Democrats used their impeachment pursuit against former President Donald Trump as an attempt to “equate” 75 million Americans who voted for Trump with “the couple hundred criminals who came in an ransacked the Capitol,” Rep. Mike Johnson said (R-LA) in an interview on SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Sunday with host Joel Pollak.
Johnson said the Democrats’ “ultimate goal” with impeachment was to frame Trump’s supporters as indistinguishable from Capitol rioters.
“They really wanted to use impeachment as a vehicle because they wanted to equate all those tens of millions of Trump’s voters and all of his supporters and everybody who came to the rally, they wanted to equate all of those people with the couple hundred criminals who came in and ransacked the Capitol,” Johnson stated.
“If [Democrats’] new impeachment standard is to take hold, most of the party leadership in the Democrats will have to be censured or impeached themselves,” Johnson added. “I thought Trump’s attorneys did such a great job with their video montage where they showed all these guys — even the impeachment managers themselves — using the exact same language that they were trying to incriminate the president by using.”
Johnson remarked, “[Trump] has always stood for law and order and defense of the Constitution. He’s always opposed mob violence.”
Pollak asked about the future of impeachment.
Johnson speculated that congressional majorities may use impeachment more frequently as a political tool.
Johnson remarked, “You are lowering the bar [for impeachment] now. You weaponized this. You turned it into a political weapon to be used by the majority party against a president they don’t like. You opened a Pandora’s box that we may never be able to close again.”
Targeting former officeholders with impeachment is unconstitutional, Johnson assessed, recalling his legal background as an attorney practicing constitutional law for two decades.
Johnson stated, “The whole trial was unconstitutional … because the 45th president doesn’t hold any public office now. He’s a private citizen who lives in Florida. The Constitution limits the authority of the Senate in cases of impeachment to removal from office.”
Johnson said the Framers intended for due process and the First Amendment to apply to public officials charged through impeachment.
“What the Founders had in mind when they set up this impeachment article and the idea behind it was that it would be so serious that the decorum would be so appropriate for the weight of a moment like that,” Johnson explained. “It was sort of presupposed. It was understood, of course, that you would afford due process. They didn’t need to spell out the federal rules of the civil procedure in the Constitution for something like this because they thought that everyone would be acting like adults.”
“This was not a constitutional exercise,” Johnson repeated. “What [Democrats] tried to do [is] to raise ‘cancel culture’ now to a constitutional level.”
Breitbart News Sunday broadcasts live on SiriusXM Patriot 125 from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Eastern.