Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Last Call For Orange Meltdown, Con't

President Petty McVengeance hates Actual President Barack Obama so much that he now refuses to display or even unveil Obama's official portrait in the White House.

It's been a White House tradition for decades: A first-term president hosts a ceremony in the East Room for the unveiling of the official portrait of his immediate predecessor that will hang in the halls of the White House for posterity. 
Republican presidents have done it for Democratic presidents, and vice versa — even when one of them ascended to the White House by defeating or sharply criticizing the other.

"We may have our differences politically," President Barack Obama said when he hosted former President George W. Bush for his portrait unveiling in 2012, "but the presidency transcends those differences." 
Yet this modern ritual won't be taking place between Obama and President Donald Trump, according to people familiar with the matter. And if Trump wins a second term in November, it could be 2025 before Obama returns to the White House to see his portrait displayed among every U.S. president from George Washington to Bush. 
Trump is unconcerned about shunning yet another presidential custom, and he has attacked Obama to an extent no other president has done to a predecessor. Most recently he's made unfounded accusations that Obama committed an unspecified crime. 
Obama, for his part, has no interest in participating in the post-presidency rite of passage so long as Trump is in office, the people familiar with the matter said.

Can you blame Obama here?  Nobody was more instrumental to spreading and validating the Obama Kenya birther nonsense than Donald Trump as a way to attack the nation's first black President.  Obama in the White House drove Trump to fury, and being the birther candidate meant white voters rewarded him with the White House five years later, pure and simple.

So yeah, you won't see that portrait in the White House anytime while Trump is in office. Trump is an outright racist, and Obama sure as hell shouldn't have to come hat in hand to massa's White House.

I hope Biden puts it up on his first day.

Retribution Execution, Con't

As expected, Donald Trump is no longer letting Sen. Lindsey Graham drag his feet on subpoenas of former Obama administration officials, and it looks like the Justice Department is on board for months of hearings and investigations heading into November.

Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham is preparing to ask his colleagues on the panel for blanket permission to subpoena dozens of Obama and Trump administration officials connected to the investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election — and contacts between President Donald Trump's team and Russians.

His proposal would permit the South Carolina Republican to demand testimony and documents from figures involved in the intelligence associated with the launch of the Russia investigation, including Attorney General Loretta Lynch, former national intelligence director James Clapper, former CIA Director John Brennan and former FBI Director James Comey.

But it also stretches into the Trump era, with authorization to subpoena current and former figures involved in the investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller — including former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and current FBI Director Christopher Wray.

Graham intends to seek a Judiciary Committee vote on the matter on June 4. The proposal would allow Graham to obtain documents or testimony from any figures referenced in a report by the Justice Department Inspector General's review of the FBI's handling of a surveillance warrant connected to that investigation. That probe found corner-cutting, missteps and abuses by officials in the process used to surveil Carter Page, a former adviser to the Trump campaign.

The subpoena is unusually broad — committee subpoenas are usually specific to a smaller number of targets. But its approval, which will likely fall along party lines, would give Graham enormous, unilateral authority to conduct the probe.

Looks like everyone's going to be called in the very near future, in conjunction with the Barr Justice Department's show trial investigations, complete with "well unlike Mueller, we'll be fair and balanced" nonsense.

Attorney General William Barr on Monday said Barack Obama and Joe Biden are unlikely to be under criminal investigation in a review of the Russia probe that began in 2016 -- addressing simmering accusations by President Donald Trump against his predecessor and his 2020 opponent. 
Barr said he was attempting to curtail the politicization of Justice Department investigations, yet his comments could fan speculation from right-wing commentators. 
"Whatever their level of involvement based on the level of information I have today, I don't expect Mr. Durham's work will lead to a criminal investigation of either man," Barr said Monday at a press conference, referring to the US Attorney John Durham's ongoing review of the early Russia investigation, which ultimately led to the appointment of special counsel Robert Mueller to examine election interference and coordination with the Trump campaign. 
"Our concern over potential criminality is focused on others," Barr added. 
CNN previously reported that Durham's focus appears to be on decisions made by top officials overseeing the intelligence analysis of Russian election interference efforts in 2016, and particularly the leadership of then-CIA director John Brennan and then-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, according to more than a half dozen people familiar with the investigation. 
Durham is also investigating the actions of a lower-level FBI attorney who included incorrect information in a surveillance application in 2016. Additionally, the Durham review has also included looking at the information the intelligence community had to back up an FBI court application to wiretap former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.
Barr on Monday also criticized, broadly, using criminal investigations as "a political weapon." 
"This is not good for our political life and it's not good for the criminal justice system," he said. "As long as I'm attorney general, the criminal justice system will not be used for partisan political ends. This is especially true for the upcoming elections in November."

Sure Barr won't interfere heading into elections.  He has at least three months to go before the election heats up after Labor Day, and he'll continue interfering as long as he can get away with it.

Attorney General William P. Barr has installed a new top deputy at the federal prosecutor’s office in Washington, raising concerns that a key U.S. attorney’s office handling multiple investigations that are of interest to President Trump is becoming further politicized.

The arrival of Associate Deputy Attorney General Michael R. Sherwin — who won the conviction of a Chinese trespasser at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club in Florida in September — has triggered new accusations that Justice Department leaders are bypassing career prosecutors in the office and intervening in cases favoring the president’s allies, current and former federal prosecutors in the office said.

Barr’s actions in cases handed off by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s Russia probe and “packing” senior supervisory positions with close associates “seriously undermines the U.S. attorney’s office in D.C.’s . . . long-standing reputation for independence from political influence,” said Charles R. Work, a former office prosecutor, Republican Justice Department political appointee and president of the D.C. Bar.

“This represents a politicization of the U.S. attorney’s office of the District of Columbia that is remarkable and unique and unprecedented,” said Stuart M. Gerson, a Republican and former Barr aide who served as acting attorney general briefly under presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton. “It’s a political coup; there really can be no question about it.”

So the same day Barr is claiming the Justice Department won't be used for "partisan political ends" he's installing Trump loyalists on key cases.

Expect things to get brutal in the months ahead, especially as COVID-19 and the Trump Depression rage on unabated.

The Blue Wave Rises, Con't

Republicans in battleground states are warning Trump that he's headed for real trouble in November, and that he may very well end up taking the GOP with him into a 2008-style wipeout.

Donald Trump has made clear he will attack Joe Biden unmercifully in order to ensure the election is a choice between him and Joe Biden — rather than an up-or-down vote on the president’s handling of the coronavirus.

Scott Walker has a different view, at least when it comes to Trump's chances in the all-important battleground of Wisconsin.

“I think it still boils down to a referendum on the president. They’ll beat up on Biden and they’ll raise some concerns,” said the former two-term Republican governor of Wisconsin, who lost his seat in 2018. But in the end, if people felt good about their health and the state of the economy, Trump will probably carry Wisconsin. If not, Walker said, “it’s much more difficult” for the president.

Walker is not alone among swing-state Republicans in his assessment of the president’s political prospects. Interviews with nearly a dozen former governors, members of Congress, and other current and former party leaders revealed widespread apprehension about Trump’s standing six months out from the election.

Many fret that Trump’s hopes are now hitched to the pandemic; others point to demographic changes in once-reliably red states and to the challenge of running against a hard-to-define Democratic opponent who appeals to a wide swath of voters. The concerns give voice to an assortment of recent battleground state polling showing Trump struggling against Biden.

There are certain to be plenty of momentum shifts before the election, especially in such a volatile political environment. Trump enjoys a vast resource advantage and his campaign has only begun going after Biden with sustained advertising — an effort that isn't yet fully reflected in public polls, his advisers said. This past week, the campaign circulated a memo to supporters saying that Trump had closed a once-substantial national gap.

And throughout 2016, many Republicans thought he wouldn't win.

But that hasn’t quelled GOP fears, even in some traditionally friendly states.

Georgia hasn’t gone for a Democratic presidential nominee since 1992. But last week, Republicans released two internal surveys showing a neck-and-neck race, one of which had Biden narrowly ahead.

“Georgia is absolutely at risk for Republicans in 2020 — up and down the ballot, everything is in play. The data from previous elections shows this. It didn’t happen overnight — Democrats have been making gains for years in Georgia,” said Republican State Leadership Committee President Austin Chambers, who has deep experience in Georgia politics and recently released a memo warning the party to take the state seriously.
Chambers said he's confident Trump will ultimately prevail. But concern within the state GOP has been growing, particularly because of the the state's changing demographics and fast-growing Atlanta suburbs, which turned sharply against Republicans in 2018. Former GOP Sen. Saxby Chambliss noted that white suburban women have long been a “major key to Republican victories” in Georgia but broke from the party in 2018.

“Trump will need a significant turnout from them and he needs their vote,” Chambliss said.

It's a similar story in Arizona. Public polling over the course of the spring has consistently shown Biden ahead, and a recent private GOP survey had the former vice president with a small lead. Though Democrats haven’t won Arizona in a presidential election since Bill Clinton in 1996, the party flipped four statewide offices in 2018.

“It’s already baked-in that it will be a close election in Arizona from top to bottom,” said Kirk Adams, a former state House speaker and ex-chief of staff to Republican Gov. Doug Ducey. If anyone is just now starting to feel "concern because of the president’s current standing, it means they haven’t been paying attention.”

 If these Republicans are warning Trump could lose, it's because he continues to be losing in GOP polling and has been for months now. It's only going to get worse for Trump.

Unfortunately, it's going to get worse for us, too.


Related Posts with Thumbnails