Good morning, Wednesday November 13th 2019

Well, well, well—it begins today.

I love what Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) said: “Dems Are Giving Trump ‘A Fair and Impartial Firing Squad”

I think this article has a lot to offer:

President Trump speaks at the White House, April 17, 2019. (Carlos Barria/Reuters)

Ten Reasons Why Impeachment Is Illegitimate

By VICTOR DAVIS HANSON

November 12, 2019 6:30 AM

President Trump speaks at the White House, April 17, 2019. (Carlos Barria/Reuters)

We are witnessing constitutional government dissipating before our very eyes.

#coup has started. First of many steps. #rebellion#impeachment will follow ultimately. #lawyers https://twitter.com/jaketapper/status/826255624610729985 
“#coup has started. As one falls, two more will take their place. #rebellion #impeachment”
2017 Tweets from Mark Zaid, current attorney for the “whistleblower”

There are at least ten reasons why the Democratic impeachment “inquiry” is a euphemism for an ongoing coup attempt.

1) Impeachment 24/7. The impeachment “inquiry,” supposedly prompted by the president’s Ukrainian call, is simply the most recent in a long series of “coups” that sought to overturn the 2016 election and thus preclude a 2020 reelection bid. The pattern gives away the game.

Usually the serial futile attempts to abort the Trump presidency – with the exception of the Mueller Dream-Team debacle – were each characterized by about a month of media-driven hysteria. We remember the voting machines fraud hoax, the initial 2017 impeachment effort, the attempt to warp the Electoral College voting, the Logan Act, the Emoluments Clause, the 25th Amendment, the McCabe-Rosenstein faux coup, and various Michael Avenatti-Stormy Daniels-Michael Cohen psychodramas.
Ukraine then is not unique, but simply another mini-coup attempt that follows the last failed coup and will presage another coup to take its place when it too fails to remove Trump.

All of these efforts reflect a desperate effort both to reverse the 2016 election and to preclude a 2020 reelection effort, and, barring that, to drive down the Trump polls to the point of making him delegitimized. A week after Trump was elected, the Wall Street Journal reported that intelligence agencies were withholding information from their president. “Anonymous,” in a Sept. 5, 2018, New York Times op-ed, bragged of an ongoing “resistance” of high-ranking government officials seeking to stonewall Trump. As soon as Trump was inaugurated, Washington lawyer and former Obama official Rosa Brooks was publicly raising the possibility of a military coup to remove him. Retired admiral William McRaven recently called for Trump to be gone – “the sooner, the better.”

Mark Zaid, the lawyer for the whistleblower, in his arrogance, long ago at least told the truth when he chose the words “coup” and “rebellion” to characterize left-wing efforts to remove Trump. He admitted that the coups would fail (given their lack of legality), but that they would still be followed by successive efforts. In a sane world, with this “bombshell” disclosure, the entire whistleblower

2) Whistleblowers Who Are Not Whistleblowers. The “whistleblower” who prompted this most recent iteration of attempted Trump removal is no whistleblower by any common definition of the noun (i.e., “an individual who, without authorization, reveals private or classified information about an organization usually related to wrongdoing or misconduct. Whistleblowers generally state that such actions are motivated by a commitment to the public interest.”). He has no incriminating documents, no information at all. He does not even have firsthand evidence of wrongdoing, much less proof of suspect conduct within intelligence agencies that alone would prompt a legitimate appeal to the Office of the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community.

Instead, the whistleblower relied on secondhand, water-cooler gossip about an (illegally) leaked presidential call. Even his mangled version of the call did not match that of official transcribers. He was not disinterested but had a long history of partisanship in general, and concerning Ukraine in particular. He was a protégé of many of Trump’s most adamant opponents including Susan Rice, John Brennan, and Joe Biden. He did not follow protocol by going first to the inspector general but instead caucused with the staff of Adam Schiff’s impeachment inquiry. Neither the whistleblower nor his doppelganger Lieutenant Colonel Vindman, who both professed strong pro-Ukrainian sympathies during their past tenures associated with the Obama administration, were bothered by the activities of the Bidens or by the Obama decision to stop arms deliveries to Ukraine. Their outrage, in other words, was not about Ukraine but over Trump.

It is highly unlikely that there are any future plans to call the whistleblower or recall Vindman in person before any committee, because their usefulness as instigators of “impeachment” has already passed, and they are now both rank liabilities. Their inconsistencies and past partisan affiliations only offer vulnerabilities.

3) First-term impeachment. The Clinton and Nixon inquiries were directed at second-term presidencies in which there were no more electoral remedies for alleged wrongdoing. In contrast, Trump is up for election in less than a year. Impeachment then seems a partisan exercise in either circumventing a referendum election or in damaging a president seeking reelection.

4) No Special Counsel Finding. In the past, special counsels have found felonious presidential behavior, such as cited in Leon Jaworski’s and Ken Starr’s investigations.

In contrast, special counsel Robert Mueller spent 22 months and $35 million, and yet his largely partisan law and investigative team found no collusion and no actionable presidential obstruction of that non-crime. We are not just proceeding with impeachment without a special counsel’s finding of wrongdoing, but after a special counsel’s finding of no actionable wrongdoing.

5) No Bipartisanship. There was broad bipartisan support for the Nixon impeachment inquiry and even some for the Clinton impeachment. There is none at all for the Schiff impeachment effort, given its overtly partisan nature.

Read More

Democratic impeachment push goes on public trial

by Susan Ferrechio

House Democrats Wednesday will put their monthslong effort to impeach President Trump on public trial, beginning with a slate of witnesses they believe will bolster support for their effort to oust Trump for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

“How this public process starts is crucial for them,” Ron Faucheux, president of Clarus Research Group, told the Washington Examiner.

This week’s testimony will start with William Taylor, the top United States diplomat in Ukraine who told lawmakers in a closed-door deposition last month that he was informed the U.S. was withholding critical military aid on behalf of Trump, because Trump wanted Ukraine to investigate corruption allegations against former Vice President Joe Biden, as well as 2016 election interference.

Deputy Assistant Secretary of State George Kent will also testify publicly about the influence of Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani “in terms of the way the president thought of Ukraine” and that Trump’s view of Ukraine grew negative after he talked by phone to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

On Friday, ousted Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch will testify. In a closed-door deposition, Yovanovitch said she felt threatened by Trump, who recalled her three months early after he was told she was badmouthing him in Ukraine.

Read More

Americans are the victims of the impeachment inquiry | Opinion

Trump on impeach inquiry: 'I sort of thrive on it'

US President Donald Trump says the impeachment inquiry is a “scam” that is driving his poll numbers higher and he says he sort of thrives on it, but admits it “makes it harder to do my job.” (Oct. 7) AP, AP

Mark Green, Guest columnist

A lot of bipartisan legislation that enjoys widespread support sits gathering dust while Congress focuses on the impeachment inquiry.

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
Congressman Mark Green, M.D., is a physician, businessman and combat veteran representing Tennessee’s 7th District in the U.S. House of Representatives. He is a member of the House Committee on Homeland Security and the House Committee on Oversight and Reform.

Americans across the country send their representatives to Washington, D.C., to fulfill a pledge. This pledge is that we will work to pass laws to make life better back at home. Unfortunately, we have a lot of bipartisan legislation that enjoys widespread support yet sits gathering dust while Congress focuses on the impeachment inquiry.

Here’s an example. I introduced legislation along with Rep. Bennie Thompson to repeal the arcane “35-mile rule” that bars hospitals from obtaining a Critical Access Hospital designation. Many of my constituents live near hospitals that are closing down because these hospitals do not receive the benefits associated with being Critical Access Hospitals. This rule actively increases the distance they must travel to receive life-saving medical care.

No good comes from the 35-mile rule, and many of my colleagues across the aisle agree with me that we must repeal it. So what’s the problem? Why is my legislation gathering dust in a committee when it lacks opposition?

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Frankly I am already tired of hearing about IMPEACHMENT, but I guess we will hear a lot more.

We shall see how all this plays out.

Blessings
Bobbie Patray

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