Last week, in the wake of Nancy Pelosi announcing that she intended to proceed with the impeachment of Donald Trump, I wrote the following about how the actual trial will be conducted:
The only wild card, of course, are the Senate Republicans. They performed admirably during the fight to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court last year—but do they have the stomach to draw blood during an impeachment trial? Because that’s what it’s going to take. Democrats are the ones who started this scorched-earth campaign, and McConnell should make damned sure they suffer the consequences.
Well, now it appears as if that concern was not misplaced. That’s because Senate Republicans, true to form, have already started to balk at the prospect of an extended trial that would keep Democrats tied up well through the Iowa caucuses next February. And if you think that sounds craven and linguine-spined, get this—some of them don’t even want to call any witnesses:
Well, ain’t that just Jim Dandy. Throughout the travesty that House Democrats called an impeachment “inquiry,” all I’ve heard about is how the whole thing was nothing but a Soviet-style show trial where Adam Schiff just made up the rules as he went along and the President had no right to question his accusers. But just you watch out, everyone said, because if the Democrats dared to pull the trigger on impeachment then the trial would move to the Senate, where the GOP is in control! Does Pelosi really want Lindsey Graham hauling in Joe Biden and his idiot son to answer questions about Burisma under oath, or chatting with Schiff and the “whistleblower” about how this Ukraine “scandal” was manufactured?
Guess they don’t need to worry about that anymore.
“Here’s what I want to avoid: this thing going on longer than it needs to,” Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina told the Washington Examiner. “I want to end this.”
Yes, quickly and conveniently, without causing any pain or inconvenience for the Democrats. You know, those same Democrats who spent the last three years trying to overturn the results of an election by ginning up a phony story about Russian collusion, and when that didn’t work went to Plan B and criminalized the President’s exercise of foreign policy with Ukraine so they could make up an excuse to impeach him. Never mind that their actions have undermined the rule of law and upended the Constitution—according to Graham and his like-minded warriors of the Senate, Democrats shouldn’t be made to pay a price for that. Hell, Democrats shouldn’t even have to explain themselves, not even when they spy on journalists and his fellow Republicans.
What, you didn’t hear about that?
“No, I don’t have any desire to subpoena Adam Schiff’s phone records,” Graham said. “We’re not going to do that. No, we’re not going to do that. I wouldn’t want my phone records subpoenaed. Now, if some investigative body outside of Senate oversight wants to do it, that’s up to them. But when House members and Senate members start subpoenaing each other as part of oversight, the whole system breaks down.”
Respectfully, Senator Graham, the whole system has already broken down. If it hadn’t, do you think Schiff would be getting secret subpoenas to obtain phone records and then unmasking the targets in his impeachment reports? Would he be coordinating with a State Department lackey operating outside the chain of command to make up dirt about an ordinary phone conversation between the President of the United States and the president of Ukraine? Good Lord, if the system hadn’t already broken down, would there have ever been that circus around the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court last year? Graham himself said to the Democrats during that fiasco, “Boy, you all want power. God, I hope you never get it. I hope the American people can see through this sham.” Did he believe then that the system worked?
What Graham and his cohorts doesn’t understand is that the Democrats are treating this as war—and if they don’t respond in kind, the path ahead can only lead to defeat. President Trump deserves better after everything the Democrats have done, and so do the American people.
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