Cutting to the chase: the central impeachment questions.…


Cutting to the chase, the Congressional Democrats impeached President Trump on 2 charges:

(1) Abuse of Power – for pressuring the Ukrainian President to investigate Joe & Hunter Biden, and

(2)  Obstruction of Congress – for withholding documents and blocking his aides’ testimony.

In a prior post,  we replayed Prof. Jonathan Turley dismantling the obstruction charge against President Trump.

The essence of his argument:

  • The President has every right to withhold testimony and documents citing “executive privilege”.
  • If Congress disputes the right to executive privilege, it can appeal to the courts.
  • If the courts deny the claim of executive privilege and the President still withholds, then — and only then — is he guilty of obstruction.

Congress did not appeal to the courts and it has no standalone  legal power to deny executive privilege and charge obstruction.

Case closed.

So, what about the other impeachment charge: abuse of power?

This is will emerge as the central issue in the trial, especially given the hornet’s nest poked by the Bolton book draft leaks.

So, let’s dig a little deeper …


I think most people agree that President Trump pressured Pres. Zelensky to look into the Bidens and Burisma.

The question is why did Trump do it?

Let’s go back to the triggering phone call:

Adam Schiff — in his introductory remarks to the Impeachment Investigation Committee — told the members and the public that Trump told Zelensky:

No other country has done as much as we have. But you know what? I don’t see much reciprocity here.

I hear what you want. I have a favor I want from you though.

And I’m going to say this only seven times so you better listen good.

I want you to make up dirt on my political opponent, understand. Lots of it.

OK, Schiff says that’s his “interpretation” of the call — which he later claimed was “an obvious parody” highlighting the key points.

Say, what?

What did the official record of the call say?

There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution.

A lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great.

Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it. It sounds horrible to me.

Two clearly different views, right?

Trump didn’t say “I want you to make up dirt on my political opponent, understand. Lots of it.”

He specifically referenced a “prosecution” of corruption charges that then VP Biden intervened to stop.


If the former — dig up dirt — is true, then there’s a basis for arguing abusive of power.

If the latter — why VP Biden stopped the prosecution — is true, than the President is simply executing his Constitutional responsibility to investigate corruption.

My bet: there won’t be any hard evidence that Trump wanted Zelensky to braodly “dig up dirt” on his election opponents.

Maybe that’s what he wanted, but there won’t be evidence of that.

Bolton testimony will likely be claimed under “executive privilege”.  That will, at a minimum, delay his testimony … and might quash it entirely.

Regardless, hard to believe Trump said “go after Biden to help my re-election”.

Even if he did, it’ll be “he said – he said” … casting some arguable doubt.


OK, so let’s flip the coin.

What if Trump was, in fact, concerned about whether Sleepy Joe committed corrupt acts as V.P.

Such an investigation would not only be legit … it would be a presidential duty.

I think most folks would agree that a VP taking a million dollar bribe would constitute corruption … even if the bribe isn’t delivered in a cash-full suitcase, but rather  delivered circuitously through his son in the form of unearned income.  It’s still a bribe!

That’s where Joe & Hunter becomes fact witnesses.

When it’s established that Hunter had no relevant experience or expertise for his million-dollar appointment to Burisma’s board, the probable case of corruption becomes clearer … and Trump’s argument that he was simply rooting out corruption gains merit.


My take: If Dems win on calling Bolton to testify, GOP will call Joe & Hunter. Both Bolton and Joe will go to the courts on executive privilege claims.  Who knows how that will turn out.

Hunter has no “out” except claiming 5th amendment rights when testifying … that would certainly look fishy, right?

Most likely outcome: Trump gets dirtied but not removed.  Biden gets fatally dirtied,

Cue-up Trump vs. Sanders.

Obama says he doesn’t want that.

Do the rest of the Dems?


Follow on Twitter @KenHoma

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