White House and Republicans discuss impeachment trial

With senators as jurors, this is like jury tampering on steroids


The Washington Post reported today that “a group of Republican senators and senior White House officials met privately Thursday to map out a strategy for a potential impeachment trial of President Trump, including rapid proceedings in the Senate that could be limited to about two weeks, according to multiple officials familiar with the talks.”

“The prospect of an abbreviated trial is viewed by several Senate Republicans as a favorable middle ground — substantial enough to give the proceedings credence without risking greater damage to Trump by dragging on too long,” the Post continued.

There were six Republican senators in attendance: Lindsey Graham, (SC), Mike Lee (Utah), Ron Johnson (Wis.), John Neely Kennedy (La.), Ted Cruz (Tex.) and Tom Cotton (Ark.). White House attendees included: White House counsel Pat Cipollone; acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney; senior adviser and Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner; and counselor Kellyanne Conway.

Earlier this month I wrote about Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s comment, “I will say I’m pretty sure how it’s likely to end,” McConnell said to reporters. “If it were today, I don’t think there’s any question — it would not lead to removal.” https://wordpress.com/block-editor/post/around-the-block.com/244

Based on that statement, and given that in an impeachment trial, senators are the jury, I wrote, “that leads to the obvious question: If the Senate trial is really a trial, wouldn’t McConnell be challenged for cause as he’s actually gone on the record, publicly, that he is sure how the trial will end…in an acquittal. Doesn’t that sound like a juror who “is unable to reach a fair verdict?”

Now, we have six additional senators who are actually plotting with defendant Trump’s legal and political team on how to conduct the trial. Don’t they sound like jurors who should be disqualified as well? Including McConnell, that makes seven disqualifications leaving the vote to the remaining 93: 46 Republican/47 Democrat or Independents, which is still a quorum. And by my math, two-thirds of 93 is 62, which would be the number of votes necessary for removal.

While this won’t happen, it should; 15 Republican converts is a lot easier than the 20 that would be required with a full Senate.

Can you imagine the outcomes if John Gotti, Al Capone, the Rosenbergs, the Menendez brothers, Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer…well you get the point…were able to collude with the jury before their trials? Do you think the judges at those trials would have stepped in?

But wait, maybe the presiding judge in the Senate trial will do the right thing. Who is that? Chief Justice John Roberts? Never mind.  

Note: the defendants listed above are for illustrative purposes only. The use of their names does not suggest I am comparing them to defendant Trump in any way.

Published by Ted Block

Ted Block is a veteran “Mad Man,” having spent 45+ years in the advertising industry. During his career, he was media director of several advertising agencies, including Benton & Bowles in New York and Foote, Cone and Belding in San Francisco; account management director on clients as varied as Clorox, Levi’s and the California Raisin Advisory Board (yes, Ted was responsible for the California Dancing Raisins campaign); and regional director for Asia based in Tokyo for Foote, Cone where he was also the founding president of FCB’s Japanese operations. Ted holds a Bachelor’s degree in communications from Queens College and, before starting in advertising, served on active duty as an officer on USS McCloy (DE-1038) in the U.S. Navy. Besides writing Around the Block, Ted is also a guest columnist for the Palm Beach Post.

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