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View Poll Results: How long will Trump be President?

Voters
132. You may not vote on this poll
  • 1 Term (4 Years)

    26 19.70%
  • 2 Terms (8 Years)

    41 31.06%
  • 1st Term Impeachment/Assassination

    48 36.36%
  • 2nd Term Impeachment/Assassination

    4 3.03%
  • I don't know what's going on!

    13 9.85%
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Thread: ✮✮✮ !Trump Dump! ✮✮✮

  1. #11976
    Moderator
    Registered: Apr 2003
    Location: Wales
    Quote Originally Posted by heywood View Post
    . . . Paid sick leave
    I don't know if it's still the case but we used to get up to 3 days without a doctor's certificate if you're employed. After that you need a certificate to claim Statutory sick pay if your company doesn't have a policy. It's so long since I worked for a proper company that I don't really remember whether any of my employers had a plan but I think there were a number of days when you'd still be paid before having to claim SSP.

  2. #11977
    Turns out that the actual text of that FBI report and the information contained within is very different than the “No Spying” headline that’s being trumpeted about as if it’s absolute fact:

    https://theintercept.com/2019/12/12/...the-u-s-media/

    As usual independent journalists doing the work corporate ones refuse to do (like even bothering to read documents they’re reporting on).

  3. #11978
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    Now that's some tremendous spin right there. Take what's actually been said in the media, accuse them of hiding the truth, then frame everything in the worst possible light.

    Barr's IG Report is much like the Mueller Report in that it failed to achieve what the pundits so desperately hoped for.

  4. #11979
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    First of all, Carter Page already was being monitored way before Lord Dampnut started his campaign. Secondly, we are talking about the FBI being sloppy in filing FISA applications here. As the report said,
    There is no "documentary or testimonial evidence that political bias or improper motivation influenced the FBI's decision to seek FISA authority on Carter Page."
    Remember, Carter Page had been an unabashed Putin apologist, had been bragging about serving as an informal adviser to the Kremlin, and he had been the target of Russian spy operations and recruitment.

    As far as the report goes, the FBI is completely vindicated from the charges levied against them. They did not spy on the campaign, they did not plant any spies into the campaign, nor did they wiretap Lord Dampnut or his associates to spy on the campaign. Furthermore, the Russia probe itself was completely above the board and well justified.

  5. #11980
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Location: Canuckistan GWN
    Carter Page is sun-dried shit. For fresh excrement, there's Lev Parnas, who just found himself in a deeper hole than we first believed. A hole so deep it goes clear through to Russia.



    Rachel Maddow reports on prosecutors accusing Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas of lying about his finances by omitting mention of a million dollar payment from a bank account in Russia in September of 2019, calling him now an extreme flight risk who should be held in custody ahead of his trial. Aired on 12/11/19.
    Oh dear me oh my.

  6. #11981
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Location: Canuckistan GWN
    Sorry! Please disregard that last video. It gets worse.



    Trump's call to Vladimir Putin, where he requested Russian guidance on setting US policy towards North Korea, is locked away in a top secret server with a clearance well above that required. The Putin strategy session, is joined there with many other phone calls with world leaders, including one with Theresa May, where Trump spent 10 minutes trying to convinve her that Russia was not responsible for the assassination attempt on Sergei Skripal, using a Russian nerve agent.

    Also included is a memorandum about that post election White House meeting with Russian Intelligence Assets (Minister Sergei Lavrov and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak). In that meeting he assured them that the "nut job", James Comey, had been fired and that Trump was "unconcerned" with Russian interference in the 2016 elections.

    Russia Russia Russia!
    Last edited by Nicker; 13th Dec 2019 at 09:54.

  7. #11982
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2016
    Location: Trollinus Maximus
    Look forward to the tears when the senate lets him go

  8. #11983
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    We're all 99% sure that's exactly what's going to happen.

  9. #11984
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    I mean, Moscow Mitch has publicly stated he intends to fully cooperate with the defendant and get it over as soon as possible. Also, at least 20 Republicans would have to vote according to their conscience and that's hard to imagine even at the best of times.

  10. #11985
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Location: Canuckistan GWN
    Quote Originally Posted by jkcerda View Post
    Look forward to the tears when the senate lets him go
    Are you looking forward to the tears?

  11. #11986
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    Quote Originally Posted by Starker View Post
    I mean, Moscow Mitch has publicly stated he intends to fully cooperate with the defendant and get it over as soon as possible. Also, at least 20 Republicans would have to vote according to their conscience and that's hard to imagine even at the best of times.
    It depends on whether they're up for election or not.

    I can tell you right now that Trump will be president by the 2020 election. I have no doubt about that. The only question is who'll end up looking bad during this process that'll lead to his acquittal? Will the Democrats look like they played a weak hand too far for the sake of politics, or will the Republicans look like they're choosing to overlook Trump's alleged guilt because he's one of their own?

    Whatever happens, nothing that comes about during the trial will change many minds. The fact that the percentage of pro/con impeachment opinions has barely moved tells me that we've all made our decision on Trump before the first witness even took the stand in front of congress. Quite simply, if you liked Trump before, he's innocent. It doesn't matter what the evidence states. You'll still like him tomorrow. If you didn't like Trump before, then he's guilty. Nothing will dissuade you from believing so.

    Laws? Facts? They don't matter, so don't argue them. Impeachment is a political affair, and this is all a show for the ~10% of independent voters who have yet to make up their minds.

  12. #11987
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Laws and facts do matter, no matter what the outcome. If for nothing else then for the historical record. Otherwise, you might just resign yourself to the fact that you have a king who can do no wrong.

  13. #11988
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    For historical record, sure. Our children will judge us harshly, I'm sure. But as of this very moment, asfar as Donald Trump's fate is concerned, they don't mean shit. It's all about those Republican voters who will elect Republican congressmen being really all about Donald Trump.

    But look at it like this. We're not exactly living in a lawless anarchy quite yet. For example...

    Let's assume that the Democrats really are doing all this to be a giant pain in the ass because they don't like Trump, and all these Republicans who have dared cross him are secret Deep State/Democrat operatives. Well, they didn't go so far as to manufacture evidence damning Trump during the Mueller investigation, stating that a lot of other suspicious things happened, but they couldn't quite nail Trump directly, so...oh well. Though he did arguably obstruct justice in an attempt to save face, but without that juicy smoking gun, good luck pressing that in front of congress. Big pfft there.

    Or what about Barr's IG report. You know, the one that was meant to expose the FBI as a branch of the DNC, investigating Trump's inner circle simply to harass them for political gain. Deep State shit, you know? There was even a moment when Barr announced it was GOING CRIMINAL! OHMAHGAWD! THOSE DEMOCRATS ARE TOAST! What did it find? Not much. The FBI does some suspicious shit on occasion, and they're terrible at doing their due diligence, but as far as investigating Trump was concerned, it was all for fairly reasonable cause. Oh, and Christopher Steele? You know, that lying spy extraordinaire and Democrat mole? He ended up being a somewhat pro-Trump friend of Ivana's. NO CHARGES PRESSED! WE JUST NEEDED TO MAKE SURE EVERYTHING WAS KOSHER!

    ...it's kinda obvious that no matter where you lie on the Great Political Divide, there are lines that no one's quite willing to cross. They'll play their politics to the hilt, but they won't quite go into straight up Damn The Constitution territory.

    So, with that in mind, here's what's going to happen with Trump. They're going to find reason to say that he did abuse his position. That he did bribe Zelensky with funds earmarked for his war effort to force him into investigating his political opponents. That's not good. But is it bad bad? Well...I'm not gonna say. Instead of impeachment, let's censure him. That way, we can still look good, Trump gets to stay in office, but it's on record that we really greatly frown upon shit like this, so if any other president tries something like this, we can point and say "yeah, well, we censured Trump for this, so it's wrong."

    That's what they did last time Trump openly violated the Constitution, and I expect they'll do it here as well. I'm taking bets if anyone's up for it.

  14. #11989
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by Renzatic View Post
    Quite simply, if you liked Trump before, he's innocent. It doesn't matter what the evidence states. You'll still like him tomorrow. If you didn't like Trump before, then he's guilty. Nothing will dissuade you from believing so.
    Quit trying to pretend Democrats are as bad as Republicans. I think he's guilty because of an overwhelming preponderance of clear facts, not despite the facts like his supporters.

  15. #11990
    Moderator and Priest
    Registered: Mar 2002
    Location: Dinosaur Ladies of the Night
    Quote Originally Posted by Pyrian View Post
    Quit trying to pretend Democrats are as bad as Republicans. I think he's guilty because of an overwhelming preponderance of clear facts, not despite the facts like his supporters.
    I don't personally believe in the "both sides are just as bad" take on things, though for the sake of inclusiveness, I am arguing from that position.

  16. #11991
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    Putting on my lawyer's hat, as I do, I think it would be really educational for everybody all around to separate what is legal (a crime under a federal or state statute) and what is political.

    On the legal side, Trump is probably guilty of misusing campaign funds (the one most discussed was paying off sex with a porn star for her silence as a "campaign expense", but there were others) and obstruction of justice (dozens of counts, the Mueller report went through 10 of them). I say "probably" because the facts aren't really credibly in dispute. That's the thing about Trump; he doesn't really deny his actions, he just tries to argue (unconvincingly) that there was nothing wrong with them. That's going to make a criminal case against him pretty straightforward, because the jury isn't going to be asking, e.g., "did Trump say this thing which looks like threatening a witness?" (that he did isn't in dispute) only "would a reasonable person serving as a witness faced with a statement against them that Trump just publicly leveled against this witness change their testimony to avoid the threat?". And then some good lawyer is going to dig up like 50 prior cases of the exact same thing where the juries found that, yes, a reasonable person would change their testimony based on that threat. So if you were betting on it, you'd do the math and know how to bet. The first is probably not what you'd call a high crime or treasonous. The second... I mean it's a self-preservation pattern of mafia bosses. I'd say it isn't impeachment worthy just because if it were, it'd have been started the process years ago. Oh, and then there was the actual fraud Trump was convicted, although that wasn't a criminal claim. But clearly that wasn't considered a high crime either.

    Then on the political side, you have actions that again aren't really factually in dispute, the two big things being the public or hardly-covered-up encouragement by Trump of Russian interference in the 2016 and 2020 elections, the use of pressure on the Ukraine government to have an investigation undermining his political rival in the next election, and behind that is the whole campaign led by Giuliani to apply pressure to other governments (like Italy) to the same end. For the first, the Mueller report already explained why it's not criminal because it probably doesn't meet the elements of criminal conspiracy of literal coordination and joint-planning between the Trump admin and the Russian interference team that you'd have to show in a conspiracy trial. The pressure campaign against Ukraine is a form of joint-planning between the Trump admin and Ukraine government, but the underlying act (withholding Congressional-approve aid) may not be itself a crime. It's more in the order of a constitutional "political question" dispute between Congressional and Executive powers.

    That is, if it did go to a court, the court I think would throw it out under the "political question" doctrine that this is not the kind of dispute that's fit for resolution by a court (that is, it's non-justicible) but for congress and the president to resolve through their own constitutionally-created mechanisms, which in this case is the impeachment power of congress. There are other ways the president and congress can address disputes, but that's the one that fits here. But this isn't a legal court. It's a political process.

    I mean the central argument isn't that Trump's use of the executive power was criminal, but that it was unconstitutional (what they call "ultra vires", beyond the power the president has to actually do under the constitution.) Ok, back up a second, the president has broad powers in foreign relations. So the president has authority to withhold aid to a state to pressure it to change its behavior to advance the interests of the United States, and that was used by the Obama administration also against Ukraine to oust (for corruption) the same prosecutor that's making the fuss about Hunter Biden, the son of Trump's rival, which is an interesting twist to the whole thing and fodder for conspiracy mongering. The argument about Trump is that he used that power for personal advancement (undermining his rival in the next election) and not the advancement of the US. He's actually undercutting the defense of Ukraine from Russian incursion which is explicitly against US interests. And yes I realize Russia keeps getting lassoed into the whole mess. That's more fodder for people sick of the whole mess to dismiss it as Russia-phobia, but it's not my fault Trump keeps doing gratuitous favors for Russia. But the underlying claim shouldn't have anything to do with Russia. It's the fact the president used one of his powers for personal gain at the expense of US interests. It'd actually be better if that underlying claim could be separated from anything to do with Russia so it wouldn't cloud people's judgment about what's at the root of the claim.

    Anyway, the point of all of that is just that the underlying claim is about ultra vires use of presidential power, particularly a use of power that stamps over a congressional power (since Congress is the one that approved the aid). It's a very weird process because the Republicans in congress don't see the underlying dispute as one about defending congressional power against executive encroachment. Well their defense is scatterbrained. I understand the crux of it is they're trying to cloud the facts and argue that Trump's actions were not a form of pressure, no quid pro quo, the hold on aid had nothing to do with the request for the investigation (so they don't even have to get to the question of whether the request was in the personal interest of the president or US interests). It wasn't ultra vires use of power because it wasn't a use of presidential power at all. It's a hard argument to reconcile with facts like the aid actually was held up and was lifted immediately after the whistleblower complaint that the hold up was because of the request, and that's before you even get to the language of the request, and the fact that all the information coming out of the Ukraine admin was that they understood it as a quid pro quo (which is the relevant standard, what the hearer understands, not what the requester thought they were doing). So the facts make the request and aid straightforwardly connected. (Trump isn't really allowing them to argue it was a misuse of power but not impeachable since he argues his request was true and fine.)

    But anyway, the point is that at its root, this is a constitutional dispute about executive and legislative powers, and the legislature (not the courts) is the one that has the primary responsibility and power to defend its own powers against executive incursion, as well as to counter the executive's application of ultra vires powers ("abuse of power") on a matter at this level of scale. It's just an oddity, not really surprising given our polarized political reality, but anyway a dysfunction of the whole system when the legislature is acting as an extension of executive power and they don't want to defend their own prerogative, as if half of congress doesn't want to see any problem with an executive applying power to personal ends at odds with US interests that literally they themselves voted for under their own powers that are getting superseded.

    Well this has gotten pretty long, so I'm supposed to say thanks for coming to my TED talk. Stay frosty out there, friends. Things be crazy.

  17. #11992
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by demagogue View Post
    On the legal side, Trump is probably guilty of misusing campaign funds (the one most discussed was paying off sex with a porn star for her silence as a "campaign expense", but there were others) and obstruction of justice (dozens of counts, the Mueller report went through 10 of them).

    [...]

    The first is probably not what you'd call a high crime or treasonous.
    Is it actually possible to commit a high crime or a high misdemeanor while not in office?

  18. #11993
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    I think the classic example is outright treason where a person aids an enemy in some direct attack on the country or just hands over secret information that's going to put the lives of people at risk, which anybody with the right kind of access could do. I suppose they'd probably need to be a current or ex-official or military, but in theory anyone could.

    The thing about Trump is he's so completely solipsistic that I think in his mind he can't even really separate US interest from Trump's personal interest. They're one in the same, which sounds completely wacko from a neurotypical perspective but is completely consistent & expected from a Cluster B worldview. So even if he does make explicit deals with foreign governments that harm US interests but benefit his personal interests, it wouldn't even enter his mind that US interests are separate from his, he's going to be open about it ("of course I don't pay taxes because I'm smart" style) and nobody (that doesn't have long experience with it) quite knows how to deal with it, and quite a few take it at face value that is just being a good businessman. That's why we elected him.

    Oh I was going to say before though, to the extent I have a bias, it's for rule of law. I think Trump has an instinct for skirting right on the boundaries of legality, but I think it's important he's only punished for when he slips over that line in a major way, which is an empirical question of fact that can't be prejudged before all the evidence is out, and not just for political reasons. I wouldn't be happy if any process against him weren't legally grounded, like he were tried for something that isn't a crime or tried for something that is but not have a fair trial. That's kind of where I was going with that rant above. In our polarized era, it's really important that everything be as non-politicized and by the book as possible. I think it's fair to say I'm a Never Trumper center-right politically, but I don't want to see Trump treated any way except what's legally rock solid, and I'd want to stay away from a lot of the attacks about impeaching or prosecuting him that are grounded in political opinion and not legal.

  19. #11994
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    I take it you're not a fan of the impeachment clause, then. For a the trial you describe, you'd need some kind of criminal proceedings, not impeachment. But the current position of the DOJ is that US presidents are above the law.

    Also, what about these cases where there is clear abuse of power, but no crime has been committed? Should these just be let to stand? For example, when a public official fails to prosecute a case when they really ought to. Shouldn't there still be some kind of a remedy for corrupt officials like these?
    Last edited by Starker; 15th Dec 2019 at 09:19.

  20. #11995
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    That's all what I went into crazy detail in my long post above. Impeachment isn't a criminal trial but a political mechanism negotiating between executive and legislative power. In my second post, I was mixing things up and sorry for making it confusing. But my punchline was just that things should be "by the book" and not "politics as usual", whether it's a criminal trial or impeachment (which are two different routes, both of them "legal" and "by the book", but one through the courts and the other through Congress). Edit: Ok, I should add to this sentence. " I wouldn't be happy if any process against him weren't legally grounded, like he were tried for something that isn't a crime or tried for something that is but not have a fair trial, or he was impeachment and it focused on Trump's politics and not his Art II powers or US interests, or however the impeachment clause is or should be framed in our jurisprudence." That should cover I think what you just asked.

    But for impeachment, that means Congress is supposed to be limiting the president from abuse of Art. II power and protecting their own Art I constitutional prerogative when a president trounces it. That's still "political" as in a matter for the two political branches to address & not the courts, but it's not "politics as usual". (It gets itself confused too because Congress is supposed to impeach a president for "high crimes", which makes it also a criminal inquiry; it's a "political criminal" process which by design mixes up judicial and legislative. So you know, just substitute "legal" for "by the book" in terms of constitutional text & tradition and that should keep things a little clearer about what I think I'm trying to say.) The point is you're not supposed to impeach a president just because you don't agree with their politics. I think Trump's pattern using his powers to advance his election even at the cost of US interests could meet that standard (abuse of Art II powers as in ultra vires & against US interests), but the GOP is spinning it as politics as usual. So I think it's important they keep it by the book in the ways I mentioned above (the part about Congress should care about their & the president's & their own constitutional powers and themselves not politicize the process.)
    Last edited by demagogue; 15th Dec 2019 at 09:19.

  21. #11996
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Yeah, I meant criminal proceedings. I know impeachment is a legal way of removing a president. Updated my post for clarity.

  22. #11997
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    What do you think of how the Democrats have proceeded, btw? By the book or have they unnecessarily politicised the process?

  23. #11998
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    A clear abuse of power that isn't criminal should be handled by impeachment. If it even went to a court, the court should dismiss it under the "political doctrine" as not under its power to even hear, and the court should refer it to Congress for impeachment. If it's something really, really bad, like a president just ends democratic elections or declares himself president for life and Congress can't or refuses to act, then that's an exam question I actually had in my constitutional law course because it may be a constitutional crisis that hasn't been tried before and there isn't an obvious answer how the courts should decide in a case like that. They'd be making a de novo decision and setting precedent however they decided.

    As for a criminal trial, a president has some immunity while in office (it's not set in stone yet that it's total immunity in all imaginable cases; but anyway that's still an academic question as there's no movement to prosecute Trump while in office). That immunity ends when they leave office. So everything I'm talking about is assuming a prosecution after his final term ends. To the extent some crimes have a statute of limitations, there's also a good case IMO for tolling (i.e., extending) the time limit, because prosecutors can't bring a prosecution earlier during a president's term, which is exactly the situation that tolling was designed for.

    Edit: As for how Democrats have proceeded, I'm afraid to say too much because here in Japan I'm getting soundbites from Youtube and regurgitated opinions from opinion articles. I should read the transcripts before expressing a proper opinion, but I imagine there's a lot to read. Maybe after the holidays I can properly get to it.

    Edit2: Well what I'm thinking about wasn't soundbites I heard from Democrats but my Trump-supporting friends on FB assuming the attacks on Trump are politicized and always quick to point out (i.e., always quick to share a meme someone else made about) some whataboutism Democrats did that was allegedly just as bad. It's going to be counterproductive for anything to happen to Trump and they maintain that belief (now I'm mainly thinking about a future trial since all indications are his impeachment won't be ratified by the Senate, but it's bad news if people think the impeachment is also just politics as usual too). But maybe they're going to think that literally whatever the facts of the case are, so I don't know if there's a winning strategy here. Sometimes circumstances just conspire against the public good in really pernicious ways like this, or like Brexit.
    Last edited by demagogue; 15th Dec 2019 at 09:47.

  24. #11999
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by demagogue View Post
    To the extent some crimes have a statute of limitations, there's also a good case IMO for tolling (i.e., extending) the time limit, because prosecutors can't bring a prosecution earlier during a president's term, which is exactly the situation that tolling was designed for.
    Yeah, I read an article about this on Lawfare. They seemed to be sceptical, though, whether it's possible in this case:

    https://www.lawfareblog.com/equitabl...tion-president

    Courts have also allowed criminal statutes of limitations to be equitably tolled when indictments are timely filed under seal and then made public after the limitations period has expired, unless the defendant proves that this had a prejudicial effect. In the current case, this exception seems irrelevant, because Barr reports that Mueller did not obtain any further indictments under seal. Additionally, charging the president under seal may also run afoul of the Sixth Amendment and the Supreme Court’s decision in Doggett v. United States, in which the court held that an eight-and-a-half-year delay between a defendant’s indictment under seal and his arrest violated his right to a speedy trial.

    So, are current circumstances extraordinary enough to equitably toll the statute of limitations? A sitting president may have obstructed justice or conspired to commit campaign finance fraud but cannot be charged pursuant to Justice Department policy—and if the president is reelected, the ordinary five-year statute of limitations may expire on these charges. But if Barr believes the evidence is insufficient to prosecute the president for obstruction—and he stated in his letter to Congress that, in reaching this determination, he did not consider the 2000 memo arguing for the president’s possible constitutional immunity—then perhaps the matter at hand is simply that of prosecutorial discretion. That is an ordinary part of every prosecutor’s job and seems insufficient to trigger the extraordinary remedy of equitable tolling.

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