Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Politico: Caitlin Emma: ‘Senators Reveal Bipartisan Plan To Avert Shutdown For 7 Weeks’

Source:Politico- left to right: Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (Democrat, New York) & Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (Republican, Kentucky)

Source:The New Democrat

“The measure effectively punts bigger fights on Ukraine aid and disaster relief in order to move the agreement more quickly through the Senate.

Senate leaders released the details of a seven-week stopgap spending bill on Tuesday afternoon, hoping to pass a bill through both chambers of Congress within five days — and little room for error.

The temporary spending bill, called a continuing resolution, would fund federal agencies at current levels through Nov. 17, setting up another government funding deadline before Thanksgiving rather than at midnight on Saturday. It would provide about $6 billion each for Ukraine and disaster aid, far below the White House’s requests for each, and include the Federal Aviation Administration extension through the end of the year. It provides no additional funding for the border.

The measure effectively punts bigger fights on Ukraine aid and disaster relief in order to move the agreement more quickly through the Senate, as conservatives threaten to delay the bill amid objections to Ukraine funding and other issues. All 100 senators have to agree to greenlight fast passage under the chamber’s rules, otherwise a final vote wouldn’t occur until after the shutdown deadline had passed.

Still, the measure could easily pass the Senate and stall in the House, where Speaker Kevin McCarthy continues to try mustering conservative support for any sort of stopgap funding plan. Hardliners in that chamber have threatened to try to boot the speaker if he works with Democrats to keep the government open.

A ‘standard’ funding fix: Before unveiling the text, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer called the stopgap “a bridge. Not a final destination.”

“We can and must do more to respond to disasters that have ravaged the country,” he said. “We can and must do more to stand with our friends in Ukraine.”

Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell billed the measure as a “standard, responsible step forward” that buys more time for bipartisan negotiations on a broader government funding deal and Ukraine aid, among other issues.

“The sooner Congress keeps the light on, the sooner these conversations can resume,” he said.

What’s next: The Senate will take its first step toward advancing the measure on Tuesday night, leaving very little time to clear all the procedural hurdles and send it to the House, where a Republican quagmire over government funding awaits.

The bare bones continuing resolution is intended to make things less complicated for McCarthy. But the California Republican will surely have to rely on Democratic votes to pass the measure in its current form — if he allows it to come up for a vote at all — potentially endangering his speakership.” 

From Politico 

Last week, former U.S. Representative Charlie Dent (Republican, Pennsylvania) who left the House in 2018. because he was worried about the Democratic wave that was about to happen and did happen in 2018, said on CNN that he expects the Senate to pass a bipartisan government funding, with an overwhelming vote in the Senate and then they would go home. Meaning it’s then up to the House to try to pass anything, including taking up the Senate bill, just to keep the government open. I think we’re starting to see that in the Senate now, led by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

So after the Senate passes it’s bill perhaps tomorrow, the ball then would be moved to Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy’s court, where he would then have a choice: take the Senate’s bill and come back in November and continue negotiations on Ukraine, disaster relief, and additional border security, but risk losing his speakership, if House MAGA really goes through on their motion to vacate him.

But, if the Speaker just takes the bill and it passes overwhelmingly in the Senate, with perhaps just House MAGA and a handful of left-wing Democrats voting against it, then perhaps House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries would move for his members to bail out the Speaker on a motion to vacate, if Speaker McCarthy takes the Senate’s bipartisan bill and brings it up for a vote in the House.

Or, the alternative could be, that Senate passes it’s bill with 80-90 votes, the House does nothing, let alone passes anything, the government shutdowns, House MAGA and perhaps Speaker McCarthy gets blamed for that and now their rail-thin majority in the House, is in serious jeopardy about a year from now.

CNN: 'Hear What Mark Meadows Told Former Aide About Working With Donald Trump'

Source:CNN- former Donald Trump White House Chief of Staff deputy and now author Cassie Hutchinson.

"Former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson joined CNN's Jake Tapper to discuss her new book "Enough," which paints the closing days of the Trump White House as even more chaotic and lawless than she previously disclosed in her shocking televised testimony last summer." 

From CNN

Just the fact that not just people who worked for Donald Trump, but some of the closest people to Donald Trump, at least in the sense of people that have worked for Donald Trump, are the people who are speaking out against Donald Trump (at least in the Republican Party) and are testifying against Donald Trump, should tell you everything that you need to know about Donald Trump and how he does business and governs. (If you want to call that governing) 

Mark Meadows, wasn't a coffee boy. He wasn't a runner, the guy who took and delivered messages or answered the door when the food arrived. He was the White House Chief of Staff for President Donald Trump. The only two people that could have more information about how the U.S. Government works when they were in power, would be Donald Trump and then Vice President Mike Pence. Mark Meadows job at the White House, was to supervise the entire presidential staff there. And Cassie Hutchinson was basically his deputy who was in on almost everything that her boss was involved in. 

Also, a lot of the people who are speaking  out against Donald Trump, are not in current legal jeopardy. People like Alyssa Farrah Griffin, who was on the President's communications staff, Ty Cobb, who was the President's private lawyer in Washington, Vice President Pence's Chief of Staff Mark Short, and the President's last White House Press Secretary (even though she never held press conferences) Stephanie Grisham. 

So these are the people who know Donald Trump very well, if not the best and they're now telling America how big of a threat that the former President is to the country. Which is why at the very least they need to be listened too and taken very seriously.

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Tuesday, September 26, 2023

NBC News: Donald Trump Breaks With Kevin McCarthy, Pushing Republicans to Shut Down The Government

Source:NBC News- left to right: Speaker of The House Kevin McCarthy and former President Donald J. Trump (for anyone whose new to America who sees this)
Source:The New Democrat

“WASHINGTON — House Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s attempts to avoid a government shutdown just became more complicated after former President Donald Trump stepped in to endorse the tactics of far-right House Republicans, who prefer to see a funding lapse than compromise with the Democratic-led Senate and White House.

Trump, the front-runner for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, who backed McCarthy, R-Calif., for speaker, made the comments in a post on his social media platform.

“The Republicans lost big on Debt Ceiling, got NOTHING, and now are worried that they will be BLAMED for the Budget Shutdown. Wrong!!! Whoever is President will be blamed,” Trump wrote, adding: “UNLESS YOU GET EVERYTHING, SHUT IT DOWN! Close the Border, stop the Weaponization of ‘Justice,’ and End Election Interference.” 

From NBC News 

Donald Trump forgot (or left out intentionally) that he wants a government shutdown, to stop the Department of Justice from investigating and prosecuting him. Actually, he sort of got to that in code when he said on his so-called Truth Social platform: “stop the Weaponization of ‘Justice,’

If there is government shutdown this weekend, Special Counsel Jack Smith might not be furloughed and told not to come into work and go home, not get paid, etc, but a lot of his staff that he has to have to do his job, would be ordered not to show up for work because the funds to pay them and pay for their operations, aren’t yet approved by the U.S. Government.

The problem that Mr. Trump has, is that Speaker Kevin McCarthy has a bigger problem. If there is a government shutdown, House Republicans would get blamed for that and he knows that. And would probably not just put his speakership at risk, but his tiny 5 seat House majority at risk as well. And all indicators so far are that the Speaker wants a deal with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and President Biden.

CNN: Donald Trump Fights Special Counsel’s Gag Order Request

Source:CNN- left to right: Donald J. Trump and Special Counsel Jack Smith (in case anyone is just waking up from a coma who sees this)

"Former President Donald Trump’s attorneys argued in a court filing that a gag order requested by special counsel Jack Smith in the federal 2020 election interference case is unconstitutional, overly broad and an effort to censor the former president during the 2024 presidential race." 

From CNN 

As I've mentioned before on this blog, the only reason, perhaps more like an excuse for why Donald Trump is running for President again, is so he can get himself out of all his legal jeopardies, as well as his co-defendants. And if he does get convicted in Atlanta, Georgia, before the 2024 presidential election, he's thinking that DOJ or the Department of Homeland Security, wouldn't turn him over to the State of Georgia, if he's elected President again. 

Normally when someone is innocent of the crime or crimes that they're being prosecuted for, they let their lawyers handle their case or the cases. Because they can either say the prosecution has nothing, they're completely innocent and will prove that in court. But, if your Donald J. Trump, you obviously don't play by the same rules as everyone else because you think that you are above the law. 

But as long as Mr. Trump is just private citizen/wannabe President again Donald Trump, he's subjected to the same legal system as everyone else. Meaning that if there's evidence against him that he committed real crimes, (and both Fulton County DA and DOJ have plenty evidence against him that he committed multiple felonies) they're required to prosecute him the same way that they would prosecute Joe or Jane Average on the street (who whoever the people are) if they had the same evidence against them. That's how the rule of law, accountability, and personal responsibility works in America. 

Donald Trump hasn't acted like an innocent man in any of the cases that have been brought agains him. If anything, the opposite is true. You don't try to run for President simply to avoid legal sanctions against you, unless you are not innocent. And you also don't try to poison jury pools and try to harass prosecutors, when you are innocent, because that just makes you look even more guilty. Which is why Jack Smith and company is try to get at least a limited gag order against the former President, so they can continue to do their jobs.

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Monday, September 25, 2023

Forbes Magazine: 'JUST IN: Matt Gaetz Issues Direct Warning To McCarthy If He Uses Dems To Pass Short-Term Funding'

Source:Forbes Magazine- Washington reporters trying to talk to U.S. Representative Matt Gaetz (Republican, Florida)

"Speaking to reporters, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) was asked about his threat to launch a motion to vacate Speaker McCarthy, and said that if McCarthy uses Democratic votes to pass the continuing resolution he would try to end his Speakership." 

I hate to admit that Representative Matt Gaetz is right about anything, just because he's such a wildcard and the political version of the Kamikazi pilot, who doesn't seem to mind diving, as long as he takes others with him on the way down. If he told me it gets hot and sunny in Florida and even rains everyday in other parts of the state, I would double check that before I took his word on that. But he is right about one critical point here, which is how Congress (House and Senate) funds the U.S, Government. 

But I think the response to Representative Gaetz's here, could be a one word question, why: 

Why does Congress wait until the end the year to do its appropriations bills? 

Why does Congress never pass a budget at all anymore, let alone pass a budget on time? 

Why does Congress fund the U.S. Government, with just one Godzilla sized omnibus bill, that's supposed to fund the entire U.S. Government, that only a handful of Congressional staffers bothered to read, (because they're insomniacs with nothing better to do) as well as the Washington lobbyists who got to read the bill, but only because they wrote the bill. 

The answers to these questions are fairly simple and can also be answered with a one word answer: MAGA. 

The reason why Congress hasn't passed its own appropriations bills, is because the Republican House hasn't passed one bill yet. Why? Because House Republicans only have 222-435 seats and don't want to work with House Democrats on anything, including funding the U.S. Government. 

The reason why Speaker Kevin McCarthy has such a small majority, is because again, MAGA. There are roughly 100 members of the House MAGA Caucus. But 20-30 more MAGA members who ran for the House last year,  but who lost to mainstream Democrats. If House Republicans had another 20-30 seats, made up of normal, center-right Republicans, (the traditional GOP Republicans) they probably already have their appropriations bills done. 

And if the government hasn't been funded yet, with not even a budget passed out of Congress by now, they could then blame the Senate for not doing their part to pass the appropriations bills.

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CNN: Hear Senator Bob Menendez Explain Why He Had Large Sums of Cash At Home

Source:CNN- U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (Democrat, New Jersey) now facing the political battle and trial of his life.

"Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez of New Jersey remained defiant Monday after being indicted on bribery charges at the end of last week, calling the legal battle ahead his “biggest fight yet,” and said that he believes he will be exonerated." 

From CNN 

First of all, Senator Memendez's reason for having all that cash in his personal home, because he always wanted to have extra money around, to send to Cuba, to help his friends or relatives, doesn't pass the bullshit test. (I have to be frank here) I mean if that's the real reason, why wouldn't he just disclose that to the Department of Justice. DOJ doesn't raid or investigate someone's home, because that person has a savings account in their home. 

Once again, I'm not a lawyer and I don't think I can say that enough. But I doubt he's still a U.S. Senator by the start of next year. A few things could I believe will happen here: 

We're just starting to see the evidence and the case that the DOJ Southern District of New York has on Senator Menendez. Next could be the documents, phone calls, text's, email, banking records,  that link his co-defendants with Senator Menendez. 

Next, he'll probably have multiple primary challengers for his seat in the Democratic primary next year. and they could either all be well-funded, especially if they're coming from the U.S. House, with New Jersey House Democrats who want his Senate seat. 

3rd, even if Senator Menendez perhaps survives his primary challenge, with all the evidence, along with the additional evidence that will come out against him, New Jersey voters are going to have a real hard question that they're going to have to deal with. Not hard in the sense that the answer is not obvious, but hard in the sense of do you really want to have to answer this question: 

Do you really want one of your members of Congress, you senior U.S. Senator, whose apparently now a national security leak, whose financially personally profited off his status as not just a U.S. Senator, but Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, by doing favors with his position in Congress, in exchange for lots of cash? I know what my answer would be to that and I think every honest, intelligent, sane, and sober, (hopefully that's not a unique distinction) knows what their answer to that would be as well. 

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Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Bear Downs: NFL 1986- Pittsburgh Steelers @ Chicago Bears: Highlights

Source:Bear Downs- Chicago Bears kicker Kevin Butler.

"1986 Chicago Bears Week 13
Pittsburgh Steelers at Chicago Bears
November 30th, 1986" 

Going into this game, you might think that a team that was 4-8 going into this game, like the Pittsburgh Steelers, that finished 6-10 in 1986, playing a Chicago Bears team that was 10-2 going into this game, that finished at 14-2, that was the defending Super Bowl champions in 1986, you might think this game was a mismatch. But this is why sports is played on the field and not on paper and in the books.

This was an inter-conference game. Meaning that the Steelers and Bears only played each other at that point, at most, 1-3 years, at least in the regular season. 

A cold weather game, between 2 cold weather teams. 

Both teams being run and defensive oriented, that threw off of play action. 

The Steelers being coached by Chuck Noll, who might be one of the 5 best NFL head coaches ever. 

I don't want to give the score away, assuming you haven't seen this game yet, or have looked it up yourself. But this is a game where if the Steelers could avoid making key mistakes, especially in their own territory, their defense plays a great game, they run the ball enough to keep the Bears from attacking their QB every single play, this is a game where the Steelers could stay in the game the whole way and even have a chance to win it. Which is exactly what they did.

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CNN: 'Ex-Prosecutor Reacts To 'Smoking Gun' in Donald Trump Classified Docs Case'

Source:CNN- former U.S. President of the United States Donald J. Trump (Republican, Florida) "It's not illegal, when I do it." Not a direct quote obviously, but you get the idea.

"Former Trump White House lawyer Ty Cobb and former Georgia prosecutor Chris Timmons speak with CNN’s Erin Burnett after the New York Times reported that former President Donald Trump told an aide to say she knew nothing about the boxes of documents later found at Mar-a-Lago." 

From CNN

Again, another example of a longtime Donald Trump official, whose cooperating against a man who she served loyally, for years, who had an important job with him, for years. 

We don't have any independent information that this is exactly what happened, that Donald Trump told this woman to obstruct justice. But if you were on trial for your life and freedom, who would you rather be and have to believe: a loyal, honest, public servant, or a professional reality star, whose literally lied for profit his entire professional career, whose lied to just to be able make money, who can't even be honest when he's talking about his height and weight. 

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Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Forbes Magazine: 'JUST IN: Senate Democratic Leaders Warn Of Government Shutdown, Put Blame On House Republicans'

Source:Forbes Magazine- U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (Republican, New York) and some of his Senate Democratic colleagues.

"Senate Democratic leaders hold their weekly press briefing." 

I don't want to sound like I'm the president of the Chuck Schumer or Senate Democrats Fan Club, because I'm definitely not. I have a lot of issues with them, especially as it relates to fiscal responsibility and the Senate rules, like dealing with holds and unanimous consent, as I mentioned last week. But they're 100% right here. 

It's one thing if the MAGA Republicans, or just the Republican Party in general, not just still had The White House, but a real majority in the House and a real majority in the Senate, instead of a bare majority in the House and bare minority in the Senate, as well as a Democratic President. 

If Republicans were in complete control right now, instead of just having a bare majority in the House and nothing else in the Federal Government, they could pass anything that they want to right, assuming they held their votes together in Congress. 

But right now, we have a Democratic White House and a divided Congress. And that means both parties have to work together for any bill pass to pass out of Congress and get to The White House, for the President to sign. 

There's nothing conservative about an across the board cut to all government spending, except for of course the military. Fiscal conservatism is about restraining government spending and keeping deficits down, at least when you can't balance the budget. It's not about cutting everything in the government, except the military, which just happens to also be the most expensive department in the entire U.S. Government.

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CNN: 'GOP Lawmaker Blasts Kevin McCarthy in New Blistering Statement'

Source:CNN- U.S. Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy (Republican, California) I'm very tempted to say Speaker of the Nuthouse, with 100 or MAGA members in the House Republican Conference, where even Representative Marjorie T. Greene is starting to look somewhat sane and responsible (but only in comparison) but I have too much respect for the office that Mr. McCarthy currently holds. Even if it's just for a very short time.

"Rep. Victoria Spartz (R-IN) speaks to CNN after issuing a critical statement about House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) as time is running out to prevent a government shutdown." 

From CNN

If you watch the first 10-20 seconds of this CNN video (that's linked just above) you'll hear Representative Mike Lawler (Republican, New York) make my entire point in just 20 seconds and what I'm arguing here. 

Representative Mike Lawler: "This is not Conservative Republicanism. This is stupidity. They don't know how to take yes for an answer. It's a clown show. If you want a stronger hand, run better candidates and win more elections.You keep running lunatics, you are going to be in this position." 

Last year at this time, then House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy already had 212 Republican seats in the House, because even though President Donald Trump lost reelection in 2020 and Republicans lost the Senate, House Republicans picked up 10 seats in that same election. Why? Because even though President Trump lost 10-15 percent of the Republican Party to either Joe Biden, or Republicans not even bothering to vote for President, those same Republican voters still voted for Congress and voted for Congressional Republicans, both for House and Senate. 

Go up 2 years later, now House Republicans just need to pick up 6 seats to win back the House and 1 seat to win back the Senate, in a mid-term election with a Democratic President and a Democratic Congress. House Republicans picked up just over the bare minimum to win back technical control of the House. Yes, we have a Republican House of Representatives right now. But they only have 222-435 seats. Which means Speaker Kevin McCarthy and Majority Leader Steve Scalise can only afford to lose 3 votes out of 435 on anything, assuming every House Democrat votes and doesn't vote for whatever partisan legislation that House Republicans want to pass by themselves. 

In a mid-term election where House Republicans could've picked up 30-40 seats in the House, with an unpopular Democratic President in Joe Biden, and an unpopular Democratic Congress, with rising interest rates and high inflation, Republicans only picked up 10 seats in the House in 2022, lost another seat in the Senate, lost two more governorships, lost more state legislatures and state legislative seats. 

So what Representative Mike Lawler is saying here, is that if Kevin McCarthy or whoever the Republican Speaker or House Republican Leader wants more power in the House and be able to govern and be able to accomplish great things, they need better candidates and to win more elections. Which means fewer MAGA members and other members of the broader American Far-Right, that's invaded the modern Republican Party. And get back to the center-right, Conservative Republicanism of Ronald Reagan. 

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Monday, September 18, 2023

Forbes Magazine: ‘In One Word: Evil’: Ralph Norman Slams ‘Lawlessness’ Taking Over America'

Source:Forbes Magazine- U.S. Representative Ralph Norman (Republican, South Carolina)

"During House floor remarks last week, Rep. Ralph Norman (R-SC) spoke about the threats he believes are overtaking America...

According to Oxford evil is: "a manifestation of profound immorality and wickedness, especially in people's actions." 

If this wasn't a slow news day, I doubt I'm writing about anything having to do with Representative Ralph Norman (Republican, South Carolina) especially about a speech that he gave on the House floor 5 days ago. Not that he's not important or anything, but I'm simply not very familiar with the man. 

Representative Norman talked about what's going on the country today (as he sees it) and described it as evil.  Representative Norman mentioned: 

take home pay not going up 

illegal immigration 

the Americans being freed in Iran, in exchange for 4 billion dollars 

the national debt 

what he called as lawlessness and not giving any real examples of that. 

And then Representative Norman gets into if the government is not funded the way he wants it too, it should be shut down. I guess there goes any case that Speaker McCarthy might have to try to blame The White House and Senate Democrats for any potential government shutdown that might happen next month. 

Ralph Norman has been in the House of Representatives since 2017. That means he was a member of Congress for most of Donald Trump's presidency, after winning a special election to the House in June, 2017. But he waits until Joe Biden to become President of the United States, until he starts complaining about the national debt. Unless he's given speeches about the dangers of a rising national debt while Donald Trump was President, that I'm simply not aware of. 

MAGA Republicans talking about the need for fiscal responsibility, is like hearing serial murderers talk about the need for a death penalty, but not for themselves. Or alcoholics talking about the need for sobriety, but just not for themselves, because they're currently drunk and don't know any better. 

The national debt went up 11 trillion dollars during the Trump presidency, in just 4 years. George W. Bush needed 8 years for the debt to go up 7 trillion and Barack Obama needed 8 years for the debt to go up 9 trillion. I would love to know who MAGA Republicans actually believe they're fooling. Wait, I got it: they're voters. Of course! 

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CNN: 'Ex-Prosecutor Says Donald Trump Just Shot Himself in Both Feet'

Source:CNN- President Donald J. Trump (Republican, Florida) 45th President of the United States (2017-21) the man who personally makes the case for just 1 4yr team as POTUS.

"Former President Donald Trump said that he received counsel from numerous people shortly after the 2020 election but that it was his decision to push the false claim he won the presidency and try to overturn the results." 

From CNN

I really don't have much to add to what attorney Gene Rossi told CNN anchor Sara Sidner here. Once again, I'm not a lawyer (and if you think you've heard this too many times, I'm getting through) but it's one thing to listen to and take the bad advice of counsel and then be prosecuted later on for something illegal and then just say you were just listening to your lawyers. But it's another to ignore your lawyers, especially when they're telling you the truth (like you just lost the presidential election) and then say that you didn't care what your lawyers told you. You are going to keep doing what you are doing anyway.  

If Donald Trump has a campaign theme for 2024 it's basically this: you have to elect him President again, so he can get himself and his allies who are being prosecuted, out of legal trouble. That's the only reason why he's running for President again, which is to be completely immune from the laws and rules of the United States, that every other American has to follow. And I'm sure he wants the title, the power, and want to personally financially profit over being President again. 

Since being indicted in Atlanta last month, Donald Trump's has had 3 defenses, so far:

he's entitled to say and do whatever he wants under the First Amendment, including lobbying government officials to overturn free and fair elections that he's lost, as well as try to intimidate prosecutors, witnesses that would testify against him, and poison the potential jury pool against him. That was Mr. Trump's first defense. 

Mr. Trump's 2nd defense has been that he's immune from any legal prosecution because he was not only a Federal official, when his own personal election interference was going on in late 2020 and in January 2021, but that he was President of the United States. 

Mr. Trump's 3rd defense, was that he was just listening to his lawyers. But he just threw that in the trash by admitting on national, broadcast, network television, when he talked NBC Meet The Press anchor Kristen Welker on Sunday and said that he didn't respect his lawyers when they told him that he lost the 2020 election and still went ahead with his election interference campaign. 

Perhaps Donald Trump's next defense will be that he's an idiot and simply didn't know what he was doing at the time. And perhaps he'll plead not guilty by reason of stupidity. I wouldn't put it pass him. After all, he's is the king of reality TV. 

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Friday, September 15, 2023

Alan Dershowitz: 'Should Joe Biden Pardon Donald Trump?'

Source:Alan Dershowitz talking about whether President Joe Biden, should pardon former President Donald Trump.

"This is Alan Dershowitz's video podcast called The Dershow. We discuss politics, law, the constitution and current events." 

To personally answer Alan Dershowitz's question:  of course not. It's a ridiculous question and I'll explain why. 

Keep in mind, none of us at The New Democrat are lawyers. And we don't pretend to be lawyers, or know as much or more about these issues, as Alan Dershowitz and other accomplished American lawyers. We go off the evidence that we see and what we see in the news. 

The reason why President Biden shouldn't pardon Donald Trump, is I believe very obvious. For the rule of law to mean anything in America, rules and laws have to apply to everyone equally. Not arguing that our justice system is perfect or that it even has to be. Nothing that's run by humans can be perfect anyway, for obvious reasons. 

For the rule of law to mean anything in America, no one can be above the law. And the justice system has to do its best to make sure that everyone whose committed crimes in America, is held accountable for those crimes. That doesn't mean prison time for everyone, but everyone who commits crimes in America, has to be justifiably held accountable in this country. Otherwise, our beautiful system of checks and balances and the rule of law, gets thrown out in the trash. 

Alan Dershowitz argued in this video and referenced President Gerald Ford's 1974 pardon of Richard Nixon, as a reason for Joe Biden to pardon Donald Trump. And he even said it unified the country and it could unify the country again if the President pardons Mr. Trump. (I'm trying not to laugh as I paraphrase what Alan Dershowitz said here) 

First of all, the Nixon case is very different. President Nixon didn't represent any real threat to our democracy or our system of checks and balances. He resigned the presidency, his political career was over at that point. He even took some responsibility for what he did during Watergate and got emotional about it years after he resigned the presidency. 

As far as unifying the country: didn't happen in 1974, 75, 76, etc. The decision to pardon Richard Nixon was very unpopular in 1974 and 75. And President Ford is almost elected President anyway in 1976. If the decision to pardon Richard Nixon had unified the country, President Ford gets reelected fairly easily, because again, the country is united behind Gerald Ford as President and as Alan Dershowitz said himself in this video, Jimmy Carter was a fairly weak national candidate in 1976, who if it wasn't for Watergate, probably doesn't even run for President at all, at least in 1976.

And as far as a potential Biden pardon of Trump today unifying the country: Mr. Dershowitz might want to consider a career in comedy. He's too smart to actually believe that. Not just the Democratic Party would freak out about that, but now the Biden presidency is essentially over, because he's lost most of his party on this and now has to worry about not even getting nominated for reelection. And you would probably see 10-20% of the Republican Party, the no so-called never-trumper wing of the party, that's looking for any Republican whose not Donald Trump, or like Donald Trump, an ally of Donald Trump, a wannabe Donald Trump, to win the Republican nomination for President, oppose President Biden over his Trump pardon. Not going to happen, if anything it would just unite the country against Joe Biden. Not bring the country together.

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CNN: 'Hear The Trump Statement One Source Told Maggie Haberman Was a "Confession"'

Source:CNN- New York Times national reporter Maggie Haberman.

"CNN's Anderson Cooper speaks with New York Times reporter and CNN senior political analyst Maggie Haberman after former President Donald Trump gave multiple television interviews." 

From CNN

I said back in 2017 (and I just wish I had written this down and made it public) that Donald Trump picked the wrong country to run for President and be its head of state. Why? Because our governmental system that's built around checks and balances, accountability, the rule of law, is not suited for someone of Donald Trump's mindset and personality. He believes he can do whatever he wants, whenever he wants to, that rules and laws that apply to everyone else, don't apply to him. 

I make this point because it's obvious that just in the first 2 years of the Trump presidency, how about the 1st year, when he didn't have a Democratic House of Representatives that he had to do deal with, when he had a Republican Congress (House & Senate) that he wanted to use the Federal Government to go after and investigate his political opponents, like Hillary Clinton, as well as the media that reporter negative stories about him. 

Within the 1st month of the Trump presidency, he's already calling for NBC News's license to be repealed by the Federal Communication Commission, because he didn't like a story that they reported about his administration and he wanted people in his own White House arrested for leaking negative stories about him as well. 

I have no doubt that if Donald J. Trump becomes President of the United States (and our endless, national nightmare reappears) that he'll want to use the government to go after the people who investigated him, go after anyone who might present to his presidency politically, as well as pardon himself for everything that he's involved in and currently being prosecuted for, as well as all of his allies that are also being prosecuted. 

The question is will Mr. Trump be able to. He wasn't when he was President the 1st time because the Department of Justice, including his own Attorney General told him that they can't go after people simply because President Trump doesn't like them and sees them as threats to him. 

I don't want Donald Trump anywhere near government office ever again, for reasons I've already laid out. But I don't think we know for sure that even if he wanted to use the government to completely clear himself of everything and be able to operate above the law, as well as go after everyone that he sees as political threats to him, people who threaten his own freedom, will he even be able to do that, or will our system of checks and balances and rule of law, once again serve as the check against him. I don't want to take that risk. 

Hopefully a year from now, there's so much evidence against him in court, that no Independent in their right mind would ever even consider voting for him again, for anything, and every Democrat alive gets out and votes for the Democratic nominee for President, if for no other reason, that they see Donald Trump as the true threat to American democracy and freedom that he represents.

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Thursday, September 14, 2023

Forbes Magazine: 'The Ball's In Chuck Schumer's Court': Tommy Tuberville Blames Block Of Military Promotions On Democrats'

Source:Forbes Magazine- U.S. Senator Tommy Tuberville (Republican, Mississippi) 

"Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) defended his ongoing block of military promotions by claiming that Democrats could enact the promotions individually." 

What Senator Tommy Tuberville is really doing here is making the case for Congressional reform, especially in the Senate. 

The idea that one senator can hold up executive appointments (in this case the military) because he disapproves with the Department of Defense on abortion and can hold the lives of these appointments and their families, as well as their pay and jobs, their futures, etc, is why the Senate needs to reform it's rules. This is completely irresponsible on Senator Tuberville's part to the point that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and other Senate Republicans like Lindsey Graham, disagree with Senator Tuberville on this. 

Elections have consequences. You don't believe that, you obviously weren't alive when Donald Trump was President. Or perhaps you were in a long, national coma, (while most of the rest of country were living a nightmare) or perhaps vacationing on Planet Mars. (At least mentally) 

If you don't like the appointments of President Biden, make the case against them and try to convince at least 50 of your colleagues that you are right about those appointments and vote no. But just one U.S. Senator, whose not even in leadership, not even at the committee level, can decide for the rest of the Senate who can be appointed and who can even be voted on, simply because he doesn't like a policy of the Defense Department, is an abuse of power, and completely un-democratic.  

As far as reforming the Senate: I don't expect Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer to be able to do this in this Congress. Especially with a 1 seat majority and with Senator's Joe Manchin and Krysten Sinema in the way, but they need to reform the hold process here and maybe Leader Schumer could work out an agreement that the next Republican Majority Leader could take advantage of as well: 

If one senator whose not even in leadership, or a senator whose in leadership, decides to put any hold on an executive or judicial nominee, then the Majority Leader could move to overturn that hold with a simple majority both in committee and on the Senate floor. That would be my proposal here, but I don't expect that to happen in this Congress.

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CNN: Tierney Sneed & Zachary Cohen: ‘Georgia Judge Shuts Down DA’s Effort To Try Donald Trump & Co-Defendants’

Source:CNN- former President Donald J. Trump (Republican, Florida) and perhaps I should thank God, that’s he’s the former President.

Source:The New Democrat

“A Georgia judge shut down the effort by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis to have all 19 defendants, including former President Donald Trump, to be tried together in October in the Georgia election subversion case.

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee announced Thursday that Trump and 16 co-defendants will move forward on their own schedule, with a trial date yet be announced.

The two remaining co-defendants, Kenneth Chesebro and Sidney Powell, sought speedy trials and are scheduled to begin in October.

Thursday’s order is a victory for Trump and his fellow co-defendants who did not want to go to trial this October. The schedule laid out by the judge only cemented some of the steps in the pre-trial process, setting up the possibility that the trial itself does not happen until well into 2024, or even later. Trump’s legal calendar during the first half of next year is already clogged with plans for trials in the other criminal cases he faces, and he is juggling those proceedings with his 2024 presidential run.

“Fulton County DA Fani Willis’ politically motivated, wrongful attempt to deny President Trump due process of law by arguing that no severances should be granted has been summarily squashed by the court,” a spokesperson for Trump said. “Willis’ unjust rush to judgment in order to please her radical political base has simply failed.”

While McAfee didn’t set a trial date for Trump and 16 of his co-defendants, the timeline he sets out in a court order Thursday means they wouldn’t go on trial before at least December.

The new schedule laid out by the judge signals he wants to start hashing out pretrial disputes with the batch of 17 defendants by the end of the year. The judge is ordering discovery to start by October 6.

However, there is no set timeline yet for the trial for the 17 defendants nor is there one for resolving disputes over what evidence can be presented to the jury. McAfee ordered that other types of pretrial motions be filed by December 1, but he has not scheduled a hearing on those requests.

At the pace McAfee laid out, federal courts will have some time to address the efforts by some defendants in the case to move their prosecutions to federal court.” 

From CNN 

For any left-wing conspiracy theorists out there (and I know there are at least a few) who think that Judge Scott McAfee is simply trying to do Donald Trump a favor here: keep in mind, this is the same judge who ruled that Mark Meadows won’t be tried in Federal court and ruled against him last Friday.

And once again I’m not a lawyer, (and if you weren’t a lawyer either, you would probably feel the need to keep mentioning that when you were writing about legal issues also) but the Judge’s ruling here is just being realistic. There’s so much evidence against all these defendants, all 16 of them, that the court, as well as the defense lawyers are going to have to go through and prepare for and will have many motions to file, that no way all 16 of them could be tried next month. Probably next spring at the earliest. And this case will probably go after Jack Smith’s case in Washington next year anyway.

Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Forbes Magazine: 'BREAKING NEWS: Matt Gaetz Launches An All-Out Assault On Kevin McCarthy's Time As Speaker'

Source:Forbes Magazine- left to right: Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy (Republican, California) & Representative Matt Gaetz (Republican, Florida)

"In remarks from the House floor, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) ripped into Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) moments after the latter announced an impeachment inquiry into President Biden. Gaetz excoriated the Speaker for not upholding his agreement that won him the chair in a chaotic bid for the speakership.

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As my colleague Fred Schneider wrote on The New Democrat earlier today: 

"Another thing to think about as far as motivations here: Speaker McCarthy is a handful of Republican votes away from losing his job. The Far-Right of the party in the House has a leash on him that's so tight, that they could probably strangle Godzilla with it. 

The Speaker knows that he has to work with not just The White House and Senate Democrats, but House Democrats, to keep the government from shutting down this fall and House Republicans getting blamed for that. And he knows that the Far-Right MAGA Caucus in the House, doesn't want the Speaker to work with Democrats on anything." 

And if you don't believe any of that, you didn't watch the video of Representative Matt Gaetz, which was his speech on the House floor, that was also earlier today. 

What Representative Gaetz and his far-right MAGA Caucus are essentially saying, (if not definitely saying) is that either Speaker McCarthy does exactly what they want him to do, which was laid out in the January agreement that he made with the House MAGA Caucus, members of that caucus will call for votes to remove Kevin McCarthy has Speaker of the House. 

Any of those resolutions could pass, since House Republicans only have 222-435 votes, one of the smallest majorities in the history of the U.S. House of Representatives and House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries and the rest of the House Democrats, have no obligation to save Kevin McCarthy's job. Plus, out of those 222 House Republican members, 100 of them (give or take) are MAGA Republicans.

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CNN: 'Hear Kevin McCarthy's Full Remarks On Joe Biden Impeachment Inquiry'

Source:CNN- U.S. Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy (Republican, California)

"House Speaker Kevin McCarthy announced Tuesday that he endorsed launching a formal impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden... 

From CNN

The political phrase payback comes to mind when I listen to Speaker Kevin McCarthy here. House Republicans and really Congressional Republicans in general, when you consider the fact that Senator Ted Cruz was talking about impeachment and a criminal trial in the Senate, after Joe Biden was elected President almost three years ago. 

Another thing to think about as far as motivations here: Speaker McCarthy is a handful of Republican votes away from losing his job. The Far-Right of the party in the House has a leash on him that's so tight, that they could probably strangle Godzilla with it. 

The Speaker knows that he has to work with not just The White House and Senate Democrats, but House Democrats, to keep the government from shutting down this fall and House Republicans getting blamed for that. And he knows that the Far-Right MAGA Caucus in the House, doesn't want the Speaker to work with Democrats on anything. 

One more thing to think about: Speaker McCarthy has previously said that that House should vote to approve an impeachment inquiry of President Biden, before the House moves to do that. He also knows that probably not a single House Democrat would vote for that. He also knows that there are already a few Republicans talking about how risky it would be and perhaps bad judgment, to try to impeach President Biden now, especially based on the fact that there's no evidence that the President has done anything illegal here. Maybe House Republicans should try to impeach Joe Biden's son Hunter instead. Ha, ha.

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Monday, September 11, 2023

Beau Boone: 'Nightmare Season: The Story of the 1973 San Diego Chargers'

Source:Beau Boone- Johnny Unitas unfortunately deserves to be the cover photo of the 1973 San Diego Chargers.

"When rebuilding a team, it is normal to face a good deal of challenges. The 1973 Chargers faced perhaps every challenge that they could run into, culminating the season into a nightmare." 

If there is anything that's good about the 1973 San Diego Chargers, it's that they drafted future Hall of Fame QB Dan Fouts and their 1973 nightmare season, led to the Chargers hiring Tommy Prothro in 1974, who really is responsible for rebuilding the Chargers from the draft. 

It's not Don Coryell who rebuilt the Chargers and turned them into consistent winners and even a Super Bowl contender in the late 1970s and early 1980s. That credit should go to Tommy Prothro. Even though Prothro didn't have a single winning season in his 4 plus years in San Diego, he rebuilt their defense with draft choices like Woodrow Lowe, Don Goode, Gary Johnson, Louis Kelcher, and Fred Dean. He also drafted WR John Jefferson, who was one of QB Dan Fouts favorite targets in San Diego in the late 1970s. 

To give you an idea about bad the 1973 Chargers were: they were 25th in points scored and 26th in points given up. Which should give you a good idea that they were blown out a lot in 1973. Most teams that finished at 2-11, tend to get blown out a lot. They were 19th in total offense, in a 26 team league and 22nd in defense. 

The Chargers had a 40 year old QB in Johnny Unitas and a 22 year old QB in Dan Fouts. So their choice at QB, was either a broken down, over the hill 40 year old QB, or a kid who just finished college, no experience in the NFL and now you want him to lead your NFL team. But when you hit bottom, you can't get any worst and things did get gradually better for the Chargers after 1973. 

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Dallas Cowboys: The Flex Defense VS The 4-0 Defense

Source:The Logical Cowboy with a look at Tom Landry's 4-0 defense.

"A Deep Look into Tom Landry's 40 Defense of the 80s" 

From The Logical Cowboy

If Tom Landry had a basic defense philosophy and strategy as a defense head coach, which is how he started out as a defender when he played and as a defense coordinator with the New York Giants, before he became head coach of the expansion Cowboys in 1960, it was to make opposing offenses one-dimensional. His goal was to force the opposing offenses to throw the football all the time against his pass rushers and secondary, by taking away the other team's running game.  

Pre-1984 and starting in the mid 1960s, the base defense of the Cowboys was the flex defense: 

"The Dallas Morning News has a cute article, about how the first defensive call by Rob Ryan on the first defensive play of the first preseason game of Dallas in 2011 was the 43 Flex. I recall watching that play and thinking “psycho front”. And yes, Ryan has 4 players along the line of scrimmage and 3 players at linebacker depth, but what we’re going to do in this article is talk about about Tom Landry’s first two defenses, the 43 inside and 43 outside, and how they then morphed into the flex, to better use the talents of their All-Pro defensive tackle, Bob Lilly.

The ideas for the Flex came about after Bob Lilly’s move from left defensive end to right tackle. Dick Nolan describes it as one half of  the line playing a 43 inside, one half playing a 43 outside. To note, the  tackles in the inside/outside are flexed. In Tom Landry’s Flex, however, it depended on which side of the offense was “strong”, or likely to be  the side players would run to. Bob, in Peter Golenbock’s book, describes it as follows:

If I were on the weak side, I’d be head-up with the guard, right on the line of scrimmage, whereas the tackle on the other side would be three feet back. George Andrie would be right over the tackle and instead of being on his outside shoulder, he’d be head-up, three feet back. He would be keying my guard. I also keyed my guard." 

The Cowboys pre-1984, would be in the flex defense on 1st down, against opposing offenses. It was somewhat weak against the pass, because the DT's would intentionally line up off the line of scrimmage, so they could react how the other team is trying to run the ball or what type of passing play they would be running. Instead of just attacking the other team's offense, regardless of what play they might run on 1st and expecting that you defense and you personal is good enough to stop what the opposing offense is truing to do to you. The flex defense was reactive, instead of proactive against opposing offenses. 

Well, in 1978, the NFL changed its pass blocking and defense coverage rule, which more than anything as revolutionized what is now the modern NFL and has made NFL offense balanced. Pre-1978, most NFL teams probably ran the ball 60% of the time and only the good teams completed even more than 55% of their passes and perhaps just 50%, because offensive linemen weren't allowed to extend their arms when blocking and defenders could essentially tackler receivers even before they got off the line of scrimmage, let alone before they got the ball. With the new blocking rules and illegal contact rule, NFL offense became balanced. Which meant the flex was no longer dominant against the run, but still effective.

Like with all great head coaches, when the league adapts against you, you either successfully adapt yourself, or you go out of business. Which is why Tom Landry went with 4-0 defense full-time in 1984 or so, to bring more pressure against opposing team's QB's. This is the 4-0 defense.

"The other basic Dallas defenses, beyond the 4-3 flex:

The 4-0, wherein Meg, middle linebacker Lee Roy Jordan, is removed for a defensive back, such as Barnes.

The 4-0, 6, whereupon Sarah (the strongside linebacker) is also removed and safety Randy Hughes takes his place. Barnes and Hughes are thus the fifth and sixth backs. The Cowboys had never employed six backs in a formation before last season." 

What made the Cowboys 4-0 unique, was while the Chicago Bears were bringing everybody, especially their linebackers when they rushed the QB, while the Washington Redskins were stunting and red dogging with their defensive lineman and linebackers, the Cowboys would go with their 4-0. 

The Cowboys would still have their 4 lineman in to attack the QB, but would have 5 defensive backs lined up on the line of scrimmage. Now, if you know the other team is not going to run the ball and you have excellent cover corners, and of course you have excellent pass rushers up front, the 4-0 can be a great defense against the pass, because you are basically leaving opposing offenses o-lines alone to block all your pass rushers, unless they go with max protection. 

But, if you don't get to the QB, now your corners are vulnerable to big pass plays. It's the whole Las Vegas gamble, unless you know the other team's offense so well and know you defense is up to this challenge.

I think what made the Cowboys defense special in the 1970s and even in the 1980s, when the Cowboys were no longer dominant even in the NFC East, let alone the NFC, and the entire NFL, was that they could get to the QB with just their 4 down lineman. They would also take away you're 1st down run with just their down lineman. And maybe they would red dog linebacker Tom Henderson, just to give opposing QB's and offensive coordinators something else to think about. 

When you have Ed Jones, Harvey Marin, Randy White, Jethro Pugh, and later Jim Jeffcoat up front, you shouldn't have to blitz or even red dog a lot, to get to the QB. But Tom Landry was always thinking and looking for new ways to make the Cowboys even better and be able to adapt to the times as they were changing in the NFL. 

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Friday, September 8, 2023

CNN: 'Why Mark Meadows Lost Bid To Move Georgia Criminal Case To Federal Court'

Source:CNN- former President Donald J. Trump White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows.

Source:The New Democrat

"A federal judge on Friday rejected former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows’ bid to move his Georgia criminal case to federal court, a significant setback for Meadows and a troubling sign for former President Donald Trump.

US District Judge Steve Jones found that the allegations against Meadows contained in the Fulton County district attorney’s indictment on election subversion charges were largely “related to political activities” and not to Meadows’ role as White House chief of staff.

“The evidence before the Court overwhelmingly suggests that Meadows was not acting in his scope of executive branch duties during most of the Overt Acts alleged,” wrote Jones, a Barack Obama appointee.

The Friday ruling has significant implications for the former president and his 18 co-defendants in the Fulton County district attorney’s sprawling racketeering case, though the judge said the ruling did not apply to the other defendants. Meadows was the first of five defendants who already filed motions to move the case to federal court – and Trump is expected to do so, too.

FILE PHOTO: Former U.S. President and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally in Windham, New Hampshire, U.S., August 8, 2023.   REUTERS/Reba Saldanha/File Photo
The latest in Georgia 2020 election case
Meadows unsuccessfully argued that his case, now playing out in Georgia state court, should be moved because the allegations in the indictment were connected to his official duties as White House chief of staff. His lawyers wanted the case in federal court so they could try to get it dismissed altogether, invoking federal immunity extended to certain individuals who are prosecuted or sued for conduct tied to their US government roles.

The judge’s decision could set the tone for the other defendants also trying to move their cases. It’s an ominous sign for the defendants who are hoping to invoke the same federal immunity protections.

The judge explicitly stated in his ruling that he is not offering any opinion about Fulton County’s underlying criminal case against Meadows, who has pleaded not guilty.

Jones wrote in the decision that Meadows had not met even the “‘quite low’ threshold for removal” to federal court, because his activities for the Trump campaign were outside the scope of his federal role as White House chief of staff.

“The Court finds that the color of the Office of the White House Chief of Staff did not include working with or working for the Trump campaign, except for simply coordinating the President’s schedule, traveling with the President to his campaign events, and redirecting communications to the campaign,” Jones wrote. “Thus, consistent with his testimony and the federal statutes and regulations, engaging in political activities is exceeds the outer limits of the Office of the White House Chief of Staff.”

The Hatch Act, which prohibits federal officials from engaging in political activity as part of their official duties, was “helpful in defining the outer limits of the scope the White House Chief of Staff’s authority,” the judge said."

From CNN 

"CNN’s Gloria Borger and Jamie Gangel dissect a federal judge’s decision to reject former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows’ bid to move his Georgia criminal case to federal court. " 

From CNN 

As I said on The New Democrat 11 days ago: 

“The Meadows legal team is going to have to answer the question where is it in the interest of the United States and under Mark Meadows job description, for the White House Chief of Staff, to try to convince the Secretary of State of Georgia, to throw out enough legal votes, for then President Donald Trump to win that election in 2020. Which is what Meadows was trying to do on behalf of then candidate Trump in 2020, so the President could overturn the 2020 election and be declared the winner and be able to stay in office.

The Meadows legal team is not going to be able to do that because Meadows was clearly acting as a Trump campaign official, not as Federal Government official. And so was the President in November or December of 2020, when he was trying to do the exact same thing, when he was talking to the Georgia Secretary of State as well.

George Conway already explained in this video (that’s linked on this post) about the Hatch Act. If Meadows is making a free speech argument by saying that he was advocating for the President of the United States in Georgia, when he was trying to convince the Secretary of State to overturn the election there and declare President Trump the winner, he would be in violation of the Hatch Act, which is a Federal felony.

Under Federal law, Federal officials, who are not elected officials, meaning they don’t serve in Congress or are not President or Vice President, are barred from weighing in on and contributing to political campaigns and elections. Legally, they’re supposed to be above politics. So which felony does Mr. Meadows want to plead guilty to: the Federal Hatch Act, or the Georgia RICO ACT?”

I don’t want to sound like I’m kissing my own ass: (which would be impossible for me to day anyway, at least physically) but for anyone who predicted that Mark Meadows was actually going to win this, perhaps also believes in Santas Clause as well.

It’s clear that what Mark Meadows was doing post-2020 election day, after President Donald Trump had already lost to Joe Biden, (and that’s according to the 50 United States, including Georgia, Arizona, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Michigan) he was working on behalf of his de-facto client Donald J. Trump, to overturn that presidential election and just automatically declare President Trump the winner of that state. Even though it was clear that the President lost that election by 12,000 votes. Mr. Meadows wasn’t acting as White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, on behalf of the U.S. Federal Government, which is why he lost today.

John F. Kennedy Liberal Democrat

John F. Kennedy Liberal Democrat
Source: U.S. Senator John F. Kennedy in 1960