The Republicans say the investigation by the House was done in secret and they didn’t have a voice in the investigation. This is clearly false and NC Rep. Mark Meadows is in this group. The depositions were held before 3 house committees: The House Intelligence, Foreign Affairs and Oversight committees. Each committee is composed of Republicans and Democrats. Out of the 435 house members, 109 are committee members attending the depositions and 48 committee members are Republicans. In addition, there were attorneys representing each side and professional questioners for each side. The 48 Republicans committee members could ask all the questions they wanted, and they did. There was no time limit. The Republican and Democrat committee members went back and forth, taking turns, until each side said, “No further questions.”
We have heard for weeks, Republicans complaining that the rules of the investigation were “unfair” and “Un-American.” The truth is that the investigation followed the rules approved and signed by former Rep. John Boehner, past Republican House Speaker. The rules for an investigation were created in 2015, while the Republicans were in full control of the House. Former Republican Rep. Trey Goudy explained that any initial investigation needed to be held under these rules. Republicans should blame themselves for the rules.
The question has arisen, when does the President get to defend himself? Well, he already has been defending himself. He tweets many times a day and addresses the press whenever he wants to. The public hearings are now starting, and the Republicans can call the President to appear if he wanted to. Also, he will be able to tweet all day in response to all accusations and explain why he thinks they are true. If impeached, then the Senate will hold a trial and the President will be sworn under oath, can explain everything that he disagrees with, and can bring in all the witnesses he wishes.
This same investigation procedure has been followed for the impeachment of President Clinton, investigation of Nixon and the Republican investigations on Benghazi. When you hear Sen. Lindsey Graham say this is unprecedented and never happened before, he is not telling the truth.
The childish stunt of weeks ago, when more than two dozen Republicans violating the law, barging into a restricted area was weird. Many were members of the committees and were entitled to be there. Meadows sits on the Oversight Committee and all he had to do was show his badge and walk in. He pretended he could not go in. It was a childish show and I was distressed to see Meadows in the group pretending he could not get access. We need a responsible adult representing NC citizens, not a child prankster.
Stayed tuned for more goofy actions as the hearings continue. For example, Graham recently said he will not read the investigation record since it wasn't conducted fairly. It is obvious that he does not want to know what the witnesses said. He can't deny the facts so he doesn't want to have to talk about them. This reminds me of Sgt. Shultz famous refrain in Hogan's Heroes, "I know nothing!"