Vice President Mike Pence, center, listens as President Donald Trump argues with House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., during a meeting in the Oval Office of the White House, Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
Trump Demands Pelosi Stop ‘Impeachment Fantasy’ Immediately on Eve of House Vote
by Dave Boyer – The Washington Times – Tuesday, December 17, 2019
The president’s six-page letter, sent on the eve of the House vote on two articles of impeachment, lodges his “strongest and most powerful protest” against impeachment, which he called a partisan “crusade” by Democrats.
“This impeachment represents an unprecedented and unconstitutional abuse of power by Democrat Lawmakers, unequaled in nearly two and a half centuries of American legislative history,” the president wrote.
Mr. Trump reiterated his position in a White House meeting with Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales, saying he conducted a “perfect call” with the Ukrainian president.
He said Republicans are united behind him because they realize it is all a “witch hunt.”
“The whole impeachment thing is a hoax,” he said. “We look forward to getting on to the Senate. We’re not entitled to lawyers. We’re not entitled to witnesses. We’re not entitled to anything in the House. It’s a total sham.”
“You are offending Americans of faith by continually saying, ‘I pray for the president,’ when you know this statement is not true, unless it is meant in a negative sense,” Mr. Trump wrote. “It is a terrible thing you are doing, but you will have to live with it, not I!”
“By proceeding with your invalid impeachment, you are violating your oaths of office, you are breaking your allegiance to the Constitution and you’re declaring open war on American democracy,” the president said. “You dare to invoke the Founding Fathers in pursuit of this election nullification scheme, yet your spiteful actions display unfettered contempt for America’s Founding and your egregious conduct threatens to destroy that which our Founders pledged their very lives to build.”
Mr. Trump also boasted of his “Electoral College landslide (306-227)” in 2016 and said that Mrs. Pelosi had “developed a full-fledged case of… Trump derangement syndrome and sadly, you will never get over it!”
After continually referring to the impeachment inquiry and special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe as witch hunts, the president told Mrs. Pelosi, “More due process was afforded to those accused in the Salem Witch Trials.”
The president said House Democrats have not met the standard of “high crimes and misdeameanors” for impeachment with their Ukraine inquiry. The probe centers on allegations that Mr. Trump withheld military aid for Ukraine temporarily while pressuring its president to start an investigation of 2020 Democratic presidential front-runner Joseph R. Biden and a second probe into meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
“This impeachment represents an unprecedented and unconstitutional abuse of power by Democrat Lawmakers, unequaled in nearly two and a half centuries of American legislative history,” Mr. Trump said. “The Articles of Impeachment introduced by the House Judiciary Committee are not recognizable under any standard of Constitutional theory, interpretation, or jurisprudence. They include no crimes, no misdemeanors, and no offenses whatsoever.”
He added, “You are turning a policy disagreement between two branches of government into an impeachable offense. It is no more legitimate than the Executive Branch charging members of Congress with crimes for the lawful exercise of legislative power.”
The president also used the letter to reintroduce his claim that Mr. Biden is guilty of corruption for pressuring Ukraine as vice president to fire its top prosecutor or lose $1 billion in U.S. aid. His son Hunter was being paid $3 million at the time for serving on the board of a Ukrainian gas company despite little experience in the energy field.
“You know full well that Vice President Biden used his office and $1 billion dollars of U.S. aid money to coerce Ukraine into firing the prosecutor who was digging into the company paying his son millions of dollars,” Mr. Trump wrote. “You know this because Biden bragged about it on video. …Now you are trying to impeach me by falsely accusing me of doing what Joe Biden has admitted he actually did.”
Asked by reporters at the White House if he accepts any responsibility for his pending impeachment, Mr. Trump said, “No, I don’t take any. Zero, to put it mildly.”
“They took a perfect phone call that I had with the president of Ukraine, an absolutely perfect call,” he said. “To impeach the president of the United States for that is a disgrace and it’s a mark on our country. Other presidents are going to have to live with this.”
He said future presidents will face impeachment “every time they do something that’s a little bit unpopular or a little bit strong, even if they’re 100 percent right.
“I’ve done a great job… nobody’s done as much as I’ve done in the first three years,” Mr. Trump said.
The president reiterated that impeachment is simply a scheme to overturn the results of the 2016 election.
“Everyone, you included, knows what is really happening,” he told Mrs. Pelosi. “Your chosen candidate lost the election in 2016… and you and your party have never recovered from this defeat. You are unwilling and unable to accept the verdict issued at the ballot box during the great Election of 2016. So you have spent three straight years attempting to overturn the will of the American people and nullify their votes. You View democracy as your enemy!”
The letter calls the accusation that the president obstructed Congress “preposterous and dangerous.”
“House Democrats are trying to impeach the duly elected President of the United States for asserting Constitutionally based privileges that have been asserted on a bipartisan basis by administrations of both political parties throughout our Nation’s history,” he said. “Under that standard, every American president would have been impeached many times over.”
Some Democrats mocked the missive.
“Hey don’t just quote the most digestible sound bites from the completely insane letter the President wrote,” tweeted Sen. Brian Schatz, Hawaii Democrat. “The main thing is that the President wrote a completely insane letter to the Speaker, and that he’s clearly not doing ok.”]
• Tom Howell Jr. contributed to this story.