White House Unveils New Impeachment Strategy: Total War  – News

White House Unveils New Impeachment Strategy: Total War – News


After scrambling for more than two weeks to explain away Donald Trump’s attempts to strong-arm Ukraine into investigating one of his political rivals, the White House has finally settled on a strategy: Neither the president nor the administration will cooperate with the impeachment inquiry Democrats launched last month, charging that the “unprecedented” probe violates Trump’s constitutional rights “Your inquiry is constitutionally invalid and a violation of due process,” Counsel to the President Pat Cipollone wrote in a letter to Nancy Pelosi and other top Democrats on Tuesday “The effort to impeach President Trump—without regard to any evidence of his actions in office—is a naked political strategy that began the day he was inaugurated, and perhaps even before ” The refusal to cooperate has broad implications for both the current impeachment inquiry and the scope of executive power, and is almost assured to result in Trump’s impeachment in the House of Representatives for obstruction of justice “This letter is manifestly wrong, and is simply another unlawful attempt to hide the facts of the Trump Administration’s brazen efforts to pressure foreign powers to intervene in the 2020 elections,” Pelosi said in a statement Tuesday evening “The White House should be warned that continued efforts to hide the truth of the President’s abuse of power from the American people will be regarded as further evidence of obstruction ” Up to this point, Trump and his allies had struggled in their response to the impeachment inquiry The president and his lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, admitted to pressing Kiev for a probe into unfounded conspiracy theories about Joe Biden and the origins of the Russia probe, and daily revelations—including a trove of text messages between American and Ukrainian officials that seemed to contradict Trump’s “no quid pro quo” defense—further corroborated the whistleblower complaint that touched off the scandal With its new strategy, the White House is almost completely ignoring the substance of the accusations against Trump and instead is attacking Democrats’ impeachment process as an illegal effort to “overturn” the 2016 election and influence the upcoming vote in 2020 Cipollone argued, incorrectly, that the impeachment inquiry is unconstitutional unless the House first holds a vote, and that the process has been “unfair” to the president “You seek to overturn the results of the 2016 election and deprive the American people of the President they have freely chosen,” Cipollone wrote “Many Democrats now apparently view impeachment not only as a means to undo the democratic results of the last election, but as a strategy to influence the next election, which is barely more than a year away ” To some extent, this defense is nothing new. Trump deployed a version of it in his fiery responses to Robert Mueller’s investigation, which outlined a pattern of obstruction of justice, and has continued to do so in his frenzied attacks on the current impeachment inquiry In essence, it’s Trump’s “witch hunt” mantra dressed up in legalese. But in formalizing that argument, the White House is essentially attacking the concept of congressional oversight entirely—a remarkably expansive assertion of presidential power that Democrats say would effectively put Trump “above the law ” For a Republican party that claims to believe in small government and spent eight years bellyaching about Barack Obama’s alleged executive overreach, this would seem to be dangerous argument  And yet, it could finally give the GOP a strategy to respond to a scandal that’s kept most of its rank-and-file on the sidelines, spooked about getting involved in the president’s sloppy defense “If Democrats rush an unfair process,” House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy told Politico Tuesday, “we’ll hit them every step of the way ” House Republicans might be able to rally around that process-focused message, and the White House may be able to stop the drip-drip-drip of damning revelations that threaten to turn some Republicans against the president It may be incumbent on Democrats, then, to keep the substance of their inquiry front and center “You are not above the law,” Pelosi told Trump in her Tuesday statement. “You will be held accountable ” — Impeachment fervor is causing a ruckus at Fox News— Why Rudy Giuliani’s Ukrainian adventure could end his career— Inside the stunning collapse of WeWork (and its kooky CEO)— It’s official: Trump has met his Twitter match— A surprise appearance by Tiffany Trump— From the Archive: The power broker who taught Donald Trump the dark political arts Looking for more? Sign up for our daily Hive newsletter and never miss a story Most PopularTrump Says Screw It, Is Blatantly Corrupt on CameraBy Tina NguyenExplosive Texts Reveal Trump-Ukraine Quid Pro QuoBy Eric LutzTrump Responds to Impeachment Inquiry with More Obstruction of JusticeBy Eric Lutz

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