Some of our Presidents have gone down in history for letters they wrote.
Ronald Reagan will always be remembered for his moving “sunset” letter, in which he eloquently said farewell to the nation he loved as he began his long descent into Alzheimers. Reagan is also known for his heartfelt letters to his wife Nancy, enough of them literally to fill a book. (In fact, you should read that book –- especially the letter Ronnie wrote to Nancy for their 20th wedding anniversary, maybe the sweetest love letter ever.)
Going back to the early days of our country, John Adams exchanged countless letters with Abigail, his wife, best friend and closest confidant. And George Washington, while working for ratification of the Constitution, wrote a remarkable four-page letter to his nephew in which he laid out his argument for unity.
Abraham Lincoln wrote a letter in which he famously said, “I am naturally anti-slavery. If slavery is not wrong, nothing is wrong.”
Harry Truman is known for a letter he wrote to music critic Paul Hume, who said his daughter Margaret “cannot sing very well” in a bad review of a concert she gave. Truman’s letter was quite something: “...It seems that you are a frustrated old man who wishes he could have been successful. When you write such poppy-cock as was in the back section of the paper you work for, it shows conclusively that you’re off the beam...Someday I hope to meet you. When that happens you’ll need a new nose, a lot of beefsteak for black eyes, and perhaps a supporter below!”
Now President Donald Trump has written a letter for the ages, and the emotion behind it is pretty close to Truman’s. Trump has absolutely had enough and went off on a six-page rant to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on the eve of his pre-ordained Wednesday impeachment.
The letter is MAGNIFICENT.
He literally did write it for the history books, knowing full well that nothing he says will deter Democrats from their ultimate partisan goal. As he says to Pelosi, “...I write this letter to you for the purpose of history and to put my thoughts on a permanent and indelible record. One hundred years from now, when people look back at this affair, I want them to understand it, and learn from it, so that it can never happen to another President again.”
I would be proud for my great-great-great grandchildren to read this letter (if American history is still taught then) and know that I supported this President. I want all to know what really happened. And though the letter expresses Trump's personal point of view, it's based on a great deal of proven fact. How refreshing to see in print what we know to be the truth, bluntly told. Similar observations have been expressed here by me and also by my research/writing staff, who join me in praising the letter.
It was written to protest the action being taken Wednesday –- a “partisan impeachment crusade,” which is exactly what it is. Trump makes it clear that THIS is the abuse of power, not anything he has done. It’s strong stuff: “By proceeding with your invalid impeachment, you are violating your oaths of office, you are breaking your allegiance to the Constitution, and you are declaring open war on American Democracy.” I’d say that by impeaching him for something they know for a fact he did not do, that is exactly what they are doing.
Then it gets REALLY good: “You dare to invoke the Founding Fathers in pursuit of this election-nullification scheme –- yet your spiteful actions display unfettered contempt for America’s founding and your egregious conduct threatens to destroy that which our Founders pledged their very lives to build.” Hallelujah, amen.
Defending himself against the charge of “Abuse of Power,” he says to Pelosi, “You know that I had a totally innocent conversation with the President of Ukraine.” He goes on to point out that he said “do US a favor,” not ME, and “OUR COUNTRY,” not a campaign. “Every time I talk with a foreign leader,” he says, “I put America’s interests first, just as I did with President Zelensky.” He also points out that Zelensky himself said more than once that there was nothing wrong with the call, that he felt no pressure. Trump’s letter goes on to lay out a full defense on the abuse of power charge.
"You are turning a policy disagreement between two branches of government into an impeachable offense,” he rightly tells Pelosi.
He describes what we know Joe Biden actually did in Ukraine. (We know because he bragged about it on camera in front of a live audience.) He tells Pelosi, “Now you are trying to impeach me by falsely accusing me of doing what Joe Biden has admitted he actually did.”
Then he addresses the “Obstruction” charge, calling it “preposterous and dangerous.” He says he had only been “asserting Constitutionally-based privileges that have been asserted on a bipartisan basis by administrations of both political parties throughout our Nation’s history.” He singles out a quote from Jonathan Turley that we have used here: “...if you impeach a President, if you make a high crime and misdemeanor out of going to the courts, it is an abuse of power. It’s YOUR abuse of power [emphasis mine]. You’re doing precisely what you’re accusing the President of doing.”
Trump does not hesitate to ascribe motive to the Democrats’ attempt to undo his election. “Everyone, you included, knows what is really happening,” he says. He talks frankly about Trump Derangement Syndrome and the fact that Democrats just can’t get over losing in 2016. He quotes congressional Democrats who started speaking and dreaming about his impeachment literally minutes after he was elected. He condemns Adam Schiff’s lying “parody” of his phone call with Zelensky that Schiff read into the record as if it were real.
He includes a loooooong paragraph that lists the many accomplishments of his first three years in office and contrasts them with the “indefensible” policies of the Democrats.
Then, fed up with being the target of their projection, he really lets them have it: “You are the ones interfering in America’s elections. You are the ones subverting America’s Democracy. You are the ones Obstructing. You are the ones bringing pain and suffering to our Republic for your own selfish personal, political and partisan gain.” This may be the most insightful part of the letter; charging that his attackers are guilty of the very things they accuse him of. Importantly, when he says this, he’s not only expressing his own view, but that of his millions of supporters, who’ve had reason to think this for a long time.
Of course, the media are already trashing the letter as a “tantrum,” the product of a deranged mind (again with the projection). Pelosi called it “sick.” But Trump’s letter is a brilliant, candid outpouring, a measure of his strength, and, yes, it will go down in history as one of the most remarkable Presidential letters ever written.