Dana Milbank has been covering the impeachment “process” for the Washington Post. He describes the most brazen assault on our democracy in modern times. The damage this man has done to our society will embolden future presidents to believe that they can do “whatever they want.” The Senate is prepared to abandon its role as an independent branch of government. The Republicans are acting like sycophants, with no judgment of their own, as if they are wholly owned by Trump. With an acquittal, Trump will feel no restraints on his instinct for dirty deeds and lawlessness.

The Capitol dome looms behind the Peace Monument statue in Washington.  (J. Scott Applewhite/AP)
The Capitol dome looms behind the Peace Monument statue in Washington. (J. Scott Applewhite/AP)

93 Comments Post your own or leave a trackback: Trackback URL

  1. jacquilenhardt5598 says:

    Adam Schiff says he doesn’t know who the whistle blower is, so how does Rand Paul? Rand was asking about two employees who were heard talking about taking down the President right after the election, and onward. Is Eric Ciaramella the whistle blower? How does Dana Milbank know who the whistle blower is? Do you believe that Adam Schiff really doesn’t know, or is he lying? Dana Milbank glommed on to one statement by Dershowitz, which he misunderstood, because the democrats impeached the President with NO evidence, and NO accusation of a crime.

    • Ah, another copy of this. Saying it twice doesn’t make it more comprehensible. We are not the Trump echochamber

    • NYC public school parent says:

      The Republican trolls must be very worried if they are posting their lies on education boards. Apparently they have decided that all the heroes who testified — including two decorated soldiers – are liars and the guy who conned people into attending Trump U is the truth-teller.

      There is copious evidence that Trump committed a crime — even the GAO has found that. But to people like this trolls, nothing Trump does is a crime. He could mujrder someone on Fifth Avenue and these trolls would post “no evidence” because the 100 people who saw it aren’t as trustworthy as the man whose behavior they model. If lying helps you, do it.

      • jacquilenhardt5598 says:

        I’m here not to troll, I have read several books by Diane Ravitch. I did not realize when first I came here that she is so far left. Now, I stay for the entertainment, and information gathering. Trump released the transcript of the call immediately, so I don’t need a Ukrainian American telling me his interpretation of a phone call I READ myself. The whistle spy participated in a coup attempt, which is why Schiff is hiding him. Eric Ciaramella is the hoax-blower

      • jacquilenhardt5598: “The whistle spy participated in a coup attempt, which is why Schiff is hiding him.”

        The whistleblower’s life and the life of his family are at risk. For this reason it s against the law to out the name of a whistleblower.

        There is no coup attempt. The majority of Americans are tired of the lies and the corruption. The House has the right to impeach a president who goes against the law.

      • Sigh!

        Like William Barr’s summary of Mueller’s report on the Russia investigation, Trump released a revised summary of the call. The total transcript was classified and hidden away.

        “Official Reveals Trump’s ‘Exact Call’ With Zelensky Was Edited Down”

        “When he released a “transcript” of his July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, President Trump called it a “an exact word-for-word transcript of the conversation, taken by very talented stenographers.” Trump could not have been more explicit in his claim that the White House had, in full transparency, published a complete account of the call. “All you have to do is read what they wrote down, the stenographers,” Trump said later, “They wrote down an exact call.”

        “Guess what? It wasn’t. The New York Times reports that National Security Council Ukraine expert Lt. Col. Alexander S. Vindman, who listened in on the call, testified that the “transcript” was abridged. This explosive report has two important ramifications: First, the call was even worse than the published record lets on, and second, that some officials undertook a cover-up to hide damaging information it contained. …

        http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/10/rough-transcript-trump-call-zelensky-cover-up-ukraine-impeachment.html

        White House lawyer moved Trump[ call transcript to a classified server, Ukraine adviser testifies.

        “Scribbling notes on a yellow legal pad, Mr Eisenberg proposed a step that other officials have said is at odds with long-standing White House protocol: moving a transcript of the call to a highly classified server and restricting access to it, according to two people familiar with Mr Vindman’s account. …

        https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/trump-impeachment-ukraine-call-zelensky-transcript-server-vindman-a9178896.html

      • Oh, how dense some people.

        There is an attempted coup taking place, but it is from the Trump administration, not the witnesses who blew the whistle on Trump’s corruption.

      • jacquilenhardt5598 says:

        All the hate is on the left all. Of. It.  

        Sent from Yahoo Mail for iPhone

      • jacquilenhardt5598:* “All the hate is on the left all. Of. It.”*

        Facts don’t matter anymore. The president can now do anything illegal if it is going to make his bid for the presidency better strictly because he is ‘doing so much good for America’. As Trump says, “the USA IS WINNING AGAIN”.

        Explain in detail why Trump and the GOP worked so hard to keep facts from coming out in the ‘trial’? Why isn’t Bolton allowed to testify when he can give a first hand account of what happened? According to polls seventy-five percent of Americans wanted to see and hear actual evidence and actual witnesses.

        Why did a transcript of the Ukraine phone call go against long-standing White House protocol by putting the call to a highly classified server and restricting access to it. Surely there is a reason and it can’t be exoneration.

        Why is Trump continuing to refuse to show his taxes? Why have 20 women come out saying that Trump sexually attacked them without their consent? They are all liars when Trump has lied over 16,400 times since being inaugurated?

        Why does Trump believe Putin over our intelligence services who say that Russia interfered in our elections?

        Why did Trump change international amnesty rules so that people who are starving and under threat of death in their own countries cannot get amnesty? Why are DACA, who are holding decent jobs, afraid of being sent out of the country when the only culture they know is ours?

        When both Trump and his party effectively proclaim that there is no limit to their power, no restraint to their actions, and no boundaries to their rule, they are for all intents and purposes establishing themselves as dictators.

        I’m sure there are some far R places that would welcome your blather.

      • CM “The president can now do anything illegal if it is going to make his bid for the presidency better strictly because he is ‘doing so much good for America’”

        I think it’s better to say the philosophy this way “The president can do anything because whatever he does is best for the country.”

      • Máté Wierdl: “The president can do anything because whatever he does is best for the country.”
        We both agree with this statement? Right!!!

      • “The hate is on the left. All of it.”

        Jacqui, I wonder how Mitt Romney fits into this claim and my Mormon friends.

      • Just like Donald Trump, you are wrong, again, but we forgive you because you allowed your brain to be hacked by the Alt-Rights endless stream of hate. You surrendered your right to think for yourself when you allowed Trump and Faux News to become an echo chamber in your head.

        In fact, that HATE radiates out of Trump’s mouth and Twitter fingers and spreads from there.

        https://www.politico.com/story/2019/07/16/trump-attack-progressive-congresswomen-1416579

        Trump digs in on racist tweets: ‘Many people agree with me”

        https://apnews.com/9924c846abf84cfeabb76e6045190b42

        Black voters say they won’t forget Trump’s racist tweets

        https://www.pbs.org/newshour/nation/black-voters-say-they-wont-forget-trumps-racist-tweets

        Twitter Analysis Shows How Trump Tweets Differently About Nonwhite Lawmakers

        https://www.npr.org/2019/10/10/768646968/as-summer-heated-up-trumps-tweets-about-non-white-democrats-intensified

        Trump Hate Map

        We’ve seen the proof since his campaign launch in June 2015.

        President-elect Donald Trump’s xenophobic rhetoric didn’t just push his fellow candidates to the right on immigration (in what has become known as the “Trump Effect”). It’s gone beyond the political world and injected itself into everyday life — and, in many instances across dozens of states, in a very violent ways.

        This map shows documented instances where President-elect Donald Trump, his supporters, or his staff have harassed or attacked Latinos, immigrants, Muslim-American, African-Americans, and other minority and marginalized groups.

        You can view individual incidents on the map by clicking directly on the Trump head “markers,” or you can click on the box-shaped symbol at the top left corner of the map to see a pull-down list of the incidents.

        https://americasvoice.org/trumphatemap/

      • jacquilenhardt5598 says:

        Ahhh yes, want to control our own border is soooooo racist, sorry, no, that’s not a thing except in the heads of the left. A promise to secure the border has been made by EVERY presidential candidate since Regan gave amnesty in the 1980’s.

        I’m glad you brought up violence, but somewhat surprised in light of the fact that antifa (anti first amendment brown shirts) are embraced by the “mainstream” left. How do you feel about the rise in anti-semitism on the left and the violence perpetrated on Jews?

        Americasvoice is a racist website, so I won’t click on it.

      • Trump’s Great Wall is a political stunt just like Trump’s scripted roll in The Apprentice was, because controlling America’s borders is a lot more difficult than just one border between the United States and Mexico. Simply put, Trump’s Great Wall is a publicity stunt designed to fool his supporters into thinking he is actually doing something to make the U.S. safer … when everything he is doing is making the U.S. less safe.

        U.S. – Canada land and water boundary = 5,525 miles
        U.S.-Mexico Land and Water Boundary = 1,933.4 miles
        Length of U.S. Coastline = 12,479 miles
        Great Lakes Shorelines and Connecting Rivers = 4,960 miles

        And building a wall along the border between the U.S. and Mexico is not going to be easy. In fact, it is probably impossible.

        “What Geology Has to Say About Building a 1,000-Mile Border Wall
        Compared to erecting a marble palace or high-steepled church, a wall may seem relatively straightforward—it isn’t”

        https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/vast-geological-challenges-building-border-wall-180962072/

        “As the government shutdown over Trump’s border wall rages, a journey along the entire 1,933-mile US-Mexico border shows the monumental task of securing it”

        https://www.businessinsider.com/us-mexico-border-wall-photos-maps-2018-5

        Trump wall – all you need to know about US border in seven charts

        https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-46824649

        Illegal border crossing from Canada quietly rising, data shows

        https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/illegal-border-crossings-canada-quietly-rising-data-shows-n981131

        Billions of dollars of cocaine are smuggled into the US by sea every year, and the Coast Guard says it can only stop one-quarter of it

        https://www.businessinsider.com/coast-guard-cant-stop-most-of-the-cocaine-it-sees-headed-for-the-us-2018-11

      • I do not think, the Wall is a stunt. It’s a memorial for Trump. As senseless as the Egyptian pyramids or the Great Wall of China but they all serve the emperors who made people to build them: the emperors’ names are taught in history.

        This is why the next US president needs to tear down the Trump Wall. Otherwise our grand children will read about Trump in their history books and they may even have to memorize the dates when the Wall was built and how much it cost.

        The Trump Wall hopefully will have the same fate as the Berlin Wall had.

      • Add all of Trump’s stunts up and the result is the memorial he is building with his name attached.

      • We will have hell of a time time getting rid of these Trump memorials once he is gone. But we must do it, or people will try to follow in his footsteps to buy immortality from our taxdollars. .

      • After Trump is evicted from the White House, I do not think he is going to stop Tweeting to his followers. The adulation of a mob is addicting to tyrants like Donald Trump. Trump has tasted real power and now he will crave it.

      • dianeravitch says:

        Mr.Gorbachev, tear down that wall!

      • “Ahhh yes, want to control our own border is soooooo racist, sorry, no, that’s not a thing except in the heads of the left. A promise to secure the border has been made by EVERY presidential candidate since Regan gave amnesty in the 1980’s.”

        The Trump Wall is made from tears, similarly to other senseless projects in history, such as the pyramids of Egypt or the Great Wall of China. In this case, the tears are those people’s who do not get health care because the money is spent on a wall, the security value of which was already questionable three millennia ago.

      • For the Great Wall of China, it was not tears, it was blood. Hundreds of thousands,maybe millions of peasants were forced to finish that wall and connect up all the different sections about 200 years before JC was born. The bodies of those that died, and there were many, were tossed inside the foundation of the wall to save time.

      • The (as much as $20) billions taken away from healthcare to build the Trump Wall certainly could save thousands of lives. A few thousand people will surely die as the result of the Trump Wall.

        Of course, we can ask where else did politicians wasted billions. For example, from Diane’s new book I have learned that Duncan wasted $7 billion on Race to the Top and related stuff. That money could have been used to insure about a million uninsured people for a year.

      • Ken Watanabe says:

        Yeah, that pretty much mirrors the view of his base who cannot discern the objective facts without partisan rose-colored glasses.

    • Ken Watanabe says:

      I really don’t think you get a whole picture. Please go back and start from a square one. There were indeed several pieces of evidence(no matter how people define what evidence is”) to press forward. Republican Senates and Trump attorneys were so desperate to keep witnesses from testifying. Even some Republicans like Mitt Romney, Susan Collins, and Lamar Alexander recognized that. Even Trump team attorney Alan Dershowitz recognized that(Of course he would never change his heart whatsoever).

      Speaking of evidence, do you really think witnesses or whistleblowers are legally obligated to identify themselves and speak out while facing a life-threatening danger??? Name any democratic nation that allows such a law. I cannot come up with any.

      It’s so easy for many people to say “where’s evidence? We need evidence!” Do you really believe providing evidence(no matter what it looks like) makes anyone in the wrong recognize the error in their initial position and stand corrected??? I’m sorry, that will never happen, and certainly not for a Team Trump attorney like Alan Dershowitz.

      And Republican Senates? To be fair, their behavior is just like the one I see in Japan’s Prosecutor’s Office in the manhunt of Carlos Ghosn, a former Nissan/Mitsubishi CEO who fled Japan due to their abusive practice of indefinite imprisonment without due process. They can be hard-headed, non-plussed as much as they want–just like lawmakers in Japan’s majority party under Trump’s best friend Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

      Lastly, crime is NOT the condition for the sitting president to be impeached.

  2. jacquilenhardt5598 says:

    Adam Schiff says he doesn’t know who the whistle blower is, so how does Rand Paul? Rand was asking about two employees who were heard talking about taking down the President right after the election, and onward. Is Eric Ciaramella the whistle blower? How does Dana Milbank know who the whistle blower is? Do you believe that Adam Schiff really doesn’t know, or is he lying? Dana Milbank glommed on to one statement by Dershowitz, which he misunderstood, because the democrats impeached the President with NO evidence, and NO accusation of a crime.

  3. Elissa Dyson says:

    Diane, I hope you’re texting your old boss Lamar, and urging him to vote for witnesses!
    Hello from Onion Creek!

  4. At this point, it is an attempted coup, because Trump has not succeeded yet in overthrowing the U.S. Constitutional Republic. Someone might stop him and the plotters behind him.

    But, Trump could not attempt to pull off a coup alone. He has had a lot of help from Putin, Moscow Mitch, the Republican Party, and the fanatical religious group known as the Dominionists that anointed him as their chosen one to bring on Armageddon for the faux evangelical Christians in America that think they will go to heaven when it happens.

    Who is more dangerous?

    A few fanatical Islamic terrorists blowing themselves up in a crowd believing that becoming martyrs will get them into heaven (the young men think they are going to be rewarded with dozens of virgins for their sacrifice) or a powerful group of faux evangelical Christians that think Trump was sent to them by God to start World War III and end the world so these lunatics would finally get to go to heaven and the rest of us not.

    There is no other reason to call Trump the Chosen One unless they expect this malignant narcissist and psychopath to destroy the world before he is done … if they succeed with their subversive, religious coup.

  5. Robert Rendo, Educator says:

    This monster is NOT going to be removed from office. This trial makes a mockery of the judicial system, but this president and his pals in D.C. make a mockery of the Constitution.

    The safest path to get rid of him is to vote him out of office. If not, there will be a tsunami surge of support from his constituents who will backlash against the removal and end getting him re-elected..

    Don’t cut the heads off the hydra too soon or too fast, lest they will grow back even more quickly and exponentially . . . .

    That’s American reality for now.

  6. Ellen Lubic says:

    With Dershowitz acting as the Kapo, the Repub Senators follow Moscow Mitch like lemmings so that they can curry favors from his boss, the Liar in Chief and now, The Dictator. The nation is about to flush our Constitution down the toilet and we will have the One Party System Mitch has been promising us and working for since Obama was elected. He has control of all court appointments, and also of all legislation in the Senate and he declines to put Dem bills up for a vote on the floor. He has purposely avoided allowing any bill to pass to protect our elections, so elections can once again be stolen not only by foreign govts like Russia, but by any hackers anywhere in the world. We have the Republicans, legislators and voters, to thank for killing our democratic republic and installing Fascism in America. Trump will now stay in office until he dies and then,as he told us the other day, Yvanka will be the next Prez. Better renew your passport and take your money out of the banks so it isn’t confiscated by the Trump Crime Syndicate of which Mitch McConnell is co Dictator.. This is not Black Humor nor nihilistic sarcasm..it is my greatest fear.

    • “The nation is about to flush our Constitution down the toilet and we will have the One Party System Mitch has been promising us and working for since Obama was elected.”

      Not over yet.

      The November 2020 election is offering voters a choice between the Constitutional Republic or a toxic all-powerful head of state Donald Trump, the Putin, Kim Jong-un, Bashar al-Assad, and Rodrigo Duterte of North America’s Trumpland.

      And if Trump manages to win the 2020 election with help from Putin/Russia and the Dominionist/ALEC controlled Republican Party, the U.S. Constitution still offers us one defense, two terms and he is out in 2024.

      But even if Trump wins in 2020, how many seats will the GOP lose in state legislatures and Congress like they did in 2018.

      If the Democrats can take back the majority in the Senate even by one seat in addition to adding more seats in the House, then Trump will be blocked at every turn and probably face more impeachment trials.

      • Thanks for the positive attitude, Lloyd. Let’s believe. I was canvassing in Iowa for Bernie past weekend…

      • Lloyd Lofthouse: …two terms and he is out in 2024.
        We HOPE he is out in 2024. Do you really think that Trump will easily give up the power that he now has, especially if he knows that state courts are going to incarcerate him with no hope of a pardon?
        ……………………………………..
        WaPo:
        April 18, 2019 at 1:59 p.m. CDT
        President Trump on Thursday joked about serving more than two terms as president, telling a crowd that he might remain in the Oval Office “at least for 10 or 14 years.”

        Newsweek:
        4/12/18
        Trump was full of praise for the idea of a leader continuing indefinitely.

        “He’s now president for life. President for life,” Trump said of Xi. “No, he’s great. And look, he was able to do that. I think it’s great. Maybe we’ll have to give that a shot someday.”

      • I know Trump has let the world know that he wants to be president of the U.S. for life.

        But there is this thing called the U.S. Constitution in the way. The only way Trump gets what he wants is to get rid of that Constitution. If Trump and the GOP attempted to do that, there would be a very bloody civil war.

        Since day one, only 33-percent of the active-duty officers in the military support Trump and their Oath of office is probably word for word the same one Trump took to become president. Of course, Trump lied when he took that Oath and for sure he didn’t pay any attention to what it said, but most if not all military officers take that Oath very seriously.

        After all, when you volunteer to serve your country and are willing to die to defend the United States that also includes defending the U.S. Constitution.

  7. retiredbutmissthekids says:

    Please send a fax (free!) to Republican Senators Utah: Romney & Lee; AK: Murkowski & Sullivan’ Maine: Collins; IA: Ernst. Lamar Alexander was also suggested (don’t know what state), & also send to others from your own states (esp. MANY to your own Rep. State Senators. Ask them, as Welch did McCarthy in the infamous McCarthy-Army trial, “At long last, have you no decency?”

    You can send 5 for free before midnight, then, after midnight, another 5.
    To do, go to:
    https://faxzero.com/fax_senate.ph

  8. Christine Langhoff says:

    Oh, Diane – what has happened to your old friend, Lamar Alexander. He has thrown away his whole career for nothing.

    What a sad day for our country.

    • AlwaysLearing says:

      It is now a part of his legacy. It will be how he is remembered. A shameful way to end a career.

      • retiredbutmissthekids says:

        ESPECIALLY shameful, given that he’s retiring & has nothing to lose & everything to gain: justice & right & protecting America & the Constitution would have been his legacy.
        SHAME. ON.HIM.
        “At long last, have you no decency, sir?”–Welch

        A resounding NO.

    • NYC public school parent says:

      Lamar Alexander:

      “While I do think that President Trump shooting someone on Fifth Avenue is inappropriate, in my opinion it just isn’t enough to remove a Republican President. The voters must decide whether shooting someone is fine or not and if the shooting was designed to kill an opponent so he could get re-elected, that’s fine with me since the voters who Trump does allow to vote must decide.”

  9. Bob Shepherd says:

    Lots of laughter from the Kremlin today

  10. Bob Shepherd says:

    So, a joke:

    Stalin appears to Putin in a dream. Putin says, “Do you have any advice for me?”

    Stalin says, “Yes. Kill all your enemies and paint the Kremlin blue.”

    Putin says, “Why blue?”

  11. Bob Shepherd says:

    Everybody knows. Trump is pathetically insecure and profoundly ignorant, a lout, a moron, a pathological liar, a racist, a bully and a thug, clinically an exhibitionist narcissist, a serial sexual predator, a ne’er-do-well would-be playboy and business failure, a con man, a long-time criminal money launderer for Russian mobsters who PUBLICLY called on Russia to hack his opponent in the 2016 elections and received enormous support from Russian Foreign Intelligence, the GRU, in those elections, in the form of a massive Social Media disinformation campaign.

    Everybody knows that Trump is a Russian asset, a dependable water-carrier for the kleptocratic Russian state, a traitor to his country. Trump, Vlad’s Agent Orange, Moscow’s Asset Governing America (MAGA), has delivered everything Putin wanted, appointing to head most U.S. government departments and agencies people intent on trashing those, telling his aides he wanted to withdraw from NATO, alienating all of our allies, making nice nice with the dictatorial likes of Kim Jong-il, groveling before Putin at international meetings, factionalizing the country to an extent not seen since just before the Civil War, abandoning our allies the Kurds and leaving Syria to the Russians, withholding military aide from a strategically important ally at war with Russia, withdrawing from the INF treaty (which limited nuclear weapons development) and the Open Skies treaty (which enabled Russia and the US to conduct short-notice, unarmed, reconnaissance flights over the others’ entire territories to collect data on military forces and activities) at a time when Russia has developed new hypersonic nuclear missiles.

    EVERYBODY KNOWS. You and I know it. Every reporter knows it. The Republican Senators know it. The toadies in the Trump Misadministration know it. His dirty lawyers know it. The Evangelical leaders know it (most of them; there are some real dummies). The U.S. intelligence services know it. All our allies know it. Melania knows it. Trump and his spawn certainly know it. Yes, sure, there are some rubes out there in the hinterlands who don’t. But everyone else? They ALL know. He’s useful to the corrupt politicians gathered around him because Trump will allow them to do anything THEY want for their rapacious donors. This is how bad it’s gotten. Ghouliani cooked up a scheme–nail the Bidens, and sold his dim-witted (“Belgium is a city”; “the Prince of Whales”; “China is paying us billions because of my tariffs”) client on it. And he got caught. But hey, nothing a Sharpie won’t cure in an time when our leadership, at the highest levels, is A CORRUPT CRIMINAL ENTERPRISE.

    Dark times. This is what a country that has lost its moorings looks like, one that is on its way to becoming either a fascist dictatorship or a failed state. It’s the cronies gathered around Stalin in the Kuntsevo Dacha. It’s John Gotti and the boys at the Ravenite. It’s Rome in the time of Commodus. It’s a sick joke. And everybody knows.

    And the “trial”? Well, what Trump did was bad. Very, very bad. Impeachably bad. Removal from office bad. Putting his personal political gain above the country’s national security, above the needs of a desperate, strategically important ally at war. Unforgivable. But that’s tiny compared to the whole picture, isn’t it? It’s as though the Son of Sam were being tried for traffic violations. But here we are. And even for this, he will go completely free. To do it again. And again. And again. Trump emboldened. Jabba theTrump off the chain, bungling and bellowing through history, breaking things.

    The one word that sums him up best: he is a vandal.And the next thing for him to vandalize is democracy itself, given that his lawyers have argued, and the Senate will tomorrow affirm, that this would be autocrat who says that Article 2 of the Constitution means that he can do anything he wants, can in fact do anything he wants.

    • Abigail Shure says:

      Bob,

      This is a wonderful description of where we are today. I have been watching hours and hours of the hearings. I sit mesmerized in front of the television. I thought that Dershowitz might be a wake up call. Republican senators certainly cannot buy this ludicrous argument. Does it apply to regular people as well? It is a prescription for anarchy. The Trump supporters have reason to celebrate. Our society has become unhinged.

  12. ““When the president does it, that means it is not illegal.” Now, “we are right back to where we were a half-century ago, and I would argue that we may be in a worse place,” Schiff said. “Nixon was forced to resign. But that argument may succeed here now.”“

    Well, our political leaders should have taken care of the problem in the last 40 years. I don’t think, they did anything. As a minimum, the president should be jailed forcommitting crimes like any other citizen. Nixon was allowed to resign, and was not punished in any other way. Why not?

  13. This could be the most crucial day in the impeachment trial yet. Today, the Senate will vote on whether to call witnesses. Despite the wave of uncertainty over revelations from former national security adviser John Bolton and despite ongoing debates about whether Chief Justice John Roberts can intervene to make sure witnesses are called, it appears Republicans will close ranks and vote against witnesses. That means the Senate could swiftly vote to acquit President Trump and end the trial, possibly today. What happens after it’s all over? Well, there will be a lot to think about. In the short term, it’s unclear how the whole saga will affect this year’s presidential election. Constitutionally speaking, the broad presidential powers outlined by the President’s defense could reshape the way future Oval Office occupants view their duties.

  14. What is wrong with these people? They don’t allow evidence because it would surely mean Trump is guilty and must be voted out of office. This is SO obvious.
    …………….
    Lamar Alexander: ‘No Need for More Evidence’ in Impeachment Trial

    Allison Quinn
    News Editor
    Updated Jan. 31, 2020 4:23AM ET /
    Published Jan. 31, 2020 12:17AM ET

    Sen. Lamar Alexander came out firmly against calling more witnesses in President Trump’s impeachment trial on Thursday night, declaring “no need for more evidence.” The Tennessee Republican’s announcement, which came ahead of a Friday vote on whether to hear new evidence in the Senate trial, dashed Democrats’ hopes of convincing at least four GOP senators to back their calls for more witnesses. It also seems all but certain to lead to a speedy acquittal for Trump. “I worked with other senators to make sure that we have the right to ask for more documents and witnesses, but there is no need for more evidence to prove something that has already been proven and that does not meet the United States Constitution’s high bar for an impeachable offense,” Alexander said in a statement. Shortly before he announced his decision, Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) said she would vote in support of calling more witnesses. Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) has also expressed support for calling witnesses, while Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AL), another key swing vote, has not yet announced her decision.

    • NYC public school parent says:

      Lamar Alexander HAD to vote against witnesses so that Susan Collins could claim to be “independent” by voting against Mitch McConnell when Mitch gave her permission to do so because her vote wasn’t needed.

      Collins could not come out saying she was going to vote for having witnesses until Lamar Alexander was committed to voting against witnesses.

      Collins is always allowed to vote against something Mitch McConnell doesn’t want when her vote isn’t needed. She always has to wait until her boss gives her permission to do so.

      Lamar Alexander did this for Susan Collins to fake being willing to do something that Mitch McConnell won’t let her do. But McConnell gave her permission to do this because he didn’t need her vote.

      As soon as I heard that Susan Collins would vote for witnesses, I knew that Mitch had won and gave her permission. That’s why she refused to make her position clear until she knew what position Mitch McConnell would allow her to take.

    • Alexander is not the only embarrassment in TN politics.

  15. Jamelle Bouie: “The president could do far more than solicit dirt from foreign governments. He could have his political opponents arrested or he could promise pardons to supporters who physically intimidated Democratic voters. ‘To protect my reelection and thus the national interest, I am ordering the National Guard to occupy and shutdown Democratic precincts in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin, as well as Arizona and North Carolina.’”

  16. AlwaysLearning says:

    Senator Chris Murphy on Twitter
    “It’s simple really. ”

    “If the trial is rigged to keep hidden the most damming, most important, most relevant evidence, then it’s not a trial. ”

    “Nor is it an acquittal.”

    “IT”S a COVERUP.”

  17. Threatened Out West says:

    These Senators are so stupid and corrupt that they’re giving up their own power, and they refuse to see that.

    • Bob Shepherd says:

      There are people who secretly believe, in their tiny, cinder-like hearts, that everything comes down to power, that any talk about “values” is just hooey–propaganda to rally the rubes. The Repugnican Limbo Party today is made up of such people, and as long as the power is on their side, they are OK with anything. Trump is momentarily empowering to them because he allows them to be as rapacious as they’ve always wanted to be.

  18. RT says:

    Now the Democrats have their ammunition. Tyrant! They can yell their heads off. Will the fifty voters who matter listen in the appropriate states?

  19. Callisto says:

    Republicans will have similar epitaphs:

    “Here lies (insert Republican coward’s name) who sold out the Constitution for a Putin-owned failed steak salesman.”

    They will forever be remembered as the weaklings that betrayed their oath to America.

  20. NYC public school parent says:

    I want every Senator who votes that Trump should be allowed to illegally hold up foreign aid until the foreign leader publicly announces that the President’s political opponent is a crook to be asked if there is ANYTHING Trump could do that they could not excuse.

    If Trump decided to shoot Joe Biden on Fifth Avenue, would Lamar Alexander say it was okay because even though he thought it was “inappropriate”, the voters must decide?

    Lamar Alexander is no different than any of the Germans who allowed Hitler to gain power – Hitler’s attacks weren’t directed at them and so whatever Hitler did to other people was fine with him. Lamar Alexander would have been that “good” Aryan German who said that as long as Hitler was only doing horrible things to Jews, he saw no need to stop him.

  21. She admits that there is not a fair trial in the Senate but will vote “No” on additional witnesses? “We have degraded this institution for partisan political benefit”. One more lame brain to the stack that grows.
    ……………………………..

    Sen. Lisa Murkowski Says She Will Vote ‘No’ on Additional Witnesses

    Justin Baragona
    Contributing Editor
    Published Jan. 31, 2020 1:33PM ET

    Leah Millis/Reuters
    Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) announced on Friday that she would be voting no on calling additional witnesses in the Senate impeachment trial, essentially giving Republicans enough votes to block the measure. “I have come to the conclusion that there will be no fair trial in the Senate,” Murkowski said. “I don’t believe the continuation of this process will change anything. It is sad for me to admit that, as an institution, the Congress has failed.”

    “It has also become clear some of my colleagues intend to further politicize this process, and drag the Supreme Court into the fray, while attacking the Chief Justice. I will not stand for nor support that effort,” she continued. “We have already degraded this institution for partisan political benefit, and I will not enable those who wish to pull down another.”

    Murkowski throwing her hands in the air over impeachment comes a day after Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) said that while President Donald Trump’s actions with Ukraine were inappropriate, he would not vote for additional witnesses as Democrats proved their case and the president’s actions didn’t rise to the level of impeachment.

  22. I’m sure the Democrats wouldn’t have stopped Trump from testifying. Wonder why he didn’t volunteer? /s
    …………………………………
    WaPo:
    As his defense team made its closing arguments for acquittal and against calling more witnesses, Trump tweeted about the trial, repeating many of the same talking points as his lawyers, but with more Trumpian language.
    “The Radical Left, Do Nothing Democrats keep chanting ‘fairness’, when they put on the most unfair Witch Hunt in the history of the U.S. Congress,” he tweeted. “They had 17 Witnesses, we were allowed ZERO, and no lawyers. They didn’t do their job, had no case. The Dems are scamming America!”

    • Trumpelstiltskin, the serial liar, says his side wasn’t allowed any witnesses? He is referring to Biden and his son.

      That means Dump-for-Brains wanted to turn the Senate trial into a circus where he wasn’t on trial but the Bidens were. That is why he hired Alan Dershowitz because he is a master at turning the police and/or victims into criminals as he did during the O.J. Simpson trial. I’ll bet OJ is someone Trump admires.

      But it isn’t as if Trump has no witnesses. Everyone on his White House staff he ordered not to testify and defy Congress were witnesses to his crimes.

  23. WaPo:
    Senate to vote Wednesday on whether to remove or acquit Trump on impeachment charges
    President Trump faces charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. Closing arguments will be held next week ahead of the vote, Republican officials said.

  24. Chief Justice John Roberts dodged a scenario that could have called (at least in the minds of Democrats) for some kind of intervention: a 50-50 tie on the witness vote. He said at the trial today that “it would be inappropriate for me, an unelected official from a different branch of government, to assert the power to change that result so that the motion would succeed.”

  25. I guess this is what is now being pushed. Hope it falls flat when Bernie wins the presidency.
    …………………………………….

    Republicans: Want to reelect Trump? Vote for Bernie
    BY LIZ PEEK

    OPINION | Here’s what Republican and independent supporters in Iowa can do to reelect Donald Trump: Re-register as Democrats and vote for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) in the February 3 caucuses.

  26. So, in the impeachment ‘ “Democrats broke every standard of due process, transparency and fairness in their House investigation, making a mockery of their constitutional duty.” Jared has made the most realistic plan for peace in the Isreal-Palestinian conflict that has ever been released. Princess Sparkle confirms a $24M budget to support human trafficking victims and Trump negotiated TWO MAJOR trade agreements that are good for this country. WOW! I’m impressed.
    …………………………………….
    Resolute Reads
    FIVE STORIES PRESIDENT TRUMP DOESN’T WANT YOU TO MISS
    Trump Signs USMCA, Paving Way for Job Market Boom
    -Fox Business
    “President Trump signed the historic United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, replacing the Clinton-era North American Free Trade Agreement that he called a ‘disaster.’ The USMCA, which is the biggest trade deal of all-time, covers more than $1.3 trillion of commerce,” Jonathan Garber reports.

    In photos: President Trump keeps his promise to replace NAFTA

    Crying Wolf on Impeachment
    -The Wall Street Journal
    “The impeachment trial of Donald J. Trump is coming down to one big question: Will Democrats, by crying wolf, drown out the more legitimate Republican cry of foul?” Kimberly Strassel writes. “Democrats broke every standard of due process, transparency and fairness in their House investigation, making a mockery of their constitutional duty.”

    🎬 Watch: House Dems called 17 witnesses. Their case failed, so they want more.

    Jared Kushner: A Pivotal Moment in the Middle East
    -CNN
    “After joining the administration, one of the first assignments I was given by President Trump was to develop a plan to resolve the decades-old Israel-Palestinian conflict. I am pleased to say that, after three years of work, we have made a breakthrough. Our vision for peace is by far the most comprehensive and realistic plan that has ever been released,” Senior Advisor to the President Jared Kushner writes.

    Ivanka Trump Confirms $42M Budget Increase to Support Human Trafficking Victims
    -Fox Business
    President Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, Attorney General William Barr, and Adviser to the President Ivanka Trump discussed ways to combat human trafficking at a White House Summit yesterday. “The first daughter confirmed a Wednesday report during the summit that President Trump will soon be proposing a $42 million budget increase for 2021 to support victims and efforts to prosecute criminals who take part in human trafficking,” Audrey Conklin reports.

    President Trump: We are 100% committed to ending human trafficking.

    USMCA Paves the Way for Productivity and Prosperity
    -Des Moines Register
    “Skeptics of President Donald Trump’s bold way of negotiating trade ate a bit of crow this month. That includes this Iowa senator. I’m not a big fan of tariffs. So, when the president imposed tariffs as leverage in world trade talks, I was skeptical. [Yet] President Trump has succeeded in securing two major trade agreements that are good for America and good for Iowa,” Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) writes.

    Privacy Policy | Contact the White House | Unsubscribe
    The White House · 1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW · Washington, DC 20500 · USA · 202-456-1111

    • From The Atlantic:

      A team of officials under Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, has spent much of the past three years putting together a plan for the kind of Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement that has thwarted every single one of Trump’s predecessors since Harry Truman recognized the Jewish state in 1947.

      The result, as Kushner tells it, is better than what came before; it has more details, plus a map that Israel has agreed to. But that’s the key thing—only one side has agreed, and Palestinian leadership has already rejected terms that would, among other things, leave Israelis in charge of Palestinian security.

      But even if the plan doesn’t lead to peace, it may already be changing reality on the ground. The right-wing government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said it will move to annex territory that Palestinians hoped would be part of their own future state. The Palestinians lack leverage—or allies in the U.S. administration—to change the status quo. Early indications about this plan point to something far short of real peace.

      • “Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement that has thwarted every single one of Trump’s predecessors ”

        In what sense has it thwarted them?

      • Máté Wierdl: “Jared Kushner, has spent much of the past three years putting together a plan for the kind of Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement that has thwarted every single one of Trump’s predecessors since Harry Truman recognized the Jewish state in 1947.”

        None of Trump’s predecessors were able to come up with a peach plan that worked.
        Jared hasn’t either.

        Jared: “…it, is better than what came before; it has more details, plus a map that Israel has agreed to.” No progress has been made when only one side agrees.

        Sounds like the type of deals that Trump makes. Doesn’t matter if the other side doesn’t want it.

      • Typical Trump: That he would come up with a peace plan for the Middle East that isn’t a peace plan because only one side wins and the other side gets basically nothing.

        Most of if not all business deals Trump has negotiated through his life (except the money laundering deal he made with the Russian mafia), every contract he has signed, he breaks once he gets what he wants and either takes the business partner or contractor to court or gets taken to court where he drags the court case out for years and even defies judges orders to turn over evidence by destroying the evidence so it doesn’t exist anymore. Then he often refuses to pay his lawyers what he owes them explaining why Trump uses a revolving door for everyone that works for him but his children.

      • Looks like Jared has bombed on this one.
        ………………………………………….
        Arab League foreign ministers reject Trump peace plan

        The foreign ministers of the member state of the Arab League unanimously adopted a resolution on Saturday rejecting the Trump Israeli-Palestinian peace plan, and said that “it does not satisfy the minimum of the rights and aspirations of the Palestinian people.

        “Why it matters: The Trump administration was counting on a coalition of Arab countries it has built over the last several years to prevent such a resolution and press the Palestinians to go back to the table. Those efforts did not materialize.

        The state of play: The Arab League foreign ministers convened on Saturday in Cairo at the request of the Palestinians to discuss the Trump plan. The closing statement, which passed in consensus between all member states, said the U.S. plan contradicts the principles of the peace process and United Nations resolutions. The statement also explained that Arab countries will not engage with the U.S. on the plan and will not cooperate with the Trump administration in its implementation

        https://www.axios.com/arab-league-foreign-ministers-reject-trump-peace-plan-612f8cde-c8cc-4955-8504-7b6e6142c103.html

      • dianeravitch says:

        Jared the diplomat should return to real estate

      • dianeravitch: “The Trump administration was counting on a coalition of Arab countries it has built over the last several years to prevent such a resolution and press the Palestinians to go back to the table. Those efforts did not materialize.”

        I think that means that Trump went to Saudi Arabia and was mesmerized by the manipulative attention that he received. Trump sold military sales to Saudi Arabia worth $110 billion with $350 billion in total over the decade.Once again, he was counting on his ‘warm personality’ to win over the Saudi’s and the other Middle Eastern countries.

        Jared the diplomat is a slum lord in Baltimore. The greed never ends.

      • Is he good at real estate?

  27. Now we know. Trump rallies are the “Greatest Show on Earth”. [I’d NEVER attend one. I prefer political rallies where the main speaker can distinguish fact from rambling garble.]
    ……………………………………………
    Donald J. Trump

    @realDonaldTrump
    Trump poll numbers are the highest since election, despite constant phony Witch Hunts! Tens of thousands of people attending rallies (which the Fake News never mentions) to see “The Greatest Show On Earth”. Fun because USA is WINNING AGAIN! https://twitter.com/olivianuzzi/status/1223302455276064770

  28. Mr. Trump is the only president in the history of Gallup polling who has never had the support of a majority of Americans for even a single day.

  29. CNN:

    Schiff said the Republican criticism of the House for not waiting for litigation over a Bolton subpoena to play out in court before moving forward with impeachment is false, noting the House is still pursuing testimony from former White House counsel Don McGahn, and that it’s unclear when their efforts will end.
    “First of all, if we continue with litigation, as we are doing at this moment with Don McGahn, and we subpoenaed him nine months ago and we’re still nowhere near a final resolution, it would probably be one to two years before we would have had a decision on John Bolton,” he said. “That means the President would have been able to cheat in the next election with impunity because they could have simply delayed and played out the clock.

  30. By David Leonhardt
    Opinion Columnist WaPo

    …Trump’s ultimate argument, most purely expressed by Alan Dershowitz, one of his lawyers, was that a president can do almost anything because he’s president. And that argument made me think of the infamous “Access Hollywood” tape, from 2005 (and disclosed in 2016 by The Washington Post). On that tape, Trump notoriously talked about grabbing women’s genitalia without their permission. He also said the following:“And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.”

    …this credo is central to understanding Trump’s business career, his presidency and now the impeachment trial….

    Senator Kamala Harris was also reminded of the “Access Hollywood” tape last week. During the trial, she submitted a question, which was read by Chief Justice John Roberts:President Nixon said, ‘When the president does it, that means that it is not illegal.’ Before he was elected, President Trump said, ‘When you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.’

    After he was elected, President Trump said that Article II of the Constitution gives him ‘the right to do whatever [he] want[s] as president.’These statements suggest that each of them believed that the president is above the law — a belief reflected in the improper actions that both presidents took to affect their re-election campaigns. If the Senate fails to hold the president accountable for misconduct, how would that undermine the integrity of our system of justice?

  31. I can’t say I want anyone to suffer from a debilitating disease. I also don’t want lies to be broadcast to millions for the purpose of making more money.
    ………………..
    Rush Limbaugh announces he has ‘advanced lung cancer’ | Fox News

    Longtime influential conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh announced on his show Monday he was diagnosed with “advanced lung cancer,” a shocking announcement in which he said he will miss shows for treatment. | Fox News

    Talk radio king Rush Limbaugh stunned his 20-million member audience Monday with the announcement he’s been diagnosed with “advanced lung cancer.” The 69-year-old conservative talk pioneer closed his broadcast with the grim news, saying he will be leaving his golden EIB microphone for treatment, but hopes to return soon.

    https://fxn.ws/37QT7J4

  32. The WH is confirming that “The President did nothing wrong.” Whoop! Whoop!
    ……………………………………….
    The White House • February 3, 2020

    0+0=0
    The Senate heard closing arguments today on House Democrats’ sham impeachment.

    Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) and his team claim their case is as simple as “two plus two equals four.” But nothing in their phony impeachment adds up—unless the math is 0+0=0.

    Roll the tape: None of this began with a phone call.

    After trying to impeach this President for over 3 years, here is their “case”:

    Zero crimes. Forget “High Crimes and Misdemeanors,” which the Constitution requires to impeach and remove a sitting President. Democrats’ weak articles of impeachment don’t include any alleged criminal violations at all. It’s the first impeachment in American history based on no crimes, only policy disputes.

    Zero wrongdoing. No matter how much House Democrats tried to rig the process, the facts remain the same: The President did nothing wrong. At the core of their impeachment hoax is a simple disagreement about when potential corruption should be investigated and when it shouldn’t be. (Hint: If it involves a Democrat, they say it isn’t worth looking into!)

    Result: Zero bipartisan support. Democrat leaders couldn’t make their case, so their impeachment made history in a second way: It’s the first one without any bipartisan support. In fact, the only bipartisanship was against their articles…

    https://www.whitehouse.gov/1600daily/?utm_source=link

  33. Voting to Acquit This Noxious Criminal Is the Point of No Return for the Republican Party
    By Amanda Marcotte, Salon
    03 February 20
    Today Republicans make it official: Out of sheer lust for power, they’ve rejected democracy and basic decency

    …In 1974, Richard Nixon resigned for doing pretty much the same thing Trump did: His goons were running an illegal scheme to help him cheat in the 1972 election, and he was engaged in the cover-up. Nixon resigned not because he wanted to but because congressional Republicans, or enough of them anyway, believed that the rule of law mattered more than maintaining their party’s political power. Republicans worked with Democrats to expose evidence that led to Nixon’s downfall.

    Nowadays, the opposite is true: Republicans are working to conceal evidence, and when they can’t conceal it are arguing that it doesn’t matter what Trump does anyway. In voting to block witnesses and then to acquit a clearly corrupt and criminal president, they are making it official: Cheating in elections is no crime, so long as you’re on their side.  

    There is no turning back now. Republicans will, of course, continue to pretend they’re anything but the party of corruption and cheating, but the veneer of plausible deniability has been stripped away. Their party’s last vestiges legitimacy are gone, and they know it. In fact, they’re voting on it in the Senate sometime on Friday.

    What this means for the rest of us is still not clear. There will be an election in November, and a newly emboldened Trump will probably concoct more criminal conspiracies to cheat in it. He may very well win. If he doesn’t win, it’s entirely likely that he’ll reject the election results and refuse to leave, launching a new and much more dangerous episode in our slow-unfolding constitutional crisis. Senate Republicans, having already signed off on his cheating, may conclude there’s no reason to stop now, and find some excuse to back his illegal rejection of the election results. …

    Check out this article! https://www.salon.com2020/01/31/voting-to-acquit-this-noxious-criminal-is-the-point-of-no-return-for-the-republican-party/

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