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Just wondering who the "we" is here

by JRT, Island of Misfit Toys, Friday, December 08, 2017, 10:56 @ San Pedro

1. It generally makes sense to defer judgment and allow due process to play out when there's a due process that's about to play out. Here, there's never going to be a trial for Franken or Roy Moore, so it's not that we're waiting for a process. Other than media reporting and Franken statements there's no other real process.

2. One might argue that we as observers should withhold judgment in any matter that doesn't have a due process hearing procedure, but that seems like a whole lot of the things that voters of citizens take into account about our elected officials. Of the hundreds of hours I spent reviewing, say, the 2016 presidential candidates, I would say the minority of items had a full due process hearing- seems like I read one or two actual Court decision about Trump (the Polish workers, and maybe the Fred Trump casino loan?) but the great, great majority of his lawsuits were settled prior to hearing-whether you're talking about Trump University or his bankruptcies or whatever. Same with HRC-there was a lot of investigating of Benghazi and emails, but it didn't ever arrive at a due process hearing with presentation of evidence by each side. Should I ignore Trump University and Clinton's email server?

3. Your "we" might be referring to elected officials who urged Franken to step down. I'd be fine with a public official who consistently said he wanted to wait for the results of the Ethics investigation or trial of members on either side accused of impropriety. I know there's public pressure to act even quicker, but I think if someone really stuck to their guns on that they could probably sustain that position because they could keep rolling out their prior examples of keeping to that and it would work. Imagine, if, say, Susan Collins said she was withholding comment on Franken, and that it was in keeping with withholding comment on Bob Menendez until after his trial, and on "the Russia stuff" until Mueller was done, etc., etc. I think that would work.

4. I think waiting for the investigation before commenting also requires a good investigation setup, and what they have for the House right now for Conyers/Farnethold, etc., sounds horribly lacking. I think we should wait for due process and ensure the process is fair to the public interest in discovering lawmakers who act horribly and cost taxpayers money like Farenthold, Conyers, etc.

5. This is a tough environment where a ton of old stuff is hitting the light of day precisely because the public (and sometimes institutional) climates were so hostile to those make such accusations that they have been kept down for some time. I dont' think its that due process views have changes, I think the easing of some (nowhere near all) of the negative results of reporting has opened some floodgates that needed to be open. I'm not sure that I would say we used to be more devoted to due process or the presumption of innocence in general. Gary Hart and John Edwards and Bob LIngston and plenty of people got convicted in the court of public opinion. Even Bill Clinton, I don't think it was due process that saved him, I think the people made their judgments on the original reporting/rumors whatever and stuck to their guns as it was substantiated and litigated. I don't know if we're dropping our reliance on due process or not, but it's certainly an important value to uphold.


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