CBS Evening News reported (Jan. 23 ) this from a White House source: “One Trump confidant tells CBS News that GOP Senators have been warned: Vote against the president, and your head will be on a pike.” The New York Times picked up the story the following day. Perhaps a note on grammar is necessary here. The actual source of the quote is unstated beyond “Trump confidant.”

The beauty of the phrase is it permits the recounting of the action but obscures who really did, or in this case spoke, the action. So, while Trump could claim he never threatened punishment, the message went forth nonetheless.

Is this something Trump would stoop to? He did boast that he had “retired” the political career of Jeff Flake, a Republican Senator from Arizona, and engineered Mark Sanford’s primary election defeat in South Carolina’s 1st Congressional District. So with the president’s own boast as background, the answer is yes.

Here is the bottom line, Donald J. Trump, or one of his White House staff, threatened the jury (the Republican majority anyway) with beheading (metaphorically speaking). The Republican nondefense-defense during the House Impeachment hearing was that the process was unfair.

Apparently during the actual trial, threatening the jury is Republican due process and fair?


Joseph R. Fischer, 


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