Democrats and the Mueller Report
Robert Mueller is done. Trump-Russia collusion is dead, but the war on the Trump presidency rages on. As many congressional Democrats and their lackeys in the left-wing media continue to pursue their foolish dream of removing President Trump from office, it’s important to remember that swing-district Democrats -- whose victories gave control of the U.S. House to their party -- won their elections not by promising to impeach President Trump.
In other words, all those Democratic Party chairs now promising endless investigations of the President are only in the position to do so because their swing-state comrades laid off the impeachment chatter. Or, as John Lawrence of The Hill put it the day after the Mueller report summary was released:
Democrats did not win the majority on a promise to relentlessly pursue Trump; they won because candidates for Republican seats persuaded voters, long before the Mueller report was issued, that they could be trusted to address tough issues like health care, immigration, campaign finance reform, and integrity in government. If Democrats hope to retain those seats -- and a majority -- in 2020, they will have to demonstrate that the voters’ confidence was not misplaced. They assuredly will not retain the hard-won majority if they are perceived as single-mindedly heading down the impeachment, or even the Mueller-Barr, rabbit hole.
Again, not only did swing-district Democrats avoid or downplay talk of impeachment, they also frequently spoke of waiting on the Mueller report -- as well as relying upon Mueller’s report -- before deciding on whether impeachment of President Trump was indeed called for. Let’s review their own words.
In September of 2018, the Washington Free Beacon reported,
Gil Cisneros (CA-39) and Katie Porter (CA-45), have generally said they support the investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller, and that decisions on impeachment should wait for a conclusion and report by Mueller and his team.
Lucy McBath (GA-6) said she “would not call for impeaching Trump unless there was a bad report from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of possible Russian influence on the 2016 presidential campaigns.” Reporting on Haley Stevens (MI-11) just three weeks prior to the 2018 midterms, the Detroit News declared,
Stevens takes a wait-and-see approach on possible impeachment hearings for Trump, saying that conversation depends on the outcome of special counsel Robert Mueller’s inquiry. “We need to see the Mueller investigation through,” Stevens said. “I believe we need to put the country first and certainly treat anything along those lines very seriously.”
In May of 2018, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram asked 22 Texas Democrats running for U.S. Congress whether they would vote to impeach President Trump. Two Democrats -- Lizzie Pannill Fletcher and Colin Allred -- flipped seats in Texas. When asked about impeachment, Fletcher declared, “Congress must ensure that [Mueller’s] investigation is completed, and that if President Trump has committed impeachable offenses must be prepared to bring the charge.” Allred added, “We need to make sure the Mueller probe is protected and that it’s able to reach its conclusion.”
Reporting on Jennifer Wexton (VA-10) last year, ABC News noted,
Wexton was also cautious when discussing Trump and possible impeachment. A former prosecutor, she said she wants special counsel Robert Mueller to continue his work and that “we need to follow the facts and we can’t rush to judgment.”
A week before the 2018 election, New Jersey’s Mikie Sherrill joined her New Jersey swing-district colleagues in calling for restraint on impeachment. She declared, “Congress should support Special Counsel Robert Muller's investigation and allow him to finish his work.”
And so on. (I chronicle 2018 swing-district Democrats on Trump, Mueller, and impeachment here.) Democrats flipped dozens of GOP-held seats because they painted themselves as rational, nonhyperpartisan candidates who would follow the facts -- especially on impeachment. Now that Mueller’s report has further revealed the Trump-Russia-collusion farce for what it really was, these Democrats must be held accountable to their words.
Furthermore, ever since the Mueller investigation began, there was a bipartisan chorus of politicians telling us that the Mueller investigation should be “protected” and that Mueller must be “allowed to complete his work.” Of course, to a great extent this was because so many liberals and #NeverTrumpers were convinced that the end of the Mueller investigation would spell the end of the Trump administration.
Whether or not they felt that the Mueller investigation would be the ultimate undoing of President Trump, many Democrats put all of their impeachment eggs in the Mueller investigation basket. Leon Panetta -- defense secretary and CIA director under Barack Obama and chief of staff to Bill Clinton -- summed up this position well. Two months prior to the 2018 midterms, ABC News reported Panetta saying,
“I think the most important thing that the Democrats could do is to allow Bob Mueller to complete his work.”
Panetta continued, “I think Bob Mueller’s work will ultimately determine whether or not there are going to be additional steps taken against the president and they ought not to get ahead of that report because that will be the key to determining what happens.”
Now that the collusion narrative has finally officially collapsed, impeachment-obsessed Democrats must look elsewhere to satisfy their anti-Trump hate. Of course, as they chase this political unicorn, they only reinforce the notion that the Mueller investigation was never really about Russian collusion at all, but rather just a convenient means of undoing the results of the 2016 presidential election. In other words -- as the actions of congressional Democrats prove -- it seems that the Mueller investigation was little more than a “witch-hunt” all along.
Trevor Grant Thomas
At the Intersection of Politics, Science, Faith, and Reason.
Trevor is the author of the The Miracle and Magnificence of America