Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi would impeach 62 million Americans if she could. But unfortunately, her office only allows her to pursue impeachment of a single deplorable.
Pelosi announced the beginning of an impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump last Tuesday.
Portraying herself as a strict constitutionalist, she said to the nation, “Our republic endures because of the wisdom of our Constitution enshrined in three co-equal branches of government serving as checks and balances on each other.”
Pelosi continued, saying, “The actions taken to date by the president have seriously violated the Constitution, especially when the president says Article II says ‘I can do whatever I want.’”
Pelosi wants Americans to believe dire circumstances have called for her party to assume the duties as noble guardians of our republic.
“A republic, if you can keep it,” Pelosi reminded Americans as she looked upwards and past the news cameras. “Our responsibility is to keep it.”
The House Democrats, Pelosi claims, are all that stands between self-government and a despot of a president bent on destroying the nation.
Americans should reject her twisted rhetoric.
For starters, the speaker took the President out of context. The President did say Article II of the U.S. Constitution “allows me to do whatever I want,” but he said it only in the context of firing leaders within the executive branch such as Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller and former FBI Director James Comey.
Though the President could have phrased it better, the President was correct. According to the Constitution, the legislative branch’s “advice and consent” role applies only to the appointment, not the firing of the president’s staff. As the sole elected leader of the executive branch, President Trump reserves the right to fire any appointee he deems an impediment to faithfully executing the laws of the United States.
As for the basis of the impeachment inquiry, “the essence of it,” Pelosi said, is that the President “has admitted that he brought up the investigation of the Biden family in his call” with the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. “He is asking a foreign government to help him in his campaign.”
“Don’t get caught in the trap of ‘oh, there is no quid pro quo’ with regards to the president’s ask,” she told her caucus, according to NBC News.
Never mind that Pelosi had not yet read the transcript of the call. Never mind that former Vice President Biden boasts of pressuring the Ukrainian government to fire a prosecutor investigating his son’s Hunter’s company for corruption. Never mind that Biden flew with his son on Air Force Two, where Hunter Biden attended a business meeting with one of the wealthiest men in China.
Who cares if less than two weeks after the trip, the Chinese government invested more than $1 billion into a business co-owned by the son of the U.S. Vice President. No further investigation is required, the lack of media coverage tells us, because Biden claims no mal-intent behavior ever occurred.
Democrats argue the American people do not need to know how the Obama administration interacted with foreign agencies and obtained the FISA warrants necessary to wiretap the 2016 Trump campaign. For Attorney General William Barr to inquire about the origins of the Russia collusion investigation is totally inappropriate and demonstrates the attorney general has “gone rogue,” says Nancy Pelosi.
Meanwhile, Democrat lawmakers have engaged in eerily similar behaviors, and few seem to spot the hypocrisy. The Washington Post’s Marc Thiessen reported that in May three Democrat U.S. senators wrote a letter to Ukraine’s Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko, and threatened the Ukrainian’s to reopen investigations that could impact the Mueller probe.
Unlike President Trump’s phone call, there is a clear quid pro quo in the letter the senators wrote, “We have supported [the] capacity-building process and are disappointed that some in Kyiv appear to have cast aside these principles to avoid the ire of President Trump.” Directly after they urge the Ukrainians to “reverse course and halt any efforts to impede cooperation with this important investigation.”
Democrats fail to articulate how lawmakers requesting cooperation from foreign governments on an investigation into Trump is any different than Trump requesting foreign cooperation on an investigation into Biden.
Both are contenders for the presidency in 2020, the only difference is that one has emerged innocent after a two-year long, $32 million investigation has concluded.
Truth be told, this impeachment battle has very little to do with Donald Trump. The impeachment proceedings are really about the actions of 62 million Americans who cast ballots for any candidate but Hillary Clinton.
In the same way Democrats inflicted permanent damage to the judicial system during the spectacle of Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation, they now threaten to do the same to the presidency.
Just like Sen. Chuck Schumer, D‑N.Y., said he would oppose any Trump Supreme Court nominee with everything he had, Rep. Waters and many others called for Trump’s impeachment within the first few months of his presidency.
In addition to destroying the long-established assumption of confidentiality presidents and foreign leaders reserved for effective communication, the Democrats have turned impeachment into nothing less than the means for Congress to reverse the outcome of a presidential election.
“If you’re looking for a fair process, you came to the wrong town at the wrong time,” Sen. Lindsey Graham, R‑S.C., told Kavanaugh during his confirmation hearing. “Boy, y’all want power. God, I hope you never get it.”
Unfortunately for America, Graham’s statement proves as valid now as it did a year ago.
For two-and-a-half years and counting, Democrats have shown they see no reputation too well-respected, no constitutional precedent too sacred, and no group of citizens too large, for them to debase and strengthen their power.
As Pelosi suggested, despotism corrupts the D.C. air. But the swampish odors are not coming from the White House.
Ben Dietderich is a George Washington Fellow and a senior studying political economy.