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And yet with globalization, we seem to have developed a strange apprehension about the efficacy of our ability to apply the innovation and hard work necessary to successfully compete in a complex security and economic environment. Further, we have misunderstood interdependence as a weakness rather than recognizing it as a strength. The key to sustaining our competitive edge, at home or on the world stage, is credibility — and credibility is a difficult capital to foster. It cannot be won through intimidation and threat, it cannot be sustained through protectionism or exclusion. Credibility requires engagement, strength, and reliability — imaginatively applied through the national tools of development, diplomacy, and defense.

The Y Article

A National Security Narrative

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

H/T AB

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Kalima
Admin

The rich are ecstatic. The middle and working class have been duped into voting against their own interests.

Super-rich family buy £65m house after Johnson’s victory

Family decide to buy property in central London as direct result of election outcome

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2019/dec/13/super-rich-family-buy-65m-house-to-celebrate-johnsons-victory

Kalima
Admin

So is the SC now coordinating with the WH too being as the turtle has already decided the verdict before trump’s trial in the Senate?

Recuse yourself traitor.

Supreme Court will take up Trump’s broad claims of protection from investigation

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/courts_law/supreme-court-will-take-up-trumps-broad-claims-of-protection-from-investigation/2019/12/13/1de84cd6-1d19-11ea-8d58-5ac3600967a1_story.html

Kalima
Admin

Indefensible. Not one repub willing to defend the Constitution and the rule of law. Not one repub deserving of their seat in Congress.

Joyce Alene

@JoyceWhiteVance
Mitch McConnell rejects the founding fathers’ creation of a system of checks & balances to keep any one branch of gov’t from becoming too powerful & engaging in corruption/abuse of power. https://twitter.com/acyn/status/1205311801212190727

Acyn Torabi
@Acyn Torabi
Mitch McConnell: Everything I do during this, I’m coordinating with White House Counsel. There will be no difference between the President’s position and our position as to how to handle this.

Melissa Allen Heath
@melisheath
How is that not a violation of the basic premise of separation of powers under the Constitution?? Such a stance is tantamount to surrender of authority of the legislative branch, leaving us open to the imposition of tyranny. McConnell & those who vote with him violate their oaths https://twitter.com/Acyn/status/1

AdLib
Admin

Well…it’s hard to bid farewell to a stable, functional UK but after strongly winning this election, it looks like Boris Johnson will be empowered now to drive the nation into a Brexit crash dive.

Both Johnson and Corbyn had net negatives as candidates but between Corbyn taking no real position on Brexit and Johnson, Tories and Russia helping to deceive Brit voters into thinking that Brexit will be good for them and Make Britain Great Again, the future of the UK has just been sealed…and not in a good way.

The standard of living in the UK can only disintegrate from here as economic shocks come and social services are slashed and privatized. In 5 years, when the next election would normally occur, the UK will look sadly different from what it is now. And for many Tory voters, just like Trump voters (who thankfully are a smaller minority in the US), the suffering will be self-inflicted.

I feel terrible for Kalima and others from and in the UK, they will feel it the worst but losing the UK as we know it is a terrible loss for all of us.

U.K. General Election 2019: A Big Night for Conservatives, Exit Poll Shows

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/12/world/europe/uk-elections-brexit.html

Kalima
Admin

I have no intention of ever going back but still have family, friends and the grave of my parents there. I am sick to the core of my soul that voters would ever trust the Tories again and let an incompetent liar like Johnson continue to destroy the country. Couldn’t even bring myself to watch the Beeb. I have no reason to remain a British citizen now. I have no country. The world has gone insane.

My brother-in-law died on the 1st of November through lack of adequate care in a London hospital. My sister hasn’t slept more than 2 hours a night for 6 months because they wouldn’t admit him even though he was skin and bones. She has no time to grieve because she is taking care of her mother who has dementia. There are few options available to help her that don’t cost an arm and a leg, and Johnson wants to introduce American style healthcare? Despicable!

Locally in the working class Midlands and further north, patients wait hours for appointments and medical procedures could take months. Many die waiting. House calls are almost nonexistent. It was bad when my father was alive 7 years ago with the council and local government funding cuts the Tories demanded. I’ve heard from friends that it’s so much worse now and that is why I will never understand these election results. I am numb.

General election: Boris Johnson uses first speech after win to repeat NHS campaign lies

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/general-election-boris-johnson-result-tory-majority-nhs-lies-a9244891.html

AdLib
Admin

And Corbyn has now announced that he will resign as the leader of Labour. I have felt for some time that he was not an ideal leader for Labour, he had far too much baggage, was a quiet supporter of Brexit and IMO, the wishlist manifesto from Labour in this election was a bit much for most voters.

But this election swung on of course, Brexit and Corbyn’s middle-of-the-road position on it didn’t give him a way to be forceful about why voters should vote Labour. I would have wished he’d have been strongly anti-Brexit so he could campaign on that and work at winning voters to Labour because of that.

Who knows, maybe the damage Brexit and Boris do to the UK will push an earlier election as public outrage grows and whoever is leading Labour then can present a stronger argument to support change and Labour.

But whatever the case, dark times ahead for the UK and sending the good folks there all the best from here in this Trump Autocracy.

UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn says he will not lead the party in future elections

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/12/13/uk-labour-leader-jeremy-corbyn-says-he-will-not-lead-the-party-in-future-elections.html

TOCB
Member

A wise man once told me that the best way to beat a bad system is to use it. I know that sounds crazy, but it is often true. The problem is that sometimes it destroys the entire organization, because by the time people acknowledge the system is bad, it is too late to save the organization.

I used this on my children when they were young, in order to make them realize from their own experiences that what they wanted to do was not the best thing. It is only necessary to use this exercise when the people you are attempting to advise refuse to listen to reason. However, when they experience the consequences of their choices, they will have learned at first-hand and it will be a life lesson for them. It can be difficult to watch people you love go through the consequences of bad choices, but it is part of the learning process.

Kalima
Admin

The Republican strategy consists of lies and loud meaningless voices. They won’t address the evidence or substance of trump’s horrendous wrongdoing. Collins sounds like an auctioneer on meths. Gohmert is a babbling fool. Jordan can’t remember history of less than a decade ago where he took part in the “Fast and Furious” debacle, the IRS nothingburger and the partisan Benghazi fiasco.

I wanted to watch more but these obnoxious liars made it impossible for me. It’s a shame that they couldn’t be removed.

AdLib
Admin

Though this is historic, it was not something that I had the patience to watch at great length. Yelling and lying is all the Repubs could do while Dems spoke of facts and patriotism to our democracy.

The Repubs simply wanted to drag out and dirty-up the Constitution and this process, degrade it as they and Trump have already been doing.

I don’t think most Americans watched this tortuous process today and tonight but they will be watching the hearings in the Senate. And if Repubs choose to continue using our Constitution as toilet paper by making the hearing a sham and blocking testimony and evidence, that anti-Americanism needs to be hung around their necks from now until election day.

TOCB
Member

Moscow Mitch has publicly stated, at least for Fox “News” viewers, that Senate republicans will not convict trump. He said that republicans will consult with trump’s team at every step of the trial. Members of the “jury” will consult with the defendant.

The House of Representatives will do their job next week and impeach this corrupt president. Republicans in the Senate will acquit him in January or February 2020, and in trump’s feeble mind, he will be exonerated. It will then be up to American voters to impeach and remove the republican party in November 2020. If not, the USA will cease to exist. PERIOD!

Kalima
Admin

The clown show. Red noses, turned down mouths of “victimhood” and enough meaningless complaints to sink the Titanic twice over. The Republican travesty.

TOCB
Member

In last night’s impeachment hearing many Democrats admonished republicans to vote their conscience as opposed to voting based on political expediency. It appears that they should direct the same advice to at least one of their fellow Democrats.

Jeff Van Drew who represents a district in NJ that trump won by 5 points in 2016, has decided not to vote for impeachment. He said he thinks it is too divisive, I suppose politically. I think any Democrat who does not vote to impeach should be voted out of office in the Democratic primaries. If a Democrat wants to vote like a republican, they should depend on republicans to elect them.

Many of the Democrats who won election in 2018 in republican districts, did NOT win because voters wanted to protect the ACA or other issues they seem to think they won on. They won because voters wanted to hold trump accountable for his actions. PERIOD! Almost NONE of the over 400 bills passed by House Democrats have even been taken up in the republican controlled Senate, so how does having a Democratic House and a republican Senate and White House get anything done in Washington? IT DOESN’T!

If Americans want sensible gun safety legislation, they MUST elect a Democratic House, a Democratic Senate and a Democratic president. And that goes for any other legislation that MOST Americans want.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/democratic-rep-van-drew-to-vote-against-trump-impeachment-says-others-could-join-him/ar-AAK2wz4?ocid=spartandhp

AdLib
Admin

Yes, I think this coward who puts re-election over country needs to be primaried and beaten. This is a moment when there is a call to everyone who took an oath of office to step up and protect the Constitution. And this coward only cares about feathering his own nest. He should run as a Republican, we don’t need people of zero character and morals to be running or serving as a Dem.

We have to be better than the greedy, immoral Repubs, not just slightly less greedy and immoral.

Kalima
Admin

More lies. The aid had already been cleared to go by the Defence Dept and the State Dept.

Business
In new legal memo, White House budget office defends withholding aid to

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/in-new-legal-memo-white-house-budget-office-defends-withholding-aid-to-ukraine/2019/12/11/0caa030e-1b95-11ea-826b-14ef38a0f45f_story.html

AdLib
Admin

We’re through the looking glass now, the torrent of lies pouring out of Trump, his Admin and the Repubs is unrestrained. It’s mostly all lies all the time now. Such spite for the country and voters, this across the board lying and propagandizing. The GOP and Trump’s Admin are literally unchained by conscience and honesty, it’s all deception.

And around 40% of the country doesn’t care as long as the minorities they hate can be oppressed.

We are in a New Civil War whether folks admit it or not but this time it’s not the North vs. South, it’s Americans vs. Fascists.

Kalima
Admin

If this weak coward has such a need to kill, he should have enlisted. He is disgusting. His whole family is. His fat slob of a father wanted his security guys to rough up a woman protester at his latest freak show PA rally. What a “great” role model for his youngest son and the sons of his delusional supporters. He should be behind bars.

Donald Trump Jr. Went to Mongolia, Got Special Treatment From the Government and Killed an Endangered Sheep

During a summer 2019 hunting trip, Donald Trump Jr. killed a rare argali sheep. The Mongolian government issued him a hunting permit retroactively and he met with the country’s president.

https://www.propublica.org/article/trump-inc-podcast-donald-trump-jr-went-to-mongolia-got-special-treatment-from-the-government-and-killed-an-endangered-sheep

AdLib
Admin

Crime is the natural act of a Trump, that’s become sadly obvious.

Kalima
Admin

It’s in their DNA. Stupid, crooked and cruel.

Kalima
Admin

DOJ inspector general sheds further doubt on the Trump team’s tactics

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/12/11/ig-sheds-further-doubt-trump-team-its-tactics/

AdLib
Admin

Yet he’s having to fight the US AG and President to get the truth out. We are in such dangerous times.

Kalima
Admin

The disbar barr wants to keep trump’s Russia Investigation conspiracy alive. It will not end well for him and he can only convince 29% of the voting public that are republicans. The rest of the voters are Dems and Independents with many of them wanting trump removed.

“You can fool all the people some of the time and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time”.

AdLib
Admin

One thing I think is clear now, a majority of Americans, those who are not in the Trump cult, now have seen quite starkly that Barr iis a liar and a propagandist. No matter what he declares in the future, only Trump’s cultists will believe him. He has disqualified himself publicly, he is a fraud and just as a majority of Americans believe about Trump, he’s seen as not being credible.

Kalima
Admin

He’s trump’s Roy Cohn and we all know how he ended up.

Twice trump has been involved with foreign interference to win an election. Twice barr has lied to the public and Congress about the findings of reports that took two years to complete. He has no credibility left. He is not working for the American people. He’s trump’s personal lawyer now and should be impeached and removed. Vermin infecting democracy and the rule of law he took an oath to protect. The Dems should use clips of trump and his gang members swearing their oath. Nothing more needs to be said.

TOCB
Member

So far, I am persuaded that Senator Graham is a country lawyer with a South Carolina accent, who has an impressive ability to distract. I think he and the IG established that the FISA warrants to surveil Carter Page involved FBI neglecting to note that Page had been an agent for the CIA, and Graham implied that the omission of that information rendered the beginning of the investigation into Russian interference into the 2016 presidential election biased against trump.

However, what I heard the IG say about the opening of the investigation is that it had nothing to do with Carter Page, and that it was completely legitimate. Further, the date of January 2017 was mentioned several times related to the time the FBI discovered that there was a problem with the FISA warrants related to Page.

I recall that the 2016 presidential election was completed in November 2016, AND by that time Carter Page was no longer a member of trump’s campaign, and indeed trump had stated he did not even know Carter Page. So if the issues with FISA warrants related to Carter Page occurred in January 2017, when Page was no longer affiliated with trump’s campaign and indeed trump was by then POTUS, who did not even know Carter Page, HOW could FISA issues related to Carter Page be viewed as a bias against candidate trump and result in an illegal counter intelligence investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election???

AdLib
Admin

Truth is irrelevant to authoritarians and their toadies. Graham is a soldier for Trump, whether he’s been blackmailed into it or took on the role out of greed. Nothing he says ever passes through a filter of conscience or truth so neither will give him pause at saying whatever it takes to defend his master.

This is not reflective of a democracy, this is behavior one sees in a tyranny. Graham is no different than the Nazi soldiers who dutifully participated in horrific war crimes, he displays that he has no boundary he wouldn’t cross to promote and defend Herr Fuhrer.

TOCB
Member

Lindsey Graham just opened a Senate session to question the Justice Department OIG about the report he issued about whether the FBI was politically motivated in opening an investigation on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Graham’s initial statement is VERY puzzling. He said that, “the FBI took the law into their own hands.” I was always under the impression that the FBI, as part of the Justice Department, is charged with law enforcement. If the FBI cannot investigate violations of laws, exactly who does Graham think should, “take the law into their own hands”?

AdLib
Admin

When there is a Dem President, as should be likely in 2021, if Graham is still in office (hope he can be defeated instead), don’t be surprised at how he doesn’t hesitate to take the exact opposite position in urging the FBI to take the law in their own hands against the Dem president.

TOCB
Member

I am NOT the typical “older black voter”. Although I do not dislike Joe Biden, he is not my first or second choice for president. I think Senator Warren is the person who is best prepared to lead the USA into the twenty-first century, twenty years after it began.

However, Senator Warren is a woman. Republicans, the press and “moderate Democrats” have managed to label her as unelectable because she is a woman, AND she supports universal single payer health insurance. These are the two primary reasons Senator Warren won’t win the Democratic nomination.

Americans preferring a man as president over a woman as president, is what it is. I have nothing for that. However, as a practical matter, Americans REALLY need to know how health insurance works in the USA, and how our fellow Americans are dying everyday due to the lack of adequate affordable healthcare.

Here is a teaser from a site that gives an overview about the history of healthcare in the USA, and how it works today. I encourage people to read the entire article at this link:

https://www.interexchange.org/articles/visit-the-usa/understanding-us-healthcare-system/

American Health Insurance System

Although there are several different types of coverage and states often have their own health insurance regulations, there are some aspects of the system that are similar throughout the U.S. Hospitals, clinics, doctors’ offices and other health care facilities are owned by a variety of private and public entities. Health insurance providers are generally separate companies from these and deal with a wide range of different healthcare providers.
Patients pay monthly health insurance fees to ensure that they will be covered when they need to go to the doctor, clinic or hospital. Insurance providers cover thousands of patients, so they are able to negotiate with health care providers for reduced fees and then pay for services. The Medicare or Medicaid insurance works the same way but on a bigger scale. Because they need to be able to negotiate, insurance providers generally have a network of doctors that they have agreements with, and patients are covered for visits to doctors within that network but may not be covered, or fully covered, for visits to doctors out of their network. Insurance providers will usually cover services considered necessary by doctors, but often will not cover services which are considered “elective.” Insurance companies aim to keep their costs down while still covering necessary health care.

The Affordable Care Act

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, commonly referred to as “Obamacare,” was voted into law in 2010. Since insurance companies are private, for-profit companies, many Americans had been left uninsured because they could not afford or did not want insurance, or because they were rejected because of pre-existing conditions. The Obama administration attempted to address some of these issues with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. These are some of the major provisions of the law:
Insurers are not allowed to refuse coverage because of pre-existing conditions
Minimum standards for health insurance policies were established
Medicaid eligibility expanded
Medicare underwent reforms aimed at greater efficiency
Individuals without employer-provided insurance are required to purchase health insurance
Health Exchanges were set up to offer consumers a good way to find suitable health insurance and to provide subsidies for those who need it
Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, 11 million more Americans are insured than previously. But this legislation has come under fire from Republicans despite the fact that it was passed by both houses of Congress. Repeated attempts to stop the legislation through the courts have mostly failed, though there have been a few rulings partially in their favor. The debate over health care is likely to continue as it has for the last hundred years.

AdLib
Admin

When we remember back to the passage of the ACA, we can recall how imperfect it was out of the need to negotiate with corrupt people like the Repubs and Joe Lieberman, who fought to protect the power and wealth of insurance companies and against the rights of the people to healthcare.

It was remarkable and has helped millions but it is imperfect and didn’t accomplish Obama’s original goal that he announced in the 2008 primary, to provide universal healthcare to all Americans.

The Biden/Buttigieg/Klobuchar refrains of, “Don’t have hope about change!” and “Incrementalism Now!” will be a defeat for the Dems and won’t change the suffering of those who are being prevented approvals by their insurance companies for necessary treatments and medicines or those who can’t afford premiums and deductibles.

Even Obama described it along the way as something to build on.

Yet, our Moderate Dems just want to take it back to where it was, when it worked for many but didn’t work for millions.

That is not a solution and failing to fix healthcare in a profound way will sour many against the Dems for weak solutions and potentially lead to Repubs taking power in Congress and/oor the WH with lies like Trump spat out on providing great healthcare for all for less money.

Failing to truly fix things lays the groundwork for the devious con men and women of the GOP to step in and take power. Dems should be smarter than that.

Kalima
Admin

Opinion
The Guardian view on general election 2019
A fleeting chance to stop Boris Johnson in his tracks

The mood may be one of despair, but this election is critical to the country’s future. The best hope lies with Labour, despite its flaws

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/ng-interactive/2019/dec/10/the-guardian-view-on-general-election-2019-a-fleeting-chance-to-stop-boris-johnson-in-his-tracks

AdLib
Admin

I must say that I am bewildered why the Tories always have the natural lead in the UK and Labour is constantly having to chase after it. With all the hell that the Tories have brought Brits and the insanity and destruction BoBo is promising with a Hard Brexit, I just don’t get it.

At least in the US, popularity swings between Repubs and Dems, Trump lost the popular vote in 2016, Dems have a Blue Tsunami in 2018 and polls favor them in 2020.

With Labour, they are always having to battle as an underdog since Tories took over. Maybe it’s this from the article you linked to:

A Tory decade of self-defeating austerity has produced average wages lower than in 2008. Tent cities and food banks have become ubiquitous. Despite the existential threat of the climate emergency, the UK is not on track to meet our carbon dioxide reduction targets.

A different electoral system and a more deliberative politics, allowing society’s losers as well as winners to buy into political decisions, might have helped. The Guardian has urged such an approach as part of a solution to Brexit. Instead, a struggle for power within both the main parties has shaped an election in which many wish they faced better choices. Britain needs modern parties to correspond to the range of people’s lives and concerns. In their absence, voters in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, as well as large parts of England, feel cut off from Westminster debate.

TOCB
Member

I think constitutional monarchies are fake governments, regardless of how much power the sovereign has. Even our representative democracy is fake in a very important respect. In fact, the last two times a republican occupied the White House, the president did not receive the majority of the votes. Additionally, by hook or crook, when republicans are the majority in Congress, it is not because the majority of Americans voted for them. I am not sure what kind of government we actually have in the USA, but it is not a democracy.

From my understanding Brexit is something that MAY have been initiated by Putin, in an effort to dismantle the EU. It makes sense to me that the UK’s monetary system is controlled by the government and not the European Central Bank. I don’t quite understand why sovereign nations don’t control their own currencies.

However, it also makes sense to me that the UK would want to be a part of a market partnership with the EU in order to leverage the marketing power of other European nations. I don’t see what the UK gains from being a separate market than the rest of Europe.

AdLib
Admin

Indeed, a constitutional government is opposed to a monarchy and vice versa, they can’t be both. The US hasn’t been a true democracy or republic.

The Electoral College itself is a refutation of democracy and an installation of racism in this nation. It is a remnant of accommodating undemocratic slave states and also was conceived to protect the leadership class from the will of the people…who some of the Founders feared lacked the judgement to directly choose the governing class.

And now, in these very corrupt times, it has degraded far beyond that, into some democracy mixed in with oligarchy and fascism.

Gerrymandering, which has been around since 1812, has been embedded in this country to deny democracy and give power to those who can’t win a fair, majority vote.

Is it a surprise that the most gerrymandered states are generally the most racist states? That gerrymandering is used to keep power in the hands of a minority of white people and keep it out of the hands of so-called minorities?

In the UK, Brexit has been another bigotry-driven device, heavily supported by the UK’s worst enemy, Russia. Now why would the UK’s enemy support a massive change to the UK unless it would damage them?

Russia wants to help the UK become more powerful? Or do they want the real threat to them, the EU, to become weaker?

Putin is laughing at the bigoted Brits who have been so easily whipped up in their hatefulness to support the downfall of their country. It’s amusing to them that so many Brits can be blinded enough by hate to push their own country off a cliff.

But who empowered all of this? The propaganda against staying in the EU, co-financed by Russia, was meant to divide and damage the UK in an ongoing way but David Cameron’s enormous greed and ignorance, to promise and deliver a referendum on Brexit as a cynical ploy to remain in power, was the key. Without that, Brexit would still be a divisive issue but wouldn’t be on the verge of happening. Cameron and his sacrificing the future of the UK for keeping power in his hand should always be remembered as what detonated all this madness.

And despite all of the very clear warnings now, as to what a Hard Brexit would do to devastate the country, the Tories are still on the brink of being empowered by Brits to blow up the country.

I am hoping so hard that they lose badly today, for the sake of the UK and the free world.

Kalima
Admin

The similarities between trump and his destructive chaos are unmistakable.

I have no idea why anyone would vote for the same hardships of the last 9 years except that as with the lies from the Leave extremists, they still believe those lies.

Today we go to the polls and may common sense conquer weak minds.


Boris Johnson wants to destroy the Britain I love. I cannot vote Conservative

Peter Oborne

Johnson’s Conservatives are a revolutionary sect and should be understood as such

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/dec/11/boris-johnson-destroy-britain-conservative-revolutionary-sect

AdLib
Admin

Maybe this is a bit simplistic but it seems that white nationalism/bigotry is the real “Trump” card in the UK, Europe and the U.S.. The people who are most fearful and hateful of minorities seem invulnerable to reason and even simple reality. No matter how much they’re lied to, betrayed and harmed by the party that pushes white nationalism, they are like drug addicts who can’t look past chasing their next high above everything else.

That high being the affirmation of their bigotry.

The all-consuming flames of hatred seem to dominate all thinking by these people, turning them into mindless and angry cultists, set apart from conscience and compassion.

The truth is, they are the enemy of any nation’s future and progress and until or unless they’re defeated, that nation will disintegrate.

Hoping intensely that Tories don’t win a majority and Labour can pull a coalition together to take power.

Kalima
Admin
TOCB
Member

I am NOT a politician, and I don’t play one of tv. I AM an American citizen. From my perspective as an American citizen, I would prefer the Articles of Impeachment include all of the crimes we are aware of trump violating. We know he encouraged and welcomed Russian interference in the 2016 election. We know he attempted to obstruct justice in the investigation of his conspiracy to encourage and welcome Russian interference in the 2016 election. Of course the legal wording would be different that “encouraging” and “welcoming”. The point is that these actions are a betrayal and an abuse of the office of the presidency.

We also know that trump attempted to extort and bribe the Ukrainian government to persuade them to interfere in the 2020 election, and he attempted to obstruct justice and to obstruct Congress in investigating those crimes. And we know that trump has violated the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution in various and sundry ways. We know these things because trump has done MANY of these thing is plain sight for the entire world to see.

Regardless of what action the republican controlled Senate takes related to their constitutional responsibility to preserve and protect the Constitution against ALL enemies, foreign and domestic. Republicans in the Senate should be forced to defend their inactions to the American people. We know some Americans will support and indeed cheer the inactions of the Senate related to convicting trump and removing him from office. That is their prerogative.

But then, there are the rest of us.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/house-democrats-unveil-articles-of-impeachment-against-trump/ar-BBY1N3F?ocid=spartandhp

AdLib
Admin

I was of the same opinion from the beginning but I’m more on the fence now due to some of the following arguments.

First, to properly pursue the Mueller-Report-related charges, Dems would need all of the Grand Jury evidence and testimony to provide in the trial. As Schiff mentioned this morning, it has already taken the courts 8 months just to move forward partially against Trump’s and Barr’s stonewalling on this, it could take many months or more than a year to finally have all appeals denied…and then he can sue on grounds of Executive Privilege or some other tactic to stall and restart the whole court process again. If Dems were to pursue impeachment on grounds for which key evidence is not provided, it gives Repubs an easy way out to vote against impeachment and justify their cover up of Trump’s crimes. Otherwise, the 2020 election will have come and gone before Dems win all the legal battles they need to in order to have the testimony and evidence they need. If they just pursue the Ukraine-related matters, they already have all the key evidence and witnesses they need to make a fully backed-up case for why the only fair decision could be a conviction of Trump.

Secondly, and touched on above, we all know that it is more likely than not that the Repubs in The Senate will vote against impeachment to cover up Trump’s crimes. If Dems have made a clear and complete case against Trump, with no perception by the public that they have failed to provide sufficient evidence and testimony, Senate Republicans who are up for election in 2020 will be easily painted as undermining justice and the national interest and their re-elections will be more endangered. If Dems gave Republicans something strong to rationalize away their cover up, such as presenting an Impeachment Article without providing all the relevant evidence needed, they have an easy out to just say, “They didn’t have the evidence to prove their case and should never have brought impeachment in the first place.

Lastly, for impeachment to have a profound impact on Americans, it needs to be easy to understand. I don’t like this either, dumbing down and narrowing impeachment to the lowest common denominator of a very unevenly educated public but there is a reasonable case to be made for this. If impeachment contains every high crime and misdemeanor that Trump has committed, it would be a massive case with many diverse details about each charge. In a criminal or even civil case, this would be fine, a judge and/or Jury would be given the time to absorb and consider it all. However, in the case of impeachment, Americans aren’t obliged to watch every minute of it and catching some here or there may be all that that many in the ultimate “jury” does. If they watch bits and pieces and each time, it is about details of a different aspect of impeachment and exploration of a different set of facts about that issue, it may become too hard for many to follow (or want to follow). While people showing such poor civic duty deserve to be criticized, they still need to be won over as best as possible by Dems. Not just for the 2020 election, to punish the Repubs for being Russian and Trumpian tools but if Dems want a prayer of being able to win a conviction in The Senate and have a growing majority push Repub Senators to convict and remove Trump, they need Low Information Voters along with the well informed voters. This is how Trump and the Repubs were forced to fail in repealing the ACA, enough Americans were activated and overwhelming in telling the Repubs they need to stop trying to kill the ACA and despite conventional wisdom that Repubs would kill it, they were stopped.

From a perspective of justice, I too would like to see Trump impeached for all of his high crimes and misdemeanors. From a pragmatic position though, the end result I want to see is either Trump removed now or definitely in 2020, along with the Repub majority in The Senate. I think this laser-focused approach on impeaching for an easy-to-understand crime in the public’s mind and having all the evidence and testimony needed to provide a bulletproof case against Trump may be the best path to accomplish the desired result.

And, unless Trump tries a sneaky trick to exploit the Constitution and resigns to make Pence president on his last day, when he can pardon Trump for all his federal crimes (still many state crimes he’ll be liable for), Trump could still be prosecuted after he’s voted out of office for all of these crimes.

So he may not get away with any of them just because Dems focus on the ones that will be most effective in removing Trump through impeachment or Trump and the Senate Repub majority in 2020.

TOCB
Member

I don’t disagree with anything you said, and you said it very well. However, your justification for a narrowly focused impeachment, like House Democrats, is a political justification. I understand the pragmatism of that decision. However, as an American citizen who is concerned about our institutions and the rule of law, I am very disappointed in congressional republicans because they are forcing congressional Democrats to be political.

They (republicans) complain that this is a partisan impeachment, and they are 100% correct. The REASON it is a partisan impeachment is because congressional republicans refuse to accept their responsibility to hold THIS president accountable. Of course, if it were a Democratic president, they would be leading the way to impeaching him or her.

As you are well aware, it is not the responsibility of the American voters to impeach a president. Voters only get to make their choices for government at election time. Impeachment was included in the Constitution as a remedy outside of an election. The Constitution made it SOLEY the responsibility of the House to impeach and the Senate to acquit or convict and remove. The saddest thing in this is that ANY member of Congress would not rise to place country over party and politics when it is for the common good to do so.

AdLib
Admin

It’s interesting because I was saying the same thing when Pelosi and other Dems were insisting we shouldn’t impeach unless a majority of voters supported it first.

The principle is important, Congresspeople need to fulfill their oath of office and their duty to the country. So they have to impeach Trump.

Here’s a choice I’d ask you to consider. Which of the following would you choose?

1. The House impeaches Trump only for high crimes and misdemeanors connected to Ukraine and the trial is held before the 2020 election.

2. The House prepares an impeachment of Trump that encompasses all of his high crimes and misdemeanors that he’s committed in office but needs to wait until after the 2020 election until all legal obstacles to providing the required evidence are cleared.

3. The House goes ahead with impeachment of Trump on all of his high crimes and misdemeanors before the 2020 election without being able to provide much of the specific testimony or evidence needed to prove most of the cases.

I have stood on principle in situations even when they didn’t lead to the outcome I wanted.

Here, I think principles can be affirmed but outcome must be the removal or terminal political damage of Trump and the GOP.

If all charges are made against Trump but many fail because they are badly flawed by lack of evidence, Trump and Repubs will only focus on them to define the whole process as flawed.

Our democracy is on the verge of being pushed off a cliff. This is an emergency and we can’t afford to fail. Upholding the principle of impeaching Trump on everything won’t matter if he wins re-election. He’ll tear it down with the rest of our democracy.

Lastly, prosecutors only charge suspecs with crimes that they can’t win convictions on and often, that is not all possible charges.

TOCB
Member

Again, I do not disagree. HOWEVER, (you know I am a contrarian) trump and republicans will attempt to make a mockery of anything Democrats, the press and those who respect the rule of law do. So not doing something based on principle because trump will attempt to distort it, is playing into trump’s hand, IMHO.

I would include the full Mueller Report, both volumes, as evidence to support an obstruction of justice article. There would be no debate on it in the hearing in the Judiciary Committee. As Mueller said, the report speaks for itself, and it outlined ten cases of obstruction of justice. I would also submit as evidence NUMEROUS reports from government agencies and videos of trump himself that support violations of the Emoluments Clause. Nadler could allow limited debate on that issue. Nothing would require any court action because Congress has the SOLE authority for impeachment, and at this stage the court has no jurisdiction. The MAIN focus could remain on Ukraine.

When the case gets to the Senate, I suspect republicans will take the position that trump has done nothing wrong, and they will end the trial in short order. We will then have an impeached president in the Oval Office for a year. A president who in his mind, has been exonerated by the Senate, and who is a clear and present danger to the national security of the USA. A president who on the day the House announced articles of impeachment, had a private meeting, with no U.S. press present, in the Oval Office with Russia’s foreign minister and who called the women and men who work at the FBI, SCUM.

There is literally no telling what trump likely will think he can get away within a year. After all, what will the U.S. government do about it? Impeach him???

AdLib
Admin

The problem is, if The House approved Articles of Impeachment on other charges including The Mueller Report, knowing they did not have and could not provide hard evidence from the Grand Jury nor testimony, only using Mueller’s conclusions, they would then know they were impeaching Trump in bad faith.

Any prosecutor would pause at pursuing a prosecution where there is evidence but they are not able to present it.

And this would give a legit opening for Repubs’ now-illegitimate claims that there is no hard evidence proving Trump committed high crimes and misdemeanors.

I think the course of action you’re suggesting, prosecuting cases against a president to remove him without having the hard evidence in hand, is not a very good option and would set the precedent for the next time a Dem is in the WH and Repubs control The Senate, to impeach that president without hard evidence or witnesses.

I also think it would distract and undermine what it would be trying to accomplish against Trump. It would taint all charges for impeachment, that would be all they focused on.

As I mentioned in my last, this is not how prosecutors pursue cases. Why was Al Capone convicted of tax evasion and not charged with all the mob crimes he committed. the Untouchables and prosecutors knew he committed those crimes but the next step is asking themselves, can we prove it beyond a reasonable doubt.

Without live testimony and the Grand Jusry evidence, Dems can’t prove Trump’s guilt in all of these other cases (maybe some though) beyond a reasonable doubt.

They know the price they’d pay in the public’s mind for bringing an incomplete case, how that could help Trump beat all the Articles of Impeachment AND give him a sympathetic talking point to win in 2020.

I am with you on the principle that everyone should be held responsible for any and all crimes they commit. However, professional attorneys and prosecutors, who have been advising and managing impeachment for the Dems, have very good wisdom and insight into nailing a criminal in a trial and in the public eye.

I see pressing ahead with impeaching Trump on all charges possible, especially the ones that Trump has been stonewalling in the courts to block key evidence and testimony, as a fatal, self-inflicted injury for Dems.

It would be like an operation was successful but the patient died…the patient being justice and the defeat of Trump.