Barreling toward impeachment proceedings, Pelosi offers Trump her thoughts and prayers

Christopher Wilson
Senior Writer

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and President Trump took to cable news and Twitter on Friday morning as the first week of the impeachment battle came to a close in Washington.

When Pelosi was asked about Trump’s comments that the White House staffers who spoke to the whistleblower should perhaps be considered as spies and executed, she pivoted to offering prayers.

“I pray for the president all the time,” said Pelosi on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “I pray for the safety of his family, wish that he would pray for the safety of other families and do something courageous on guns. But I also pray that God will illuminate him to see right from wrong. It's very problematic.”

Pelosi also said that Attorney General William Barr had “gone rogue” in his handling of the whistleblower complaint and that acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire broke the law by taking the complaint to the White House even though Trump and Barr were mentioned in it.

Pelosi also said that she still hoped to work with Trump on an infrastructure funding bill.

“I think where they are going is the coverup of the coverup, and that's really very sad for them,” said Pelosi. “To have a Justice Department go so rogue — well, they had been for a while — and now it just makes matters worse that the attorney general was mentioned, the president was mentioned, and yet the Justice Department directed the director of national intelligence to take it to the White House.”

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and President Trump. (Photos: Aurora Samperio/NurPhoto via Zuma Press, Erin Scott/Reuters)

“He’s a person of great reputation,” said Pelosi of Maguire, “I felt sorry for him because here he is having to … I don’t know what. I think that what he did broke the law. The law is very clear.”

More than 218 House Democrats now support the impeachment inquiry, and if they were to all vote yes on an article of impeachment, it would pass and Trump would be officially impeached. The proceedings would then move to a Senate trial in which two-thirds of the chamber would need to vote to remove him from office. On Thursday, a number of Republican senators said they hadn’t had time to read the full whistleblower complaint that details Trump attempting to pressure the Ukrainian government into investigating former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter. The complaint is nine pages.

Polling done since Pelosi formally announced the inquiry on Tuesday shows support for impeachment growing, but it’s still short of a majority of Americans.

While Pelosi was on MSNBC, the president spent his morning demanding the resignation of Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif.

During Thursday’s House Intelligence hearing with DNI chief Maguire, Schiff laid out how he believed the July phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky transpired. Schiff made it clear he was giving his interpretation of how the call went, but Trump wrote that he was “supposedly reading the exact transcribed version of the call.”

“Adam Schiff therefore lied to Congress and attempted to defraud the American Public,” wrote Trump. “He has been doing this for two years. I am calling for him to immediately resign from Congress based on this fraud!”

It’s likely Trump or his staff saw a viral tweet from conservative operative Benny Johnson, which included a video of Schiff at the hearing that cut off the part where he described the call as, “Well, it reads like a classic organized crime shakedown. Shorn of its rambling character and in not so many words, this is the essence of what the president communicates.”

During the House hearing Thursday, Maguire said he thought the whistleblower had acted in good faith and had done “the right thing.”

Trump also took time out from his presidential duties on Friday morning to defend his English grammar and usage.

“To show you how dishonest the LameStream Media is, I used the word Liddle’, not Liddle, in discribing Corrupt Congressman Liddle’ Adam Schiff,” wrote Trump. “Low ratings @CNN purposely took the hyphen out and said I spelled the word little wrong. A small but never ending situation with CNN!”

The punctuation mark to which Trump referred in the tweet was an apostrophe, not a hyphen. The president also misspelled “describing” and capitalized “Corrupt,” which is not standard English, since it does not constitute Schiff’s formal title. Most grammarians prescribe a hyphen in a compound adjective, such as “never-ending.”

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