Thursday, 28 February 2019

Jody Wilson-Raybould and Michael Cohen deliver their story February 27, 2019

February 27, 2019 was a big day for Politics in the USA and in Canada. Michael Cohen and Jody Wilson-Raybould issued their side of their story to the interested, truth-seeking citizens of Canada and the USA. The fur was flying, as has been said, on both sides of the border.
In Canada the former Attorney General Ms Wilson-Raybould had recently been demoted to Veteran Affairs and subsequently resigned her position from this Cabinet Post claiming Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his executive staff had attempted to pressure her into changing her official position regarding a judicial opinion on SNC Lavalin. She stated all of this on National television and in session of an official Parliamentary Committee. The Globe and Mail had run an article two weeks earlier alleging that this pressure (without acceding) preceded her removal from office to a lesser position in government. Shortly after the News report by The Globe she resigned from this position and would remain as an MP without Cabinet status. For us, we saw and heard a competent, intelligent and thoughtful public servant stating specific information regarding dates and individuals present when these alleged indiscretions took place. She was impressive, and appeared to receive the support of a majority of listeners including the press. Virginia Woolf with 500 pounds a year and a room of her own would have great things to write about this woman, indeed.
The official Opposition Mr. Sheer, in a ten minute address called for the Prime Minister's resignation because he didn't have the confidence of the people to rule any longer. The second minority party leader Mr. Singh demanded a Public Inquiry into this alleged wrong doing. The Prime Minister followed with his fifteen minute address asserting  her characterization of past events were untrue, while his were perfectly correct and within his elected jurisdiction; he also stated that only after a review of her complete testimony would he pronounce her standing within the Liberal Party. (She is potentially going to be dumped.) The following morning news reports regurgitated all of the above and we await Mr. Trudeau's action regarding Ms. Wilson-Raybould's place in the Liberal Party.
Recently Mr. Trudeau's work and demeanour has been heavily denounced for his handling of the $4.5 Billion Pipeline purchase, the Canadian Oil Industry and of course the SNC Lavalin affair with Ms. Wilson-Raybould; this indiscretion, if it proves to be true could be the end of his government.
I believe that no matter what takes place from here forward that the status quo will remain until the next election in October 2019, and then we'll have Mr. Sheer and the Conservative party in power once again.
On March 4, 2019 Jane Philpott resigned from her cabinet position, that of President of Treasury Board in support of Ms. Wilson-Raybould. Mr. Justin Trudeau our Prime Minister, stated, in a very short message on national television that this was her right and privilege in our system of Democracy.
Let's just say that the rest of the story is yet to be revealed.
On April 2, 2019 Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has expelled Jody Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpott from the Liberal caucus.
Trudeau delivered the news to the national Liberal caucus in Ottawa Tuesday night, saying the trust had been broken with both former cabinet ministers.
"It's become clear that Ms. Wilson-Raybould and Dr. Philpott can no longer remain part of our Liberal team," Trudeau said.
[Ms. Wilson-Raybould had secretly taped a telephone conversation with the Clerk of the Privy council. She then released it to the public two weeks ago. Trudeau has used this act to expel her from the Liberal Party. She claims she will run as an independent in the October 2019 General Election.]
On April 3, 2019 as reported in The Globe and Mail Ms. Philpott stated: “Rather than acknowledge the obvious – that a range of individuals had inappropriately attempted to pressure the former attorney-general in relation to a prosecutorial decision – and apologize for what had occurred, a decision was made to deny the obvious – to attack Jody Wilson-Raybould’s credibility and attempt to blame her.”

Mr. Cohen said of his President under oath, "President Donald J Trump is a racist, he is a conman, he is a cheat." That was just the beginning of his testimony, he a convicted criminal that faces three years in prison (beginning in May of 2019) for tax evasion, campaign finance violations, lying to a bank and lying to Congress. For the record he pleaded guilty on all counts. And why did he plead guilty? He had been Trump's fixer of matters that could have embarrassing results and that could have cost Trump money. Cohen set up complicated financial and business instruments furthering Trump's empire and brand. Cohen had threatened hundreds of Trump's opponents with litigation and other nasty outcomes to get what Trumped wanted. He claimed in times long gone that he would have taken a bullet for Mr. Trump. That was his expressed loyalty, until his epiphany struck home. Now he stated under oath that he couldn't lie, cheat or con for Trump any longer because doing so has cost him everything he now holds dear: his family and friends and his integrity.
Since the Stormy Daniels' payoff from Cohen's account and subsequent documented reimbursement by Trump, Cohen (on invitation from Congress) has come forward to confess his wrongdoing regarding Trump's affairs and business dealings. Basically he didn't want to do Trump's dirty work any longer, and, he wanted redemption for the mistakes he had made during the ten years that he worked for Trump. He wanted to confess his sins directly to the American people. Congress was trying to get to the truth for the American people. Just one of these wrongdoings was the sordid Stormy Daniels' affair that has been newsworthy for more than twelve months. [Most of us are tired of it except the media who are like a dog with a bone.]
Why should he be believed now? That is the battle cry from the Republican side of the House of Representatives and some of these questioners are aggressive as well as demeaning toward the witness. "Don't believe me, look at the evidence." was Cohen's response on several occasions while pointing to the documents he had placed on the record during his statement. The Democrats continually state that all they want from him is the truth. Indeed if they didn't get it Mr. Cummings, the Chairman of the Committee, would personally "Nail him to the cross." 
Mr. Cummings' closing statement on the well-being of their Democracy was brilliant. "Frankly, we are better than this, we can do better for our children and better for our nation." [His fist was shaking while he spoke.]
I fear, as do others, that nothing will change while Mr. Trump is in power; he will continue to turn a blind eye and a deaf ear to anyone who differs from him on policy and procedure; he will continue to blame others for any ensuing negative aftermath; he will try to win---at least appear to win---any thing at all costs even if it is to the detriment of the American people at home or abroad. And if he should get to the Presidential Election in 2020, and if he should lose, the USA may not have a smooth transition of power. Are the people who favour him that crazy that they would forsake their Constitutional Democracy and leave their nation in chaos? Who can say? Some say it's quite likely.
Meanwhile the Democrats (and some Republicans) will do what they can to get Trump's finger away from the buttons that are diminishing the value of the American Dream, and most importantly, off the Nuclear button that was never intended to be re-activated by every US President since Harry Truman in 1945.
History may make Michael Dean Cohen a quasi hero even though he was a long way from it before  facing Congress on February 27, 2019.

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