Obstruction of Justice, Abuse of Power and Impeachment: Alternative Interpretations
President Trump has just been acquitted by the United States Senate of impeachment charges alleging that he engaged in abuse of power and obstruction of justice. However, there is a good case to be made that it was the Democratic members of Congress, both in the House of Representatives and the Senate, who each engaged in obstruction of justice and abuse of power, and the case is rather simple. If there were adequate grounds to initiate a criminal investigation of the activities of Joseph Biden and his son Hunter with respect to the removal of the Ukrainian State Prosecutor in order to attain dismissal of pending investigations against Burisma holdings, then, whether such investigation might have resulted in a conviction or not, impeding such investigation would have been obstruction of justice, certainly in the sense that recently concluded “Russiagate” prosecutions resulted in such charges although no collaboration with alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 elections was found to have existed despite years of investigations by Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller and his virulently anti-Trump pro-Democratic Party staff. If such obstruction was implemented by abuse of the impeachment process, then it would be couple with the crime of abuse of power. The fact that finding a potential rival for the presidency or his son guilty of corruption might have been of benefit to the current president would be absolutely irrelevant.
Ironic that those guilty of impeding the criminal investigation that should have been undertaken against the Bidens through abuse of their power as legislators should have done so by accusing the official charged with the duty of investigating such allegations of the exact crimes they were in fact committing. Ironic but par for the course in the rippling crescendo emanating from the historical seismic debacle of November 8, 2016. The Democratic Party, exposed by, among others, Julian Assange, of cheating with the active collaboration of the mainstream media during the 2016 presidential primaries as well as in the general election (recall Donna Brazile’s gift of debate questions to Hillary Clinton) turned the tables on the GOP by successfully instigating the massive Russiagate hoax. They have done the same thing with the Great Impeachment Hoax of 2020.
So, how credible was the evidence of Biden family shenanigans in the Ukraine! Much more credible and evidence laden than the mainstream media and Democratic Party leaders would have us think, especially given the relatively low level of evidence necessary to initiate a criminal investigation (see American Bar Association (2008), Standards on Prosecutorial Investigations), just think of how little real evidence it took for the Obama administration to obtain a FISA warrant to investigate Trump campaign advisor Carter Page, an investigation that was obviously of great benefit to the campaign of then President Obama’s choice to succeed him as president, or how the low threshold of evidence necessary to destroy the career of Paul Manafort was based on information provided, amazingly enough, by the Ukraine.
The facts. Joe Biden has publicly admitted that he coerced the Ukrainian government to remove its top prosecutor under threat of withholding financial support to the tune of one billion or so dollars. As a result of that threat, Viktor Shokin, the Ukraine’s top prosecutor (akin to the United States Attorney General) was immediately removed from office. That prosecutor had six active investigations against Burisma Holdings and its founder, Mykola Zlochevsky, which were subsequently dismissed by Mr. Shokin’s replacement Yuri Lutsenko. While Mr. Shokin had been a respected career prosecutor, his replacement had been jailed for corruption and did not even have a law degree or prosecutorial experience. Hunter Biden, Joe Biden’s black sheep son (cashiered from the Navy for drug abuse, recently found to have fathered a child he rejected, etc.) served as a member of the Board of Directors of Burisma Holdings despite having no experience in the Ukraine or in the gas industry in which Burisma was engaged, for which he was handsomely rewarded financially, apparently for doing little other than “public relations” work. There is at least a reasonable suspicion that he was in fact paid to have the United States informally intervene to have the charges against Burisma Holdings and Mr. Zlochevsky dropped by Ukrainian prosecutors, as in fact occurred.
So, proof of guilt? No! Adequate grounds to initiate a criminal prosecution, both in the Ukraine and the United States? Plenty. Has that been done? No! Why? Among other reasons, one stands out, the intervention by all of the Democratic Party members of the House of Representatives and the Senate, through abuse of the impeachment process, to save the political campaign of the traditionalist leadership of the Democratic Party’s choice as candidate for the presidency of the United States.
Obstruction of justice? Obviously. Abuse of power? Obviously. By President Trump, absolutely not. By the Democrats. Obviously. Consequences?
Probably none unless we as voters are somewhat savvier than the Democratic Party and mainstream media believe us to be. Unfortunately as voters, as always we stand between a rock and a hard place because Donald Trump is not an ideal president for many of us and the “lesser evil sirens” are wailing away. But there are real choices, as Dennis Kucinich just pointed out, Tulsi Gabbard would make an awesome president, Bernie Sanders, probably a decent one. Unfortunately, that same Democratic Party mainstream media alliance are pulling out all the stops to assure that Tulsi is not given a chance to run, and, as the recent purported debacle in Iowa demonstrates, Bernie Sanders’ campaign is likely to be derailed by the Democratic party leadership as well.
So, … What are our options? Mine is to vote “for” rather than “against” someone, and that excludes the probable nominees of both major political parties.
Things to think about hoping we are in one of those “you cannot fool all of the People all of the time” moments Abraham Lincoln once promised in other very trying times.
© Guillermo Calvo Mahé; Manizales, 2020; all rights reserved. Please feel free to share with appropriate attribution.
Guillermo Calvo Mahé (a sometime poet) is a writer, political commentator and academic currently residing in the Republic of Colombia although he has primarily lived in the United States of America (of which he is a citizen). Until recently he chaired the political science, government and international relations programs at the Universidad Autónoma de Manizales. He has academic degrees in political science (the Citadel), law (St. John’s University), international legal studies (New York University) and translation and linguistic studies (the University of Florida’s Center for Latin American Studies). He can be contacted at email@example.com and much of his writing is available through his blog at www.guillermocalvo.com.