Wednesday was a unique day in the Senate Impeachment Trial. It was Day One of the two days allotted for Senators to ask questions (via written message read by Supreme Court Justice John Roberts). That ‘s precisely what happened: the first question came for the President’s Defense Team and then alternated for the remainder of the day’s session.
Let me be clear: there was NO new information given — certainly no further evidence. However, the day was clarifying for many in that “some” questions that, when answered, cleared up some of the craziness that was thrown out mainly by the House Managers during their portions of the trial. That is NOT a partisan allegation on my part, just the objective observation of one who has endured almost all of this trial to filter out facts. (We’ll wait until our trial final summary to detail some of the “craziness” referenced above)
Admittedly, there were several critical Q & A’s that clarified some severe allegations which though made over and over against President Trump and answered by his Defense Team, House Managers continued to beat the same drums. Their continuation to do this seemed a bit dismissive to the 100 Senators in the room, as if they are not capable of hearing and concluding for themselves.
In place of usual bullet points, let’s take a look at a few of the most important happenings outside of questions and answers, then a look at a few questions and answers that have drawn attention.
Plans For Calling Witnesses. First, Sen. Chris Van Hollen announced plans to introduce a motion to require the chief justice to subpoena documents and witnesses if he determines they are relevant to the impeachment articles, and to exercise his authority to rule on evidence issues like an executive privilege.
“My motion ensures the chief justice will serve the same role as a judge in any trial across our country — to allow the Senate access to the facts they need to get to the truth,” the Maryland Democrat said in a statement.
The Whistleblower’s Job. Republican Sens. Ted Cruz, Josh Hawley, and Jerry Moran asked House managers if the White House whistleblower ever worked with former Vice President Joe Biden.
Lead House impeachment manager Adam Schiff fielded the question, using his five minutes to defend himself and his staff’s handling of the whistleblower’s complaint. Schiff said he had never met the whistleblower and does not know the whistleblower’s identity. He did not directly address the question regarding Biden and the whistleblower.
The hold on Ukraine aid revealed when and its purpose. Sen. Mitt Romney (R., Utah) asked a question that many Democrats also want answered: “On what specific date did President Trump first order the hold on security assistance to Ukraine, and did he explain the reason at that time?”
White House lawyer Pat Philbin replied: “I don’t think that there is evidence in the record of a specific date, the specific date.” He said testimony indicates that Office of Management and Budget officials were aware of a hold as of July 3, 2019. Records indicate multiple conversations as far back as 2018 between the President and others about concerns of corruption in the Ukrainian government. (Long before Biden alleged corruption was discussed)
Q & A’s of Note: January 29, 2020
The most outstanding Q & A of the day came in answer to two different questions, one from Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and one from Sen. Bob Melendez (D-NJ) both addressed to Trump’s Defense Team.
Cruz asked whether it mattered, in legal terms, if there was a quid pro quo with Ukraine. In response, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), the lead manager, painted a hypothetical scenario in which President Obama asked Russian President Dmitry Medvedev to investigate his political rival in 2012, Mitt Romney.
“See how you feel about this scenario: President Obama says on an open mic to Medvedev…’ I know you don’t want to use this because they’re killing your people. I want you to do an investigation of Mitt Romney, and I want you to announce that you found dirt on Mitt Romney. If you’re willing to do that, quid pro quo, I won’t give Ukraine the money they need to fight you on the front line.’ Do any of us have any question that Barack Obama would be impeached for that kind of misconduct?”
The irony that set this exchange as the best of the day came with a response to Schiff’s theoretical topic by Defense Team in a later answer to a question by Jay Sekulow. I’ll paraphrase Sekulow’s answer:
“Senators, we don’t need a ‘hypothetical’ scenario for this story. We have an actual example of it. President Obama’s FBI accepted ‘unverified and salacious’ information in the form of the Steele Dossier from a former FBI informant later identified as an associate of numerous Russian politicians. The FBI took that dossier that FBI Director James Comey had personally stated to President Trump shortly after he was elected was ‘unverified and salacious’ to the FISA Court to use as the basis for multiple FISA warrants to allow the FBI to surveil Trump Campaign associates.’
A bit later, it was revealed that Christopher Steele had been fired from the FBI for press leaks and that the dossier which relied on information from Russian operatives had been paid for by the Clinton Campaign and the Democrat National Committee.”
But it got better later. When Sen. Menendez sent his question forward, it too was answered by Jay Sekulow. The question was how long would the Impeachment Trial be drawn out if the Senate approves the calling of additional witnesses and documents in the trial. Sekulow responded that “the trial if witnesses are called will last weeks and even months more.”
Adam Schiff then piped up from his chair and said, “Give us witnesses, and you can have whatever you want.” Sekulow quickly responded and said, “You’ll give us whatever we want?” Schiff: “Witnesses.” Sekulow jumped on that and replied, “We want Hunter Biden, Joe Biden, Adam Schiff, because of his interactions with the whistleblower and we want the whistleblower and anyone on your staff that interacted with the whistleblower.”
Schiff quickly said “We’re not calling the Bidens or the whistleblower.” Sekulow quipped, “Then we won’t have witnesses,” and walked back to his chair.
Those interactions are priceless! And, I promise, they’ll be memorialized and indexed in history under “The Greatest Senate Impeachment Trial Confrontations” for our great-grandchildren to see — especially under the subtopic titled “Noise, Noise, Noise!”
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and Chief Justice John Roberts got into a bit of a tiff Wednesday. Sen. Paul asked a question (in written form sent to the Chief Justice who reads each question out loud) in which he requested the name of the whistleblower. The Chief Justice declined to allow the name of the whistleblower to be given publicly. Paul intends to “push the issue” during Thursday’s Q & A session in the Senate chamber.
Before we present today’s “Obama Corruption Story” of the day, please know this: Thursday’s impeachment trial agenda is the second day of questioning. It is slated to last up to eight hours though I doubt it will take that long.
It remains to be seen what will happen after Thursday’s Q & A. The subject of calling additional witnesses will most likely consume the Friday agenda.
I earlier on Wednesday made a bold prediction, a prediction based on little more than my listening and watching far too many hours of this sham than I wanted, but felt compelled to do so and drawing educated conclusions. My prediction is two-fold: There will be NO witnesses called before the Senate, and President Trump will be acquitted. Oh, one more thing: I think Nancy Pelosi will resign as House Speaker!
Today’s Obama era corruption story is the first part of what will be several looking into former Vice President Biden and his son Hunter. We include the story link below for you to download.
Many know the investigative journalist John Solomon. He is one of the most respected political journalists in the U.S. today. Here is his timeline on the interactions that are applicable in this discussion of Joe Biden and Ukraine. You will certainly be shocked when you see the exhaustive and documented evidence presented in the story titled “The Ukraine scandal timeline Democrats and their media allies don’t want America to see.”
NOTE: On Friday, our corruption story will be another Biden story. It comes from a non-partisan, non-government, and independent news source that concentrates on investigatory information regarding Eurasian government corruption. This was sent to TruthNewsNetwork, and I don’t believe any other U.S. source, but I may be wrong. It is an interview with a person named in the interview that participated directly in the Biden-Ukraine activities. Don’t miss it!