Today the Senate acquitted former president Donald Trump of the charge of inciting an insurrection. Fifty-seven senators said he was guilty; 43 said he was not guilty. An impeachment conviction requires a two-thirds majority of the Senate, so he was acquitted, but not before seven members of his own party voted to convict him.
McConnell pulled another Merrick Garland gambit. By delaying the trial himself, he provided the false framework to 'rely' on a patently false procedural cover. Knowing the right wing zealots have no idea (nor do they care) about proper or improper procedure, he skates to whatever outcome he wants.
This is what happens with cabals: ends justify means. His mission with that disgustingly hypocritical rant was to open the money spigots of the corporate givers who claim they don't like Trump anymore. Likely they don't like him because they're afraid their customers dislike him so much they'll spend elsewhere. There's no honor here; there's just crass political and economic calculus.
The one good thing that watching the 'trial' delivered for me was an introduction to Jamie Raskin. What an extraordinary mensch. Brilliant, articulate, so many more positive adjectives...he was the highlight of what was a dreadful week. When things seem and feel really bad in the world (both my personal/family world and the larger one out there), I look for someone who persists in the face of it all, and try to convince myself that it's not all bad, because, "See? There's a Jamie Raskin in the world after all." His eloquence and genuine caring got me through a really bad week.
I knew the republican senators would not be moved to anything resembling a conscience vote; cabals don't deviate. But I was yet again trounced by the reality that there's no there there. McConnell's cynical soliloquy was just too much foam on the brew.
Good lord, but we need people who care. I think Biden does care, and his agenda and the fact that he has a great team with him will move us into the right path again, but I fear that we are truly in a prolonged siege for control. And it has always felt to me that bad people are better at getting control than good people.
Not my prose, but my brother said I could share.
Subject: The Second Insurrection
Once again the U.S. Capitol Building has been occupied by a traitorous mob of Un-American seditionists determined to overthrow the Constitution which forms the basis of our Democracy. For the second time in two months a mob of traitors has assembled within the walls of the Capitol Building itself, to desecrate the foundations of democratic government. The felonious mob that assembled in the Capitol on January 6, 2021 wreaked havoc through property destruction and loss of life. Their sedition was brief and promptly faded away as the cowards that they were quickly slithered back under the rocks from which they had emerged.
But today, the Capitol is once again occupied by traitors. Traitors who have determined to abandon their oaths of office, to abandon the Constitution, to abandon their Country and its Democratic principles. These traitors pose a much greater threat to the United States than did the slime which covered the Capitol floors on January 6th. Slime can be quickly washed away, and forgotten. But this collection of vermin is different. These rodents are supposed to wash away the slime. Instead, the group of Trumpublicans currently occupying the Senate Chambers will continue the stain on the United States by their boot licking fealty to a failed dictator, Donald Trump. The stain left by these traitors will continue. On January 6th, the Capitol was stained by riotous outside extremists, who will soon be incarcerated and duly forgotten. But the stain of the traitorous Trumpublicans is from the inside of the Senate itself. It will last beyond their terms in office and remain a stain on their institution, and themselves, into history. They have chosen fealty to The Big Lie over their nation and its institutions. Their shame will last forever.
Thank you for this. It is the Republicans who caved by voting to acquit; some issued statements afterward explaining their acquittal on technical grounds that won't age well, especially as more information comes out in the trials of the mob.
Listening to the trial reminded me that we have spent four years subjected to a loud and whiny authoritarian who tells lie after lie; those extended clips of Donald Trump were like the return of a nightmare. It's time to shove Trump off the national stage and into the criminal courts, where he belongs.
This trial was really one last chance for the Republican Party to redeem itself. They failed.
It's time to get back to President Biden's agenda.
I am disillusioned and disheartened...
1. How is it that the defense lawyers could lie but face no repercussions? Do they not take an oath? Why is this allowed?
2. How is it that senators could take an oath agreeing to be impartial but then blatantly meet with the defense lawyers to strategize? Since they were obviously not impartial, why were they allowed to have a vote?
3. And under that same oath they agreed to listen to the evidence, but some were absent for hours at a time, missing presentations and still allowed to vote?
4. How is it that once the Senate agreed by a majority that the impeachment trial was indeed constitutional, some senators voted not guilty saying their decision was because they felt the trial was unconstitutional? How could they be allowed to totally disregard the earlier Senate majority vote just because they were on the losing side of that vote? Shouldn’t their votes be nullified? Does this set a precedent?
It just seems that even though rules are made, there are no consequences for not following them, thus making them meaningless. I just keep shaking my head...
Trump will fade away as Palin did. Trump, in retrospect, will seen as a national embarrassment. There will be a commission or special counsel. Participants will be required to testify under oath. A clear picture of Trump's role will once again be outlined to the public - just prior to the mid-terms. Those who challenged the results of the 2020 presidential election on 6 January 2021 and those who opposed the impeachment will be vilified for their craven positions.
Meanwhile, those who are disgusted with the big lie, the insurrection and the impeachment must take a lesson from Stacey Abrams . Work on 'getting out the vote'. Get involved in the primaries. Put up solid candidates. Georgia's two new senators, in a red state, should galvanize those who think turning a red states blue is impossible. Ensure that the midterm election will be a barn burner. Teach the Republicans a lesson.
The Republican Party chose their direction today to be the party of hate, conspiracy theories, lies and violence. My response was to write to Senator Cornyn, U.S. Representative Chip Roy and Texas Representative Andrew Murr, all Republicans, that I will never vote for a person with an R (or a Q or T for that matter) next to their name ever again at all levels - local, state and federal. I did put in a caveat that if the Republican Party were to split and a Party of Lincoln created I would consider voting for people of that party. As Heather pointed this direction for the Republican Party goes back to 1986 and Donald John Trump is a symptom not a cause of their plans success so far although he may have accelerated it. My real fear now is that the Trumpian Republicans now have majorities in the legislatures of many states. Trump will fade from the picture as his legal and financial trials overwhelm him, but the White Nationalist and all their ilk are united and emboldened after their victory on January 6th and feel it is the start of the war for White Supremacy they've been planning for decades. We need to use the Power of the People to get them to replace the Autocratic Republican Party which is destroying democratic institutions with a party that is supporting democracy and its institutions. There is also other steps in the grass roots effort -- 1. term limits in Congress (for example, twelve years - 2 terms in the Senate and 6 in the House) and probably the Supreme Court as well 2. voting rights for every citizen which solves every one getting to vote in much the same way we're learning how to get the COVID vaccine to literally everyone. 3. campaign reform - if corporations are people than they only get one monetary vote (the same limit placed on individuals) 4. A candidate's oath to honesty and to the support of the people above all else. In other words, a movement where it will be We the People -- All of us, this time!
Defeat is just a bump in the road to victory. Dems bent the moral arc toward justice, even if Repugs bent it back somewhat.
On this weekend of Abraham Lincoln's birthday, let us consider some words of his.
“The best thing about the future is that it comes one day at a time.”
"With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in."
With the busy-ness of the week and the obvious headlines, it was not until this evening that I looked into Rep. Jamie Raskin’s reference to the son he just buried. Tommy Raskin was a truly remarkable 25 year old young man who did much to make this world a better place in the too few years he graced us, as clearly taught well by his parents.
I’ve thought that if one of my children died, I’d be curled up in bed for a solid month. Jamie Raskin brought all of his professional and life experience to bear in an exemplary job of leading the Impeachment trial—while still grieving his loss. He’s really one of the good guys.
You argue almost as beautifully as Representative Raskin, giving context and explanation for the Democrat cave-in today. I’ll think about all your points. I want you to be correct! I want to feel the optimism of many others who have commented here. But despite such coherent reasoning, it seems like you are putting lipstick on a pig.
Something very dangerous happened today that you leave out. Donald Trump was exonerated by the Senate for insurrection and attempted assassination of its members. And he didn’t even have to appear to answer for it. He just turned down an ‘invitation’ His lackeys appeared and lied for him. Had he at least been forced to appear, for the first time we would have optics that he is not above having to answer to Congress, even if acquitted. Instead, he proved without doubt that he does not have to answer to Congress and that he is powerful enough to not only to stage an attack on Congress and our Constitution, but to coerce 43 members of the Senate and 197 members to support him for doing so. That is terrifying. Terrifying for his continuing power, but also terrifying to imagine Democrats in Congress seem to think they can still govern at all with this reality. (how can the Republicans threaten to filibuster indefinitely when Democrats can just remove that option? Why do Democrats always back down from Republican threats when time and again, they see what happens?)
I don’t expect to hear demands from Congress or Biden for an independent commission with none of the brakes and containment put on Robert Mueller. The idea that the courts will rein in Trump is kind of laughable. Not that he won’t lose lawsuits, but clearly no one has the guts to sentence him to any prison time. Hell, we still can’t even get his taxes, let alone thorough inquiries into his full corruption of the White House and the Executive Branch. I suspect he’s well into planning his next coup and that he has learned a lot more about our weaknesses. I mean, if you can get away with trying to murder your own Vice President and House Speakers, what can possibly be in your way?
I saw a meme yesterday something like, “The system is not broken, it was built this way.” I suppose that refers to our system of governance that was built by mostly aristocratic white men in the 18th Century, with an assumption of men with honor participating. If you assaulted a man’s honor you might be facing a deadly duel with pistols or swords. They never anticipated mass communication consumed by the ignorant & dishonorable, foisting an idiot into the presidency & dishonorable ppl into Congress. Nor that their failsafe to prevent this, the Electoral College would fall to the same partisan idiocy. It lasted 2 centuries & 45 years until the malevolent 45th president and a complicit Congress proved it was inadequate.
In my lifetime, which started in WWII, (4 years before George Orwell wrote his tale of a dystopian future in “1984”) and went thru the time of racial segregation, communist witch hunts, homosexual oppression, continuous useless wars of the military industrial complex, a deadly pandemic of HIV (which showed a glimpse of the ignorance of the masses before our present viral pandemic) I thot things were getting better. We had made strides in civil rights for minorities and elected a biracial president. Then to get blindsided on November 8, 2016, my 72nd birthday and my great-grandson’s first by the ignorant, bigoted masses electing a totally unqualified mentally ill man to the presidency. And for 4 dreadful years suffering the assaults of a complicit, enabling Repugnant Party to this madness and watching old prejudices which had been suppressed, resurface as the norm, I finally thot in 2020 that America was back. But, the madman and his violent minions have escaped without consequence and are a continuing threat. My great-grandson, if he survives may someday as an old man write “In my lifetime, which started in the downfall of America ...”
50 Democratic Senators and 7 Republican Senators vote to Convict Donald John Trump.
The final vote in the Senate impeachment trial fails to achieve the required 2/3 majority required for the conviction of former President Donald John Trump. However, it must be noted that this not only exceeds a majority vote in favor of conviction (57 to 43 for conviction) but is also the largest number of votes for conviction by percentage and an absolute number of votes for a Presidential impeachment conviction. It is also the largest number of votes by the President's own party for impeachment conviction in U.S. history.
Now it is time to move on to the Biden agenda for the American people. There is little to be gained from a continued focus on Donald John Trump. The District Attorney of Fulton County Georgia, the District Attorney in the city of New York, and the Attorney General of the State of New York, and perhaps others may continue their criminal pursuit of Donald Trump, or not as they choose. There are over 200 insurrectionists already arrested and charged by the FBI and DOJ for various offenses related to the January 6 Capitol riot. Many of those are already naming Trump as an "unindicted co-conspirator" and the individual ordering their participation and motivating their criminality that day. Each of those trials is sure to be a further condemnation of Trump's behavior in the days leading up to and on January 6, 2021.
However, it is time to let the courts and historians do their fault finding and condemnations and for us to move on and do our tasks. That is my opinion.
I hope others will remember this day and the events leading up to it, but be able to move on successfully to the tasks in front of us.
I'm 66 years of age, and have never missed voting in any election (from school board on up), and have never once voted for a Republican or any of their offshoots.
It's high time the rest of this nation caught up to me.
Yesterday I wept for my country, for the perfidy of senate women and men who voted for their own election futures as they saw it and not for our country, and the blatant machinations of mcconnell. That this whole farce will be forever writ large in our history my hope is that it will be read as the warning that is it as to how fragile democracy is and not as the playbook that it might be. I had listened with rapt attention to the proceedings for most of the week , but had to turn away as mcconnell went on and on trying to balance on the fence of what he saw as political expediency.
Today I have put away my tissues, pulled up my big girl panties and rededicated myself to work to support the election of men and women across my state who will work for our country and not just themselves as well as helping men and women across the country with the same goals. Urge your congress people to support HR1 . https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/congress-we-demand-a-democracy-that-works-for-us That will be a good place to start for all of us and we all have our work cut out for us.
Rep. Jamie Raskin was the shining light that we all turned to as we all turn toward a fire to warm ourselves we hoped by his reflected light to feel a little less alone in the dark. If the democratic party does not take advantage of his abilities to move their agenda forward and put him in positions of power to do good for all of us they have lost their way indeed.
Our work is not done people, it has just begun.
The lack of a conviction is a travesty, both infuriating and heartbreaking. It galls me that Trump will continue to receive a pension, full medical care, a $1M annual travel budget and secret service protection at taxpayers’ expense. Whether he will run again remains to be seen, of course, but his statement today said that his MAGA campaign is just beginning. He and his acolytes are going to cast a dark shadow over this country for some time to come. I hope that he and many of his sycophants will face a raft of penalties and charges in criminal courts.
And now, there is work to do. There are approximately 165 proposals in 33 States aimed at making it more difficult to vote. www.axios.com/state-voter-suppression-proposals-5ee31df3-8e98-4bf5-8910-7bc6db704f15.html
We need to turn the tide on voter suppression. Every American of voting age should have the opportunity to vote.
In Colorado, where 100% of registered voters automatically receive a ballot in the mail, voter participation in the November, 2020 election was 86.7% and 99.3% of all votes were cast with a ballot that was either mailed or dropped off at one of hundreds of drop boxes across the State. Smooth, straightforward and zero controversy. (Well, except the serious matter of the very controversial Representative Boebert, who will need to be voted out in 2022, if she lasts that long, but even she was fairly elected in her district.)
If you would like to take action in your State to increase vote-by-mail options, the National Vote at Home Institute can help: https://voteathome.org/about-us/
Ms. HCR, thank you, this is a very clear analysis of what happened in the Senate yesterday and what it means in the overall political context. Calling witnesses and extending the impeachment trial would have added little to the historical record so ably established by Congressman Rankin and the other House managers, and would have only created more GOP opportunities to lie bigly and disseminate their own alternatively factual version of the events on Jan. 6th.
I thought Mitch McConnell's cynical speech on the Senate floor minutes after the acquittal vote was astonishing, both as an accurate description of Trump's crimes against the Constitution and our nation, and as a desperate attempt to somehow jettison Trump while saving the GOP from itself, given that Trump is now inseparable from the mass of kool-Aid-drinking GOP voters.
McConnell's gambit can only work (that is, save his GOP to "fight" another day), if Trump is dragged before the courts, convicted of felonies and sent to prison for years, but even if we do get the satisfaction of seeing the inciter-in-chief perp-walked into court in an orange suit, it seems unlikely that the furies he has unleashed among the white, rural, god-fearing, gun-loving right will dissipate or return to their box anytime soon.
While Trump has likely already had his 15 minutes of notoriety, McConnell is a real piece of work and a clever, diabolical politician. Democrats have their work cut out for them and must not hesitate to overpower and embarrass McConnell at every opportunity, get rid of the filibuster, add states to the Union, do whatever it takes to address the real needs of citizens and begin winning elections.
National unity - if this is even possible - will require many years of good government.
A very sad day in America indeed. Only 100 Americans get to be a Senator at the same time. And 43 of them abandoned their responsibility and showed that the qualifications for this role have been minimized. For them, this was not about doing the right thing for our democracy, but it was about doing the right thing for themselves and what's left of the Republican party. America has been built on lies and perhaps myths and it's time we reckon with that. We've been in the Catskills for the last two days -- just hours away from NYC -- and we continue to see Trump flags flying. They somehow believe the lie that Trump won (and won in a landslide) without any substantiation. The 43 who voted believe that a former President cannot be impeached, when there isn't truth to that. These are the same people who have believed that some Americans are inferior, that science doesn't matter and yes, like Marjorie Taylor Greene, that 9/11 didn't really happen. The only way we get better is to admit the truth and stop singing about America the Beautiful. There is great beauty in this country, yet clinging to this as absolute doesn't allow any room to explore what ails us, what has always ailed us and what will plague us further. So I want and have confidence in Joe Biden to help move us forward while a justice system investigates, indicts and exposes the truth about Donald Trump and his enablers. And it is up to us to speak in sentences and not soundbites, to open our eyes to what it feels like to be marginalized (and worse), and to stop protecting our own hides at the expense of others.