Comey testimony thread

Discussion in 'Politics & Current Events' started by sezna, Jun 8, 2017.

  1. sezna

    sezna undermotivated

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    I saw that Trump is giving a speech at the exact same time. I wonder if he is trying to distract people from Comey's hearing, or if it is his team trying to restrain him, lol.

    This hearing by the Senate - what could come out of it? Can they bring criminal charges? Sorry for asking you lots of questions. You seem knowledgeable.

    The R from Arkansas - Tom Cotton, his accent is very unique. It is like a mix of Texan (which I am very familiar with) and some sort of Kentucky-sounding "deep southern" vibe.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2017
  2. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    Well, the Senate itself can't do much - really, you can't do much to charge a sitting president without first impeaching him, and to do that the House has to move to impeach. Right now that's not terribly likely, but presented with clear enough evidence, either from the Senate or House investigation or from Mueller's investigation, that could change. If that WERE to happen, and if the House would vote to impeach, then the Senate would try him and if he was found guilty of the charges he was impeached by the House for, at that point he would be removed from office. At THAT point, he could be criminally tried.

    But, right now, as a sitting President, Trump could shoot Comey in cold blood and it's unclear if he could even be arrested if he wasn't first impeached. It'd actually likely be a constitutional crisis of sorts, lol.

    This is winding down here, and they're moving into a closed hearing. IMO, Comey handled himself very well today. Betting markets are evidently implying the odds of Trump not finishing his first term have increased somewhat over the hearing, which IMO makes sense - there's definitely grounds to attempt to impeach him for obstruction of justice, even if there was no evidence of actual collusion with Russia during the election.
     
  3. sezna

    sezna undermotivated

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    Watching Cornyn now. Due to where I live, he is one of my least favorite people. Interesting to see him in a situation doing something that I don't hate.

    Yeah, impeachment seems increasingly likely. We are in the beginning of Trump's term, so, if not now, he still has lots of time.
     
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  4. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    Well, it depends on the House, which still has a Republican majority that's sticking with Trump pretty tightly thus far. If his popularity falls enough that he starts to be a drag on them and their re-election chances, though... And, I can't see today's testimony HELPING Trump....
     
  5. asfeir

    asfeir SS.org Regular

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    I was a bit puzzled by Mc'Cains contribution. Was he trying to link two matters which are not really linked in order to make it sound like Comey sided with a party?
     
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  6. sezna

    sezna undermotivated

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    Just got to the McCain part. What is he rambling on about? He seemed caught off guard that the Clinton investigation is done, and he just asked Comey about Clinton a bunch. That is not even what this hearing is about. He then tied it to the Russian involvement somehow.

    Does McCain not realize the entire Russian investigation (with respect to involving Trump) started well after the July 5th announcement of the Clinton email announcement? He is just rambling about Clinton...

    ^^ asfeir, I think we replied at the exact same time. McCain really made no sense there.
     
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  7. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    McCain really sounded senile, like he didn't understand what was going on around him - rambling, disjointed, unfocused. :/
     
  8. sezna

    sezna undermotivated

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    I wasn't sure if it was senility or if he was caught off guard by Comey's answers and expected it to go a different direction. But yes I agree, it did give off that impression.
     
  9. tedtan

    tedtan SS.org Regular

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    I missed the testimony, but I've read some people think McCain was going for sound bites rather than serious questions.

    McCain is usually a reasonable, respectable gent even though I disagree with some of his political positions. Was he that bad today?
     
  10. Randy

    Randy Ooh, Degrasse Tyson-son Super Moderator

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    That would all be fine and well if he was actually coherent in his statements. If this was all gamesmanship, why did he call Trump "Comey" three different times?
     
  11. tedtan

    tedtan SS.org Regular

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    As I said, I have not yet seen the testimony, so I am asking you (the general you) to help me understand what happened, not trying to explain things I've not yet seen.

    Any input in that context?
     
  12. Randy

    Randy Ooh, Degrasse Tyson-son Super Moderator

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    I know, I know, I was making the statement in response to whomever it was you heard that said it.

    Before Comey even says anything, McCain is tripping over his words and delivering in a very oddly metered way. It would've been very easy for him to deliver a statement such as (based on the argument people are using to make sense of what he said) "Why did you come to a conclusion on the Hillary Clinton email server case so early on but the Russian investigation has dragged on so long?" or (as some people are stretching to say) "How come Hillary Clinton's campaign was not and is not being investigated with relation to Russian involvement in the election, since we're still unaware of EVERYONE the Russian were in contact with at the time?" He could've made either statement or both or mixed the two together.

    Instead he labored along, he misspoke several times on very simple things and was inconsistent in ways ~18 years of seeing John McCain speak, I know is not in his character or at least wasn't. My guess is that the two things I mentioned above were what he had in mind or a hybrid thereof, but he was legitimately having either a medicated or overall metal breakdown that prevented him from delivering it that way. As a result, he called Trump by the wrong name multiple times, he repeated certain things in a manner that implied he'd forgotten he already said them, and he created events that literally never happened (such as Comey absolving Hillary Clinton of involvement in the Russian meddling in the election... yes, McCain actually said that)

    And even beyond that... even if the somewhat coherent points I mentioned in the first paragraph were what he was TRYING to say 1.) The email investigation was YEARS older than this Russian investigation, so of course, chronologically it would've concluded earlier 2.) Not to say it's impossible but what's the value in chasing Hillary's connections to Russia in this past race, considering all the intel they hacked and released was unilaterally damaging to her, and she hold no official office anymore? Even if those were his points, even delivered coherently, they still would've been a bit addle brained.
     
  13. sezna

    sezna undermotivated

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    He seemed to think the Hillary investigation was also tied to the Russians, and the FBI just decided to stop investigating Hillary and start investigating Trump due to political ties. That is what I got out of his stammering and confusing questions.
     
  14. KnightBrolaire

    KnightBrolaire baritone6/8 string hoarder

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    kasowitz just gave a press conference where he said comey deliberately leaked documents to his friends, who then leaked them to the press, and that it was an entirely retaliatory act, which will be prosecuted by the proper authorities. Looks like comey is getting screwed.
     
  15. Randy

    Randy Ooh, Degrasse Tyson-son Super Moderator

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    I was pretty close.
     
  16. tedtan

    tedtan SS.org Regular

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    Thanks for the run down; that does seem out of character for McCain.
     
  17. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    There does seem to be a contradiction in the timeline - Trump started talking about tapes after word of the memo leaked. I'll have to go back and check the transcript, but I haven't seen one yet.

    That said, I'm not convinced Comey is "screwed" - there was a lot of questioning along the line of how he'd intentionally made the content of the memos unclassified as he was writing them, so they could be easily and widely distributed it if ever needed. In other words, the content of the memo wasn't classified, nor was it bound by any client privilege or confidentiality. I don't see any reason why Comey can be prosecuted for mentioning to a friend that Trump demanded his loyalty over dinner, and encouraged his friend to go forward with the story, while he himself was trying to stay out of the public eye in the immediate aftermath of his firing. The content was not classified, nor was there any specific expectation of confidentiality in the conversation between Trump and Comey.
     
  18. KnightBrolaire

    KnightBrolaire baritone6/8 string hoarder

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    kasowitz also mentioned that the leaks which comey claimed were in response to a tweet, actually happened before the tweet, since the NY times was citing the leaked documents the day beforehand.
     
  19. sezna

    sezna undermotivated

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    Kasowitz is SO full of BS. He is saying "Trump feels vindicated by the testimony" before there was even time for Trump to watch it after his speech. Maybe he was extremely briefly briefed on it? And there was no mention of retaliation in that testimony. And, as an added bonus, what criminal charge is there for distributing your personal notes?
     
  20. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    Ok, I THINK I've got the timeline nailed down.

    The story started to break on May 11th, the day before Trump's tweet, two days after Comey was fired on the 9th. Here's a contemporaneous account, with an excerpt quoted below:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/11/us/politics/trump-comey-firing.html

    That would have been a Thursday. Note that the sources here are two associates who are recounting private conversations with Comey, from around the time the conversation with Trump happened. On Friday, the 12th, Trump tweeted Comey better hope Trump didn't have tapes. Over the weekend, Comey decides to leak the existence of the memo he wrote to a friend and encourage him to share it with the press. On Monday, the 16th, news coverage first starts referring to a "memo" that Comey wrote:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/16/us/politics/james-comey-trump-flynn-russia-investigation.html

    So, while the story about the conversation had already broke before Trump's tweet, the fact that Comey memorialized it in a memo seems to have not come out until a couple days later. Which, thinking back, is kind of my recollection, too, that the story suddenly gained legs after a few days when there was actual evidence. Note too the added detail - this is a story no longer about Trump asking for loyalty, but Trump asking Comey to drop the investigation. Now, tot ry to find a copy of Comey's testimony to see if that jives...
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2017
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