Impeachment a desperate attempt by Democrats to oust Trump from office
Published 8:13 am Monday, October 7, 2019
BY REP. PHIL ROE
Does this sound familiar? “The evidence is pretty clear that there was collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians,” said Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) on November 17, 2018. On September 21, 2017, Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) said, “Here you have a president who I can tell you, I guarantee you, is in collusion with the Russians to undermine our democracy.” When Special Counsel Robert Mueller released his report, he stated, “…the evidence was not sufficient to charge that any member of the Trump Campaign conspired with representatives of the Russian government to interfere in the 2016 election.” However, this finding of no collusion didn’t stop 95 House Democrats from voting to impeach the president in July — three months after reading this conclusion from Mr. Mueller. Congressional Democrats clearly made up their minds without any evidence.
Mr. Mueller spent over two years investigating President Trump, which cost taxpayers $25 million, the time and effort of 19 lawyers, 40 FBI agents, intelligence analysts, forensic accountants and other professional staff, 2,800 issued subpoenas, 500 search warrants and 50 orders of pen registers and 500 witness interviews. The results of the Mueller Report should have been a relief and Congress should have moved on. Unfortunately, “no collusion” was not the answer House Democrats wanted.
Now, House Democrats are again talking about impeaching the president after a whistleblower complaint based on second-hand information was filed against the president. Instead of waiting one day to read the transcript of the call between President Trump and the president of Ukraine, Speaker Pelosi announced they would begin impeachment proceedings — before examining the evidence. This is just another desperate attempt by House Democrats to remove President Trump from office since they couldn’t beat him at the ballot box. Democrat leadership wants the public to believe they are reluctant to begin an impeachment inquiry, but the truth is this is a carefully-calculated, political move.
It wasn’t so long ago that Speaker Pelosi herself believed impeachment would be counterproductive for our country. In May 2018, then-Minority Leader Pelosi was asked about whether House Democrats would move to impeach the president if they were in charge. Pelosi responded, “Unless you have bipartisan consensus, impeachment is a divisive issue in the country. Many people would think it’s being done for political reasons.” I couldn’t agree more.
Impeachment is not meant to be a political tool to remove opponents from office with whom we disagree. People have forgotten there were many opponents of President Obama outside of Congress calling for his impeachment. I never supported moving forward with those proceedings because they were largely over policy disagreements House Republicans had with President Obama. Now, House Democrats disagree with President Trump on his decision to investigate 2016 election interference, particularly on how an investigation began into his campaign. I think it is an appropriate investigation, and if House Democrats disagree, they should try to convince the American people in the 2020 election. Instead, they are trying to invalidate the votes of nearly 63 million Americans.
I have always believed sunshine is the best disinfectant, which is why it was important for the American people to see the Mueller Report, the transcript of the president’s call with the Ukrainian president and the substance of the whistleblower’s complaint at the heart of this matter. From the transcript of the call, it is quite clear that President Trump was asking for assistance investigating the origins of the 2016 investigation on election interference — which Attorney General William Barr publicly indicated he was going to investigate. Several of the Washington news media, however, took it upon themselves to make it seem like the favor the president requested was for the Ukrainian prime minister to investigate former Vice President Biden’s son by skipping over the part of President Trump’s conversation where he asked for help investigating what happened in 2016. House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff did the same thing in his opening statement in a hearing last week by creating a fictional conversation. I was flabbergasted that Chairman Schiff would fabricate the details of a call just to advance a political narrative.
There are still questions to be answered about this whistleblower complaint. But whatever you think of the president’s call; whatever you think of the whistleblower complaint; whatever you think of President Trump, one thing should be clear: the president’s call does not constitute impeachable conduct. Impeachment should never be used as a political tool.