JUNE 13, 2019
WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Thursday accused President Donald Trump of perpetrating an “assault” on the nation’s democracy after he told ABC News that he’d welcome foreign information on his 2020 opponent.
“It’s a very sad thing,” Pelosi told reporters about the president’s words. “That’s an assault on our democracy.”
“What the president said last night shows clearly once again … that he does not know the difference between right and wrong,” Pelosi told reporters. “And that’s probably the nicest thing I can say about him.”
The president told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos he’d accept dirt on his 2020 opponent from a foreign government and may or may not turn it over to the FBI. Trump argued that such information amounts to “opposition research” widely used by campaigns
The House speaker said the law prohibits a campaign from accepting an in-kind contribution from a foreign government, which she said includes information. However, Pelosi demurred on a question about whether his remarks pushed her closer to launching an impeachment inquiry.
Pelosi said she would pursue a “methodical” approach on deciding whether to launch that inquiry.
“Everybody in the county should be totally appalled by what the president said last night,” Pelosi said. “But he has a habit of making appalling statements.”
Earlier, Pelosi said Trump was giving Russians a “green light” to meddle in the 2020 election.
“The Russians attacked our elections, and @realDonaldTrump is giving them the green light to do it again,” Pelosi said in a tweet.
Trump told ABC that he would probably take information provided by a foreign government about a political adversary.
“They have information. I think I’d take it,” Trump said. “If I thought there was something wrong, I’d go maybe to the FBI – if I thought there was something wrong.”
Trump also said such political help would not be considered interference.
Rep. Adam Schiff, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said Trump’s comments are a “dereliction of his duty.” But the California Democrat said he was not surprised by the admission.
“The Trump campaign sought such help in 2016, and their candidate just put out word they want more in 2020. It’s up to Congress to put a stop to it,” he said.
It wasn’t only Democrats who raised concerns about Trump’s position. Sen. Lindsey Graham, a South Carolina Republican and close White House ally, also pushed back.
”I think it’s a mistake,” Graham told reporters on Capitol Hill who quizzed him on the president’s remarks. “I think it’s a mistake of law.”
The Russians attacked our elections, and @realDonaldTrump is giving them the green light to do it again. We can’t stand by and just hope for the best. The Senate must join the House in passing #HR1 to #ProtectOurDemocracy! https://t.co/l7UTcFVlDd
— Nancy Pelosi (@SpeakerPelosi) June 13, 2019
I meet and talk to “foreign governments” every day. I just met with the Queen of England (U.K.), the Prince of Wales, the P.M. of the United Kingdom, the P.M. of Ireland, the President of France and the President of Poland. We talked about “Everything!” Should I immediately….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 13, 2019
Courtesy/Source: USA Today