January 26, 2020

Mehdi Hasan and Jack Kingston joined Joy Reid to discuss (and I use that term loosely) the GOP approach to their opening statement in Trump's impeachment trial in the Senate. It was less a discussion than a 15-minute-long running fact-check, since Kingston spent the entire segment gaslighting the two people who say true things and do their homework. Reid and Hasan spent the whole segment debunking Kingston's lies and attempting in vain to get him to recognize any truth whatsoever.

Kingston continually defended Pat Cipollone's lies on the Senate floor — in particular, that Republicans were completely shut out of the SCIF during the hearings and deposition process. Hasan and Reid informed him that 48 GOP members were permitted into those hearings. Kingston still wouldn't admit to being wrong or Cipollone lying, and claimed what Cipollone actually meant was that Trump and his lawyers weren't permitted to question witnesses during that process.

That's when Reid went in for the kill.

REID: Let me ask you a question, Jack. Have you ever sat on a grand jury?

KINGSTON: Actually, no.

REID: Okay.

KINGSTON: I keep getting struck from it because of my Congressional --

REID: Gotcha. I have sat in on a grand jury. And those SCIF hearings were the equivalent of grand jury hearings. And I'm gonna ask you this question. You haven't sat on a grand jury, but I will tell you that whoever the defendant or the potential defendant is, is not allowed to have counsel or cross-examine witnesses. The SCIF behaves as a grand jury room. No grand jury ever allows the potential defendant to cross-examine witnesses or have counsel in. The Republicans decided that they were going to use that as an excuse to claim Donald Trump did not get due process. However, now Donald Trump has the opportunity to have evidence and witnesses entered into evidence. He will have the opportunity to have his counsel cross-examine witnesses. Do you then agree that now that we're in the point of a trial, that was the grand jury portion of these proceedings. -- wait a minute. This is now the trial. So given that you think it's very important for the president to cross-examine witnesses, do you then agree that there should be witnesses called for the president's counsel to cross-examine?

KINGSTON: I think if we're going to sit with the Clinton and the Nixon impeachment where the presidents were allowed to have counsel and cross-examine witnesses in the House, then that's what --

REID: I mean in the Senate.


REID: You're not answering my question.

KINGSTON: Joy -- I'm trying to get there. I promise you. I will get there. But Nixon and Clinton were both allowed to cross-examine witnesses in the house. Schiff and Nadler denied Trump that ability. Now --

HASAN: That is false. You must stop saying things that are false.

Honestly, anything with these GOP ratf*ckers is nearly unwatchable because of their talking over others and their lies, but Reid's grand jury analogy was so perfect, and painted Kingston so neatly into a corner regarding witnesses, it was absolutely worth the time.

The rest of the segment was more of the same, and Kingston even went full Backwards Day. When they actually PLAYED the clip of Cipollone saying, "Not even mr. Schiff's Republican colleagues were allowed into the SCIF," Hasan asked if Kingston could at least NOW admit that Cipollone lied about that one fact. You know what Kingston said? Get ready.

"Mehdi, do you agree that I'm right and you're wrong? That's the question."

THIS is what we are dealing with on the GOP side. How does one combat this level of gaslighting and delusion?

Can you help us out?

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