GOP Lawmakers: Corrupt, or Cowed?

As Donald Trump continues to build an ever-expanding morass of lies and misrepresentations; and as he continues to name-call, bully, and hurl veiled threats at those who oppose (or hint at opposing) him, GOP lawmakers, along with Trump’s base, seem to support him with increasing and inexplicable fervor. Even in the face of an impeachment inquiry, as evidence of Trump’s abuse of office mounts and witness testimony corroborates the original whistleblower’s story, Donald Trump insists that he did nothing wrong, and Republican lawmakers, even with nothing to support their stance, back him up, disparaging anyone who disagrees. 

One can only conclude that either the GOP lawmakers are just as corrupt as their leader, or, that they have found themselves in a position that makes them nervous about their own future if they don’t pay full allegiance to Trump. 

It’s too painful to imagine that every last one of our Republican lawmakers is thoroughly corrupt, and only slightly less painful to imagine that this scenario is closer to the truth for many of them:

The rest of the world: Why do you stay with him? He’s lied, he’s cheated, he bullies you, he’s hit you more than once…..

GOP Lawmakers: None of that is true! Everything’s fine. It’s great.

The rest of the world: What are those bruises?

GOP Lawmakers: Oh, that was a misunderstanding. I shouldn’t have provoked him. Things are fine now.

The Rest of the world: You need to leave him.

GOP Lawmakers: But I need him! He just gets mad sometimes, that’s all. But when things are good, they’re really, really good.

The rest of the world: But don’t you see? He’s isolated you and the kids.

GOP Lawmakers: It doesn’t matter. He’s all we need.

The rest of the world: What about the example to the kids?

GOP Lawmakers: What do you mean? He’s a great example. Things are fine. Really. Trust me.

The rest of the world: Why do you keep defending him? Please leave him. You do owe it to yourself and the kids.

GOP Lawmakers: He didn’t mean it. Things are a little rough right now, but he’ll come through. He said he would. You don’t know him like I do.

The rest of the world: We can’t support this relationship. We’re here for you, but please don’t wait until it’s too late…

GOP Lawmakers: But I’m afraid. Where would I go? How would I support myself? What if I can’t make it on my own? ………. Oh, Just forget what I siad. I really shouldn’t be talking about him that way, he’s actually a really good guy. He just gets mad sometimes. He needs me. I need him. Really, I shouldn’t say bad things about him. Things are fine. They’re great. Really.

Top GOP lawmakers speak after House passes impeachment inquiry resolution | Fox News [2019-10-31]

Under pressure to defend Trump, GOP lawmakers decry House impeachment inquiry | PBS NewsHour [2019-10-24]

Subpoenas for Trump Financial Records Upheld

President Trump recently lost two lawsuits challenging subpoenas for financial records from several financial institutions. On Monday, May 20, Washington, D.C. federal judge Amit Mehta ruled in favor of the U.S. House of Representatives, who requested Trump’s financial records from his accounting firm, Mazars LLP. Later in the week, New York Judge Edgardo Ramos rejected Trump’s request to block subpoenas from Deutsche Bank and Capital One, requiring them to comply with Congress’ requests. Some other institutions have already complied with the subpoenas. 

The lawsuits put forth this past week by Trump appear to be aimed at stalling or stopping Congress’ various investigations into Trump’s affairs. The issues being investigated include Trump’s tax returns; various financial dealings, including his Washington hotel; security clearances for members of his family; and policy decisions Trump has made. Trump has refused to cooperate with any of the investigations, calling them “political” and lacking legislative purpose. 

Trump’s attorneys hold that Congress simply wants to “turn up something that Democrats can use as a political tool against the president now and in the 2020 election.”

But many see the swiftness of both judges’ rulings to uphold the subpoenas as an indicator of the weakness of Trump’s legal cases. This strengthens speculation that Trump will ultimately lose. 

House Oversight Committee Chair Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), called Mehta’s decision a “slam dunk.”

Previously, many progressive members of Congress had been looking to initiate impeachment proceedings in order to pursue criminal investigations. But these victories provide support for Congress’ investigations into possible criminal activity by Trump, reducing or eliminating the need for impeachment proceedings, as they make legal progress.

Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), House Judiciary Committee Chair, who had been urging House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to open impeachment proceedings, agrees that Congress’ victories this past week have made the argument for impeachment “much weaker.” 

Wells Fargo and TD Bank have already turned over documents to the House Financial Services Committee, with “a few thousand” coming from Wells Fargo and “a handful” coming from TD Bank. Congress has subpoenaed a total of nine financial institutions for financial records pertaining to Donald Trump.

Federal judge sides with Congress, ordering Trump to turn over financial records | CBS This Morning [2019-05-21]

Report: Wells Fargo, TD Bank have turned Trump’s financial records over to the House | Fox News [2019-05-22]