UPDATE, 1630 GMT:
I chatted with Riem Higazi of Austria’s Radio FM4 on Thursday afternoon about the latest developments around impeachment of Donald Trump, and the testimony of Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire about the official complaint of a US intelligence staff member over Trump’s phone call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy.
The political test is going to be whether the American public go along with the investigation and the need for accountability, or if they are going to buy this Trump line that it is all a conspiracy against him, the victim.
And we won’t know the outcome of that until November 2020, with the vote on whether he gets a second term.
UPDATE, SEPT 26, 1230 GMT:
I spoke further with BBC outlets on Wednesday and Thursday to go through the dynamics of the impeachment inquiry, as more evidence came out about Donald Trump’s phone call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy.
With social media, it’s a question of the truth out there v. the attempts to confuse us….
These are very serious charges. They do constitute abuses of power, if true. They do constitute crimes, if true. Whatever you think of Donald Trump personally, to uphold the American system, you have to at least investigate this.
A discussion which not only goes through the Trump-Zelenskiy call, but deals with the disinformation — trying to protect Trump — that Joe Biden arranged the dismissal of a Ukraine prosecutor in 2016 to protect his son Hunter.
This really goes to the voters in November 2020. Do they think there is enough evidence that they might not vote for Trump for a second term.
Beyond politics, do you hold a leader accountable for his actions?
ORIGINAL ENTRY: I joined Monocle 24’s Georgina Godwin and BBC outlets on Wednesday to explain the launch of the impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump’s possible legal violations and abuses of powers.
We discuss the catalyst for the inquiry, Donald Trump’s late July call to Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, and the other investigations into his tax, finance, and business affairs and his links with foreign countries including Russia.
So why did House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, after months of holding off the announcement, act now? And what lies ahead for both the impeachment process and US politics entering the 2020 Presidential election?
The unknown answer — because Trump and Republican allies will scream “Witch Hunt, Hoax, Fake News”, the same tactics they used to undermine the Russia inquiry — is whether that works with the American public. Will there be so much dust thrown in their eyes that this inquiry is blocked as well?
Listen from 25:05:
What Donald Trump allegedly tried to do was to tell the President of another country, “You have to investigate someone who might be running against me in 2020 for the Presidency, and if you don’t investigate him, I’m going to hold up military aid to your country.”
If true, that is both a flagrant abuse of Presidential power of US foreign power and illegal interference in the 2020 election.
The Trump tactic is that, even if you are caught out over one falsehood, you just pile on another claim and hope that throws dust in everyone’s eyes….
Donald Trump said in 2016 that he could shoot someone on 5th Avenue in New York and people will still vote for him. How many of his supporters are willing to vote for him whether he shoots someone or whether he stomps on the US Constitution?