Over the next week you will likely be experiencing one of the most dramatic periods in American history.
This week the House impeachment “hearing” on President Trump, of course, will still be going on. And the president’s lawyers have said they will not cooperate.
Then Monday, Dec. 9, is when the long-awaited, long-debated report by the Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz is going to be released. That will be followed by an appearance by Horowitz in front of the Senate two days later.
What’s at stake? Probably as much economically as on the political side. For one thing, business in Washington has come to a screeching halt in recent months. A lot of people would say that Washington works best when nothing is done, but right now there are economic issues that need to be handled.
For one thing, the US doesn’t have a budget yet for 2020. The government has been operating on a temporary Continuing Resolution (CR) that expires on Dec. 20. So you’ll be hearing about another possible government shutdown, or at least the threat of one, very soon.
More important are the trade deals that Trump is trying to negotiate.
There is absolutely no reason for the Chinese or any other nation to conclude a full-scale trade deal with the US if there is even a hint that Trump will be kicked out of office (he won’t be) or won’t be re-elected next year (he will be.)
So the trade deals are stalled, which hurts the US economy, which will eventually have the stock market on edge. Remember the kiddie song called “Dem Bones”: “The leg bone’s connected to the knee bone, the knee bones connected to the … etc.)
Well, the trade deal’s connected to the US economy and the US economy is connected to the stock market and the stock market is connected to your job — that’s the grown-up version.
Recently, several newspapers reported that the Horowitz report would be a disappointment to those thinking there were lots of misdoings during the last presidential election. They used that annoying cliche “a nothing burger” to describe the report.
My sources are telling me differently. They think it will be historic, nothing short of — as Attorney General William Barr once implied — a defense of the Office of the President.
Of course, very, very few people have seen the full Horowitz report, which has been years in the making. When the investigation was being conducted it was segmented.
So people who say they know things — including my sources — are mostly tea-leaf reading.
But there are exceptions. And this is why I think my position that the Horowitz report will be a something-burger (maybe even a whopper) is more defensible.
Sen. Lindsey Graham, the Republican who heads the Senate Judiciary Committee, has reportedly seen most of the report. And Graham is the one calling Horowitz before his committee on Dec. 11. Would Graham do that if Horowitz was going to be a disappointment?
We will see in a week.