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MSNBC host: ‘I do not see an overwhelming case and overwhelming evidence by these Democrats …’

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MSNBC host Ari Melber has conceded that congressional Democrats lack the evidence to convict President Donald Trump on obstruction of justice.

“I do not see an overwhelming case and overwhelming evidence by these Democrats to support convicting on obstructing Congress, and I’ll tell you why,” he bluntly said during a panel discussion late Friday evening.

Listen (disable your adblocker if the video doesn’t appear):

“What the Democrats are arguing is that basically, something that began three months before they actually voted to impeach should now be resolved by the removal of the president,” he said.

What “began three months before they actually voted to impeach” was that the president began ordering current and former White House officials to not testify. But as Melber quickly noted, this is standard behavior for any president facing impeachment.

And as it stands, just this week former Vice President Joe Biden, Democrat, revealed that even he doesn’t intend to comply if subpoenaed to testify before Congress.

“And in every other case, including Nixon, we know the rule has been the president is allowed to fight within the law, is allowed to deny — and, yes, quote, defy — all the way up until the Supreme Court, which takes often more than a year,” Melber continued.

“So is there enough evidence to support the immediate removal of a president, three months and you’re gone as a precedent? I haven’t seen them land that. I don’t see the Democrats having provided enough evidence yet to convict on article two.”

Former Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill and MSNBC legal analyst Maya Wiley tried to argue otherwise, but Melber quickly dismissed their arguments by noting that it was Democrats who chose in their impeachment haste to not wait for the courts to compel officials like former White House Counsel Don McGahn and former National Security Adviser John Bolton to testify.

“We’re talking about not was Donald Trump wrong … but is it a removable high crime?” he said. “The argument would be, if you want McGahn you need expedited review and you need to argue it out, if you want Bolton, you need expedited review and you continue to pursue it, not saying ‘actually, we’re going to put that to the side because we’re in such a rush to move on this.'”

“I love you, but you’re wrong,” McCaskill jokingly replied.

Congressional Democrats were in such a rush to impeach the president before Christmas — despite impeachment being a process that has historically always taken far longer to complete — that they bypassed the entire process and now seem intent on trying to blame Trump for their own poor judgment.

Melber isn’t alone in believing that the Democrats’ obstruction of justice case is weak:

Unlike the voices seen above, however, Melber does believe Democrats’ abuse of power charge against the president is 100 percent valid.

“When you look at the abuse of power… I saw overwhelming factual evidence and first-person accounts to support constitutional abuse of power by the president to potentially cheat in the election. Undermining democracy itself. Very strong,” he said earlier in the panel discussion seen up top.

Is this true, though?

Famed attorney Alan Dershowitz, a member of the president’s legal team, has made the case that abuse of power isn’t even an impeachable offense.

Fox News’ Gregg Jarrett has similarly argued that if abuse of power is an impeachable offense, then former President Abraham Lincoln would’ve been impeached as well.

“Republican President Lincoln utilized the powers of his office to ensure that Union soldiers in the field, who vigorously supported Lincoln’s reelection in 1864, were given the chance to cast their ballots for him. Most states permitted absentee ballots for troops. But the crucial state of Indiana did not,” Jarrett opined in a column Friday.

Thus “[a]ll the power and influence of the War Department … was employed to secure the re-election of Mr. Lincoln,” as Civil War journalist Charles Anderson Dana reportedly explained in one of her books, according to Jarrett.

“Did Lincoln use the power of his office for personal political gain? Of course. Was it an ‘abuse of power?’ No,” the FNC host concluded.

But both Dershowitz’s and Jarrett’s arguments appear to be premised on the belief that president did, as Democrats have claimed, ask Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate Biden’s alleged corruption out of a desire to hurt the former VP going into the 2020 election. However, this hasn’t in fact been either proven or disproven.

All that’s known for certain is that there are TWO POSSIBILITIES for why Trump pressed Zelensky for an investigation —  because he wanted to affect the 2020 election, or because he was genuinely concerned about Biden’s alleged corruption.

That Democrats have filed abuse of power charges against the president shows they believe theory one. However, their belief alone doesn’t make for a case, regardless of what House Intelligence Committee chair Adam Schiff and his media groupies have to say on the matter.

Vivek Saxena

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