WASHINGTON and DETROIT, Jan. 11, 2018 — In a column January 11 in the Detroit Free Press, former White House and Conyers spokesman Robert Weiner and policy analyst Ben Lasky argue that despite the allegations against him, Democrats already miss Cong. John Conyers' issues and tough questioning, including his ability to get AG Jeff Sessions to admit investigating political opponents was “inappropriate.” The article is “Missing Conyers already.” He retired December 5.
Weiner and Lasky begin, “U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y. has been named the new Democratic Leader ('Ranking Member') of the House Judiciary Committee. It was the powerful post held by Conyers, pressured to resign from the committee and then retire from Congress due to allegations of sexual harassment.”
They continue, “On Nov. 14, his last major public appearance, Conyers led the Democratic questioning of U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions at his committee's day-long hearing.”
They explain, “In his lead-off questioning, he asked Sessions, 'In a functioning democracy, is it common for the leader of the country to order the criminal justice system to retaliate against his political opponents?'”
Sessions answered: “Mr. Conyers, I would say the Justice Department can never be used to retaliate politically against opponents. That would be wrong.” Conyers persisted, and Sessions confirmed that the President's actions would be “improper” and “cannot influence an investigation.”
They write, “Now, consider the next hearing December 13, with Conyers gone, and the witness Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Cong. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) used a similar question to what Conyers asked Sessions, Rosenstein's boss, a month earlier: 'Do you think it's appropriate for the president to call for the investigation of specific individuals?'”
The question was more generic and Rosenstein got away with “I'm certainly not going to comment on that…. other than to tell you that it's my responsibility, along with the attorney general to make sure that those decisions are made independently on facts and law.”
The writers assert: “Conyers, known for precision, would have used the hearing's punch and asked something like, 'Attorney General Sessions said last month that it is improper for a president to ask DOJ to investigate his political opponent. Do you agree?'” He would have forced the issue for an answer.
Weiner and Lasky lay out Conyers' enormous past and recent accomplishments. In addition to creating Martin Luther King Day decades ago, they cite in recent years getting a majority of Democrats for the first time to support his single payer “Medicare for All” healthcare bill, leading a lawsuit against President Trump for violating the Constitution's emoluments (profits) clause, laws stating no wars in Iran and North Korea without Congressional approval, and legislation banning bulk data collection by intelligence agencies, a position recently endorsed by the Supreme Court.
They conclude, “Nadler is a strong progressive with brilliant and insightful understanding of the Constitution. He has large shoes to fill from John Conyers.”
LINK TO FULL PUBLISHED ARTICLE: https://www.freep.com/story/opinion/contributors/2018/01/10/john-conyers-judiciary/1014794001/
Weiner and Lasky also provided links to two recent radio shows by Weiner on The Alan Nathan Show on Main Street Radio Network, with 200 station airings:
The Alan Nathan Show:-Weiner's regular weekly discussion with host, discussing national politics:
January 10, 2018 scroll to 30:45. Subject: national Immigration policy
January 5, 2018 scroll to 31:21: Subjects: Russia and national politics:
Weiner and Lasky wished everyone Happy New Year and said feedback is always welcome to articles and radio-TV.
Contact: Robert Weiner/Ben Lasky 301-283-0821, cell 202-306-1200 [email protected]
SOURCE Robert Weiner Associates and Solutions for Change
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