Trump Is Acquitted and Iowa Caucus

Grind for February 7th
“Nature soaks every evil with either fear or shame.” – Tertullian

Much Ado About Nothing

The Headline

Senate lawmakers acquit President Trump on impeachment charges

The Grind

As expected, the GOP-controlled Senate on Wednesday voted to acquit President Trump on impeachment charges related to Ukraine.

Senators voted along party lines with the exception of Mitt Romney (R-UT), who is likely the first senator in US history to vote in favor of impeaching a president of his own party.

“Sadly, because of the Republican Senate’s betrayal of the Constitution, the president remains an ongoing threat to American democracy, with his insistence that he is above the law and that he can corrupt the elections if he wants to,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi after the vote, adding that the trial wasn’t fair. “You cannot be acquitted if you don’t have a trial,” she said. “You don’t have a trial if you don’t have witnesses and documentation.”

The Details

Donald Trump is the third US president to be impeached, but the first to run for re-election after impeachment.

“President Trump has been totally vindicated and it’s now time to get back to the business of the American people,” announced Trump’s 2020 campaign. “The do-nothing Democrats know they can’t beat him, so they had to impeach him.”

Trump’s approval rating reached an all-time high of 49% this week.

With neither the Russia investigation nor the impeachment trial ending in Democrats’ favor, we can expect them to continue trying to remove him from office.

Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY) is still planning to subpoena former National Security Adviser John Bolton, who did not speak during the impeachment trial. Before the trial, Bolton said he would obey a subpoena to testify.

What Did You Expect?!

The Headline

Iowa caucus: Buttigieg in the lead, but smartphone app delays results

The Grind

With 86% of Iowa’s caucus votes tallied, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg is in the lead with 26.7%. Bernie Sanders is in a close second with 25.4% followed by Elizabeth Warren with 18.3%, Joe Biden with 15.9%, and Amy Klobuchar with 12.1%.

Receiving less than 1% of votes was Michael Bloomberg, the former New York City mayor who entered the race late and abandoned the early voting states to focus on Super Tuesday.

Bloomberg is polling in fourth place nationwide with 10.6% after spending nearly a quarter of a billion on advertising. This week, his campaign announced a team of more than 2,000 – including staff in all Super Tuesday states.

The Details

As I wrote last month, Iowa’s Democratic Party this year decided to use a smartphone app to calculate and relay caucus results despite widespread concerns about election security.

The app ultimately failed to work, as did the party’s back-up telephonic reporting system, forcing officials to validate information manually.

“We found inconsistencies in the reporting of three sets of results. In addition to the tech systems being used to tabulate results, we are also using photos of results and a paper trial to validate that all results match and ensure that we have confidence and accuracy in the numbers we report,” said Iowa Democratic Party Communications Director Mandy McClure, adding that officials found no evidence of a “hack or intrusion.”

Did you know… Hoover vacuum cleaners were so popular in the UK that many people now refer to vacuuming as hoovering.