Press secretary claims Trump tweet 'not witness intimidation' because it is 'not a trial' -- but president says it is

White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham says President Donald Trump did not engage in witness intimidation Friday morning when he, in real time, posted tweets attacking his former Ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovich, during her testimony before a House impeachment inquiry hearing. Trump is being accused by Democrats and Republicans alike of witness intimidation or witness tampering, with even Fox News anchors saying Trump’s tweets constitute an additional article of impeachment.


“The tweet was not witness intimidation, it was simply the President’s opinion, which he is entitled to,” Grisham said in a statement given to Fox News. “This is not a trial, it is a partisan political process  – or to put it more accurately, a totally illegitimate, charade stacked against the President.”

(Grisham is wrong on all counts. Impeachment is embedded in the U.S. Constitution.)

And yet, an 18-page memo of talking points distributed Tuesday evening to House Republicans argues differently, charging Chairman Schiff “offered no due process protections for the President.”

President Donald Trump has claimed he is on “trial” and repeatedly – eight times, at least – complained he is not being afforded due process. A few examples:

Regardless, witness intimidation and witness tampering can be done whether or not there is a trial, so Grisham is wrong on all counts.