As I watched Speaker Nancy Pelosi surround herself with large American flags and wrap her impeachment putsch in the language of the Founders, a Mark Twain line came to mind.
“Don’t try and teach a pig to sing,” he warned. “It’s a waste of your time, and it annoys the pig.”
Yet that’s exactly what Pelosi is doing.
No matter how she dresses it up, her impeachment is a pig.
Does Pelosi hate Donald Trump? Of course she does. She hates that he’s president, that he’s building an economy that is the envy of the world and that he appeals to voters her party used to own. She’s turned him into such a villain that every success of his is a failure for her.
She calls him a coward, an imposter and keeps saying “all roads lead to Putin.”
Actually, all roads under Trump lead to jobs, jobs, jobs. Some 266,000 were added in November, driving the unemployment rate down to 3.5%, the lowest in 50 years. Wages climbed by 3.1% annually — all signals the economic expansion is still strong.
The report was such a blockbuster that even Trump haters had to admit it. “Trump Parries Impeachment With a Boom,” The New York Times said on page one. But if it looked with a fair eye, the Times would see plenty of other good news, too.
On the global stage, China made positive comments about settling its trade dispute with the US, which helped lift the stock market to new records. Iranians continued to risk their lives demanding more freedoms from the mullahs and Iraqis continued to demand that Iran get out of their country.
Israelis marked the two-year anniversary of Trump recognizing Jerusalem as the Jewish state’s eternal capital and moving our embassy there. Just as two years ago, the anniversary came and went without major disturbances despite predictions of mayhem from the “Arab street.”
And despite the media fixation on the frat-boy antics of Canada’s Justin Trudeau and France’s Emmanuel Macron, the NATO meeting demonstrated that Trump’s persistent demand that Europeans meet their financial obligations for the common defense is paying dividends. Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that by the end of 2020, the delinquents will have spent $130 billion more since Trump’s election.
In short, there’s plenty of good news that benefits Americans — and the American Way around the world.
But it’s an alternative reality where the media and Democrats are obsessed with one thing only: trying to end the Trump presidency. Any hope that Pelosi would come to her senses was dashed with her order to draw up articles of impeachment.
“Our democracy is what is at stake,” she said. “The president leaves us no choice but to act.”
She is wrong. She does have a choice, and she made the wrong one.
She could have called off the unpersuasive investigations and left the issue of Trump’s fitness up to voters next November. Instead, despite knowing there is zero chance Dems can muster the two-thirds vote in the Senate needed for conviction and removal, she puts dead-end partisan politics ahead of national progress on numerous fronts.
Her choice was wrong for another reason, too. The two investigations into the 2016 spying effort on the Trump campaign are moving forward and both could lower the overheated political temperature with cold facts.
One of them, the Justice Department’s Inspector General’s report on the conduct of the FBI and other officials as they sought surveillance warrants, will be released Monday.
The other, a criminal probe carried out under Attorney General Bill Barr, will take longer but is said to be moving quickly.
The probes offer a potentially competing narrative to the impeachment push. The Dem narrative says the president is corrupt; the GOP narrative says his accusers are.
Both or neither could be true, of course, but truth ain’t what it used to be. Polarization runs so deep that each side relies on its own scripture.
So it felt inevitable when, soon after Pelosi ripped into a reporter for merely asking if she “hates” Trump, a 1998 video surfaced of her saying Republicans were “paralyzed with hatred” for impeaching Bill Clinton.
Ah, but that was then. Now, when it comes to getting rid of Trump, the only rule for the left is that there are no rules.
Consider Rep. Adam Schiff’s secret subpoenas for phone records, including those of GOP Rep. Devin Nunes, Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani and Washington journalist John Solomon, all of whom had the audacity to defend Trump.
Consider that former Ukraine Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch asked the State Department to compile a watchlist of American citizens and monitor them on social media and other means. Solomon and Giuliani were on that list, too, as were Fox anchors Lou Dobbs, Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham, according to a Judicial Watch lawsuit that said the State Department deemed Yovanovitch’s request illegal.
Consider what law professor Jonathan Turley said after the hearing where he was the only witness who argued against impeachment. “Before I finished my testimony, my home and office were inundated with threatening messages and demands that I be fired,” he said.
Finally, consider what Ambassador Gordon Sondland said during his testimony in November. “We have countless emails apparently to my wife, our properties are being picketed and boycotted,” Sondland said. A Dem congressman from Oregon, Earl Blumenauer, publicly called for the action against Sondland’s hotels because Sondland served in the Trump administration.
Pelosi could have ended such madness by calling off the rabid dogs and saying her party trusts democracy. Instead, her impeachment jihad proves she doesn’t.
Homage to civic hero
An institution, a legend, a patriot — those are some of the accolades being used to describe Jay Kriegel, who died at age 79.
A trial member of Mayor John Lindsay’s team of whiz kids, Kriegel never tired of defending his boss’ legacy.
But Kriegel was hardly stuck in the past. His was an active life in business, publishing, legal affairs and real estate.
Yet no matter where he was paid, his passion was always for New York. His tireless effort to bring the 2012 Olympics here was just one example.
In a sign of his nonpartisan devotion to the civic cause, bitter rivals Mayor Bill de Blasio and former Mayor Mike Bloomberg both sang his praises. “For half a century Jay has been devoted to making this a better place,” de Blasio said.
Bloomberg said “his impact can be seen and felt across all five boroughs today. I’ll miss him dearly.”
As will we all.
‘Impeach’ frat prattle
Reader Bob Miletsky has a question, writing: “Is it me, or do the impeachment hearings resemble the trial in ‘Animal House,’ where Dean Wormer wanted to void the frat’s charter?
“I guess soon we will find out that President Trump has been on double secret probation.”