I really have been wanting to give Speaker Nancy Pelosi the benefit of the doubt on handling the issue of any impeachment of Trump, but after hearing her arguments against starting an impeachment inquiry, I’m convinced she has no grand strategy. According to Kelly O’Donnell and Politico, Pelosi has stated the following:
“I don't want to see the president impeached. I want to see him in prison.”
Sounds great, huh? Pelosi wants us to defeat Trump at the ballot box in 2020, then federal prosecutors can go after Trump when he is a private citizen for the crimes he committed as president. The problem with this plan is that it assumes that if there is a failed impeachment process that federal prosecutors will abandon prosecuting Trump.
But as it has been pointed out on MSNBC, President Bill Clinton had to cut a deal with prosecutors while he was still in office. They were not about to let Clinton go even after the U.S. Senate failed to convict him. Pelosi has to know about this, so I think that her implied argument that links acquittal in the U.S. Senate to no charges in a criminal proceeding for Trump is specious.
Plus, Paul Butler of Georgetown Law School has pointed out the other flaw in Pelosi’s argument: what if Trump wins reelection? Guess what happens? Trump cannot be charged with federal crimes, and the statute of limitations on the crimes outlined in the Mueller Report run out in 2025.
Add this latest news on Pelosi to the pile of other mixed messaging out of her, and what I think you get is there is no 3D chess strategy at play. And let’s be honest folks. Pelosi and other Democrats who do not want to open an impeachment inquiry are doing a shitty job on messaging.
Pelosi readily admits that Trump committed crimes. But she does not want to impeach Trump. Unfortunately, the DOJ has this stupid memo that says a sitting president cannot be indicted. This leaves the process of indicting a president to the House. It’s in the U.S. Constitution. But Pelosi is arguining that it is either 1) up to the voters to remove Trump or 2) some federal prosecutors to indict and prosecuted him when he is a private citizen.
Then, she has made previous arguments that impeachment is divisive and the American people are not on board with impeachment. But we are to have scatter shot multiple investigations — Judiciary, Oversight, and Intelligence committees for starters — where information is blocked by Trump to somehow convince the American public that Trump needs impeachment. And as we have seen, Judiciary and some of the rest are just NOW getting around to voting for contempt on Barr and McGhan for blowing off subpeonas.
How long has it been since Mueller turned in his report? It was released on April 18th. And still most American have not read that lengthy report. And they are not going to. It’s up to Congress to highlight what is in the report, but we are now in June and nothing. The first “witness” up will be John Dean, who has nothing to do with this case.
I’m a partisan Democrat, and I have always respected Nancy Pelosi. But she has no grand strategy or plan on impeachment. What she has as Nicole Wallace and her panel said today is a politcal “bank shot.”