Sunday, February 7, 2021

Who Needs Witnesses? We Do!

The Spy's Report from Washington

By Scott V. Sandford, Justice Correspondent with
Hamilton Burger, Spy Contributing Criminal Jurisprudence Expert

The second trial of one Donald Trump begins next week in the Senate chamber, this time under the control of Democrats not firmly committed to sweeping the inconvenient facts surrounding the January 6th insurrection under the rug or whatever that thing is on Trump's head.

Don't expect a conviction, now that 45 treason-lovin' Trumpublicans have already lined up around the transparently frivolous pretext that a crooked President no longer in office can't be prevented by conviction following impeachment from running again although that it is one of the two penalties specified for such a conviction in the Constitution.

Don't believe the mainstream media?  Read Article I, Section 3 it for yourself: 

You'd think the best way to persuade 2/3 of the Senate that the Tangerine-Faced Traitor should not be allowed to resume his subversion in 2024 would be to put on an overwhelming case that would establish beyond any reasonable doubt that he was guilty of fomenting insurrection, as charged in the Article of Impeachment.

If you thought that though, you wouldn't be a Democrat:

Testimony by Mr. Trump or other White House or military officials could clarify that. But in this case, a greater understanding would almost certainly prolong the trial by weeks or longer. Republicans are averse to an extended airing of Mr. Trump’s conduct, but for Democrats, the cost would be steep to their ambitions to pass coronavirus relief legislation and install the remainder of Mr. Biden’s cabinet — with very little chance of ultimately changing the verdict of the trial.

Senator Chuck Schumer, Democrat of New York and the majority leader, with whom the decision will most likely rest, has indicated would be comfortable proceeding without witnesses. 

Why would you be comfortable putting on less than your best and strongest case? Who does that?

Our friend Jill Wine-Banks, as part of the Watergate Special Prosecution team knew full well she needed real testimony to make her case.  Speaking of lying scumbag Jeb Magruder, she wrote, “After weeks of questioning, Magruder finally implicated others in the cover-up. . . . [and] told us that John Mitchell had approved the Watergate bugging scheme. . . .”  

She also wouldn't approve Magruder's plea deal until she had obtined sufficient witness corroboration.  That's how it's done.   (J. Wine-Banks, The Watergate Girl at 31-38.)

Why should a impeachment trial on which the future of our democracy hangs be any different?

To build the case that the Loser-in-Chief really did what he is charged with:


here are the witnesses we would call:

1.  Acting Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller.  On January 6, facing a violent armed insurrection that had breached the Capitol and was then rampaging through its halls, injuring and mudering Capitol Police Officers, the then-Chief of the Capitol Police, Stephen Sund, asked the Pentagon to send in the DC National Guard.  He was stonewalled.  He was apparently not aware that Miller had previously issued the following directive to prevent the Guard from coming to the aid of the US Capitol:

Miller could testify as to what prompted this memo, and whether he had had, directly or indirectly. any communications with or directions from the President or his agents with regard to the deployment of the DC National Guard in event of an attack on or around January 6.  While they're at it, the Democratic Managers should interview other Trump hacks he installed after the election at the Pentagon, including Kash Patel and Ezra Cohen-Watnick, to find out what they were asked to do by Trump and how they responded.

And let's not forget to interview deranged insurrectionist and pardoned criminal Mike Flynn and his brother, Lt. Gen. Charles A. Flynn who “was involved in a key meeting during its heavily scrutinized response to the deadly assault on the U.S. Capitol.”

2.  In a fine tick-tock, The Washington Post recounted the chaos at the White House on the afternoon of January 6, when it was obvious that defendant Trump's plug-uglies had invaded the Capitol to stop Congressional ratification of the Electoral College results.

Hiding from the rioters in a secret location away from the Capitol, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) appealed to Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser. Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) phoned Ivanka Trump, the president’s daughter.

And Kellyanne Conway, a longtime Trump confidante and former White House senior adviser, called an aide who she knew was standing at the president’s side.

Who knows more about the importance of credible
witness testimony than the Spy's Contributing Expert?

But as senators and House members trapped inside the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday begged for immediate help during the siege, they struggled to get through to the president, who — safely ensconced in the West Wing — was too busy watching fiery TV images of the crisis unfolding around them to act or even bother to hear their pleas.

“He was hard to reach, and you know why? Because it was live TV,” said one close Trump adviser. “If it’s TiVo, he just hits pause and takes the calls. If it’s live TV, he watches it, and he was just watching it all unfold.” . . . 
Meanwhile, in the West Wing, a small group of aides — including Ivanka Trump, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany and Meadows — was imploring Trump to speak out against the violence.

Thanks for providing the witness list.  On this account, none of which has been credibly undercut, the testimony of Mark Meadows, Kevin McCarthy, Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, Kayleigh McEnany and Kellyanne Conway would shed light on what the defendant did or didn't do to stop the insurrection.  If their testimony confirms that the President, once apprised of insurrection, allowed the rampage to worsen, such testimony would confirm that the President was in fact in favor of the insurrection he fomented.

And let's add Mike Pence, whose please for help also went unanswered.  Who did he speak to, and what did they tell him? 

If you don't believe our expert, Jill Wine-Banks agrees that establishing his course of conduct that afternoon is critical to the case.

3.  Rupert Murdoch.  For months, Fox ‘News’ has delivered a non-stop farrago of seditious lies about the election intended to incite the violent protest against the election that took place on January 6.  It is beyond dispute Fox ‘News’ remains in the iron if palsied grip of its owner, Australian plutocrat Rupert Murdoch.  It is also known that he and the defendant were in frequent communication throughout his term.  What did they discuss?  What did Murdoch say and do in the days prior to and including January 6?

Indeed the entire senior management team of the Fox empire should be deposed, including Rupert's trusted lackeys like his son Lachlan Murdoch and Viet Dinh, the hard-right Republican lawyer “responsible for all [Fox] legal, compliance, and regulatory matters, as well as oversight of government and public affairs.”  Sounds as if fomenting or discouraging sedition falls within that brief somewhere. And if it doesn't, how does he justify the $12,000,000 he pocketed last year? 

The only argument we've heard against hearing witness testimony to bolster the case for barring defendant Trump from future office is that lengthening the trial would prevent the Senate from doing other work, like confirming Biden's cabinet.  Fortunately, as so often happens, the defendants' own mouthpieces have undercut his best arguments.

His lawyer Bruce Schoen, claiming that he is shomer Shabbas, has asked the Senate to recess the trial so that he can observe the Sabbath and keep it holy.   That means the Senate, lacking any frummie member since the unlamented departure of “Holy Joe” Lieberman, can work on other business from sunset Friday to sunset Saturday.  

That's all the time they need to confirm President Biden's Cabinet and approve the desperately needed pandemic relief.

So let the testimony begin.  We'll bring the popcorn.

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