Overheard on the streets this week:

CITIZEN 1: I’m just saying it’s really very gratifying.

CITIZEN 2: What is?

CITIZEN 1: To live in a country where our elected federal officials have made short work of solving all the issues that confronted us just a short time ago.

CITIZEN 2: What are you talking about?

CITIZEN: 1: Well, when’s the last time you heard about a congressman or senator introducing a bill to take care of immigration, health care or the national debt?

CITIZEN 2: It’s been a while.

CITIZEN1: Right. All anyone seemingly wants to talk about now is the impeachment of the president. I guess that means everything else has been solved, right?

CITIZEN 2: Well, I’m not sure that’s quite accurate.

CITIZEN 1: I must have missed the border wall being built. And apparently national health insurance slipped by me too. Can I get free checkups? I’ll bet even William Devane is no longer strongly urging me to buy gold because the debt’s under control. You’d think I would have noticed that all those former problems had been solved. I read newspapers and magazines, listen to the radio, and watch cable and network news. How could I have overlooked all that?

CITIZEN 2: You didn’t.

CITIZEN 1: I didn’t?

CITIZEN 2: No.

CITIZEN 1: Then why is the news filled with all this impeachment stuff?

CITIZEN 2: Because we have to get to the bottom of whether or not Trump is guilty.

CITIZEN 1: Guilty of what?

CITIZEN 2: Not sure about that. Still working on it. Something along the line of treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors.

CITIZEN 1: But if I understand correctly, the current committee being chaired by Congressman Adam Schiff is really just a pre-impeachment fishing expedition. This isn’t even the real thing. The whole House of Representatives isn’t involved yet, and, as I recall, one little committee doesn’t have the power to actually impeach a president to be tried in the Senate.

CITIZEN 2: Well, you’re right. But Trump’s probably guilty of something. The committee just has to find the right witness to say the right thing.

CITIZEN 1: So, the recent parade of people is designed to ferret out damning information.

CITIZEN 2: You got it.

CITIZEN 1: Hmmm. If you ask me, up until now at least, there doesn’t seem to be a whole lot of that.

CITIZEN 2: Maybe not yet. But Adam Schiff won’t stop until he finds something.

CITIZEN 1: That seems obvious. And speaking of Schiff, I gotta tell you, I don’t like him. Reminds me of Phil Drewbaker.

CITIZEN 2: Who in the world is Phil Drewbaker?

CITIZEN 1: A kid I went to elementary school with. Kinda smarmy, always wanting attention. Every day at recess, when we’d play basketball outside, Drewbaker would spit on the court. And not just once. We’re talking 30-40 times in a 20-minute period. He got attention all right. Everybody yelled at him. He just smiled and spit some more.

CITIZEN 2: And that kid reminds you of Adam Schiff?

CITIZEN 1: Yep. Seems to me he’s gotta have the spotlight. I heard somebody say that the Impeachment hearings should really be called the Adam Schiff Ego-Trip hearings.

CITIZEN 2: Well, that may be stretching things a bit.

CITIZEN 1: Oh, really? Did you see that clip from last week when a Republican Congresswoman from New York tried to question a witness? Schiff started banging his gavel and basically told her to pipe down. Despite protests from her and others, he just flat out refused to let her speak because that’s not how he had drawn up the rules. I thought at one point he was going to say something like, “It’s my ball and my yard. You can go home if you don’t like it.”

CITIZEN 2: Perhaps he wasn’t the best choice to head up the inquiry.

CITIZEN 1: Do ya think?

CITIZEN 2: All I know is, there’s a whistleblower out there, and he or she says there’s something rotten in Denmark.

CITIZEN 1: Uh-huh. And meanwhile, everybody else in Congress just sits around and has seemingly forgotten how to take care of the rest of the people’s business.

CITIZEN 2: I guess you do have a point there.

CITIZEN 1: Darn right. By the way, Schiff does know that even if his committee votes to impeach the president and a majority of the whole House goes along with it, unless a smoking gun suddenly appears, the Senate is never gonna convict him, right?

CITIZEN 2: Shh. Don’t say that. You’ll spoil all their fun.

Bill Lewis is a freelance writer in Marietta.

See more of his work at www.wordsmith-at-large.com.

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