Members of the Democratic Party and “anti-Trump” intellectuals have proposed a new opposition strategy in the impeachment of President Donald Trump: they propose that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi retain the first article of impeachment (abuse of power) and only send the second (obstruction of Congress) to the Senate.
After four weeks of delay, Pelosi said Friday, Jan. 10, she would be willing to send the articles to the Senate this week.
Attorney George Conway, and former acting Attorney General Neal Katyal, wrote the same day in the Washington Post that Pelosi should send only the second article of the challenge to the Senate because, according to them, the issue of obstruction was “ripe” for trial.
Both claim that no further evidence is needed to show that President Trump tried to prevent the House from investigating him.
However, the Supreme Court in December accepted a series of cases of presidential objections to congressional subpoenas in the investigations, “thus destroying the legal basis for the ‘obstruction of Congress’ argument,” the conservative Breitbart reported.
In the case of the other challenge—abuse of power—lawyers argue that it is impossible to conduct a trial due to the lack of witnesses.
The article alleges that Trump abused his power by using U.S. assistance to pressure Ukraine to investigate Hunter Biden, son of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.
Although Conway and Natyal blame the White House for the lack of witnesses, the truth is that it was actually the Democratic leaders who refused to call witnesses proposed by the Republican Party.
For example, the chairman of the Intelligence Committee, Adam Schiff, forbade the Republicans from calling witnesses, vetoed the presence of the president’s defense attorney at the hearings, and limited the ability and content of the questions the Republicans could ask the witnesses called by the Democrats.
The case against President Trump was initiated following an anonymous complaint by an intelligence service member who accused the president of pressuring Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenski to investigate the controversial dealings of Democratic nominee Joe Biden and his son (who were involved in a mega-corruption case involving a European country’s gas company).
According to the complaint, the alleged ‘quid pro quo’ (demanding one thing in return for another) took place during a phone call between the two leaders and would have consisted of Zelenski refusing to investigate Biden and the White House withholding millions in US aid to Ukraine.
However, both presidents denied that any pressure was applied and the promised aid was delivered to Ukraine in a timely manner.
That is why the Republicans have asked, from the beginning of the process, to be able to question the anonymous whistleblower who accused President Trump (despite not having been a direct witness to the call), which the Democrats have actively blocked.
In the case of other witnesses who have been subpoenaed and refused to appear, the Supreme Court will decide whether they should appear, according to a report by Breitbart.
After a series of public and closed-door hearings on the Ukraine issue, the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives voted last month to remove the president for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.
It is worth noting that no Republicans in the lower house voted to remove President Trump, as did three Democratic representatives. One opposition congressman also abstained.
However, the next step in the process that should take place in the Senate (which has a Republican majority) is being held up by Speaker Nancy Pelosi in what many consider to be obstruction of the Upper House and blatantly unconstitutional behavior.
“The impeachment inquiry, investigation, votes, and the ultimate refusal to transmit articles are not about removing Trump from office. Rather, it is a tacit acknowledgment he will be re-elected in November 2020. The plan now is to use the impeachment to neuter that second term with a Democratic-controlled Senate,” former Rep. Trey Gowdy said.
“The impeachment inquiry, investigation, votes, and ultimate refusal to transmit articles are not about removing Trump from office. Rather, it is a tacit acknowledgment he will be re-elected in November 2020. The plan now is to use the impeachment to neuter that second term with a Democrat-controlled Senate,” Gowdy wrote.
This week the House will vote on the procedure to be followed on the impeachment articles.