Congress’ Incredible Ability To Waste Taxpayers’ Money

Yesterday Just the News posted an article reporting that Congress added $3 million to the legislative branch’s already exorbitant $1.3 trillion annual budget for the failed impeachment of Donald Trump. There are several problems with this expenditure. First of all, we really don’t have $1.3 trillion to spend on a wild goose chase. It was understood from the beginning that the Senate would never impeach President Trump, so what was the purpose of this futile exercise? It was a purely political stunt. Damn the taxpayers, and full speed ahead. Second, anyone paying attention with an IQ of more than 50 understood that the charges against the President were not impeachable offenses. The whole impeachment theater was an exercise in futility.

The article details the spending:

That price tag included the salaries of more than 100 congressional staffers and employees who, for those four months, essentially worked full-time on the impeachment proceedings. It also factors in the hourly fees of the six attorneys who were hired as lawyers of record for witnesses who made appearances during hearings, and acted as impeachment counsel for the House Democratic impeachment managers throughout the trial.

The high cost of the impeachment effort is primarily due to the House’s decision to use congressional staffers to investigate the president for potentially impeachable crimes. For reference, during the impeachment of President Clinton 1998, the majority of the fact-finding was done by Independent Counsel Ken Starr’s staff. For President Nixon’s impeachment inquiry, the bulk of the investigating was handled by special prosecutors Archibald Cox and Leon Jaworski, in addition to a Senate select committee.

The $3 million tally is a conservative estimate, since it does not yet include the impeachment costs run up during the Senate trial in January and February. It also does not factor in overtime pay for Capitol Police, witness travel expenses, or supplies and materials required for the hearings and trial. 

The impeachment inquiry began just weeks after the release of the Mueller Report and conclusion of the two-and-a-half year Russia probe. Adding the impeachment spending to the $32 million spent on the Mueller investigation, the taxpayer has been billed a total of $35 million for the two investigations, neither of which resulted in bipartisan findings of presidential wrongdoing.

Elections have consequences. The impeachment fiasco was the result of turning the House of Representatives over to the Democrats after the Democrat candidates promised they would not spend their time going after President Trump. The impeachment fiasco was something that the more radical elements of the Democrat party demanded, but most American voters did not support. If the Democrats hold the House of Representatives after the November elections and President Trump is reelected, I can guarantee that more taxpayer money will be wasted in Congress on political theater.

Saving The Taxpayers Money While Draining The Swamp

Yesterday The New York Post reported that National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien has dramatically cut down the size of the National Security Council.

The article reports:

The job cuts are an attempt to streamline the foreign policy outfit, which ballooned under the Obama administration to almost 240 staffers — still up from 115 during Condoleezza Rice’s tenure as George W. Bush’s NSA in the early 2000s, a senior White House official said.

By the end of this summer, the NSC will consist of just 105 staff, the official said.

The changes come as O’Brien — Trump’s fourth national security adviser — tries to remake the forum in his image after replacing fiery predecessor John Bolton, who was ousted last October following a high-profile dispute with the president.

…Trump reportedly instructed O’Brien to substantially reduce the size of the agency shortly after he arrived at the White House — an effort O’Brien detailed in a Washington Post opinion piece.

At the time, the foreign policy operation was at the center of an impeachment inquiry sparked by a whistleblower complaint related to the agency’s work.

“Under previous administrations, the NSC more than doubled in size and duplicated many of the functions of DoD, State and the intelligence community,” O’Brien told The Post on Tuesday.

“Under President Trump, we have brought the NSC back to its proper size and role as a coordinating body,” he continued.

“To make that happen we require the best leaders, many of whom are women. Our goal is always to find the very best professionals for each job, and I am very proud of the team we have assembled at the NSC to further President Trump’s agenda,” he said.

In 2016, Republicans in both houses of Congress introduced bills that would have slashed the NSC staff to no more than 150 people — legislation the Obama administration opposed.

Created by President Harry Truman in 1947, the NSC is an interagency panel that advises and assists the president on national security and foreign policy.

It should also be noted that the President also cut 70 Obama-era holdovers from the National Security Agency in February.

The deep state is slowly being removed.

Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz’s Report Has Been Released

Yesterday Charles Hurt posted an opinion piece at The Washington Times about the report of Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz concerning abuses at the highest levels of the Department of Justice.

The piece reports:

We now know that FBI agents — operating at the behest of powerful appointees of the Obama administration — deliberately doctored foreign intelligence to obtain secret warrants to spy on an active political campaign for president. In the United States of America.

This is no longer opinion or speculation. This is fact, backed up by exhaustive investigation and extensive evidence. The fact that these massive abuses are getting short-shrift in the media today only reveals the extent to which the media has been a co-conspirator in this travesty of justice.

They have become outright defenders of a police state, where spying on innocent Americans seeking political office is now perfectly acceptable to them.

Meanwhile, in Congress, the most powerful Democrats in the land knew what was going on and encouraged it. All for sick partisan gain.

To cover their tracks, they lied and accused their political opponents of doing exactly what they themselves did: Using foreign disinformation straight out of Moscow to sow discord and win an election here in the United States.

Again, this is not some hot-headed opinion from a crazy conspiracy theorist. Or, at least, it’s not just that. It also happens to be the stone-cold truth.

As the information is revealed, it is easy to understand why the people involved fought so hard to keep it from becoming public. There are many of our elected officials who have fought to keep the truth from coming out. The voters are the only way that those not directly involved who worked to keep the truth away from the public will be held accountable. It is now becoming obvious that the entire impeachment fiasco had nothing to do with President Trump, but instead was to distract Americans from the truth that many of our elected officials were attempting to keep buried.

When You Understand The Connections, This Makes Sense

There are a lot of Republicans walking around wondering how they ever supported Mitt Romney. He has made some very strange comments and votes since Donald Trump was elected. Now we are beginning to see the reason behind some of his actions. Keep in mind that President Trump has consistently attempted to drain the Washington, D.C., swamp. There are investigations currently going on into various aspects of that swamp. Whether anyone will actually pay a price for their corruption I don’t know, but I suspect there are some seriously uncomfortable people walking around Washington right now.

Today Fox News posted an article about some of Romney’s recent comments.

The article notes:

Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, who faced the scorn of President Trump and fellow Republicans over his vote last month to convict at the Senate impeachment trial, questioned the motivation behind a Republican effort to issue a subpoena related to Hunter Biden and his dealing with Ukraine.

“I would prefer that investigations are done by an independent, non-political body,” Romney told the Washington Post. “There’s no question the appearance is not good.”

Oddly enough, he has not been equally concerned about all of the investigations into President Trump. The article notes that Romney’s vote in the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee is pivotal. That is the Committee that would approve a subpoena to gather information on the Ukrainian scandal involving Hunter Biden. Republicans maintain an 8-to-6 majority in the committee, and if Romney sides with Democrats the result would be a 7-7 tie.

PJ Media posted an article in February that reminded us of the following:

Romney’s vote to convict on the charge of abuse of power might very well be connected to his own links to the company via one of his top advisers. The Federalist reported back in September that “top Mitt Romney adviser Joseph Cofer Black, who publicly goes by ‘Cofer Black,’ joined Burisma’s board of directors while Hunter Biden was also serving on the board.”

I would be very surprised if Romney votes to investigate Ukrainian corruption since he has close ties to someone who may be caught up in the investigation. This might also explain some of Romney’s problem with President Trump–it is becoming obvious that Romney may well be part of the swamp. That may be the reason he worked so hard to be elected to the Senate–self preservation.

The Consequences Of Success

Yesterday The Washington Examiner posted an article that illustrates the bias of the mainstream media.

The article begins with a denial from the networks. I am not sure I believe the denial:

Representatives from both CNN’s State of the Union and CBS’s Face the Nation refuted Grisham’s claims that they turned down an appearance from a White House official. A Fox News spokesperson also pointed out that Grisham inaccurately said Fox Business was the only network to accept a White House spokesperson because they do not have a Sunday talk show.

The article states:

White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham claimed a slew of networks declined to book a White House official for Sunday programming after a good news week for President Trump.

Grisham, in a Friday night appearance on Hannity, acknowledged the White House will not get much airtime to discuss the State of the Union address, the president getting acquitted in the Senate impeachment trial, and a strong jobs report.

“I have got to tell you there is not going to be one White House official on any of the Sunday shows this weekend. Only Fox Business is taking a White House official to talk about what an amazing week this president has had, and I do find that timing very, very suspect,” she explained.

The article concludes:

While most networks aren’t featuring a White House official, many are bringing on Trump supporters. CBS’s Face The Nation will have South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, as well as 2020 hopefuls Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont and former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg. The two presidential candidates will also appear on Fox News Sunday.

Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani will appear on Fox News’s Sunday Morning Futures.

ABC’s This Week will also feature two Democratic presidential candidates; the only conservative on their guest list is former Virginia Rep. Barbara Comstock, who is also a network contributor.

It will be interesting to see the comments about Speaker Pelosi’s tearing up the speech on the Sunday shows. Her actions were childish and totally inappropriate. However, I doubt they will be reported as such.

The Question Justice Roberts Refused To Read

One of the few interesting moments in the impeachment drama was the refusal of Chief Justice Roberts to read aloud a question submitted by Senator Rand Paul.

The Gateway Pundit posted the question yesterday:

“Are you aware that House intelligence committee staffer Shawn Misko had a close relationship with Eric Ciaramella while at the National Security Council together and are you aware and how do you respond to reports that Ciaramella and Misko may have worked together to plot impeaching the President before there were formal house impeachment proceedings.”

Senator Paul commented:

My question is not about a “whistleblower” as I have no independent information on his identity. My question is about the actions of known Obama partisans within the NSC and House staff and how they are reported to have conspired before impeachment proceedings had even begun.

The article notes:

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) has released the question that was blocked Wednesday and Thursday by Chief Justice John Roberts in the Senate impeachment trial of President Trump. Paul’s question deals with the origins of the impeachment inquiry and employs the name of the alleged whistleblower, not in that context but with regard to his relation with a NSC co-worker who moved on to the staff of Lead House Manager Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) and whether they plotted to impeach Trump before the House impeachment proceedings started.

Impeachment may or may not end today, but I can assure you that whatever happens this will not be the end of the Democrats efforts to block any successful policies of President Trump.

When The Truth Is Stretched So Thin You Can See Through It

Yesterday The Gateway Pundit posted an article that included an amazing comment by one of the House Impeachment Managers.

The article notes:

Impeachment manager Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) on Thursday was asked whether the Clinton campaign’s use of the Steele Dossier in 2016 would be considered impeachable under the Dems’ standard.

Hakeem Jeffries said no because the Steele dossier was opposition research that “was purchased.”

What a disaster for the Democrats!

So if Hillary Clinton won the 2016 election, the legitimacy of her victory would not be in question by the Democrats even though she paid a former British spy to compile a dossier using Russian intel sources.

In other words, foreign interference in US elections is fine as long as you are a Democrat and you pay for it.

Wow. So according to Representative Jeffries, it is okay to use foreign sources to influence and election as long as you pay those sources.

What is interesting about this is that the Democrats are no longer contesting the fact that the Clinton campaign paid for the Steele Dossier. Are they also willing to admit that the Dossier was passed on to government agencies for nefarious purposes? Will they be willing to admit that their opposition research was used by the Obama administration to spy on the Trump campaign? Will the Democrats ever take responsibility for the use of government agencies for political purposes that occurred during the Obama administration?

I am not worried about foreign influence supporting Republicans in the 2020 election. I have no reason to believe that the Democrats will again choose to break any law they think they need to in order to win. If you haven’t seen the Politico article about Ukrainian interference in the 2016 Presidential election, please read it (I strongly disagree with the opening statement, but there is a lot of good information in the article).

Really?

Yesterday Breitbart posted an article about a recent comment by Senator Chris Coons (D-DE).

The article reports:

Senator Chris Coons (D-DE) said on Tuesday during MSNBC’s impeachment coverage that “hypothetically,” President Donald Trump could be impeached for a “hateful, racist position” that he tweets about.

Host Chuck Todd said, “I have to say, one of the logic things I don’t understand when I hear people making declarations about ‘this is not an impeachable offense.’ Correct me if I’m wrong, the impeachable offense is whatever a majority the House says it is, and if you get ousted, it’s whatever two-thirds of the Senate says?”

Representative Coons continued:

He continued, “It is a political process, Chuck. You’re right that we don’t have detailed documentary evidence of what the Founders meant by high crimes and misdemeanors. We have some history from the United Kingdom, where they used that term in impeachment over a long period of time. Understanding this is the Constitutional mechanism for removing the president, I find it hard to believe that it has to be a specifically plead federal crime.”

He continued, “If, for example, the president of the United States just chose to move to his golf resort in Scotland for two years and not come back, not return calls, not be the president, don’t you think we could impeach him and remove him for dereliction of duty, even though there’s no specific crime?”

He added, “If the president hypothetically were to start adopting some hateful, racist position and tweeting and saying things that violated all of our values and were offensive to every American and didn’t specifically commit a crime, couldn’t we remove him in that instance?”

Our Founding Fathers are not turning over in their graves–they are spinning. Hasn’t this man read the Constitution? Aren’t the Democrats the party who had a Senate Majority Leader who was a leader in his local Ku Klux Klan?

I really can’t believe that the Democrats are so willing to undo a legitimate election when the next election is merely nine and a half months away.

This Isn’t A Surprise To Any Unbiased Person

On Monday The Washington Examiner posted an article about race relations in America. We still have those who are trying to profit or gain personally by creating racial discord, but generally speaking America is doing better.

The article reports:

Satisfaction with race relations in the United States has jumped under President Trump, the latest indication that the Republican is making significant inroads with blacks and other minorities in advance of the 2020 presidential election.

New details from a Gallup survey on satisfaction said race relations and the “position” of minorities under Trump are far higher than they were under President Barack Obama, the nation’s first black president.

Race relations scored the highest satisfaction advance, 14 points, from 22% at the end of the Obama administration to 36% this month, said Gallup.

The article includes the following chart:

These statistics may explain why the Democrats were willing to embark on the seemingly suicidal mission of impeachment.

The article concludes:

What’s more, Gallup said that the nation’s average satisfaction rate is at a 15-year high.

Said the survey analysis:

“Americans’ average satisfaction rating for the 27 issues Gallup has tracked consistently since 2001 is now 47%. This is up three points from a year ago and is the highest since the January 2005 poll.

“Today’s average satisfaction is roughly on par with the level of the early 2000s. Only in 2002 was the average for this metric substantially higher than it is today. The average 53% recorded that year reflected heightened satisfaction as Americans were in full ‘rally around the flag’ mode shortly after the 9/11 attacks.”

President Trump has been a very successful President. It is a shame that most of the mainstream media has chosen to ignore that fact.

What An Amazing Coincidence!

Pj Media posted an article today about the latest ‘bombshell’ relating to President Trump’s impeachment. The ‘bombshell’, of course, is the excerpt supposedly leaked from John Bolton’s not yet released book about his time working in the White House. The timing of this ‘bombshell’ is very interesting. The ‘bombshell’ just happened to be released as the President’s defense lawyers were making their case. The ‘bombshell’ obviously provides good publicity for sales of John Bolton’s book when it comes out.

The article reports:

Over the weekend the New York Times leaked a newsy item reportedly from former National Security Council Adviser John Bolton’s as yet unpublished book. The book reportedly includes information about President Trump’s desire to hold up aid for Ukraine – aid that was, in fact, given to the troubled country.

…As PJ Media reported, the pre-sales for Bolton’s book were opened on Amazon the same day as the leak.

Did Bolton orchestrate the leak? Such a leak would subject him to sanctions before his book was properly vetted to prevent the release of classified information. No, Bolton’s attorney told The Washington Times. The leak showed “the prepublication review process [at the NSC] has been corrupted.”

So how did information about the book get leaked while it is still under the prepublication review process?

The article provides a major clue:

But now a Breitbart News report may shed some light on where the leak from the unpublished book came from.

A source in the White House told Breitbart that Lt. Colonel Yevgeny Vindman is a senior ethics lawyer who vets materials for classified information, such as books and articles, before they’re allowed to be published. Breitbart reports that Vindman vetted Bolton’s book in December.

Vindman … Vindman… why does that name seem so familiar?

The last time you heard of a guy named Vindman he was testifying against the president of the United States at the House impeachment inquiry. His beef? He didn’t like President Trump’s Ukraine policy.

At the time, you learned Army Lt. Colonel Alexander Vindman had worked with the man largely thought to be the impeachment whistleblower who was working over at the CIA. We also learned that Vindman had a twin brother who worked on the NSC staff. His name is Yevgeny.

Wow! What an amazing coincidence! Yevgeny Vindman could be totally innocent of the leak, but he would probably be the first person I asked about it if I were looking for the source.

The Other Side Of The Story

Impeachment continues. We all know that President Trump’s constitutional rights were violated during the initial hearings in the House of Representatives–he was not allowed to face his accusers, his lawyers were not allowed to call witnesses, and much of the cross examination of the Democrats’ witnesses was disallowed or limited. All of those things are in violation of the constitutional rights supposedly allowed ALL American citizens. Now the President’s defense team is making their case to the Senate.

Townhall posted an article today that lists six facts that were either misrepresented or omitted in the House Managers’ presentation to the Senate.

The article reports:

According to Purpura (White House Deputy Counsel Mike Purpura), there are six key facts that “have not and will not change.”

1. The transcript proves President Trump didn’t condition military aid or a meeting on anything.

“The paused security assistance funds aren’t even mentioned on the call,” Purpura said.

2. Ukrainian officials said they never felt pressured into investigating former Vice President Joe Biden or his son, Hunter, for corruption. They also said quid pro quo never took place.

3. President Zelensky and other Ukrainian officials were unaware of the paused military aide.

“The security assistance was paused until the end of August, over a month after the July 25th call,” Purpura said.

4. None of the Democrats’ witnesses say President Trump tied an investigation into the Bidens to the military aid or a meeting.

5. “The security assistance flowed on September 11th and a presidential meeting took place on September 25, without the Ukrainian government announcing any investigation,” Purpura said.

6. President Trump has been a strong supporter of Ukraine.

“The Democrats’ blind eye to impeach the president does not and cannot change the fact, as attested to by the Democrats’ own witnesses, that President Trump has been a better friend and supporter of Ukraine than his predecessor,” Purpura explained. “Those are the facts.”

What a colossal waste of taxpayers’ money this trial has been when everyone could have simply read the transcript of the telephone call in question. We need to vote anyone out of office who has promoted the idea that President Trump has committed an impeachable offense. I truly believe that the rush to impeach has more to do with the crimes of some Congressmen that may be revealed in the Durham report than anything President Trump has or has not done.

Will The Other Side Of The Story Get Equal Coverage?

The mainstream media has praised Representative Adam Schiff for his ‘masterful’ performance this week. The major networks have highlighted various charges Representative Schiff has made (even when those charges have already been proven false). The mainstream media has obviously taken sides. There have been many instances where that was obvious, but The Conservative Treehouse posted an article today about one particular instance.

The article reports:

A good reminder of what we can expect when President Trump’s defense team has their first opportunity in five months to defend him. During a broadcast segment on ABC news reporters in the Capitol were interviewing President Trump defense attorney Jay Sekulow.

Back in the ABC studio, Clinton operative George Stephanopoulos did not want to see ABC broadcasting statements from the defense and he is caught on camera using hand signals to tell the producers to cut-off the broadcast. Stephanopoulos realized he was caught:

The article contains video clips of the incident.

There are a few things to consider here other than the obvious. First of all, this ‘trial’ started five months ago. Saturday will be the first opportunity the defendant will have for his representatives to defend him. Would you be willing to go into court in that situation? Secondly, because of the rules of the Senate, the Senators were not able to spotlight the lies told in the presentations made this week–and there were many lies told.

I don’t know how many people will actually watch the President’s defense team on Saturday. I do know that anyone who watched the House Impeachment Managers this week and then watches tomorrow will be very surprised at how much of what they heard this week was not true. It is unfortunate that the mainstream media will probably carry very little of the defense after fawning over those making the charges all week.

Don’t Trust What You Read On Twitter

Yesterday The Gateway Pundit posted an article about a tweet by CNN’s Joe Lockhart .

This is the tweet:

There’s only one problem with the tweet–it is totally made up.

The article at The Gateway Pundit reports:

After his tweet went viral with thousands of retweets and 10’s of thousands of ‘likes’ with ‘conservative’ WaPo blogger Jennifer Rubin retweeting it, Lockhart admitted he made up the entire conversation.

“Ok maybe I made up the convo, but you know that’s exactly what they’re thinking.” Lockhart tweeted.

After major backlash from thousands of people calling Lockhart out for his lies, he pulled a Schiff and claimed it was just satire and parody.

This is what all Democrats do when they get caught lying and fabricating conversations.

Note that in the tweet Lockhart is saying that the Senators don’t know incriminating information against President Trump because they watch Fox News. Think about that for a minute–CNN, known for its fake news has reported stories that are totally false. The reporting on Fox News–particularly Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity, and Laura Ingraham has consistently proved to be true. What about the people who watch CNN and have no idea that everything Fox News has reported for the past two years has turned out to be true? How does that compare to the truthfulness of CNN? The false reporting of CNN and other biased media outlets bears much of the responsibility for the divisiveness currently found in America.

Why This Impeachment Show Is Bad For America

President Trump is being impeached on the basis of a telephone call we have a transcript of. The content of the call has been made public. The content of a second call has also been made public. It should be noted that Representative Adam Schiff totally made up the contents of the first call when he began the inquiry into impeachment. That should be a clue that something might not be totally above board.

Real Clear Investigations posted an article today that supports the conclusion that the impeachment show is simply a show.

The article reports:

Barely two weeks after Donald Trump took office, Eric Ciaramella – the CIA analyst whose name was recently linked in a tweet by the president and mentioned by lawmakers as the anonymous “whistleblower” who touched off Trump’s impeachment – was overheard in the White House discussing with another staffer how to remove the newly elected president from office, according to former colleagues.

Sources told RealClearInvestigations the staffer with whom Ciaramella was speaking was Sean Misko. Both were Obama administration holdovers working in the Trump White House on foreign policy and national security issues. And both expressed anger over Trump’s new “America First” foreign policy, a sea change from President Obama’s approach to international affairs.

“Just days after he was sworn in they were already talking about trying to get rid of him,” said a White House colleague who overheard their conversation.

“They weren’t just bent on subverting his agenda,” the former official added. “They were plotting to actually have him removed from office.”

Misko left the White House last summer to join House impeachment manager Adam Schiff’s committee, where sources say he offered “guidance” to the whistleblower, who has been officially identified only as an intelligence officer in a complaint against Trump filed under whistleblower laws. Misko then helped run the impeachment inquiry based on that complaint as a top investigator for congressional Democrats.

The probe culminated in Trump’s impeachment last month on a party-line vote in the House of Representatives. Schiff and other House Democrats last week delivered the articles of impeachment to the Senate, and are now pressing the case for his removal during the trial, which began Tuesday.

Think about this for a minute. What we have is a couple of holdovers from the Obama administration discussing undoing an American election because they did not like the result. That is the stuff of which banana republics are made. This impeachment show is setting a precedent–any time the President and the House of Representatives are from different political parties, we can expect an attempt at impeachment. That illustrates the fact that some of our representatives in Washington do not value the votes of the American people as much as they value power in the hands of their political party. The impeachment is a show–there is little doubt as to how it will end. Unfortunately the important thing about the impeachment is the impact it will have on the country our children and grandchildren grow up in. We are sorely in danger of becoming a country where the votes of the citizens do not matter to those who are part of the ruling class.

Things To Keep In Mind

Yesterday The Daily Signal posted an article about the impending impeachment trial. The article is a summation of things to keep in mind as the trial progresses. Please follow the link to read the entire article. I will try to hit some of the high points here.

The article reports:

1. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., announced that the trial itself will begin at 1 p.m. Tuesday.

The Clinton impeachment took five weeks, and Johnson’s lasted 11 weeks. The Senate’s impeachment trial rules, adopted in 1986, mandate that the trial should begin at noon and last until the Senate decides to adjourn, Monday through Saturday, “until final judgment shall be rendered.”

2. When the trial begins, the Senate will adopt a resolution establishing the specific timetable, including the time allotted for each side to present its case, senators to ask questions, and the Senate to consider motions.

At that point, if the Senate follows the general pattern of the Clinton trial, the Senate will vote on a motion to dismiss the impeachment and, if that motion fails, on whether additional witnesses or evidence should be considered.

During Johnson’s impeachment trial, the prosecution and defense called a total of 41 witnesses. During the Clinton trial, three witnesses provided videotaped testimony.

McConnell and several other Senate Republicans have indicated they think the Senate should rely on transcripts of the testimony of witnesses who appeared before the House, while Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and several other Democrats have demanded that witnesses be called to testify.

3. Clinton likewise did not appear before the Senate during his trial.

Trump previously indicated he would “strongly consider” testifying or providing a written statement to the House during its impeachment inquiry, but that didn’t happen. Odds are, Trump won’t be present at the Senate trial.

4. Similarly, the rules of evidence used in criminal trials do not apply in an impeachment trial. The Senate’s impeachment trial rules state that the Senate’s presiding officer has the authority to rule on questions of evidence.

Any senator, however, may ask that the full Senate vote on such matters. That reflects the Constitution’s assignment to the Senate of “the sole Power to try all Impeachments.”

5. There have already been calls for the House managers to move to disqualify senators whose impartiality is in question. There is no basis in the Constitution, Senate rules, or history for such an attempt.

The only qualification for participating in a Senate impeachment trial is to be a senator.

6. Removal from office is automatic upon conviction, and the Senate may vote separately whether to disqualify the defendant from serving in any other federal office.

The Constitution explicitly provides, however, that these consequences by the Senate do not, if the defendant’s conduct is also criminal, prevent “Indictment, Trial, Judgment and Punishment, according to Law.”

7. In theory, he likely could be retried in the future. Although neither the Constitution nor Senate rules address this issue, and no precedent exists for it, a few legal scholars, such as former Obama administration official Neal Katyal, have pointed out that the Fifth Amendment Double Jeopardy Clause does not apply to impeachment proceedings. 

8. Senate committees may hold hearings in the morning of each trial day, but doing any business such as sending bills, nominations, or other matters to the full Senate would require the consent of all senators.

The Senate impeachment rules provide that the chamber must suspend its legislative and executive business while the trial is under way.

One thing to consider in all of this is that the House of Representative’s evidence was generally hearsay evidence. Because impeachment does not follow the rules of evidence, it is possible that some of that evidence will be introduced. However, do Senators really want to go back to their districts to say that they voted for impeachment because a witness ‘felt’ that the President was thinking something that might have been against the law? Realistically, we also need to realize that there is an element of the Democrat party that will continue to do everything it can to destroy President Trump and his agenda regardless of what happens in the impeachment trial. At some point you have to wonder why successful economic and foreign policies are such a threat to the Democrat party.

Presenting A Deceptive Brief

Yesterday Byron York posted an editorial at The Washington Examiner about the impeachment brief Democratic House managers have compiled. The title of the article at The Washington Examiner is, “Two deceptions at the heart of Democrats’ impeachment brief.”

The editorial notes:

Democrats insist on Trump’s immediate removal because, they argue, he was the knowing beneficiary of Russian help in the 2016 election, and if he is not thrown out of office right now, he will do it again. But in making their argument, Democrats make two critical mischaracterizations about Trump, Republicans, and 2016. One is flat-out wrong, while the other is misleading.

The one that is flat wrong is the Democrats’ assertion that Trump wanted Ukraine to investigate “a debunked conspiracy theory that Russia did not interfere in the 2016 presidential election to aid President Trump, but instead that Ukraine interfered in that election to aid President Trump’s opponent, Hillary Clinton.”

The problem is, the theory does not hold that Russia “did not interfere” in the 2016 election. There is a mountain of evidence that Russia interfered, and that has been the conclusion of every investigation into the matter, beginning with the first congressional probe, by the House Intelligence Committee under then-chairman Devin Nunes. The theory is that in addition to Russian interference, some people in Ukraine, including some government officials, also tried to influence the U.S. election. It was not a government-run effort, and it was on a far smaller scale than the Russian project, but it happened.

I don’t know if any of the available information about Ukrainian interference will ever make it out to the mainstream media, but there have been criminal trials in Ukraine that confirm that the government was involved in 2016 in support of Hillary Clinton. The information is out there, but most of the mainstream media has successfully avoided reporting it.

The editorial reports the second deception:

The other mischaracterization in the Democratic brief is the assertion that, in 2016, Trump “welcomed Russia’s election interference.” The brief quotes special counsel Robert Mueller’s report that the Trump campaign welcomed Russian help because it “expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts.”

That’s not wrong — Trump did, in fact, welcome Russia-based leaks — but grossly out of context. The context is this: Trump welcomed Russia-based leaks about the Clinton campaign because the media were enthusiastically embracing and repeating Russian-based leaks about the Clinton campaign. Print, internet, TV, everyone, was accepting, repeating, and amplifying the material released by WikiLeaks from the Russian hack of top Clinton campaign official John Podesta.

Perhaps people have forgotten how prominently media organizations featured the Russia-based material.

The editorial then lists a number of examples of media hysteria about Russian during the 2016 election.

The article concludes:

Of course, the Times was not the only media organization to trumpet the Russia-based leaks. They all trumpeted the Russia-based leaks. Everyone was complicit. And that is what makes the Democratic charge against Trump so misleading. He wasn’t welcoming something that everyone else was condemning. He was welcoming something that everyone else was welcoming, too. And now, in retrospect, that is a terrible offense, part of the foundation for removing the president from office?

Neither mischaracterization in the Democratic brief is a mistake; Democratic prosecutors know full well what actually happened. But the mischaracterizations are necessary to build the case against the president, to show that he had corrupt motives in the Ukraine matter. They are, of course, not the entire case, but they are important. And they are wrong.

Any Congressman who enables this farce of an impeachment to continue needs to be voted out of office as soon as possible.

An Insurance Policy Against Shenanigans

Breitbart posted an article today about one of the rules that will apply in the impeachment trial of President Trump in the Senate.

The article reports:

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is as of now including in the U.S. Senate impeachment trial rules a “kill switch” that effectively allows for the president’s legal team to seek an immediate verdict or dismissal of the case should Democrats engage in any shenanigans like they did in the House process.

The revelation comes after the House finally late last week formally sent the Articles of Impeachment it adopted before Christmas—after holding them for more than a month without transmission—to the U.S. Senate, thereby triggering the start of a Senate trial. The Senate will formally commence its trial procedures in votes this coming week, and while some Republicans want to outright dismiss the charges altogether from the outset, others believe a trial should take place.

The article explains:

In other words, the big picture here is that it seems as though the Senate will move forward with an actual trial—details on a number of fronts on that as of yet to be determined—but that there will be one thing that is clear: If Schiff or the Democrats try anything untoward like they did in the House, the president and the Senate have the option to shut the whole thing down and blow it all up on them. That means Republicans hold the upper hand, and should things get crazy—while there are not currently enough votes to dismiss the trial or outright off the bat acquit Trump—after Democrat partisan gamesmanship there likely would be enough votes to dismiss the whole thing. Bad behavior, in a partisan way, from people such as Schiff and Nadler and other Democrats could drive more Republicans toward the motion to dismiss—the kill switch—if that ever becomes necessary.

The article concludes:

A former White House official added that including this “kill switch” in the resolution gives Senate Republicans the tools they need to help McConnell keep the trial on the straight and narrow.

“McConnell has proven time and time again he is a more effective Leader than Pelosi is Speaker,” the former Trump White House official told Breitbart News. “This resolution ensures the President and his team has every tool at their disposal.”

The even bigger picture here is that when it comes to the Senate trial, GOP senators—in particular McConnell—are taking an active role in ensuring it will be fair. They are leading the way in framing this.

Vice President Mike Pence, in an exclusive interview with Breitbart News late last week, made it clear that “when it comes to the Senate trial, it’ll be for the senators to decide [on witnesses and process], but I think the fact that you hear people talking about witnesses in the Senate just proves how weak the case underpinning the Articles of Impeachment really is.”

“The fact that we’ve heard they had an open-and-shut case, that despite the fact the American people can read the transcript, see the fact the president did nothing wrong, no quid pro quo, the military aid was released,” Pence added. “The American people have the facts. We heard that Congress did what the facts demanded, and now suddenly we hear Democrats saying they need more facts and they need more witnesses. My view on this is the American people see through all of this—the sham investigation followed by a partisan impeachment. They’re saying ‘enough is enough.’”

Hopefully the Senators will act with more decorum than the members of the House of Representatives.

The History Behind The Totally Misleading Headline

Yesterday The Gateway Pundit posted an article explaining the back story behind the reporting of the latest unforgivable crime committed by President Trump.

The article notes:

Earlier today Speaker Pelosi announced that NEW EVIDENCE by the GAO found that President Trump broke the law by not handing over tax-payer dollars to the corrupt Ukrainian government fast enough.

Pelosi made the announcement on Thursday morning during her impeachment briefing.

The Government Accountability Office issued their opinion on Thursday which just happened to be the same day that Democrats would slow walk their sham articles of impeachment over to the US Senate.
What a coincidence!

For the record… The GAO also accused Barack Obama of breaking the law back in 2014 for swapping 5 Gitmo terrorists for Bowe Bergdahl — but there was no impeachment.

So I guess a temporary delay of aid is less serious that setting terrorists free.

The article includes some perspective from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB)’s Director Russ Vought:

Director Vought:  This GAO opinion comes from the same people who said we couldn’t keep National Parks open during the shutdown. Recently GAO flipped its position twice in the last few months. We wouldn’t be surprised if they reverse again. Regardless, the Admin complied with the law at every step.

It is becoming obvious that the Democrats are desperate to hang some sort of crime on President Trump. We have an election in less than ten months–let the American voters decide.

Really Tacky

Breitbart reported the following yesterday:

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) declared herself “sad” as she used more than a dozen commemorative pens to sign the two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump on Wednesday evening.

The occasion was “so sad, so tragic for our country,” Pelosi told reporters, noting the “difficult time in our country’s history.” She then approached a table that had been prepared with the documents, and two dishes full of pens for her to use — about half a dozen pens in each.

Pelosi then sat and signed the articles, one for “abuse of power” and one for “obstruction of Congress.” She applied each pen, paused every few seconds, switched pens, and then continued.

The two dishes were swapped out and replaced with two new ones after the first article of impeachment had been signed — presumably, different pens for different articles.

Despite pronouncing herself “sad,” Pelosi smiled throughout the signing.

She then handed out the pens to leaders of the Democratic Party caucus in the House, including House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY), House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY), and others.

Can you imaging the uproar if the Republicans had done this during the Clinton impeachment?

If You Depend On The Mainstream Media For Your News…

There are a lot of Americans who depend on The New York Times for their news. Generally these are well-educated people who respect the tradition of the Times as the newspaper of record. They are either unaware or unconcerned about the amount of false reporting that the Times has done in recent years. Essentially, the Americans who depend on The New York Times for their news are uninformed about what is true and what is false. Recently a story appeared in the news that illustrates the problem. The Russians have hacked into the records of Burisma, the Ukrainian energy company the hired Hunter Biden. The New York Times has the story and PJ Media has the story. It’s not the same story.

The New York Times notes:

It is not yet clear what the hackers found, or precisely what they were searching for. But the experts say the timing and scale of the attacks suggest that the Russians could be searching for potentially embarrassing material on the Bidens — the same kind of information that Mr. Trump wanted from Ukraine when he pressed for an investigation of the Bidens and Burisma, setting off a chain of events that led to his impeachment.

The Russian tactics are strikingly similar to what American intelligence agencies say was Russia’s hacking of emails from Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman and the Democratic National Committee during the 2016 presidential campaign. In that case, once they had the emails, the Russians used trolls to spread and spin the material, and built an echo chamber to widen its effect.

Note that the emphasis is on the election–the corruption that has already been proven is not mentioned–it’s all about embarrassment.

PJ Media notes:

GRU is responsible for other high-profile hacks of the DNC and John Podesta. Seven GRU officers were indicted in 2018 for conspiring to interfere with the 2016 election.

The hacking attempts against Burisma began in early November, as the Democrats’ impeachment efforts increased the profile of the company and Biden’s conflict of interests.

It is not yet known what the hackers found or what they were looking for. The New York Times says that “experts say the timing and scale of the attacks suggest that the Russians could be searching for potentially embarrassing material on the Bidens.”

The PJ Media article concludes:

So what does this mean? Scott Rosenburg of Axios believes that awareness of the hacks “cuts both ways politically.” There are huge negative implications for Joe Biden and his presidential campaign, since “it means document dumps could happen at any time, with accompanying media frenzy and potentially damaging revelations.” Many on the left still believe—despite all evidence to the contrary—that Trump colluded with Russia in 2016, so Russian involvement with the hacks “means that any such revelations will come pre-tainted with a Russian label,” according to Rosenburg.

Despite the Russian connection, should damaging information be revealed, Biden’s campaign has the most to lose, as his repeated denials of knowledge of his son’s business dealings could be undercut by documentary evidence. New details about how Hunter Biden’s position on the board gave Burisma access to the White House during the Obama years may also be brought to light.

The New York Times is still beating the dead horse of collusion with the Russians (no evidence found in Mueller Report or since).  Unfortunately Americans are being misinformed by what was formerly ‘the paper of record.’

Interesting Take

On Friday, The Daily Wire posted an article about Trey Gowdy’s recent comments concerning the purpose of impeaching President Trump. The article points out that there is very little hope that President Trump will be impeached in the Senate and that there is very little chance that President Trump will not be re-elected. So what is the goal?

The article notes:

Former Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) told Fox News’s Sean Hannity on Thursday that Democrats are not trying to remove President Donald Trump with impeachment, but instead are focused on kneecapping his second term by flipping the Senate so he can’t get anything done.

“Let’s skip over the process,” Gowdy said. “The process, the three month long inquiry investigation was laughable. But they voted. That’s the House’s prerogative. They voted, not a single Republican went along with them. In fact, they didn’t even keep all the Democrats. But the House exercised its prerogative and they impeached the president.”

“There is no mathematical way he is ever going to be convicted and they know that,” Gowdy continued. “So their goal cannot be to remove Donald Trump from office, it is to neuter his second term. I think he is going to win in November. It’s to neuter that second term by targeting the Cory Gardners and the Martha McSallys and the Thom Tillises and the Susan Collins and Joni Ernst because if Trump wins and doesn’t have the Senate then he is not going to get any judicial vacancies filled and he’s not going to replace a Supreme Court Justice if he or she retires.”

One of the major accomplishments of the Trump administration is the reshaping of the judiciary. President Trump has appointed a record number of judges to serve in the federal appeal courts.

On December 19th, The National Review reported:

Let’s first put the confirmation results in some statistical perspective. From 1981 through last year, the Senate confirmed an average of 45 judges, or 5.5 percent of the judiciary, per year. This year’s total is more than twice the annual average and constitutes 11.9 percent of the judiciary. It’s the second-highest confirmation total in a single year in American history.

Those 102 confirmations include 20 to the U.S. Court of Appeals, the third-highest annual total in history. President Donald Trump has appointed 50 appeals court judges in his first three years, compared to 55 appointed by President Barack Obama — in eight years. And this is only the second time in American history that the Senate has confirmed double-digit appeals court nominations three years in a row. The only downside is that only one current appeals court vacancy exists anywhere in the country right now, the fewest in more than four decades.

The Democrats understand that the legacy of judges will be a lasting legacy. They desperately need to take the Senate in order to stop the continuing confirmations of judges. That strategy is much more logical than a futile effort to unseat a President who is popular with most Americans (although hated by the Washington establishment).

An Interesting Take On Impeachment

The American Thinker posted an article today about the next step in the impeachment process.

The article notes:

The latest reporting I’ve seen is that the Senate will take up President Trump’s impeachment trial this week.  What’s wrong with that, you ask?  I’ve already said what’s wrong: the Schiff-Nadler Star Chamber violated President Trump’s Fifth Amendment rights to procedural due process, rendering the resulting impeachment articles null and void as “poisoned fruit.”  The GOP leadership should do what the Founders would have done: challenge the legal legitimacy of the impeachment articles.  The logic blueprint I will present below — Mr. Jefferson knew logic — will help make the case in court.

As we know, protecting the rights of the accused is of fundamental importance in a just legal system and is a key motivation behind the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution, which asserts that “[no person shall] be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law.”  The Supreme Court has interpreted due process broadly to include:

    • procedural due process rights,
    • substantive due process rights, and
    • prohibition against vague laws
    • as the vehicle for the incorporation of the Bill of Rights.

Of concern here are only procedural due process rights (PDPRs), which include:

    1. An unbiased tribunal.
    2. Notice of the proposed action and the grounds asserted for it.
    3. The opportunity to present reasons for the proposed action not to be taken.
    4. The right to present evidence, including the right to call witnesses.
    5. The right to know the opposing evidence.
    6. The right to cross-examine adverse witnesses.
    7. A decision based only on the evidence presented.
    8. Opportunity to be represented by counsel.
    9. A requirement that the tribunal prepare a record of the evidence presented.
    10. A requirement that the tribunal prepare written findings of fact and the reasons for its decision.

I can sum this up with one question, “If you were on trial would you be happy to have the same rights as a defendant that President Trump was given by the House of Representatives?”

If the God-given rights that are supposed to be guaranteed by our Constitution matter, the impeachment case put together by the House of Representatives needs to be thrown out for not respecting those rights.

This Is A Perfect Example Of Spin

CNS News posted a transcript of the letter Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi wrote to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell regarding impeachment.

Here is the letter:

Dear Colleague on Next Steps on Impeachment

January 10, 2020

Press Release

Dear Democratic Colleague,

For weeks now, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell has been engaged in tactics of delay in presenting transparency, disregard for the American people’s interest for a fair trial and dismissal of the facts.

Yesterday, he showed his true colors and made his intentions to stonewall a fair trial even clearer by signing on to a resolution that would dismiss the charges.  A dismissal is a cover-up and deprives the American people of the truth.  Leader McConnell’s tactics are a clear indication of the fear that he and President Trump have regarding the facts of the President’s violations for which he was impeached.

The American people have clearly expressed their view that we should have a fair trial with witnesses and documents, with more than 70 percent of the public stating that the President should allow his top aides to testify.  Clearly, Leader McConnell does not want to present witnesses and documents to Senators and the American people so they can make an independent judgment about the President’s actions. 

Honoring our Constitution, the House passed two articles of impeachment against the President – abuse of power and obstruction of Congress – to hold the President accountable for asking a foreign government to interfere in the 2020 elections for his own political and personal gain.  

While the House was able to obtain compelling evidence of impeachable conduct, which is enough for removal, new information has emerged, which includes: 

·         On December 20, new emails showed that 91 minutes after Trump’s phone call with Ukrainian President Zelensky, a top Office of Management and Budget (OMB) aide asked the Department of Defense to “hold off” on sending military aid to Ukraine.

·         On December 29, revelations emerged about OMB Director and Acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney’s role in the delay of aid, the effort by lawyers at the OMB, the Department of Justice and the White House to justify the delay, and the alarm that the delay caused within the Administration.

·         On January 2, newly-unredacted Pentagon emails, which we had subpoenaed and the President had blocked, raised serious concerns by Trump Administration officials about the legality of the President’s hold on aid to Ukraine. 

·         And on January 6, just this week, former Trump National Security Advisor John Bolton announced he would comply with a subpoena compelling his testimony.  His lawyers have stated he has new relevant information.  

I am very proud of the courage and patriotism exhibited by our House Democratic Caucus as we support and defend the Constitution.  I have asked Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler to be prepared to bring to the Floor next week a resolution to appoint managers and transmit articles of impeachment to the Senate.  I will be consulting with you at our Tuesday House Democratic Caucus meeting on how we proceed further.  

In an impeachment trial, every Senator takes an oath to “do impartial justice according to the Constitution and laws.”  Every Senator now faces a choice: to be loyal to the President or the Constitution.  

No one is above the law, not even the President.

Thank you for your leadership For The People.

Sincerely,

Wow. It is my sincere hope that American voters are smart enough to see this for the sham that it is.

A Proposed Resolution By Senator Josh Hawley

The Gateway Pundit reported yesterday that Senator Josh Hawley has introduced a Resolution in the Senate regarding the delay of the House of Representative’s delay in forwarding the articles of impeachment to the Senate.

The Resolution states:

Title: Amending the Rules of Procedure and Practice in the Senate When Sitting on Impeachment Trials.

Resolved, That rule I of the Rules of Procedure and Practice in the Senate When Sitting on Impeachment Trials is amended to read as follows:

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

If, following adoption of such articles, the House of Representatives does not so notify the Senate or otherwise provide for such articles to be exhibited to the Senate within 25 calendar days from the date of adoption of such articles, as recorded in the Journal of the House of Representatives, such articles shall be deemed exhibited before the Senate and it shall be in order for any Senator to offer a motion to dismiss such articles with prejudice for failure by the House of Representatives to prosecute such articles. Such motion shall be adopted by an affirmative vote of a majority of the Senators, duly chosen and sworn, without debate by the yeas and nays, which shall be entered on the record.”.

The article provides background for the Resolution:

The Senate has adopted a set of 26 rules that govern all impeachment proceedings, known as the “Rules of Procedure and Practice in the Senate When Sitting on Impeachment Trials.” Those Rules presume prompt delivery of the articles of impeachment to the Senate following their adoption by the House. Historically, the House delivered articles of impeachment to the Senate for action almost simultaneously with the vote to impeach. During the Clinton impeachment, for example, the articles were transmitted to the Senate the same day they were approved. Consequently, the current Senate rules have no mechanism to address Speaker Pelosi’s unprecedented attempt to prevent a Senate trial by withholding the articles after the President has been impeached.

Speaker Pelosi’s gambit raises grave constitutional concerns. Article 1, Section 3 gives the Senate the “sole” power to try impeachment cases. But if the Speaker refuses to transmit the articles after the President has been impeached, she could prevent the Senate from exercising its constitutional prerogative, perhaps indefinitely.

Senator Hawley’s resolution would amend the Senate’s impeachment rules to prevent this abuse of the Constitution and protect the Senate’s sole power to try impeachment. The resolution would allow the Senate to dismiss for lack of prosecution any articles of impeachment that the House of Representatives has delayed transmitting for 25 calendar days or more. Under this new rule, any Senator would be entitled to move to dismiss once the allotted time period had elapsed. Any motion to dismiss would be voted upon by the full Senate.

This should provide the impetus for Speaker Pelosi to forward the articles of impeachment and stop this endless delay.