By Don Kohn
Sen. Lindsey Graham has become a leader in President Trump’s impeachment defense and one of his first salvos is a Sept. 25 tweet labeling as a “nothing burger” the whistleblower complaint saying that Trump tried to convince his counterpart in Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden.
Essentially, the whistleblower accused Trump of abusing his office by enlisting the aid of a foreign leader against a possible political opponent and then tried to cover it up.
“Wow. Impeachment over this?” Graham tweeted. “What a nothing (non-quid pro quo) burger. Democrats have lost their minds when it comes to President @realDonaldTrump.”
Graham also tweeted, “It tells me the Democrats think they are going to lose at the ballot box. The only reason they are trying to impeach the president is because they don’t believe they can beat him at the ballot box, or they are trying to destroy him.”
A “nothing burger?”
Sen. Graham, the formal transcript of Trump’s call with Ukraine’s new president, former comedian Volodymyr Zelensky, on July 25 shows Trump clearly asked Zelensky to look into the actions of Biden, the current leader in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination, in connection with the firing of Ukraine’s top prosecutor.
Biden has maintained that as vice president he was targeting the prosecutor for not sufficiently pursuing charges of corruption. Many other foreign leaders also called for his ouster, and he eventually was replaced. Trump and his allies, including Graham, contend Biden was trying to protect his son, Hunter, who served on the company’s board of directors, and who was never charged of any crime.
As Graham scoffs and belittles as a “nothing burger” the rationale for seeking Trump’s impeachment, old footage of him defending Republican rationales for trying to impeach President Bill Clinton in 1999 is being used by Democrats to demonstrate the senator’s hypocrisy.
“You don’t even have to be convicted of a crime to lose your job in this constitutional republic if this body determines that your conduct as a public official is clearly out of bounds in your role,” said Graham as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, who helped lead those impeachment proceedings.
“Impeachment is not about punishment. Impeachment is about cleansing the office. Impeachment is about restoring honor and integrity to the office,” he said.
Senator Graham, you are absolutely correct.
Impeachment IS about “cleansing the office” and about “restoring honor and integrity” to the office of the presidency.
It’s not a “nothing burger,” Senator. It’s about protecting our country and preserving our democracy.
The House of Representatives will hold hearings into the matter. At some point, perhaps by year’s end, articles of impeachment may well be approved and sent to the Senate.
We will see then just how trivial this matter is and how you, as a senator who is supposed to represent the best interests of our nation and our state, respond.
We all will be watching.