Al Franken was forced to resign from the Senate by leaders of his own party without due process against allegations either baseless or brought anonymously.
Due process is a premise of our society, both in law and in daily life. One is not convicted and sentenced without a trial in which one has a right to face one’s accusers. In daily life we refrain from decisions until we know “all the facts,” less formal than law, but the same concept. Due process = basic fairness.
Republicans are frantic to keep a Senate seat and, with it, a thin majority in the Senate. Primary voters chose former judge Roy Moore as the GOP candidate. Women, who have identified themselves, have said Moore, in his 30s, engaged in conduct with them when they were at, or slightly above, Alabama’s age of consent. Moore’s blanket denial enraged a woman with whom he had a consensual sexual affair when he was in his 30s and she was only 17 (and this is not a Van Halen song). She was angry because she knew he lied when he cast aspersions against the women came forth to accuse him.
Al Franken asked for an investigation (part of “due process”) but Democratic Party leaders fell over themselves to show how “different” the Democratic Party is from the GOP. One individual, regarded by some as an authority on our Constitution, remarked that Al Franken “had to resign.” When someone is an “expert” on our Constitution, the niceties of due process must be an encumbrance to all-knowing wisdom.
The Framers of our Constitution were hypocrites. They spoke of freedom as they made slavery merely legal, but protected slavery so deeply in the Constitution that we had to fight the Civil War to rid ourselves of slavery’s evils. The Framers also warned of history’s experiences with “factions,” as they called political parties, while they simultaneously built a governmental structure pre-disposed to a system of two parties and while they formed the first two political parties (Jefferson’s “Republican” and Hamilton’s “Federalist”).
The overtly racist wing left the Democratic Party in the 1960s. LBJ pushed through civil rights legislation. The GOP and Richard Nixon launched the Southern Strategy, Hatred had a new home. In recent years the Democratic Party has seemed divided and somewhat chaotic, but understandable and with a sense of direction (however general that sense of direction might be), like the Federation in “Star Trek.” Republicans have seemed like the Romulans: brutish, hardly rational, but unified in their focus on power and conquest as ends in themselves.
The DNC tossed Al Franken over the side and under a steam roller. He was the one person who stood up, most tenaciously, to the minions of the Russian stooge who occupies the Oval Office. Gee, that is such a coincidence.
If anyone bothers now to learn if Roger Stone was part of a set-up of Franken, as an extension of Putin’s propaganda machine, and the former Senator from Minnesota is cleared, doe Franken get his Senate seat back?
If the Democratic Party really is “different,” it should focus on the person who occupies the Oval Office through treason—illegal means. Trump really is a loser—LOSER, in caps, shout it—and holds office thanks to that dictator of All the Russias, his pal Putin. The Federal courts have the power to remove Trump, but then, Putin would not allow it. Also, in a misguided effort to “reach across the aisle,” leaders of the Democratic Party might toss the country under the bus, just to seem “reasonable.”.