This week, the House Judiciary Committee continued their ongoing investigation of President Donald Trump’s behavior with a scheduled appearance for testimony by his former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski — and the occasion did not go well, at all really. Despite Lewandowski having never worked in the White House and thereby remaining at least in theory immune from concepts of executive privilege that the Trump team has already proven ready and willing to stretch to wild limits, the former Trump aide and continued associate of the president defiantly refused to answer a whole host of questions about his conversations with Trump, which according to Special Counsel Robert Mueller at times turned towards the president’s efforts to obstruct the Russia investigation.
Instead of answering questions, Lewandowski at times seemed intent on trying to deliver the most stinging sarcasm in response to questions from Democrats — and that’s it. As former public defender Kumar Rao put it:
‘Lewandowski and Republican House members are obstructing justice in real time at the behest of Trump…during a Congressional hearing on *obstruction of justice.* This is predictable, yet still insane to watch. The intensity and breadth of obstruction by Trump and his cronies, including sitting members of Congress, in all aspects of this hearing is staggering. How can anyone watch this and be on the fence about the need to impeach Trump?’
The intensity and breadth of obstruction by Trump and his cronies, including sitting members of Congress, in all aspects of this hearing is staggering.
How can anyone watch this and be on the fence about the need to impeach Trump?
— Kumar Rao (@KumarRaoNYC) September 17, 2019
In his opening statement, Lewandowski himself delivered melodramatic complaints about investigations into the Trump team’s connections to Russia, among other things. As he put it, ascribing wild conspiratorial aims to investigations sparked by mountains of demonstrable evidence and duly proceeding according to the U.S. rule of law:
‘Sadly, the country spent over three years and 40 million taxpayer dollars on these investigations. It is now clear the investigation was populated by many Trump haters who had their own agenda — to try and take down a duly elected president of the United States… As for actual ‘collusion,’ or ‘conspiracy,’ there was none. What there has been, however, is harassment of the president from the day he won the election.’
Lewandowski’s reaching here isn’t even particularly original. Trump himself has already spent a great deal of time whining about supposed “presidential harassment” getting delivered via the investigations into his Russia ties and other things, so what Lewandowski might be hoping comes off to someone here like a valiant, brave attempt to defend the truth or whatever really lands like a bumbling shill following after their leader and that’s it.
Lewandowski has a clear apparent ulterior motive in the whole thing – getting a new job. On apparent break from his testifying (or pretending to at least) before the House Judiciary Committee, he tweeted out a link to a website to support “a potential senate run” in New Hampshire. Both of the state’s current Senators are Democrats, including Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan, the latter of whom was elected even in the “red wave” year of Trump’s 2016 victory.
In the face of some of his antics, panel member and Texas Democrat Sheila Jackson-Lee insisted:
‘We will expose the truth. The president can’t hide behind you any longer. And you should be here to be telling the truth, Mr. Lewandowski because the truth will set you free and the American people.’
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