Susan Collins

Hope That At Least Four Republican Senators Will Delay A Vote To Replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg

This is a very depressing time, and Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell are adding to it by the outrageous rapid move to promote a Supreme Court nominee to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg so quickly.

With only six weeks until the election, and with the normal period before the process for a Supreme Court nominee being about 75 days, what is the hurry to do this?

In 2016, the Republicans refused to consider a Supreme Court nominee for an entire year, rather than allow Barack Obama to put Merrick Garland on the Supreme Court!

The argument was that in the year of a Presidential election, no replacement for the Court should be considered.

If the Court could do with eight members for a year, then they can do with only 8 members until January, when the next inauguration takes place.

No one can argue that if Donald Trump were to win a second term, of course, he could pick a replacement.

But if Joe Biden win the election, then the new President should make the choice for a lifetime appointment of about 30 years.

A hopeful sign is that two women Republican Senators—Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine—have stated that the elected President in November should make the appointment, and that they do not support a rapid replacement before the election or after if Joe Biden wins in November.

Collins has been very disappointing in supporting the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh in 2018, and she is in deep trouble in her Senate reelection campaign in Maine.

Murkowski does not have to face voters until 2022, and in the past, she won reelection to her seat against both a Republican and a Democrat in 2010, so she is more to be trusted than Collins.

But there is also Mitt Romney, who one would think is principled enough based on his opposition to Donald Trump, that he could be a third vote.

Four votes are needed, however, to stop a nominee from being confirmed for now, and Senate President Pro Tempore Chuck Grassley of Iowa, has said in the past he is against a replacement in an election year, so maybe he will also oppose a quick action.

There is also speculations that Cory Gardner, in a tough race in Colorado, might wish to avoid voting on a nominee before the election.

There are also those Senators seen as more moderate conservatives, but none of them can be relied upon: Rob Portman of Ohio, and Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania.

Of course, Mitch McConnell himself, and Lindsey Graham, both facing election in their states, had posed the same principle in 2016, but not now, so purely, both are hypocrites. One can hope that possibly their opponents will gain more funding and possibly defeat them, although the odds are long.

Then, there is Ted Cruz, a despicable piece of trash, who also said the same thing about election year appointments, but now is on a list of potential Supreme Court nominees, although Trump has said a woman will be selected next week!

All of the other Republicans running for reelection seem unlikely to show any principle, although Ben Sasse of Nebraska is one we could hope might do so, but seems unlikely to have the courage to take a stand.

So we may end up with a 6-3 Court, setting us back to the 19th century in so many ways, and if nothing else, it should encourage more than ever before for massive contributions to Democrats for the Senate and for Joe Biden nationally, as this nightmare of Donald Trump must come to an end in November!

The Loss Of Moderate Conservative Republican Principle: Ben Sasse, Rob Portman, James Lankford

Looking at the Republican members of the US Senate, trying to find those who “might” be considered “moderate” conservatives who have some ethics and principles, is a tormenting task.

Republican Senators, with the exception of Mitt Romney, have been unwilling to speak up against the transgressions of Donald Trump, remaining silent in the midst of so much lawlessness and evil.

So when one tries to make a list of possibly “retrievable” Republican Senators, other than Lisa Murkowski of Alaska at times, and even Susan Collins at fewer times, who makes the list?

Senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska

Senator Rob Portman of Ohio

Senator James Lankford of Oklahoma

These three seem reasonable occasionally in statements and actions, but one cannot be very optimistic about them despite the occasional exceptions. The first two have been seen as potential future Republican Presidential contenders, while Lankford is young enough, and at times, rational enough, that he might also be added to a potential Presidential candidate list.

This is the sad state of the Republican Party in 2020, while in the past, there were always “reasonable” Republicans to work with “across the aisle” with Democrats.

Many Republicans Not Attending National Convention In Jacksonville, Florida

President Donald Trump may wish for a grand audience of thousands of delegates cheering him on at the Republican National Convention in Jacksonville, Florida in late August, but it looks as if many US Senators and others will not attend, due to the CoronaVirus Pandemic raging in the nation, and particularly in Florida.

Among those announcing they will not attend include two retiring Republican Senators, Pat Roberts of Kansas and Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, with Roberts being 84 and Alexander 80 years of age.

But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, who is 78, also has indicated he is unlikely to attend.

Additionally, the following Senators have made statements that they will not attend:

Lisa Murkowski of Alaska

Susan Collins of Maine

Mitt Romney of Utah

Chuck Grassley of Iowa, who will be 87 in September

Expect more Senators and many Congressmen and other party figures to decide not to attend, and it is possible that the entire convention will have to be remote, which is the present plan of the Democrats, as the only practical solution in the middle of a pandemic which has killed 135,000 people in just over four months.

Joe Biden plans to go to Milwaukee in person to give his acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention, but without a large audience, and Donald Trump, if he was smart, which he is not, should do the same thing, as this pandemic has transformed life in America for the foreseeable future.

Will Four Or More Republicans Call For Witnesses In Donald Trump Impeachment Trial?

With the Donald Trump Impeachment Trial to begin in earnest on Tuesday, January 21, the first full day of the last year of this Presidential term of office, the question arises whether at least four Republican Senators will buck their leader, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and call for witnesses to testify.

John Bolton, former National Security Adviser, is the key witness in mind, although there are others, including Mick Mulvaney (the Acting White House Chief of Staff), Attorney General William Barr, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and Vice President Mike Pence, as well as lesser figures.

If even John Bolton gets to testify, it will be a victory for Democrats, but the question is whether there are Republican Senators who want to know the truth, or are just interested in backing the President, no matter what abuses of power he has engaged in.

The best estimate is that we will find the following Senators supporting testimony:

Susan Collins of Maine

Lisa Murkowski of Alaska

Mitt Romney of Utah

Lamar Alexander of Tennessee

Rob Portman of Ohio

Cory Gardner of Colorado

If only three of the above support witnesses, it would be a 50-50 tie, and the belief is that Chief Justice John Roberts could rule in such a tie situation, and would support witnesses.

But this is such an unprecedented situation, so we are guessing at what will be the ultimate decision on this matter.

Republican Senators Who Do Not Support Lindsey Graham Resolution Condemning House Impeachment Inquiry

Mitt Romney of Utah

Susan Collins of Maine

Lisa Murkowski of Alaska

Lamar Alexander of Tennessee

Mike Enzi of Wyoming

Cory Gardner of Colorado

Johnny Isakson of Georgia

This means that Lindsey Graham is not able to gain support from the entire Republican Senate caucus, and is a hint of the likelihood that such a resolution to condemn the House of Representatives Impeachment Inquiry will fail to gain a majority of the US Senate.

It could be that a vote for conviction in an impeachment trial might be 54-46, not enough to remove Donald Trump, but a major slap in the face, nevertheless to the 45th President.

And it could be more than seven Republican Senators could end up voting against Trump, although the likelihood of reaching the threshold of 20 Republicans joining with all 47 Democrats to remove Donald Trump is very much a long shot.

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 Border Wall Oval Office Speech Accomplishes Nothing

Donald Trump is claiming a national emergency on the southern border with Mexico, even though there is no crisis of terrorists trying to cross the border, based on government statistics.

In fact, only SIX people were picked up at the border with Mexico in the first six months of 2018.

This “national emergency” is about Donald Trump wanting to please his 35 percent base of supporters on the building of a wall which is impractical, ineffective, and will cause a tremendous government expense in the tens of billions of dollars of taxpayer money, when Trump said Mexico would pay for the Wall.

Rightfully, Mexico has refused, so now Trump wants Americans to bear the burden of a wall, which in many areas, would not logistically be possible, in areas of desert, mountains, and waterways.

Rather, the answer is technology, drones, and more personnel on the boundary.

Meanwhile, government workers are being victimized by having no pay during the government shutdown, and many vendors at government sites are being put out of business, Meanwhile, native Americans and the poor are being denied food stamps and health care, and we will see a rise in deaths due to this government shutdown, soon to be the longest in American history, and totally unnecessary and outrageous.

It is time for the Republicans in the Senate to move to open up the government, as closing the government is a disaster that accomplishes nothing, and the only way the GOP has any chance to keep the Senate majority in 2020 is by demonstrating independence from the President, who likely will be gone before the year 2020 arrives.

Already, discontent with the stalemate has been voiced by Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia, Cory Gardner of Colorado, and Thom Tillis of North Carolina.