Encore of Revival: America, September 21, 2020

Justice Ginsburg is dead at 87, God rest her soul. Her life’s work is well documented in the litany of eulogies from this past weekend. This article will not attempt to add to them.

Whenever a seat opens on the Supreme Court, the nation enters the same debate with the same platitudes. Depending on who is and is not in control of the White House and the Senate, different people argue different platitudes. In 1992, then Senator Joe Biden argued what is today called the “Biden Rule”, that supreme justices should not be appointed during an election season. Republicans didn’t agree. Then President George HW Bush appointed a justice anyway, along with many other federal judges. The Democrat-controlled Senate, and the Judiciary Committee chaired by Biden, refused to even hold hearings on HW Bush appointees. But, their refusal was not limited to the 1992 election year; Biden applied his “Biden Rule” in 1991.

Then, in 2016, Biden opposed Republicans following the “Biden Rule”. He wanted Obama to appoint a justice for the Republican Senate to approve. Suddenly, Republicans agreed with the “Biden Rule” and Biden did not.

Now, a Republican president can appoint a justice for a Republican Senate to approve; but some Republican Senators think they should follow Biden’s rule. Democrats would never follow Biden’s rule if they had the White House and the Senate; we only expect this from Republicans.

Let’s cut with the platitudes and pretentious precedents already. Politicians choose judges because they can. Just how the court always rules in favor of the court—on every case, making whichever ruling reasserts the power of the court—the Senate always votes in favor of the Senate and the White House always acts in favor of the White House.

As with HW Bush and Obama, President Trump will appoint a new justice. The Senate will drag its feet, pretend to serve the will of the people, and play other games to remind Washington that the Senate has power to approve court nominees.

While branches of government put their power on exhibition, the Far Left is resorting to chaos and lawlessness as its display of power. That will only embolden the Right to vote in more Republicans, who will be all too glad to give Trump and his successors the very power he hasn’t used, which the Left nonetheless fears he will. Having been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize as the first president in 39 years not to involve America in the very new wars the Left criticizes the Right for, their case against Trump no longer holds water.

If, by some miracle, Republicans lose the election, they will approve Trump’s nominee anyway. They’ll have to. Notwithstanding that nominee vetting often takes 70 days, the Senate will likely find an excuse to wait until after the election. It’s not so much about politics and election strategy as it is about asserting power by delaying power to expand power. Expect a Republican-appointed justice by December, no matter what political smoke blows in the meanwhile. God rest her soul, Ginsburg is dead; so is Roe v Wade.

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Encore of Revival: America, February 10, 2020

Trump’s acquittal did not come because of party politics or friends in Washington. It came because he stood fast—he held his ground in a party that tried to denounce him early on. He had many good friends helping, but it was Trump himself that empowered their efforts and directed the flow.

The Republican Party is not what it seems. They hated Trump when he didn’t do things in their failing manner, but now they acquit him and act like they have always been BFF from the beginning. Any disagreements in Trump’s early days don’t matter anymore, even though that’s not the tone they used at the time, though a number of those Republicans are out of office.

It’s typical. The Republicans held their noses while Reagan gave them success. They passed Democratic-oriented, anti-Conservative laws during the W. Bush years viz the Patriot Act. They objected to Conservative voices in media during the 2005 “Build a Fence” movement viz Senator Lott. Thanks to Trump’s inability to be railroaded, they are being gifted more success and clout than they ever didn’t earn before.

Senator McConnell stayed true to the colors he flew, which is more than can be said for the late Senator McCain or Senator Romney, who took his unofficial place as “Republican Senate maverick”. Senator Romney’s departure from the fold could make him a one-term Senator—and not from lack of RNC backing. Senator Graham and many others took their stand for law, order, facts, evidence, process, and truth. The Republican Party stood behind their president, this time. Had former House Republicans not been card-carrying members of the metaphorical “never Trumper” movement, Republicans might still hold the House and none of this ugly impeachment would have happened.

Justice came from Republicans this time; don’t get used to it. While Democrats are the party of hate and failed “we wanna’ help you” platitudes, the Republicans are the party of treachery. Democrats stand together while Republicans usually don’t. It was a strange week in Washington. Things will be fine through the Trump years because they will depend on him. But after that, buckle up.

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Encore of Revival: America, February 3, 2020

After hearing from the house managers and then the Trump defense team, it sounds more like the one who may have committed “high crimes and misdemeanors” would be Joe Biden. Maxim Waters claimed that impeachment is not governed by law, only whatever whim Congress decides—a statement that simply isn’t true.

This level of lawlessness expected of the government suggests a nation doomed. A growing portion of the electorate actually believe that government should take whatever drastic action it wants—because they feel comfortable with the current action proposed. But, they so quickly forget that the tables were only recently reversed, and being lawful in the very way they hold in contempt now was the only thing protecting them from the government doing likewise to them just a few years ago.

The biggest danger Trump always posed was that he would do too good of a job, that he would be too successful, and that the Republicans would thus earn great power that they neither deserved nor understood. These past few months, Republicans have announced that they would back a president they abhorred just a few years ago. They do this because they enjoy the success they didn’t expect him to create because they had failed to create that success at anytime in their careers. Hateful yesterday, grateful today, what will tomorrow hold for Republicans?

Last week, as expected, Republicans turned down Democrats’ call for more witnesses—after House Democrats could have called the same witnesses, but didn’t. Though having Biden on record would have played well in Republican politics, the disgruntled, disenfranchised, dejected, and shamed former National Security Advisor John Bolton was never going to be given a soapbox. He is a war monger and a neo-Conservative, still angry that Trump pulled out of Syria and Afghanistan. Democrats wanted him as a witness, but Republicans knew he would only yield opinion and tainted facts at best, understandably contrary to the president who fired him. That was never going to happen and Democrats knew it; that’s why Democrats asked for it. Getting rejected often rallies the voter base.

As Democrats push their case for impeachment because of “feelings rather than law”, Republican voters are rallying around their president. Trump will likely win by an even greater margin in 2020 than he did in 2016, all thanks to the support for impeachment. This is not only because of Democrats on Capitol Hill. In coffee shops, offices, and homes, Republican voters are listening to Democrat voters give their reasons to support impeachment and that scares them just as much, if not more, than what Democrats in Washington say. Thus, in 2020, the Senate stands to gain even more seats, inching ever closer to a supermajority in the Senate. Once that happens, our liberties will be at the greatest risk since the founding because nothing is as dangerous as a party not held in check. Republicans in Washington pose a supermajority danger to all voters, and it was Democratic voters who helped it all happen—because their parents never taught them why government must not be lawless.

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Encore of Revival: America, December 23, 2019

Trump’s popularity is soaring. The impeachment this week helped the popular president even more—well, if an “impeachment” that the House speaker chooses not to transfer to the Senate is an actual impeachment. In the words of Sen. Mitch McConnell, the House doesn’t demonstrate much leverage by not, “sending us something we do not want.” Not sending the Senate something the Senate does not want has made Trump even more “popularer”.

Whether Democratic or Republican, everyone should think the House is an embarrassment to the country. Even Putin thinks the House is laughable. Smart Democratic voters won’t want their politicians barking up trees, starting fights that help the other team. But, there is a danger—power corrupts and supermajority corrupts “superly”. Democrats are handing the nation a supermajority Republican party by 2022, when the third round of Senate elections for Trump’s tenure take place. That is when our freedom will be at more risk than it has ever been; when good people no longer have accountability they are no longer good.

Fortunately, while many Democratic voters don’t value the Constitution that started the trend of ending slavery for the first time in human history, at least they know the power of gridlock. Democrats like checks and balances when they don’t have power. That might be enough to save freedom.

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Encore of Revival: America, November 12, 2018

This was an astonishing victory for Republicans for any year, especially a controlling party midterm. Senate Republicans have rarely held this many seats since the FDR days except Reagan and W Bush. Losses in the House were among the lowest losses for a controlling party midterm. By gaining seats in the Senate, Republicans are winning the long game. We are headed for a possible supermajority by the end of Trump’s second term. In the next two years, House Democrats will have just enough power to be irritating, but not enough to make any difference, other than helping Trump get re-elected in 2020.

Democrats are darned if they do and darned if they don’t. Trump’s appointees can be approved faster and impeachment in the House would die in the Senate. Opposition party power is good for presidential elections. Trump’s best course of action would be to deliver the strongest Conservative proposals so Democrats can go on record as obstructionists. The best course of action for Democrats would be to talk and vote like Republicans, which has always been historically favorable, proven with Democratic Rahm Emanuel -led “blue dog” victory in 2006.

Results are still being counted. At last count, Democrats gained 30 seats in the House and had control of the House by 7. Most of those states had Democratic Senate and gubernatorial victories. In this victory for Democrats, nothing seems out of the ordinary. The election results appear to be real and fair; Democrats won the House fair and square.

The question of some after-election counting and recounting, however, seems sketchy. The Arizona Senate race looks like a lost cause for the Republican candidate. Arguably from Senate voting records, the Arizona seat up for grabs was not gained by Democrats except in name only. That Senate seat will be up the election Trump leaves office. But, that’s a different story from a cluster of recount fiascos in Florida and Georgia, where recounting is a matter of procedure, not questionable results. The losers in those elections are pushing in hopes that close results can easily be tipped. If recounts were to change those results, that would open bigger questions, bigger objections, and bigger investigations. So far, the number of ballots in question would not change the results; miscounts would.

Even with the ground Republicans took, Democrats outspent Republicans by roughly $300M. Ironically, Democrats campaign on a platform of opposing big money and suspect business man Trump of trying to buy the presidency. The spending was bad optics for them.

Trump’s proved helpful on the campaign trail. Many Republicans who pushed him away lost. Senate Republicans defeated incumbents in Florida, Indiana, Missouri, and North Dakota. Senate Republicans also held vacant seats in Tennessee and Utah. 26 Republicans retired, more than any midterm year since 1974, the greatest retirements being 27 in 2008.

FDR holds both the greatest midterm gain and midterm loss since his time as president. After FDR, the greatest midterm loss was Obama’s first midterm. The greatest midterm gain in the Senate was Trump, the second-greatest being JFK with +3. This was a favorable midterm year for Republicans. But, already you read that right here at Pacific Daily Times before the election. So, while Republicans had a historic election, Pacific Daily Times has set a new standard for accuracy in the media.

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Encore of Revival: America, December 11, 2017

Little to nothing new happened this week. The supposed Democratic attempt to fry Moore by frying Franken only fried Franken. Franken’s seat is secure for Democrats; Moore’s seat would be up for party grabs in Alabama. The theory goes that the Democratic party viewed Franken as expendable since a Democrat would likely replace him, but Moore, a Republican, would be replaced by a Democrat, thus the Democrats would gain a seat in the Senate. By accusing and frying Franken of the same kind of sex scandal as Moore, it seemed to be non-hypocritical for Democrats to expect that Moore step down.

That’s the theory anyway as to why so many Democrat-leaning voices went after Franken.

Theory or no, it didn’t happen. The Clinton years cemented the unofficial Democratic position that “sex and morals” don’t affect politicians—that a man can cheat on his wife and remain loyal to his country. Republicans are the party of “morality police”, in a sense. Once a sinner proves he is a sinner, it’s time to hang a “scarlet letter ‘A'” around his neck and burn him at the stake. But, especially with the public being tired from having to remove Kevin Spacey from their “favorites” lists, the Republican voters don’t want anymore. “A Republican proves to be a sinner in need of forgiveness” no longer means that “moralless Democrats need to gain power” in the minds of Republican voters. The press “pooped in its diapers” over scandals one too many times and the Religious Right just doesn’t care anymore. The “scandal trump card” is no longer part of the rules as of this political season.

With the Alabama special election coming up tomorrow, and a tax bill about to get through Congress, headlines may finally change a little from what they have been for the past month. Thanks to the continued distraction provided by Mueller’s ongoing and seemingly directionless investigation of Russianewsgategate, the White House is moving forward and may start creating new headlines soon. Not having to write the same story week after week will come as a relief to some writers, but a disappointing alarm to get off the couch for the mainstream.

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