WASHINGTON, DC, January 30, 2020 – As impeachment trial of President Trump wends its way through the Senate, Republicans are scrambling to manage their cover-up. As Alliance for Justice Senior Fellow William Yeomans describes it in his new column, that cover-up is increasingly fragile.
There is a “fundamental truth about managing a cover-up,” Yeomans writes. “It is essential to keep the lid on and tightly sealed. The instant the seal breaks, all bets are off.” The leak of John Bolton’s manuscript was not part of the plan of maintaining that seal.
Now, Republicans are scrambling for new arguments to maintain their cover-up and justify blocking any witnesses. Yeomans lays out how they’re finding it in Alan Dershowitz’s argument that Trump’s actions may have been inappropriate, but don’t rise to the level of impeachment. “Previously, Trump’s defenders were reluctant to take this course because it contains an implicit admission — anathema to Trump — that his underlying conduct might not be perfect, but merely unimpeachable,” he explains. “The strength of the case for witnesses, as expressed in public opinion, has moved some of them to embrace it.”
Trump has also tried to bring back the threat of executive privilege to block Bolton’s testimony, but Yeomans outlines the multiple reasons that wouldn’t be sufficient to keep him out of the witness stand. The bigger concern is that the White House might be engaging “in further obstruction by over-classifying material in the manuscript to delay or prevent its publication.”
Yeomans Work focuses on the challenges to the justice system in the era of Trump. Bill Yeomans is available for media interviews. His opinions are his own and do not necessarily represent the positions of Alliance for Justice. For booking inquiries, contact Zack Ford, Press Secretary, at Zack.Ford@afj.org or at 202-464-7370.