Mitch McConnell Pencilling In John Bolton's Testimony For ... Never, Does Never Work For You?
After serious consideration, John Bolton has agreed to act as People's Sexiest Man Alive, should the magazine call upon him to serve. When and if the Nobel Committee nominates him for a Peace Prize, the former National Security Adviser will humbly accept. His hit single Suns Out, Guns Out, Even If It's Raining, by Johnny and the Mustache Riders, is topping the charts, so if the Academy wants to give him a Grammy, he will dutifully drag his tux out of the old mothballs for that award ceremony. And if Mitch McConnell, in his infinite wisdom, seeks to issue John Bolton a subpoena to appear as a witness in Donald Trump's impeachment trial, well, then Mr. Bolton will fulfill his patriotic duty and appear as summoned.
"Accordingly, since my testimony is once again at issue, I have had to resolve the serious competing issues as best I could, based on careful consideration and study. I have concluded that, if the Senate issues a subpoena for my testimony, I am prepared to testify," Bolton wrote on his PAC website this morning.
Bolton flatly refused to comply with the subpoena issued by the House of Representatives, for which he was roundly pilloried. Hiding behind White House Counsel Pat Cipollone's skirts, he professed to be trapped between his burning desire to testify and the president's claim of "absolute immunity" for the entire executive branch. What a wrenching dilemma! Don't you just feel terrible for poor John Bolton?
Describing the White House's facially bogus invocation of privilege as a "momentous Constitutional question," Bolton insisted that he couldn't possibly appear without a court order, knowing full well that final legal resolution could take years. At the same time, he took advantage of the publicity around the case to goose sales of his upcoming book, promising that he had important information on "many relevant meetings and conversations that have not yet been discussed in the testimonies thus far." Preorder your copy now!
And though both the White House and Congress moved to dismiss the lawsuit, Bolton blames the House entirely for refusing to let him drag out impeachment through endless litigation. How very dare the House go "so far as to withdraw its subpoena to Dr. Kupperman in a deliberate attempt to moot the case and deprive the court of jurisdiction" and instead rely on the mountain of evidence they got without him to impeach the president! Clearly they're not worthy of his time, and even though Bolton has wrestled with his conscience and decided that actually he can obey the law and show up when summoned, he's never going to cooperate with the House. You know ... in case Adam Schiff gets any bright ideas about reissuing that subpoena.
The House has concluded its Constitutional responsibility by adopting Articles of Impeachment related to the Ukraine matter. It now falls to the Senate to fulfill its Constitutional obligation to try impeachments, and it does not appear possible that a final judicial resolution of the still-unanswered Constitutional questions can be obtained before the Senate acts.
But now that there's absolutely zero chance that he'll be called by the Senate, he's had a road to Damascus conversion. Hosanna!
Yeahyeah, we see everyone on Twitter saying this will magically shame the GOP into demanding that Bolton and Mulvaney testify, lest this whole thing look like a sham, EGADS!
And Chuck Schumer is out there insisting that, "It is now up to four Senate Republicans to support bringing in Mr. Bolton, and the other three witnesses, as well as the key documents we have requested to ensure all the evidence is presented at the onset of a Senate trial." AS IF he actually believes Susan Collins's limpwristed expressions of concern.
Look, brass tacks, Mitch McConnell did not get the nickname The Grim Reaper by giving a rat's ass about public opinion. Or consistency. Or law. Or precedent. Or basic decency. Or America.
This is the guy who held a Supreme Court seat open for a year, and would still be holding it open if Clinton had won. He got rid of the filibuster rule and blue slips for judges, jammed through a massive tax giveaway to corporations and the wealthy via reconciliation, and tried to do the same thing to take away healthcare for millions of Americans. He does not give a fuck, which is why John Bolton is trying to launder his own reputation by pretending that he didn't do his damnedest to obstruct a congressional impeachment investigation. If it gets 5,000 more people to download his book, then it's totally worth it, right?
Because Bolton knows perfectly well that Mitch McConnell would rather fly coach, in the middle seat, between the heads of the NAACP and the Council on American Islamic Relations, than have him testify in the Senate.
Bolton's gonna make him an offer he can't NOT refuse. And McConnell's gonna definitely NOT take him up on it.
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Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.