From the New York Times Opinion Page to the Senate Impeachment Trial

|The Volokh Conspiracy |

Around 8:30 p.m. ET, Alan Dershowitz read at some length from my New York Times op-ed. Here is the clip:

At the time, I was lecturing at the University of Oregon, so I did not see it live. Though my phone quickly started to blow up. I am grateful that my friend and mentor, Randy Barnett, was in the Senate Gallery to watch it live.

Earlier today, I appeared on the Brian Lehrer Show on WNYC for about 30 minutes. We spoke at some length about the Op-Ed. I may have answered some other questions you have raised. Here is the segment:

 

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    1. I know. I can forgive a lot of things from Blackman, but his non-stop promotion of the NY Times in the last week is hard to overlook. Couldn’t he have found a more reputable outlet to express his opinion?

      It makes me feel a little dirty thinking that I’m reading opinions that were also expressed in the Times.

      1. Cut the guy some slack. This is like an incel who has a girl brush against him in the cafeteria and spends the next few months telling everyone from his parents to strangers about the relationship.

        1. Sounds like the good Rev is speaking from experience!

    2. Someone will have to fill Dershowitz’s shoes one day. You don’t become a Kim Kardashian of the legal profession without constant self promotion and making yourself relevant.

      1. I’m seeing vastly more self indulgence th an self promotion.

        Though there is plenty of both.

        I try to keep my comments to reacting to specific posts/comments and not cast more general aspersions but…ugh.

      2. “a Kim Kardashian of the legal profession”

        As if

        “Kardashian West successfully lobbied Trump last year to grant clemency to Alice Johnson, a drug trafficker who had been serving a life sentence for nonviolent drug offenses. She cited the experience as her inspiration to begin studying law to become a lawyer.
        * * *
        During her speech, Kardashian West also announced a new program for released convicts that would give them preloaded cards to use for ride shares to be able to make to job interviews as part of reintegrating them back into society.”

        What have you accomplished in the law?

        Further, whatever you might think of Dershowitz now, ask Clause Von Bulow or OJ how bad a lawyer he was.

      3. Kim Kardashian is studying to become a lawyer you know.

        1. She’s even “reading law” like in the olden days.

          1. A la Justice Robert Jackson.

  1. While it may be true that smearing Biden doesn’t meet the technical definition of a “thing of value” in extortion statutes, it is close enough to qualify as criminal-like behavior, which is the Dershowitz standard for an impeachable offense. Perhaps this criminal-like behavior is enough to distinguish between Trump and Blackman’s other cases including Lincoln.

    1. It’s only “smearing” if the allegations aren’t true. Are you seriously saying that Hunter Biden wasn’t brazenly trading on his father’s position? And that Joe himself wasn’t using his position to protect the racket?

      1. There wasn’t enough evidence for AG Barr to open an investigation.

        1. Barr has his hands full cleaning up the corruption in his own department in the DOJ, FBI, and also in the FISA court.

          Who is he going to send to Ukraine to investigate Biden, the same FBI agents that whitewashed the Clinton email felonies? The FBI team that covered up that Steele’s main source said it was all late night barroom bullshitting?

          I’m any case the FBI doesn’t have any jurisdiction in Ukraine, the Ukrainians have jurisdiction. And after a vice-president ordered the Ukrainian government to kill the investigation, maybe it takes the go-ahead from the President for the Ukrainians to restart it.

          1. Just about everything you say is false.

            1. Well, I’d be glad to apologise and correct if you could just tell me what was false.

              I mean Peter Strzok was fired for unaccountably delaying the investigation into Clinton’s emails on Weiners laptop. And he was the one that edited Comey’s statement from Gross Negligence to Extremely Careless.

              The fact that the FBI contacted Steele’s primary source who said it was late night bullshit over drinks, then turned around and told the FISA court that the source was “very candid”, was in the IG report.

              And you have Joe’s own word for it that he used 1b in aid as leverage to fire the prosecutor, that was played in testimony in front of the Senate today.

              Do you have any evidence that any of those facts aren’t true?

              1. “I mean Peter Strzok was fired for unaccountably delaying the investigation into Clinton’s emails on Weiners laptop. ”

                I may have missed something, but wasn’t Strzok fired for his anti-Trump email messages?

                https://www.factcheck.org/2018/08/clintons-emails-weiners-laptop-and-a-falsehood/

                1. See page 13 of the IG executive summary where the IG lists the problems in the Weiner laptop investigation and says “We found these explanations to be unpersuasive justifications for not acting sooner…and that the FBI Midyear team had sufficient information to take action on early October….The FBI’s failure to act in late September or early October is even less justifiable …”

                  And the fact check is bullshit, because the IG notes Strzok did nothing for a month until SDNY Dep. US Attorney Joon Kim started asking questions on October 21, and the DOJ asked Strzok why he hadn’t taken any steps to investigate it yet. See page 12 for that.

                  1. I’m sure you are correct — but was that why Strozk was fired?

                    1. The FBI said when he was fired it was because of everything in the IG report: “Mr. Strzok was subject to the standard FBI review and disciplinary process after conduct highlighted in the IG report was referred to the FBI’s Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR).”

                      Including the conduct I pointed out on pages 12 and 13 above.

                      So are you going to concede the point now?

                    2. “The FBI said when he was fired it was because of everything in the IG report”

                      This statement does not match what you quote the FBI as saying.

                    3. “So are you going to concede the point now?”

                      I was not debating you. I was curious about the discrepancy between the popular reporting, which focused on his anti-Trump emails, and your point. I was asking for enlightenment, which you offered, not an argument.

              2. “a vice-president ordered the Ukrainian government to kill the investigation”

                There is no evidence that Biden ordered the Ukrainian government to kill any investigation. There is evidence that Biden (in accordance with U.S. policy, Britain’s interests, EU’s support, IMF support, etc., etc.) pressured Ukraine’s government to fire a prosecutor who was improperly shielding powerful people from investigations and who had never investigated Hunter Biden and who was no longer investigating Burisma.

                https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/29/business/media/fact-check-biden-ukraine-burisma-china-hunter.html

                1. It’s clearly a fact that Biden had the prosecutor fired. And it’s clearly a fact that the prosecutor had jurisdiction, and plenty of legitimate reasons to investigate the company paying Hunter Biden 1,000,000 a year.

                  And the smoking gun is the internal State department email John Solomon got via FOIA discussing Hunter Biden and Burisma, right before the prosecutor got fired:

                  “Per our conversation, Karen Tramontano of Blue Star Strategies requested a meeting to discuss with U/S Novelli USG remarks alleging Burisma (Ukrainian energy company) of corruption, She noted that two high profile U.S. citizens are affiliated with the company (including Hunter Biden as a board member).

                  “Tramontano would like to talk with U/S Novelli about getting a better understanding of how the U.S. came to the determination that the company is corrupt,”

                  1. “Biden had the prosecutor fired

                    Yes.

                    “it’s clearly a fact that the prosecutor had jurisdiction, and plenty of legitimate reasons to investigate the company ”

                    Less clear. But, sure.

                    “the smoking gun is the internal State department email”

                    The email says the U.S. had determined Burisma was corrupt, not that it was not corrupt and shouldn’t be investigated. That seems very nearly the opposite of a smoking gun. At the very least, you need a lot more than that. That is more like a hair that might be the dog’s or the victim’s or the perp’s or the pizza delivery guy’s. Not a smoking gun by any stretch. The quote you paste cuts the other way without some additional context.

        2. Wrong again Josh. They’ve been investigating Devon Archer, Hunter’s Burisma buddy for a while. Not to mention the little issue of Hunter lying to the Arkansas court in a paternity case, claiming he can’t pay child support while at the same time buying a multi-million dollar mansion and driving his $130K Porsche to eat at Jean Georges.

          1. A clinger complaining these days about someone who stiffs creditors or engages in unseemly personal conduct is a person devoid of self-awareness.

            And scruples.

            Replacement can’t occur too soon.

          2. FlameCCT,

            So Josh says there is no investigation in to Hunter Biden re his Burisma dealings, and you think he is wrong because there is an investigation into someone else and Hunter is a deadbeat dad?

            That’s not how it works. As far as we know, neither AG Barr nor anyone else in the DOJ/FBI have opened an investigation into Hunter Biden’s dealings with Burisma.

      2. Are you seriously saying that Hunter Biden wasn’t brazenly trading on his father’s position? And that Joe himself wasn’t using his position to protect the racket?

        Hunter Biden was trading on his name.

        Joe Biden was not protecting “the racket,” Fox News lies notwithstanding. I’m not going to repeat the explanation, which has been stated hundreds of times, since you and those like you are plainly unwilling to accept any fact that upsets your worship of Trump.

        1. Yes, yes, we know, it wasn’t just Biden, multiple figures who were on the gravy train wanted the prosecutor fired.

        2. 1. Joe Biden appointed point man in Ukraine
          2. Biden demands more Americans be involved in Ukraine’s gas business
          3. Hunter Biden hired for a post he’s unqualified for at lucrative pay a few days later with a corrupt gas company.

          Then…

          4. Corrupt gas company under investigation (and yes, yes it was). Hunter is to be brought in for questioning.
          5. Joe Biden threatens to withhold a billion in loan guarantees unless lead prosecutor is fired immediately.
          6. Lead prosecutor fired immediately
          7. Investigation into company quietly dropped.

          But, we need to trust that Joe did this all for the just good reasons, and only did it because the country was corrupt, because we trust Joe, and he’s a good guy. And Joe trusts Hunter, so that can’t be questioned either. So, there are no questions, questions aren’t allowed. This is open and shut, because we trust Joe, and he’s a good guy, and that’s all you need to know.

          1. 4. Corrupt gas company under investigation (and yes, yes it was). Hunter is to be brought in for questioning.
            5. Joe Biden threatens to withhold a billion in loan guarantees unless lead prosecutor is fired immediately.
            6. Lead prosecutor fired immediately
            7. Investigation into company quietly dropped.

            These are lies. The prosecutor was fired precisely because he wasn’t investigating anything. Everyone involved with Ukraine, including the EU and the IMF, considered him corrupt and wanted him gone – again, because he was not investigating. Biden was not acting on his own initiative, to protect his son.

            Stop repeating lies. Stop believing them.

            1. 4) Yes, they were under investigation, not a lie.
              5) We literally have video of him bragging about this.
              6) Yes, he got fired.
              7) Yes, the replacement quietly dropped the investigation.

              That he was fired because he wasn’t investigating anything is one side’s story, which he publicly disputes. Maybe instead of appealing to the non-existent moral authority of the EU and IMF, you should consider that disputed versions of events should be investigated.

              1. That he was fired because he wasn’t investigating anything is one side’s story, which he publicly disputes.

                Oh. He disputes it, does he? Well good for him. I wasn’t relying on anyone’s “moral authority.” I was relying on some facts.

                But sources ranging from former Obama administration officials to an anti-corruption advocate in Ukraine say the official, Viktor Shokin, was ousted for the opposite reason Trump and his allies claim.

                It wasn’t because Shokin was investigating a natural gas company tied to Biden’s son; it was because Shokin wasn’t pursuing corruption among the country’s politicians, according to a Ukrainian official and four former American officials who specialized in Ukraine and Europe.

                Shokin’s inaction prompted international calls for his ouster and ultimately resulted in his removal by Ukraine’s parliament.

                Without pressure from Joe Biden, European diplomats, the International Monetary Fund and other international organizations, Shokin would not have been fired, said Daria Kaleniuk, co-founder and executive director of the Anti Corruption Action Centre in Kiev.

                “Civil society organizations in Ukraine were pressing for his resignation,” Kaleniuk said, “but no one would have cared if there had not been voices from outside this country calling on him to go.”

                And this:

                Hunter Biden joined the board in April 2014, two months after U.K. authorities requested information from Ukraine as part of a probe against Zlochevsky related to money laundering allegations.
                ….
                After the U.K. request, Ukrainian prosecutors opened their own case, accusing Zlochevsky of embezzling public funds. Burisma and Zlochevsky have denied the allegations.

                The case against Zlochevsky and his Burisma Holdings was assigned to Shokin, then a deputy prosecutor. But Shokin and others weren’t pursuing it, according to the internal reports from the Ukrainian prosecutor’s office reviewed by Bloomberg.

                In a December 2014 letter, U.S. officials warned Ukrainian prosecutors of negative consequences for Ukraine over its failure to assist the U.K., which had seized Zlochevsky’s assets, according to the documents.

                Shokin became prosecutor general in February 2015. Over the next year, the U.S. and the International Monetary Fund criticized officials for not doing enough to fight corruption in Ukraine.

                Shokin took no action to pursue cases against Zlochevsky throughout 2015, said Kasko, who was Shokin’s deputy overseeing international cooperation and helping in asset-recovery investigations. Kasko said he had urged Shokin to pursue the investigations.

                The U.S. stepped up its criticism in September 2015, when its ambassador to Ukraine, during a speech, accused officials working under Shokin of “subverting” the U.K. investigation.

                UKRAINE-POLITICS-JUSTICE-PROSECUTOR-DEMO
                A protester holds a placard reading “Demand independent prosecutor general” during a rally on March 28, 2016.Photographer: Sergei Supinsky/AFP via Getty Images
                Kasko resigned in February 2016, citing corruption and lawlessness in the prosecutor general’s office.

                The U.S. plan to push for Shokin’s dismissal didn’t initially come from Biden, but rather filtered up from officials at the U.S. Embassy in Kiev, according to a person with direct knowledge of the situation. Embassy personnel had called for U.S. loan guarantees to Ukraine to be tied to broader anti-corruption efforts, including Shokin’s dismissal, this person said.

                Biden’s threat to withhold $1 billion if Ukraine didn’t crack down on corruption reportedly came in March. That same month, hundreds of Ukrainians demonstrated outside President Petro Poroshenko’s office demanding Shokin’s resignation, and he was dismissed.

                So against that you’ve got Shokin’s claim, quoted by Giuliani. OK, Brett. Your wildly oscillating standards of proof show up again.

                1. “sources ranging from former Obama administration officials to an anti-corruption advocate in Ukraine say”

                  Oh, they say so, do they? Well good for them.

                  1. They are a lot more credible, by orders of magnitude, than Shokin’s unsubstantiated denial. I mean, it couldn’t possibly be the case that everyone wanted him out fro the excellent reason that he wasn’t investigating corruption.

                    But Brett wants the claim “investigated,” even though, Bondis phony claims notwithstanding.

                    You guys believe anything, absolutely anything, that will exonerate Trump.

                    1. Their ridiculous gullibility in the face of overwhelming evidence indicates to me that they know what Trump did was deeply wrong.

                2. The Trump defense team addressed this on Monday, Jan. 27, 1:57 PM Pacific Time. Here is what Pam Bondi said:

                  There was ongoing investigation into the oligarch, Zlochevsky, the owner of Burisma, at the time. We know this because on February 2nd, 2016, the Ukrainian prosecutor general obtained a renewal of a court order to seize the Ukrainian oligarch’s assets. A Kiev Post article, published on February 4th, 2016, says the oligarch Zlochevsky is quote “suspected of committing the offense of illicit enrichment” end quote.

                  Investigating means collecting information. Pam Bondi doesn’t identify a single search warrant execution, witness interview, or document request.

                  I’m not sure whether to believe Bondi’s claim about the court order. Some of Zlochevsky’s assets might be difficult to locate, or situated outside of Ukraine, but taking ownership of Burisma away from Zlochevsky should be straightforward once a court order is issued because Burisma is a Ukrainian corporation. I wouldn’t think that Zlochevsky would still be the owner of Burisma when the court order was renewed. Be that as it may, an asset seizure operation is not the same thing as an investigation.

                  The Kiev Post article says that Zlochevsky is suspected of committing a crime, but doesn’t say that any steps were being taken to investigate those suspicions.

                  In short, the Trump defense has presented no evidence that Zlochevsky, much less Burisma, was being investigated.

                  1. They took his villa and his Bentley.

                    1. In this country, the cops can take your money and say “it’s totally dirty money” without convicting you of a crime first, they don’t even have to charge you with a crime. So the fact that another country is seizing assets doesn’t prove that there was any investigation into whether or not it was criminal, either.

                    2. James,

                      Perhaps but it does show that he wasn’t ignoring Zlochevsky or being his buddy. If my assets get seized, whether by dirty cops or a court order, I’m going to be upset and want to get them back. If I have a get-out-of-jail-card in my pocket I’ll use it.

                    3. They took his stuff months after Biden started agitating for Shokin to be fired for not addressing corruption.

                      https://web.archive.org/web/20190516140624/https://www.economist.com/europe/2015/12/12/making-joe-biden-mad-as-hell

                      The only evidence regarding Shokin’s treatment of Zlochevsky prior to Biden’s actions is Shokin’s refusal to help the Brits with their case against Zlochevsky.

                    4. BobDude,
                      Do you think that the day they seized Zlochevsky’s assets was the first he knew that they were after him? That’s very unlikely. Also the idea that Biden wanted Shokin out because he was corrupt is laughable. All of them were corrupt and Shokin’s successor, Lutsenkso, was as corrupt as the rest of them. Not at all “solid” as Biden claimed in the son of a bitch video. Well, I guess he was solid in the sense that he dropped the charges against Zlochevsky.

                  2. Maybe Zlochevsky gave the prosecutor a $25,000 campaign donation so he would drop the case. That detail would certainly not have been lost on Bondi.

                  3. The order was to re-freeze assets that had become unfrozen given the transfer of at least that aspect of the case among various Ukrainian criminal justice departments in a reorganization to promote the fight against corruption. In other words, it was just a return to the status quo that existed in December 2015, not any sort of revivification of the investigation into Zlochevsky that was stymied by the firing of Shokin as alleged by the Trump defense.

                    1. https://en.interfax.com.ua/news/general/322395.html

                      Nope. Seized several villas and not a Bentley but a Rolls Royce Phantom.

                    2. You people have been bending yourselves into pretzels to try to claim that Shokin was not going after Zlochevsky. These facts prove that he was. Your attempt to obfuscate the facts is pathetic. Z needed protection, he bought it by paying Hunter the bag man, and he got it by getting the guy fired who was after him.

                    3. “You people have been bending yourselves into pretzels to try to claim that Shokin was not going after Zlochevsky. These facts prove that he was”

                      You’re failing to accurately summarize your opposition’s point, and failed to provide facts that refute them.

                    4. James,

                      The opposition’s points are a load of um.. malarkey. They have been denying that Shokin was going after Zlochevsky and/or Burisma. An asset seizure proves he was. Whether it was the beginning or the end of an investigation, or whether he was indicted at the time is beside the point. It was a hostile act and any victim of such would try to get relief. So in comes Joe.

                3. Ah, the good old postmodern “Your facts aren’t facts” argument. This is why I just embrace clownworld and the inevitable disregard and violence our culture will have to weather. At some point, try as you may to deceive us otherwise, people will simply stop listening to you. They won’t even try to talk. And when you realize this and harden your position further, that’s where the line for the helicopter ride begins.

              2. Exactly Brett.

                But no let’s investigate a totally unfounded, baseless and delusional Trump-Russia conspiracy theory for 3 years.

                1. “If it’s what you say I love it especially later in the summer.” Don Trump, Jr., hoping to get dirt on Hillary from a Russian agent.

                  Yeah, Mueller did not find sufficient evidence to charge a criminal conspiracy, but Russia definitely interfered in the 2016 election with the purpose of helping Trump and reached out to Trumpworld. Trumpworld actively sought the help. The fact that we don’t have evidence that they ever managed to connect suggests incompetence, at best, but hardly vindication.

                  Trump openly stated he would accept help from a foreign government if he could get it. Why this isn’t concerning to “patriots” can only be explained by the fact that the so-called “patriots” love Trump more than they love the country? That is just gross.

                  1. Lol right. Russia posted some Bernie and Jesus memes on facebook. Time to fire up the nuclear warheads!

                    I swear mental illness is increasing exponentially.

                    1. “I swear mental illness is increasing exponentially.”

                      Yes, you display it openly and with pride.

              3. Brett, alternative facts demand alternative investigations?

            2. “Biden was not acting on his own initiative, to protect his son.”

              Maybe not, it was just a lucrative side benefit then.

              1. You have no evidence aside from the disgruntled Shokin (disputed by more credible Ukrainians) that the firing of Shokin had any “lucrative side benefit” to Burisma, much less to Hunter Biden, much less to Joe Biden.

                Stop just making stuff up. You can point out how sleazy the whole thing is without making up criminal conspiracy theories.

            3. Biden demanded Shokin be fired in December 2015.
              Shokin was fired in March, 2016.
              A search warrant against Burisma was executed by Shokin in February, 2016.
              Burisma sent letters to the US State Department (namedropping Hunter Biden) asking State to get the Ukrainian government to call off the investigation, in February, 2016.
              Hunter Biden and his coworker Devin Archer met with State Department officials – including Secretary of State John Kerry – in February and March, 2016.
              The investigation was officially closed, as announced by the Urkainian government and Burisma, in January, 2017.

              I’m pretty sure that even someone like you can understand that December 2015 comes before February 2016 and March 2016.

              So, YES, there was an investigation ongoing at the time. And the “EU” and IMF have admitted they only supported the American request because the American administration requested it.

              Stop repeating lies. I’d say stop believing them, but that’s too much to ask of you.

              1. There is more history here than you’re accounting for. The entire Burisma issue relates to an investigation of the company for conduct in 2010-2012 (before Hunter Biden joined the Board). The primary driver was the 2014 UK investigation of Zlochevskiy. The UK asked the Ukrainian Prosecutor’s Office to assist with that investigation. Instead of doing so, Shokin’s office sent letters (in 2014 and 2015) to Zlochevskiy’s attorneys attesting there was no investigation of him. (As you can imagine, Zlochevskiy’s lawyer immediately submitted these to the UK court, which dismissed the case.) That pissed everybody off. Including Vitaly Kasko, a former deputy to Shokin who resigned in protest due to “total lawlessness” in Shokin’s office. (Kasko is now back in the Prosecutor General’s office under the new regime.)

                Note that the December 2015 demand is after Shokin’s office sent the letters that tanked the UK investigation. Note also that the UK investigation–which is the underlying thing that Shokin was supposed to be investigating, but didn’t until the last second, had to do with conduct that predated Biden’s involvement with Burisma.

                1. I don’t know if you’re trying to imply this, but why do you think it is relevant to highlight that the conduct Burisma was investigated for predated Hunter Biden serving on their board? You don’t have to be serving on a board at the time of the crime in order to be liable for it. The board doesn’t even have to do something wrong themselves. They simply could have been negligent in reporting a problem. Feel free to call them out of context, but you can’t say these two statements aren’t factual:

                  1. Hunter Biden served on the board of Burisma
                  2. Joe Biden, by his own admission, was involved in firing the prosecutor tasked with investigating Burisma

                  This appearance of unethical behavior alone warrants investigation. Anyone who seriously cares for ethics in government would be concerned about it. You try to dismiss it with other information, some of it factual, some of it subjective, but no matter how you spin it, there are legitimate causes for concern. That’s the most important part of this discussion because the entire argument against Trump is that there cannot be legitimate cause for concern, ergo he must have acted for personal gain. That’s why you keep dismissing anything Biden related and why the House hijacked this process. If Romneybot fails again and plays into this bureaucratic waste of time, at least I’ll know I was right for picking GJ and not him in 2012.

                  1. To an extent, it’s an odd argument. One might assume that if Democrats “really wanted to get to the truth”, they would happily agree to exchanging Hunter’s testimony for Bolton’s. It should be an easy win, especially since Hunter and Joe have done nothing wrong.

                    Yet…they don’t. It’s in fact, very strongly resisted. Why?

                    1. What, exactly, does Hunter know about Trump’s (alleged, but fairly well-documented) wrongdoing?

                      And why do the R’s need to bargain for it? Do they not control the federal government, which contains a fairly good number of law-enforcement agencies?

                    2. Because what Hunter did or didn’t do is irrelevant to whether Trump abused the powers of the Presidency. No judge would allow this sort of sideshow.

                      Imagine a person think thinks her opponent for dog catcher of Anytown, USA, is cheating on his taxes. She break into his home for the purpose of stealing documents to prove her hunch and use that proof to undermine his campaign to unseat her as dog catcher. She is scared away before she gets the documents. At trial, it is irrelevant at her trial for attempted larceny and burglary whether her opponent was actually committing tax fraud or even whether she really believed he was.

                    3. Responding to James,

                      “What, exactly, does Hunter know about Trump’s (alleged, but fairly well-documented) wrongdoing”

                      To a certain extent, it doesn’t really matter what Hunter knows or doesn’t know. What matters is that certain Republicans want him to testify and are willing to trade Hunter’s testimony for Bolton’s testimony. And the Democrats need Republican support if they want Bolton’s testimony in the Senate.

                      Let’s use a slightly different example. Democrats want Bolton’s testimony. Republican say “Sure, but only if Bolton testifies on a Thursday”. Democrats should say “sure” as they need Republican votes. Instead, they’re saying “Absolutely not, we want Bolton to testify when we want him to, and we absolutely won’t agree to your demands that he testify on a Thursday. But it is absolutely critical Bolton testify”

                      What does it really matter if Bolton testify on a Thursday or not, if it’s so important? Why not just agree?

                    4. Democrats can’t force Republicans to do the right thing, but they can refrain from enabling it. As Nova Lawyer explains, the Senate has no business calling either of the Bidens as part of the impeachment trial. Republicans don’t need Democratic votes to call Hunter Biden as a witnesses. Instead, they want Democrats to vote for Hunter Biden as a witness in order to make calling Hunter Biden appear legitimate even though it’s not. By refusing to do that, Democrats are basically saying that they will stand for what is right regardless of what the Republicans do.

                      Armchair Lawyer’s hypothetical of Republicans saying, “We agree to Bolton testifying as long as he testifies on a Thursday” is vastly different because it doesn’t ask Democrats to be complicit in Republican wrongdoing.

                    5. Responding to Kenneth,

                      ” it doesn’t ask Democrats to be complicit in Republican wrongdoing”

                      So, you’re saying calling Hunter Biden to be a witness would be “wrongdoing”? IE morally wrong, or evil? That’s an interesting stance to take. And that the “wrongdoing” of calling Hunter outweighs any “goodness” in calling Bolton?

                      I mean, you’ve gone down an odd road where instead of seeking the truth, you’re instead looking to prevent the truth in the name of a “moral goodness”

                    6. “To a certain extent, it doesn’t really matter what Hunter knows or doesn’t know.”

                      You bring witnesses to a trial to testify about they know. This is why jurors are cautioned to only listen to information presented in court, and not (say) something they read on the Internet, where people feel permitted to issue opinions on subjects they really have no knowledge of.

                      “So, you’re saying calling Hunter Biden to be a witness would be “wrongdoing”?”

                      Yes. Bring Mr. Biden’s testimony to the trial of Hunter Biden, where his testimony is meaningful. It has no meaning at the trial of Mr. Trump.

                    7. Responding to James (and Kenneth).

                      As the point has been repeatedly made, impeachment is a political process. It’s not an actual criminal trial. (If it was an actual criminal trial, it would’ve been thrown out long ago) And in any political process, there is, well, politics.

                      What is being asked for here is a compromise, which is the heart of politics. Give and take. It does not matter if you think Hunter’s testimony is meaningful. What matters is, that is the trade the GOP is offering to get the testimony you do think is meaningful.

                      If you want to reject that trade, that’s fine. Suddenly have particularities about what belongs in a trial and how it should be done, that’s fine too. But remember, this is a political process. This is politics. And if you need something from the other party, but continue to offer nothing in return…don’t be surprised if nothing gets done.

                  2. “This appearance of unethical behavior alone warrants investigation.”

                    Sure. About two years ago, if Trump were competent at his job. So the fact that he’s just now gettin’ ‘roun’ to it isn’t a win for him, even if they DO find something (which, c’mon, Rudy’s been digging for months now, and (oops) doesn’t seem to have found anything worth telling anyone about.

                  3. “the entire argument against Trump is that there cannot be legitimate cause for concern”

                    You don’t understand the argument. No one is upset if Trump was concerned. He didn’t follow any legitimate procedures for addressing his concerns. (DOJ investigation, etc.). Instead, he used U.S. government resources to try to obtain an announcement of a criminal investigation.

                    If he had concern about government ethics, there are established methods by which the U.S. government investigates those and none of them involve pressuring a foreign government to announce a criminal investigation. But the established methods of investigating possible ethics violations wouldn’t really be helpful to Trump because U.S. policy is generally not to publicly announce such investigations and such a review had been done and Biden had been cleared.

                    If he had concerns about possible criminality, there are established methods by which the U.S. government investigates those and none of them involve pressuring a foreign government to announce a criminal investigation. But the established methods wouldn’t have been helpful to Trump, because DOJ policy is not to announce investigations and there is no real suggestion that Joe Biden did anything criminal.

                    Trump’s conduct did nothing to advance any legitimate ethical or criminal concerns he had. Instead, he used government funds to try to get the one thing that would be helpful to him personally: An announcement of a criminal investigation of Joe Biden which he could only get by pressuring Ukraine to announce a criminal investigation (as, even under Barr, DOJ would not participate in such a smear campaign).

                    1. Even worse, he used his personal attorney to co-opt government resources.

              2. A search warrant against Burisma was executed by Shokin in February, 2016.

                Citation needed. Pam Bondi presented a detailed discussion of Burisma, but failed to mention this or any steps taken by Shokin to investigate Burisma. Are you seriously suggesting we should take your word for it that you know more about the case than Trump’s defense team?

                  1. That’s not a search warrant. NOVA Lawyer explained above that the court order it describes, “was just a return to the status quo that existed in December 2015, not any sort of revivification of the investigation into Zlochevsky.”

                    1. It is an asset seizure. It proves that Shokin was investigating and prosecuting Zlochevsky. Trying to say that it was a return to a status quo as if there is no threat to Z is ridiculous. I don’t know about you but if I had villas all over the place and a Rolls Royce Phantom I might get a little upset if someone took them from me. In fact if I had a way to get them off my back I would use it.

                    2. “It is an asset seizure. It proves that Shokin was investigating and prosecuting Zlochevsky.”

                      non sequitur

                1. Burisma was Zlochevsky. Shokin was going after Z. Z put Hunter on the board of Burisma. Trying to separate Z and Burisma is just deflection.

                  1. My comments about the search warrant are equally valid if you substitute Zlochevsky for Burisma.

                  2. You’re getting really out there on this Burisma stuff.

                    You’re mischaracterizing evidence to fit your argument. Either you’re wrong, or you’re in too deep for reality to matter any longer to you.

                    1. Sarcastro,
                      You obviously know next to nothing about this business. Zlochevsky owned and controlled Burisma. At various times Burisma’s dealings were investigated as was Z himself. This boffo news, and it is boffo news, about seizing Z’s assets isn’t diminished by claims that somehow the Burisma investigation was “dormant” at the time. If you and your pals can’t see that seizing villas and luxury cars is going after someone then it means you don’t want to see it. So the whole “Shokin was never investigating Burisma” is a smokescreen.

                      Your side is getting panicky about this because of Pam Bondi’s presentation that brought it up. It’s actually fun to see all the pathetic, half-baked arguments to deflect from the truth.

              3. Your timeline starts with Biden’s demand for Shokin to be fired. Nothing indicates an investigation was ongoing at that point.

                1. Are investigations made public here? When there is an indictment but usually not before. It’s probably the same in Ukraine.

            4. “These are lies”

              Wow. That’s dramatic. What exactly the lie? I mean, points 5, 6, and 7, you’re not really contradicting.

              And I mean, the prosecutor says he was investigating. The company’s lawyers says they were under investigation. Shokin established a special anticorruption agency within the prosecutor general’s officer in September of 2015 to deal with any delays. Burisma’s founder assets were being seized in February of 2016. So…it looks like it was under investigation. Well, at least until a few months after Shokin was fired.

              I mean, here’s Burisma’s lawyer on it.

              https://www.kyivpost.com/business-wire/john-buretta-us-important-close-casesagainst-burisma-nikolayzlochevskyiin-legally-sound-manner.html

              So, what exactly is the “lie”? They are inconvenient facts, for sure. And perhaps Biden had other reasons to pressure so very very hard to fire Shokin. I’m sure Shokin was a corrupt man, but such intense pressure at such a time is…odd. I’m sure it’s nothing.

            5. The State Department was calling Burisma corrupt, and a Burisma lobbyist was trying to call them off, using Hunter Biden’s name right before the prosecutor was fired:
              “Per our conversation, Karen Tramontano of Blue Star Strategies requested a meeting to discuss with U/S Novelli USG remarks alleging Burisma (Ukrainian energy company) of corruption,” a Feb. 24, 2016, email between State officials read. “She noted that two high profile U.S. citizens are affiliated with the company (including Hunter Biden as a board member).”

              It just beggers belief that a month before Shokin gets fired Burisma Lobbyists are using Hunter Biden to work the state department to squelch corruption allegations against Burisma, and to assert that there was nothing to allegations that Burisma was under investigation in Ukraine.

              1. “The State Department was calling Burisma corrupt, and a Burisma lobbyist was trying to call them off, using Hunter Biden’s name right before the prosecutor was fired:”

                Which somehow proves the Joe Biden is corrupt, because…

                1. Proof? Who said anything about proof. The question hasn’t even been investigated. Your side is the one claiming that they have proof that the very idea has been “debunked” and there’s not even a question.

                  1. The timeline of your story doesn’t line up. The papertrail provides proof of a much more anodyne set of events.

                    If Trump wanted to start an investigation of Hunter, he has a Department of Justice to do that and a very amenable AG. He didn’t.

                    This is just desperate lies now.

                    1. The timeline of your story doesn’t line up. The papertrail provides proof of a much more anodyne set of events.

                      No it doesn’t. The papertrail as you call it leads directly to Biden selling influence.

                      How do you know that there is no investigation? The last time I checked the FBI website I didn’t see a “This Week In Investigations” section. Besides if there isn’t one now there is plenty of time to start one. I would start by having a little chat with Devon Archer about the possibility of a plea deal.

            6. The issue isn’t whether Shokin was corrupt or not. In fact the default assumption would be that any public official in Ukraine at the time was corrupt. The issue is whether or not he was pursuing Burisma and/or Zlochevsky. We know he was after Z because of the asset seizure in Feb., 2016. Whether he was after him or Burisma at all times during his tenure is not important. He was after him in February and Biden got him fired in March.

              1. Yeah. Cynic here, but to me the default assumption about something like this effort to oust Shokin, is that you want this corrupt guy out, not because he’s corrupt, but because he’s not your guy, and you need to have your guy in.

                1. Your default assumption is highly dubious.

                  1. Why is that highly dubious? In fact the guy who did replace Shokin was notoriously corrupt. He was just willing to let Zlochevsky off the hook.

                2. Somehow I doubt you apply that cynicism in interpreting Trump’s actions.

            7. “The prosecutor was fired precisely because he wasn’t investigating anything.”

              Your defense of Joe Biden’s involvement requires a lot of mental gymnastics – effectively your logic is that Joe Biden got the prosecutor fired because he wasnt investigating Hunter Biden’s corruption.

              1. No. Because he wasn’t investigating Zlochevsky’s corruption. There is no evidence whatsoever of any Hunter Biden corruption. (What do you people even claim that Biden was supposedly doing?)

          2. 3. Hunter Biden hired for a post he’s unqualified for at lucrative pay a few days later with a corrupt gas company.

            Who told you he was unqualified?

            4. Corrupt gas company under investigation (and yes, yes it was). Hunter is to be brought in for questioning.

            No. Three years after the fact, after meeting with Firtash’s Trumpkin legal team, Shokin said, “Oh yeah, I was totally planning to look into Hunter Biden at some point in the future. Trust me.”

            6. Lead prosecutor fired immediately

            Nope. Months later.

            1. “Who told you he was unqualified?”

              That’s Hilarious.

              Would you like to explain to us just one year after Hunter Biden was publicly kicked out of the Navy for smoking crack, the crash course he took to get qualified for a million a year job.

              1. I read David’s response, and couldn’t to be bothered to respond with his stances.

              2. “Would you like to explain to us just one year after Hunter Biden was publicly kicked out of the Navy for smoking crack, the crash course he took to get qualified for a million a year job.”

                He had two qualifications… 1) he is an American, and 2) he was related to someone powerful.

              3. Your question appears to be based on the misconception that Hunter Biden had enlisted in the Navy when he graduated from school, was discharged, and was thus a 20-something guy with no experience. That’s not remotely accurate.

                Hunter Biden was privately, not publicly, discharged from the Navy Reserves, for testing positive for cocaine. (Your use of the word “crack” is presumably to make the story sound more sordid.)

                The “course” he took was not a “crash course,” but years of experience. He went to law school. He became an EVP at MBNA. He worked in the Dept. of Commerce. He served as a lobbyist and a lawyer. He served on the board of directors of Amtrak. He worked in venture capital. He worked as counsel at the several-hundred lawyer firm of Boies Schiller.

                None of this stuff is a secret, except perhaps to people who get all their news from Hannity and/or Trump’s twitter feed.

                1. David you really should abandon this. You are the only one who is pushing this. Your most ardent admirers, and I count myself as one even though we are on the opposite side of this, aren’t propping you up on the “Hunter is totes qualified” line.

                  Bringing up Hunter’s time at MBNA? Seriously? Joe was for years called the Senator from MBNA.

      3. “It’s only “smearing” if the allegations aren’t true.”

        So you wouldn’t object if your local Sheriff announced that he was investigating whether or not you were implicated in a local prostitution ring involving 10-year-olds? Because, after all, it’s only a smear if they’re NOT investigating you.

    2. “close enough” … “criminal-like”

      Seems like an airtight theory.

      1. “Criminal-like” is the Dershowitz standard.

        1. Which he explained and gave examples.

          1. After reading the transcript of Dershowitz’s testimony, it appears he limited “criminal-like” to conduct that isn’t criminal only because of time and place technicalities. One example was a bribe taken outside the United States or beyond the statute of limitations that would otherwise have been a crime.

            I extend the definition of “criminal-like” to include a more expansive view of a statutory element of a crime. In this case, it is possible that Trump’s conduct wasn’t criminal because of the statutory limitation on the definition of “threat” or a “thing of value.” That being said, I have no doubt there was a threat (withholding security assistance needed to resist Russian aggression) and a thing of value (casting suspicion on Biden) that makes Trump’s conduct criminal-like and thus eligible for impeachment. In contrast, I believe all of Dershowtiz’s other examples of abuses of power do not link to a crime in the way that Trump’s abuse of power does.

            1. How is casting suspicion on Biden a thing of value?

              1. Given you keep asking this question as if it is serious, I can’t decide whether you are a troll or dumb.

                1. I am unaware of any case law that defines casting suspicion as a thing of value.

                  1. As I said, casting suspicion doesn’t meet the technical, legal definition of a thing of value. Nonetheless, casting suspicion is commonly understood to be a thing of value so that Trump’s conduct is akin to extortion.

              2. I think that we can liken this to libel. Casting suspicion is a thing of value. If it’s false, this is a problem. However, if it’s true or you reasonably suspect it to be true, it’s part of the normal course of duties.

                While we can debate all day whether or not Biden was Actually corrupt, I think that we can all agree that it Appeared corrupt and should be properly investigated.

                1. ” I think that we can all agree that it Appeared corrupt”

                  Because that’s the way it was presented to you.

                  What would make it appear corrupt, objectively, would be if any one of the millions of Trumpkins could point to any action taken by Biden Sr. that was the payoff to paying his son to be on the board of this foreign company.

                  What you’ve got is “it sure looks shady that this corrupt foreign company gave an important person’s son a job they don’t appear to be qualified to perform, for a lot more money than they appear to be worth.”
                  That suggests the foreign company might be shady. It suggests that Biden, Jr. might have been willing to take money he hadn’t really earned. It suggests exactly bupkiss about Biden, Sr.

                2. So do you believe that what President Trump did qualifies as “…properly investigated?”

                3. Neither the Justice or State Department thinks an investigation is warranted. Neither does the Ukrainian government.

                  1. I can believe everything Trump did is wrong, and still this stinks to high Heaven.

                    1. Because….

                  2. If the Ukrainian government did not think an investigation was warranted, what was the harm in asking?

                    1. Trump did more than ask, chief.

    3. “close enough to qualify as criminal-like behavior”

      That’s the standard by which you remove a president from office?

      That’s not even the standard to take away someone’s drivers license!

      1. “That’s not even the standard to take away someone’s drivers license!”

        Good! He can drive himself to the airport on his way out.

      2. Then again, it’s far higher than the standard one normally uses for firing someone, which doesn’t require anything close to “criminal-like behavior.”

  2. from my New York Times op-ed.

    Wait, you had an op-ed in the NYT? Why is this the first I’m hearing about it? If you’re going to publish something like that, you really ought to tell us instead of keeping it a secret.

    1. I have some follow-up questions. Do you think Prof. Blackman would be willing to answer them?

    2. “Tomorrow, my reactions to comments on this blog about pieces posted on this blog about my New York Times op-ed.”

  3. That this blog is the best movement conservatives in legal academia can do heartens me as I contemplate the next few decades of the culture war.

    1. Because brushing aside constitutional protections in service to political passions of the moment, as stirred by the power hungry using simple majorities has worked out so well for democracies historically?

      1. Yes, don’t you just hate it when simple majorities brush aside constitutional norms?

        1. I do. Glad you do, too.

  4. Excellent! Well done.

    In fairness, well done also to the NYT for inviting the opposing point of view.

    1. Agreed. He has every right to be proud (if that’s the motivation for the blog post). I’m interested, glad he posted.

  5. Professor Blackman, Congratulations on your Op-Ed and scholarship being recognized by Professor Dershowitz and use by him in his remarks to the Senate. I’m personally glad you are associated with South Texas College of Law.

    1. What do you have against South Texas school of law?

  6. I’m so sorry to hear that! My condolences with the loss of your academic credibility!

    1. It’s almost career suicide in academia, once you are outted as a conservative legal scholar supporting a Republican President in the NYT, and prominently cited on the floor of the Senate on National TV, then probably the only place left to try to salvage what was once a promising career is to accept an appointment on the federal bench for the next 30 or 40 years.

      And I hear they are hiring.

      1. Writing something for the New York Times is fine (reputation-wise), regardless of the stance you actually take. But having your work endorsed by Alan Dershowitz seems like a problem…

        1. “WASHINGTON – Sen. Doug Jones, a key Senate Democrat considered one of the chamber’s most endangered senators going into the 2020 race, found some of the arguments made by President Donald Trump’s counsel “persuasive” and highlighted concerns he has over the second article of impeachment.
          * * *
          “He did make some good points on a couple of things on factual issues that I’ve got concerns about with, especially with regard to Article II,” Jones said of the arguments made by Alan Dershowitz, a member of Trump’s counsel defending him during the trial.” USA Today

          1. Imagine Doug Jones wanting to keep his Senate seat. We’ll see if lukewarm support for Trump and not having a history of sexual advances toward minors will be enough for him to do that.

  7. Stop hiding your light under a bushel.

    OK, hazing aside (which by the way you’ve been begging for), congratulations. You earned the right to be proud, even a little over-exuberant. That said, if by the next impeachment you haven’t found humility, at least learn to fake it. Trust me, it’s more dignified.

    1. Indeed.

      Thrust into prominence because you are momentarily saying things that powerful but slimy people find convenient, might seem to be a feather in his cap, but it’s something he will have to run away from at some point. Unless he gets to be a federal judge, which doesn’t seem impossible at this point.

      1. Geez, Josh. Give it a rest.

        1. Why should he give it a rest, we have conspirators here all the time making multiple posts about their Supreme Court amicus briefs, participation in debates, forums on Lawfare etc.

          Actually I think a NY Times oped being cited during an impeachment trial on the Senate floor presided by the Chief Justice actually does qualify as a big deal, especially on a law blog.

          You do know that this is a law blog right?

          1. A thin legal veneer does not a “law blog” make.

          2. Kazinski,

            It’s endless. Sure other conspirators talk about that stuff, sometimes a bit much, but Blackman is an unbelievable self-promoter. He has these “Today in Supreme Court History” ads for his book, and when he writes something he can’t stop talking about it.

            OK. He got an op-ed in the NYT. Fine. Mention it. But really, “Responses to my op-ed,” “Further responses to my op-ed,” “Dershowitz quotes from my op-ed,” and soon, no doubt, “Responses to Dershowitz quoting my op-ed.” Well, we probably won’t get the latter because AFAICT, most constitutional lawyers don’t think much of the argument. Even Dershowitz didn’t think much of it until it got him in front of the cameras.

            1. Geez, let the guy crow a little, he’s part of history.

              1. You know who else was part of history???

                1. I don’t know much about history…

            2. To you it may seem like self promotion but to me it seems like content.

              I’m going to write a quick python routine to go and scan all the posts on Volokh back to September and tally the number of times you’ve commented on Blackman’s posts compared to other authors.

              I’m willing to wager Blackman’s posts will be either 1 or 2 on the list. Then you’ll have to admit self promotion of no, you find Blackman’s commentary engaging and worthy of comment.

              Care to take that wager?

              1. “I’m going to write a quick python routine to go and scan all the posts on Volokh back to September and tally the number of times you’ve commented on Blackman’s posts compared to other authors.”

                Oh, yeah? Well, I’m going to write a quick python routine about a cheese shop that has a dead parrot that, for some reason, people keep slapping with a fish.

    2. ” You earned the right to be proud, even a little over-exuberant. ”

      Not everyone has social skills. Some people struggle mightily, or even fruitlessly, with how to handle interpersonal relationships and social norms.

  8. There are a dozen instances more impeachable just under Obama and Bush than what the deranged Democrats are charging here.

    1. I hate to tell you this, but I think you missed your opportunity to impeach Obama, and Bush is a little bit too dead, even if he did allow new taxes after promising no new taxes.

      1. It never occurred to me to impeach Obama, because like everyone else prior to 2019, I wasnt operating under the innovative new impeachment standard and strategy that Democrats have adopted.

        1. So, Obama didn’t do anything impeachable until 2019?

  9. A consummate swamp creature if there ever was one.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/john-bolton-was-paid-115000-to-participate-in-two-panels-sponsored-by-foundation-of-ukrainian-steel-magnate/2018/06/12/df6d48a0-6e67-11e8-afd5-778aca903bbe_story.html

    June 12, 2018

    National security adviser John Bolton was paid $115,000 in the past year to participate in two panel discussions sponsored by the foundation of an Ukrainian steel magnate — including one in Kiev last September [2017], during which Bolton reassured the audience that President Trump would not radically change U.S. foreign policy.

    “The notion that [Trump’s election] is going to represent a dramatic break in foreign policy is just wrong,” Bolton said, responding to a question from a British interviewer. “Calm down, for God’s sake,” he continued.

    Bolton’s appearances at the Kiev event and at another event in Munich this February were paid for by the Victor Pinchuk Foundation, according a financial disclosure form released Monday by the White House. . .

    The payment from the Pinchuk foundation was the largest single speaking fee Bolton received in the past year, according to his disclosure. In all, Bolton reported making $747,000 in speaking fees and $2.2 million in total income. . .

    Pinchuk has spent years working to create closer ties between Ukraine and the United States and Western Europe. Along the way, he has also put money into the charities — and, sometimes, the pockets — of American political figures.

    Pinchuk has donated more than $10 million to the family foundation of former president Bill Clinton and former ­secretary of state Hillary Clinton. In 2011, Pinchuk met with one of Clinton’s aides at the State Department to relay a message from Ukraine’s president at the time, Viktor Yanukovych. . .

    Asked about Trump during the discussion, Bolton said “I didn’t support him” in the GOP primary, according to a video of the event. . .

    1. “A consummate swamp creature if there ever was one.”

      And your guy hired him to an important post.

      1. Sick burn. Our guy hired a lot of retards on the advice of others who he didn’t normally associate with. It was bad enough that he almost got involved with Mittens. Thanks for proving that it’s hard for Washington outsiders to completely avoid the swamp.

        1. ” it’s hard for Washington outsiders to completely avoid the swamp.”

          Your guy was already all muddy when he got there. So don’t pretend to be surprised rolling around in the mud didn’t make him any cleaner.

  10. Kudos Professor Blackman.

  11. Congratulations – when you have the endorsement of Alan Dershowitz, that’s when you know you’ve really made it.

  12. By the way, did you watch Dershowitz last night? He’s 81 years old. He is as fit as a fiddle, and mentally sharp, delivering his remarks crisply and clearly, and with zeal.

    Joe Biden is 77. In comparison to Alan, he is not only, obviously, a tangle-tongued knucklehead, but one in his dotage. And corrupt as can be, to boot.

    1. Where ‘disliked by bigots’ = “corrupt.”

    2. Both he and Sanders will be 78 when the election rolls around. I think in Bernie’s case that’s a plus, probably will limit how many people he can send to the gulag in one day.

      1. Moar melodrama please.

        1. Let the clingers have their say.

          Think of it as ‘any final words you want to say’ before replacement.

    3. “A vote for Joe Biden is a vote for Grandpa Simpson”- Christopher Charles Morton

      1. So would that make a vote for Trump a vote for Montgomery Burns?

        (Answer: no. Burns is a successful businessman.)

        1. No, David, Trump doesn’t live in the two-dimensional space Biden occupies.

        2. “So would that make a vote for Trump a vote for Montgomery Burns?”

          Well, he’s sure no Hank Skorpio…

    4. “Joe Biden is 77. In comparison to Alan, he is not only, obviously, a tangle-tongued knucklehead, but one in his dotage. And corrupt as can be, to boot.”

      So, if he’s elected this year, next year’s transition from the current tangle-tongued knucklehead in his dotage who’s corrupt as can be, to the next one, should go smoothly.

  13. Goodness, the witnesses . . .

    None of the witnesses are material, because there’s no impeachable conduct alleged. There was no investigation, and the aid was released, there was no harm to US interests, there was “no pressure,” and the inquiry about an investigation was justified anyway.

    But if the Republicans were going to behave as the Democrats always do and as they did in the House, then Republicans would call every last witness they want, material or not, as it may help them politically, while letting the Democrats call none. Joe, Hunter, Schiff, Eric Ciaramella, etc.

    1. “None of the witnesses are material, because there’s no impeachable conduct alleged.”

      Oh, dear… is counting all the way up to two too much for you?

      “But if the Republicans were going to behave as the Democrats always do and as they did in the House, then Republicans would call every last witness they want, material or not, as it may help them politically”

      This was Donnie’s plan. So, you’re saying he’s a Democrat?

    2. Unless you’re Dersh himself, No way you’re a lawyer and make that ridiculous argument.

      Good lord.

      1. I heard Ted Cruz make that argument to a gaggle of the press on CSPAN. Now say what you will about Ted Cruz he is a hell of a Lawyer, nine cases argued before the Supreme Court, including taking on the Bush Administration and winning Medellin v Texas.

        1. Not even Blackman is willing to make that argument.

          No harm no foul isn’t a principle in the legal system.

        2. Not sure if ‘Ted Cruz is willing to say it’ is a very high bar these days.

  14. I wonder if POTUS will have a case for prosecutorial misconduct? Trumped-up charges (pun intended) for the purpose of hampering the presidency.

    1. How, exactly, has his Presidency been hampered? All he does is sit around and send tweets out, and that doesn’t seem to be affected. It’s still the GREATEST WITCH HUNT HOAX SHAM COUP that HAS EVER HAPPENED!!!

    2. Yeah, lets jail a swath of the political opposition. Should go great.

      Do you hate living in a functioning republic that much?

      1. “Political opponents of Republicans are immune from criminal liability.”

        1. Yeah, that’s what I said, ML, sure.

          Don’t be such a tool.

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