How Democrats Can Build A Stronger Case To Impeach President Trump

Below is my column in USA Today on what the Democrats would have to do to build an actual case for the removal of the American president. I have previously said that abuse of power is impeachable, but it is the most difficult of potential impeachment claims. Once again, impeachment does not require a criminal allegation but it does require clarity. It also requires a complete and compelling record. This record is neither complete nor compelling on proof of an impeachable offense.

Rather than continuing to criticize the record, below is an effort to lay out a possible case for impeachment.

Here is the column:

House Democrats have done a masterful job of holding hearings with testimony from distinguished diplomatic and national security witnesses on the alleged quid pro quo that President Trump sought from Ukraine. The problem is that the record is incomplete and conflicted on critical points. The question is whether Democrats want a real or a recreational impeachment. A real impeachment case can be made, but to make it, they will have to reschedule, reframe, and repeat their House investigation.

As compelling and upsetting as much of the testimony has been, the record still lacks direct evidence of a quid pro quo on American military aid to Ukraine. Out of all the House Intelligence Committee witnesses, European Union Ambassador Gordon Sondland was the only person to speak directly to President Trump on the issue, testifying that Trump denied any quid pro quo and that his own presumption of a quid pro quo was connected to a White House meeting with the Ukrainian president and not the aid. The transcript of the phone call between Trump and the Ukrainian president does not state a quid pro quo, and the only two other direct conversations on the record have Trump denying a quid pro quo.

While a September conversation between Trump and Sondland can be discounted as coming after the whistleblower complaint was sent to Congress, an August conversation with Senator Ron Johnson occurred before the submission. Johnson was upset with the delay in aid and, when he asked if there was a quid pro quo, he testified that the denial by Trump was “adamant, vehement, and angry” and contained “more than one expletive.” Those conflicts only highlight the still undeveloped record.

The hearings seemed to studiously avoid every witness with firsthand knowledge of the issue, including personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, former national security adviser John Bolton, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney, and others. It was like hearing the play “Hamlet” entirely from the view of his friends Rosencrantz and Guildenstern. At some point, you really have to hear from the royal family.

If Democrats continue with their plan to impeach Trump by the end of December, they would be presenting the thinnest record and fastest impeachment investigation in history. Democrats assert that the record is more than 2,670 pages long. In comparison, the report by Kenneth Starr to Congress summarizing the evidence in the Clinton impeachment was 445 pages, with more than 8,000 pages of supporting documents just on the part dealing with the Monica Lewinsky allegations. The grand jury record and other documents from the investigation were even larger.

Basing an impeachment on such an undeveloped record would relieve senators of the need to seriously consider the underlying alleged acts. They could vote to acquit on the basis of an incomplete record. In other words, Democrats are not just making it easy on themselves but easy on their Republican counterparts by rushing a House vote. None of this means that a case cannot be made, but it has to be proven. You cannot blame partisan voting in the Senate if you submit a record that omits key witnesses while inviting conjecture over poorly defined criminal acts.

This of course assumes that Democrats seriously want to remove Trump from office. Instead, it all could be a failure by design in the hope of losing the case in the Senate in order to energize the Democratic base and win back control of the Senate next November, all while denying Republican voters a rallying point. Assuming that Democrats actually would like to remove Trump from office, how could the House prove such a case? The answer is those three simple steps of reschedule, reframe, and repeat.

First, the expedited vote by the end of December is simply absurd. It is not clear why Democrats have not even subpoenaed key witnesses or taken the time to force that testimony. After doing little on impeachment for more than two years, there is suddenly a blind rush to a vote while leaving a line of uncalled witnesses in the wake. While the House has spent some considerable time litigating over tax records, it has refused to go to court to enforce any witness subpoenas for the investigation. It easily could do so and ask for expedited review from the courts. If it had done this at the outset, we would have had the first round completed by now. It can still get through the trial court and the likely appellate court on an expedited path by next spring. However, Democrats have burned months without subpoenaing such testimony. They should do so without further delay.

Second, this investigation should have been left to the House Judiciary Committee from the outset. It should be transferred to that panel and the matter reframed to fit controlling legal interpretations and case law. The current bribery and obstruction claims are forced and unsupported. The Supreme Court unanimously rejected such broad interpretation of bribery in a prior case. Likewise, the obstruction allegation seems based on the exercise of the right of the administration to seek judicial review. After setting such a short period for its investigation, the House would impeach a president for seeking judicial review during that brief period. The missing witnesses may be able to establish the elements of these crimes, but they are missing from the abridged record. What remains is an abuse of power case requiring a broader evidentiary foundation to stick.

Finally, new testimonial hearings should be held, and uncalled witnesses should be subpoenaed. The House can then ask for expedited review from the courts. If Trump defies a final order, then that would be an undeniable impeachable offense. If witnesses such as Giuliani appear and invoke the Fifth Amendment right to refuse to testify, they can be given “use and derivative use” immunity to compel testimony. This form of immunity would not bar the use of the extensive evidence already gathered if they were later prosecuted. If they then refuse to testify or commit perjury, then they can be prosecuted. This could all be finished by next spring.

It remains to be seen if an actual case can be proven with these witnesses, but this would be an opportunity for a real case for removal in the Senate. However, they have a year to make that case. The view that it is untoward to impeach a president close to an election is simply absurd. The election has nothing to do with an impeachment. The election is about the next term. A legitimate impeachment can happen the day before an election. That is certainly better than leaving alleged impeachable acts without a constitutional remedy. So the choice rests with the House. It has made the case that impeachable offenses may exist. Now it has to prove them.

Jonathan Turley (@JonathanTurley) is the chair of public interest law at George Washington University and served as the last lead counsel in a Senate impeachment trial in defense of Judge Thomas Porteous. He has testified with other constitutional experts in the Clinton impeachment.

218 thoughts on “How Democrats Can Build A Stronger Case To Impeach President Trump”

  1. Part of impeachment hearings involves educating the public. This is the first impeachment case in history where the wrongdoing involved other nations (Ukraine and Ukrainian relations with both Russia and the U.S.) Hence the decision to begin hearings in the House Intelligence Committee was quite correct, since members would be familiar with diplomatic traditions, as well as with activities of concern for our national security.

    1. This is the first impeachment case in history where the wrongdoing involved other nations (Ukraine and Ukrainian relations with both Russia and the U.S.)

      The alleged wrongdoing and where the impeachment hearings began knowing an IG report will be in less than a week and where the full details (investigations) of Ukrainian corruption are not known. We spent 2.5 years with Mueller’s investigation; the same investigation should have been done with Ukraine, prior to any impeachment inquiry.

      Short of that, this process is exposed for its naked political motivation. And that’s the education the public is witnessing.

  2. The argument that the total number of pages in the record is somehow indicative of quality is disingenuous. Turley uses that red herring because he has learned that using logical fallacies to lead others often induces them into accepting his primary assertion. Readers should also take notice of the fact that Turley opens his critique with a false complement. Turley’s assertion that “House Democrats have done a masterful job of holding hearings” is contradicted by the central theme of Turley’s column, which is that House Democrats are making serious errors in the way they are conducting the impeachment inquiry.

  3. “Bruce Fein, a former senior official in the Department of Justice and a constitutional scholar, has identified 12 impeachable offenses committed by Donald Trump. But, as he notes, many of these constitutional violations are not unique to the Trump administration. They have been normalized by Democratic and Republican administrations. These long-standing violations are, for this reason, ignored by Democratic Party leaders seeking to impeach the president. They have chosen to focus exclusively on Trump’s attempt to get the Ukrainian president to open an investigation of Joe Biden and his son, Hunter, in exchange for $400 million in U.S. military aid and a visit by the Ukrainian leader to the White House. Ignoring these institutionalized violations during the impeachment inquiry, Fein fears, would legitimate them and lead to the death of democracy.” Truthdig, Chris Hedges and Bruce Fein.

    This is exactly what is happening here.

    1. Pres Trump has basically until 12/10/19 or a few days more to haul in the Traitors like Comey, McCabe, Brennan, Clapper & the rest of those azzholes or this country is stick a fork in it done.

      Without Trump openly displaying justice at the top everyone else will see there is no justice left in the USA & that it’s open season for criminals. That the biggest bully is the winner from now on.

      No more bullsh*t JFK or 9/11 cover up crap, those cover up days are over.

      The biggest heads roll or the nation rolls over dead.

        1. The topic of the article posted on several Seattle based news websites yesterday. Once the employee entered the order into the terminal, he/she became what I refer to as a Schrödinger’s Employee, that is one who committed such an embarrassment to the company he effectively and instantly fired himself. Yet the boss will offer a veneer of due process to make the HR paperwork look good–thus, he is simultaneously fired and working at the same time.

          1. The holiday season is here, maybe the company could make the kid some kind of a special agent barista that’s in charge of emergency cleaning the back seat area of every LEO vehicle that some drunk just puked in, for 60/70 miles around Tulsa for 3-6 months.

            750/1 mil gen pop around Tulsa area, that’s a lot of LEO vehicles

    2. Bruce Fein has called for the impeachment of every occupant of the office in the last 20 years. He’s a tricorn-hat crank.

  4. The question of when the Ukrainians knew that there was a problem with the security assistance got a lot of attention during the hearings, and new factual information in Cooper’s public testimony revealed that the Ukrainians were inquiring about the security assistance at a much earlier date than any of the deposition transcripts had revealed.

    This new information is significant because it would seem to contradict an argument that critics of the proceedings had been making: that there was no quid pro quo because the Ukrainians did not know that a hold had been placed on the assistance until a short time before it was released. That said, it’s not clear how relevant this distinction truly is. No one disputes that Ukraine is extremely reliant on U.S. security assistance, over which Trump has substantial control. So by threatening future assistance, Trump could still be proposing a quid pro quo exchange even if he had not yet cut off the security assistance or the Ukrainians were not aware he had done so.

  5. Yes, I fear that the advocates for impeachment don’t have a strong case. But bribery is specifically mentioned in the constitution. I only question whether The Donald actually did so, as opposed to his stooge, Giuliani.

    Maybe there are other High Crimes & Misdemeanors?

      1. mespo – if you get a cite out of him more power to you. 🙂 I think he is sneaking on in the middle of the night because he has been temporarily banned.

      2. The statutory elements of bribery are irrelevant; this is not a criminal trial. The Constitution is relevant.

        There can be little dispute that Trump directed officials to withhold military aid appropriated by Congress until and unless Ukraine publicly announced investigations that would benefit Trump politically. At this point, if you don’t think the testimony established a quid pro quo involving aid to Ukraine, you weren’t paying attention.

        “Abuse of power” is an obvious choice because it fits Trump’s conduct. Presidents are not supposed to use our tax dollars for their own gain, and Trump had no authority to withhold aid that had been appropriated by Congress. Charging Trump with abusing his power as president speaks to what is wrongful about what he did.

        It is also well established that “abuse of power” is an impeachable offense. Richard Nixon was charged with abuse of power, as was Bill Clinton, although that particular charge against Clinton failed to pass the House of Representatives. In addition, there is no question that our founders intended for impeachment to be used when presidents engaged in corrupt conduct, which is what an “abuse of power” charge is intended to capture.

        Democrats should also include an article that charges Trump with obstruction of justice. Despite the overwhelming evidence of Trump’s misconduct, there is no question that Trump prevented the House from obtaining testimony from many of the most important witnesses, including acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Witnesses also testified that many important documents, including handwritten notes of key witnesses like Ambassador William Taylor, were withheld.

        There are often legitimate reasons for the executive branch to withhold production of documents and witnesses, such as a proper assertion of executive privilege. But Trump had no legal reason to withhold evidence, blasting the impeachment inquiry as “illegitimate” and “unconstitutional” even though impeachment is literally written in the Constitution. By thwarting Congress’ constitutionally mandated authority, Trump literally declared himself above the law, and Democrats are justified charging him with obstructing their investigation as a result.

        1. ProsecutorMilesEdgeworth :

          “The statutory elements of bribery are irrelevant; this is not a criminal trial. The Constitution is relevant.”
          ******************
          Okay Javert square your notion about the irrelevancy of the elements of the crimes cited in Art. II”, Sec. 4: “The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and 𝐂𝐨𝐧𝐯𝐢𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 for, 𝐓𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐬𝐨𝐧, 𝐁𝐫𝐢𝐛𝐞𝐫𝐲, or other high 𝐂𝐫𝐢𝐦𝐞𝐬 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐌𝐢𝐬𝐝𝐞𝐦𝐞𝐚𝐧𝐨𝐫𝐬.”
          I count five references to the “irrelevant” criminal law. (I helped you out with some hints).

          BTW, if I’m ever prosecuted for anything criminal can I request you handle it? I’ll be home by lunchtime.

          1. Impeachment is not a criminal trial; therefore, it is not necessary to prove a criminal statute was broken for impeachment to occur.

            Abuse of power is all that is necessary to show. A president does not have constitutional authority to add conditions to funds that Congress did not expressly vote on. It was done for his own benefit.

            As I previously said, Nixon was accused of abuse of power by the House of Representatives, as was Bill Clinton. The House voted down the abuse of power allegation against Clinton.

            While bribery is an impeachable crime, I do not believe it was a bribe. And it is simply a red herring.

            1. ProsecutorMilesEdgeworth :

              “As I previously said, Nixon was accused of abuse of power by the House of Representatives, as was Bill Clinton. The House voted down the abuse of power allegation against Clinton.”
              ********************
              This is just patent sophistry. There is no crime called “abuse of power” and that’s why it’s never mentioned in any article of impeachment. The closest you get is some preamble language in Clinton’s articles called “abuse of his high office,” which is dicta to the actual modified Art. IV charges of perjury:

              Nixon’s articles of impeachment were Art. 1 “impeded the administration of justice,” Art 2 “repeatedly engaged in conduct violating the constitutional rights of citizens, impairing the due and proper administration of justice and the conduct of lawful inquiries, or contravening the laws governing agencies of the executive branch and the purposed of these agencies,” and Art 3, “without lawful cause or excuse to produce papers and things as directed by duly authorized subpoenas issued by the Committee on the Judiciary of the House of Representatives.”

              Clinton’s articles of impeachment were: Art. 1: “manipulated the judicial process of the United States for his personal gain and exoneration, impeding the administration of justice,” Art. 2: “willfully corrupted and manipulated the judicial process of the United States for his personal gain and exoneration, impending the administration of justice,” and Art. 3: “has prevented, obstructed, and impeded the administration of justice, and has to that end engaged personally, and through his subordinates and agents, in a course of conduct or scheme designed to delay, impede, cover up, and conceal the existence of evidence and testimony related to a Federal civil rights action brought against him in a duly instituted judicial proceeding.” Atr. 4: deleted then modified to “William Jefferson Clinton, in refusing and failing to respond, and in making perjurious, false and misleading statements, assumed to himself functions and judgments necessary to the exercise of the sole power of impeachment vested by the Constitution in the House of Representatives and exhibited contempt for the inquiry.” Art. 5: “contravened the authority of the legislative branch and the truth-seeking purpose of a coordinate investigative proceeding in that, as President, William Jefferson Clinton, refused and failed to respond to certain written requests for admission and willfully made perjurious, false and misleading sworn statements in response to certain written requests for admission propounded to him as part of the impeachment inquiry authorized by the House of Representatives of the Congress of the United States.”

              All are referenced to federal crimes of obstruction of justice, violation of constitutional rights, perjury and contempt of Congress. Respectively, 18 US Code Ch. 73 (various sections), 18 U.S. Code § 242, 18 US Code Sec. 1621 and 2 U.S. Code § 192 along with Congress’ legally recognized power to punish for contempt (Anderson v. Dunn 19 U.S. 204 (1821).

              Nixon’s articles were never voted on by the House; Clinton was acquitted.

              So while you have the shape of the beast ( a criminal code citation isn’t essential) you’re still misleading folks by suggesting that dumb Jerry Ford’s comment about impeachment being “anything Congress says it is,” holds any sway with anyone with a law degree.* Btw do you have one?

              * Ford had one but it rarely showed.

          2. Also, if you study legal history, you will find “high crimes and misdemeanors” does not refer to any particular criminal statute. It is defined by common law (or case law).

            There was almost no criminal code in the US when the Constitution was written, so high crimes and misdemeanors don’t refer to a violation of a criminal statute.

            It refers to abuses of power that involve using public funds for a personal benefit or usurping the authorities that are delegated to another branch of government.

            The framers intended to split federal powers up amongst 3 branches of government because they feared too much power in one branch would lead to another monarchy. France did the same thing at the same time we did for the same reasons.

              1. Estovir, Henry VIII made a huge contribution to history by breaking with the Vatican. It explains to a large extent why Britain and many of its former colonies became progressive democracies while Spain and its former colonies became backward, fascist regimes.

                1. Peter hates women. No one in their right mind would cite Henry VIII as a good historical reference considering the way he mistreated and beheaded women.

                  Henry VIII had 6 wives though raped fewer women than Bill Clinton

                  a mnemonic of the wives
                  “Arrogant Boys Seem Clever, Howard Particularly”

                  a mnemonic for their fates
                  “Divorced, beheaded, died; divorced, beheaded, survived”

                  King Henry VIII,
                  To six wives he was wedded.
                  One died, one survived,
                  Two divorced, two beheaded.

                  and

                  Boleyn and Howard lost their heads,
                  Anne of Cleves he would not bed,
                  Jane Seymour gave him a son – but died before the week was done,
                  Aragon he did divorce,
                  Which just left Catherine Parr, of course!

                  But Peter prefers big gurls.

                2. There aren’t any fascist regimes in Iberia or Latin America, and there never were.

                  It doesn’t seem to occur to Peter that teasing out why one country adopts process improvements and technological innovations faster than another country is an intricate endeavour, not a matter of cherry-picking features one likes and features one dislikes and declaring them a ’cause’.

                  It also doesn’t occur to Peter that the presence of electoral and deliberative institutions in Europe prior to 1789 was was associated with upland locations and with littoral locations. After 1789, such institutions extended the length and breadth of Europe, with only Russia lacking them by 1870.

                  As for Latin America, the situation varied from one place to another. Brazil and Chile during the period running form 1830 to 1890 were constitutional states wherein public life was conducted by a small affluent subset of the population (rather like many European countries). By 1865, a similar state of affairs was the order of the day in Colombia. Argentina ca. 1880 was government by a political cartel organized by Julio Roca (which ran the show for 35 years or so), Mexico had a durable personal dictatorship from 1876 to 1911. Other countries suffered under short-term caudillos while others were ruled by party factions erected by local grandees.

                  Consider Europe and it’s derivatives in 1885, at the time of the Congress of Berlin. Britain was the world’s anchor economy. The Maddison Project has been compiling and analyzing historical data on output. Their current report on the domestic product per capita of various places in 1885 (stated as a ratio to Britain’s per capita product) are as follows:

                  Australia: 1.445
                  United States: 1.171
                  New Zealand: 1.161
                  Belgium: 1.037
                  Great Britain: 1.00
                  Switzerland: 0.989
                  Argentina: 0.983
                  Uruguay: 0.911
                  Netherlands: 0.883
                  Spain: 0.841
                  Canada: 0.803
                  Germany: 0.746
                  Denmark: 0.734
                  France: 0.704
                  Norway: 0.621
                  Austria: 0.562
                  Sweden: 0.551
                  Greece: 0.512
                  Chile: 0.446
                  Italy: 0.414
                  Poland: 0.393
                  South Africa: 0.369
                  Portugal: 0.327
                  Finland: 0.313
                  Japan: 0.269
                  Indonesia: 0.244
                  Venezuela: 0.244
                  Colombia: 0.237
                  India: 0.234
                  Ceylon: 0.230
                  Brazil: 0.171
                  Roumania: 0.143
                  Peru: 0.111

                  By my count, there are four Catholic countries and three confessionally mixed countries ahead of all the Scandinavian states.

                1. Barron gives me hope for the US Catholic Conference of Bishops, a group so dysfunctional and toxic they almost make the US Congress look healthy. The US Bishops are largely to blame for the fall of Catholicism in America. Acedia is their middle name. He needs our prayers. While his Thomastic bent is fine (there are many other solid Church Fathers to also include in Christian catechesis and apologetics) I am more impressed with his recent trajectory thanks to Pope Francis as a newly consecrated Auxiliary Bishop, i.e. focus on evangelization. Barron is more and more appealing to Catholic mysticism and prayerfulness, tools far more necessary today in our nation than Catholic scholasticism. If you have access to Bp. Barron, you should allow that to grow. He might need your help one day and with you being in Richmond, you would have excellent access to him when he travels to DC for USCCB business. You would be a fool to let that contact collapse. I correspond with Joseph Gloor from Word On Fire only because we both have a passion for bodybuilding, masculinity (estovir) and leading healthy lives, but your contact with Barron is a prized catch. Please nourish that. He seems like a wonderful holy man and boy do we need them

                2. We used to email regularly.

                  Barron should be on your short list of regular contacts.

                  03:37 Can you follow the theo drama,
                  03:40 and let go of the ego drama?
                  03:42 Everything else will follow from that.

            1. There was almost no criminal code in the US when the Constitution was written, so high crimes and misdemeanors don’t refer to a violation of a criminal statute.
              ****************
              More bullshark. Like most of the English speaking world, our “code” was English Common Law. For four centuries before our Revolution, “High crimes and misdemeanors” was a well-known phrase in English law which most fifth graders know is the ancestor to our law. It certainly had broad application and was used in the context of mal-administration. It wasn’t not, as you suggested, a method to settle political scores. As no less an authority than Alan Dershowitz reminds us in book, “The Case Against impeaching Trump, that Blackstone contended that specific crimes constituted the essence of the mal-administrative component of impeachment.

          1. Mr. Benson,
            I think it is only fair to inform you that Prosecutor Mike Edgeworth only practices law in Japan. I have both defeated him and defended him in a murder case. He has a habit of withholding evidence.

            1. “I think it is only fair to inform you that Prosecutor Mike Edgeworth only practices law in Japan.”
              *********************
              That’s surprising. I thought he practiced Martian law.

    1. mespo727272, the use of “bribery” in the constitution far precedes the statute. Research the meaning yourself; I don’t know the history.

      1. David Benson is the God Emperor of Making Stuff Up and owes me thirty-eight citations (one from the OED, one from the town ordinances and two from the Old Testament), an equation and the source of a quotation, after fifty-two weeks, and needs to cite all his work from now on. – I told mespo he would be lucky to get a citation out of you. You make the claim, buy want us to do the work. You must have been crap as a teacher.

      2. DBB:
        “Research the meaning yourself; I don’t know the history.”
        ******************
        I do and it derives — like much of our criminal code — from English common law that the Founders knew well. You can research that as easily as I can. It’s been around since at least the time of the ancient Romans and likely since 3000 BC. that ought to give you enough of a trail. I went through this in a previous comment.

    2. I fear that the advocates for impeachment don’t have a strong case.

      How embarrassing for you. Normal people don’t yearn for a president to do impeachable offenses. Normal people don’t root for efforts to undermine the functioning of our country. But the Democrat party isn’t able to control normal people. No, they are relying on the useful idiots to support their efforts to win now, because…

      they fear if they cannot find anything to impeach President Trump, he will serve a second term.

      1. Why? Why is the inside-the-beltway permanent political class so determined to send Trump packing? Because he’s not a member of “The Club.”

        Yes Trump is ruff, gruff, combative, and bombastic, but there’s lots of Club members who are all of those things, yet they’ve been around Washington for decades. Truth is that The Club has been effectively insulating itself from the American people, enriching itself and its family members by burying self-pay schemes in the largess of government, and Trump is a threat. There are dark corners inside The Club’s clubhouse, lots of them, and Trump is wandering around with a flashlight.
        https://townhall.com/columnists/derrickwilburn/2019/11/29/the-real-reason-the-dems-want-trump-gone-n2557211/?fbclid=IwAR2C7PMhTQ12RJZLlRWIl6MlI0WebgoVwMZoZH4-gCNDUkQvC8nD4pnFW9s

  6. Interesting that JT is giving free legal advice to the Democrats that for the most part aren’t smart enough to scratch fire off their butts with both hands. We didn’t see that free legal advice when Obama defied congress over Fast and Furious and the billions in bribes to Iran, both “high crimes and misdemeanors.”

  7. THANKSGIVING DAY NEWSFLASH –

    Russia Inquiry Review Is Expected to Undercut Trump Claim of F.B.I. Spying
    By Adam Goldman – Nov. 27, 2019

    WASHINGTON — The Justice Department’s inspector general found no evidence that the F.B.I. attempted to place undercover agents or informants inside Donald J. Trump’s campaign in 2016 as agents investigated whether his associates conspired with Russia’s election interference operation, people familiar with a draft of the inspector general’s report said.

    The determination by the inspector general, Michael E. Horowitz, is expected to be a key finding in his highly anticipated report due out on Dec. 9 examining aspects of the Russia investigation. The finding also contradicts some of the most inflammatory accusations hurled by Mr. Trump and his supporters, who alleged not only that F.B.I. officials spied on the Trump campaign but also at one point that former President Barack Obama had ordered Mr. Trump’s phones tapped. The startling accusation generated headlines but Mr. Trump never backed it up.
    __________

    And the Warren Commission found no evidence that the CIA, FBI, NSA, JCS, ONI, LBJ, MOB, Texas Oilmen et al. conspired to assassinate JFK after JFK withheld support from the Bay of Pigs Operation and swore to “splinter the C.I.A. in a thousand pieces and scatter it to the winds.”
    ________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    “We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false.”

    – William Casey, CIA Director

    1. JOHN KIRIAKOU: The Press Should Not Be Shielding FBI Malfeasance

      The Washington Post and others just adhered to the Justice Department’s own policy of protecting their own while wrecking the lives of those who have the guts to stand up to them.

      By John Kiriakou

      The Post article, as well as articles in The New York Times, at CNN, and in other outlets, downplayed the behavior as having had “no effect” on the FBI’s surveillance of Page, ignoring the fact that tampering with a federal document is a felony. That’s consistent with the Justice Department’s own policy of protecting their own while wrecking the lives of those who have the guts to stand up to them.”

      https://consortiumnews.com/2019/11/27/john-kiriakou-the-press-should-not-be-shielding-fbi-malfeasance/

  8. hmmmm I guess you could use Obeyme as an example followed by Schumer and Pelosi but the easy way is just come up with one, just one, fact.

    And then explain how you would get around the six word escape hatch

    Until then its just a case of ‘which which it is’ with Benita playing the part of Clinton.

  9. Why do Trump supporters have disdain, and are outright hostile to the rule of law? It’s like they don’t want or can’t function in a democracy, and can find no obligation to do so. And so the GOP defense in essence, is that facts are irrelevant, no matter how damning or inconvenient, and that Trump has the power to do whatever he wants, and even if it seems inappropriate, improper, or simply wrong, it’s fine with them that their side uses lies and russian propaganda, and yet call themselves patriots and that loyalty to their man outweighs loyalty to the rule of law, or to the constitution or just facts or truth.

    1. Why do Trump supporters have disdain, and are outright hostile to the rule of law?

      Why do you fancy you should have opinions about matters you know nothing about? And what are you doing indoors? Don’t you have any playmates?

      1. Here in NYC, I’m surrounded by lefties who hate Trump…including many friends. From my experience, I would say that those who hate Trump the most are also the same people who know nothing about history, the Constitution, or even current events. These friends, who grew up with me loving George Carlin now talk about the “patriarchy,” “white men”, “gun culture,” and view “hate speech” as something to be banned while still claiming they are for “free speech.”

        It’s a sad state of affairs, but it’s also a lesson about the very tenuous nature of civilization itself and the absolute need for guns…especially the AR15.

        1. Don’t know. The Trump haters in our social circle are extensively educated people – and exemplars of motivated reasoning.

          1. Sorry, but when I saw your words, “motivated reasoning”, it triggered (sorry for the expression) my memory of an article from Psychology today. “exemplars of motivated reasoning”…huh:
            How People Fool Themselves

            Motivated reasoning operates in much more personal spheres as well. For example, it is seen as a mechanism people commonly use to preserve a favorable identity, particularly in Western cultures. To maintain positive self-regard, people (unwittingly) discount unflattering or troubling information that contradicts their self-image. Individuals engage in motivated reasoning as a way to avoid or lessen cognitive dissonance, the mental discomfort people experience when confronted by contradictory information, especially on matters that directly relate to their comfort, happiness, and mental health. Rather than re-examining a contradiction, it’s much easier to dismiss it.

        2. Ivan,

          Maybe get you some new friends from Hong Kong & lose the old friends & explain why.

          The people of Hong Kong are thanking Pres Trump for helping protect their Free Speech Rights & they also know why they need guns when a bigger govt starts attacking Unarmed Citizens.

          You could have them ask a US Marine to smack them head a few times with a rifle to show them an example of what tranny of an evil US govt would be like for them being unarmed just before an evil govt has them shot.

          At least the number of viewers of CNN, NYT, WP, etc., continues to collapse.

          https://www.breitbart.com/asia/2019/11/28/watch-hong-kong-protesters-hold-thanksgiving-rally-celebrate-u-s-support-pro-democracy-movement/

      2. Since my post is based on observable facts, I can understand, why you don’t understand it. After all the dear leader did say not to believe your eyes or ears.

            1. TONY – since you never use facts, evidence of logic, I a pretty sure you are using “ignorant” incorrectly.

                1. Tony – and yet you are here, throwing out your low grade ad hominems. Still, you are afraid to debate those whom you declare intellectual superiority over. Or is it that the “deaf ears” are yours? Are you afraid your world order will be overthrown if you actually had to engage in an argument where you had to defend your position?

      1. Olly, “FPR!” Of course! Now I remember that commenter. I had completely forgotten his posts. Thank you for the admonition. I’ll try to stick to my obsession with the literal “manifest tenor” as America should.

    2. FishWings -what bubble are you living in? Do you realize that Judicial Watch is having so much trouble getting Hillary’s emails that they will not get them all until sometime in 2021? It appears from the Lisa Page emails that the WH sicced the FBI and DoJ on Hillary’s opponent.

      1. Paul, you were saying that L.A. gets it’s food from Phoenix and you can starve us out?? Phoenix is the least sustainable city in the country! What were you talking about???

        I raised this question further down but somehow it got erased.

    3. Fishy:

      “Why do Trump supporters have disdain, and are outright hostile to the rule of law? “
      ***********
      I don’t know, Fishy, have you stopped beating your wife? I see you’re pulling out all the classic canards!

    1. IB:

      “Tunisia, Tunisia, Tunisia” keeps up the poetic pattern. Followed by “Bahrain, Bahrain, Bahrain.”

      You know I wouldn’t punish the Left for their failed attempted coup; I’d punish them for thinking we’re so damn stupid.

  10. “Obama transferred $1.7 billion in cash to Iran in 2016.” “True” Fact Checking Trump CNN

    Leftists might be able to initiate a plan to restore a measure of credibility if they begin to acknowledge that they gave aid to our enemies and then apologize.

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