Our system of government is at issue

Seems as though Republican congressmen and women have their collective knickers in a twist seeking a way to defend their puppeteer who, apparently, has been caught dead to rights committing another nefarious deed which our Constitution specifies as an impeachable offense.

The President implores his followers to "read the transcript" of his conversation with Ukranian President Zelensky, knowing full well that it is essentially an admission of guilt and with confidence that they haven't and won't.

He is insistent that the whistleblower be identified even though his or her anonymity is protected under the law and his or her charges have been corroborated by witnesses with firsthand knowledge of the phone conversation and related background scheming.

A current Republican talking point is that while Trump may be guilty of an impeachable offense, it did not succeed and therefore did no harm to the country or to the Bidens, and should, as a consequence, be excused.

Contrary to his oft repeated assertion that the Mueller Report found no evidence of collusion with the Russians or any effort to obstruct the Mueller investigation, the report does identify Trump as an "unindicted co-conspirator," immune from prosecution while in office. To further excuse his blatant abuse of power is, in effect, amending the Constitution so as to afford Trump and his successors dictatorial power. It is our system of government that is at issue.

Robert Hoffman

Santa Maria

'Hysterical parroting' fails to make case

A letter published recently titled “Facing a Constitutional Crisis”, shows us the parrot population is growing by leaps and bounds. 

The writer claims that the impeachment investigation that is being carried out in the House of Representatives in normal, legal fashion, poses a constitutional crisis. The hysterical parroting of GOP talking points fails to make his case.

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The writer says that in 2016, the American voters elected Mr. Trump. Well, the electoral college did; the majority of voters did not. However, in accordance with the Constitution, Mr. Trump was duly sworn in.

Since that time, according to the letter writer, the Democrats have been “trying to undo what the American people decided by plotting a coup d'etat”, a claim Mr. Trump has been making over and over.

The problem with this claim is that, like 90% of what comes out of Trump's mouth, no such thing is happening. Trump and the letter writer betray their ignorance of history and the Constitution by making and repeating this claim.

A coup d'etat is the sudden, violent overthrow of a government, according to the dictionary. History shows us that this is generally accomplished by using a military force or outright murder to unseat a leader and install someone else.

Is that what is happening? Well, no.

Using this claim to describe a legal procedure being carried out in the House that may lead to a vote to remove an unfit or treasonous leader hardly fits the definition of a coup, now does it?

The claim is a dead giveaway that the letter writer is parroting Mr. Trump and his pathetic apologists. His further outrageous claim that this is “traitorous” shows us something else: the writer agrees with Mr. Trump that failure to support the president, regardless of what he says and does, equates with treason. That thinking fits right in where dictatorship flourishes. Of course, Mr. Trump's admiration is reserved for just this kind of person on the world stage. Makes you stop and think, doesn't it?

It is indeed time for Congress to grow a spine. GOP apologists for this disaster of a president need to rediscover their misplaced sense of honor and honesty, and get over their fear of what Trump might do to their careers. They're doing that to themselves already.

Judith L McKinnon


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