You have to wonder how many Democratic senators spend the long hours of impeachment fantasizing how to end the misery of listening to Rep. Adam Schiff deliver the party’s funeral oration. Please God, hurl a lightning bolt at the podium… bring down a chunk of the fine old coffered ceiling where he stands and prates about a Russian invasion of Malibu… send a coral snake up the leg of his trousers…!
It was so bad that his California counterpart, Senator Diane Feinstein, just up-and-split late Wednesday. Elizabeth Warren has been seen furiously doodling maps of all the primary precincts she is failing to visit in her confinement. Bernie Sanders imagines himself wielding thirty inches of re-bar upside Mr. Schiff’s skull, while Amy Klobuchar pops her third Xanax of the evening. You have no idea what mental tribulation the House impeachment manager supreme is visiting on his colleagues.
The impeachment case against Mr. Trump might mercifully spell the end of the Master Narrative the Democrats have been confabulating since 2016: that Donald Trump invited the wicked Vlad Putin to checkmate Hillary Clinton and thereby crushed the hopes and dreams of those wishing to make Ukraine the 51st state… or something like that. Because according to Mr. Schiff, there is no nation on this planet as dear to the interests of America than darling Ukraine, with its radioactive forests, decrepitating Soviet infrastructure, and dedication to liberty.
Those who were only puzzling over Nancy Pelosi’s motives in bringing this case, and assigning it to the two sketchiest characters in her charge, Schiff & Nadler, must finally be convinced that she is no longer sound of mind. What was she thinking? Did she really want to set up the voters to lose faith in the basic electoral process by preemptively delegitimizing the 2020 election? (“Trump can only win if he cheats!”) Is she that desperate to flip the Senate to prevent anymore judicial appointments? Could be. Or is the impeachment spectacle a different kind of set-up: to make the forthcoming raft of indictments against RussiaGate coupsters look like a mere act of revenge rather than long-delayed justice for a three-year campaign of perfidious sedition by some of the highest officials in the land?
Anyway, after another day of this boresome torment, the Senate will get to hear Mr. Trump’s defense in a full-throated way — really for the first time since the whole nasty business began, and in a conspicuous venue where it can’t be ignored anymore. If nothing else, it will probably be more interesting and certainly more dignified than the idiotic vaudeville put on by Schiff & Nadler. Even if the President’s managers move to dismiss the case out-of-hand for its utter lack of merit and the legal errors in its construction by two House committees, I doubt they will miss the opportunity to use the time allotted to lay out the story of what actually happened the past three years — a crime spree of government against itself.
The temptation to call witnesses must be anguishing, though, from a legal standpoint the Houses’s case deserves to be thrown out summarily just to reestablish the principle that impeachment is not a frivolity. But the nation would miss the chance for Mr. Schiff to have to explain exactly what happened around the “whistleblower” episode and, of course, there would be no more possible excuses for producing the “whistleblower” him-or-herself in the witness dock. I think we would discover what an absolutely shady operation that was.
In the meantime, an interesting development flew in under the radar as the impeachment spectacle hogged the news: The Department of Justice yesterday declared two of four FISA warrants against Carter Page invalid. The warrants were signed by James Comey, Andrew McCabe, and Rod Rosenstein. The move has deep repercussions in everything connected to the RussiaGate investigation, including especially the prosecutions mounted by Robert Mueller’s lawyers. It implies what has already been demonstrated by other evidence: That the FBI and the DOJ knew by January of 2017 at the latest that all the information they used to start the case against the President was garbage, and yet they continued it anyway — including the appointment of Mr. Mueller and his commission. The DOJ’s statement about the two FISA warrants doesn’t negate the possibility that the other two will also be declared invalid. It’s time for the figures involved in all this to become very afraid.