A “Lovely, Knotty Problem”: Is The House Impeachment Case On A Collision Course With The Law of Attempts?

Below is my column in Washington Post on a little discussed issue lingering in the hundreds of pages of briefing in the Trump Senate trial: what to do with an attempt to abuse power. Many of us have been discussing whether abuse of power is an impeachable offense. The White House maintains that it is not because articles of impeachment must be based on criminal acts. Many of us have criticized that theory as untenable and unsupportable in the history of English and American impeachments. However, the more interesting question is not what to do with an abuse of power but an attempted abuse of power.

Here is the column:

With the start of the impeachment trial, the Senate (and the country) will soon be faced with what the late Yale professor Arthur Leff described as one of the law’s most “lovely, knotty problems.”

Leff was speaking of what is loosely called “the law of attempts,” a category of crimes where someone is accused of contemplating, but not actually carrying out, an unlawful act. The Trump trial could be the first time the Senate considers charges that amount to allegedly conceiving, but then abandoning, an abuse of power. While it is certainly true that there was a temporary act of “nonfeasance” in withholding the aid to Ukraine, it was ultimately released over two weeks before the deadline under federal law.

The Trump administration will argue that there was no quid pro quo between the president of the United States and the president of Ukraine; that the military aid to Kyiv, though authorized by Congress, was never withheld; and that the White House always intended to release the aid by the end of September. (It was released on Sept. 11, two days after a whistleblower complaint about the alleged bargain sparked congressional inquiries and, according to critics, was the reason that Trump decided to release the aid.) The question for the Senate is whether an attempt to cut the deal qualifies as a high crime or misdemeanor.

The law of attempts has long been debated, and has often favored defendants in securing lesser punishments or outright acquittals. When, in 1879, an Alaska man sent an order for 100 gallons of whiskey from California, he was charged with illegally attempting to “introduce spirituous liquors” into Alaska. A court dismissed the charge, writing, “There are a class of acts which may be fairly said to be done in pursuance of or in combination with an intent to commit a crime, but are not, in a legal sense, a part of it, and therefore do not, with such intent, constitute an indictable attempt.”

That helps explain why such attempted crimes are generally punished less severely. The California Penal Code Section 664 stipulates, for example, that most attempted offenses are punishable, at most, at a level half that for a completed offense. Of course, the Senate cannot “half-remove” a president. But one of the more knotty problems facing the Senate is whether a president can be saved by what Leff called the “luck” of an alleged plan that never actually played out.

If so, the whistleblower complaint could strangely prove the luckiest break Trump ever got from the House. If Trump’s critics are right, it was the complaint that stopped an attempt from becoming a completed abuse of office.

Not everyone sees a foiled attempt as a reason to acquit. This perspective came up in the House impeachment hearing when Harvard Law professor Noah Feldman declared, “If the president of the United States attempts to abuse his office, that is a complete impeachable offense.” (I also testified at the hearing.)

Another witness, University of North Carolina law professor Michael Gerhardt, attempted to explain it this way: “Imagine a bank robbery. The police come and the person’s in the middle of a bank robbery. The person then drops the money and says, ‘I am going to leave without the money.’ Everybody understands that’s robbery.”

The analogy highlights the problem of what some courts call “abandonment” cases. Even if the intent of a robbery is proved, Trump never took the loot. Police do not arrest people parked in front of a bank and charge them as bank robbers based on their contemplated or thought crime.

All impeachment trials present a mixed question of both the guilt and the gravity of an alleged offense. Senators often disagree with the House about whether an act is impeachable or, if guilt is proven, whether the gravity of the act warrants removal.

This issue came up in the first impeachment trial of a federal judge, when the House charged Judge John Pickering in 1803 for “unlawful rulings” and intoxication on the bench. These were noncriminal acts. The Senate voted to separate the votes on guilt and removal, but still the judge was removed from office. Later, in 1936, in the impeachment trial of Judge Halsted L. Ritter (for bribery), the president pro tempore ruled that, if the underlying offenses are found to have occurred, removal should be automatic.

That brings us back to the Trump trial. Today, senators cast a single vote for different reasons. Some based on guilt; some based on gravity with only God able to sort them out. Indeed, some senators of both parties have already reached their decision based merely on the allegations. For example, Sen. Kamala D. Harris (Calif.) declared, “I don’t really think this impeachment process is going to take very long, because, as a former prosecutor, I know a confession when I see it!” Assuming that most senators missed that Perry Mason moment, they will still be left not simply weighing the evidence but the act in terms of the removal of an American president.

Withholding the aid in the hopes of an investigation into a political opponent would be improper if proved. But the aid, in the end, was not withheld. The Senate might now have to decide whether an attempted abuse constitutes a removal offense for an American president.

Jonathan Turley is the chair of public interest law at George Washington University and served as the last lead counsel in an impeachment trial before the Senate in defense of Judge Thomas Porteous. He is also a CBS and BBC legal analyst.

202 thoughts on “A “Lovely, Knotty Problem”: Is The House Impeachment Case On A Collision Course With The Law of Attempts?”

  1. In your scenarios, the proper analogy would be a man who walks into a bank to rob it, goes to the window, raises the gun, demands the money, but then the police come in.

    He would, of course, be arrested and tried for bank robbery.

  2. I believe that the impeachment of President Michelle Obama in 2027 has begun and the reasons for her impeachment will be as dumb as they are for President Trump.

  3. Schumer tanked. Nice!

    ====

    Schumer Whiffs Impeachment
    The Democratic leader succeeds only in unifying the Republican caucus.

    An old Beltway joke is that the most dangerous place in Washington is between Chuck Schumer and a TV camera. After Week One of the Trump impeachment trial, that deserves modification: The most dangerous place for Democrats is Chuck Schumer in front of a TV camera.

    Speaker Nancy Pelosi handed the impeachment baton to the Senate minority leader, and doesn’t America know it. The New Yorker has engaged in a media sprint, accusing Republicans of a rigged trial. He’s doing a masterful job of unifying Republicans, encouraging them to vote next week to ignore his witness demands and expeditiously acquit President Trump.

    In fairness, Mr. Schumer was handed the weakest impeachment case in U.S. history. He began this exercise facing 53 Republican senators who spent months watching the most liberal House Democrats use secret hearings, leaked transcripts and strong-arm tactics to produce two vague and legally dubious articles of impeachment. The highly partisan nature of the House process also put Republicans under pressure from their base to move on.

    Mr. Schumer nonetheless had an opportunity to do what Democrats keep pretending to do: Take the proceedings seriously. Had he reached out to Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to work on an agreement—had he privately spoken of the need for the Senate to come together and publicly refrained from partisan jabs—he’d have had an audience. Republican senators—in particular those up for re-election or retiring—don’t want to be accused of bias. As of last weekend, enough GOP senators to matter were still on the fence about Democratic demands for more witnesses.

    Not so much anymore. Mr. Schumer managed to annoy them, in particular with his first-day stunt of keeping the chamber in session until nearly 2 a.m., forcing vote after vote on witness motions that he knew would fail. Mr. McConnell’s organizing resolution already provided for these votes later in the process, making the Schumer motionathon nothing more than an inconvenient stunt.

    He managed to offend Republicans too, by claiming they’ve already failed to “rise to their constitutional mandate,” are complicit in a “coverup” and don’t “want a fair trial.” He’s derided the president’s legal team and excoriated Republican witness proposals. He insulted his colleagues’ intelligence by arguing both that they need more evidence and that the case against Mr. Trump is already cut and dry. Reps. Adam Schiff and Jerry Nadler haven’t helped, with their presumptuous lectures on the senators’ obligations and duties.

    Mostly, Mr. Schumer’s partisan accusations and threats have further exposed for Republicans his real goal with this trial: becoming Senate majority leader. Mr. Schumer knows the trial will end with acquittal. His nonstop attacks on Republican integrity are designed to squeeze vulnerable senators and help his party pick up seats in states like Maine or Colorado. Yet the senators from those states aren’t stupid; they see him hijacking a serious event for naked politicking, and they resent it.

    “I don’t think Chuck Schumer is very interested in my opinion,” Sen. Susan Collins told reporters earlier this month. “I don’t think he’s really very interested in doing anything but trying to defeat me by telling lies to the people of Maine. And you can quote me on that.”

    The media keeps writing about the overwhelming “pressure” on GOP moderates to break on impeachment, but that gets it backward. A Republican vote against witnesses or for acquittal might ruffle a few independent voters. The far greater danger—especially in light of Mr. Schumer’s accusations—would be to cooperate with the Democrats on impeachment.

    Which is why the press also has dead wrong its gleeful judgment that Mr. McConnell has hurt his party, leaving them vulnerable to accusations of a rigged trial. While Mr. Schumer has been listening to his sound bites, Mr. McConnell has been listening to his caucus. He was able to bring them along on his organizing resolution, precisely because he incorporated the provisions they felt they needed to go home and face their voters. That even included accommodating late requests to provide Democrats more days for their presentation, and to make it easier to admit evidence.

    Mr. Schumer’s job this week was to the secure the cooperation of a handful of Republicans for his demands to drag this trial out further; he has likely failed. Will there be Republicans who break here or there on his witness demands? Probably, and understandably. But given the New Yorker’s undisguised political hardball, it seems far less likely that he’ll get enough to win his motions.

    This week was Mr. Schumer’s audition for majority leader, and Republicans certainly weren’t impressed. Mr. Schumer’s bigger concern—when the dust settles after acquittal—is that his own party realizes how badly he served them.

    WSJ

  4. Nadler Uses Professor Turley..

    To Buttress Impeachment Argument

    One particular target of Nadler’s rhetoric was law professor Jonathan Turley, selected by the Republican minority to argue against impeachment during a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee, which Nadler chairs.

    Turley, Nadler said at one point, “agreed that the articles charged an offense that is impeachable.” Nadler quoted from Turley’s written testimony: “The use of military aid for a quid pro quo to investigate one’s political opponent, if proven, can be an impeachable offense.”

    Speaking a bit later, Nadler cited an article Turley wrote for The Washington Post in which the professor explicitly made the Democrats’ point: “The White House is arguing that you cannot impeach a president without a crime. It is a view that is at odds with history and the purpose of the Constitution.”

    During the Judiciary hearing last month, Turley had agreed with another witness that abuse of power was an impeachable act. Nadler seized on it.

    “He not only agreed,” Nadler said, “but he, quote, ‘stressed that it is possible to establish a case for impeachment based on a noncriminal allegation of abuse of power.’”

    Nadler then went in for the kill.

    “Professor Turley is hardly the only legal expert to take that view. Another who comes to mind in Professor Alan Dershowitz,” Nadler said — referring to a frequent Trump defender who is expected to speak on the president’s behalf at the trial.

    Edited from: “Democrats Use Trump’s Allies In Their Case Against The President”

    This Evening’s Washington Post

    1. Jevon’s paradox too hard for you to understand?

      Learn what falsifiability and testability are yet?

      Ready to explain difference between intelligent design and simulation hypothesis?

      Changing the subject of course with more digs on Turley

          1. The Ukrainians didn’t even know aid was temporarily delayed. Exactly how do you establish corruption when it apparently was all just in Trump’s head and the objects of the supposed pressure never heard a quid pro quo or knew a whiff of it?

            you guys arent serious. this is a farce. Republicans need to flush it and then make sure federal law enforcement authorities conduct mass arrests of the coup plotters. That will be serious.

            Maybe we will find out the Repubilcans aren’t serious either. I suspect they aren’t. Still waiting on mustache man to produce some results.

            1. Beyond the issue of an undemonstrated never mind unproven compulsory reciprosity by Trump is the question of unethical if not illegal involvement by U.S. politicians in Ukrainian politics and Burisma (publicly bragged about by Biden) that would justify the requested investigation under a U.S./Ukraine treaty.

              1. we have blinders and Turley is wrong. that’s why they dropped the bribery article?

                but the problem still exists in their current impeachment pleadings… the problem is they are framing a charge which is something like “attempted corruption” which is just too attenuated to be taken seriously on the face of it. demur!

                turley explains it in the article above but a lot of these clowns never bother to read turley in the first place, they just come here to trash him

                it’s sad because a law student has to study the “law of attempts” in crim law basic course and it’s a frequent bar exam question. and a lot of these guys are lawyers, at least the Congressman! do they remember their basics?

                I’m not putting non-lawyers down but if you want to say turley is wrong at least read the article and if you want to say Ukrainians not knowing about the delay in aid is irrelevant than basically yeah it shows that you don’t get the core legal point about “the law of attempts”

                Jim Jordan made the point today on NPR and they glossed over it.

                1. Trump’s ordered delay (if only for a minute) in providing the military aid to Ukraine takes his action a step beyond “thinking about” committing extortion and resulted in his actually having committed the crime.

                  1. the phrase you’re looking for is a “substantial step” i think

                    a substantial step in this context is going to have to be something that in some definitive way communicates an invalid QPQ

                    the next layer of problem you have is that the QPQ if there was one, was valid on its face.

                    it’s quite the pretzel logic that the Democrat leadership is advocating, give them a break if it’s hard to understand! The actual key assertion is just ORANGE MAN BAD!

                2. Kurtz, you’re embarrassingly uninformed on the facts of the case, a common problem with consumers of right wing news sources – they’re hiding it and you’re avoiding it, a business model of targeting your market.

                  The Ukrainians knew about the hold by the July 25 phone call according to their deputy foreign minister. Google it.

                  I suggest you read or watch the House managers case and judge the facts when you know more of them.

              2. mespo727272 says:January 23, 2020 at 9:01 PM:

                “Sure, it’s why people flock to us …”

                ——

                rotflmao

  5. i AM APPALLED by how many obviously democrats are linking articles from hardcore anti Trump fake news sources . I mean C’MON , if you can’t figure out whats bogus and whats real these days you’re truly hopeless.

    1. The Dims are following the Leni Riefenstahl’s “Triumph of the Will” strategy – lie big, lie often and then you’ll come to believe it yourself. Then you can fool others.

      In the immor(t)al words of George Costanza:

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

        – William Casey, CIA Director 1981-1987

      2. mespo – Leni does not lie in Triumph of the Will, she is just an incredible cinemaphotographer. Have you seen Olypiad?

        1. Anonymous:

          Dismissing the crimes of the SA is tough to call truth. “Olympiad” lost me with that annoying field hockey scene. Would have watched it if Joe Lewis got some screen time!

  6. “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.

    “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.”

    “They didn’t like his policies,” another former White House official said. “They had a political vendetta against him from Day One.”

    Sean Misko is now one of Adam Schiff’s top aides.

    AND WE ALL KNOW WHO THE WHISTLEBLOWER IS :

    “Oops! Schiff Accidentally Releases The Name Of Alleged Whistleblower”

    why is Eric Ciaramella’s name in the congressional Impeachment testimony?

    Dems said they would redact the name of the “whistleblower.”

    2 explanations:

    1. Ciaramella is not the whistleblower

    2. Dems messed up BIG TIME & printed the name of the leaker in their own document

    https://godfatherpolitics.com/oops-schiff-accidentally-releases-the-name-of-alleged-whistleblower/

    1. “Barely two weeks after Donald Trump took office, Eric Ciaramella – the CIA analyst whose name was recently linked in a tweet by the president
      ______________________________________________
      It looks to me that CIA agents have pretty good cover stories.

  7. You begin with the false assumption that withholding aid is not something the president is permitted to do. Since it is the president who sets foreign policy and is charged with enforcing policy directives, such as ending corruption or ending the waste of American taxpayer dollars to corrupt regimes, then, if any “withholding” took place, it must first be proved that the president had no right to do the withholding; that proof has not been presented.

    1. it must first be proved that the president had no right to do the withholding; that proof has not been presented.
      ________________________________________________
      Nobody has claimed withholding aid is bad per se.

      The question is was aid withheld for the purpose of pressuring a foreign govt to do something that would benefit the president personally.

      Of course, that is not what happened, but the people who know what really happened have not testified.

      1. and trump KNEW in September ov 2019 that joe biden would be the nominee in 2020???
        if biden is not the nominee then there can be no politrical advantage in having his actions in 2016 investigated.
        that would be like the Kansas city chief stealing the atlanta falcons playbook to give them an advantage in the upcomming super bowl..

        1. if biden is not the nominee then there can be no politrical advantage in having his actions in 2016 investigated.
          ____________________________________________
          You think trump is guilty
          but he is only guilty if Joe Biden is the nominee
          here is a clue:
          Trump is not guilty.
          There was never any intent to get Ukraine to investigate anything and Trump has the material evidence to prove it.

          You can stop trying to justify Trump asking Ukraine to investigate Biden. He was just kidding.

      2. “The question is was aid withheld for the purpose of pressuring a foreign govt to do something that would benefit the president personally.”

        Doing the right thing most of the time benefits the President personally.

        He benefits from our improved econmy, our low unemployment, an increased number of jobs. What he doesn’t personally benefit from is being President because his company had expanded outside the US where a lot of money was being made. Since he became President that expansion ceased completely costing him and his family a lot of money.

        1. Doing the right thing most of the time benefits the President personally.
          ______________________________________________

          You are another apologist who thinks Trump did pressure another country to get a personal favor. You don’t have to apologize for trump’s action. There was never a serious request for an investigation or any aid withheld to get Ukraine to do anything. You are trying to justify a crime that never happened.

          1. “You are another apologist”

            Right, Anon, I am an apologist. I apologize for Trump providing higher incomes to people and more jobs. I am sorry that Trump didn’t follow Obama’s course to lower everyone’s standard of living.

            As far as Ukraine and your multiple aliases, all can be placed in a garbage bag and set outside to be taken away. It’s toxic and abusive stuff.

    1. Excerpt from the AOL/Yahoo Finance article:

      He added: “Joe Biden is tough… He has stayed as the proverbial frontrunner… They like him in Pennsylvania. He could beat Trump in Pennsylvania.”

      Scaramucci acknowledged Biden’s stutter, but said this could be a way for him to connect with average Americans and make him more relatable. In comparison, he described Trump as “unstable and so erratic.”

      “He’s abnormal — he acts abnormal, he says abnormal things, he tweets abnormal things,” Scaramucci said. “He bullies private citizens. He has a bellicosity of rhetoric that’s shocking for an American president and so, what’s happened is the bell curve of normalcy has shifted and the delegates here have accepted some hypernormalisation.”

      “It’s like if you have a crazy uncle,” he added. “He’s acting crazy. You’re at the dinner table and you’re trying to ignore some of the things he’s saying and hope that the spasm of crazy goes away. But it’s not going away and that’s the big issue.”

      Trump’s current approval rating sits at 42%. It could be higher, Scaramucci said, but the problem is that there is so much disdain for him among Americans.

      “Trump is a demagogue,” he said. “And demagoguery, if you really study it, it has a life expectancy of about four to five years. So we’re in the four-and-a-half year period of this demagoguery and when Joe McCarthy’s demagoguery ended, there were many great political leaders who said, ‘My god, why didn’t I speak up? Why didn’t I recognize the idiocy of this? Why didn’t I recognize what this person was doing to the great institutions of our country?’”

  8. First, I was unaware that we had ‘thought crimes’ in this country. Perhaps I was wrong.

    Second, since when is it appropriate to impute a corrupt motive to an otherwise lawful act, particularly when there is a more innocent alternative explanation. The power to enact foreign policy lies with the executive — not congress. Withholding aid from a corrupt foreign government seems like a perfectly sensible thing to do.

    Third, what happened to, the president “… shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed …”. I’ve seen the video replayed about 50 times where Joe Biden brags about using the threat of withholding 1 billion dollars of aid to the Ukrainian government unless they fire their prosecutor … who happened to be investigating his son’s company. This is certainly a prima facie case of bribery, and whether Biden is guilty or not, it certainly deserves to be investigated.

    Fourth, does Biden get a pass because he’s running for president, or because he’s a democrat, or because investigating might expose the possibility that Obama knew about what Biden did and looked the other way? Biden is, after all, the democratic frontrunner for president, and We the People deserve answers before we decide whether or not to vote for him.

    1. “Biden is, after all, the democratic frontrunner for president, and We the People deserve answers before we decide whether or not to vote for him.”

      Let’s hope he’s not the nominee.

    2. Beware the “Brain Police.”

      Seems like we floated off into some nebulous hypothetical ether of prevarication.
      _______________________________________________________________

      “We all FLOAT down here!”

      – It

  9. Washington Post

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/impeachment-trial-live-updates/2020/01/23/ac685e4e-3dce-11ea-baca-eb7ace0a3455_story.html#link-2D7EUARHRU6FJJOMSGOV2TMBLY

    3:00 p.m.

    Johnson red-faced after mention of 2016 letter urging reforms of Ukraine prosecutor’s office

    Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) was red-faced as a House manager made her case by invoking a 2016 letter he and other senators sent urging reforms of the Ukrainian prosecutor’s office.

    Rep. Sylvia Garcia (D-Tex.) used the letter from Sens. Johnson, Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) and other members of the Senate Ukraine Caucus to argue that Biden’s desire to see then-prosecutor Viktor Shokin removed reflected official U.S. policy and was not a sign of personal corruption.

    As Garcia spoke, a visibly upset Johnson rose from his seat, approached Portman and whispered in his ear. Portman reacted impassively, but his comments did not appear to calm Johnson, who departed the floor for the Republican cloakroom moments later.

    When he returned, a still-agitated Johnson spoke again to Portman, who still appeared unmoved, before taking his seat.

    Johnson, a fierce ally of Trump, said in October that he did not recall signing the letter. After reviewing it, he released a statement suggesting that Congress was “subjected to the same misinformation campaign against the Ukrainian prosecutor general, perpetrated by representatives of the U.S. government.”

    “The Senate Ukraine Caucus’ 2016 letter was encouraging the Ukrainian government to vigorously pursue an anti-corruption agenda generally,” Johnson stated.

    On the Senate floor, Garcia had said: “Let’s be very, very clear: Vice President Biden called for the removal of this prosecutor at the official direction of U.S. policy, because the prosecutor was widely perceived as corrupt, and with the support of all our international allies. His actions were therefore supported by the executive branch, Congress and the international community.”

    By Elise Viebeck

    1. the letter from Sens. Johnson, Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) and other members of the Senate Ukraine Caucus to argue that Biden’s desire to see then-prosecutor Viktor Shokin removed reflected official U.S. policy and was not a sign of personal corruption
      ______________________________________________
      There is nothing in the letter that supports firing the prosecutor General. The reforms to the prosecutor’s office and Judiciary that are mentioned in the letter are talking about changes to the laws. The IMF had given Ukraine an ultimatum to make changes to the laws to help root out corruption if the Ukraine wanted to get any more IMF loans

      There is no evidence that Vice President Biden called for the removal of this prosecutor. That story was made up after the prosecutor resigned.

      1. Jinn said:
        There is no evidence that Vice President Biden called for the removal of this prosecutor. That story was made up after the prosecutor resigned.
        __________________________________________________________________________

        In the video Mr Shokin says he was told the country needed the money and as a patriot he would resign. In the smear they said he was not investigating corruption. They even say Burisma was not being investigated. In fact Burisma was trying to get a better image by getting the cases closed. In a press release in 2017 Burisma’s lawyer announced all cases had been closed.

        The PG speaks about the matter here:

        https://en.interfax.com.ua/news/general/616721.html

        Biden’s version does have a few holes in it but both tells do mesh quite well. (Biden’s 6 hour tell is a shorter time frame.)

        The interview is in the video Rudy released.

        1. In the video Mr Shokin says he was told the country needed the money and as a patriot he would resign.
          _____________________________________________
          I didn’t see a video in your link but if Shokin said that he is lying about the money because he has testified under oath he didn’t know Biden got him fired until after Biden bragged about getting him fired in the 2018 video . It seems that nobody knew about Biden getting Shokin fired story until Biden made that video – not even Shokin.

          There is no evidence that I can find for the story until after Biden made the video – then there is a scramble to make it appear true.
          As far as I can tell Shokin did not come up with a public version of the story until 3 years after his dismissal.

          The reason given when Shokin was fired was the failure to make progress in investigating the Maidan murders. There were protests in the streets asking for his resignation

          The fundamental problem with the Biden got Shokin fired story is the money. There was no $1 billion connected to Shokin’s dismissal. There was also no Biden in Ukraine when Shokin resigned but there are telephones.

          1. There is no evidence that I can find for the story until after Biden made the video – then there is a scramble to make it appear true.
            ————————————————————————————————————
            It goes like this. Not many in the US that was not involved was aware of the problem. Any time it was mentioned they start yelling debunked conspiracy theory. The theory was “DEBUNKED” when an “OPINION” article in the paper declared it to be. There are 100’s if not 1000’s of references to that one opinion piece as proof of the debunking. I follow the Ukrainian News Service to get their point of view. When Biden confessed on video a state AG relayed it to Rudy. Rudy started the investigation and found some people in Ukraine wanted to talk to our officials but were being blocked. You can watch the 3 videos if you want the whole story.

            It is a three part series I posted the linked earlier. This is part three. The interview with Shokin starts at 12 min. At the 17 min mark the money freeze is discussed, One of the smears on Shokin is he let the money be released by not following up with the investigation. Your tax dollars were on hold. Shokin was forced to resign and no one followed up. The funds were released. and so it went.
            Some UK bank funds followed the same route. froze and released because no one responded.

            The Ukraine news paper archive are available in English here:

            https://www.unian.info/news/archive

            and here:

            ukrweekly.com/uwwp/pdf-archive/

            These 2 news archive provide a lot of info if you are willing to dig.

            1. “some people in Ukraine wanted to talk to our officials but were being blocked.”

              G, you are well informed, Anon is not. That point was brought up on this blog more than once and at least one time to Anon. The only explanation is that Anon must have some type of brain dysfunction.

    2. The WashPost is the 3rd biggest purveyor of fake news in the country c’mon !!!

      Wikileaks official fake news list , Wikileaks is the ONLY source that has NEVER had to retract information for being inaccurate :

      Cnn, Msnbc,Abc,Cbs, Nbc, HuffPost, NYT, WashPost, The AP, BuzzFeed, Politico, NewsWeek, The Hill, Rolling Stone, Sky News, USA Today, Time, LA Times, Reuters, BBC, Boston Globe, Vox, The Miami Herald, Mother Jones, HLN Yahoo, MSN, NY Daily News, Vice, Univision, People, PBS, NPR, New Yorker, Wall Street Journal, Daily Beast, Bloomberg, Aurn, National Journal, BI ,

      Even Jimmy Carter admits it :

      He said and i quote ” I do not deplore the Wikileaks revelations , they just made public what was actually the truth , most often the revelation of truth, even if it’s unpleasant is beneficial” end quote .

      1. Carter said that in 2013 so not relevant to the point you are trying to make. No Fox News or WSJ on your list above, I am sure that is simply an oversight.

  10. Nan y you have been drinking the Coollade. You so uninformed. Believe the worst stop watching all the Cnn,msnbc,cbs,abc,NBC do your self a favor a lay off the Coolade

      1. Tony – technically, they did not use Kool-Aid at Jonestown, they used a flavored drink. You really need to up your game.

  11. The Law of Coup Attempts

    James Comey indicted, prosecuted and convicted Hillary Clinton in 15 minutes, then arbitrarily and corruptly expunged the charges – right before our very eyes. The communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats) want only to prosecute conservatives. Hillary Clinton is a walking talking truckload of indictments dating from 1978 when she circuitously accepted a bribe as the Arkansas governor’s wife from Tyson Chicken (Tyson’s broker switched Tyson’s cattle futures account gains and Hillary’s cattle futures accounts losses, transferring $100K to Hillary in less than six months), evolving ultimately to illegal servers, Bleachbited e-mails and a literal world of pay-to-play by the U.S. Secretary of State, the proceeds of which swiftly found their way into the Clinton Foundation.

    This childish tantrum of “fresh hell” as impeachment against President Trump is irrefutably abuse of power, usurpation and treason.by the communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats). At worst, this is a case related to the President of plausibly deniable Hint Pro Quo. In fact, it is a coup d’etat (Mark Zaid, January 2017, the “coup has started” and “impeachment will follow.”) and an act of “resistance” as an extension of the 2016 election, the results of which the communists have found no coping mechanism for. Rep. Al Green, “I’m concerned that if we don’t impeach this president, he will get re-elected.”

    The real question is: How far does America fall into the abyss before maximally effective corrective action is required? America has been “overrun” and it may soon be necessary to call in “danger close” fire support. America is in a condition of hysteria, incoherence, chaos, anarchy and rebellion. President Abraham Lincoln seized power, neutralized the legislative and judicial branches and ruled by executive order and proclamation to “Save the Union.” President Donald Trump must now seize power, neutralize the legislative and judicial branches and rule by executive order and proclamation to “Save the Republic.”

  12. It was NOT a failed attempt at abuse of power. Several actions that Trump executed successfully were abuses of power. Soliciting interference in our elections by a foreign power is a crime. As the GAO has determined, withholding the aid to Ukraine was illegal. Trump succeded in damaging our foreign policy objectives, trust in the United States as an ally, and Ukraine’s bargaining power with Russia by both withholding the aid and refusing to meet with the President of Ukraine. Regardless of whether the aid was ultlimately delivered, real damage was done. Trump’s blanket refusal to co-operate with a co-equal branch of government is an abuse of power. There is no precedent for providing absolutely NO witnesses and NO documents. Also, since withholding the aid was illegal, Trump may not be able to cite executive priviledge related to witnesses and documents bearing on the commission of a crime. The damage to the image of the United States and our foreign policy that this President has caused by his interactions with Ukraine, his repeated misuse of funds appropriated by Congress, and his many other executive excesses in deed and word since taking office show a pattern of behavior that undermines the balance of power and the ability of Congress to control the purse and to provide oversight. All of these abuses of power are “high crimes” that have damaged our country’s objectives and threaten our Constitution. This is why this President must be impeached.

    1. Foreign policy is the purview of the executive … not congress. The fact that congress approved aid to the Ukraine, thereby making its preferences known, does not bind the president.

      Asking a foreign government to investigate corruption is not ‘soliciting interference in our elections’. The Ukrainian courts have already ruled that they did interfere in our elections.

      Exerting executive privilege, particularly with regard to foreign policy and national defense, is a recognized act employed by every president since George Washington. Whether or not the claim is legitimate is a matter for the courts to decide, and the democrats in the house chose not to contest it in the courts.

      Calling policy differences ‘high crimes’ is facially stupid.

    2. Nancy i can honestly say you’re the most clueless ignorant individual i have ever come across and i mean that .

      The only possible way someone could be that clueless is by watching any of the below 100% confirmed fake news sources :

      Wikileaks official fake news list .

      Cnn, Msnbc,Abc,Cbs, Nbc, HuffPost, NYT, WashPost, The AP, BuzzFeed, Politico, NewsWeek, The Hill, Rolling Stone, Sky News, USA Today, Time, LA Times, Reuters, BBC, Boston Globe, Vox, The Miami Herald, Mother Jones, HLN Yahoo, MSN, NY Daily News, Vice, Univision, People, PBS, NPR, New Yorker, Wall Street Journal, Daily Beast, Bloomberg, Aurn, National Journal, BI ,

      EVEN THE HARD LEFT WING GUARDIAN ADMITTED THE TRUTH : YOU WILL NEVER HERE THE TRUTH FROM THE MAIN STREAM MEDIA , NEVER .

      “It’s Confirmed, John Brennan Colluded with Foreign Spies to Get Trump”

      “An article in the Guardian last week provides more proof that one side did collude with foreign powers and interfered in the election. It was Hillary’s side”.

      “Then-CIA director John Brennan was the ringleader. He colluded with foreign powers in a massive political espionage scheme”

      https://www.independentsentinel.com/its-confirmed-john-brennan-colluded-with-foreign-spies-to-get-trump/

      Nancy , the below charges are what the corrupt democrats will be charged with :

      “Espionage, deprival of civil rights under color of authority, fraud on the FISA court, perjury, and RICO style racketeering conspiracy charges. Durham is also too be said to be looking at unprecedented unmasking of American citizens by senior White House officials”

      Here’s some REAL NEWS for you Nancy .

      “It is now clear that the inner circle of the Obama White House, including the former President himself, were coordinators of the entire Russia hoax from inception through the Mueller inquisition. From the start all the way up to the coming indictments”

      A coordinated conspiracy run from the Obama White House
      That all elements of the senior departments of the major agencies of the United States Government were illegally weaponized to destroy a political opponent. A coordinated assault on the constitution and the Republic.

      To sabotage an incoming President. Overthrow the government of the United States. Abuse their authorities to openly frame, smear and seek the destruction and criminal indictment of a duly elected President using the evidence they themselves fabricated.

      Conspiracy to overthrow the duly elected Government

      The Obama Brennan coup attempt against President Trump is an assault on Democracy like never seen before. The Andrew Weissman, Peter Strzok insurance policy of the Mueller inquisition has left our country polarized, and paralyzed the political discourse with a diabolical basket of intentional smears. John Brennan has done more damage to America than the Russians could do in 100 years.

      https://www.commdiginews.com/politics-2/john-durham-contradicts-ig-report-indictments-are-coming-125172/

      1. i wont hold my breath for Brennan to be arrested, given a fair trial, then drawn and quartered, but that’s what the dog merits

        he’s guilty of treason, honestly

        let’s see if the guy with the handlebar moustache actually delivers or not

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