Tim Donner: Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has been the recipient of a trio of valuable political gifts in recent days, vaulting her to frontrunner status in the Democratic presidential race. First, the Joe Biden Ukraine scandal finally was unmasked, with Biden’s son Hunter now under fire and forced to resign from the board of a foreign company that filled his coffers mightily. Second, Warren’s chief rival at the top of the progressive totem pole, 78-year-old Bernie Sanders, had a heart attack. And then, third, before the debate took place last week, Bernie went on CBS and delivered what could be a gift to Warren as she strives not to frighten people with her socialist ideas.
Bernie Sanders: Elizabeth Warren has been a friend of mine for some 25 years, and I think she is a very, very good senator. But there are differences between Elizabeth and myself. Elizabeth, I think, as you know, has said that she is a capitalist through her bones. I’m not.
Tim: No, certainly not. But Warren still took on a lot of incoming for her socialist views from some of the bottom feeders on the stage in Ohio Tuesday night.
But then there’s the guy who can run but cannot hide from, at minimum, the appearance of flagrant corruption, with his son closing massive deals with companies in foreign countries visited by him as vice president. And in a surprisingly penetrating interview on ABC, Hunter Biden faced pretty much all the questions everyone’s been asking.
Amy Robach, ABC News: Did you and your father ever discuss Ukraine?
Hunter Biden: No. There’s no but to this. Nobody buys this idea that I was unqualified to be on the board.
Amy Robach: What were your qualifications to be on the board of Burisma?
Hunter Biden: Well, I was vice chairman of the board of Amtrak for five years. I was the chairman of the board of the UN Food Program. I was a lawyer for Boies Schiller Flexner, one of the most prestigious law firms in the world.
Amy Robach: You didn’t have any extensive knowledge about natural gas or Ukraine itself, though.
Hunter Biden: No, but I think that I had as much knowledge as anybody else who was on the board.
Amy Robach: If your last name wasn’t Biden, do you think you would have been asked to be on the board of Burisma?
Hunter Biden: I don’t know. I don’t know. Probably not. I don’t think that there’s a lot of things that would have happened in my life that if my last name wasn’t Biden … Did I make a mistake? Well, maybe in the grand scheme of things, yeah. But did I make a mistake based upon some unethical lapse? Absolutely not.
Tim: That is the Bidens’ story, and they’re sticking with it, with the elder Biden saying in the debate he is proud of his son’s judgment. Okay.
But lost in the impeachment hysteria enflaming our nation’s capital — though still no vote, no one on the record — were some things offered up by Democrats in last week’s LGBTQ town hall on CNN, culminating with a hysterical outburst from a black transgender.
CNN questioner: Do you think religious institutions, like colleges, churches, charities, should lose their tax-exempt status if they oppose same-sex marriage?
Beto O’Rourke: Yes.
Audience questioner: I currently identify as non-binary. In California, I am able to change my gender to X. However, on the federal level, there is no such option. Will you recognize third-gender markers on a federal level?
Amy Klobuchar: Yes.
Audience member, screaming: I’m an extraordinary black trans-woman, and I deserve to be here. My black trans-sisters that are here, I am tired. I am so tired. I’m just sitting there, and this guy took my black trans-women, took my black trans-brothers, too. And I’m going to say what I’m going to say.
Tim: That on CNN, and without even a hint of embarrassment. Do you realize that a candidate for president, Beto O’Rourke, said that he would eliminate the nonprofit status of churches and any organizations that don’t support same-sex marriage? I guess he’ll do that right after he, “hell, yeah,” confiscates your AR-15s and AK-47s.
Meanwhile, incredibly, almost no one in the political establishment or running for president, except maybe Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), seems willing to support President Trump’s withdrawal of troops from Syria as the northern part of that country is overrun with Turkish attackers. Instead, foes are calling Trump every name in the book for abandoning our Kurdish allies. A lone voice of dissent, and perhaps reason, is the non-interventionist Republican Sen. Rand Paul (KY), appearing on Meet the Press.
Rand Paul: Turkey was coming in one way or another, and 50 soldiers would simply be in the way and be a tripwire to a much worse outcome. So, I think the president was right in moving 50 soldiers out of the way of an onslaught. President made a judgment that I think most military commanders would agree with, that you don’t have 50 soldiers, that you don’t go to war with 50 soldiers. Once the Turks said they were coming, it would have been foolish to leave 50 soldiers in the wake of tens of thousands of people coming across the border.
Tim: And exactly what about that doesn’t make sense? And exactly how many Americans favor continuing another endless war in the Middle East? For what benefit?
And speaking of benefits — we were, weren’t we? — the NBA is in the midst of a firestorm over the benefits they get from their relationship with China and its more than one billion consumers. Benefits great enough that the NBA was willing to throw under the bus the Houston Rockets’ general manager Daryl Morey, who tweeted his support for the anti-communist freedom protesters in Hong Kong. And a bad situation got far worse when megastar Lebron James attacked Morey.
Lebron James: I don’t want to get into a feud with Daryl Morey, but I believe he wasn’t educated on the situation at hand and he spoke. So many people could have been harmed, not only financially but physically, emotionally, spiritually, so just be careful what we tweet and we say and what we do. We do have freedom of speech, but there can be a lot of negative that comes with that, too.
Tim: Did that sound like a warning? Like a shot across the bow? Don’t mess with our client, China? Toe the line? Ignore Hong Kong, or else? You know, the NBA would have been far better off if it just admitted that China’s a huge client that it doesn’t want to get upset and be done with it. It would still be wrong, but at least it would be honest, a straight money deal.
But through all of this, let’s remember — and if we don’t, the elite media will remind us with their widely distributed left-wing talking points — that the only thing that really matters these days, folks, is the actions of this despicable president leading to a constitutional crisis.
Various reporters/anchors/commenters on CNN/MSNBC/NBC, etc.: Underway right now, America in the middle of a constitutional crisis … It’s a constitutional crisis in the making … Are we in a constitutional crisis? … We are in a constitutional crisis … The US is facing a constitutional crisis as the president goes to war with Democrats over his impeachment … Remember that phrase, constitutional crisis? Well, it’s swirling yet again … We are nearing that kind of constitutional crisis at this point … This is probably a constitutional crisis …
David Gergen: We are now in the midst of a partisan brawl. It could lead to a constitutional crisis.
Tim: Well, there’s David Gergen, who had a principle-ectomy, get it? Had all his principles removed? If Gergen thinks it’s a constitutional crisis, then, by golly, we can rest safe in the knowledge that the rest of the Swamp does, too.
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