Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionInquiry is just first step in the processLet us not lose sight of the fact that the House of Representatives determines whether Articles of Impeachment should be promulgated. If they determine sufficient evidence of “high crimes and misdemeanors,” the Senate conducts a trial. If the Senate finds guilt, the penalty could be as little as censure, with more severe penalties available. In other words, a House vote does not mean immediate removal from office.Bruce S. TrachtenbergNiskayunaTrump’s supporters ignoring the factsColumnist Hugh Hewitt on Sept. 27 (“Welcome to Al Capone’s vault. Look familiar?”) was at it again. He followed up his July op-ed, in which Robert Mueller’s testimony was compared to Lee’s failure at Gettysburg and Napoleon’s and Hitler’s failure in Russia, with a new one. President Trump’s conversation with Ukrainian President Zelensky was “a nothingburger.” Fox News and the president staff person Kellyanne Conway have taken the same line. Nothing to it, just Democrats hating the president.I find it hard to believe that anyone who takes the time to read the full transcript of the conversation between the president and Mr. Zelensky and the whistleblower’s full account wouldn’t have a question or two about the president’s behavior.Jim MurphyScotiaAccusations reflect on the accusersOften at the point that an accusation is leveled, the accusation is more a reflection of the accuser, rather than a proper characterization of the behavior of the accused. This transference is evident in today’s political environment.President Trump was accused of colluding with a foreign power to effect the 2016 election, when the Clinton campaign colluded with a foreign power in hiring Fusion GPS to develop opposition research using Russian-gathered intelligence.As part of the Russian collusion hoax, President Trump was accused of obstruction of justice by not providing documents in a timely manner under subpoena from Congress. Thirty-three-thousand of Secretary of State Clinton’s emails, under subpoena, were deleted.Most recently, President Trump is suffering through an impeachment inquiry, as he is accused of “strong arming” the president of Ukraine, while Vice President Joe Biden bragged about having the prosecutor removed from his son’s case in Ukraine using “strong armed” tactics. Is there something being missed here?John P. SummersSchenectadyMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?
JOHNSTON — An economist who monitors Iowa’s farm sector says things would be far worse if the Trump Administration hadn’t given farmers $28 billion in trade relief payments. Iowa State University economist Chad Hart says the farm economy has been struggling for the past five years due to depressed commodity prices.“It wasn’t just the trade war that brought this on,” Hart says. “The trade war sort of exacerbated the problems that we’re seeing out there.”Hart says one of the lessons Iowa farmers learned from the “farm crisis” of the 1980’s was not to get too deep in debt.“The ag community was tightening its belt over the past four or five years, but we are seeing debt levels rise. We are seeing bankruptcies rise,” Hart says. “That general malaise in the ag economy over the last five years has taken its toll and there’s not as much cushion for farmers as there was in the past.”Hart says most economists see signs the U.S. economy will dip into recession sometime in 2020.“We started to see the ag economy really take its lumps in 2014, 2015, 2016 and we’ve been basically staying down since then,” Hart says. “The general economy is starting to reflect what the ag economy has been going through over the past five years, so it is eerily similar to what we saw in the ’20s and ’30s in that sense.”During the “roaring ’20s” the U.S. economy grew as a 1922 law imposed tariffs on imported goods and Americans increasingly bought U.S.- made products. Consumer spending currently accounts for about two-thirds of the U.S. economy and Hart says it’ll be up to the U.S. consumer if or when a recession may occur.Hart made his comments during a recent appearance on Iowa Public Television’s “Iowa Press” program.