Trump Told Bolton to Help His Ukraine Pressure Campaign, Book Says

The president asked his national security adviser last spring in front of other senior advisers to pave the way for a meeting between Rudolph Giuliani and Ukraine’s new leader.

Comments: 249

  1. If this were a fair trial, game set and match for conviction and removal. But if Mitch McConnell has his way, we might even hear from John Bolton.

  2. @Mark Keller McConnell has no intention of allowing the public to hear any testimony that would be damaging to Trump. The Republican Trump supporters either already know-what everybody else knows-or just don't want to hear anything negative against their party. Not to worry-Trump will be empowered by his victory to outdo his previous behavior.

  3. @pat smith I fear you are correct and this is deadly frightening. IF this is allowed to proceed as it seems it is going to be, then our democracy is in peril. I guess I am preaching to the choir but it sure is disheartening to see that senators took an oath to hold up the truth and will not allow witnesses. AND what this will do to empower Trump, I hate to think. I cannot imagine how much worse this is going to get for our country.

  4. @Jorge "almost none of the testimony put on by the Democrat managers would be admitted into evidence under the FRE" Nope, this isn't a court trial, the federal rules of evidence do not apply. And the FRE wouldn't block much of the testimony anyway. Also, if this were under normal rules of evidence, Trump's failure to call witnesses with first hand knowledge would lead to an adverse inference as to what their testimony would be, almost certainly leading to a conviction.

  5. Watching senators reduce themselves To the magnitude of Santa’s elves Is sad to contemplate But unlike Watergate We have no one to blame but ourselves

  6. @Larry Greenfield Not 'Santa's elves' but the Devil's disciples!

  7. @Larry Greenfield the difference is we had Jennings, Brokaw and Cronkite every night pushing the same facts, now we have FOX pushing an alternate universe. So thats where the actual blame belongs..

  8. I have missed reading your poetic comments, Larry! As usual, you are spot on! Thanks!

  9. Don't worry folks. We don't need witnesses. Everything is fine.

  10. If Bolton truly wanted to do the right thing, he would have testified before the House, instead of saying he would testify before Senate under subpoena. He knew perfectly well the Senate was extremely unlikely to do so. He is not some sort of hero.

  11. @Steelmen It is almost 'irrelevant' what Bolton's motives may be-if he has information that is germane to the trial of Trump-and is willing/able to give that testimony-we should hear it. Unfortunately, the Republican leadership and 'die-hards' will not allow evidence or witnesses-at this point.

  12. @Steelmen Agreed. This is one book I will NOT purchase.

  13. @pat smith Even if they did it would still not be germane as the GOP has already decided their verdict. The man just pretty much shot someone on Main Street and the traitors to America are going to say he is innocent. It is such a shame that there are Americans who prop up such a horrible individual. They see him as some kind of god that is going to watch out for them. You can fool some of the people all the time and all the people some of the people all the time but you can fool all the trump supporters all the time.

  14. Whoever continues to leak these updates from the unpublished manuscript is playing a huge rule in the future of our democracy. The timing is such that it makes it almost impossible to ignore. Democrats everywhere thank you!

  15. @Hannah It is absolutely imperative to our continued Democracy/Republic for each of us to our part in helping Democrats get elected this cycle and retake the presidency and the Senate. Each of us must volunteer, donate and vote like our lives depend on it, to make this happen.

  16. @Hannah The problem is they are not under oath. They are doing a disservice if this proves to be Bolton seeking money and fame. FWIW I do think Bolton is probably telling the truth. I also think he is a perfect definition of a coward. He served and then he stabs.

  17. @John republican senators are under oath, administered by the Chief Justice. Please explain the value of oaths made by Republicans.

  18. If this were a fair trial, game set and match for conviction and removal. But if Mitch McConnell has his way, we might not even hear from John Bolton.

  19. With the very survival of American democracy in the balance, it's imperative that John Bolton hold a press conference at 12:30 p.m. EST today to regurgitate everything he knows about Trump's "drug deal" with Ukraine. With witness testimony and documents all but dead in the Senate trial, Bolton's candor is critical in forestalling the worst possible outcome: Trump's acquittal on both Articles of Impeachment. If God won't help us, perhaps Mr. Bolton will.

  20. @H. Clark Well, it’s 1pm now. Bolton is like the “tardy angel” that Edward Gibbons wrote about as Rome fell to the barbarians.

  21. The Republicans are dead set against hearing anymore evidence that might further incriminate the president. And they sure don't want to hear from John Bolton. It's time for Mr. Bolton to speak out. Today. Not tomorrow.

  22. True. But Parnas already told the press that Lindsay graham was involved even earlier, 2018. The entire administration knew trump was looking to smear Bidens and also punish Ukraine for supporting candidate Hillary. Lindsay graham is no saint. He is the opposite. If the entire administration is tainted they will do anything to cover up even as drip drip truth trickles with gravity.

  23. @petey tonei - that's the core issue, too many other people will go down if the truth gets out.

  24. @petey tonei Lol. Smearing an opponent is not a crime my friend. It’s called politics as usual.

  25. @Dean Robichaux " Smearing an opponent is not a crime my friend. " But abusing the power of your government office to do so is impeachable, my friend.

  26. What is Bolton's objective in not speaking up and simply giving an in-person interview to a news outlet or even to the Senate? Clearly, he has something to say. And clearly, this is the opportune time to say it. Does it really just come down to a mercenary interest to sell books? Then he's doing exactly what Trump and his cronies accused him of when they blow off his words. "He just wants to sell a book."

  27. @Amber In all likelyhood he wants to be called as a witness so he will not be accused of trying to sell his book and profiteering. However he does not want to overtly make it difficult for the Republican senators he has relationships with and share his views on foreign policy.

  28. @Ryan Thank you for explaining the logic!

  29. It's important to remember that Bolton is a proven liar with an ax to grind. Even Adam Schiff has said he can't be trusted. Take this with a grain of salt. Yes, Trump lies, but he's no match for Bolton in that department.

  30. @Paul Stenquist The drugs you are taking must be quite effective. It is very difficult to understand your "evaluation" of the den of thieves, and their veracity otherwise. With the story changing by the minute it also must be quite difficult to consistently come up with new explanations for obvious behavior.

  31. @Paul Stenquist . . .do you have documentation of Bolton's lies? It would be an argument if you did. Right now, what you are asserting is here-say and no more.

  32. @Paul Stenquist The simple solution exists. Ask for both gentelmen to testify under oath. Tried and proven million times before.

  33. And why does this even matter at this point? Republicans have decided that trump can do whatever he wants, whenever he wants, and they will ignore anything that says otherwise. Hear testimony from witnesses? Read relevant documents? Have a fair trial? Nonsense. Welcome to the dictatorship of a reality TV person. Never thought I'd live to see this day.

  34. @Stephanie: Stalin's show trials of the 40's at least had witnesses and a jury even though it became obvious that the verdict was in before--most of the time. As you and I obviously know and so should our Senators--Trump can't do anything he wants, when he wants, legal or illegal. I hope all the Republican Senators running this year are voted out of office with a high majority against them. Nothing will get done correctly until Mc is out of the Senate.

  35. @Stephanie It's important that the People hear testimony even if the Republicans refuse. It's especially important since the Republicans refuse. We The People need to know what the Republicans are so afraid of us learning.

  36. @Stephanie Hard to believe that just a few short years ago Trump was a game show host. Now he holds absolute power over one of the two main political parties. Never thought I'd see this.

  37. Unfortunately, too little, too late. Won't make a bit of difference to the Republican Senators. But Lamarr Alexander and other Republican Senators, who will not agree to hear Bolton or any other witnesses, and who have decided that Trump acted inappropriately but did not commit impeachable offenses, should put their money where there mouths are by declaring that even though they will vote against impeachment they do not support Trump's re-election. It might actually help the Senate retain its last shred of dignity.

  38. The House should subpoena them and if they don’t appear have the house sergeant at arms come get them. They can plead the 5th in front of the house or they can rot in jail. Let the courts sort it out later.

  39. Bolton needs to hit a microphone right now - meaning immediately - and spill it or history will judge him very harshly as one of the facilitators of the demise of our democracy. Even worse, he’ll be exposed as someone who compromised our system of government and his own integrity for book sales.

  40. @Gary Too late!

  41. The Senate may not want to hear from John Bolton but the overwhelming majority of the voters do. Time for an all out media blitz from Mr. Bolton letting everyone know (over and over again) just how awful and dangerous our current President is.

  42. @Jay Orchard Don't you get it? Go buy the book! You can have the inside story for some 30 bucks, March 17 . . .

  43. How exactly is an oath of impartiality executed by ignoring witnesses to the event in question?

  44. Cippilone, an officer of the court, was obliged to report the crime in progress; he didn’t of course and should be charged as a conspirator to commit extortion along with Trump, Mulvaney, Giuliani, Pence, Pompeo and all the other criminals. No wonder this disgraceful “attorney” argues (weakly) that no crimes were committed.

  45. @Painter33 I think the House can now subpoena Bolton next week if they want to.

  46. @Painter33 debar him. He should be recused from entering the trial room. Today. Bench him. Anyone listening!

  47. @Painter33 Charged by whom? The corrupt Dept of Justice? It is still difficult for people to grasp that we live in a banana republic. All components of our federal government controlled by Republicans are 100% corrupt.

  48. We need to hear from Bolton. Any senators (Murkowsky, Romney, Gardner, Alexander, etc.) wavering on this decision need to read former Senator Kennedy's 1965 "Profiles in Courage" and get some themselves. Perhaps we will be reading about them in 55 years!

  49. Correction: "...should read former Senator Kennedy's 1955 'Profiles in Courage' and get some themselves. Perhaps we will be reading about them in 65 years!"

  50. Eyes on the senate! The People deserve all three branches of government. That's one way to stop the autocratic slide. And then let's look at the supreme court, maybe add a few justices. Ah, things are looking up.

  51. Let Steyer and Bloomberg guarantee the profits Bolton might receive from the book, and let Bolton read aloud the most relevant criminal acts that Trump orchestrated in front of him on national TV. They claim that they want to sink DT, well get out the checkbook.

  52. @Lawrence I would want Steyer and Bloomberg to take a more direct approach - we should be asking them to spend their billions not only to oppose Trump, but also every single Republican Senator up for re-election.

  53. @Joyce Don't waste resources on unwinnable races. Less than ten seats are turnable, and some seats held will be difficult to keep.

  54. Do you know why this drip continues? Just let if out. I was hoping for witnesses but everyone knows why they will not allow them. We need a disclosure statement from each and every Congressman, President, VP and Cabinet members if they have relatives on foreign government payrolls. I get you folks are upset with Trump. I am too. But I'm equally as upset with Biden and his family that are obviously selling their position. Which is worse?

  55. @John . . .is it possible that having Hunter on the board gave our country an ear into meetings we otherwise would not have heard? Could there be a National Security reason he was on that board? Then it wouldn't necessarily be "favoritism" at work but patriotism.

  56. @John seriously?

  57. @John There is ZERO proof the Bidens did anything wrong. The Senate knew exactly what was going on at that time. Trump is doing everything to hand his buddy Putin America on a plate.

  58. Is it legal misconduct or perjury if Romney had asked the President’s counsel prior to the show in the Senate when the discussions were taking place and they put up Philbin to answer versus Cipolloni who was reportedly in the room with Bolton?

  59. Yet the the US Senate will not take this into consideration. There’s no trial without a witness. We, The People, want to hear from witnesses.

  60. @Ayyad Amin I called both Cornyn and Cruz from TX - one mailbox was full, other I left a message saying the same thing - we WANT to hear from witnesses. Everyone needs to call their senators. Today,

  61. @Ayyad Amin there were 17 witnesses which we didn't get to hear from since they had them testify when they had closed door hearings. I want to hear what they had to say. Guess we never will.

  62. @Ayyad Amin For God's sake, then ACT - WHY are you not all out in the streets as you were during the Nixon impeachment hearing?

  63. "Hey Russia, if you're listening ...", Trump said. One day later, Russia hacked the democratic campaign and then helped him win. Bolton's book proves not only is Trump guilty as charged of soliciting Ukrainian help to win, but also that he is an unrepentant repeat offender. When Senators say, "Let the voters decide" it really means, "Let Russia (or Ukraine, or China) decide." Republicans allowing Trump's foreign solicitation to go on unfettered, failure to allow witnesses, and refusal to remove Trump is treachery.

  64. @Sherry , Wouldn't it be nice if there were some patriotic hackers who could obtain emails from republican senators about this entire charade? Of course, I'm only joking.

  65. @Sherry Wait until the books comes out and you will see everyone scrambling to explain why Bulton was not called.

  66. @John P Joking why? That’s an excellent idea.

  67. I really fear for the future of this republic, this shining beacon on the hill. It is this beacon that drew me from my home land 40 years ago - now India and the US are in the same autocratic mess. Will people ever learn the lessons of history ?

  68. @kumar I will answer your question as succinctly as I can- - - NO!!!

  69. @kumar To learn from history, you must first study it. Unfortunately in this country most people are ignorant of the basic facts of world geography, and their knowledge of world history is even less.

  70. On behalf of Americans who are (& have been for 3+ years) heartbroken, sad, appalled, embarrassed, ill, petrified, stunned, disturbed..., I apologize that our country is in this pathetic quagmire!! We know better & therefore, we should do better (Maya Angelou)!! This is a test we have failed miserably & the lessons will haunt us for all the days of our lives!!! Namaste...

  71. Since the Senate is unwilling to do its job and hold a trial - you know, those things where witnesses are called, outcomes aren’t predetermined, jurors aren’t allowed to claim favoritism for the defense or refuse to acknowledge evidence... I hope the house opens a second impeachment inquiry and invites Mr Bolton to testify. And I hope they keep doing it until the Senate does their job. Let’s see if Bolton would show up this time or hide behind the White House again.

  72. @CB Agree that the House must call Bolton to testify. Absolutely. Americans should be permitted to hear him say under oath what he knows. The Senate GOP has dodged its responsibility to us, their fellow Americans. I have already called my own Congressman, plus Pelosi and Schiff to urge them to subpoena Bolton ASAP.

  73. @CB Nothing to lose at this point because all is already lost I'm afraid in terms of 2020.

  74. @k martino It’s not lost until you let go. We’ve simply have got to hold onto the ideals and we all have to go out and do whatever we can do to keep Trump from being re-elected and riding roughshod over the country in the meantime. We have 9 months left, maybe.

  75. It's ironic that Bolton was supposed to have been a "hawk' against authoritarian regimes like Iran, now he's helped to install Trump in as the dictator of the US.

  76. Mr. Bolton is no darling of left learners. Nor was Mr. Comey. Both are men who show us what it means to be a man of character and patriotism regardless of political persuasion. I am grateful. Where are the others? GOP Senators for instance. “Christian” leaders for another. And all of Rush and Sean’s boys who have given up their own brain and personhood to be someone else’s mouthpiece. Where is the honor in that?

  77. @Ao I beg to differ. Comey's handling of the Hilary emails started this mess - he became a patriot only when his reputation was at stake. Bolton is yet to be a hero---he could have showed up as witness in the house, but chose the release of his book for profits over duty to country. Don't be fooled. Republicans are self-centered and do what makes sense for their own interests. Not the country.

  78. @ao Bolton is not doing the patriotic thing in this instance so I do not consider him to be patriotic. Christian? For the moment we still have, at least in writing, the idea of a separation of church and state. I don't expect him or any of them to explain their decisions with that measure, we are far too down the road with 'NON- Christian' behaviour for that to carry any meaning. Ditto for Susan Collins, Mike Pence, Mike Pompeo, L. Graham, or any of the other people involved who either choose to rationalize away the facts in favor of their own interests. It is clear for anyone open to facts that the intent of the law was broken by Trump. They all know, some have said it. Bolton, what is he playing at? I have no respect for the likes of him or Susan Collins, etc., etc. Please don't pretend that this is that difficult or complicated to understand. Who cares about his book anymore. The time to act has past.

  79. @Ao , Bolton is no hero. He could have publicly told his tale anytime during these proceedings. His book sales are apparently more important to him him than his country.

  80. This latest revelation will, of course, accomplish nothing. It’s still possible that Trump will ultimately lose the upcoming election - not that his defeat would accomplish anything, either; it’s too late for that. In any case, his job is certainly in no danger as a result of this farce of a trial. More's the pity.

  81. @Will It should be clear to everyone that the solution that should be employed now is conviction and removal from office. Failing that, it is break the glass time in November when the entire corrupt mess, GOP and Individual 1. can be flushed away.

  82. @Will I'm guessing this is not Will Hurd of Texas - but remember, this bit of impeachable conduct is just one little blip that's come to light. There's the deep relationship with Mister Bone Saw, the death of Kashoggi, whatever is going on with Turkey, the two crooks plan for peace in the Middle East, whatever Xi has wangled out of Trump, and God knows what else. If Trump skates now, he's free to do anything he wants, just as he said. His defeat now or at the polls accomplishes plenty...

  83. @Will And what is even more disturbing is that several RepubliCONs have now said that what the president did is wrong, but voting for impeachment will divide the country. What do they think Don the Con is doing now?

  84. I bet the average American loves these sound bites from Rush and Fox. There is a blatant disregard for facts and the truth. We are one lost nation when a President never admits when is wrong. We will have the Super Bowl to distract us once again from reality. We have lost our safety net for justice and accountability.

  85. Access Hollywood 2.0: When you’re President, they let you do it. I had no idea our democracy was so fragile. Now I know.

  86. Not surprisingly, it would appear that Trump's defense team, several members of congress, and Bill Bar are all participating in Trump's cover up not to defend him, but to defend themselves. If this were a movie, it would be the part where it appears all is lost. At the moment, Bolton is the only one who stands a chance of doing something radical and blowing this whole thing wide open. The question remains, will he let this sham pass with his silence or call the press conference his country needs from him TODAY?

  87. Bravo! Keep your excellent reporting going. I’m grateful the legitimate press is reporting the truth and thereby protecting our republic!

  88. Let’s enjoy it while we can. Which, if he’s re-elected, will not be for much longer.

  89. At this Point Everybody Knows Trump Did it. What the Senators are really deciding is whether or not they should remove him from office based on his conduct. And below that the senators who are on the fence are just weighting if it will be more damaging to drag this out or to not call witnesses. If Trump has taught us one thing it's that the power's of the presidency are nearly unchecked by the legislative branch.

  90. Among the other explosive issues this new reporting reveals, lawyer Cipollone was a witness to this private Oval Office meeting yet has failed to voluntarily recuse himself as Trump’s lead counsel in his ongoing Senate trial. Aside from serious ethical issues here, Cipollone is a potential defendant in this criminal conspiracy, soliciting help from a foreign power to affect an election.

  91. @John Grillo Maybe someone ought to alert John Roberts about this?

  92. A fair question is whether Cipollone’s active participation in this Senate trial, as Trump’s lead counsel, vitiates the entire defense of him that has been presented given his intentional, fraudulent non-disclosure to the Senate as a likely fact witness or, at the least, a decision by the presiding officer John Roberts, to declare a mistrial.

  93. @John Grillo I wonder what the NYT didn’t cite a source for any of the information that they included in their article? They wrote the article as if THEY had read the manuscript. NO ONE can read the draft except the NSC until the sensitive info is redacted and/or the related sections of the book are rewritten. Which means whatever info they included in the article either came from Bolton personally - and his credibility is suspect until he is under oath (and even then it’s questionable) - or they got the info 2nd, 3rd, 4th-hand. To put any credence in this article is tantamount to believing in the tooth fairy. Unless or until Bolton is under oath when he is disseminating this information, it must be taken with a grain of salt.

  94. Senator Lamar Alexander voting against hearing testimony from John Bolton: It was inappropriate for the president to ask a foreign leader to investigate his political opponent and to withhold United States aid to encourage that investigation, but it was not an impeachable offense. Donald Trump: I've been exonerated.

  95. One cannot help but wonder how far Trump's lying and deception goes and if it is not stopped by Congress, what that bright, green, vindicating light foretells of Trump's corrupt and authoritarian behavior over the next year. If the Senate impeachment trial has shown us one thing, it is that Republicans have abandoned, blindly or willfully, any shred of upholding the rule of law and the Constitution. We are at a very precarious moment in America's democratic experiment.

  96. @AGoldstein, Trump’s lying and deception will go as far as his party and the electorate lets him; no doubt about it. I was appalled when he won the presidency, but never did I envisage that 3 ½ years in the situation would be this dire. It is on daily display that many politicians – senators and congressmen/women – are not in it to serve their country and their citizens, but to ensure themselves steady employment and hefty pay checks post-government. How else to explain their lack of willingness to act in the face of the evident treachery of this abominable POTUS? Democracy should never be an ‘experiment’; too many have suffered and died to uphold it.

  97. @AGoldstein Only 9 months until the electorate shows what they think of the GOP, and of Trump. There's a silver lining in these dark clouds: the next administration may well have a Democratic Senate to work with, thanks to the shameless criminality of Trump and McConnell. The few Republicans who don't live in the Fox "News" bubble surely know that their party is doomed - and the fact that there's so little squawking about it suggests that they've stopped caring.

  98. @AGoldstein I agree - we are indeed at a very precarious moment in our democracy, and how we handle this moment will greatly matter, both domestically and in world politics. Every Senator, regardless of party, has taken an oath to "support and defend" the Constitution of the United States. It says nothing about supporting other elected officials over and above the Constitution, including the President.

  99. From now until November and beyond, Bolton, Parnas and others will continue to spill the beans. All over the world, people will see the details and the nature of the scared Republicans who have forgotten to put principles over party, who have forgotten their own oath of impartiality in this senate trial, who have forgotten history and precedent set by earlier impeachments, and who have forgotten or twisted the meaning of the separation of powers and the constitution. Is it any consolation that "history will judge them harshly?" A greater consolation is if the voters, come November, vote against whoever they can who has--for whatever fearful or craven reasons--decided for the first time in history to have impeachment trials without witnesses.

  100. Nothing matters. We have an autocratic president with an enabling Senate. Democracy is not automatic because it is written on paper.

  101. @joe The only good thing I see coming out of this is a lot more people are engaged in the political process. Hopefully that voter turnout will begin the path back to what our country was founded on.

  102. Trump is America's single greatest national security risk, as John Bolton has witness up close and personal "Trump repeatedly made national security decisions contrary to American interests, Mr. Bolton wrote, describing a pervasive sense of alarm among top advisers about the president’s choices.... the president was effectively granting favors to autocratic leaders like Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey and Xi Jinping of China." In additional lawless, Rudy Giuliani wrote a letter to Ukraine's President Zelensky, saying he was representing Mr. Trump as a “private citizen” ! How in the world is the President of the United States a 'private citizen' ? The Trump Swamp runs deep and wide and is overflowing with Presidential corruption, lies and lawbreaking. Eject this man from office....now or in November....assuming we have an election and the republic still exists then. And eject the lawless Republicans who are actively aiding and abetting this scofflaw administration.

  103. Is there even a reason to report these stories anymore? Isn't it officially okay for President Trump to do whatever he wants now?

  104. It's time for the House to pass additional articles of impeachment. Keep up the pressure on the Senate in this election year. We don't need to convince the deplorables, just a few thousand voters who couldn't vote for Hillary last time.

  105. If this were a fair trial, game set and match for conviction and removal. But if Mitch McConnell has his way, we might not even hear from John Bolton.

  106. But now it’s clear the senate believes there nothing wrong here. No matter what. It’s mind boggling how they can selfishly allow our democracy to be ravaged and approve of this this horror of a person let alone a president to continue. And henceforth allow others to claim these same privileges and be above the law. We are doomed. I truly have lost faith.

  107. @Sharon berlan Hello. Don't lose faith. Criminal organizations (unfortunately, I'm speaking about our WH, Administration and Senate GOP) will self-destruct on their own. It is the nature of the criminal. If it weren't, rarely would any criminal ever get caught. They'll continue to make glaring errors. It is only a matter of time. PEACE!

  108. @Sharon berlan It's not the Senate, it's only the Republicans in the Senate that are destroying our nation. The Democrats are trying their level best to save our nation.

  109. @DR Not necessarily true, as is also the case with karma.

  110. Democracy: It was fun while it lasted.

  111. The GOP already determined its response to this kind of Ukraine news or, quite frankly, anything negative about Trump: it is true...and we don't care.

  112. It won’t make a darn bit of difference to some of our illustrious Senators. They’ve been under Trumps control for years now and really just don’t care. Power corrupts..

  113. The Republican debacle trying to defend Trump is making me physically ill with fear for our nation. We know know that the Senate has been effectively neutered by Trump and McConnell. Of course the Bolton revelations are going to come to light to everyone's embarrassment. But as long as Bolton doesn't testify under oath, Trump is confident that he will be able to discredit Bolton in his MAGA-head football rallies. No oath, no truth according to Trump, and McConnell is making sure there will be no oath. And incidentally, how in the world did Dershowitz's crazy legal theories of impeachability ever rise to being the primary theory to address. He is contradicted by every legal authority in the nation, and yet Republican Senators are seizing on his "life raft" of insanity as cover for their own cover-up of Trump's crimes. I a praying that voters see what is going on here. Our democracy is being undermined by thugs and criminals. They must be removed from office. They have proved themselves to be underminers of our nation.

  114. @William O, Beeman Yes, William, as I've said of Dershowitz's crazy legal theories: Der’SHOW’itz’s definition of what constitutes Impeachment, if believed and acted upon by the Senate, will be responsible for installing America’s first EMPEROR --- Emperor Trump. As George ‘Dubya’ Bush would say: “Great Job, Dersie.”

  115. A strategically timed leak that will, sadly, accomplish nothing. The Republicans are fully aware of, and have accepted, Trump's corruption as a means to their continued power.

  116. @Leslie Pact with the Devil. Those who have studied Faust will understand what happens next.

  117. correct me if I am wrong, but by reading this article I have found myself both confused about Pat Cipollone's role as White House Counsel and amazed that he would blatantly put himself as an attorney in a conflict of interest, my understanding in regards to White House Counsel is that his role is to defend, protect and advise the office of the Presidency and to prevent it from committing any possible inappropriate or criminal activity, therefore, by him allowing himself to be entangled with Giuliani has he now put himself in a compromising position, it is getting clearer and clearer just how much corrupt intent on the part of the President, McConnell, and the Republican Congress which includes the Senate to possibly perjure themselves in order to first keep, secondly gain Power. Sadly the Oath to the Constitution to Protect and Defend it against all attacks foreign and Domestic has been lost on this Republican Congress which basically makes them inept, to all the Good American People, you still have the power to pressure these elected officials, do not give away the Right to Freedom which you are doing by allowing them to stomp over the one thing that is unique to all Democracies. As for Mr. Cipollone, Sekulow, Derschowitz, Giuliani, they are an outright embarrassment to all righteous legal professionals who have taken their oaths seriously. this is an outrage and this should be brought to the attention of the Bar association for immediate disciplinary action.

  118. It's too late, John Bolton! You had your chance to be an American hero when William Taylor, Fiona Hill, Marie Yovanovitch and Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman were securing their place in history as true patriots.

  119. @FreddyD I concur. But I never saw nor will see Bolton as a hero in any sense of the word because he always seemed to be motivated by other factors like money and the spotlight over being a patriot and putting this country ahead of all else. He had MANY opportunities to tell his story long before these past few weeks. Whatever his end game is/was, it failed on the bigger stage such as the impeachment trial, but perhaps it ultimately pay off on the biggest stage - the presidential election in November. Hopefully folks will remember what he said and take that into account when they vote.

  120. @FreddyD It's not too late. Bolton could still call a press conference and unequivocally tell us what happened. Yes, he might be placing himself in costly legal jeopardy, but such is the price of freedom and patriotism.

  121. @FreddyD He made himself available in time. Not ideal but better than nothing. Contrast it with the fellas in the inner circle who are actively being criminal. As much as I disagree with Bolton philosophy, he, at least, seems to stick to it. I agree with you, mainly. Thank you.

  122. Nadler and Schiff have both said their case is ironclad and Trump is guilty beyond a shadow of a doubt. Why do they need more witnesses? Any first-year law student will tell you when you have proven your point, stop trying to prove your point. The only thing that can happen is something unexpected will refute your claim. This entire fiasco has been a disgrace. Democrats made up their mind 3 years ago to try to overturn the 2016 election and have tried every way they can. They don't care about the constitution - they only want to prevent Trump from enacting more of his agenda. This is a manufactured crisis and I support the Republicans who refuse to lend credibility to the Democrat's sham by doing anything to legitimize it.

  123. I would push back on the often repeated lie that the Democrats have been trying to remove trump since the election. Rather, the republicans have proved unable to contain a man that threatens our democracy. Thus, we are forced to take action. It’s like a teacher being blamed for punishing a student that has been allowed to rule his parents home for too long. Sometimes you have to draw the line in the sand and be the adult in the room.

  124. @Matt Williams Impeachment is not overturning an election. An election Trump lost btw.

  125. Does our Constitution even matter anymore? Perhaps it will in fact come down to our Supreme Court's Chief Justice. Justice Roberts, can you help us find the light?

  126. @It Is Time! The man who allowed Citizens United, a major contributor to the greed that rules our legislators? Hardly a man dedicated to the people's democracy.

  127. If Collins, Gardner, and McSally refuse to call Bolton and other witnesses, the 75% of Americans who support such a step will be all too happy to show them the door in November.

  128. So true. And of course Collins finally said she’d vote for more witnesses once Alexander said he wouldn’t. The hero without risk, once again.

  129. @CP I wish it were true, but here in Arizona, McSally will easily win. Disgustingly true.

  130. I'm not a lawyer. I don't know the answer to this question. But does this information put Cipollone in the position of being charged with suborning of perjury?

  131. @Deborah Taylor, it's hard to see how. None of the people who were in the room according to Bolton have testified under oath.

  132. @Deborah Taylor I'm no attorney as well. But Cippolone, Sekulow, Dershowitz, and White House Counsel Philbin should all be charged with perjury, for either or both lying under oath to other oath swearing Senate members, &/or to the American public. In addition, those Senators who had done the same in any means, must also be charged likewise.

  133. @Bob My understanding of suborning perjury is not that he lied (that would simply be perjury, would it not?), but that he allowed evidence to be entered and argued that he knew to be false.

  134. Senate Republicans, denial is a very effective defense mechanism. Keep on bowing and scraping to Trump. Don’t ever look in the mirror.

  135. Whoever is leaking this material has a greater command of suspense than many Hollywood scriptwriters.

  136. @Danusha Goska What's the 'leak'? This information is in a book that is being published-orders are being taken-so much of the events are already in the public domain. Today's date (May) is new but not definitive.

  137. Watching this saga from Canada, I cannot help but shake my head both in disgust and sadness as to how low the precepts of democracy and law have sunk in the United States. Trump and his cohorts have become a cancer to the world, one from which it will be an ordeal to recover from it.

  138. @JB2003 Adams the Federalist and Jefferson the principle architect of American democracy hated each other. Adams and Jefferson 's successor Madison were Federalists and hated the concept of democracy as much as today's Federalists. America has always had a large segment of its population who reject democracy. As a fellow Canadian I wonder how we get Americans to understand that a nation of laws can continually engage in pro democracy and anti democracy debates as democracy is not central to America's raison d'etre and the love of democracy is for advertising purposes only.

  139. @JB2003 there will be no recovered from this. trump will be re-elected. we gonna have a financial and economic reset in his 2nd term. and guess what the rich will come out richer and the poor the same. our democracy will be replaced with some form of dictatorship. and possible some kind of miniwar

  140. @John America died a long time ago and it is only now that the GOP unplugged life support. I am optimistic that that with denial becoming less and less a defense America or many Americas will arise from the ashes. The world is a much better place than it was in the late 18th century. California can no longer afford Ted Cruz, Louie Gohmert or Fearless leader determining its destiny. California has always been about the future and the GOP is about a mythical past. Remember that Jeffersonian democracy is about we the people being responsible for the future and not some mythical cloud being's blessings or curses. Get on with it the future is more promising than ever especially when we realize we are in charge.

  141. So, Cipollone, who is standing before the Senate defending trump, was aware of trump's instructions to Bolton. E, gods, with acquittal without witnesses likely, it is time for both Bolton and Parnas to make public all that they have. And it is time for decent, intelligent voters to look at trump and his sycophants and consider what they might do with four more years. Vote like your future is in jeopardy, because it is.

  142. Bolton is beholden to his book sales and has disgustingly played Congress like a fiddle. A group of 50 GOP senators is petrified of Trump's base, while only Mitt has the guts to do something. And 75% of America wants witnesses but won't get them. It is crystal clear to the world that American representatives in Congress don't represent American citizens, and are slaves to their own greed and power. I am thoroughly repulsed by these politicians. That includes you John. A most tragic day for our 'democracy'.

  143. Clever writing, but a hollow premise. The writers assert a pressure campaign to dig up dirt, injecting a narrative from later in the timeline to back before it started. President Trump asked Bolton for an introduction for a meeting between Giuliani and Zelensky. Bolton didn't make the intro. The meeting never happened. This is all last minute, Hail Mary garbage a la Kavanaugh, Avenatti and Swetnick.

  144. This is not just a drug deal, this is a drug deal gone bad. Trump fumbled a bribery scheme and landed himself impeached, and the Constitution got run over by a bunch of Republicans fleeing the scene of the crime.

  145. @Kvetch Most concise and accurate description I have heard yet.

  146. @Kvetch This!

  147. Cipollone! Knew all about the Drug Deal! Great reporting by Haberman and Mike Schmidt!

  148. @fast/furious Is Cipollone a fact witness? At the very least he should have recused himself from being the lead council for Trump in the Senate. He is proudly sitting at council table denying what Bolton reports was discussed in that meeting that he attended. What I heard of the republican arguments today, no one mentioned that Cipo attended the meeting reported in the article.

  149. No big deal. If Trump asked Bolton to get a gun, load the bullet and then watch him shoot someone in the head on 5th Avenue, the lawless Republicans would still say “no case”. Even if that someone was Joe Biden. He’s the president. He can do whatever he wants to stay in office. This gets more and more bizarre.

  150. @Scott Montgomery "That may be unethical, but it is not an impeachable offense." wink, wink. Translation: "I need to win an election. And I want republicans to win the next election at any cost."

  151. Small wonder that Cipollone, Trump's lead defense attorney was so adamant that no witnesses be called - he's involved in the bribery attempt, himself.

  152. @Mary Scott Can we call a mistrial??

  153. Bolton witnessed a crime. I've never seen a witness act or be treated like this.

  154. The GOP wanted to call Adam Schiff as a witness? Well, what about calling POTUS's head impeachment attorney Pat Cipollone as a witness. He was actually in the room where it happened, and is standing up in front of the Chief Justice and the entire Senate lying his head off. He should be disbarred.

  155. So 50 years from now Bolton's face will be on the $50 bill as savior of the Republic?

  156. @Bob Now, by never coming to the table, he doesn’t even deserve to be on a 3 dollar bill.

  157. Trump and Republicans continue to redact the Constitution with his Sharpie. Now as long as ones party controls the senate.. the President of that party cannot be indicted, investigated or impeached

  158. It's amazing what Republicans in the Senate are willing to turn a blind eye to.

  159. @R In The West Although that is one way to look at it -- the GOP Senators know exactly what they are doing and, in my opinion, not turning a blind eye to anything. For some, Trump and McConnell probably have some salacious or illegal dirt on them that they do not want revealed; for others, they support the right-wing (fascist?) takeover but can't be seen to be doing so publicly; for yet others, they like the pay and perks of being in the Senate (including the huge benefits of health insurance and a staggeringly high pension). SO: my takeaway would be that the Senate Republicans know exactly what they are doing; it's probably just for different reasons (i.e., but not blind eyes).

  160. There is nothing preventing Mr. Bolton from coming forward and telling what he knows in a news conference or a television interview. Last night he gave a paid speech and told that group he backs up what his deputies had to say to the House Intelligence Committee. Show some courage, Mr. Bolton.

  161. @ecamp "paid speech...." That says it all.

  162. Joe Biden announced his candidacy on April 25, 2019. Only a few days later Bolton says that Trump wanted this Ukraine shakedown started. Coincidence? I think not.

  163. They were all in the loop and still are, now all the GOP Senators are too! VOTE BLUE EVERY RACE EVERY STATE.

  164. “Mr. Trump gave the instruction, Mr. Bolton wrote, during an Oval Office conversation in early May that included ..... Pat A. Cipollone, who is now leading the president’s impeachment defense.” So Cipollone just spent 2 weeks lying to the Senate and American people on the taxpayer’s dime? He needs to resign. Now. Outrageous and absolutely inappropriate.

  165. So Cipollone was "in the room where it happened". He knows that he is defending a lie. Any lawyers out there who can explain why this is legal? Why Cipollone shouldn't be disbarred?

  166. I've changed my mind, I will not be buying his book! #boycottboltonsbook

  167. @matt Usually books written by Republicans are bought the RNC or big donors and handed out, upping the sales. Reports suggest that due to these leaks Trump and Barr are going after him with all they've got. His refusal to act like a man and play games to gin up interest may backfire into no one wanting his book. We know what in it and no one seems to care. Republicans because they know all that and Democrats because he's stiffing them for his own ends.

  168. Do you consider yourself a Profile in Courage?

  169. If only this news could change any minds, or outcomes ...

  170. Of course he did.

  171. This reminds me so much of the end of the Kavanaugh confirmation where there was such a frenzy of last-minute effort and hope to get unearth and consider all the facts. And we all know how that worked out.

  172. Our democracy and free elections are dying in front of our eyes.

  173. @BabsC. Really? A bit over-dramatic an assessment in my view. It’s a choppy period of polarization, yes. But the choppiness will subside - the Union will persevere! Keep the faith Babs!! - a friend in the comments section

  174. @BabsC. The public will remember this farce of a "trial", and the hypocrisy and complicity of the Republican party in Trump's obstruction and cover-up, long past November. It will be decades before the GOP recovers - if it ever does.

  175. @BabsC. Not only that, but who your elected officials represent....on the world wide scene.

  176. If Bolton is pro-democracy and not pro-profit, he will drop the entire manuscript on legit media sources. Also, while Paul Rand is getting off from revealing the whistleblower’s name, why is he quiet as to who is leaking Bolton’s manuscript? Afraid that it might Kelly Ann Conway? Or Mike Pence?

  177. I am curious; what was on the RNC campaign server that Russia also hacked?

  178. Hey senators, we want witnesses. And let us see more documents while you’re at it.

  179. Since there are so many conflicting accounts of what has transpired, the Senate should have all of the people involved testify under oath before taking a vote. If they do not hear from them before casting a vote, then they are covering up a scandal. If that is the case, I hope it comes back & bites those who vote against further testimony.

  180. @Jean In Florida Where are the Republicans that at least act like they are not mere party hacks? Sasse or Portman or anybody that will to lead. Alexander predictably caved. He has explained that he sees wrongdoing but doesn't feel the need to do anything about it. He's thinking more about elections than the moral standards of our office holders, just like nearly everyone else in the GOP. I think the votes to not allow witnesses have been there the whole time. The wavering was just a chance for Collins to not appear as phony as usual, helping her in a moderate state. Her vote for witnesses will end up being meaningless.

  181. @Jean In Florida Makes one wonder what dirt Trump, or McConnell, has on Lamar Alexander. Maybe something about corruption in Tennessee coal mines? Who knows, but what a disappointment and a pusillanimous, GOP-talking-points, explanation he gave. Let's hope Lisa Murkowski has a little more spine, and takes the preferences of the American electorate, which does want to hear more witnesses and see more documents, into account in her important vote.

  182. @Jean In Florida It's pretty clear what happened at this point. Trump tried to use Ukraine as one of his 2020 campaign managers.....similar to the way he used Russia and the Kremlin as one of his 2016 campaign managers. The evidence of both of these acts of Trump Treason is well documented. The only one denying reality, then conceding reality and then saying reality doesn't matter is Trumpistan and the blindly loyal Republican Senate that's perfectly comfortable with a national security living in the White House.

  183. And Pat Cippolone was in the room for the conversation in early May. The GOP under Trump is a Confederacy of Lies and Corruption.

  184. Pat A. Cipollone's career is over. Move for disbarment. He is complicit as a participant with the president in the Ukraine "drug deal" then falsely represents the facts representing the president at the impeachment trial.

  185. @Leadership If proven true.

  186. How is it that Cipollone was in on the "drug deal" and is allowed to defend President Asterisk?

  187. If Bolton does not step up to a public microphone and tell everything he knows in the next 30 minutes, he’s as much as a criminal as Trump.

  188. Trump is trumpeting Putin's talking points. This makes Trump a traitor to the USA. And the republicans are just happy as can be to let him stay in power, let him cheat again and again, let him cheat in the 2020 election to stay in power. They are giving him carte blanch to never leave and for America to lose our democracy.

  189. Looks to me like the GOP senators are unindicted co-conspirators. Sad.

  190. If this isn't a hail Mary pass, what is?

  191. @Nan Socolow ... aaand ... a shoestring catch for a score!

  192. Mr. Bolton, This is your moment to act for your country and the world. Call a press conference TODAY and blow up the Trump coverup!

  193. @Aluetian GOP would quibble that a press conference is not under oath. GOP just does not want to face the facts

  194. Testify he must!!

  195. Will today be the day The Constitution dies or is there still hope for America!

  196. The Grifter, Giuliani and other minions have absolutely no credibility. They are not to bve lelieved. Bolton is not my cup of tea but I do not think he is a liar. Let Bolton testify. And why not Parnas!

  197. Trump is the epitome of slime and shame. But everybody knows that. The real question is, why are Republicans so supine in the face of his perfidy? Do they enjoy being bullied and lied to? Is masochism and humiliation by Trump the new GOP gold standard? Please, can a loyal Trump Republican answer these questions? Inquiring minds want to know what your bizarre motivation is in supporting His Highness.

  198. @MarcosDean I'm not a Trump supporter at all, but to address your question: Read the Levitsky and Ziblatt book How Democracy Dies (they are Harvard political scientists and historians). They make a compelling case for how authoritarianism, totalitarianism, and fascism == as those have arisen in numerous countries and places around the world for close to 100 years == are now being pursued in this country. We are headed for a fascist state -- presumably happily for Trump supporters who are white, ill-educated, ill-informed, resentful of not being able to compete in a flourishing democracy or economy, and increasingly armed and willing to kill fellow (white) Americans. And, of course, aided and abetted by vilification of honest journalism and unbiased media. We fought the "good fight" in WW II to rid the world of Nazi rule. Nobody is going to come to the aid of American to fight an equivalent fight against the growing tide of fascism here.

  199. Good question...but most are ashamed and the rest of them are arrogant...I doubt you will get any takers.

  200. The truth will continue to come to light, but I fear the GOP (no longer so “grand”) as they have traded their integrity for money and power. Thanks to Trump and these traitors, I am embarassed to have them watch Trump on television as they’ve been taught to stand up to bullies. I guess the Senators missed that lesson. Finally, let’s not laud Mr. Bolton. Had he testified to the House and not played political games with which chamber he was willing to grace with his truth (while he gamed how to best enrich himself with his book), we may not be where we are today.

  201. The details and the nitty gritty of the whole Ukraine scheme are interesting but irrelevant. Senator Lamar Alexander's statement pretty much sums it up: Senators know Trump is guilty of the case brought by the House investigators. But a majority feel that it does not rise to the level of removal. So every new bombshell revelation is now innoculated by that simple fact, that Trump can do what he wants and "They let you do it. You can do anything."

  202. It feels as if the Republicans had their minds made up long before John Bolton first mentioned having something to say about Trump while he was his national security adviser. And it also feels as if the Republicans will shut this "trail" down for good this afternoon by not voting for additional witnesses and then immediately voting to clear Trump. The only remaining value I see with John Bolton and his book is that people WILL read it, realize what occurred, and will remember how Trump danced around and over the Constitution while his Republicans cleared him of any "inappropriate" and corrupt behavior. I am hoping people will remember all of this come November 3 and will vote Trump out of an office he was never fit to run in the first place.

  203. @Marge Keller You seem confident that there will be an election in November. If the Senate votes that Article II does, indeed, allow the president to do whatever he wants, then the remainder of the Constitution is entirely meaningless.

  204. It remains unlikely the Senate will vote to remove Trump. O.K., but what if a majority of Senators voted for removal. This, like the loss of the popular vote, silences Trumps probable statement that he has been vindicated, that the impeachment was an witch hunt. He becomes an impeached President who the majority of the Senate voted for removal.

  205. Maggie, Michael- thank you. It is now more convincing why Bolton is not being allowed to come in as a Witness. The Senate should Subpoena all others besides Bolton. The people have the right to know what really happened.

  206. How ironic it will be when senate R's who said "Let the voters decide," get voted out of office after revealing to all that they fear the "president" more than the electorate.

  207. Will this convince Republicans or Democrats on the fence to hear witnesses? I'm not optimistic, even though it should.

  208. What does Team Trump have on our Republican Senators? Only 2 want to hear more information? What a heartbreaking day for our country.

  209. Let's face it; the only purpose of the impeachment drama is to persuade a number of independents and wavering pro Trump supporters to vote for a Democrat next election. Not sure we can trust Bolton or know what his ultimate motives are (except to sell more of his books). I can only hope that it does not backfire on the Democrats and they get their act together. The current infighting is not helping matters.

  210. @Larry Milask: Well, we do know what Trump’s motives are, don’t we? And how much we can trust Trump... And competing is not the same as infighting. Just vote Blue no matter who! If only because none of the Democratic candidates are criminals and traitors to their country. That’s enough for the 2020 election.

  211. i think is is depressingly clear that the only justice we will receive is at the (paper) ballot box, or sooner if we en masse, take to the streets as those in hong kong did.

  212. @L'historien Alas, even the ballot box has been compromised.

  213. @L'historien I’m willing to take to the streets. I would also recommend driving with headlights on during daylight hours on our streets and highways as a very visual and impressive means of safe public protest in the dark days going forward. This was an effective means of protest after a travesty of justice in the sports world in the 90’s. This is a serious means of protest we can do, in place, in our communities right now.

  214. Let's keep the narrative that Bolton is NOT a hero going please. He should have testified in the House and he CHOSE not to. The only good thing that could possibly come out of this is that we all now know that the Republican party is officially dead and Trumpism has taken over. Let's all face that so we can move forward and decide how to deal with this new reality in which a controlling party in Congress has rewritten the norms of our political landscape.

  215. If Simon & Schuster had an any values (and some business sense) they would release the Bolton book today.

  216. @Brian Perkins Though I’m fairly certain this newspaper has already published all the interesting bits.

  217. they can't. The manuscript is still under review by the government to see if it contains any confidential information

  218. I'd like to hear from every Republican who ever worked with Bolton over the past 20 years to comment on who they believe... Bolton or Trump. America would love to see the results of such a poll. Bolton may have had detractors who disagreed with him on policy matters, but his character, integrity and patriotism have never been questioned. Bolton will not back down.

  219. It is so telling that Trump's case (with the assistance of GOP Senators) rests entirely on the suppression of evidence and witnesses. On the one hand, they won't turn over documents or allow witnesses to testify. On the other, they're saying that there is not enough evidence of wrongdoing to convict. It's all so disingenuous - and certainly not the behavior of an innocent man. Just watch, too, as the White House pulls out all the stops to prevent Bolton's book from being published at all. These little leaks from some hero/s in the White House about Trump's egregious behavior are all we are likely to get. Thank you to the hero/s working from within to ensure that at least some of the truth comes out!

  220. Just to review, Rudy G. cannot claim privilege regarding his private talks with Trump unless the conversation included actual legal advice. Rudy was running "domestic political errands" for Trump. (Thank you Dr. Hill). The White Counsel is not one of Trump's personal attorneys: he represents the office of the president, and it is debatable if the privilege ever applies to his conversations with Trump. Ask John Dean about this topic. And the presence of Bolton in this meeting destroys attorney privilege if it ever existed.

  221. @Bruce McLellan actually the client holds the legal privilege, not the lawyer. But the privilege being discussed in this matter is not legal privilege, but executive privilege, which is also held by the President. However, executive privilege does not cover unlawful acts/abuses of power.

  222. @Robert Peterson I understand the holder of the A/C privilege is the client. I practiced law in Minnesota for over 25 years. The entry question with Rudy G. and Trump, is whether the A/C exists at all given that he was not doing legal work for him. The client cannot invoke the protection of the privilege if the elements of the privilege never existed in the first place. Here is a question I do not know the answer to about application of the executive privilege: does it apply to communications between the president and a person who is not employed in any capacity by the government, such as Rudy. And here is another question about that privilege regarding the meeting described in the article: if we assume communications between Trump and Bolton normally would be protected, is the privilege waived when those communications are made in the presence of a third person - like Rudy - to whom the executive privilege may not apply?

  223. Anything is deniable, even the truth is deniable. Denials, however, when they are not true, are difficult to sustain. Ultimately, what is true will become undeniable. When that happens, one can hope that the voters will render the verdict that the Senate continues to avoid hoping that we will all "move on" because there is "nothing to be seen here". It's clear that there is a great deal to be seen here and there are those who are not willing to deny it.

  224. I look forward to Adam Schiff's closing argument today, now that this bomb had exploded. Schiff is our modern day Atticus Finch, urging a prejudiced jury to do the right thing. Whether Republican senators take this news into account when rendering their decisions remains to be seen. County before politics should guide them, and we may well see some profiles in courage.

  225. @Taxpayer agreed, Schiff should make closing statements, not Nadler. Schiff has defended this country, and its constitution, with laser intelligence and focus. We are on the brink of the death of the Republic.

  226. The record of this critical moment for the republic is being transcribed in minute detail as never before, both in legislative annals and in accounts widely circulated in the media and social commentary. Should democracy as we know it not survive this judicial travesty, at least future generations seeking to establish governments of, by and for their people will have a clear record of where our attempt went wrong. They'll even be able to watch the video replays. I know which side of the ledger I'd choose to be on when that history is written. (hint: not the side that barred the testimony of witnesses)

  227. How is it that there is so little courage in the Republican Party? The best any seem to offer is too little, too late, with most simply offering no courage at all.

  228. Hmm, if only there were some way to get these people with disparate accounts to describe what happened and respond to questions and cross examination. Perhaps after administering some sort of oath upon pain of perjury? If only we had something like that in this country.

  229. @MPM yea, 😆 if only.. Fear reigns. It’s casts a pall while drips will keep dripping. This is a make or break moment in the rule of law and our form of democracy. It is no joke.

  230. The House HAS proven its case without John Bolton's testimony. The only reason the Senate needs to call John Bolton as a witness is if there are Senators who are not yet convinced that the House has proven its case but may change their minds if they heard from John Bolton. Are there any such Senators? Or have all of them concluded either: (a) that Trump did act improperly but did not commit an impeachable offense; or (b) Trump did not even act improperly no matter what Bolton says? The public has a right to know.

  231. Now a new phase of American history starts this week. Mr Dershowitz, Mr Trump's defender, said in the Senate this week that colluding with foreign powers to assist his Presidential re-election is not impeachable. Furthermore, the 25th Amendment to the Constitution, which allows forcibly removing the President for unworthy behavior, will not be used either by the Cabinet or Congress. Thus, the only recourse is the November election. But that will be tainted already. So, not much chance there with halting Trump. This means now that any Presidential candidate or office holder can openly collude with foreign powers for personal reasons, with immunity. Hey, the Senate says they will not be punished, given this precedent. Angela Merkel is on Line 1, ready to take your call.

  232. Is Pat A. Cipollone a lawyer?

  233. @BMEL47 Longer on chutzpah than on competence.

  234. @BMEL47 He is lying through his teeth, isn't he. Of course, he is. Unlike witnesses/juries, why aren't lawyers asked to take the oath before arguing any case.

  235. @BMEL47 The best!

  236. ‘If it is in the nation’s interest,” as Dershowitz says — then it is OK, and not a crime if Giuliani, Pompey, Barr, and All the President’s men, keep denying, and lying, and even commit perjury if they ever got put under oath , (which Trump keeps blocking anyway), to prevent the people from knowing the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. “I have tremendous power, that’s never been seen before, under Article Two of the Constitution,” Trump says. “Never seen before.” Really? What about all the other previous Presidents? Article Two under Trump may as well be Number Two in the White House bathroom. And the hand grenade? Not to worry, all the GOP Senators are throwing themselves on it. Maybe they will all get lifelong golfing privileges at Mar a Lago.

  237. @Toms Quill “I have tremendous power, that’s never been seen before, ..." I think he meant, that's never been fully exploited before. (I.e., you've never seen someone like me use it.) Which scares me. Trump will be emboldened by the acquittal. He thinks he's been holding back. There's more to come.

  238. Of course the Republicans don't want witnesses. I wonder what Lamar Alexander has to say now. Trump's Rasputin-like hold on the Republican party appears to be locked in because they are all probably at risk for prosecution if anything gets out. Thick as thieves.

  239. @interested party Well if Alexander had a conscience he could vote yes. But he doesn't.

  240. Cipolloni needs to recuse himself from the Senate Hearing right now. He's been lying. He should be disbarred for this behavior.

  241. @fast/furious Cippolone and Philbin should be charged with perjury, as well as Sekulow and Dershowitz; prior to also possibly some Republican senators that have also lied under oath in the Senate.

  242. @fast/furious He needs to recuse himself and go straight to jail, do not collect $200 dollars! Perjury in the well of the Senate Chambers should cost him a LOT!

  243. @fast/furious Absolutely.

  244. The senators like Alexander and house reps. like Tusli are scared of a criminal tv show host with a twitter account. I hope the praise from Matt Tabai and Glenn Greenwald soothes their corrupt nerves so we can all just get ready to live under a dictator (that was sorta against the iraq invasion!!!)

  245. None of this matters to the Republican senate majority...at the moment. History will not treat these cowards kindly.

  246. If this were Hong Kong or France we’d all be in the streets now.

  247. The fix is in. It’s clear that no matter how much evidence piles up against Trump, the GOP will turn a blind eye.

  248. @Shock the Monkey History may not treat our nation kindly either.