All hail the big day — the Democrats’ big ah-ha, gotcha, Mr. President moment, when open hearings on Capitol Hill with key Witnesses In The Know would provide the final quid pro quo proof, leading to impeachment of Donald Trump.
Or, as Ambassador Bill Taylor might painfully put it — umm, the way I see it is I feel like the way everybody understood it is that the president may have thought about that thing, that quid pro quo thing.
‘Cause that’s how Taylor’s Q&A with Daniel Goldman, the counsel for the majority for the House Intelligence Committee, pretty much went.
Decisive, it ain’t.
You can’t impeach a president based on what you think others may have thought about the president’s thoughts. Or worse, based on what you feel the president felt.
Here’s one of Taylor’s remarks: “There was a feeling by President Trump … that he had a feeling of having been wronged by Ukraine and so this was something that he felt they owed him to fix the wrong.”
And from that, Goldman tossed in ye olde quid pro quo, drawing shaky, shady conclusions where conclusions couldn’t — shouldn’t — possibly be drawn.
“You understood that to mean …,” Goldman said.
But therein lies the problem — the huge problem. How can Taylor, or Goldman, or any of the other witnesses Democrats have primed and ready to go for this charade of a hearing possibly, accurately, truthfully testify to Trump’s motivations, outside his actual words?
Goldman tried; he really did.
“The president repeatedly says there was no quid pro quo,” Goldman said. “But regardless what you call it …”
No. It’s not regardless what you call it. It’s either a quid pro quo, or it’s not. And if it’s not, what’s left is a case of making a case for impeachment based on personal thoughts and feelings — or on the thoughts and feelings of others.
Look, when an attorney asks questions (to paraphrase) that go like this — What did you understand it to mean? What did you think it to mean? What did you feel he understood that to mean? — it’s time to acknowledge, hey now, facts may be a bit on the slim side.
The slim-to-none side, even.
Testifying on what someone else said and believed is hardly the stuff of rock solid impeachable evidence.
Either Democrats come up with some cold hard facts — or move on. America has put up with cries for impeachment for too long as it is.
• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter, @ckchumley.
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