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Thursday, December 12, 2019

The threat of impeachment may be less of a deterrent than the Constitution's framers imagined.

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What if Trump offends again?

Posted by nimbleswitch at 04:39 PM | 0 COMMENTS

There's no what if about it.

#1 | Posted by Zed at 2019-12-12 04:56 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

This has been what I am concerned about with the way McConnell is alluding to his handling of the impeachment once it reaches the Senate. I have been asking in the Nooner where we go after impeachment and if it wouldnt serve us better to censure now and fight to enforce the subpoenas instead of pushing forward and losing the leverage of impeachment. I believe an impeached Trump with nothing to lose will cheat even more brazenly to win re-election...

#2 | Posted by justagirl_idaho at 2019-12-12 05:09 PM | Reply

Keep impeaching Trump keep it in the news keep it in the Public's mind keep doing what is right to the full extent you are able to for as long as you are able.

#3 | Posted by Tor at 2019-12-12 06:33 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 3

Fascist state

#4 | Posted by hamburglar at 2019-12-12 06:36 PM | Reply

What if Democrats keep on doing "nothing"?

#5 | Posted by Spork at 2019-12-12 08:12 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Yeah, yeah. It's the same problem Jesus had.

#6 | Posted by HeliumRat at 2019-12-12 09:08 PM | Reply

The threat of impeachment may be less of a deterrent than the Constitution's framers imagined.

They probably never imagined such a garbage pile of humanity as the GOP being devoid of any and all morals, values, standards and principles.

Probably never thought there would be such ungrateful, schitty people as to sell out their country for tax cuts and Jeebus.

#7 | Posted by jpw at 2019-12-12 11:40 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

What if Democrats keep on doing "nothing"?

#5 | Posted by Spork

Absurd talking point that only the terminally stupid repeat.

#8 | Posted by jpw at 2019-12-12 11:41 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 3

I'm willing to bet SporkGoat was one of those kids growing up that wore a hockey helmet even though he never played hockey, road the short bus, and licked many a window.

#9 | Posted by aborted_monson at 2019-12-13 02:30 AM | Reply

____
The threat of impeachment may be less of a deterrent than the Constitution's framers imagined.
---


    They probably never imagined such a garbage pile of humanity as the GOP being devoid of any and all morals...

---

Well, no duh! Turns out, Founding Fathers weren't very smart or attentive. If they were intent on not creating a King, then they wouldn't grant a single, one person the powers of a King, like for example power of pardon (if they wanted the possibility of pardons, vest it in the Supreme Court, or the Congress, or its subset - a large enough number of people - or have a staggered commission be elected and unanimous / super majority in verdict reverse, to prevent or at least make a chance of corruption that much smaller.) They could have made it impossible for Congress to abrogate its powers to President or executive branch.

It also inevitably leads to "monied interests" or foreign powers, or all "enemies, foreign and domestic" to try and affect election of a single individual, so the visible culmination of that effort should not be a surprise, it could long be predicted and in fact in some books and TV series have been - we just mostly ignored it as impossible "fiction" and entertainment. And it's a lot cheaper than "hot" war.

The best prevention of abuse of power is to never grant or vest it in the first place, especially in one or a very limited number of people.

Vesting too much unnecessary power in the hands of a single individual simply invites corruption - we are sort of really "lucky" that Trump is so casual, open and transparent about his own - he endlessly speculates about what he can get away with (shooting and killing someone on Fifth Avenue, pardoning himself, infinite unchecked powers etc.) - because he was so spoiled rotten and corrupt since he was a child that it's absolutely natural to him.

The more he gets away with, the more he will test the "system" which has been long broken and made ever more corrupt (even before Kennedys, Nixon and Clintons) - it's just that every time it's "tested" and cracked open a little more we exhale with a sigh of "relief" and say "the system survived, therefore system 'works' and is strong" - when it's not and it should have been fixed, but the partisan interests on both sides (I'll pretend that there are only two "sides" for practical purposes) prevent that because they want to use the "precedent" for themselves when they get the power to exploit the "system" (whataboutism.) In the immortal words of Fiona Hill, "And here we are!"

As to the slightly paraphrased question in the headline ("What if he does it again?") first, of course, he will - he does it every day, before, after and during his tweet-streams-of-consciousness; and second, why are they asking this question now? The investigation(s) and the threat of impeachment (just like all other kinds of threat) are / were stronger than the impeachment process itself which has already been mocked by McConnell and Trump (in fact he kept asking for it and tried to induce it faster, as the "immunization shot" - so what the hell was the rush? Nobody of any consequence from the House is running in Democratic primaries, so keeping the legal pressure and legal options of subpoenas and expedited court decisions was a no-brainer. But now, Pence rejects calls to declassify new impeachment testimony calling the request illegitimate because the impeachment inquiry has concluded. The vice president's lawyer says it "serves no purpose." Can you blame him? If it's possible to imagine Mike Pence laughing, it may be one of those moments.

With Democrats kneecapping themselves in a "rush to impeachment on narrow grounds" Agent Orange may feel good about himself and feel invincible, so the headline question - "What if" should be changed to "What will happen when...?"
____

#10 | Posted by CutiePie at 2019-12-13 05:09 AM | Reply

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Trump is a piker compared to Obama as it pertains to pushing the limits of executive power.

Democrats are in a serious dilemma. They absolutely love executive and bureaucratic overreach when they are in power.

So, how do they go about neutering Trump without creating a precedent that creates a roadblock for a future Dem POTUS?

#11 | Posted by JeffJ at 2019-12-13 06:11 AM | Reply | Funny: 1 | Newsworthy 1

He's been committing war crimes with SA in Yemen for years, if you guys want something real to impeach over.

Of course, Democrats want the ability to commit war crimes on their terms when they are pressing the buttons, so this is a non-starter.

SPACE FORCE FULLY FUNDED FOR PREZIDENT NAZI!

#12 | Posted by Ben_Berkkake at 2019-12-13 07:42 AM | Reply

"What if Democrats keep on doing "nothing"?"

Hey stupid, the Democrats are doing everything Constitutionally allowed.

#13 | Posted by danni at 2019-12-13 08:10 AM | Reply

"They probably never imagined such a garbage pile of humanity as the GOP being devoid of any and all morals, values, standards and principles."

Exactly true. The founders were patriots who probably just couldn't imagine a political party being owned by the oligarchy. If you aren't very rich but you are still a Republican, sorry but you are also stupid.

#14 | Posted by danni at 2019-12-13 08:14 AM | Reply

You'd better bet Republicans are asking, "After all this, what if he does it again?" And their answer is, "We bow, scrape, and defend like the cult requires."

He is burning up their brand, and while they are getting judges, the tarnish on the brand will outlive everyone in the story.

#15 | Posted by techres at 2019-12-13 08:24 AM | Reply

I don't care where you stand politically, this will be a dilemma for democrats once this is over.

Be it successful or unsuccessful....it's going to be difficult.

This isn't to say I think we're wrong to pursue this course. We didn't have a choice...Trump's actions forced this.

History should blame him, not anybody else.

#16 | Posted by eberly at 2019-12-13 09:12 AM | Reply

What if Democrats keep on doing "nothing"?

#5 | POSTED BY SPORK AT 2019-12-12 08:12 PM | REPLY

And what are the Republicans doing to reign in Trump's Dictatorship?

#17 | Posted by hatter5183 at 2019-12-13 09:19 AM | Reply

I think the dems are doing all they can. Impeach, get everyone on record as being either for or against Trump's BS and hold everyone accountable for that stance during the next few elections. Trump is all but guaranteed to continue breaking the law and abusing his fellow Americans. If he survives impeachment it will only make him bolder, and if someone has already voted to excuse his crimes and he continues to commit them it'll be a very bad look for everyone involved.

#18 | Posted by qcp at 2019-12-13 09:33 AM | Reply

History should blame him, not anybody else.

#16 | POSTED BY EBERLY

I would say that history should blame the people that elected and enabled him.

This is an enormous country (~300 million people). There are tons of people who are sociopathic, psychopathic, narcissistic, or just destructive. But, in the past, our political system has prevented those sort of people from being in a position where they have the power to damage the structure of our system of government. But, a significant segment of the population (represented by a political party) have decided to forsake their responsibilities on that count.

I don't hate Trump. Just like I don't hate Rush Limbaugh or Glenn Beck. They are disgusting human beings, but just by natural variation you are going to have a certain (small) percentage of disgusting human beings in any population. That is just a fact of life, and is who these people are, and nothing can really be done about it. What I "hate" is the supposedly "normal" people (who do not fall way down the tail on the bell curve) who support and amplify these disgusting human beings.

TLDR - Republicans, YOU built that.

#19 | Posted by gtbritishskull at 2019-12-13 10:05 AM | Reply

"I don't care where you stand politically, this will be a dilemma for democrats once this is over."

Our system of government has been totaly ruined by the SC who have equated money in politics as free speech, who have endorsed corporate personhood, eviscerated the Voting Righs Act, etc. Today it seems to benefit Republicans but that could easily change, in which case, I expect that same SC would make some more corrupt and completely ridiculous decisions to put them back in power. We live in an oligarchy and the Republicans on the SC are determined to keep it that way and to do so they have even awarded the Presidency to Republicans who did not win an election.

#20 | Posted by danni at 2019-12-13 10:07 AM | Reply

America face Post-Impeachment Dilemma: What if Trump Offends Again?

ftfy

#21 | Posted by fresno500 at 2019-12-13 10:13 AM | Reply

We have to have the Senate impeachment trial otherwise Trump gets away with everything...keep it in the news and keep it in the Public's mind.... keep doing what is right to the full extent you are able to for as long as you are able.

Don't let Trump off the hook and get away... this is the ONLY chance you'll get... show everyone why he should NOT be re-elected

#22 | Posted by Pegasus at 2019-12-13 10:35 AM | Reply

There is no "if"...which is why he must be impeached. Organize and vote out McConnell, Gym Jordan Nunes, and the other ball polishers.

#23 | Posted by e1g1 at 2019-12-13 10:58 AM | Reply

Hey, Spork, as of July, Mitch McConnell and the Republican Senate were just sitting on more than 500 bills passed by the House and sent to them. The McConnell-led Republican Senate are the do-nothings in Washington.

#24 | Posted by nimbleswitch at 2019-12-13 11:13 AM | Reply

I'm trying to understand the strategic advantage to Dems in only offering two (2) Articles of Impeachment. Not only does it give Republicans the ability to hone in on one story and lie about it 24 hours a day, it lets Trump off the hook for Obstruction of the Mueller Investigation, Witness tampering, Emoluments Clause violations, Campaign Finance violations, Abuse of Power by dangling pardons, and other conduct grossly incompatible with the presidency.

Can someone tell me why they are doing it this way?

#25 | Posted by JOE at 2019-12-13 11:28 AM | Reply

What if Democrats keep on doing "nothing"?

#5 | POSTED BY SPORK

Impeaching the President of the United States is "nothing"??

It's not the Democrats who need to worry. They have done the right thing. Or at least tried to.

Republicans need to worry that Humpy proves them to be the fools they are for supporting his corrupt schemes and giving him the green light to continue to attempt undermine our elections and to allow foreign powers to undermine our Democratic elections and institutions.

No one is above the law.

Happy "Nothing" Day!

#26 | Posted by donnerboy at 2019-12-13 11:36 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Obviously he's done much more.

And he will cheat in the election. He's already been doing so.

#27 | Posted by BruceBanner at 2019-12-13 11:40 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

#27 | POSTED BY BRUCEBANNER

In the face of overwhelming evidence Hillary and the DNC did exactly what you believe Trump is going to do.

This is a psychological form of fundamental attribution bias, studies on this bias and mental health suggest that people who have mental illnesses are more likely to commit such a bias.

#28 | Posted by AndreaMackris at 2019-12-13 11:56 AM | Reply

-I would say that history should blame the people that elected and enabled him.

Should...but voters always have never been blamed...at least history doesn't judge them. People have terrible memories and people go back in time and either rationalize or even change their vote.

#29 | Posted by eberly at 2019-12-13 11:56 AM | Reply

"In the face of overwhelming evidence"

What a lie.

If that were even halfway true, HRC would've been charged. The fact she hasn't leaves three possibilities: HRC is the most brilliant mastermind in criminal history; Republicans are the most incompetent prosecutors since the dawn of time; or Mackris is a shameless liar who will fling feces all day, hoping something will stick.

#30 | Posted by Danforth at 2019-12-13 12:04 PM | Reply

This is a psychological form of fundamental attribution bias

The term is "fundamental attribution error," and it has literally nothing to do with what you're talking about.

Are you a real person?

#31 | Posted by JOE at 2019-12-13 12:06 PM | Reply

In the face of overwhelming evidence Hillary and the DNC did exactly what you believe Trump is going to do.

Overwhelming evidence?

Citations necessary.

Who am I kidding, Mattress is one of the DR's biggest liars.

Carry on Mattress. Let the lies fly.

#32 | Posted by ClownShack at 2019-12-13 12:07 PM | Reply

Can someone tell me why they are doing it this way?

#25 | POSTED BY JOE

I agree with limiting the scope. Conservatives are going to whine and scream regardless of what articles are put out. And they are going to focus on what is most useful to them. The more you give them, the more options they have to pick from.

All those others, if you take them one by one, would you say he should be impeached for them taken on their own? Dangling Pardons? Has no other president "misused" pardons? If someone argued that he should not be removed from office for "dangling pardons" (when he hasn't actually USED them) I would probably agree with them.

You are doing what conservatives are accusing Dems of... you don't like him so you are grabbing whatever might even be slightly impeachable and throwing it at the wall to see what sticks. We have a compelling case that his actions with the Ukraine are impeachable (and worthy of removal). If he cannot be impeached based upon that, nothing else will work either. And throwing everything at him muddies the water. And allows Republicans to argue (rightly) that a majority of the articles against him are pretty flimsy.

I would be fine with just one article (Abuse of Power), but I like the strategic nature of the Obstruction of Congress one. Keep in mind that it is CONGRESS that will be deciding whether he violated it. If they allow him to get away with that one, then they are basically endorsing his actions so far. The Senate (and the Senators) would be SAYING that the Executive Branch DOES NOT HAVE TO comply with subpoenas from Congress (including the Senate). If he gets acquitted on that charge, you can rest assured that executive branch lawyers will use that in any case in the future. They will argue that CONGRESS (specifically the Senate) has said with that vote that CONGRESS does not think that subpoenas of the executive branch are enforceable. And I think that would make a compelling argument to a judge.

Incumbents are likely to get re-elected. McConnell has been in the Senate for over 30 years. A lot of Senators are invested in the power of the Senate, primarily because they intend to be there a long time. Are they willing to neuter it to save Trump? Or will some of them have second thoughts about it? We will see.

#33 | Posted by gtbritishskull at 2019-12-13 12:36 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

"You are doing what conservatives are accusing Dems of... you don't like him so you are grabbing whatever might even be slightly impeachable and throwing it at the wall to see what sticks. We have a compelling case that his actions with the Ukraine are impeachable (and worthy of removal). If he cannot be impeached based upon that, nothing else will work either. And throwing everything at him muddies the water. And allows Republicans to argue (rightly) that a majority of the articles against him are pretty flimsy."

NW

#34 | Posted by eberly at 2019-12-13 12:39 PM | Reply

Citations necessary.
#32 | POSTED BY CLOWNSHACK

pbs.twimg.com

#35 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2019-12-13 12:40 PM | Reply

you don't like him so you are grabbing whatever might even be slightly impeachable and throwing it at the wall to see what sticks.

Impeaching a president for witness tampering is not "grabbing whatever might be impeachable."

Impeaching a president for repeatedly, actively and directly obstructing an investigation into HIMSELF related to foreign interference in a US presidential election is not "grabbing whatever might be impeachable."

Impeaching a president from consistently earning millions from foreign governments since the day he entered office in direct violation of the Constitution is not "grabbing whatever might be impeachable."

Impeaching a president for being named as an unindocted co-conspirator in commission of a felony criminal campaign violation is not "grabbing whatever might be impeachable."

You've grown numb to how big a POS this guy is. Snap out of it.

#36 | Posted by JOE at 2019-12-13 12:52 PM | Reply

#36 | POSTED BY JOE

Witness Tampering? You have to prove "beyond a reasonable doubt" that he tried to "improperly influence, alter, or prevent" the testimony of a witness. A guy who tweets out gradeschool insults multiple times a day, you are going to try to prove that THAT tweet was INTENDED to affect the testimony? Or that mention of a pardon was INTENDED to affect testimony. You have to do that BEYOND A REASONABLE DOUBT don't forget.

Obstruction of Justice has a firmer foundation, but the President is the head of the Executive Branch. It is his JOB to oversee investigations and direct priorities. And you need to prove some sort of corrupt or improper INTENT to make it stick. Him saying "I know I didn't do it, so decided it was not a priority" is actually a pretty good defense. So, you would need to prove FIRST that he DID do something wrong (beyond a reasonable doubt) and THEN you could tack on the charge of obstruction of justice (since he obviously knew he DID do it, he knew the investigation was valid, so you can SHOW he intentionally "obstructed justice").

Getting money from foreign governments also is not illegal. Even putting your assets in a blind trust, you still are (probably) earning money from foreign governments. The President sells a baseball card on ebay (for maybe 10% more than it is appraised at), and the Kremlin buys it. Should he be impeached? My point is you also have to show intent. That he is intending to allow himself to be paid by foreign governments, and probably, if you want to actually remove him, that he is being INFLUENCED by that money he is receiving.

And as for being an un-indicted "co-conspirator"? An indictment is not a reason to impeach a president. When they are indicted, his "co-conspirators" are still assumed to be innocent. Even if they get convicted, it is still not far enough. If you can prove that he committed a felony, then you might get somewhere. But just saying that he was labeled as a "co-conspirator" of other people that were indicted is about as flimsy as it gets.

I am not defending his behavior. I would probably support removal for three of the things you mentioned above unless some exculpatory evidence came out (but they would need to follow the process first to give that evidence a chance to come out). But, Republicans would be justified in being skeptical and voting to acquit. "Beyond a reasonable doubt" is a pretty high standard. And while impeachment does not have to be held to that standard, the standard that he DOES have to be held to is not specified, so Republicans would be justified in deciding to use that as their standard.

#37 | Posted by gtbritishskull at 2019-12-13 01:50 PM | Reply

Nice Republican talking points. Not worth a response. Might as well be talking to JeffJ.

#38 | Posted by JOE at 2019-12-13 01:55 PM | Reply

Nice Republican talking points. Not worth a response. Might as well be talking to JeffJ.

#38 | POSTED BY JOE

So, because a Republican says them, it means they must be wrong? Nice logical fallacy. You would make a good conservative.

When you feel you are ready to play with the big boys, let me know.

#39 | Posted by gtbritishskull at 2019-12-13 02:43 PM | Reply

So, because a Republican says them, it means they must be wrong?

Do you know what a "talking point" is? It's more than just someone talking. Oh well, i'm bored, so here goes.

I would probably support removal for three of the things you mentioned above...But, Republicans would be justified in being skeptical and voting to acquit.

So what? If they want to defend a president obstructing a monumentally serious investigation into himself, committing flagrant Emoluments violations, and committing campaign finance felonies, then let them go on record saying that's okay. The fact that Republican congressmen are pieces of ---- is no reason not to put that fact on full display.

just saying that he was labeled as a "co-conspirator" of other people that were indicted is about as flimsy as it gets.

So you haven't read the Cohen indictment which states that Trump directed the commission of a felony? That's not just a label, that's a factually-supported accusation that Trump himself committed his own felony. Prosecutors don't say the president has committed a felony unless they know the president has committed a felony.

My point is you also have to show intent. That he is intending to allow himself to be paid by foreign governments, and probably, if you want to actually remove him, that he is being INFLUENCED by that money he is receiving.

There's no intent requirement in the Emoluments Clause. The Clause is a blanket prohibition on a president "accepting" any present or emolument "from any foreign state." No need to create additional elements of this offense - they don't exist in real life.

You have to prove "beyond a reasonable doubt"

I see this nonsense sprinkled throughout your post. The Constitution mandates no such thing. This is a standard in criminal cases only. Impeachment is a political proceeding where by its nature the public interest is a far stronger factor, and it has historically been left to the discretion of the Senate to choose an evidentiary standard, with many choosing a "preponderance of the evidence" (501%) standard, and only the defendant arguing for a "beyond a reasonable doubt" standard. That'd be Trump - and you, apparently.

#40 | Posted by JOE at 2019-12-13 03:12 PM | Reply

*50.1%

#41 | Posted by JOE at 2019-12-13 03:13 PM | Reply

Trump is a piker compared to Obama as it pertains to pushing the limits of executive power.

LOL Jesus Christ Jeff.

#42 | Posted by jpw at 2019-12-13 04:10 PM | Reply

Trump is a piker compared to Obama as it pertains to pushing the limits of executive power.
LOL Jesus Christ Jeff.

POSTED BY JPW AT 2019-12-13 04:10 PM | REPLY

Jeff has become radicalized. There's not much hope for him now.

#43 | Posted by LauraMohr at 2019-12-13 04:15 PM | Reply

LOL Jesus Christ Jeff.

#42 | POSTED BY JPW

Obama had more over-reach smackdowns by SCOTUS (many of them being unanimous decisions) than any other president in history.

#44 | Posted by JeffJ at 2019-12-13 04:46 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

Obama had more over-reach smackdowns by SCOTUS (many of them being unanimous decisions) than any other president in history.

POSTED BY JEFFJ AT 2019-12-13 04:46 PM | REPLY

LIAR LIAR PANTS ON FIRE

www.factcheck.org

#45 | Posted by LauraMohr at 2019-12-13 07:55 PM | Reply

LIAR LIAR PANTS ON FIRE
www.factcheck.org

#45 | POSTED BY LAURAMOHR

Posted on July 3, 2014 | Corrected on July 7, 2014

So, you post a source that mostly quibbles about whether or not some of Obama's SCOTUS smackdowns were due to Executive over-reach and you post from a source that doesn't even cover the last 2 years of his presidency, which means it can't refute my claim.

You're lazy, Laura. You really need to do your work.

#46 | Posted by JeffJ at 2019-12-13 08:01 PM | Reply

The emoluments story has never been covered in the dramatic way it should be and the lazy network newspeople need to make it come alive with interest so we could get up some support for another impeachment on this charge. I can imagine them catching sleazy foreign bagmen showing up at Drumpf Hotels and meeting with the nasty bellboy who carries the cash. Interviews with lowlifes who would be willing to tell what they know, secretly. This story could be an attention grabber.

#47 | Posted by grumpy_too at 2019-12-13 08:39 PM | Reply

Even in Jeff's lie Obama is trying to make a better life for Americans.

We need to remove Trump. He should not be able to run again.

#48 | Posted by BruceBanner at 2019-12-13 10:07 PM | Reply

He can't be impeached twice, that's double jeopardy. He'll be unrestrained and unchained. Off the hook.

#49 | Posted by visitor_ at 2019-12-14 08:55 PM | Reply

ummm i'd worry about your saintly democrats.... corruption is everywhere with this group....

here is nancy pelosis son's company charged in a stock swidle...

www.washingtontimes.com

as for me i want a long impeachment.... i really wanna shake that tree and see hon many democrats fall out.... the longer it is, the more we learn about their corruption.

it's apparent democrats don't give a cr@p about the constitution... so nether do i...

screw 2020 onto trump 2024 - when 2 terms are not enough...

#50 | Posted by Pegasus at 2019-12-14 10:51 PM | Reply

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