Ben Sasse

Major Republican Opposition To Trump On Abandonment Of Kurds To Turkish Dictatorship Desire To Exterminate Them

Donald Trump has opened up a major revolt in the Republican Party by his decision to abandon the Kurds, who helped defeat ISIS, and allowing the Turkish dictatorship to mount an assault, with the purpose of “ethnic cleansing” of a nationality, which has long wanted its own nationhood, but is considered by the Turks to be a terrorist group. However, thousands of Kurds died fighting ISIS alongside the international coalition led by the United States.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senator Lindsey Graham, House Republican Conference Chair Liz Cheney, Senator Marco Rubio, Senator Ben Sasse, Senator Rob Portman, Senator Patrick Toomey, former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, Christian Broadcasting Network evangelical Pat Robertson, and innumerable others denounced Trump. They said he was undermining national security, and creating the likelihood of revived ISIS terrorism in the future.

Trump is proving how he has no concept of how to deal with foreign policy, and is most interested in pleasing dictators as with Turkey, a nation which should not be favored in assessments of the Middle East.

Whether this anger and growing split on the Kurds will cause any real opposition to Trump on other issues, and on the impending impeachment, seems highly unlikely, but Trump clearly is undermining Republican fear of antagonizing him.

Some Republican Senators Begin Expressing Criticism Of Donald Trump

In the midst of the impeachment crisis, some Republican Senators are beginning to separate themselves from Donald Trump, after being silent for so long.

So we have Mitt Romney of Utah, Ben Sasse of Nebraska, Susan Collins of Maine, and Joni Ernst of Iowa expressing sharp criticism of Trump, with Romney the strongest in his statements, and Trump bitterly attacking him, and stupidly, calling for his impeachment, something that cannot be done against a member of Congress, but only the executive and judicial branches of government.

All of the above are facing reelection in 2020, except for Romney, who does not face voters again until 2024.

How much further Sasse, Collins, and Ernst will go against Trump will be interesting to watch, and one senses that others, including those not facing reelection in 2020, will start to turn against him, with long serving member Chuck Grassley of Iowa defending the “whistleblower” investigation on the Ukraine controversy.

So the impeachment drama, and how it will affect the Congressional and Presidential elections of 2020, continues to draw attention, as, with 13 months to go, the unpredictability of what will occur in November 2020 is clearly very concerning.

Would Any Republican Senators Vote For Conviction Of Donald Trump In Impeachment Trial? It Is Possible Up To 23 Would Do So, Three More Than Needed To Remove Trump From Oval Office!

As the likelihood of the impeachment of Donald Trump increases daily, the question arises whether any of the 53 Republican Senators would actually vote for his conviction and removal from the Presidency.

It has been reported that privately up to 30 Republican Senators would wish to do so, but are unwilling to risk their Senate seats to vote in public, where they need to be listed as to their vote on the matter.

Looking at the list of Republicans, it seems to this author and blogger that the following 23 might decide to convict Trump:

Richard Shelby of Alabama

Lisa Murkowski of Alaska

Marco Rubio of Florida

Johnny Isakson of Georgia

Chuck Grassley of Iowa

Joni Ernst of Iowa

Pat Roberts of Kansas

Rand Paul of Kentucky

John Kennedy of Louisiana

Susan Collins of Maine

Ben Sasse of Nebraska

Deb Fischer of Nebraska

Richard Burr of North Carolina

Rob Portman of Ohio

James Lankford of Oklahoma

Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania

Tim Scott of South Carolina

John Thune of South Dakota

Lamar Alexander of Tennessee

Mike Lee of Utah

Mitt Romney of Utah

Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia

Mike Enzi of Wyoming

All of these Senators, except four, do not face election until 2022, or 2024 in the case of Fischer and Romney, while Roberts, Enzi and Alexander are retiring in 2020, and Isakson is retiring early at the end of 2019 due to poor health . Only Collins, Ernst, Sasse and Capito face election in 2020, but possibly could be considered “yes” votes for conviction.

If all of these 23 GOP Senators voted to convict, added to 47 Democrats and Independents, it would mean the vote to convict would be 70-30, enough by three, allowing, in theory, three of the Senators facing election in 2020 to decide NOT to remove Trump.

Time For Republican Senators To Be Held To Account: Are They For Good Of Nation And Constitution Or Party And Self Interest?

The series of escalating events surrounding Donald Trump’s abuse of power and a legion of impeachable offenses is ever worse now with the revelation that Trump was pressuring the government of Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden, who was involved in business dealings with a Ukrainian company.

The push for impeachment is ever greater, as it is another example of collusion with a foreign government, this time Ukraine, while in 2016, it was Russian collusion that helped Trump in his race against Hillary Clinton for the White House.

So an impeachment inquiry was inevitable, with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announcing, finally, an impeachment inquiry this afternoon.

Many say there is no point to impeachment, as there will be no conviction and removal by the two thirds majority needed in the Senate.

But that was not a factor in the Andrew Johnson impeachment, nor the Bill Clinton impeachment, with the case against both Johnson and Clinton very weak, as compared to Richard Nixon, and now Donald Trump.

The point is that in 1974, courageous Republicans let Nixon know they would not support him in an impeachment trial, and he resigned.

This is now what Republicans need to do when an impeachment trial comes to the Senate. The message must be that if you vote to support a lawless President, public outrage will work to defeat you in the next election for your seat, and your reputation in history will be in tatters, as you are endorsing the destruction of the checks and balances and separation of powers that make the American Constitution work.

Republicans’ feet must be held to the fire, and no excuses will be accepted.

So Mitt Romney, Ben Sasse, Susan Collins, and others who like themselves to be seen as moderate conservatives need to show courage and guts and do the right thing.

And those who cater to Donald Trump, and know better, such as Mitch McConnell, Lindsey Graham, John Cornyn, John Thune, and a multitude of others, the wrath visited against all of you will be massive, and you will regret supporting a man who has no ethics, no morals, no scruples, and is out to destroy the Constitution of rule of law.

It is time for a Profile in Courage on a massive scale!

Horrible Week For Donald Trump: Unanimous Demand To Release Mueller Report, And 12 GOP Senators Oppose Trump On Border Wall “National Emergency”

Donald Trump has just had one of the most miserable weeks any President has had.

There was a unanimous demand in the House of Representatives for the release of the Mueller report to the public, when it comes out.

Also, 12 Republican Senators joined all 47 Democrats to condemn the Border Wall “National Emergency” which Trump has perpetrated.

Unfortunately, Trump used his veto on the 59-41 repudiation, and only if 8 more Republicans join in an override vote, will Trump be stopped from his continuation of a “national emergency”, although court cases are in process and will delay, if not prevent the follow through on this unnecessary waste of money building a wall on the Southern border.

However, it was very disappointing that only one Republican Senator running for reelection, Susan Collins of Maine, voted against Trump, while such Senators as Thom Tillis of North Carolina (who had written a Washington Post Op Ed explaining why he would oppose Trump, but then flip flopped) and Ben Sasse of Nebraska (who had been critical of Trump, and was thought to be a bright young Senator in his 40s with some conviction and principle) showed no guts and are more concerned about their own reelection contests coming up in 2020.

Donald Trump Has Gone Bonkers By His Action To Withdraw US Forces Fighting ISIS In Syria

The absolutely worst moments of Donald Trump’s Presidency are upon us.

Trump, totally ignorant and clueless on American foreign policy, has ordered the complete, rapid withdrawal of all US forces from Syria, at a time when ISIS is still a threat, and many enemies gain by our withdrawal.

Russia, Iran, Turkey, the murderous regime of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, and the terrorist group Hezbollah all gain.

The NATO allies–Great Britain, France, Germany, Canada and the rest–, Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the Kurdish allies who are anti Turkish and anti Assad, all are major losers.

Total disarray and gains for authoritarian governments is the result, and we will rue the day that we decided to leave the fight against ISIS, which is not yet totally defeated.

This is all part of a clear plan by Trump to help his friend Vladimir Putin, and Turkish dictator Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and ironically, the major enemy of Israel and Saudi Arabia, the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Our President is clearly a menace, and many Republicans, including Senators Bob Corker of Tennessee, Jeff Flake of Arizona, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Marco Rubio of Florida, and Jeff Flake of Nebraska, are coming out of the woodwork to express their disgust and disdain of what the President is doing.

This is the time for James Mattis, Secretary of Defense; Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State; and John Bolton, National Security Adviser, all of whom were strong supporters of remaining in Syria, to announce their mass resignation, and call for Donald Trump to resign.

As I finish this essay, Mattis has announced his resignation, making ever more dangerous the reality that there are no real “adults'” advising Trump on military policy.

Meanwhile, the stock market has been in free fall, and it looks as if the government will be shut down over Christmas, due to the insistence of Donald Trump that there be a 2,000 mile built across our boundary with Mexico, an insane and wasteful idea that will not guarantee security.

It is time for Vice President Mike Pence to speak out against the President, and show some guts and courage to speak his mind.

Growing Likelihood Of Challengers To Donald Trump For GOP Presidential Nomination In 2020

With Donald Trump being “individual No. 1”, clearly the center of probes by Robert Mueller, the Special Counsel, and also by the Southern District of New York, the likelihood grows of Republicans, who have just come off a 40 seat loss in the House and control of the lower chamber, being alarmed enough that serious challengers to Donald Trump’s nomination for a second term seem likely.

One can expect the following Republicans to consider challenges to Trump.

Outgoing Ohio Governor John Kasich.

Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse.

Utah Senator Mitt Romney, the 2012 Presidential nominee.

Outgoing Arizona Senator Jeff Flake.

Former South Carolina Governor and former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley.

There could be others as well, but this list seems quite realistic, although the more that challenge Trump, the less likely there would be success.

It would be much easier if only one challenger took the bait, and went after Trump.

One can think back to 1979-1980, when President Jimmy Carter was challenged by both Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy and California Governor Jerry Brown.  

The one thing about even one challenger to a sitting President is that the result has been that while the President won the nomination, he ended up losing the election, with three of the four times losing massively.

William Howard Taft won only 23 percent in 1912 after being challenged by former President Theodore Roosevelt, and having to deal with TR as the Progressive Party nominee, as well as Democratic nominee Woodrow Wilson.

Jimmy Carter won only 41 percent in 1980 after being challenged by Ted Kennedy and Jerry Brown, and having to deal with an independent nominee, John Anderson, as well as Republican nominee Ronald Reagan.

George H. W.  Bush won only 37 percent in 1992 after being challenged by Pat Buchanan, and having to deal with independent nominee Ross Perot and Democratic nominee Bill Clinton.

At this point, before we begin the new year, it would seem as if John Kasich would have the upper hand on a challenge over others, and that Ben Sasse, representing a new generation of conservative leadership, would be an additional major challenge to Trump, were Sasse willing to mount a campaign.

Of course, any challenge to Trump would also be indirectly a challenge to Vice President Mike Pence as the “heir apparent”.

Christine Blasey Ford Spoke For All Women, And Men, Who Have Been Sexually Abused, And Brett Kavanaugh Proved He Is Unfit For Supreme Court

The testimony of Christine Blasey Ford was gripping and convincing, and she proved to be so genuine that even Republicans avoided attacking her, and Donald Trump stated words of praise for her performance.

At the same time, Republicans and Donald Trump called for moving forward on Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court, until two courageous women confronted Arizona Senator Jeff Flake in a Capitol Hill elevator, and convinced him to call for time out, and an FBI investigation to be conducted, which now is moving forward.

Christine Blasey Ford was articulate, and her education and career as a college professor of psychology gave her the ability to overcome her nervousness at speaking before the Senate Judiciary Committee. She knows how to speak, how to deliver ideas and points, but even this professor, the author and blogger, as much as he can speak before hundreds of people, wonders if he could do as fine a performance if he had to face a Senate committee.

Imagine if Christine Blasey Ford was NOT a professor, but rather one of millions of ordinary women, not educated, not professional, not having the kind of family and moral support that she had.

Imagine if it had been a poor, minority woman, someone not good at expressing herself, or had been a man of similar lack of education and speaking ability and economic station, who had been abused as boys and men also are, and terrified to speak out, even including those who are gay or lesbian, and suffer sexual abuse every day, and yet remain silent.

Those people, men and women, who dispute CHristine Blasey Ford for waiting so many years, look at the case of Bill Cosby, or look at the cases of the men abused by the Catholic Church over decades, or look at the women abused by their mother’s boyfriends or their stepfathers, which happens so often after failed marriages.

Those men and women who have no heart, no concern, and always back white male privilege, and powerful male privilege, reveal themselves for what they are: despicable, disgraceful human beings who have no compassion, no empathy, no concern for anyone unless they are wealthy, white males, and whose wives who go along with them, reveal they have no minds of their own, and are “Stepford Wives”, who do not realize they are being manipulated by their dominant husbands who most likely are cheating on them. There is so much domestic abuse that never is reported, or is overlooked historically by legal authorities, when it is reported by courageous victims.

Brett Kavanaugh proved in his tirade against Democrats and Senators on the Judiciary Committee, that he is unfit for a lifetime position on the Supreme Court, and that he is too partisan and too supportive of Donald Trump, to be an objective, open minded member of the high Court, His drinking problem is a severe one, and he is too cocky, and self serving, much like Donald Trump, to have so much power and authority over Constitutional law for the next thirty to forty years. His performance was a disgrace, that should open the eyes of the eight members of the Court for lack of dignity and decency, and the American Bar Association and other groups which had endorsed him, have withdrawn their support.

It is time for decent Republicans, including Jeff Flake, Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, Bob Corker, and Ben Sasse to show they have guts and principle, and reject this nomination!

Bob Corker And Jeff Flake Both Retiring, Should Use Their Influence On The Senate Foreign Relations Committee To Quell Donald Trump

Two Republican Senators have decided not to run for reelection, and both have been critics of Donald Trump.

Bob Corker of Tennessee is the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman, and Jeff Flake of Arizona is on the committee.

Both have no reason to cooperate with Donald Trump, now after this horrific week of foreign policy. We have witnessed the trashing of NATO and the European Union, and criticism of leaders of major allies, including Angela Merkel of Germany, Theresa May of Great Britain, Emmanuel Macron of France, and Justin Trudeau of Canada by Trump. At the same time, we have seen the praise and secret diplomacy of Trump with Vladimir Putin, causing an uproar, and now Trump’s invitation to Putin to come to the White House in the fall, possibly before the midterm elections, or alternately to witness the military parade ordered by Trump for Veterans Day, to be celebrated Saturday November 10 in Washington DC.

Corker and Flake, along with others, should denounce the Putin invitation and the wasted money on an unnecessary military parade, so that Donald Trump’s ego is further glorified.

The two Senators should do everything possible to make life for Trump more difficult, and should refuse to move forward on any policy, foreign or domestic, where their votes are needed to make a majority.

Both should order more subpoenas to require administration cabinet members to testify under oath, and make clear that they have declared war on the corrupt Presidency of Donald Trump!

Their leadership could make a difference in so many ways, and encourage more Senators on the Republican side to join them and the ill Senator John McCain of Arizona, and the principled Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse, who has been a never ending critic of Donald Trump, and could face retribution when he faces his own reelection in 2020.

Of course, it is possible to imagine that Bob Corker, Jeff Flake, and Ben Sasse could end up challenging Trump for the Republican Presidential nomination of 2020 against Trump, or Vice President Mike Pence, were he to become President later in this term.

The Need For Top Advisers Around Trump To Resign, Or Lose Their Credibility

It is now three days since Helsinki, and the President is totally off the wall in his view of the Russian involvement in the 2016 campaign, constantly changing his language, demonstrating total confusion and mental instability.

And we see his top advisers standing by smiling or having a poker face, and contradicting everything he says when not in his presence.

This includes his intelligence advisers, and his national security team.

Meanwhile, except for the few Republicans who are leaving Congress (Senator Bob Corker, Senator Jeff Flake, Congressman Mark Sanford), or Senator John McCain, who is in his last term even if he survives long term from his cancer battle, no one else is speaking out. There is the additional exception of John Kasich, who is leaving the Ohio Governorship, and also of Ben Sasse of Nebraska (who will face reelection in 2020 but has always spoken out), and Senate candidate Mitt Romney who is keeping his independence, knowing he will win the Utah Senate seat easily in November.

Everyone else is putting their career ahead of the country, absolutely despicable behavior.

As stated yesterday, US Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman needs to resign in protest, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, White Chief of Staff John Kelly, National Security Adviser John Bolton, and others in the cabinet, including Defense Secretary James Mattis, all need to group together and go to the White House and demand Trump resign, or they will announce their joint resignation.

One might say this would create total chaos, but it would be a public statement by the entire group, showing patriotism over political loyalty, and Vice President Mike Pence might be forced to join with them to insist, that for the good of the country, it is time for Trump to go!

We need a Barry Goldwater and Hugh Scott, as with Richard Nixon and Watergate in 1974, and the people named above have the ability to restore their integrity and reputation by doing the right thing, and soon!