After obliterating any reasonable factual defense of himself on impeachment, Donald Trump has news for Republican lawmakers: Process arguments really aren’t the way to go. “I’d rather go into the details of the case rather than process,” Trump told reporters Monday, according to the pool report.
That’s probably news to Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz and his fellow GOP storm troopers, who thoroughly embarrassed themselves last week by busting into a highly secure area and compromising it with live video/audio taken through their cell phones. But apparently the process arguments Republicans have been harping on about Democrats not taking a full House vote and deposing witnesses behind closed doors isn’t good enough for Trump anymore.
“Process is good,” Trump said, “but I think you ought to look at the conversation with the Ukrainian President.”
If this delusional idiot weren’t running our country, this development would be hilarious. Trump still thinks the details of the very phone call that steeled Democrats and bewildered Republicans is the silver bullet. The evidence against Trump is so damning at this point that even House GOP fire breathers have stopped defending Trump on the merits of the case against him because he’s simply indefensible by any reasonable standard.
On the Senate side, Republicans have pretty much gone mute as a caucus. When asked about the impeachment case building against Trump, the vast majority of them are now saying that they can’t comment because they might end up as “jurors” in a Senate trial.
“I’d be a juror, so I have no comment,” Tennessee Sen. Lamar Alexander told the Washington Post.
Alexander, who isn’t running for reelection, is seen as an elder statesman of the Senate GOP caucus who might actually vote against Trump depending on how convincing the case against him ultimately is. Trump has been personally trying to court Alexander’s vote.
But even the GOP senators who do dare to defend Trump these days do so on process grounds alone. Asked last week about damning testimony, Sen. John Cornyn offered only, “It’s hard to separate the substance from the unfairness of the process.” And when Trump’s most boisterous Senate defender, South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, introduced a resolution assailing House Democrats’ process, he conceded, “I’m not here to tell you that Donald Trump’s done nothing wrong.” Wow, with defenders like that …
Trump has been rather slow to catch on to the fact that he’s in real trouble. News reports last week suggested he and his aides were just starting to realize that he might actually be impeached. Yet he’s still deluded enough to be referring to his smoking-gun phone call with the Ukrainian president as “perfect.”
“We had a very good conversation with the Ukrainian President. The conversation was perfect,” Trump told reporters Monday, adding of GOP lawmakers, “They don’t ever talk about the conversation.”
There’s a reason Republicans are trying to bury that call, Trump, because only a criminal would frame it as “perfect.” Apparently, none of Trump’s genius staff have informed him that trying to extort a foreign leader for your own political benefit is a crime, not to mention thoroughly impeachable.