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Pelosi’s poor choices helped sink her impeachment gambit

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15.01.2020

OPINION — What a difference 28 days makes.

On Dec. 18, House Democrats rushed to impeach President Donald Trump on charges of obstruction of Congress and abuse of power, with chief prosecutor Adam Schiff actually calling him a “clear and present danger” to the nation. Speed was of the essence, they told us. So critical, in fact, that the very security of the nation depended on it.

There wasn’t time to call people who Democrats now say are essential witnesses and to fight the president’s likely claim of executive privilege in court. There wasn’t time to allow the president’s legal team to participate in the hearings or give Republican members the ability to call their own witnesses. Democrats were in such a hurry, they said there wasn’t time to go to court and resolve the constitutional conflict between the executive and legislative branches.

So instead, they blamed the president, redefined a common executive-legislative branch conflict as criminal and created a new, precedent-free article of impeachment.

Schiff’s chief investigator on the Intelligence Committee, Daniel Goldman, told the Judiciary Committee, “To the extent that other witnesses would be able to provide more context and detail about this scheme, their failure to testify is due solely to the fact that Trump obstructed the inquiry and refused to make them available.”

Or as Schiff himself put it, “We are not willing to let the White House engage in a lengthy game of rope-a-dope in the courts, so we press ahead.”

It seems Schiff and Goldman have forgotten President Barack Obama and his Attorney General........

© Roll Call