Trump on Trial: Day One

Donald Trump's impeachment trial begins with arguments about the rules. Here is the House Manager's Statement on McConnell's rules. The New York Times reports that McConnell made two modifications after objections: there will be three rather than two days of opening statements and all the documents and evidence from the House proceeding will be entered in the Senate proceedings. The amended version of Sen. Res. 483 is here.

The House Brief and Statement of Facts is here. It's reply to Trump's trial brief is here. [More...]

From the Times:

The managers asserted that the view put forth by Mr. Trump’s team that abuse of power is not an impeachable office was not only legally and constitutionally “wrong” but “dangerous.” The Constitution, they argued, does not require that an impeachable offense be a crime, and its framers specifically included the impeachment clause to deal with president’s who put their own interests above the country.

“That argument would mean that, even accepting that the House’s recitation of the facts is correct — which it is — the House lacks authority to remove a president who sells out our democracy and national security in exchange for a personal political favor,” they wrote.

The managers likewise rejected the argument that Mr. Trump’s attempts to block testimony and witnesses from the House’s impeachment inquiry was lawful and appropriate. Their inquiry was properly authorized, they said, and Mr. Trump never actually asserted executive privilege, merely instructing witnesses not to cooperate without justification.

Here is a great free resource from our government: A webpage with links to all impeachment publications, including " bills, rules, precedents, and other documents related to impeachment inquiries and proceedings."

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  • Display: Sort:
    The Hill (a right leaning news source) (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jan 21, 2020 at 02:00:39 PM EST
    Rick Wilson (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jan 21, 2020 at 04:21:51 PM EST
    says that McConnell is basically leading the GOP to slaughter and that voters are going to remember 10 months from now that the GOP senators were part of the cover up.

    Backtracking (none / 0) (#5)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jan 21, 2020 at 04:26:12 PM EST
    On the evidence and the 12+hour days was a big tell.  He was losing control.

    Republicans appear to have ... (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Jan 21, 2020 at 04:06:41 PM EST
    ... completely lost their moral and ethical bearings, that is, if they ever had any in the first place. They are completely disregarding the alarming precedent they may be about to set regarding the constitutionally-defined relationship between the legislative and executive branches of government, merely in order to instead live in the political moment and "own the libs."

    Further, they're once again tempting fate with the electorate, and that didn't work out too well for them in 2018. Why they're doing so in vigorous defense of this blow-dried blond babooze who otherwise doesn't give a rat's a$$ about them, I'll never know. But there are far worse things than losing an election, such as losing your own soul.

    The GOP is collectively enabling a profound betrayal of our country, our Constitution and our national security. What's it going to take to get through to them - a nationwide general strike? A march on Washington to occupy and shut down that city? A military coup? Because sad to say, as democracy's guardrails repeatedly give way to the tyranny of a well-organized minority, we're now approaching that fail-safe point for our political institutions far faster than many people realize.

    "A republic - if you can keep it." More prophetic words were never spoken.


    "... such as losing your own soul" (none / 0) (#27)
    by Erehwon on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 01:32:07 PM EST
    Alas, you assume facts not in evidence!

    That may be true. (none / 0) (#33)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 02:48:48 PM EST
    From Charles Pierce:

    "In this, no Republican was different from any other Republican. Lisa Murkowski and Tom Cotton were the same. Thom Tillis and Ted Cruz were the same. Cory Gardner and Jim Inhofe were the same. Mitt Romney and Ben Sasse were the same as Mike Rounds and Mike Enzi. And they were all the same as Mitch McConnell. There were no moderate Republicans in the Senate on Tuesday. There were no Never Trumpers. There were only collaborators. There was no independence in the Senate on Tuesday, only complicity. And it was a deadening, sad thing to watch."



    A senator from Utah named Mitt ... (5.00 / 3) (#6)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 01:23:45 AM EST
    ... Pretended his conscience was split.
    But when the time came to stand,
    He meekly lowered his hand
    And thus showed he's just full of sh*t.

    A Zen Master of False Equivalence ... (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 01:17:45 PM EST
    ... critiques the arguments put forth by Trump's attorneys, in part by attempting to equate Trump's betrayal of national security with Clinton's personal betrayal of his spouse, proving once again that one's possession of a juris doctor degree and even a prominent faculty position at a prestigious law school is not necessarily a reliable indicator of basic common sense.

    Schiff (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 02:04:58 PM EST
    Again close the perfect

    Schiff's conclusion: (none / 0) (#32)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 02:32:01 PM EST
    "Maybe the President really is above the law because they say you can't indict the President. The attorney general's position is that you can't even investigate the President. Are we really ready to say that? That the only answer to presidential misconduct is to `get over it?'"

    Republican senators will eventually be compelled to decide between constitutional principle and political expediency, and their place in history will be judged accordingly.

    I hope someone (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 03:12:56 PM EST
    At one of these driveway rants ask Trump this simple question.

    We know it's unlikely but if by chance the senate votes to convict and remove you will you accept that decision and leave?

    They should keep asking him every day until he get exasperated and admits he won't.  Cause I really think he won't.

    I (none / 0) (#49)
    by FlJoe on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 04:55:24 PM EST
    don't what the rules are for the round of questions by Senators, but it seems like this would be fair game
    In those records, an email from Trump's other lawyer, Jay Sekulow reveals Trump and Sekulow spoke about Dowd representing Parnas and the other indicted associate Igor Fruman.

    "The president consents to allowing your representation of Mr. Parnas and Mr. Furman [sic]," Sekulow wrote in the Oct. 2 email.

    Mr Sekulow does trump know Mr.
    Parnas? If not why were you unethically claiming his consent? The next day Dowd sent  this letter to Congress, do you agree that Parnas was assisting Giuliani in connection with his representation of president trump?

    The House Managers (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by KeysDan on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 11:53:20 AM EST
    did an excellent job Thursday. Very well-prepared and executed presentations, starting with Manager Nadler's legal scholarship and ending with the moving "Right Matters" of Manager Schiff.

    While Manager Schiff is outstanding,the other managers were also effective, including Jerry Nadler who should not be underestimated.  He rebounded very well after the bothsiderism admonition of Chief Justice Roberts, whom I view as the Susan Collins of the judiciary.

    He avoided pettifoggery is his historical accounting of President Andrew Johnson's impeachment acquittal where Kansas Senator, Edmund Ross, voted at the very end to acquit because, according to many historians, he was promised special favors by Johnson to do so. Mr. Nadler seemed to take Robert's admonition to heart, civilly, very civilly, noting that Republican senators' acquittal of Trump would also be historically questionable.

    This time around,Trump's special favor to Republican senators is that they can keep their heads if they vote for him. According to CBS News, GOP senators were warned by IMPOTUS "vote against the president and your head will be on a pike."

    But, this is par for the mob. It is also being reported by ABC News that at a small gathering at the Trump DC hotel, with Lev and Igor (who Trump claims not to know) and, of course, the Zelig of the criming, Rudy, after being told that Ambassador Yovanovitch was bad-mouthing Trump, the IMPOTUS was heard on a tape recording, now released, "Get rid of her. Get her out tomorrow, I don't care.  Get her out tomorrow, Take her out. Okay?  Do it."

    This was in April 2018, 16 months before the whistleblower.  More than just one perfect phone call to Trump's crimes against the Constitution. Long in the making.

    Tomorrow morning, the defense will begin, be mindful not to confuse it with the Saturday Morning Cartoons.

    The vote to table Schumer's amendment.. (none / 0) (#2)
    by desertswine on Tue Jan 21, 2020 at 03:21:36 PM EST
    was right down party lines.

    Chatter about this (none / 0) (#7)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 07:18:47 AM EST
    Everybody has an opinion

    Senate Democrats privately mull witness trade in impeachment trial: A Biden for Bolton

    Reports of "pushback" this morning.

    Several Senate Democrats are privately discussing the possibility of calling Republicans' bluff on witnesses, weighing an unusual trade in President Trump's impeachment trial: the testimony of Hunter Biden for the testimony of a key administration official.

    "If you want to give Joe Biden an opportunity to sit in the well of the Senate and answer the question, `Do you think the president acted appropriately?' go right ahead," said Sen. Christopher A. Coons (D-Del.), a Biden supporter who is close with the family. Coons has not discussed the matter with Biden or Democratic leaders but said his longtime friend could hold his own.

    "I can't imagine a person more comfortable in the well of the Senate than a man who spent 36 years here as a United States senator," he said.

    I understand the arguments against this.  And I would personally be less comfortable with Joe that with Hunter.
    Although I think Coons makes a great point about Joe

    As far as Hunter, he did a really stupid thing.  A thing I have heard no one say was illegal so he has no legal exposure (correct me if I'm wrong lawyers) but what he did should not be done.  I think a little public shaming might not be an entirely bad thing.

    Be a good lesson for the next fortunate son who gets the offer of a great no show job.

    All that said, this won't happen.  I think.

    Jerslyn (none / 0) (#8)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 07:21:16 AM EST
    We had an email exchange about time stamps.

    That comment was posted at 7:44 NOT 7:18.

    Like I said who really cares just FYI.

    This is a consistent thing.  Happens every time.


    look (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by FlJoe on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 07:58:11 AM EST
    on the bright side makes it harder for GOP goons to monitor your activity. By now they probably think you are a time traveler.

    On the other hand, you are now the prime suspect in planting Obama's false birth records.


    I guess I'm on CNN today (none / 0) (#10)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 08:47:47 AM EST
    I would not get thru a day of Peggy Noonan without harming my expensive tv.

    I realize that not everybody likes ... (none / 0) (#23)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 12:49:10 PM EST
    ... Chuck Todd and Peggy Noonan (I certainly don't), but we should at least respect their natural and uncanny ability to literally suck the air out of the room with some of the most breathtakingly insipid political punditry ever uttered.

    Personally, my contempt is reserved for those MSNBC executives who appear to have confused inanity and banality for analysis and insight when deciding to prominently cast these two chattering birds in the network's news programming.



    Leda and the Swan (none / 0) (#24)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 12:54:56 PM EST
    My view of this was never the same after I saw a duck p€nis.

    You're welcome for not linking.


    After an all-day, all-night, all-morning (none / 0) (#11)
    by KeysDan on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 10:13:52 AM EST
    53/47 vote to table every motion to obtain more documents and to hear witnesses and make it a semblance of a fair trial,it appears that McConnell is just biding time until he has the votes to dismiss.  Republican senators not there yet will climb aboard as soon as they believe there is a suitable fig leaf.

    Frustration coupled with a sense of futility were apparent in House Manager Nadler's unvarnished presentation calling out Trump's lawyers' lies and history's likely assessment of the Republican senators as being complicit in Trump's constitutional crime involving a cover-up.

    After the street-fighter Fordham law-type approach of Nadler, I assumed that when it came to Adam Schiff's turn we would see the Harvard-law smoother tact.  But, no.  Schiff was no less frank,  with deserving rejoiners such as Trump keeping his promise to drain the swamp by exporting corruption to Ukraine.  

    Chief Justice Robert's attempt at "bothsiderism"--both sides need to be "civil", should dash those pundits' unrequited love for Roberts as a trial savior.

    The idea of trading a Biden or two for a witness who is relevant to Trump's impeachment charges is,  in my view, one of those by-gone era bipartisan, let's have a tall bourbon and branch water and work this all out. More likely, it would become a new Fox-ready disinformation ploy, just displacing House Managers as the villains. And, McConnell would not even negotiate picking up on motions today, rather than going into the wee hours.

    It was always a very good bet that the Senate would acquit the Impotus of the  impeachment charges, but it is so disheartening, and scary, to watch the machinations that are making it happen.

    Bothsiderism (none / 0) (#12)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 10:23:34 AM EST
    Nadler was screaming LIAR LIAR LIAR

    Very notable Schiff smartly avoided that.  

    Jus sayin.


    Yes, Nader (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by KeysDan on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 11:19:40 AM EST
    could have harnessed his umbrage and still been effective in calling out the Trump lawyers.  Schiff navigated the lies wisely

    The Trump lawyers were deserving, what with their insolence (you are not in charge here, call for apology), but Schiff took the better path.

    Actually. all the House Managers are doing a very good job, especially Hakeem Jeffries and Jason Crow.

    And, always more to add.  At a Davis press interview, Trump helped out in making the case for Impeachment Article 2, obstruction of Congress. He said he was comfortable with how the impeachment trial is going---because the White Hoouse is withholding evidence, "Honestly, we have all the material.  They don't have the material."


    I predict (none / 0) (#17)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 11:20:57 AM EST
    Less Nadler

    Shouldn't (none / 0) (#31)
    by jmacWA on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 02:30:11 PM EST
    we at least get some eye rolls from Roberts.  He just sits there and listens stoically to the GOP fabrications, but calls out the Democrats when they speak the truth.  Where were all the media calls for decorum when the GOP clowns were acting up in the House?

    I have no issue with Nadler calling out the liars.


    He spoke (none / 0) (#35)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 05:49:47 PM EST
    At the end of the day.  To both.

    And the House is not the Senate.  That was his total point.


    As Trump's attorneys played yesterday to ... (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 12:33:03 PM EST
    ... the Fox News audience and their client's political base, so Jerry Nadler did likewise to Democrats and progressives. While his remarks were admittedly intemperate, they were also not without purpose in firing a rhetorical shot right across the GOP's bow.

    If Republican managers want to impugn Democrats' motives, character and professional integrity with impunity, so too will Democratic managers reply in kind to them. The difference is that Reps. Schiff, Nadler, et al., have fact and truth on their side, whereas Republicans have only their own vanity and arrogance.



    I Wouldn't Feel So Miserable (none / 0) (#13)
    by RickyJim on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 10:30:11 AM EST
    before the witnesses/documents votes post  opening arguments.  Even if that one doesn't turn out well for the Democrats, they have a great new issue to unseat Republican senators this November.

    too bad CJ Roberts (none / 0) (#14)
    by leap on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 11:13:40 AM EST
    cares more about managers throwing insinuating words about than Republican lawyers throwing out lies. He is such a coward.

    I think he was talking about (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 11:17:18 AM EST
    Tradition.  And tone.  You don't scream liar, liar, liar in the senate.  Especially if it's true.

    Roberts did a great thing.  He put down a marker.

    I have no doubt that before this is over we will all see the need for that marker.

    I would like people to lay off Roberts.  He said a true thing.  He may be our only hope.


    He did lay indeed down that marker. (5.00 / 2) (#19)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 12:35:03 PM EST
    Now, let's see if he actually holds to it.

    It is still (none / 0) (#21)
    by KeysDan on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 12:42:27 PM EST
    OK to call each other pettifoggers, though.

    That reference sent me to the dictionary: (none / 0) (#26)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 01:23:27 PM EST
    Pettifog (verb), to quibble about petty points.

    Sounds like a term that would be wielded by a character from a British costume drama.



    Probably, the (none / 0) (#30)
    by KeysDan on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 02:28:27 PM EST
    meaning of an inferior legal practitioner, especially one who deals with petty or dubious practices---in the context of the Chief Justice `s reference to the 1905 Swain impeachment trial    when  a senator objected to a House manager's use of the term.

    The verdict is in on Chief Justice Roberts. (none / 0) (#40)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 12:02:52 AM EST
    "He did indeed lay down that marker. Now, let's see if he holds to it."

    He didn't.


    Reporting by CNN. (none / 0) (#41)
    by KeysDan on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 08:49:12 AM EST
    Susan Collins sent a note to the dais minutes before the Chief Justice admonished both House Managers and Trump's lawyers.  So far, Collins has not fessed up, but, apparently some Republican senators complained not so much about Nadler's assertion that Trump's lawyers lied, and then lied some more, but that they were complicit in voting for a cover-up. The Trump-supporting senators are, apparently, offended by incivility and a lack of decorum.  Pettifoggery is locker room talk and needs  to stay there. And that applies to both sides, of course.

    Roberts didn't say you can't lie (none / 0) (#42)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 09:05:45 AM EST
    That's really not his job.  He said you can't call someone a liar.  Seems pretty easy to understand.  And if you read the pearl clutching coverage you usually get to that point.

    Ruth Marcus who wrote one of the most quoted clutch pieces (JOHN ROBERTS WONT SAVE US FROM TRUMP -WaPo) just said in a interview (I rewound to get this right)

    "The Chief Justice did a good thing the other night when he admonished both sides...but I don't think we would be well served or that the court would be well served if he were to really take - I know this is frustrating to people- if he were to take a really aggressive position"

    She said a lot more.  And I agree with almost all of it.

    The correct response to a lie is to show why it's a lie, not scream liar liar liar.

    I would like to see some of our institutions not dragged down into the muck.  Liars gonna lie.  We need to be better.  Calmer.  More civil.

    People will notice.  People are noticing.


    Chief Justice Roberts spent that entire ... (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 01:07:09 PM EST
    ... afternoon and evening sitting on the dais like a bump on a log while Trump's lawyers repeatedly impugned the integrity, character and motive of the House managers, rather than address the charges that were before them.

    While I understand the reasons for granting defense counsels a wider latitude to conduct their case than the prosecution, Roberts allowed personal attacks to be leveled against the managers, and has further allowed the same from GOP senators, who are ostensibly members of the jury.

    One can only imagine how Roberts will respond when Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) arises on the Senate floor in defense of Trump's conduct and starts spitting nails at the prosecution for the vicarious benefit of his Fox News audience.

    All a baseball player ever asks of an umpire behind the plate is to be consistent and fair when calling balls and strikes. Surely we can call upon a judge to act likewise when presiding over a case.



    I (none / 0) (#50)
    by FlJoe on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 05:15:23 PM EST
    am waiting for him to call (a very) foul ball on this one
    Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) attacked veteran and former Soviet escapee Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman while she was supposed to be attending the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.
    it's a twofer, breaking the trial rules and unnecessary pettifogging.  

    It not a secret (none / 0) (#52)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 05:40:20 PM EST
    People are not sitting and listening.  Few republicans are.  Widely reported.

    And the dirty secret is many democrats are also wandering the halls.

    Not sure what Roberts is supposed to do about that.


    There is a reason we never (none / 0) (#53)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 05:41:02 PM EST
    Get to see the audience.

    Well they are spinning (none / 0) (#56)
    by ragebot on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 08:24:57 PM EST

    Can Roberts ban fidgets?


    Yes (none / 0) (#57)
    by Peter G on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 11:31:25 PM EST
    I would think so. And hold them in contempt.

    My impression was (5.00 / 1) (#58)
    by ragebot on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 12:46:39 AM EST
    the senate votes on the rules.  Far as I know there has been on prohibition of fidgeting (is that the right word) yet.

    Also not sure Roberts has much power at all.  I thought both the House and Senate voted on who was in contempt.  Has the congress ever voted to hold a member in contempt.  I know cabinet members have been held in contempt but it was more along he lines of finding a cabinet member in contempt with the admonishment strongly worded letter to follow.

    In any case the Senate can vote with a simple majority to over ride any action Roberts takes; at least that is my understanding.


    In a plug for this site (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 12:38:26 PM EST
    This tone thing is important.  
    When I came here it took a while to learn to make an argument without screaming liar, liar, liar.

    I appreciate the perhaps one thing I have gotten over the years.  

    More people will listen if you are not screaming.



    RickyJim (none / 0) (#22)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 12:45:05 PM EST
    Makes a great point

    Let's not set our hair on fire about witnesses until we know there will be no witnesses.

    Sort of a PSA

    The ads (none / 0) (#37)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 06:12:25 PM EST
    are already running about the Republicans voting to have no witnesses at a trial.

    ... are later replicated elsewhere, it may well give some GOP senators serious pause:

    "As the Senate begins its second day of the trial of President Donald Trump, a Microsoft News poll finds that 57 percent of likely voters support removing him from office. The poll found that 57 percent support a Senate vote for removal, and just 37 percent oppose. Pro-and-con views were much closer before the House voted on Dec. 18 to send articles of impeachment to the Senate -- today the two views are 20 percentage points apart, and before the vote they were just 10 points apart." (Emphasis is mine.)

    Microsoft News says its poll's margin of error is plus or minus three points. Again, if this result subsequently corresponds with that from other similar polling questions, it would both represent a significant shift in public opinion from the adoption of articles of impeachment five weeks ago, and strongly suggest that "Moscow Mitch" McConnell and congressional Republicans may be playing with fire.


    The Poll Would Be More Useful (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by RickyJim on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 08:04:14 PM EST
    if it had a state by state breakdown.

    This is a couple (none / 0) (#36)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 06:09:46 PM EST
    point shift upward from the last poll that was taken the other day. Maybe Schiff's arguments are making headway with some.

    I think what's far more important is ... (none / 0) (#38)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jan 22, 2020 at 06:45:07 PM EST
    ... the 10-pt. shift upward from five weeks ago, which is reflecting a general trend in that direction in this particular poll. The day-to-day fluctuations in opinion polls are usually irrelevant. If we're going to see any impact in polls from the public Senate presentation by Adam Schiff, et al., we'll probably start noticing it next week.

    This (none / 0) (#43)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 09:08:08 AM EST
    Trump's lawyers are also on trial
    The president's impeachment trial has revealed a common Trump theme: The lawyers he brings in to defend his behavior end up in their own legal morass.

    They've been accused of orchestrating a criminal conspiracy. They've been dubbed ethically compromised. They've been labeled liars. They could even be called to testify in the impeachment case they were hired to combat.

    In the opening days of Donald Trump's Senate trial, it has at times felt like the president's lawyers are his co-defendants.

    If only Lin-Manuel Miranda could lay out ... (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 01:18:24 PM EST
    ... the House managers' case as a Broadway musical, Trump would be removed from office within the week while Disney Studios initiated negotiations for the movie rights.



    This (5.00 / 2) (#70)
    by FlJoe on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 08:54:42 AM EST
    seems to be a forgotten point, remember that the Senators get to grill these guys.

    I look forward to the likes of Kamala Harris going up against Sekulow and Cippolne.

    As I mentioned earlier they both could and should be considered fact witnesses and I expect to exploit that.

    Also the bonkers legal theories that they espouse should easily torn to shreds.

    As a side note the performance of Klobuchar, Warren and Sanders may have an effect on the Democratic race. If Amy were to hit one out of the park on national TV it might give her a significant boost. I expect Warren to use it to promote her anti-corruption theme and Sanders to give another finger wagging tirade.

    In any case there will be fireworks.  


    Amy caused (5.00 / 2) (#71)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 09:42:50 AM EST
    Kavanaugh to have a meltdown so bad that the GOP took him by the scruff of his neck and made him apologize.

    This (none / 0) (#44)
    by FlJoe on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 09:10:53 AM EST
    seems out of character  
    In the midst of one of the most acrimonious partisan divides in congressional history, Sen. Lindsey Graham extended kind words to Rep. Adam Schiff after the first day of opening arguments in President Trump's Senate impeachment trial.

    "Good job, you're very well-spoken," the South Carolina Republican told the California Democrat as the two men shook hands on Wednesday night.

    Adam Schiff has been brilliant. (5.00 / 2) (#45)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 12:48:35 PM EST
    He came. He saw. He's named names, kicked a$$ and taken no prisoners. Adam Schiff is the holy terror who's striking fear in Republican hearts, because the fiercest warrior in battle is the man who first did his very best to avoid such a confrontation.

    Sen. Lindsay Graham, on the other hand, is an opportunistic lapdog who has shown himself to be a man untethered by any moral or ethical principle, and whose one true mission has been political self-aggrandizement.



    Back (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by FlJoe on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 05:34:31 PM EST
    to form
    "All I can tell you is from the president's point of view, he did nothing wrong in his mind," the South Carolina Republican insisted.
    "If the mind is sh!t you must acquit" is one heck of a closing argument.

    In a criminal case, which I realize (5.00 / 2) (#55)
    by Peter G on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 07:57:54 PM EST
    is not a perfect analogy, the inability of the accused to understand having done anything wrong -- notwithstanding objectively damning evidence, or even a verdict -- is considered evidence of a narcissistic personality, which in turn makes the defendant a much higher risk for recidivism and thus a greater danger to society, warranting a more severe sentence. It is not under any circumstances considered a defense.

    "While Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters,
    Sons of bankers, sons of lawyers
    Turn around and say good morning to the night.
    For unless they see the sky,
    But they can't and that is why
    They know not if it's dark outside or light."
    - Elton John and Bernie Taupin, "Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters" (Honky Chateau, 1972)

    ... when filtered through the warped prisms of the GOP's parallel universe. Because unfortunately for the country, this so-called trial is not being conducted in an actual courtroom but rather, in "Moscow Mitch" McConnell's Senate Big Top, where Republican senators are underscoring the inherent wisdom of the late author and social activist Upton Sinclair's acid observation from his 1935 political memoir I, Candidate for Governor: And How I Got Licked:

    "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it."



    That was remarkable even for Lindsey. (none / 0) (#54)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jan 23, 2020 at 05:44:11 PM EST
    In his mind.  His mind?

    Lindsey did seem a little more hysterical than usual.  I don't think they think this is going well.

    And no I don't really expect conviction.  They are worried about the other audience.


    Interesting - Axios (none / 0) (#59)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 06:26:23 AM EST
    Translation - we need to end this.  It's not going well.

    Trump impeachment team looks at shorter trial defense

    President Trump's team is considering using just a portion of the 24 hours they're given for arguments in his impeachment trial.

    Why it matters: A truncated defense would likely reflect a decision not to contest facts or defend Trump point by point, but rather to try to diminish the legitimacy of Democrats' overall case and end the trial as quickly as possible.

    But if the White House moves too abruptly, it risks angering the small group of Republican senators Democrats have been courting to cross party lines to allow new witnesses and evidence in the trial.
    What we're hearing: Just because Trump's team can use up to three days to present their case doesn't mean they will. Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow himself appeared to tease the idea it could wrap as early as Saturday -- though other White House and Senate GOP aides later downplayed the notion they would cut back to just one day.

    The bottom line: When your strategy is "concede nothing, admit nothing, apologize for nothing," it doesn't have to take very long

    Going to be listening on Sirius today

    Also interesting (none / 0) (#60)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 06:39:25 AM EST

    Donald J. Trump

     After having been treated unbelievably unfairly in the House, and then having to endure hour after hour of lies, fraud & deception by Shifty Schiff, Cryin' Chuck Schumer & their crew, looks like my lawyers will be forced to start on Saturday, which is called Death Valley in T.V.

    6:37 AM - Jan 24, 2020
    Twitter Ads info and privacy

    Something tells me Death Valley is exactly what they want.

    And in a continuing effort to not stream consciousness I just heard a pretty great line from Bloomberg.

    "I realize some people may say, do we really want an election between two NY billionaires?  To which I say, who is the other one?"

    Blooms has been going straight at Trump in ways that make it clear the goal is to "trigger" him. Like premiering his "Trump disrespects the military" ad on Fox and Friends.

    I really and truly believe if we are saved from Trump season 2 it will be by Bloomberg.  Even if he is not the nominee (I am increasingly convinced he will be) he has pledged to spend all his money and use all his formidable machine to beat Trump even if he is not the nominee.

    So if we are saved it will be Blooms and his checkbook that save us.

    Even if you do not like that.


    It doesn't (none / 0) (#61)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 07:06:34 AM EST
    bother me that he's opening up his checkbook but I have to say I'm sure the purity brigade is gonna have a meltdown over it.

    Democracy is the most important thing to save. If we don't have that we don't have anything. This is something more people need to understand and forget about their silly gripes about where the money comes from. The campaign finance system can be reformed in 2020 if need be.


    Do you imagine he has not dealt (none / 0) (#62)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 07:25:29 AM EST
    With purity brigades before?  In the three times he was elected Mayor of (freakin) NYC.

    No offense to the purity brigade but I suspect they are about to be steamrolled.  And I will cheer.

    That said, nominee or not it will still be Bloomberg's money.  Something also tells me the purity brigade will no problem taking his money when the shi+ hits the fan

    And I see nothing that says the shi+ is not coming.  We need a really really big fan.


    I will (5.00 / 1) (#63)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 07:32:47 AM EST
    cheer along with you if the purity brigade gets steamrolled. I'm beyond tired of their petty tyrant attitude and toddler meltdowns.

    What exactly (none / 0) (#64)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 07:35:33 AM EST
    do you think is going to hit the fan? Seriously there's so many ways this could fall I'm wondering what your take is.

    Theoretically- The trial happens (none / 0) (#65)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 07:47:24 AM EST
    And then we move on.  What will hit the fan is the distinct possibility Trump wins another term

    How could anyone possibly watch what has happened the last three years and not admit how possible that is.  Not doing so is deep denial.  The thing BTW that gave us Trump in the first place.

    You want my take, and sorry this veered off topic for this thread, I don't think, barring some really big frankly unlikely events in the trial - or a Rudy indictment - or on and on with all the magical thinking we have all done for three years, ANY of the other candidates are better than 50/50 for winning and most less than that.   That's what I think.

    IMO we need to, right now, start preparing for the worst and even broadening our idea of the definition of "worst".

    There is no room for error.  I think the others have proven over and over they are not ready for prime time - forget Trump.  I do not think Biden is any more likely than Amy or Pete to win.  I think this is a dangerous idea.  Biden is an absolute disaster.

    Show me a candidate I think can win and I will donate.  Right now I think Bloomberg can win.

    That's what I think.


    This is another (5.00 / 1) (#67)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 08:09:44 AM EST
    reason my husband and I are looking at being ex-pats. I can't believe this country is swirling the drain so bad but it is. This is not the way I want to live out my days in a totalitarian theocracy.

    Not giving advise (none / 0) (#68)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 08:23:48 AM EST
    But I will never do that. Even if I could which I probably could not.  I considered it once when things were great compared to now, but no.

    This is my country.  I will die fighting.


    I can understand (none / 0) (#69)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 08:26:26 AM EST
    that and have been that way up until now.

    Well (none / 0) (#66)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 08:08:16 AM EST
    I tend to agree with you on Biden. I think some of the others have better odds but they might not be much better except Bernie who has worse odds. There is a reason the GOP is pushing Bernie. Trump's odds increase greatly against Bernie.

    Bloomberg certainly has shown that he can go toe to toe with Trump and is not worried about any namby pamby bipartisanship. So that's a plus for him with me.

    And never forget the media's same siderism is going to do nothing to help us and the fact that they want a close race and will turn on our nominee if they get too far ahead. Whether they want it to work for Trump or not it does.


    Purity Brigade? (none / 0) (#80)
    by TrevorBolder on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 07:50:51 PM EST
    Bloomberg was elected freaking Mayor of NYC as a Republican, for 3 terms, after bribing the City Council to let him run for a additional term. As a Republican following 2 terms of Rudy Guiliani.

    There was no purity brigade in getting him elected in NYC. He was elected to continue the job Guiliani began


    Since you (5.00 / 1) (#85)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 08:31:52 PM EST
    are Russian I would guess you have no idea how ridiculous your post is.

    BREAKING: ABC News is reporting ... (none / 0) (#74)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 01:11:23 PM EST
    "Get rid of her! Get her out tomorrow. I don't care. Get her out tomorrow. Take her out. Okay? Do it."

    ... there is an audio recording of President Trump directly ordering Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman to "get rid of" U.S. Ambassador Marie Yovanovich, which occurred at a private dinner with the two men whom Trump still insists he has never met.


    They do not follow orders well (1.00 / 1) (#81)
    by TrevorBolder on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 07:57:30 PM EST
    "Get rid of her! Get her out tomorrow. I don't care. Get her out tomorrow. Take her out. Okay? Do it."

    The tape was in April 2018, she was removed as ambassador in May 2019.

    Maybe Trump says things in private meetings he doesn't mean, or forgets about the next day as they are not really important to him


    You (5.00 / 4) (#82)
    by FlJoe on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 08:09:21 PM EST
    seem quite fine with the President saying "things" that he may or may not mean to to random people and then forgetting about it. Heck of a way to run a country comrade.

    No one said (none / 0) (#83)
    by TrevorBolder on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 08:23:53 PM EST
    I was fine with it,

    That is your fantasy

    But , it does appear that he does that, in private meetings, which all of a sudden are no longer private.

    Would have loved to hear Obama's side comments about his adversaries. LBJ's were legendary, omg, everyone would be traumatized about something he said in private with no intent for it to be public.


    That's hilarious (5.00 / 3) (#86)
    by Yman on Sat Jan 25, 2020 at 07:57:06 AM EST
    Not Trump's comments, but your laughable attempt to rationalize them because they were made in a private setting.  Not to mention your suggestion that he didn't act immediately because it was unimportant, as well as your imagined comments from Obama.

    Well (5.00 / 4) (#84)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 08:30:57 PM EST
    considering the fact that Trump is well known as an idiot you really don't think he'd be hiring the smartest mobsters do you? I mean Parnas was running a business called "Fraud Guarantee".

    "They" do not follow (5.00 / 1) (#87)
    by KeysDan on Sat Jan 25, 2020 at 10:19:00 AM EST
    orders well.  Yes, when you want to replace an ambassador, which is the president's prerogative, rather that doing it yourself or having the Secretary of State do so, it is just good government to meet in a private hotel dining room with criminal or shady non-governmental characters and repeatedly bark out orders to "take her out".  And, "they" were on it, memorializing the instructions so as not to forget them.  And, the plot thickened.

    tRump (none / 0) (#90)
    by FlJoe on Sun Jan 26, 2020 at 07:43:06 AM EST
    ordered a hit and it was carried out, there is well documented character assassination campaign launched against the ambassador.

    Parnas was in the thick of it, the plot is crystal clear.


    and here's Parnas' recording (none / 0) (#94)
    by leap on Sun Jan 26, 2020 at 09:42:09 AM EST
    of the hit piece. Go to about 42 minutes in for the nub.

    Ambassador Yovanovich (none / 0) (#95)
    by KeysDan on Sun Jan 26, 2020 at 10:23:31 AM EST
    was recalled in May 2019 after a late night warning by the Director General of the Foreign Service to get out on the next plane. William Taylor was then appointed as acting Ambassador in June 2019. Yet, curiously, Yovanovich , "the woman" as he described her in his shakedown call of July 25, 2019, was still on his mind not only as the "bad news" Ambassador, but also, in the ominous, future tense statement to Zelensky that "she is going to go through some things".

    Who released that recording? (none / 0) (#75)
    by Peter G on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 02:03:43 PM EST
    Mr. Butterfield's (none / 0) (#76)
    by KeysDan on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 02:21:29 PM EST
    revelation showed Nixon was taping others. Here, others are taping Trump.  If Igor has taped Trump at a dinner meeting at his hotel, Russia, China and everyone else knows every thought of Trump. While his thoughts require just a short tape, we can only hope he does not mumble the codes on tape.

    From what I could gather, ... (none / 0) (#78)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 02:49:57 PM EST
    ... it appears that Igor Fruman recorded it, so I would assume that it was released by either him or his attorney.

    It sounds like a gangster ... (none / 0) (#77)
    by desertswine on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 02:25:20 PM EST
    ordering a "hit."

    "She is going to (none / 0) (#79)
    by KeysDan on Fri Jan 24, 2020 at 03:08:02 PM EST
    go through some things."  Doesn't sound good, a threat---testified the Ambassador.  And, I doubt that President Zelensky, also, did not note  Trump's gangster language for those who don't do his bidding.

    Three votes for witnesses (none / 0) (#88)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Jan 26, 2020 at 07:02:58 AM EST
    Would not surprise me.  Just to poke us.

    I (none / 0) (#89)
    by FlJoe on Sun Jan 26, 2020 at 07:33:58 AM EST
    think three would be a small victory for the Democrats. The "what are you trying to hide question" gets a bi-partisan veneer.

    This may be huge

    Sen. Mitt Romney said Saturday that it's "very likely" that he'll be in favor of calling witnesses in the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, but won't decide until after opening arguments.

    I hope it's huge (none / 0) (#91)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Jan 26, 2020 at 07:57:00 AM EST
    And not part of the "poke"

    Strangely (none / 0) (#92)
    by FlJoe on Sun Jan 26, 2020 at 08:24:32 AM EST
    I have not seen a single mention if it on the shows or the nets this morning. Plenty of time on the heads on pikes bs though.

    I will assume it's a poke until proven otherwise, it's just the way the GOP roll.


    I peeked at the bobble heads (none / 0) (#93)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Jan 26, 2020 at 08:28:22 AM EST
    I can't do it.  10 minutes on CNN had me running to the escapism.

    Kaboom (none / 0) (#96)
    by FlJoe on Sun Jan 26, 2020 at 05:26:58 PM EST
    Former national security adviser John Bolton revealed in his manuscript that President Donald Trump told him as early as August 2019 that he wanted to continue freezing the military and security assistance to Ukraine until they could get officials to go after the Biden family.


    So (none / 0) (#97)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Jan 26, 2020 at 05:35:20 PM EST
    We learn this in a pay wall protected article about a f'ing tell all book.

    Instead of, you know the way a civilized first world country would learn about it.  

    I'm sure this way will be more effective if getting justice.

    I'm feeling very patriotic and supportive of "the paper of record" right now.

    Haberman and Schmidt.  Mother of god


    Haberman and Schmidt (5.00 / 2) (#99)
    by Ga6thDem on Sun Jan 26, 2020 at 07:27:09 PM EST
    owe it to the country to take Trump down since they are the ones that were pushing all the email crappola for months.

    And (none / 0) (#98)
    by FlJoe on Sun Jan 26, 2020 at 05:41:44 PM EST
    of course the big story is Kobe is still dead.