i’m usually cautiously optimistic but hicks was never going to be forthcoming because of her extreme pride in her proximity to trumpito. i’m not totally sure what the strategy is behind letting her sit for the committee other than the above mentioned fuck you to the rule of law.
Same, I’m usually cautiously optimistic too. I don’t think there’s any strategy on either side here. Dems are calling anyone who will agree to show up. The HW is just doing a blanket refusal. It’s all reactionary, there’s no grand plan, just whatever sticks, whatever gains traction.
Without congressional oversight though we are teetering on the edge of a fascist dictatorship with Trump, insanely inept but still that’s how democracy dies. Once he knows congress can’t do anything to stop him, that’s it, it’s over. We all know he’d run that play until he’s consolidated all power to the Presidency. It’s scary times.
The House Intelligence Committee has “very little visibility” into the three Justice Department investigations into the intelligence officials who launched the Russia probe, the panel’s chairman Adam Schiff said on Wednesday.
It’s a situation that has Schiff concerned, given his fears that the probes are politically motivated.
“It’s an effort to amplify the counter-narrative, and to ignore what the Russians did, and what they will do in the next election,” Schiff said at a National Press Club event on Wednesday. "We’ve already seen a disturbing erosion of our checks and balances” with regard to the White House’s contact with DOJ, he added.
“I have discussed personally with the Director of National Intelligence [Dan] Coats my profound concern about what Bill Barr is doing in particular,” Schiff said. “Namely, his desire to provide cover to the president by investigating the investigators.”
Schiff, meanwhile, said he is still trying to get answers from the FBI about the counterintelligence findings of Mueller’s investigation, and whether the counterintelligence investigation launched in early 2017 into Trump himself was ever formally closed.
While the FBI has “started to provide some answers” and increased briefings, Schiff said, they’ve been reluctant to go into any detail. “They’re just telling us about process,” Schiff said. “Like everything else, it’s like pulling teeth, and our patience is growing fatigued at this point.”
I hear both your points. I do like the strategy of parading everybody before Congress – even if they stonewall – in order to clog up administration resources and grind things a halt. It also makes for yet another newscycle dedicated to each person associated with the administration/campaign and how it relates to the larger narrative. The repetitiveness is actually, in my mind, a good way to keep the “alleged” crimes or associations in the news without having to have the same politicos doing the finger-pointing.
Then again, I don’t watch the news, so I what the hell do I know?
It’s good to keep the hum but it’s hard for the public to hear over the crazy shit the President does and says daily. I don’t think the Dems message is breaking through all the noise. They need to get a bit louder, the public too.
I don’t watch TV news either, I haven’t had cable in 15 years, I can’t stand the intensity of the advertising. Not sure what you’re implying here.
Adjacent news and will not be included in the main header. To watch video click link
The House waded into the decades-old debate over reparations for African-Americans on Wednesday, convening its first hearing on legislation introduced 30 years ago that would create a commission to develop proposals to address the lingering effects of slavery and consider a “national apology” for the harm it has caused.
But the real star was Mr. Coates, whose 2014 article “The Case for Reparations” in The Atlantic rekindled the debate, arguing that African-Americans had been exploited by nearly every American institution. Mr. Coates called out Mr. McConnell several times by name, citing the senator’s comment that he does not favor reparations “for something that happened 150 years ago, for whom none of us currently living are responsible.”
Mr. Coates responded by ticking off a list of government-sponsored discriminatory policies, including those in Mr. McConnell’s native Alabama, including redlining and poll taxes, that are the legacy of slavery.
“He was alive for the redlining of Chicago and the looting of black homeowners of some $4 billion,” Mr. Coates said. “Victims of their plunder are very much alive today. I am sure they would love a word with the majority leader.”
“While emancipation deadbolted the door against the bandits of America, Jim Crow wedged the windows wide open,” he added. “That’s the thing about Senator McConnell’s ‘something.’ It was 150 years ago. It was right now.”
The hearing itself was laden with symbolism. This year marks the 400th anniversary of the first documented arrival of Africans to the port of Jamestown in what was then the colony of Virginia. Wednesday, June 19, is Juneteenth, the holiday that celebrates the end of slavery in the United States. And the bill carries the designation H.R. 40, a reference to the first proposal for reparations: the unfulfilled “40 acres and a mule” promise to freed slaves after the Civil War.
“In terms of Bob Mueller, he is going to have to testify. And, he can testify voluntarily or he can testify under subpoena, but it is going to have to happen,” the prominent congressman said at a National Press Club event in Washington.
“I don’t think a two-year investigation of this magnitude, followed by a written report and a 10-minute statement without questions, satisfactorily answers the many, many questions we have about the investigation,” Schiff said, adding “time and patience are running out on that front.”
Felix Sater, a Russian-born real estate developer, is set to testify Friday before the House Intelligence Committee about his experience working on a proposed Trump tower project in Moscow during the 2016 election, according to Sater and other people familiar with his scheduled appearance.
The closed-door interview is part of an inquiry by the House panel into President Trump’s long-standing interest in expanding his brand to Moscow, a topic that Rep. Adam B. Schiff (D-Calif.), chairman of the committee, has said he intends to explore further.
Politico follows up with this detail,
Lawmakers had initially said the interview — which is expected to focus on the negotiations surrounding the failed Moscow real estate project — would be public. But the panel decided to make it private because the subjects are extremely sensitive and concern national security issues, including Sater’s previous work as an undercover asset for the Defense Intelligence Agency on Russia issues, said a person familiar with the matter.
The State Department official in charge of U.S. arms control negotiations with Moscow and her husband had a years-long friendship with GOP operative Paul Erickson, the former boyfriend of convicted unregistered Russian agent Maria Butina — ties this official did not disclose to her superiors or to Congress during her confirmation process in the spring of 2018.
Erickson officiated the June 2017 wedding of Andrea Thompson, the undersecretary of state for arms control and international security affairs, and David Gillian, a former senior Australian army officer, three administration officials and Erickson’s lawyer have confirmed. At the time, Thompson was serving as national security adviser to Vice President Pence. Four months before the wedding, Gillian had transferred Erickson $100,000, which federal officials allege Erickson stole from Gillian, FBI and court documents show. Thompson never disclosed these ties to her superiors until approached this week by this columnist, the three administration officials said.
The wedding took place about six months before Erickson and Butina were publicly identified as being connected to Russian influence operations inside the United States. But by the time of Thompson’s confirmation, allegations of the couple’s influence activities had been widely reported.
Why is this posted on this thread?
Sen. Robert Menendez (N.J.), the ranking Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, told me that his panel will investigate Thompson’s lack of disclosure to both Congress and the FBI.
“These reports about Under Secretary Thompson raise questions about how forthcoming she was with all relevant information during her confirmation process,” Menendez said. “I hope that any relevant connections implicating financial interests, or to someone who our government has charged with being an agent of a foreign power, would have been fully reviewed and vetted by the FBI during the security clearance process, and disclosed to the Foreign Relations Committee. It is not clear that happened.”
“Ms. Hicks made clear that she understood the president to be serious when he said that he would accept foreign interference in our elections,” Nadler said in a statement for a hearing on former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
“She also made clear that even she knew that such foreign assistance should be rejected and reported to the FBI,” he said.
Democrats, who control the House of Representatives, want Hicks to answer questions about five episodes in the Mueller report that they believe contain evidence of obstruction of justice by Trump. They also questioned her about hush payments during the 2016 campaign to two women, including porn star Stormy Daniels, who claimed they had affairs with Trump.
Nadler pledged to release a transcript of Hicks’ testimony soon.
Patience is wearing thin over Robert Mueller’s testimony as Democratic members are ratcheting up their calls to subpoena the special counsel.
Rank-and-file members on the House Judiciary Committee are increasingly saying that it’s time to compel Mueller to testify publicly before their committee, even if he prefers not to appear in such a setting.
"It is my hope that that’s going to happen in very short order," said Rep. David Cicilline, a Rhode Island Democrat, when asked if the committee should subpoena Mueller. "I think there is still some hope that there will be an agreement reached that the special counsel will come voluntarily, but I think the chairman has made it very clear that he intends to be certain that the American people hear from Mr. Mueller, and if that requires a subpoena, I have every confidence the chairman will issue one."
Transcript of Hope Hicks testimony to the House Judiciary Committee.
Don’t have time to read, here are the highlights from Politico.
Sater was a no show, a subpoena has been issued.
The House Intelligence Committee will issue a subpoena for the testimony of Felix Sater, a former business associate of President Trump, after he failed on Friday to appear for a scheduled interview with panel staff.
“The Committee had scheduled a voluntary staff-level interview with Mr. Sater, but he did not show up this morning as agreed. As a result, the Committee is issuing a subpoena to compel his testimony,” panel spokesman Patrick Boland said in a statement.
But Sater’s attorney said Friday that he had failed to appear because of health complications — and is ready to give his testimony to the panel voluntarily.
“Due to health reasons, Mr. Sater was unable to appear today,” Sater’s lawyer, Robert Wolf, said. “He looks forward to voluntarily appearing at the next rescheduled date.”
Wolf also explained that Sater’s dog ate his testimony.
I wish they would stop talking about taking McGahn, Barr and Mueller to court and actually do it, get those subpoena served. Congress has the right to everything, it’s compulsory, they will win even without these examples of the made-up-bullshit-blanket-immunity-proclamations coming from the White House.
Hicks wouldn’t answer questions as basic as where her desk was located in the White House or whether an Israel-Egypt war broke out while she worked in the government — something that clearly never happened. She also declined to discuss interactions she had with figures outside the White House, including former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski and former Trump legal team spokesman Mark Corallo.
“It’s very useful to show the judge what this means in practical reality… what an incredible assertion of executive supremacy and of congressional irrelevance,” Nadler said.
“In effect what it’s saying is, you can’t really investigate fraud, waste, abuse of power in the White House because anyone in a position to talk about it, we’re blocking,” he added. “And the [Hicks interview] was very useful to give us the record that we can show the judge how extreme it really is.”
Nadler emphasized that the committee’s inability to get Hicks to answer any questions about the Trump White House offered a long-term strategic victory, too.
If a court finds that the administration’s conception of “immunity” goes too far and orders McGahn to testify, it’s a precedent Nadler said could be used to speed the appearances of Mueller witnesses like Hicks and other former White House officials who testified about Trump’s efforts to thwart the special counsel’s investigation of his 2016 campaign’s contacts with Russia.
Absolutely! WTF is going on with the Democrats? I worked like a dog for months and invested funds in helping to flip CA-49. My primary motivation was giving Congress the power to go after Trump like attack dogs – now they’re all acting like a bunch of tea cup poodles – even Nadler is just paying lip service. And I’m tired of hearing “they know something we don’t, just be patient” – The same was said of Mueller’s investigation. After two and a half years, Trump is more entrenched than ever, his approval rating has not budged, he actually has a shot at being re-elected – and he’s dismantling our democracy day-by-day – not to mention that a delusional, temperamental, immature, sociopath has his finger on the nuclear button.
I volunteered too, watching the glacier like movements of the House is not reassuring.
The House Judiciary Committee appears to have reached a deal with former White House aide Annie Donaldson that would allow her to not appear before the committee by a Monday deadline and answer written questions instead, according to sources familiar with the matter.
The testimony of Donaldson, who was chief of staff for then-White House counsel Don McGahn, has been of high interest to House Democrats given her first-hand knowledge of key events. Donaldson said she took copious notes, which the committee believes will bolster its probe into potential obstruction of justice.
The committee [issued a subpoena in May](House Judiciary issues subpoenas for Hope Hicks, Annie Donaldson - CNNPolitics) for her testimony by Monday. But Donaldson’s attorney and Democrats have discussed allowing her to answer written questions instead, in part because she is pregnant and lives in Alabama.
Under the terms outlined, Donaldson would be required to answer questions within a week and the committee would reserve the right to bring her in for testimony after November 1, according to one of the sources. She has yet to receive the written questions from the committee but will consult with the White House on which questions she can answer, the source said.
I agree…watching the Dem’s being steamrolled by R’s and holding off on any real big impeachment inquiry is unnervingly slow.
Seeing that Dems are not being successful getting a full court press on getting the Mueller Report re-exposed, AND that the 2020 election is taking shape, these stall tactics make it even worse.
I tend to believe like Alan Lichtman (13 keys to WH) that Impeachment proceedings would create the scandal necessary to unseat this lothario/lug not to mention dangerous, corrupted and immoral president.
See #9 Scandal - what would be exposed during an Impeachment inquiry?
electoral college results (as happened in 2000 and 2016), it has an excellent predictor of political trends, successfully anticipated election outcomes since 1984. The “keys” to power, as summarized by PBS, include:
Party Mandate: After the midterm elections, the incumbent party holds more seats in the U.S. House of Representatives than after the previous midterm elections.
Contest: There is no serious contest for the incumbent party nomination.
Incumbency: The incumbent party candidate is the sitting president.
Third party: There is no significant third party or independent campaign.
Short-term economy: The economy is not in recession during the election campaign.
Long-term economy: Real per capita economic growth during the term equals or exceeds mean growth during the previous two terms.
Policy change: The incumbent administration effects major changes in national policy.
Social unrest: There is no sustained social unrest during the term.
Scandal: The incumbent administration is untainted by major scandal.
Foreign/military failure: The incumbent administration suffers no major failure in foreign or military affairs.
Foreign/military success: The incumbent administration achieves a major success in foreign or military affairs.
Incumbent charisma: The incumbent party candidate is charismatic or a national hero.
Challenger charisma: The challenging party candidate is not charismatic or a national hero.