Category Archives: politics

Donald Trump and Constitutional Separation of Powers

Politico reports

“President Donald Trump insisted in a tweet Friday that he has a “legal right” to demand that Attorney General William Barr intervene in a federal criminal case — just hours after the Justice Department chief asserted that the president’s social media posts “make it impossible for me to do my job.”

“‘The President has never asked me to do anything in a criminal case.’ A.G. Barr,” Trump wrote, paraphrasing the attorney general’s remarks in an interview with ABC News that aired Thursday.”

In my first college semester Political Science class, we learned and discussed constitutional separation of powers.  Forty of the 50 states have constitutions of the same.   Elected officials cannot intervene in court cases.

I remember many years ago organizations of citizens who saw corruption in federal courts wrote their U.S. Reps and Senators.  They all received letters that stated about the separation of powers and advised that they obtain private legal counsel.

It is a slap in the face of the U.S. Constitution and separation of powers for Donald Trump to assume that he has a legal right to demand the U.S. Attorney General to intervene in a federal criminal case or any other case.  He appears to be a man whose only motivation to be president of the U.S. is to use the power of the position to benefit his friends and pay retribution to those he cannot exploit.

 

The impeachment trial of Donald J. Trump

This is a great summary. Thanks.

Abagond

US President Donald Trump on February 6th 2020.

The impeachment trial of US President Trump (January 16th to February 5th 2020) ended yesterday. The Senate, controlled by his own party, the Republicans, found him not guilty. He remains the president.

The two charges:

  1. Abuse of power – for asking a foreign power, Ukraine, to help him win the 2020 election.
  2. Obstruction of Congress – for refusing requests for witnesses and evidence.

Acquittal: Only 48% of the Senate found him guilty of the first charge, 47% of the second. Well short of the 67% required by the constitution.

No witnesses called: All but two Republicans voted to allow no witnesses to be called. What kind of trial is that?

The Republican arguments during the trial showed that the facts were not on their side.

  • Some said Democrats had not proved their case – yet refused to allow any eyewitnesses to…

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GAO Decision –It is a Violation of Law to Withhold Funds Appropriated By Congress

Subtitle: The Jury in Trump’s Impeachment Trial is Rigged By Republican Senators Who Hold The Majority.

Donald Trump made it publicly known that he disregards all reports by U.S. Intelligence agencies that Russia interfered in the 2016 Presidential Election.  It is more disturbing that currently, U. S. Congressional Republican Senators are disregarding the findings and conclusion of the GAO.  Sticking to Trump’s talking points, and in spite of the GAO’s report, Republican Senators declare that Trump did no wrong when withholding funds from the Ukraine.  Those funds were to assist the Ukraine in defending themselves against Russia’s aggression.

The United States Government Accountability Office, (formerly, General Accounting Office), is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for Congress. GAO is the federal government’s audit institution.  It is part of the Legislative Branch of government under the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921.   Its history is at this link.

On Thursday, January 16, 2020, GAO released its report on the withholding of funds of vital military aid to the Ukraine.  It found that President Trump broke the law when he withheld those funds.

Representative Adam Schiff, (D-CA) made the following statement regarding GAO’s findings. Read the rest of this entry

Dropping the Bomb: Lev Parnas’ interview with Rachel Maddow complicates Trump’s impeachment trial

The Secular Jurist

By Robert A. Vella

Well, now we know why Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi delayed sending the articles of impeachment to the Senate required to start President Trump’s trial.  She needed time to acquire additional evidence from Rudy Giuliani‘s indicted associate Lev Parnas after a federal court ruled that it was admissible.  That mass of evidence was released this week ahead of interviews Parnas had with The New York Times and MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow who aired part-one of a two-hour video discussion last night (part-two airs tonight).

What Parnas revealed was a bombshell, to say the least.  Not only did he corroborate consistent witness testimony from the House of Representatives’ impeachment inquiry regarding Trump’s criminal scheme to coerce the Ukrainian government for personal political gain, he also implicated Vice President Mike Pence, Attorney General William Barr, current and former Republican congressmen, GOP operatives and financiers, a…

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Blame It On Nancy — claytoonz

I agree with the Canadian. 

 

Yesterday, A Canadian CEO blamed Donald Trump for the lives lost by Iran shooting down the Ukrainian airliner. Iran was responding to the United States killing its top general while he was on his way to the airport in Baghdad. The general was killed after Donald Trump ordered his assassination. The CEO, Michael McCain, chief […]

via Blame It On Nancy — claytoonz

An Act of War: Trump Has Iranian General Assassinated — The Inglorius Padre Steve’s World

Friends of Padre Steve’s World, The great Prussian military strategist Carl Von Clausewitz wrote: “No one starts a war–or rather, no one in his sense ought to do so–without first being clear in his mind what he intends to achieve by the war and how he intends to conduct it.” Late Thursday night I saw […]

via An Act of War: Trump Has Iranian General Assassinated — The Inglorius Padre Steve’s World

U.S. President Donald J. Trump Impeached

December 18, 2019 is a day that goes down in history.  U.S. President Donald J. Trump was impeached by a majority vote in the U.S. House of Representatives.

House Majority Leader, Nancy Pelosi, has not yet given the passed Articles of Impeachment to the Senate, which is led by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.  Senators are to be impartial jurors at impeachment trials. McConnell has made public statements that he is not impartial and is working with White House personnel on how to conduct Trump’s trial.

During the debate in the House,  Republicans representatives presented their defense of Trump by accusing Democrats of wanting Trump impeached before he was sworn into office.  They made redundant and spurious arguments that Trump did not abuse his power when he made an Ukrainian investigation into Crowdsource and Joe and Hunter Biden conditional on releasing defense aid to Ukraine that Congress had already approved. Read the rest of this entry

Public Hearings On Impeachment of Donald Trump

December 17, 2019 UPDATE

On Friday, the House Judiciary Committee passed two Articles of Impeachment against Donald Trump.  The matter has been moved to the full House of Representatives for a vote.  A vote is expected for this coming Wednesday.  If passed, Trump is impeached, and the matter then moves to the Senate to decide whether or not to remove Trump from office.

According to the Daily Beast,  the Senate is suppose to act as a “fair and impartial jury,” but both Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham,  “have said explicitly their only goal is to end the trial as quickly as possible, call zero witnesses, and take their marching orders directly from the president himself.  They’re supposed to be the jury and they’re literally going on TV admitting they’re not going to be impartial and they’re going to take their orders from the president.”

Of a personal opinion, I question if Republican Representatives and Senators do not want to impeach Trump and remove him from office because they do not want V.P. Pence taking over the role of President.  I wonder why?

 

 

December 10, 2019 UPDATE

The House Judiciary Committee’s two proposed articles of impeachment against President Trump on Tuesday.  The first article charges him with abuse of power for pressuring Ukraine to assist him in his re-election campaign by damaging Democratic rivals. The second article charges him with obstruction of Congress for blocking testimony and refusing to provide documents in response to House subpoenas in the impeachment inquiry.

You can read the full Articles of Impeachment here.

DECEMBER 3, 2019 UPDATE

CNN says of the 300 page House Intelligence Committee report, that it contains witness testimonies, timelines and phone records that accuse “Trump of perpetrating one of the most serious political crimes in the history of the United States. ”

Rather than add it to comment section, I am embedding a link to the full report here.   The Finding of Facts portion begins on page 39 as;

Based on witness testimony and evidence collected during the impeachment inquiry, the Intelligence Committee has found that:

I.  Donald J. Trump, the 45th President of the United States—acting personally and through his agents within and outside of the U.S. government—solicited the interference of a foreign government, Ukraine, in the 2020 U.S. presidential election. The President engaged in this course of conduct for the benefit of his reelection, to harm the election prospects of a political opponent, and to influence our nation’s upcoming presidential election to his advantage. In so doing, the President placed his personal political interests above the national interests of the United States, sought to undermine the integrity of the U.S. presidential election process, and endangeredU.S. national security.

The impeachment inquiry starts on Wednesday before the House Judiciary Committee.

 

On Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019, public hearings begin on the impeachment of Donald Trump.  My intent is to keep this post as a discussion and update thread until those hearings are completed.  Updates, including any available videos of the hearings, will be posted in the comment section below.  Feel free to add to them.

The public hearings will be live streamed on most major media networks and on USA Today online.

For a breakdown of Committee Members and schedule, see NBC News.

According to MSNBC:

“On the eve of the historic impeachment hearing, the top impeachment investigator, Rep. Adam Schiff tells NPR there is enough evidence to impeach Trump for bribery, for abusing “official” powers of the presidency and because Trump was “offering official acts for some personal or political reason.”

Below is a list with links to transcripts of depositions that have been released to the public. Click on the words that appear in blue to open the links, which will open in another window.  Transcripts of testimonies are in pdf. Read the rest of this entry

Rep. Elijah Cummings Provided Strength and Calm for Urban Baltimore — BCNN1 WP

He stood up for the poor and the disadvantaged throughout urban America — but Elijah Cummings was principally the strong voice and political advocate for Baltimore, where he was revered as his hometown’s champion. The Democratic congressman lived at the doorstep of some of the city’s worst rioting, including violent 2015 protests following the death […]

via Rep. Elijah Cummings Provided Strength and Calm for Urban Baltimore — BCNN1 WP

Day-3 of Impeachment Inquiry: Whistleblower complaint released ahead of congressional testimony

I’ve been tied to the news about this.  Here is the Whistleblower’s Complaint at this link.

The Secular Jurist

By Robert A. Vella

This is day-3 of Donald Trump’s impeachment process.  Events are moving at light-speed, and it appears that the president – who had escaped accountability in the Mueller investigation and countless other transgressions – has finally gone too far even for Republican lawmakers on Capitol Hill.  Yesterday, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a resolution calling for the release of the whistleblower complaint detailing Trump’s corrupt interactions with the Ukrainian government.  That the demand was quickly complied with is very telling.  It indicates that Trump has lost control over this situation, and that Congress’ tolerance for continued obstruction by his administration has come to an end.

A redacted copy of the formal whistleblower complaint filed by Inspector General Michael Atkinson has been submitted to Congress ahead of today’s testimony by acting Director of National Intelligence (DNI) Joseph Maguire.  The still unnamed whistleblower has also agreed to testify…

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U.S. tourism drops, GOP to cancel primaries, Trump coerces NOAA, Dem controversy, and health concerns

Thanks for the updates.

The Secular Jurist

By Robert A. Vella

Tourism to the U.S. is declining due to international concerns over mass shootings, xenophobia, trade wars, and foreigners’ dislike of President Trump.  The loss of revenue to American businesses is estimated to be in the tens of billions from 2018-2020.  GOP officials in several states are planning to cancel their presidential primary elections in order to protect Trump from challengers to his reelection campaign.  Embarrassed by his contrived, inaccurate, and illegal publicized “weather forecast” for Hurricane Dorian, Trump apparently coerced the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) into rebuking its own National Weather Service (NWS) agency for having the temerity to tell the truth.  NOAA’s statement was suspiciously authorless and the timing of its release suggest that the White House ordered it as an act of retribution and to protect Trump’s prodigious yet fragile ego.  The Democratic National Committee (DNC) is involved in another internal party…

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Dare Call it What it Is: Race Hatred Blessed By the President — Padre Steve’s World: Official Home of the Anti-Chaps

 

Friends of Padre Steve’s World,

Another day, another race based mass killing, another fake message of support from the President.

This time it was El Paso, Texas. A young white man from Dallas, an admitted White Supremacist went to a Walmart at a mall. Using an AK-47 he went on a killing spree. When police confronted him he offered no resistance.  The latest casualty count is 20 dead and 26 wounded, but the count is still fluctuating.  In his manifesto retrieved from the 8Chan site preferred by violent White Supremacists, he wrote:

“This attack is a response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas. They are the instigators, not me. I am simply defending my country from cultural and ethnic replacement brought on by an invasion.” 

via Dare Call it What it Is: Race Hatred Blessed By the President — Padre Steve’s World: Official Home of the Anti-Chaps

IT’S NOT MENTAL HEALTH, IT’S WHITE SUPREMACY — THE LEON KWASI CHRONICLES

It’s also White Supremacy taking advantage of the First and Second Amendments.  Too many are now one-man “militias” under the auspice of helping the government wage race war on American soil.   

via IT’S NOT MENTAL HEALTH, IT’S WHITE SUPREMACY — THE LEON KWASI CHRONICLES

2 mass shootings, Trump fires Coats, Putin foe poisoned, Feds to cut interest rate, Earth Overshoot Day — The Secular Jurist

By Robert A. Vella What would be a Monday in America without more mass shootings? Trump fired the Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and replaced him with a Mueller-hating sycophant. The physician who treated Alexei Navalny, the imprisoned political foe of Russian strongman Vladimir Putin, suspects he was poisoned in jail. The decade-long period […]

via 2 mass shootings, Trump fires Coats, Putin foe poisoned, Feds to cut interest rate, Earth Overshoot Day — The Secular Jurist

State-Sanctioned Murder! — Filosofa’s Word

Does anybody remember Clayton D. Lockett? No, of course not. Allow me to refresh your memory. Mr. Lockett was brutally murdered by our own federal government on April 29,2014 in a botched execution. Lockett was administered an untested mixture of drugs that had not previously been used for executions in the United States. Although the […]

Why do we kill people

via State-Sanctioned Murder! — Filosofa’s Word

Robert Mueller’s Scheduled Testimony Today – Open Discussion

Former special counsel Robert Mueller is testifying before both the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees for a total of five hours Wednesday., July 24, 2019.   The Committees intend to get a “much clearer narrative” of the Special Counsel’s two-year investigation before the American people about Trump’s conduct.

I plan on watching, and found where it is being live streamed online.   The video is below and should be live when testimony begins.  Please join me in watching and comment below.  Based on Mueller’s history of sometimes being vague, and his press conference where he stated that if he came before Congress he would not go beyond what is written in his report, this should be interesting.

Mueller’s testimony is scheduled to be split before the two committees, with 3 hours before the Judiciary Committee and 2 hours before the Intelligence Committee.  There will be a 30 minute break between the two hearings, and Mueller can request breaks. Read the rest of this entry

Medicare Is Not Free Insurance

During the 2016 presidential campaign, we heard “Medicare for all” as the solution to insure all Americans.  We are hearing it again now in 2019.  Currently, Medicare is not 100 percent coverage at no cost to the insured.  If politicians in D.C. can’t make it available without costs to those with Medicare now, how are they going to make it a reality to all Americans?

I am guilty of thinking that after paying into Medicare for more over 40 years, that once I reached 65, I would have healthcare insurance for free.  I was mistaken.

Medicare has four (4) parts.  The parts are explained in a handbook.  As I write this, next to me is “The Official U.S. Government Medicare Handbook”.   The subtitle is “Medicare and You, 2019.”

Medicare Part A is “premium free” and only covers hospital admissions, skilled nursing facilities, hospice care, and home health care.  I found at this link that Medicare Part A has a $1,364 deductible for each benefit period.  Benefit periods begin with admission to a hospital through the date of discharge.  After 90 days of hospitalization, the insured is responsible for all hospital costs.

Medicare Part B covers doctor services.  If an insured is admitted to a hospital without Medicare Part B, they are responsible for the cost of doctor services.  There is a $185 deductible per year for Medicare Part B. After your deductible is met, Medicare Part B covers 80 percent of doctor services.

The current cost for Medicare Part B is $135.50 per month.  That amount might be higher depending on annual income.   Currently, most providers do not accept Medicare for vision and dental because what they pay for is limited. Read the rest of this entry

Mueller to testify, government secrecy, Supreme Court news, China-Canada tiff, NRATV, and ICE insight

The Secular Jurist

By Robert A. Vella

He didn’t want to, but former Special Counsel Robert Mueller will comply with a subpoena to testify in public before the House Judiciary and House Intelligence committees next month.  Whether or not Democrats will ask probing questions about his truncated prosecutorial decisions, as well as about his reluctance to investigate leads implicating President Trump in criminal behavior, will reveal how serious they really are about impeachment and their constitutional duty to check abuses of power by the executive branch.  Government secrecy, a trademark of authoritarian regimes, is obviously increasing under Trump as Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests are being undermined by administrative actions and policies on top of Monday’s egregious ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court.  Addition of the contentious citizenship question to the 2020 census has run into a logistical obstacle which can now only be overcome by overt intervention by the Supreme…

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Lori Lightfoot – Chicago’s First Gay, Black, Woman Mayor

Know Your Heritage

Chicago has elected its first black, female mayor, becoming the largest U.S. city to do so, and she is a University of Michigan alum.

Lori Lightfoot also made history by becoming the first openly lesbian candidate to run for the office. Chicago is now the largest U.S. city to elect an openly gay mayor. Lightfoot earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from UM in 1984, graduating with honors, before earning a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Chicago.

After receiving a full scholarship to the University of Chicago Law School, Lightfoot moved to Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood. With the exception of a one year clerkship on the Michigan Supreme Court in Detroit, she has lived in Chicago since 1986.

Most recently, Lightfoot served as a senior equity partner in the Litigation and conflict Resolution Group at Mayer Brown LLP before announcing her candidacy for mayor in May 2018.

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“A Symbol of Renewed White Identity and Common Purpose” What Trump is to White Supremacists and Nationalists

The Inglorius Padre Steve's World

Friends of Padre Steve’s World,

Yesterday in Christchurch New Zealand an Australian White Nationalist not only committed mass murder against Muslims at worship in Christchurch’s two mosques. Before he did so he released a 74 page manifesto on Twitter, and announced it on 8chan, a website devoted to White Supremacism, Racism, and war against Muslims, Jews, dark skinned immigrants, and people on the political left. When he made his attack he announced to his followers that it would be carried live on his Facebook page.

He killed 49 men, women and children in cold blood, and wounded many more, live-streaming the whole event. It was an event made for social media and it became viral before media outlets and YouTube attempted to scrub it from their servers, but be assured, it will keep popping up in other places because White Nationalists will publicize it, and ghoulish people will,watch it and…

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