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Fox News' Judge Napolitano: What Trump has admitted to regarding contact with Ukraine is a crime
It's probably a good thing that President Trump was busy at the United Nations on Tuesday, because the frequent Fox News viewer wouldn't have liked what he heard during anchor Shepard Smith's afternoon show.
Smith was joined by former Judge Andrew Napolitano, the network's senior judicial analyst, shortly before House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) announced the launch of a formal impeachment inquiry against Trump. Smith asked Napolitano about all sorts of scenarios involving Trump and his phone call to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, and whether they would be crimes. Trump has admitted he asked Zelensky to investigate the son of 2020 presidential candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden, and Napolitano said that yes, "it is a crime for the president to solicit aid for his campaign from a foreign government."
The whistleblower who brought attention to the call went through the proper channels and was deemed credible by the intelligence community's inspector general, but acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire did not pass the complaint along to Congress, as required by law. This was a bad move, Napolitano said, and the "administration is on very, very thin ice, on the grounds on which it blocked it, for two reasons." First, the statute says if a complaint is found to be credible and urgent by the inspector general, it "shall," not may, be shared with the bipartisan leaders of the House and Senate.
Also, the Justice Department's ruling Maguire is using to defend his decision to withhold the complaint from Congress is "cockamamie," Napolitano said, explaining that the DOJ is claiming that since the president doesn't work for the intelligence community, the complaint is moot. "Moot?" Napolitano asked. "The complaint accuses the president of the United States of bribery, how can that be moot? The Congress has every right under the statute to know about it." Bribery, he continued, is "absolutely an impeachable offense, there's no equivocation. Why do I say that? Because it's stated in the Constitution. The basis for impeachment: treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors." Watch the video below. Catherine Garcia