House Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and the Republicans can control how or what to do about the Senate trial as long as they stick together and don’t let House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) dictate to them what to do.
Republicans held together over Kavanaugh and they are likely to hold together here again.
But there might be a crack in the wall with remarks from Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK).
Murkowski is now saying that she’s “disturbed” by McConnell’s remarks that he would coordinate with the White House over the trial.
“And in fairness, when I heard that I was disturbed,” Murkowski said before describing that there should be distance between the White House and the Senate in how the trial is conducted. “To me it means that we have to take that step back from being hand in glove with the defense, and so I heard what leader McConnell had said, I happened to think that that has further confused the process.”
She said she wanted to give a “full and fair process” and that she didn’t want to prejudge, “that’s wrong.”
She did however also call out the House process for being rushed, “Speaker Pelosi was very clear, very direct that her goal was to get this done before Christmas.”
She says the Senate is now being asked to cure deficiencies in the evidence that will be presented at the trial, particularly when it comes to whether key witnesses should be brought forward to testify including White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney and former national security adviser John Bolton.
“How we will deal with witnesses remains to be seen,” Murkowski said before describing that the House should have gone to the courts if witnesses refused to appear before Congress.
Where was Murkowski’s criticism when the House Democrats were denying the Republicans the right to call witnesses and holding secret hearings? Where was Murkowski when House Intel Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA) was lying and falsely describing the evidence to the public? She’s an attorney, where is she calling out the House failure to include exculpatory evidence or call exculpatory witnesses? How about more strongly calling out Pelosi for sitting on the articles and obstructing a fair trial?
Now, what Democrats have is on its face defective, stating no “high crimes and misdemeanors,” the obstruction alleged is literally the problem that Murkowski is pointing out – that the House Democrats didn’t go to court to get some of the witnesses they now intend to call and but they call the right to fight the request “obstruction.”
Based on what they have, if you were talking about a regular legal case, you could move for dismissal based on the failure to state a case, to meet the basic standard. And that’s what McConnell is saying. The Senate has complete control over the trial, why should they bend over backward to ameliorate the Democrats’ failures?
If Murkowski is going to talk about “disturbing” or things to be concerned about, how about people who were essentially running against Trump for President being intimately involved in the investigation in the House, namely Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA)? How about that tainting the investigation? And now in the Senate, Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Sen. Michael Bennet (D-C0) and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), are they going to recuse? Or do they get to vote to impeach the man they’re running against?
Sorry, but the whole process has been unfair and defective from the start, and the charges should be flat-out rejected. Don’t start pretending now as though McConnell is the one being unfair. Unfair is trying to unseat a president for three years because you’re upset he won and your side lost. Unfair is paying a foreign national for information from the Russians and weaponizing it to the FBI and the media to undermine Donald Trump before and after the election.
This needs to be killed and all Republicans need to be on board.