President Donald Trump has previously raised his unrecognized qualifications for the Nobel Peace prize. However, for those of us watching the rally last night in Ohio, one statement sent us furiously typing on our computers and googling the latest news from the Nobel committee. Trump referred to just hearing that the Ethiopian Prime minister would receive the prize and noted the unfairness since he was the one who made the deal. In fact, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed won the prize last year in October and there is no evidence that Trump played a key role in his peace negotiations to end the war between Ethiopia and Eritrea.Continue reading “Trump Complains About Being Stiffed By Nobel Committee In Baffling Statement Over Ethiopia”
An interesting thing occurred on Capitol Hill yesterday. A U.S. Senator demanded to be treated as an actual U.S. Senator. After the briefing by the Trump Administration on the “imminent” threat behind the killing of Iranian general Qasem Soleimanim, Utah Republican Sen. Mike Lee came out of the hearing irate at what he described as the “worst military briefing” he had ever witnessed. Lee is one of President Donald Trump’s most committed supporters and a hawk. However, he has a quaint notion of being part of an independent branch of government with independent obligations under federal law. Lee refused to simply rubber stamp the position of the White House and denounced the “briefing” as offering no real evidence and little beyond platitudes. Sen. Rand Paul joined Lee in criticizing the briefing as clearly insufficient. In response to this principled position, both have been accused of “empowering the enemy” by Sen. Lindsey Graham. Defending the authority and functions of Congress is precisely what the Framers demanded in our system of checks and balances.Continue reading ““It’s UnAmerican. It’s Unconstitutional”: Utah Senator Denounces The Iran Briefing As “Absolutely Insane””
My column today in the Washington Post explores the possibility of witnesses in the Senate impeachment trial and specifically what the Senate might do if the White House demanded a clearly relevant defense witness named Hunter Biden. As the column was coming out, former national security adviser John Bolton announced that, if subpoenaed, he is “prepared to testify” before a Senate trial. Some of us have been saying for months that Bolton was signaling to the point of screaming that he was eager to testify. Nevertheless, the House refused to subpoena him, let alone seek to compel his testimony. It was the same counterintuitive position that led to the House to withdraw its subpoena for top Bolton aide, Charles Kupperman. Bolton’s announcement only highlights the baffling blunder of the House in rushing this impeachment before creating a complete and compelling record for removal. Instead, it effectively handed over control of the case — and completion of its case — to the Senate and the opposing party.Continue reading “The Bolton Factor: Pressure Builds For Witnesses In The Senate Trial”
Below is my column in The Hill newspaper on the recent decision on the appearance of a key witness, Charles Kupperman, in the House investigation. The abandonment of the subpoena on Kupperman highlights what will be a major question in the Senate of why the Senate should demand witnesses who the House failed to seek to compel. By rushing the impeachment and forcing a vote before Christmas, the House gave up control over an incomplete and insufficient case for removal. It gave up that control to a chamber controlled by the opposing party. Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s attempt to game the system has not achieved any concession from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Few of us believed it would. Now the House will proceed on the thinnest record ever presented in a modern presidential impeachment trial.
Here is the column:Continue reading ““How Did It Get So Late So Soon?”: The Democratic Impeachment Erodes With Opinions and Time”
I have previously criticized psychiatrists who have regularly appeared on the air to identify a variety of mental illness that they have observed in President Donald Trump from afar. As I discussed in a prior column on the demise of the Goldwater rule, this is diagnosis without examination and often seems mixed with strong political judgments about Trump’s political positions. Bandy X. Lee, a professor of psychiatry at the Yale University School of Medicine, has been one of the most outspoken and last week urged House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to demand some ill-defined “hold” on the president pending psychiatric examination. Her position latest position is utterly bizarre but has been treated as a serious discussion point by some media like Salon magazine.Continue reading “Yale Psychiatrist Calls On Pelosi To Put “A Mental Health Hold” On Trump”
President Donald Trump is often incautious in his language when speaking on the international stage. Words matter in diplomacy which often reflect important distinctions of international law. President Trump’s latest tweet is an example of this pattern. In pledging to strike back “very fast and very hard” to any Iranian retaliation for the killing of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, Trump included striking Iranian cultural sites. Under international law, the targeting of cultural targets is viewed as a war crime. The U.S. military has a long history of avoiding such targets.TrRead more
Recently, Joe Biden “clarified” his pledge to defy any Senate subpoena to testify in the Trump impeachment trial but stating the exact opposite in a later interview. Now, in a remarkable contradiction, Biden has denied that he advised against the Bin Laden raid in 2011 despite his statement to the contrary eight years ago. Given the importance of the issue to his views as president, the latest in a long line of contradictions could further undermine Biden’s position in a still competitive Democratic field.Continue reading “Biden Denies Ever Opposing Bin Laden Raid”
Filmmaker Michael Moore recently showed how polarizing our national dialogue has become over race. Moore declared that the vast majority of whites in this country “are not good people” and that others should “be afraid” of them in an interview on The Rolling Stone podcast “Useful Idiot.”Continue reading “Moore: Most White People Are “Not Good People” And Are Dangerous If Encountered On The Street”
Rep. Al Green (D, Tex.) has remained the most quoted Democratic member . . . . by Republicans. Green has given Republicans quotable gems to show a long-standing and unending effort to impeach Trump from his very first day in office. His most popular GOP talking point is “I’m concerned that if we don’t impeach this president, he will get reelected.” However, Green has also said recently that the House may continue to impeach Trump and has called for an array of clearly illegitimate articles of impeachment. Now, Green has given Republicans a quote to reinforce its narrative by declaring that the “genesis” of the impeachment began before Donald Trump was even elected. That is likely to be added to the top Green quotes for the upcoming Senate trial.Read more
Happy New Year to all of our blog community from around the world. As has been our tradition on this blog, with the start of 2020, I thought I would share our annual “State of The Blog” statistics from the last year. It has been a great year for the blog with the highest traffic in the history of our blog. We continued our expansion internationally. While I usually post a separate blog when we passed another million mark, the crush of impeachment meant that our passage of the 38,000,000 view mark went unheralded and we are well on our way to 39,000,000.
Thanks to all of our regulars and particularly Darren Smith who continues to monitor the blog and write on the weekend. We also now have an email following of over 105,0000 and a twitter following of almost 100,000.Continue reading “STATE OF THE BLOG (2019)”
Below is my column in the Washington Post on the widely reported theory of Harvard Professor Noah Feldman that President Donald Trump has not yet been impeached.
Here is the column:Continue reading “I Was Against Trump’s Impeachment. But Let’s Not Pretend That It Didn’t Happen.”
NBC News anchor Chuck Todd is under fire for an openly derisive comment about Trump supporters as effectively delusional drones who want to be lied to. He even added a dig at belief in biblical accounts like Noah’s Ark. It is the latest example of how open bias has become the norm on mainstream media. Imagine if Todd said Obama supporters are ignorant voters who just want to be lied to. This is precisely why the media is now driving some voters to Trump and reinforcing echo-journalism on both sides.Continue reading “Chuck Todd Asks Whether Trump Supporters Simply Want To Be Lied To”
There may be no greater sign of the division of our times then the two people who tied as the most admired men in the new Gallup poll: Barack Obama and Donald Trump. It reflects our siloed news and opinions in today’s politics.Continue reading “Trump and Obama Tie As Most Admired Men In Gallup Poll”
Below is my column in The Hill newspaper on the perils of professors who agree to testify as Republican witnesses, particularly in an impeachment. It is not the continuing threats against me and my family. That happened when I testified in the Clinton impeachment. No, it is the response of fellow academics and the degree of flagrantly false stories in the media. As a lawyer, I have worked with accused murderers, polygamists, spies, terrorists, and others. However, nothing produces the unhinged rage as appearing as a Republican witness.
Here is the column:Continue reading “The Eleventh Commandment: Thou Shalt Not Testify For Republicans”
When I agreed to testify in the Trump impeachment hearing, I knew that that I would be attacked for my testimony. With roughly 54 pages of testimony, there would be ample areas of good-faith disagreement. The surprising thing was the tsunami of attacks for things that I did not say. The most vile was that I previously said that Justice Sonia Sotomayor “wasn’t smart enough for the Supreme Court.” That false story appears to be traced to a tweet from from another law professor, Baltimore Law Professor Garrett Epps stating “Does anybody else remember @JonathanTurley appearing on MSNBC to explain that Sonia Sotomayor didn’t have the intellect to serve on the Supreme Court?” I certainly don’t because I never said such a thing. However, Epps and an array of reporters did not feel that such a statement required a modicum of actual research. (I am giving Professor Epps the benefit of the doubt that he did not actually watch the video that he linked. If he did, he clearly chose to ignore where I clearly state a very different point about Sotomayor’s opinions while saying that she could still emerge on the Court as a great justice like Justice John Paul Stevens).Continue reading “No, I Never Said Sotomayor Wasn’t Smart Enough For The Supreme Court”