Monday, October 1, 2018

The Last Straw?

Or just one more poison pill that the Republicans are happy to force down our throats?

From Daily Kos, reporting on a story at NBC News:

"NBC News: Kavanaugh contacted witnesses prior to publication of Ramirez assault claims...NBC News reports that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh was apparently in personal contact with potential witnesses he believed would cast doubt on the allegations that he exposed himself to a female student during a drunken Yale party.
It would seem to be a very odd move for a Supreme Court nominee to be personally involved in speaking to witnesses in a preemptive attempt to discredit testimony against him"

Let's just be clear about this.  It is not "a very odd move." It is witness tampering.  It is subornation of perjury, a major felony.   And is there a person on earth, even one as big a liar as Lindsey Graham, or Trump himself, that would claim that this Yale law school graduate, this man who has been a judge for over a decade, does not know that?  Is there anyone in the country that thinks it was okay for this degraded specimen of humanity to contact potential witnesses and pressure them about their testimony?

And just to add to this sordid incident, it appears that Kavanaugh made these contacts before the publication of the Ramirez story in the New Yorker, contrary to Kavanaugh's claim that he never heard about Ramirez' claims before the story was published, which would amount to one more count of perjury.

No one expected Trump to be fair or civic minded in his selection of a Supreme Court Justice.  But isn't this a step too far even for Senate Republicans, appointing a Justice that breaks the most fundamental judicial laws right in their faces, and feels perfectly entitled to do so?

Wait, how foolish of me.  Republicans will do anything, no matter how petty, no matter how criminal, if it advances the interests of the rich sociopaths that keep them as slaves.  And they will do it while screaming out in self-righteous anger about what a dirty trick it is for Democrats to try to keep a monster like this off of the Supreme Court.

Just for Reference, in case you are wondering:

U.S. Code › Title 18 › Part I › Chapter 73 › § 1512

(b) Whoever knowingly...corruptly persuades another person, or attempts to do so, or engages in misleading conduct toward another person, with intent to—
(1) influence, delay, or prevent the testimony of any person in an official proceeding;
(2) cause or induce any person to—
(A) withhold testimony, or withhold a record, document, or other object, from an official proceeding...shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.

(e) In a prosecution for an offense under this section, it is an affirmative defense, as to which the defendant has the burden of proof by a preponderance of the evidence, that the conduct consisted solely of lawful conduct and that the defendant’s sole intention was to encourage, induce, or cause the other person to testify truthfully.

(g) In a prosecution for an offense under this section, no state of mind need be proved with respect to the circumstance—

(1) that the official proceeding before a judge, court, magistrate judge, grand jury, or government agency is before a judge or court of the United States, a United States magistrate judge, a bankruptcy judge, a Federal grand jury, or a Federal Government agency

(Bolding by me.)  Note:  the law against subornation of perjury applies to all "official proceedings "
in front of any "government agency," which would presumably include the United States Senate.  Also note that the burden of the proof in a case like this is on the defendant.

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