Matt Gaetz and Jim Jordan Just Debuted the Trump Circus Defense

Charles P. Pierce
Photo credit: Tom Williams - Getty Images

From Esquire

(Permanent Musical Accompaniment To The Last Post Of The Week From The Blog’s Favourite Living Canadian)

Friday’s Transcripts of the Day were those of Fiona Hill and Colonel Alexander Vindland, and, yes, they pretty much prove that the president* is as guilty as sin, even as his own sins, which are considerable. But the most entertaining parts of the new transcripts, and the sections that give us some kind of indication as to where the open hearings might go, are those featuring the floundering attempts by various Republicans to derail the proceedings in one way or another. And when it comes to Republican Flounders, there’s no flounder more floundering than Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Breathalyzer), Republican of Florida.

You may recall that Gaetz was one of the leaders of the pack of Republican congresscritters who bum-rushed the secure area in which the depositions were held. In the latest transcripts, the actual moment of Gaetz’s triumph, which occurred during Hill’s time before the committee, is captured. Intelligence committee chairman Adam Schiff was having none of this, and pretty plainly wanted Gaetz to get up off of his last nerve.

SCHIFF: "Excuse me, could we suspend? Do we have any members here that are not members of the three committees authorized to be present? Mr. Gaetz, you’re not permitted to be in the room.”

GAETZ: “Mr. Chairman, really?”

SCHIFF: “Yes, really. Mr. Gaetz, take your statement to the press, they do you no good here, so please absent yourself...You’re going to remove yourself, Mr. Gaetz...Mr. Gaetz, you’re not a member of the three designated committees that are participating in this interview. You’re not permitted to be here. That is the ruling of the chair, and you are required to 1eave...I am citing the House rules and the deposition rules,” Schiff said. You are not permitted to be here. Mr. Gaetz, you are simply delaying the procedures in violation of the rules. Please absent yourself.”

Related Video: A History of Presidential Impeachments

In a related development, it was announced that Rep. Jim Jordan, Republican of Ohio and dedicated follower of fashion, would be replacing Rep. Randy Crawford on the Intelligence Committee in next week’s public hearings. This was particularly well-timed since another witness came forward on Thursday night and accused Jordan of shrugging off molestation complaints against Ohio State doctor Richard Strauss when Jordan was the assistant wrestling coach at the school. From NBC News:

Photo credit: Samuel Corum - Getty Images

A professional referee says in a lawsuit filed Thursday that disgraced doctor Richard Strauss masturbated in front of him in a shower after a wrestling match at Ohio State University, and that he reported the encounter directly to Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, who was then the assistant coach.

“Yeah, that’s Strauss,” Jordan and then-head coach Russ Hellickson replied, according to the lawsuit, when the referee, identified in court papers as John Doe 42, told them about the incident. The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Ohio, implies that Jordan's response to the incident, which the referee said happened in 1994, was essentially a shrug. John Doe 42 is the second person to say he told Jordan directly about either being approached or molested by Strauss, who was found by independent investigators to have sexually abused 177 male students over two decades.

Oh, it’s going to be a show, no doubt about it. And, at the end of it, the president* is still going to be guilty as sin.

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Michael Bloomberg is going to launch his campaign in Alabama. He is the billionaire former mayor of New York City whose primary issue is gun control, and who's most notable for attempts to ban the Big Gulp. Meanwhile, African-American citizens in NYC dislike and distrust him because of his defense of the Stop-and-Frisk tactics that led to abuse by the NYPD. And that word has got around. Exactly who would his constituency be in Alabama? His primary voting bloc seems to remain wealthy cable news stars and their many friends. Lord, though, it’s hard to tell whether the ownership class is more frightened of Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, or Joe Biden’s cerebral cortex. He is not a serious factor in the Democratic primary. Read the damn room, people.

By the way, John Bolton is in this thing for the book deal. Nothing more.

The president* had a bit of a nutty in his driveway on Friday. The highlight was when he claimed he barely knew Ambassador Gordon Sondland, the middleman in the Ukraine scheme. I know I’ve forgotten more than a few people who have given me $1 million. It’s tragic, is what it is. Also, he might go to Moscow so Vladimir Putin can show him all the big boom-booms the Russians have. QUIET!!!!!!

Little Richard’s “SHUT UP!” was much more compelling. The sound of the helicopter was drowned out by the sound of a cock crowing, three times.

Photo credit: Chip Somodevilla - Getty Images

Weekly WWOZ Pick To Click: “Clarinet Marmalade” (Paul Barbarin): Yeah, I still pretty much love New Orleans.

Weekly Visit To The Pathe Archives: Here are some US airmen yucking it up with some colleagues from the Soviet air force in Ukraine in 1944. Military aid, you know, without a quid or a quo. Nice soup ladies! Singing and dancing! And young Ivan, being introduced to Beeman’s. (“Hey, Ivan. You got any Beeman’s?”) History is so cool.

Is it a good day for dinosaur news, CBC? It’s always a good day for dinosaur news!

Nicknamed Buster, the partial bones, which included toes, shins and shoulder bones, formed the evidence to officially designate a new dinosaur species that roamed the province more than 67 million years ago, says Victoria Arbour, the Royal B.C. Museum's curator of paleontology. The dinosaur's species name, Ferrisaurus sustutensis, means "iron lizard from the Sustut River," Arbour said. It was discovered on a rail line along the Sustut River north of Smithers, B.C. "I think it's really exciting that Ferrisaurus is a new species from B.C. because B.C. isn't a place that is really well known for dinosaur fossils,'' she said. "It really highlights there's a lot of potential for even more dinosaur discoveries down the road if we look hard enough.’'

Congratulations to British Columbia on the occasion of the discovery of its first indigenous dinosaur, which lived then to make people from Vancouver to Peace River happy now.

The Committee was very impressed by Top Commenter Rod McDonald’s History of Performative Outrage TED Talk about the long legacy of people complaining about things. It awarded him 91.11 non-transferable Beckhams.

They screamed when the defense dept spent 300 bucks on furniture from Jordan Marsh in case Jackie K. needed a place to rest at Otis AFB when she was pregnant w/ Patrick — they were appalled when Susan Ford “greedily dishonored” her father’s presidency by doing a Subaru commercial — they were *outraged* at the windfall profits that Billy Carter got from his 2-pump jerkwater gas station when his brother was POTUS— But this asshat loots millions intended for homeless vets and *crickets* - what can one say other than “O tempora! O mores!”

The archives of the shebeen are fathomless.

I’m off to DC next week to watch the donkey show. (Might stop by Roger Stone’s trial as well.) Be well and play nice, ya bastids. Stay above the snake-line, and, remember, if any of you are caught quidding the quo, the president* doesn’t know who you are.

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