Ever since Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi uttered into existence the “official impeachment inquiry” on Sept. 24, 2019, Republicans had been demanding the full House vote on a resolution specifically authorizing, as the House had done in the impeachments of former presidents, and establishing fair rules for it.
Weeks later, Pelosi announced she was giving Republicans what they wanted. But, on Halloween Day, Republicans got a trick instead of a treat.
Democrats passed H.R.660, which simply resolved that the House committees continue doing what they were doing and proposed some rules going forward that are far from fair for the man Democrats have accused of “high crimes and misdemeanors.”
In addition to punting on the request for a specific authorization, the resolution denies President Trump some basic rules of fairness.
It gives Democrats veto power over Republicans’ use of the subpoena while placing no limit on Democrats’. It requires House Republicans to submit their witness list to the Democratic committee chairmen for approval with no similar requirement on Democrats. It does not afford the president the right to counsel in the House Intelligence Committee where the bulk of the impeachment proceedings have occurred and will resume. It authorizes the continued use of the top-secret Intelligence Committee even though this has nothing to do with national security and that committee is not intended for and has never been used for impeachments before.
The resolution does require the Intelligence Committee to designate “open hearings,” which have now been scheduled. But because the resolution fails to provide the president with a right to counsel in the Intelligence Committee, these hearings will occur without the president’s counsel and thus deny him the right and ability to defend himself.
Furthermore, Pelosi’s H.R.660 doesn’t undo the damage that’s already been done.
For over a month now Democrats have held closed-door impeachment proceedings without the presence of the president’s attorneys while refusing to allow Republicans the right to call their own witnesses and present their own evidence and, in some cases, limiting Republicans’ right to cross-examine the Democrats’ witnesses.
In what were supposed to be top-secret proceedings, Democrats released the opening statements of certain witnesses and leaked out testimony they believed to be favorable to them, again, while denying the president the right to even participate.
H.R.660 does not and cannot undo nearly a month of secret, one-sided work done by House Democrats on the Intelligence Committee.
Pelosi’s chicanery involving the impeachment vote is nothing new to House Democrats. House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff infamously kicked off the “inquiry” by making up words Trump allegedly said during his telephone call with the Ukrainian president.
Because the transcript of the call, and the statements of the Ukrainians themselves, revealed there was no crime, Schiff had to make it up.
Schiff’s fabrication is reminiscent of the former head of the secret police in the Soviet Union, Lavrentiy Beria’s, famous boast, “You bring me the man and I’ll show you the crime.” But over a month into the “official” impeachment inquiry, and many months into the unofficial one, Democrats still have not shown us the crime.
Rest assured, if the president had committed a high crime or misdemeanor Democrats would have put the name of that crime in neon lights on top of the Capitol Building.
Instead, Pelosi went on the late-night talk show of the left-wing Stephen Colbert and tried to explain why she’s impeaching the president. She giggled, laughed and repeatedly said it’s “about the Constitution,” while boasting that she’s “throwing a punch for the children.”
She also stated solemnly that, “No one is above the law,” but then failed to identify what law the president violated. In short, even though she has no evidence of any crime, Pelosi has the power, so she’ll throw the punch.
To add a veneer of legality, she claimed the president “violated his oath.” Whatever that means, it will be enough to impeach in the House. That’s because Democrats have the majority and are licking their chops to take out this president who beat them in 2016.
There is a historical precedent for impeaching a president for non-criminal conduct, however. Former President Andrew Johnson, who like Trump was despised by the opposition party and the media, was impeached by the House for various non-criminal acts, i.e. “high misdemeanors” in the parlance of the Constitution.
But here’s the rub. Pelosi knows her impeachment will die in the U.S. Senate just like Johnson’s and Clinton’s did.
Yet she’ll use these impeachment proceedings, as the country moves into the 2020 presidential re-election, to land as many punches against the president as she can.
Her performance on “The Late Show” reveals the truth.
She’s got nothing. But her impeachment inquiry, although a joke and political stunt to her, is being taken with the utmost seriousness by the president’s 62 million loyal supporters.
Each punch Pelosi throws at Trump hits half of America — the half that put Trump in the White House and kept Congress in the hands of the Republicans in 2016.
And now, thanks to this impeachment, it will happen again.
In the end, Pelosi’s punch will go down in history as one of the biggest haymakers that missed its mark and ended up knocking out her own political party.
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