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20 Impeachment What-Ifs

President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and the vice president’s son Hunter at an NCAA basketball game on January 30, 2010 (Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)

The Democrats might have had a more persuasive case for impeachment if only…

1) Donald Trump had cut off all military assistance to Ukraine.

2) Donald Trump got a Ukrainian prosecutor fired by leveraging U.S. aid.

3) Barack Obama earlier had not vetoed lethal military aid to Ukraine in fear of Russian reactions.

4) Ukraine was not a notoriously corrupt country.

5) There was a special prosecutor’s report finding Trump legally culpable.

6) There was direct or written evidence that Trump had committed a high crime.

7) Joe Biden as Vice President had not spearheaded the Obama administration’s Ukraine policy.

8) Joe Biden’s son was not given obscene compensation by Ukrainian interests to influence U.S. aid policy to Ukraine.

9) Joe Biden had not bragged on tape that as VP that he got fired a Ukrainian prosecutor who, per the prosecutor’s own account, was likely looking into his son’s activities by leveraging even non-military U.S. assistance to Ukraine.

10) Ukraine was the first or second partisan inquiry into purported suspect presidential activity rather than the 20th or more partisan attempt.

11) There was a not an upcoming election in less than a year.

12) There was bipartisan congressional support and majority public opinion for impeachment.

13) Both Joe Biden and Barack Obama had not described their own earlier quid pro quos with Russians and Ukrainians on tape that were never investigated.

14) The whistleblower, as promised, had come forward to testify, explained his charges and motivations, and faced cross-examination.

15) Adam Schiff’s staff or staffer had not secretly conferenced with the whistleblower before he made his formal complaint.

16) The Democratic House leadership in July 2019 had not agreed to start impeachment proceedings well before the Ukraine drama.

17) The media’s coverage of the Trump administration had been 60 percent negative rather than 90 percent negative.

18) Robert Mueller’s prior 22 months of presidential investigations had not come up empty.

19) Adam Schiff had posed as a Peter Rodino–like sober, judicious and fair inquisitor.

20) Donald Trump had sent the country into recession, or sent thousands of troops into an unpopular war abroad.

NRO contributor Victor Davis Hanson is the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and the author, most recently, of The Case for Trump.

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