“Politicians and diapers must be changed often, and for the same reason.”
--- Mark Twain
We couldn’t help but think of dirty diapers while watching Tuesday’s January 6 committee hearing. These committee members, not even one real Republican among them, need to be changed as soon as possible for congressional representatives who really care about preserving our system and finding out the truth. What happened Tuesday might have been the most shameless political travesty ever televised, bringing us smack into banana republic territory.
Of course, you know –- because they’ve admitted it –- that this whole mess is about driving a stake through the heart of President Trump so he wouldn’t think of running again, can’t win if he does run, and is utterly destroyed in historical accounts. To do this, they have to choreograph their hearings, reading from teleprompters and cherry-picking previously recorded testimony. There is no defense allowed, no other viewpoint and no cross-examination, even of the few witnesses who do appear live and are led through their testimony. That renders these hearings essentially worthless.
The committee also takes it as a given that election fraud simply did not happen --- and that even an admission of the possibility is tantamount to insurrection itself. This requires us to believe that all allegations of fraud were thoroughly investigated and dismissed, when it's not true. So let me say this: Neither you nor I can conclude with certainty that the election was stolen, but we can’t say it wasn’t, either. NO ONE can. In states where the margin of victory was a mere sliver –- in Georgia, for example, or in Arizona, where it came down to about 11,000 votes statewide –- it might be easy to win by fraudulent means. Given all the variables and the things we know took place, I’d be more surprised to learn that this didn’t happen than that it did.
President Trump was and is convinced that it did.
The Wisconsin Supreme Court recently ruled that the Mark Zuckerberg-funded, unmanned drop boxes broke state election law. How many ballots were affected? How many “mules” really were stuffing boxes? How many fake votes were harvested from nursing homes? We don’t know. We will never know. In very close battleground states, there is just no telling what the real count was. And we WILL lose “our democracy” if we don’t fix the system so it’s transparent and verifiable. We’ve got a midterm election coming up in a few months; we should be fixing the bugs in the system instead of wasting time with this shameful political theatre.
Mollie Hemingway authored an outstanding book called RIGGED, detailing the many ways in which the 2020 election was corrupted. On July 1, after Cassidy Hutchinson’s inaccurate testimony, she wrote about how the January 6 committee is furthering its election dogma, in a commentary called “The J6 Show Trial Is Lying About Election ‘Fraud.’” Her piece is well worth reviewing --- a must-read if you haven’t seen it --- because it especially applies to Tuesday’s hearing.
As Hemingway said, “Turning questions about the many problems with the 2020 election into a crime is the kind of thing that is done in third-world countries...It is horrific to see it happening here.”
News accounts of the hearings mostly present at face value what committee members say, as if that told us “what we learned.” Hemingway is right: committee members have been repeatedly lying and “assuming facts not in evidence.” This means you, Jamie Raskin, Liz Cheney and chairman Bennie Thompson.
Everyone who has come to the witness table since Day 1 needs a thorough cross-examination. Personally, I’d like to see them questioned by a “dream” panel consisting of Ted Cruz (for his interrogatory skills), Jim Jordan and Jim Banks (the two Republicans Speaker Nancy Pelosi kept off the committee), Mollie Hemingway (for her knowledge of actual election fraud) and Kash Patel (ditto, and also for his knowledge of FBI/DOJ activity). They should subpoena Pelosi and perhaps DC Mayor Muriel Bowser. Now THAT, I’d watch from beginning to end.
Perhaps the witnesses who most needed cross-examination were members of the Oath Keepers who testified Tuesday. Their testimony was so subjective that there was nothing to be learned about what Trump had actually done or intended to communicate to them, if anything. But it served the committee’s purposes. In fact, one Oath Keeper was apparently testifying as part of his plea agreement, and I’d love to have been a fly on the wall when they were working with him on his testimony.
Yesterday, we brought you the story of a leaked internal FBI document that showed their CHS (confidential human source) had told them the KC Proud Boys had no plan to enter the Capitol and/or subvert the election certification. If these were actual fact-finding hearings, we’d be hearing more about this aspect of January 6. REVOLVER NEWS has determined the government documents are authentic and is investigating as well, with “much more to come.” In the meantime, here’s what they say.
Here’s what founder and president of the Oath Keepers, Stewart Rhodes, had to say from his prison cell when he saw the story...
At the end of Tuesday’s hearing, Liz Cheney announced that President Trump had attempted to contact an upcoming witness, saying that “this committee has supplied that information to the Department of Justice.” She simply accused him in the hearing room, with no evidence, no word about who the witness is, nothing. I think she might have graduated from the Adam Schiff School Of Law. Still, it might be enough for our current attorney general to indict the former President for witness tampering.
Committee member Jamie Raskin preferred to stay out of that after the hearing, saying he had no details about it and did not know which witness Cheney meant. (Wouldn’t he know if this had really happened?) He said the committee was trying to “send a message that witness tampering is a crime.” Oh, I see –- sending a message by accusing someone of witness tampering. What slimeballs.
Yes, I know, it’s a little out of character for me to call people names. If you think I’m going too far using that word, you obviously didn’t watch yesterday’s hearing.
CNN’s Jake Tapper hosted former UN Ambassador and Trump National Security Adviser John Bolton to discuss the hearings, no doubt expecting Bolton to beat up Trump on the air. And he did, sort of. But even though Bolton still referred to 2020 election fraud as “the lie,” he also said the committee is undermining its case by going too far with all its “opining.”
He also said Trump had not meant to overthrow the Constitution, but just “to buy more time to throw the matter back to the states to try and redo the issue.” The topper: He said he KNEW Trump hadn’t planned a coup, because he’d helped plan those himself a few times (“not here”) and knows what’s involved. Not kidding; he really said that.
Finally, Margot Cleveland has a MUST-READ commentary about the particularly egregious tactics being used by this committee.
They’re “asking inappropriate questions about their fellow Americans’ beliefs and associates,” she says, in a way that brings to mind Sen. Joe McCarthy’s infamous anti-Communist tactics, and they’re “publicly portraying witnesses who exercise their Fifth Amendment rights as guilty.” She wrote this on Tuesday before that day’s hearing --- I wonder what she'll say now.
The attorney for one of the groups questioned, 1st Amendment Praetorian, told Cleveland that the committee refused to let anyone in the room record the proceedings in any way. Leslie McAdoo Gordon said that while witnesses called before DC federal grand juries can obtain a transcript of their testimony, this committee refuses to allow their targets to obtain transcripts. Cleveland says McAdoo Gordon told her that “the committee’s hiding of their transcripts serves to cover their lies and to control the narrative of the show trial, but it also allows the Jan. 6 Committee to hide the wildly inappropriate questions it poses to witnesses.”
She means questions such as “Do you believe in QAnon?” “Do you believe that Joe Biden is the legitimately elected President of the United States?” And that’s just the beginning –- they want information about donors, financial status and activities that are not relevant to January 6 and not the business of the government.
This will never stop unless it’s exposed for what it is.
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