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The One Silver Lining in All of This

From the New York Times:

So President Trump’s impeachment trial poses a unique and particularly onerous challenge for the 100 senators of the 116th Congress: a daily vow of silence that will be in effect beginning at 1 p.m. and for the duration of the proceedings, sometimes long into the night.

Senators will be confined to their desks, forced to stash their cellphones in cubbies and barred from speaking, even in hushed tones, as seven House impeachment managers and Mr. Trump’s defense team debate whether the president committed high crimes and misdemeanors.

To remind them, sessions of the trial will begin each afternoon with the Senate sergeant-at-arms uttering a dramatic command that dates to 1868 and the nation’s first presidential impeachment trial: “All persons are commanded to keep silence, on pain of imprisonment.” (There is no record of a Senate forcing jail time on one of its own.)

Asked about the limitations, Senator James Lankford, Republican of Oklahoma, joked that “all of us are taking bets on Lindsey Graham,” the garrulous South Carolina Republican who spent the Clinton trial as an impeachment manager, making the case that the president should be removed from office for lying about an affair with a White House intern.

“That’s the only one I really know of that I’m really worried about for six hours,” Mr. Lankford said of Mr. Graham.

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“Isn’t it about time Lindsey goes ape shit for me like he did for Kavanaugh?”

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Enough with Susan Collins

From Esquire, by Charles P. Pierce:

Responding to remarks by House Republican minority leader Kevin McCarthy, which had addressed everything but the matter at hand, Pelosi referred to the evidence released on Tuesday regarding Lev Parnas, Rudy Giuliani’s old running buddy, who, Pelosi noted, “was recently photographed with the Republican leader.”

“The president considered [congressional funds] his private ATM machine I guess and said he could say to the president he could make, “do me a favor.” Do me a favor? Do you paint houses, too? What is this, do me a favor?”

And yes, in case you were wondering, and as proof of her current pop culture bona fides, the Speaker of the House just inferred that the President* of the United States might just be the equivalent of a mob boss.

However delightful those moments might have been, along came Susan Collins later Wednesday afternoon to burnish her reputation as the wettest wet blanket in the Senate.

“I wonder why the House did not put that into the record and it’s only now being revealed. Well, doesn’t that suggest that the House did an incomplete job then?”

It is not possible that the senator is this dumb. The House didn’t add the Parnas evidence into the record until this week because a court hadnt allowed its release until this week.

What I think is that Collins thought she had a good thing going with her do-si-do about leading a group of Republicans who might just vote to allow witnesses, which would have given her some good-government cover in a trial she felt would end in acquittal anyway. This is consonant with her entire political career, which has been demonstrated to be utterly useless in the face of a lawless president*. Now, though, a flood of evidence demonstrating the president*’s guilt is inundating the Congress and the news, and it threatens to sweep away Collins’s careful middling of her obvious constitutional duties, and she doesn’t like it very much. Enough with Susan Collins. I mean, god almighty, enough.

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Yeah, What Was Up With That? *sniff*

From Doonesbury:

“Our missiles are big, powerful, accurate, lethal, and fast.”
— Trump

“This speech will be talked about long after his second term. This is on par with ‘Tear down this wall, Mr. Gorbachev.'”
— Sen. Lindsey Graham

58
— number of times Trump sniffed during speech, inspiring the trending of #SniffyMcAdderall

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