15 thoughts on “News/Politics 10-31-19

  1. The super secret identity no one can know.

    Except everyone in DC already does, so just spill it already. Name the latest traitor. This fraud has more conflicts of interests than Joe Biden.


    “For a town that leaks like a sieve, Washington has done an astonishingly effective job keeping from the American public the name of the anonymous “whistleblower” who triggered impeachment proceedings against President Trump — even though his identity is an open secret inside the Beltway.

    More than two months after the official filed his complaint, pretty much all that’s known publicly about him is that he is a CIA analyst who at one point was detailed to the White House and is now back working at the CIA.

    But the name of a government official fitting that description — Eric Ciaramella — has been raised privately in impeachment depositions, according to officials with direct knowledge of the proceedings, as well as in at least one open hearing held by a House committee not involved in the impeachment inquiry. Fearing their anonymous witness could be exposed, Democrats this week blocked Republicans from asking more questions about him and intend to redact his name from all deposition transcripts.

    RealClearInvestigations is disclosing the name because of the public’s interest in learning details of an effort to remove a sitting president from office. Further, the official’s status as a “whistleblower” is complicated by his being a hearsay reporter of accusations against the president, one who has “some indicia of an arguable political bias … in favor of a rival political candidate” — as the Intelligence Community Inspector General phrased it circumspectly in originally fielding his complaint.

    Federal documents reveal that the 33-year-old Ciaramella, a registered Democrat held over from the Obama White House, previously worked with former Vice President Joe Biden and former CIA Director John Brennan, a vocal critic of Trump who helped initiate the Russia “collusion” investigation of the Trump campaign during the 2016 election.

    Further, Ciaramella (pronounced char-a-MEL-ah) left his National Security Council posting in the White House’s West Wing in mid-2017 amid concerns about negative leaks to the media. He has since returned to CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia.

    “He was accused of working against Trump and leaking against Trump,” said a former NSC official, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss intelligence matters.

    Also, Ciaramella huddled for “guidance” with the staff of House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, including former colleagues also held over from the Obama era whom Schiff’s office had recently recruited from the NSC. (Schiff is the lead prosecutor in the impeachment inquiry.)

    And Ciaramella worked with a Democratic National Committee operative who dug up dirt on the Trump campaign during the 2016 election, inviting her into the White House for meetings, former White House colleagues said. The operative, Alexandra Chalupa, a Ukrainian-American who supported Hillary Clinton, led an effort to link the Republican campaign to the Russian government. “He knows her. He had her in the White House,” said one former co-worker, who requested anonymity to discuss the sensitive matter.

    Documents confirm the DNC opposition researcher attended at least one White House meeting with Ciaramella in November 2015. She visited the White House with a number of Ukrainian officials lobbying the Obama administration for aid for Ukraine.

    With Ciaramella’s name long under wraps, interest in the intelligence analyst has become so high that a handful of former colleagues have compiled a roughly 40-page research dossier on him. A classified version of the document is circulating on Capitol Hill, and briefings have been conducted based on it. One briefed Republican has been planning to unmask the whistleblower in a speech on the House floor.

    On the Internet, meanwhile, Ciaramella’s name for weeks has been bandied about on Twitter feeds and intelligence blogs as the suspected person who blew the whistle on the president. The mainstream media are also aware of his name.”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. More….

    And more traitors…..


    “Rush Limbaugh knows the whistleblower’s name. He says everyone in Washington does.

    For obvious reasons, it’s in the Democrats’ best interests to keep the name under wraps. And no Republican wants to be the first to report the name. Rush said, “They’re just trying to figure out a way to get it in the public. Kind of like everybody knew about the Steele dossier but nobody knew how to get it into the public, so they ran a scam on Trump to tell him about the golden showers story and, voila, that bogus dossier makes it into the news.”

    Earlier today, I wrote a post about the most problematic part of Lt. Col. Alexander S. Vindman’s testimony. Speaking before Schiff’s House Intelligence Committee on Tuesday, he said he had shared read-outs of the call with others afterward. He had included this in his prepared remarks as well. Vindman wrote that he had shared with “a very small group of properly cleared national security counterparts with a relative need to know.” I questioned if a member of this group might be the whistleblower. Or if not, perhaps a member of this group told the whistleblower.

    When Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) heard Vindman’s statement, he immediately asked him how many others he shared this information with. At that point, according to Jordan who spoke to reporters following the hearing, Schiff said, “No, no, no, no, we’re not going to let him answer that question.”

    Schiff may think he can keep the whistleblower out of this. And the reporters accusing Jim Jordan of trying to arrive at the whistleblower’s name through the process of elimination may also believe they can keep it quiet. But if everyone in Washington knows it, it can’t remain private forever.

    Nor should it.

    Anyway, Rush said, Vindman “may be the guy — we don’t know — Vindman may be the guy that told the whistleblower. So Vindman would actually be silent whistleblower number 1. The whistleblower we all know about would be whistleblower number 2. He’s the guy that called Schiff. And they were all working with Schiff. And Schiff doesn’t want that to come out.””


    Now why do you suppose the Shifty One would be trying to hide all this?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. When JFK was Trump.

    When getting advice from men whose job it is to fight, you will always get advice that says fight.


    “When JFK Was Trump

    In the rush to criticize the current president, we risk forgetting the lesson of the Kennedy years: There is danger in relying too heavily on the “wisdom” of the elders.”

    “Have we ever had a president before this one who so disdains the advice and policies of those who have spent their lives working for the government he leads? Have we ever had a chief executive who is so skeptical of the judgments of career diplomats and military leaders, who rejects the advice of top intelligence leaders, who trusts his family more than those with a lifetime of experience?

    Yes we have. His name was John Fitzgerald Kennedy.

    Kennedy and Donald Trump are hardly similar men, nor are they similar presidents. JFK’s 14 years of experience in the House and Senate, his knowledge of history and his prudence in public (as opposed to private) matters make that notion absurd. But in one way they are alike: Throughout Kennedy’s presidency, he came more and more to distrust the received wisdom of the “permanent government” or “deep state” or “military-industrial complex” or whatever term seems apt today. In his case, that skepticism may have saved the planet from nuclear annihilation.

    During the tumult of the Trump years, generals like H.R. McMaster and Jim Mattis have been glorified as steadying influences in the room—military wise men whose opinions on everything from Syria to NATO Trump has recklessly disregarded. And that is true. Trump deserves censure for his refusal to listen to the advice of experienced hands, and his White House can be faulted for jettisoning decades worth of scientific, economic and military expertise.

    But in the reflexive rush to criticize Trump, we risk forgetting the lesson of the Kennedy years: There is danger in relying too heavily on the “wisdom” of the elders. A president with a well-honed resistance to the certainties of experts and a strong sense of history can be a crucial protection against disaster. Unlike Kennedy, Trump possesses only one of these traits. But we shouldn’t let the current president’s lapses reset our expectations for civilian control over the military and foreign affairs.

    JFK campaigned in 1960 as a conventional Cold Warrior, warning that the United States was falling behind the Soviet Union, arguing that a (nonexistent) “missile gap” was threatening our security, embracing the idea that the fall of any nation to communism would threaten surrounding nations—the domino theory. But he had also come to office with a strong belief that the power of nationalism was changing the dynamic of world politics. He’d been skeptical about France’s ability to hold Indochina in the early 1950s. And in his first days in office, Kennedy rejected the advice of his military advisers to place troops in Laos—advice that included the use of tactical nuclear weapons.

    His skepticism about the military grew steadily. After the Bay of Pigs fiasco in 1961, he said, “Those sons of @#$%$# with all the fruit salad just sat there, nodding, saying it would work.” He was furious when it took hours for the army to deploy troops to deal with rioting at the University of Mississippi when the first black student was admitted. And in the closest brush with nuclear war ever—the 1962 Cuban missile crisis—Kennedy repeatedly refused to strike at Soviet missile installations on the island.

    His judgment may well have made the difference between war and peace. But the military and intelligence heavyweights saw it otherwise. “The greatest defeat in our history,” Air Force Chief Curtis LeMay called it. Former Secretary of State Dean Acheson—the ultimate “wise man” who had confidently assured JFK that the Soviets would not respond to a military strike in Cuba—called the peaceful resolution of the crisis a matter of “luck” and later said, “We have to face the fact that the United States has no leader.” And Allen Dulles, the longtime CIA chief cashiered by JFK after the Bay of Pigs, said in retirement: “Kennedy is weak, not a leader.”

    Kennedy, in turn, was sufficiently worried about his military advisers that he encouraged director John Frankenheimer to make a movie out of Seven Days in May, a novel about an attempted military coup, and even vacated the White House for a weekend to accommodate the movie’s shooting schedule.

    By June 1963, Kennedy was signaling his intention to break with the Cold War consensus. In a speech at American University, he called for a new approach toward the Soviet Union. While condemning its totalitarian system, he said: “Let us not be blind to our differences, but let us also direct attention to our common interests and the means by which those differences can be resolved. And if we cannot end now our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity. For, in the final analysis, our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this small planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s future. And we are all mortal.””


  4. Why do I have the feeling that even this they will use to benefit Dems in their enforcement of the new policy?

    Past experience, that’s why.


    “Twitter Bans All Political Advertisements (Facebook Hardest Hit)”

    “Twitter used to be the free-speech wing of the free-speech party but things have changed. Today, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey announced the company was banning all political ads. That includes candidate ads but also issue ads by third parties. He made the announcement in a Twitter thread explaning his reasons.”

    “Several points about this. First, I wonder how effective this will be. Twitter is banning ads but not “grassroots” expressions of support for candidates. So what’s to stop some unscrupulous candidate from paying people to manufacture that grassroots support? So long as Twitter accounts remain anonymous to users, how do you know that Tweet praising Candidate A wasn’t put there by a member of his or her staff? You’re taking the direct ad money out of the equation but money can still be used to circumvent this ban and probably will be.

    Second, this is a pretty direct broadside against Facebook. Mark Zuckerberg has been under pressure from AOC and many on the left for his stance on candidate ads. Just today, the NY Times published an opinion piece by Thomas Friedman saying Zuckerberg was “Breaking America.”

    This is all about money for Zuckerberg, but he disguises his motives in some half-baked theory about freedom of the press — so half-baked that he couldn’t explain it even when he knew he would be asked about it by a congressional committee…

    Just once I’d like to see Zuckerberg look into a camera and say: “I will take Facebook stock down to $1 if that is what it takes to ensure that we’re never again an engine for the perversion of democracy in any country, starting with my own. Facebook is not going to accept any more political ads until we have the resources to fact-check them all.”

    I doubt he’ll do that, though, because his priorities are profits and power, and he seems quite ready to hurt American democracy to get them.

    It’s probably a coincidence that on the day the Times published this piece asking Zuckerberg to say this, Dorsey came out and said it. But there’s no doubt Jack is aware of the pressure on Facebook and this is a way to improve the image of his brand, especially with the left. I wonder if Zuckerberg will have a sudden change of heart this weekend and decide to follow suit.”


  5. More on the latest partisan fraud masquerading as a whistleblower.


    “The anti-Trump “whistleblower,” whose complaint against President Trump spurred the Democrats’ impeachment inquisition, is a 33-year-old registered Democrat who worked under Vice President Joe Biden and former CIA Director John Brennan, RealClearInvestigation’s Paul Sperry reported Wednesday afternoon.

    Eric Ciaramella, the anti-Trump operative, also worked with Alexandra Chalupa, a Democratic National Committee opposition researcher who led the effort to link the Trump campaign to Russia during the 2016 election.

    Chalupa, a Ukrainian-American, “met with top officials in the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington in an effort to expose ties between Trump, top campaign aide Paul Manafort and Russia,” according to Politico. The DNC paid Chalupa $412,000 from 2004 to June 2016.

    The DNC operative also reportedly partnered with a notorious convicted domestic terrorist-turned-activist known as the “Speedway Bomber” to dig up dirt on Trump.

    Chalupa in 2016 said she “felt there was a Russia connection” and shared her findings with both the DNC and Hillary Clinton’s campaign, Politico reported.

    A former co-worker told Sperry that Ciaramella had a working relationship with Chalupa in the White House.

    “He knows her. He had her in the White House,” the co-worker told Sperry.

    A CIA officer specializing in Russia and Ukraine, Ciaramella was detailed over to the National Security Council from the agency in the summer of 2015, working under Susan Rice, President Obama’s national security adviser. He also worked closely with the former vice president.

    Federal records show that Biden’s office invited Ciaramella to an October 2016 state luncheon the vice president hosted for Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi. Other guests included Brennan, as well as then-FBI Director James Comey and then-National Intelligence Director James Clapper.

    Several U.S. officials told RealClearInvestigations that the invitation that was extended to Ciaramella, a relatively low-level GS-13 federal employee, was unusual and signaled he was politically connected inside the Obama White House.

    Former White House officials said Ciaramella worked on Ukrainian policy issues for Biden in 2015 and 2016, when the vice president was President Obama’s “point man” for Ukraine. A Yale graduate, Ciaramella is said to speak Russian and Ukrainian, as well as Arabic. He had been assigned to the NSC by Brennan.

    He was held over into the Trump administration, and headed the Ukraine desk at the NSC, eventually transitioning into the West Wing, until June 2017.

    “He was moved over to the front office” to temporarily fill a vacancy, said a former senior White House official, where he “saw everything, read everything.”

    Ciaramella left his White house National Security Council post in mid-2017 amid concerns about negative leaks to the media, and has since returned to CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia.

    “He was accused of working against Trump and leaking against Trump,” a former NSC official told Sperry.

    According to a former NSC co-worker, Ciaramella was behind the false narrative that Russian President Vladimir Putin directed Trump to fire former FBI director James Comey.”


    Dirty little traitors. The whole lot of ’em.


  6. For those just needing to catch up on the objective news basics; from World Magazine’s Sgt. Friday “just-the-facts” Sift this morning:


    House makes impeachment drive official

    The U.S. House of Representatives passed a resolution on Thursday formalizing the impeachment investigation of President Donald Trump. Lawmakers mostly stuck to party lines, with no Republicans voting for the resolution. Two Democrats, Reps. Collin Peterson of Minnesota and Jeff Van Drew of New Jersey voted against it. Independent Rep. Justin Amash of Michigan voted for the resolution.

    Why are they taking this vote now? House committees have investigated the president since September, but Democratic leaders have so far resisted a floor vote. The vote pins down all lawmakers, including those from swing districts, on the impeachment issue. Republicans and the White House have criticized Democrats for investigating without setting up official rules, arguing they made the process unduly secretive.

    “With today’s vote, Speaker [Nancy] Pelosi and the Democrats have done nothing more than enshrine unacceptable violations of due process into House rules,” White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said.

    The resolution empowers the House Intelligence Committee to hold televised hearings and release witness transcripts. The House Judiciary Committee will be responsible for drafting articles of impeachment. ..


  7. Yes, but now R’s get to cross examine, present their own evidence, and directly and publicly challenge the many falsehoods.

    Plus, now those D Reps in purple places have to own their vote. 🙂

    This benefits Trump and the WH more than it does Democrats, all the way around. Now all the world will see when their witnesses are destroyed on cross examination, something D’s have hidden thus far, along with the transcripts to prove it, something else they’ve thus far selectively edited before leaking to the press.

    Sunshine will show this for the circus it is. 🙂


  8. Oh wait.

    It appears that yet again, the Dems have rigged the game.


    I should have known better than to think they might do the right thing.


  9. Figures.

    Crooked pieces of trash. Once again, they rig the game.


    “House Democrats plan to pass their Trump impeachment resolution Thursday. Its full description is: “Directing certain committees to continue their ongoing investigations as part of the existing House of Representatives inquiry into whether sufficient grounds exist for the House of Representatives to exercise its Constitutional power to impeach Donald John Trump, President of the United States of America, and for other purposes.”

    A better and much shorter title would be the Adam Schiff Empowerment Act.

    The resolution gives Rep. Schiff, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, far-reaching power over the Trump impeachment proceedings. Speaker Nancy Pelosi remains the ultimate authority, of course, but, like a chairman of the board choosing a chief executive officer, she has picked Schiff to run the show. And in the resolution, Democrats will give him near-total control.

    The first thing the resolution will do is give the impeachment investigation to the Intelligence Committee. Until now, three committees — Intelligence, Oversight, and Foreign Affairs — have been conducting impeachment interviews. Going forward, Oversight and Foreign Affairs will be out of the interview picture in favor of Intelligence.

    Among other things, that would mean that some Republicans who have been persistent critics of the process but who have been allowed into depositions by virtue of their membership in other participating committees — two examples are Oversight Committee members Rep. Jim Jordan and Rep. Mark Meadows — will no longer be allowed in the interview room.

    “It’s totally one-sided,” Meadows told me Wednesday evening. “They can continue to do secret depositions. They have noticed depositions for John Bolton and others next week in anticipation of a positive vote Thursday. All it does is limit the committees that will be involved in the depositions.”

    The resolution also gives Schiff total control over whether transcripts of depositions already completed and those yet to be done will be made public. “The chair is authorized to make publicly available in electronic form the transcripts of depositions conducted by the [Intelligence Committee] in furtherance of the investigation,” says the resolution. That means Schiff can release transcripts, but it does not mean he must release transcripts.

    “It says they are authorized to disclose depositions,” Meadows noted, “which means they can pick and choose which depositions they will release.” Perhaps Schiff will release them all. But he doesn’t have to.

    The resolution would also give Schiff the authority to call and conduct public hearings on impeachment. Schiff will control the witnesses. Although there has been some discussion about whether Republicans will have the right to call witnesses, the resolution only gives the ranking Republican on the Intelligence Community, Rep. Devin Nunes, the right to ask Schiff to call a witness.

    “To allow for full evaluation of minority witness requests, the ranking minority member may submit to the chair, in writing, any requests for witness testimony relevant to the investigation,” the resolution says. “Any such request shall be accompanied by a detailed written justification of the relevance of the testimony of each requested witnesses to the investigation.” Republicans will get nothing that Schiff does not approve.

    “There’s no guarantee we can call any witnesses,” said Republican Rep. Brad Wenstrup, a member of the Intelligence Committee, in an interview Wednesday.

    “The rules the Democrats rammed through simply confirm the absolute control Schiff has been exercising this entire time,” Nunes said. “He shouldn’t be involved in impeachment at all since none of this has any intelligence component, but Pelosi obviously thinks Nadler is incompetent.””


  10. ————–


  11. ————–

    ““Speaker Pelosi’s vote on impeachment proceedings was pure political theater by Democrats. This has never been about a fair or transparent process, and their attempt to paint it that way is disingenuous. From the very beginning, they have blocked the American public and Members of Congress from viewing evidence behind closed doors while denying the White House the right to due process. Rather than passing USMCA for our farmers and ranchers, making tax cuts permanent for our families, or paying our troops, Democrats are fixated on removing our duly elected President from office by any means necessary. The resolution we voted on today does not provide for co-equal rights and it is certainly not bipartisan. This one-sided circus is a disgrace to our democracy.””


  12. https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/468246-senate-gop-shifts-tone-on-impeachment

    Senate GOP shifts tone on impeachment
    BY ALEXANDER BOLTON – 10/31/19 06:00 AM EDT


    While no Senate Republican has said the charges against Trump rise to the level of being an impeachable offense, many have expressed concern over the drip-drip of damaging revelations.

    Sen. Tim Scott (S.C.) was the latest GOP senator to express concerns Wednesday even though he argued that the House has yet to provide any evidence that would support actually removing Trump from office.

    Asked Wednesday if he had any concerns at all in light of recent reports on Trump’s efforts to pressure Ukraine, Scott said, “There’s lot of things that concern me.”

    But he added, “That’s not the question.”

    “The question on the table is impeachment and that’s the question we should get an answer to, and the answer so far is ‘For what would we impeach the president?’ And the answer is ‘I don’t see anything for that,’ ” he said.

    At the same time, Scott acknowledged there is pressure on Senate Republicans to take any impeachment articles seriously.

    “Everybody wants us to do the right thing. In order to do the right thing, we want to see all that there is,” Scott told reporters, explaining that he’s not ready to dismiss the House charges out of hand. …

    … It’s a more measured tone than Republicans used when the House was considering impeachment proceedings based on former special counsel Robert Mueller’s lengthy investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia in the 2016 presidential election and subsequent attempts to obstruct his investigation. …

    … On Wednesday, another blow against the president came when Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan, Trump’s nominee to serve as ambassador to Russia, testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that he was aware of an effort by Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal lawyer, to remove Marie Yovanovitch as the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine.

    Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), a member of the Foreign Relations Committee, on Wednesday said it would be “inappropriate” if Giuliani or anyone else spread misinformation to remove a U.S. ambassador.

    “I would be concerned if a U.S. ambassador anywhere in the world is the subject of a disinformation campaign directed from abroad or from any interest, for that matter,” he said. “That would be something I wouldn’t be happy about. That would be something I would find to be inappropriate.”

    Rubio also said it is important that he and his Senate colleagues carefully weigh the facts compiled by the House investigation.

    “It’s important for us to make decisions based on all of the facts taken in context and taken together,” said Rubio, who noted that all of the facts and evidence compiled by House investigators have yet to be shared with the Senate.


  13. Take it as seriously as the impeachment effort is.

    Not very.

    For what it’s worth, I don’t see this working out like they planned.

    And remember, the time frame here for when this moves to the Senate and the partisan charade gets exposed by R’s runs right up to and thru Super Tuesday. Until now anything Scott and company might find concerning are spoon fed leaks designed to do just that, concern the public. Only a sucker would fall for that. But even this 100% Dem controlled narrative isn’t working. This isn’t playing well in those states/areas now, at least according to this. How do you think the reaction goes when the Dems are exposed during the hot primary months by Senate R’s who will control it then?

    I think they’ve overplayed their already weak hand.


    “This morning the RNC emailed some poll data on impeachment–or, rather, a report on the data, since the raw results were not included. So I take this “breakdown of internal polling” with even more than the usual grain of salt. Still, I hope it’s right. The GOP polling was conducted between October 1 and October 24, focused on 17 “target states,” and sampled 3,400 likely voters. This last point is important, as most polls count all registered voters, if not anyone who answers the telephone.

    Despite Democrats’ Attacks, Support for President Trump Has Increased

    * In our 17 target states, President Trump’s approval has increased by 3 points since Pelosi announced this charade.

    * The President’s sky-high favorability among Republicans has actually increased, as well.

    More Americans Want Joe Biden Investigated Than President Trump

    * By a 5-point margin, more voters would like Joe and Hunter Biden investigated for their business dealings in Ukraine than support holding hearings to consider impeachment of President Trump.

    * Since March, Joe Biden’s image has taken a 31-point hit among Independents. A strong majority now view him unfavorably.

    Impeachment Not Popular In Target States

    * In our 17 target states, voters oppose Democrats’ efforts to remove President Trump from office by a 14-point margin.

    * Their support for hearings has dropped since the beginning of October.”


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