CNN Guest: McConnell Like a Judge Making 'All-White Jury for a Klansman Trial'

December 28th, 2019 7:49 AM

Every time the attempt to remove President Trump from office seems that it couldn’t get any more ridiculous, along comes CNN and that network’s guests to make the process appear even more bizarre.

One such incident happened on Thursday's Anderson Cooper 360, when Richard Painter, who was the White House’s top ethics lawyer under former President George W. Bush for two years -- stated that House Democrats “did everything they could in view of what’s going on with the Trump Administration.” Then he compared Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell's take on the upcoming Senate hearing to a judge installing an all-white jury for a trial involving the Ku Klux Klan. Former senator Rick Santorum wasn't having it.

RICHARD PAINTER: This is a trial. It's not a political game. The oath of loyalty is to the United States of America, not to Donald Trump. These senators, Democrats and Republicans have an obligation to hear the facts, to hear witnesses, and make a decision.

And for Mitch McConnell to say he is working with the White House, coordinating with the defendant in this trial before the trial has even begun is atrocious. He may think he is a judge impaneling an all-white jury for a Klansman trial in Mississippi. That's not the kind of trial we have.

SANTORUM: I'm sorry. You're being absurd. You're just being absurd.

PAINTER: It's not. No, I'm not.

SANTORUM: Yes, you are. I was there. I saw what Tom Daschle did in 1998, and I don't think you were complaining one bit about him carrying the water for the president. This is typical, and I think completely appropriate. Completely appropriate.

PAINTER: I didn't approve of that at all.

SANTORUM: And all I'm suggesting --

PAINTER: I didn't approve of that at in 1998.

SANTORUM: Well, I'm suggesting --

PAINTER: I did not approve of the Senate then and I do not approve of it now.

Santorum said "there is no requirement in the Senate to listen to witnesses...I was one back in 1999 pushing hard for witnesses, but remember, this is a double-edged sword for Democrats, because if Republicans concede and give witnesses to the Democrats, I can tell you there will be a lot of Republicans who want witnesses the Democrats don't want. So this is a very, very double-edged sword for both parties as they walk down this process." 

Painter replied by asserting that impeachment of a president “shouldn’t be partisan. It should be about America." Santorum pushed back again: "Do you think that's what happened in the House?"

Painter replied: "The House did their job. This president should have been impeached years ago," even though the GOP occupant of the White House is just wrapping up his third year.

Painter is always pitched as a Republican, but last year, he ran for the Minnesota Democratic–Farmer–Labor Party nomination for U.S. Senate, challenging recently appointed Senator Tina Smith (the Al Franken seat). He lost badly. 

[Hat tip: Julio Rosas, Townhall]