Wednesday, October 26, 2022

Last Call For Unimpeachable Facts

epublican leaders in Pennsylvania's GOP-controlled legislature says it will proceed with impeachment and removal of Philadelphia DA Larry Krasner for the heinous crime of executing prosecutorial discretion while being a progressive Democrat.

Pennsylvania Republicans announced Wednesday plans to impeach and potentially remove from office Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner, a national leader among progressive prosecutors who was overwhelmingly re-elected last year.

Krasner is not accused of committing a crime. Nor do his critics allege corruption. Instead, they accuse him of dereliction of duty for what they say is a failure to adequately enforce criminal laws, leading to rising crime rates and declining quality of life for Philadelphians.

The extraordinary move — the state Legislature has impeached only two officials in its entire history, in 1994 and 1811 — comes just two weeks before a midterm election in which Republicans have focused on crime while Democrats have highlighted threats to democracy from politicians willing to defy elections.

It also comes as progressive prosecutors and recent criminal justice reforms have faced blowback due to rising crime.

“I recognize the unprecedented nature of what must be done and am confident our members are up to the task,” Republican Rep. Martina White said at a news conference Wednesday announcing articles of impeachment at the state Capitol in Harrisburg.

Republicans control both chambers of the Legislature, but White is the only GOP member from Philadelphia, which is on pace to break last year’s record-setting homicide rate.

The rest hail from other, largely rural parts of the state.

“There should be a war on crime. But due to the failed vision and his idea of criminal justice, crime is allowed to wage war on the good people and the great beautiful city of Philadelphia," Pennsylvania House Majority Leader Kerry Benninghoff said of Krasner at the news conference.

Pennsylvania’s Constitution gives the Legislature broad power to impeach “all civil officers” for “any misbehavior in office,” though it has almost never exercised that authority.

It’s clear under the Constitution that 'misbehavior in office' is the standard,” said Republican Rep. Torren Ecker, when asked by reporters what impeachable offense Krasner had committed. “Failing to do his duty and uphold the law — that is the very definition of misbehavior.”

The Legislature is scheduled to recess the Wednesday before the Nob. 8 election, but Republican leaders said they will add extra days to the calendar if necessary to make sure an impeachment vote happens as soon as possible.

They insisted the move against Krasner and its timing is not about politics, but about the need to offer some relief to Philadelphians struggling against crime every day.

“Our caucus has been constantly concerned with crime. It has nothing to do with the election,” Benninghoff said.
Here's how we know that's bullshit.

Krasner traveled to Harrisburg Friday to try to meet with GOP leaders and protest the anticipated impeachment articles.

"This is an effort to impeach someone for political purposes who has done nothing corrupt and nothing illegal because they want to erase Philadelphia’s votes, straight up," he said. "They want to impeach our ideas."

Krasner noted that the state Legislature has taken no action against a Republican district attorney in western Pennsylvania's Somerset County who was arrested last year on rape charges (he has pleaded not guilty and a trial is expected in January) and then again this year in an alleged road rage incident targeting a witness in the first incident (he pleaded guilty to lesser charges).

"There is no effort whatsoever to even look at the possibility of an impeachment of this man," Krasner said of the Somerset prosecutor, who was suspended last year but is now suing the county for back pay because his lawyer argues he can only be terminated by impeachment.
A Republican who has actually committed crimes while in office?  Why would he be impeached?  Impeachment isn't for actually dealing with criminals, it's for using against Democrats.

It's for making liberalism illegal.

Our Little White Supremacist Domestic Terrorism Problem, Con't

The second of the Michigan state trials against the terrorist group that plotted the kidnapping and murder of Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has resulted in all three terrorists being convicted and facing decades in prison for their actions.
Three men have been found guilty by a Jackson County jury of materially aiding a terrorist and being a member of a gang as part of a plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

This verdict comes after a three-week trial where the Michigan Attorney General's Office had to prove that Paul Bellar, Joseph Morrison and Pete Musico provided aid to Adam Fox or Barry Croft, both of whom were convicted in an August federal trial of being ringleaders in the Whitmer kidnapping plot. Jurors spent two weeks listening to each side present testimony in the largest domestic terrorism case in a generation that has shed light on political extremism in Michigan.

It also was the first state trial connected to the Whitmer kidnapping plot allegations. Croft and Fox are appealing their convictions.

The jury spent about five hours deliberating before coming back with the verdict. They found Musico, 43; his son-in-law, Morrison, 27; and acquaintance Bellar, 22, guilty of providing material support to a terrorist, being a member of a gang and a felony weapons charge.

The men each face up to 42 years in prison — 20 years for the charges of providing material support and gang membership and an additional two years for a felony weapons charge. The gang membership sentence may run consecutively to other sentences. Sentencing for all three men is scheduled for Dec. 15.

Bellar looked down at the table as the verdict was read but had no visible response. His attorney, Andrew Kirkpatrick, said he was very nervous in the period leading up to the verdict and was practically hyperventilating in the elevator on the way up to the courtroom.

Morrison tested positive for COVID-19 Sunday and Musico showed symptoms, so neither was in the courtroom while the verdict was read. Over Zoom, both Musico and Morrison closed their eyes, and Morrison appeared to cry.
Not an ounce of sympathy, and I hope all three men get the maximum 42 year sentence. These terrorists -- convicted terrorists, I might add -- need to serve as a very public lesson to these MAGA white supremacist killers who want to assassinate their "political enemies".
More of this will be in the months ahead, however. We are only careening towards more political violence, not less.

The Big Lie, Con't

NBC finds that nearly two years later, the vast majority of Republicans remain election deniers who believe that the 2020 presidential election was stolen from Donald Trump, and the Joe Biden is not President.
New polling from NBC News shows just 22% of registered Republican voters believe in the legitimacy of Biden's election, with 65% viewing his election illegitimate.

That makes Republicans an outlier — overall, 60% of registered voters believe Biden's election was legitimate and 33% do not. One-hundred percent of Democrats and 74% of independents view his election as legitimate, along with a majority of white voters, voters of colors, independents, voters in cities and suburbs, as well as voters across all regions and age groups.

The only subgroups in the new poll that don't believe in the legitimacy of Biden's election are those who are correlated with stronger support for Republicans.

Just 19% of those who voted for former President Trump in 2020 believe that election was legitimate, along with 22% who want the GOP to win control of Congress this fall, 22% of white evangelicals, 34% of rural voters and 43% of white working-class voters.

Overall, confidence in Biden's election has stayed virtually stagnant since the Jan. 2021 poll. Democratic belief in the election's legitimacy rose 4% points from 96% to 100%, as the share of independents rose from 62% to 74%.

But Republicans remained steady — just 21% said in Jan. 2021 that Biden's election was legitimate, and 22% said so in the Oct. 2022 poll.
This is not a "both sides" issue. Republican election deniers are a direct thereat to American democracy. Two-thirds of Republicans don't believe Biden is legitimately President, which means they will support whatever GOP "remedies" to "stop the steal" they believe are necessary, up to and including voter intimidation, false election results, and violence. 

The problem isn't Trump. The problem isn't all the GOP election deniers running for office. The problem are the tens of millions of people denying the results of the 2020 election, and most likely the 2022 and 2024 elections as well.

And they will act accordingly.

We are nowhere near ready as a nation to deal with what's coming next month.
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