According to a report at the Daily Beast, Democrats feel they have an incredibly strong impeachment case against President Donald Trump and have a specific plan to avoid the mistakes of depending upon special counsel Robert Mueller’s report that was flattened by Attorney General William Barr.
With the House hearings coming out from behind-closed-doors and to be televised into millions of homes, the Democratic leadership feels they have a strong enough case to convince Americans beyond any shadow of a doubt that the president is not fit to continue in office.
“Looming large over Democrats as they plan, though, is the example of what happened the last time they faced the same test. Less than four months ago, Special Counsel Robert Mueller testified before the House Judiciary Committee about the findings of his two-year investigation into Trump’s contact with Russia in 2016 and its aftermath,” the report states. “The July 24 hearing was as intensely hyped as any Capitol Hill event in recent years, carried live across TV and dissected in countless articles. Ultimately, after hours of halting testimony from Mueller—who barely ventured outside the content of his report—it was clear the day didn’t meet the impossibly high expectations. Republicans gleefully proclaimed it a dud, a conclusion many Democrats privately echoed.
This time, the Democrats have a war plan they think will work — because they have already vetted their line-up of witnesses and expect no surprises.
“This round has all the trappings of Mueller, including wall-to-wall TV coverage, plus a significant heaping of gravitas as the first public impeachment hearings in 20 years. But Democrats insist the proceedings will, and must, meet those historic expectations—and what they have learned from Mueller is influencing their plan,” the reports states. “Part of that plan is structuring the hearings in a way that maximizes the impact of what the witnesses have to say. Another part is not doing anything to overhype the event and just letting the significance of the moment speak for itself.
According to Rep. Jim Himes (D-CT) who will question witnesses, “I think in this case, the risk is a lot lower because you’ve got three consummate professionals who are going to tell their stories. These are really good witnesses… I think it’s going to be a really interesting story for the American people.”
One Democratic aide agreed, saying, “This is our shot—we shouldn’t blow it and have it be like Mueller,” while a second one added, “This is a second chance, a second bite at the apple.”
“The hearings,” remarked a third Democratic aide, “are structured in a way to avoid what happened in the Mueller and Lewandowski hearings.”
According to Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN), ““I don’t think you can overhype it. This is the most serious assault on the rule of law, the separation of powers, and the president’s respect for his oath of office. These are actual impeachment hearings, for one thing, and it’s a certain gravitas that rises to.”
“The witnesses won’t be Mr. Mueller, who was a little bit dry and a little bit beyond his prime,” he continued. “It will be people who are in their prime, who are patriots who have come forth with clear evidence that the president has abused his power.”
“It’s a chance for the American people to see witnesses under oath, talk about what they know about the president’s abuse of power, and the American people can make up their minds,” suggested Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA).
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