White House Blasts Democrats’ Impeachment Report

04 Décembre, 2019, 10:57 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Mark Wilson  Getty Images

The White House slammed the Democrats' report on the findings of the House Intelligence Committee impeachment inquiry on December 3, saying the document "reads like the ramblings of a basement blogger straining to prove something when there is evidence of nothing".

"Oh lord, yes, things have changed a whole lot since these testimonies", Clyburn said, referring to the Intelligence Committee depositions and hearings, acknowledging he had told reporters two weeks ago he was still unsure about whether impeaching Trump was in the offing. "We were promised high crimes and misdemeanors and Juan is talking about a call log". Before the Thanksgiving break, the Intelligence Committee then held public hearings with a dozen of those witnesses.

Democrats, first of all, are talking about the call between President Trump and Ukrainian President Zelensky.

Most important, Zelensky has repeatedly denied that he felt any undue pressure. They point out Ukraine received the security assistance and Trump met with Zelenskiy without the country launching an investigation into the Bidens. The hearings coincide with Trump's visit to the United Kingdom for meetings with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation leaders, timing that drew criticism from both the president and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

"There is also compelling and indisputable evidence that Ukrainian government officials - some working with a Democrat operative - sought to influence the USA presidential election in 2016 in favor of Secretary Clinton and in opposition to President Trump", Republicans claim.

Trump, speaking at a wide-ranging, almost hourlong news conference at the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in London, lashed out at Democrats in the House of Representatives who are leading the impeachment inquiry into the Ukraine matter and denounced the censure idea raised by some members of Congress as "unacceptable".

"Democrats have posited a false choice: that influence in the 2016 election is binary - it could have been conducted by Russian Federation or by Ukraine, but not both".

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The president, at a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation meeting in London, called the impeachment effort by rival Democrats "unpatriotic", and said he wouldn't be watching Wednesday's hearing.

The inquiry found that Trump "solicited the interference of a foreign government, Ukraine, to benefit his reelection, " Schiff wrote in the report's preface.

Republicans again cite Trump's transparency in releasing the call summary as evidence against obstruction, and they argue that the stance the White House took in not cooperating with the inquiry was because Democrats were not adhering to "basic legal concepts of due process and the presumption of innocence".

"It will be up to the Congress to determine whether these acts rise to the level of an impeachable offense, whether the President shall be held to account, and whether we as a nation are committed to the rule of law - or, instead, whether a president who uses the power of his office to coerce foreign interference in a USA election is something that Americans must simply 'get over, '" Schiff, Foreign Affairs Chairman Eliot Engel of NY and Oversight Chair Carolyn Maloney of NY said in a joint statement.

The Democrats' report repeats the allegation-long promoted by that party-that President Donald Trump sought political gain by withholding security aid and the prospect of a White House meeting to pressure Ukraine to investigate his political opponent, Joe Biden. Those disagreements set in motion the whistleblower complaint, which Democrats used "to fulfill their yearsold obsession with removing President Trump from office", they said.

The report is broken down into two sections, one on Ukraine and the other on obstruction of Congress - both of which are expected to be separate articles of impeachment.

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