By Elad Hakim
On Dec. 4, the House Judiciary Committee will begin the second phase of the impeachment inquiry against the president.
There, Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) will attempt to explain the legal basis for impeachment and to convince the Senate and the American public to support the House’s impeachment push.
In a letter to President Donald Trump, Nadler stated, in part:
“The Committee intends this hearing to serve as an opportunity to discuss the historical and constitutional basis of impeachment, as well as the Framers intent and understanding of terms like high crimes and misdemeanors. We expect to discuss the constitutional framework through which the House may analyze the evidence gathered in the present inquiry. We will also discuss whether your alleged actions warrant the House’s exercising its authority to adopt articles of impeachment.”
The House Judiciary Committee currently consists of 41 members. Of those, 24 are Democrats (the majority), while 17 are Republicans (the minority).
Undoubtedly, the framers intended the impeachment process to be bipartisan and objective in nature, given the seriousness of removing a duly elected president. In other words, given the solemnity associated with impeachment, the founders likely expected all members of Congress to evaluate the evidence objectively before making any determinations about “guilt” or “innocence.”
In this case, the framers would have been sorely disappointed, because many of the same committee members who will, supposedly, be evaluating the president’s alleged conduct have previously advocated for his impeachment and removal.
In July, Nadler himself told CNN, “My personal view is that [Trump] richly deserves impeachment. … He has done many impeachable offenses, he’s violated the laws six ways from Sunday.”
On Nov. 15, 2017, Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.) stated:
“The time has come to make clear to the American people and to this President that his train of injuries to our Constitution must be brought to an end through impeachment. I believe there is evidence that he attempted to obstruct an investigation into Russia’s interference with the U.S. presidential election and links between Russia and the Trump campaign, most notably the firing of FBI Director James Comey. The president’s blatant refusal to separate himself from his businesses has led to clear instances of conflict of interest that appear to violate both the domestic and foreign emoluments clauses. And his attacks on ‘so-called’ judges and ‘fake news’ have undermined public confidence in the judiciary and the press. It’s time for Congress to take action to stop this reckless and harmful behavior by removing Mr. Trump from office and to defend and uphold the Constitution of the United States.”
On May 21, Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) wrote on Twitter:
“We are now at the point where we must begin an impeachment inquiry. I don’t say that lightly. We’ve taken every step we can w/subpoenas and witnesses. Trump obstructs everything. A president who thinks he’s king, accountable to nobody &, above the law is absolutely unacceptable.”
On June 13, Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) wrote an article in The Atlantic, in which he stated:
“We have no choice: Congress must begin an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump. Even if the effort to remove him comes up short in the Senate, showing a willingness to hold a lawless president accountable may be the only way to save our democracy.”
In August, Rep. Ted Deutch (D-Fla.) wrote in the Sun Sentinel:
“Although Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s testimony may not have been a summer blockbuster, it confirmed the damning conclusions of his report. The investigation revealed substantial evidence that President Trump obstructed justice. And that the special counsel did not exonerate him.”
On Sept. 24, Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.) stated:
“A formal impeachment inquiry should be undertaken in the House of Representatives. The President has now admitted that he asked the President of Ukraine to take actions to help his re-election. That conduct alone violates his obligations under the Constitution. These facts pose a threat to our national security.”
That same day, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) wrote on Twitter:
“Article I gives Congress the power to hold @potus accountable. There’s no room for any other process. There’s no other action or time. With a heavy heart, it’s imperative that an #ImpeachmentInquiry begin and that Articles of Impeachment are filed expeditiously.”
Given these openly biased comments, it’s hard to imagine how Nadler and the other Democrats on the committee can be trusted to evaluate the evidence objectively.
Unlike a neutral jury panel that is entrusted with objectively evaluating the evidence and subsequently rendering a verdict, many of the Democrats on this committee have all but “convicted” the president already.
Contrary to Nadler’s assertions, they’re not evaluating or “analyzing” the evidence in order to decide whether or not to impeach the president. To the contrary, that decision was made long ago. Rather, this is merely a final attempt to sway public opinion and to convince Senate Republicans to support their impeachment drive, which has been in the works since the day that Trump was elected president.
Elad Hakim is a writer, commentator, and attorney. His articles have been published in The Washington Examiner, The Daily Caller, The Federalist, The Algemeiner, The Western Journal, American Thinker, and other online publications.