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Published: February 7th 2021
I have a feeling of Deja Vu.
It is late December 2010 and we are in the Radisson Blu in Bamako, Mali, West Africa on our way to Timbuktu...two items dominating the News...the floods sweeping through our fellow travellers' hometown in Toowoomba, Queensland and a simmering coup in Cote d'Ivoire.
Kinda surreal that 39 hours from Australia and Mike & Ros's hometown is in the News...houses swept away...lives threatened. Their house is on a hill so they will be OK they say.
Images of fighting in the streets of Abidjan... turmoil following incumbent President Laurent Gbagbo’s refusal to concede defeat in the 28 November 2010 Presidential elections to his opponent, former Prime Minister Alassane Ouattara.
Daily reports...killings...the UN forces holed up...all say Ouattara clearly won...but no way Ghagbo is relinquishing power without a fight.
It took until 21 May 2011 for the crisis to be resolved and Ouattara to be installed as President...thanking the United Nations and the International community for their support.
Over the 5 months of conflict there were consequences...1,012 were killed.
On 6 January 2021 (7 Jan in Oz) I wake early
and Denise says come quick...TV on...sitting dumbfounded...watching USA self destruct.
The last time I had such a call was as planes flew into the Twin Towers and Pentagon on 9 September 2001.
Images on TV reminiscent of the Ivorian conflict returning...but this time t'was not in Cote d'Ivoire.
This time t'was in USA with the World watching.
And what made it unlike the others is there was plenty of warning on the internet that it was coming.
President Trump of the USA demanded it come...and then made sure it did.
Like Ghagbo, Trump refused to concede defeat in the Presidential elections.
And like Ghagbo...no way Trump was relinquishing power without a fight.
He incited a mob to storm Congress...to stop the confirmation of his defeat.
As a result Trump is being impeached for the second time.
The charge this time is: "Donald John Trump engaged in high crimes and misdemeanours by inciting violence against the Government of the United States."
A serious charge with compelling evidence of his guilt. Who can doubt when it was for all to see on live TV!!!
Accordingly this should be a tale of right versus wrong.
Of truth versus lies.
Of dire consequences for those
who wilfully tear the fabric of democracy by insurrection and sedition.
But in the end it is probably a tale of the lust for power...his impeachment being decided by those most fearful of losing it.
'Cos power is a drug of addiction...once tasted...power is hard to forego.
In 2020 as the US elections approached Trump made it clear that he had contempt for the Democratic party contender, President Obama's Vice President, Joe Biden..."the worst candidate ever"
he crowed...no way he could or would lose to him.
Demanded his Republican Party followers vote on Election day...demanded they not
vote by mail.
But there was a Worldwide Covid-19 Pandemic in 2020 raging that Trump poo-hooed as a hoax..."will just disappear"
he said..."just a bad flu"
And as Trump downplayed the pandemic...USA led the World in infections and pandemic deaths...stuck his nose up at health warnings...treated virus protective face masks as a political statement..."face masks are for Democrats not Republicans"
he claimed...exercise your constitutional right to refuse to wear masks and refuse to socially distance he encouraged his supporters to claim.
And it seemed to Trump that USA leading the World in
Covid infections and deaths was a badge of honour..."We are doing very well"
he kept claiming.
But Joe Biden's message was to take notice of the science...beware the invisible virus...it can kill...wear masks...vote by mail and keep social distancing...but vote you must as if your life depends on it.
And while political division festered as the virus raged...a white policeman kneeling on a black man's throat as he gasped "I can't breathe"
until he died...catapulted into the News and scoured the wounds of segregation and racism resulting in marches around the World chanting "Black Lives Matter"
...looting of shops and fires by protesters...White Supremists and other fringe groups clashing with BLM protesters...ensuring a nasty aftermath.
Trump blamed left wing groups while seeming to encourage right wing zealots...clearing the streets with tear gas so he could have a photo op for the Evangelistic lobby while holding a bible in front of St Mark's Church as city blocks burnt.
But the Evangelical lobby who historically voted Republican could see Trump was not
a man of God as he lacked empathy and compassion...while the right wing white supremists regarded him as their friend.
Somehow his misogynistic attitude to women...his
disdain for Mexicans, Muslims, Kurds and various ethnic groups appeared to be overlooked by many.
In a haze of non-partisan racial tension ferment...the US Presidential elections got closer and closer.
The Courts of many States ensured their laws complied with voting by mail to ensure a fair and virus-aware election.
To compensate for postal delays many States made laws as to when such votes had to be mailed and received to ensure all votes were received and counted.
And vote by mail many millions did...not surprisingly mainly Democratic voters as it turned out.
All sorts of obstacles were made in Republican States to impede postal and pre-poll early vote drop-offs.
Even Trump made all sorts of noises to discourage postal voting that made this dancer across the Pacific wonder if a sinister plan was brewing.
Before the election Trump often asserted the risk of mail-in voter fraud which caused many States to ensure their voter systems were secure...wise of the States to do so as it turned out.
Election night 8 November 2020
Election day voting was counted first before the counting of pre-poll and mail-in
votes, as States had so ordered.
Not surprisingly the Republican vote led many early counts 'cos Trump had demanded Republicans vote only on election day.
The trap was sprung...claiming he had won before half the count had even been made...Trump's ruse soon exposed.
As mail-in and pre-poll votes swung in Democrat's favour...Trump squealed "election fraud"
...bellowed "stop the steal"
...screamed "I have won by a landslide...I've been robbed"
...tantrum, tantrum, tantrum.
As the count was completed the Democrats won...surprisingly Trump scored more than ever before...but fortunately for the Democrats they scored even more. Popular vote:
Joe Biden Democratic Party - 51.4 percent to total 81,283,485
Donald Trump Republican Party - 46.9 percent to total 74,223,744 Electoral College vote:
State by State vote Biden won 306 to 232
But an ill wind was blowing...Trump refusing to concede he had lost...mounting 62 legal challenges of election fraud heard by about 96 judges...all cases thrown out (except one small win that made no difference at all) with judges scathingly dismissing his claims as totally without merit and lacking any evidence at all.
In Oz I could feel the sigh of relief sweeping the planet...'cos Trump's mantra was divisiveness and division while Biden's was decency and inclusion.
Even with recounts in Wisconsin and Georgia, Biden won...Wisconsin, Michigan, Nevada, Arizona, South Carolina, Georgia and Pennsylvania being the last to be confirmed. Allegations by Trump refusing to accept he lost included:
Trump has spread claims that Dominion voting software “used in states where tens of thousands of votes were stolen from us and given to Biden.”
i.e. misallocation of votes.
Yet there is no evidence that any voting systems were compromised, according to the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, which is part of the Department of Homeland Security.
Trump claimed observers were excluded from watching vote counts. Video evidence showed these claims were false.
Trump claimed vote count machines were manipulated to fail to scrutinise signature verification on illegal votes. “They said you could sign your name as Santa Claus and it would be accepted,”
A Carson City judge found no evidence that the use of the so-called Agilis machine was illegal, error-prone or had led to the counting of fraudulent votes. In
fact, he pointed out, Clark County had used the same Agilis machine in the June primary, and Republicans had not complained until the eve of the general election.
Trump claimed “video footage from Georgia shows suitcases filled with ballots pulled from under a table AFTER supervisors told poll workers to leave room and 4 people stayed behind to keep counting votes.”
Viewing of video footage showed this was not so.
On 2 December 2020 Trump claimed “In Arizona, in-person voters whose ballots produced error messages from tabulation machines were told to press a button that resulted in their votes not being counted. Also, in Arizona, the Attorney General announced that mail-in ballots had been stolen from mailboxes and hidden under a rock.”
Legal proceedings in Arizona found 190 votes had overcounts and in another court case 6 extra votes were found for Trump. Results ridiculously insignificant. On unrelenting allegations of mail-in voter fraud, the Washington Post found only 372 cases of potential fraud out of approximately 14.6 million ballots cast by mail in 2016 and 2018.
Of the over 60 judgments rejecting Trump's spurious claims of election fraud the most
memorable is by a Republican judge in Pennsylvania. In a ruling on November 21, Judge Brann dismissed the suit, writing that the Trump campaign had used “strained legal arguments without merit and speculative accusations” stitched together "like a Frankinstein's Monster"
in a bid to throw out millions of votes.
A federal Appeals Court upheld that ruling on November 27, writing: “Charges require specific allegations and then proof. We have neither here. Voters, not lawyers, choose the President. Ballots, not briefs, decide elections.”
The Washington Post has made a detailed summary report on the numerous assertions by Trump of election fraud...check it out if you prefer facts to conspiracy theories or fiction...or "truth versus Trump's lies"
as many refer to them:
"Trump's challenges to election fraud: What they are and what they were."
But Trump still refused to concede...calling his followers to gather in Washington on 6 January 2021"to stop the steal"
...the day Congress would confirm the result to Biden...a "Save America March"
Trump called it...and gather in their thousands they did.
****** Inciting Insurrection
On 6 January 2021 a violent mob marched on the USA Congress Building in Washington DC on the orders of the then
President of the USA, Donald John Trump...violently forcing entry...smashing windows...not only trashing as they went...but destroying as best they could the democratic process that was then in train...only 5 dying as a result...one policeman & four protesters.
Their orders were to stop the US Congress from confirming that Trump & his Republican Party had lost the USA election two months earlier and by doing so they hoped that Joe Biden and his Democratic Party would not that day be confirmed as the winner.
I watched it live on TV from 8am to midnight EST in Australia on CNN switching frequently to Fox News for Right-Wing balance.
And instead of the usual sneering or mocking reporting I associate with Fox News...they appeared as shocked and appalled as I was.
I watched taking copious notes of what was said...unable to tear myself away from my satellite TV set.
There is debate (albeit indisputable) whether Trump incited the crowd to insurrection (defined as "a violent uprising against an authority or government"
) on 6 January 2021.
Flanked by large signs reading "SAVE AMERICA MARCH"
...crowds gathered to answer his call.
Chief of Strategist Steve Bannon
was surely not just hoping when the previous day he said, "All hell is going to break out tomorrow."
How ironic Steve Bannon
was pardoned by Trump just before he left office!!!
I have read the transcripts of Trump's incendiary speech to the crowd on 6 January 2021 and I say there is no doubt that he incited the crowd to march on Congress. READ ON...I SET IT OUT FOR YOU.
The only deviation from his speech was he said he’d march with them…but he did not.
Instead it is reported he watched it on TV…no doubt with a smug smile on his face. Republican Mo Brooks getting the crowd warmed up: "I have a message I need you to take to your heart and take home and along the way stop at the Capital. Today is the day American patriots take down names and kicking arse." Trump's personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani:
Gee'd up the crowd with disproved allegations of election fraud but closed with: "And if we are wrong we will be made fools of. But if we
are right they'll go to gaol. So...let's have trial by combat.
Trump revving up the crowd to march on Congress on 6 January 2021: (Here are excerpts from Al Jazeera of the transcript of his speech): YOU BE THE JUDGE
"Turn your cameras please and show what’s really happening out here because these people are not going to take it any longer.
The media is the biggest problem we have as far as I’m concerned, single biggest problem, the fake news and the big tech. Big tech is now coming into their own. We beat them four years ago. We surprised them. We took them by surprise and this year, they rigged an election.
Hundreds of thousands of American patriots are committed to the honesty of our elections and the integrity of our glorious republic.
All of us here today do not want to see our election victory stolen by emboldened radical left Democrats, which is what they’re doing and stolen by the fake news media.
That’s what they’ve done and what they’re doing.
We will never give up. We will never concede, it doesn’t happen. You
don’t concede when there’s theft involved.
Our country has had enough. We will not take it any more and that’s what this is all about. To use a favourite term that all of you people really came up with, we will stop the steal.
We went to 75 million and they say we lost. We didn’t lose.
We will not let them silence your voices. We’re not going to let it happen. Not going to let it happen." Crowd:
"Fight for Trump! Fight for Trump! Fight for Trump!"
"I hope Mike is going to do the right thing. I hope so. I hope so because if Mike Pence does the right thing, we win the election. All he has to do. This is from the number one or certainly one of the top constitutional lawyers in our country. He has the absolute right to do it.
We’re supposed to protect our country, support our country, support our constitution and protect our constitution.
States want to revote. The states got defrauded. They were given false information. They voted on it. Now they want to recertify. They want it back.
Mike is going to do the right thing. States want to revote. The states got defrauded. They were given false information. They voted on it. Now they want to recertify. They want it back.
All Vice President Pence has to do is send it back to the states to recertify, and we become president, and you are the happiest people.
I said, ‘Mike, that doesn’t take courage. What takes courage is to do nothing. That takes courage,’
and then we’re stuck with a president who lost the election by a lot, and we have to live with that for four more years. We’re just not going to let that happen.
There’s never been a movement like this ever, ever for the extraordinary love for this amazing country and this amazing movement. Thank you." Crowd:
"We love Trump! We love Trump! We love Trump!"
"We’re gathered together in the heart of our nation’s Capitol for one very, very basic and simple reason, to save our democracy.
We still have congressional seats under review. They have no idea. They’ve totally lost control.
They’ve used the pandemic as a way of defrauding the people
in a proper election.
We want to go back, and we want to get this right because we’re going to have somebody in there that should not be in there and our country will be destroyed, and we’re not going to stand for that.
For years, Democrats have gotten away with election fraud and weak Republicans, and that’s what they are. There’s so many weak Republicans.
The weak Republicans, they’re pathetic Republicans and that’s what happens.
If this happened to the Democrats, there’d be hell all over the country going on. There’d be hell all over the country.
But just remember this. You’re stronger, you’re smarter. You’ve got more going than anybody, and they try and demean everybody having to do with us, and you’re the real people. You’re the people that built this nation. You’re not the people that tore down our nation.
Unbelievable, what we have to go through, what we have to go through and you have to get your people to fight. If they don’t fight, we have to primary the hell out of the ones that don’t fight. You primary them.
We’re going to let you know who
they are. I can already tell you, frankly.
But this year using the pretext of the China virus and the scam of mail-in ballots, Democrats attempted the most brazen and outrageous election theft.
There’s never been anything like this. It’s a pure theft in American history, everybody knows it.
We’re going to have to fight much harder and Mike Pence is going to have to come through for us.
If he doesn’t, that will be a sad day for our country because you’re sworn to uphold our constitution.
Now it is up to Congress to confront this egregious assault on our democracy. After this, we’re going to walk down and I’ll be there with you.
We’re going to walk down.
We’re going to walk down any one you want, but I think right here.
We’re going to walk down to the Capitol,
and we’re going to cheer on our brave senators, and congressmen and women.
We’re probably not going to be cheering so much for some of them because you’ll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength, and you have to be strong.
We have come
to demand that Congress do the right thing and only count the electors who have been lawfully slated, lawfully slated.
I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.
Today we will see whether Republicans stand strong for integrity of our elections, but whether or not they stand strong for our country, our country.
Today, we see a very important event though, because right over there, right there, we see the event going to take place.
And I’m going to be watching, because history is going to be made.
We’re going to see whether or not we have great and courageous leaders or whether or not we have leaders that should be ashamed of themselves throughout history, throughout eternity, they’ll be ashamed.
And you know what?
If they do the wrong thing, we should never ever forget that they did. Never forget. We should never ever forget.
With only three of the seven states in question, we win the presidency of the United States."
"As you know the media has constantly asserted the outrageous lie that
there was no evidence of widespread fraud. The American people do not believe the corrupt fake news anymore. They have ruined their reputation.
But it used to be that they’d argue with me, I’d fight. So I’d fight, they’d fight. I’d fight, they’d fight. Boop-boop. You’d believe me, you’d believe them.
Somebody comes out. They had their point of view, I had my point of view. But you’d have an argument. Now what they do is they go silent. It’s called suppression.
And that’s what happens in a communist country.
That’s what they do. They suppress. You don’t fight with them any more, unless it’s a bad.
They have a little bad story about me, they’ll make it 10 times worse and it’s a major headline.
We don’t have a fair media any more. It’s suppression and you have to be very careful with that. And they’ve lost all credibility in this country. We will not be intimidated into accepting the hoaxes and the lies that we’ve been forced to believe over the past several weeks. We’ve amassed overwhelming evidence about a fake election. This is the presidential election.
Last night was a
little bit better because of the fact that we had a lot of eyes watching one specific state, but they cheated like hell, anyway.
Look, I’m not happy with the Supreme Court. They love to rule against me. Let them rule the right way, but it almost seems that they’re all going out of their way to hurt all of us, and to hurt our country. To hurt our country.
Today, for the sake of our democracy, for the sake of our constitution, and for the sake of our children, we lay out the case for the entire world to hear. You want to hear it?" Crowd: "Yes!"
"In every single swing state, local officials, state officials, almost all Democrats made illegal and unconstitutional changes to election procedures without the mandated approvals by the state legislatures, that these changes paved the way for fraud on a scale never seen before.
You will have an illegitimate president, that’s what you’ll have. And we can’t let that happen.
These are the facts that you won’t hear from the fake news media. It’s all part of the suppression effort. They don’t want to talk about
it. They don’t want to talk about it.
And just like the radical left tries to blacklist you on social media, every time I put out a tweet, even if it’s totally correct, totally correct. I get a flag. I get a flag. And they also don’t let you get out.
Two months ago, we had a massive crowd come down to Washington. I said, ‘What are they there for.’ ‘Sir, they’re there for you.’
We have nothing to do with it. These groups, they’re forming all over the United States.
And we got to remember, in a year from now, you’re going to start working on Congress. And we got to get rid of the weak congress people, the ones that aren’t any good, the Liz Cheneys of the world, we got to get rid of them. We got to get rid of them.
The radical left knows exactly what they’re doing. They’re ruthless and it’s time that somebody did something about it. And Mike Pence, I hope you’re going to stand up for the good of our constitution and for the good of our country. And if you’re not, I’m going to be
very disappointed in you. I will tell you right now. I’m not hearing good stories."
"So, I mean, I could go on and on about this fraud that took place in every state and all of these legislatures want this back. I don’t want to do it to you because I love you and it’s freezing out here, but I could just go on forever. I can tell you this …" Crowd: "We love you. We love you. We love you. We love you. We love you. We love you. We love you. We love you."
"They said, ‘It’s not American to challenge the election.’ This is the most corrupt election in the history, maybe of the World.
With your help over the last four years, we built the greatest political movement in the history of our country and nobody even challenges that. I say that over and over, and I never get challenged by the fake news, and they challenge almost everything we say. But our fight against the big donors, big media, big tech and others is just getting started. This is the greatest in history. There’s never been a
movement like that. You look back there all the way to the Washington Monument. It’s hard to believe. We must stop the steal
and then we must ensure that such outrageous election fraud never happens again, can never be allowed to happen again, but we’re going forward. We’ll take care of going forward. We got to take care of going back. Don’t let them talk, ‘Okay, well we promise,’ I’ve had a lot of people, ‘Sir, you’re at 96 percent for four years.’ I said, ‘I’m not interested right now. I’m interested in right here.’
Looking out at all the amazing patriots here today, I have never been more confident in our nation’s future.
Our brightest days are before us, our greatest achievements still wait. I think one of our great achievements will be election security because nobody, until I came along, had any idea how corrupt our elections were." The stage was set...the crowd revved up...Trump punching the air...time for Trump's conclusion:
"As this enormous crowd shows, we have truth and justice on our side. We have a deep and enduring love for America in our hearts. We love our country. We
have overwhelming pride in this great country, and we have it deep in our souls. Together we are determined to defend and preserve government of the people, by the people and for the people.
Our brightest days are before us, our greatest achievements still wait. I think one of our great achievements will be election security because nobody, until I came along, had any idea how corrupt our elections were. And again, most people would stand there at 9:00 in the evening and say, ‘I want to thank you very much,’ and they go off to some other life, but I said, ‘Something’s wrong here. Something’s really wrong. Can’t have happened.’
And we fight. We fight like Hell and if you don’t fight like Hell, you’re not going to have a country any more.
Our exciting adventures and boldest endeavours have not yet begun. My fellow Americans for our movement, for our children and for our beloved country and I say this, despite all that’s happened, the best is yet to come.
So we’re going to, we’re going to walk down Pennsylvania Avenue, I love Pennsylvania Avenue, and we’re going to the Capitol and we’re going
to try and give …
The Democrats are hopeless. They’re never voting for anything, not even one vote.
But we’re going to try and give our Republicans, the weak ones, because the strong ones don’t need any of our help, we’re going to try and give them the kind of pride and boldness that they need to take back our country.
So let’s walk down Pennsylvania Avenue. I want to thank you all. God bless you and God bless America. Thank you all for being here, this is incredible. Thank you very much. Thank you."
And march they did...screaming "Hang Pence".
..calling for Nancy Pelosi the Democrat speaker...screaming for blood...burglaring the Congress building...urban terror...all in the name of Donald Trump...to stop the steal...5 dead in the aftermath.
And word is Trump did not march with them as he said he would...watched the rampage on TV...refusing to call in the National Guard...ignoring calls to quell the mob.
When he eventually spoke from the White House my notes read: "This is what happens when you steal an election."
Then seemingly reluctantly, "I know your pain I know your hurt. We had an
election that was stolen from us. But you have to go home now. We love you. You are very special. I know how you feel but go home and go home in peace."
He also referred to "evil Democrats..."
but I was so shocked at his lack of remorse at the riot in Congress he had incited that my notes did not go beyond that.
I had watched the Blitzkrieg blanket bombing of Iraq live on CNN in the First Gulf War in 1991 and the 9/11 planes colliding into the twin towers and the Pentagon in 2001...now I was watching USA in vitriolic freefall.
I watched Mike Pence refuse to bow to Trump's or the mob's pressure stating when the mob had gone and Congress resumed: "In the wake of the unprecedented violence and vandalism at this Capital, the elected representatives of the United States have assembled again, on the very same day to support and defend the Constitution of the United States."
I even watched the vote in the Senate as the Arizona objections were defeated..."NO"
Objections in the Senate for Georgia, Michigan and Nevada withdrawn
as a result of the storming of Congress that day...about the only good that came from that day.
Couldn't last for the House of Reps rejection of the Pennsylvania objections that concluded at 4am US time...that they sat until it was done to avoid further violent dissent was another good from that day...Pence finalising and confirming the Electoral College vote as Biden 306...Trump 232...confirming Biden will be inaugurated on 20 January 2021 as the 46th President of the USA.
And thereafter I watched frequent updates of those events as their gravity and detail became better known and was disseminated around the World.
Trump was impeached for inciting insurrection as a result...the only President to be impeached twice...the Senate hearing to be after he vacates his office.
On 19 January 2021 Mitch McConnell
the Republican Leader of the Senate declared: "The mob was fed lies. They were provoked by the President (Trump) and other powerful people. And they tried to use fear and violence to stop a specific proceeding of the first branch of the Federal Government which they did not like."
The Second Impeachment of President Trump
have read the Articles of Impeachment and I have my opinion as to the outcome. On 11 January 2021 it was served and reads as follows:
"Resolved that Donald John Trump, President of the United States, is impeached for high crimes and misdemeanors.
ARTICLE 1: INCITEMENT FOR INSURRECTION...
The Constitution provides that the House of Representatives "shall have the sole Power of Impeachment" and that the President "shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors."
Further, Section 3 of the 14th Amendment of the Constitution prohibits any person who has "engaged in insurrection or rebellion against" the United States from "hold(ing) any office under the United States."
In violation of his office engaged in high Crimes and Misdemeanors by inciting violence against the Government of the United States.
On 6 January 2021 the Vice President and Senate met to count the electoral votes.
In months preceding Trump issued false statements asserting that the Presidential election results were the product of widespread fraud and should not be accepted by the American people or certified by State or Federal
Shortly before the Joint Session commenced, President Trump addressed a crowd at the Ellipse in Washington DC.
There he reiterated false claims that "We won the election, and we won it by a landslide."
He also wilfully made statements that, in context, encouraged - and foreseeably resulted in - lawless actions at the Capital, such as "If you don't fight like hell your not going to have this country anymore."
Thus incited by President Trump, members of the crowd he addressed in an attempt to, among other objectives, interfered with the Joint Session's solemn constitutional duty to certify the 2020 Presidential election, unlawfully breached and vandalised the Capital, injured and killed law enforcement personnel, menaced members of Congress, the Vice President, and Congressional personnel, and engaged in other violent, deadly, destructive, and seditious acts.
President Trump's actions on January 6, 2021 followed his prior efforts to subvert and obstruct the certification of the results of the 2020 Presidential election.
Those prior efforts included a phone conversation on January 2, 2021 during which President Trump urged the secretary of the state of Georgia, Brad Raffensberger to "find" enough votes to overcome the Georgia Presidential
election results and threatened Secretary Raffensberger if he failed to do so.
In all this, President Trump gravely endangered the security of the United States and its institution of Government.
He threatened the integrity of the democratic system, interfered with the peaceful transition of power, and imperiled a coequal branch of Government.
He thereby breached his trust as President to the manifest injury of the United States.
Wherefore, Donald John Trump, by such conduct, has demonstrated that he will remain a threat to national security, democracy, and the Constitution if allowed to remain in office, and has acted in a manner grossly incompatible with self-governance and the rule of law.
Donald John Trump thus warrants impeachment and trial, removal from office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honour, trust, or profit under the United States."
****** The Whys and Wherefores
Even though Trump is now out of office as Joe Biden was inaugurated as the 46th President of the United States on 20 January 2021, the Democrats say the Impeachment must proceed as to do nothing condones Trump's actions which are too serious to be ignored.
Yet we hear Trump's lawyers plan a single defence as he is now out of office that the Constitution does not allow impeachment.
I can see the merits of that defence BUT
I would argue the vote whether he can return to office or continue to enjoy the benefits AS REQUIRING A SEPARATE VOTE INDEPENDENT OF THE INSURRECTION ISSUE UNDER SECTION 3 OF THE CONSTITUTION.
Will McConnell and other brave Republicans support the impeachment which is on the ground of "incitement of insurrection"
Are they willing to risk the narcissistic Trump seek another term in four years as he says he will do?
My biggest concern is as a two thirds majority is required to convict, if 17 Republicans in the Senate do not support the impeachment, he will be declared "Not guilty"
...purely on party numbers grounds.
Trump warned in his speech on 6 Jan what would happen to Republicans who do not support him.
Sorry to the conspiracy thinkers...sorry to the yeahsayers and naysayers...Guilty is Guilty and that's the nub of it.
Biden was inaugurated on 20 January 2021 as the 46th President of the USA...Kamala Harris as
the first woman Vice-President...crowds excluded...25,000 National Guard protecting the capital...Trump refusing to attend...telling his supporters that he'll be back..."this is only the beginning"
...continuing his mantra of divisiveness and dissent.
Biden continuing the call for national unity...his speeches Presidential...messages of care and integrity...prayers for healing of the national divide...to overcome the pandemic...revive the economy...even addressing climate change...all achievable he says if Americans unite in determination to work together.
The world is watching.
Can USA heal its wounds?
If not, I fear its decline will echo the Fall of Rome.
Did Trump incite the mob to storm the Capital?
Guilty or Not Guilty.
You be the Judge.
I await your decision.
Relax (or should I say "Hold your breath"?)
Disclaimer: All photographs in this blog are mine. Excerpts from satellite newscasts to the general public from around the World are readily available. This blog is to share the news of this current historic event from my perspective and does not represent the opinion of Travelblog.org.
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D MJ Binkley
Dave and Merry Jo Binkley
Notes from the Dangerous One
One of the longest blogs you've put out there. Well thought out. Although the lovely Merry and I refuse to be classified as a member of either party, your thoughts clearly illustrate the thoughts of both sides in a very ideologically divided nation. The simple fact is that while possible retribution is at hand for the 45th President, there are not enough votes however, to convict him in the Senate. To many "frightened" Republicans will not vote to convict as this will have severe back lash among their constituents. Trump's defense could easily be defined as a First Amendment issue around free speech. It would be ideal if he could never be allowed to hold public office again. The Republican Party is extremely fractured right now and does not remotely resemble "The Party of Lincoln." Crazed congressional ultra-right wingers are attempting to hijack the party. My guess is that in four years, Trump will not run again. I do not believe that he "enjoyed" being president as it was nothing like he imagined it would be. How the Republican Party will shape up is anybody's guess.
Notes from the Dangerous One
To see Trump jumping up and down pumping his fists like a prize fighter during his rallies, expressing how much everyone loves him, I see a narcissist that craves the attention. I hope for your great country's future that he does not stand again, otherwise now divided will be forever broken. If retribution is not at hand for what happened on 6 January, I suggest there needs to be a change in your Constitution as I presume to let a President get away with insurrection just prior to leaving office was surely not considered by the founding fathers. Looking forward to seeing your smiling faces in USA again, but with USA Covid and political ferment, I fear 'tis a long way off. Thanks for the bravery of your comments.
D MJ Binkley
Dave and Merry Jo Binkley
Can we Heal?
You've put some words to paper with emotion and thought... we could spend hours in conversation, debate and a shared understanding. I am not a republican. I am not a democrat. I am a centrists. I am sick of many politicians from both sides of the aisle. In my opinion, I do not think anything will be done to Trump as greed generally rules and too many Senate members want Trump's financial support and support from his rich friends. Even if they disagree with him and think he is a loon they won't speak of it publicly because the do not want to offend --as the Trump fans will not re-elect them. It seems a real conundrum for the Republican Party. While Trump was in office there was great anger from the Democratic Party. Now that Biden is in office the anger is coming from the Republican Party. I do believe Biden is the right man at the right time. I do suspect he will inch things forward fighting the barriers created by politicians. People have lost the ability to debate calmly and find compassionate compromise that will provide good for the greater number. Trump's big issues may end up being financial law suits which he may not win. His bucket of money may decrease but he always seems to pull it out somehow. If the bank in Germany has truly decided to stop lending him money he may be in a mess. We hope for healing but we have lots of hatred running rampant. MJ
Can we Heal?
I read your comments MJ that highlight the conundrum (great word) that I was not brave enough to state so clearly. As I view from across the Pacific I can view it theoretically objectively, but of course am restricted by media bent. But what I saw of the events on 6 January from 8am to midnight and reading the transcript of his Save America March speech, and viewing the emails of the plans to attend and cause havoc, I only needed to know how to read to understand the import and impact and the logical conclusion with the crazed aftermath. Seeing Biden's measured and empathetic speeches I know America can heal....but does enough of the populous want it to???
How the hell did this happen?
As an American I've spent the last four years being embarrassed by the man in the White House. I breathed a sigh of relief when Biden was elected. But I while I should have realized that Cadet Bone Spurs wasn't going to go away quietly, I was shocked at the violent mob that stormed the Congress. My country has certainly been the scene of protests - some violent, most peaceful - over the years, but I have never seen, nor even contemplated, that the president would direct such violence against elected officials, many of them from his own party. I can only hope that those people who call themselves Republicans go back to being Republicans and not Trumpniks.
How the hell did this happen?
As an Australian I also wonder how the hell this could happen, Karen. As Australians we know only so well how Trump's vitriolic language affects us in our relationship with our largest trading partner, China. Having ended his reign with a bang not a whimper, Trump galled me and many others that he gave our Prime Minister a Medal of Honour just before Trump left office to ensure we remain “the gum on the boot of the USA that has to be wiped off” as China has claimed. What happens in USA affects other countries as well. China has whacked trade bans on many of our major exports to bring us to our knees for being an ally of USA, and have made no secret that is why they are doing so. The World needs a strong and united USA...not a basketcase. We Australians are proud and resilient and will recover. Will USA?
Home and Away
Response to your questions.
I saw that you posted this blog before but then withdrew it. I am neither a Democrat or a Republican, but a moderate like David and Merry Jo, who seeks fairness and truth. Neither party upholds those values, but only answer to special interests. I have a sister, perhaps two, plus two children, perhaps three, who sees things your way. I see it the same way as 75 million other Americans. As with my family, any discussion is fruitless as there is no agreement on the facts, and arguments only strains relationships. So, I will not respond to your comments, but to your questions: Can USA heal its wounds? No. Biden promised to unite the nation but everything he has done in the two weeks since his inauguration has further divided the nation. Did Trump incite the mob to storm the Capital? No. The Chief Justice, who is required by the Constitution, to be the judge in any impeachment trial, will not do so, and there aren't enough votes to find Trump guilty. I've been reading the history of our Constitution and the great debate during the Virginia Ratification Convention between the Federalists who wanted a strong Federal Government and the original republicans who were concerned that without the Bill of Rights, that government would strip us of our liberties. The concerns of Patrick Henry are now coming true. Now to think of happier things...like watching the Super Bowl!
Response to your questions
Wow. If there is ever a response I would not expect, it is your's Bob. Guess it highlights how Trump has polarised public opinion. I do not want to fracture our relationship but I regard Trump's speech on 6 January as clearer than a confession that he incited the mob to storm Congress. I set out the transcript of his speech as it speaks for itself. As I expressed in my blog, but more eloquently, the impeachment should be about right versus wrong but it's about hanging onto power. Or as one of the private comments I have received, who is a frequent visitor to USA, so candidly put it, "The USA is actually a divided States of America and their 2nd Amendment and Bill of Rights encourages civil disobedience the like which we don’t see here. They desperately need a Bill of Personal Responsibilities." I shake my head that your great nation could find itself in such dilemma. Our best wishes to you and your family during this fractured time...and always.
Ake Och Emma
Ake Dahllof and Emma Holmbro
Where is the street art from?
Where have you taken the photos of the street art? Is it one place or to they originate from various places? /Ake
Where is the street art from?
I present my most detailed blog ever of a current insurrection attempt in a country where one should least expect it that has traumatically divided the United States and I find you admiring the street art while sidestepping the action. Nothing wrong with stopping to smell the roses but come on Ake. Is there an Ake perspective to these events? How is the Swedish press and public reacting?
John and Sylvia
John Wallace & Sylvia Bowman Wallace
Invading the US Capitol
This may be the first time the US Capital has been invaded by US citizens but it is not the first time it has been invaded. The last time it was burned to the ground. This was during the Chesapeake Campaign of the War of 1812 when the US invaded Canada (for the second time) in an attempt to make it the 14th State. It failed abysmally and the British/Canadian/French militias soundly defeated the US forces. Until now, it remains the only time that a foreign power has captured and occupied the capital of the United States.
Invading the US Capitol
An amazing glimpse of history here John. Does that mean the British/Canadian/French militias marched south and burnt the US Capital as it then was, to the ground? What was the US capital in 1812?
John and Sylvia
John Wallace & Sylvia Bowman Wallace
I was going to send you a PM but realised they mostly don't work. Ali is trying to sort this out. I don't expect you to publish this but I have been following Bob's comments on other blogs and, whatever he may say now, he has been a supporter of Trump for at least the last two years. He argued against social separation and the wearing of masks. He supported the community celebrations in Florida and claimed it was one of the few states that were validating the US constitution by supporting people making their own decisions about what was in their own interests - whatever the consequences were for others. I suspect he is a closet "Libertarian" - I can do whatever I want until it all goes wrong and then it is your fault. Sadly, they seem to be a minority but powerful force in the US with firearms.
John and Sylvia
John Wallace & Sylvia Bowman Wallace
The burning of Washington
From Wikipedia.... "The Burning of Washington was a British invasion of Washington City (now Washington, D.C.), the capital of the United States, during the Chesapeake Campaign of the War of 1812. To this date, it remains the only time since the American Revolutionary War that a foreign power has captured and occupied the capital of the United States. Following the defeat of American forces at the Battle of Bladensburg on August 24, 1814, a British force led by Major General Robert Ross marched to Washington. That night, British forces set fire to multiple government and military buildings, including the White House (then called the Presidential Mansion), the Capitol building, as well as other facilities of the U.S. government. The attack was in part a retaliation for the recent American destruction of Port Dover in Upper Canada, as well as American forces burning and looting the capital of Upper Canada the previous year. Less than a day after the attack began, a heavy thunderstorm —possibly a hurricane — and a tornado extinguished the fires. The occupation of Washington lasted for roughly 26 hours, and what the British plans were beyond the damage are still a subject of debate."
The burning of Washington
Thank you John for the further information on the 1814 burning of the US Capital, Washington DC. In the current situation with the Impeachment Trial Of Trump, if ever there was a mirror of the moral decay that led to the Fall of Rome, this is it.
Guilty as Charged
David, such an excellent indepth damming information of the guilt of the President. But, except for a few of the Republicans, the rest were too scared to publicly find him guilty. If it was a secret ballot then the verdict would have been very different.
Guilty as Charged
Thank you Cass and I believe you are right. If it was a secret ballot Trump may have been indicted. I regard the "weak Republicans" as not the ones Trump pointed out in his speech on 6 Jan, but the ones who were too afraid to support the impeachment for fear of political demise in the Primaries. I was pleased that what I said in my blog has been confirmed in later investigation, except the issue of whether he could continue to receive the perks of past Presidents seemed to have been ignored notwithstanding it came under a different section of the US Constitution.
Janice M Waller
an excellent recap of the terrible times in the US
As you laid out so well the US has been going through some very difficult times. We also were reminded of coups in other nations never imagining it would be happening here in the US. It will be a steep hill to climb to bring the country back together but hopefully we will manage it. We have to keep positive thoughts about that as the alternative is not the country we have always been proud about. The world is definitely watching and we hope we can become the country that is a viable member of the world community again. Thanks for your efforts in doing such a wonderful job of presenting this topic
an excellent recap of the terrible times in the US
Your's is the sort of comment Janice that gives me confidence that with enough like-minded folk there is hope for the USA. I like you fear for the alternative. Must confound you with thoughts of sailing into the sunset to escape it all. But what will you find when you return?