A Split Decision From Congress Will Leave Voters With Final Say On Trump

52
1172

A Split Decision From Congress Will Leave Voters With Final Say On Trump

WASHINGTON — When it was all over and the witnesses had testified and the speeches were done, President Donald Trump pronounced himself satisfied with the show. “We had a tremendous week with the hoax,” he declared on Friday as he addressed a room of collegiate athletes. “That’s really worked out incredibly well.”

Legal Experts Say U.S. Court Ruling On White House Counsel Could Encourage Witnesses To Talk In Impeachment Probe

Trump began the day with a 53-minute phone call to Fox & Friends in which he repeated a familiar list of accusations and falsehoods, which he amplified again on Saturday with a string of Twitter posts. Indeed, even after two weeks of hearings that presented compelling evidence against him, Trump was acting as if nothing had changed. In a way, it had not.

Everyone is playing their assigned role in a drama where the ending seems known in advance as the House of Representatives heads toward a likely party-line vote to impeach the president, followed by a Senate trial that will not convict him.

But if the outcome of the showdown on Capitol Hill at the moment appears foreordained, the ultimate verdict still is not. Unlike Presidents Richard Nixon or Bill Clinton, Trump faces an election after his impeachment battle, meaning that the voters will serve as the court of appeals rendering their own final judgment on whether he has committed high crimes and misdemeanors.

As a result, now that the House Intelligence Committee has laid out the evidence against Trump, the debate that will now play out on Capitol Hill will be aimed not at swaying lawmakers firmly embedded in their partisan corners, but at framing the issue in ways that will resonate with the public. The next few weeks could be critical in setting the parameters for a campaign that will decide if Trump is fit for office.

“The impeachment jury is actually the smaller universe of voters in our country who are persuadable, swing voters who have avoided the tribalism plaguing most of our citizenry these days,” said former Rep. Chris Curbelo, R-Fla. “Their verdict will be issued next fall.”

While scholars and lawyers have argued the finer points of Article II, Section 4 of the Constitution, the main players in the drama have been studying poll numbers and fundraising totals. Every day during the hearings, Trump’s campaign and various organs of the Republican and Democratic parties blasted out emails and videos aimed at that jury beyond the Beltway.

https://news.yahoo.com

Members of the Intelligence Committee tweeted out their interpretations of the day’s events to their followers from the hearing room dais, even as witnesses were still testifying. Impeachment was the first question asked at Wednesday night’s Democratic presidential debate, which began barely an hour after that day’s marathon hearing wrapped up.

Both sides were fixated on the case study of Rep. Elise Stefanik, a Republican from New York who vaulted to fame among conservatives and infamy among liberals for her fierce defense of Trump. After her Democratic opponent in next year’s election reported raising $1 million from Trump critics outraged by Stefanik’s performance, conservatives who once were suspicious of her moderate credentials rallied to her side and she was given prized slots on Fox News.

“We just raised 250k in 15 MINUTES,” Stefanik wrote on Twitter just hours after impeachment hearings concluded on Thursday. “THANK YOU! help us get to 500k TONIGHT.”

In five days of public hearings over two weeks, the committee heard from 12 witnesses, all of them current or former administration officials and most with years if not decades of public service under presidents of both parties. With an average of 12 million Americans watching each day, the testimony laid out in meticulous detail an effort by Trump and his lieutenants to pressure Ukraine into helping him tear down his domestic political rivals.

Lawmakers were told that Trump wanted Ukraine to announce that it would investigate former Vice President Joe Biden as well as a debunked conspiracy theory about Ukraine helping Democrats in the 2016 presidential election, the latter a figment of disinformation propagated by Russia, according to U.S. intelligence agencies. Trump clearly conditioned a coveted White House invitation for Ukraine’s president on his demand for the investigations and several witnesses said it was obvious he held back $391 million in American aid as leverage as well.

Republicans poked holes in the testimony, making clear that none of the witnesses had actually heard Trump explicitly tie the security aid to the investigations, and they complained vociferously about the process, assailing it as tilted against the president. Some Republicans conceded that Trump did in fact do what he was accused of doing but maintained that it was not impeachable.

Whatever the hearings revealed about Trump’s conduct in office, they seemed to only reinforce just how polarized the country has become. No lawmakers declared that the evidence had changed their minds in either direction and judging by polls most Americans seemed to find only validation for the viewpoint they had when the hearings began.

Indeed, listening to Republicans and Democrats, or their friendlier media, would give the impression of two radically different sets of hearings, one that presented damning, incontrovertible evidence that the president abused his power or one that revealed that the whole proceeding was a partisan sham.

While polls before the hearings showed that 49% favored impeachment versus 47% who opposed it, a survey by Yahoo News and YouGov at the end of the hearings found support for impeachment at 48% and opposition at 45%. Other polls may eventually show movement but, at first blush, the drama of hearing the evidence presented out loud by real witnesses with evident credibility did not noticeably shift the overall dynamics.

Democrats and Republicans alike privately agreed that it looked unlikely that even a single Republican would vote for impeachment when it reaches the House floor. In the Senate, Republican strategists said they believed they might lose two senators — Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska — while Democratic strategists said they also might lose two — Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona.

“We’ve just had this partisan divide ever since the Clinton years,” said former Rep. Barbara Comstock, R-Va. “Whether it was Supreme Court nominations or this, it’s just become a team sport, shirts and skins, no matter what the issues are.”

Steve Elmendorf, the top aide to the House Democratic leader when Clinton was impeached, agreed that lawmakers appear locked into their positions. “Except,” he cautioned, “we are in the Trump show, where anything can happen. Two months ago, we did not think he was going to be impeached over a phone call we knew little about.”

Among the wild cards that could still change the dynamics might be testimony by some of the key witnesses who so far have refused to talk, including John Bolton, the former national security adviser who opposed the pressure campaign and is waiting for a court ruling on whether he should appear.

Trump has long argued that an impeachment battle would help him politically by galvanizing his base against the elites trying to invalidate the 2016 election. While he has refused to provide testimony or documents to the House, arguing that the process is rigged against him, he is taking his case instead to evening rallies in sports arenas filled with supporters.

Trump and his allies took heart from a Marquette University Law School poll showing him with small leads against each of the Democratic front-runners among voters in Wisconsin, one of the most critical battleground states for 2020. That poll, taken during the first week of hearings, showed that support for impeachment in the state had slipped by four percentage points to 40%.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi was initially wary of pursuing impeachment unless it was likely to be bipartisan, recalling what happened to Clinton, who was impeached on a largely party-line vote in the House and acquitted in the Senate. House Republicans back then thought voters would reward them for pursuing impeachment of a president who lied under oath about a sexual affair with a former White House intern but instead it was Democrats who picked up seats in the 1998 midterm elections as the inquiry was underway.

With that in mind, today’s Democratic presidential candidates, while supporting impeachment, are treading lightly around it on the campaign trail, where voters generally do not bring it up. Instead, they emphasize issues like health care, gun control and income inequality, reflecting a fear about how impeachment will play come next fall.

But Comstock, who was a Republican staff aide investigating Clinton during his presidency, said the conclusions drawn from the electoral consequences of his impeachment were too narrow. “I do think both sides have maybe learned the wrong lesson,” she said.

While Republicans lost the midterm elections, they won the White House back in 2000 when Clinton’s handpicked successor, Al Gore, fell short in the Electoral College despite running on a record of peace and prosperity.

Eventually, Comstock said, the public tires of scandal and seeks to move on. Trump may win acquittal in the Senate, but that does not mean the public will be as forgiving.

“While they’re now trying to make the best of it with fundraising and saying this is going to help us, that fatigue” may set in, she said. “There are people who just want a normal presidency.”

A Split Decision From Congress Will Leave Voters With Final Say On Trump

52 COMMENTS

  1. The next time I review a blog, I hope that it does not disappoint me as much as this set. I imply, I recognize it was my choice to check out, yet I in fact assumed youd have something intriguing to state. All I listen to is a bunch of whimpering concerning something that you can take care of if you werent as well hectic looking for attention.

  2. Have you ever considered about including a little bit more than just your articles? I mean, what you say is important and all. Nevertheless imagine if you added some great images or video clips to give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with images and video clips, this website could undeniably be one of the very best in its field. Good blog!

  3. Thanks for your article. It is rather unfortunate that over the last ten years, the travel industry has had to handle terrorism, SARS, tsunamis, bird flu, swine flu, as well as first ever real global economic depression. Through everything the industry has really proven to be robust, resilient along with dynamic, locating new ways to deal with trouble. There are often fresh challenges and opportunities to which the sector must just as before adapt and answer.

  4. An outstanding share, I just given this onto an associate who was doing a little analysis on this. As well as he in fact bought me morning meal due to the fact that I located it for him. smile. So let me rephrase that: Thnx for the treat! However yeah Thnkx for investing the moment to review this, I feel strongly concerning it and love learning more on this subject. When possible, as you become proficiency, would certainly you mind upgrading your blog with more information? It is very useful for me. Huge thumb up for this post!

  5. Thanks for your valuable post. Through the years, I have been able to understand that the symptoms of mesothelioma cancer are caused by a build up connected fluid between your lining on the lung and the breasts cavity. The ailment may start inside chest area and spread to other body parts. Other symptoms of pleural mesothelioma include weight-loss, severe breathing in trouble, a fever, difficulty ingesting, and puffiness of the face and neck areas. It should be noted that some people having the disease never experience almost any serious indications at all.

  6. Usually I do not read post on blogs, however I wish to say that this write-up very pressured me to take a look at and do so! Your writing taste has been surprised me. Thank you, quite great article.

  7. I’m still learning from you, while I’m trying to achieve my goals. I certainly enjoy reading everything that is written on your website.Keep the information coming. I liked it!

  8. My brother recommended I might like this web site. He was totally right. This post actually made my day. You can not imagine just how much time I had spent for this info! Thanks!

  9. I discovered more a new challenge on this fat loss issue. One issue is that good nutrition is highly vital any time dieting. A big reduction in fast foods, sugary food items, fried foods, sweet foods, pork, and white colored flour products could be necessary. Retaining wastes parasites, and poisons may prevent desired goals for fat-loss. While certain drugs in the short term solve the issue, the horrible side effects will not be worth it, they usually never offer you more than a momentary solution. This can be a known incontrovertible fact that 95 of diet plans fail. Thank you for sharing your ideas on this blog site.

  10. Hey just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The text in your post seem to be running off the screen in Chrome. I’m not sure if this is a formatting issue or something to do with browser compatibility but I figured I’d post to let you know. The design and style look great though! Hope you get the problem fixed soon. Kudos

  11. I don’t even understand how I stopped up here, but I assumed this post was good. I do not realize who you are however definitely you’re going to a famous blogger if you happen to aren’t already 😉 Cheers!

  12. certainly like your web-site but you have to test the spelling on several of your posts. A number of them are rife with spelling problems and I find it very bothersome to inform the truth however I¡¦ll certainly come again again.

  13. Have you ever considered about adding a little bit more than just your articles? I mean, what you say is important and all. But think of if you added some great pictures or video clips to give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with images and clips, this blog could certainly be one of the very best in its field. Terrific blog!

  14. There are some fascinating moments in this write-up however I don?t understand if I see every one of them facility to heart. There is some validity but I will certainly take hold viewpoint until I check out it better. Good article, thanks and also we desire more! Contributed to FeedBurner as well

  15. I know this if off topic but I’m looking into starting my own blog and was curious what all is needed to get set up? I’m assuming having a blog like yours would cost a pretty penny? I’m not very web savvy so I’m not 100 certain. Any tips or advice would be greatly appreciated. Kudos

  16. Do you have a spam issue on this website; I also am a blogger, and I was curious about your situation; many of us have created some nice procedures and we are looking to trade techniques with others, please shoot me an e-mail if interested.

  17. It is truly a nice and helpful piece of info. I am satisfied that you simply shared this useful information with us. Please keep us up to date like this. Thank you for sharing.

  18. In these days of austerity plus relative stress about running into debt, many individuals balk about the idea of utilizing a credit card in order to make purchase of merchandise and also pay for any gift giving occasion, preferring, instead just to rely on a tried and also trusted technique of making repayment – cash. However, if you have the cash there to make the purchase in full, then, paradoxically, that is the best time for them to use the credit card for several motives.

  19. We absolutely love your blog and find a lot of your post’s to be precisely what I’m looking for. Do you offer guest writers to write content for you personally? I wouldn’t mind publishing a post or elaborating on many of the subjects you write with regards to here. Again, awesome weblog!

  20. Great – I should definitely pronounce, impressed with your site. I had no trouble navigating through all the tabs as well as related info ended up being truly easy to do to access. I recently found what I hoped for before you know it in the least. Reasonably unusual. Is likely to appreciate it for those who add forums or something, website theme . a tones way for your client to communicate. Excellent task.

  21. Hi, Neat post. There’s a problem with your site in internet explorer, would check this… IE still is the market leader and a big portion of people will miss your excellent writing due to this problem.

  22. Howdy! Do you know if they make any plugins to help with Search Engine Optimization? I’m trying to get my blog to rank for some targeted keywords but I’m not seeing very good success. If you know of any please share. Thank you!

  23. Good day webmaster, commenters and everybody else !!! The site was absolutely awesome! Lots of great info and inspiration, both of which we all need!b Keep ‘em coming… all of you can like a great job with such Concepts… can’t tell you just how much I, for just one appreciate all you decide to do.

  24. Greetings! I’ve been following your weblog for a long time now and finally got the courage to go ahead and give you a shout out from Humble Tx! Just wanted to mention keep up the great job!

  25. Very effectively written information. It will be priceless to anyone who usess it, including myself. Keep up the nice work ¨C for sure i will try extra posts.

  26. Hey there would you mind sharing which blog platform you’re working with? I’m looking to start my own blog in the near future but I’m having a tough time deciding between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal. The reason I ask is because your design seems different then most blogs and I’m looking for something completely unique. P.S Sorry for getting off-topic but I had to ask!

  27. hi!,I like your writing so much! share we communicate more about your post on AOL? I require a specialist on this area to solve my problem. Maybe that’s you! Looking forward to see you.

  28. We’re a group of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our community. Your site provided us with valuable info to work on. You’ve done an impressive job and our entire community will be thankful to you.

  29. I am glad for writing to let you know of the really good experience my girl encountered using your web site. She realized many details, which included how it is like to possess an excellent coaching character to let others with ease thoroughly grasp a number of impossible things. You actually did more than visitors’ desires. Many thanks for offering the interesting, trusted, informative and unique tips on this topic to Lizeth.

  30. I was extremely happy to locate this web-site. I intended to thanks for your time for this wonderful read!! I certainly appreciating every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to take a look at new stuff you post.

  31. I have to point out my love for your generosity giving support to folks that should have help with the concept. Your special dedication to getting the solution all around had been exceptionally interesting and have specifically helped others just like me to reach their dreams. Your new important recommendations means a lot a person like me and extremely more to my fellow workers. Warm regards; from each one of us.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here