Trump’s Anti-Impeachment Strategy Is Materializing — and It Could Work
Published in The Washington Post
on September 30, 2019
President Trump’s strategy to fight off impeachment is rapidly coming into view. It looks exactly like what we have come to expect from him — pugnacious and partisan — and it could work.
The emerging approach has three prongs. Prong one: Attack Joe Biden’s connection to his son Hunter Biden and to Hunter Biden’s business dealings in Ukraine and China. Prong two: Rally Republicans around the specter that Democrats are trying to unfairly win back what they lost in the election. Prong three: Rally non-Republican supporters by reminding them of Trump’s purported populism.
The attacks on Biden serve two purposes. The first is obvious: Push a story line that competes with impeachment. Democrats will dismiss this, but the story will resonate with Republicans who already are predisposed to believe the other side is up to no good. Conservative media are already circulating a recent opinion piece from conservative columnist John Solomon in the Hill in which he contends there’s more to the Biden-Ukraine story than is currently believed. If something new is uncovered, then the pressure on the Republican-led Senate to investigate Hunter Biden will grow, distracting from the Democrats’ impeachment narrative.
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Henry Olsen is a senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center.