Who Do You Believe: Trump? or Comey?

Donald Trump broke his silence on James Comey’s testimony to the Senate this morning in a press conference. During his testimony Comey described his encounters with the President and accused him of lying and demanding loyalty. Trump had the opportunity to accept responsibility for his words, but instead he refuted the accusations and recounted the exchanges in a way that must implicate one of these two men as a liar. He stated, “No collusion. No obstruction. He’s a leaker.”  In his ad hominem attack, Mr. Trump created either incriminated himself or James Comey. There can be no middle ground; either Comey gave an accurate description of his encounter with Trump, or he lied. Unless any possible tapes of the conversation surface (which is unlikely), the public must decide whom they believe based on the personal character of these two individuals because they were the only witnesses present at the time of the encounters.

Herein lies the problem that Trump created for himself. Comey is a thoroughly vetted former FBI director who testified under oath. He has nothing to gain from giving a false testimony, and he has no history of lying. On the other hand, Trump has never been properly vetted. He never served publicly prior to his electoral win. Because of his myriad false statements, he would never even qualify to serve as an entry-level diplomat for the State Department. Trump will be remembered in history as one of Washington’s most consistent liars. Many independent fact-checkers such as Mother Jones, Politifact, and the Washington Post indicated that during the 2016 election season Trump made more false statements than any other candidate or politician in the United States. Trump has everything to lose if Comey’s story is correct. Trump is not a credible source of accurate information, and the information relayed during his press conference today should be disregarded.

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Poem: Peach Peach Let’s Impeach

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Peach Peach let’s Impeach

Let’s Impeach the Leech

Screech ‘til we Impeach the Leech

 

Bleach Bleach Clorox Bleach

Reach Reach Reach that Bleach

Bleach our guilt so I Beseech

 

Speech Speech give a Speech

Preach Preach Overreach

He Overreached so we Impeach

 

Each Peach now Outreach

Teach Speech now Outreach

Teach our children how to Preach

– BD King ©2017

What Does Gorsuch’s Nomination Mean

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DJT will occupy the White House for two, maybe four, or if hellfire inundates the political landscape of these United States, for eight more years. In contrast, Neil Gorsuch will occupy his new seat in the Supreme Court for much longer. The Senate has, for one hundred years, required three fifths of the Senate (or sixty senators) to agree to vote to confirm a Supreme Court Justice. A cloture vote that would require the Senate to cease filibuster was too high for any majority party to intercede. This is because by tradition it was understood that Supreme Court Justices should be apolitical, and that both minority and majority parties should agree on the nominee.

In 2005 Supreme Court Nominee Harriet Miers met with the Senate Judiciary where she was encountered opposition. Miers had never actually served as a judge, and was perceived as one of Bush’s political protégés. At the time Republicans held a majority in the U.S. Senate, but requiring votes from Democrats, Miers withdrew her name knowing that she would never earn the approval of the minority party who would have filibustered. Enough Democrats did agree to nomination of the very conservative Samuel Alito who they believed to be less partisan and more experienced. In 1968 Republicans used a filibuster to delay a vote on Abe Fortas. He was not able to gain enough cloture votes to proceed, and Fortas soon thereafter withdrew his name. This system has worked for both Republicans and Democrats. Filibuster is a safety net to prevent political extremists from being elected to the Supreme Court.

President Barack Obama presented an apolitical centrist judge in Merrick Garland. The Senate (Mitch McConnell and the Republican leadership) decided that they would gamble on the 2016 Election by not allowing a hearing for Garland. Because they chose obstruction, America was deprived a Supreme Court Judge for over a year.

Then entered DJT who presented Neil Gorsuch, who unlike Garland was neither apolitical, nor a centrist. Republican senators, used their simple majority to block Garland, did not have enough votes to force a cloture. Instead of discussing Gorsuch’s nomination, and working with Democrats, they changed a one-hundred-year-old rule that protected Americans from electing political hacks into the Supreme Court.

The Republicans rushed to put in Neil Gorsuch. Perhaps, they acted so hastily because DJT is currently under federal investigation for treason, and the U.S. Senate wanted to install a conservative judge before impeachment hearings would ultimately halt the nomination process. Republican senators such as Ted Cruz certainly had no interest in investigating the nominee. During Gorsuch’s hearing the instead of asking him about pertinent issues regarding his his positions, the Texas senator asked him about how he enjoyed rodeos in Colorado. Democrats believe that DJT is not in a position to nominate a Supreme Court Justice because Supreme Court Justices, unlike U.S. Presidents, remain in power until they die or choose to retire, and the confirmation of a Supreme Court Justice with ties to a possible fraudulent Trump presidency would easily have devastating effects, lasting for generations.

Republicans will not hold the White House and Congress forever. What goes up must come down. The tide will turn, but this Senate rule will not. Mitch McConnell has affixed a Band-Aid to heal an infected contusion. He won this battle, but in the end America has lost. He has set a precedent to allow all future Supreme Court nominees to become political appointments. I hope that when Democrats win back the Senate, that they take the higher ground by reinstating filibuster for Supreme Court judges.