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Great Moments in bad faith


“I used to think it would be bad if a mountain of evidence that the president had illegally witheld funds to extort a foreign government to ratfuck a presidential election, but when the impeachment manager cited a news report suggesting that we would be Donald Trump’s uncritical doormats I had no choice but to be Donald Trump’s uncritical doormat”:

The reference came from a CBS News report that had gone viral earlier Friday, quoting an anonymous Trump confidant claiming that senators were warned that “your head will be on a pike” if they vote against the president on impeachment. The report did not say who had delivered the threat or which senators had been so warned.

“I don’t know if that’s true,” Schiff (D-Calif.) said. “I hope it’s not true. But I’m struck by the irony of the idea, when we’re talking about a president who would make himself a monarch, that whoever that was would use the terminology of a penalty that was imposed by a monarch — a head on a pike.”


When Schiff mentioned the alleged “head on a pike” threat, the GOP side of the chamber began to murmur and shift in outrage.

“That’s not true!” said Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), who shook her head angrily, then crossed her arms over her chest in protest for the rest of his speech.

And after he ended his speech about 10 minutes later, the Republican outrage was brewing.

Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming, the Republican Conference chairman, denied any such threat and attacked Schiff for repeating the suggestion.

“What he has proven to all of us is that he is capable of falsehoods and he would tell it to the country and tell it to us sitting in the chamber when every one of us knows it’s not true,” he said. “Whatever gains he may have made, he lost all of it, plus some, tonight.”

While it is not especially surprising that a party leader like Barrasso, whose vote for Trump’s acquittal is not in question, would be vexed by the remark, the dismay of Collins and Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) — GOP senators who Democrats believe are open to voting next week for additional witnesses — could be more troubling.

I don’t even understand what the point of this lie is.

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