The large number of Trump supporters living on Colorado’s western slope no doubt vehemently oppose his impeachment. This blog is to help them understand why impeaching the President is imperative to protect our country, our democracy and our national sovereignty.
Trump has broken important U.S. laws, multiple times. In so doing, he has demonstrated that he poses a profound threat to our country. One of the laws he violated protects our country from foreign interference at very high levels of government:
Soliciting foreign interference in our elections
Trump has repeatedly invited foreign interference in our elections to benefit himself, an act that violates 52 U.S. Code § 30121, titled “Contributions and donations by foreign nationals.” This law states it is illegal for a person to solicit or accept “a contribution or donation of money or other thing of value” from a foreign national, “or to make an express or implied promise to make a contribution or donation, in connection with a Federal, State, or local election” with a foreign national.
On June 13, 2019, Ellen Weintraub, Chair of the Federal Elections Commission (FEC) in Washington D.C. explained (pdf) why this law is so important to our country:
Let me make something 100% clear to the American public and anyone running for public office: It is illegal for any person to solicit, accept, or receive anything of value from a foreign national in connection with a U.S. election. This is not a novel concept. Electoral intervention from foreign governments has been considered unacceptable since the beginnings of our nation. Our Founding Fathers sounded the alarm about “foreign Interference, Intrigue, and Influence.” They knew that when foreign governments seek to influence American politics, it is always to advance their own interests, not America’s.
Trump didn’t invite a foreign country to interfere in our elections just once, or by accident. Rather, he has over time demonstrated a clear pattern of openly and repeatedly soliciting foreign interference in our elections to benefit his own personal political fortunes. This is an out-and-out betrayal of our country. Trump made these solicitations in very open public venues, too, making the fact that he did it impossible to refute.
Here are the occasions in which Trump violated U.S. law and compromised America’s sovereignty and security:
During is campaign, on July 13, 2016, Trump asked Russia to help him with his campaign, in his famous “Russia, if you’re listening” speech regarding Hillary Clinton’s illegally-hacked emails. Watch the speech in which Trump asks Russia to intervene in our election:
The second time Trump solicited interference from a foreign national in our election was in a July 25, 2019 telephone call (pdf) with Ukraine President Zelensky. In the call, President Trump urged President Zelensky to investigate former U.S. President Joe Biden, one of Trump’s 2020 political rivals. Trump framed this as a request to do us a “favor,” and Trump did this while he was simultaneously withholding $391 million in military aid which Congress had allocated to Ukraine to help it defend itself from Russian aggression on their country’s eastern border. Russia is a foe of the U.S., and thirteen Russians have been indicted for efforts they made on behalf of the Russian government to aid Trump’s campaign for president in 2016.
The third time Trump solicited interference in our elections was on October 3, 2019, as he was waiting to board a helicopter on White House grounds. Trump said to a reporter, on camera, that he hoped Ukraine would open an investigation into former VP Joe Biden, and then Trump also urged China to open an investigation into Joe Biden as well. Announcements of investigations into his political rival would have been of great value to Trump in the 2020 election by making his rival look bad, and so it is considered a “thing of value” under U.S. law. Watch as Trump asks the Ukraine and then Chinese governments to open investigations into his political rival:
It is irrefutable that Trump has invited not one, but three foreign countries to corrupt our elections. If these countries actually did as he asked, like Russia did in 2016, it would interfere with American citizens’ right to freely and fairly choose their own leaders without influence from foreign countries. America’s Founding Fathers feared the possibility that an American president would do this when they wrote the Constitution. That’s why the Founders built into America’s founding document, the Constitution, a way to recognize and defend against the corrupting influence of foreign money and power on our country, and particularly on the president. The defense they provided is impeachment and removal of a president who engages in such behavior.
This is why the House has no choice but to impeach President Trump, and it’s why the Senate has a clear reason to remove him from office.