Tag Archives: impeachment

McCarthy is no Pelosi

Having declared my faint hope that the cowardly U.S. House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy will find the courage to stand up to the MAGA cabal within his congressional caucus, I want to offer a brief comparison to the woman he hopes to succeed as speaker of the House.

McCarthy will march to the MAGA cadence, I am quite sure. The current speaker, McCarthy’s fellow Californian Nancy Pelosi, also felt pressure from her progressive House members. They wanted her to impeach Donald Trump far sooner than she eventually did.

Pelosi stood firm against the likes of The Squad and other ultra-progressives. She, in effect, told them to pipe down and let her lead the House as she saw fit.

Pelosi eventually announced the impeachment inquiry after the then-president sought a political favor from the Ukraine president, seeking him to dig up dirt on Joe Biden and his son, Hunter. The speaker was not going to be pushed into acting prematurely.

Will the man who wants to be speaker show the same courage?

I am trying to stop snickering at the notion.

johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Not all Rs are evil … honest!

Contrary to what some readers of this blog might presume, your blogger doesn’t hate all Republican politicians. Far from it.

The detestable Republicans out there are the subscribers to the MAGA cult doctrine espoused by believers in The Big Lie.

These are the pols among the cabal of cultists who refused to impeach or convict a president who incited the assault on our government, who sought to overturn the results of a free, fair and legal presidential election. Beyond that, there exists to this very minute Republicans who are willing to put country ahead of party.

These also are Republicans whose future concerns me as we move past the midterm election and look ahead to the 2024 election. About one-third of the Senate will be on the ballot and among those up for re-election are the likes of Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah, the lone Republican who voted to convict Donald Trump in his first impeachment trial.

We witnessed already the damage that election deniers and MAGA worshipers can do to Republican officeholders. I am concerned, thus, for the future of the likes of Sen. Romney, who values his oath to the nation more than loyalty to an individual.

My congressional district in North Texas is going to be represented by a MAGA follower. I look for Republican Rep.-elect Keith Self to be front and center on the calls to look high and low for dirt on Hunter Biden, Anthony Fauci and would vote to impeach President Biden for make-believe transgressions.

We need more thoughtful pols — Democrats and Republicans — who understand that compromise is the most critical ingredient in creating good government.

I know they’re out there.

johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Trump’s place in history?

Is it too early to begin assessing Donald John Trump’s place in U.S. presidential history?

I don’t believe it is. I believe historians already are hard at work seeking to get their arms around an individual who won an election by securing enough Electoral College votes to defeat a highly qualified, eminently more sophisticated opponent in 2016.

He then began the lying campaign from the get-go, saying out loud he won by a “historic landslide,” which of course was nothing of the sort.

It got a whole lot worse from there.

In many respects, the Trump history is still being forged. Its final form will come when all the prosecutors are done examining whether he committed crimes while inciting the assault on our government, or when he took classified documents from the White House to his Florida estate, or whether he is guilty of tax fraud in the operation of his company, or whether he bullied Georgia election officials to “find” votes that would swing that state into his favor during the 2020 election.

Then again, even those myriad probes are enough to include in Trump’s legacy as a twice-impeached president of the United States.

I keep asking myself what Trump will do with his post-presidential life. Will there ever be a Trump museum and presidential library? Will he ever devote himself to any noble cause, or will he remain as fixated on his own aggrandizement as he was before he became a politician? How will this individual ever be involved with events that include his predecessors or his successors?

It might take a future generation of historians to craft an image of Donald Trump’s time at the pinnacle of political power that matches reality. The beginning chapters, though, surely can be drafted.

No matter what the cultists who adhere to what passes as doctrine in the mind of Donald Trump might say, the first draft will be anything but glorious.

johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

When will indictment arrive?

All the smart money — and even some of the dumber dough — believes that Attorney General Merrick Garland is going to indict Donald J. Trump … for something!

So many questions lurk on the edges and even some in the guts of the issue.

When will the indictment(s) come? How far will the AG go in charging the former president of the U.S.A. with committing a criminal act? How does an indictment affect the former POTUS’s plans for running for the presidency again, if he’s indeed going to do so? What will be the response of Trump’s diminishing — but still frothing rabid — base of supporters?

I happen to believe that Garland could indict Trump on obstruction of justice, on violating his oath of office, potentially on contempt of Congress, on conspiracy to commit sedition.

It all turns on the events of 1/6. Trump incited the insurrection and no one on Earth is going to persuade me he didn’t do it.

However, Merrick Garland is nothing if not a realist. He knows the stakes are huge. If Republicans gain control of Congress after the midterm election, he faces the prospect of impeachment by Republicans still steamed over Democrats’ decision to impeach Trump twice.

The biggest obstacle to impeaching the AG, though, is that he is doing his job. Unlike the “high crimes” that produced two impeachments against Trump — seeking political favors from a foreign government and inciting the attack on the Capitol — Garland merely would be doing his job in accordance with the law.

That likely wouldn’t stop the GOP from seeking to make Garland “pay” for the impeachment of the former POTUS.

This is all part of the drama that awaits as Merrick Garland ponders what appears to be an inevitable action. I am waiting to see how this drama ends.

johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Vengeance politics is alive

Vengeance politics is alive and flourishing in what passes for the hearts of many contemporary politicians.

These days, I refer to our Republican members of Congress. They are salivating over the prospect of the GOP taking control of the legislative branch of government after the midterm election.

What’s causing the collective drool? The idea of investigating Democrats who — in their sordid minds — have committed high crimes and misdemeanors.

None other than Ohio blowhard Jim Jordan, the GOP House member accused of looking the other way while Ohio State coaches were molesting young athletes, has promised investigations once Republicans take control of the House. It’s hard to take Jordan seriously, given his blind fealty to the MAGA agenda, but I will take him seriously, indeed.

They want to investigate Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas over the immigration “crisis” on our southern border. They want to investigate soon-to-retire senior White House medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci for dishing out bad advice on handling the COVID pandemic.

Some of the wackier among them want to impeach President Biden for … good grief, only God knows what lurks in their shallow brains.

Meanwhile, we have legislative matters that need attention Gun violence is one of them. Climate change, too. How about energy policy, or immigration policy, or reproductive rights issues? Does any of that interest the MAGA wing of the GOP? Hell … no!

They want revenge over Democrats outrage at the conduct of the most recent GOP president, the moron who sought political help from a foreign government and then incited the assault on our nation’s government after the 2020 presidential election. The House impeached him twice for those two misdeeds, but the cowards who comprise the Republican caucus in the Senate couldn’t muster up the courage to convict him of the obvious crimes he committed against the government he took an oath to “preserve and protect.”

If it comes to pass that Republicans take control of the House and Senate, I am going to stand watch to make sure I use this blog to remind them all of the oaths they, too, will take. They will place their hands on holy books and pledge to defend the Constitution of the United States. I fear their actions will put that document in danger.

johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

POTUS still has power

Let us assume for a moment or two that the worst thing happens — at least from my admittedly biased view — after the midterm election and Republicans gain control of both congressional chambers.

Such an event remains an open question. The House well could still flip; I am not sure about the Senate.

Were the Republicans to gain control, they need to do so in a significant fashion. As in, they would need what amounts to a super-majority in the Senate to sustain whatever it is the GOP caucus wants to accomplish. Why? Because President Biden has the veto pen at his disposal.

The Constitution sets a high bar for overriding a presidential veto, just as it does for convicting an impeached federal official, such as the president of the United States. Both congressional chambers must agree with a 2/3 vote to override a veto. No one in their right mind thinks the Senate is going to turn from a 50-50 body to a 67-33 Republican majority after the midterm election. I have made the case that Democrats actually have a decent shot at solidifying control of the Senate by winning a couple of seats for a 52-48 majority. The House also looks as though a GOP flip would be by a slim margin.

Given the intense partisanship that dictates how legislation flows in Congress, it would work well if both legislative chambers could find a way to craft more bipartisan legislation that could appeal (a) to Democrats serving in Congress and (b) to the Democrat who occupies the Oval Office … and who has that veto pen at his disposal.

Republicans, though, well could be getting ahead of themselves if they believe a much-touted “red wave” is afoot in the midterm election. Their overhyped confidence in the quality of some of the MAGA-ites running for high office could well bit ’em in the backside.

I sense the “wave” election is turning more into a ripple across a puddle … which gives President Biden an important tool he can deploy to fend off the extremists’ view of where they think the nation ought to go.

johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Impeach Biden? For what?

Nancy Mace has revenge on her mind. So, too, do a number of other congressional Republicans who, according to Mace, will be ready to impeach President Biden if the GOP gains control of the House of Representatives after the midterm election.

Mace is nuttier than a Snickers bar.

She hails from South Carolina, and she says Republicans in the House will sharpen their long knives and get ’em ready to skewer the president. They will be full of vengeance because Donald Trump managed to get impeached twice by the Democratic-controlled House.

Rep. Nancy Mace, who voted against impeaching Trump, says there’s ‘a lot of pressure’ on Republicans to impeach Biden: ‘I think that is something that some folks are considering’ (msn.com)

Let’s see. Trump got impeached the first time because he placed a “perfect phone call” that sought a political favor from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, whom Trump wanted to dig up dirt on then-former VP Joe Biden. Most members of the House said that constituted a violation of his oath of office. The House impeached him.

Then came 1/6 and the insurrection that Trump incited. A few Republicans actually joined that House impeachment and most senators voted to convict Trump of inciting the attempt to overturn the 2020 presidential election results. The only problem is that they needed 67 votes to convict; the Senate ended up with 57 votes.

Now the Republicans, if they gain control of the House, want to re-enter the impeachment battle, which they said the first two times involving Trump was all theater, that Democrats were “weaponizing” the impeachment process.

Well, what in the hell are we to believe if Republicans follow through on their stated threats to impeach President Biden?

How in the name of political vengeance can the GOP justify it?

johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Constitution works!

Gerald Ford spoke a fundamental truth only minutes after taking office as president of the United States in August 1974.

“Our Constitution works,” President Ford reminded us, as if we needed reminding about the crisis that preceded his becoming president. His predecessor, Richard Nixon, resigned just as he was about to be impeached and tried (and likely convicted) for high crimes against the Constitution.

I want to remind everyone who worries about whether the Constitution will hold up under the pressure being applied to it these days by a former POTUS who all but vows violence if he is indicted for criminal activity.

I am going to remain somewhat calm about the strength of the Constitution. It did survive the Watergate scandal. President Nixon had to quit. President Ford took office as the Constitution had been battered and bruised by the calamity of Nixon’s abuse of power.

It survived then. I am going to continue to believe in the strength of the Constitution now as the nation awaits the outcome of several investigations into a former president’s effort to upend the “peaceful transfer of power” from one administration to the next one.

I will concede that the transfer of power was not peaceful. It was bloodied by the 1/6 insurrection. However, the transition did occur.

Our Constitution works, indeed.

johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

All eyes on DOJ, but wait …

Millions of Americans — such as me — are fixated at the moment on the U.S. Department of Justice seizure of those “highly classified” documents from Donald J. Trump’s glitzy home in Florida.

I keep hearing an endless string of legal analyses that suggest an indictment of someone — perhaps the ex-president — is inevitable.

Let’s be clear, though, about something that is getting buried under all the rhetoric about the DOJ probe: It is just one of several investigations underway concerning the criminal behavior many of us believe occurred during the entirety of Trump’s single term as POTUS.

What’s brewing? Let’s see:

  • A Fulton County (Ga.) grand jury is looking into whether Trump tampered with election results by demanding that the Georgia secretary of state “find” enough votes to turn the election result there from pro-Joe Biden to pro-Trump.
  • The New York attorney general is examining whether the Trump Organization falsified its assets to (a) obtain favorable loans or (b) avoid paying debts it owes.
  • The House 1/6 select committee is probing whether Trump committed an act of sedition against the U.S. government by inciting the attack on the Capitol and then was derelict in his duty as POTUS by refusing to call off the attack once it commenced, resulting in injury and death to police officers and at least one attacker.

That’s several full plates, don’t you think?

Of all those probes, the one that needs to be finished soon is the congressional investigation. The midterm election well could result in Republicans taking control of the House and we all know what’ll happen then: the GOP leadership will shut it all down and will pretend there is nothing to see.

There happens to be plenty to see and do, which makes the House panel’s work all the more urgent.

It’s almost enough to make me wonder how in the name of sanity does the former president or those closest to him avoid being charged with some criminal act. I cannot assess which of the potential charges are forthcoming, or which of them will emerge as the most serious.

I do have this nagging gut grumble that’s telling me that when the legal eagles finish their work, we’re about to see history made in a way that will make the 45th POTUS a mighty unhappy man.

Shall we all just stay tuned?

johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Weaponization anyone?

Wait just a dadgum minute. Didn’t those Republican idiots who stood up for Donald Trump accuse Democrats of “weaponizing” the impeachment process during both of the impeachments that Trump endured?

Yeah, they did. What in the name of pure partisan politics is going on now with Republicans in the House saying they’re getting ready to impeach President Biden, Attorney General Merrick Garland, Vice President Harris — and perhaps even the White House chef, for all I know — if they seize control of the House after the midterm election?

What in the world would be the basis for any of this absolute horsesh**? Is it because, um, that Biden managed to pass legislation without GOP help in Congress? Or that Garland decided to issue a lawful search warrant to find documents that Trump pilfered from secure locations in the White House? Of that Harris cast tie-breaking votes when Republicans failed to join Democrats in enacting legislation designed to help Americans?

Or — what the hell? — maybe the White House chef cooked a souffle that deflated too early?

I don’t know. I do know that whenever I hear this nonsense coming from the GOP side of the great divide on Capitol Hill, it fills me with a modicum of hope that voters across the land might be able and willing to spare us all the nightmare that awaits if the GOP takes control of Congress.

johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com