If you’re a Democrat, or a progressive, or just a sane person, there were two pieces of extremely good news yesterday:
First, Raphael Warnock won re-election to the Senate in Georgia, for what will now be a full six year term.
Second, the Trump organization was convicted of criminal tax fraud.
The Reverend Warnock had originally been elected to fill the remainder of Johnny Isakson’s term — Kelly Loeffler had originally been appointed by Georgia’s governor, but under Georgia law, then had to run for the remainder of the term (it’s complicated!) — but now Warnock gets a full six year term to himself.
It’s still disturbing that the race against the brain-damaged ex-football star Heschel Walker was as close as it was — at last count, about 51.4% to 48.6% — but now, Joe Manchin and Kirsten Synema can no longer hold the Senate hostage with their refusal to change procedures on overriding the filibuster.
(In one of the great ironies of Senate procedure, it takes 60 votes to override a filibuster but only 51 to carve out an exception to the filibuster. Don’t ask, we will be debating this topic at a later time.)
The victory is, in many ways, two years too late — the Republicans have now taken the House, of course — but the Senate will, at least, be able to continue to confirm judges and other governmental positions that require confirmation.
The Trump Organization
In what is guaranteed to be a long legal year for Dear Leader #45, his organization was criminally convicted of tax fraud yesterday. Trump wasn’t personally convicted, and you can’t exactly send an organization to jail — although you can fine them very heavily — but this is just the beginning of the legal circle closing in on Trump.
There are five other investigations that Trump has to be concerned about, and the questions they ask:
- The Classified Documents Investigation: did Trump illegally remove classified documents from the White House and obstruct investigators?
- The Jan. 6 Investigation: did Trump try to incite an insurrection, commit election fraud or fraudulently fund-raise in the run-up to Jan. 6?
- The Manhattan District Attorney’s Investigation: did Trump or his company commit financial crimes beyond tax fraud?
- The Georgia Election Investigation: did Trump break the law to try to overturn his 2020 election loss in Georgia?
- The New York State Civil Case: did Trump and his children lie to lenders and insurers about the Trump Organization’s financial condition?
It is well beyond the scope of this post to review all of these here, but the New York Times has done a nice job of reviewing where all of these investigations stand, if you’re interested in the details.