The Times Editorial Misstates The Law In Call For Roberts To Issue A Subpoena To Bolton

The news of the Bolton book leak has electrified Washington and, as intended, has rekindled calls for witnesses. I have long stated a preference for witnesses despite my criticism of the historic blunder of the House leadership in rushing this impeachment forward on an incomplete record. However, the media has now latched on to a column in the New York Times by Neal K. Katyal, Joshua A. Geltzer and Mickey Edwards that Chief Justice Roberts can not only order a subpoena for Bolton solely on the request of the House managers but that his decision cannot be overturned by anything less than a two-thirds vote. I believe that the premise of the argument on the vote is highly flawed and should not be seriously entertained by either the House managers or the Chief Justice.

For the record, I have long disagreed with Katyal on these and other issues raised during the Trump Administration. For example, I strongly disagreed with Katyal that the challenge going to the Supreme Court over Trump travel orders would be successful. (It wasn’t). I also disagreed with his long support for impeachment on various grounds, including what he described as a strong if not unassailable case for a bribery charge. In my recent testimony before the House Judiciary Committee regarding President Trump’s impeachment, I opposed the position of my fellow witnesses that the definition of actual crimes is immaterial to their use as the basis for impeachment — and I specifically opposed impeachment articles based on bribery, extortion, campaign finance violations or obstruction of justice. The committee ultimately rejected those articles and adopted the only two articles I felt could be legitimately advanced: abuse of power, obstruction of Congress. It clearly did not view bribery as a strong article of impeachment.

We disagree on this novel argument. The long-standing rule is that the Senate ultimately controls by majority vote question of evidence. The rules include an express statement that the Senate shall debate “whether it shall be in order to consider and debate under the impeachment rules any motion to subpoena witnesses or documents.” Katyal (and his co-authors) however come up with the novel position that this is not really an evidentiary question even if it would be a subpoena for evidence. Instead, he argues that the Senate could not overturn the Chief Justice absent a two-third vote. The basis is something of a legal slight-of-hand.

The argument is that this falls under Rule V says: “The presiding officer shall have power to make and issue, by himself or by the Secretary of the Senate, all orders, mandates, writs, and precepts authorized by these rules, or by the Senate, and to make and enforce such other regulations and orders in the premises as the Senate may authorize or provide.” Since this rule was not changed, they argue that it would take a two-thirds vote since this goes to the foundational authority of the presiding officer.

That is highly contestable. Rule V simply refers to the general authority of the Chief Justice to issue orders, mandates, writs, and other precepts. It includes a specific reference to carrying out the decision of the Senate majority on such questions. There is no change or challenge to that authority in a fight over a subpoena. The subpoena itself is an evidentiary ruling that is subject to the majority vote of such questions. Otherwise, according to their logic, any order could be viewed as a challenge to the authority of the presiding officer and subject to a two-thirds vote.

To put it simply, the argument tries too hard. I believe that the New York Times editorial is fundamentally in error on the controlling rules. However, this is admittedly a relatively uncharted territory. Frankly, it is an area that Roberts likely would loathe to enter. Yet, if forced to do so, he should reject this argument.

158 thoughts on “The Times Editorial Misstates The Law In Call For Roberts To Issue A Subpoena To Bolton”

  1. I used to be partisan Democrat, a hopeless addict of unchecked emotional outbursts, screaming, insulting Trump supporters, having no integrity, unmanageable emotions, no original thought, not being abe to think for myself and on many occasion copying / pasting fake news sources to teach others on the internet in forums like this one.

    My friends rescued me with an intervention and I will always be thankful to them They took me to a 12 Step Program for Emotions Anonymous and it has made all of the difference in the world.

    To the DNC paid trolls on here, you can get help and lead a life without emotional outbursts and a more manageable life. However, no one can do it for you except for you. You need to take the first step

    12 STEPS OF EMOTIONS ANONYMOUS

    The following are the 12 Steps of Emotions Anonymous, also referred to as EA. Emotions Anonymous exists to support individuals with emotional difficulties in their efforts to live a more manageable life by using the Emotions Anonymous Program of recovery.

    We admitted we were powerless over our emotions — that our lives had become unmanageable.

    Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

    Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.

    Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

    Admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

    Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

    Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

    Made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.

    Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

    Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

    Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.

    Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

  2. Bolton Had Submitted Book Transcript To White House On December 30

    Finally, on Monday, some stirrings of unease began to be heard from the Senate Republicans after the New York Times reported on Sunday that in his forthcoming book former national security adviser John Bolton writes that Trump told him in August “that he wanted to continue freezing $391 million in security assistance to Ukraine until officials there helped with investigations into Democrats including the Bidens.” This is smoking gun evidence that directly contradicts what Trump lawyer Michael Purpura told the Senate on Saturday, and bizarrely repeated on Monday: “Not a single witness testified that the president himself said that there was any connection between any investigations and security assistance, a presidential meeting or anything else.”

    Bolton submitted his manuscript for White House review on Dec. 30, so there is every reason to expect that his version of events was already known to Trump and his senior aides. That could, in fact, explain their desire to rush the Senate to exonerate the president without hearing any witnesses.

    Edited from: “Republican Lack Of Outrage Even After Bolton’s Evidence Is Ourageous”
    ……………………………………………………………

    This tells us the White House knew ‘before’ The New York Times what was in Bolton’s book. No wonder Republicans sought to quash Bolton’s testimony. Trump’s lawyers then attempted a deceptive defense with the assumption Bolton would never testify. Which makes you wonder what they expected when the book was finally released.

  3. Impressive 75 year old woman. Texan!

    This is the kind of activity all Americans should engage:
    less keyboard / wifi…..more kick ass physical training
    🇺🇸👍🏽

    Ms. O’Loughlin goes to the gym four to five days a week. Her retirement facility has a fitness center, but she belongs to two additional gyms. “I’m not a little old lady in tennis shoes,” she says. “I need tough workouts so I can have strong quads.” She attends spin class, boot camp and yoga.

    The Playlist

    “If you need music, you need to go home,” she says. “I tried running with headphones once and then threw them away.”

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/shes-75-and-a-step-ahead-of-her-competition-11580041800

    She’s 75, And a Step Ahead of Her Competition

    A Texas stair climber trains with a high school track team to prep for a race up the Eiffel Tower

    When Marsha O’Loughlin goes to Paris this March, she won’t be snapping photos of the Eiffel Tower. She’ll be too busy running up its stairs.

    The 75-year-old is one of 131 participants who plan to compete in the 2020 Verticale de la Tour Eiffel, a race up 665 of the tower’s stairs.

    Ms. O’Loughlin participates in a sport called tower running, which involves racing up skyscrapers, towers and stadium stairs. She’s ranked first in her age group nationally and 76th among women globally, according to the Towerrunning World Association. “I never take an elevator up a building unless it’s the only way up,” says Ms. O’Loughlin, who lives in a retirement community in Denton, Texas.

    A runner her whole life, she embraced marathoning in her late 30s. By her early 40s, she was looking for a new challenge. On a whim, she signed up for a tower run in Dallas and won her age group. She hasn’t stopped running stairs since. Ms. O’Loughlin points out that she’s very competitive. “I compare myself to 40-year-old still,” she says. “I always set a goal and I almost always finish faster.” She competes in around six races a year. Stadium climbs are her favorite.

    Due to construction, the Eiffel Tower racers will climb the first two levels of the tower twice—a total of 1,330 stairs. The top times will get to ascend a third time in a final round.

    To prepare, she plans to try her first power hour on Feb. 16 at the Fight for Air Climb in Springfield, Ill. Rather than climb the 32 floors (532 stairs) of the Wyndham Springfield City Centre once, she’ll try to complete as many complete ascents of the building as possible in one hour, descending via elevator. “People seem impressed with me,” she says. “I don’t think what I do is a big deal. It’s what I’ve been doing for years.”

    Ms. O’Loughlin pushes a weighted sled during a boot camp class. Photo: Justin Clemons for the Wall Street Journal
    The Workout

    Ms. O’Loughlin runs the 20 floors of a building at Texas Woman’s University in Denton on Mondays and Thursdays. There are 20 steps a floor and she usually runs three to four reps. Leading up to a race, she will increase to five reps, and she descends backward, holding the railing. “It saves your knees,” she says. “I realize I’m 75, not 20.”

    Tuesdays she does speed work at a local high school track, performing sets of 200- and 400-meter runs. She often joins the track team’s workouts. “The kids look at me sideways,” she says. “They’re jumping around and I’m all serious. I could be their great-great-grandma. I wish I could find a good training partner, but it’s hard to find someone with the same goals at my age.”

    On Wednesdays she does 10 repeats of a hill near her home. “It’s not a big hill, but I focus on my form,” she says. On weekends she does a long run of anywhere from 90 minutes to two hours, and she will also run stadium stairs at the local high school or one of the local universities.

    Ms. O’Loughlin goes to the gym four to five days a week. Her retirement facility has a fitness center, but she belongs to two additional gyms. “I’m not a little old lady in tennis shoes,” she says. “I need tough workouts so I can have strong quads.” She attends spin class, boot camp and yoga. She admits boot camp is tough. “I’m not very coordinated,” she says. “If people are jumping, I do a wall sit so I can save my knees. But I can do a perfect plank and a push-up off the wall with a hand clap.”

    Ms. O’Loughlin is ranked first in her age group nationally and 76th among women globally in the sport of tower running. Photo: Justin Clemons for the Wall Street Journal
    The Diet

    “I stay away from the diets in women’s magazine and eat whatever I want, but don’t pig out,” Ms. O’Loughlin says. “If I want to have a piece of pizza, I will. And I don’t do low-fat milk. Give me the half-and-half in my coffee, but just a splash.”

    Ms. O’Loughlin likes to mix up breakfast, alternating between scrambled eggs with a slice of toast and cereal with fruit. Lunch is often yogurt and fruit. “I’m not that fond of yogurt, but it’s good for me,” she says. She might make a 6-ounce piece of filet mignon for dinner, or salmon with asparagus and sweet potatoes. She drinks Gatorade cut with water during races.

    The Gear and Cost

    Ms. O’Loughlin has worn Brooks Launch sneakers for years. The current model, 7, costs $100. “I live in my running gear,” she says. “Looking good doesn’t win races. The people in the fancy stuff are the ones doing five-hour marathons.” She clocks her times with a $10 watch. “I can’t see too much without my glasses, and it has big numbers,” she says. She plans to buy bike gloves to practice with ahead of Paris. “I don’t like feeling a cold railing,” she says. Her membership at LA Fitness costs $21 a month and Texas Family Fitness costs $12 a month.

    Ms. O’Loughlin cross-trains by taking boxing, spin and boot camp classes. Photo: Justin Clemons for the Wall Street Journal
    The Playlist

    “If you need music, you need to go home,” she says. “I tried running with headphones once and then threw them away.”

    Up, Up and Away

    If you’re short on time and money, try stair running, says Cedric Bryant, the Seattle-based president and chief science officer of the American Council on Exercise. “You get high-intensity cardio while also working all of the lower-body muscles,” he says. “And stairs work the glutes more than even hill running.”

    The former head of research and development for StairMaster, Mr. Bryant says stair running is about the equivalent of running on a treadmill at a 60% incline. Beginners should start by walking up quickly, he says.

    “When you feel comfortable, alternate skipping a step, and when that feels easy, progress to running,” Mr. Bryant says. For an added challenge, he suggests adding a weighted vest that’s about 5% of your body weight. Running down stairs puts stress on the knees, so he suggests walking down and using the descent as your recovery. Good form will prevent you from tripping, he says.

    “You don’t want to look at your feet,” he says. “Look straight ahead, lean slightly forward and pump your arms to aid in moving the body up and forward.” If you start to trip, that’s a sign you are fatigued and should stop, he says.

    Seniors or those new to exercise might feel unstable at the start. “Don’t be afraid to use a railing if available,” he says. He also suggests incorporating balance exercises, such as standing on one leg for 30 seconds and switching legs for four reps, into your routine.

      1. mespo! Hush! You are the kindest thing and I appreciate it.
        Believe me, it’s quite an honor to be fortunate enough to post comments with men of your intellect.

        1. Hi Cindy!

          I’m feeling better after having my head bashed in from at least a 1/2 dozen different vectors, on the same day last month.

          I hope everything is going well down their where it’s warm. 😉

          Best wishes!

          As my good friend Greg Hunter & his USAWatchDog.com says at the end of his Friday wrap up show: Fear Not God the Father & his Son Jesus Christ are firmly in control.

          He’d be fired off CNN/etc., today, but I like it!

            1. Thanks Cindy!

              It’s not the getting knocked down that’s hard, it’s the standing back up.

              Let us keep standing back up as long as we can.

    1. Regarding Above:

      Here Estovir attempts to bury impeachment news under an impossibly long and irrelevant story having nothing to do with anything. Like this frivolous piece can blot out bad news for Trump supporters.

  4. The impeachment circus and the 24/7 coverage by Turley, fake snews outlets and the paid trolls has all the theater of Kong vs Giant Squid

  5. Reliable sources report that Democrats and DNC Candidates give the order to put the heads of Americans on a pike… Terrorists are like that

  6. Once again, by their actions, the Democrats in the House are trying to abuse their authority, and control the Senate. How ironic that they keep citing a Constitution they ignore.

    The Democrats’ case against Trump has devolved into what they claim he was thinking, or planned, or wanted to do. Ukraine has confirmed it was not pressured or offered any quid pro quo. That’s the end of the quid pro quo false allegation, as it requires two parties. No, now it’s whether Trump wanted to pressure them, or thought about it.

    It’s like impeaching a president for blowing up Russia, because he wanted to, and claiming that it’s immaterial that he didn’t actually do it.

    If that’s the standard to go by, then lets impeach almost every Democrat in Congress for wishing they could assassinate Trump.

    This isn’t justice. This is a double standard that doesn’t apply to them, and another attempt to unravel a lawful election. There are too many people perfectly happy if politicians abuse their power, as long as it’s against Democrats.

    Even God decided after the flood that he would not punish mankind for evil thoughts.

    1. I never cease to be amazed at the depth of discipleship Fox News viewers display. Karen, Honey, the only one ignoring the Constitution is Trump. Cite for me the authority under the law to ignore subpoenas from Mueller and Congress. (crickets). There isn’t any. Cite for me the reasons why Republicans don’t want Pompeo, Bolton, Barr or any others directly involved in the Ukrainian scandal to testify. Give the reason why they won’t release the actual transcript instead of the memo. (crickets). They know there’s no way to spin away this additional evidence that proves Trump is lying, so they pull all the stops to prevent it and pivot to accuse Democrats of bad deeds. It is a consistent theme from Fox that every bad deed of Trump’s is really something the Democrats are guilty of doing themselves.

      The Constitution provides Congress with oversight over the Executive Branch. Trump lies about having absolute authority to do as he pleases, and that everything he does is subject to executive privilege so Congress can’t find out about it. The SCOTUS spoke to this in U.S. v. Nixon, making clear that the privilege only applies to military and diplomatic secrets and deliberative matters involving domestic policy. Nothing Congress has sought is privileged. There could be classified information, but Congress is allowed access to classified information. Congress cannot conduct oversight if it has to force cooperation from the Executive Branch. Even Nixon and Clinton cooperated.

      Have you ever asked yourself why most Americans: 1. did not vote for Trump; 2. do not, for an historic period of time, and by historical margins, disapproved of him; and 3. want him gone? Do you really think we’re all just automatons, falling for propaganda by the mainstream media? Or, just maybe, we see a lying narcissist, failed businessman, reality television performer who panders to White Supremacy, who lies about being able to revive the coal industry, who calls migrants “murderers, rapists, criminals, animals and vermin”, who lies about Mexico paying to build a wall, who brags about assaulting women, who ordered the assassination of a foreign military leader on foreign soil to try to improve his polling numbers, resulting in traumatic brain injuries to 30+ US military, who tried to leverage military aid to an ally in exchange for sliming a political rival, who insults and verbally abuses anyone who opposes him, who is a misogynist, xenophobe and racist, and who the rest of the world laughs at?

      1. Natacha – the WH complied with the Mueller subpoenas. The House subpoenas for impeachment requires a vote of the entire House to authorize the committee, not a blanket statement by Speaker Pelosi that it is starting. The Constitution is very clear where the power lies.

  7. If Turley thinks for one minute that Roberts would interfere with Moscow Mitch when Roberts job is to sit there like a bump on a log and make it look good, then Turley’s been sitting in too many DC bars. Roberts WILL do nothing, after all, it’s his job.

  8. “Sole Power”

    Sole power, as a phrase, is completely and totally exclusive of any other form or fashion of power. The phrase granting sole power excludes the presiding judge from possessing any degree of power above the power of the Senate and causes the presiding judge to be subordinate to the Senate. No entity, including the presiding Chief Justice, has any power to prevail on any question or in any manner or fashion over the Senate under its majority leader. The Senate has the sole Power to try all impeachments. The “manifest tenor” of the U.S. Constitution holds dominion without challenge. Mitch McConnell and the Senate majority will decide the issue of subpoenas.

    Perspectives of Founding Father and Framers, Articles of Confederation, opposing opinions, previous procedures and any and all other forms of “precedent,” adjudication, “case law” or “decision” may not, can not and/or shall not bear in any way, shape or form on the irrefutable and immutable full and complete omnipotence and dominion of the Senate, under its majority leader, regarding any and all aspects of an impeachment trial.

    Questions regarding subpoenas will be answered by McConnell and by McConnell alone; with support of the members of the Senate majority.
    ______

    Article 1, Section 3

    The Senate shall have sole Power to try all Impeachments. When sitting for that Purpose, they shall be on Oath or Affirmation. When the President of the United States is tried, the Chief Justice shall preside: And no Person shall be convicted without the Concurrence of two thirds of the Members present.

  9. Back to the real World, The Coronavirus:

    Latest report out of Hong Kong Post, China is now reporting the virus, spreading of the Bill & Melinda Gates Fountion’s Patented Virus is released out of the Bio Lab &, comments added, has went from a 1000 cases yesterday reported to 44,000 today.

    With ant 83% infection rate for those coming into contact with it & an almost unbelievable death rate of 15% of those with the virus.

    But the US Borders are Wide Open!

    Sen Mitch McConnell, isn’t his wife Chinese & family? Sen Feinstein, doesn’t she & Willard Romney love hanging out with Chinese spies?

    Anyway nothing to see on that issues back to those coughing at the Sen’s Adam Shitf/Nader & Palosi circle jerk. LOL;)

    1. Strange

      Yeah, about 50 gooks died. And stock market tumbled 400 points.

      But when there were reports of Ebola, Salmonella, E-coli, & listeria…..The markets rallied.

      So who is pressing the sell button? An SEC Forensic investigation is needed.

          1. the word comes from Hank-guk which means a Korean-national, in Korean

            the cognate word in Chinese is Guo, like a Han-guo is a Korean national, in Mandarin

            Or, the Guo-min-dang was the nationalist party, that escaped to Taiwan after they lost.

            Zhong-guo-ren are Chinese people, in Mandarin

            just thought i would through that linguistic trivia out there

          2. Well that’s also true, Mespo. In addition to being an impolite term, it primarily referred to Vietnamese. Which indicates the level TJ is coming from.

            1. Seth Warner,

              When I was at Ft. Bragg, NC in 1976, the NCO’s & officers told me about the Gooks.

              If there was dispute, then it would be settled as a VC kill……A Gook!

            2. you must not have read what i wrote Seth but that’s normal for you to tune out
              the term comes from Korean. Mandarin is guo

              national in Vietnamese is also similar Quốc

      1. TJ. Ebola was not in the PRC. The PRC and Africa are about as different as you can get.

        SEC can’t investigate diddly. They’re the worst do nothing agency of all.

        Understand they are a purely civil enforcement agency. They can’t make a single arrest. It’s up to the DOJ to do that. And they oh so rarely do. Most people don’t realize this.

        If not a single fraud from SP or Moody’s went to jail after the mortgage bond meltdown, not likely they would ever try and do much today, either. It’s purely selective enforcement aimed at small fry.

      2. This Corona Virus could be far worst then most realize.

        If the US shuts down all trade/Air Travel/etc… from China, then it stops all the illegal Heroin coming from China.

        Forget about those hooked on that heroin going nuts from withdrawal, just worry how nuts all the US Congress/Senate leaders are going to be when their illegal profits from that dope stop!

          1. Et Al:

            Cooks, Gooks, Chinooks, Ok but what about the Zipper Heads?

            All I know is I’m sick of all this PC correct BullSchitf, if those special snowflakes can’t take it in the real world they should tie some kerosene soaked rags on their ankels so the ants don’t crawl up & bite their candy azzes.

        1. oh, it won’t shut down trade from anywhere except wuhan. not a probem

          and probably they smuggle all the fentanyl through mexico anyhow

  10. Interesting ideas “What is the real goal of this unconstitutional and idiotic Impeachment? You may be surprised to find out.” Anyone wish to offer an opinion?

    Kick the whole impeachment back to the House

    What is the real goal of this unconstitutional and idiotic Impeachment? You may be surprised to find out.

    By Mark Langfan, 01/26/2020

    Hour after hour after hour, the Democrat Impeachment Managers get up and demand the Senate subpoena witnesses and documents. They drone on how all of this alleged evidence is necessary for their Impeachment case.

    There’s just one problem with the whole spiel. The right and legally appropriate and correct time to have subpoenaed the documents and witnesses was before they impeached President Trump when they themselves could have voted in the House, with a guaranteed Democrat majority, to subpoena the documents and the witnesses.

    Had they issued the subpoenas then, President Trump would have moved in Federal court to quash the subpoenas and all the issues of executive privilege would have been decided by the Supreme Court before the House vote on Impeachment. Instead, the Democrats of the House are trying to get four Republican Senators to do their work for them. The Senate Republicans should counter-attack, immediately vote to kick the idiotic impeachment back to the House, and demand the House itself subpoena whoever they want to subpoena.

    What is the real goal of this unconstitutional and idiotic Impeachment? It’s not to help Biden by keeping Sanders out of Iowa for the Iowa caucuses. First and foremost, its intent is to shut-out or filibuster the Senate from approving Federal judges. If this Impeachment takes months, hundreds of Federal judgeships will go unfilled. The Senate Democrats know this and therefore they will be making every attempt to make sure the impeachment takes many months.

    Second, if the Senate Republican Leader doesn’t have the votes for a motion to dismiss, or a motion to acquit, he needs a third option that will turn the tables on the Democrats. That option is to vote that the Impeachment Articles as delivered are “premature” and insufficient, and return the Impeachment Articles to the House for further evidentiary support. In fact, the Democrat House Impeachment managers have actually proven beyond a reasonable doubt that they allegedly need volumes of additional evidence, and half a dozen witnesses to make their case.

    Ergo, at the moment, they have no case. Even the Democrat Senator from Hawaii who excoriated Justice Kavanaugh took the House Democrats to task by stating, “if we’re following the Clinton precedent, there would have been all of the discovery done at the house level and that’s not what is happening at all.” Yes, the House Democrats should have done all the discovery and subpoenaing of witnesses in the House proceeding and not at the final Senate Trial.

    Third, a vote to return the Articles of Impeachment as premature to the House will fully protect the Republicans who are on the fence, and or are in toss-up states. They can say to their anti-Trump constituents, we didn’t reject the Impeachment, we merely returned the articles so the House could properly subpoena whatever they wanted to subpoena, and work it out in the courts. Why is it the Senate Republicans’ job to fight a court fight for evidence protected by executive privilege that the House Democrats should have litigated for in the first place? What’s worse, they want Republicans in toss-up states to lose their Republican voters for voting for the Senate issuing subpoenas when the House should have done it in the first place.

    Fourth, sending the Impeachment back to the House lobs the premature Impeachment grenade back into the House where it belongs. Let the Democrats in Trump districts go on record voting for subpoenas against President Trump or all these issues when they got elected by promising not to impeach President Trump. And, critically, throwing the Impeachment back to the House throws Nancy Pelosi’s time-table out the window.

    In sum, if Senator McConnell doesn’t have the votes to acquit or dismiss the Impeachment, he needs to immediately force a vote to throw these premature imaginary Articles of Impeachment back to the idiots who concocted them in the first place – the Democrat-Majority House of Representatives.

    Mark Langfan
    The writer is Chairman of Americans for a Safe Israel (AFSI) and specializes in security issues, has created an original educational 3D Topographic Map System of Israel to facilitate clear understanding of the dangers facing Israel and its water supply. It has been studied by US lawmakers and can be seen at http://www.MarkLangfan.com.
    More articles from the author

  11. Meetings Correspond With Bolton’s Claims

    Career employees at the State Department, the National Security Council and Defense Department held a series of interagency meetings in July to discuss the aid freeze, quickly reaching a consensus that it was against United States’ interest to hold back the money.

    But they also concluded that the only way to get it lifted was for someone to make a direct appeal to Mr. Trump because it was a presidential-level decision.

    Persuading Mr. Trump to change his mind became particularly urgent as of mid-August, when the Defense Department concluded that it was running out of time to spend all the $250 million in military assistance Congress allocated by the September 30 deadline — for items like sniper rifles, rocket-propelled grenade launchers and other gear.

    So as of mid-August, a series of interventions took place with Mr. Trump, involving John Bolton, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, participants in these meetings told The Times.

    This included an Oval Office meeting in late August, attended by all three of these top White House advisers, where one at a time they tried to persuade Mr. Trump to lift the hold on the military aid.

    Mr. Bolton argued the aid was in the country’s interest, according to one official briefed on the gathering.

    Mr. Esper added that the United States gotten some good benefits from their defense relationship, noting that most of the money was being spent on military equipment made in the United States.

    Mr. Trump responded that he did not believe President Volodymyr Zelensky’s promises of reform. He emphasized his view that corruption remained endemic and repeated his position that European nations needed to do more for European defense.

    The aid remained blocked. For more on the push back orchestrated by Mr. Bolton and Mr. Trump’s top aides, here is an article from in late December giving a detailed account of this effort.

    Edited from: “Bolton’s Account Corroborates Now Public Information On Ukraine Aid Freeze”

    Today’s New York Times

    1. here’s an example of how they hated Bolton back in September and now he’s their winter soldier

      NOW YOU KNOW WHY WE CALL THEM THE LYING PRESS

      https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/sep/11/john-bolton-path-destruction

      Washington DC’s most famous warmonger might have lost his job, but this probably won’t be the last we hear of Bolton

      Wed 11 Sep 2019 09.12 EDT Last modified on Wed 11 Sep 2019 21.06 EDT

      Our long international nightmare of John Bolton is over. For now.

      “Did Bolton resign? Was he fired? It doesn’t matter. John Bolton is now no longer in charge of US national security policy and thus, we can all breathe a little easier.

      Trump wants to build a legacy, Bolton to break things – something had to give
      Read more
      Indeed, Bolton’s top priority has always been to go to war with Iran. One of the biggest concerns among those of us who understand that going to war with Iran is a bad idea was that Bolton, an experienced bureaucrat, would take advantage of a naive commander-in-chief and use innocuous enough policy decisions to slow-walk Donald Trump into a corner where war was the only way out.

      Bolton – who has made a career of scuttling arms control agreements – also had his sights on cancelling the Obama-era New Start Treaty, an agreement between the US and Russia that placed limits on the number of deployed nuclear warheads, missiles, bombers and launchers.

      Bolton has spent the better part of his tenure in the Trump administration disparaging the treaty, repeatedly signaling that the US wouldn’t put much effort toward renewing it before it expires in February 2021.

      But while our collective outlook going forward is promising without Bolton anywhere near the levers of power, the trail of flames he has left behind will have lasting damage.

      Yes he wasn’t successful in convincing Trump to attack Iran, but Bolton helped create the conditions for war by pushing Trump to finally withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal mere weeks after assuming the top national security job….”

      1. Kurtz, it appears you share the sentiments of others in wanting to blow up this thread. Stopping this discussion is your only goal.

        1. Bolton’s turncoat play was fully expected by me. in 2019. Not when he was fired but the day Trump made his biggest mistake hiring him.

          You don’t believe Russia is a threat. Trust me if you did then you would be squarely against encouraging warmongers like Bolton from further mischief.

          Well Russia isn’t really a threat in any significant way except they can rain nuclear death on us all. Small concern to fools.

        2. https://consortiumnews.com/2019/11/22/ray-mcgovern-the-pitfalls-of-a-pit-bull-russophobe/

          here they will say: who’s Ray McGovern? oh he must not know anything.
          oh that consortium news its another russian asset. etc.

          this is all very much about policy and that warmonger John Bolton is going to save the day for Democrats or so they believe is proof positive all the “Deep State” suspicions were right on the money

          arrest them all. oh wait with what army? its not like FBI wasnt against Trump from the start. and CIA. you guys must have a reason you’re so confident.

          here’s the thing. if Republicans fail, and let this coup happen, and yet, the Army is loyal to Trump, it can still squash this coup and set things right.

          America’s descending into a high-tech banana republic anyways. any way you look at it. probably inevitable if not this decade than the next.

  12. Oh, so now the communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats) love John Bolton.

    Actually they love a disloyal traitor who kisses and tells (as a wholly fabricated and embellished work of fiction) on conservatives.

    With 20/20 hindsight, the Christine Ballsey Ford pattern of artificial evidence production on demand is revealed and we can now accurately determine that Bolton was sent in as a mole, with ostensible conservative bona fides, to be turned on orders from the DNC marketing department.

    Once an agent of the Deep Deep State, always an agent of the Deep Deep State.

    Semper Fi, John.

    1. The fellatrixation of the provocateur and warmonger Bolton by Democrats now is laughable, preposterous. They’re the worst pack of fake lying hypocrites ever and in American history that takes some doing!

  13. Six points presented on Saturday by the President’s counsel, did not change with the case brought by the House managers. Even if they had subpoenaed Bolton, received his testimony and presented that as evidence to support their 1st article, the other 5 facts still do not change. Presidents should not be impeached for what amounts to thought crimes. This is why conversations between the president and his advisers need to be protected by executive privilege. The conversations need to be able to freely explore concerns and options, without the limiting affects that would come from those that would politicize those discussions.

    1. The transcript shows that the president did not condition either security assistance or a meeting on anything. The paused security assistance funds aren’t even mentioned on the call.

    2. President Zelensky and other Ukrainian officials have repeatedly said that there was no quid pro quo and no pressure on them to review anything.

    3. President Zelensky and high-ranking Ukrainian officials did not even know, did not even know, the security assistance was paused until the end of August, over a month after the July 25 call.

    4. Not a single witness testified that the President himself said that there was any connection between any investigations and security assistance, a presidential meeting, or anything else.

    5. The security assistance flowed on September 11 and a presidential meeting took place on September 25 without the Ukrainian government announcing any investigations.

    6. The Democrats blind drive to impeach the president does not and cannot change the fact, as attested to by the Democrats own witnesses, that President Trump has been a better friend and stronger supporter of Ukraine than his predecessor.

    1. Easy pickings Olly, and not that you have the gonads to back anything up, but i’d enjoy a continuing discussion on these points.

      1. The phone call is only one part of a month’s long effort by the president, and it is fully consistent with other evidence showing his seeking help from a foreign government in his coming election campaign.
      2. Zelensky was in no position to get into our domestic politics, especially at odds with the strongman who already “asked” him for a “favor”.
      3. According to their Deputy Foreign Secretary, they knew by July 25 that the aid was being held up.
      4. Bolton is ready to testify to the QPQ. Let’s hear him.
      5. The aid did flow and without any explanation as to why it was held up and why it was now flowing. We do know that the shakedown became public knowledge just prior to the release, and absent another reason, that is almost certainly why.
      6. Questionable, but also with Obama a matter of policy, not personal gain. If TruMp had been guided by the same motive we would not be in an impeachment, something democrats did not run on in 2018 and which their leadership had rejected until this scam became public knowledge.

      1. Your feelings on what took place in no way change the facts and evidence of what took place. Cries for Bolton’s testimony is the Hail Mary in this process. As Darrell Royal said regarding throwing a pass; there are three things that can happen when you pass the football, and two of them are bad.
        Even if they secure his testimony, that will still only prove Bolton claims X and the facts prove everything else.

        1. the first time bolton has had his boots shined by Democrats in a while. i thought y’all hated him? I did and said he was a bad choice right here several times

          whew what a news day coronovirus up over 3K cases in the PRC, Kobe died in fiery crash, market tanks,

          AND DEMOCRATS HAVE ANOTHER SILVER BULLET! story about a leak about a story

          1. Kurtz, a !lawyer should know that a witnesses political opinions are irrelevant to his believability. Was he there? Yes. Did others say he knew first hand and had relayed this information to them already? Yes? Is he known to be a liar – not Trump, Bolton? No

            1. no they are not irrelevant. you are very wrong.

              on the contrary you are always allowed to impeach for bias so long as it does not relate to a witness’ religion. see FRCP 610

              anything coming from Bolton on this is going to be very biased BECAUSE he is a war monger, a well known one, who advocates an aggressive policy of provoking Russia.

              ANYTHING Trump would have done to slow down the military aid would have made the walrus moustachioed creep angry. Regardless of how wise or not.

        2. Olly, I responded to your interpretations of limited facts – no, the call is not the only event in the shakedown- and falsehoods – no, the Ukrainians knew about the holdup a month before you claim – with facts.

          Answer them or crawl into a ball.

          1. that’s your interpretation of facts. observe your overly wide reference to: “the ukrainians”

            this is a very wide net you cast. and it’s all besides the point. the holdup was a mere delay for a valid reason, at root, it matters litle what Ukrainians knew or not, except that it evaporates your QPQ hypothesis a little more or less. you’re grasping for straws

            the bottom line thing we need to observe is that the Democrats are trotting out the worst Russophobe in the Republican circles to establish their Russophobic narrative which follows on the tails of their Russophobic failed Mueller investigation.

            not that the Russians didn’t interfere: but as i elaborated many times, they gave help to both candidates, which was a cunning forked attack to allow further mischief by the loser in either event

            you guys never address this perhaps because you cant play chess so you never heard of a forked attack or maybe it’s just over your heads

            or because if you did understand, then you would dislike your hero Hillary even more, for falling for it, for doing the sucker play where she balloons the tiny interference into a something bigger than it was, thereby de-legitimatizing her opponent– but more important for Russian strategic purposes– discrediting our electoral system as such.

            you guys fell for it and made it worse, even as you pretend to whine about it every day!

            1. Weak Kurtz. What was the valid reason for the hold up? None were given and Putin, Kim, Erdogen, MBS loving Trump doesn’t GAF about corruption and you know it. He does care about Biden and getting re-elected..

              But hey, let’s hear those 1st person witnesses he’s been hiding, OK?

            2. Kurtz

              It is painful to see you played, toyed and manipulated by the trolls on here

              Please stop. I cant bear it anymore

          2. I responded to your interpretations of limited facts

            And I responded to your interpretations of unlimited feelings. In an impeachment trial about nothing, the number of facts is not as relevant as what they prove. And your unlimited feelings are completely irrelevant given this is a trial.

            So no; try a support group if you need someone to answer your feelings.

  14. It’s interesting to note the number of Soros paid trolls already on this thread. One suspects that certain commenters are furious at this Hunter Biden development. Said commenters are probably making every effort to derail this discussion with distractions and What Abouts. And that illustrates the level of anxiety Democrats are feeling today.

    1. Thanks for that “up is down” report, Bahgdad Enoch. Apparently you have missed that since last night’s news, GOP Senators have forgotten about that mean man Adam Schiff and the bad things he said about them and are now considering witnesses, and the reporting that many, including McConnell are angered that the WH, which has had the draft copy of Bolton’s book for almost a month, failed to give them a heads up.

      Good times!

      PS This is rich! Epstein’s lawyer Ken Starr is warning about politicizing impeachment!!

      1. Book, you-know-who is FURIOUS at developments! Blowing up this discussion is the only thing on his calender today.

      2. its more of what doesn’t matter. so what if he did. i have been saying this all along. the slight delay in aid, valid on its face, selfish side reason irrelevant

        we’ve been meddling too much in Ukraine and were key support for Maidan rioters who overturned an election there so its the height of hypocrisy for the US to be whining about these minor details after that fact

        remember Victoria Nuland trying to call the successor to Yanukovich? i do. Pathetic hypocrites! 2014:
        https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-26079957

        Trump should not have given any lethal aid whatsoever. He perhaps was pandering to the war establishment and we see where it got him. Scant thanks.

        I’ll say this. Obama was smart for two things Republicans rag on him about to this day.

        a) not getting sucked deeper into the Syrian civil war than Hillary wanted. probably too much but could have been worse.

        b) not over reacting to the Russian annexation of Crimea. Which Crimeans clearly supported. Smart!

        1. Kurtz, whatever! You’re shouting yourself hoarse. The Bolton leak is a game changer. Try to deal with it.

          1. It’s no game changer and you will count the votes soon enough

            Senators must understand this: guys like me out here in Flyover do not want more endless wars

            Trump was elected partly on his obvious policy to de-escalate with Russia

            the war pigs like Bolton who don’t like this policy and are intent on a major war with Iran and not just some skirmishes, are saboteurs in league with the likes of ex Cia cap Brennan, the objective is relentless provocation of Russia. transparently so.

            the mass media is a globalist corporate lick-spittle pawns of oligarchs such as Geo Soros who hate Putin so much they would see us spend every last drop of American blood to get rid of him

            https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-01-23/soros-starts-new-global-university-with-1-billion-commitment

            1. Take a cold shower Kurtz. You’re a lawyer and certainly know that no one cares about the policy positions of witnesses as long as they – unlike your hero – have a reputation for truthfulness.

              1. oh, policy is very relevant here. it’s all about policy in the end.

                the relentless expansion of NATO since the collapse of the Soviet Union has been to the advantage of the US but it probably has gone too far and if you let the war mongers take down a president to make their point well kiss any phony dream you have of civilian government goodbye

                of course I’m old enough to remember when Democrats suspected that the war mongers did exactly that to JFK but you guys must have forgot the concern at the root of that

              2. the big picture is about the Deep State, the military industrial complex, the self serving intelligence community, and their paid lackeys in the lying press, who all serve a combine of international global financial interests to turn america into the machine of liberal whatever worldwide

                https://raymcgovern.com/2020/01/25/adam-schiff-credulous-congressman/

                By Ray McGovern, January 24, 2020

                Five days after President Trump took office, I had an opportunity to brace House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff personally about evidence that Russia “hacked” into the DNC. He had repeatedly given that canard the patina of flat fact during an address at the old Hillary Clinton/John Podesta “think tank,” The Center for American Progress Action Fund.

                Fortunately, the cameras were still on when I approached Schiff during the Q&A: “You have every confidence but no evidence, is that right?” I asked him. ( https://raymcgovern.com/2017/01/31/thats-bogus-ray-mcgovern-pwns-congressman-schiff-on-russian-hacking-fairy-tale/ ) — 2 minutes

                The canard was just barely at the duckling stage back then. So, to give Schiff the benefit of the doubt, he may have put misplaced confidence in the Gang of Three — CIA/Brennan-FBI/Comey-National Intelligence Director/Clapper — con-men all. They were, in any case, telling Schiff what he wanted to hear.

                As frequenters of this site are aware, subsequent years have turned up no concrete, technical evidence that the DNC was “hacked” — by Russia, or by anyone else. The DNC emails were copied onto an external storage device before being given to WikiLeaks. Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity, whose ranks include two former NSA Technical Directors, have shown this to be the case, relying on the principles of physics and on the forensics that the FBI, for some reason, did not do. (And, please, do not let adjectives like “debunked” be used in attempts to cast doubt on VIPS’ unchallenged — if often unwelcome — conclusions.)

                I need to tell you right off the bat that the next video-clip is not from The Onion. Rather, it shows a more recent example of Schiff’s incredible, incurable credulity, as he regaled some equally credulous young folks at the same “think tank” on Oct. 23, 2018 (hat tip to Rosie Memos @almostjingo for tweeting). Chairman Schiff clearly has a nose for hot tips about his bete noire, Russian President Vladimir Putin.

                This was abundantly that October day when he addressed a young audience at the same old Clinton/Podesta “think tank”. Schiff said he had been told that Putin has one of his henchmen follow then-Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev around with a pillow to smother him in his sleep if he ever gets out of line. ( See: raymcgovern.com/2018/11/24/adam-schiffs-incredible-incurable-credulity/ .)

                There is not the slightest hint in the video that Schiff was speaking tongue in cheek. Equally sad, no one in the audience laughed. (Where do they recruit such credulous young folks?).

                But who gave Schiff the “intelligence” about the “pillow-carrier” poised to snuff out Medvedev? Which of the Gang of Three might it have been? U.S. Attorney John Durham surely has enough on his plate these days as he looks into the larger Russia-gate canard, of which “the-pillow-carrier-and-Medvedev” is but a small duckling. Nontheless, it seems possible we will learn the identity of the con who whispered the tale of the pillow into Schiff’s impressionable ear.

  15. Nadler: He is a Dictator

    Rep. Jerrold Nadler rarely disappoints, and the always over-the-top impeachment manager came through again Friday as he summed up the Democratic case to remove President Trump from office: “This is a determination by President Trump that he wants to be all powerful. He does not have to respect the Congress—he does not have to respect the representatives of the people. Only his will goes. He is a dictator. This must not stand. That is another reason he must be moved from office.”

    Let’s count the ways in which Mr. Trump is “all powerful.” Does he control elections? His party lost two governorships in 2017, the House and a net six governorships in 2018, and another governorship and the Virginia Legislature in 2019.

    How about the courts? Mr. Trump’s policies were subject to some 40 national judicial injunctions in its first 32 months, compared to 20 for the Obama Administration in eight years. Mr. Trump often wins on appeal, but until he does his policy agenda has been blocked in the courts. Mr. Trump has not defied a judicial order.

    Does he control or censor the press? Nearly every major media outlet spent two years promoting a false story of his collusion with Russia. The press overwhelmingly supports impeachment and opposes his agenda. His plea to change the libel laws has gone nowhere.

    Does Mr. Trump control his own Administration? The bureaucracy leaks with seeming impunity, including the unprecedented leak of the transcripts of presidential calls with foreign leaders. One such disclosure by the famous whistleblower triggered Mr. Trump’s impeachment, making him only the third President to be impeached. As dictators go, Mr. Trump must be the least powerful in history.

    WSJ

  16. Bolton Has To Be Reackoned With

    Denial Is Not An Option

    Senate Republicans can call Bolton, hear his damning testimony and suffer the president’s rage. Alternatively, they can refuse to consider the most dispositive evidence imaginable, confirm this is a sham trial (denying Trump exoneration) and then watch as Bolton humiliates them by revealing the evidence they willfully ignored. Either way, the incriminating evidence against Trump will come out. The only question is if they want to be seen as accomplices in a failed coverup scheme.

    Edited from: “Eight Ways Bolton Has Changed The Trial And Boxed In Republicans”

    Today’s Washington Post
    ……………………………………………………..

    It’s interesting to note the number of ‘Ping Backs’
    already on this thread. One suspects that certain commenters are furious at this Bolton development. Said commenters are probably making every effort to derail this discussion with distractions and What Abouts. And that illustrates the level of anxiety Trump supporters are feeling today.

    1. How do the Democrats feel placing their hopes in the hands of a man they call a war criminal?

      https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/political-commentary/john-bolton-hawk-iraq-war-criminal-882916/

      I dont like Bolton, never have. War monger, Deep State sycophant. But I wouldn’t be too sure that his testimony would be what the Democrats want it to be

      One way or another, it will be bad if the Deep State meddlers walk away scot free from this mess.

        1. it doesnt at all. it was predictable as having the scoundrel John bolton in that position in the first place

          I denounced it on this website and I guess I was right

          I remember when i was a kid and Democrats were for de-escalation with Russia. Now you are boosting provocateurs like Bolton. Totally pathetic!

          Go read a thousand articles out there denouncing him the past 20 years as a warmonger if you have no shame over licking Bolton’s backside like this.

    2. The large number of pingbacks seemed to start a few days ago.
      There were times when every “recent comment” was a pingbacks.
      The Bolton news broke yesterday.

  17. Gotta love Pravada on the Hudson citing “multiple people” [who] “described Mr. Bolton’s account of the Ukraine affair.” Only a double hearsay game of telephone this time. The Newspaper of Record is improving from the triple hearsay days!

    1. Of course the accounts of the book revelations are in sync with multiple witnesses under oath, several in contact with Bolton, and the NYTs, unlike Mespo and especially Trump, has a well earned reputation for accuracy.

      1. Byb:

        Name every witness who, from personal knowledge, corroborates Bolton’s alleged revelations (and they are double hearsay)! Swearing to hearsay won’t make it — or the re-sayer — more reliable .

        1. we don’t even know what the supposed story is. story about a leak of a story. wow. pathetic.

          some “game changer”

          but if they repeat the lie enough….

        2. Hill. Vindman, and Morrison are NSC staff under Bolton who listened to the call and or overheard Boltons descriptions. Others who have corroborated a QPQ are Sondland and Parnas. Pompeo and Mulvaney as well as other OMB staff. The facts which corroborate this are Zelensky’s scheduled CNN appearance, the hold up on the aid, the release of the aid without explanation, though occurring right after it became public knowledge, Guliani and crews actions,and Trumps complete lack of interest in any supposed corruption by anyone other than his main political rival. We know what happened. You don’t want to know.

          Let’s hear the witnesses.

  18. So if the vote was taken today it would be 47 or less to remove & 53 or more not to remove.

    If we wait a day, 2, a week or 2 or 3 the vote remains the same.

    How long can you stand to watch these fools & them jerking off like 12 monkeys?

    1. How long can you stand to watch these fools & them jerking off like 12 monkeys

      Eeuuwwww! Think of the children!

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