MSNBC Host to DNC Chair: Should Dems Demand Trump Impeachment?

In a softball interview with Democratic National Committee chairman Tom Perez on Monday afternoon, MSNBC anchor Kasie Hunt asked if the Democratic Party should make the impeachment of President Trump part of its platform. She also invited the liberal leader to wildly speculate on whether Trump was guilty of colluding with Russia during the 2016 campaign.

Noting that Perez was “the perfect person” to talk to about the ongoing Russia investigation since “it was the DNC that was partly the victim here” with regard to the organization’s emails being hacked, Hunt urged him to “explore the hack itself and your view of – did the President know before the DNC did that these e-mails were hacked?”

 

 

Without possibly having evidence to back his claims, Perez launched into a rant of conjecture and left-wing talking points:

...you know, there was a term we used to use a lot when I was a prosecutor, and that was the term of consciousness of guilt. There’s a lot of people acting like they’ve been involved in wrongdoing....And why he continues to be Putin’s poodle. You know, he says he's a tough guy, but he’s really Putin’s lap dog. And the only reason I can think of is because Putin has something on him, and that, to me, is becoming clearer and clearer with every indictment, with every guilty plea.

Rather than challenge any of the DNC head’s unsubstantiated assertions, Hunt instead teed him up to respond to calls on the left to remove the President from office:

Sir, one topic that has come up repeatedly as the campaign season has unfolded and some of your donors have been pushing, this idea that President Trump has already, essentially, committed offenses that are impeachable and that he should be impeached. Do you think, based on what you know now, and all of what you just ticked through about the President being, quote, unquote, “Putin’s poodle,” does that amount to an impeachable offense and should the Democratic Party hold the official position that this president should be impeached?

Perez replied: “Well, listen, I think he’s the most dangerous president in American history.” Without directly answering the question, he proclaimed that “the most important thing that I believe that I can do is to win elections.” Moments later, he reiterated that Trump was “undeniably the most dangerous president in American history” and concluded that “we have to make sure that his tenure is as short as possible.” Whether that effort included impeachment remained unclear.

Perhaps Hunt should have pressed Perez on where the Democratic Party stands on important policy issues heading into the 2018 midterm elections, rather than just give him a platform to hurl accusations and invective.

Here is a transcript of the March 5 exchange:

3:48 PM ET

KASIE HUNT: And we now have the chairman of the Democratic National Committee with us, Mr. Tom Perez. Thank you so much, sir, for being with us.

TOM PEREZ [DNC CHAIR]: Hi, Kasie.

HUNT: You are in many ways the perfect person to continue our discussion of this, because of course it was the DNC that was partly the victim here, in addition to John Podesta, of course, who was with Hillary Clinton’s campaign. Do you – first of all, can I ask to you react to what Sam Nunberg is saying and doing here in taking this action. But also explore the hack itself and your view of – did the President know before the DNC did that these e-mails were hacked?

PEREZ: Right. Well, I also come to you as someone who spent over a decade at the Department of Justice. I worked there under Republican and Democratic administrations as a career prosecutor. And I’ll tell you, I watched the statements that you just made, and you know, from time to time, when we were doing investigations, somebody would try to stonewall us, and you know, Director Mueller is a big boy.

HUNT: So what would you do?

He understands what to do and he’ll go to court. You go to court. You enforce the subpoena. And you get them to come in. And I’m quite confident that he has the factual basis that will enable him to require him to come in.

Now, what I don’t know is whether or not he’ll go in and take the Fifth Amendment because frankly when I read about what he was saying, my first question was, is he – does he have exposure on his own? So he’s trying to beat his chest a little bit. Because there are so many people that have been involved in this.

And to answer your other question, you know, there was a term we used to use a lot when I was a prosecutor, and that was the term of consciousness of guilt. There’s a lot of people acting like they’ve been involved in wrongdoing. And the actions of this president, whether it’s firing the former head of the FBI, whether it’s trying to pierce that bright line between the Department of Justice and the White House, so many things he’s doing.

And why he continues to be Putin’s poodle. You know, he says he's a tough guy, but he’s really Putin’s lap dog. And the only reason I can think of is because Putin has something on him, and that, to me, is becoming clearer and clearer with every indictment, with every guilty plea.

And as it relates to the DNC, this had a remarkably adverse impact, as you all know. Because this wasn’t simply an attack on the DNC, it was an attack on our democracy.

HUNT: Sir, one topic that has come up repeatedly as the campaign season has unfolded and some of your donors have been pushing, this idea that President Trump has already, essentially, committed offenses that are impeachable and that he should be impeached. Do you think, based on what you know now, and all of what you just ticked through about the President being, quote, unquote, “Putin’s poodle,” does that amount to an impeachable offense and should the Democratic Party hold the official position that this president should be impeached?

PEREZ: Well, listen, I think he’s the most dangerous president in American history. And not only because of his refusal to take actions against Russia. I mean, the most serious threat to the integrity of the elections is Russia.

I think he’s the most dangerous president in history is because he’s hurting workers, because he’s dividing America. And for me, as the head of the Democratic Party, the most important thing that I believe that I can do is to win elections. And that’s exactly what we’ve been doing over the last year. Winning elections in places like Oklahoma, Doug Jones in Alabama, the elections in Virginia and elsewhere.

I’m out here in Washington state right now because we’ve got tremendous opportunity to pickup congressional seats. We’ve seen what happens when you take over the state senate. Washington state just enacted a wide array of voting rights reforms to make it easier for people to vote. They did so because the Democrats finally took over the state senate.

So, I feel like my role is to make sure we are electing Democrats everywhere. He’s undeniably the most dangerous president in American history and we have to make sure that his tenure is as short as possible.

(...)

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