Casual or Cowardly? Pelosi Takes Dangerous Road To Impeachment

Below is my column on the curious footing of the impeachment “inquiry” against President Donald Trump. The failure to hold a vote of the full house has left many of us wondering what Speaker Nancy Pelosi was actually announcing in her press conference. The Judiciary Committee had been calling their proceedings an “impeachment inquiry” for weeks but Pelosi held a press conference with great fanfare to announce the commencement of an inquiry. Now Pelosi has finally responded to criticism and said that she may still hold a floor vote — again fueling questions of what the press conference was about to being with.

Members of Congress have long been defined by two contradictory attributes of the constitutional power of voting and the consistent effort to avoid using it. Voting means being accountable, and politicians are not big on personal accountability. That is why members have effectively removed the requirement for a legislative declaration of war from the Constitution. Instead, in all except a handful of wars, Congress has used open-ended resolutions to start wars in places such as Afghanistan and Iraq, preserving later denials of responsibility while supporting popular wars.

Now, the House of Representatives appears on the verge of doing the same with impeachment. If war is the continuation of politics by other means, impeachment may soon follow as the House does away with any need for an initial vote of its members. The change in the process for presidential impeachment is the focus of a planned letter from the White House that will tie demands from Congress for evidence to a vote of the full House. It is a case of passive aggression meets active avoidance.

With great fanfare, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said that an impeachment “inquiry” would begin. For those of us who have practiced in the area of impeachment, it was a curious moment. Reporters immediately called to ask if all it takes is a unilateral announcement of something called an impeachment “inquiry.” The answer is as murky as the motivation to avoid the traditional vote of the House to start an impeachment investigation.

On its face, the Constitution does not require anything other than a majority vote of the House to impeach a president. It is silent on the procedures used to reach that vote, and courts have largely deferred to Congress to create its own internal rules and processes in fulfilling constitutional functions. Historically, a vote of the chamber as a whole was required to commit a matter to the House Judiciary Committee or a select committee for an impeachment investigation of a sitting president.

The reason for that traditional practice is obvious. Before the House takes the momentous step toward impeachment of an American president, all of its members should be on record with that consequential action. Whether it was former President Nixon or former President Clinton, House members felt a responsibility to vote on whether to start the process.

The “impeachment by press conference” action of Pelosi is an entirely new animal. After her press conference, I told The Washington Post that this was not any recognizable process and that the approach taken by Democrats on presidential impeachment was “casual to the point of being conversational.” It would allow a type of immaculate impeachment that suddenly comes to life by the unilateral declaration of the speaker.

That practice would substantially reduce the burden of members in starting this process and make future impeachments all the more easy to commence. That could come at a great cost for the country, which, despite periods of such intense and bitter division, has always treated presidential impeachments as a collective and weighty decision for the entire House. The decision to avoid a full vote robs the House of the legitimacy and substance that comes from a vote of the entire body.

The current impeachment “inquiry” rests on the authority of one person. Until the entire body votes, it remains the Pelosi impeachment effort rather than a House impeachment process. While Democrats are counting on the courts to follow their traditional deference to the House on this question, the abandonment of the traditional vote in the House will undoubtedly give pause to some judges who are asked to override legal barriers to gain access to executive branch and grand jury material.

I testified months ago before the House Judiciary Committee on these very conflicts and encouraged it to secure a vote of the chamber to start an impeachment investigation before fighting these issues in court. While it has oversight authority that can override executive privilege arguments, an impeachment process puts the authority of Congress at its apex under the Constitution. This is important in securing grand jury material, a controversial and uncertain source of evidence for the committee.

There are other overly casual aspects to the Pelosi effort. It rests on the idea that the involved committees already have been given authority to conduct an impeachment inquiry. But they have not. The House Judiciary Committee has oversight authority that has been given to it in Section Two of Article One. However, the impeachment powers and the attendant deference by the courts also rest in Section One of Article One. In demanding grand jury material, a court could find that the only clear authority of the committee is oversight, not impeachment, powers.

The greatest danger, however, is to the process of impeaching the president. This casual unilateral approach will make impeachment more likely to become an extension of politics. The framers worked hard to avoid the use of impeachment as an impulsive or partisan device. That is what is likely to come from this new informal path created by Pelosi.

A majority of Democrats are now on the record supporting impeachment. They should get their votes on the record, and the House should remove the legitimacy questions created by Pelosi. There are valid issues to be investigated in the Ukrainian phone call of President Trump. If proved, these allegations would constitute impeachable offenses. The House, however, should lay a proper unassailable foundation for that process.

If there is any step that warrants formality, it is the impeachment of the president of the United States. That is hardly convenient for members of Congress who want to wait and see if impeachment is popular. But there still comes a point when casual becomes little more than cowardice.

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. He also served as the last lead counsel in a Senate impeachment trial and testified as a constitutional expert in the Clinton impeachment hearings. You can follow him on Twitter @JonathanTurley.

60 thoughts on “Casual or Cowardly? Pelosi Takes Dangerous Road To Impeachment”

  1. The, self described, scandal free Obama administration, is about to get it’s lid blown off. – Chuck Woolery Oct 7, 2019

    (not counting on it, but I sure hope so)

    1. It would explain the bizarre freak-out meltdowns on air by the likes of Jake Tapper and Upchuck Todd, though, wouldn’t it?

        1. Not really. Do you?

          I heard others call him that over the years and I think it suits him. Especially after his dramatic performance last weekend. He’s not a journalist. He’s a clown. He’s a partisan. He was a Dem staffer for years and his wife works on Democrat campaigns. As the Federalist reported, Upchuck and his wife both have skin in the game for Democrats. He’s anything but “neutral” and unbiased. He’s a joke.

            1. Is that your opinion across the board? Including Trump? Or just in regard to so-called journalists like Upchuck and Fake Jake?

    2. Chuck Woolery? Really?

      Now there’s a source.

      https://heavy.com/news/2019/08/chuck-woolery/

      ‘Chuck Woolery, 78, is the co-host of a conservative podcast called Blunt Force Truth and a former game show presenter on programs including Love Connection and Wheel of Fortune.

      Google searches for Woolery spiked on August 20, 2019, and he was trending on Twitter after posting a message about race the previous day.

      In the tweet, Woolery appeared to downplay the significance and impact of racism in the United States. He wrote that racism was merely a political tool used by the “progressive left” in order to “hold on to the Black Vote.”’

      1. Yes Chuck Love Connection Woolery. Just reposting his message for the fun of it. And, if you saw James Clapper on CNN today, he said that they were just following orders from President Obama. Doesn’t think they did anything wrong, just following orders from the president. Interesting comment made by Clapper.

    3. Instead of the press investigating the allegations surrounding Joe Biden’s family corruption and self-dealing, the media are instead looking into digging up wrong doing by Rudy Guliani and Trump and anyone associated with Trump. Not looking at or investigating or reporting on Joe Biden, nope, he gets a pass. Does that strike you as strange? The free press, the watchdog press, has no interest in camping out on Biden’s doorstep to get an interview? Or find out the real story? No interest in asking questions? Really? How odd.

        1. Bill Martin — since you asked so nicely….I shall take it under consideration. Have you made the same request of the other snarky Anonymous yet?

          1. Cool Whip,
            While I do not know whether Bill Martin has asked any other Anonymous posters to pick a name. However, it has been brought up by quite a few people.

            Thank you for picking a name! 🙂

            1. Thanks Prarie Rose. Even though Cool Whip is my street name, I’ve decided to distinguish my comments from that snarky Anonymous.

  2. These whistle blowers make me think of Stormy Daniels like bimbos that are looking for their 15 minutes of fame. For the next 6 months there will probably be several more of them coming out with some new juice about Trump. When everything is said and done, there will be no impeachment.

  3. https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/political-commentary/whistleblower-ukraine-trump-impeach-cia-spying-895529/

    The ‘Whistleblower’ Probably Isn’t
    It’s an insult to real whistleblowers to use the term with the Ukrainegate protagonist

    By MATT TAIBBI

    Start with the initial headline, in the story the Washington Post “broke” on September 18th:

    TRUMP’S COMMUNICATIONS WITH FOREIGN LEADER ARE PART OF WHISTLEBLOWER COMPLAINT THAT SPURRED STANDOFF BETWEEN SPY CHIEF AND CONGRESS, FORMER OFFICIALS SAY

    The unnamed person at the center of this story sure didn’t sound like a whistleblower. Our intelligence community wouldn’t wipe its ass with a real whistleblower.

    Americans who’ve blown the whistle over serious offenses by the federal government either spend the rest of their lives overseas, like Edward Snowden, end up in jail, like Chelsea Manning, get arrested and ruined financially, like former NSA official Thomas Drake, have their homes raided by FBI like disabled NSA vet William Binney, or get charged with espionage like ex-CIA exposer-of-torture John Kiriakou. It’s an insult to all of these people, and the suffering they’ve weathered, to frame the ballcarrier in the Beltway’s latest partisan power contest as a whistleblower.

    Drake, who was the first to expose the NSA’s secret surveillance program, seems to have fared better than most. He ended up working in an Apple Store, where he ran into Eric Holder, who was shopping for an iPhone.

    I’ve met a lot of whistleblowers, in both the public and private sector. Many end up broke, living in hotels, defamed, (often) divorced, and lucky if they have any kind of job. One I knew got turned down for a waitressing job because her previous employer wouldn’t vouch for her. She had little kids.

    The common thread in whistleblower stories is loneliness. Typically the employer has direct control over their ability to pursue another job in their profession. Many end up reviled as traitors, thieves, and liars. They often discover after going public that their loved ones have a limited appetite for sharing the ignominy. In virtually all cases, they end up having to start over, both personally and professionally.

    With that in mind, let’s look at what we know about the first “whistleblower” in Ukrainegate:

    He or she is a “CIA officer detailed to the White House”;
    The account is at best partially based upon the CIA officer’s own experience, made up substantially by information from “more than a half dozen U.S. officials” and the “private accounts” of “my colleagues”;
    “He or she” was instantly celebrated as a whistleblower by news networks and major newspapers.
    That last detail caught the eye of Kiriakou, a former CIA Counterterrorism official who blew the whistle on the agency’s torture program.

    “It took me and my lawyers a full year to get [the media] to stop calling me ‘CIA Leaker John Kirakou,” he says. “That’s how long it took for me to be called a whistleblower.”

    Kirakou’s crime was talking to ABC News and the New York Times about the CIA’s torture program. For talking to American journalists about the CIA, our federal government charged Kiriakou with espionage. That absurd count was ultimately dropped, but he still did 23 months at FCI Loretto in Western Pennsylvania.

    When Kiriakou first saw the “whistleblower complaint,” his immediate reaction was to wonder what kind of “CIA officer” the person in question was. “If you spend a career in the CIA, you see all kinds of subterfuge and lies and crime,” he says. “This person went through a whole career and this is the thing he objects to?”

    It’s fair to wonder if this is a one-person effort. Even former CIA official Robert Baer, no friend of Trump, said as much in an early confab on CNN with Brooke Baldwin:

    BAER: That’s what I find remarkable, is that this whistleblower knew about that, this attempt to cover up. This is a couple of people. It isn’t just one.

    BALDWIN: And on the people point, if the allegation is true, Bob, what does it say that White House officials, lawyers, wanted to cover it up?

    BAER: You know, my guess, it’s a palace coup against Trump. And who knows what else they know at this point.

    That sounds about right. Actual whistleblowers are alone. The Ukraine complaint seems to be the work of a group of people, supported by significant institutional power, not only in the intelligence community, but in the Democratic Party and the commercial press.

    In this century we’ve lived through a president lying to get us into a war (that caused hundreds of thousands of deaths and the loss of trillions in public treasure), the deployment of a vast illegal surveillance program, a drone assassination campaign, rendition, torture, extralegal detention, and other offenses, many of them mass human rights violations.

    We had whistleblowers telling us about nearly all of these things. When they came forward, they desperately needed society’s help. They didn’t get it. Our government didn’t just tweet threats at them, but proceeded straight to punishment.

    Bill Binney, who lost both his legs to diabetes, was dragged out of his shower by FBI agents. Jeffrey Sterling, like Kiriakou, was charged with espionage for talking to a reporter. After conviction, he asked to be imprisoned near his wife in St. Louis. They sent him to Colorado for two years. Others tried to talk to congress or their Inspectors General, only to find out their communications had been captured and cc’ed to the very agency chiefs they wanted to complain about (including former CIA chief and current MSNBC contributor John Brennan).

    The current “scandal” is a caricature version of such episodes. Imagine the mania on the airwaves if Donald Trump were to have his Justice Department arrest the “whistleblower” and charge him with 35 years of offenses, as Thomas Drake faced. Trump incidentally still might try something like this. It’s what any autocrat of the Mobute Sese Seko/Enver Hoxha school would do, for starters, to mutinying intelligence officials within his own government.

    Trump almost certainly is not going to do that, however, as the man is too dumb to realize he’s the titular commander of an executive branch that has been jailing people for talking too much for over a decade. On the off chance that he does try it, don’t hold your breath waiting for news networks to tell you he’s just following an established pattern.

    I have a lot of qualms about impeachment/“Ukrainegate,” beginning with this headline premise of the lone, conscience-stricken defender of democracy arrayed against the mighty Trump. I don’t see it. Donald Trump is a jackass who got elected basically by accident, campaigning against a political establishment too blind to its own unpopularity to see what was coming.

    In 2016 we saw a pair of electoral revolts, one on the right and one on the left, against the cratering popularity of our political elite. The rightist populist revolt succeeded, the Sanders movement did not. Ukrainegate to me looks like a continuation of Russiagate, which was a reaction of that defeated political elite to the rightists. I don’t feel solidarity with either group.

    The argument that’s supposed to be galvanizing everyone right now is the idea that we need to “stand up and be counted,” because failing to rally to the cause is effectively advocacy for Trump. This line of thinking is based on the presumption that Trump is clearly worse than the people opposing him.

    That might prove to be true, but if we’re talking about the treatment of whistleblowers, Trump has a long way to go before he approaches the brutal record of the CIA, the NSA, the FBI, as well as the cheerleading Washington political establishment. Forgetting this is likely just the first in what will prove to be many deceptions about a hardcore insider political battle whose subtext is a lot more shadowy and ambiguous than news audiences are being led to believe.

  4. former congressman ron paul asks: good questions:

    https://www.fitsnews.com/2019/09/30/ron-paul-impeachment-or-cia-coup/

    by RON PAUL || You don’t need to be a supporter of President Trump to be concerned about the efforts to remove him from office. Last week House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced impeachment proceedings against the President over a phone call made to the President of Ukraine. According to the White House record of the call, the President asked his Ukrainian counterpart to look into whether there is any evidence of Ukrainian meddling in the 2016 election and then mentioned that a lot of people were talking about how former US Vice President Joe Biden stopped the prosecution of his son who was under investigation for corruption in Ukraine.

    Democrats, who spent more than two years convinced that “Russiagate” would enable them to remove Trump from office only to have their hopes dashed by the Mueller Report, now believe they have their smoking gun in this phone call.

    It this about politics? Yes. But there may be more to it than that.

    It may appear that the Democratic Party, furious over Hillary Clinton’s 2016 loss, is the driving force behind this ongoing attempt to remove Donald Trump from office, but at every turn we see the fingerprints of the CIA and its allies in the US deep state.

    In August 2016, a former acting director of the CIA, Mike Morell, wrote an extraordinary article in the New York Times accusing Donald Trump of being an “agent of the Russian Federation.” Morell was clearly using his intelligence career as a way of bolstering his claim that Trump was a Russian spy – after all, the CIA should know such a thing! But the claim was a lie.

    Former CIA director John Brennan accused President Trump of “treason” and of “being in the pocket of Putin” for meeting with the Russian president in Helsinki and accepting his word that Russia did not meddle in the US election. To this day there has yet to be any evidence presented that the Russian government did interfere. Brennan openly called on “patriotic” Republicans to act against this “traitor.”

    Brennan (above) and his deep state counterparts James Comey at the FBI and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper launched an operation, using what we now know is the fake Steele dossier, to spy on the Trump presidential campaign and even attempt to entrap Trump campaign employees.

    Notice a pattern here?

    Now we hear that the latest trigger for impeachment is a CIA officer assigned to the White House who filed a “whistleblower” complaint against the president over something he heard from someone else that the president said in the Ukraine phone call.

    Shockingly, according to multiple press reports the rules for CIA whistleblowing were recently changed, dropping the requirement that the whistleblower have direct, first-hand knowledge of the wrongdoing. Just before this complaint was filed, the rule-change allowed hearsay or second-hand information to be accepted. That seems strange.

    As it turns out, the CIA “whistleblower” lurking around the White House got the important things wrong, as there was no quid pro quo discussed and there was no actual request to investigate Biden or his son.

    The Democrats have suddenly come out in praise of whistleblowers – well not exactly. Pelosi still wants to prosecute actual whistleblower Ed Snowden. But she’s singing the praises of this fake CIA “whistleblower.”

    Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer once warned Trump that if “you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you.” It’s hard not to ask whether this is a genuine impeachment effort…or a CIA coup!

    1. The campaign noted that since the impeachment inquiry was announced, donations from 50,000 first-time online donors came in.

      LOLZ

    2. Taibbi and Turley are on the right track. This “whistleblower” is just a government worker never-Trumper working in concert with other coup accomplices – this was measured and gutless. Funny how left media is now characterizing Barr’s investigation of origins Russia investigation as chasing conspiracy theories. Classic projection.

  5. apropos given our current discourse

    Get in the trenches, Professor Turley: consider leading in the public square by doing the following types of forums.
    Since you have time for Argentina, Alaska, Tampa, Las Vegas, etc, you have time to lead these gatherings too

    Sophia!

    https://mailchi.mp/georgetown/october-9-salt-and-light-gathering-on-keeping-faith-in-demoralizing-times-1454511?e=c744dfad5a

    10/9

    Gathering for Young Leaders Under 40: Bruenig, Gerson, Alvarado, and Lewis on “Keeping Faith in Demoralizing Times”

    This Salt and Light Gathering for young Catholic leaders in public life will explore how to live with faith, hope, and charity at a time of division in the United States, crisis in the Catholic Church, and paralysis in Washington, DC. Four remarkable leaders will share their experiences and the lessons they have learned regarding how to work with integrity and maintain your principles in the midst of growing public hostility, polarization, and disengagement. The gathering will ask how young people of faith with a shared commitment to human dignity and the common good can live out that faith in both their professional and personal lives.

    This wide-ranging conversation will reflect the diverse perspectives and experiences of its participants: two Washington Post columnists and two young leaders at the intersection of faith and public life:

    Michael Gerson is a Washington Post columnist and a policy fellow with the ONE Campaign. He was a speechwriter for President George W. Bush and a former senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations.

    Elizabeth Bruenig is a Washington Post columnist and editor who focuses on religion, politics, and culture. She was a 2019 Pulitzer Prize finalist for her series on a teen sexual assault victim in her hometown of Arlington, Texas.
    Jeanné Lewis is the vice president and chief engagement officer at the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy. She also serves as a board member for Faith in Public Life and is a member of St. Augustine Catholic Church in Washington, DC.

    Montse Alvarado is vice president and executive director at Becket Law. She is a consultant to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Committee for Religious Liberty and a member of the Fellowship of Catholic University Students’ President’s Advisory Council.
    John Carr, director of the Initiative, will open the gathering. Kim Daniels, associate director of the Initiative, will moderate the conversation.

    This Salt and Light Gathering is for Catholics under 40 years old in Washington to explore the links between faith, Catholic social thought, and their lives and work and is co-sponsored by Georgetown University’s School of Continuing
    Studies. It will begin at 6:00 p.m. with a happy hour, followed by a 7:00 p.m. discussion with the panel; a reception will follow at 8:30 p.m.

  6. Dr T. Please wake-up. It’s not “curious footing” – it’s outright smear and destroy campaign. It has nothing to do with the law. It has only to do with a hatred that has manifested itself in so many liberals hearts. It is eating them alive, but is hurting so many innocent people along the way – Kavanaugh, Flynn, Covington Catholic, etc. So sad that their hatred has consumed their humanity.

      1. The weaponization of our federal agencies appears political on the surface, but it is far more dangerous than that. These morons on the Left believe these agencies are working on their behalf and they have no idea these agencies are working on their own behalf. It’s like paying off a protection racket, but these criminals are the law. Who are they going to turn to for justice when they no longer want to pay?

            1. Olly,
              Sorry for being obtuse. Today has not been a day conducive to detailed posts.

              You wrote: “These morons on the Left believe these agencies are working on their behalf and they have no idea these agencies are working on their own behalf. It’s like paying off a protection racket, but these criminals are the law. Who are they going to turn to for justice when they no longer want to pay?”

              That made me think of the liberal tendency to rail against Big Business (which, to be honest, I, too, am wary of). However, they seem to consider Big Government as not just benign, but beneficial. Such things do not follow.

              When entities such as corporations and governments become too large, they become impersonal through the burden of bureaucracy. Corporations, like all businesses, exist to make money. Governments should serve the people, but, when they get too large and too impersonal, that service seems to turn inward, to propagate existence of different agencies, to exert power and influence and to entrench them both, and that can become the will of those hidden within the bureaucracy rather than that of those it purports to serve.

              Government is of the people and people can become corrupt, they can be self-serving. We all know them in our personal lives, why would people change if they enter government employment? In a generous view, people can make mistakes of judgement and be manipulated, even those desiring to serve with honor in government.

              Unfortunately, government, especially Big Government, with its larger sets of power, is like a large planetary body, attracting larger egos which may also have a larger desire for power. Government gets to exert power, we have granted it this power, trusting to each other to use it with restraint. But power corrupts when not held accountable, and too often, those in government do not like to be held accountable.

              Big Government works to reinforce its own position, its own authority, its own agendas–it is the state and statist power does not celebrate freedom. When government grows too large, it forgets, or worse, ignores why it exists and for whom. Justice is no longer served when the reasons for government and the rule of law and the freedoms it is to defend and protect are buried under the weight of bureaucracy.

          1. the three branches of the Government as written by Benito Mussolini that replaced King, Church and Aristocracy later Government Church mainly banks in our country are called Corporatism, Statism and Labor Leaders.

            Government is always in control in all cases and that’s fine IF goverenment is controlled by citizens… res publica.

            In the USA we have A Republic of the Executive, Legistlative and Judiciary … plus an unsanctified fourth branch which are agencies that act as all three branches.

            it is there what is called the Deep State through the machinations of Corporatist Statists and Labor Leaders … uncontrolled may be easily found.

  7. This continues the rolling coup efforts of the Pinkos.

    They have been unwilling to accept the election of 2016; in doing so they are establishing a precedent that will ultimately destroy our republic.

    If Ms. Pelosi’s actions are legitimate, then she has moved the goal posts. At what point does it become legitimate political opposition to have tanks in the street?

    Ms. Pelosi cloaking herself in the flag is disingenuous.

    “Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel.”

    1. Paul:

      And therein lies the Dims problem. Like to hear Biff Biden explain how getting busted out of the Navy for coke qualifies you for a Ukrainian energy company board seat at $83K per month? How about Joe explaining the business never gets talked about on the golf course? Maybe an explanation about the China flight on AF2 that resulted in a 1.5 Billion dollar investment ten days later for Hunter?

      Maybe that’s all legal but like someone smart said “if it is legal, that’s the real scandal.”

    2. Translated for the uneducated. If the Grand Jury known as The House of Representatives votes the required percentage to indict. The Defendent has the rights to a Jury trial known as the Senate… unless the defendent resigns and is pardoned. The rest is just hyper made up BS

  8. Like I said on the other thread and reiterated by JT in his fine column:

    “There are no charges. There is no impeachment. All we have is a political charade called an inquiry. Welcome to the Left’s view of democracy. Read Alinsky. It’s all there.”

    1. Saul Alinsky has met his match with Donald Trump, which is why the US House and MSM are off the rails in our country. They hate Trump for using their tried and true tactics since the 1960s….

      The Founding Fathers embraced a better way

      Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary, October 7, 2019
      http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/100719.cfm

      Gospel of Saint Luke 10:25-37

      There was a scholar of the law who stood up to test Jesus and said,
      “Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
      Jesus said to him, “What is written in the law?
      How do you read it?”
      He said in reply,
      “You shall love the Lord, your God,
      with all your heart,
      with all your being,
      with all your strength,
      and with all your mind,
      and your neighbor as yourself.”
      He replied to him, “You have answered correctly;
      do this and you will live.”

      But because he wished to justify himself, he said to Jesus,
      “And who is my neighbor?”
      Jesus replied,
      “A man fell victim to robbers
      as he went down from Jerusalem to Jericho.
      They stripped and beat him and went off leaving him half-dead.
      A priest happened to be going down that road,
      but when he saw him, he passed by on the opposite side.
      Likewise a Levite came to the place,
      and when he saw him, he passed by on the opposite side.
      But a Samaritan traveler who came upon him
      was moved with compassion at the sight.
      He approached the victim,
      poured oil and wine over his wounds and bandaged them.
      Then he lifted him up on his own animal,
      took him to an inn, and cared for him.
      The next day he took out two silver coins
      and gave them to the innkeeper with the instruction,
      ‘Take care of him.
      If you spend more than what I have given you,
      I shall repay you on my way back.’
      Which of these three, in your opinion,
      was neighbor to the robbers’ victim?”
      He answered, “The one who treated him with mercy.”
      Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”

      1. Estovir:
        My personal favorite biblical verse is from Paul, who knew a thing or two about human nature:

        14 I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise.

        15 So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.

        16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

        17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.

        18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;

        19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.

        20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:

        21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

        22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools

        Paul to the Romans 1: 1-22 (KJV)

  9. There are valid issues to be investigated in the Ukrainian phone call of President Trump.

    There are valid issues to be investigated regarding Ukraine…period. Democrats are on a mission, but not simply to impeach Trump. They are doing the only thing they can do to impeach what Barr, Durham and the IG will reveal about Ukraine and the Russiagate boondoggle. The reports will be devastating to Democrats. They’ll be in a position of defending corruption and illegal activities at the highest levels of the previous administrations while trying to make a case that Trump’s actions were politically motivated. My guess is that will leave at least 60% of Americans throwing the BS flag on the Democrats.

    Game over.

  10. Again, and again JT picking ant shit out of pepper so he and trump supporters can feel good about a incompetent unhinged person that shows day after day week after week, month after month, year after year that he truly is unfit for the office of POTUS.

    1. Unfit? So say you. What are your thoughts about Justin from Canada? Would we be better with a weak pretty boy “leader” who used to teach drama and loves dressing up and blacking up, not just his face, but his entire body!? I wonder what he’ll be for Halloween? What an odd ball fruitcake. Needless to say, I appreciate what we as a country have in President Trump. As such, I’ll vote for Trump again in 2020.

  11. https://www.politico.com/story/2019/08/08/nadler-this-is-formal-impeachment-proceedings-1454360

    Nadler appears to believe that a committee chairman can start an inpeachment inquiry.
    Realistically, he got his own inpeachment inquiry show on the road well before Pelosi said it was “official”.
    That action, and Pelosi’s refusal to put it to a full House vote, have given the Trump Administration an opening to claim that they don’t recognize this is a legitimate impeachment inquiry, and that they won’t comply with subpeonas.

  12. The only solution to this is a permanent House committee on Impeachment investigations. The day a new President is inaugurated, the committee should start getting evidence and calling witnesses. The American people deserve to know that their President was duly elected and that he or she is not a crook.

    1. t317,
      I think Nadler and Schiff already view their committees as “impeachment committees”.
      But if you established a seperate, formal “Impeachment Committee”, the committee may be permanent but the leadership ( whoever controlled the House) would not.
      I think we’d see the same kinds of problems we now have playing out.

    2. They have a committee. Two of them. It’s called the House of Representatives who acts as the Grand Jury and the Senate who acts as the Jury with The Chief Justice as the Judge

      Spend less time trying to circumvent the law of the land and more time using it as written or as amended you might get somewhere.

  13. ” Voting means being accountable, and politicians are not big on personal accountability.”

    Then they are being hypocrites for vociferously demanding Trump be held accountable for his ‘high crimes and misdemeanors’.

    This especially in light of them, for example, not holding Obama accountable for warring against Libya without war powers authorization by Congress and for not holding Hillary accountable for her illegal actions with her private email and private servers and for not holding anyone accountable for the NSA spying on Americans.

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