President Donald Trump has been acquitted of the impeachment articles charged against him, but Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), the lead House manager to present the impeachment case, isn’t satisfied.
In fact, Schiff said this week that he hopes to keep looking into the president’s alleged “misconduct” and would like to talk with certain administration officials as part of the continuing investigations.
The investigations will continue
In an interview on Thursday with NPR‘s Morning Edition host Steve Inskeep, Schiff praised Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) for his “guilty” vote against the president. Even though it ended in a full acquittal, the impeachment effort was “absolutely worth it,” Schiff said, as an attempt to place a “constraint” on the president and administration. Schiff says that he does not have second thoughts about the manner in which House Democrats pursued it.
The Democrat also vowed to remain “vigilant” about President Trump’s actions going forward and indicated that he and others would continue to investigate not just the matter of the temporarily withheld aid to Ukraine but also a host of other issues of alleged wrongdoing by the president and his associates. However, he acknowledged that no final decisions have been made.
Asked about the potential for compelling former National Security Adviser John Bolton to testify before Congress, Schiff was non-committal and cited the lengthy time frame needed to force the issue in the courts.
Mulvaney and Pompeo
Mentioning two current administration officials — acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo — Inskeep asked whether Schiff intended to seek testimony from them as well on Ukraine and potentially other matters.
“I would still like to hear from them,” Schiff said. “But we have to make the decision about next steps in consultation with our caucus and our leadership.”
He further explained: “What we’ll need to weigh is the need to validate Congress’ oversight authority, the need to make sure the American people understand the full length and breadth of the president’s misconduct, as well as others in the administration that were part of the misconduct. And at the same time, the imperative of keeping our legislative agenda first and foremost and striking the right balance between the two.”
Schiff went on to suggest that, despite failing to obtain a conviction, the impeachment effort was still worthwhile because it “stigmatized for all of history” the president and served to inform the public of his “misconduct” that, hopefully, would be a factor in their minds come time to vote in November.
The congressman also accused President Trump of having solicited election interference from China and revisited his tired old refrain of “Russia, Russia, Russia” while strongly insinuating that the Obama administration had fallen short in addressing the Russian interference problem in 2016. He further noted that Russia was likely to try and interfere again, and called on the intelligence community to be more public about any evidence of interference that should be discovered, even while acknowledging that doing so could appear “partisan.”
They aren’t going to stop
It was pretty obvious from this interview that Schiff learned very little from his loss in the Senate impeachment trial and that, regardless of his failure, he intends to keep doing what he’s been doing.
So long as Democrats remain in the majority in the House, partisans like Schiff will continue to investigate President Trump. For them, any potential avenue for Trump’s impeachment and removal from office is worth pursuing, no matter the potential consequences to the nation.