We wrote last week about Richard Burr and Thom Tillis’s cadre of failings, two men who, if we believe their muddled justifications, must be two of the more myopic senators this state has ever sent to Washington, D.C.
Their arguments for acquitting President Donald Trump, almost a sure thing at this point, only make sense if you’re reading directly from the Republican National Committee’s messaging or if you’re one of Fox News’ inculcated masses.
Otherwise, the president has hardly mustered a defense against the claims that he withheld U.S. aid to Ukraine for his own political gain, just one of a number of impeachable allegations made against the president, a president credibly accused of a campaign finance cover-up and sexual misconduct by a couple dozen women in his lifetime.
Beyond that, a new editorial from Capitol Broadcasting Company says our senators—who both voted against allowing witnesses into Trump’s impeachment trial—joined their GOP cohorts in the Senate in failing to even bluff at offering a fair process.
A reminder, however, that it could be argued impeachment was never about convincing the Republican Party, which has tied its fate irrevocably to Trump. It is centrally about convincing the American public.
From CBC’s editorial:
Take note of what North Carolina’s senators said last week as they rejected hearing from witnesses in the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.
From Sen. Richard Burr who leads the Senate’s Intelligence Committee:
- “The hearsay that John Bolton or ANYBODY else may bring to this???? is irrelevant because even if the president said this, it does not rise to the level of removal from office, which is a sacred thing because the American people have duly elected him.”
- “Alan Dershowitz said it very well last (Monday) night, ‘You blew it, House managers.’ The articles you’ve brought don’t rise to the level of removal from office.”
- “I personally feel thateven if they invited witnesses and witnesses confirmed, yes, the president had a quid-pro-quo or something like this, if it doesn’t rise to the level of removal from office then why would we put the American people, the institution, through this process,when we know what the outcome is going to be at the end of the day.”
From Sen. Thom Tillis:
- “They don’t have the information. It’s a sham impeachment. It’s a waste of people’s time and people in North Carolina are getting tired of it.”
- “They don’t have a case. … It should be dismissed based on the lack of evidence and lack of process,” Tillis said on former Gov. Pat McCrory’s talk show.
- “I keep on going back to, I don’t characterize the President’s conversations any more than I do any other member of the Senate,” Tillis said Friday when the Senate voted.
Tillis seems to forget that Trump stopped witnesses and documents in the House proceedings. How can anyone conclude that there is a “lack of evidence” when you vote to not hear it?
So Burr says the president did it, but it is not impeachable. Tillis says the President did not do it; that there is a lack of evidence and the whole thing is a sham.
Burr and Tillis, jurors who are sworn to “do impartial justice,” voted NOT to hear any witnesses.
We’ve been watching, listening and following the Senate impeachment trial – which really has only been opening and closing statements. REAL trials in the United States include the basics: Calling witnesses who testify and are cross-examined under oath along with the introduction of evidence that seek to prove or exonerate the accused.
Do Burr and Tillis believe the president is free to repeat his Ukraine caper? Is it that Trump can do anything he wants? Do they agree with the absurd logic of Alan Dershowitz: “If a president does something which he believes will help him get elected in the public interest, that cannot be the kind of quid pro quo that results in impeachment.”
Burr and Tillis have violated their oaths. This is a trial without evidence.