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Trump Impeachment Thread

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Topic: Trump Impeachment Thread
Posted By: Passing Through
Subject: Trump Impeachment Thread
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 7:39pm
Now that the process is under way.

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Only the best people.



Replies:
Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 7:42pm
Petition for Grand Jury materials from the Mueller Inquiry.

http://judiciary.house.gov/sites/democrats.judiciary.house.gov/files/documents/FINAL%20PETITION.pdf" rel="nofollow - http://judiciary.house.gov/sites/democrats.judiciary.house.gov/files/documents/FINAL%20PETITION.pdf


APPLICATION OF THE COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY, U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, FOR AN ORDER AUTHORIZING THE RELEASE OF CERTAIN GRAND JURY MATERIALS 

Pursuant to Local Rule 57.6, the United States House of Representatives, Committee on the Judiciary (the Committee), through undersigned counsel, respectfully requests that this Court issue an order pursuant to Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 6(e) authorizing the release to the Committee of: (1) all portions of Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s Report on the Investigation Into Russian Interference In The 2016 Presidential Election (the Mueller Report) that were redacted pursuant to Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 6(e); (2) any underlying transcripts or exhibits referenced in the portions of the Mueller Report that were redacted pursuant to Rule 6(e); and (3) transcripts of any underlying grand jury testimony and any grand jury exhibits that relate directly to (A) President Trump’s knowledge of efforts by Russia to interfere in the 2016 U.S. Presidential election; (B) President Trump’s knowledge of any direct or indirect links or contacts between individuals associated with his Presidential campaign and Russia, including with respect to Russia’s election interference efforts; (C) President Trump’s knowledge of any potential criminal acts by him or any members of his administration, his campaign, his personal associates, or anyone associated with his administration or campaign; or (D) actions taken by former White House Counsel Donald F. McGahn II during the campaign, the transition, or McGahn’s period of service as White House Counsel. 



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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 7:43pm


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 7:44pm
You could have made it more accurate and appropriate ... 

"The Final Demise of the Democrates and Socialism in America Thread"


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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 7:48pm
Did you see Donald lashing out on twitter today at Fox? 

They aren't lying for him about his horrible poll numbers any more and he is upset with them.



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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 7:49pm
He is a whiny bastard. 

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 7:54pm
Whine and Win!Thumbs Up

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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 7:55pm
Not with 42%

Why do you think he is lashing out at everyone?


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 8:00pm
Republicans have to be testing the name President Pence.

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 8:03pm
This has a familiar ring to it, except that the Dems are even more on the nose than when Shrillary was their feckless leader and in the process of losing the unloseable election (oh wait, or was that Bill Shorten?) - who IS their leader now, btw???... is it John Setka too?Sleepy

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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 8:08pm
Do you dream about Bill?

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 8:17pm
Why, do you see me in your nightmares?LOL

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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 9:08pm
How it works.

The Supreme Court has explained that Congress has not only the power, but the duty, to investigate so it can inform the public of the operations of government:

It is the proper duty of a representative body to look diligently into every affair of government and to talk much about what it sees. It is meant to be the eyes and the voice, and to embody the wisdom and will of its constituents. Unless Congress have and use every means of acquainting itself with the acts and the disposition of the administrative agents of the government, the country must be helpless to learn how it is being served; and unless Congress both scrutinize these things and sift them by every form of discussion, the country must remain in embarrassing, crippling ignorance of the very affairs which it is most important that it should understand and direct. The informing function of Congress should be preferred even to its legislative function. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impeachment_in_the_United_States#cite_note-25" rel="nofollow - - [25]

 

House of Representatives: Impeachment https://en.m.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Impeachment_in_the_United_States&action=edit&section=8" rel="nofollow -

 

 

Impeachment proceedings may be requested by a member of the House of Representatives on his or her own initiative, either by presenting a list of the charges under oath or by asking for referral to the appropriate  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Congressional_committee" rel="nofollow - - Judicial Conference of the United States suggests a federal judge be impeached, a charge of actions constituting grounds for impeachment may come from a  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special_prosecutor" rel="nofollow - - state or territorial legislaturehttps://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_jury" rel="nofollow - - petition . An impeachment proceeding formally begins with a resolution adopted by the full House of Representatives, which typically includes a referral to a House committee.

The type of impeachment  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Resolution_%28law%29" rel="nofollow - - House Committee on the Judiciary . A resolution to authorize an investigation regarding impeachable conduct is referred to the  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_House_Committee_on_Rules" rel="nofollow - The House debates the resolution and may at the conclusion consider the resolution as a whole or vote on each article of impeachment individually. A  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Majority" rel="nofollow - https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Speaker_of_the_United_States_House_of_Representatives" rel="nofollow - Also, the House will adopt a resolution in order to notify the Senate of its action. After receiving the notice, the Senate will adopt an order notifying the House that it is ready to receive the managers. The House managers then appear before the bar of the Senate and exhibit the articles of impeachment. After the reading of the charges, the managers return and make a verbal report to the House.

Senate: Trial https://en.m.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Impeachment_in_the_United_States&action=edit&section=9" rel="nofollow -

 

 

The proceedings unfold in the form of a trial, with each side having the right to call witnesses and perform  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cross-examination" rel="nofollow - - oath  or  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Affirmation_in_law" rel="nofollow - - due diligence . After hearing the charges, the Senate usually deliberates in private. The Constitution requires a  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supermajority#Two-thirds_vote" rel="nofollow - https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impeachment_in_the_United_States#cite_note-26" rel="nofollow - - [26]  The Senate enters judgment on its decision, whether that be to convict or acquit, and a copy of the judgment is filed with the  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Secretary_of_State" rel="nofollow - https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impeachment_in_the_United_States#cite_note-R&PoP-USS-19" rel="nofollow - - [19]  Upon conviction in the Senate, the official is automatically removed from office and may also be barred from holding future office. The trial is not an actual criminal proceeding and more closely resembles a civil service termination appeal in terms of the contemplated deprivation. Therefore, the removed official may still be liable to criminal prosecution under a subsequent criminal proceeding. The President may not grant a pardon in the impeachment case, but may in any resulting Federal criminal case. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impeachment_in_the_United_States#cite_note-27" rel="nofollow - - [27]

Beginning in the 1980s with  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_E._Claiborne" rel="nofollow - https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impeachment_in_the_United_States#cite_note-R&PoP-USS-19" rel="nofollow - - [19]  These committees presided over the evidentiary phase of the trials, hearing the evidence and supervising the examination and cross-examination of witnesses. The committees would then compile the evidentiary record and present it to the Senate; all senators would then have the opportunity to review the evidence before the chamber voted to convict or acquit. The purpose of the committees was to streamline impeachment trials, which otherwise would have taken up a great deal of the chamber's time. Defendants challenged the use of these committees, claiming them to be a violation of their fair trial rights as this did not meet the constitutional requirement for their cases to be "tried by the Senate". Several impeached judges, including  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_District_Court_for_the_Southern_District_of_Mississippi" rel="nofollow - - Walter Nixon , sought  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_judiciary_of_the_United_States" rel="nofollow - https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nixon_v._United_States" rel="nofollow - - Nixon v. United States  (1993), the  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supreme_Court_of_the_United_States" rel="nofollow - - political questions  and  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Justiciability" rel="nofollow - https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impeachment_in_the_United_States#cite_note-PresserArticleI-2" rel="nofollow - - [2]

In theory at least, as President of the Senate, the  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vice_President_of_the_United_States" rel="nofollow - - judge in their own case  would be a blatant  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conflict_of_interest" rel="nofollow - - President pro tempore of the Senate .

To convict an accused, "the concurrence of two thirds of the [Senators] present" for at least one article is required. If there is no single charge commanding a "guilty" vote of two-thirds majority of the senators present, the defendant is acquitted and no punishment is imposed.

Results of conviction.

Conviction removes the defendant from office. Following conviction, the Senate may vote to further punish the individual by barring him or her from holding future federal office, elected or appointed. However, conviction does not extend to further punishment, for example, loss of pension. After conviction by the Senate, "the Party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to Indictment, Trial, Judgment and Punishment, according to Law" in the regular federal or state courts.

 




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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 9:15pm
Senate rules on Impeachment. The first section will become important as this process progresses, as it may not happen.


RULES OF PROCEDURE AND PRACTICE IN THE SENATE WHEN SITTING ON IMPEACHMENT TRIALS [Revised pursuant to S. Res. 479, 99–2, Aug. 16, 1986] 

I. Whensoever the Senate shall receive notice from the 100 House of Representatives that managers are appointed on their part to conduct an impeachment against any person and are directed to carry articles of impeachment to the Senate, the Secretary of the Senate shall immediately inform the House of Representatives that the Senate is ready to receive the managers for the purpose of exhibiting such articles of impeachment, agreeably to such notice.

https://www.law.cornell.edu/background/impeach/senaterules.pdf" rel="nofollow - https://www.law.cornell.edu/background/impeach/senaterules.pdf


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Shammy Davis
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 11:49pm
Originally posted by Passing Through Passing Through wrote:

Senate rules on Impeachment. The first section will become important as this process progresses, as it may not happen. . .

Ah! The light bulb has finally turned on in PT'S thinking. Now picture this as Pelosi stalls and Nadler whines.

Related image


Posted By: Shammy Davis
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2019 at 11:52pm
Originally posted by Passing Through Passing Through wrote:

Now that the process is under way.
This process?

Image result for train crash gif


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 8:35am
Originally posted by Shammy Davis Shammy Davis wrote:

Originally posted by Passing Through Passing Through wrote:

Senate rules on Impeachment. The first section will become important as this process progresses, as it may not happen. . .

Ah! The light bulb has finally turned on in PT'S thinking. Now picture this as Pelosi stalls and Nadler whines.


You are funny Shammy. LOL

You know I told you what the strategy would be last Nov and several times since. Jerry has just taken the first ptep towards obtaining grand jury materials(you know all the times Donald and his kids were blacked out) 

The difference is that Jerry is very smart and is sidestepping that corrupt Senate Leader MoscowMitch who boasts that he will shut down the Senate vote before it happens. Wink


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Baguette
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 9:32am
They have to get the full story out there PT and once they do it should all happen very quickly. Trump can’t be impeached if the Republicans stick solid with him, but that would be pretty hard for them to do once the so far hidden info is out there. It’s all very interesting!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 9:46am
That is the point of what Democrats are trying to do Baguette.

Impeachment only happens in Republicans vote with Democrats and deliver a 67% verdict. That simply wont happen, and McConnell has said he will shut down the Senate vote.

Democrats job is to investigate and hand their findings to the Senate who hold a trial.

Democrats inform the Senate of their Manager choices and the Senate then select their Managers and the process begins.

What Democrats are doing is to not name Managers but continue with the pre Impeachment investigations. With no  Senate Managers the process ends with a vote on the House floor to presumably find Trump guilty but to not continue to a Senate trial.

This pre Impeachment inquiry they believe allows them to obtain what they want from the court and it adds weight to a judge forcing all the Trump obstructers from appearing before them 


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Baguette
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 10:09am
The Republicans are getting away with it at the moment because they can frame it as a “ fake news witch hunt” only because we don’t know the full story. The extent they’re going to to make sure we don’t know that full story to me is highly suspicious. Surely an innocent person would want it all out there to prove their innocence? To me this has never been a political left versus right situation . This is a criminal in the Whitehouse situation. I find it so strange that all Americans aren’t demanding it gets sorted ASAP!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 10:18am
They got a jump on the process with William Barr declaring Trump had not done anything wrong and Trump declaring he was exonerated.

Wednesday was the first time people not actually paying attention got to hear the facts of the situation, 9 weeks later. 9 weeks for those lies to go unchallenged. 

Just as after Mueller's 12 minute public statement, it changed views with some Republicans saying they had never heard it suggested Trump had done anything wrong.

Wednesday was devastating for Trump and there is now 6 weeks of no Congress where members go back to their districts and hold town hall meetings and talk to constituents to explain what happened last Wednesday. On returning, hopefully a lot of the ongoing legal stuff is cleared up and public hearings will continue unobstructed.

Last Wednesday, not a single Republican questioned Mueller's findings, they just tried to discredit the process, the inquiries origins and the people conducting the inquiry.

Not one asked Mueller a question on the substance of his finding, because they couldn't.
Also none asked questions on the basis of the inquiry, the Russian attack on their elections, because they are relying on it again next year.


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Redemption
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 10:44am
Originally posted by Shammy Davis Shammy Davis wrote:

Originally posted by Passing Through Passing Through wrote:

Now that the process is under way.
This process?

Image result for train crash gif


Trump will have to leave the Oval Office though.
In 2024


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 10:48am
He desperately hopes he is re-elected but 2024 wont save him from prison though.

Who was the last President whose sole reason for needing re-election was to try to avoid prison?


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Shammy Davis
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 11:15am
Originally posted by Passing Through Passing Through wrote:

Originally posted by Shammy Davis Shammy Davis wrote:

Originally posted by Passing Through Passing Through wrote:

Senate rules on Impeachment. The first section will become important as this process progresses, as it may not happen. . .

Ah! The light bulb has finally turned on in PT'S thinking. Now picture this as Pelosi stalls and Nadler whines.



You are funny Shammy. LOL

You know I told you what the strategy would be last Nov and several times since. Jerry has just taken the first ptep towards obtaining grand jury materials(you know all the times Donald and his kids were blacked out) 

The difference is that Jerry is very smart and is sidestepping that corrupt Senate Leader MoscowMitch who boasts that he will shut down the Senate vote before it happens. Wink


But, but, but, nothing is going to happen. Didn't Jerry tell you that Congress is in recess until September 6th? When they convene again it will be just in time to recess for the holidays.

Image result for laughing gif


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 12:21pm
Keep up please Shammy. How many times have I told you this whole process is about the timing of the public hearings. Maximum impact Shammy, and that isn't doing it now. 

I know you Trumpers would love to have this over with very soon so that the Trump/Russia/Hannity propaganda machine can roll back into action with plenty of time before the elections.

What did Nancy say in a candid moment? I dont want him Impeached, I want him in prison. 


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Tlazolteotl
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 12:29pm
When you compare the US electoral process to the Australian electoral process, from beginning to end, we look like geniuses.

Every part of the US system is rotten, beginning with disenfrachising millions, ending at the Electoral College, and all stops in between.

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"Two hundred years ago, 99.999 percent of human idiocy went unrecorded. Now we have the Internet."

Errol Morris


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 12:34pm
Very true tlaz. In an article this week it was suggested that things are so badly skewed now that Trump could technically lose the popular vote by 5 million this time and still win. He lost by 3 million to Hillary.

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Shammy Davis
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 1:03pm
Originally posted by Passing Through Passing Through wrote:

Keep up please Shammy. How many times have I told you this whole process is about the timing of the public hearings. Maximum impact Shammy, and that isn't doing it now. 

I know you Trumpers would love to have this over with very soon so that the Trump/Russia/Hannity propaganda machine can roll back into action with plenty of time before the elections.

What did Nancy say in a candid moment? I dont want him Impeached, I want him in prison. 


Another empty prediction? Keeping up with nothing is not much of a challenge.
Image result for laughing gif


Posted By: maccamax
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 1:20pm
The TBV "Dog Pack" must be almost ready to start attacking Boring Boris .

He is now PM and that means he cannot be supported by the Local loons..

Our rusted on Lefties can't allow anything like that to happen.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 1:32pm
There were no attacks on Theresa May or David Cameron maxie. Why would there now be attacks on Boris?

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Whale
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 1:35pm
Originally posted by maccamax maccamax wrote:

The TBV "Dog Pack" must be almost ready to start attacking Boring Boris .

He is now PM and that means he cannot be supported by the Local loons..

Our rusted on Lefties can't allow anything like that to happen.

Son't be silly Macca, he is not a lying, crooked, racist,bullying, thieving piece of trash.
Some may disagree with his statements or actions but he is not filth 


Posted By: stayer
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 4:23pm
Originally posted by Passing Through Passing Through wrote:

There were no attacks on Theresa May or David Cameron maxie. Why would there now be attacks on Boris?

Lol. It starts...

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"She's going through a growth phase." - GW


Posted By: Tlazolteotl
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 7:45pm
I'm interested to see a no-deal WTO rules Brexit because the fear of it looks greatly exaggerated to me. But if I'm wrong then it's no skin off my nose.

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"Two hundred years ago, 99.999 percent of human idiocy went unrecorded. Now we have the Internet."

Errol Morris


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 7:53pm
They have been discussing this for a while now since it became apparent that a hard Brexit was more than a possibility. I think Britain will be locked out of WTO for 6 or 7 years. Some of the more dire prediction have global GDP implications. Hard to see it though.

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 9:36pm
Originally posted by Tlazolteotl Tlazolteotl wrote:

When you compare the US electoral process to the Australian electoral process, from beginning to end, we look like geniuses.

Every part of the US system is rotten, beginning with disenfrachising millions, ending at the Electoral College, and all stops in between.

 

Excellent piece on the electoral college and how Trump's vile racist agenda is a strategy to win it again.


Trump’s Racist Electoral Chess Board

His racism is turning off lots of people, but mostly those who live in blue states that he lost in 2016.
by  https://thebulwark.com/author/richard-north-patterson/" rel="nofollow - RICHARD NORTH PATTERSON  
 
JULY 26, 2019 5:25 AM
https://thebulwark.com/trumps-racist-electoral-chess-board/" rel="nofollow - https://thebulwark.com/trumps-racist-electoral-chess-board/


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 9:43pm
A follow up


Electoral College

Richard North Patterson has a  https://thebulwark.us18.list-manage.com/track/click?u=41df14e6667a85d0f6e4a4f5e&id=2c7663d780&e=d7d7772423" rel="nofollow - great piece  up today about how, in 2020, the Electoral College is, in a sense, incentivizing Trump's racism.

Here's RNP:
 
Trump sees his racial provocations as strategic. Notes  https://thebulwark.us18.list-manage.com/track/click?u=41df14e6667a85d0f6e4a4f5e&id=190e6f7f2b&e=d7d7772423" rel="nofollow - the Ironically, his malign electoral incentives are embedded in our most revered foundational document: the Constitution.  https://thebulwark.us18.list-manage.com/track/click?u=41df14e6667a85d0f6e4a4f5e&id=7ad53e26e2&e=d7d7772423" rel="nofollow - Explains  The New Yorker: “To restate the obvious: the president is unpopular. Despite this… he’s concentrating on turning out his base of disaffected white voters, particularly those living in the Midwestern states that tipped the Electoral College his way.” In the New York Times, Nate Cohn  https://thebulwark.us18.list-manage.com/track/click?u=41df14e6667a85d0f6e4a4f5e&id=ddc02d5935&e=d7d7772423" rel="nofollow - amplified Trump’s electoral calculus  — given his advantage in the Electoral College, Cohn estimates, he “could win while losing the national [popular] vote by as much as five percentage points.” 

 

https://thebulwark.us18.list-manage.com/track/click?u=41df14e6667a85d0f6e4a4f5e&id=79e20b1391&e=d7d7772423" rel="nofollow - Read the whole thing . There's a lot in there and it's all very interesting.

But there are two follow-on points that I think are worth making.

The first is that it didn't have to be this way. Trump supporters like to say that Trump was the only candidate in 2016 who could have beaten Hillary Clinton.

This seems very wrong to me.

I'm open to the idea that Trump is the only candidate who could have beaten Hillary Clinton in the way he did: Which is to say, lose the popular vote and then win Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin.

2016 presented two electoral pathways for Republicans. The first was to become a white-identity party and try to win a narrow EC victory by flipping industrial Midwestern states. That's what Trump did.

The other pathway was to become a majority party. If someone else had been the nominee—Marco Rubio, Chris Christie, Scott Walker, take your pick—the likely EC map would have had Democrats holding Pennsylvania and Michigan and Republicans taking Wisconsin, New Hampshire, Virginia, Colorado, and Nevada.

At which point the party is set to try to expand the map further in 2020 and integrate even more groups into their coalition.

As it is, the party is now mortgaged to white identity politics and has no real pathway forward except to hope that Trump draws a radical challenger and then hold on for dear life.

The second thing I wanted to say about the Electoral College is that it is an under-appreciated aspect of our republican system.

Because people are generally garbage—that's just a fact; science—direct democracy should be mediated at every possible juncture.

The EC does that. But it does a lot more. It essentially enforces a two-party system by not allowing third parties to gain any purchase unless they can win entire states. This has the effect of taking every policy dispute and having it sorted in a binary way by the two parties.

Are there downsides to this? Sure.

But there are very real upsides, too. A parliamentary system with dozens of parties is fine for smaller countries. The smaller the political system, the more nimble it can be.

But America has 330 million people in it. Our government handles like an aircraft carrier. Which means that our political system should have as many hedges built into it as possible. We want issues to be digested slowly by our political parties.

So two cheers for the Electoral College. The problem we face today isn't the EC. It's the GOP.


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 31 Jul 2019 at 7:46pm
The number of Democratic members of the House of Representatives who support impeachment today rose to 114, up from 83 prior to Me Mueller testifying last week. A majority of the House Judiciary Committee where impeachment begins supports it.

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Shammy Davis
Date Posted: 31 Jul 2019 at 9:21pm
Originally posted by Passing Through Passing Through wrote:

The number of Democratic members of the House of Representatives who support impeachment today rose to 114, up from 83 prior to Me Mueller testifying last week. A majority of the House Judiciary Committee where impeachment begins supports it.
Of course. All are Dems. Running out of info to post, are you?


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 01 Aug 2019 at 8:50am
I said they are Dems. That is still where impeachment starts isn't it Shammy, in the House Judiciary?

 While the dotard believes he can stop impeachment in the courts, his loyal puppy Barr hasn't explained how it works  to him yet. #MoscowMitch told Donald he would take care of it for him and that's all that matters, and Barr wouldn't dare tell him anything different.

Anyway, Nancy's grand plan is going along terrific. The Judiciary is holding their pre impeachment inquiry, getting the legal stuff sorted, sending out subpoenas etc. 

All tentative Dems on break will hold town halls and talk to constituents before returning in 6 weeks to report where their districts stand. Nancy as House leader has her majority and particularly the 40 new members to protect. September is when it all advances quicklyThumbs Up


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 01 Aug 2019 at 1:41pm
#MoscowMitch got a run at the Democratic debate today and got big applause.

It has been trending for 4 days now and he hates it. It is a winner for Democrats.

Moscow Mitch undermines Impeachment of Trump and his Russia conspiracy is not going to be a good headline for next year.


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 02 Aug 2019 at 1:11pm
117 now Shammy. Only one more needed.

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 03 Aug 2019 at 3:32pm
A very helpful update from Nancy on the progress of the various House committees efforts to bring back rule of law to the gigantic Trump swamp.

Pelosi Statement on Progress of House Investigations

AUGUST 2, 2019

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi released this statement on the progress of the House’s investigations:

“When we take the oath of office, we solemnly vow ‘to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.’  The Mueller report states unequivocally that Russia interfered in the 2016 election ‘in sweeping and systematic fashion.’  And the Intelligence Community informs us that Russia is working 24/7 to undermine our elections.  This assault on our elections is a serious national security matter which the President chooses to ignore.

“The Mueller report and his testimony last week confirmed that the President’s campaign welcomed Russian interference in the election, and laid out ten instances of the President’s obstruction of justice.  The President’s more recent attempts to prevent us from finding the facts is further evidence of obstruction of justice.

“To protect our democracy and our Constitution, Democrats in the Congress continue to legislate, investigate and litigate.

Litigation:

  • Last week, Jerry Nadler, Chair of Judiciary, took a significant step when he filed a petition to obtain the grand jury testimony underlying the Mueller report, for the House to ‘have access to all the relevant facts and consider whether to exercise its full Article I powers, including a constitutional power of the utmost gravity — approval of articles of impeachment.’
  • Elijah Cummings, Chair of Oversight and Reform, is winning in court in the Mazars case, seeking the President’s financial statements and reports prepared by his accountant to determine financial conflicts, violations of the Emoluments Clause, and the truthfulness of representations contained in the President’s statutorily required financial disclosure forms;
  • Maxine Waters, Chair of Financial Services and Adam Schiff, Chair of Intelligence are winning in court in the Deutsche Bank case, seeking the President’s bank account records to assist with the Committees’ investigation of unsafe banking practices, including money laundering, illicit transactions and foreign investments;
  • Richie Neal, Chair of Ways and Means, is pursuing the President’s tax returns to assist with the ongoing investigation of the IRS’s presidential tax audit program;
  • Eliot Engel, Chair of Foreign Affairs, on another front, is investigating the Russia connection with hearings seeking the facts from the Trump-Putin meetings;
  • In addition, last week, the House voted to reiterate its oversight authority, and ratified and affirmed the subpoenas already issued by the committees and any subpoenas to come.  Responding to the subpoenas gives the President an opportunity to provide information that could exonerate him.  If he has nothing to hide, he should cooperate with the subpoenas.

Investigation:

  • Our litigation has been strengthened by the months of work from our six committees which are engaged in the investigations.  54 percent of House Democrats serve on these committees engaged in hearings and investigations, and I am very proud of their work.

Legislation:

  • We have sent the Securing America’s Federal Elections Act to the Senate.  However, Mitch McConnell refuses to take up this legislation or any other legislation to protect our democracy.  Why do the President and the Republican Leader in the Senate choose to protect Russia rather than to protect the integrity of our elections?  We will continue to lead a drumbeat across the country demanding the GOP Senate act.

“The assault on our elections and our Constitution is a grave national security issue.  We owe it to our Founders to sustain our system of checks and balances and our democracy.  We owe it to our heroic men and women in uniform who risk their lives for freedom to defend our democracy at home.  We owe it to our children to ensure that no present or future president can dishonor the oath of office without being held accountable.

“In America, no one is above the law.  The President will be held accountable.”


https://www.speaker.gov/newsroom/8219-2/" rel="nofollow - https://www.speaker.gov/newsroom/8219-2/



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Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Aug 2019 at 7:35pm

Nadler: ‘This is formal impeachment proceedings’

By  https://www.politico.com/staff/andrew-desiderio" rel="nofollow - ANDREW DESIDERIO

 

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler said publicly for the first time on Thursday that his panel is conducting an impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, adding that the committee will decide by the end of the year whether to refer articles of impeachment to the House floor.

The committee has said as much in recent court filings as it seeks former special counsel Robert Mueller’s grand jury materials and testimony from his investigation’s star witnesses. But it was a rare rhetorical escalation from the New York Democrat, who has privately pushed Speaker Nancy Pelosi to support a formal inquiry of whether to remove the president from office.

“This is formal impeachment proceedings,” Nadler said in a CNN interview. “We are investigating all the evidence, gathering the evidence. And we will [at the] conclusion of this — hopefully by the end of the year — vote to vote articles of impeachment to the House floor. Or we won’t. That’s a decision that we’ll have to make. But that’s exactly the process we’re in right now.”

That timeline would put an impeachment battle in the middle of the Democratic presidential primary contests, which begin in early 2020 — a concern for Democrats who believe that the window to act on impeachment is quickly closing. more....

  http://www.politico.com/story/2019/08/08/nadler-this-is-formal-impeachment-proceedings-1454360" rel="nofollow - http://www.politico.com/story/2019/08/08/nadler-this-is-formal-impeachment-proceedings-1454360




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Posted By: stayer
Date Posted: 09 Aug 2019 at 9:37pm
It might be worth pointing out to whale and rusty that the impeachment thing is useless.

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"She's going through a growth phase." - GW


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 10 Aug 2019 at 9:25am
I thought you said you actually read these threads before you snipe.

I didn't really believe you. Just like the Mueller Report Embarrassed


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 1:10pm

Democrats Plan Vote to Formalize Procedures for Impeachment Investigation

Sept. 8, 2019, 6:01 p.m. ET

WASHINGTON — The House Judiciary Committee plans to vote this week to formalize procedures for a growing impeachment inquiry, clarifying its investigative authorities and granting President Trump new due process, a draft resolution shows.

The Judiciary Committee took similar steps in the 1970s and 1990s when it conducted impeachment inquiries into Presidents Richard M. Nixon and Bill Clinton. Now, as then, Democrats believe the resolution, a copy of which was reviewed by The New York Times, will allow the panel to speed up its work and potentially elicit more information than it otherwise could about instances of possible obstruction of justice and abuses of power by Mr. Trump.

The development carries significant symbolic weight, as well.

Though the committee has already informed federal courts and the public that it is in the midst of a full-scale impeachment inquiry, the three-page resolution will be the first time lawmakers have recorded a vote to that effect. Committee leaders hope the move will send a signal to Congress and the White House that their investigation is not only proceeding but intensifying, even as the broader Democratic Party caucus remains divided over the merits of ultimately voting to impeach Mr. Trump.

Based on the committee’s investigative plans, the new procedures could be put to the test quickly in the coming weeks.

The committee is  https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/08/us/politics/impeachment-investigation-trump.html?module=inline" rel="nofollow - preparing to rapidly broaden the substance of the inquiry  this fall beyond the investigation into any role by Trump associates in Russia’s meddling in the 2016 presidential election. On the agenda for new scrutiny are Mr. Trump’s  https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/07/nyregion/michael-cohen-sentence.html?module=inline" rel="nofollow - role in illegal hush payments to women  who said they had affairs with him, reports that he  https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/28/us/politics/trump-border-wall.html?module=inline" rel="nofollow - dangled pardons  to immigration officials and whether his hotels and resorts have illegally profited from government spending.

If adopted, the new procedures would allow the committee’s chairman, Representative Jerrold Nadler of New York, to designate hearings of either the full Judiciary Committee or its subcommittees to be a part of the inquiry and subject to special rules. Though it sounds inconsequential, including the smaller, nimbler subcommittees in the inquiry would allow Democrats to speed up their work or steer less significant witnesses to the smaller panels.

  •  

Another provision says that after lawmakers themselves have exhausted time for questioning, committee staff members would be allowed to question a witness “for an additional hour equally divided between the majority and minority.” Democrats hope the arrangement will allow for more detailed, uninterrupted questioning.

The resolution also sets out standards that say information collected by the committee from witnesses or grand jury information shared by the courts should be kept private unless Mr. Nadler chooses otherwise.

And, for the first time, Mr. Trump and his legal team would be afforded specific due process by the committee, allowing them to regularly offer input on the findings of the investigation.



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Posted By: oneonesit
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 4:48pm
I could not care less about this cobblers - however the following headline caught my eye - "Democrats Plan Vote to Formalise Procedures for Impeachment Investigation". Bit of a mouthful isn't it. So they are going to vote to try to formailse a procedure to INVESTIGATE impeachment. I thought that had been going on for years already - Deary Me ! Think its pretty fair it wont be happening too soon

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TBV Statistical Analyst - & often misunderstood !


Posted By: oneonesit
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 4:52pm
Give up on this one PT. Scraping of the Sydney Lockout Laws by caving into the Hotels Assosn lobbyists would be a better project. Few noses in the trough there i would suggest.

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TBV Statistical Analyst - & often misunderstood !


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 5:37pm
It is a complicated process oneone. They cant just punt a dud like we did with Abbott. 

Democrats are entering the formal part of it. Going to be an interesting and lively lead up to the next election. 


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Baghdad Bob
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 5:58pm
Originally posted by Passing Through Passing Through wrote:

It is a complicated process oneone. They cant just punt a dud like we did with Abbott. Rudd

Democrats are entering the formal part of it. Going to be an interesting and lively lead up to the next election. 


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 6:02pm
Shocked

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Posted By: stayer
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 6:34pm
Originally posted by oneonesit oneonesit wrote:

I could not care less about this cobblers - however the following headline caught my eye - "Democrats Plan Vote to Formalise Procedures for Impeachment Investigation". Bit of a mouthful isn't it. So they are going to vote to try to formailse a procedure to INVESTIGATE impeachment. I thought that had been going on for years already - Deary Me ! Think its pretty fair it wont be happening too soon

They'd better call up Oprah fast because they are looking beyond ridiculous. The best non-Trump candidate if you want to bet might be a republican challenger - it certainly won't be Bernie et al.

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"She's going through a growth phase." - GW


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 6:47pm
America is done with reality tv show personalities after the current disaster.

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 7:04pm
When you hate America and the US Citizens with a real passion, and someone mentions how successful Trump and Capitalism have been!Angry

IMPEACH!!!!!

RRRRRREEEEEEEE!!!!!

Image result for Biden bloody eye


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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 7:09pm
I dont hate America. I been praying for Alabama all week.Star

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 7:24pm
You must have been disappointed when Trump fixed that Hurricane/Climate Change threat PT ... what was the final body count in the USA ... zero? ... just turned into some localised flooding didn't it? ... never mind, maybe the Trump Deranged will have something to blame him for, next time.Cry

Hope you didn't pop a blood vessel like Old Mate Creepy Joe did!LOL


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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 7:28pm
The catastrophic storm has left at least 44 people dead in the Bahamas and at least two people dead in the US. As many as 70,000 people have been left homeless due to the storm in the Bahamas, and roughly 800 people were stranded on an island off the coast of North Carolina, cut off by flooding.

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Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 7:31pm
Oh look Donny has sent Kremlin Barbie to assess the damage in Alabama. That will be 2 disasters dumped on them in a week. 



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Only the best people.


Posted By: stayer
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 7:33pm
"Kremlin Barbie." Deary me.

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"She's going through a growth phase." - GW


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 7:36pm
Originally posted by Passing Through Passing Through wrote:

The catastrophic storm has left at least 44 people dead in the Bahamas and at least two people dead in the US. As many as 70,000 people have been left homeless due to the storm in the Bahamas, and roughly 800 people were stranded on an island off the coast of North Carolina, cut off by flooding.

2 Dead and 800 stranded ... that's terrible!Cry

Ask the citizens of Socialist Venezuela if they would like to swap ... Embarrassed


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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 7:39pm
Is Maduro still in charge there Doc? Wasn't Trump getting rid of him? 

Maybe he should invite Maduro to Camp David now the Taliban has cancelled and called ''Death to America''


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 7:46pm
Lets see:

Maduro still in power
Iran firing up their nuclear program.
Kimmy firing rockets again.
Taliban declaring war on America
Russian sanctions dropped but Putin still in Ukraine.
Losing trade war with China bigly
Middle East peace still not sorted,
Mexico still not paying for wall

How good is Trump going?

Did I miss anything?


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Only the best people.


Posted By: rusty nails
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 8:00pm
The economy tanking as a direct result of his genius tariff play......


Posted By: Tlazolteotl
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 8:01pm
How come America can't beat the Taliban? If we fought WW2 like this the Nazis would still be going strong in 1955 and we'd be preparing to let them back into the German parliament.

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"Two hundred years ago, 99.999 percent of human idiocy went unrecorded. Now we have the Internet."

Errol Morris


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Sep 2019 at 8:15pm
Alexander the Great nor Genghis Khan couldn't beat the Afghans, the Mango Mussolini is no chance. 

The Taliban dont want a Trump resort in Kandihar, so he has nothing to offer them.


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 10 Sep 2019 at 3:20pm
O'bummer defeated the Taliban though ... which was an amazing feat since he was so busy fixing the US economy, creating jobs, controlling immigration and the borders, and building a flawless health care system ... oh wait.Embarrassed

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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 10 Sep 2019 at 3:37pm
He did do most of that, but never got the better of the Taliban, nobody has. And it was an amazing feat, but then again he didn't spend all of his time golfing and emolumenting, traitoring and kleptocrating. Embarrassed

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 11 Sep 2019 at 12:11am
O'bummer spent all his time frightening the children about "climate change" and panicking everyone about the "rising sea levels" ... it worked, he picked up his new waterfront mansion at Martha's Vineyard for a song! Clap

Maybe the sea level rises are just more bullgelati ... like most of the 8 torturous years that the US Citizens experienced under O'bummer.Embarrassed

Luckily, "someone" has Made America Great Again ... and fixed the rising sea level problem too! Thumbs Up




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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: rusty nails
Date Posted: 11 Sep 2019 at 12:48am
Someone?

Is that the guy who bragged he was a mental genius because he could identify giraffes and zebras correctly?

That’s some low bar you got yourself there Doc!


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 11 Sep 2019 at 1:07am
Low bar? ... well yes, he only had to do better than O'bummer ...

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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 13 Sep 2019 at 9:01am
Low Barr?

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 18 Sep 2019 at 5:41pm
How will they find time to impeach Trump, when they have all swung in behind the NYP Fake News in unison, and are all calling for Brett Kavanagh to be "IMPEACHED!!!" ... you know because ... "RRRREEEEEE!!!!"

Seriously, why bother having this Democrat "debate" selection process ... they are all equal ... just give it to a Random Goldfish ... it would be just as smart and have a similar attention span!LOL


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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 18 Sep 2019 at 5:44pm

Nadler: Judiciary too busy impeaching Trump to focus on Kavanaugh claims

"We have our hands full with impeaching the president right now and that’s going to take up our limited resources and time for a while," Nadler said.


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 18 Sep 2019 at 5:45pm
Nancy doesn't want impeachment though. She doesn't want anything to interfere with putting Trump in prison.

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 18 Sep 2019 at 6:55pm
Nancy is a gutless elitist, who knows how badly any move to impeach Trump will play against the Commies ... she may be dumb, but she's not stupid like all the other air headed Socialists!LOL

That's why Trump just keeps on goading them.Clap


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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 18 Sep 2019 at 7:09pm
No, she remembers what happened with Oliver North, and she wants nothing to get in the way of imprisoning the traitor. She really hates him and as one of the Intelligence Committee gang of eight knows exactly what he has done.

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 18 Sep 2019 at 7:37pm
You know that Trump will be a Two Term POTUS when Skeletor Pelosi is a member of the "Intelligence" Committee!LOL

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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 26 Sep 2019 at 12:45pm
Out of interest, this is the timeline of the Clinton impeachment.

October 5, 1998The Judiciary Committee of the House votes, 21 to 16 along party lines, to recommend an impeachment inquiry.
October 8, 1998The House of Representatives votes, 258 to 176, to conduct an impeachment inquiry.
November 3, 1998In mid-term elections, Democrats do surprisingly well.
Nov. 9-Dec. 10, 1998The House Judiciary Committee holds hearings on impeachment.
November 17, 1998The Judiciary Committee releases 22 hours of taped conversations between Lewinsky and Linda Tripp.
November 27, 1998Clinton submits answers to 81 question posed to him by the Judiciary Committee.
December 11-12, 1998The House Judiciary Committee approves four articles of impeachment, relating to perjury before the grand jury, obstruction of justice, perjury in a civil deposition, and abuse of power.
December 19, 1998The House impeaches President Clinton, approving two of four articles of impeachment. Bob Livingston resigns. Vice-President Gore and House Democrats join Clinton in a show of support on the South Lawn of the White House.
January 7, 1999The impeachment trial formally opens in the Senate. Chief Justice Rehnquist is sworn in as the presiding judge. The charges are read.
January 12, 1999.Clinton settles the Paula Jones suit for $850,000
January 14, 1999Opening statements are delivered by five of the House Managers of the prosecution.
January 15, 1999Opening statements by the Managers continue and the Chief Justice issues his first ruling, upholding an objection by Senator Harkin to the Managers' use of the word "jurors" in referring to the Senators.
January 19, 1999Opening statements by the defense team begin hours before President Clinton delivers his State of the Union address.
January 21, 1999A speech by former Senator Dale Bumpers wraps up the opening arguments for the President.
January 22, 1999The Senate begins a two-day question and answer period. Starr's office seeks a court order requiring Lewinsky to meet with the House Managers.
January 23, 1999Ordered to meet with the Managers, Lewinsky is mobbed by media when she returns to Washington.
January 24, 1999Lewinsky meets with three House Managers in a Washington hotel room.
January 25, 1999The Managers decide to produce just three witnesses for the trial, Lewinsky, Jordan, and Sidney Blumenthal.
January 27, 1999The Senate rejects a Democratic proposal to dismiss the case on a 56 to 44 vote, with one Democrat (Feingold of Wisconsin) voting with the Republicans.
February 1, 1999Monica Lewinksy is deposed on videotape by House Manager Ed Bryant.
February 2, 1999Vernon Jordan is deposed on videotape by House Manager Asa Hutchinson.
February 4, 1999The Senate votes not to have live witnesses on the Senate floor, but to allow presentations of the videotaped testimony of three witnesses.
February 6, 1999The Senate watches videotaped testimony from Lewinsky, Jordan, and Blumenthal.
February 8, 1999Closing arguments in the impeachment trial are presented by both sides.
February 9, 1999Deliberations by the 100 Senators begin behind closed doors.
February 12, 1999The trial ends. The Senate acquits the President, voting 45 to 55 for conviction on the perjury count and 50 to 50 for conviction on the obstruction of justice count.



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Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 26 Sep 2019 at 12:50pm
Lawfare analysis of the summary Trump/Zelensky phone call

The misconduct cannot be dismissed as unproven; it screams off the plain text of the White House’s own  https://www.lawfareblog.com/white-house-releases-memorandum-ukraine-call" rel="nofollow - memorandum detailing the president’s phone conversation  with his Ukrainian counterpart. It cannot be disparaged as the result of a “Witch Hunt” or blamed on angry Democrats working for a special counsel or attempting a coup from the depths of the “Deep State.” The revelation did not flow from any investigation at all but, instead, from the complaints of shocked subordinates, complaints that generated pressure that ultimately caused the president himself to fess up and release the document. It cannot be blamed on “The Squad” or on Nancy Pelosi or on Adam Schiff. None of these people made the president say the words that appear in that document. None of them made him take the actions into which the memo offers dramatic visibility. Nor does the president deny that he said those words. He just thinks it’s fine for a president to do so.

And that, really, is the crux of the problem and the crux of the decision before Congress. To do nothing is to agree that this conduct is acceptable.

Before turning to what this document says, what it means and how we should collectively think about it, it’s important to emphasize that the memo does not represent the full scope of the still-emerging scandal that is L’Affaire Ukraine. For the past few weeks, the public has been looking at a complex scene through the narrowest of keyholes. That scene involves not just this one phone call but also  https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/21/us/politics/giuliani-ukraine.html" rel="nofollow - Rudy Giuliani’s interactions with the Ukrainian government ,  https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/giuliani-pursued-shadow-ukraine-agenda-as-key-foreign-policy-officials-were-sidelined/2019/09/24/ee18aaec-deec-11e9-be96-6adb81821e90_story.html?wpisrc=al_news__alert-national--alert-world--alert-politics&wpmk=1" rel="nofollow - machinations in the White House ,  https://www.politico.eu/article/trump-administration-backs-off-hold-on-ukraine-military-aid/" rel="nofollow - the withholding of aid to Ukraine  and presumably a bunch of other presidential actions. (Here is a  https://www.lawfareblog.com/timeline-trump-ukraine-scandal" rel="nofollow - timeline of the known events .) The release of this document does not completely fill out the picture. It dramatically fills out just one component of the picture. So keep in mind that we are still looking through a keyhole at the scene—just a keyhole whose aperture has suddenly widened and thus provided a clearer view of part of the hidden room. However bad the White House memorandum is—and it is very bad indeed—the full reality is almost certainly far worse.

The president is unrepentant. After the release of the memo, he tweeted:

https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump" rel="nofollow">
https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump" rel="nofollow -
https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1176848267759509504" rel="nofollow -

Will the Democrats apologize after seeing what was said on the call with the Ukrainian President? They should, a perfect call - got them by surprise!

https://twitter.com/intent/like?tweet_id=1176848267759509504" rel="nofollow -
https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1176848267759509504" rel="nofollow - 11:17 PM - Sep 25, 2019
https://support.twitter.com/articles/20175256" rel="nofollow -

Over the course of the day since then,  https://twitter.com/RepMattGaetz/status/1176891574468382721" rel="nofollow - he has retweeted  a steady  https://twitter.com/SteveScalise/status/1176880816519045120" rel="nofollow - stream  of posts by  https://twitter.com/RepMarkGreen/status/1176888237652156417" rel="nofollow - political allies  declaring that the memo is exonerating. He has asserted in two  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mgeibpHgyNU" rel="nofollow - press http://savefrom.net/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DmgeibpHgyNU&utm_source=userjs-chrome&utm_medium=extensions&utm_campaign=link_modifier" rel="nofollow -   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eiQJu3jQMSg" rel="nofollow - conferences http://savefrom.net/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DeiQJu3jQMSg&utm_source=userjs-chrome&utm_medium=extensions&utm_campaign=link_modifier" rel="nofollow -  (one with Zelensky at the United Nations) that this—like the Mueller investigation—is a “Witch Hunt” and that he did nothing wrong. Meanwhile,  https://twitter.com/AndrewDesiderio/status/1176884014768185344" rel="nofollow - talking points sent out  by the White House focus instead on allegations of wrongdoing by Joe and Hunter Biden, arguing that Trump’s goal was to root out corruption in both Ukraine and the United States. Along with Trump’s  https://twitter.com/KimStrassel/status/1176865142828457984" rel="nofollow - allies  in the press, the White House has also tried to paint Trump’s goal as enlisting Ukrainian assistance in probing Russia’s interference in the 2016 election.

We will leave it to others to predict whether these arguments will carry the day politically as Congress weighs the question of impeachment. During his press conference with Trump, Zelensky offered some support,  https://time.com/5686305/zelensky-ukraine-denies-trump-pressure/" rel="nofollow - stating  that “nobody pushed me” to investigate Biden and emphatically asserted that Ukraine is an “independent country” with an “independent judiciary” over which he has no control.

But Serhiy Leshchenko, an adviser to Zelensky,  https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/ukrainians-understood-biden-probe-condition-trump-zelensky-phone/story?id=65863043&cid=social_twitter_abcnp" rel="nofollow - told  ABC that the Ukrainians understood discussion of the Biden issue as a precondition for scheduling a call with Trump: “It was clear that Trump will only have communications if they will discuss the Biden case,” said the adviser. “This issue was raised many times. I know that Ukrainian officials understood.”

For present purposes, it suffices to note that the text of the memo offers not a whiff of support for the president’s claims about what he did. That text unambiguously reflects conduct intolerable in a president in a number of different respects. And it does so in five brief, easy-to-understand pages, in which Trump clearly seeks to recruit a foreign head of state to violate the civil liberties of American citizens and uncover dirt on a potential political opponent in the 2020 presidential election. For everyone who breathed a sigh of relief that the Mueller report did not establish presidential “collusion” with Russia in 2016, the White House itself has announced with this release that the president himself has already engaged in such collusion with Ukraine for the next election cycle—and what’s more, he is putting the powers of the American presidency to that purpose.

Let’s start by parsing what the document says, though we urge readers to take the time to read it in full:

 

The conversation in question took place the morning of July 25, 2019—one day after former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s testimony before the  https://www.c-span.org/video/?462628-1/robert-mueller-congressional-testimony" rel="nofollow - House Judiciary  and  https://www.c-span.org/video/?462629-1/robert-mueller-testifies-house-intelligence-committee" rel="nofollow - Intelligence Committees  regarding the results of his investigation. The relevant part of the conversation starts a few minutes in, after an exchange of pleasantries in which Trump congratulates Zelensky on his party’s recent win in Ukraine’s parliamentary elections. Trump moves from there to a discussion of the U.S.-Ukraine relationship, framing it in terms of reciprocity:

Trump: The United States has been very good to Ukraine.  I wouldn’t say that it’s reciprocal necessarily because things are happening that are not good but the United States has been very very good to Ukraine.

After lauding the United States for its support for Ukraine, Zelensky shifts the conversation to business:  

Zelensky: I would like to thank you for your great support in the area of defense. We are ready to continue to cooperate for the next steps specifically we are almost ready to buy more Javelins from the United States for defense purposes.

The “Javelins” that Zelensky is referring to are U.S. anti-tank missiles, a type of weapon that the Trump administration began providing to Ukraine along with other forms of lethal equipment in 2017. Just a few weeks before Trump and Zelensky spoke,  https://www.rferl.org/a/ukraine-requests-u-s-weapons-ahead-of-possible-trump-zelenskiy-meeting/30042598.html" rel="nofollow - Ukraine had put in a request to purchase additional arms and military equipment from the United States , which was still pending review by U.S. officials by the time of the call.

But Trump then pivots to a new topic (emphasis added):

Trump: I would like you to do us a favor though because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it. I would like you to find out what happened with this whole situation with Ukraine, they say Crowdstrike… I guess you have one of your wealthy people… The server, they say Ukraine has it. There are a lot of things that went on, the whole situation. I think you’re surrounding yourself with some of the same people. I would like to have the Attorney General call you or your people and I would like you to get to the bottom of it. As you saw yesterday, that whole nonsense ended with a very poor performance by a man named Robert Mueller, an incompetent performance, but they say a lot of it started with Ukraine. Whatever you can do, it’s very important that you do it if that’s possible.

Here Trump appears to be referencing a  https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/zmjy33/donald-trump-ukraine-zelensky-crowdstrike-phone-call" rel="nofollow - peculiar conspiracy theory  he’s echoed in the past, casting doubt on whether Russia was really responsible for the hack of the DNC server in the spring of 2016. Proponents of this theory argue that because the DNC server hacked by the Russian government in the lead-up to the 2016 election was never examined by the FBI but only by Crowdstrike, a private cybersecurity company hired by the DNC, its conclusions cannot be trusted. Trump  https://www.apnews.com/c810d7de280a47e88848b0ac74690c83" rel="nofollow - has said  in the past—incorrectly—that the company is owned by a Ukrainian national. Here, he appears to be asking for Zelensky’s help, and proposing enlisting Attorney General William Barr, to track down this server—which he seems to believe somehow ended up in Ukraine. (There is no evidence for this.)

Zelensky responds by emphasizing the importance of U.S.-Ukrainain cooperation and the broader strategic partnership, assuring Trump that the American president “ha[s] nobody but friends” in Zelensky’s administration. He mentions a recent meeting between one of his assistants and the president’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, noting that “we are hoping very much that Mr. Giuliani will be able to travel to Ukraine and we will meet once he comes to Ukraine,” before closing by assuring Trump that “all the investigations will be done openly and candidly.” Trump then uses this as an opportunity to pivot to another topic of particular concern:

Trump: Good because I heard you had a prosecutor who was very good and he was shut down and that’s really unfair. A lot of people are talking about that, the way they shut your very good prosecutor down and you had some very bad people involved.

The prosecutor in question is Viktor Shokin, the former Ukrainian prosecutor general.  https://www.nytimes.com/2016/03/30/world/europe/political-stability-in-the-balance-as-ukraine-ousts-top-prosecutor.html?module=inline" rel="nofollow - Shokin was removed  from his position by Ukraine’s parliament in 2016, after the Obama administration  https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/trump-ordered-hold-on-military-aid-days-before-calling-ukrainian-president-officials-say/2019/09/23/df93a6ca-de38-11e9-8dc8-498eabc129a0_story.html" rel="nofollow - threatened  to withhold U.S. foreign assistance to the country over Shokin’s resistance to pursuing corruption prosecutions. This policy decision has played a central role in another series of theories Giuliani has advanced in recent months. Giuliani has  http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/1909/19/CPT.01.html" rel="nofollow - posited  that the Obama administration—and Vice President Joe Biden, in particular—lobbied for Shokin’s removal because he had opened an investigation into a Ukrainian gas company, Burisma Holdings, of which Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, was a board member. Subsequent reporting has  https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/the-story-behind-bidens-son-ukraine-and-trumps-claims/2019/09/22/7b884206-dda4-11e9-be7f-4cc85017c36f_story.html" rel="nofollow - shown  that the investigation into Burisma was long dormant by this time and did not implicate the younger Biden, and one of Shokin’s successors  https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-05-16/ukraine-prosecutor-says-no-evidence-of-wrongdoing-by-bidens" rel="nofollow - cleared  the Bidens of any suspicion of wrongdoing. Yet Trump and Giuliani have continued to circulate it anyway. For this reason, perhaps, Trump goes on to discuss another actor in the broader controversy:

Trump: The former ambassador from the United States, the woman, was bad news and the people she was dealing with in the Ukraine were bad news so I just want to let you know that.

The ambassador Trump is referencing is Marie Yovanovitch, a career foreign service officer who served as the U.S. ambassador in Kyiv from August 2016 through May 2019, when she was summarily  https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/05/07/us-ambassador-ukraine-is-recalled-after-becoming-political-target/" rel="nofollow - dismissed  just a few months prior to the end of her appointed term. Yovanovitch had become a target of criticism for Giuliani, who  https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/giuliani-pursued-shadow-ukraine-agenda-as-key-foreign-policy-officials-were-sidelined/2019/09/24/ee18aaec-deec-11e9-be96-6adb81821e90_story.html" rel="nofollow - accused  her of involvement in a conspiracy to expose information damaging to the Trump campaign in 2016.

Trump then turns to his request that Zelensky have the Ukrainian prosecutor general revisit the subject of the Bidens’ role in Shokin’s removal. Here and at multiple other points throughout the conversation, he references Barr, as well as Giuliani, as a point of contact for Zelensky on the matter. (The Justice Department has  https://twitter.com/AndrewDesiderio/status/1176860692634394627" rel="nofollow - stated  that Barr “has not communicated with Ukraine” or discussed the matter with Giuliani, and that Trump did not ask Barr to contact the Ukrainian government.):

Trump: The other thing. There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great. Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it… It sounds horrible to me.

Zelensky responds by assuring Trump that he is appointing a new prosecutor who will “look into the situation.” Trump goes on:

Trump: I will have Mr. Giuliani give you a call and I am also going to have Attorney General Barr call and we will get to the bottom of it. I’m sure you will figure it out. I heard the prosecutor was treated very badly and he was a very fair prosecutor so good luck with everything.

After Zelensky promises Trump to that he will “take care of” the investigation, Trump comments that Yovanovitch is “going to go through some things.”

There’s a great deal more—including Zelensky’s apparent attempt to ingratiate himself with Trump by noting that he stayed at Trump Tower New York on his last visit to the city. But by and large, this is the substance of the call that appears to have motivated the whistleblower complaint. It is also the substance that rightly has Congress’s attention.

Both the  https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/25/us/politics/ukraine-transcript-trump.html?smid=nytcore-ios-share" rel="nofollow - New York Times  and the  https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/transcript-of-trumps-call-with-ukrainian-president-shows-him-offering-us-assistance-for-biden-investigation/2019/09/25/16aa36ca-df0f-11e9-8dc8-498eabc129a0_story.html" rel="nofollow - Washington Post  have reported that the director of national intelligence and the intelligence community inspector general referred the complaint about Trump’s call with Zelensky to the Justice Department for possible criminal investigation. The director in question appears to have been Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire. His predecessor, Dan Coats, left the role on Aug. 15 and has  https://www.indystar.com/story/news/politics/2019/09/24/coats-discusses-whistle-blower-complaint-to-economic-club/2374412001/" rel="nofollow - stated publicly  that the whistleblower complaint was presented the day after his departure. According to the  https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/transcript-of-trumps-call-with-ukrainian-president-shows-him-offering-us-assistance-for-biden-investigation/2019/09/25/16aa36ca-df0f-11e9-8dc8-498eabc129a0_story.html" rel="nofollow - Post , the inspector general found that Trump’s pressuring of Zelensky could implicate campaign finance laws prohibiting the solicitation or acceptance of a “thing of value” from foreign nationals.

The Criminal Division of the Justice Department, however, reviewed the memo describing the Zelensky call and found that the facts did not supply an adequate predicate for a criminal investigation, the Justice Department  https://twitter.com/AndrewDesiderio/status/1176860692634394627" rel="nofollow - has stated publicly . According to the  https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/transcript-of-trumps-call-with-ukrainian-president-shows-him-offering-us-assistance-for-biden-investigation/2019/09/25/16aa36ca-df0f-11e9-8dc8-498eabc129a0_story.html" rel="nofollow - Post , Assistant Attorney General Brian Benczkowski made the final decision. The department’s reasoning rests on the argument that an investigation by the Ukrainian government did not constitute a “thing of value” under the relevant statute, the Post writes.

If all this sounds familiar, it’s because it is: A key question considered by Robert Mueller involved whether Donald Trump Jr. and the leadership of the Trump campaign unlawfully solicited a thing of value from Russian individuals in seeking “dirt” on Hillary Clinton in the infamous Trump Tower New York meeting. In that instance, Mueller declined to bring charges in part because of the difficulty in ascertaining whether the promised dirt constituted a thing of value and, if it did constitute such a thing, what its valuation would be.

Campaign finance lawyers and other specialists will debate the adequacy of the Justice Department’s judgment in the Ukraine case, just as they  https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/04/campaign-finance-loopholes-helped-trump-team/587671/" rel="nofollow - did  about Mueller’s declination decision. On today’s special edition of the Lawfare Podcast, campaign finance expert Bob Bauer argued that the Justice Department’s apparent analysis, to the extent that it’s public, is not persuasive. And former Justice Department official David Kris raised a number of other possible theories of criminal liability:

Whatever the merits of the criminal side of the picture, it is a side-show. The far bigger question is the acceptability of the president’s conduct. As law professor Alan Rozenshstein  https://www.lawfareblog.com/dont-over-legalize-impeachment" rel="nofollow - put it  earlier today: “The question is not whether Trump broke federal criminal law. The question is whether he has failed to uphold his constitutional duties and should be impeached and removed from office.”

In that regard, while the call provides no shortage of material to analyze, three main issues stand out regarding Trump’s conduct: the question of a possible quid pro quo; the clear evidence that the president solicited the Ukrainian president to deliver dirt on U.S. persons in a gross abuse of their civil liberties; and a just-as-clear attempt at soliciting foreign government intervention in a U.S. presidential campaign.

Trump and his supporters have  https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1176880340427821056" rel="nofollow - aggressively asserted  that the call does not contain evidence of a quid pro quo. But in context of the broader issue of U.S. military aid to Ukraine, the memo actually is suggestive of a kind of shakedown. Days before the call, Trump ordered his acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, to  https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/trump-ordered-hold-on-military-aid-days-before-calling-ukrainian-president-officials-say/2019/09/23/df93a6ca-de38-11e9-8dc8-498eabc129a0_story.html" rel="nofollow - freeze a substantial package of military aid to Ukraine —a move that reportedly  https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/giuliani-pursued-shadow-ukraine-agenda-as-key-foreign-policy-officials-were-sidelined/2019/09/24/ee18aaec-deec-11e9-be96-6adb81821e90_story.html" rel="nofollow - baffled and concerned officials  in both the State and Defense Departments. Now consider how Trump sets the stage for his conversation with Zelensky by framing the U.S.-Ukrainian relationship in terms of reciprocity, suggesting that “the United States has been very good to Ukraine” but Ukraine may not have adequately reciprocated. 

Thus when Zelensky comes in with his ask—for the president’s support for Ukrainian efforts to acquire defensive equipment from the United States—Trump is ready. He immediately pivots to an ask of his own, telling Zelensky that “I would like you to do us a favor though[.]”

But the favor in question is not a policy favor for the United States. It’s a political favor for Trump. This is where Trump raises the issue of Crowdstrike, asking Zelensky to “find out what happened with this whole situation with Ukraine.” Recall that the conspiracy theory regarding Crowdstrike involves casting doubt on whether Russia really hacked the DNC and, thus, on whether Russia interfered in the 2016 election at all. Trump appears to be asking for Zelensky’s help in amplifying this theory—which supports Trump’s understanding of the Mueller probe as a “Witch Hunt”—and finding evidence to support it. His request for a “favor”—immediately after Zelensky references a prospective purchase—is easily understood as the president’s connecting the U.S.’s provision of defensive equipment on Zelinsky’s willingness to provide assistance to Barr on a matter of personal concern to the president.

When Zelensky responds positively, stating that “all the investigations will be done openly and candidly,” Trump digs in further with another request: “whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great,” he says, pushing Zelensky to commit to investigating Hunter Biden and Joe Biden. He requests repeatedly that Zelensky speak to Giuliani, who at this time was  https://twitter.com/RudyGiuliani/status/1142085975230898176" rel="nofollow - publicly calling  for the Ukrainians to investigate the Bidens.

Here again, context is key. The president is invoking a  https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2019/9/23/20879611/joe-biden-hunter-biden-ukraine-corruption-prosecutor-burisma-donald-trump-whistleblower-complaint" rel="nofollow - debunked conspiracy  theory about Hunter Biden which, if successfully propagated, would weaken Joe Biden’s 2020 presidential candidacy.

So while the president and his supporters are correct that there is no explicit quid pro quo in the sense of a moment in which Trump says something like, “I will only give you those weapons you need if you help me with my re-election run,” the coercive context is not hard to infer from the text itself and the surrounding circumstances. A plain reading of the memo makes clear that the quid is funds for defense equipment, and the quo is help from Zelensky in discrediting the Mueller investigation’s findings and Trump’s potential political opponent, Joe Biden. It may not be clear enough to satisfy the exacting standards of the criminal law. But remember, this is only one conversation in a long string of interactions, and Congress is not assessing whether the bribery or extortion statutes have been offended. It is assessing whether the president is fit to hold office.

Quid pro quo is actually not the sin qua non of impeachability in this conversation anyway. Even if there was no quid pro quo, or the evidence on the subject is unclear, there is no question that Trump explicitly requested that the government of Ukraine investigate Joe and Hunter Biden. This is the overt solicitation by the president of a foreign investigation into a political opponent—a serious offense in and of itself, whether Trump conditioned aid to Ukraine on the investigation or not.

The civil liberties and constitutional rights of American citizens are implicated every time the government initiates a law enforcement investigation. For this reason, when the government believes that a violation of U.S. law has taken place, laws and guidelines govern how law enforcement may proceed. The nature of the investigation—whether it is a criminal probe or a national security investigation—dictates the protections that must apply and the predicate thresholds that must be met. But in all cases, it is impermissible for the government to investigate someone simply for political purposes. To do so is to wield the coercive powers of the U.S. law enforcement apparatus to abuse a citizen’s rights.

If a domestic investigation into a U.S. citizen requires information from a foreign government, U.S. law enforcement has specific processes to request that information—including, but not limited to, agreements like Mutual Legal Assistance Treaties. This foreign law enforcement cooperation occurs within a framework designed to both share information and also respect the rights of the relevant parties within the respective jurisdictions of both governments. The inverse sometimes happens as well: Foreign governments will initiate investigations that require U.S. law enforcement cooperation and will make requests of the Department of Justice for information to be shared. Again, there are specific channels and processes that govern when and how such cooperation occurs.

But none of this took place here. There is no evidence that any U.S. law enforcement entity has investigated Biden or his son regarding corruption in Ukraine or made official requests to Ukraine along these lines. Instead, the president asked the president of Ukraine to wield his country’s law enforcement powers against these people. And he dispatched his personal attorney to help.

To be sure, presidents sometimes attempt to use their foreign policy authorities to encourage a foreign government to initiate its own law enforcement action. The U.S., for example, pressures Latin American countries to take action against narcotraffickers and pressures China to crack down on intellectual property theft. This type of pressure sometimes involves encouraging foreign partners to pursue legal actions against individuals whom U.S. officials believe have committed crimes but cannot themselves prosecute for jurisdictional or other, more pragmatic reasons. The paradigmatic example is encouraging the foreign prosecution of terrorism suspects, a practice that has played a major role in U.S. counterterrorist efforts since the Sept. 11 attacks. But the proper amount of pressure for the U.S. president to exert against a foreign government to investigate U.S. citizens for political purposes is zero. It should simply never happen.

And the context surrounding Trump’s requests regarding the Bidens shows it to be anything but policy driven. Unlike most such requests, this one was not the product of a deliberative interagency process aimed at arriving at a cohesive U.S. policy. To the contrary,  https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/giuliani-pursued-shadow-ukraine-agenda-as-key-foreign-policy-officials-were-sidelined/2019/09/24/ee18aaec-deec-11e9-be96-6adb81821e90_story.html" rel="nofollow - reports indicate  that officials on the National Security Council had grown concerned in recent months over the degree to which Trump and Giuliani have come to personally dominate Ukraine policy at the expense of other foreign policy officials. Nor was Trump’s request backed up by the sort of evidence or other information that one would expect in an effort to legitimate that foreign government’s legal action, especially as Ukrainian officials had previously cleared Hunter Biden of any wrongdoing.

Most importantly, however, requests for foreign law enforcement action almost always occur through conventional diplomatic and law enforcement channels, so that working-level officials can coordinate further on the details. These requests never involve referrals to private citizens with no diplomatic or law enforcement authority or responsibility—let alone, as in this case, the president’s personal attorney—in directly relevant legal action. The unavoidable inference is that the request being made has nothing to do with the national interests such actions are supposed to advance, and everything to do with the president’s own interests.

American citizens are entitled to certain constitutional rights, including the right to due process and the right not to be subject to law enforcement action because of their constitutionally protected political expression. When taking action that may compromise the private interests of a U.S. citizen, the federal government is  https://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=10296811528183203766&q=matthews+v.+eldridge&hl=en&as_sdt=20006#p331" rel="nofollow - required  to weigh the risk that those private interests will be erroneously denied against the public interest being pursued and the burden that taking additional measures to reduce the risk of arbitrary deprivation would entail. A series of legal and regulatory restrictions help ensure that the government respects these rights within the United States, but the constitutional obligation to do so  https://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=2412865658294709561&q=reid+v.+covert&hl=en&as_sdt=20006#p6" rel="nofollow - doesn’t go away overseas . Yet here, Trump appears to have taken an official act as president vetted by no particular process and without any clear public interest in mind, with the clear knowledge and intent that, if he had his way, his actions could lead to the investigation, prosecution and arrest of two American citizens. In other words, he appears to have acted without any regard for their constitutional due process rights—a set of rights that prior presidential administrations have been careful to at least consider even when  https://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=6173897153146757813&q=hamdi+v.+rumsfeld&hl=en&as_sdt=20006#p533" rel="nofollow - detaining  and  https://www.justice.gov/sites/default/files/olc/pages/attachments/2015/04/02/2010-07-16_-_olc_aaga_barron_-_al-aulaqi.pdf#page=28" rel="nofollow - targeting  Americans overseas who are suspected of being terrorists hostile to the United States. The contrast with how this administration has approached its duties toward a former vice president and possible presidential candidate is striking. 

The last major area of concern about this call involves the solicitation of foreign intervention in American electoral politics. Everyone who claimed the Mueller report vindicated the president because Mueller did not prove “collusion” with Russia needs to reckon seriously with what Trump asked of Zelensky. In L’Affaire Russe, the Russian state—at the direction of the Russian president himself—intervened in the American presidential election by a number of different means. The defense of Trump’s conduct, and that of his campaign, was that they were not involved in the Russian intervention. Even to the extent that people associated with the Trump campaign had contact with the Russians, it is not clear that Trump himself knew about the contacts. Here, by contrast, the request to a foreign government to involve itself in American electoral politics is as direct as can be. The president in this document is asking his counterpart to deliver the goods on a possible electoral opponent. And he is doing it himself. There is no plausible deniability. If this is not collusion in precisely the sense that collusion’s absence was purportedly so exculpatory in the Russia context, it’s hard to imagine what collusion would look like. And unlike the conduct described in Volume I of the Mueller report, the president is no longer a private citizen. Now, he is actually corruptly wielding the powers of his office in order to achieve this abusive end. This represents a dramatic escalation in severity.

Tomorrow, Maguire will  https://www.c-span.org/video/?464509-1/acting-director-national-intelligence-maguire-testifies-whistleblower-complaint" rel="nofollow - testify  before the House Intelligence Committee. He may face questions about the contents of the complaint, his interactions with the White House and the Department of Justice, as well as reports that he  https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/acting-director-of-national-intelligence-threatened-to-resign-if-he-couldnt-speak-freely-before-congress/2019/09/25/b1deb71e-dfbf-11e9-be96-6adb81821e90_story.html" rel="nofollow - threatened  resignation if he could not speak freely before the committee—reports that he later denied. The whistleblower complaint has been delivered to Congress, and members of both intelligence committees have  https://www.cnn.com/2019/09/25/politics/whistleblower-complaint/index.html" rel="nofollow - reviewed  it, so it’s likely that more details about its contents will emerge soon. Trump also  https://www.c-span.org/video/?464713-1/president-trump-holds-news-conference-release-ukraine-memo&live=" rel="nofollow - stated  that he is willing to release transcripts of both his and Zelenky’s first telephone conversation and the Ukrainian president’s meeting with Mike Pence. A great deal depends on how legislators react to the widening aperture and resulting increased visibility into the room.

It is important to remember that impeachment is a hybrid of a legal phenomenon and a political one. While it proceeds under a constitutionally defined legal standard, the adjudicator of that standard is Congress, not a prosecutor or a judge. The question of whether the president has committed “Treason, Bribery, and other high Crimes and Misdemeanors” involves the application of a legal and constitutional standard, but it’s a standard defined and articulated by political judgment. In the midst of the Clinton impeachment, Lindsey Graham—then a member of the House of Representatives— https://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/politics-government/white-house/article230483449.html" rel="nofollow - articulated  it well: “You don’t even have to be convicted of a crime to lose your job in this constitutional republic if this body determines that your conduct as a public official is clearly out of bounds in your role…. Impeachment is not about punishment. Impeachment is about cleansing the office.  Impeachment is about restoring honor and integrity to the office.”  

The key question is thus how Congress’s collective judgment will change as the keyhole widens and we see more and more of the picture. After viewing the whistleblower complaint, Republican Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska  https://www.cnn.com/politics/live-news/trump-impeachment-inquiry-09-25-2019/h_3cbf2c98932a6b6ea8310abd9bfe1818" rel="nofollow - said , “Republicans ought not to be rushing to circle the wagons to say there’s no there there when there’s obviously lots that’s very troubling there.”  Does this suggest that confronting the stark reality of what Trump has done might spark a shift in opinion?

Another key question will be what timeline House Democrats envision for moving forward. On the one hand, the memo itself could form the basis for an article of impeachment, and moving expeditiously could allow Pelosi to take advantage of the political momentum in her caucus for impeachment. Democrats may choose to let matters ripen. This memo is just one piece of a larger puzzle of potentially impeachable conduct worthy of investigation—and further investigation may reveal even worse conduct. In the meantime, the president and his allies will launch an all-out effort to discredit the impeachment proceedings and normalize the president’s conduct. So there’s a race to frame public understanding of the conduct at issue, along with the investigation of that conduct.

And therein lies the rub. Using the office of the presidency of the United States to pressure the head of a foreign government to investigate a domestic political opponent ahead of an election is gross misconduct. It clearly corrupts the political and governmental process by threatening the independence of U.S. elections. But in the context of a president who is breaking a whole host of political and moral norms on a daily basis, how long does one keep investigating before one finally renders judgment and forces a vote?

The answer may be when the Speaker of the House can count the 218 votes necessary to pass articles of impeachment whose inevitability she seems suddenly to accept.

https://www.lawfareblog.com/self-impeaching-trump-zelensky-conversation" rel="nofollow - https://www.lawfareblog.com/self-impeaching-trump-zelensky-conversation



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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 26 Sep 2019 at 12:50pm
Audio version available on the link half way down the article.

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Dr E
Date Posted: 26 Sep 2019 at 7:48pm
I'm waiting for Whoopi Goldberg to post her analysis on her blog ... I'm sure it will be more even handed and yet, just as meaningfulLOL

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In reference to every post in the Trump thread ... "There may have been a tiny bit of license taken there" ... Ok, Thanks for the "heads up" PT!


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 27 Sep 2019 at 8:01am
While you are waiting chow down on this. 


The unclassified whistle-blower report.

https://intelligence.house.gov/uploadedfiles/20190812_-_whistleblower_complaint_unclass.pdf" rel="nofollow - https://intelligence.house.gov/uploadedfiles/20190812_-_whistleblower_complaint_unclass.pdf


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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 27 Sep 2019 at 8:54am
Very similar to 1974. There had been little appetite for impeachment of Nixon until Democrats commenced impeachment hearings and the numbers flipped to almost the same as this poll. from 42-52 to 53-42.

As evidence of criminality was exposed in hearings where the public watched on prime time tv, sentiment changed so quickly that Republicans who had been like they are now, 90%+ opposed to impeachment, went to Nixon and tapped him on the shoulder.

Republican insiders now say that if there was a secret ballot in the impeachment trial in the Senate, 30 Republicans would vote to fire Trump.



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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 27 Sep 2019 at 9:18am
This story is moving so fast Nancy has gone from no impeach to we have a smoking gun within a week She was right a few months ago after the Mueller hearings when she said Trump will impeach himself, he can't help himself..



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Only the best people.


Posted By: stayer
Date Posted: 27 Sep 2019 at 9:42pm
Originally posted by Passing Through Passing Through wrote:

This story is moving so fast Nancy has gone from no impeach to we have a smoking gun within a week She was right a few months ago after the Mueller hearings when she said Trump will impeach himself, he can't help himself..


Yeah the "trump will impeach himself" is the thing.

Nah.

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"She's going through a growth phase." - GW


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2019 at 8:32am
You really cant be this thick stayer. Do you have any clue what is going on around you?

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Only the best people.


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2019 at 8:33am

Democrats subpoena Pompeo as part of impeachment inquiry


Democrats hit the gas on their impeachment inquiry Friday, subpoenaing Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for documents they demanded weeks earlier that describe a pattern of interactions between President Donald Trump, his lawyer Rudy Giuliani and senior Ukrainian officials who they pressured to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden.

Rep Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.), chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, issued the subpoena in consultation with House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff and House Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings, who have been probing Trump's solicitation of foreign help in the 2020 election.


Subpoenas:


https://www.politico.com/f/?id=0000016d-747c-dbb7-a16d-7dfc3be10002" rel="nofollow - https://www.politico.com/f/?id=0000016d-747c-dbb7-a16d-7dfc3be10002


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Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2019 at 10:16am
Whistle-blower report claims it's first head:

CNN reporting: Kurt Volker, US special envoy to Ukraine, has resigned.


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Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 08 Oct 2019 at 7:32pm

“ROMNEY IS THE PRESSURE POINT IN THE IMPEACHMENT PROCESS”: MITT WON’T PRIMARY TRUMP—BUT HE’S TRYING TO BRING HIM DOWN

Trump’s favorite punching bag is reaching out to fellow Republicans to raise the temperature on impeachment. “Romney is the one guy who could bring along Susan Collins, Cory Gardner, Ben Sasse,” says a Mitt confidant.

 

BY  https://www.vanityfair.com/contributor/gabriel-sherman" rel="nofollow - - N

OCTOBER 7, 2019

When it comes to impeachment, the Republican Senate, resting on the bedrock of Donald Trump’s base, has been viewed as an unbreachable wall. But what would it look like if it started to crack? The first sign might be an ominous quiet. The emergence of a  https://www.cnn.com/2019/10/06/politics/second-whistleblower-trump-ukraine/index.html" rel="nofollow - - said last week  that he would be forced to hold a Senate trial if the House impeached Trump. “There’s been a real increase in nervousness over the past three or four weeks,” a prominent GOP member told me. “Everybody sees what Trump did as such a clear abuse of power,” said another prominent Republican. “Whether it’s criminal or not is another issue. But it’s so blatantly over the line.”

There’s no flood of GOP refugees yet—but there’s unmistakable drift. Trump’s approval rating among Republicans is 87%, a drop of four points since mid September,  https://news.gallup.com/poll/203198/presidential-approval-ratings-donald-trump.aspx" rel="nofollow - - signs  of cracking. Tucker Carlson  https://dailycaller.com/2019/10/03/tucker-and-patel-truth-about-impeachment/" rel="nofollow - - called  Trump’s Ukraine actions “criminal and impeachable behavior” last week. Behind the scenes, Fox board member Paul Ryan has privately  https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2019/09/madness-at-fox-news-as-trump-faces-impeachment-lachlan-murdoch" rel="nofollow - In the Senate, Ben Sasse and Susan Collins have made their usual equivocal noises—but not surprisingly, its Mitt Romney, longtime Trump antagonist and sometime suck-up, who’s become the standard-bearer, leading to questions as to what his game is. According to sources, donors have in recent days called the Utah senator and encouraged him to run against Trump in the primary. “There is a half-billion dollars on the sidelines from guys who are fed up with Trump,” a GOP donor told me. Their hopes were raised when Romney attacked Trump on Friday,  https://twitter.com/MittRomney/status/1180151213993730049" rel="nofollow - - tweeted  a  https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/washington-secrets/mitt-2020-romney-beats-trump-55-37-in-hypothetical-primary" rel="nofollow - - tweeted . “He is a pompous ‘ass’ who has been fighting me from the beginning, except when he begged me for my endorsement for his Senate run (I gave it to him), and when he begged me to be Secretary of State (I didn’t give it to him). He is so bad for R’s!”

According to people close to Romney, he’s firmly decided against primarying Trump, an enterprise he believes to be a sure loser given Trump’s enduring GOP support. Romney has also told people that, as an unsuccessful two-time presidential candidate, he’s the wrong person to take on Trump. Instead, a Romney adviser told me, Romney believes he has more potential power as a senator who will decide Trump’s fate in an impeachment trial. “He could have tremendous influence in the impeachment process as the lone voice of conscience in the Republican caucus,” the adviser said. In recent days, Romney has been reaching out privately to key players in the Republican resistance, according to a person briefed on the conversations. “Romney is the one guy who could bring along Susan Collins, Cory Gardner, Ben Sasse. Romney is the pressure point in the impeachment process. That’s why the things he’s saying are freaking Republicans out.” (Romney, through a spokesperson, declined to comment.)

GOP elected officials and donors are privately war-gaming what an endgame for Trump would look like. “It’s clear the House is going to impeach,” the prominent Republican told me. Making matters worse for Trump, a policy wedge has opened up between Trump and the Republican Senate at a moment when he needs its support most. Trump’s surprise decision to pull back American troops in Syria and allow Turkey to take on our Kurdish allies has  https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2019/10/donald-trump-obliterate-turkey" rel="nofollow - Vanity Fair



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Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Oct 2019 at 8:12am
This seems significant. 58% want an impeachment inquiry, including a majority of Independent voters.



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Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Oct 2019 at 8:14am
Washington Post poll: Just 55% of Republicans approve of the way that *Republicans* have handled impeachment so far while 36% disapprove.

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Posted By: Tlazolteotl
Date Posted: 09 Oct 2019 at 8:45am
What does Rasmussen say?Yin Yang


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"Two hundred years ago, 99.999 percent of human idiocy went unrecorded. Now we have the Internet."

Errol Morris


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Oct 2019 at 8:48am
Trump 55% approval and rising, according to Donald.


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Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Oct 2019 at 8:48am


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Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Oct 2019 at 8:49am
20% approval of impeachment by Republicans is really significant.


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Posted By: Tlazolteotl
Date Posted: 09 Oct 2019 at 8:55am
If Trump went who would be the Republican candidate next year?


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"Two hundred years ago, 99.999 percent of human idiocy went unrecorded. Now we have the Internet."

Errol Morris


Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Oct 2019 at 9:00am
I would think Romney/Hayley or Hayley/Romney would be a prominent ticket. Someone seen as not having anything to do with Trump. Nikki Hayley was UN Ambassador but was seen as leaving as the wheels started falling off with her integrity intact. Romney is getting on but is seen as old style traditional Republican.


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Posted By: Isaac soloman
Date Posted: 09 Oct 2019 at 10:51am
Bad luck pt. Another broken dream.....


Donald Trump impeachment probe unconstitutional, White House says

Posted 17 minutes ago

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-10-09/white-house-generic/11585570" rel="nofollow">The White House https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-10-09/white-house-generic/11585570" rel="nofollow - https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-10-09/trump-admin-blocks-us-ambassador-to-eu-from-testifying/11584462" rel="nofollow - https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-10-07/lawyer-says-second-whistleblower-backs-complaint-against-trump/11578328" rel="nofollow - https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-10-05/white-house-ordered-to-turn-over-documents-in-trump-probe/11576392" rel="nofollow - The White House has officially refused to cooperate in the impeachment inquiry launched by Democrats targeting US President Donald Trump, saying it was "constitutionally invalid".

The comments were made in a letter signed by White House counsel Pat Cipollone and sent to House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the top US Democrat, and the Democratic chairs of the House intelligence, foreign affairs and oversight committees.

The inquiry was started amid accusations from a government whistleblower that Mr Trump sought Ukraine's help in investigating Democratic rival Joe Biden.

Mr Cipollone wrote in the letter that the inquiry had progressed in a "manner that violates fundamental fairness and constitutionally mandated due process", and "lacks any legitimate constitutional foundation".

The White House argued that the three other impeachment inquiries in American history, against presidents Andrew Johnson, Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton, all included House votes, and that this should serve as precedent for the impeachment of Mr Trump.

More to come.

Reuters/AP



Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Oct 2019 at 11:36am
What, the defendant claiming the investigation is illegitimate? LOL


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Posted By: Passing Through
Date Posted: 09 Oct 2019 at 11:44am
Here is what Mother Jones thinks of the strategy Isaac.

PS, they are right.

Nixon is rolling in his grave today lamenting that he just didn't turn up for impeachment.LOL



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