- How Foreign Allies Talk About Trump Behind Closed Doors
- Transcript: Behind Closed Doors
- Front Page Podcast
- Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris
They met while working at DOT. He proposed in Peru, his home country. Shout out to my fellow WarOnCars friends. Sherrod Brown D-Ohio is 67 … Rep.
How Foreign Allies Talk About Trump Behind Closed Doors
John Katko R-N. Scott Tipton R-Colo. Hunter Hall, deputy director of federal affairs at the Picard Group Hal Dash Samara Hutman David Wolfson Aliza Klein Kendra Kostek Matthew Dolan Karen Scott Kevin Bailey Lisa De Pasquale … Megan Carpentier Dee Dee Sorvino Jennifer Overbye Alex Curd Marc Kimball. Ron Johnson R-Wis.
Transcript: Behind Closed Doors
Amy Klobuchar D-Minn. Panel: Rep. Max Rose D-N. Rand Paul R-Ky. Jim Himes D-Conn. Sherrod Brown D-Ohio. Jackie Speier D-Calif. Mac Thornberry R-Texas Joints Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley. John Kennedy R-La.
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So on one side, you could say, yes, we should be open. We were able to see testimony during the Clinton impeachment, during Nixon.
All of that was televised and open. But technically, they do not have to. The Congressional Research Service put out a report in August that said that House members could approve an impeachment resolution on the floor, but they can always do a closed conduct investigation first. That's their choice. And the House has the ultimate choice to start an impeachment inquiry.
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It starts in the House. And then you go to what was a trial for a conviction before the Senate. So that brings me to the other side of this, which is House members led by Democrats have decided that they want to be able to kind of get to the bottom of this, do really what would have been an old fashioned investigation if the Justice Department had decided to take this up, which they did it. And they want to be able to get much evidence as they can before they come up with the articles of impeachment and before voting.
If you think about it, that's a little more politically palpable for a lot of people who might not be sure if they want to sign on to an impeachment inquiry. They want to make sure there's enough there to hang their hat on. This is a caucus that just came off of the Mueller Pro where they were expecting a smoking gun in the Mueller report that wasn't there. And they don't want to go back to their districts, particularly if they are maybe from a Democrat.
But from what used to be a red district or from a state that voted for Donald Trump and explained that they voted for impeachment before they had all of the information. So they want to go through all of that information now. Kornacki: What you said there with the historical context, I think is really interesting in that if you think back to Bill Clinton, Ken Starr, independent counsel, he's doing his own investigation. He throws this massive report at Congress. Congress decides to impeach over it. They didn't need to do much investigating Nixon, , special counsel. Again, a lot of material thrown at Congress.
So you're saying that rather than having somebody since nobody is in that position for this right now, there is no special counsel. Congress behind closed doors is trying to get the information that could be the basis in the way those those past reports were.
The flip side, though, I want to ask you about is what we're seeing right now in that is these hearings are taking place behind closed doors. Presumably these members are getting something of value from it, but leaks are coming out through the press, into the public. Leaks can be very accurate. They can be misleading. They can distort things. Are there concerns that given again, this is a political process, the fact that these closed door meetings are resulting in leaks that are driving the news coverage of it, that that is affecting this process in any way?
Ainsley: Sure. I don't think anyone is more upset about that than Republicans. If this was televised, we would be able to see someone question these witnesses from the other side. So obviously, you cherry pick what is best for your case.
So that this starts to look very damaging for the White House. Now, you know, we're hitting on something here, which is that there is no jury in this. There are no prosecutors. There's no grand jury. There's no process where you would have where witnesses are interviewed behind closed doors before they're interviewed in front of a jury because the Justice Department simply decided not to take this up. Kornacki: So another thing you've been hearing from Adam Schiff and from Democrats is a reason they want these behind closed doors is because they're afraid witnesses will coordinate otherwise.
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What are they trying to say there? Ainsley: Well, what they're worried about is that the Trump administration may get to these witnesses, particularly people who they have a close relationship with because they recently left and try to get everyone on the same page to give the same narrative that could be false. And so oftentimes investigators will keep witnesses from talking to each other so that they don't all come up with the same false story that then cannot be proven false because they're all telling you the same thing. It's just a way for them to kind of fact check and make sure everyone's telling the truth, by keeping these witnesses separate and by not letting future witnesses know what the past witnesses have said in their testimony.
Kornacki: Broadly speaking, what are Democrats committing to here just in terms of more transparency in the future, anything? Ainsley: So we know that Adam Schiff, the chair of the House Intelligence Committee, has committed to releasing transcripts of these closed door hearings. But we don't know yet if he will ever make any televised testimony. We can imagine at least a piece of this will have to be televised, especially as they move to the Senate and they present all of their evidence as part of a trial. But at this point, we don't know if there are any witnesses that they plan to bring before television cameras.
That's just simply not known yet. Kornacki: What is - I'm curious what your sense is from Republicans in the House and even the Senate floor, for that matter, where this ultimately lands - are their objections to the process, to the closed door nature? Are they strong enough that you could see them basing opposition to impeachment on that? Basically just saying this was an unfair process because of this? Ainsley: Well the White House is certainly basing their decision not to comply with Democratic subpoenas based on the process. I do wonder, though, if Republicans will be able to use that same talking point once Democrats decide to make this public.
If there is enough mounting evidence, it could be that there's a shift. I mean, we're already seeing a shift in Americans who have decided that this is a legitimate impeachment inquiry and a shift in the number who say that the president should be out of office. And so there could be that shift that would make Republicans think differently. Kornacki: So, Julia, just given that the intense public interest in this, obviously, and the fact that this isn't taking place in public and it's only coming out in little bits in terms of what gets leaked, is there a risk there for Democrats in terms of the public either thinking it deserves to know more and it isn't getting it or or or gets potentially even misleading information?
Ainsley: Yeah, there's a risk on both sides. I mean, think about the way Republicans attacked Robert Mueller's investigation, that this was all coordinated by the deep state and people who wanted to see Trump out of office. And that was career law enforcement officials.
Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris
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