Democrats are divided about the issue of impeachment following the release of the (redacted) Mueller report.
The special counsel arguably gave Congress a “road map” for pushing the obstruction case, but some fear going that route would be political suicide to the extent it might polarize the country further and validate the president’s “it will never be enough for Democrats” line.
On Thursday evening, Jerry Nadler did not rule out impeachment in comments to reporters during which he also made it clear that the House Judiciary Committee will subpoena the full report and intends to hear from Mueller himself.
One Democrat who isn’t torn about whether to get the ball rolling on ousting Trump is Elizabeth Warren.
Never one to hold her tongue, Warren spoke out on Friday. “The Mueller report lays out facts showing that a hostile foreign government attacked our 2016 election to help Donald Trump and Donald Trump welcomed that help”, Warren said. “Once elected, Donald Trump obstructed the investigation into that attack.”
You’re reminded that Mueller suggests the only thing standing between Trump and obstruction were his insubordinate subordinates, so to speak. “The President’s efforts to influence the investigation were mostly unsuccessful, but that is largely because the persons who surrounded the President declined to carry out orders or accede to his requests”, Mueller wrote.
As Warren went on to say Friday, Mueller pretty clearly intended to give Congress the last word on obstruction, not William Barr. “Congress has authority to prohibit a President’s corrupt use of his authority in order to protect the integrity of the administration of justice”, the special counsel said.
“The correct process for exercising that authority is impeachment”, Warren flatly stated, adding that “to ignore a President’s repeated efforts to obstruct an investigation into his own disloyal behavior would inflict great and lasting damage on this country, and it would suggest that both the current and future Presidents would be free to abuse their power in similar ways.”
In case you’re still unclear as to what exactly Warren is trying to say, she drove the point home as follows:
The severity of this misconduct demands that elected officials in both parties set aside political considerations and do their constitutional duty. That means the House should initiate impeachment proceedings against the President of the United States.
Soooo… no Trump versus Warren in 2020, then? Bummer.
Meanwhile, the Justice Department thinks it’s really uncool of Jerry Nadler to subpoena folks.
“[This is] premature and unnecessary”, DoJ spokesperson Kerri Kupec said Friday. Barr released the report “with only minimal redactions [and] the Department of Justice has also made arrangements for Chairman Nadler and other congressional leaders to review the report with even fewer redactions”, a statement reads.
For his part, Mitt Romney is literally nauseous. “I am sickened at the extent and pervasiveness of dishonesty and misdirection by individuals in the highest office of the land, including the president”, Romney said in statement. “I am also appalled that, among other things, fellow citizens working in a campaign for president welcomed help from Russia – including information that had been illegally obtained; that none of them acted to inform American law enforcement; and that the campaign chairman was actively promoting Russian interests in Ukraine.”
Early Friday, Trump lashed out at the report, calling it “Crazy” and insisting that some parts of it were “bullsh*t”. His second tweet ended with this:
Nine hours later (literally) he picked the thread back up:
“….big, fat, waste of time, energy and money – $30,000,000 to be exact. It is now finally time to turn the tables and bring justice to some very sick and dangerous people who have committed very serious crimes, perhaps even Spying or Treason. This should never happen again!”
After that, Trump called The New York Times and the Washington Post “Truly, the Enemy of the People!” in between a retweet binge that included Mark Levin, Sean Hannity, Matt Gaetz, Fox News interviewing Mark Meadows and Jim Jordan, and Jay Sekulow, as interviewed by the same Sean Hannity.