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Thursday, December 12, 2019

Editorial shows why newspapers should die

USA Today demanded that Congress "Impeach President Trump." The editorial is a testament to the uselessness of editorial boards. Only the uninformed would fall for the newspaper's misrepresentations of the facts.

The argument is that President Donald John Trump threatened to withhold foreign aid from Ukraine unless it investigated Joe Biden.

The transcript of the July 25 telephone call between the presidents of the two republics busts this conspiracy theory. Nevertheless, USA Today tried to convince its readers that up is down.

It wrote, "Clinton was impeached by the House (but not removed by the Senate) after he tried to cover up an affair with a White House intern. Trump used your tax dollars to shake down a vulnerable foreign government to interfere in a U.S. election for his personal benefit."

The facts say Bill Clinton perjured himself in a deposition in a sexual harassment lawsuit in which the Lewinsky affair helped establish a pattern of fraternizing with the staff. He was not covering up an affair; he was lying to a judge.

The argument that "Trump used your tax dollars to shake down a vulnerable foreign government to interfere in a U.S. election for his personal benefit" is an abomination. It was Joe Biden who did so as vice president when he used a billion-dollar loan guarantee to coerce Ukraine to fire a prosecutor who was investigating a company that paid Biden's coke-addled son, Hunter, a million dollars a year.

Joe Biden bragged about it in 2018.

He said, "I went over, I guess, the 12th, 13th time to Kiev. And I was supposed to announce that there was another billion-dollar loan guarantee. And I had gotten a commitment from Poroshenko and from Yatsenyuk that they would take action against the state prosecutor. And they didn’t.

"So they said they had — they were walking out to a press conference. I said, nah, I’m not going to — or, we’re not going to give you the billion dollars. They said, you have no authority. You’re not the president, the president said. I said, call him.

"I said, I’m telling you, you’re not getting the billion dollars. I said, you’re not getting the billion. I’m going to be leaving here in, I think it was about six hours. I looked at them and said: I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money.

"Well, son of a bitch. He got fired. And they put in place someone who was solid at the time."

President Donald John Trump was not asking Ukraine to dig up dirt on Biden. He already had the dirt. Biden gave it to him. He was just asking them how their investigation was going.

But the editorial board thinks it is 1898 and not 2019. It thinks people have no other sources of news, and therefore it can get away with such deceptions. You furnish the pictures. I'll furnish the war.

The editorial board plodded on. It wrote, "This isn’t partisan politics as usual. It is precisely the type of misconduct the Framers had in mind when they wrote impeachment into the Constitution.

"Alexander Hamilton supported a robust presidency but worried about 'a man unprincipled in private life desperate in his fortune, bold in his temper' coming to power. Impeachment, Hamilton wrote, was a mechanism to protect the nation 'from the abuse or violation of some public trust.'"

It selected two phrases from the Federalist Papers and applied it to this case.

The first phrase is from a paper on what to look for in electing a president. The second phrase is from Paper No. 65, in which he made the case for having the Senate -- not the Supreme Court -- preside over impeachments.

Hamiliton wrote, "A well-constituted court for the trial of impeachments is an object not more to be desired than difficult to be obtained in a government wholly elective. The subjects of its jurisdiction are those offenses which proceed from the misconduct of public men, or, in other words, from the abuse or violation of some public trust. They are of a nature which may with peculiar propriety be denominated POLITICAL, as they relate chiefly to injuries done immediately to the society itself. The prosecution of them, for this reason, will seldom fail to agitate the passions of the whole community, and to divide it into parties more or less friendly or inimical to the accused. In many cases it will connect itself with the pre-existing factions, and will enlist all their animosities, partialities, influence, and interest on one side or on the other; and in such cases there will always be the greatest danger that the decision will be regulated more by the comparative strength of parties, than by the real demonstrations of innocence or guilt."

In other words, he knew impeachments would be political circuses and he decided to pitch the tent in the Senate, which is the one body of government where every state is equal. That would prevent Virginia and New York from bullying the rest of the country.

Today, the threats are California and New York.

I have no doubt that given the fact that no crime was committed and an election looms in 11 months, that Hamilton would have rigorously opposed this constitutional lynching, as would Washington, Franklin, and every colonialist named Lee.

But USA Today believes it knows better and that it can somehow sway public opinion to have the Senate fire the president and turn its back on the will of the people in 30 states and one congressional district in Maine.

The newspaper never gave Donald John Trump an endorsement, a chance, or an apology. It has zero credibility with President Trump's supporters.

And they will decide whether a telephone call is worthy of impeachment. Without their support of impeachment, he will remain president, making an impeachment yet another failure by Democrats.

Newspapers bill themselves as vital to a democracy.

We live in a constitutional republic and will be better off when the newspapers disappear -- as editorials such as USA Today's editorial on impeachment show.

Who needs them when we have the Babylon Bee?

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