Congress: The president just gave us an "all-out threat." It's time to take him down.
During Trump’s second State of the Union address Tuesday night, he attacked the very idea of congressional investigations targeting him, his family and his administration.
Trump said the only things that could harm America’s economy are “foolish wars, politics, or ridiculous, partisan investigations,” essentially launching a desperate appeal for Congress to please leave him alone.
He severely misjudged his audience.
“We will not be bullied by the president of the United States,” Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), chair of the House Democrats, told the New York Times.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called Trump’s words “an all-out threat, and asserted to reporters that Trump “should not bring threats to the floor of the House.”
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), chair of the House Intelligence Committee, tweeted, “I can understand why the idea of meaningful oversight terrifies the President. Several of his close associates are going to jail, others await trial, and criminal investigations continue.”
Schiff confirmed that he and Democrats in Congress were “going to do our job,” despite Trump’s behavior.
Trump initiated a government shutdown in late December, demanding $5.6 billion for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Speaker Pelosi refused to go along with it, and in mid-January she disinvited Trump from giving the State of the Union in the House chamber during a government shutdown. Trump backed down, and gave in to Pelosi’s demand. A few weeks later, Trump caved to Pelosi yet again as he agreed to reopen the government without a single penny for a border wall.
Yet somehow Trump thought making calling for an end to investigations during a high-profile speech would be effective. It was not.
Pelosi explained to the Times that Congress has a constitutional duty to engage in oversight and investigations, and “if we didn’t do it, we would be delinquent.”
The day after Trump made his threat, Schiff announced a sweeping revival of an investigation into Trump and Russia related to the 2016 campaign.
Later this week, a House Ways and Means subcommittee will hold a hearing about obtaining Trump’s tax returns.
“The days of the House operating as a wholly owned subsidiary of the Trump administration are over,” Jeffries told the Times. It’s a new day in Congress, with serious investigations and real accountability.
Published with permission of The American Independent. Attribution: Dan Desai Martin.