As House Democrats launch an impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump, Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) posed an interesting question earlier today about the conflict of interest with Democratic Senators who are Trump’s political adversaries.
Don’t senators running for POTUS have a conflict of interest regarding possible impeachment of an opponent?
Shouldn’t they recuse themselves if it came to the Senate?
Wouldn’t anyone so positioned against a defendant be barred from serving as a judge or jury in a court of law?
— Thomas Massie (@RepThomasMassie) October 2, 2019
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A popular Democratic Party talking point is that President Trump twisted the arm of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate his potential political opponent, former Vice President Joe Biden, in a phone conversation they had in July.
“There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great. Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it … It sounds horrible to me,” Trump said to Zelensky in an exchange the Democrats find as grounds for impeachment.
“Since we have won the absolute majority in our Parliament, the next prosecutor general will be 100% my person, my candidate, who will be approved, by the parliament and will start as a new prosecutor in September,” Zelensky responded. “He or she will look into the situation, specifically to the company that you mentioned in this issue.”
“On top of that, I would kindly ask you if you have any additional information that you can provide to us, it would be very helpful for the investigation to make sure that we administer justice in our country,” Zelensky added.
“I will have Mr. Giuliani give you a call and I am also going to have Attorney General Barr call and we will get to the bottom of it,” Trump said. “I’m sure you will figure it out. I heard the prosecutor was treated very badly and he was a very fair prosecutor so good luck with everything.”
Massie wants to hold Democratic presidential candidates to their own standards. If they believe it is wrong for Trump to use his power to investigate a political rival, Democrats should not engage in the same behavior in the Senate.
He also called out Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) last week for lying about Trump’s conversation with the Ukrainian President for the purposes of ginning up support for impeachment:
One “parody” after another has led to this circus.
We should be focused on real issues. https://t.co/jZELYrccSX
— Thomas Massie (@RepThomasMassie) September 26, 2019
Massie used the ridiculousness of the controversy to make the principled libertarian point against sending foreign aid throughout the world to buy favor.
Imagine how much more prosperous our country could be if we didn’t send $400 million of taxpayers’ money to countries like Ukraine to start with.
— Thomas Massie (@RepThomasMassie) September 25, 2019
Massie is backed up by his friends in the House Freedom Caucus, who are leading the charge against the Democrats’ hypocritical witch hunt against the President.
“We have serious concerns about Democrats’ abusive targeting of our career foreign service professionals, which would put our nation’s diplomatic interests at risk,” said Congressman Jim Jordan, a Freedom Caucus member who serves on the House Oversight Committee.
“The Democrats are choosing confrontation over cooperation and exploiting their power solely to attack this President and undo the results of the 2016 election,” Jordan added.