Adam Schiff: Trump’s Potentially Impeachable Offenses Include Bribery

On Tuesday’s broadcast of NPR’s “Morning Edition,” House Intelligence chairman Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) said there was a clear argument to be made that President Donald Trump committed “bribery.”

Schiff said, “I don’t think any decision has been made on the ultimate question about whether articles of impeachment should be brought. But on the basis of what the witnesses have had to say so far, there are any number of potentially impeachable offenses: including bribery, including high crimes and misdemeanors. The basic allegations against the president are that he sought foreign interference in a U.S. election, that he conditioned official acts on the performance of these political favors — and those official acts include a White House meeting that the president of Ukraine desperately sought with President Trump, as well as hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayer-funded military assistance for a country that is at war with Russia and a country that the United States has a deep national security interest in making sure it can defend itself.”

He continued, “As the founders understood bribery, it was not as we understand it in law today. It was much broader. It connoted the breach of the public trust in a way where you’re offering official acts for some personal or political reason, not in the nation’s interest. Here you have the president of the United States seeking help from Ukraine in his reelection campaign in the form of two investigations that he thought were politically advantageous, including one of his primary rival.”

He added, “Bribery only requires that you’re soliciting something of value. It doesn’t have to be cash. It can be something of value.”

He concluded, “But more than that, high crimes and misdemeanors also include things that are violations of the public trust. The public trusts the president to be acting in their interests, not in the interest of their political campaign when it comes to conducting the nation’s business.”

Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN

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