October 25, 2019

THE IRON LAW OF UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES:

Now House Republicans Hate The Rules They Made (Joe Conason, October 24, 2019, National Memo)

The Republicans complain that the impeachment inquiry chaired by Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), is occurring behind closed doors, that the president's counsel cannot cross-examine witnesses and that their party is somehow excluded from fair participation in the proceedings. Coming from lawyers, as most of them are, this indignant whining is phony; they all know that these hearings are investigative, like a grand jury proceeding. There will be plenty of time for open hearings and, should Trump be impeached, a Senate trial with a full defense.

According to the Democratic members present in those closed hearings, the Republicans on the relevant committees hardly ever show up. Whenever they do drop in, most of them waste time on conspiracy theories and other nonsense -- which isn't doing the president any favors, but fully displays their intellectual laziness.

What the Republicans also know -- but aren't telling their bamboozled voters -- is that the Democrats are conducting the impeachment inquiry under rules that the Republican majority approved in January 2015.

For instance, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), today insists the impeachment inquiry shouldn't proceed unless the Republicans are permitted to issue subpoenas -- but the rule that awards subpoena power exclusively to the majority is precisely what he and his cronies approved four years ago. Minority Whip Steve Scalise compares the inquiry's closed hearings to "the Soviet Union," a bit of demagoguery in which he conveniently forgets his own role in approving that rule.

No doubt McCarthy and Scalise can recall, but hope everyone else will forget, how they used those rules in 2016 to engineer an inquisition into Benghazi that was -- as the dim McCarthy admitted on television -- designed to drive down Hillary Clinton's poll numbers. 

Yeah...but...Hillary!



Posted by at October 25, 2019 12:00 AM

  

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