1 month ago

Republicans in Alabama’s U.S. House delegation oppose impeachment resolution

All Republicans in Alabama’s U.S. House of Representatives delegation on Thursday voted against a resolution formally opening an impeachment inquiry into President Donald J. Trump, while Democratic Rep. Terri Sewell (AL-07) supported the measure.

H. Res. 660 passed on a 232-196 vote. No Republicans supported the resolution, while two Democrats voted “nay.”

Reactions poured in afterward from Alabama congressmen, who criticized both the substance and process surrounding the impeachment inquiry.

While Republicans prior to this resolution have largely criticized the process as secretive, they now argue that the newly formalized process institutionalizes an inequitable, one-sided inquiry ensuring the minority party has no real input or rights.

In a statement, Congressman Bradley Byrne (AL-01) said, “Since starting their impeachment scheme, Democrats have tried to manufacture a case against President Trump despite having no evidence of an impeachable offense. They’ve been playing a shameful game of political keep away in the basement of the Capitol to keep Americans in the dark. Today Democrats doubled down on their illegitimate smear job.”

“This is a sad day for our country, but the facts are in our favor and cannot be hidden from the American people forever. Until then, I will not stop fighting to expose and defeat this politically motivated sham,” he added.

Byrne made national headlines last week when he and a group of conservative Republicans, including Congressman Mo Brooks (AL-05), stormed into the secure basement room in which Congressman Adam Schiff’s (D-CA) committee was holding an impeachment hearing. Byrne returned to the Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility (SCIF) on Wednesday of this week in an attempt to review transcripts and records from the Democrats’ impeachment hearings but was denied access.

After the vote on Thursday, Congressman Mike Rogers (AL-03) stated, “I am proud to stand with President Trump and fight against the Democrats’ witch hunt. This sham is nothing more than an attempted coup.”

“Adam Schiff’s investigation is based solely on lies and leaks,” he continued. “They have never accepted the fact the Donald Trump was elected president fair and square. House Democrats should be ashamed of themselves.”

Congressman Robert Aderholt (AL-04) released a written statement and a video bashing the impeachment efforts.

He slammed Democrats and took an implicit jab at The Washington Post in the process.

Aderholt’s full statement as follows:

The Democrats have now made official, what they have been wanting to do since January 20, 2017 and that is try and overturn the 2016 election. Impeachment has been their only agenda since President Trump was elected, and they’ve spent the last 10 months since they took over the House trying to find a way to do so.

I voted no! While Congress does have the CONSTITUTIONAL AUTHORITY to impeach a President, it was meant to only be used as a response to actual crimes committed by a President. So far, in what little information the Democrats have selectively leaked, I’ve seen nothing that rises to the level of overturning an American election.

Since the election three years ago, a national newspaper’s tag line has been “Democracy Dies in Darkness.” It’s too bad that our Democracy is dying in the darkness of this impeachment process. The process passed by Democrats reverses procedures used in the Nixon and Clinton impeachment investigations. For those two investigations, the President’s staff could examine evidence, ask questions of witnesses and attend hearings. Members of Congress from the Minority Party could issue subpoenas without the Chairman’s permission. Even with today’s vote, the Democrat impeachment process keeps the investigation behind closed doors for at least the next few weeks. This is wrong.

It’s time for Democratic leadership to accept that the Russians did not cause Hillary Clinton to lose, but that the voters simply chose Donald Trump over the prospects of granting a Clinton four more years in the White House.

The American people elected us here to work for them—to negotiate deals that improve trade, drug pricing, healthcare, infrastructure and aim to fix some of the biggest issues we face as a country. It seems that Democratic leadership would rather waste more even more time and taxpayer dollars on yet another pointless investigation that does nothing to answer the problems we were elected here to fix.

Congressman Mo Brooks (AL-05) used some Halloween puns to make his point in a press released headlined, “Befitting Halloween, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Her Coven Declare Open Season on ‘Donald Trump Witch Hunt’! Mo Brooks & the Good People of Oz Oppose.”

The North Alabama congressman also tweeted out a picture of what appears to be former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton photoshopped as a witch.

Brooks’ full statement as follows:

For years, Socialist Democrats successfully manipulated and fooled the American people with a ‘Russian Collusion Hoax’ that helped Socialists win the House of Representatives. Not to be deterred by having been caught with their hands in the cookie jar, Socialist Democrats are implementing ‘Russian Collusion Hoax 2.0’, an effort to again manipulate and fool the American people with a hyper-partisan, false, Trump impeachment narrative that, to date, is wholly lacking in evidentiary substance and legal support.

To date, Socialist Democrats have produced ZERO credible evidence that President Trump committed a high crime, misdemeanor, treason, or bribery—the Constitutional impeachment standard. Rather, Nancy Pelosi and Adam Schiff have abused their power by holding secret, sham proceedings in the Capitol basement while selectively and illegally leaking one-sided information designed to deceive the American people into believing the worst Fake News allegations against President Trump. Frankly, this process is so appalling as to constitute a very real threat to our Constitutional Republic. Trashing the votes of more than 60 million Americans is no small matter yet that is exactly the blood-lust of Socialist Democrats.

H.Res. 660 is badly flawed. First, the resolution enshrines tainted evidence obtained in secret in the official record. Because of the badly flawed process used, all evidence obtained to date in these Star Chamber proceedings is so badly tainted that it should be discarded as ‘fruits of the poisonous tree’. None of this evidence would ever see the light of day in a court of law where how evidence is obtained is also important. Every witness who has testified in Schiff’s secretive basement proceedings should be called again to testify in front of the American people.

Secondly, the flawed resolution gives Adam Schiff the authority to veto and prevent any Republican from calling any witness to rebut the Socialist Democrats’ false narrative. This process flies in the face of the Constitution’s Bill of Rights and long-standing due process rights and past judicial orders. In contrast, impeachment proceedings for both Nixon and Clinton, the accused and the minority party had the absolute right to call witnesses without majority party authorization. Socialist Democrats should respect past, bipartisan processes often used and long-respected in matters of such grave importance.

Keep in mind, there is a significant opportunity cost to this impeachment. None of the American people’s legislative priorities are being addressed. A tsunami of illegal aliens continues to swamp America’s southern border, at great cost to taxpayers and lost American lives. America’s deficit ballooned to $984 billion this past year, yet there is zero talk in Congress about reigning these deficits in or preventing a debilitating national insolvency and bankruptcy that risks American prosperity and lives. Nationally, economic growth has slowed substantially as impeachment overshadows economic issues. Substantive committee hearings on major issues facing America have declined almost to a standstill, leaving much needed work undone. For example, both the National Defense Authorization Act and federal government funding for the rest of this fiscal year languish while all eyes focus on this impeachment soap opera. Such is the state of Washington politics under Socialist Democrat majority tenure in the House. It’s not just a real shame, it is a dangerous tragedy that threatens America.

By trying to impeach President Trump at all costs, Socialist Democrats show their disdain for more than 60 million Americans who voted for Donald Trump in 2016. America’s Founding Fathers meant for impeachment to be reserved only for the most serious offenses. Impeachment rips apart America by ripping apart American votes. It’s a travesty that Socialist Democrats are proceeding with this impeachment despite ZERO evidence of an impeachable offense. Socialist Democrats ought to be ashamed.

In a statement, Congressman Gary Palmer (AL-06) said the impeachment inquiry resolution was long overdue, yet still “unjust.”

“This resolution has finally come after many weeks of an already defunct process, a clear attempt to save political face,” he noted.

“Nothing in this impeachment inquiry thus far has met the threshold required for the serious charge of impeachment,” Palmer outlined. “The Constitution says a president may be impeached for ‘treason, bribery, or high crimes and misdemeanors.’ The investigation into President Trump has been centered around a phone call with President Zelensky of Ukraine, but the call transcript, which I have read, and Zelensky himself have both confirmed that President Trump has not committed a crime or abused his power. Zelensky has said that President Trump did not bribe or insist on any quid pro quo.”

Palmer concluded, “Aside from clear lack of evidence, the buildup to this point is so flawed that justice has been made virtually impossible. Democrats have held meetings in secret, have withheld transcripts of witness testimonies, and have leaked only the evidence that fits their narrative. They have done their best to construct a biased picture of the president in view of unseating him, regardless of the actual facts. And now they ask the American people to trust them to be fair for holding an official vote, something they should have done weeks ago. At this point, no vote can cure the injury inflicted upon the reputation of the Congress by this Democrat conceived and executed conspiracy against President Trump. We must acknowledge the process for what it is, an unjust and partisan attempt to remove a duly elected president by going against precedent, due process, and justice.”

Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

1 hour ago

7 Things: Two articles of impeachment, polling has Sessions still up, Trump gets trade win and more …

7. Biden is still first, but Warren is falling

  • New polling data from the Quinnipiac University has been released that shows former Vice President Joe Biden is still in first place with 29%, but U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) has moved up into second with 17%.
  • U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has fallen to third place with 15%, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg is down to 9%, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg follows with 5% and entrepreneur Andrew Yang has 4%.

6. Stopping the spread of misinformation

508

  • Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill has met with Twitter and Facebook representatives in an effort to stop misinformation from spreading online throughout the state in preparation for the upcoming 2020 election cycle.
  • Merrill said that it’s important that everyone in Alabama is “informed with up-to-date, complete, and accurate information.” Merrill added, “[E]lection security and protocol is higher than ever in Alabama. We continue to introduce new ways to improve security every single day.”

5. Ainsworth has endorsed Ward

  • Lieutenant Governor Will Ainsworth took to Twitter to endorse State Senator Cam Ward (R-Alabaster) for the Alabama Supreme Court. Ainsworth confirmed the endorsement, saying, “I am supporting his candidacy and encourage my friends to do the same.”
  • Ward responded to Ainsworth’s endorsement by saying he’s “honored” to have the support and that Ainsworth “knows my legislative record and the conservative values I will bring to our Supreme Court.”

4. Tuberville doubles down on his reasonable drag queen take

  • When former Auburn football coach Tommy Tuberville expressed that a Christmas parade may not be the appropriate place for a drag show, you knew the media would take the bait and attack him for it.
  • In response, Tuberville further explained that a parade designed for children isn’t really the place for this stuff. He stated, “Christmas is about celebrating with family,” adding, “Our public celebrations ought to be family-friendly for young and old.”

3. Democrats are supporting trade agreement

  • The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) is now supported by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) caucus, which is the trade agreement that would replace NAFTA.
  • Pelosi’s announcement of her support comes only one day after Alabama Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh (R-Anniston), House Speaker Mac McCutcheon (R-Monrovia), State Senator Gerald Allen (R-Tuscaloosa) and State Representative Wes Allen (R-Troy) sent a letter to Pelosi pushing for her to support the trade agreement.

2. New polls in Alabama Senate race

  • The Alabama Farmers Federation has released new polling data that shows former Attorney General Jeff Sessions and former Auburn Football Coach are polling closely, with Sessions at 35% and Tuberville at 31%, whereas data released by the Sessions campaign showed that Sessions was at 44% and Tuberville was at 21%.
  • The Farmers Federation data also showed that U.S. Representative Bradley Byrne (R-Fairhope) is at 12%, former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore is at 8% and State Representative Arnold Mooney (R-Indian Springs) and Stanley Adair are only at 1% each.

1. Abuse of power and obstruction

  • The House Democrats have announced formal articles of impeachment they’re bringing against President Donald Trump, which are abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. In doing so, U.S. Representative Jerry Nadler (D-NY) said that Trump “endangers our democracy; he endangers our national security.”
  • U.S. Representative Bradley Byrne (R-Fairhope) responded to the articles of impeachment, saying it’s “nothing more than a pathetic witch hunt.” U.S. Representative Robert Aderholt (R-Haleyville) said that the “charges are so political, not even all their members will be able to stomach voting for them.”

2 hours ago

Mo Brooks: Obama’s attack on law enforcement tied to spike in police killed in the line of duty

On Friday, another Alabama police officer was shot and killed in the line of the duty, which was the sixth such death in 2019.

Huntsville STAC Agent Bill Clardy III was shot and killed. LaJeromeny Brown, the suspect behind the killing, was charged with capital murder. Clardy’s death is the latest in an alarming trend of law enforcement officers killed while on the job.

During an appearance on Huntsville radio’s WVNN on Tuesday, Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) expressed his frustration over the circumstances surrounding Clardy’s murder. He argued there was more elected officials could do to reverse the trend.

586

“It saddens me,” Brooks said on “The Jeff Poor Show.” “It angers me that we allow criminals to stay on our streets as long as we do with the kind of records that they have. If media reports of this man’s record are correct, he should never have been in a position where he could have been exposed to the public or where he could have murdered one of our police officers. I think it is good [U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Alabama] Jay Town is looking into … why this man was at large when he should have been in a penitentiary somewhere serving a long, long sentence. So I am frustrated with our judicial system, and I just hate what happened. And I feel for the family.”

“A lot of this is what we’ve seen over the last decade or so where we’ve seen some political elements that seem to be anti-law enforcement,” he continued. “The more get public officials making anti-law enforcement statements, the more you’re encouraging people to resist law enforcement officers, even to the point of pulling out a gun and people getting killed. There is so much to it that frustrates me as an elected official, and so many things we as a society could be doing better to protect innocent Americans on the one hand and our brave law enforcement officers on the other.”

The Madison County Republican argued for one policy prescription, which was a review of how public officials support and publicly speak about law enforcement. Brooks pointed to former President Barack Obama’s rhetoric and how he handled some high-profile officer-involved incidents, which, according to Brooks, has created an environment more difficult for law enforcement.

“We need to have more public officials who support law enforcement,” Brooks explained. “Keep in mind that under the last administration — I hate to be so partisan, but this is the truth of the matter — under the last administration, any time a law enforcement officer did what he needed to do to protect the public, and an individual was killed in the following fray, the Obama administration would immediately attack law enforcement, and that kind of jumping to a conclusion that Barack Obama did so frequently and his attacks on law enforcement, and his support for African-Americans for no reason apparently other than they were African-American — it wasn’t about whether they were guilty or not. We saw what happened with Ferguson, Missouri, where the Obama administration immediately came to the defense of the African-American who was killed, attacked the law enforcement community, and then later on it turned out that this guy was a thug and just finished committing a forceful robbery.”

“Another follow-up on that is what happened in Texas where an African-American probably emboldened to some degree by these anti-law enforcement statements of elected officials decided to go on a killing rampage, and his targets were two types of people: law enforcement officers and whites,” he continued. “And that is what he said. Words are important. And our elected officials — if they don’t want anarchy, if they don’t want crime to rule, then they better be a whole lot more forceful in protecting our law enforcement officers and backing them up, or else you’re going to see more of this.”

@Jeff_Poor is a graduate of Auburn University, the editor of Breitbart TV and host of “The Jeff Poor Show” from 2-5 p.m. on WVNN in Huntsville.

2 hours ago

Aderholt bashes partisan impeachment charges, reaffirms support for USMCA

On Tuesday, U.S. House Democrats announced two impeachment charges will be filed against President Donald Trump and then later in the day declared that they have a reached a deal to support the Trump-negotiated United States Mexico Canada Agreement (USMCA).

Republican Congressman Robert Aderholt (AL-04) reacted to both developments, first tweeting his continued opposition to impeaching the president.

No Republicans are expected to vote for the impeachment charges, as the real question is how many Democrats will break ranks by either abstaining from voting on or opposing the charges.

Speaking about his Democratic colleagues, Aderholt concluded, “These impeachment charges are so political, not even all their members will be able to stomach voting for them.”

441

Aderholt on Tuesday later issued a statement regarding the latest news about the USMCA, which is the trade deal negotiated by the Trump administration that would replace NAFTA.

“Since coming to Congress, my focus has been on growing our local economy and bringing the best jobs to this area. This USMCA agreement will allow our region to continue building on our already strong economy,” he advised. “This agreement is a win for Americans across the country and in the State of Alabama.”

The dean of Alabama’s House delegation commended the president for his leadership on the USMCA.

“I congratulate President Trump for negotiating this agreement, and I look forward to working with him to continue building on our historic economic expansion,” Aderholt said. “By persuading Canada and Mexico to revise the outdated NAFTA agreement, and then negotiating on labor issues with Democrat leadership, President Trump has secured a trade deal which will establish a level playing field that keeps America competitive.”

Aderholt pointed to specific sectors of Alabama’s and his district’s economies expected to benefit from the USMCA.

“The automobile and agriculture industries are two of the biggest drivers of economic development in the Fourth Congressional District of Alabama. In 2017 alone, Alabama had more than $7 billion in exports to Mexico and Canada,” he outlined. “The USMCA agreement expands access for U.S. exports of chickens and eggs. As the representative of one of the largest poultry producing districts in the nation, I can say there is no doubt USMCA is a win for Alabama’s farmers.”

“According to an April 2019 report by the U.S. International Trade Commission, USMCA is estimated to increase U.S. production of automotive parts and employment in the sector. I have repeatedly called on House leadership to bring this deal to the House floor and look forward to supporting it,” Aderholt concluded.

A vote on the USMCA has been scheduled in the House for next week, however the impeachment process driven by House Democrats might actually stall ratification in the Senate after that.

Assuming the two charges get enough Democratic votes to pass the House and Trump is impeached, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has already said he will not take up the USMCA until the impeachment trial has concluded in the upper chamber.

Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

3 hours ago

Alabama NFIB state director comments on spike in small business optimism

The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) on Tuesday released its latest monthly Small Business Economic Trends Survey, with the results boding well for Alabama’s economy as well as the national economy.

In fact, the nationwide survey showed small business optimism posting the largest month-over-month gain since May 2018, rising 2.3 points to 104.7 last month.

NFIB’s optimism index is comprised of 10 total index components, and the spike in November’s total index was bolstered by seven of those components improving. A 10-point improvement in the earnings component led this charge. Additionally, business owners reporting it is a good time to expand increased by six points, and those expecting better business conditions increased by three points.

In more good news, the NFIB’s business uncertainty index fell six points last month to 72, the lowest reading since May 2018.

206

While the survey is not broken down into state-specific data, NFIB Alabama state director Rosemary Elebash said in a statement, “Our members here are telling us it’s a good time to reinvest in their businesses and add jobs.”

Read more about the survey here.

This came after NFIB released its monthly jobs report last week. That report showed a net 30% of small business owners, seasonally adjusted, raised compensation and 26% planned to do so in the coming months, up four points and the highest level since December of 1989. Job creation jumped last month, with an average addition of 0.29 workers per firm, the highest level since May.

This being said, finding qualified workers remains the top issue for NFIB members. Last month, 26% reported that this is their foremost problem. That number is one point below August’s record high.

The totality of November’s economic news reflects a stark departure from previous months, as speculation about a possible recession was dampening small business owners’ economic outlook. Additionally, NFIB noted that the current focus and noise in Washington, D.C. around impeachment is proving to have little, if any, impact on small business owners.

Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

15 hours ago

Two officers on leave amid investigation into inmate’s death

Two Alabama prison officers are on leave as the department probes the use of force in the death of a state inmate.

The Alabama Department of Corrections said it is investigating the alleged use of force that resulted in the death of an inmate at Ventress Correctional Facility inmate.

62

Fifty-five-year-old Michael Smith of Fairfield, died Dec. 5 after being removed from life support following a November incident at the prison.

The prison system said it is also investigating the death of another inmate at Holman Correctional Facility.

 (Associated Press, copyright 2019)

Sign-up now for our daily newsletter and never miss another article from Yellowhammer News.