News and Commentary

SHAPIRO: House Democrats Completely Manufactured Both Impeachment Charges
WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 10: Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) (C) speaks as (L-R) Chairman of House Judiciary Committee Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY), Chairwoman of House Financial Services Committee Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), Chairwoman of House Oversight and Reform Committee Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and Chairman of House Ways and Means Committee Rep. Richard Neal (D-MA) listen during a news conference at the U.S. Capitol December 10, 2019 in Washington, DC. Chairman Nadler announced that the Judiciary Committee is introducing two articles on abuse of power and obstruction of Congress for the next steps in the House impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump.
Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images

On Tuesday’s episode of “The Ben Shapiro Show,” the Daily Wire editor-in-chief talks about the two impeachment charges against President Trump and why even The Washington Post admits they have no precedent in history or law. Video and partial transcript below: 

There is no obstruction of Congress, because obstruction of Congress is just called the president saying, “No, I’m a separate branch.” This happens all the time. [However], obstruction of justice is when you refuse a court order — it’s a whole third branch of government. Jonathan Turley was pointing this out in his testimony before the House Judiciary Committee last week. 

These are now two completely manufactured charges. They are creating charges, out of whole cloth, that have no precedent in history or law. None. There is no precedent. The Washington Post admits there is no precedent in history or law for the idea that you can impeach solely based on, quote unquote, “obstruction of Congress.” It doesn’t exist because, again, obstruction of Congress, put another way, is just called “the executive branch is unitary, and the executive branch is not subject to all of the whims of Congress unless the judiciary agrees that the executive branch’s privileges are overruled by the ability of Congress to seek information.”

These sorts of battles happen every single day between the legislature and the executive — that is not obstruction of Congress any more than it was obstruction of Congress for Barack Obama to declare privilege over documents regarding Eric Holder and “Fast and Furious.” That was not obstruction of Congress, that was just called how this stuff works.

When it comes to the first charge — the abuse of power charge — again, weak tea. You have now redefined the nature of bribery to avoid the troublesome pitfalls of having to fulfill the criminal elements. That’s what the Democrats did here. They took “bribery,” the crime [of] bribery, they stripped it of the corrupt intent [aspect] and they stripped it of the requirement that there be a thing of value given an exchange. So they stripped the contents of the law, they called it “abuse of power,” and [then] they said he’s guilty of that. That’s amazing stuff. 

If you’re gonna charge somebody with first-degree murder, you have to prove intent. That’s one of the things you have to prove in a first-degree murder, because first-degree murder is typically thought of as murder with malice aforethought. Malice and intent aforethought — you planned it out, you committed the murder. Let’s say that you didn’t want to [prove malice aforethought], so instead of charging manslaughter, you just said, “You know what, we’re not going to have [malice aforethought] as part of the crime anymore. Now, [if] you kill somebody, [it’s a] strict-liability crime — we’re going to consider it first-degree murder.” You’ve changed the nature of the law.

The crime itself didn’t change, you changed the nature of the criminal definition. That is what the Democrats are doing right here. 

You’re not going to see a single Republican defection along these lines — not one. Democrats are gonna say, “well, it’s an abuse of power. There’s precedent for that. I mean, there were abuse of power charges against Nixon and Clinton.” Against Clinton, there were actual criminal charges in the impeachment document; against Nixon, there were actual criminal charges in the impeachment documents. And by the way, the House actually voted down the abuse of power allegation against President Clinton. They voted for the crime, the perjury stuff — and the obstruction of justice stuff, they voted dow. The Republican House voted down the abuse of power allegation against Bill Clinton under Newt Gingrich. 

It’s a sham, everybody understands it’s a sham and man, if this doesn’t blow back on Democrats, I’d be shocked. They’ve gone so far over their skis at this point, they are so far beyond what the impeachment process was supposed to do, and this is coming from somebody who is perfectly willing to listen to all the evidence on Ukraine. Again, I’m not parroting the Trump administration line that everything was “perfect,” I don’t believe that for a second. [But] this is so far beyond the scope of what impeachment is supposed to achieve, it is so far beyond the scope of normal legality, that it falls directly into the category of abuse of power for Democrats. 

This is a serious abuse of power by Democrats. To use the impeachment process to redefine crimes, and then use that as sufficient as a basis for impeachment, is insane. Every president from here on out is getting impeached, basically, as long as there is a president of the opposite party in power. That is where this is going. Because again, I can [tell] you a half-dozen things off the top of my head that Barack Obama did, that fulfill the Democrats’ definition of abuse of power — he received an improper personal benefit and ignored or injured American interests. 

How about his IRS going after his direct political opponents in 2012? How about that? That seems like [it fulfills] those elements, doesn’t it? Man, the utter blatancy of it is what’s incredible, the partisan obviousness of it is what’s amazing. I thought the Democrats were smarter than this, apparently not. Apparently they’re just idiots and they’ve decided we have to go through with this. It doesn’t matter whether we have the grounds, we’ll just make up the grounds. Basically, we’ll create a bill of attainder for Donald Trump, and then we’ll craft the crime to meet the fact that we want Trump impeached. 

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