Patterico's Pontifications


Aftermath: Republicans Launch Attack On Principled Colleague For His Principled Stand

Filed under: General — Dana @ 11:22 am

[guest post by Dana]

In a follow-up to Mitt Romney’s impeachment vote, it’s interesting to see the Trump loyalists go after him. Instead of lauding one of their own for standing on his principles and voting his conscience, especially knowing the fallout would be hard and swift, Romney has not just been attacked by Trump, which we expected, he is also being attacked by fellow Republicans who clearly want to stay in the good graces of their boss:

A state representative called Thursday for U.S. Sen. Mitt Romney to be censured for his vote to convict President Donald Trump for abuse of power, the same day Romney came to Utah’s Capitol to meet privately with Republicans leaders of the Legislature to explain his action.

The censure resolution pairs with a bill filed last week that would give Utah voters the ability to recall their U.S. senators that is attracting even more attention now that Romney broke with his party. Utah House Speaker Brad Wilson, R-Kaysville, also filed a resolution “paying tribute” to Trump.


The sponsor of the censure resolution, Rep. Phil Lyman, R-Blanding, said he didn’t want Utah’s relationship with Trump to be “damaged by the actions of Sen. Romney.” …

“I wanted to send a message that Utah supports President Trump,” Lyman said. “I didn’t want that message to be lost.”

According to the report, the GOP state Senate was not interested in pursing the resolution, but would rather move on from the impeachment.

Also, Rep. Matt Gaetz, bootlicker from Florida, has called for Romney to be expelled from the Senate Republican caucus:

“If I were [Senate Majority Leader] Mitch McConnell I would expel Mitt Romney from the Republican caucus,” Gaetz said in an interview on Fox News’ Lou Dobbs Tonight. “He is not acting like a Republican. He has shown no interest in working with this administration, or with Republicans who are eager to seize the opportunity of the Trump presidency.”

“Frankly, I don’t know what the difference is between Mitt Romney and a Democrat at this point,” Gaetz continued.

And here are some more jabs coming from Republicans:

Florida Senator Rick Scott tweeted that his colleague “is wrong”. “His decision to buy into [Democratic Congressman] Adam Schiff’s partisan charade is disappointing. And he will ultimately be judged by the voters of Utah.”

Florida Republican Congressmen Matt Gaetz of Florida and Lee Zeldin of New York both called Mr Romney a “sore loser”.

“Mitt Romney absolutely despises that Donald Trump was elected POTUS & he was not,” tweeted Mr Zeldin.

“The sore loser mentality launched this sham impeachment & corruptly rigged & jammed it through the House. It looks like Schiff recruited himself a sore loser buddy on the GOP side to play along.”

Sam Nunberg, a former adviser to Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, rhetorically asked if Mr Romney was “making a last ditch effort to become” the Democratic 2020 nominee.

Anyway, Romney was prepared for the fallout:

Speaking with The New York Times podcast “The Daily,” Romney said he expects “unimaginable” consequences for his vote, adding that he does not yet know what they will be.

“My personal and political and team affiliation made me very much not want to convict,” he said. “I mean, I want to be with my colleagues in the Senate. I don’t want to be the skunk at the garden party. I don’t want to have the disdain of Republicans across the country.”

I was unsurprised that two-faced Democratic leaders would do a quick turn-around and sing Romney’s praises after the vote – a politican they happily smeared to win an election. It would have been a shock to see Republicans attack Romney for choosing fidelity to his conscience over loyalty to Trump and the Party, if I didn’t already understand that Republican talk about values, principles, and foundational beliefs doesn’t amount to a hill of beans these days. But then you already knew that, too.


“Maybe People Should Pay for That”: Witness Against Trump to Be Booted Out of White House

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:47 am

Let the purge begin! (Actually, it has already been in motion for a while).

Remember this fella?

I also recognize that my simple act of appearing here today, just like the courage of my colleagues who have also truthfully testified before this committee, would not be tolerated in many places around the world. In Russia, my act of expressing concern to the chain of command in an official and private channel would have severe personal and professional repercussions, and offering public testimony involving the president would surely cost me my life.

I’m grateful to my father for his brave act of hope 40 years ago and for the privilege of being an American citizen and public servant where I can live free of fear for mine and my family’s safety. Dad, I’m sitting here today in the U.S. Capitol talking to our elected professionals. Talking to our elected professionals is proof that you made the right decision 40 years ago to leave the Soviet Union and come here to the United States of America in search of a better life for our family. Do not worry. I will be fine for telling the truth.

Define “fine.” Sure, nobody has yet carried out the death threats they have made against you. But in Donald Trump’s administration, “I will be fine” doesn’t mean no retaliation:

Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, a key witness in President Donald Trump’s impeachment inquiry, has told colleagues he expects to leave the White House’s National Security Council in the coming weeks to return to the Defense Department, a source tells CNN.

Vindman said his departure from the council could come as soon as this month, the source said. That would be well ahead of the scheduled end of his time at the White House, which was originally slated to last until July. Vindman was appointed to his post in July 2018 and was asked to stay for two years.

The source did not say whether Vindman’s departure was voluntary or at the behest of the White House, though aides inside the West Wing had speculated it could come soon as the impeachment trial was over.

Trump has continued to fume about Vindman’s presence at the National Security Council since he testified, according to people familiar with the matter. Vindman’s duties were significantly curtailed after he testified — as were his those of his brother, an attorney for the council, according to sources familiar with the situation.

So we’re not the Soviet Union, where they kill people for this stuff. We’re Soviet-lite. We just make sure they’re not around any more. Also jettisoned before their time: Jennifer Williams, a special adviser to Mike Pence.

News of Vindman’s likely departure follows another witness, Jennifer Williams, who left Vice President Mike Pence’s office two months ahead of schedule.

If you can eliminate and make an example of anyone who tried to reveal your corruption, it makes it easier to do your corruption.

Next stop: the whistleblower! Retaliation against him would be against the law, of course … but perhaps you had forgotten: Donald Trump is above the law.

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