Associate solitary reporter Melissa Smith, our Chief Congressional Correspondent here at AP, wondered, Tuesday evening, how legitimate Venezuelan President Juan Guiado felt about sitting in the Gallery during Donald Trump’s State of Disunion Speech on Tuesday.
Guaido, 36, is Venezuela's version of President Obama, 58, while Trump’s Venezuelan counterpart is Nicolas Maduro, 57.
Trump is akin to ____ (AP fans, fill in the blank(s) as often as you like, comparing Trump to world leaders who are, like him, palpably dishonest).
Our top pick here at AP: Bibi Netanyahu.
So ASR Smith, who is very quick on her feet, had 30 significant seconds alone with Guaido as he left the Gallery.
Guaido was not seated next to Melania or Rush Limbaugh, but Smith did notice that Rush scowled visibly when he saw the athletic Guaido take his seat.
Guaido told Smith that he begged Trump to bear down on Maduro even harder than he has already, but that he never could get a straight answer.
Smith had already confronted Colorado’s highly endangered junior senator, Cory Gardner, immediately after he voted NO on both Articles of Impeachment.
Gardner’s words cannot be quoted in this family-friendly newspaper, except he did tell Smith to tell DNC Chair Tom Perez to relocate to the Dominican Republic.
Gardner also vilified his Utah colleague, Mitt Romney, who turned thumbs down on Trump (see https://www.politico.com/news/2020/02/05/trump-impeachment-vindication-mitt-romney-111179; and
https://www.politico.com/news/2020/02/05/sen-mitt-romney-will-vote-to-convict-trump-breaking-with-fellow-republicans-110848), the only Republican Senator to do so.
In November, Gardner is certain to face 53-year old former Colorado House Speaker Andrew Romanoff, who will easily defeat pro-fracking former Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper in the Colorado Democratic Party Senate primary on June 30.
Romanoff proudly takes no PAC money, while “Hick” rakes it in.
When he walks into the U S Senate for the first time in early January 2021, Romanoff will be by far the most eligible Democratic bachelor in our Nation’s Capital.
The only thing Trump knows about Mormons (like Romney) is that they are hard-working and most all of them are Republicans, like the Beehive State’s senior senator (and Ted Cruz ally) Mike Lee; Idaho’s Mike Crapo; and the Land of Enchantment’s Tom Udall, a Democrat (and cousin of Colorado’s Mark Udall, a really good Democrat whom Gardner somehow managed to defeat in 2014 after Mark ran a lackluster campaign, while Gardner managed barely to squeak past him by smiling and being upbeat).
Trump claims to be a Presbyterian like your solitary reporter, but, well, you know, he’s not.
As ASR Smith left the Senate yesterday, she was arrested by Capitol police for shouting at the top of her lungs that now that Trump’s been let off the hook (with considerable help from Maine’s Susan Collins), Trump will surely feel free to cheat all over again as he desperately tries to stay in his Oval Office after January 20 (see https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/02/05/impeachment-was-supposed-to-protect-the-2020-election-now-its-worse-off-109878).
But Smith gave conservative Democrat Joe Mancin (West Virginia) a high-five for voting to convict.
In the Hawkeye State, the first casualty in the Iowa Democratic Party Debacle is a former HRC operative, Tara McGowan (https://www.politico.com/news/2020/02/05/angry-democrats-unload-operative-over-iowa-caucus-results-110807).
So we asked our Chief Iowa associate solitary reporter, Angus Norwood, for his thoughts.
“Know what, ASR?” Norwood, a renowned Professor of English at the University of Minnesota, said, “I’m just too darn old to deal with all that fancy-fancy electronic stuff. I prefer to stroll around my old neighborhood in Iowa City and talk with enthusiastic Democrats whom I persuaded to caucus for Minnesota’s Amy Klobuchar."