One Year to Go
Monday November 4, 2019
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- The 2020 elections will be held one year from now. Ok, exactly one year from yesterday.
- Up for grabs will be Donald Trump's renewal of his lease on the White House. The Democrats continuing their control of the U.S. House and the Republicans trying to hang onto the U.S. Senate.
- In the Senate, as of this Autumn, Senate Republicans are defending 23 seats; Dems have to defend only 12.
- With a year to go it is fair to ask: On what battleground(s) will the election be fought?
- If you've been watching anything but Nick at Night for the past six weeks, you couldn't be blamed for believing the election will turn on a complaint by a person (as of this writing still unknown) who "blew the whistle" on Donald Trump's threatening to withhold needed defense funds from Ukraine.
- You know the rest.
- That report was released on September 26, 2019 and from that day onward we have been treated/subjected to a minute-by-minute analysis of who said what, when they said it, if they meant it, and whether it matters twenty-four-hours-a-day-seven-days-a-week on the cable news programs.
- Is it possible to keep up that level of energy for another 364 days?
- I had to stop typing and rest just thinking about it.
- Let me tell you where I am, so you can measure it against where you are.
- The two ends of the argument are:
- One: Trump threatened to withhold the money to Ukraine unless and until the President of Ukraine personally went in front of microphones and declared an investigation into the doings of Joe and his son Hunter Biden. Political enemies of Trump.
- This is a crime because no one has suggested that whatever Hunter was up to affected the national security of the United States but might have an effect on that pesky election I keep telling you about.
- Two: Trump threatened to withhold the money to Ukraine unless and until the President of Ukraine personally went in front of microphones and declared an investigation into the doings of Joe and his son Hunter Biden. Political enemies of Trump.
- So what?
- It will come as no surprise to historians 2,000 years in the future that the nation is just about perfectly split on whether this rises to the level of impeachment. Eighty five percent of Republicans think it does not. Eighty five present of Democrats think it does.
- I fall in the middle.
- Based upon what we know at this very second - and that is more than likely to change - I think Trump did it. I think it's a crime. I do not think it is reason enough to remove him from office.
- Here's my preferred outcome: The House votes to impeach Trump - with some number of Republicans tagging along.
- The Senate does not get 67 votes to remove Trump, but does get to 52 or 53 votes (which would also include a few Republicans) meaning Trump was found to have been guilty by a majority of the U.S. Senate.
- That stain would follow him all the way to his new domicile in Florida.
Trump recently filed papers officially moving his residence from New York to Florida. Florida has no personal state income tax. New York's top rate is 8.2%.
New York said, "He never paid his taxes anyway."
Florida said, "Will this change the odds on the annual shuffleboard tournament? No? Then get out of my way. It's Meatloaf Monday at the Early Bird."
- The Founders put the bar pretty high to overturn the results of a Presidential election. Two-thirds of Senators needing to agree that a President's conduct has been so egregious that he has to pack up and go is a standard that has never been met.
- I know it's coffee room chatter to say the Senate would have voted to removed Richard Nixon, but it never got to that point and I have never seen a whip count either way.
- The House Judiciary Committee voted to take Articles of Impeachment against Nixon to the floor, but Nixon resigned before the full House voted.
- I don't know if the Democrats are overplaying their hands. Republicans have a problem in that they don't know what cards are even in their hands.
- I don't know if the political chattering class can sustain impeachment as the centerpiece of the 2020 election. I think not.
- In any event, it will be the voters who decide, in the end, whether Donald Trump's conduct is a disqualification for a second term.
- On the Secret Decoder Ring page today: Links to a timeline for both the Whistleblower in the current situation and to Watergate lo those many decades ago.
- The Mullfoto is just a pretty picture on the Potomac a couple of weeks ago.
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