Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-02-18 04:28pm

I think it was a legit link, as far as I could tell. I probably just made a typo. But let's see if I can find another link.

Here we go:

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/17/us/p ... ation.html

Also, Trump has now echoed this kind of rhetoric, calling McCabe and Rosenstein's actions "treasonous".

Now, I don't know whether any of the actions they allegedly engaged in were illegal. But there is absolutely no way that they would qualify as Treason under the Constitution. The definition of treason specifies "levying war against the United States" and/or "offering aid and comfort to its enemies", and has traditionally only been applied to those who aid countries or factions that the US is at war with. So Constitutionally, there is no possible way that Rosenstein and McCabe's actions would qualify as "Treason", unless they did them on behalf of a hostile faction at war with the US.

What Trump is doing is once again trying to shift the definition of Treason from disloyalty to the US in war time, to disloyalty to the President. That is a very important distinction, because the US is not supposed to be an autocracy, and loyalty to the country is not the same as personal loyalty to the President. That is what Trump is trying to change.

But Trump should be wary of trying to expand the definition of Treason to target his political opponents. Because there are a great many people who would like very much to apply a broader definition of Treason to him.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by JI_Joe84 » 2019-02-24 01:19am

Trump is too stupid to understand what he does could come back and be used against him. He thinks he will be president for life. That is a fact.
Any time people tell him tactically this is a bad idea, do not do this he goes and does it just to say, "I AM THE PRESIDENT!" Which we all know means "supreme leader" in his mind. So most definitely he will do it, you can bet on it.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Gandalf » 2019-02-24 01:35am

JI_Joe84 wrote:
2019-02-24 01:19am
Trump is too stupid to understand what he does could come back and be used against him. He thinks he will be president for life. That is a fact.
Any time people tell him tactically this is a bad idea, do not do this he goes and does it just to say, "I AM THE PRESIDENT!" Which we all know means "supreme leader" in his mind. So most definitely he will do it, you can bet on it.
I assume this is based on something...?
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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Broomstick » 2019-02-24 04:30am

JI_Joe84 wrote:
2019-02-24 01:19am
Trump is too stupid to understand what he does could come back and be used against him. He thinks he will be president for life.
Given his age and habits it is entirely possible he could be President for the rest of his lifespan. But not for the reasons he thinks.

I, for one, do not believe the official annual reports about his "excellent" health are objective and true.
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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Mr Bean » 2019-02-24 02:49pm

Broomstick wrote:
2019-02-24 04:30am
JI_Joe84 wrote:
2019-02-24 01:19am
Trump is too stupid to understand what he does could come back and be used against him. He thinks he will be president for life.
Given his age and habits it is entirely possible he could be President for the rest of his lifespan. But not for the reasons he thinks.

I, for one, do not believe the official annual reports about his "excellent" health are objective and true.
One need to look no further then his official height being three inches taller than he is (He's in the 6 foot half an inch range but claims 6"3) or his weight being exactly one pounder under the "obese" for his claimed height to know it's likely complete and utter nonsense.

The fact the official White House doctor would lie about the Presidents heath is like many things a unspoke rule we never dreamed we would have to make official.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-02-24 09:37pm

Gandalf wrote:
2019-02-24 01:35am
JI_Joe84 wrote:
2019-02-24 01:19am
Trump is too stupid to understand what he does could come back and be used against him. He thinks he will be president for life. That is a fact.
Any time people tell him tactically this is a bad idea, do not do this he goes and does it just to say, "I AM THE PRESIDENT!" Which we all know means "supreme leader" in his mind. So most definitely he will do it, you can bet on it.
I assume this is based on something...?
Well, he's got to be at least hoping he is, because odds are that he's indicted on multiple counts as soon as he leaves office.

I'm not even talking about what Mueller may or may not come up with. The Stormy payoff shit alone would almost certainly result in multiple felony counts for campaign finance violations, if he weren't the sitting PotUS. If he leaves office before the Statute of Limitations runs out, odds are he's indicted. Hell, there may already be sealed indictments waiting to go the instant he leaves the White House.

I repeat: publicly available information on Trump's dealings is enough to show that he would almost certainly be indicted, were he anyone other than the PotUS (who for some reason gets immunity from indictment, according to the DoJ).

Edit: There is also, in my opinion, ample grounds to charge him with Obstruction of Justice, again based on publicly-available evidence (chiefly his own statements).
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Gandalf » 2019-02-26 03:17pm

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2019-02-24 09:37pm
Gandalf wrote:
2019-02-24 01:35am
JI_Joe84 wrote:
2019-02-24 01:19am
Trump is too stupid to understand what he does could come back and be used against him. He thinks he will be president for life. That is a fact.
Any time people tell him tactically this is a bad idea, do not do this he goes and does it just to say, "I AM THE PRESIDENT!" Which we all know means "supreme leader" in his mind. So most definitely he will do it, you can bet on it.
I assume this is based on something...?
Well, he's got to be at least hoping he is, because odds are that he's indicted on multiple counts as soon as he leaves office.
That's not what JI_Joe said.

Also, Bush invaded a country and got away with it. We hung Nazis for that. Unless everyone somehow developed a spine, there's a small chance of Trump being indicted.
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That we dying younger hiding from the police man over there
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Electric shocking body rocking beat streeting me to death"

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-02-26 03:32pm

Gandalf wrote:
2019-02-26 03:17pm
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2019-02-24 09:37pm
Gandalf wrote:
2019-02-24 01:35am


I assume this is based on something...?
Well, he's got to be at least hoping he is, because odds are that he's indicted on multiple counts as soon as he leaves office.
That's not what JI_Joe said.

Also, Bush invaded a country and got away with it. We hung Nazis for that. Unless everyone somehow developed a spine, there's a small chance of Trump being indicted.
We hung Nazis for that and a whole lot of other shit including herding children into gas chambers.

But the difference, as I see it, is four-fold:

1. Bush was part of the Washington establishment, one of the good old boys. Trump isn't. Now, don't get me wrong, this isn't me buying into the "Trump is an outsider taking on the establishment against the Deep State" crap. Trump is at least as corrupt, dishonest, and greedy as any of the Washington old guard, as his actions prove almost every day. The problem is, he doesn't know how (or doesn't care) to play the game the way they do. Which brings me to my second point.

2. Trump has gone out of his way to piss off as many people as possible, made it clear that he divides the world into "people who like him" and "enemies". He has made enemies he didn't need to, and he has no veneer of respectability to hide behind. Again, this doesn't mean its all a witch hunt-there is enough evidence based on his own public actions and statements to make a pretty good obstruction case against him-but it means that there are people who might otherwise be inclined to let misdeeds by the President slide who won't in Trump's case.

3. Bush's actions, as immoral and in some cases illegal as they were, were conducted (theoretically, at least) in pursuit of American interests. Trump is openly hostile to core American institutions, and has probably sold our country out to foreign dictators. So patriots who accept Bush's actions out of a sense of "My country right or wrong" will have much less reason to stand by Trump.

4. There is a history of prosecuting people in the US for violating campaign finance laws and obstruction of justice. There is not a history of prosecuting a president for his foreign policy decisions.

All that's not to defend Bush, he absolutely should have stood trial. I'm just saying there are factors here that did not apply there, that might plausibly lead to a different outcome, even if we assume that American political culture is otherwise effectively unchanged since then. This is the problem with knee-jerk, cynical conclusions like "Bush got off, therefore Trump will", or for that matter like "Mueller backed the Bush Administration on Iraq, therefore he must be assumed to be lying now". It ignores the substantive differences between those circumstances.

Of course, its possible that Trump will get off scot-free. I can't predict with certainty the outcome of something is complicated as this in advance, and I'm not arrogant enough to try. But I do think there is at least a good chance that Trump will stand trial.

If you wanted to make an opposing argument, a better parallel than Bush might be Watergate. There, Nixon was forced out, but pardoned. However, it should be noted that many, then and now, rightly view that pardon as a mistake, and that Ford himself attributed his failure to win reelection to that decision
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-02-26 11:42pm

House has voted to block the state of emergency. Senate reportedly could go either way, but McConnel is allowing a vote. Trump is expected to veto (the first veto of his presidency), and there aren't realistically going to be enough votes to override it, but it will force Republicans to go on the record on this issue (which can be used against them in future).
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Mr Bean » 2019-02-27 07:39am

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2019-02-26 11:42pm
House has voted to block the state of emergency. Senate reportedly could go either way, but McConnel is allowing a vote. Trump is expected to veto (the first veto of his presidency), and there aren't realistically going to be enough votes to override it, but it will force Republicans to go on the record on this issue (which can be used against them in future).
You forgot to mention the part where it gives the courts legal arguments a big point to indicate Congress is opposed to it as official votes are worth 1000% more in the legal field than twitter statements or recording of CNN. Even if veto'd such a vote likely dooms him in the courts.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-02-27 07:43am

Since the only chance of maintaining the Constitutional authority of Congress (short of a Constitutional Amendment or a revolution) lies with the Supreme Court, we can only hope that it will sway their decision.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by houser2112 » 2019-02-27 08:18am

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2019-02-26 11:42pm
House has voted to block the state of emergency. Senate reportedly could go either way, but McConnel is allowing a vote. Trump is expected to veto (the first veto of his presidency), and there aren't realistically going to be enough votes to override it, but it will force Republicans to go on the record on this issue (which can be used against them in future).
Let's not give McConnell any points for "allowing a vote". It's a privileged resolution, so he has no choice to allow a vote; he must hold a vote on it within 18 days.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-02-27 08:23am

houser2112 wrote:
2019-02-27 08:18am
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2019-02-26 11:42pm
House has voted to block the state of emergency. Senate reportedly could go either way, but McConnel is allowing a vote. Trump is expected to veto (the first veto of his presidency), and there aren't realistically going to be enough votes to override it, but it will force Republicans to go on the record on this issue (which can be used against them in future).
Let's not give McConnell any points for "allowing a vote". It's a privileged resolution, so he has no choice to allow a vote; he must hold a vote on it within 18 days.
Figures. The day McConnel grows a conscience will be the day Hell freezes over.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-03-07 10:35pm

The Trump administration, in cooperation with the Mexican government, created a secret database including journalists, immigration activists, and an attorney (many of them US citizens) connected to the immigrant caravan, and used it to track them and subject them to extra scrutiny and harassment at the border, leading to some of them being barred from entering Mexico and numerous individuals being subject to warrantless searches and/or having alerts placed on their passports:

https://www.nbcsandiego.com/investigati ... 83231.html
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-03-08 11:28pm

More authoritarianism towards activists:

https://www.thenation.com/article/ice-i ... -tracking/

ICE "kept tabs" on anti-Trump protesters. Because clearly that's in ICE's jurisdiction.

We all need to stop pretending that ICE is anything other than Trump's brown shirts/Gestapo at this point. I wonder how long it will be until activists start getting deported as "illegals" through the farcical lack of due process which is immigration court- if it hasn't happened already.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-03-10 12:01am

Newly-uncovered documents show that the DOJ did, in fact, pursue a request from Sessions to investigate Hillary Clinton- something they previously denied under penalty of perjury:

https://www.thedailybeast.com/doj-finds ... ry-clinton

More proof of how the Trump administration has attempted to use law enforcement to conduct a political purge.

Edit: And yet another impeachable offense, looks like.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Ziggy Stardust » 2019-03-18 11:34am

Typical gutless Republican behavior:
Republicans are digging in for a long fight over reining in the president's emergency powers, setting up a potential clash with both the White House and Democrats.

President Trump on Friday vetoed Congress’s attempt to block his national emergency on the U.S.-Mexico border wall. With neither chamber expected to have the votes to override his veto, the president is poised to win round one of his fight with lawmakers.

But Republicans are already setting their sights on making it easier to terminate future emergency declarations — setting up an intriguing round two.

“It’s an institutional issue, it’s a congressional authorities issue. We have the power of the purse,” said Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio). “Under the National Emergencies Act, there was too much latitude that was given away … and we need to pull that back some and let it be used for legitimate national security purposes.”

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) added that there is “unanimity” in the GOP conference about making changes to the law in the wake of the fight over Trump’s emergency declaration to construct the U.S.-Mexico border wall.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has tapped Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) to craft legislation in the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee that could win the 60 votes needed for a bill to defeat a filibuster and ultimately pass the upper chamber.

Under the National Emergencies Act, Congress can force a vote on a resolution of disapproval if they want to try to block an emergency declaration. But a president can veto the resolution, setting up a difficult hurdle for Congress to overcome since a two-thirds majority vote in each chamber is needed to override a veto.

Even GOP senators who sided with Trump are interested in the broader issue.

“I would like to revisit the emergency powers that Congress has provided to the executive branch,” said Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), who voted with Trump. “I do think it's going to be a healthy debate to have.”

McConnell told reporters after a closed-door conference lunch that there was “a lot of discomfort with the law” among Republicans and that they were “discussing” ways it could be altered.

“If Congress has grown uneasy with this law, as many have, then we should amend it. If the 116th Congress regrets the degree of flexibility that the 94th Congress gave the executive, the 116th Congress can do something about it,” McConnell added separately during a floor speech, announcing that he had asked Johnson to look into legislation on the issue.

Roughly a third of the Republican conference, including members of leadership, is already backing legislation from Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) that would require Congress to pass a resolution approving future national emergency declarations within 30 days. Without the approval, the resolution would be terminated.

“I don’t know of any president that likes to give up power, but clearly Congress has been asleep at the switch,” said Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), who voted with Trump but is supporting Lee’s legislation.

Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) added that “there is a lot of people, myself included, who believe that the National Emergencies Act ... needs to be reformed.”

A battle with Republicans would just aggravate Trump's existing problems with Democrats, who are suing him in court and plan subsequent votes to challenge his declaration for the wall.

A Democratic aide said the House would hold a vote to override Trump’s veto on March 26; meanwhile, Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said Democrats would force a vote on blocking Trump’s national emergency every six months.

“We've got to be real careful and whether it's legislatively or in court, fight him every step of the way,” Schumer said.

Trump, as part of a failed eleventh-hour plea to get Republicans to vote against the resolution of disapproval, signaled that he could support making future changes to the National Emergencies Act, despite refusing to accept a deal earlier in the week.

Johnson, asked about Trump’s penchant for changing his mind on the issue, stressed that he would seek input from the White House.

“We’re going to need him because we want the administration to be taking a look at any exemptions that we might need to take a look at when we reclaim that authority,” Johnson said.

He added that he thought the “basic concept” of Lee’s bill was “correct” and could “pass constitutional muster” but that he expected others would have ideas on what the final legislation should look like.

“There’s a lot more complexity to this,” he said. “We’ll have a lot of input.”

An aide confirmed that Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is working on legislation that could draw support from Democrats, who have been skeptical of the Lee bill.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Schumer both said their party would not back the Utah Republican’s bill.

But Schumer appeared to soften his stance slightly after Thursday’s Senate vote approving the resolution against Trump, saying he wanted to look at its details. Drew Hammill, a spokesman for Pelosi, also didn’t rule out legislation on Friday, saying, “House Committees are reviewing the President’s unlawful use of the National Emergencies Act.”

Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), the No. 2 Senate Democrat, predicted that Democrats would be “open” to changing the underlying law as long as it was separated from the fight over whether Republicans would back the resolution of disapproval.

“It doesn’t solve our current problem,” he added, “but it addresses the dilemma we face.”
Naturally, the Republicans are oh so opposed to Trump's emergency declaration. Not opposed enough to actually have the balls to overturn the veto, mind you. Opposed enough to let the emergency declaration go through, which is what they really want anyway, but then to pass a series of legislative reforms to make sure the Democrats can never pull the same move when they come into power again. The same cowardly, despicable, undemocratic behavior that the Republicans have been increasingly willing to celebrate, e.g. what they did in North Carolina and Wisconsin in the past year (in those states, when Democrats surprisingly beat Republican incumbents to win the governorship, the Republican controlled legislatures immediately passed a series of laws that stripped the governor of most of his powers).

Never ceases to amaze me how utterly corrupted the entire Republican party is, and that there are so many people out there perfectly willing to tolerate this behavior in a country with ostensibly strong democratic institutions.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-03-18 11:42am

Institutions that the Republicans have spent decades systematically eroding for their benefit. And institutions which were always slanted to disproportionately favor rich straight white Christian men, and have only been more truly democratic at great difficulty.

Still, while I'm sure that "we don't want the Democrats to be able to do what we did" is a big factor here, I can't say I'm sorry at the idea of this particular Presidential power being curtailed. I only wish it had happened sooner. Its about time that Congress started reasserting its role as an equal branch of government to the Executive.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Ziggy Stardust » 2019-03-18 10:49pm

While I do agree completely that executive power does need to be reigned in, it's hard not to be cynical about the convenience of the timing of the Republican's ethical epiphany on the issue.

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-03-19 09:48am

Oh, indeed. But I'm willing to let them do the right thing for the wrong reasons, in this case, because its something that really does need to be done.

I also think that there are some Republicans who are genuinely troubled by Trump's declaration. A few voted against it. More probably would like to, but are afraid to go against the base. That's pathetic, and a dereliction of their duty, but I do think that if there's anywhere where you could get some Republicans to do the right thing, it ought to be this.

After all, its Congress's power that Trump is trying to curtail here. Out of self-interest, if nothing else, they ought to be opposed to it.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Lost Soal » 2019-03-19 09:54am

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2019-03-19 09:48am
Oh, indeed. But I'm willing to let them do the right thing for the wrong reasons, in this case, because its something that really does need to be done.

I also think that there are some Republicans who are genuinely troubled by Trump's declaration. A few voted against it. More probably would like to, but are afraid to go against the base. That's pathetic, and a dereliction of their duty, but I do think that if there's anywhere where you could get some Republicans to do the right thing, it ought to be this.

After all, its Congress's power that Trump is trying to curtail here. Out of self-interest, if nothing else, they ought to be opposed to it.
Your assuming they do this before Trump has gotten his way. Last I checked most laws aren't retroactive meaning unless a court stops him this new measure won't affect his already declared emergency, it just stops it from being done again.
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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-03-19 10:03am

Still needs to be done, still will protect Congressional power against any attempt to use Trump's precedent to do this in the future.
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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-03-28 10:31pm

Trump has called for Intelligence Committee head Adam Schiff to be forced to resign from Congress for lying and leaking (ie supporting the investigation into Russian collusion). All nine Republican members of the Intelligence Committee then united to demand Schiff's resignation as head of the committee.

I don't care what anyone thinks of the Mueller report (or rather Barr's summary of it, since we have yet to see the full report)- there is NO justification, EVER, for the President demanding the forced resignation of a duly-elected opposition Congressman. And that Republicans would seemingly lock-step support this is sickening, and frightening. This is nothing less than trying to make it a crime to hold a dissenting view in Congress. Barr's summary of the Mueller report has become a casus belli for imposing dictatorship on America.

Here is (part of) Schiff's response to the Republican committee members:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J6fKbEqurZA

"My colleagues may think it's okay that the Russians offered dirt on a Democratic candidate for President as part of what was described as the Russian government's effort to help the Trump campaign. You might think that's okay. My colleagues might think it's okay that when that was offered to the son of the President, who had a pivotal role in the campaign, that the President's son did not call the FBI, he did not adamantly refuse that foreign help. No instead that son said that he would love the help of the Russians." ... "You might say that's all okay. You might say that's just what you need to do to win. But I don't think it's okay. I think it's immoral, I think it's unethical, I think it's unpatriotic, and yes, I think it's corrupt, and evidence of collusion. Now I have always said that the question of whether this amounts to proof of conspiracy was another matter. Whether the special counsel could prove beyond a reasonable doubt the proof of that crime would be up to the special counsel and I would accept his decision, and I do. He is a good and honourable man and he is a good prosecutor. But I do not think that conduct criminal or not is okay. And the day we do think that's okay is the day we will look back and say that is the day that America lost its way."

Incidentally, while popularity is by no means a reliable measure of merit, it does carry weight in a democratic (or pseudo-democratic) system, and the Republicans are once more decidedly in the minority view in claiming total exoneration on collusion. At least one recent poll shows that 55% of Americans do not believe that the Mueller report fully exonerates Trump for collusion:

https://www.cnn.com/videos/politics/201 ... ad-vpx.cnn
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-03-28 10:47pm

I normally wouldn't link to anything related to Fox News, but this was too delicious not to share:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0RdTi0FQ12U

Fox News senior judicial analyst Andrew Napolitano says on Fox Business Network that he believes the Mueller report will show evidence for conspiracy and obstruction (specifically, that he believes there will be evidence either way).

Of course, he also suggests that the evidence should be held back from the public because you're not supposed to reveal evidence about people who aren't being prosecuted (which since DOJ policy is that a sitting President cannot be indicted, is tantamount to saying that the public should never know anything about a President's crimes).

That's certainly a... novel approach. "Yeah, I think Trump will look really guilty, and it should totally be covered up." Points for honesty, I guess?

All the comments, meanwhile, are denouncing him for not sucking Der Fuhrer's dick hard enough. :wanker:
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2019-03-29 05:35pm

AG Barr has said that the Mueller report will be released, with redactions, by mid-April, and has offered to come in and testify before the committee on May 2nd. He says that he will not let Trump preview the report (which is reportedly almost 400 pages long, so fat chance that Trump would actually read it), though he asserts that Trump would have the right to do so. House Judiciary Committee Chair Nadler has reiterated the demand for a full, un-redacted release by April second.

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/politi ... if-n988961
Special counsel Robert Mueller's report on his investigation into Russian election interference will be released publicly, with some redactions by mid-April and possibly sooner, Attorney General William Barr said in a letter Friday.

In a letter to the heads of the Senate and House Judiciary committees, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., Barr wrote that Mueller's office was helping to determine what would be redacted and that the report — which Barr said was nearly 400 pages — would be released to Congress without the White House reviewing it first.

"Our progress is such that I anticipate we will be in a position to release the report by mid-April, if not sooner," Barr wrote.

"Although the President would have the right to assert privilege over certain parts of the report, he has stated publicly that he intends to defer to me and, accordingly, there are no plans to submit the report to the White House for a privilege review," Barr wrote.

During a question-and-answer session with reporters at his Mar-a-Lago club in Florida later Friday, Trump said he had "great confidence" in the attorney general and did not object to Barr's announcement that he'd release the full report without a White House review first.

"If that's what he’d like to do, I have nothing to hide," Trump said. "This was a hoax, this was a witch hunt, I have absolutely nothing to hide."

Nader, the chair of House Judiciary Committee, responded to Barr's on Friday, reiterating a request for the full report by April 2. "That deadline still stands," Nadler wrote.

"I appreciate the Attorney General’s offer to testify before the Committee on May 2. We will take that date under advisement," Nadler added. "However, we feel that it is critical for Attorney General Barr to come before Congress immediately to explain the rationale behind his letter, his rapid decision that the evidence developed was insufficient to establish an obstruction of justice offense, and his continued refusal to provide us with the full report.”

The top Republican on the comtitee, Rep. Doug Collins, of Georgia, however, called Nadler's deadline "arbitrary."

"While I join Chairman Nadler in looking forward to reviewing the classified information in the report at a future date, he stands alone in setting arbitrary deadlines for that release and in calling the attorney general to break the law by releasing the report without redactions," Collins tweeted.

Barr said he wants Congress and the public to have the opportunity to read Mueller’s report, but that some things will need to be redacted, including grand jury material, information that would reveal intelligence sources and methods and disclosures that could affect other investigations currently underway. Those caveats were included in his March 24 letter to Congress.

But Barr went beyond on Friday saying that he will also redact "information that would unduly infringe on the personal privacy and reputational interests of peripheral third parties." Such a restriction would conform to longstanding Justice Department policy that prohibits revealing information about people who were investigated for possible crimes but never charged.

On Sunday, Barr released a four-page letter outlining the conclusions of Mueller's investigation. He wrote that Mueller found no proof that President Donald Trump criminally colluded with Russia — but reached no conclusion about whether the president had obstructed justice.

On obstruction of justice, Barr said that the special counsel declined "to make a traditional prosecutorial judgment," leaving it up to the attorney general to choose whether to bring obstruction charges against the president. Barr declined to do so, he said in the letter to Congress, based on the evidence presented and Department of Justice guidelines around prosecuting a sitting president.

Mueller did not, Barr said, "draw a conclusion — one way or the other — as to whether the examined conduct constituted obstruction."

"Instead, for each of the relevant actions investigated, the (Mueller) report sets out evidence on both sides of the question and leaves unresolved what the Special Counsel views as 'difficult issues' of law and fact concerning whether the President's actions and intent could be viewed as obstruction," Barr wrote. "The Special Counsel states that 'while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.'"

In the letter on Friday, Barr wrote that his earlier note was not a "summary" and that it wouldn't have been appropriate for him to summarize Mueller's findings.

"Everyone will soon be able to read it on their own. I do not believe it would be in the public's interest for me to attempt to summarize the full report or to release it in serial or piecemeal fashion."

He also disclosed the length of the report — "nearly 400 pages long" not including "tables and appendices" — and said it "sets forth the Special Counsel's findings, his analysis and the reasons for his conclusions."

Barr also volunteered to testify before the Senate and House Judiciary Committees, suggesting May 1 and May 2 as dates for his testimony.

Six Democratic committee chairs in the House had previously sent a letter to Barr requesting that he submit the full, unredacted report from Mueller to Congress by April 2.

The White House declined to comment on the latest Barr letter.
So it goes to the courts, I guess. Zero redactions is probably an impossible demand, as much as I believe that full public disclosure would be the ideal, and I do think (from my limited understanding of the law) that Nadler is probably asking for something that cannot be provided due to the need to preserve classified sources, etc. But it's going to be a fight to see how much gets released. Certainly, Barr's admission that he intends to make redactions based not only based on national security concerns but also to preserve reputations (ie, he will redact anything that makes Trump or a member of his administration or campaign look bad) is unacceptable.

Also, remember that fight Mueller had going with a mystery foreign company over documents? I had thought that it was rather odd, to say the least, that the Mueller probe wrapped up while that case was still pending.

Well, the Supreme Court has rejected the company's appeal, meaning that the documents must be turned over. The case is apparently being taken over by the U.S. attorney's office in Washington:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles ... reme-court
The U.S. Supreme Court turned away an appeal connected to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s now-completed investigation, rejecting arguments from a mystery company that was trying to avoid having to turn over information to a grand jury.

The justices, without explanation Monday, left intact a federal appeals court ruling that said the company, owned by an unidentified foreign government, had to comply with a subpoena. The company, which refused to cooperate, faces fines that have increased by $50,000 a day and may have grown to well more than $2 million.

The U.S. attorney’s office in Washington will be taking over the matter, the special counsel’s office said Monday. The ongoing significance isn’t clear now that Mueller has submitted his final report on the investigation to Attorney General William Barr.

The case marked the first known effort to get the Supreme Court to weigh in on Mueller’s probe, which centered on Russian meddling with the 2016 election and possible obstruction of justice. The justices previously refused to block the appeals court ruling while they considered whether to take up the case.

The dispute became a source of intrigue in part because a federal appeals court in Washington closed an entire floor of a courthouse to the public while the case was being argued in December.

The case has been so secret that Mueller’s name didn’t appear publicly in a Supreme Court document until this month. Court records provide no hints as to what Mueller was seeking.

The company has an American office where the July 2018 subpoena was served. Prosecutors contended the company conducts "considerable business" in the U.S., according to an appeals court opinion.

At the Supreme Court, the company argued that the 1976 Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act protects foreign governments and entities they own from being dragged into U.S. criminal cases. The appeal also argued that U.S. courts can’t impose sanctions on a foreign sovereign for not complying with a subpoena.

In ruling against the company on a 3-0 vote, the federal appeals court in Washington said the 1976 law, while shielding foreign governments in some contexts, gives American courts authority over them when they are involved in U.S. commercial activity.

Mueller didn’t have authority to file briefs at the Supreme Court, but U.S. Solicitor General Noel Francisco weighed in on the special counsel’s behalf and urged the court to reject the appeal.

The case is In Re Grand Jury Subpoena, 18-948.

(Updates third paragraph to say U.S. attorney’s office will take over matter.)
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver: https://youtube.com/watch?v=zxT8CM8XntA

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