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Has U.S. Democracy Been Trumped? Bernie Sanders wants to know who owns America?

#14201 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-November-05, 10:55

Monty Python's Ukraine Connection starring Rudy Guiliani

Quote

Rudy: Evening squire.

Ukraine official: Good evening.

Rudy: Is, uh, is your president a goer? Know whatahmean, know whatahmean, nudge nudge, know whatahmean, say no more?
'
Ukraine official: Well, he sometimes "goes", yes.

Rudy: Aaaaaaaah bet he does, I bet he does. Say no more, say no more, know whatahmean, mudge nudge?

Ukraine Official: I'm afraid I don't quite follow you.

Rudy: Follow me. Follow me. That's good, that's good! A nod's as good as a wink to a blind bat!

Ukraine official: Are you selling something - arms maybe?

Rudy: Selling. selling. Very good, very good. Ay, ay, ay. Oooh! Ya wicked Ay! Wicked Ay! Oooh hooh! Say No MORE!.

Ukraine official: I wasn't going to.

Rudy: Oh! Well, never mind. Dib dib. Is your uh, is your president interested in...investigations, ay? Investigations, ay, he asked him knowingly.

Ukraine official: Investigations?

Rudy: Biden, Biden, grin, grin, wink wink, nudge nudge, say no more?

Ukraine official: Political investigaiton?

Rudy: They could be, they could be political. Secret, you know. Secret public investigations.

Ukraine official: Harumph. No, I'm afraid we don't have secret investigators.

Rudy: Oh. Still, mooooooooh, ay? Mwoohohohohoo, ay? Hohohohoho, ay?

Ukraine official: Look are you asking me to do something illegal?

Rudy: Oh, no, no, no...no, no, no..... YES!

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#14202 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-November-05, 14:11

In a shocking <_< turn of events, Ambassador Sondland has changed his story - presumably to avoid perjury charges. :unsure:

Quote

In a dramatic addition in his previous testimony, Gordon Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, now says he told Ukrainians they should announce anti-corruption investigations if they wanted to get congressionally-authorized U.S. military aid.
my emphasis
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#14203 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2019-November-05, 15:25

View Posty66, on 2019-November-05, 07:38, said:

From David Leonhardt at NYT:




A good article.

I try to think about what Dems must do and I am not having a lot of luck.Here is a question: If many of the Democratic candidates do not believe that Warren's health care plan is workable, and it seems that many do not think it is workable, why would we expect voters to believe it is workable in November of 2020?


Here is something else from the NYT:;https://www.nytimes....-albatross.html


Quote



That is the danger facing the Democrats, and particularly their quasi-front-runner Elizabeth Warren, with the issue of "Medicare for all." Single-payer health care is, in certain ways, the liberal-activist equivalent of the conservative dream of a flat tax. It's an idea of some merit if you're designing a system from scratch and it polls O.K. if you don't tell people about the trade-offs. But it tends to run into trouble quickly on the state level — with Vermont's stillborn single-payer experience mirroring the flat-tax experiments of states like Kansas. And it has enough political vulnerabilities, in terms of costs and disruption both, that no sane Democrat should want it as the centerpiece of their national campaign.

Warren, who is definitely sane, clearly doesn't want to make it her centerpiece; you can tell that she'd like to run on her promise to tax the wealthy to pay for free child care and college, with a dose of anti-corruption and trustbusting on the side. These ideas have their own difficulties, but they're popular and responsive to the voters, and a good foil for Donald Trump's record of corporate tax cuts and not much else.



Ken
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#14204 User is offline   Zelandakh 

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Posted 2019-November-05, 15:25

Interesting thought of the day: if it were to turn out that the de facto actioning of Trump's quid pro quo occurred during the Pence-Zelenskiy Warsaw meeting on Sept 1st, could it be that both the POTUS and VP get impeached at the same time?
(-: Zel :-)

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#14205 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2019-November-05, 15:55

View Postkenberg, on 2019-November-05, 15:25, said:

If many of the Democratic candidates do not believe that Warren's health care plan is workable, and it seems that many do not think it is workable, why would we expect voters to believe it is workable in November of 2020?

I'd be surprised if many voters think M4A is going anywhere in the next 10 years even if the Dems somehow manage to hold onto the House and take back the Senate. Warren has her work cut out to keep this from becoming the defining policy issue of her campaign. I think she can make a semi-decent case that M4A is our best shot at reining in runaway costs and that it is one of many things she plans to fight for but not the only thing or even the most important thing at stake in 2020.
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#14206 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2019-November-05, 16:37

From Wall Street Fears Elizabeth Warren for the Wrong Reasons by Nir Kaissar at Bloomberg:

Quote

Wall Street should fear Senator Elizabeth Warren, but not for the reason it thinks.

Some of Wall Street’s biggest stars have howled recently about how Warren would wreck the U.S. economy and the stock market if she were elected president or merely continued to make strides in that direction. Billionaire Paul Tudor Jones predicted last week at the Robin Hood Investors Conference in New York that the S&P 500 Index would decline 25% and that U.S. economic growth would be cut in half if Warren were to win. Leon Cooperman, Rob Citrone and Jeffrey Vinik have also said that the market would react negatively.

Those fears are misplaced. Presidents have far less control over the U.S. economy than many think. Most recently, President Donald Trump tried to boost the economy with his sweeping Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, but its effects have been negligible so far. Also, no one can reliably anticipate the stock market’s reaction to events. Instead, Wall Street ought to worry about what Warren would do to the rarefied world of private equity, particularly leveraged buyouts, or LBOs.

LBOs are simple transactions in concept, similar to buying a home. LBO firms acquire companies by putting down a small percentage of the purchase price and borrowing the rest. That liberal use of leverage magnifies returns, which is the main reason LBOs have historically been among the best performing investments. They can also play a useful role. When a public company wants to go private, a firm with multiple business lines wants to shed a division or a business owner wants to cash out, LBO firms are often the buyers.

The problem is there’s more money chasing LBOs than deals to accommodate it. Roughly $1.2 trillion was invested in the strategy as of March, according to research firm Preqin, double the amount invested across all private equity strategies in 2000. The unsurprising result is that companies are fetching higher purchase prices, if investors can find deals at all. In a 2018 survey, private equity firms cited high valuations, a scarcity of deals and intense competition as their biggest challenges, according to financial data company PitchBook.

The numbers bear it out. In the first half of 2019, LBO investors paid 11.2 times Ebitda, or earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, according to Morgan Stanley, nearly 70% more than the 6.7 times they paid in 2000.

LBO firms have been able to offset higher purchase prices with help elsewhere. For one, interest rates have declined significantly over the last two decades, with the 10-year Treasury yield falling to less than 2% from close to 7% in 2000. Investors have demanded little more for low-quality debt in recent years, which features prominently in many LBO deals. Those low rates have allowed LBO firms to borrow or refinance more cheaply. In addition, the U.S. has enjoyed the longest economic expansion on record since 2009, which has helped bolster their portfolio companies’ profits. Third, rising valuations have allowed LBOs to sell their investments at ever higher multiples.

Those tailwinds could evaporate quickly, but that hasn’t dissuaded investors, at least so far. They still expect higher returns from private equity than they do from U.S. stocks and bonds and a smooth ride, given that private assets are sheltered from turbulent public markets. Those perceived advantages have made private equity a fixture of institutional portfolios and, increasingly, those of individuals.

To accommodate the flood of investment, LBO firms are venturing farther from their traditional turf and into every conceivable corner of the economy, including pet stores, doctors’ practices and newspapers. The industry says its expanding reach leaves companies better off, but there’s mounting evidence that companies acquired through LBOs are more likely to depress wages, cut investment or go bankrupt, in many cases because of their debt load. When that debt proves too burdensome, workers and their communities and the taxpayers who inevitably support them all lose, while LBO firms still collect their fees and dividends.

Leverage is risky business, as the 2008 financial crisis laid bare, and the growth of private equity is spreading that risk well beyond its small sphere of well-heeled investors. Numbers for private equity are famously guarded, but one way to get a sense of the risks and rewards that come with the industry’s use of leverage is by looking at the stock performance of publicly traded private equity firms.

The S&P Listed Private Equity Index, which includes industry titans Blackstone Group Inc., Apollo Global Management LLC and KKR & Co., tumbled 82% from peak to trough during the financial crisis, including dividends. That exceeded the 79% decline for the S&P 500 Financials Index, the sector whose excessive use of leverage triggered the crisis, and the 51% decline for the S&P 500. Since the crisis eased in March 2009, however, the private equity index has outpaced the financials index by 1.3 percentage points a year through October and the S&P 500 by 2.4 percentage points.

That brings us back to Warren, who has said that “private equity firms are like vampires — bleeding the company dry and walking away enriched even as the company succumbs.” Warren has also called private equity “legalized looting” that “makes a handful of Wall Street managers very rich while costing thousands of people their jobs, putting valuable companies out of business and hurting communities across the country.”

Warren introduced a sweeping bill in July titled — what else — the “Stop Wall Street Looting Act” that would, at the very least, fundamentally transform the industry. Her proposal would ratchet up the potential liability of private equity firms by putting them on the hook for debts of their portfolio companies, holding them responsible for certain pension obligations of those companies and limiting their ability to collect fees and dividends. It would change tax rules to deny private equity firms preferential rates on the debt they put on portfolio companies and close a loophole that allows them to pay lower taxes on investment profits. It would also modify bankruptcy rules to make it easier for workers to collect pay and benefits and harder for executives to walk away with bonuses.

Steve Biggar, an Argus Research Corp. analyst who covers private equity firms, called Warren’s plan an “industry-destroying proposal.”

Of course, the industry is just as vulnerable to a sustained downturn or higher interest rates, given its cocktail of leverage and high valuations. In the meantime, as more Americans encounter the fallout from failed LBO deals, support for regulation of private equity is likely to grow. And if Warren occupies the White House, she may well lead the charge.

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#14207 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-November-05, 17:56

View Postkenberg, on 2019-November-05, 15:25, said:



A good article.

I try to think about what Dems must do and I am not having a lot of luck.Here is a question: If many of the Democratic candidates do not believe that Warren's health care plan is workable, and it seems that many do not think it is workable, why would we expect voters to believe it is workable in November of 2020?


Here is something else from the NYT:;https://www.nytimes....-albatross.html





I have been a supporter of Warren but the problem I have with her is not healthcare but her idea of doing away with the filibuster in order to implement her plans.

We have to look at two issues: the short term and the long range. In the short term, beating Trump and winning the Senate are necessary. Long term, reestablishing norms is absolutely vital to restore the republic. Tearing down a vital minority weapon for a short term gain is a poor choice that undermines the long ranged chances of holding on to the republic.

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#14208 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2019-November-05, 20:51

Virginia Dems take back the Senate and the House and have full control of Virginia state government for the first time since 1993!

From NYT:

Quote

Democrats completed Virginia’s historic partisan shift from red to blue on Tuesday, winning majorities in both chambers of the legislature and consolidating power across state government for the first time in a generation.

In an election where passions about President Trump and the impeachment inquiry drove voters on both sides, a revolt against the president in Virginia’s rapidly growing suburbs helped remake the state’s political map. Now, under Gov. Ralph Northam, who survived scandal earlier this year, Democrats are positioned to advance a set of sweeping liberal priorities in the state.

Going into Tuesday, Republicans held a 20 to 19 advantage in the State Senate, with one vacancy. Democrats picked up at least two seats, including an upset in a suburban Richmond district by Ghazala Hashmi, who will be the first Muslim woman in the Senate. A former college literature professor, Ms. Hashmi was brought to the country from India as a child. Running her first campaign, she described experiencing a personal crisis after Mr. Trump ordered a ban on immigration from Muslim-majority countries.

“I didn’t know if I actually had a home in this country,” she said in an interview last week. “My anxiety was caused by wondering if other people would speak up and support the assault we were seeing on civil liberties.” She decided to speak up and represent herself.

Pre-election polling showed the top issues were all ones that favored Democrats: raising the minimum wage to $15, spending more on roads and, after a mass shooting in Virginia Beach this year, expanding background checks and banning assault weapons.

After Mr. Northam called a special session of the legislature to respond to gun violence over the summer, and the Republican majorities adjourned it after just 90 minutes, Democrats thought they had won a moral victory to use against opponents in the fall. Republicans denounced the session as a political stunt.

The balance of power in both chambers turned on just a handful of competitive districts, all in suburban regions outside Washington, Richmond and in Hampton Roads.

Swing-district Republicans backpedaled away from Mr. Trump and the party, a brand that had proved toxic in last year’s midterms with the increasingly diverse electorate in suburbia. Some Republicans campaigned more like Democrats, boasting of support for Medicaid expansion that the party long fought in Richmond, for L.G.B.T. rights and even for gun safety measures.

With so much at stake — a referendum on the president, the partisan balance of both houses, political momentum going into a presidential election — money cascaded into the normally low-interest legislative races.

Republicans came into Election Day with a 51 to 48 majority in the House of Delegates and its narrow edge in the Senate. Each chamber had one vacancy.

In 2017, Republicans clung to power in the House by a single seat that was decided by a random drawing after the election in that district resulted in a dead tie.

State senators, who serve four-year terms, had not faced voters since 2015, before Mr. Trump’s election. Many Republican senators who were considered most vulnerable occupied districts carried by Mr. Northam in 2017 and by three Democrats who flipped congressional races in 2018.

A scandal that engulfed the governor and other top Democrats in the state early in the year seemed to have faded from voters’ concerns, as it had from headlines. After a racist photo on Mr. Northam’s medical school yearbook page surfaced in February, he offered to resign. But he quickly reversed himself, and polls now show many more voters approve of his performance than disapprove.

Another factor aiding Democrats was a court-ordered remapping of districts in southeast Virginia. In June, the United States Supreme Court upheld a lower court decision striking down earlier maps as racially gerrymandered. New maps shifted 425,000 voters in 25 districts. They more evenly distributed black voters, which gave Democrats an overall advantage, according to an analysis by the nonpartisan Virginia Public Access Project.

The House seat that was decided by the random drawing two years ago — in favor of David Yancey, a Republican from Newport News — was tilted toward Democrats in the redistricting. Shelly Simonds, who lost the drawing, ran again this year in a rematch and won.

Likewise, Kirk Cox, the Speaker of the House and Virginia’s most powerful Republican, ended up in a new district that shifted significantly leftward, one that Hillary Clinton had carried. His campaign ads skipped partisan rhetoric and portrayed him as a former baseball coach who supports education spending.

More than $1 million flowed to 16 individual candidates, who were seeking part-time jobs that pay less than $20,000 a year.

Races where television ads had been unheard-of echoed with a cacophony of attacks while Virginians tried to tune out politics for a brief respite during the World Series.

Emily’s List, which supports women running for office who back abortion rights, pumped more than $2 million into Democratic races mostly for the House. The former New York mayor Michael R. Bloomberg was the largest outside individual donor. His group Everytown for Gun Safety gave $2.5 million to help Democrats, and Beyond Carbon, his climate change group, donated more than $600,000 to two House candidates in coastal districts.

Republicans’ largest donor was the Republican State Leadership Committee ($3.2 million), a national group that supports state-level races, the value of which became clear after sweeping Republican legislative victories in 2010, which led to Republican-drawn voting maps that have influenced power in the states and in Congress.

This year, the prospect of the 2021 redistricting after the next census was a quiet but powerful issue for both parties.

In recent days, nationally prominent Democrats campaigned alongside statehouse candidates to raise voters’ enthusiasm, including the presidential candidates Joseph R. Biden Jr., Amy Klobuchar and Kamala Harris.

On Saturday, Senator Mark Warner, Democrat of Virginia, sought to inspire volunteer door-knockers by citing what he viewed as Republican outrages in Washington, including Mr. Trump’s abandonment of Kurdish allies in Syria and smears against a decorated Army officer called to testify in the impeachment inquiry.

He suggested Democrats could force congressional Republicans to “grow a backbone” by flipping the Virginia House and Senate.

Republican surrogates were less visible. Mr. Trump skipped campaigning for fellow Republicans in the state, though Vice President Mike Pence held a rally in Virginia Beach.

At a get-out-the-vote gathering on Saturday for the Henrico County Republican Committee, once a Republican stronghold outside Richmond, the headliner was a local talk radio host, John Reid.

“I think Democrats have overreached beyond belief,” Mr. Reid told the party faithful, referring to impeachment proceedings. He predicted Republicans would have a good day on Tuesday. “Donald Trump upsets people — that’s fine,” he said. “It cannot be denied that he’s delivered.”

Indeed Mr. Reid.
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#14209 User is offline   Zelandakh 

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Posted 2019-November-06, 04:20

Quote

DECLARATION OF AMBASSADOR GORDON D. SONDLAND

I, Gordon Sondland, do hereby swear and affirm as follows:

1. I have reviewed the October 22, 2019, opening statement of Ambassador William Taylor. I have also reviewed the October 31, 2019, opening statement of Tim Morrison. These two opening statements have refreshed my recollection about certain conversations in early September 2019.

2. Ambassador Taylor recalls that I told Mr. Morrison in early September 2019 that the resumption of U.S. aid to Ukraine had become tied to a public statement to be issued by Ukraine agreeing to investigate Burisma. Ambassador Taylor recalls that Mr. Morrison told Ambassador Taylor that I told Mr. Morrison that I had conveyed this message to Mr. Yermak on September 1, 2019, in connection with Vice President Pence’s visit to Warsaw and a meeting with President Zelensky. Mr. Morrison recalls that I said to him in early September that resumption of U.S. aid to Ukraine might be conditioned on a public statement reopening the Burisma investigation.

3. In my October 17, 2019 prepared testimony and in my deposition, I made clear that I had understood sometime after our May 23, 2019, White House debriefing that scheduling a White House visit for President Zelensky was conditioned upon President Zelensky’s agreement to make a public anti-corruption statement. This condition had been communicated by Rudy Giuliani, with whom President Trump directed Ambassador Volker, Secretary Perry, and me, on May 23, 2019, to discuss issues related to the President’s concerns about Ukraine. Ambassador Volker, Secretary Perry, and I understood that satisfying Mr. Giuliani was a condition for scheduling the White House visit, which we all strongly believed to be in the mutual interest of the United States and Ukraine.

4. With respect to the September 1, 2019, Warsaw meeting, the conversations described in Ambassador Taylor’s and Mr. Morrison’s opening statements have refreshed my recollection about conversations involving the suspension of U.S. aid, which had become public only days earlier. I always believed that suspending aid to Ukraine was ill-advised, although I did not know (and still do not know) when, why, or by whom the aid was suspended. However; by the beginning of September 2019, and in the absence of any credible explanation for the suspension of aid, I presumed that the aid suspension had become linked to the proposed anti-corruption statement. As I said in my prepared testimony, security aid to Ukraine was in our vital national interest and should not have been delayed for any reason. And it would have been natural for me to have voiced what I had presumed to Ambassador Taylor, Senator Johnson, the Ukrainians, and Mr. Morrison.

5. Also, I now do recall a conversation on September 1, 2019, in Warsaw with Mr. Yermak. This brief pull-aside conversation followed the larger meeting involving Vice President Pence and President Zelensky, in which President Zelensky had raised the issue of the suspension of U.S. aid to Ukraine directly with Vice President Pence. After that large meeting, I now recall speaking individually with Mr. Yermak, where I said that resumption of U.S. aid would likely not occur until Ukraine provided the public anti-corruption statement that we had been discussing for many weeks. I also recall some question as to whether the public statement could come from the newly appointed Ukrainian Prosecutor General, rather than from President Zelensky directly.

6. Soon thereafter, I came to understand that, in fact, the public statement would need to come directly from President Zelensky himself. I do not specifically recall how I learned this, but I believe that the information may have come either from Mr. Giuliani or from Ambassador Volker, who may have discussed this with Mr. Giuliani. In a later conversation with Ambassador Taylor, I told him that I had been mistaken about whether a public statement could come from the Prosecutor General; I had come to understand that the public statement would have to come from President Zelensky himself.

7. Finally, as of this writing, I cannot specifically recall if I had one or two phone calls with President Trump in the September 6-9 time frame. Despite repeated requests to the White House and the State Department, I have not been granted access to all of the phone records, and I would like to review those phone records, along with any notes and other documents that may exist, to determine if I can provide more complete testimony to assist Congress. However, although I have no specific recollection of phone calls during this period with Ambassador Taylor or Mr. Morrison, I have no reason to question the substance of their recollection about my September 1 conversation with Mr. Yermak.

I declare under penalty of perjury that the aforementioned is true.


#5 is the killer. 10 days later the aid was released and 23 days after that an investigation into Burisma was announced. Chas, would I be right in thinking that should a link between those two events be demonstrated, that would be enough to convince even you of wrongdoing?
(-: Zel :-)

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#14210 User is offline   barmar 

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Posted 2019-November-06, 11:08

View Postjohnu, on 2019-November-05, 02:22, said:

I don't really understand the frenzy over the quid pro quo extortion of Ukraine. Sure, it's icing on the cake, but just asking the Ukraine to investigate Biden is an impeachable offense.

The extortion makes it an abuse of power, which is much more serious than simply asking.

#14211 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2019-November-06, 14:18

View Postbarmar, on 2019-November-06, 11:08, said:

The extortion makes it an abuse of power, which is much more serious than simply asking.

Extortion is a separate and different crime, and also an impeachable offense. A rhetorical question - how many impeachable offenses do you have to commit to be impeached?
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#14212 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-November-06, 15:22

Which is the greater offense doesn't matter, as Alexander Hamilton explained:

Quote

“In many cases it[impeachment] will connect itself with the pre-existing factions, and will enlist all their animosities, partialities, influence, and interest on one side or the other, and in such cases there will always be the gravest danger that the decision will be regulated more by the comparative strength of parties, than by the real demonstrations of innocence or guilt.”


Impeachment is not a criminal action nor a criminal trial, which are reasons the Supreme Court was rejected as an adjudicator of the removal decision.

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#14213 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2019-November-06, 15:56

This NYT story by Jason Zengerle paints an interesting portrait of Adam Schiff. It includes characters like the "badasses", who wrote the op-ed that united the Democrats, and the "dipshits" like Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz who stormed the SCIF. Well written from beginning to end:

Quote

"This president, he’s like a planetary object,” Adam Schiff said. “He warps time. And things that you think happened a couple weeks ago, it turns out, only happened a day or two ago.”

Schiff was slumped in a chair in his Washington office, tie askew and eyebrows ruffled, as if he’d been kneading his forehead. It was a little past 5:30 p.m. on the first Friday of October, the end of a week that, Schiff thought, “has been like three years compressed into a week.”

This was true for anyone who had merely tried to follow the news, but it was especially true for Schiff, who was at the center of it. Ten days earlier, on Sept. 24, Nancy Pelosi, the speaker of the House of Representatives — who had spent much of the year trying to rein in the growing number of House Democrats who wanted to impeach President Trump — stood in the Capitol in front of a row of American flags and announced that the House was moving forward with an “official impeachment inquiry.” Soon after, she announced that Schiff, a California representative and chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, would be leading the investigation.

...

Quote

On one of the rare mornings in October that the Intelligence Committee wasn’t holding a deposition, Schiff sat in a dingy cafeteria in the Capitol basement, filled with Capitol police officers eating their breakfasts, and sipped an unsweetened iced tea. The “dam was breaking,” he said: More and more witnesses were coming forward to testify against Trump. “The portrait of a president who continues to put his personal interests above the national interests is coming into sharper and sharper view.” His phone rang; Pelosi wanted to see him right away in her office. In a few hours, he would leave with the speaker as part of a small congressional delegation on an unannounced trip to Jordan and Afghanistan.

As he headed to the elevator, Schiff told me a story about a sailboat ride he shared with Pelosi earlier this year, in the waters off Hyannis Port, on Cape Cod, during a Democratic fund-raising weekend. When they left the harbor, the skies were clear. But then “the clouds rolled in, and the wind picked up, and the skies darkened, and the rain started coming down,” Schiff said. “Soon we were ‘burying the rail’ ” — heeling so far to one side that the rail of the boat was underwater. The captain was worried about the stomachs and nerves of his V.I.P. passengers. “He said, ‘We can lower the sail and motor back,’ ” Schiff recalled. “And the speaker’s reaction was: ‘Yes, you could, but that would be the cowardly thing to do.’ And so the captain said, ‘Keep the sail up.’ ”

I asked Schiff if he would have preferred the safer choice of motoring back. “No,” he said. “I was loving it.”

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#14214 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-November-06, 19:23

Quote

By
Matt Zapotosky,
Josh Dawsey and
Carol D. Leonnig
November 6, 2019 at 7:02 p.m. CST

President Trump wanted Attorney General William P. Barr to hold a news conference declaring the commander in chief had broken no laws during a phone call in which he pressed his Ukrainian counterpart to investigate a political rival, though Barr ultimately declined to do so, people familiar with the matter said.

The request from Trump traveled from the president, to other White House officials, and eventually to the Justice Department. The president has mentioned Barr’s declination to associates in recent weeks, saying he wished Barr would have held the news conference, Trump advisers say.


The pond ice where Barr has been skating is getting thinner and he knows it.

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#14215 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2019-November-07, 08:13

Of the 6 seats in the Virginia House of Delegates that Dems flipped on Tuesday, 4 were in districts whose maps were redrawn by court order in April. Will Dems enact reforms that take politics out of Virginia redistricting for good when they convene in January? I expect so. Ditto for passing legislation that allows cities and counties to use ranked choice voting in local elections as a first step toward possibly using ranked choice some day to elect Virginia and U.S. members of Congress.
If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#14216 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-November-07, 08:55

View PostWinstonm, on 2019-November-06, 19:23, said:



The pond ice where Barr has been skating is getting thinner and he knows it.



Marcy Wheeler at emptywheel.net explains further:

Quote

Had Barr made that public comment, with his knowledge that the subject of the complaint connected to an ongoing investigation in SDNY into the underlying information operation that led up to the President’s call, his involvement in the Durham investigation that had already been fed by that information operation, and his meeting with lawyers that helped to provide a payoff for some of that information operation, it would have been an overt act that even Barr, with his abundant flair for PR (as witnessed by this WaPo article), could not deny was an overt act in a conspiracy being investigated by his subordinates.

So instead, he had a different subordinate (there is no evidence Kupec had any knowledge of these other acts) do that.

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#14217 User is offline   Zelandakh 

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Posted 2019-November-07, 11:33

Here is a useful WP article providing a lot more detail on the timeline of events in that critical early September period.
(-: Zel :-)

half-wit -- Chas_P the racist
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#14218 User is offline   barmar 

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Posted 2019-November-07, 12:00

View Postjohnu, on 2019-November-06, 14:18, said:

Extortion is a separate and different crime, and also an impeachable offense. A rhetorical question - how many impeachable offenses do you have to commit to be impeached?

The House could probably impeach him on just one.

But the Senate is a different matter. The Senate Republicans are firmly on Trump's side, so if there's any hope of them convicting and removing him the offense would have to be especially eggregious (and so far, no single offense seems likely) or there would have to be so many offenses that they can't forgive him.

#14219 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-November-07, 13:57

View Postbarmar, on 2019-November-07, 12:00, said:

The House could probably impeach him on just one.

But the Senate is a different matter. The Senate Republicans are firmly on Trump's side, so if there's any hope of them convicting and removing him the offense would have to be especially eggregious (and so far, no single offense seems likely) or there would have to be so many offenses that they can't forgive him.


I think you are either misreading the situation or not being clear in your language choice. There is no chance of the Senate Republicans convicting unless there is enough public backlash that they would fear from not convicting genuine political harm, i.e., elections and re-elections. Honor, honesty, integrity, abiding by oaths of office - those immigrants were long ago deported.

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#14220 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2019-November-07, 17:05

Bloomberg to enter the fray? That would make things interesting.
If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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