As the impeachment inquiry goes public tomorrow, we thought we would highlight a few items. It is important to know that the House majority is making it very difficult for the President or House Republicans to be meaningfully involved in the process. This is very different from past impeachments.
The Daily Caller has a quick summary of House Republicans outlining their case against impeaching the President, and to summarize:
“Four key pieces of evidence are fatal to the Democrats’ allegations,” the memo states. “Stripping away the hyperbole and hysteria, these indisputable pieces of evidence show that there was no, ‘Treason, Bribery, or other high crimes and Misdemeanors,’ as required by the U.S. Constitution.”
Those four facts, the GOP members argue, are that Trump’s July 25 call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky does not show evidence of pressure, Zelensky said he did not feel pressured during the call, Ukraine did not know Trump was withholding security assistance at the time of the call, and Trump both met with Zelensky and freed up foreign aid before Ukraine ever investigated Biden or Burisma as he requested.
Heritage's Tom Jipping blows up the argument that this partisan impeachment inquiry is anything like past impeachments. Here are four of the reasons he lists:
First, the previous resolutions authorized those impeachment inquiries at the outset; this one simply says “carry on” to committees that began investigating weeks ago.
Second, the previous resolutions authorized only the Judiciary Committee to investigate whether impeachment grounds exist. On Sept. 24, 2019, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi unilaterally told six different committees to investigate without any rules or procedures.
Third, H.R. 660 sets procedures for public hearings in only two of the six investigating committee. The others are named in the resolution but told simply to “continue their ongoing investigations as part of the existing House of Representatives inquiry.” This apparently means that the other four committee can continue operating in secret, using procedures they make up as they go along. . . .
[Fourth, t]he structure for subpoena authority in House Resolution 660, however, is the opposite [of past impeachments.] It is not directed at both the majority and minority; in fact it does not use the word “jointly” at all. Instead, the ranking minority member must have “the concurrence of the chair” to exercise subpoena authority, but not vice versa. If “the chair declines to concur,” the ranking minority member must bring the matter to the committee for decision. In other words, the chairman can act unilaterally, while the minority always needs the majority’s permission.
This sure looks like a “star chamber” proceeding. The lack of transparency and the partisan nature of this proceeding should be concerning to everyone.