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.

Respecting The Tenth Amendment

The Tenth Amendment states:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

To say that we have wandered from this principle is the equivalent of saying that there is some sand in the Sahara Desert. President Trump is slowly trying to put in place policies that will allow the states to reclaim at least part of the authority they were originally given under the constitution. Yesterday One America News posted an article about plans being looked at to change the way Medicaid is funded.

The article reports:

According to a Wall Street Journal report, President Trump is expected to release guidance that would make it easier for states to apply for block grants in the coming weeks.

The way these block grants work is that each state that applies for the program would receive a capped chunk of federal money to spend on Medicaid, however they choose. If a state spends less than what is given, they are able to keep that money for themselves.

Thus, the measure motivates state governments to make cuts on Medicaid as well as relinquish the federal government’s requirement to match what states spend on the issue. Many local lawmakers have reportedly praised the new tactic as financially responsible.

“We don’t need to put welfare in the Constitution to meet the needs of the most vulnerable,” said Jonathan Small, member of the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs. “It will cost $374 million in state taxpayer dollars, to cover 628,000 able bodied adults.”

Conservatives argue another perk is that Medicaid block grants are more efficient at the end of the day.

“Officials say it could improve the way Medicaid is administered since states can tailor their health care program to their citizens needs,” stated Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee. “Ultimately what that means is that the cost of healthcare will be lowered if states line up to be more efficient because they’ll be rewarded for such, then it will lower the cost of healthcare which is why it will be a win for the country.”

Hopefully bringing Medicaid back to state control would also cut down on the fraud that is so rampant in the program. Needless to say, Democrats oppose the move.

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.

This Will Make Some People Very Unhappy

Breitbart reported yesterday that the latest Farm Journal Pulse Poll shows that President Trump has an 83 percent approval rating among American farmers. That is a point higher than the previous poll. The disapproval rate in 18 percent. This is one of many reasons the Democrats want to get rid of the Electoral College.

The article reports:

“Of note is the strongly approve category went up three percentage points from an already lofty (December) number and his highest overall approval ratings ever,” said Pro Farmer policy analyst Jim Wiesemeyer.

“That says the president’s approval is rock-solid,” Wiesemeyer added. “With the recent upbeat news on USMCA and the Phase 1 accord with China, the ratings will likely remain firm ahead.”

Farmers who stated they “strongly approve” of President Trump rose to 64 percent in January, up from 61 percent at the end of 2019. A mere 19 percent said they “somewhat approve” of President Trump’s performance, while only three percent said they “somewhat disapprove.”

“Trump needs the rural vote to keep the same states he won in 2016 in his win column come November,” Wiesemeyer said. “In fact, contacts say he is focusing on winning Minnesota this time as a backstop should he lose a state he won in 2016. That means agriculture will continue to be a key topic in the president’s re-election campaign.”

The President has the support of people who have been positively impacted by his trade policies. Informed Americans understand the good things President Trump has done for America.

Sometimes It Takes A While For The Truth To Come Out

Newsbusters posted an article today confirming something President Trump has been asserting for quite some time.

The article reports:

President Donald Trump’s strategic silence on Puerto Rico’s earthquakes, while greenlighting billions of dollars in aid and a new major disaster declaration for the stricken U.S. territory, is forcing the liberal media into a most uncomfortable place…acknowledging that he was right all along.

Earlier this week, The Washington Post attempted to redeploy ye olde Hurricane Maria playbook, in order to commoditize human suffering for Democrat political gain. This ham-fisted close to their editorial gave the game away:

Still, it is worth remembering that many Puerto Ricans were forced to leave the island after Maria and are now living — and will be able to vote — in swing states such as Florida and Pennsylvania. Presumably many of them will remember how the island has been treated.

It is important to recall that the national media was asleep at the switch during the initial aftermath of Hurricane Maria –devoting coverage instead to the president’s tweets regarding the NFL. In fact, the liberal media didn’t begin to cover Maria’s terrible aftermath until there was a clear anti-Trump angle as embodied by the radical, separatist mayor of San Juan, who rode her post-Maria notoriety all the way to Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign — where she now serves as national co-chair.

The article concludes:

Additionally, the island was roiled by news that much-needed relief supplies sat in a warehouse as earthquake victims suffered- which only serves to bolster the president’s charge (one with which many Puerto Ricans agree, by the way) that the island’s government is corrupt and incompetent. Per CBS News:

Puerto Rico Governor Wanda Vázquez Garced fired the island’s emergency management director on Saturday, after a video showing aid sitting unused in a warehouse went viral on social media. Some of the aid has allegedly been sitting in the warehouse since Hurricane Maria struck in 2017.

“There are thousands of people who have made sacrifices to help those in the south, and it is unforgivable that resources were kept in the warehouse,” Vázquez said in a statement. 

With no obvious anti-Trump angle to chase, the liberal media (with the continued exception of CBS’s David Begnaud) is forced to cover the issue itself, to wit: the earthquakes that have rattled Puerto Rico, and the local government’s continued inability to adequately respond to an emergency due to institutionalized corruption and incompetence. Trump was right after all.

The start of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season is four and a half months away.

This is typical of countries where corruption reigns–many of the famine problems around the world have more to do with the distribution of food rather than a shortage of food. Dictators around the world have often used food as a weapon to keep their populations under control. In this case, the corruption in Puerto Rico was such that the aid never reached the people who needed it–it remained in warehouses. Meanwhile, the Mayor of San Juan has moved forward to work on the Bernie Sanders campaign.

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.

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.

Follow The Money And The Speaking Engagements

On Friday, The Gateway Pundit posted an article with the following headline, “Dem Senator Chris Murphy – Who Lashed Out at Trump Following Soleimani’s Death – Is Frequent Speaker at NIAC Council – the Iranian Regime’s US Lobby House.”

The article reports:

On Thursday the United States killed General Qassim Soleimani, a top commander of Iran’s al-Quds Force, in an airstrike at Baghdad’s International Airport. The strike also killed Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy commander of Iran-backed militias known as the Popular Mobilization Forces. Seven people were reportedly killed in the airstrike.

Following the death of Commander Soleimani Democrat Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) lashed out at President Trump for assassinating the Iranian al-Quds terrorist leader.

The Senator Tweeted an objection to the fact that Soleimani was killed without the assent of Congress and that he felt the assassination would set off a war.

The article continues:

Senator Murphy has been has a history of supporting Iran’s mullahs.
Murphy is a routine speaker at the NIAC Council, the regime’s lobby house in the US.

In fact, Trita Parsi, the regime’s top activist at NIAC, has praised Senator Murphy for his support of NIAC’s efforts.

NIAC’s Trita Parsi praised Sen. Murphy for being a hero of the Iran deal.

I wonder how much of the money involved in the Iran deal somehow found its way into the pockets of some of our Congressmen.

The 2020 Davos Economic Conference

The 2020 Davos Economic Conference will convene this month. The Conservative Treehouse posted an article yesterday announcing that President Trump has announced the Presidential Delegation that will attend the World Economic Forum in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, from January 20 to January 24, 2020.

The article notes some interesting aspects of this conference:

As a result of the recent U.K. election, pending Brexit, a favorable $7.5 billion WTO ruling and USTR Lighthizer’s new $2.4 billion EU targeted tariff program, the administration has significant advantages going into a trade discussion with the EU in 2020.

Team USA has the world’s strongest economy, the largest market, legally bolstered tariff authority and a quiver full of powerful economic arrows.

Meanwhile Team EU has: (1) the UK leaving; (2) severe drops in German industrial manufacturing; (3) a shrinking French economy; (4) yellow-vests in the streets; and (5) demands for greater economic autonomy from many key member states.

Overlay Germany, France and Italy large economy challenges such as: their promise to meet NATO obligations – and their attachment to the strangling Paris Climate Treaty, and the EU’s collective economic position is precarious at best.

The article includes the list of delegates:

The Honorable Steven Mnuchin, Secretary of the Treasury, will lead the delegation.

Members of the Presidential Delegation:

1. The Honorable Steven Mnuchin, Secretary of the Treasury (Lead)
2. The Honorable Wilbur Ross, Secretary of Commerce
3. The Honorable Eugene Scalia, Secretary of Labor
4. The Honorable Elaine Chao, Secretary of Transportation
5. The Honorable Robert Lighthizer, United States Trade Representative
6. The Honorable Keith Krach, Under Secretary for Growth, Energy and the Environment, Department of State
7. The Honorable Ivanka Trump, Assistant to the President and Advisor to the President
8. The Honorable Jared Kushner, Assistant to the President and Senior Advisor to the President
9. The Honorable Christopher Liddell, Assistant to the President and Deputy Chief of Staff for Policy Coordination.

The pictures included in the article are an indication of things to come:

Stay tuned.

The Political Impact Of The Long Fight To Remove President Trump

On Tuesday, Victor Davis Hanson posted an article at National Review about the impact of impeachment on President Trump.

The article includes a number of observations about the impact of the endless investigations of the President:

Quietly, the approval ratings of Trump have been rising to pre-impeachment levels and are nearing a RealClearPolitics average of 45. Support for impeaching Trump and/or removing him is not increasing as the House Democrats expected. It is essentially static, or slowly eroding, depending on how polls phrase such questions.

Apparently, an exhausted public did not see “Ukrainian” impeachment as a one-off national crisis akin to the Nixon inquiry and the Clinton impeachment and trial that merited national attention. The impeachment vote instead is being confirmed in the public mind as part of a now boring three-year impeachment psychodrama (from impeachment 1.0, the Logan Act, the emoluments clause, the 25th Amendment, and Michael Avenatti/Stormy Daniels comedies to Robert Mueller’s “dream team” and “all-stars”). The progressive logic of the current jump-the-shark monotony is to become even more monotonous, the way that a driller leans ever harder on his dull and chipping bit as his bore becomes static.

The Democrats believed that all of these efforts would be like small cuts, each one perhaps minor but all combining to bleed Trump out. But now we know, given polling data and the strong Trump economy, that the long odyssey to impeachment has had almost no effect on Trump’s popularity, other than losing him 3–4 points for a few weeks as periodic media “bombshells” went off.

The reality may be the very opposite of what Democrats planned. The more the Left tries to abort the Trump presidency before the election, the more it bleeds from each of its own inflicted nicks. As an example, Rachel Maddow’s reputation has not been enhanced by her neurotic assertions that Trump’s tax returns would soon appear, or that the Steele dossier was steadily gaining credibility, or that yet another tell-tale Russian colluder had emerged from under another American bed.

The constant drumbeat of accusations is simply not resonating. Yet, the Democrats continue with a playbook that is not working.

Please follow the link to read the entire article. It includes a lot of information that has been overlooked amidst the hype.

The article concludes:

Instead, voters are exhausted by his haters and their crazy agendas. They grow enraged over how the Mueller and Horowitz investigatory reports have disproved all the daily media, celebrity, and political assertions. And they are upset about the larger culture of the anti-Trump Left, from the fundamentals of open borders and identity politics to the trivia of transgendered athletes, Colin Kaepernickism, and the open-border, Green New Deal socialism. An auto worker who votes as a true-blue union Democrat but likes Trump’s trade policies, a no-nonsense farmer who worries about farm exports but likes deregulation, and a teacher who votes a liberal slate but has no way to control his classroom may not seem like Trump voters, but some such voters are terrified by the cultural trajectory of what the Trump-hating Left has in store for them all.

For a majority, refined and arrogant progressive mendaciousness voiced in condescending nasal tones has become far more repugnant than all-American hype in a Queens accent.

What is happening in America may be an indication that representative government may be making a comeback. We may be entering a time when elected officials will actually be required to represent the people who elected them.

Testing, 1, 2, 3, Testing…

Iran is very unhappy that President Trump has put economic sanctions on that country and has not been willing to withdraw them until there is a change in behavior. I would like to mention that paying protesters to shout “Death to America” might not be the pathway to having the sanctions lifted. There are a few things at work regarding the attack on the American Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq. The first is aggravating President Trump enough so that America is drawn further into the never-ending war in the Middle East. So far the President has resisted that temptation. The second fact is simply being so annoying that President Trump does something that the American left and international community can condemn him for.

Breitbart posted an article today about the attack.

The article reports:

Iran-backed militiamen behind an attack on the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, Iraq, have begun retreating from the area on Wednesday following a threat from President Donald Trump to hold Tehran accountable for the siege.

“Supporters of the Kataib Hezbollah militia who had spent the night camped outside the embassy began dismantling their tents and leaving the area, saying they had won a victory and would now seek the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq through the nation’s parliament,” the Washington Post reports.

Did Iran really believe they would not be held accountable for the siege?

The article continues:

The development comes after Department of Defense Secretary Mark Esper announced on Tuesday evening the deployment of 750 U.S. soldiers to the region in response to the attack. Esper said additional troops are prepared to ship out for reenforcement if needed.

Earlier Tuesday, President Donald Trump blamed Iran for orchestrating the attack and threatened the country will pay a “very big price.”

“The U.S. Embassy in Iraq is, & has been for hours, SAFE! Many of our great Warfighters, together with the most lethal military equipment in the world, was immediately rushed to the site. Thank you to the President & Prime Minister of Iraq for their rapid response upon request,” the president tweeted.

The article concludes:

The violence comes as Iran and its allies have faced unprecedented mass protests in recent months and after heavy U.S. sanctions on Iran that have cratered its economy and raised tensions across the region. In Iraq, the protesters have been angered at their own government’s corruption and economic mismanagement, as well as its close ties to Tehran.

Stay tuned.

The Search Continues…

Yesterday John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog about a story The New York Times ran about a disgruntled Trump voter. The article in The New York Times was posted in October. It was about Mark Graham, a real estate appraiser in Erie, Pennsylvania.

The New York Times reported:

Mark Graham, a real estate appraiser in this faded manufacturing hub [Erie, Pennsylvania], sat with friends at a gym named FitnessU on the morning after the Democratic debate in mid-September. He had voted for Barack Obama, but in 2016 he took a gamble on Donald Trump.
***
“Things have changed in the last couple weeks: More stupidity has come out,” Mr. Graham, 69, said in a telephone interview last week. He hopes Democrats nominate former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., but he is not particular. “I’d vote for the Democratic nominee no matter who it is at this point,” he said.

Well, voting records are public. It turns out that Mr. Graham did not vote in 2016.

The article at Power Line Blog continues:

Fast forward a month, to November 12. Now the Times reports, excitedly, on a new anti-Trump ad campaign being undertaken by David Brock’s disreputable organization, American Bridge:

A Democratic group unveiled a $3 million advertising campaign Tuesday featuring people who supported President Trump but now regret it, the first wave of a yearlong effort to reclaim some of the voters in the industrial Midwest who helped tip the 2016 election.

The group, American Bridge, will air commercials in Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania that are first-person testimonials from residents of each state explaining why they backed Mr. Trump in 2016 and why they will not do so again next year.

The Times proudly noted its own role in tracking down anti-Trump converts:

The disaffected Trump voter who appeared in the Pennsylvania spot — Mark Graham of Erie, Pa. — was featured in a New York Times article last month.

It is reasonable to assume that American Bridge found Mr. Graham via the Times article.

Unfortunately, neither American Bridge nor the Times thought to check the Erie, Pennsylvania voting records to confirm Mr. Graham’s claim that he voted for President Trump in 2016. It turns out he didn’t:

An allegedly regretful Trump voter in Pennsylvania, highlighted in videos by a Democratic political action committee and by The New York Times, never actually voted in 2016.

News organization JET 24, an ABC affiliate, found after checking county voting records that Mark Graham of Erie County, Pennsylvania, did not vote in the presidential election three years ago.
***
[T]he Trump campaign noted Friday that American Bridge has yet to take down its ad or apologize.

The New York Times has run a correction:

After this article was published, local news media reported that Mark Graham did not vote in the 2016 election. The Times has confirmed that Mr. Graham did not vote in the election. While Mr. Graham acknowledged misspeaking about his voting record, he said the article accurately reflects his feelings about the 2016 race and President Trump’s performance in office.

I guess that’s sort of an apology for their lack of research. It gives me hope that the mainstream media is having so much trouble finding everyday Americans who regret voting for President Trump.

Pettiness On Parade

Yesterday PJ Media posted an article about the movie Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. The movie is the rather silly physical comedy sequel to Home Alone. There is a scene in the movie where President Trump (before he was involved in politics) makes a cameo appearance. CBC TV in Canada chose to remove that scene from the movie.

The article reports:

That’s right, ComicBook.com reports that CBC edited out Donald Trump’s cameo from the 1992 movie. And people watching it were quick to report the suspicious omission on social media. Some were outraged, and the snowflakes were thrilled.

The article concludes:

Donald Trump formally announced his campaign in June 2015. The first time the CBC’s cutting of Trump’s cameo appearance was acknowledged on Twitter was around Christmas that year

…Now, either 2015 happened to be the first year the CBC broadcasted the movie, which I highly doubt, or something happened between the 2014 CBC broadcast of Home Alone 2, and the 2015 CBC broadcast. One could argue that Trump wasn’t a political figure in the public’s conscious before 2015, but years prior he had been making headlines for publicly questioning Obama’s birth certificate—so I don’t think that excuse really works. Had his cameo been cut before then, I’m sure it would have been noticed.

Trump’s presidential bid appears to the be beginning of the folks at the CBC being triggered by Trump so badly that they actually had to edit him out of their broadcast of the film. I can’t decide if this is hilarious or sad.

How petty can the media get?

Wisdom From The Mayor Of Livermore California

The article I am referring to is from June 2018, but it is still totally relevant. Linked in posted an article on June 16, 2018, about the success and popularity of President Trump. Obviously that popularity does not extend to the media, but it does extend to the thousands of people who attend his rallies. The article is written by Marshall Kamena, a registered Democrat who is the Mayor of Livermore, California.

The article notes:

My Leftist friends (as well as many ardent #NeverTrumpers) constantly ask me if I’m not bothered by Donald Trump’s lack of decorum. They ask if I don’t think his tweets are “beneath the dignity of the office.”

Here’s my answer: We Right-thinking people have tried dignity. There could not have been a man of more quiet dignity than George W. Bush as he suffered the outrageous lies and politically motivated hatreds that undermined his presidency.

We tried statesmanship.

Could there be another human being on this earth who so desperately prized “collegiality” as John McCain?

We tried propriety – has there been a nicer human being ever than Mitt Romney?

And the results were always the same. This is because, while we were playing by the rules of dignity, collegiality and propriety, the Left has been, for the past 60 years, engaged in a knife fight where the only rules are those of Saul Alinsky and the Chicago mob.

I don’t find anything “dignified,” “collegial” or “proper” about Barack Obama’s lying about what went down on the streets of Ferguson in order to ramp up racial hatreds because racial hatreds serve the Democratic Party.

I don’t see anything “dignified” in lying about the deaths of four Americans in Benghazi and imprisoning an innocent filmmaker to cover your tracks.

I don’t see anything “statesman-like” in weaponizing the IRS to be used to destroy your political opponents and any dissent.

Yes, Obama was “articulate” and “polished” but in no way was he in the least bit “dignified,” “collegial” or “proper.”

The article continues:

The problem is that, through these years, the Left has been the only side fighting this war. While the Left has been taking a knife to anyone who stands in their way, the Right has continued to act with dignity, collegiality and propriety.

With Donald Trump, this all has come to an end. Donald Trump is America ’s first wartime president in the Culture War.

…Trump’s tweets may seem rash and unconsidered but, in reality, he is doing exactly what Alinsky suggested his followers do. First, instead of going after “the fake media” — and they are so fake that they have literally gotten every single significant story of the past 60 years not just wrong, but diametrically opposed to the truth, from the Tet Offensive to Benghazi, to what really happened on the streets of Ferguson, Missouri — Trump isolated CNN.. He made it personal.

Then, just as Alinsky suggests, he employs ridicule which Alinsky described as “the most powerful weapon of all.”… Most importantly, Trump’s tweets have put CNN in an untenable and unwinnable position. … They need to respond.

This leaves them with only two choices. They can either “go high” (as Hillary would disingenuously declare of herself and the fake news would disingenuously report as the truth) and begin to honestly and accurately report the news or they can double-down on their usual tactics and hope to defeat Trump with twice their usual hysteria and demagoguery. The problem for CNN (et al.) with the former is that, if they were to start honestly reporting the news, that would be the end of the Democratic Party they serve. It is nothing but the incessant use of fake news (read: propaganda) that keeps the Left alive.

Imagine, for example, if CNN had honestly and accurately reported then-candidate Barack Obama’s close ties to foreign terrorists (Rashid Khalidi), domestic terrorists (William Ayers & Bernardine Dohrn), the mafia (Tony Rezko) or the true evils of his spiritual mentor, Jeremiah Wright’s church.

Please follow the link above to read the entire article. It is extremely insightful!

The Overlooked Impact Of Illegal Immigration

Breitbart posted an article yesterday about an aspect of illegal immigration that is often overlooked.

The article reports:

Research by the Center for Immigration Studies’ Steven Camarota and Karen Zeigler finds that annual illegal and legal immigration to the U.S. will redistribute political power in the form of 26 House seats away from a number of red states and towards massively populated blue states like California and New York.

“To put this number in perspective, changing the party of 21 members of the current Congress would flip the majority in the U.S. House,” Camarota and Zeigler note.

Ohio, a swing state that voted for President Trump in 2016, will get three fewer congressional seats in 2020 due to mass immigration in other states. Michigan and Pennsylvania, also states that voted for Trump in 2016, will each have two fewer congressional seats. Wisconsin, a Trump-supporting swing state, will have its congressional seats cut by at least one.

Red states such as Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, and West Virginia, Camarota and Zeigler predict, will all get one less congressional seat in 2020. Smaller blue states such as Minnesota and Rhode Island will each receive one less congressional seat.

Those seats cut from mostly red states will be redistributed to California, the most immigration-inundated state in the country. California, by 2020, is set to gain 11 congressional seats solely due to the fact that noncitizens, rather than just American citizens, are counted in congressional apportionment.

Likewise, New York — where nearly 40 percent of residents are foreign-born — is set to gain four more congressional seats and New Jersey, with a more than 22 percent foreign-born population, will also take an additional two congressional seats.

Texas, which has become increasingly blue due to immigration and out-of-state young people, will gain another four congressional seats, as will the swing state of Florida with its foreign-born population of 4.1 million.

The deeply blue states of Illinois and Massachusetts, both of which went 55 to 60 percent for Democrat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election, will each gain one congressional seat.

What this is saying is that the influx of non-citizens into blue states will lessen the impact of voters in red states. This is a glaring example of the reason only citizens should be counted when allotting seats in the House of Representatives. The House of Representatives is supposed to represent American citizens. Americans are leaving California and New York in droves. These two states should be losing representatives–not gaining them.

Beginning To Level The Playing Field In Trade

CNBC reported yesterday that China will lower tariffs on products ranging from frozen pork and avocado to some types of semiconductors next year.  The Chinese economy is slowing down, and lowering tariffs is seen as a way to bring back previous growth.

The article also notes:

 

  • Next year, China will implement temporary import tariffs, which are lower than the most-favored-nation tariffs, on more than 850 products, the finance ministry said on Monday.
  • That compared with 706 products that were taxed at temporary rates in 2019.

The article cites a few significant tariff cuts:

The finance ministry said the tariff rate for frozen pork will be cut to 8% from the most-favored-nation duty of 12%, as China copes to plug a huge supply gap after a severe pig disease decimated its hog herd.

…China will also lower temporary import tariffs for ferroniobium — used as an additive to high strength low alloy steel and stainless steel for oil and gas pipelines, cars and trucks — from 1% to zero in 2020 to support its high-tech development.

…The tariff rate for frozen avocado was cut to 7% from the most-favored-nation duty of 30%, the ministry said.

…Tariffs for some asthma and diabetes medications will be set at zero, the ministry said, while duties on some wood and paper products will be lowered too.

Import tariffs on multi-component semiconductors will be cut to zero.

China will also further lower most-favored-nation import tariffs on some information technology products from July 1, the ministry said.

China has long been an unfair trading partner–manipulating their currency, disregarding intellectual property, and generally behaving badly. Hopefully President Trump’s ‘trade war’ will bring some balance into our trade relationship with China.

 

The Real Game

As you no doubt are aware, Senator Schumer has ‘uncovered’ documents that show that the Democrats need to call witnesses in the Senate in addition to witnesses that testified in the House of Representatives. While this is much ado about nothing, The Conservative Treehouse posted an article today that explains the actual goal of all the drama. The article is very detailed (including the full arguments from the House of Representatives asking for more witnesses and the Department of Justice’s response). I suggest that you follow the link above to read the entire thing.

The article notes:

As we suspected, albeit against much criticism, House counsel Doug Letter has responded to the DC Appeals Court arguing the forced testimony of White House counsel Don McGahn is needed for evidence in impeachment trial. [Court pdf Avail Here]

This court filing today bolsters the unspoken background motive for delayed House Impeachment Managers.  The House Judiciary Committee is using impeachment as support for their ongoing effort to gain: Don McGahn deposition, and Mueller grand jury material (6e).  The goal is opposition research; impeachment is a tool to establish legal standing to obtain it.  Everything else is chaff and countermeasures.

The Democrats are looking for a legal basis to continue their fishing expedition to gather campaign fodder for 2020.

The article continues:

This court filing bolsters CTH analysis that rushed House articles are a means to an end. That is – a way for House lawyers to argue in court all of the constitutionally contended material is required as evidence for pending judicial proceedings, a trial in the Senate.

This would explain why all the prior evidence debated for inclusion and legal additions to “articles of impeachment” were dropped. Instead the House focused only on quickly framing two articles that can facilitate pending court cases.

…REMINDER: The House Judiciary Committee (HJC) led by Chairman Jerry Nadler has been seeking: (1) Mueller grand jury material; (2) a deposition by former White House counsel Don McGahn; and less importantly (3) Trump financial and tax records.  Each of these issues is currently being argued in appellate courts (6e and McGahn) and the supreme court (financials/taxes).

Looking at the legal maneuvers from that perspective means the grand jury material is the unspoken goal and impeachment is simply the enhanced means to obtain it.

The 6(e) material relates to evidence gathered by the Mueller team for grand jury proceedings in their two-year effort to construct a case against President Trump.

Remember, the Mueller evidence was gathered during a counterintelligence investigation, which means all things Trump -including his family and business interests- were subject to unbridled surveillance for two years; and a host of intelligence gathering going back in time indefinitely. A goldmine of political opposition research.

Obviously if Jerry Nadler could get his hands on this material it would quickly find its way into the DNC, and ultimately to the 2020 democrat candidate for president. This material would also be fuel for a year of leaks to DC media who could exploit rumor, supposition, and drops of information that Andrew Weissmann and team left to be discovered.

The article highlights some of the Department of Justice response:

[…] “Pursuing an interbranch suit in court while simultaneously pursuing impeachment, and then using that litigation as part of the impeachment proceedings, is “far from the model of the traditional common-law cause of action at the conceptual core of the case-or-controversy requirement.” Raines v. Byrd, 521 U.S. 811, 833 (1997) (Souter, J., concurring). But that is exactly what the Committee has done. The effect of that choice is
to “embroil the federal courts in a power contest nearly at the height of its political tension.” Id.

Indeed, if this Court now were to resolve the merits question in this case, it would appear to be weighing in on a contested issue in any impeachment trial. That would be of questionable propriety whether or not such a judicial resolution preceded or post-dated any impeachment trial. Cf. Nixon v. United States, 506 U.S. 224, 232, 235-36 (1993).

The now very real possibility of this Court appearing to weigh in on an article of impeachment at a time when political tensions are at their highest levels—before, during, or after a Senate trial regarding the removal of a President—puts in stark relief why this sort of interbranch dispute is not one that has “traditionally thought to be capable of resolution through the judicial process.” Raines, 521 U.S. at 819.

This Court should decline the Committee’s request that it enter the fray and instead should dismiss this fraught suit between the political branches for lack of jurisdiction.

Stay tuned. Meanwhile, understand that the emails that Senator Schumer has discovered are not a ‘smoking gun’–they are simply a record of the way business is done in Washington.

We May Disagree, But We Need To Remember Our Manners

Former Navy SEAL Jonathan Gilliam is someone who occasionally fills in for David Webb on the David Webb radio show. He is a former Navy SEAL who is well trained in the art of self defense. Recently he was asked to speak in Washington to a group called Women for America First.

The Gateway Pundit posted an article today about what happened next. The quote below is included in the article (the quote is originally from a Breitbart article):

Andrew James Ruder, 37, of Charleston, South Carolina, was arrested for simple assault by the District of Columbia Metropolitan Police Department on Saturday for allegedly hitting and choking a man who attended a pro-President Donald Trump event at the Willard International Hotel, according to a police report obtained by Breitbart News and a spokesperson for the Metropolitan Police Department.

Jonathan Gilliam, a retired Navy SEAL and former FBI special agent who was a speaker at the Women for America First event, is named as the victim of the alleged assault in the police report.

…The police report said Ruder used “Personal Weapons (Hands / Feet)” in the attack: On listed date time and location S-1 lunged in a aggressive manner towards V-1 in which S-2 joined and assaulted V-1 by grabbing his neck causing the listed injury. V-1 was able to defend himself and strike S-1 on the face with a closed fist. S-1 was placed under arrest and transported to the Second District for processing.

Please follow the link above to read the entire article. It details harassment by people who do not support President Trump attending a wedding in the same hotel . We are all entitled to our opinions, but certain behavior needs to be simply out of bounds.

The article reports:

Our event on Saturday evening was rudely disrupted when attendees from a high-profile democrat wedding in the adjacent ballroom repeatedly stalked, harassed, and both verbally and ultimately physically attacked our guests. Throughout the evening, on at least 30 different occasions, our private event was interrupted. One group of our guests trying to locate our event was invited into the room the wedding was being held by a group of women attending the wedding. Once inside, they realized it was the wrong room, but the women told them they should stay because it was a Biden rally and they simply shouldn’t support President Trump. Our guests were repeatedly verbally assaulted with comments such as “is this an actual thing?”, “you should be ashamed of yourselves”, “MAGA Trash”, “Nazis” and “C*nts”. Wedding guests walked into our event as if they belonged there and began bidding on silent auction items. Ultimately hotel security was placed at the door of our event at the end of the night but even that did not deter the wedding guests from antagonizing our group in the hallways or in the restrooms.

As the evening came to a close, our guest speaker, former Navy SEAL and FBI agent, Jonathan T. Gilliam, helped escort our guests out of the venue. During this time, the alleged best man refused to allow people on the elevator saying, “you’re only allowed in if you respect your ovaries”. As Jonathan escorted approximately five of our guests to the lobby of the hotel via the stairs so they could exit the hotel, the alleged best man in the wedding party and several other individuals began verbally taunting him and the women he was protecting, resulting in an altercation. Subsequently, Jonathan was physically attacked by approximately 4-6 other attendees of the wedding party who piled on attempting to choke and beat him, before he was able to break free and counter the attack. After others intervened, including a plain clothed officer, the fight was broken up. Metro DC police responded to the assault within minutes and the alleged best man was arrested.

The abuse by the wedding guests did not stop there. After the police arrested the man, the wedding guests proceeded to confront our guests and screaming to “make things right”. The wedding guests proceeded to the Round Robin Bar where they continued to intimidate members of our group to the point where our members retreated to their rooms to avoid any further attacks.

This is not acceptable behavior by any standards, and the hotel security should have stopped it on the spot by removing anyone harassing the guests. It is my hope that the men guilty of the assault will do some serious jail time and not just a slap on the wrist.

 

 

Still Fishing…

Yesterday Paul Mirengoff posted an article at Power Line Blog about some recent comments by Senator Schumer.

The article notes:

Chuck Schumer’s moan that “the facts” need to “com[e] out” before a full impeachment trial can occur is an invitation to a motion to dismiss the House’s articles of impeachment, once they arrive. The House had its opportunity to develop the facts. If it didn’t develop facts sufficient to support removing the president, the Senate shouldn’t waste its time on the matter.

Mitch McConnell reportedly is considering a motion to dismiss. According to this report, he hinted that the Senate will move to dismiss the articles of impeachment after opening argument.

McConnell noted that in the 1999 trial of Bill Clinton, Schumer supported a motion to dismiss the case. He also recalled that Schumer opposed calling live witnesses. This time around, Schumer wants to call at least four witnesses who did not appear before the House.

Some Republicans, including President Trump apparently, also want to call witnesses during the impeachment trial. Joe and Hunter Biden have been mentioned, along with the whistleblower and even Adam Schiff. However, I agree with those who want to end the impeachment trial early. If Republicans want to hear from certain players, they can try to bring them in as part of the ordinary oversight process.

Why is Chuck Schumer still looking for the facts? It is the job of the House of Representatives to present the facts to the Senate for trial. If there are no facts, there is no reason for a trial. The Democrats have been looking for a crime for almost three years now. They have done little else. It is time for them to put their toys away and get to work. There will be an election in less than a year. Let the American people decide (or is that what they are afraid of?).

The New Standard–Expect A January Surprise

Yesterday Byron York posted an article at The Washington Examiner that previews what will happen when the impeachment trial moves to the Senate. It’s not a particularly optimistic article in terms of antics by the Democrats, although I think the eventual outcome will be the acquittal of President Trump.

The article reports:

With a House impeachment vote a foregone conclusion, the battle to remove President Trump from office has moved to the Senate. Minority Leader Chuck Schumer grabbed control of the debate Monday with demands for what he called “fairness” in the president’s trial.

I think Senator Schumer’s definition of fairness is, “Heads I win; tails you lose.”

The article continues:

Schumer wants the Senate to allow testimony from four witnesses the House did not interview: former national security adviser John Bolton, acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney, key Mulvaney aide Robert Blair, and Office of Management and Budget official Michael Duffey. House Democratic impeachers wanted the men to testify, but after the White House, claiming privilege, refused, House leaders chose not to try to force them to appear. Going to court to compel their testimony, Democrats said, would take too much time.

Now, Schumer wants the witnesses simply to forget about privilege questions and testify in the Senate trial.

“How, on such a weighty matter, could we avoid hearing this, could we go forward without hearing it?” Schumer asked at a news conference Monday. “I haven’t seen a single good argument about why these witnesses shouldn’t testify — unless the president has something to hide and his supporters want that information hidden.”

Republicans will respond that the Senate is not the place for fact-finding — that is, for senators to become investigators and do what the House declined to do. Some will also note that the House chose not to seek the appointment of an outside investigator, a special counsel, to establish what happened in the Trump-Ukraine matter, and the Senate is ill-equipped to play that role. Many will also argue that the facts of the case do not align with the Democratic accusation of bribery and more testimony will not change that. Others will argue that they don’t believe what the president did rises to the level of an impeachable offense.

The technique the Democrats will use is the one we saw in the Kavanaugh confirmation hearing. The Democrats needs four Republicans to sign on to the idea of calling new witnesses (a simple majority vote is needed). Then they can dig up all the imaginary dirt on the President they can manufacture and totally taint the hearing. The idea is to damage President Trump to the point where the Democrats win the Presidency in 2020 and none of their misdeeds like government abuses of surveillance or violations of citizen’s civil rights will ever be dealt with. I am not sure Americans are stupid enough to buy what they are selling.

On a final note, I would like to share my prediction that Hillary Clinton will be the Democrat’s candidate for President in 2020.

The Trump Economy

Fox Business reported today that the Dow has gained 10,000 points since Trump’s election.

The article reports:

The stock market has been unstoppable under the influence of President Trump.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average crossed 28,332.74 on Monday, meaning it has rallied 10,000 points, or more than 54 percent, since Trump’s election victory on November 8, 2016. The benchmark S&P 500 has gained more than 46 percent.

“The rally has been driven by pro-growth measures, de-escalation of trade tensions, huge liquidity injections by central banks and a FOMO approach by investors worried about missing out on a remarkable U.S. market outperformance that has set one record high after the other.” Mohamed El-Arian, chief economic adviser at Allianz, told FOX Business.

So if you are an average working American, why does this matter to you? First of all, most Americans have 401k plans. As the stock market rises, the value of those plans rises. However, there is another often overlooked aspect of a growing stock market. Many communities, counties, and states have pension plans for former employees. These are unfunded liabilities. That means that those payments are not considered when drafting budgets. Those payments are made from investment accounts. As the stock market rises, the possibility of having to decrease these payments diminishes and the possibility of the municipality involved having to raise taxes to cover these payments also decreases. People who work gain by both having the value of their retirement accounts increase and by not having to pay higher taxes to cover retirement costs.

Tariffs Work

No one likes trade wars, but we continue to see evidence that tariffs (combined with economic strength) work. Bloomberg posted an article on Thursday (updated Friday) about the recent trade agreement reached between the United States and China.The article notes that the tentative agreement was reached just as more tariffs were due to go into effect against China on December 15th. Because of the tentative agreement, the tariffs are postponed.

The article reports:

President Donald Trump signed off on a phase-one trade deal with China, averting the Dec. 15 introduction of a new wave of U.S. tariffs on about $160 billion of consumer goods from the Asian nation, according to people familiar with the matter.

The deal presented to Trump by trade advisers Thursday included a promise by the Chinese to buy more U.S. agricultural goods, according to the people. Officials also discussed possible reductions of existing duties on Chinese products, they said. The terms have been agreed but the legal text has not yet been finalized, the people said. A White House spokesperson declined to comment.

While there was no official confirmation from the government in Beijing on Friday, an announcement is expected in Washington as early as today, according to people familiar with the Americans’ plans. One possible option is for U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to sign the agreement with Chinese Ambassador Cui Tiankai, according to people briefed on the matter.

When the agreement was announced, global stocks soared to record highs.

The article concludes:

In addition to a significant increase in Chinese agricultural purchases in exchange for tariff relief, officials have also said a phase-one pact would include Chinese commitments to do more to stop intellectual-property theft and an agreement by both sides not to manipulate their currencies.

Put off for later discussions are knotty issues such as longstanding U.S. complaints over the vast web of subsidies ranging from cheap electricity to low-cost loans that China has used to build its industrial might.

Nothing is at yet cast in stone. Stay tuned.