Trump’s Self-Fulfilling ‘American Carnage’

Almost exactly a year ago, Rep. Adam Schiff warned senators that Trump could do “a lot of damage” if he wasn’t impeached. Here we are.

BY HEATHER COX RICHARDSON | JANUARY 14, 2021

At 4:22 this afternoon, the House of Representatives passed the number of votes necessary to impeach Trump. In the end, 232 Representatives —222  Democrats and 10 Republicans — agreed that the president had incited an insurrection and must be removed from office. But 197 Republicans disagreed.

 

And so, Donald Trump makes the history books as the first president of the United States of America to be impeached twice.

This is an indictment of him, of course, but also of the Republican Party that let him off the hook a year ago for undermining the national security of the United States as he tried to steal the 2020 election. Shortly before the Senate vote on conviction almost exactly a year ago, House impeachment manager Adam Schiff (D-CA) charged his Republican colleagues to look to the future, telling them, “you know you can’t trust this President to do what’s right for this country. You can trust he will do what’s right for Donald Trump. He’ll do it now. He’s done it before. He’ll do it for the next several months. He’ll do it in the election if he’s allowed to.” Continue reading

Rioter to police: “You can’t stop me; I’m on my way to a vote”

by Heather Cox Richardson | January 12

The news continues to move at a breathless pace.

After making no comments on the January 6 coup attempt since the day after, when he continued his assault on the validity of the 2020 election, Trump today refused to acknowledge he has done anything wrong. He told reporters his speech to the “Stop the Steal” rally in Washington, D.C., that prompted the assault on the Capitol, was “totally appropriate.” He insisted that “other people” had said that the “real problem” was “the horrible riots in Portland and Seattle and various other places.”

Instead of addressing his role in the crisis, on his way to Alamo, Texas (not The Alamo, which is in San Antonio, Texas, about four hours away from Alamo), Trump blamed the Democrats for attacking him unfairly. He said that the Democrats who were pushing for impeachment were once again on a “witch hunt” that was “causing tremendous danger to our country.”

No one is buying it.

There are three real stories right now with regard to this crisis. The first is that what happened on January 6 when rioters stormed the Capitol, and what led to that attack, is getting clearer, and none of the details are good. The second, and related, story is that the Republicans are splitting, and their leadership is trying desperately to find a way to remain powerful. The third ties the first two together: lawmakers are preparing to throw Trump out of office.

Today the FBI finally briefed the public on the events of January 6. Contradicting reports that said there was no sign of trouble in advance, an FBI official said that on Tuesday, the bureau warned that extremists were going to muster in Washington, D.C., to launch a “war.” Today, the bureau announced 160 case files on the insurrection and said this was just the beginning. Acting U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia Michael Sherwin said people will be shocked about some of the things that happened inside the Capitol. He also said the Department of Justice is considering filing charges of sedition against some of the riot’s participants.

A separate briefing for House Democratic committee chairs seemed to leave them shaken by the scope of the insurgency. “This was not a peaceful protest that got out of hand,” they said in a statement. “This was an attempted coup to derail our Constitutional process and intimidate our duly elected leaders through violence.” “[W]e have grave concerns about ongoing and violent threats to our democracy. It is clear that more must be done to preempt, penetrate, and prevent deadly and seditious assaults by domestic violent extremists in the days ahead.”

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GasLit Nation: Clear Intent

GASLIT NATION WITH ANDREA CHALUPA AND SARAH KENDZIOR

This two-hour special is the longest Gaslit Nation episode we have ever done, and the most serious. We break down the attack on the Capitol by domestic terrorists, showing how this was orchestrated at the highest levels of power and enabled by complicit actors in broken institutions. We lay out probable paths for the United States at this critical juncture, and discuss what we need to do to avoid the fate of the USSR, which is the model for Trump’s crime cult.

Play

“Stop it. It’s over. The election is over”

by Heather Cox Richardson | January 11, 2020

This morning began with House Democrats filing one article of impeachment against Trump, charging him with “incitement of insurrection.” It makes its case by noting that Trump’s months of lies about the election and his inflammatory speech to the rally on January 6– including lines like “if you don’t fight like hell you’re not going to have a country anymore”—led directly to “violent, deadly, destructive and seditious acts.”

The article also noted Trump’s attempt to subvert the election through his phone call on January 2, 2021, to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, demanding he “find” enough votes to overturn the results of the presidential election in the state. Including this in the impeachment article will prevent Georgia Governor Brian Kemp from pardoning Trump for it.

The article says that Trump is, and 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.” He must be removed from office and disqualified from any future positions in the U.S. government.

This document and the procedures around it tell us far more than their simplicity suggests.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had announced the day before that the House would take up a resolution, advanced by Representative Jamie Raskin (D-MD), that called on Vice President Mike Pence “to convene and mobilize the Cabinet to activate the 25th Amendment to declare the President incapable of executing the duties of his office, after which the Vice President would immediately exercise powers as acting President.” The resolution did not speak to the physical or mental health of the president, but focused on his inability to fulfill his duty to respect the legitimate results of the Presidential election, accept the peaceful transfer of power, protect the people of the United States, and see that the laws be faithfully executed.

This resolution was a generous offer to Republicans. It limited its condemnation of Trump to his quite obvious refusal to accept the election results, rather than digging deeper into his behavior. Pelosi also called for Unanimous Consent to bring up the Raskin resolution. This was a way to give cover to Republicans who didn’t want to go on the record against Trump, but who want him out of power in favor of Pence.

Although extremist Republicans are trying to argue that removing Trump shows Democratic partisanship, in fact, Pelosi was trying to give Republicans as much cover as possible.

It was a Trump Republican who shot that down.

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British-Indian novelist writes an awesome farewell to Trump administration

A political fond farewell from British-Indian novelist Hari Kunzru

“Mike Pence, you repressed joyless would-be witchfinder, every time you spoke you always looked like you were straining to expel an enormous bolus of your own hypocrisy from your clenched sphincter.

“Betsy DeVos, you blandly foolish soulless entitled child-stealing witch, rotting like a corpse inside your Chanel suit.

“Kayleigh McEnenay, you evacuated husk of a mean-girl cheerleader, the cavity where your heart once was pumped full of spite and moronic lies.


“Bill Barr, you vast pompous pus-filled bladder of casuistry, you are an enemy of justice, bloated with resentment and cruelty, wobbling like a jelly at the feet of the oligarchs.

“Jared Kushner, you vacuous dainty preening overpromoted nub of mediocrity, squeezed like an entitled smear of toothpaste into a silk suit bought with tear-stained dollars wrung out of the suffering tenants of your slum apartments.

“Ivanka Trump, you monstrous slug of vanity, you infantile ninny so marinaded in self-regard that in your pea brain you believe we ought to love you for your crimes.

“Mike Pompeo, you bubble, you booby, you flatulent zero, that roiling in your ample guts that you mistake for world shaking significance is just the acid reflux of irrelevancy.

“Don Junior, you scabrous single-nostriled unloved elephant-murdering human wreckage, vibrating with bitterness and impotent rage at all the opportunities you’ve squandered.


“Interlude: all you staffers and interns, so eager to crunch your way in your shiny new work shoes over the bodies of the poor and powerless, I smite you and cast you out one by one.


“Eric Trump, you pallid clammy suppurating nocturnal semi-human grub, your absence of charisma is your only notable trait and the act of flushing you from memory will so be smooth and painless that in a month people will find it hard to picture your moon face.

“Rudy Giuliani, you capering cartoonish skull-faced bag of graft and corruption, too stupid even to ask who’s pulling your strings just so long as you can cake your crusty face in tv make-up and clack your jaw at a camera.


“And of course Stephen Miller, you weeping pustule upon the social body, you dreg, you homunculus, you noxious slime felched from the gaping cavity of Jim Crow, one day may you find yourself walking barefoot across hot sand, desperate for water, crying for your missing child.


“With that I’ll rest a while, and go to find a street corner to dance on.”


Hari Kunzru