As they like to say in the horror movie trailers: It… begins…! (Cue bassoons and waterphones.)
If last Wednesday’s solemn and prayerful parade through the Capitol rotunda was the Democratic Party’s funeral march, then impeachment starting this week may be the burial service. Central casting couldn’t have found a more perfect funeral director than the grave and genteel Mitch McConnell.
Of course, the Democrats have been screeching for new witnesses because Adam Schiff (D-CA) muffed his due diligence on the House side. The tactical fallback, courtesy of Lawfare, is to provoke a legal pissing match over executive privilege, which they hope to turn into a campaign ploy in the months ahead: Trump concealed the truth! This time, though, I doubt the Senate rules will give them a chance to run option plays from the Brett Kavanaugh playbook, flooding the end zone with obvious geeks and bottom-feeders of the Michael Avenatti species.
And, naturally, the witness question beats a path directly to the Bidens. Open that door and there is really nothing on God’s green earth that will keep Hunter B out of the witness chair. In which case he will have to reiterate what he said in a TV interview a few months back — they’ll play the recording in-session — which is that he got the $83-K-a-month do-nothing gig on the Burisma board-of-directors because he was the Vice-president’s son. Or he can change his story and cast himself as a liar. It would not be necessary to call Joe Biden, just submit in evidence that recording of him bragging on how he strong-armed the Ukrainians to shut down their Burisma investigation by threatening to withhold a billion-dollar aid-and-loan package. Hmmmm. Sounds suspiciously like what Mr. Trump is accused of, absent evidence.
Was Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) playing dumb on Face the Nation Sunday when he said Hunter Biden shouldn’t testify because he has no knowledge of the accusation? Or, is Mr. Nadler just dumb enough to forget that in a trial, the person accused of something is called the defendant because he’s entitled to defend himself? The corruption in the Hunter B matter is not just obvious, it’s confessed. Everyone seems to have forgotten that the US has a treaty with Ukraine on mutual legal assistance in criminal matters signed at Kiev on July 22, 1998. How, exactly, does that not apply to Mr. Trump’s conversation with Mr. Zelensky?
Well, all this tends, naturally, to questions around the 2020 election. Though the polls cast Joe B as front-runner, I fail to see how he survives the Ukraine payola scheme as a viable candidate. On top of which is his pretty obvious mental deterioration. Half the time, he doesn’t seem to know what state he’s in, and the most amazing things come out of his pie-hole — the latest being his gaffe about Beto O’Rourke being a Latino. Did Uncle Joe not meet the man half a dozen times at debate venues?
Bernie Sanders looked to be coming on strong in recent weeks, until Project Veritas caught some of his field managers threatening to burn down Milwaukee if he was deprived of the nomination and then proceed with a national insurrection. Was that a true colors moment? Voters have a right to wonder if Bernie is piloting a garbage barge of old-time Bolshevism, complete with the requisite reign of terror.
Just today The New York Times endorsed Elizabeth Warren and Amy Klobuchar for president. Yes, you probably thought what I thought initially: one for Prez, one for Veep. Actually, no, it was both for Prez. How’s that supposed to work? Well, it’s just a ruse, of course, because both are foundering in the polls, and poor Ms. Warren is on tape lying about herself so many times that you’d see more of that on TV than Seinfeld reruns before next November. The New York Times is actually holding out for the resurrection of Hillary Clinton. Isn’t this the perfect set-up for old Hillary to swoop into Milwaukee on her leathery wings of fire, like the fearsome Wendigo of Potawatomi legend, and gobble up the delegates? It would be much like the Whigs nominating the old warhorse General Winfield Scott in the election of 1852. That election marked the death of the Whig Party, and with Hillary leading the charge, 2020 would be the end of the Democrats, such as they were known.
The impeachment witness question also redounds upon the fabled “whistleblower,” that Jacob Marley of the impeachment Christmas story, rattling his chains off-stage and wailing of cosmic injustice against the poor Ukrainians. There is no witness more pertinent to this enormous fiasco than that pimpernel of perfidy — and, of course, the long choo-choo train of persons he conspired with, including Adam Schiff and the Lawfare gang. I would love to see him unmasked in the ‘splainin’ seat, spilling the beans on the predication of this whole sordid affair. But it might be better to wait and hear from him in the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings to follow this impeachment circus, where his turpitudes can get the full attention they deserve, with indictments to follow.
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