I didn't think it was possible for some of our politicians to sink to new lows. They've already plumbed so many depths, so shamelessly, that anything worse seemed beyond them. I was wrong.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi indicated Thursday that she would delay sending the articles of impeachment to the Senate, seeking more clarity on the rules for President Trump’s trial and potentially pushing the proceedings well into the new year.
Mrs. Pelosi’s comments drew condemnation from Republican lawmakers and President Trump, but the California Democrat said that she couldn’t select impeachment managers and advance the matter without more details about the Senate’s plans for a trial, which she has said should be conducted in a manner that she considers fair.
. . .
The Constitution doesn’t spell out the exact procedure for articles of impeachment being sent to the Senate, but specialists across the political spectrum say that Mrs. Pelosi has the power to delay sending the articles.
. . .
Some Democrats have expressed support for delaying sending over the articles of impeachment indefinitely, as a way to apply pressure on Mr. McConnell to allow witnesses and to obtain documents from the administration.
“We have one card to play here, which is the timing of its conveyance to the Senate, and how can we use that card to try and make the process balanced,” said Rep. Jim Himes (D., Conn.). “I think the speaker has a point of leverage. And she’s going to use that leverage to make sure the trial is fair.”
There's more at the link.
The Constitution is very clear that the House of Representatives and the Senate control their own modus operandi. Neither can dictate to the other how it should conduct its affairs. For Ms. Pelosi to insist that she won't carry out her duties unless the Senate bows to her will in the way it does its business is so ridiculous, so over the top, that it's beyond pathetic. In a sense, it puts the cherry on top of the charade that has been the entire impeachment process.
From the very start, this has been the most hypocritical process imaginable. Remember all the hype about "the whistleblower"? Turns out there wasn't one. In fact, there has not been one single witness produced, during the entire impeachment proceedings, who had or has first-hand knowledge of anything of which President Trump has been accused. Not one single first-hand witness. Instead, they've all been third-hand allegations: "I heard that this happened", or "I was told that this occurred", or "It seemed to me that this implied that". Such testimony would never convict any criminal in a court of law. It's hearsay. It's not testable or verifiable.
Then there's the way Republicans were refused the right to ask a number of important questions, and denied the ability to cross-examine important "witnesses" (who weren't). This was so outrageously biased that even some Democrats cringed at the sight. It was blatant hypocrisy on display, and those guilty of it appear quite unashamed by it - more's the pity.
Now we have this. A party-line vote in the House has produced articles of impeachment that are so vague, so non-specific, that almost any President in US history could be accused of the same "crimes". Not content with such chicanery, Ms. Pelosi is now trying to use them as a lever to manipulate the Senate, over which she has no control whatsoever. How would she react if Senator McConnell tried to force her to run the House of Representatives according to his wishes? She wouldn't be very happy, or very polite - but she has no problem trying to do precisely that to him.
Of course, the articles of impeachment are now a matter of official record. I sincerely hope that Senator McConnell brings them to the floor of the Senate with or without Ms. Pelosi's cooperation, and opens them to debate and a vote there - whether or not it's an actual trial. In fact, since a trial in criminal or civil court can't take place without formal charges being presented (and that's what articles of impeachment are - they're charges), perhaps he'd be justified in demanding that they be submitted by a given date and time. If they're not, then he can move to dismiss the charges on the grounds of prosecutorial misconduct.
I truly don't understand how any supporter of the Democratic Party can tolerate so grave an abuse of power, so blatant a trashing of the structures of this Republic to promote partisan political interests. If the Republican Party tried to do precisely the same thing, the screams of outrage from the progressive left (and almost all the news media) would be apoplectic . . . but when it's for a cause they support, all we hear is crickets. That speaks very poorly for the ethical and moral sense of those on the left.
I've said before that I don't support either political party - I vote for the individual. I also don't like how President Trump behaves, and have serious problems with some of the ways he conducts himself. Nevertheless, he's very clearly the victim here, not the perpetrator. I sincerely hope that these bogus charges backfire on all who conspired to pass them, and redound to their electoral doom next November. That would be nothing more than poetic justice. As for Ms. Pelosi . . .