Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 01-22-2020, 01:35 AM
Nobody is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Oregon
Posts: 11,552

Senate trial witnesses


When talking about witnesses Republicans want to get people like Joe and Hunter Biden so they can try and make the Bidens look corrupt and so justify what Trump did.

But let's say that the Democrats say something along the line of, "We're fine with you subpoenaing Hunter Biden* if we can subpoena John Bolton." (or Mick Mulvaney, or take your pick).

Now this question is obviously a guess, but do you think that the possible damning evidence someone like Bolton could give would overcome the Republican's attempts to use Hunter to confuse and obfuscate the facts? Would it be a wash? Or would it be a victory for the Republicans.

This assumes that the White House doesn't stonewall and allows whoever's subpoenaed to appear before the Senate.

As for me, regardless of who the Democrats got, even Bolton, I would expect a lot of claims of executive privilege. If the lawyers for the Democrats think that they could get damning information despite those claims, I think it would be worth it. Otherwise not.



* I'm excluding Joe because in addition to being pointless, it would take him off the campaign trail. And even though he's not my choice for the primaries, I don't want to help the Republicans in any way.
__________________
End of Line.
  #2  
Old 01-22-2020, 07:33 AM
Ravenman is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 27,680
Bolton plus Rudy plus Mick for Hunter seems fair to me.
  #3  
Old 01-22-2020, 07:39 AM
UltraVires is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Bridgeport, WV, US
Posts: 16,435
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ravenman View Post
Bolton plus Rudy plus Mick for Hunter seems fair to me.
3 for 1. How about a 1 for 1?
  #4  
Old 01-22-2020, 07:45 AM
Lamoral's Avatar
Lamoral is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Location: Fenario
Posts: 3,168
It's not going to happen. The Democrats are banging their heads against a brick wall here and it's only going to make them look even MORE incapable of getting what they want. When they asked the candidates in the last debate if they felt that Trump might appear "vindicated" in the wake of this impeachment and whether they thought it would make the election more of an uphill battle, they all shrugged it off very cavalierly. But they're wrong, IMO.
  #5  
Old 01-22-2020, 07:51 AM
septimus's Avatar
septimus is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 20,812
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
3 for 1. How about a 1 for 1?
Is this for "fairness"? Bizarre. Especially since it isn't Hunter who is on trial. Especially especially since Hunter's guilt or absence thereof is irrelevant to the impeachment charges.

GOP behavior, as well as comments by their supporters, remind me of 4th-graders squabbling on a playground.
  #6  
Old 01-22-2020, 08:13 AM
UltraVires is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Bridgeport, WV, US
Posts: 16,435
Quote:
Originally Posted by septimus View Post
Is this for "fairness"? Bizarre. Especially since it isn't Hunter who is on trial. Especially especially since Hunter's guilt or absence thereof is irrelevant to the impeachment charges.

GOP behavior, as well as comments by their supporters, remind me of 4th-graders squabbling on a playground.
Of course it matters. If Hunter Biden is guilty of violating the FCPA, then that is evidence that Trump was doing his job to take care the the laws are faithfully executed. Even if he is not guilty, Trump can still investigate. And he can do it how he deems fit, not how posters on the SDMB deem fit.
  #7  
Old 01-22-2020, 08:27 AM
Lance Turbo is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Asheville, NC
Posts: 4,587
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
Of course it matters. If Hunter Biden is guilty of violating the FCPA, then that is evidence that Trump was doing his job to take care the the laws are faithfully executed.
Trump choosing not use the legitimate investigative tools at his disposal and instead trying to bribe Zelensky to smear Biden with taxpayer money is proof that he was not doing his job to take care that the laws are faithfully executed even if Biden is guilty. In fact, it's worse if either Biden guilty.

Good news for Trump is that this has been thoroughly investigated and it is clear that neither Biden is guilty of anything.
  #8  
Old 01-22-2020, 08:30 AM
BeepKillBeep is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Canada
Posts: 3,027
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
Of course it matters. If Hunter Biden is guilty of violating the FCPA, then that is evidence that Trump was doing his job to take care the the laws are faithfully executed. Even if he is not guilty, Trump can still investigate. And he can do it how he deems fit, not how posters on the SDMB deem fit.
Out of curiosity, do you think Trimp has anything wrong during his presidency? Is so, then what things do you think he's done wrong?
  #9  
Old 01-22-2020, 08:35 AM
iiandyiiii's Avatar
iiandyiiii is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 36,813
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
Of course it matters. If Hunter Biden is guilty of violating the FCPA, then that is evidence that Trump was doing his job to take care the the laws are faithfully executed.
No it's not, not even close. If Trump was concerned about law-breaking by a US citizen, he would have referred this to US law enforcement. There's no legitimate reason for asking a foreign government -- especially one known for corruption -- to announce an investigation into a US citizen political rival.

Quote:
Even if he is not guilty, Trump can still investigate. And he can do it how he deems fit, not how posters on the SDMB deem fit.
He didn't investigate. That's the whole point. He tried to pressure a foreign government (and one known for corruption) to announce an investigation into a US citizen political rival.
  #10  
Old 01-22-2020, 08:43 AM
guizot is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: An East Hollywood dingbat
Posts: 8,929
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
Of course it matters. If Hunter Biden is guilty of violating the FCPA, then that is evidence that Trump was doing his job to take care the the laws are faithfully executed. Even if he is not guilty, Trump can still investigate. And he can do it how he deems fit, not how posters on the SDMB deem fit.
That's like a cop on trial for planting fake "evidence" distracting the jury by going on endless character assassinations of the "suspect."

"Well, see? He was a bad guy! So didn't he deserve it?"
  #11  
Old 01-22-2020, 08:52 AM
Left Hand of Dorkness's Avatar
Left Hand of Dorkness is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: at the right hand of cool
Posts: 42,224
Username/post title combo.

I'm fine with Hunter Biden being called, because it's irrelevant, and it can further demonstrate the "LOOK A MONKEY" tactics used by the Republicans. On the other hand, getting Bolton and Giuliani to testify is key.
  #12  
Old 01-22-2020, 09:02 AM
Ravenman is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 27,680
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
3 for 1. How about a 1 for 1?
Bolton, Rudy and Mick obviously have firsthand knowledge of events that would have probative value. Who knows, maybe it is exculpatory.

Other than your political bias, by what measure do you judge that two of these witnesses should not testify?

ETA: also, I think you need to pick a theory of why Hunter is bad and stick with it for more than six seconds. It started off as Hunter being the one who was paid obscene amounts of money for REASONS!!!! and now you're saying that Hunter was bribing some foreign company. Come on. Seriously, this is the Trumpist version of the pee tape: the Red Hats have it in their mind that Hunter must be up to no good, yet there's no evidence of it. How well as the hunt for the pee tape gone? In some respects, better than the hunt for evidence of Biden corruption, I suppose.

Last edited by Ravenman; 01-22-2020 at 09:07 AM.
  #13  
Old 01-22-2020, 09:07 AM
iiandyiiii's Avatar
iiandyiiii is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 36,813
Tactically, I don't care if Biden testifies. There's no legitimate reason for it, but it's politics, and this is a political process, so if that's what it takes to get Bolton, then fine with me. And I couldn't care less if it hurts him during the primary.
  #14  
Old 01-22-2020, 09:32 AM
BigT's Avatar
BigT is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: "Hicksville", Ark.
Posts: 37,132
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
Of course it matters. If Hunter Biden is guilty of violating the FCPA, then that is evidence that Trump was doing his job to take care the the laws are faithfully executed. Even if he is not guilty, Trump can still investigate. And he can do it how he deems fit, not how posters on the SDMB deem fit.
So it matters if Hunter Biden is guilty, but, even if he's not guilty, Trump didn't do anything wrong. Think about that for a minute.

If Trump didn't do anything wrong whether Biden is guilty or not, then you have just admitted that Biden's guilt is irrelevant to the trial. And you are correct.

Where you err is in the part you take for granted--that Trump was doing his job investigating. The evidence we have shows Trump trying to withhold Congressionally approved aid to Ukraine contingent on Ukraine coming up with something against Hunter Biden. That's not an investigation. That's usurping the power of Congress and paying Ukraine to find or make up stuff to help him win a political election.

The President cannot do as he sees fit, any more than anyone else. He has constitutional restrictions. He has to follow the law. And the allegations are that he did not do so. The actual transcript of the call confirms

None of this has anything to do with Hunter Biden.

Last edited by BigT; 01-22-2020 at 09:33 AM.
  #15  
Old 01-22-2020, 09:34 AM
Robot Arm is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Medford, MA
Posts: 23,693
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ravenman View Post
Bolton, Rudy and Mick obviously have firsthand knowledge of events that would have probative value. Who knows, maybe it is exculpatory.
Yeah, if Trump is innocent, then Republicans (and Trump himself) should be anxious to get Bolton, et al., to testify and exonerate him.
  #16  
Old 01-22-2020, 09:40 AM
Elendil's Heir is offline
SDSAB
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: 221B Baker St.
Posts: 88,163
Mitch thought witnesses were great back in '99, if that's what the House managers wanted: https://www.cnn.com/videos/politics/...sot-es-vpx.cnn

Now remind me what party the President was a member of back then, and what party the House managers were...?
  #17  
Old 01-22-2020, 09:55 AM
Jophiel's Avatar
Jophiel is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Chicago suburbia
Posts: 19,771
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lamoral View Post
It's not going to happen. The Democrats are banging their heads against a brick wall here and it's only going to make them look even MORE incapable of getting what they want. When they asked the candidates in the last debate if they felt that Trump might appear "vindicated" in the wake of this impeachment and whether they thought it would make the election more of an uphill battle, they all shrugged it off very cavalierly. But they're wrong, IMO.
Counterpoint: The refusal of the GOP to allow any witnesses (and amendments to the trial rules, etc) makes it look more and more like a show trial. Which it is, of course, but it gives Democrats additional ammunition against vulnerable Republican senators to say that they refused to hear witnesses or accept evidence, etc. The GOP strategy during the House proceedings were to conflate them with a criminal trial and bemoan the lack of due process, etc. Now the Democrats will go a similar route and ask how McConnell's trial can possibly be considered legitimate when they refused basic things like witnesses.

Obviously Trump isn't going to be removed from office by this crop of senators but Democrats can blunt the "vindication" angle by leaning into the kangaroo court proceedings.
  #18  
Old 01-22-2020, 10:09 AM
UltraVires is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Bridgeport, WV, US
Posts: 16,435
This "referral to U.S. law enforcement" argument: Trump IS the U.S. law enforcement. He is under no obligation to follow the precedents of prior presidents. He is under no obligation for follow best practices as defined by anyone. He is under no obligation to respect the burgeoning increase of the federal government with teat suckling one to another. He IS the executive branch.

If he wants to ask my drunk brother in law to investigate a bank robbery, that's his job, and the way he does it is to his discretion, much like how Obama used his discretion to only punish certain illegal immigrants. The Prez is the Prez.
  #19  
Old 01-22-2020, 10:14 AM
Lamoral's Avatar
Lamoral is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Location: Fenario
Posts: 3,168
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jophiel View Post
Counterpoint: The refusal of the GOP to allow any witnesses (and amendments to the trial rules, etc) makes it look more and more like a show trial. Which it is, of course, but it gives Democrats additional ammunition against vulnerable Republican senators to say that they refused to hear witnesses or accept evidence, etc.

.......

Now the Democrats will go a similar route and ask how McConnell's trial can possibly be considered legitimate when they refused basic things like witnesses.
The optics of the scenario still favor the Republicans. They refused to allow witnesses because they can. They still look like the brick wall and the Democrats still look like eggs thrown against it.
  #20  
Old 01-22-2020, 10:18 AM
Jophiel's Avatar
Jophiel is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Chicago suburbia
Posts: 19,771
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lamoral View Post
The optics of the scenario still favor the Republicans. They refused to allow witnesses because they can. They still look like the brick wall and the Democrats still look like eggs thrown against it.
Right. The question is how to frame the optics. Nothing is going to make McConnell hold a real trial but they can make it look more obvious that nothing will make McConnell hold a real trial. Quietly acquiescing isn't going to get them anything. "It's a sham trial and we... uhh... sat quietly through it and went along..."

Last edited by Jophiel; 01-22-2020 at 10:19 AM.
  #21  
Old 01-22-2020, 10:25 AM
iiandyiiii's Avatar
iiandyiiii is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 36,813
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
This "referral to U.S. law enforcement" argument: Trump IS the U.S. law enforcement. He is under no obligation to follow the precedents of prior presidents. He is under no obligation for follow best practices as defined by anyone. He is under no obligation to respect the burgeoning increase of the federal government with teat suckling one to another. He IS the executive branch.

If he wants to ask my drunk brother in law to investigate a bank robbery, that's his job, and the way he does it is to his discretion, much like how Obama used his discretion to only punish certain illegal immigrants. The Prez is the Prez.
This is just shockingly harmful bullshit. The President isn't God-Emperor -- he actually has to follow the law. And he swore an oath to put the interests of the country over his own. Bribery is illegal, both offering and soliciting.

It's not credible that Trump did this for any purpose other than his own personal political benefit. No more than arguing that the women Cosby raped consented to being drugged and having their bodies used by him.
  #22  
Old 01-22-2020, 10:26 AM
Jophiel's Avatar
Jophiel is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Chicago suburbia
Posts: 19,771
From Political Wire (but subscription only column):
Quote:
Republicans are making a massive political gamble. Four recent polls show the public overwhelmingly backs having witnesses:

CNN: 69% to 26%
Washington Post/ABC News: 71% to 22%
Quinnipiac: 66% to 17%
Morning Consult/Politico: 57% to 24%
So Democrats continue to press for witnesses, Republicans continue to block, Democrats say "Why are Republicans refusing the will of the American people regarding conducting a fair trial?" Eventually more and more info will come out as well through other channels and each time is an opportunity to ask a GOP senator up for re-election why he or she refused to hear from these witnesses when they could have learned this critical information during the trial instead of after.

Last edited by Jophiel; 01-22-2020 at 10:29 AM.
  #23  
Old 01-22-2020, 10:35 AM
Jas09 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: St. Louis, MO
Posts: 5,742
It doesn't matter, in the end, because even if 4 GOP Senators vote to subpoena witnesses, Trump will just claim executive privilege and block them from testifying. The Senate won't wait around for the courts to adjudicate the issue any more than the House did. Any deal of "Biden for Bolton"(which I think Democrats are smart to avoid anyways) is moot since there is 0% chance Trump will let Bolton testify.

McConnell will probably even allow a few of them (Collins and Gardner in particular) to vote in favor of witnesses to give them some cover in their re-election races (assuming they feel that they can survive the wrath of the right in their states). The path here is pretty much set (barring new evidence, of course) and for McConnell it's just a matter of how to protect Trump while throwing his at-risk Senators a bone here and there to make them seem "deliberative and serious".
  #24  
Old 01-22-2020, 10:37 AM
iiandyiiii's Avatar
iiandyiiii is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 36,813
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jas09 View Post
It doesn't matter, in the end, because even if 4 GOP Senators vote to subpoena witnesses, Trump will just claim executive privilege and block them from testifying. The Senate won't wait around for the courts to adjudicate the issue any more than the House did. Any deal of "Biden for Bolton"(which I think Democrats are smart to avoid anyways) is moot since there is 0% chance Trump will let Bolton testify.

McConnell will probably even allow a few of them (Collins and Gardner in particular) to vote in favor of witnesses to give them some cover in their re-election races (assuming they feel that they can survive the wrath of the right in their states). The path here is pretty much set (barring new evidence, of course) and for McConnell it's just a matter of how to protect Trump while throwing his at-risk Senators a bone here and there to make them seem "deliberative and serious".
Bolton can just show up... he's not a WH employee. I don't know if he would, but he could, and I'm not sure if there's anything the WH could do to stop him.
  #25  
Old 01-22-2020, 10:58 AM
Ike Witt's Avatar
Ike Witt is online now
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Lost in the mists of time
Posts: 15,199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elendil's Heir View Post
Mitch thought witnesses were great back in '99, if that's what the House managers wanted: https://www.cnn.com/videos/politics/...sot-es-vpx.cnn

Now remind me what party the President was a member of back then, and what party the House managers were...?
You can't spell hypocrisy without GOP.
  #26  
Old 01-22-2020, 11:00 AM
Wrenching Spanners is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: London
Posts: 769
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robot Arm View Post
Yeah, if Trump is innocent, then Republicans (and Trump himself) should be anxious to get Bolton, et al., to testify and exonerate him.
Does the same principal apply to Biden (either one or both) testifying? They should be eager to exonerate themselves, right?
  #27  
Old 01-22-2020, 11:03 AM
Lance Turbo is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Asheville, NC
Posts: 4,587
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
This "referral to U.S. law enforcement" argument: Trump IS the U.S. law enforcement. He is under no obligation to follow the precedents of prior presidents. He is under no obligation for follow best practices as defined by anyone. He is under no obligation to respect the burgeoning increase of the federal government with teat suckling one to another. He IS the executive branch.

If he wants to ask my drunk brother in law to investigate a bank robbery, that's his job, and the way he does it is to his discretion, much like how Obama used his discretion to only punish certain illegal immigrants. The Prez is the Prez.
Your extremely weak argument relies on the idea that Trump asked Zelensky to investigate something. Whether or not it is a legitimate use of executive power to ask a foreign government to investigate a US citizen is not relevant because that's not a thing that happened.

The 'deliverable' for this scheme was for Zelensky to publicly say things to bolster two debunked conspiracy theories. The first being the completely nonsensical idea that Joe Biden pressured Ukraine to fire a prosecutor for the purpose of enriching Hunter Biden. The other being that it was Ukraine, as opposed to Russia, that attacked the US electoral process in 2016. Neither of these conspiracy theories stand up to even the slightest scrutiny.

I understand why you want to shift the battleground to something like, "Is it illegal for the President to order an investigation?" But the President did not order an investigation in this case so that question is moot.

The question we're dealing with here is, "Is it a high crime for the President to bribe a foreign government to smear a political rival using taxpayer money?"
  #28  
Old 01-22-2020, 11:04 AM
Jophiel's Avatar
Jophiel is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Chicago suburbia
Posts: 19,771
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrenching Spanners View Post
Does the same principal apply to Biden (either one or both) testifying? They should be eager to exonerate themselves, right?
They're not on trial.
  #29  
Old 01-22-2020, 11:10 AM
CarnalK's Avatar
CarnalK is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 19,323
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
This "referral to U.S. law enforcement" argument: Trump IS the U.S. law enforcement. He is under no obligation to follow the precedents of prior presidents. He is under no obligation for follow best practices as defined by anyone. He is under no obligation to respect the burgeoning increase of the federal government with teat suckling one to another. He IS the executive branch.
.
He's explicitly not allowed to withhold funds as a bargaining tool in this case. You don't have a king, you know.
  #30  
Old 01-22-2020, 11:12 AM
Wrenching Spanners is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: London
Posts: 769
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jophiel View Post
They're not on trial.
They’re not in impeachable offices. Also, the principle of exoneration doesn’t apply only to trials. The Biden’s have certainly been accused of wrongdoing. Shouldn’t they be anxious to exonerate themselves from those accusations of wrongdoing?
  #31  
Old 01-22-2020, 11:17 AM
Jophiel's Avatar
Jophiel is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Chicago suburbia
Posts: 19,771
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrenching Spanners View Post
They’re not in impeachable offices. Also, the principle of exoneration doesn’t apply only to trials. The Biden’s have certainly been accused of wrongdoing. Shouldn’t they be anxious to exonerate themselves from those accusations of wrongdoing?
If they are, there's plenty of avenues available to them besides participating in a sham trial run by people desperate to tear them down. So I don't know why they'd choose that option. If they're feeling "anxious", there's always 20/20.
  #32  
Old 01-22-2020, 11:18 AM
Lance Turbo is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Asheville, NC
Posts: 4,587
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrenching Spanners View Post
They’re not in impeachable offices. Also, the principle of exoneration doesn’t apply only to trials. The Biden’s have certainly been accused of wrongdoing. Shouldn’t they be anxious to exonerate themselves from those accusations of wrongdoing?
They have already been exonerated by even the most casual examination of the accusations against them.

There is not even a coherent narrative in which one of them came anywhere near committing a crime in this matter.
  #33  
Old 01-22-2020, 11:30 AM
Wrenching Spanners is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: London
Posts: 769
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jophiel View Post
If they are, there's plenty of avenues available to them besides participating in a sham trial run by people desperate to tear them down.
So you're basically saying that Robot Arm was wrong in post #15. Thought so. Thanks.
  #34  
Old 01-22-2020, 11:31 AM
Jophiel's Avatar
Jophiel is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Chicago suburbia
Posts: 19,771
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrenching Spanners View Post
So you're basically saying that Robot Arm was wrong in post #15. Thought so. Thanks.
No, but you seem more interested in winning silly word games so go on with your bad self victory
  #35  
Old 01-22-2020, 11:55 AM
Robot Arm is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Medford, MA
Posts: 23,693
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrenching Spanners View Post
Does the same principal apply to Biden (either one or both) testifying? They should be eager to exonerate themselves, right?
Exonerate themselves from what? Neither is on trial and there's no evidence of anything to accuse them of. To the extent that there's innuendo ("they're paying Hunter Biden a lot of money, what's up with that?") that's already been countered by facts.

And, lest we forget, the impeachment trial (and this thread) are about Trump's guilt or innocence, not the Bidens'.
  #36  
Old 01-22-2020, 11:59 AM
Jophiel's Avatar
Jophiel is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Chicago suburbia
Posts: 19,771
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robot Arm View Post
And, lest we forget, the impeachment trial (and this thread) are about Trump's guilt or innocence, not the Bidens'.
No, no... Trump's interest in full witness participation in a trial to determine if he's removed from office is exactly the same thing as whether or not Hunter Biden wants a bunch of GOP hacks to grill him just to prove some nebulous point. No possible way to have one without the other.
  #37  
Old 01-22-2020, 12:21 PM
Wrenching Spanners is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: London
Posts: 769
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lance Turbo View Post
They have already been exonerated by even the most casual examination of the accusations against them.

There is not even a coherent narrative in which one of them came anywhere near committing a crime in this matter.
The accusation against Hunter Biden is that he engaged in a massive conflict of interest, receiving large amounts of money to work in an industry where he had no experience, in a country with corruption problems, for a company under investigation for corruption, while his father was the most prominent international figure involved in addressing Ukrainian corruption. That accusation is 100% justified and there is no rational argument against it. Hunter Biden was hired into a corrupt situation because of who he knew, and the person he knew that he had the most influence with was Joe Biden. The question is if Hunter was just a prominent, connected person whose presence could be used by Burisma to influence others, or if he personally engaged in efforts to lobby politicians and other involved parties in ways that crossed the line into outright corruption. I agree there’s no smoking gun that Hunter Biden engaged in criminal corruption. However, he certainly put himself into a place where his actions should be investigated.

The accusation against Joe Biden is that he was aware of his son’s conflict of interest, which Joe’s own aides have substantiated is true, and that he took no actions to avoid improper interactions with his son. That’s not illegal, but it certainly is unsavoury, especially for someone running for President. It also leads to a connect-the-dots situation where, if an investigation found that Hunter Biden had committed corrupt actions, Joe Biden would be implicated as a subject of, and possible participant in, those actions.

Unless/until either of the Bidens is called to testify before the Senate, this is a digression from the OP’s purpose for the thread, which is to have an ongoing discussion of the impeachment trial. If you want to discuss the Biden’s in relation to the impeachment trial, feel free to revive the thread from last year. (I might actually have time to start responding again.)
  #38  
Old 01-22-2020, 12:27 PM
Wrenching Spanners is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: London
Posts: 769
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robot Arm View Post
And, lest we forget, the impeachment trial (and this thread) are about Trump's guilt or innocence, not the Bidens'.
Then why were the Bidens mentioned in the first sentence of the OP?
  #39  
Old 01-22-2020, 12:30 PM
kayaker's Avatar
kayaker is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Rural Western PA
Posts: 33,820
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nobody View Post
When talking about witnesses Republicans want to get people like Joe and Hunter Biden
What did the Bidens witness?
  #40  
Old 01-22-2020, 12:36 PM
Wrenching Spanners is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: London
Posts: 769
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrenching Spanners View Post
Unless/until either of the Bidens is called to testify before the Senate, this is a digression from the OP’s purpose for the thread, which is to have an ongoing discussion of the impeachment trial. If you want to discuss the Biden’s in relation to the impeachment trial, feel free to revive the thread from last year. (I might actually have time to start responding again.)
Missed edit window. I meant to say that I don't want to hijack this thread into a rehash of the Biden testimony thread. The "ongoing discussion of the impeachment trial" is another thread. This thread is obviously about Senate witnesses. Sorry if I'm sowing confusion.
  #41  
Old 01-22-2020, 12:41 PM
Lance Turbo is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Asheville, NC
Posts: 4,587
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrenching Spanners View Post
The accusation against Hunter Biden is that he engaged in a massive conflict of interest, receiving large amounts of money to work in an industry where he had no experience, in a country with corruption problems, for a company under investigation for corruption, while his father was the most prominent international figure involved in addressing Ukrainian corruption.
That is not what conflict of interest means.
  #42  
Old 01-22-2020, 01:20 PM
Ann Hedonia's Avatar
Ann Hedonia is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 3,785
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
This "referral to U.S. law enforcement" argument: Trump IS the U.S. law enforcement. He is under no obligation to follow the precedents of prior presidents. He is under no obligation for follow best practices as defined by anyone. He is under no obligation to respect the burgeoning increase of the federal government with teat suckling one to another. He IS the executive branch.

If he wants to ask my drunk brother in law to investigate a bank robbery, that's his job, and the way he does it is to his discretion, much like how Obama used his discretion to only punish certain illegal immigrants. The Prez is the Prez.
Cite, counselor ?

Law enforcement officers get in legal trouble ALL THE TIME for using their LEO powers to pursue personal vendettas. Just because you’re a cop, even if you are Chief of Police, you can’t just investigate anyone you feel like.
  #43  
Old 01-22-2020, 02:01 PM
Ravenman is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 27,680
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
This "referral to U.S. law enforcement" argument: Trump IS the U.S. law enforcement. He is under no obligation to follow the precedents of prior presidents. He is under no obligation for follow best practices as defined by anyone. He is under no obligation to respect the burgeoning increase of the federal government with teat suckling one to another. He IS the executive branch.

If he wants to ask my drunk brother in law to investigate a bank robbery, that's his job, and the way he does it is to his discretion, much like how Obama used his discretion to only punish certain illegal immigrants. The Prez is the Prez.
You're a lawyer. You're certainly aware of the appointments clause in the Constitution. Are you asserting that Presidents can direct private individuals to exercise government power without being appointed to a position in government?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrenching Spanners View Post
The accusation against Hunter Biden is that he engaged in a massive conflict of interest, receiving large amounts of money to work in an industry where he had no experience, in a country with corruption problems, for a company under investigation for corruption, while his father was the most prominent international figure involved in addressing Ukrainian corruption.
It's quite clear that you are misusing the term "conflict of interest," but just for shits and giggles, please explain what specific responsibilities Hunter Biden had that came into conflict in this arrangement, and whether you see those as legal, fiduciary, ethical, or other responsibilities.

Bonus points: is the family member of any politician allowed to accept employment at all? Why isn't all employment by family members of politicians -- say, Mitch McConnell's wife serving as a cabinet secretary, or vice versa, Elaine Chao's husband serving as a senator, also a conflict of interest?
  #44  
Old 01-22-2020, 02:02 PM
Lance Turbo is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Asheville, NC
Posts: 4,587
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann Hedonia View Post
Cite, counselor ?

Law enforcement officers get in legal trouble ALL THE TIME for using their LEO powers to pursue personal vendettas. Just because you’re a cop, even if you are Chief of Police, you can’t just investigate anyone you feel like.
Please don't go down this rabbit hole with him. It's a distraction.

It's not relevant whether or not it is legal for Trump to order an investigation in to any old thing (it isn't). He didn't order an investigation in this particular case so the question is moot.
  #45  
Old 01-22-2020, 02:56 PM
Jas09 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: St. Louis, MO
Posts: 5,742
Quote:
Originally Posted by iiandyiiii View Post
Bolton can just show up... he's not a WH employee. I don't know if he would, but he could, and I'm not sure if there's anything the WH could do to stop him.
This may be true, but from what I've read it's far from settled law. I have no doubt that Trump will try. And I can imagine a possible world in which the GOP Senators in question agree to a "Bolton for Biden" deal and then also vote to circumscribe Bolton's testimony along lines agreeable to Trump/McConnell.

I also have very little confidence in the notion that Bolton is ready to blow up the Trump world - I think he just wants to be in the news before his book launches.
  #46  
Old 01-22-2020, 08:59 PM
Nobody is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Oregon
Posts: 11,552
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
Of course it matters. If Hunter Biden is guilty of violating the FCPA, then that is evidence that Trump was doing his job to take care the the laws are faithfully executed. Even if he is not guilty, Trump can still investigate. And he can do it how he deems fit, not how posters on the SDMB deem fit.
So if the Republicans agreed to let the Democrats subpoena someone of their choice, providing that Hunter Biden also got subpoenaed, who do you think that would help more?
__________________
End of Line.
  #47  
Old 01-22-2020, 09:17 PM
Nobody is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Oregon
Posts: 11,552
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robot Arm View Post
Yeah, if Trump is innocent, then Republicans (and Trump himself) should be anxious to get Bolton, et al., to testify and exonerate him.
Although, if allowed to testify, Bolton would probably turn out like the so called "moderate Republicans", I.E. say the right things when it doesn't matter, then toe the party line when it does

On the other hand, just the though of Bolton testifying has trump nervous and I almost think that alone would be worth trying to get him.

NPR
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trump
He knows some of my thoughts. He knows what I think about leaders. What happens if he reveals what I think about a certain leader and it's not very positive and that I have to deal on behalf of the country? It's going to be very hard. It's going to make the job very hard. He knows other things. And I don't know if we left on the best of terms. I would say probably not, you know? And so you don't like people testifying when they didn't leave on good terms, and that was due to me, not due to him.
__________________
End of Line.
  #48  
Old 01-22-2020, 09:24 PM
Nobody is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Oregon
Posts: 11,552
Quote:
Originally Posted by kayaker View Post
What did the Bidens witness?
Wa wa wa waaaa
__________________
End of Line.
  #49  
Old 01-22-2020, 09:29 PM
Nobody is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Oregon
Posts: 11,552
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrenching Spanners View Post
Then why were the Bidens mentioned in the first sentence of the OP?
Because I'm talking about a hypothetical offer, where, to get a witness or two the Democrats want, they agree to a witness or two the Republicans want. And I'm curious which party people think such a deal would benefit more, if either, or if they think it would be a wash? What's your opinion?
__________________
End of Line.
  #50  
Old 01-23-2020, 10:33 AM
MikeF is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,689
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrenching Spanners View Post
Does the same principal apply to Biden (either one or both) testifying? They should be eager to exonerate themselves, right?
Exonerate themselves from what? Are they on trial, here?
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:27 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright © 2019 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017