Democratic House impeachment managers continued their “opening statements” yesterday, arguing that abuse of power is a legitimate basis for impeachment and removal from office. For the second day in a row, Democrats had the impeachment stage to themselves, which must have sent Trump over the edge. He tweeted and re-tweeted more on the first day of opening statements than ever before, then broke his record yesterday, anger-tweeting more than 142 times. His inability to control the proceedings and his anxiety at not being in the spotlight is clearly getting the best of him, which par for the course with any malignant narcissist.
The Democrats again did an excellent job making their case, which included compelling video of Lindsey Graham in 1999 talking about how impeachment doesn’t require that a crime be committed–directly contradicting his current stance. Rep Nadler pointed out to the Senate that Trump’s playbook “is not America first, it is Donald Trump first.” And Rep Adam Schiff’s closing statement created a stir on social media. Schiff admonished Senators to hold Trump responsible for his dangerous abuse of power, echoing Rep Nadler’s sentiment that all of the senators know “you can’t trust this president to do what’s right for this country. You can trust he will do what’s right for Donald Trump.” Schiff closed by saying, “If you find him guilty, you must find that he should be removed. Because right matters. Because right matters. And the truth matters. Otherwise, we are lost.”
The hashtag #RightMatters instantly went viral on social media and political observers said Schiff’s performance was among the best they’d ever seen. And now it does seem that a few Republicans might vote for witnesses, but it’s not clear if they will be enough to carry a vote. Either way, public sentiment is still slowly turning away from the White House. Polling indicates that the percentage of Americans who want witnesses rose from 71% to 72%, including 69% of Republicans! So if Moscow Mitch tries to hold a quick sham trial it will certainly backfire. Republican Senators are as much on trial as Trump in these hearings and they might pay a big price in November if they betray their oaths.
In typically unscrupulous and tyrannical fashion, it was reported last night by CBS that Trump’s legal team warned Senators, “vote against the president and your head will be on a pike.” In a regular courtroom, threatening a juror is a crime, but Republicans don’t seem to care that Trump is dragging them toward authoritarianism.
Meanwhile the real-world consequences of Trump’s disastrous tenure continue to mount. Trump just finalized the rolling back of wetland and clean-water restrictions. According to EcoWatch:
“In addition to rolling back protections for some wetlands and streams that run intermittently or temporarily underground, it will also get rid of a requirement that landowners seek permits from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which had considered permits on a case-by-case basis before 2015.”
To borrow from Adam Schiff, if we don’t run this dangerous buffoon out of office in 2020 “we are lost.” Keep resisting Trump and keep working to “vote his ass out of office.”
Have a nice weekend.