Nancy Pelosi Is Not Here For GOP Impeachment Pisspants Tantrums
There's no good way to spin it. Donald Trump seized $391 million in congressionally appropriated aid for Ukraine and refused to release it until that country's president agreed to do him a political favor. All the GOP's bullshit about NO QUID PRO QUO just crumbled to dust, and so their only option is to throw sand in the gears and then scream about the broken machinery. Hence the Pizza'n'Selfie party in the SCIF and the Senate resolution whining about Democrats following the rules Republicans themselves put in place. Third verse, same as the first.
So ... here's your Monday rundown of all the GOP impeachment fuckery this weekend. It's an all-you-can-eat Bad Faith Buffet, and Devin Nunes is gonna get his money's worth and then raid the salad bar to take something home for YOU KNOW MOO.
Did Hillary Hack Her Own Server to Frame Russia and Then Fly It to Ukraine on Her Broomstick, GOP Is Just Wondering
The Republicans have questions! The are very, very stupid questions. As one Democratic lawmaker told the Washington Post, "There's been zero interest [among the GOP] in actually getting to the conduct of the president. It's not the subject of their questioning at all." Instead they are back on the goddamn Steele Dossier, because 2016 will never end!
Stupid Devin actually used his time to ask Fiona Hill if she was BFFs with Christopher Steele -- someone she knew from back when he worked for MI6. Then he wandered off to do whatever the hell he does, leaving his aide Derek Harvey and Rasslin' Jim Jordan to shout "Bruce Ohr!" and "H.R. McMaster!" and "Pull my finger!"
Republicans appear to be trying to link their concerns about the Steele dossier to Ukraine, a country Trump has said, without evidence, interfered in the election. One Democratic official present for witness testimony said Republicans were asking witnesses things like, "Are you aware that part of the evidence in the Steele Dossier originated in Ukraine?"
"The witnesses are like, 'I have no idea what you're talking about,' which makes sense, because it's totally made up," an official said.
And if you think that's bad ...
They're Trying to Out the Whistleblower
Thanks to the New York Times, the GOP probably has a pretty good idea who the whistleblower is. We're not going to go into it, because we're not paragons of ethics like Dean Baquet, but there's a very small universe of people matching the description he so helpfully insisted on publishing. (Nope, not linking.) It's a safe bet that Republicans have worked out the whistleblower's identity. Which is probably why they're doing their darnedest to get his/her name in the hearing transcript.
The Post reports that "GOP members and staffers have repeatedly raised the name of a person suspected of filing the whistleblower complaint," and are asking pointed questions about this individual's political leanings. The whistleblower is entitled to anonymity under the law, and his/her testimony is unnecessary, since Donald Trump released the transcript confirming the entire complaint. And yet, these anti-patriotic sumbitches are ensuring that anyone who has access to an unredacted copy of that transcript -- which will probably appear in the goddamn Epoch Times next week -- can get a pretty good idea who it might be.
Not that these guys would call in a trollstorm and ruin the life a career public servant but ... yeah, they totally would. (Cf. Pete Strzok, Lisa Page.)
Charles Kupperman, who was on the Ukraine shakedown call in his former post as deputy mustache under then-National Security Adviser John Bolton, had already agreed to testify today. But this Friday, he filed suit against both the House of Representatives and Donald Trump asking a federal judge to decide if congressional subpoenas are UNLEGAL because White House employees are "immune from congressional process" like White House Counsel Pat Cipollone keeps saying. (Spoiler Alert: That is NOT A THING.)
Suing the House is a novel approach, and Kupperman's timing was less than ideal. On the very day that his lawyers claimed, "It is unclear whether a House committee has the authority to issue subpoenas to investigate potentially illegal conduct by an impeachable officer outside the scope of a properly authorized impeachment inquiry" -- which might require Congress to hop in the time machine to go back and undo literally every congressional investigation ever -- Judge Beryl Howell of the same federal court ruled that no vote is required to open an impeachment investigation, "no governing law requires this test—not the Constitution, not House Rules, and not Rule 6(e), and so imposing this test would be an impermissible intrusion on the House's constitutional authority[.]" Womp, womp.
Kupperman may have also bought himself a contempt of Congress charge, as Rep. Adam Schiff threatened in a letter to his lawyers. And furthermore, if the White House blocks witness testimony, not only will Congress pile on additional obstruction charges, but it will "draw an adverse inference against the President" -- which is lawtalk for "if you don't show up to defend your sorry ass, we'll go with the testimony of other witnesses, and those people said you're guilty as sin."
So far the other witnesses aren't trying this shit, so ... we shall see. Kupperman could tie himself up in the courts for ages if he wanted to, but "absolute immunity" is just some nonsense these assholes made up to buy time. It won't work.
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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.