By Liz Peek
Published April 22, 2019
Now Democrats want an unredacted report from the Special Counsel, even though the Special Counsel's report released by Attorney General Barr contained minimal redactions. They know such a report, a version of which Barr has promised to give to senior officials of both parties, will contain Grand Jury information which by law cannot be made public. They want it anyway.
They also want Special Counsel Robert Mueller to testify before Congress. No doubt, Mueller will testify before Congress.
And then what? What will Democrats demand next to keep the public eye off the nation’s economic success under President Trump? It has been clear from the start that the collusion probe has been a stand-in for policy; for the past two years it has been so much easier to attack President Trump on bogus charges of working with the Russians than to actually propose better ideas for moving the country forward.
Democrats face two problems. First, the country is increasingly crediting President Trump with buoyant job creation, higher productivity and wage gains. Second, their party is cracking apart, suffering a leadership vacuum and a surfeit of dissonant noise-makers hungry for attention. They can’t agree on policy, but they toe the line on combatting Donald Trump.
Meanwhile, Americans are ready to move on, more concerned about immigration, health care and other issues that impact their pocketbooks. Unfortunately, Jerry Nadler, Adam Schiff, Elizabeth Warren, Chuck Schumer and Maxine Waters, among others, are not ready to let them. Senator Warren, desperate to attract attention to her stalled presidential campaign, is a front-runner only in calling for impeachment proceedings. Congressman Nadler, who has already issued subpoenas into every nook and cranny of Mr. Trump’s business past in hopes of finding something, anything, to further investigate, has demanded the unredacted Mueller report and all the accompanying underlying evidence.
Putin would much prefer Socialist Bernie Sanders in the driver’s seat than another four years of Trump.
Representative Adam Schiff, D-Calif., said after the release of the Mueller report, “undoubtedly there is collusion,” even though dozens of investigators could not find any. He said in an interview, “We will continue to investigate the counterintelligence issues. That is, is the president or people around him compromised in any way by a hostile foreign power? . . . It doesn’t appear that was any part of Mueller’s report.” Maybe that’s because, like so many of Schiff’s allegations, it doesn’t exist.
Schiff cannot let this go, because, truly, that’s all he’s got. Ask yourself, who had ever heard of Adam Schiff before he became the face of the “Bring Trump Down” party?
To be fair, President Trump isn’t ready to move on, either. He wants an apology. We read that he wanted to fire Mueller; who wouldn’t, knowing that the underlying charge was untrue? He has raged and bullied, infuriated that his extraordinary accomplishment of defeating the “inevitable” Hillary Clinton was overshadowed by spurious accusations and constant speculation about his likely downfall. Worse, his enemies have described his immense victory as illegitimate, thanks to Russian interference. Those who voted for him know better.
Trump wants the entire country to acknowledge that the Mueller inquiry was a hoax, perpetuated by sore losers and enabled by a politicized Justice Department. That isn’t going to happen.
Rather than continuing down that fruitless path, the president should further rebuff the Collusion Delusion by calling for a robust and transparent investigation into Russian election meddling. He should dedicate his administration to preventing future influence campaigns of the sort that Moscow is famous for. Such an initiative would separate the partisan attacks on his White House from a serious matter that concerns all Americans.
It might also be helpful to the Trump 2020 campaign. After all, it is almost certain that Putin’s guns will be directed at Trump in the next election. Though the liberal media has ignored White House policy towards Russia, the reality is that Trump has been tougher on Moscow that his predecessor. Sending arms to Ukraine, encouraging NATO allies to beef up their defense spending, imposing sanctions on numerous Russian intelligence, military and commercial entities, boosting exports of natural gas in an effort to dilute Russia’s grip on Europe’s energy supply, increasing U.S. military spending; Putin would much prefer Socialist Bernie Sanders in the driver’s seat than another four years of Trump.
President Trump will not be impeached on the flimsy case for obstruction of justice; Republican control of the Senate virtually guarantees any such effort would fail. Also, there are too many new House Democrats representing districts that voted for Trump in 2016 who will shy away from such a divisive gesture. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her deputy Steny Hoyer have rebuffed calls to initiate impeachment proceedings, with the latter telling CNN, "Based on what we have seen to date, going forward on impeachment is not worthwhile at this point.”
Still, there are members of Pelosi’s unruly caucus who will call for impeachment, like Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, who promised to “impeach the mother**cker” hours after being sworn into office. For that crew, impeachment is another way to garner headlines and “likes” on their social media pages. One wonders if they have considered what is best for the country.
In his State of the Union address in February, President Trump promised, “We can make our communities safer, our families stronger, our culture richer, our faith deeper, and our middle class bigger and more prosperous than ever before.” He asked Democrats to “choose between greatness or gridlock, results or resistance, vision or vengeance, incredible progress or pointless destruction.”
It seems unlikely Democrats will choose greatness.