*The following is an opinion column by R Muse*
Loyalty, allegiance, fealty, or devotion are all words that imply a deep-seated sense of duty or unwavering attachment to something like a cause or a nation, or someone like a family member or close friend. There is also loyalty to a political party that one might think has to be earned and carefully cultivated. Over the past month, if nothing else, Republicans have shown an unwarranted sense of loyalty to a man who deserves nothing but contempt as a politician and revulsion as a human being leading many to wonder just what Trump would have to do to lose favor of even one of his fellow Republicans.
Now, it looks as if there is at least one Republican alive who understands the importance of a White House occupant with a grasp of the U.S. Constitution, hewing closely the rule of law, and comprehending the crucial nature of diplomacy; he also understands the threat to America in allowing Donald Trump near the White House, much less tolerating him occupying it. Unlike any other Republican thus far, that lone Republican, a distinguished judge for three-decades, says Trump has to go immediately and he is offering his expertise to start drafting articles of impeachment for the good of the nation.
Mark P. Painter is a recently retired Ohio appellate judge who was also the first American jurist to ever be elected by the United Nations General Assembly to the United Nations Appeals Tribunal. Judge Painter’s credentials are uniquely extraordinary as a world-class jurist, but his primary concern as of late is the clear and present danger of allowing Donald Trump to remain in the White House or any position of authority and power.
Mr. Painter penned an op-ed for The Cincinnati Enquirer that was reposted in USA Today and says he is a lifelong Republican, and that from 1968 through 2004 he voted exclusively for Republican presidential candidates; it is what any sane human would consider a dyed-in-the-wool Republican loyalist. However, he also said, like a very tiny number of Republicans, that he has watched as “’his” party went from “what once was a sane, center-right party go off the rails, first to the extreme right, then to wherever Trump is, which is in another universe.”
That “other universe,” the one many Americans and world citizens consider a bizarre combination of a Adolf Hitler as carnival con man drove Mr. Painter to make what he says is tough decision; “End this dangerous presidency. Trump must be impeached and removed with all haste.”
Judge Painter cited the same list of Donald Trump’s affronts to America, its Constitution, and common decency as every other civilized human being, and noted that only Congress can send the reality show swindler packing, but there is really only one thing on his fairly long list that is grounds for immediate impeachment. It is true that there are the issues of colluding with a hostile foreign power to influence American policies, but those issues are still being exposed. However, what is beyond refute is Trump’s violation of the Emoluments Act and continuing gross conflicts of interest that began at his inauguration and have gone on unabated and unchallenged.
It is important to note that Trump still owns and profits from his expansive businesses that include making money with every weekend golfing trip to Florida, his old lady’s refusal to live in the White House, and his family’s vacations and business trips around the country and the world. By his own admission, Trump only put his sons and a businessman in charge of day-to-day operations; Trump still owns everything including all the profits from the government he is in control of whether it is putting up Secret Service agents in Mar-a-Lago, Melania’s place of residence in New York, or when foreign dignitaries stay at his hotels anywhere on Earth.
Look, Trump can’t be impeached for being an entitled bully, or an “illiterate tweeter,” or attacking his detractors any more than he can over his penchant for making up fake terror attacks or inauguration crowd sizes or popular vote numbers. In due time, however, he can be impeached for colluding with Russia and lying about his and his staffs’ collusion, but investigations and the wheels of justice in that kind of case turn slowly, but they do turn. However, Trump violated the Constitution the day he was inaugurated by profiting from being president including every time a foreign dignitary spends one penny at a Trump property or he hauls the Secret Service to his Florida country club festivities; the other gross conflicts of interest are another issue entirely.
Judge Painter noted that “his” congressman, Steve Chabot (R-OH), has been a stalwart defender of Trump from the media, “which is simply reporting Trump’s machinations.” However, he also said “It’s time for him [Chabot] to man up and start drafting the articles of impeachment,” and reminded Mr. Chabot that “he did it for Clinton for far less than Trump has already done.”
In case Chabot forgot what the impeachment process entails, or needs assistance getting started, Judge Mark P. Painter said “We can’t let him get away with the ‘dozens of dazzlingly illegal things Trump has already done” and that “because America is at stake; If you need help drafting those articles of impeachment, Steve, I am available.” And, if Judge Painter needs co-signers to his offer, there are tens-of-millions of real Americans at the ready because they too realize that America is at stake.
**The above article includes a report with commentary by R Muse**
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.