have the legal expertise to make the charges stick in their presentation to the House.

        • Kenster says:

          Bullshit. Like AOC, Omar has been a fame chaser from the beginning and never misses an opportunity to get on a magazine cover or build her brand. This was just another Twitter op.

        • Rayne says:

          I think she may have been genuinely scared when she began her work on it the articles in lockdown. But that is EXACTLY when one should use more caution and think more carefully about the objective to be achieved. The goal is to remove Trump from office to prevent any more harm to the nation and the globe. The stakes are too high for work done under the gun which doesn’t consider how best to ensure it is fully executed and promptly.

        • ducktree says:

          Exactly the point that I gathered from your comment. Thanks.

          Well done and of course Omar wasn’t even mentioned in the credits. Cutting room floor and all.

      • joel fisher says:

        Certain GOP ’24 hopefuls who ought to be charged for yesterday’s shitshow, but won’t, might be howling just a smidge less than otherwise expected if the impeachment/conviction included a bar on holding an office of public trust. Cruz and Hawley are really smart and have the capacity to badmouth an Article of Impeachment, secretly encourage conviction, and pretend to be horrified.

        • Rayne says:

          Cruz and Hawley, the two traitorous bastards who were fundraising off yesterday’s seditious activities, are exactly the loudly-braying assholes who’d manage to spike conviction and removal in the Senate with more grandstanding to buff their own GOP bonafides.

          It’s far too easy for them to scream that the Democrats are allowing a Muslim to remove their beloved leader, thereby poisoning the process for any other GOP senator who is running for re-election in 2022 and 2024.

          Some people clearly haven’t learned how to use systemic thinking to model out a potential chain of events. Bad enough they were pants’d yesterday and had to rely on young staffers to cover their asses.

        • ducktree says:

          Exactly this. On the late morning of Jan. 6 I received a text from a local areacode purportedly requesting a donation to Rafael Cruz’s campaign.
          Told them to drop dead.

        • joel fisher says:

          “pants’d”. Exactly the right word to describe Cruz and Hawley if they have, in fact, been revealed to the world, and not just astute observers, as the beneficiaries-and engineers–of the removal of Trump. I grant
          you they are scum, but if this happens, and they helped, for whatever reason, I’m OK with it.

  5. Molly Pitcher says:

    I originally posted this on the “coup edition”.

    I think Elaine Chow resigned to keep the numbers of cabinet members available to invoke the 25th Amendment too low to be viable.

    from an article in Newsweek this morning:

    ” In a 1985 opinion from the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Legal Counsel, the acting assistant attorney general at the time, Ralph Tarr, wrote that it would be best when contemplating deployment of the 25th Amendment for a majority of support to exist among the secretaries heading federal departments, as well as within the cabinet as a whole.

    “As a practical matter, and in order to avoid any doubt regarding the sufficiency of any given declaration, it would be desirable to obtain the assent of a sufficient number of officials to satisfy any definition of the term ‘principal officers of the executive departments’” referred to within the 25th Amendment, Tarr’s opinion said. He did not specify what a ‘sufficient number’ would entail, but with 23 cabinet members, at least 11 would need to support the measure. Pence would become the 12th member and establish a majority.”

    A very good question was asked, do ‘acting’ heads count ?

    • Peterr says:

      Chow’s resignation letter says it takes effect on Monday, not immediately.

      The only reasonable explanation for this that I can come up with is that she told Pence she intended to resign, he said “Not yet, please – I need to you give me a couple of days to get the votes in the cabinet for the 25th amendment,” and she told him “I’ll give you to Monday.”

      • Molly Pitcher says:

        Let’s hope so, but Pence refused to take a phone call from Pelosi and Schumer this morning after making them wait on the phone for 25 minutes. I hope he was in the middle of seeking spiritual guidance, and not just blowing them off.

        I worry that he does not have the testicular fortitude to move forward with the 25th.

    • madwand says:

      I don’t think impeachment or the 25th will happen before the 20th. So while we hope for the best plan for the worst. The insurgents are saying they will come back on the 19th. Ben Collins the guy who monitors the bad guys on Parlor, 4chan 8chan Quanon and says the insurgents have been rebuffed by Trumps remarks and think he may have been coopted by the deep state or is otherwise incapacitated, (finally they got it, he is incapacitated). So Ben says they are bifurcating into the religious Qanon and the guys who feel they have been betrayed. They are also migrating across to more traditional venues such as Facebook Twitter Instagram etc. According to them, there was a plan and when they went to DC to stop the certification, possibly overturn the government, and then Trump deserted them, rememberTrump after inciting the crowd, retreated to the WH to watch it all on TV. Shades of Jubilation T Cornpone as I see it.

      So my opinion
      !. A private ceremony for Biden.
      2. Take the Pentagon along with DHS back under government control. Send Miller, Patel, and Ratcliffe et al packing.
      3. Make an inner and outer perimeter in and around DC if you plan to do the inauguration on the capital steps.
      4. Arrest everyone you can, like Viking Guy and charge everyone you can, get the leaders off the street.
      5. Position National Guard Troops in Bivouac areas around DC so they can respond.

      The Maryland Governors experience with DOD is instructive. Hoyer was in phone con with Hogan, both from Maryland, urging Hogan to send in his guard troops. Hogan had his Commander of the NG ask for permission to go into DC, they are in the regular chain of command, couldn’t get it despite calling SecDef directly, he wouldn’t answer. Had to be an internal fight going on possibly Miller talking to Trump, finally Army Sec calls Hogan and says get your ass in there. Delay of 1 and a half hours. Hopefully an astute Guard Commander prepositioned his troops on the Maryland DC border during the delay.

      Ben Collins the MSNBC guy is saying this is real, only time will tell if this is hyperbole or actuality.

  6. P J Evans says:


    I’d also like to see the various members of Congress, in both Houses, who were objecting to the *legitimate electoral votes* being counted, censured at the least (with loss of whatever seniority they may have) and expelled in the case of those who were leading the insurrection. They have violated their oaths, and as some of them claim to have legal education, they surely knew what they were doing was illegal and unConstitutional..

    • dimmsdale says:

      Eric Swalwell just on MSNBC (no link bc caught it in real time) indicating that the forthcoming investigations MUST consider the possibility of collusion with the mob from inside the Capitol BY congressional staff. If indeed investigations go forward, we may be looking at serious charges against some Republican congressmen and their staffers. (That’s getting WAY out over the skis, of course, but … clearly that’s one way all this may be going.)

      • Eureka says:

        That’s an interesting and entirely plausible angle. The first name among many that comes to mind is Noonces — tho there are other/ others’ staffers who’ve been very active in other Trumpian plots. Why not this one?

        One of the Dem reps locked up last night in what she described as a COVID superspreader event room with largely maskless colleagues also mentioned that the GOPers inside were blaming dems for the insurgency, which I find to be a strange posture, even for the perpetually aggrieved in anxious circumstances. [Maybe she was just referring to the unflinching superstars of the movement, rather than the caucus as a whole. Or perhaps enough time had passed that they became bored in safety and reverted to form. Or maybe some never felt unsafe…]

        ETA after seeing clip harpie linked: YES! I was wondering the exact same thing, how they knew to get to certain rooms (esp. of the Parliamentarians as Swalwell notes — and he says that _he_ can’t even readily locate those rooms).

        • P J Evans says:

          I could see Hawley and Cruz passing information via staff who “know people”, and I wouldn’t leave out Greene and Boebert.

        • Eureka says:

          Yes to all, plus the Flynn- (Powell-) Graham – (Leeden) nexus came to mind given past- current events and relationships. (Besides Trump’s seemingly direct lever on Graham.) We still don’t know the scope of offices raided or if any *information* was sought, either, even as an operative-based side-project (recalling e.g. how that guy who molested Pelosi’s office said that her computer had stuff up on the screen). While it’s all probably just MAGA theater, we don’t know.

          And add to the list of suspect activities Cotton’s claim that some of his colleagues were furiously sending fundraising emails as the insurgents were overtaking the Capitol (which has already been noted, but should be added to this context). Insider trading on the MAGA exchange.

        • P J Evans says:

          The one guy who took a piece of mail from Pelosi’s office is going to be dealing with the Postal Inspectors. They take mail theft seriously – and it’s a federal crime.

        • Eureka says:


          Justice Department warns of national security fallout from Capitol Hill insurrection

          01/07/2021 06:32 PM EST

          The mob that rampaged inside the halls of Congress on Wednesday might have taken a lot more than Americans’ illusions of invulnerability.

          “National security equities” may have been among the records stolen from the Capitol on Wednesday when pro-Trump insurgents stormed the building and looted several congressional offices, the Justice Department said in a briefing Thursday.

          Michael Sherwin, the acting U.S. attorney for Washington, D.C., said it will likely take “several days to flesh out exactly what happened, what was stolen, what wasn’t,” noting that “items, electronic items were stolen from senators’ offices, documents and materials were stolen, and we have to identify what was done to mitigate that [damage].”

        • Eureka says:

          At least one laptop was stolen (Merkley’s). Bertrand also cites Pelosi’s mailpiece and the ransacking of the Senate Parliamentarian’s office. Who knows what was taken or copied — or, left behind: Gallego raises the issue of bugs and the possibility that foreign adversaries joined the mob.

        • Rayne says:

          Infuriates me to no end that the Capitol Building wasn’t treated like a crime scene by Capitol Police and the FBI. Somebody’s ass needs to be kicked for this because the crime scene has been contaminated making it harder to figure out what was disturbed when, what was taken, what was compromised, what was planted.

        • Eureka says:

          I know. Besides all of the environmental crews working on things, there was a photo of Rep Andy Kim on his hands and knees helping them to clean. There was a giant pile of “belongings” type things, not “debris” type things in front of him (tho debris is important, too!): every fiber of my being said Hold up! Bag and tag that. Where’s your gloves, camera, measurement device (and also knowledge of evidence collection)… Sigh.

          Inserting a question: what’s the nature of surveillance inside offices — zilch? Do we even know? (would be a risk in and of itself aplenty/ also may be necessary in some spots. As I wonder if they’ve got any hi-def video to recreate things…)

          Did you see below I left you a note about DeVos resigning per WSJ (NBC news had not yet confirmed)?

          Adding 913p NBC confirms

        • Rayne says:

          Didn’t see the DeVos note yet, thanks. When I check messages it’s in chrono order and all of the comments at the same time. LOL I’ll check it out as I scroll down, thanks again.

        • Rayne says:

          Funny you should mention Boebert — I have to check the timing but I swear the Capitol Building was breached not long after she was speaking on the House floor. One moment I’m flipping away from her squealing (ugh, she was YELLING on the floor) and the next there’s the police unsuccessfully stopping the advancing horde. Hmmm.

        • Ingalls says:

          This afternoon columnist Jaimie Stiehm appeared on Michelangelo Signorile to tell about her experiences in the House Press Gallery yesterday. Stiehm noted that Boebert stood up on the floor and assured those present that she was not going to “challenge anyone to a duel.” FIfteen minutes later, according to Stiehm, the barbarians were literally at the door of the chamber.

        • Rayne says:

          Thank you for that. Wondering how close her duel remark came to Giuliani’s “battle by combat” remark. Boebert very well could have been in coordination with mob participants.

        • Rayne says:

          Yup, assuming FBI would go there and use an NSL to obtain records like that. Was she smart enough to use a burner? Would the burner have been picked up on any surveillance within her location? She doesn’t strike me as savvy enough for this. Next question is whether she was using encrypted comms, and if any of the communications were protected by Speech and Debate.

  7. Worried says:

    I know time is short, but I think a Trump impeachment is the way to go.

    Then he is prevented forever from holding office.

    If he resigns, or is subject to 25th amendment removal process, I presume he could be pardoned by President Pence and get a new political life.

    IANAL, so not sure.

    • Molly Pitcher says:

      bmaz assured me that Trump can be impeached after he leaves office. I just don’t think that the GOP in Congress will be motivated to vote for that once Trump is out of office.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      They could do both: Pence and the Cabinet could invoke the 25th and Congress could move immediately to impeach and convict. There’s no need for the House to wait; in fact, it works against accountability.

      Impeachment here is not about removal – January 20th would have come and gone. It’s about documenting the public record; setting a political line in the sand, moving beyond which draws dire sanction; and prohibiting Trump from holding further federal office.

      The latter may undercut Trump’s ability to run his massive grift from seeking office without having the intent ever to resume public office. That grift is based on picking pockets, stoking victimhood and inciting violence, and making promises Trump could never fulfill (a lifelong trait).

      • Molly Pitcher says:

        Did you see my post above regarding how many cabinet members constitute a majority ? At the end of that I repeat a question which was brought up on the other thread, do acting heads count as cabinet members for the purposes of the 25th Amendment ? I have not been able to find an answer to that.

        • Marinela says:

          If the acting doesn’t count for the purpose of 25th, then Trump laziness may work against him. Most positions are acting I think.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Neither the Cooley Law School article nor the 1985 Tarr memo for the Reagan-Meese OLC is of much help. The Cooley article attempts little beyond a recitation of which Cabinet-level officers would be involved. It punts on the “acting” issue.

          Richard W. Tarr punts as well, saying only that to avoid doubt, it would be good practice to obtain the consent of all such officers, whether acting or Senate-approved. His memo does not preclude obtaining the consent of only Senate-approved officers.

          Given the timing, the issue seems more practical than legal. What’s the critical mass of GOP authority figures backing use of the 25th, in the Cabinet and Congress, sufficient to get the Secret Service to escort the president from the building.

          I don’t see Pence going there, or McConnell, Graham, etc. The Base would never accept it, nor would the Nuneses, Jordans, Hawleys, Limbaughs. But they should try, and Pelosi and Schumer should proceed with impeachment. As important as they are, there’s more at stake than just the next thirteen days.

      • Worried says:

        Thank you, proof that IANAL. Thought someone has to be in office to be impeached.

        However, what pressure is there on GOP legislators to vote for impeachment after he is out of office?

        I know we can’t appeal to their sense of honor, there has to be some sort of political peril I would guess.

        • Stacey says:

          If I were making the argument to a bunch of terrorized Stockholm Syndromed Republican congress critters who were shaking in their boots that Trump would run in 2024, the ability to stop him from doing that might be an incentive. Another incentive, from their perspective, might be that if he can’t run for office then he can’t run his money grift on them, sucking up $$ in the Republican universe of donors. Money and oxygen sucking, actually.

          I’d think that those two reasons would motivate the self-serving among them. There’s that other issue of Trump supporters being against them until the day they die, but Trump’s ability for coat tails was contraindicated in every election he ‘helped’, was it not? Ask Loefler and Purdue and McSally how much they appreciated his efforts on their behalf–I’m gonna go with ‘not much’.

          And honestly, someone ought to be making the argument to these asshats that the sooner they divorce themselves from the cray they got in bed with starting in the 80’s and just go back to their ‘fiscal conservative’ bull shit and leave the high-octane culture war stuff out of it, the sooner they get their political lives back. I know they’re addicted to the political crack of abortion/gay marriage/guns and now mask-wearing, but get any of them alone in a room and ask them ‘how’s that working out for ya?’ now that they’re all prostituting themselves to these fools to the point where they don’t even enjoy being rich assholes anymore, I bet you’d get some takers.

          I’ve also always thought you should convince enough of them to just link arms and run off the cliff together and then there’s too many of them for the Aderall-riddled brain of Trump to even see who all it was.

        • Worried says:

          Yes, there may be many reasons for Trump to be jettisoned.


          Look what happened to Lindsey Graham at Washington National (the name when I used to fly in there, that’s how my memory works).

          Even after the insurrection.

          74 million people have signed on and they are not going away, thanks to Fox “News” and other propaganda style sites.

          January 19 may give us another dose of the difficulties our country is facing.

          No GOP legislator wants to take a chance on being the next Lindsey Graham or Mike Pence in their cross-hairs.

          Trump can stay politically alive…….

    • Ravenclaw says:

      Not a lawyer either, but I’m pretty sure that a presidential pardon would have no impact on a future impeachment. It isn’t a prosecution in the usual sense & is conducted by a separate, coequal branch of government. The question (aside from the excellent one about “acting” secretaries re. the 25th) is what precedents there are for impeaching elected officials after they have already left office?

    • Worried says:

      My local television station (ABC) just discussed this issue.

      They said removal via 25th amendment does not have any impact on future ability to run for office. Apparently the condition for removal is considered temporary to the time of removal.

      Surprising (to me) they said that impeachment itself does not preclude running for office in the future. Only if the impeachment results say that the person cannot run in the future, are they denied to run.

      Very confusing.

      How to get rid of this guy so he can’t ever be a menace to us again?

  8. JVO says:

    If there are no consequences for blatantly, repeatedly violating the Oath of Office and the US Constitution, then this petulant POTUS baby will never learn the right lesson. It’s time to get out the big wooden paddle, place the kid over the knee (Impeach) and deliver the appropriate discipline [with only Love for Our Country in our hearts] and SMACK (Conviction and Removal)!

  9. ernesto1581 says:

    “It’s time for Mike Pence to honor his oath to defend the Constitution by invoking the 25th Amendment.”

    …which requires VP in concert with 2/3 the cabinet. a cabinet currently showing signs of beginning to empty at an interesting pace, elaine chao being the first to hit the road after yesterday’s attempted coup de tater tot.

    hypothetical: were the drain to continue, would 25/4 then require 2/3 of a quorum? I don’t remember anything to that effect in the amendment — but who knows there isn’t another fifty-year-old memo from nixon days sitting in a file which addressed the possibility.

    anything to get the nuclear codes out of trump’s hands, at any rate…

    • ernesto1581 says:

      does Tarr’s 1985 OLC opinion have any legal weight or support?

      (sorry, majority + VP, not 2/3. foolish.)

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Opinions from the DoJ’s OLC are interpretations of federal law binding on executive branch personnel, but not the federal courts or Congress.

        But the Tarr memo offers little guidance. Tarr simply recommends obtaining the backing of a majority of the listed cabinet-level officers, whether acting or Senate-approved, so as to avoid the potential for litigation. It does not preclude obtaining the backing of only Senate-approved officers.

  10. graham firchlis says:

    Pelosi acting as Majority Leader can bypass Rule XI governing Judiciary Committee procedures and bring an impeachment resolution directly and immediately to the floor as privileged under an exception to Rule IX.

    If she has a report from the whips that she has near unanimous caucus support, she will likely take this unprecedented approach. But unless and until she’s assured of sufficient caucus support to actually pass the resolution and subsequent manager appointments, she won’t move so quickly. Phone calls to your House rep can make the difference.

    Senate conviction remains in the hands of Radical Reactionary Republicans. Mass demonstrations at Republican senatorial state offices demanding installation of President Pence may be persuasive. Chants of “We want Pence!” will find more receptive ears than “Dump Trump” IMHO.,%60%60impeached”%20Federal%20official.

  11. OldTulsaDude says:

    My non-rational side wants a Caligula-model removal from office but my rational side argues for legal means. After all, I tell myself, I am not like Trump.

  12. Raven Eye says:

    25th or impeach?

    I like the way impeachment wraps things up. I especially like the concept of “disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust, or profit under the United States.” To me, in addition to actual office, that also means no diplomatic passport and no security clearance. Those are explicitly honor and trust categories. And regarding the clearance; that should involve a face-to-face debriefing and document signing session – not one of those “I’ll have someone on staff put together the forms I need to sign”. (It would be sweet if LTC Vindman could be brought back on the payroll to conduct that session.) And on a good day, the best he can hope for is “Mr.” Trump.

    I don’t have any qualms about continued Secret Service protection. My larger concern there is public safety. Things can unwind quickly and dangerously when nutters start shooting or bombing. And the idea of federal LEOs always having an eye on Trump warms my heart. (He’s likely to refuse the protection anyway.)

    The question is which course of action will be taken.

    If Pence and the Cabinet do a 25th, McConnell and his fellow enablers could be off the hook and in a position to run out the clock. It could still get messy and a legal challenge would be almost instantaneous (I wouldn’t be surprised it someone working for Trump is already drawing that up). Would it surprise us to find out that Trump-enabling senators have been on the phones already with Cabinet members?

    If it gets punted back to Congress, then the Cabinet is off the hook. Rolaids time for the Republican Senators.

  13. David Clapp says:

    Start impeachment now – before Trump starts pardoning perps from Wednesday!

    Conviction nt a major issue….

    • Anne says:

      That reminds me of watching the crowd invade the Presidential palace in Belgrade to take down Milosevic, I think in 2001. Italian TV knew there was going to be a demonstration so we were all watching. The police had turned against the dictator. So they made a big show of protecting the front entrances while quietly signaling to the protestors to go around back.

  14. foggycoast says:

    a far-fetched option i haven’t heard….Pence resigns which, afaik, would mean Pelosi would become acting VP, could start the process invoke the 25th amendment and as VP would Preside over the Senate in the case where it went to impeachment instead. Pence might see this as an exit ramp. It would take the pressure off him to pardon Trump should Trump decide to resign. Of course if he does resign, Pelosi would become acting President and would not pardon him.

    far-fetched I know but we are in crazytown right now.

    • Matthew Harris says:

      That is factually incorrect. Pelosi becomes Vice-President if Trump and Pence both go out.

      If Pence becomes president, he names a Vice-President who has to pass the Senate and House.

      So that is one of many reasons why that doesn’t work.

      • foggycoast says:

        dont think so. if they both go out she becomes acting president. if only pence goes out she becomes acting vice-president.

        • foggycoast says:

          you are correct:
          “25th Amendment, Section 2.
          Whenever there is a vacancy in the office of the Vice President, the President shall nominate a Vice President who shall take office upon confirmation by a majority vote of both Houses of Congress.”
          i should know this because i was around when agnew resigned. shoot, would love to see pelosi be the one to invoke 25A. hopefully will have to settle for impeachment.

      • P J Evans says:

        Have you forgotten how Ford got to be president? He was nominated and confirmed for VP after Agnew resigned. (Ford’s VP was Rockefeller.)

  15. BobCon says:

    Nadler is endorsing a quick vote, not that I would expect him to object personally, but it’s a sign where the rest of the leadership is too.

  16. Molly Pitcher says:

    Simon & Schuster has just announced that they are canceling the publication of Senator Josh Hawley’s forthcoming book, “The Tyranny of Big Tech”

    “We did not come to this decision lightly. As a publisher it will always be our mission to amplify a variety of voices and viewpoints: at the same time we take seriously our larger public responsibility as citizens, and cannot support Senator Hawley after his role in what became a dangerous threat to our democracy and freedom.”

    • BobCon says:

      He’s threatening a lawsuit. He says it couldn’t be more Orwellian, although I kind of think locking someone in a cage with rats like in 1984 would be worse, although what do I know. He’s also claiming its a First Amendment violation, which would be true if Simon and Schuster is now the fourth branch of government. Maybe I missed that among all the news.

      • TooLoose LeTruck says:


        Hawley… locked in a cage… with rats…

        Who would the rats be?

        Cruz? Cotton? Gaetz?

        You could sell tickets to THAT cage match…

        Hell… I’d buy one.

      • blueedredcounty says:

        Don’t get how it would be a First Amendment issue at all, when it is a corporation deciding whether or not to void a contract. And we all know that it is perfectly legal for corporations to buy a person’s story and capture and kill it.

        Ah, this must just be another lie from another right wing nut job.

      • wrog says:

        hm. If Hawley can be expelled from the Senate, we could get an actual Democratic majority (50-49); at least for a little while — takes Manchin out of the loop for things like killing the filibuster..

  17. foggycoast says:

    your opinions on whether impeachment could start before 1/20 but the vote to convict could still happen after 1/20. the provision regarding removal would be moot but not the provision regarding never being able to hold office again?

  18. AgainHead says:

    Just saw Trump’s speech. Even there he still had to end with a “I know you’re disappointed, our trip is just beginning!” wink-and-nod encouragement to his indoctrinated terrorist supporters. I don’t believe for a second he’s committed to a peaceful transition in any form, as usual his lies are neither subtle nor remotely credible.

    His final sentence just demonstrated yet again why he MUST be removed NOW.

    • Worried says:

      A lesson from several years observation: Every word Trump speaks is a lie

      That is an observation, not a complaint. If we know all words are lies then we can adjust.

      I’m thinking there are almost no words in his statement that he felt; he was reading from a script prepared by an acolyte to keep the show moving.

      After the filming he probably said to someone, “Okay I read your f***king bullshit”.

  19. Vinnie Gambone says:

    Anything to keep him preoccupied next 16 days. Wonder how hard it is to get a protest permit in Palm Beach? Apply for permit for max capacity then advertise the event like goon fringe did. Even if it doesn’t come to fruition, maybe that’ll torque him enough he stays distracted.

    Impeachment will serve same purpose. Do both.

    Does “profit” in last line in impeachment articles mean he’d have to give up DC Post Office Hotel?

    “President Trump thus warrants impeachment and trial, removal
    from office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any
    office of honor, trust, or profit under the United States.”

    He should not be allowed to run out the clock on consequences.
    Once commenced, the impeachment should be continued past 1/20/21 if need be. If he’s guilty he should not escape punishment.

    And speaking of distraction,um, $2k stimulus check ?

    • Montana Voter says:

      The problem is that Trump is not giving the “signals” these goof balls are running on “Q’s” interpretation of Trumps statements.
      You give too much credit to Trump as the mastermind. He is simply being the bully he’s always been. Someone else is updating the message to the conspiracy believers.

  20. Vinnie Gambone says:

    Apologies. I neglected to read comments before flapping my lips.
    Comforting and encouraging to see the collective neuron power at work here by EW participants. Thank you all.

  21. Terry Salad says:

    Trump lie-filled and clearly forced scripted (by someone else) “concession” is no concession. It is a desperate attempt to stave off the consequences of his sedition on Wednesday. This is his M.O. do something outrageous and walk it back halfassed the next day. He will not change and 13 days is too much to endure. Impeach him now!

  22. e.a.f. says:

    Good article. Good of you to include the phone number!
    Its hard to say what Pence will do. Most people do have a line. We still don’t know what Pence’s is but his unwillingness to speak to Pelosi says a lot.
    It does make me wonder why Chao resigned instead of staying to sign onto a Sec. 25 but my take on it is, she isn’t that brave. She exited when the real shit hit the fan and she might be subject to some sort of back lash. I’m sure she and Mitch have made their money and can now retire.

    Impeachment will be the only way to get rid of Trump and if it can be done tomorrow morning that would be very, very good. We don’t really know what he can or will do next. However, the interview with his niece on MSNBC certainly gave us some clues and that alone leaves me hoping he is removed from office asap.
    Well we do sit right north of the 49th parallel and as the old saying goes, when the American elephant sneezes, Canada catches a cold.

    • Rick Ryan says:

      DeVos out too. Sure looks like craven rats jumping ship rather than do the right thing.

      Pence also saying he does not want to invoke the 25th. Maybe he’s nudging them out – “Can’t be pressured to join with the cabinet to take this potentially politically risky action if there is no cabinet!” *guy pointing at head meme*

      Frankly, I think that since the Dems have put impeachment on the table (rightly, to be clear), they cowards in the White House are going to make them do the dirty work. They’re playing politics with this. Part of me isn’t even mad – people like them are ALWAYS playing politics. It’s like asking a skunk not to stink.

      But the rest of me is absolutely apoplectic. These crass, craven cowards. They – like everyone who held those positions and offices before them – knew this was something they might have to do when they accepted the role, and now when the time comes they choke and flee. In the “party of personal responsibility,” it’s always someone else’s problem to deal with.

      I’ll add – silver lining – and perhaps an unpopular opinion, but I really do think there will be enough GOP support to actually kick Trump out this time. I can’t imagine any House Dems opposing it at this point – and there seem to be at least a few GOP reps who are also on board – and the “senior leadership” in the Senate ought to be doing cartwheels that they’ve been gifted this off-ramp from Trumpism. The usual suspects (Cruz, Hawley) won’t go for it, but I’d guess removal gets ~70-80 votes in the end, maybe more.

    • Eureka says:

      Rebecca Ballhaus: “NEWS: Betsy DeVos has resigned, writing in a letter to the president: “There is no mistaking the impact your rhetoric had on the situation, and it is the inflection point for me.” [wsj]”
      8:55 PM · Jan 7, 2021

      looks like AP updated their Chao article to include DeVos (for a non-paywalled version)

      Also, NBC news has confirmed since the comment above.

      [MSNBC just announced another resignation moments ago but I missed it, ? Katz female name in HHS]

      • cavenewt says:

        It’s hard for me to believe DeVos and Chao resigned due to high moral dudgeon. I don’t know much about these things, but I figure they’re avoiding having to take a stance on a 25th amendment action. Whatever, it’s certainly going to be some underhanded motivation.

        • Rayne says:

          Can’t remember who mentioned that waiting until the 20th to resign meant somebody in Biden administration would review final disposition of compensation, security clearances, etc. — and these two in particular may have wanted to avoid that. How convenient they had a seditious uprising as “an inflection point” they could use for their trigger to exit.

  23. Raven Eye says:

    [I was started on this before Update 1 – Geez!]

    This Trump neutering needs to get done quickly. Putin is watching this as his last best hope for our next step closer to the abyss. As a “useful idiot” (he’s not an “asset”) Trump has served up chaos to benefit a grateful nation (but not ours). Far too late, ALMOST enough of America can see how uncertainty, guided by malicious intent, has produced a broad mistrust in the democratic process and institutions. And so we sit – on the edge of our seats.

    Putin knows this is a delicate time. He’s long accepted that playing with Trump can produce unexpected outcomes, and the assets he has used are agile and flexible. But now?.

    The Russians most certainly have stepped up SIGINT efforts. They are probably more closely monitoring international and domestic military, commercial, and private flight paths. They might have stepped up monitoring the movements of key individuals (including diplomatic, military and intelligence personnel of close allies) and are monitoring and anlyzing more social media. They don’t want to be surprised.

    Our own military and IC organizations have to worry about more internal threats than usual — which include potential actions by Trump himself as well as self-dispatched militias, patriots, etc. The likelihood of an “illegal” order is higher today than a week ago [update – higher tonight than yesterday], and commanders, with or without the concurrence or direction of Trump Toadies in DoD, know that they have a duty to make sure a madman does not act.

    POTUS and Strategic Systems (read “nuke”) are at the top of DoD’s food chain. Forget the POTUS part for now. I expect that orders and advisories are going out to key commands. I wouldn’t be surprised if Raven Rock (which is always a hot site) and other relocation sites are increasing their state of readiness (and staffing changes are difficult during a pandemic). The JAG and General Counsel folks are probably double-checking laws and authorities, and reviewing some of the advisories that are being sent out.

    This is serious stuff. Putin has longed for a destabilized U.S., but I bet that even he is a little nervous and is probably in deep huddles with his people. They may even back off operationally and just improve their monitoring. Pray that’s their course of action.

    I feel sorry for our allies, especially those in shared facilities. And I’m saddened for this country.

    • Rayne says:

      1 – he’s not an “asset” — he certainly is an asset. Don’t respond, just watch what unfolds over time. Or go back and re-read Marcy’s work over the last four years.

      2 – The Russians most certainly have stepped up SIGINT efforts. — Ya think? Like SolarWinds?

      3 – more internal threats than usual — There have been at least two organizations working on transition-related issues, members of which include former military leadership. I wouldn’t be surprised if one of the reasons the military may have been slow to engage yesterday was the refusal of military to get involved in election-related matters.

      4 – I feel sorry for our allies — There’s no country at ease with this situation; the globe is at risk of destabilization. When Turkey asks if they can help it’s bad. It looks godawful to allies.

      • Raven Eye says:

        1. He doesn’t meet the criteria for an asset, unless you think he is actually under the control of Putin/Russia.

        2. I said SIGINT. I meant broader than COMMINT, because the amount and characteristics of the electromagnetic signals themselves gets to be important in times of rising tensions.

        3. SECDEF and SECARMY hold the leash on the DC Guard, so that part of military was attenuated from the git-go. A broader issue is protection of critical infrastructure — where overseas and domestic threat levels may change.

        • Rayne says:

          1 – Hundreds of millions of dollars in debt says he’s owned.

          2 – I meant SIGINT.

          3 – Overseas I’d worry about middle east and AFRICOM. Shit is going on there and has been. More on that later. Sure would be nice to know what the fuck DHS Chad Wolf was doing in Bahrain yesterday of all days.

        • Raven Eye says:

          I’ll concede the asset. I was used to considering an asset as someone under active control, as opposed to a “useful idot” Some definitions include useful idiot as a type characteristic of asset.

          Fully aware of Solar Winds, but I was thinking of SIGINT more along the lines of Russian response to these rapidly developing events — more tactical in nature.

        • Rayne says:

          SolarWinds created backdoors to allow surveillance and likely rapid response — both in terms of defense and economics given targets like Commerce and DOD.

        • Vinnie Gambone says:

          Grateful for the back and forth on Russia, Trump, Solar Winds, current reciprocal vulnerabilities. Makes me think about Kissingers stance/ strategies on preventing mutual nuclear annihilation-negotiating from a position of strength, yada, yada. It seems Russia has no compunction whatsoever about fucking with our cyber security. None. Is the USA just feeble, out matched, behind, or are we just holding back retaliating when they stick solar winds up our ass sideways, bounties on killed soldiers, etc. When are we going to actually do something that hurts them for fucking with us? Either we are holding back or we allowed ourselves to be outgunned on our capabilities. Seems like the only battlefield that matters now is the internet. If weren’t even able to monitor and respond to all the signals the Hillbilly lunatic Fringe sent out the HillBilly Coup then we don’t stand a chance against the Russians. Who woulda thunk America would crumble from hillbilly attacks from within, and Russian Cyber attacks from without?The Russians are bombing our runways. Oh well. And Stone, that cocksucker face, he needs to be dealt with too.

        • Rayne says:

          Who woulda thunk America would crumble from hillbilly attacks from within, and Russian Cyber attacks from without?

          I am still waiting for the day when it becomes obvious those hillbillies were part of an active measure by Russia. Haven’t forgotten David Duke moved to Moscow and lived there for nearly 10 years.

        • BobCon says:

          I don’t know the number of hooks the Russians have in him, and if you asked me a month ago I’d have a lot of doubts he was under anyone’s direct control.Debts to pay off, sure, but maybe not due soon.

          But there is a level of worry about him behind the scenes that seems to exceed what is being reported. I would not rule out him facing some new kind of leverage, him falling into some kind of trap recently, that is making him really vulnerable.

          It’s also possible it’s the accumulated weight of the past 5-6 years suddenly crashing down. Maybe it’s really just a business disaster.

          But when Cheney and Rumsfeld are closing ranks with Panetta and Hagel, I have to wonder if they are worried about more than abstract principles and have a very specific potential deliverable they are trying to stop.

        • Rayne says:

          He’s got hundreds of millions due beginning as soon as 2022 and his golf courses can’t be doing as much business now because of COVID (fucked himself there, ha).

          I suspect he and his kids have been scrambling to make deals using US foreign policy from which they can skim off the top — the deal selling drones to Morocco with Israel’s recognition is one example. The deal may have earned some money under the table for Trump et al while destabilizing Morocco and Western Sahara while making face with Israel. What other deals like this have been going on outside of Americans’ oversight?

          Should have a piece soon about this depending on what happens with impeachment or 25A.

        • BobCon says:

          It could be just business deals that have compromised him, I don’t know.

          I just seem to be picking up a level of worry that is hitting a lot of people in a position to know things, and it seems to go beyond what I might expect if the only mischief he was up to was trying to get more Neo Nazis stirred up. That’s bad, but it’s not the kind of thing I think Cheney would lose a lot of sleep over, to be honest. He didn’t seem too concerned about Charlottesville.

          It’s possible the WSJ calling for impeachment is a sudden dawning of civic responsibility, but they seem much more likely to be responding to some kind of conservative insider warning he needs to be out now.

          I’m curious if loyalists for his lame duck DOD appointees have been caught trying to get into top secret info, for example, or maybe he has a stash of documents squirreled away over the past four years for bargaining purposes.

          It’s just a hunch, but I’d expect with Biden only two weeks out the reaction of a lot of the GOP insiders would be to just lay low, instead of calling for an ouster.

          I’ll admit that one problem with this is that McCarthy and Nunes are part of the Gang of Eight and they’re far outside of where Pelosi, McConnell, Schumer, Rubio, Warner and Schiff have ended up. But it’s also possible McCarthy and Nunes are just too far gone to care even if Trump ends up selling code words and asset IDs.

        • Rayne says:

          There’s no daylight between business deals, nation-states, and oligarchic gangsters. Trump is part of a transnational organized crime syndicate; business, corruption, politics are all of a piece. Just look at how many Russians own a unit in his Trump Tower-NYC or how much influence has been wielded over government operations by Mar-a-Lago members who aren’t all Americans.

          Charlottesville didn’t scare the old white men because there have always been outbreaks of white supremacists reminding the rest of the American public they still walk among us. Persons of color never forget; only white dudes do because the friction isn’t part of their daily lives.

          But this time it’s not just an outbreak of white supremacists rattling chains. They’ve been co-opted by the transnational organized crime syndicate, and there’s only the slimmest amount of control Trump holds over the soldats. Whatever has been fomenting and amping their hatred now has a much tighter grip on the foot soldiers and it very nearly took over the government this week.

          Not to mention Trump is not in control of his person which means he is also not in control of the country’s intelligence — not to mention that we are very nearly without an intelligence apparatus while Russia siphons off all kinds of information through SolarWinds-enabled backdoors.

          The level of worry you’re picking up is because we are and have been fucked, and Trump was the means.

        • BobCon says:

          I get your point, although I think that level of cooption was there in 2016, and Cheney and Rummy didn’t seem to care. That is what is making me wonder if there is second line that has been crossed that has made the dragon wake.

          It’s possible in 2017 they thought the safeguards were strong, although Flynn’s clear derangement weakens that possibility.

          It’s also possible there is no second line, it’s just a very far off tipping point was reached.

          I am also open to the possibility that Bush was working the phones and pushing Cheney to do this, based more on Bush’s general opposition to Trump than narrow national security concerns. Bush did issue a statement defending the elections. For that matter, Obama may well have been talking to Bush as well.

          If that’s it, it’s absolutely justified, although I can see why they would not want their fingerprints on the Defense ex-secretaries letter.

          And of course, it could be multiple things at once — financial cooption, paranoia, evil, and a fear of law enforcement. I hope there is a lot of digging.

        • Desider says:

          So why not another bankruptcy? Why should he care? Sure he can make use of other streams somehow. Must be something more worrisome.

        • Rayne says:

          His empire is kind of like a pyramid scheme. At some point it fails. Like the Deutsche Bank bankers Trump org used resigned recently. The pandemic he refused to handle appropriately has cut into legitimate revenue streams which provide cover for illegitimate streams, and so on.

          And he doesn’t own NY AG Letitia James.

        • Earthworm says:

          My radar is picking up a level of desperation in trumps actions that seems beyond mere financial woes.
          Seems like he is under a demand to deliver something. Our country?

        • Chris.EL says:

          earlier today feels like a decade ago

          Regarding Chad Wolf in Bahrain. Somebody voted for Trump to jump the US ship for Saudi Arabia.

          Bahrain is an island and affiliated with Saudi Arabia.

          There was talk about Wolf being withdrawn from acting status, but then he was back.

          Don’t know why, made me think of the process when you take out a real estate loan when property is in a trust.

          IANAL — maybe it is to avoid linking Wolf’s acts to his official status.

          Best news today — Devos quit!!!

  24. John Langston says:

    Impeach Trump. Censor Cruz and Hawley.

    The rest of them, like Gohmert, Lankford, Nuenes, Jordan, R Johnson, Gaetz, etc., etc., etc., let God sort ’em out. If not God, something…. all 100+, something.

  25. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Joe Biden seems to have picked Rhode Island’s governor, Gina Raimondo, as his Sec’y of Commerce. Was Wilbur Ross unwilling to serve? Or Rahm Emanuel (per bmaz)?

    A Harvard magna, her DPhil from Oxford in sociology is at odds with her career as a “venture capitalist,” her Wall Street priorities, and her checkered career in state government. According to wiki, compared with other state governors, she ranks fourth from the bottom.

    Not an inspiring choice by Biden. After the Trump-Ross horror, Commerce will need more reform and inspirational leadership than Raimondo could ever muster. But choosing her probably pleases other venture capitalists.

    • Rayne says:

      Are you seriously advocating somebody cut from the same cookie-cutter mold B-schools pump out, indoctrinated in the long reach of the Chicago School of Economics? No, we definitely need fresh eyes, fresh blood, somebody who can see the big picture of commerce’s role in society and the effect it has on the nation and the globe from more than a purely economic perspective. A sociology doc in venture capital surely groks this.

      Last fucking thing we need is someone from the system that pumped out Ross and a couple generations after his wrinkly ass.

      • P J Evans says:

        Marty Walsh from Boston for Labor. Maybe not the best possible choices, but people who are willing to drop everything now.

        • biff murphy says:

          You may want to do a little homework on that PJ, Marty Walsh certainly IS an excellent choice!
          Marty has been fighting for the labor movement and equality for years.
          When Charlie Baker tried to shut down Boston’s Machinists and other Unions as a cost cutting measures from working at the MBTA (after 100 years of service) Marty stood proud with the Unions and the workers.
          He cares about Boston and the people there.
          Marty is a good man and has always stood with labor!

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Reset your snark meter and read the last paragraph. I wouldn’t hire Rahm Emanuel as a parking attendant – or Raimondo.

        I’d prefer that Biden hire someone to run the Commerce Dept who hasn’t spent half their life up the backsides of Wall Street and the US Chamber of Commerce, and who scored higher than 47th out of 50 state governors.

    • Kevin Carhart says:

      I’ve just been playing with a FOIA release of Form ADVs. Here’s Raimondo’s firm.

      https :// pointjudithadv

      She appears on Schedule A, as “MEMBER – PJCP II (CLASS B INTERESTS OWNED VIA BLIND TRUST)”.

      Looking them up on their ADVs can’t hurt, since it’s one of the few places they have to publish information about what they do.

      [FYI, link broken with blank spaces to prevent accidental clickthrough. For security reasons we avoid using link shorteners because they obscure the underlying URL from community members. If you have the actual URL to which you wish to refer readers, please cut-and-paste it into a Reply. Thanks. /Rayne]

  26. Raven Eye says:

    “We cannot take the nuclear codes away from him. We must take him away from the nuclear codes – before it is too late.”

    Oh really? So the Football is like the Ark of the Covenant and there is only one of it in the Universe? And tonight we discover that over the past decades nobody in the country ever thought to have a contingency plan for if the Football was lost or compromised. Give. Me. A. Break.

    Somebody please get Pence to a secure place. Get military aides with the codes assigned to Pence. And then tell Donny “Everything is OK. You’ve got the codes. See? Brand new and up-to-date. Diet Coke?”

    [Disclaimer: This is assuming someone is around the White House smart enough to figure this out. Where’s that National Security Advisor?]

    • PhoneInducedPinkEye says:

      There is a story about Nixon in his last days giving reckless orders and the secdef ignoring them. Would the army really follow any insane nuclear bomb related orders from Trump at this point?

      Maybe it depends on who answers the phone…

      Ah shit Patel is over there now

    • Rayne says:

      Where in the Constitution does it say any of that is legal? It’s not going to happen, quit pulling crap like that out of your Kaiser roll buns. Just because Pence was able to get away with dispatching National Guard yesterday likely using his role as President Pro Tempore of the Senate, he can’t do that with the nuclear codes and nuclear football. Talk about ignoring unlawful orders… ~smh~

    • Phaedruses says:

      In the case of ordering a nuclear attack special rules are in place to stop any one person from being able to by themselves launch said attack. It is known as the “two man rule”.

      In the case for the President, the Secretary of Defense must verify the order and other personnel would be tasked with carrying out said order. If Donald Trump tried to order any attack that is not warranted, and a rapid response was not required, IE no incoming missiles existed. The personnel in the chain of command have ways to slow him down until either he rescinds the order, or members use something like the 25th amendment to remove the ability to launch such an attack from him.

      This does require the Secretary of Defense, Joint Chiefs and Chief of Naval Operations and Commander in chief of Strategic Command to push back in forceful manner, and could require Pence to step in. Whether the current people in those positions would do so is anyone’s guess. Would they keep requesting clarification as to the order and how it is to be carried out to stall for time, I cannot say. But that is exactly how stalling tactics could be implemented. The system is build for a rapid response, however it also can allow extended time frames if the people involved don’t feel the need to rush any actions. After this week, I think some would push back.

      Just because in a fit of rage an order is given, it does not mean people who know better are willing to carry it out given the consequences of doing so.

  27. PhoneInducedPinkEye says:

    Thanks for resist bot tip, it made it so easy to call that I can pester them all the time now. All but Klobuchars VMs were full, will try again tmr.

    It is heartening to see progress on impeachment but it can’t stutter now. I need to see the party fight.

    • Rayne says:

      Thanks for the update, John. won’t give you a busy signal. Alternatively you can look for the local offices of your rep and senators, call those offices in state. You can also hunt down a fax number to their offices in DC to send them a written message; or use which offers a free fax to each of your senators or representative.

      • P J Evans says:

        Just faxed my congresscritter – one thing about living in L.A. is that mine is a Dem, and already on board with impeachment.

  28. punaise says:

    À snippet of something I left at the tail end of the Coup thread:

    what we’re talking about:- we must assume that foreign agents were among the rioters- snooping devices can be implanted into anything with a power cord- so every device in the capitol is now a potential foreign asset.

    So, just for starters:- all computers need to be inventoried, inspected inside and out, and the OS paved/rebuilt

    • PhoneInducedPinkEye says:

      They need to wipe the HDs and drill through the platters, and toss any electronics or computers that were inside the building. Reinstalling the OS isn’t enough. Deep persistence can be achieved at the silicon layer nowadays and be very difficult to detect.

    • Rayne says:

      Yup, agreed, the entire premise is compromised. I saw something very early this morning I wish I’d flagged — somebody had a snip of video which on first reading I took to be someone interpreting or translating what a mob member said while smashing a window. They wrote it in Cyrillic, used a Russian word. I didn’t have time to capture it and listen more closely to see if it was actually a Russian participant saying something in Russian.

      That bothered the hell out of me. Only consolation is that a professional wouldn’t have spent time smash-smash-smashing a window — or perhaps I’m giving too much credit to somebody who could have been sloppy GRU.

      • harpie says:

        RAYNE, I’m putting two random [?] items here:

        MARCY tweeted [with a thoughtful face emoji] screenshots of two tweets from a young woman named Kristina Malimon. Malimon was arrested at the insurrection.
        3:29 PM · Jan 7, 2021

        1] 4:25 PM · Dec 24, 2020

        Congratulations to Mr. Roger Stone on the full pardon from the GREATEST President! @realDonaldTrump #rogerstone Merry Christmas! [PHOTO – Is this at Trump Hotel?]

        2] [Timestamp?]

        On January 6th, be on the right side of history!
        Don’t miss speech of @realDonaldTrump
        this will be HISTORIC!
        #stopTheSteal2021 [PHOTO]]

        • harpie says:

          Here she is on twitter:
 Kristina Malimon
          Her bio:

          @KristinaMalimon ♥︎ “𝐼𝑓 𝐺𝑜𝑑 𝑖𝑠 𝑓𝑜𝑟 𝑢𝑠, 𝑤ℎ𝑜 𝑐𝑎𝑛 𝑏𝑒 𝑎𝑔𝑎𝑖𝑛𝑠𝑡 𝑢𝑠!“- 𝑅𝑜𝑚𝑎𝑛𝑠 8:3 ♥︎ 𝐺𝑜𝑑 𝑏𝑙𝑒𝑠𝑠 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑏𝑒𝑎𝑢𝑡𝑖𝑓𝑢𝑙 𝐴𝑚𝑒𝑟𝑖𝑐𝑎!
          Portland, OR [Instagram link]…Joined January 2020

          [“the beautiful America”?]

          Three people from Oregon arrested after violent mob storms US Capitol
          The vice chairwoman of the Young Republicans of Oregon was among those arrested for curfew violation and unlawful entry.

          Published: 11:45 AM PST January 7, 2021
          Updated: 7:28 PM PST January 7, 2021

        • Rayne says:

          Very interesting. Kristina and her mother were arrested and it looks like her mother needed a Russian translator.

      • Raven Eye says:

        I’ve seen among the “tactical” crowd (and their admiring wannabees) a subset “cool guy club” that likes to throw down the occasional Russian word or phrase. This was eye-roll inducing for a colleague who studied Russian and spent time there as a student.

        Regardless, we know there is a lot of button pushing going on from the Russian side.

  29. chuck says:

    With DeVos resigning as well that list is growing while they shirk from any mention of the 25th. Easy to see McConnell’s fingerprints on this, lead by his wife: oppose the action in words and gestures that serve Trump instead of justice. The need for a speedy impeachment from the House is critical to putting it squarely into McConnell’s lap with as many days on the calendar as possible. Sadly, don’t expect him to ever let the Senate do anything about this with the days remaining. Medical emergencies, communications breakdowns, any and all possible excuses that lead to the Senate not reconvening will be used.

  30. harpie says:

    [I haven’t been able to keep up with comments, and will just drop this here, in case it hasn’t been posted yet…]
    7:08 PM · Jan 7, 2021

    Can’t make this up.
    After this report, we now know that both Trump and Giuliani, in separate calls, tried to get ahold of Sen. Tommy Tuberville

    And both Trump and Giuliani called the wrong senator [link]


  31. Norskeflamthrower says:

    I’ve been sayin’ for months now that we are looking at a nationwide, targeted insurrection that will put the militia and their police allies on one side with the National Guard and state controlled police on the other and us citizens in the middle. And that’s only after the governors get the federal Okie Doke routine like Governor Hogan. This is not over by a long shot. Pelosi and Schumer are waaaaaay too late and with nothin’ to shoot anyway. I can’t believe there are folks that read and comment here that are dumpin’ on AOC and Representative Omar for grandstanding or making it somehow about themselves. Wake up folks…my God, after all this time it’s plain who the enemy is!

  32. greengiant says:

    So Chad Wolfs re nomination for DHS secretary was withdrawn. Guess someones don’t want a snap confirmation just to get another vote for the 25th A . Random people at State are fired for a tweet as well.
    Wish these efforts the best.

  33. Chris.EL says:

    Hopefully this *tiny* bit of levity is not inappropriate; better days are on the way!

    Better days are on the way!
    “Bill Kristol

    Here–not that anyone asked!–is Casablanca as a (gender-neutral) guide to key members of Congress over the next week:

    Mitt Romney: Victor Laszlo
    Liz Cheney: Rick Blaine
    Ben Sasse: Yvonne
    Mitch McConnell: Captain Louis Renault
    Josh Hawley: Major Strasser

    Casablanca La Marseillaise ”
    A Welsh fellow — Wayne Courtney — posted via Twitter — cellphone video from inside a viewing tent of Trump, Don Jr., Eric, Ivanka, Kimberly G., and others, gleefully watching multi screen, live feed TV, of the insurrection; complete with a countdown delivered to the screen by Don Jr.

    WTAF good dog

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