“Everyone was in the loop” Gordon Sondland says, outlining Donald Trump’s quid pro quo with Ukraine

Everyone is talking about the absolutely devastating testimony offered by Gordon “everyone was in the loop” Sondland, Donald Trump’s ambassador to the European Union, in front of the House Intelligence Committee today, so I won’t go too deep into it. I would, however, like to point out a few of the smaller things that may not be getting as much coverage as, say, the fact that Sondland not only named Mike Pompeo, Mike Pence and Mick Mulvaney as his co-conspirators, but essentially laid the whole scandal at the feet of the President, explaining how it was Donald Trump himself who had instructed members of his administration to take direction from Rudy Giuliani relative to this off-the-books mission in Ukraine. [Among other things, Sondland confirmed that, yes, there was a “quid pro quo”. And, yes, Sondland said, the military aid to Ukraine which had been passed by Congress had been withheld in order to force these concessions from the new Zelensky administration. “In the absence of any credible explanation for the suspension of aid, I later came to believe that the resumption of security aid would not occur until there was a public statement from Ukraine committing to the investigations,” Sondland noted, “as Mr. Giuliani had demanded.”] So, with all that said, here are just a few points to ponder.

1. I suspect Sondland hasn’t yet told us everything he knows… As we’ve discussed here before, Sondland had initially said under oath that he wasn’t aware of anything that might be of interest to investigators. “Nothing was ever raised to me about any concerns regarding our Ukraine policy,” he said at the outset, before going on to add that he “never” thought there was any precondition placed on the American aid to Ukraine. This narrative, of course, soon fell apart, as others in the administration, like William Taylor and Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman, defying the administration’s command that they not provide sworn testimony, came forward to confirm the quid pro quo at the center of this scandal. And, when their testimony was made public, Sondland’s memory apparently started to improve. At this point, he asked to revise his testimony, adding that he not only knew about, but actually conveyed the terms of the extortion scheme to the Ukrainians. “I said that resumption of the U.S. aid would likely not occur until Ukraine provided the public anticorruption statement that we had been discussing for many weeks,” he said. And, today, as you just read above, he went even further, confirming that it was Donald Trump who was directing everything. “We followed the President’s orders,” he said…. But, is he telling everything he knows? I suspect not. Before I get into that, though, here’s footage of Representative Sean Patrick Maloney reminding the Ambassador that he’s lied to the members of this committee before.

But, yes, as bad as this was, I think there’s more. For instance, Sondland, while he did make quite a bit forward progress this time, still maintained that he didn’t know, when Trump and Giuliani were initially demanding an investigation into Burisma, that it had anything to do with the Bidens. When asked about the sworn testimony of Colonel Vindman, who claimed to have heard the Ambassador say, “That the Ukrainians would have to deliver an investigation into the Bidens,” Sondland denied it, saying that, while it seems clear to him now, he didn’t know at the time that all of this was an attempt to coerce an investigation into the Bidens. And he also denied the sworn statement of U.S. diplomat David Holmes, who said that the Ambassador had once told him that Trump only cares about “‘big stuff’ that benefits the president, like the ‘Biden investigation’ that [Rudy] Giuliani was pushing.” If I had to guess, I’d say that there’s reason Sondland kept saying today that he never took notes, and was having trouble remembering things. And that’s because he knows it’s likely that he’ll eventually be forced to revise his sworn statement again.

2. Trump never cared about corruption in Ukraine, or cared whether they really investigated the Bidens… Many on the right have been making the ridiculous claim these past several weeks that Donald Trump held up the $400 million in Ukrainian military aid because he felt as though, before receiving said aid, they should first make significant efforts to route out corruption. Well, guess what? Sondland today confirmed that Donald Trump never really wanted a legitimate investigation. All he wanted, according to the Ambassador, was the announcement of an investigation that he could point to, claiming that the Ukrainians had reason to believe that the Bidens had committed crimes, and that the Russians didn’t really interfere in our 2016 election. “(President Zelensky) had to announce the investigations,” Sondland said under oath today. “He didn’t actually have to do them.” Here’s the footage.

And, as if that weren’t enough, Sondland also confirmed the testimony of David Holmes, which I mentioned earlier. Holmes, as you’ll recall, told investigators that Sondland, when asked, “if it was true that the President did not ‘give a shit’ about Ukraine,” responded in the affirmative, saying that he only cared about the “big stuff” that affected him? Well, when asked about it today, Sondland didn’t dispute that he’d said that. So, again, Donald Trump does not care about the Ukraine. He does not care that they’re battling Russian aggression. He does not care about corruption. He just cares about the “big stuff,” like press conferences to announce investigations into his domestic political rivals.

3. Schiff, once again, does an admirable job… While Sondland threw a number of people under the bus, and painted a picture of a corrupt president hell-bent on abusing his power for political gain, I’d have to say that Adam Schiff deserves the credit for what was yet another amazing day. Here, to give you a sense of how he handled things, is his closing statement, delivered just before he gaveled Sondland’s testimony to a close. It’s powerful stuff. ““Getting caught is no defense – not to a violation of the Constitution, or to a violation of his oath of office. And it certainly doesn’t give us reason to ignore our oath of office,” the Chairman Schiff says, as the crowd rises to give him a standing ovation, once again reminding all of us that we still have a fighting chance of saving this democracy of ours.

4. At least Trump gave them the weapons. That’s more than Obama did… The Republicans don’t have much to cling to after these past several days of hearings. They have the fact that Sondland has said under oath that, when he called the President and asked point blank what in the hell was going on relative to Ukraine deal, the President told him, “No quid pro quo,” and they have the fact that the Trump administration eventually resented their hold on the $400 million aid that had been authorized by Congress. [By the way, it’s illegal for the President to withhold aid that has been authorized by Congress, but we won’t get into that now.] The administration, of course, didn’t release the aid until after the whistleblower’s complaint had been made public, and they didn’t have a choice, but the Republicans don’t mention that part. They just mention that Trump eventually released the funds. And, invariably, they then note that, in doing so, Trump did a lot more than Obama, who just gave the Ukrainians blankets to fight the Russians. “This was the Obama administration’s approach,” Devin Nunes has said several times during the impeachment inquiry. Of course, it’s a lie, like everything else. [Speaking of which, Donald Trump announced the opening of an Apple plant in Texas today that actually opened in 2013, buy why the fuck not, right?] Here’s the truth from the Associate Press.

…While the Obama administration refused to provide Ukraine with lethal weapons in 2014 to fight Russian-backed separatists, it offered a range of other military and security aid — not just “blankets.”

By March 2015, the Obama administration had provided more than $120 million in security aid for Ukraine and promised $75 million worth of equipment, including counter-mortar radars, night vision devices and medical supplies, according to the Defense Department. The U.S. also pledged 230 Humvee vehicles.

The U.S. aid offer came after Russian President Vladimir Putin in 2014 annexed Crimea and provided support for separatists in eastern cities near Russia’s border.

Ultimately between 2014 and 2016, the Obama administration committed more than $600 million in security aid to Ukraine.

In the last year of the Obama administration, the U.S. established the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative, which provided U.S. military equipment and training to help defend Ukraine against Russian aggression. From 2016 to 2019, Congress appropriated $850 million for this initiative…

So, yes, it’s true that Donald Trump eventually handed over funds for the purchase of $47 million in Javelin anti-tank missiles, but it’s not true that Obama did nothing. Furthermore, I don’t know that providing more in the way of lethal weapons systems would have been prudent prior to Zelensky’s 2019 victory. Let’s remember that, up until 2014, the President of Ukraine was Putin associate Viktor Yanukovych, a man currently living in exile in Russia, and wanted for high treason in the country that he fled. And, as we know, corruption in the country continued to run rampant even after the 2014 democratic revolution. To hear foreign policy experts tell it, the election of Zelensky was the opening that we were looking for, a real opportunity to build a solid bulwark against Russian expansion. So, yes, Trump finally released the money for Javelins, but let not buy into the false equivalency of the Republican argument. Obama didn’t just give blankets, and he did so at a time when the deployment of Javelins may not have been called for.

5. But Trump said that it wasn’t a quid pro quo… As I mentioned earlier, the Republicans are making a lot of hay out of the fact that, according to Sondland, the President himself said, “I want no quid pro quo,” on a phone call. Again, however, they’re leaving out a little context. Most notably, Donald Trump is said to have uttered these words when Sondland called him, demanding to know why aid had been withheld, and whether or not there was any truth to what he’d been hearing about said aid having been tied up in the same quid pro quo they’d all been pursuing with Ukraine. The President, he said, was adamant that there was no quid pro quo. We know, of course, that he was lying, but, as it’s all the Republicans have, we should expect that they’ll stick with it. It’s our job, however, to keep pointing out that Sondland himself has said that, regardless of what Trump may have said, military aid was being withheld until such time as Zelensky made a public statement about opening an investigation into the Bidens… Oh, by they way, here are the notes, written in sharpie, that Donald Trump had with him while talking with the press today. As you can see, this was his only talking point… essentially saying, “We have someone on record who swears that I once explicitly told him that I was not engaging in blackmail.”

6. Trump doesn’t know Sondland… After taking credit for opening that Apple manufacturing plant that had actually opened under President Obama, Donald Trump doubled down on his “I don’t know him very well” defense against Sondland’s testimony. According to Trump, Ambassador Sondland, a man whom he appointed to office, was just “a guy who got put there.”

As for how people just get “put” in his administration without his knowledge, the President didn’t elaborate. He also didn’t reconcile the fact that, not too long ago, he not only knew who Sondland was, but called him “a really good man, and great American.”

7. The White House explains everything… Ok, I’m falling asleep, but here’s one more thing before I drift off — a message from the White House announcing complete exoneration.

This, as you might guess, never happened. Sondland was asked to repeat several times that Donald Trump once said to him that he wasn’t committing a crime, but denial of criminal activity is not, in and of itself, a viable defense, let alone proof of innocence. [Just because I turn to an associate and say, “I’m not mugging this woman,” as I push her to the ground and take her purse, does not mean that prosecutors cannot convict me of the crime.] And, more importantly, Sondland also implicated the President in a lot of shit… shit that will no doubt get him impeached.

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54 Comments

  1. Freedom Q
    Posted November 20, 2019 at 11:20 pm | Permalink

    alex jones drove a homemade tank kind of contraption through austin today.

    https://twitter.com/TrueFactsStated/status/1197268744533356546?s=20

  2. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 20, 2019 at 11:44 pm | Permalink

    Smoked him

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mtIckxxrd6g

  3. dogmatic dolt
    Posted November 20, 2019 at 11:57 pm | Permalink

    Aloha, there are I believe 22 Republican Senators up for re-election. If you want to get rid of Trump these are the people you need to figure out how to pressure.
    Lamar Alexander (R-Tennessee)
    Shelley Moore Capito (R-West Virginia)
    Bill Cassidy (R-Louisiana)
    Susan Collins (R-Maine)
    John Cornyn (R-Texas)
    Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas)
    Steve Daines (R-Montana)
    Mike Enzi (R-Wyoming)
    Joni Ernst (R-Iowa)
    Cory Gardner (R-Colorado)
    Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina)
    Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Mississippi) — Hyde-Smith was appointed by Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant to fill the seat vacated by Sen. Thad Cochran who resigned due to health issues. She competed in the 2018 special election to fill the term. CNN projects the race will go to a runoff. Hyde-Smith will compete against Democratic challenger Mike Espy since no candidate received 50% of the vote total. The contest will take place on Tuesday, November 27. A full six-year term election will be held in 2020.
    James Inhofe (R-Oklahoma)
    Jon Kyl (R-Arizona) — It is expected that there will be an open special election in 2020 for the seat because Kyl has said he will not run in 2020. A full six-year term election will take place in 2022.
    Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky)
    David Perdue (R-GA)
    Jim Risch (R-Idaho)
    Pat Roberts (R-Kansas)
    Mike Rounds (R-South Dakota)
    Ben Sasse (R-Nebraska)
    Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska)
    Thom Tillis (R-North Carolina)

  4. EOS
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 5:49 am | Permalink

    Quid pro quo? That was his presumption, which was exactly the opposite of what Trump told him explicitly. Time to wrap up this whole charade so that we can get on with prosecuting actual crimes based on real evidence.

    https://thefederalist.com/2019/11/19/the-inside-story-of-how-americas-intelligence-agencies-tried-to-undo-trumps-election/

  5. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:38 am | Permalink

    EOS and HW–If Trump would allow the people directly in contact with him to testify, we would not be getting only second hand accounts of his involvement and presumptions.

    It is in fact Trump who has ‘rigged’ these proceedings.

    It’s particularly galling when the GOP dismiss the witnesses as ‘the Democrat’s star witnesses’ when they have only been allowed to hear from secondary sources.

    I assume Rudi, Pompeo, and Barr are not testifying because they would incriminate themselves by doing so. Sounds like Pompeo is resigning, so maybe he will testify. What will your excuses be then?

  6. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:52 am | Permalink

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/11/20/if-pompeo-doesnt-testify-he-should-be-impeached/

  7. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:59 am | Permalink

    https://www.ft.com/content/c46c45a0-0bd3-11ea-bb52-34c8d9dc6d84

  8. Anonymous
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:14 am | Permalink

    The NYT editorial board writes, “All the witnesses whose testimony has been damaging to President Trump have given that testimony under oath. All of those who we are led to believe would exonerate the president have so far refused to testify.”

  9. iRobert
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:16 am | Permalink

    EOS, did Trump say he wasn’t demanding a ‘quid pro quo’ before or after he was made aware of the whistleblower’s complaint? I know you have a rule against answering questions, but could you make an exception on this itty bitty one?

    It’s should be clear that the reason the individuals most involved with this are avoiding testifying not because they care or are worried about how any Democrats will react, but because how they expect Republican Senators would react. And Republican Senators would not even consider removing Trump from office unless the details of what happened are clearly criminal and impeachable.

    The Senate Republicans have set an extremely high bar for them to proceed with removing Trump from office. Those who are refusing to testify must know their testimony would clear that high bar.

  10. Kim
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:28 am | Permalink

    Sondland: “Was there a quid pro quo? The answer is yes.”

  11. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:42 am | Permalink

    Anyone else catch David Holmes saying he was from Ann Arbor?

    I feel like we were well represented there.

  12. EOS
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:47 am | Permalink

    @iRobert,

    “It’s should be clear that the reason the individuals most involved with this are avoiding testifying not because they care or are worried about how any Democrats will react, but because how they expect Republican Senators would react. ”

    Is that a fact or your presumption? And why don’t the “witnesses” who testify before this impeachment inquiry under oath? In what court is hearsay admissible?

    I don’t know when Trump said there was no quid pro quo.

    He had every right to fire the ambassador who rebuked Trump’s policy because it conflicted with her policy. He has every right to demand a clean up of the corruption of the Ukraine government and the Burisma company in particular.

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-impeachment-burisma/ukraine-widens-probe-against-burisma-founder-to-embezzlement-of-state-funds-idUSKBN1XU2N7

  13. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:48 am | Permalink

    iRobert– do we know when Trump learned of the whistleblower complaint?

    It’s a solid question. My feeling, based on my admittedly biased narrative no doubt, is that people are alway trying to keep Trump in line, ignoring his most ridiculous demands and feeding him plausible denial statements to repeat after he gets himself in trouble. Even without knowing about the whistleblower, they put the transcript in a special server so we can assume were in damage control on this issue all along. Trump blurting out ‘no quid pro quo’ is so specific and shows so much understanding of the legalities, that it sounds coached to me.

  14. Frosted Flakes
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:49 am | Permalink

    The people closest to Trump could provide very damaging testimony. On the other hand, they might not. Either way I have zero confidence that Dems are able to assess the arguments. As I listened along yesterday to Sondland’s opening statement I thought it was very damaging but then I listened to the Republican’s ask him questions and it all unraveled. Take Mark’s headline: “Everyone is in the loop”. Ok? So Mark didn’t really bother to listen to the testimony I guess? Who is feeding Mark this shallow analysis?

    Sondland turned out to be sort of an airhead.

    https://youtu.be/2HaI0fVyFYg

  15. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:52 am | Permalink

    “In what court is hearsay admissible?”
    https://criminal.findlaw.com/criminal-procedure/hearsay-evidence.html

    The witnesses testified to the orders they received as they understood them. That’s more than hearsay, but even so, it is admissible under certain circumstances in a court of law.

    This proceeding is not a court of law, however, or we would be hearing from Maculvay, Barr, Pompeo and Guliani..

  16. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    FF has selective hearing and is easily convinced by spin and diversionary tactics.

  17. Frosted Flakes
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    I listen to what the witnesses say, Jean.

    When asked if he had evidence of quid pro quo what did Volker say? Everything “juicy” terminates in Sondland’s presumptions at this point. He is assuming what other people are thinking. It is not nothing but it is not solid at all especially when people around him, who are supposedly “in the loop”, are saying they did not think what Sondland thinks they think.

    Sondland is loopy.

  18. iRobert
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    Is everyone here an aspiring attorney using this blog to practice speaking in a courtroom?

    We are free to be honest and open here.

  19. iRobert
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:51 am | Permalink

    But I didn’t mean to stop the discussion by saying that. I actually enjoy it when people make their cases as everyone is doing this morning. It’s a nice break from the lobbing of insults back and forth at each other that we usually engage in here.

  20. John Brown
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    Fiona Hill to testify that the entire Ukraine/Biden/2016 narrative is a fabrication of the ruskies, being promoted by agent orange. Sounds spot on for a ruskie stooge.

  21. EOS
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:03 am | Permalink

    “It’s a nice break from the lobbing of insults back and forth at each other that we usually engage in here.”

    AGREED!

  22. iRobert
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    EOS: “…why don’t the “witnesses” who testify before this impeachment inquiry under oath?”

    What did you mean in this statement?

  23. EOS
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    Sorry for the confusing question. Behind closed doors, some of the witnesses were under oath. However, I don’t think those who are being questioned in the public hearing are under oath. Please correct me if I am wrong and everyone is under oath. If not, why not?

  24. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    NPR reports that the “No quid pro quo’ comment by Trump to Sondland happened the same day as the whistle blower complaint was filed (and the Prudent informed).

    “Sondland is loopy.”– says the guy defending Trump. Oh the same guy that calls people who disagree with him liars and believes they should be dismissed based on that assessment. THAT GUY defends Trump. He also does not see his double standard and claims he is not partisan but ‘fair and balanced’ in his perspective

    The GOP loved Sondland’s ass until he saved his ass by turning coats and revising his deposition. Now he’s loopy. Anyone who does not agree with FF is loopy or a liar. It’s SO boring.

  25. iRobert
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:58 am | Permalink

    I’m under the impression that all of those who we’ve seen in the public hearings have been under oath.

    It was my understanding that a number of people who spoke to the committee in closed-door sessions were not under oath.

  26. EOS
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:03 am | Permalink

    Yeah, As I wrote Fiona Hill and her attorney were being sworn in. Doh.

  27. iRobert
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:04 am | Permalink

    I thought “loopy” was a good play on words, and not entirely inaccurate.

    Though Sondland seems a likable person, he is a little goofy for an Ambassador.

  28. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:09 am | Permalink

    When the Kardashians enter the impeachment hearing discussions, we know our democracy has jumped the shark under Trump.

  29. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    irobert– Sondland bought his ambassadorship by paying for the inaugural balls when no one else would. Quid. Pro, Quo.. He is the kind of guy who gets a pass under Trump while the State Department is dismantled and lifelong diplomats like Marie Yovanovitch are fired without cause.

  30. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    Oh she did it. Go Ms Hill. “It is beyond dispute.’

    Someone needed to really go after our conspiracist in chief. Fuck the false narrative.

    I’m sure HW will have some charming misogyny to throw her way.

  31. Frosted Flakes
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:21 am | Permalink

    Jean,

    Please point to specific comments where I call someone a liar merely because I do not agree with that person. I reserve the term “liar” for those cases where someone misrepresents so egregiously the only explanation is that they are lying.

    I repeat, I thought Sondland’s opening statement was very damaging to Trump. His story, however, lost a lot of steam upon further scrutiny. His interpretations are not nothing but they are interpretations of events which he calls presumption.

    Sondland is admitting to piecing together memories based upon other people’s notes and testimony. Hey, maybe the guys memory is crap? I never had an opinion of Sondland before yesterday. What does what other people think of Sondland have to do with me? Sondland seems like a nice guy, and on honest guy, who is not super bright and somewhat careless with his words. In short I think he is susceptible to manipulation, theories, and presumption. He probably blabbed his theories a bit too. He does not strike me as discrete. These are my opinions….

  32. Frosted Flakes
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:27 am | Permalink

    Yes iRobert. I agree with you. I like Sondland. I think he is honest. I think his testimony was ultimately fine for the GOP.

    I was trying to use a pun but I also do think there is some loopy thinking there insofar as he “what others think” ultimately seem to terminate in his own presumption. Which is fine. It is good to hear all of these different people’s interpretations of intent. Ultimately the whole thing boils down to how we perceive Trump’s intent. The Democrats intent will be on trial soon too, I think.

  33. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    FF– There are legit less than 10 people who comment regularly here. They are the only people reading this and they have had plenty of opportunity to see your constant protests of liar and recognize the pattern. I don’t have to back it up.I don’t have time. Literally every time you call someone a liar it’s usually because they stated an opinion with which you disagreed. We all know that. I don’t need to defend may assessment here. Please don’t bother to ask me to going forward. Let’s just acknowledge that this is a very, excruciatingly small room. Thanksgiving supper will be a relief.

  34. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    FF– where is your call to hear from the Pompeo, Giuliani etc? I’m sure they could confirm or deny Sondland’s assessment, but they are not being allowed to testify.

    So clearly this is not a court of law, EOS or they would be subject to subpoena.

  35. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    FF I thought you were fair and balanced and logical? What justification do you subscribe to for the absence of RG and Pompeo at these proceedings?

    Imperial Presidential power?

    I wonder what your reaction will be when a Dem President asserts the same.

  36. Frosted Flakes
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    Oh Jean. Your constant misrepresentation that I call people a liar merely because they disagree with me is never made within a specific conversation where I supposedly guilty of such an act. It is always a charge made about something that happened a long time ago that you do not have time to look up. This, right here, is another of example of your pattern of misrepresentation that is typical of your MO. Do you not see how my evidence is good and yours is not good?

    Have I ever said I am against moving forward with impeachment? No I have not. I love this stuff. If it turns out to be phony then we can look back and say it was bad for the country but I am an optimist and I think it is just a necessary process we need to go through. Let the truth come out!! Expose the lies!! If we go further everyone is going to be forced to testify. It is my personal opinion that as we get deeper into this the GOP will go on the offensive. I wish all of this was not necessary but apparently it is. I am all for what is necessary!

  37. John Brown
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:47 am | Permalink

    JH, I think the christo fascists like Barr and Pompeo are working towards there never being another Democrat president. That’s a part of the pootin approach they’ve so whole heartedly adopted.

  38. EOS
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    Unlike this charade, Obama officials will be tried in a court of law for actual crimes.

  39. Frosted Flakes
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:52 am | Permalink

    Jean,

    Does that clear things up? I wrote that prior to reading your last comment. You have a lot of assumptions that are not representative of reality, my friend. Anyway, I think iRobert and EOS are on the right track with trying to keep everything civil and informative in this thread. I don’t want to be forced to defend myself from silly attacks from you in this thread because it turns weird. I would rather just listen to the battle of ideas around the impeachment without the petty attacks in this thread at least. We can do what you want to do some other time. Deal?

  40. dogmatic dolt
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:58 am | Permalink

    Aloha, everyone saying “hearsay” , that would be inadmissible really don’t know what they are talking about. My Michigan Rules of Evidence is a little dated (2004 edition) but it list 24 exceptions to the “hearsay” rule. The Federal Rules of Evidence is even more permissive. both of these are for “criminal” prosecutions. In Civil litigation hearsay is absolutely admissible, the only real restriction is that all the evidence cannot be hearsay. Judging evidence is really the standard. For example every piece of video evidence is technically hearsay evidence unless supported by a human beings first hand testimony supporting what is shown on the video. Every one of the texts used in evidence against Kwami Killpatrick was hearsay, and admitted into evidence.

    irobert, “Is everyone here an aspiring attorney using this blog to practice speaking in a courtroom?” no, been there done that.

  41. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    DD– I already replied with a link to the rules of evidence and a neat little summary. Read more carefully. I’m trying to.

  42. dogmatic dolt
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    Aloha JH, right you are. Like you I like to hear myself talk. But you didn’t respond to iRobert did you.

  43. iRobert
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

    DD,

    We’re you a defense attorney?

    I’m asking for a friend.

  44. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

    I replied to EOS and quoted them. What did iRobert say worth replying to?

  45. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

    Oops it wasn’t;t David Holmes who is from a2, but David Hale. Mark, you should see if he’s coming home for the holidays and ask for an interview. I’m sure this comment section will convince him that this blog is worthy of his time.

  46. Jean Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Hale_(diplomat)

  47. dogmatic dolt
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

    Aloha iRobert, I am not an attorney. I was and am an advocate. I practiced law without a license for about 20 years. There are many forms of administrative law (NLRB, SS, UI, ect.) that non-licensed individuals may represent folks. As time has moved on, many of those forums have been closed off to non-licensed representatives ( in line with this the Michigan Bar does not have reciprocity with California because in California you can still become a lawyer the old fashion way–reading the law and apprenticeship). I was also an administrative appeal board judge for 7 years. Rick (killer) Snyder’s first executive order was to fire me (I was a tenured judge) through government reorganization and ban folks like me from ever serving as a member of that appeal tribunal.

  48. iRobert
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    Mahalo, DD.

  49. EOS
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    I was in a McDonald’s in Hawaii and heard a man tell his kids to throw their trash in the Mahalo. Stupid Haole. :-)

  50. Bob
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

    EOS is so dumb it goes all the way to a paradise locale full of clean air and food, and eats at Mickey d’s

  51. stupid hick
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 11:17 pm | Permalink

    “Mahalo” on the trash cans? Fascinating, thank you EOS. I have always wanted to visit Hawaii. EOS’s comment reminds me of the famous scene in Tarantino’s movie, Pulp Fiction, where Vincent tells Jules about the past year, which he spent in Amsterdam: “it’s the little differences. I mean, they got the same shit over there that they got here, but it’s just… it’s just there it’s a little different”, then Vincent goes on to explain at McDonald’s in Europe, the “Quarter Pounder” with Cheese is called the Royale with Cheese, because of the metric system! It’s an amusing scene, but it’s fiction, because I can tell you when I ate at a McDonald’s in Amsterdam there was no Royale with Cheese on the menu. They serve the same Quarter Pounder with Cheese that we enjoy here. And that is the beauty of McDonald’s: laser-precision consistency. Much better than any fast food chain. In Russia, however, things are not the same as they are here, and I can tell you this from my personal experience. I took breakfast to go from a McDonald’s in Moscow, and they offer a breakfast sandwich that is superior to the Sausage McMuffin with Cheese. It’s essentially the same, but they give you lettuce and tomato. Here in the US it makes no sense to put lettuce and tomato on a breakfast sandwich, but that’s what they do in Russia. It was a culturally-enriching experience I will always remember. In Moscow, my impression is Burger King has a better presence than McDonald’s, but I did not eat at one, which I now regret. I have also eaten at McDonald’s in Napoli, and Montreal, and other far away places I can’t immediately remember, but they weren’t noteworthy experiences. Neither positive, nor negative. and not necessarily my choice, but I don’t always get to decide where I eat. Nothing wrong with eating at McDonald’s.

  52. Sad
    Posted November 22, 2019 at 3:01 am | Permalink

    We all love eating.

    It is one of the joys of life.

  53. dogmatic dolt
    Posted November 25, 2019 at 10:50 pm | Permalink

    Aloha, Democrats are realizing this might not be the best idea.

    https://www.yahoo.com/news/swing-state-dem-flips-impeachment-000103063.html

  54. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted November 30, 2019 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    Remember Saturday morning cartoons?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uQJoar17jyo&feature=emb_logo

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