Pelosi says Trump’s Ukraine conduct is ‘so much worse’ than Nixon

November 18, 2019

Nancy Pelosi is apparently convinced that the Ukraine controversy is worse than Watergate.

The Trump foe told CBS on Sunday’s edition of Face the Nation that Trump’s behavior is “so much worse than even what Richard Nixon did” and suggested that Trump, like Nixon, should resign, Breitbart reported. Pelosi also said that Trump can testify before Congress if he wants and raised the dubious claim that the burden is on Trump to prove his own innocence.

Pelosi: Trump is worse than Nixon

For Democrats, the Nixonian rhetoric is part of a messaging strategy as Pelosi and Adam Schiff (D-CA) pivot to accusing Trump of “bribing” Ukraine. For many left unimpressed by what have so far been sleep-inducing impeachment hearings, this pointed language appears calculated to hold the public’s interest as the impeachment morphs into an arcane conversation about foreign policy in Eastern Europe.

While Democrats accuse Trump of an extraordinary betrayal of his country — one that places him among the most infamous traitors in American history including the likes of Benedict Arnold — Republicans have insisted that the impeachment is a partisan coup based on a “bribe” that never actually happened. Republicans have repeatedly stressed that military aid that was suspended to Ukraine was eventually released, and in fact, that President Trump went further than former President BarackObama to help Ukraine fend off Russian aggression by selling its government lethal Javelin missiles.

Asked whether Trump could face his accuser, the so-called “whistleblower,” Pelosi hinted that the whistleblower would remain hidden and that Trump could testify, but that the burden would be on him to prove his own innocence — a complete inversion of the presumption of innocence that is a foundational concept of our legal system.

“If the president has information that demonstrates his innocence in all of this, which we haven’t seen,” she said, according to Reuters. “If he has information that is exculpatory…then we look forward to seeing it.”

But Pelosi also intimated that Trump’s “crimes” are so great that it would be better for him, and the country, if he followed in Nixon’s footsteps and resigned of his own volition.

Rhetoric diluted through overuse

According to the New York Post, Pelosi told CBS that impeaching Trump is “very sad” and that Trump poses a threat to “democracy,” an odd claim to make after Democrats spent three years bitterly refusing to concede an election result. Indeed, it’s strange that the party which has come into full alignment with a permanent, unaccountable bureaucracy can continue to claim the mantle of democracy without any acknowledgment of the irony.

Republicans have insisted that witnesses testifying against the president are simply bureaucrats from the permanent Washington “swamp” motivated by their own grievances, but the mainstream media have taken it upon themselves to glorify those “Deep State” insiders as patriots saving our republic from Trump.

Pelosi expressed similar sentiments, criticizing Trump for going after the CIA whistleblower who was just trying to speak “truth to power.” Pelosi also rebuked Trump for criticizing ex-diplomat Marie Yovanivitch on Twitter during testimony last week.

Of course, the bureaucrats-are-heroes rhetoric is nothing new — and neither are the overblown Nixonian themes. For years, the Democrats hyped up the Russia collusion hoax to be the biggest scandal in modern American history, possibly bigger than Watergate — but Russiagate proved to be a dud — a byzantine, meandering, and definitively boring dud.

Incidentally, Andrew Weissman, the Robert Mueller deputy who allegedly attended Hillary Clinton’s campaign event on the night of her 2016 loss, suggested last week that Democrats should play up comparisons between Trump and Nixon, according to the Washington Examiner.

Democrats now appear to be leaning into the same rhetoric about Watergate they have used to attack Trump for years now that the Ukraine controversy shows signs of becoming a boring, unwatchable slog, just like its Russian prequel. But if that now-forgotten scandal was bigger than Watergate, then where does that leave the Ukraine imbroglio?

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Matthew Boose

Matthew Boose is a staff writer for Conservative Institute. He has a Bachelor's degree from Stony Brook University and has contributed to The Daily Caller and The Stony Brook Press.