When it comes to the “impeachment inquiry” threatening President Donald Trump, not many Americans have the perspective of Newt Gingrich.
The former House speaker who oversaw the impeachment of then-President Bill Clinton in 1998 knows what lawmakers have done before in taking on the White House from Capitol Hill.
“What they’re doing right now is a fundamental violation of American law,” Gingrich told Fox News’ “Fox & Friends” on Monday.
“Schiff is an embarrassingly dishonest person,” the former GOP congressman from Georgia said. “Pelosi has become an embarrassingly dishonest person.”
As Americans who remember the Clinton years will recall, the contrast between what happened on Capitol Hill then versus what Democrats are doing now could not be starker.
As Gingrich pointed out, Republicans organizing the Clinton impeachment were working with the report compiled by independent counsel Kenneth Starr, who found 11 counts of lying, obstruction and other crimes that could merit impeachment.
Today’s Democrats had their own special counsel investigation blow up in their faces, with a report that established no crimes by the president at all. It got even more embarrassing when special counsel Robert Mueller showed up for congressional hearings clearly out of his element.
Instead of a vetted document compiled by experienced prosecutors, today’s Democrats are going off the shaky report of an even shakier “whistleblower” with reported ties to Democratic presidential candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden.
During the Clinton impeachment, Gingrich said, Republicans relied heavily on precedents established during the impeachment of President Richard Nixon by N.J. Rep. Peter Rodino, the Democrat who chaired the House Judiciary Committee in 1974.
Today’s Democrats are relying on nothing other than their power to control the operations of the House.
Schiff and the Intelligence Committee take testimony behind closed doors, then let convenient parts leak to friendly, anti-Trump reporters, Gingrich said.
“The fact is, the Democrats in the House are desperately trying to manufacture something,” he said.
“They wake up every morning saying, ‘I know Trump did something terrible. I wonder what it was.’
“And they have set up a rigged game that violates every core principle in American justice, violates the Constitution’s guarantee of due process.
“And I think the American people ultimately are going to get very sick of this.”
Considering that Clinton rose in the polls immediately after the House voted to impeach him back in 1998, it’s pretty clear that the idea of removing a president from office isn’t necessarily a big winner with the American people.
The difference, of course, is that Clinton was nearing the end of his second term in office in 1998.
What Democrats are doing now is a transparent attempt to smear Trump in advance of the 2020 election, using impeachment — a process established by the Founding Fathers to deal with “high crimes and misdemeanors” — as just another tawdry trick in their tawdry political toolbox.
And Gingrich is describing Pelosi and Schiff as “embarrassingly dishonest”?
He’s being kinder than they deserve.
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