Before I start my rant about the Saturday vote to acquit Donald Trump, I believe the defense team’s creative method of distraction on Friday merits mention.
The following people were randomly brought into the defense team’s argument: Madonna, Johnny Depp, Robert De Niro, ANTIFA, and of course Hunter Biden and Hillary Clinton. Très bizarre.
Democrats were accused of: preferring to indict rather than fight the coronavirus, fabricating evidence, and manipulating video and tweets.
Asked when Trump knew that then-Vice President Pence was in danger, his defense team vomited the following words:
“At no point was the president informed the vice president was in any danger. Because the House rushed through this impeachment in seven days with no evidence, there is nothing at all in the record on this point because the House failed to do even a minimum amount of due diligence.” ~Michael van Der Veen
When asked, a source close to Pence said van Der Veen was lying and insisted Trump never checked on his Vice President despite his knowledge that Pence had been rushed from danger by his US Secret Service detail. Trump did not call Pence for five days following the attempted coup.
In my opinion, Trump’s attorneys are an example of “you get what you pay for.” They must know Trump is not going to pay them. They should have stuck to chasing ambulances.
A side note-
Locked down and bored last spring, I decided to become an ordained minister. I’m not religious, but my daughter and all her hipster friends had done it, and I’m hip to the ster, or I use to be, so I did it too. It’s free, you do it online in less than ten minutes and I have a certificate to prove my new status. I could marry people, in theory, but I wouldn’t want to be held responsible when it all goes to hell. With great power comes great responsibility and all that.
Also, several years ago, people were getting their pets certified as “emotional support animals” online for $20 until the government cracked down.
Anyway, now I wonder, can I get a law degree online? Is that what these guys did?
Back to our scheduled program; onward and downward to Saturday’s events. I’ll start at the end because every day is backward day since Donald Trump bullied his way into the news all those years ago. He is the only POTUS in history to have been impeached twice, and now unfortunately acquitted twice.
Although I was not surprised I was disappointed (like Susan Collins usually is,) that the Senate rendered only 57 guilty votes, with 43 GOP Senators voting not-guilty, despite having lived the truth. Fifty-seven, although a clear majority was not enough to convict. The two-thirds majority that was required to convict was shy by ten.
I blame Mitch McConnell for this miscarriage of Justice. He is one coward among 43 who put their political interests before our endangered democracy. The minority leader, (that has a nice ring to it,) voted not guilty. He said the words “not guilty,” out loud. Minutes later he gave a twenty-plus speech during which he stated the opposite was true:
“He was practically and morally responsible. He should now face criminal charges.” ~Moscow Mitch
Then a 10-day recess was called. Is it me, or does Congress recess often? This recess will further delay the confirmation hearing of President Biden’s choice for Attorney General, Merrick Garland.
So McConnell tells us to indict Trump, but does nothing but create roadblocks to confirm cabinet members. No Attorney General for you.
These are typical McConnell games. He tells us he’s acting in good faith then he proves anyone who got caught in his web of lies— wrong.
McConnell played us like an armpit toot with his vote. This is the explanation he gave, the reasoning behind his not-guilty vote: it was due solely to the fact that Trump is no longer in office. He said it is unconstitutional to impeach a former president. There are some problems with that argument:
How is Trump going to be criminally prosecuted, as McConnell suggested if we don’t have an attorney general?
Backing up to Saturday morning— It was a pleasant surprise for many of us to find the Democrats were going to call a witness, Republican Representative, Jaime Hererra Beutler. We were going to see her notes and listen to her testimony that she heard Trump and GOP leader Kevin McCarthy arguing on the phone soon after the mob had broken into the Capitol Building on 1/6. McCarthy called Trump to beg him to stop the attack and to ask him to send help. First Trump said the attackers were ANTIFA, but when McCarthy disputed that saying “they’re your people.” Trump said, “Well Kevin, I guess they just care about the election more than you do.” Snap.
Very little was made of the fact that while everyone, (all of Congress and Vice President Pence) was whisked off to safety, Donald Trump was not. He wasn’t worried about his safety, his secret service wasn’t worried either. I don’t wonder why.
Trump let the attack continue for hours. In fact, it was former Vice President Mike Pence who called in the National Guard.
Trump’s legal team was not happy to hear there would be witnesses, particularly the personal injury lawyer, Michael van der Veen, who must know he won’t be paid. To borrow an invective from my potty-mouthed readers, he lost his shit. He was also laughed at. The laughter he invoked may have been due to the way he mispronounced the name of his home city—Phillee-delphia. Or maybe it was because he is unlikeable. Perhaps it was because he was completely out of his element and unqualified for the job he’d been hired to do.
“Now is the time to end this!” ~Michael van Der Veen
What’s with the random capitalization in his last name? Madonna, Johnny Depp￼, Robert De Niro… anyone?
And then we were surprised by the disappointing news that Democrats backed down and agreed not to call witnesses. The wind knocked out of our sails allowed the sails to fall over us, leaving us so disoriented that we didn’t process the fact that testimony of the person who would have been the sole witness was added to the record.
Still, why would democrats cave to the demands of the MINORITY? I’ve heard three excuses:
1. Senate Republicans threatened to use the filibuster to stop all other Senate business, including COVID19 relief.
2. According to Politico, Senator Chris Coons (D-Del) spoke to the impeachment managers during a break and “pressed House Democrats to relent, saying their quest for witnesses would cost them Republican votes to convict and maybe even some Democrats.”
3. Witnesses were unwilling to testify.
I love Jamie Raskin, but is the outcome of the impeachment trial less relevant than having Republicans on record, whitewashing the most impeachable conduct in US history? Because I am so in awe of Representative Raskin I have to whisper—I don’t think so.
So Trump is doing a happy dance and planning his next coup while the momentum that was built during the Senate trial and could have been used in a criminal case dwindles with each day the Senate is in recess. The evidence is public record, and although it will be very hard to come up with a rationale for not proceeding with a criminal case, this is Teflon Don we are talking about. Will he survive that too?
This trial did need to end before a criminal prosecution could begin, but we need an Attorney General.
The House Impeachment team, on day two of their presentation, laid out events from the perspective of the Capitol Police and the Members of Congress. Did they influence public opinion enough to keep Trump from running for office again? I doubt it because Trump’s base is unflappable.
If he isn’t held accountable in some way, with serious consequences, the racism that his behavior has encouraged to escalate will continue, violence against the media will continue, and hear this— we are one riot away from authoritarian rule.
With the Senate trial having rented all the available real estate in my brain, I almost missed the following great news that was released on Friday:
“We’ve now purchased enough vaccine supply to vaccinate all Americans,” ~President Joe Biden
President Joe Biden, POTUS 46, announced the purchase of 200 million more coronavirus vaccines, from both Moderna and Pfizer.
“We’re now on track to have enough supply for 300M Americans by the end of July.” ~President Joe Biden
I think we’re going to be okay… sob.