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Sat Nov 23, 2019, 01:54 PM

Yes, Congress should be talking about the president and bribery

DID PRESIDENT TRUMP commit bribery? When House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) leveled this accusation this month, some may have heard hyperbole — or even a public-relations stunt. Messaging concerns persuaded Democrats to abandon the term “quid pro quo” for “bribery.” But it is not phony messaging. The Democrats’ charge is grounded in the Constitution’s language — and it is credible.

The Constitution specifically lists bribery as an impeachable offense, before “high crimes and misdemeanors.” If the president is guilty of bribery, there is no need to wonder what “high crimes and misdemeanors” means.

Of course, the Constitution does not define “bribery,” either. But federal law does: It is the act of giving, offering or promising anything of value — not just money or tangible items — to a public official to influence an official act. Likewise, the law bars public officials from soliciting anything of value in return for influencing the performance of an official act. In Mr. Trump’s case, two weeks of testimony have uncovered evidence that he solicited something of value from the Ukrainian government (besmirching a political opponent) in exchange for official acts (a White House meeting, the delivery of military aid).

The first piece of evidence came from Mr. Trump himself, who released the rough transcript of a July 25 phone call he had with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. As Mr. Zelensky asked for an Oval Office visit and to buy more antitank missiles from the United States, Mr. Trump requested “a favor”: launching investigations into supposed 2016 election interference on the part of Ukraine and into natural gas company Burisma. The former is part of an effort by Mr. Trump and his personal lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani to discredit and distract from the fact that Russia meddled in the 2016 race to help Mr. Trump. The latter is an attempt to smear former vice president Joe Biden, whose son Hunter sat on Burisma’s board. According to the transcript, only after Mr. Zelensky promised investigations did Mr. Trump offer a White House meeting.


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Reply Yes, Congress should be talking about the president and bribery (Original post)
Zorro Nov 2019 OP
Karadeniz Nov 2019 #1
Skittles Nov 2019 #2

Response to Zorro (Original post)

Sat Nov 23, 2019, 06:51 PM

1. Beyond comprehension how the GOP can try to minimize Trump's egregious behavior.

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Response to Karadeniz (Reply #1)

Sun Nov 24, 2019, 02:54 AM

2. they need Russia's support just like Trump does

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