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Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Sometimes the parallels between the present national crisis and the Watergate scandal are almost eerie. Consider the latest argument from Trump attorney John Dowd (the same sly mouthpiece who implausibly claimed to have authored a highly incriminating presidential tweet).

Last Sunday, Dowd claimed that the “President cannot obstruct justice because he is the chief law enforcement officer under [the Constitution’s Article II] and has every right to express his view of any case.” Most constitutional scholars would find this notion that the president is above the law absurd and offensive — but there is at least one famed attorney who would have agreed.

The late Richard M. Nixon was driven from office for a series of crimes that included obstruction of justice. His Dowd-style view of absolute presidential power was captured in Frost/Nixon, a drama based on his real-life interviews with the late TV host David Frost (starring the great Frank Langella as Nixon and Michael Sheen as Frost).

Maybe someday, long after this president mercifully leaves office, we’ll see something similar: Colbert/Trump?

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Billboard urging "No" vote on Kansas abortion referendum

That Kansas voted to protect abortion rights guaranteed in its state constitution didn’t surprise me, although I certainly never expected a landslide. The original “Jayhawks,” after all, waged a guerilla war to prevent Missourians from bringing slavery into the Kansas territory, a violent dress rehearsal for the Civil War. A good deal of the state’s well-known conservatism is grounded in stiff-necked independence.

In the popular imagination, Kansas has always signified heartland values and rustic virtue. Superman grew up on a farm there, disguised as mild-mannered Clark Kent. So did Dorothy of The Wizard of Oz, a spunky young woman with an adventurous spirit. But cartoonish fantasies have little to do with the real world. My favorite Kansas politician was always Sen. Bob Dole, war hero, Senate majority leader, 1996 GOP presidential nominee, and unmistakably his own man.

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Colbert Mocks Trump's Bad Toilet habits

Image via YouTube

The political world was rocked by the FBI raid on former President Donald Trump's Mar-A-Lago residence, perhaps prompted by reports that he had flushed classified intelligence documents down the toilet. Not surprisingly, Late Show host Stephen Colbert found this image laughable if alarming. (Over the weekend, New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman had revealed photos from a White House source revealing scraps of paper at the bottom of a toilet bowl.)

“To be fair, it’s unclear if those are official White House documents or his toilet’s suicide note,” Colbert noted, although the papers did appear to have Trump’s Sharpie handwriting, as well as the name “Stefanik” written on them -- as in Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY).

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