Absolute Loyalty is Destroying America

Congressman acting as though they are employees or loyal servants to the president is not the way America should be.  It just isn’t. Doing whatever it takes to stay in power is not what the framers had in mind. What they are supposed to do, among many other things, is a) represent the people b) protect the United States from enemies foreign and domestic and c) serve as a check on the executive branch.  They are failing spectacularly at executing these duties!

Some prime examples of Congressman that epitomize absolute loyalty are:

I could go on and on.  I’m tired of watching them ignore testimony/evidence that the president is actively trying to impact our 2020 election and just looking for any tiny hole they can exploit.  I’m tired of watching them continue to push ‘false narratives’ when they know full well that they aren’t true.  I’m sickened by how mean and vindictive they are, not only the witnesses that came in to testify, but to the Chairman and everyone else that doesn’t agree with them.  Claiming there’s no evidence and then defending the White House for withholding evidence is nonsensical. The constant whataboutism is driving me mad! Arguing that we should let the election decide is crazy because Trump is actively trying impact the results of that election.  Of course, there’s no end to this is sight.    

This is clearly all about power.

Impeachment is about presidential behavior/action, but the behavior/actions of our Congressman are just as consequential in this moment.  Willful ignorance has become par for the course and it’s not because they don’t know better. It’s because they are fearful that if they break from the president they will lose their seat in Congress.  It’s as simple as that. They don’t care about the people, America’s values or protecting our elections. They care about staying in power.  

Just think about how quickly defenses of Trump have evolved:
  • It was a perfect call
  • No quid pro quo
  • Not a corrupt quid pro quo
  • This happens all the time
  • Trump didn’t know
  • Whistleblower complaint is hearsay, inaccurate, politically biased, deep state, etc
  • Process is bad
  • Democrats are out to get Trump
  • Ukraine didn’t know about the held up aid
  • Ukraine didn’t comply with requests
  • The media made it all up
  • Ukraine has the server

This was over the course of just a few weeks!  These are not principled people. Changing their view/argument changes as quickly as the political winds.  Retaining power and relevance is the main objective. This is not what public service is supposed to look like.  Not at all. 

Just a reminder, you work for the people.   

Some might argue that these people are representing their constituents.  Many polls show that in the swing states there isn’t a lot of support for impeachment.  Now, politicians use polls very selectively. We all know that because polling for gun control is just about the only issue that most people agree on.  We also know that is ignored on a constant basis. However, impeachment polls are watched incessantly and always cited by people defending the president.  I would argue that Reps/Senators should take most polls with a grain of salt.  

Most people do not have time to: 

  • Study every issue 
  • Take time to think about the implications for society 
  • Talk to/question experts in the field
  • Receive classified information
  • Field calls from fellow constituents
  • Fully immerse themselves in public service
  • Hold regular town halls
  • Employ staff devoted to reading all relevant studies, becoming experts in public policy 

I believe the people’s job is to elect principled people they believe with do all of the things listed above, come to thoughtful, reasonable conclusions and make decisions with their constituents in mind.  It is not the job of the people to do all the things listed above. By casting our vote, we are ‘hiring’ and paying a representative to devote themselves to these things. Electing a person is giving the people’s consent to use their best judgment when it comes to policy making.  So, I find it really frustrating when elected officials base their decisions solely on polling. Also, have you ever been polled? Yeah, me neither.

Now is the time to protect us from enemies foreign and domestic.

Matters of national security and foreign policy should crush all political calculations in a perfect world.  It should be, as Fiona Hill would say, ‘nonpartizan’ (I just loved how she pronounced that!). Both Marie Yovanovitch and Fiona spoke extensively about the importance of putting US national security above our partisan whims.  There are enemies that are at work that the US needs protection from. Here are a few that they, and all the witnesses, testified about: 

Russia:
  • Actively trying to impact 2020 election 
  • Propagating the conspiracy theory that Ukraine was actually behind the 2016 hack on the DNC undermining American trust in our law enforcement/intelligence community/government institutions 
  • Occupying 7% of Ukrainian sovereign territory violating international law 
  • Currently engaged in a hot war with Ukraine
Rudy Giuliani:
  • Working with corrupt Ukrainians to dig up dirt on American citizens
  • Smearing a sitting ambassador to the point of removal
  • Putting financial interests ahead of US interests
  • Conducting shadow foreign policy undermining the official State Department policy
  • Working closely with now indicted Americans to help further his interests
Donald Trump:
  • Directed Americans to work with Rudy
  • Asked President Zelensky to investigate Crowdstrike and the Bidens
  • Ordered security assistance to be withheld from Ukraine
  • Canceled Pence’s trip to inauguration
  • Withheld White House meeting
  • Stayed in contact with Sondland to get updates on pressure campaign
  • Removed ambassador fighting corruption
  • Blocked all testimony/documents from State Department/Executive Branch 
Other key Americans:
  • Mike Pence
  • Gordon Sondland
  • Mike Pompeo
  • Mick Mulvaney
  • Rick Perry
  • Kurt Volker
  • Donald Trump Jr.

These are just the foreign and domestic enemies that we know about.  Instead of looking at the facts of the case, Republicans are muddying the waters, blaming the Democrats, blaming the Obama administration, the whistleblower and anyone else they can think of.  They are supposed to be protecting our country. They are supposed to be upholding the rule of law. Instead, power and prestige are the only things that they care about. Protecting the president is the only thing they are willing to do. 

Republicans in Congress, you have the power you lust after. Use it.  

Honestly, I find it super embarrassing that these Republican Congressmen are letting the president bully them into submission.  They have just as much power as he does. The constitution says so! There have been numerous reports about Republicans admitting what an obstacle this president is and how much they dislike him so I don’t understand why they don’t take this opportunity to rid themselves of him.  Why don’t they get together with their buddies at Fox News and begin a campaign to remove this guy?  Surely one of them would love to take his place. 

Here’s my advice for you Republicans which, to me, seems so obvious if you want to continue your disgusting corruption:
  • Demand all witnesses testify 
  • demand the documents 
  • demand Trump put forth evidence that exonerates him
  • Start calling out Trump’s lies  
  • Use the damning evidence to create a path for one of you to take the presidency in 2020  
  • Use the evidence to change public sentiment through the Fox News machine
  • Hold up one of your own as being the hero for America
  • Portray your party as the one that protected US
  • Staff ‘smart’ criminals instead of amateurs to help you shake down foreign governments
  • Highlight all your cronies that helped oust a corrupt president
  • Win the election 
  • Appoint said cronies to all cabinet positions
  • Act respectable in front of cameras
  • Stop mean tweeting
  • Continue your corruption with the blessing of the American people 

For people who care about power so much I’m shocked that they don’t use the power that they possess to deploy a plan like this.  Their cowardice is shocking, even in this Trump Era we find ourselves living through. Use your power you fight so hard to keep.  Check this president. The assumption that the only path to survival is defending Trump might be a false one.

It’s up to us.  

Elections matter.  If the Democrats didn’t take the House in 2018, the American public would have no idea the level of corruption of this administration.  It’s obvious that many of our elected officials have abandoned their duties. We must not do the same. The rest of us must focus on doing our duty as citizens. 

Electing candidates that represent our values, use thoughtful reasoning to make decisions and care about society as a whole is absolutely critical in our endeavor to protect America.  We must win this election, but we are not going to do it by tearing each other down. The Republicans want us to do that. Let’s work hard over the next year to inspire nonvoters to register, rally behind our Democratic candidate and to show our neighbors what Democratic values are all about. 

The Whistleblower Story: What is going on?

This whistleblower story has captured my full attention and my curiosity like no story since Jeffery Epstein.  Here are just a few details:

  • A complaint deemed “credible and urgent” by the IG
  • DNI’s refusal to share it with Congress 
  • Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee accusing leaders of breaking the law
  • A letter that states Executive Branch involvement
  • Hearings scheduled
  • A promise made to a foreign leader

There are so many moving parts! The trouble with a story like this is it loses its impact if someone doesn’t know a lot about how the government works.  Who are the players? Who answers to who? Let’s clear things up a little.

What is the whistleblower law? 

The Intelligence Community Whistleblowers’ Protection Act (ICWPA) establishing a pathway for people working in the intelligence agency to file a complaint without disclosing classified information to the public. Here are some details to know:

  1. Whistleblower files complaint with Intelligence Community Inspector General (IG)
  2. IG has 14 days to determine whether the complaint is of ‘urgent concern’ and is credible
  3. IG hands the full complaint along with his determination over to the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) 
  4. DNI then hands the complaint over to the House Intelligence Committee with any comments he chooses to add within 7 days of receiving.
  5. House Intelligence Committee resolves the issue

It seems as though the first 3 steps were followed with regard to this whistleblower.  Step 4 is when it starts to get fishy.  

What is an inspector general? (IC IG – Michael Atkinson)

Michael Atkinson, current IG for the intel community, is due to testify to Congress today

An IG is an internal watchdog that functions kind of like an HR department or internal affairs department at a police department.  There are 72 IG offices in the federal government. Their job is to carry out audits and investigations to promote efficiency and to prevent/detect fraud or abuse within a department.

What is the Director of National Intelligence? (DNI – Joseph Maguire)

Joseph Maguire, current acting DNI, has refused to hand over complaint deemed urgent

The DNI is a position that was created after the September 11th when it was determined that there needs to be more coordination between the 17 intelligence agencies. It oversees all intelligence agencies including the CIA and NSA.  This position directly reports to the President of the United States.

Joseph Maguire, acting DNI, received the complaint and issued a letter to Adam Schiff, Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, telling him he’s not handing it over.  Schiff’s response,

“The DNI acknowledged that this involves someone apparently outside of the authority of the DNI. Someone above the DNI — there aren’t that many in that category. And they also suggested that there may be privilege issues here, which means that it would have to involve communications of the President or people around him.”

It has since come out that the complaint involves a ‘promise’ President Trump made to a foreign leader.

What is the House Intelligence Committee? (Chairman Adam Schiff D – California)

Adam Schiff, Chairman of House Intel Committee, demands full complaint be handed over.

The House Intel Committee (HPSCI) is a group of elected members of the House of Representatives that are in charge of overseeing the 17 intelligence agencies.  The leader, or Chairmen of the committee, decides what issues to investigate, when to issue subpoenas and when to hold people accountable. The Committee is a mix of Democrats and Republicans.  The Chairman will always be a member of the majority party. 

Adam Schiff has issued a subpoena for the DNI to hand over all related materials with respect to the complaint that was made.  It seems as though no one is going to comply with it.

Keeping the details straight about how the government is suppose to work will help as more details come out.  This complaint is yet another example of how Trump can’t be trusted and has no business being President.  Everyone please register to vote and let’s get him out of there in 2020!

He’s Going Down Swinging

The debate is over. Trump is a racist.  ‘Go back to your country’ is a racist statement.  There is no way to argue otherwise.  Although I am shocked, these tweets aren’t surprising.  He says racist stuff all the time.  The difference here is bluntness.  No sugar coating, no way to misinterpret.  The tweet is so explicitly racist that any CEO would lose their job in 10 seconds over it yet he remains the leader of the free world.

Why did he do it?

The timing here seems extremely suspicious to me for a couple of reasons.  Sure, Fox News ran a few segments about ‘The Squad’ roughly 20 minutes before the tweet storm, but they run segments about them daily.  That couldn’t have been the only factor in my view.

The Democratic squabble between Pelosi and AOC has been headline news which is great for him.  He could have just sat back and let the media run with it. He could have said the party is imploding, called a few names while still making these 4 congresswomen the face of the party.

Instead, he made statements so obviously racist it bumped all other stories to page two.  The White House manufacturing event turned into a circus as he escalated his attacks on these women.  All this gives the Democratic caucus a chance to put their dirty laundry back inside and stand united.  So I ask again, why would he do this? 

Trump is the King of Distraction 

He had to have known the kind of blow back he would receive which might actually be the point.  I think it’s no coincidence Trump did this just days before the bail hearing for Jeffrey Epstein.  He threw a shiny object in the opposite direction so the details of this case wouldn’t lead the hours of every cable news channel. 

His connection to this case is inevitable which might actually be his undoing.  I predict he is going to say a bunch of heinous things to keep the people off his scent.  Because after all, being a racist is a lot more acceptable than being a child rapist.

Thursday is Epstein’s bail hearing.  I expect this week will be particularly painful for many in this country as we watch this president go down swinging.