House Judiciary Committee’s top Democrat spends train ride talking on the phone about investigating and impeaching BOTH Trump and Kavanaugh – and a reporter in the same car overhears it all
- Rep. Jerrold Nadler took a train Wednesday from New York to Washington
- He chatted on the phone about Democrats’ post-election strategy and a reporter overheard the conversations
- The New York lawmaker will likely chair the House Judiciary Committee in 2019
- He lamented the strong economy and worried Democrats might be blamed if it sours in the future
- Also said Dems will go ‘all-in’ on impeaching President Trump and also try to do the same with Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh
A Democratic lawmaker who will likely run the House Judiciary Committee in 2019 spent part of Wednesday talking loudly on an Amtrak train about post-election strategy – and being overheard by a diligent reporter.
Conservative blog The Federalist published the result, a blow-by-blow account of New York Rep. Jerrold Nadler’s plan for House Democrats to launch a series of investigations into President Donald Trump and ultimately pursue his impeachment over the unproven theory that his 2016 campaign colluded with Russian agents.
Nadler also revealed that he is hopeful Democrats will impeach Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, whose contentious Senate confirmation hearings this fall featured uncorroborated claims of sexual assault.
‘We’ve got to figure out what we’re doing,’ he explained to one friend in an overheard call.
Futyre House Judiciary Committee chaurmen Jerrold Nadler of New York spent part of Wednesday making phone calls about Democrats’ post-election strategies during a train ride where the public, including a reporter, could hear every word
Nadler took an Acela train like this one from New York to Washington, and apparently didn’t sit in the designated ‘quiet car’
Nadler said Democrats will launch new investigations into the unproven allegation that aides to President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign colluded with Russian agents, going ‘all-in’ with an eye toward impeaching him
Impeachment is a procedure that involves the House of Representatives debating and voting on whether to ‘charge’ a federal official like a president, vice president or judge with an offense that fits the U.S. Constitution’s definition of ‘high crimes and misdemeanors.’
If the House votes to impeach, the Senate convenes a trial and decides whether to reach a conviction and remove the defendant from office.
Only Presidents Bill Clinton and Andrew Johnson have been impeached. Both survived in the Senate.
But judges are impeached and booted from their posts more frequently. Four have lost their lifetime appointments that way inthe past 30 years, including one, Alcee Hastings, whose political life found a second act as a Democratic congressman who is still in office.
Nadler’s phone calls on Wednesday included one with an unnamed incoming member of Congress who he advised on committee assignments. In another call, according to The Federalist, he ‘lamented identity politics and the thriving economy,’ worrying aloud that Demorcats will be blamed if the Trump boom slows down.
He also predicted that Democrats would frame their investigations as part of an effort to hold Trump ‘accountable’ rather than as a prelude to impeachment, because the public would find it more palatable that way.
Nadler also said Democrats would try to impeach Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, a form of payback for losing his nomination fight despite uncorroborated claims of sexual assault from three different women
Democrats took over the House of Representatives in Tuesday’s midterm elections, and will control every committee gavel for two years beginning in January
But Democrats will go ‘all-in,’ he insisted, with the caveat that their course of action will depend on what Special Counsel Robert Mueller writes in a report about his Russia-related findings.
Nadler said the House Intelligence Committee, expected to be led by California Rep. Adam Schiff, would likely take the lead since it has ‘a way ahead start on that.’
Delegitimizing Kavanaugh, however, could be pursued along two simultaneous paths, he said.
The first would involve publicly criticizing the FBI for conducting a ‘half-ass job’ in investigating the sexual misconduct claims lodged by the jurist’s female accusers.
‘They didn’t interview 30 witnesses who said “Interview me! I’ve got a lot to say!”‘ Nadler complained.
The FBI said at the time that it limited itself to speaking to potential firsthand witnesses of an assault Dr. Christine Blasey Ford claimed took place in 1982. All the people she claimed could corroborate her story turned out to have no memory of the event.
Kavanaugh denied throughout that he had ever behaved sexually inappropriately with anyone. The Senate confirmed him with just 50 votes, the minimum for a successful nomination.
Nadler said the justice could also be attacked as a perjurer since Democrats believe he lied about when he learned about the story of a second accuser.
But even if that avenue proved fruitful, he conceded, there was a scenario where ‘the president appoints someone just as bad.’
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