“I’m concerned that if we don’t impeach this President, he will get re-elected. If we don’t impeach him, he will say he has been vindicated.”
Texas Democrat Rep. Al Green let this slip on MSNBC last May, revealing that the relentless effort to impeach Trump is all just politics. Of course, if Democrats are able to remove Trump from office, that means Vice President Mike Pence gets a big-time promotion, but don’t think Democrats haven’t thought of that. A “President Pence” is absolutely unacceptable to them. In fact, I wrote just a few days ago that some in the Democrat Party are likely strategizing to take down both President Trump and Vice President Pence, leaving Nancy Pelosi next in the line of succession. Pelosi might stay in office for awhile or resign right away and leave the Presidency to her second-in-command.
Sure enough, former Watergate prosecutor Jill Wine-Banks mused about it on MSNBC:
“You could impeach Pence first. The problem is that Donald Trump then has to name his replacement. But I think that maybe a deal could be struck where he was told if you don’t make a replacement, then Nancy Pelosi does become President. And so you are going to be impeached and convicted; you need to make this replacement so that the proper party remains in power.”
Ah, “the proper party”? Talk about a palace coup. As I recall, when Bill Clinton was impeached in the House, the articles of impeachment included 11 felonies, including lying under oath and suborning perjury. Though many disagreed that impeachment was the right solution even then, it must be acknowledged that Clinton had broken the law; he even had to surrender his law license for a time. The Democrats’ attempt to go after Trump is simply to make sure “the proper party” is in power, preferably before any more Supreme Court justices are appointed, and they will do this by any means necessary.
It doesn’t matter that Trump hasn’t committed impeachable offenses as the framers of the Constitution thought of them. Analysts currently like to say that impeachment is a political process, not a legal one, and they’ve been repeating it over and over in recent days. But this truism is about as true as others such as “Children never lie” and “You can indict a ham sandwich.” (Children are talented fibbers and not everyone gets indicted; ask Hillary Clinton.) Impeachment was SUPPOSED to be saved for gross misconduct and abuse of power, not for what we’ve seen –- which would have been ignored or excused if Obama had done it. If impeachment is turned into merely a political process that can be done just to overturn an election or as political payback for some perceived slight, the future of our nation is dire. (And if a President’s phone calls with foreign leaders can’t be confidential, that compounds the disaster.) Thanks to Tucker Carlson for bringing Wine-Banks’ nonsense to a wider audience –- one that can appreciate what nonsense it is –- on Monday night.
That clip was followed by an interview with former State Department official (and whistleblower) Peter Van Buren, who observed that since the first “whistleblower” report surfaced, the entire transcript has been turned over and is available online for anyone to read. “It’s clearly not crazy or frightening; it clearly doesn’t represent any kind of demand for quote-unquote quid pro quo or anything along those lines,” Van Buren said. And since the transcript has been made public, the claims of any whistleblower would seem to be moot. But Van Buren does describe a “sort of a three-way pitch and toss” being played by the Democrats, the media and the so-called whistleblower.
He thinks the second whistleblower must be essentially the source for the first whistleblower. So there’s nothing new here, and the transcript is already out. But this creates what is referred to in the CIA as a “feedback loop.” They use a second source as a backup to the first and imply that the initial source is more credible by “feeding information into the loop.”
I would add that this is what they seem to have done with the Steele dossier as well. Accounts from multiple sources strengthened the case for the dossier itself, but these were actually reports that came FROM the dossier. All they really had was the made-up dossier.
Of course, we know that House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, whom Speaker Nancy Pelosi tasked with running the so-called impeachment inquiry (unofficial, since there hasn’t been a vote), was in on the ruse and has lied repeatedly. As long as he could get away with it, he pretended he and his office staff had had no contact with the first whistleblower; later we found out he or she had originally come to them for direction. We also know that in filling out the complaint, the whistleblower should have disclosed this contact but chose to leave that space blank. These are just a few of the lies; the capper may have been when, during a congressional hearing, Schiff “parodied” President Trump’s phone call with Ukrainian President Zelensky, putting outrageous words in his mouth and making him sound like a gangster.
(Incidentally, it occurred to me that since Pelosi put Schiff in charge of the impeachment “inquiry,” replacing House Judiciary Committee chairman Jerrold Nadler ---who has been obsessed with impeachment since the day Trump was elected --- we haven’t heard a peep from Nadler. Not that I’m complaining, but what’s going on with that? I digress.)
One thing that needs to be clarified about the whistleblower story is the report that the rules were changed just beforehand to allow for second-hand information. Democrats say this is incorrect and accuse Republicans of indulging in conspiracy theory. Margot Cleveland looked into it, and I’ve linked to her report below. The Intel Community IG (ICIG) put out a statement on October 1 acknowledging he had changed the form in response to the Trump whistleblower, saying it was because certain language in the form made it seem as though only firsthand information was allowed when that was not correct. But what he didn’t make clear in the statement was whether or not the ICIG had previously had a policy of allowing only firsthand information. And if he hadn’t, why would such emphatic language (“FIRST-HAND INFORMATION REQUIRED”) appear on the form, in total caps no less?
After thoroughly examining this issue, Cleveland still ends up with the concern that the ICIG’s office changed its whistleblower policy to get Trump. What do you think?