Last week’s public impeachment hearings highlighted just how much hyperbole surrounds the entire spectacle of impeachment. The establishment waited with bated breath for the testimony of former US Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch. While she was testifying, President Trump tweeted about her, claiming that her performance as Ambassador was awful, saying that “everywhere Marie Yovanovitch went turned bad.” The anti-Trump bandwagon quickly pounced on that and accused Trump of witness intimidation, while sane people everywhere hung their heads in shame at how easily language can be abused.
It should be pretty clear what witness intimidation is and isn’t. Threatening to harm a witness or communicating threats through someone close to the witness is witness intimidation. Throwing out a generic tweet on Twitter, at a time when that witness can neither see nor react to the tweet, is not witness intimidation. Neither is feeling intimidated an indication of witness intimidation.
The fact that House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff characterized Trump’s tweet as witness intimidation tells you everything you need to know about the impeachment inquiry, that Democrats will grasp at whatever straws they can to get anything to stick to Trump. The fact that analysts agreed with Schiff, and that even Fox News host Bret Baier characterized Trump’s tweet as “adding an article of impeachment” in real time shows how far gone most people are with regard to impeachment.
No disinterested observer would characterize Trump’s exchange with the Ukrainian President as impeachable, nor would that observer characterize Trump’s tweet as an impeachable offense. But just like global warming has morphed into climate change, and every act of weather becomes supposed proof of man-made climate change, so too everything Trump says or does becomes newfound evidence that he needs to be impeached. If you didn’t think we lived in a bizarro clown world before this inquiry started, you certainly will by the time it’s through.