MSNBC anchor Nicolle Wallace explained on Thursday why she does not understand the refusal by Congressional Democrats to pursue the impeachment of Donald Trump.
Wallace, who has lately referred to herself as a non-practicing Republican, was a top GOP strategist prior to her career in journalism.
“If impeachment were politically popular, I promise you the attack on Democrats would be that they were pursuing it because it was politically expedient,” Wallace explained. “If she believes that crimes were committed and that Mueller unearthed them in the second volume of the obstruction report, I don’t understand why the fact that impeachment is polarizing is some sort of — it makes them just as cowardly as the Republicans.”
“Absolutely,” replied Princeton Professor Eddie Glaude. “To my mind, it’s an abdication of their Constitutional responsibility.”
“It is incumbent on the Democratic Party — the party that runs the House, the House of the people — to be the standard bearer of the Constitution, our democracy,” he argued. “Plus as a performative contradiction, you can’t tell me, on the one hand, you’re passing legislation knowing it’s going to die in [Mitch] McConnell’s Senate and tell me, on the other hand, we shouldn’t impeach because it’s going to die in the Senate.”
“You think we’re Boo Boo the Fool, when, in fact, what it is at the end of the day you lack courage. If you lack courage in this dark time, our democracy is in peril,” Glaude added.
“I am not saying that I’ve decided impeachment is the right thing to do. But there are some statements in politics, if X then Y,” Wallace explained. “If X is I believe he committed crimes — and that’s what Robert Mueller’s obstruction volume shows — then Y is I’m going to hold him accountable because I’m Congress and that’s my job.”
“I don’t see any gray there. I don’t understand why the Democrats are helping the White House fuzz it up,” she added.
from MSNBC and Raw Story
In the 1950s, there was a famous study led by three psychologists into the inner workings of a UFO cult that believed space aliens were coming to take them away from the planet before a catastrophic worldwide flood. The researchers, who embedded by pretending to be cult members, described how the cultists repeatedly prophesized a date the aliens were supposed to come and were repeatedly disappointed when the prophecy did not pan out.
But instead of admitting that there probably weren’t aliens, the cult members cycled through a series of rationalizations, first writing off the failures as a test of their faith and then, eventually, settling on the claim that their demonstration of faith had somehow prevented the worldwide catastrophe and they had saved the planet. But what many of the cultists flatly refused to accept is that they had been wrong to believe in aliens in the first place.
This classic study, which laid the groundwork for the psychological theory of cognitive dissonance, can go a long way to explaining the ever-changing story that Donald Trump and his supporters have offered to explain away the Russian conspiracy to interfere with the American election by illegally stealing private emails from Democratic officials. The rationalizations Trump offers have morphed over the past two years, but what remains steady is the fierce conviction of his most loyal supporters that they were never wrong to vote for him and their refusal to accept that he is a corrupt person unfit to hold even a dogcatcher’s office, much less the presidency of the United States.
Phase one of the process was flatly denying that the Russian conspiracy even happened in the first place, even as journalists and American intelligence officials were amassing evidence that Russian agents had deliberately stolen emails and used them to stoke conspiracy theories designed, successfully, to suppress voter turnout for Hillary Clinton in 2016.
Trump denied the hacking in many ways. In 2016, he flatly denied it was going on or blamed the Chinese government or “somebody sitting on their bed that weighs 400 pounds,” rather than Russia. Under pressure from intelligence officials, at times Trump would reluctantly concede the hacking was real, but he would return to the never-happened-or-someone-else-did-it line as soon as he could.
Most famously, Trump stood by Russian president Vladimir Putin in July 2018 and backed Putin’s denials that the conspiracy ever happened by saying, ” I don’t see any reason why it would be” Russia and denouncing the existence of the investigation into the conspiracy headed up by special counsel Robert Mueller.
But even by then, the story of the Russian criminal conspiracy was shifting from “never happened” to “no collusion,” that is, the claim that while the Russians may have been committing crimes, the Trump campaign was wholly innocent of any involvement. Instead, Americans were meant to believe that while the Russians were busy stealing emails and publishing them through Wikileaks, the bright-eyed innocents of the Trump campaign had no idea what was going on and were just as surprised as anyone, really.
This was always nonsense, starting with the fact that Trump is on tape from 2016 literally asking the Russian hackers to go after Clinton’s personal email accounts, which they immediately tried to do. Or the fact that Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, and Trump’s campaign manager Paul Manafort met with Russian operatives promising “dirt” on Clinton in exchange for sanctions relief. But Trump kept at it, reciting “no collusion” like a busted Teddy Ruxpin, hoping repetition of this catchphrase would overwhelm the evidence to the contrary.
But with the release of Mueller’s report, it’s clear that once again the story is shifting. The sheer number of contacts with Russian operatives, the evidence that Trump’s campaign was tipped off about Wikileaks publishing emails, and the efforts by the Trump campaign to obtain more stolen emails all serve to make mincemeat of the “no collusion” rationalization. So now the narrative is shifting into “collusion is not a crime” and efforts overall to minimize and downplay the importance of it.
“There’s nothing wrong with taking information from Russians,” Trump’s attorney Rudy Giuliani said on CNN on Sunday during a segment in which he also argued, “Any candidate in the whole world in America would take information.”
That the “OK, maybe there was some colluding, but it wasn’t a big deal” narrative was the next move first started to seem evident Thursday morning, when Attorney General William Barr held a grotesquely misleading press conference meant to spin the Mueller report before the actual report came out.
As I noted at the time, Barr used legalistic language about how there was no conspiracy with the “Russian government” and made a point to argue that there’s nothing illegal about publishing or conspiring to publish stolen information. This legal parsing suggested that Barr was redefining “collusion” very narrowly in order to maintain the “no collusion” claim.
As soon as the report came out, it became evident that Barr and Trump’s other defenders are excluding collusion with Wikileaks, excluding collusion with unofficial Russian agents, and excluding attempts to steal emails that fell through in order to maintain the claim of “no collusion” in the face of a staggering amount of collusion.
Having denied corruption for two years, the Trump administration is moving into the next phase, which amounts to denying that corruption matters. They will, as Barr and Giuliani’s statements suggest, say that so long as Trump avoids committing crimes himself, but instead just knowingly benefits from crimes, that it doesn’t count. And they will try to excuse Trump’s cheating and lying by claiming everyone else does it, too — or hypothetically would, anyway.
That isn’t true, of course, but Trump and his minions have a long history of using this tactic of claiming that all people are crooks and implying that Trump is just more honest about it. Trump did it when Clinton called him out for tax evasion, saying, “That makes me smart,” which is to say, implying that everyone wants to cheat on their taxes, but he’s the one who gets away with it. That was also the tactic used to dismiss the tape of Trump bragging about sexual assault as “locker room talk”. The implication is that all men do this and talk about it, and Trump was just unlucky to get caught.
All of this is why Democrats who control the House of Representatives need to start impeachment hearings for Trump, even if they fear doing so will be politically risky. Trump clearly benefits from instilling the belief that all politicians are dirty and that his corruption is business as usual. The only way to counter that narrative is to start impeachment hearings and signal that no, there are still plenty of people in politics who think that criminal and corrupt behavior is wrong and that people who engage in it should be held to account.
Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MA), chair of the House Oversight Committee, on Sunday predicted that history will “smile upon” the lawmakers who pursue the impeachment of Donald Trump.
In an interview on Face the Nation, CBS host Bob Schieffer noted that several high profile Democrats are calling for impeachment proceedings to begin due to the release of special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation report.
“This is a political act, and if you do vote to impeach him and then the Senate votes not to remove him, won’t that look like a victory for him?” Schieffer wondered.
“It may very well, but you know, sometimes, Bob, I got to tell you, there comes a point in life where we all have to make decisions based upon the fact that it is on our watch,” Cummings replied. “History, I think, even if we did not win possibly, if there were not impeachment, I think history would smile upon us for standing up for the Constitution.”
“You know, I hear a lot of people say they’re tired of hearing about the Mueller report,” he continued. “Well, we don’t have time to get tired, because the Russians aren’t getting tired. They are attacking our electoral system every single day, if not every hour.”
“We can not afford that. Our democracy cannot afford that,” Cummings added.
from Raw Story
In the face of courageous, credible accusations in the Senate, we witnessed unhinged vile misogyny and bullying behavior. That was yesterday’s Senate Judiciary hearing on Trump lackey Brett Kavanaugh.
Senate Republicans, promoting despicable Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court found a perfect way to institutionalize their agenda and double down on the misogyny at its core. For all of us involved with the Examiner, it’s very clear that Kavanaugh should be impeached, for repeatedly lying and losing his shit on national TV.
This entitled jerk has been credibly accused of sexual assault and lying under oath in 2004, 2006 and credibility in this round of confirmation hearings. He should be removed from his current position on the Federal Court.
Republicans have proven that they care more about helping entitled privileged men to escape the consequences for sexual assault and harassment than about making sure a liar and accused sexual predator isn’t confirmed to the Supreme Court. Members of the Congress should be feeling massive pressure demanding they have a full and complete investigation into all of the lying and credible accusations leveled at his Judge. This should be conducted under the auspices of a full impeachment investigation of Brett Kavanaugh.
We can’t let any electeds off the hook they must stand strong and fight.
Kavanaugh must be removed from the Federal Court!
First Rule For Having a Fun Thanksgiving: Go with canned cranberry sauce instead of the homemade variety.
Second Rule For Having a Fun Thanksgiving: Don’t talk about politics.
Third Rule For Having a Fun Thanksgiving: When your Uncle Steve inevitably breaks rule two, be prepared.
Read up on your talking points below for your debate with Uncle Steve at the dinner table — share it with your family and friends and encourage them to sign on to the effort to impeach this dangerous president!
On impeachment: Simply put, Trump is utterly unfit to serve as president. From obstructing justice by firing the head of the FBI, to threatening nuclear war with North Korea, to normalizing white supremacy, he has shown that he is exactly the person the founders had in mind when they wrote impeachment into the Constitution.
On Russia: Your uncle may insist that Trump is not guilty of anything more than trying to make America great again. Let him know there is clear evidence that Russia meddled in the election last year and there are members of Trump’s team who have been lying about their involvement with Russian operatives at every step of the way.
On the GOP tax cuts: For decades, big corporations and the wealthy have gotten an easy ride when it comes to paying their fair share of taxes. The tax cut Republicans are trying to pass will make that far worse — at the expense of working American families.
Above all, at Thanksgiving, remember this: We’re all in this together, and Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate the things that bind us together as family and as Americans.
‘Y’all have sold out too’: Raging Fox fans blame ‘Jews’ and ‘commies’ after Fox & Friends runs impeachment ad
Dedicated Fox News viewers lashed out on Friday after the network’s morning show, Fox & Friends ran a commercial calling for the impeachment of President Donald Trump.
After the first 15 minutes of Friday’s program, Fox & Friends tossed to a commercial financed by billionaire activist Tom Steyer.
“He’s brought us to the brink of nuclear war,” Steyer says in the ad. “Accused of obstructing justice at the FBI and violating the constitution by taking money from foreign governments and threatening to shut down news organizations that report the truth.
“If that isn’t a case for impeaching and removing a dangerous president then what has our government become?” he asks. “People in Congress and his own administration know that this president is a clear and present danger who is mentally unstable and armed with nuclear weapons. And they do nothing.”
Trump reacted on Twitter by calling Steyer “wacky” and “totally unhinged.”
Needless to say, fans of Fox News were also irate about the commercial. Some called for a boycott of Fox News, while others blamed communists and Jews for the ad.
Fox fans losing thier shit over it:
Why is fox news running ads to impeach our POTUS ?
#foxnews just watched a commercial impeach the president on your station!! What money is everything now?!?!
I am totally shocked at the ad I just saw on Fox!Pull the ad!FCC how can this ad be allowed to air?$$talks! BUT Americans r going 2 #MAGA!!!
Just saw an add on Fox News promoting a petition to impeach Trump. Now y’all have sold out too? MAGA. TRUMP!!
What! @FoxNews – Are you seriously selling out and airing “Impeach” commercials. I’m doubting that the MSM are airing Pro-FOX commercials.
Just saw your commercial on FOX. Nothing you said was true. Trump’s tweets RE silencing MSM was stupid but lying under oath is much worse…
Comercials on Fox and friends to impeach our President? What is this? Is Fox losing it? I am getting pissed. Fox i am putting you on notice.
Tom Steyer “ Need to impeach” is one wacko ..spreading his words on Fox to convince impeachment of Trump
Wow @foxandfriends is running an add to impeach Trump during your show. Sorry but I can’t support this bye bye!
wow, fox just aired that commie Tom Steyer’s Impeach ad … hope fox got tons of his $ for it @foxandfriends
Hey @FoxNews why the hell are you allowing impeachment ad to run? Do you need $ that bad? I’ll be turning FOX OFF if I keep seeing this BS!
Just watched the mother of fake news on Fox. Some douche payed for anti Trump/Impeachment comercial that just aired. Shame on Fox for airing
WTH @FoxNews just ran Styer Ad for impeachment of Trump. Shame on Fox!
Just saw a paid ad on Fox, for impeaching President Trump. No doubt paid for by the Dems. Getting sick of this crap.
Watching Fox news and some Shlomo bought a commercial to plead for Drumpfs impeachment.
Man I hate jews
— Niceguy Mel #JWOKE (@NiceguyMel3) October 27, 2017