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Fact-Free Impeachment

House Impeachment Vote
The U.S. House of Representatives voted 232-196 on Thursday morning to pass a resolution that gives the despicable Rep. Adam Schiff almost unlimited power to conduct the impeachment of President Trump. No Republicans voted for the resolution, although three did not vote, while only two Democrats, Collin C. Peterson of Minnesota and Jeff Van Drew of New Jersey, joined the Republicans in voting against it.

What became vividly apparent in the lead-up to yesterday’s vote on the resolution to ratify Rep. Adam Schiff’s effort to frame and railroad President Trump out of office was that there are no facts backing up the charge that Trump committed any “high crimes and misdemeanors,” and that he is being impeached for purely political reasons.

Unfortunately, much, if not most, of the ink spent by the conservative media (and we are guilty too) has focused on the outrageous secret process that Democrats have used to frame Trump, so little attention has been paid to the actual facts of the claims against the President.

So far, the facts set forth establish only that several low-level Trump-hating bureaucrats (holdovers from the Obama administration) disagree with the President’s foreign policy and have joined with Trump-hating Democrats in Congress to criminalize those policy disagreements.

The “quid pro quo” is a crime argument is completely specious, considering both the transcript of the President’s call with the President of Ukraine and in the President’s clear constitutional power to conduct American foreign policy.

Indeed, it would be absurd to suggest that presidents should be prohibited from asking or even demanding specific actions from foreign partners in return for the billions of dollars in foreign military and non-military aid the United States sends abroad every year.

In the case of Ukraine, in a March 22, 2019 release (long before the phone call with President Volodymyr Zelensky) the State Department said, “The United States believes addressing corruption begins with countries around the world sharing a common vision and a strong commitment to taking practical steps to prevent and prosecute corruption.”

The first country cited in the release was Ukraine: “INL supported Ukraine’s Ministry of Interior in recruiting and training 7,000 new police, revitalizing a police force which had struggled with corruption and restoring citizen trust.”

Bringing up anti-corruption efforts with the new President of Ukraine, who ran on and was elected on an anti-corruption platform, was a perfectly legitimate exercise of presidential authority to conduct the foreign policy of the United States.

But it also opened the door to revealing the extent to which Hunter Biden was involved in and benefited from that culture of corruption. Would it be logical or rational to claim that because Joe Biden is running for President his ne'er-do-well son should be immune from investigation or prosecution?

Likewise, the claims that using Rudy Giuliani to nose around Ukraine and other matters is somehow illegal is ridiculous in light of past presidential practice. For years presidents have used private citizens, such as the late Armand Hammer, as unofficial backchannels to politically awkward governments, such as the old Soviet Union.

Once again, while Democrats and Deep State anti-Trumpers would like to make this practice out to be criminal, their real beef is that Giuliani might have uncovered more influence peddling by Hunter Biden, not that presidents from the beginning of the Republic to today have all been engaged in criminal conduct by using backchannel communicators.

Even more bizarre is the claim that by exercising the clear constitutional powers of his office the President has “obstructed justice.” The exercise of Executive privilege and the refusal of the Executive Branch to open its personnel and papers to congressional investigators has a rich history and is part of the checks and balances built into the Constitution.

Were saying “sue me if you want it,” as Trump has more or less said through his White House Counsel, a “high crime and misdemeanor” then Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton should both have been impeached for multiple counts of “obstruction” in the Benghazi investigation alone. (And we could add Obama and Eric Holder for Fast and Furious.)

But they weren’t because Republicans lacked the killer instinct and unscrupulousness of Democrats Adam Schiff and Nancy Pelosi.

So far, even the selective leaks emanating from Schiff’s secret dungeon have not set forth facts that support any claim of criminal conduct by President Trump. What is going on here is the criminalization of policy differences and the creation of a process to legitimize the raw hatred Democrats and the permanent political class have for Donald Trump. This is something not seen in our country since the lead up to the Civil War and it bodes ill for the internal peace and tranquility that has, over the past 154 years, made America great.

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Process vs. Substance

I don't think it's at all a mistake to focus (not exclusively) on the "star chamber" Stalinist ex parte process the "Democrats" have decreed for the impeachment proceeding. Nearly every American understands the fundamental rights of Due Process, Right to Confront one's accusers, and the right to counsel. But it is equally important to point out that no crime was committed unless it was "governing while Republican."