Defense

I think the Trump defenders’ best angle is to try to get the Burisma and the “server” fully blended into the overall anti-corruption effort that all the diplomats and NSC people kept talking about. That way, the GOP can argue that the Dems’ focus on these two things is misplaced and that they’re missing the forest for a couple of interesting trees. They can say Trump wasn’t going after those things specifically, he was just using them as examples of things that needed to be fixed.

“He was trying to fight corruption in Ukraine, just like those nice witnesses said the US should! You don’t want him to do that?”

It’s not even close to true, but it would make it look like Trump was simply a little sloppy in the examples he chose to use as shorthand for the overall effort.

(Clearly I am not a lawyer)

Professionalism

These impeachment witnesses have been uniformly awesome – at least all I’ve seen (I missed the tall guy). Not only because they’re crushing Trump, but also because they all seem like total professionals who are really good at their jobs. It’s nice to know there are good and competent people in the government. If this is the deep state, I’m all for it.

Imagine if our President had half the dignity any of them has?

And imagine being any of them and knowing the loony cartoon buffoon and his opportunist goon platoon are at the controls.

I’d jump at the chance to spill the beans.

President **

We’ve had five Presidents win the Electoral College without winning the popular vote (four of them Republicans).

And we’ve had two Presidents be impeached: Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton (Nixon when he figured out that it was going to happen).

But it’s looking like Trump will earn the distinction of being the first President to lose the popular vote and be impeached!

Always exceeding expectations.

Buh Bye, Traitor, Trash


Photo from News And Observer

The embattled Confederate monument in downtown Pittsboro came down early Wednesday morning after standing outside the historic courthouse for 112 years, Chatham County officials said.

As concerns for public safety grew and the costs of protecting the statue have mounted, officials decided to remove it, according to a county spokeswoman. The county has spent more than $140,000 on security measures, as of Nov. 18, Dudley said.

“Over the past three months, protests continued to escalate week by week, growing larger and more violent,” Kara Dudley said in a news release, referring to the protests that happen nearly every Saturday.

And take your idiot redneck treason-loving fan club with you. I’m sick of them standing around downtown looking stupid every Saturday and I’m sick of looking at the barricades that have been standing downtown for the past few months.

Why Are Republicans So Obsessed With the Whistleblower?

Kevin Drum knows:

Here’s the explanation: Republicans all know who the whistleblower is. What’s more, a couple of years ago they had a minor run-in with this person on an unrelated issue. Since then, they’ve compiled a 40-page dossier on the whistleblower and they’re practically bursting with impatience to unload it all over Fox News. As you can imagine, there’s nothing of real substance in this dossier, but they figure there’s enough smoke and smears to distract attention from Donald Trump’s crimes for a while.

But first the whistleblower’s name has to become public. None of the Republicans have the guts to just get up in the well of the House and say the name, and they’re endlessly frustrated that no one else of any stature has said it either—nor is any mainstream news outlet willing to say it.

Strategy

I think the reason Nunes takes every opportunity to sound as assholeish and bitter as he can is to get people like me to stop listening to the hearings.

It works!

Every time he starts talking, I find something else to do.

Two Bribes

There were two bribes.

This is bribe one:

  1. We know Ambassador Sondland and Guiliani and others had been trying to get the Ukrainians to announce “investigations” into Biden and Trump’s wacky conspiracy theory (where it was Ukraine, not Russia who interfered i n2016, and they were working for Clinton, not him).
  2. We know they were using the promise of a Presidential visit as payment.
  3. We know the Ukrainians know this is what Trump wants.
  4. We know that the Ukrainians wrestled with the dilemma of getting involved with US internal politics or not.
  5. We know they eventually agreed to announce the “investigations”.

Give Trump his investigations, get the visit. Bribe one.

This is the second bribe:

  1. In the second call, once the pleasantries are done, and Zelensky has asked about the possibility of a visit, and Trump has complained about not receiving enough thanks, Zelensky asks about the Javelins – the military aid.
  2. Trump immediately responds with “do me a favor though”, and talks about the investigations and his conspiracy theories.
  3. Again, Zelensky already knows Trump wants investigations. He knows what the investigations are. He knows they were already used as leverage for the Presidential visit.
  4. Zelensky apparently doesn’t at this point know that the aid has been held up. So, he likely thinks Trump talking about investigations is about the visit. So he asks again for the visit. Zelensky will later learn the aid is being held up.
  5. Trump tells Zelensky to talk to Rudy G, who has been laying the groundwork for the smear campaign against Biden.

That’s bribe two. Aid for investigations. From what we know, it was apparently not executed as cleanly as the first.

But then, word gets out that Trump is trying to bribe Ukraine, so Trump shuts the whole thing down: the military aid is released and the Presidential visit is agreed to / set up. And, Ukraine cancels their plans to announce the phony investigations.

So there were two bribes. And the only reason it didn’t work out the way Trump wanted was because someone blew the whistle on him before it all came together.