What we witnessed on February 13, 2021 with Mitch McConnell’s reason for voting not guilty in the impeachment trial of ex-president Donald Trump, is the Senate playing the Judicial Branch.
The question on whether the Senate had jurisdiction to hold impeachment trial was raised, and voted on. The Senate’s vote was that it had jurisdiction.
In a regular court of law, once a judge has ruled, the issue can no longer be argued, and jurors are instructed not to consider the issue during deliberations. However, the Senate is not a court of law. Mitch McConnell disregarded the majority Senate vote and used the issue of constitutional jurisdiction to acquit ex-President Donald J. Trump.
The argument over whether the Senate has jurisdiction to hold an impeachment trial for a government official no longer in office, is over a hundred years old. In 1862, it was federal judge West Hughes Humphries. In 1876, it was Secretary of War William Belknap. So, why hasn’t a federal court settled the question? Read the rest of this entry
This is a great summary. Thanks.
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:
- Abuse of power – for asking a foreign power, Ukraine, to help him win the 2020 election.
- 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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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
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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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
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
By Robert A. Vella
Two important but very strange developments occurred today regarding President Trump.
Two members of the House of Representatives’ far-right Freedom Caucus (a.k.a. Tea Party members) and nine other members introduced articles of impeachment against U.S. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein (who oversees the Mueller investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 election), but did so immediately before the House adjourned for its summer recess. Apparently, either the vote threshold to impeach Mr. Rosenstein do not yet exist or this is simply a political move to appease Trump supporters ahead of the midterm elections. See: Sessions defends deputy Rosenstein after impeachment move
Special counsel Robert S. Mueller III is now examining President Trump’s statements made on social media (i.e. Twitter) in order to determine if it constitutes a general obstruction of justice pattern intended to intimidate DOJ officials and potential witnesses (i.e. witness tampering) related to…
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