Congress, President Trump, Congressman discussed on We The People

We The People
|

Automatic TRANSCRIPT

Well not necessarily wonderful for depending on your perspective but it's it's wonderful that you summoned such scholars and I know that they'll be enlightening. Everyone Congressman I'd rather than you do not want to take a position one way or the other about Impeachment although you can if you like but you served with great distinction for a for Jew terms you've heard the debate tonight from the scholars and from your colleagues ask. An open ended question. What do you want to say about? The impeachment process stands now and I guess how would you approach it. If you're in Congress so I think with where this started since The president trump released the phone. Call transcript to where we are now. I've not seen much in the way of movement either from Democrats away from thinking. That impeachment is the appropriate way to deal with any Misuse or abuse or errant behavior. Nor have I seen seen Republicans move away from saying it was anything less than perfect phone call. I think Charlie Hunt His when Charlie retired retired. He said something. Funny that sticks with today he said you know the the fun and dysfunction has been removed from serving and and ah you know the thing I I think congresswoman Scanlan said something very appropriate in terms of the institution of Congress should should jealously guard what the role and function of Congress is as it was delineated in our constitution and the erosion of constant of Congressional Authority vis-a-vis. The executive branch has been one. That's taken place over seventy five years if not more but when you serve in Congress to sit there knowing what your role is supposed to supposed to be mindful that you're not actually exercising. Those perogatives is something. That's deeply frustrating. Moving forward. Since it was an open ended question. I my big concern. Is that no matter. No matter what happens happens right I I. My sense is that the house probably brings up articles probably votes on them. Although I still tend to think that there are a number the house Democrats that do not want to take this vote because it will hurt them in their districts but let's just assume how stems vote the way vote articles of impeachment. It goes to the Senate the Senate's not GonNa vote to impeach the president absent. Something extraordinary coming out between now and when they have the vote looking at this two years from now for years from now ten ten years from now when President of another party is in there were even the same party and something less than the type of bribery. We're talking about which isn't here. You take this money and I'll give you this but sort of if you do this then I can. I can help you with the favor. Sort of this muddled way that even the president talks right and and there's a difference between what you think. Obviously the president meant by what he said versus what you can prove and I just worry long term weather we've normalized allies. The extraordinary remedy of impeachment long-term. That's nothing that says nothing. That is not a judgment call on either of the sitting members of Congress here who I I think are doing their utmost in terms of diligence and honesty in doing what they feel is right long-term. Institutionally I wonder where we're going to be ten years from now as as a congress the next time something remotely close to this happens. Thank you very much for that. The congressman the congressman raises two. Really important points one is that impeachments have become so partisan that we're not going to see much cross partisan support. He says that that might hurt. Even some DEM's especially in swing districts and he worries that that could make the other party more likely to use impeachments in the future in that normalization could lead to more failed impeachments and more partisanship chip. You've been a strong supporter of impeachment under these facts. What's your response to his points? And what would you say to two members. Feel the same I didn't. I didn't go to Washington to impeach was not you know I was elected in November a special election of twenty sixteenths. I've been there three years. That was not not my first course of action. I would argue. I was driven to that course of action because of certain behavior. I don't disagree with Brian. Brian that Polit that the process has eroded for lotteries. There's no question and also participated dissipated in impeachment at a state level to all you may remember the Supreme Court justice. Yes that we did it in Harrisburg. So I'm I'm aware with it. You don't believe that is something you take lightly so let me be very clear. I don't believe you take it lightly but I do believe so. The most proudest title is not congressman. Citizen that is the most prowse title. You have open enrollment Oma coming up and that means you have the ability to operate and I think there should be a serious discussion about this so Jeffrey. That's why what better place to have. That didn't have the sears discussion. Because something is not right you can look at the Mullahs report. Jim Komi Komi. You could just go down laundry lists and you could debate about if that is peach. Impeachable and removal movable. But we in the house can't do that anyway. There's a Senate. They have to take picture. So when you're there Jeffrey in my view you look you evaluate you. Look at the information that's provided to you in and you take the course of action because you know Ben Franklin made the statement is a monarchy or a republic. And what I understand this is. I've been around around. Liuhua was in the same position. Ben Franklin had I used to have just on three hundred years different dream Ben. Franklin and infrequent was chairman of the ways and means at the Pennsylvania. I was chairman of the Appropriations Committee. I was born in the hospital. That ben Franklin unfound so no a little bit about that so I don't take it lightly so I don't disagree with what Ryan is saying but accountability Ability Accountability Santi tell take lightly Democrat or Republican. And that's a strong feel about in this particular situation. That's what I hear in the Third Congressional district on. Those is the Bluest of the blue districts but then people got a right to so I mean here Ryan saying that but I just say that this is one time I think the particular cases. Thank you so much for that. Thank you really for reminding all of us of the purpose of this convenient friends fellow citizens the congressman said. You have the most important job and what we're GONNA do at the end of this forum. Obviously I should've thought at the beginning you're going to vote and you're gonNa vote about whether or not you think based on the facts and the law that you've heard heard that you think that the president should be impeached. But I want you to think about listening to the rest of the discussion with a very open mind because I'm also going to ask you. Who changed his or in her mind based on the facts or the constitutional law that you heard in the course of this discussion so open yourself up to the possibility of reaching a conclusion which differs from your her from your political or partisan views so with that in mind lets us the rest of our time to again appeal to our fellow citizens? So so congressman you said your fellow fellow. Republicans should take the process seriously. You now know a lot of facts. We know what the standards for impeachment are. If you're comfortable doing so so why don't you tell our fellow citizens whether or not you think I'm the facts in the long. The president should be impeached. I think the I do think that the facts in evidence as I understand them do reis level impeachment. I'd look this perspective. At a member of the House of Representatives senators used his or her office to solicit a foreign leader to investigate it political opponents. I serve on the Appropriations Committee and and by the away. If you don't do that you know that that aid that we send you I'll put a legislative hold on it and it were publicly revealed. I suspected Department of Justice. Just be crawling up that members backside right now but and by the same token also said I saw the same thing with the Clinton impeachment and having been a again chairman the Ethics Committee Committee. I was involved with resignations and members. I know how that goes but I always said you know from. Every male member of Congress had done in his office with a female intern with Bill Clinton in did and it Republican discovered that member of Congress. He'd be out of office by the end of the day guarantee you and I believe me. I've seen these types of things in enforced. I so bottom line is based on this evidence you cannot use your office a quid pro quo but forget about the quid pro quo for one second. Just the act of asking foreign leader to interfere in the campaign by itself is a very serious issue that by itself. Now when when you say and if you don't do that then I'm going to hold up. Four hundred million four million dollars in military assistance. Well now you've got a bigger problem so based on that. I think it's a it's a a quite serious. And based on the witness testimony I've seen so far from businessmen and hill and Taylor. They all seem to be corroborating. What each other I've said so I think it's a pretty powerful argument? It's pretty hard to argue against it now. That said I'm not. I'm not always sure the Democrats should pull the trigger here. Do they really want to have a partisan impeachment. Yeah I mean that's that might not be something they want to do at the end of the day but I think this just based on the facts and the evidence you do that but if you're a Republican member you're in a Ruby Red district in northern Alabama you know eighty percent of your constituents your car. Don't you dare impeach the president no matter what the evidence says what do you do. It's a political decision. Split decision is going to not going to happen. powerful reminder that you reach reach a decision based on the facts and the law but then as representative. You have to make the political decision because it's a mix of politics and the constitution congresswoman. Same to you. You're you're making your appeal to our fellow citizens but as a member of the district committee you will be perhaps helping to draft articles of impeachment so in the course of your your or your address maybe tell us how how you would You know what the charges would be. We've heard charges of solicitation simply asking for foreign aid. We've heard a charge of bribery itself offering something of value to Ukraine in exchange for something of value namely only the investigation there have been charges of obstruction by refusing to cooperate with Congress. What articles do you imagine most persuasive? and which ones would you support support. I think that is one of the questions here. I mean we have an embarrassment of riches from which to select and that is part of the problem you know I I agree with Professor Malcolm that you know. We have elections for one purpose but then we also have impeachment for another purpose and so I may not agree with with for example the president's morals or his policy choices but those are things that would be dealt with through the electoral system but the concern in the impeachment process. This is are we seeing behavior that is eroding our government we heard about eroding the power of the executive but on judiciary. I've had a front row seat seat to the erosion of the powers of Congress. Not just the ways that Congress may have let its power slip away through war powers resolutions and that kind of thing but through an and as I.

Coming up next