My second cousin once removed,*
Dianne Feinstein, in an attempt to generate some bipartisan cred, made an incredibly inartful statement about having an open mind on impeachment to an LA Times
reporter, which was interpreted as a statement that she was leaning against impeachment
Feinstein and the Times seem to be on the same page about this, the paper has issued an update correcting the story, but I blame Feinstein for her eagerness to preen and play the bipartisanship game for this sh%$ storm to have blown up in the first place, and this likely makes it easier for someone like Joe Manchin to allow their cowardice to overrule their constitutional duties:
The fate of key votes in President Trump’s impeachment trial remained uncertain Tuesday as his defense lawyers concluded their arguments and Republicans led by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell struggled to muster the votes to bring the trial to a speedy close without calling witnesses.
But even as McConnell struggled to corral Republicans, Sen. Dianne Feinstein seemed to signal fissures in the unity of Senate Democrats. Feinstein suggested that while she had serious concerns about Trump’s character, she is still weighing her ultimate vote on whether to acquit him.
Feinstein’s comments came initially in remarks to reporters outside the Senate chamber in which she said she had leaned against impeachment at the outset.
“Nine months left to go [before the election], the people should judge. We are a republic, we are based on the will of the people — the people should judge,” she said.
She then added: “That was my view and it still is my view.”
Still, she indicated that arguments in the trial about Trump’s character and fitness for office had shifted her thinking. “What changed my opinion as this went on,” she said, is a realization that “impeachment isn’t about one offense. It’s really about the character and ability and physical and mental fitness of the individual to serve the people, not themselves.”
In a later written statement, in which she said she had initially been “misunderstood,” Feinstein said “it’s clear the president’s actions were wrong.”
There are 39½ million people in California, and something north of 20 million registered voters, and this boneheaded play to civility will not change a single vote.
It is worse than a crime, it is a mistake.
*Full disclosure, my great grandfather, Harry Goldman, and her grandfather, Sam Goldman were brothers, though we have never met, either in person or electronically.