By Jon Dougherty
POTUS Donald Trump did not “collude” with Russia to “steal the election” from Hillary Clinton. He did not “obstruct justice” by firing the most politically compromised FBI agent ever — James Comey — because special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe continued to its conclusion. And he didn’t “obstruct” the Mueller team because he cooperated with investigators.
In short, nothing President Trump has done is a violation of law, let along a “high crime or misdemeanor,” which is the constitutional standard for impeaching a president.
And yet, according to House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.), Democrats are going to move to impeach POTUS “at some point” anyway.
In an interview with CNN, Clyburn said that first his party had to build a solid case for impeachment before moving forward.
The Hill reported:
When Tapper asked Clyburn if he thought Democrats would launch impeachment proceedings against Trump, he said “yes, that’s exactly what I feel.”
“What Nancy Pelosi is trying to do, and the rest of us in the House of Representatives, is developing a process to efficiently move on this issue so when we get to the vote, something she calls iron clad I call effective, that is why we are trying to take our time and do this right,” Clyburn said.
Clyburn said the House Democrats are not “particularly interested in the Senate,” but rather are waiting to “bring the public along.”
Like other Democrats, Clyburn is claiming that Mueller “developed the grounds for impeachment,” and yet, Mueller couldn’t even bring himself to bring any charges against the president. The former special counsel claimed it was because of a standing Justice Department legal opinion that a sitting president cannot be indicted, but:
— Bill Clinton was named in 11 counts of criminal violations by then-Independent Counsel Ken Starr, including obstruction of justice, perjury, and witness tampering (Starr did not indict but the House used the charges to impeach Clinton);
— Mueller told Attorney General William Barr three times during a meeting in March that the DoJ’s Office of Legal Counsel guidance regarding the non-indictment of sitting presidents had nothing at all to do with is refusal to make a decision regarding an ‘obstruction’ charge against POTUS (meaning there wasn’t any evidence to support such an allegation).
As we noted last week:
On Wednesday, Mueller — in a very odd and irregular press conference — said that if he and his team of Democrat-aligned lawyers and 50 FBI agents could have proved that POTUS Donald Trump never obstructed justice during their ‘Russian collusion’ witch hunt, they would have said as much in the report Mueller filed with the Justice Department following the probe.
Mueller’s excuse for not filing charges against the president? Why, he can’t, according to him, because longstanding Justice Department policy states a sitting president cannot be indicted. And so, he couldn’t come to any conclusion on “obstruction” — even though Trump pointedly did not obstruct anything (since Mueller and his team were allowed to complete their probe without any interference — and a lot of cooperation — from the administration).
Never mind that, according to Barr, Mueller told him three times earlier this year in a meeting that the longstanding policy had nothing at all to do with his decision not to recommend charges.
“I personally felt he could’ve reached a decision” on whether the president had obstructed justice, AG Barr told CBS News chief legal correspondent Jan Crawford during an exclusive interview in Anchorage, Alaska, on Thursday.
“The opinion says you cannot indict a president while he is in office, but he could’ve reached a decision as to whether it was criminal activity,” Barr added. “But he had his reasons for not doing it, which he explained and I am not going to, you know, argue about those reasons.”
The fact is, Clyburn and other Democrats know that the American people do not support impeaching POTUS Trump. They know the party will suffer at the polls next year if they launch an impeachment effort.
The continued hinting at impeachment, then, is merely to placate their perpetually unhinged base and the far-Left Marxist faction of their own party, who will eventually tire of the empty threats and turn on party leaders.
Meanwhile, majority Republicans in the Senate vowed to derail any House Democrat effort to remove President Trump.
“I think it would be disposed of very quickly,” Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said last week.
“It would be defeated,” added Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas). “That’s why all they want to do is talk about it. They know what the outcome would be.”
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- Follow Jon Dougherty on Twitter at @JonDougherty10