I Smell A Rat …

What in the Sam Heck is going on here?  Three stories from yesterday should make your blood boil, for all three show just how big a bully Trump has become and how the safeguards to keep a president from acquiring too much power are crumbling under his bluster.

For those who may be unfamiliar or have forgotten about the Bridgegate scandal in 2013, a very brief synopsis:

Two of Governor Chris Christie’s associates, Bill Baroni and David Wildstein, ordered the closure of two of three lanes on the very busy George Washington Bridge at the point of access/egress to Fort Lee, New Jersey.  The closures were proven beyond a doubt to have been politically motivated as retaliation against Fort Lee’s Mayor Mark Sokolich, a Democrat who had not supported Christie as a candidate in the 2013 New Jersey gubernatorial election.  They caused massive rush-hour traffic tie-ups for a full week for no reason at all.  Also involved, or at least in the loop, was Bridget Kelly, deputy chief of staff in Christie’s office.  All three were tried and found guilty on all counts in November 2016.

Yesterday, however, nearly four years after their conviction, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously to overturn the convictions.  The Court held that Baroni and Kelly for no reason other than political payback reshuffled the lanes on the George Washington Bridge.  Justice Elena Kagan wrote that the move jeopardized the residents of Fort Lee but concluded that “not every corrupt act by state or local officials is a federal crime.”

ratI smell a rat.  The Court admits that it was a politically motivated move and that it had negative consequences for the residents of a town, yet … no harm done, nothing to see here, folks?  Christie has become quite a bootlicker to Donald Trump, and just yesterday he came onto my radar for claiming that there was really no point to saving lives, that it was more important to get the economy up and running.  Perhaps this is his reward?

Michael Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI in 2017 about his conversations with the Russian ambassador.  He confessed, pled guilty … and yet yesterday, the Department of Justice under the ignoble William Barr dropped all charges against him.  Yep, you heard me right … dropped all charges … free to go, nothing to see here, folks, and have a nice day Mr. Flynn.

Right before the charges were dropped, however, an interesting thing happened.  The lead prosecutor, Brandon Van Grack, withdrew from the case without giving a reason, only a terse single sentence to Judge Emmet Sullivan that he would be quitting the case.  Almost immediately thereafter, the Justice Department announced the charges were being dropped.

Again, I smell a rat … a big, fat rat named Donald Trump.rat-trump

And last, but certainly not least, there’s this …

In March, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in March cleared the way for Congress to access secret evidence from Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election in one of a set of separation-of-powers lawsuits between House Democrats and Trump.  If there is nothing to hide, after all, then why shouldn’t Congress and ultimately, We the People have access to everything?

But noooooo … Trump has asked the Supreme Court to block the ruling!  Again … what are you hiding, Mr. Trump???  And once again, I smell a rat.ratWill the Supreme Court capitulate?  Well, they seem to be on a roll of supporting Trump and whatever he asks for these days, don’t they?  The only time they decided against him of late was on April 27th when they ruled that the federal government owes health insurers massive payments from prior ACA (Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare) funding commitments that Trump & Co attempted to renege on.  While I applaud that decision, it is literally the only one in which Trump has not had his way.  Checks and balances???  Hah!

There are six months left until the election, my friends.  Every week, the abominations multiply almost exponentially.  How much more damage can he do before then?  Perhaps by November he and his family will have claimed ownership of the United States, renamed it “The Divided States of Trump”.  How much longer will Congress … and We the People … put up with this b.s.?  Or, will we sit back like good little citizens and trust the wheels of justice to work for us until one morning we wake and realize we are subjects, not citizens?Time-to-go

26 thoughts on “I Smell A Rat …

  1. Hi Jill, catching up on national news I came across the Michael Flynn counter-story. That he was set up by the Obama administration and Peter Strzok was the bad seed who manipulated the FBI into investigating Flynn.
    Here’s pretty compelling evidence against the FBI and Comey, although now sure if it’s true:

    Anyhow, it’s worth a listen. Cheers!


  2. I couldn’t agree with you more about your second and third points. Unfortunately, the first is more complicated. When the court rules unanimously, meaning that both Ginsburg and Sotomayor signed on, I feel I have to look more closely. Kagan’s ruling stated that “the evidence the jury heard no doubt shows wrongdoing—deception, corruption, abuse of power.” I would add despicable disregard for human life motivated by crass political retribution.
    The problem was that the charge was fraud—and since no one proved Kelly and Baroni pocketed any money as a result—the “good guys” on the court also apparently agreed the conviction didn’t stand.
    Very unfortunate—especially since it gives Christie an opportunity to bloviate and sound self-righteous. I wish in retrospect there had been different charges. But I can’t work up the fury for this one that I had before—or that I feel about the two smellier rats you point out.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Annie! I think that at least part of the reason that Bridgegate doesn’t evoke the same angst that the other two do is that it was local, only mattered to the people of Fort Lee, whereas the other stories are more relevant to the population as a whole. You’re right … overall, the other two are the more relevant ones for the entire nation, and I’m still seething over them.


      • I was quite angry at the time—and I actually felt some sympathy for Kelly, a single mom, that she was being the fall guy and Christie emerged unscathed. But he didn’t really: it affected his standing as a Republican candidate for President. So there’s that.

        Liked by 1 person

        • True … up until Bridgegate, I had a great deal of respect for Governor Christie, but most of it vanished after that. Rather like Rudy Giuliani, whom I so respected and admired for his compassion and good sense in the wake of 9/11, but since then, I have lost most of that, too.


  3. Hi Jill, perhaps you and readers would be interested in signing an official White House petition to extend the stimulus program for ppl who need more aid during these troubled times. We are trying to pass this Democrat led bill crafted by Bernie Sanders, approved by Ms. Pelosi, currently awaiting majority of Senate Republicans to pass.
    Enough signatures will go a long way to convince these morons that they need to pass this bill ASAP to help the poor pay bills and put food on the table. It’s $2000/ mo. retroactive to March, $8K total for every citizen making under $100K/ year. I think it’s worth a shot.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Jill, your nose is sending you good signals. Chris Christie denies everything about the Bridgegate, but here is a key from my vantage point. People take on the personality of their leader. So, if their leader is brash and punishes people who get in the way or dare criticize him, the direct reports will do the same. Whether Christie made the specific order, his direct reports knew it would be in keeping with his modus operandi. I do not doubt for one minute, his folks punished the mayor for criticism and people were impacted.

    As for the president, I was dropping a car off for servicing this morning and they had Fox and Friends on with the president phoning in. I caught a few words, but he was blaming Obama, Biden, and any one else for something. He of course was lying, but I found of interest the concerned looks on the three hosts’ faces as they tried to listen to his latest rendering. To me, it was a look of disbelief, but maybe I am giving them too much credit.


    Liked by 3 people

    • Agreed, and I will always believe that Christie knew what those three were up to and approved, either vocally or tacitly. I remember when it happened, and I was so disappointed, for up until that time, I had tremendous respect for Chris Christie. It’s rather like Rudy Giuliani who earned my respect and admiration in the days and weeks following 9/11, but then blew it all when he threw his lot in with Trump.

      Obama seems to always be his ‘ace in the hole’ … when all else fails, blame Obama, for all the racists and haters will happily jump on that bandwagon. A total aside, though … I would question the ethics of those at the car dealership if they were tuned into Fox!


  5. Hello Jill. The US is no longer a full democracy but is now a banana republic under the rule of a family crime boss. But it is not just fascist tRump, the Republican Senate is corrupt and complicate. Forgiven me if you already posted on this , I miss a few of your recent posts, but McConnell forced a unqualified ideologue Justin Walker into a federal lifetime judgeship a few weeks ago. Then recessed the Senate so he could go to the swearing in ceremony for that new judge. Now the first act of the returning Senate wont be to help the country dealing with CV19 but to slam Judge Justin Walker on to the most powerful appeals court in the country, and the stepping stone to the supreme court. Justin Walker is unqualified by any measure according to the American Bar Association, and if you listen to his being questioned by Senator Kennedy you would realize how really bad he was. If anything happens to RBG you can bet we will have that disaster on the SCOTUS. Hugs

    Liked by 2 people

    • In truth, the U.S. was never a true democracy, but a democratic republic, but to the point, you’re right … whatever underpinnings of a democracy we once had are being destroyed on a daily basis by the ‘person’ in the White House, his minions, and his supporters. I’ve referred to the U.S. as a banana republic more than once, and today I stand by that assessment. As to the situation you refer to with Justin Walker and the judgeship, Mitch McConnell’s interference, has been on my radar for a few days, but no, I haven’t yet written about it, so you didn’t miss it. You know me well, though, and know that my fingers are itching to delve into it … I simply haven’t had time as yet. Stay tuned, though! I hope to address it this weekend. Hugs!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hello Jill, I look forward to reading it. You have a grand way of expressing your self when you write that is full of passion and a joy to read, while being truthful. I admire that. Many people can be only one or the other, passionate, or truthful. You manage both. Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

        • And you, my friend, have a grand way of boosting my morale! Thanks so much for the kind words … I just write from the heart, then clean up the grammar and syntax a bit, take out some of the f-words, etc. I’ll let you know when (if) I get that post on the schedule. Thanks again … your words make me feel … worthy.

          Liked by 1 person

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