December 29, 2019

"Democratic candidate presidential and former vice president Joe Biden... is right in saying that he would refuse to comply with a Senate subpoena absent a court order."

"In making that statement, however, Biden has now taken the legs out from under the second article of impeachment voted on by the House against President Trump. That article accuses the president of 'obstruction of Congress' for doing essentially what Biden said he would do, namely demanding a court order before he would comply with what he believes to be partisan subpoenas issued by one chamber of Congress.... If Biden is not obstructing the Senate by his refusal to comply with a Senate subpoena, how could Trump be guilty of obstructing Congress by refusing to comply with the House subpoenas absent court orders? The shoe is now on the other foot and causing blisters for Democrats. It could also be uncomfortable for Republicans, who may have to acknowledge that Biden has a point."

Writes Alan Dershowitz (at The Hill).

73 comments:

TJM said...

Joe was never the sharpest knife in the drawer. But with a moronic, pro-Dem media, Dershowitz’ point will be lost

jaydub said...

It's different when democrats do it.

Francisco D said...

That article accuses the president of 'obstruction of Congress' for doing essentially what Biden said he would do, namely demanding a court order before he would comply with what he believes to be partisan subpoenas issued by one chamber of Congress

Does a Senate subpoena have more force of law than what Congress has done?

Does Biden have anything close to an Executive Privilege claim? He is a private citizen.

Inga said...

The Senate will have to decide how they can make the argument that Biden must comply with a subpoena while others in the House hearings ignored subpoenas and they were fine with that.

The Cracker Emcee Refulgent said...

So Biden can be impeached the moment he's elected? Let the good times roll.

As a libertarian-ish conservative, I do have to acknowledge that Democrats, however unintentionally, have done far more to discredit and weaken the power of government than their GOPe brethren. Never have I seen law-abiding, working, Middle America types display so much casual indifference to what the government wants them to do.

Inga said...

“So Biden can be impeached the moment he's elected? Let the good times roll.”

So who is going to do it? The House and maybe even the Senate will be in Democratic hands.

TJM said...

Inga,

Are you really that dense? Do you even understand what Alan Dershowitz, liberal Dem and acknowledge premier US Constitutional Scholar is saying?

jpg said...

Another torpedo fired at Trump circles around and sinks the Dems. JPG

Inga said...

TJM,

Are you really so stupid you don’t know what I am saying?

The Cracker Emcee Refulgent said...

"The Senate will have to decide how they can make the argument that Biden must comply with a subpoena while others in the House hearings ignored subpoenas and they were fine with that."

The beauty of it is the Senate doesn't need to worry about the fevered imaginings of the House. They do their thing there. We do our thing here.
At this point I'll gladly bet that this is never sent to a Republican Senate. Biden's refusal certainly indicates that this has been discussed and agreed upon in Donk circles.

Rich Rostrom said...

Biden is a private citizen.

Trump is an office holder in a different branch of government.

If a House of Congress can at will demand that the President show up for questioning, they can harass him into impotence.

gilbar said...

i Do NOT Understand the issue?

According to the single standard*, this is not even the same thing; let alone relevant


the single standard* many people accuse the dem's of some sort of "double standard"
This is ludicrous! there is only One Single standard ie: Rules are Only for Republicans

ambisinistral said...

"The Senate will have to decide how they can make the argument that Biden must comply with a subpoena while others in the House hearings ignored subpoenas and they were fine with that."

That's not a problem. They can concede that Biden is well within his rights to go to court in an attempt to quash the subpoena and the 2nd Article of Impeachment is dead in the water.

narciso said...

the web of connections to the Ukraine and even Russia, involves many players like john Kerry's lieutenant, jonathan winer, who was isikoff's confirmation to the steele dossier, a kin of Kerry and Pelosi, through Rosemont Seneca and visoil, aides to romney on the board of burisma,

Achilles said...

Inga said...
TJM,

Are you really so stupid you don’t know what I am saying?


He doesn’t understand how depraved you are.

You are proud of an obvious double standard applying one set of rules to trump and another to Biden.

He is probably a decent person and people as disgusting as you are are usually smart enough to lie.

The Cracker Emcee Refulgent said...

The game now is to portray Republican Senators, particularly the weaklings, as treasonous Trumplings. The problem with this is that there simply isn't time to wage the slander campaign effectively enough to change anything before the election. And given that the House will almost certainly flip back to Republican, impeachment will be a dead issue.
Maybe it all really is about judges. They can't stop Trump's re-election but maybe they can stem the tide of conservative judges. They're clearly not playing to win so perhaps some damage control will have to be good enough.

gilbar said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
gilbar said...

Igna, being a Paid Whore, for the democrat party said...
who is going to do it? The House and maybe even the Senate will be in Democratic hands

So, there you have it; according to an ignorant slut, who is a paid whore for the democrat party:
Impeachment has NOTHING to do with ANYTHING; Not "justice" not US security, not ANYTHING:
Nothing other than the fact, that the US House is controlled by the opposition party
Keep that in mind. Even the Democrats trollops admit that

Openidname said...

Unforced error by Biden, too, as nobody had asked him whether he would comply -- he just came out and announced that he wouldn't.

Char Char Binks, Esq. said...

It can't be uncomfortable for Republicans to acknowledge that Biden has a point if that undermines the point of the impeachment. It must be uncomfortable for Dershowitz to still admit to being a Democrat.

stevew said...

Oh, I don't think Biden's expressed position will make Republicans uncomfortable, Biden is saying exactly what the Republicans that floated the idea of calling him as a witness hoped for.

What am I to make of the fact that Nancy Pelosi invited Trump to give the State of the Union address? Still her President I see.

Francisco D said...

Inga,

Are you really that dense? Do you even understand what Alan Dershowitz, liberal Dem and acknowledge premier US Constitutional Scholar is saying?


It does not sound like you have been paying attention, TJM. The answers are obvious.

1. Yes. She is that dense, probably more so.

2. No. She does not understand Dershowitz. He uses big words and thinks independent of the leftist hive mind.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

No one is above the law!

Except all democratics in powers.

TJM said...

Inga, you are such a dense moron, you don't even understand what a double standard is.

You are fine with Biden ignoring a Congressional Subpoena but you are NOT fine with Trump ignoring a Congressional Subpoena, which was the basis for Article II of the Impeachment package. If you did not believe in double standards then you would agree that either Trump did not have to respond to the subpoena without a court ruling or you would say Joe Biden HAS to respond to a Congressional Subpoena without a Court Ruling. That way, both men are treating alike. By the way, ever heard of Equal Protection under the Law?

The Cracker Emcee Refulgent said...

"Unforced error by Biden, too, as nobody had asked him whether he would comply -- he just came out and announced that he wouldn't."

But this was known from the jump. Biden couldn't possibly testify under oath. Which reinforces the idea that this was all dumbshow for the frozen chosen and was never going to be sent to a Republican Senate.

Jim at said...

Wake me when the shooting starts.

walter said...

Watch the Des Moines register interview when Good ole Uncle Joe looks like he wants to throttle the female reporter.
At least he didn't challenge her to push-ups.

Crazy World said...

Joe will most likely not remember what he said or where he was at or why.

Spiros said...

I think we should just admit to ourselves that impeachment is better left to consensus democracy and forget about the "neutral standards."

Ken B said...

The rotting penis looks pretty good compared to this impeachment.

Drago said...

Between Admiral Inga, Field Marshall Freder and Vichy Republican Foreign Policy Expert LLR-lefty Chuck, Althouseblog is blessed with a deep reservoir of leftist contributors versed in military strategy and foreign policy nuances.

In addition, Admiral Inga leads the Russia Collusion Conspiracy Thought Team while LLR-lefty Chuck is the President of the Midwest Chapter of the Obama Adoration Society.

So, you know, be grateful...or something...

Qwinn said...

Funny thing is, there IS a legitimate double standard here.

Trump can claim Executive Privelege and need the Court to rule on that as a Separation of Powers issue.

What exactly is Biden asserting that hasn't already been adjudicated?

Chris Lopes said...

"The Senate will have to decide how they can make the argument that Biden must comply with a subpoena while others in the House hearings ignored subpoenas and they were fine with that."

It's easy, they don't make the argument. They agree with Biden and dismiss the 2nd article of impeachment. The Democrats are the ones who have to explain how you can impeach Trump for something it's ok for Uncle Joe to do.

gilbar said...

Article I
part i we are Impeaching a person, for wanting an investigation into corruption
part ii we are trying to Elect, that person that DID the corrupt acts
Article II
part i the person we are impeaching, wouldn't submit to Congressional subpoenas
part ii we are trying to Elect a person that won't submit to Congressional subpoenas


Oh, wait! there's More: The Guy we're trying to elect; will NOT be Impeached;
Not because he did or did not do wrong; but, because we hold a majority in the US House

It's kinda elegant, if you look at it right.

DavidD said...

“ ‘It could also be uncomfortable for Republicans, who may have to acknowledge that Biden has a point.’ ”

Could it be, just maybe, that the Republicans are trying to prove a point?

tommyesq said...

You are fine with Biden ignoring a Congressional Subpoena but you are NOT fine with Trump ignoring a Congressional Subpoena, which was the basis for Article II of the Impeachment package.

Don't buy into the rhetoric of the left - Trump did not ignore the subpoenas, he simply challenged whether they were valid and/or subject to executive privilege. At that point, it is incumbent on the party seeking to enforce the subpoena to move the court to compel testimony, which the Dems opted not to do. Trump did not ignore the subpoenas, he responded with an appropriate challenge that apparently the Dems did not believe they could overcome.

A judge will generally laugh at your being offended that a witness failed to show if you then didn't move to compel.

Mark said...

Trump . . . simply challenged whether they were valid and/or subject to executive privilege

And that is a valid, constitutional objection. Biden has no such privilege or other valid grounds to object.

narciso said...

there is so much that the blank pages have left out, some of which clarice addressed in her pieces, in the evening thread, re the fetid wells of impeachment,

narciso said...


https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2019/12/new_year_ahead_nothing_will_help_them.html

Mark said...

Now the Washington Post is running a story attacking Trump as being part of another criminal scandal in trying to oust Venezuelan dictator thug Nicolás Maduro.

rcocean said...

Please Nancy, start the trial by sending up the impeachment articles so we can get this over with. This is like sitting through the most boring predictable play in the world, and being stuck in your seat for 2 months. We already know how Act III ends.

rcocean said...

Biden would rather ignore a subpoena and go to court than answer questions about Hunter Biden, who is 100 percent innocent of everything.

Okey-Dokey.

Kevin said...

“If Joe Biden is so innocent and claims he’s innocent, why would he not allow, just like Richard Nixon did, the people that were closest to him to testify?” Senator Amy Klobuchar, a Minnesota Democrat who is seeking the presidential nomination, said Sunday on the CBS program “Face the Nation.”

At least that's what she would say if this wasn't a partisan witch hunt.

Kevin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rcocean said...

BTW, MTP has Chuck Todd in a pre-taped showed complaining that a "Fire-hose of Falsehoods" were leading people to not believe Chuck Todd. Somehow Trump, the Russians, and Fox News were leading people to disbeileve NBC news and the MSM media. Even more incredibly, the MSM has caught Trump lying 15,769 times, but people don't care.

Kevin said...

The last thing the Democrats want from this circus is "the truth".

Just enough "evidence" to convict Trump without opening up Biden's can of worms is all they're trying to finagle.

rcocean said...

But don't take Chuck Todd's word. He had graphs, and charts, and talked to 3 experts in something who all agreed with him. And then had a panel with 4 journalists who also agreed with him. It was pretty persuasive. Next time you see a fire-hose of lies, ask them to turn it off.

n.n said...

So, the House indulged in #MeToo, held a casting couch, interviewed the objects of their affection, and failed to produce a splooged dress. Now, they are left fondling a ripe peach that withers in darkness. Shelve the fruit of their collective collusion, and let it rot and burden them until justice is served.

narciso said...

largely

https://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/nb/nicholas-fondacaro/2019/12/29/todd-bashes-christians-mtp-rant-against-misinformation-trump

narciso said...

interestingly the segment about the president taking advice from enlisted personnel on Afghanistan, even though the author peter Bergen, was the subject of a time piece, a week ago, lol, is not news,

Steven said...

The Senate will have to decide how they can make the argument that Biden must comply with a subpoena while others in the House hearings ignored subpoenas and they were fine with that.

Trivially easy. Unlike private citizens, members of the executive branch are covered by executive privilege, which is recognized by the courts as conferring certain immunities in order allow them to carry out their necessary legal duties to advise the President.

It's the same difference as between subpoenaing a member of the public who witnessed a crime, and the attorney/spouse/clergyman of the defendant.

J Melcher said...

This whole impeachment thing is about poisoning the process of replacing Ruth Bader Ginsburg, if that becomes necessary in 2020, (G*d F*rbid.)

The argument that the courts must decide various issues means that a nominee must be asked how he or she would rule on either Biden or Trump. It's a "have you stopped beating your wife" question, there is no good answer. But Trump's nominee will be accused of being bribed to side with Trump (or against Biden) by the offer of such an exalted judicial position.

n.n said...

the president taking advice from enlisted personnel on Afghanistan

A Chief Executive (private and public) and Commander in Chief who listens, to his people on the ground, before directing.

SGT Ted said...

The GOP Senate is using their subpoena power to drive home exactly the point that impeaching Trump over refusing to comply with House subpoenas was a partisan act.

Slow Joe took the bait and just proved it.

Drago said...

J Melcher: "But Trump's nominee will be accused of being bribed to side with Trump (or against Biden) by the offer of such an exalted judicial position."

Ha
! That's nothing.

The left has already conclusively demonstrated that they are happy to falsely accuse republican nominees of leading gang rapes across the Maryland countryside for decades totaling hundreds and hundreds of victims.

Compared to that, false accusations of bribery are childs play.

Wince said...

The Republicans in the Senate have the luxury of months to adjudicate a Biden subpoena in the courts, whether in connection with impeachment or general oversight. Meanwhile, they can call all the other witnesses necessary to prove Biden's corruption, right up until the election.

The Democrats' window for impeachment is much narrower, but maybe this explains why Pelosi is desperate to keep impeachment alive by holding it in abeyance.

Narayanan said...

Which side of the Senate will emit / vomit such subpoena and who will go to court to enforce?

Sebastian said...

“ ‘It could also be uncomfortable for Republicans, who may have to acknowledge that Biden has a point.’ ”

Yes, for the GOPe it would be uncomfortable to force the MSM to acknowledge that Trump is right. He had a point before Biden had a point. In fact, considering that he is president rather than Joe Citizen, like, you know, with constitutional powers and privileges, Trump had a stronger point.

The main point is that the Dem farce is a sham.

n.n said...

Biden is waiting for a quid pro Joe. That said, innocent until proven peachy. The burden of proof is on the hunters and judges. Show us the dress!

Michael K said...

The Senate will have to decide how they can make the argument that Biden must comply with a subpoena while others in the House hearings ignored subpoenas and they were fine with that.M

Ted Cruz, this weekend said they will call Hunter Biden as a witness if Trump wants it done. No mention of Joe.

John henry said...

 Steven said...

Trivially easy. Unlike private citizens, members of the executive branch are covered by executive privilege, 

Could Biden claim executive privilege?

1 he is currently a private citizen.

So Can he claim it retroactively because he was vp at the time?

If he makes that argument, he would have to claim vp is an executive branch position. But under the constitution it is clearly a legislative branch position in the Senate. No more executive branch than speaker of the house.

So could he argue that since he was running errands for the president he was effectively exec branch and claim privilege that way?

Or would Obama have to retroactively claim exec privilege because biden was running errands on his behalf.

Passed the popcorn.

John Henry

Michael K said...


Blogger Inga said...

The Senate will have to decide how they can make the argument that Biden must comply with a subpoena while others in the House hearings ignored subpoenas and they were fine with that.


The stupidity is amazing. No clue. She does not know that the subpoenas from the House committees had no enforcement mechanism. They even said so.

Narayanan said...

Biden has walked it back to if when ordered by Court.

walter said...

C'mon, mannn!
Let's do push-ups!

Qwinn said...

Reading the comments at the Hill, it's terrifying how obtuse the lefties there are. They're insisting that since Biden wasn't on the call, he can provide no relevant testimony. Biden is mentioned explicitly in the impeachment. If Biden did indeed commit a crime, then Trump *obviously* should not be impeached for wanting it investigated. It is in fact the best - maybe the only - defense Trump could argue. What else could possibly be more relevant to the Article I claim? This position on the Left is astoundingly ignorant to the point that it's obvious gaslighting.

Bruce Hayden said...

“The Senate will have to decide how they can make the argument that Biden must comply with a subpoena while others in the House hearings ignored subpoenas and they were fine with that.”

Congress has two possible grounds for issuing subpoenas: A1S1 Oversight and A1S2 Impeachment. In these situations A1S1 Oversight is not applicable. Congress can only use Oversight to investigate what they have created. That includes the various Executive Branch departments, but not the White House, or the Presidency itself, which is was created simultaneously in Article II. And, indeed, the entire investigation into the phone call between Trump and the Ukrainian President was illegitimate from the start, because the House has no power, whatsoever, to oversee foreign policy, which, after all of the carefully scripted testimony in the House, is what they had - the House investigating policy differences between State Dept and CIA bureaucrats and the President in an area where he has plenary authority.

That leaves Congress’ A1S2 Impeachment power. One big problem for the Democrats in the House is that they eased into Impeachment. Initially, it was just an agreement, by Palsi, Schifty, and Wadler, 3 out of 438, House members. But after that, the House Dems did vote to institute some impeachment procedures in the Intelligence and Judiciary Committees. But it was always questionable whether a legitimate a Impeachment investigation was ever opened. Several reasons to doubt it. First, the investigation was done by the wrong committee. Secondly, there as no legitimate predicate for the investigation. No prima facile case of a High Crime or Misdemeanor, which made it a purely political stunt. And third, the Dems cheated, promising some Due Process for Trump and the Republicans, in both countries committees, then not providing it. On the flip side, upon the House voting out two Articles of Impeachment, by the time the Senate would is subpoenas, they would have jurisdiction to do so, based on the House voting out articles of impeachment.

If you read the House “Subpoenas” carefully, you will discover that they weren’t actually subpoenas, because they did not credibly threaten the targets of imprisonment through court action if the target did not comply. After some blather about the House’s Oversight and Impeachment Powers (see above), all that was threatened was Obstruction of Congress. Which we find means that the Dems would use it as the basis of Their second article of impeachment. Because the request was never stated as an actual demand, threatening legal consequences, compliance was voluntary, and the Dems had no legal expectation that these requests would be complied with. No doubt that part of this was probably because it was Schifty and his HSCI issuing these demands, and not Wadler’s Judiciary Committee.

Let me note that CTH, among others, believes that this second article of impeachment, for Obstruction of Congress, is a place holder, for sliding in Obstruction of Justice based on the bogus Obstruction of Justice claims made by Mueller’s Lawfare allied prosecutors that were summarily rejected by AG Barr, DAG Rosenstein, and the DOJ OLC, after they get the details opened up to them in their suit to unseal the Mueller grand jury information. They are essentially trying to bootstrap their claim to this information (which also includes much of information from the FBI’s FISA Article I and VII abuse, running from probably 2012 up through much of 2017) into their investigation by using their two bogus articles of impeachment as justification for unsealing the grand jury information.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

It follows from the Biden/Dershowitz position that Nancy Pelosi can hold the articles of impeachment until the witnesses she wants to testify agree or are ordered to do so.

Greg the class traitor said...

John henry said...
Steven said...

Trivially easy. Unlike private citizens, members of the executive branch are covered by executive privilege,

Could Biden claim executive privilege?

1 he is currently a private citizen.

So Can he claim it retroactively because he was vp at the time?

If he makes that argument, he would have to claim vp is an executive branch position. But under the constitution it is clearly a legislative branch position in the Senate. No more executive branch than speaker of the house.

So could he argue that since he was running errands for the president he was effectively exec branch and claim privilege that way?

Or would Obama have to retroactively claim exec privilege because biden was running errands on his behalf.


IIRC, only the current President can claim "Executive Privilege." In the ordinary course of business, a current President will assert it for a previous President, as self protection.

Obviously wouldn't happen in this case

Dersh's argument in this case is pretty obvious crap

Chuck said...

Well, since Biden has disavowed the position that he would not obey a Congressional subpoena, I guess that ends the argument, right?

The wiser and the defensible position is that lawyers for Biden and the House impeachment managers would argue that such a subpoena should be quashed on the basis that Biden has no knowledge about Trump's withholding of the Ukraine aid. Biden would not unilaterally defy such a subpoena.

And so Dershowitz's argument ends.

hombre said...

Flash: Democrats pile on Dershowitz with multiple absurdities to avoid cognitive dissonance over “okay for Biden, bad for Orange Man.”

hombre said...

“The wiser and the defensible position is that lawyers for Biden and the House impeachment managers would argue that such a subpoena should be quashed on the basis that Biden has no knowledge about Trump's withholding of the Ukraine aid.“

LLR and lawyer Chuck dazzles with Democrat propaganda that Trump’s state of mind, i.e., concern over the Bidens’ Ukraine corruption, has nothing to do with whether his conduct was an abuse of power or reflected a defensible concern over corruption and obstruction of justice by a US Vice President and family.

Political scotoma comes to mind.

hombre said...

@ 1:59: I know “political scotoma” is imprecise, but it is softer, if less accurate, than “biased to the point of stupidity.”

Greg the class traitor said...

Chuck said...

The wiser and the defensible position is that lawyers for Biden and the House impeachment managers would argue that such a subpoena should be quashed on the basis that Biden has no knowledge about Trump's withholding of the Ukraine aid. Biden would not unilaterally defy such a subpoena.

Nope. Trump was withholding the Ukraine aid to get potentially corrupt acts by the VP Biden investigated.

Questioning Biden about those acts, establishing that President Trump had good reason to want them investigated, is a major part of Trump's defense