September 26, 2019
Get Ready for All-Out Political War in 2020
By Buck Sexton, Executive Editor
“No one is above the law.”
That was the most memorable moment from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Tuesday, as she announced the official start of an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump.
It was a bombshell that rocked our nation’s capital, but the timing of this was curious…
The announcement amounted to a major political escalation against the Trump White House – and it came hours before the administration was set to release the transcript of the phone call that supposedly set all this in motion.
Why not wait for the transcript of the call between President Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to go public before “crossing the Rubicon” on this?
Politics, of course. Pelosi wanted to strike while the iron was hot.
The left wing of the Democratic Party has been searching for a reason – any reason – to finally push the House of Representatives to impeach the president. That they leapt on this “whistleblower” complaint – from a person who allegedly never even heard the call that he or she was supposedly so outraged about – is all the evidence needed to see that this drama was always pretextual.
The allegations leveled in the press against President Trump in recent days were severe. Namely, that he had engaged in a “quid pro quo” exchange with the Ukrainian president – in which he threatened to hold back U.S. military aid unless the Ukrainians agreed to investigate Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s son, Hunter. Some commentators went as far as to call this alleged Trump malfeasance “treason.”
Turns out – now that the transcript is public – Trump did no such thing. He mentioned the Ukrainians looking into corruption from the 2016 election, and made a couple passing references to Hunter Biden. Sure, it may look a little bit like unseemly bare-knuckle politics, but illegal? The Department of Justice has already looked at it and said no way.
But there’s another storyline to this… The Bidens have a real Ukraine problem.
Back in 2014, Hunter Biden was placed on the board of a major natural gas company in Ukraine.
The company, Burisma, was infamous for corruption. And it paid Hunter Biden’s company $50,000 a month to have the vice president’s son affiliated with it.
Folks, there are 195 countries in the world. What are the chances that Hunter Biden, through pure coincidence, was handed a fortune for doing virtually nothing by a company that needed all the good will of the U.S. government it could get while his dad was not just vice president, but Barack Obama’s point man on Ukraine policy?
Coincidence is a tough sell for anyone willing to look at the facts. At a minimum, it appears Hunter Biden was engaged in influence peddling… And it could be worse than that. There’s certainly plenty there to justify an investigation. That it might hurt a frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination doesn’t negate any of that.
The elder Biden isn’t just tied to this alleged impropriety by blood, either. He may have been directly involved. Given that Vice President Joe Biden in 2016 bragged publicly about getting Viktor Shokin, the main corruption prosecutor looking at Burisma, fired, one doesn’t have to look hard to see how this could have been a father abusing his immense public powers to protect his son.
To Democrats, none of that matters. They dismiss it as conspiratorial, and plan to push onward with the impeachment of Trump. They are outraged at anyone asking for an investigation involving their guy Joe Biden, but the Democrats themselves are rabid about investigating Trump and those around him.
A special prosecutor wasn’t enough. Three years of anti-Trump hysterics aren’t enough. Democrats don’t just want to beat Trump in 2020 – they want to ruin him and even send him to prison if they can. This is what they have been promising their base ever since Hillary lost. It is poisoning American politics beyond repair.
Could all of this backfire? Speaker Pelosi had been slow to pull the trigger on official impeachment proceedings, but there’s no turning back now. There will be a circus on Capitol Hill for months, and even more heat will be added into the 2020 reelection battle.
One thing both sides of this political battle can agree on: Winning is all that matters.
And this is not going to be a friendly – or perhaps even fair – contest.
Now here are some of the stories we’re reading…
It would be both smart politics and good governance to update the list of SCOTUS contenders. When a vacancy emerges, whether before or after the election, who will be considered?
The White House released the document a day after House Democrats formally launched an impeachment inquiry against the president that was triggered by his dealings with Ukraine.
The criticism from workers in Biden’s own backyard underscores his challenges… “If Democrats think that trade union support is a slam dunk, they are sorely mistaken. As for Joe Biden, I am not sure where he is on these issues. Haven’t seen him a long time…”
And let us know what you’re reading at [email protected].
Executive Editor, American Consequences
With P.J. O’Rourke and the Editorial Staff
September 26, 2019