Former New York City Mayor and TV lawyer for President Donald Trump Rudy Giuliani previewed the argument that Trump and his allies are likely to make to Republican voters in order to hold onto power this November.
Trump lawyer Giuliani says midterms will answer impeachment question https://t.co/GcYQMHYa0K https://t.co/lPyGdYnYTh— CNBC International (@CNBC International) 1533164431.0
On Wednesday afternoon, Giuliani explained that November's midterms will be a referendum on Trump and whether or not the country wants to see the president impeached.
#URGENT: Giuliani says "this (midterm) election is going to be about impeachment or no impeachment"— Carol Costello (@Carol Costello) 1533153515.0
"I say this not in my role as a lawyer but as a concerned citizen and Republican," Giuliani said. "This election is going to be about impeachment or no impeachment."
Giuliani was speaking at a campaign event for Eddie Edwards, who is seeking the Republican nomination to represent New Hampshire's 1st Congressional District the U.S. House of Representatives. His job was to rally the troops, and it's clear that this is how they intend to do it: argue that if Democrats take over, that's it for Trump.
This is the first thing Giuliani has said that is a fact. #ImpeachTrump #TraitorInChief https://t.co/PczE7ONWkU— Randall Smith (@Randall Smith) 1533163587.0
"If Democrats get control of the House, do you think they're going to treat President Trump fairly?" Giuliani asked. Many in the crowd shouted, "no!"
"I don't think they will either," Giuliani replied.
When you look at some of them on television — 'Traitor. He's a traitor, he's this, he's that.' — You get the sense that there isn't a fair-minded, large enough group of people there that we can trust not to take this country down this terrible road.
This follows similar messaging by former Chief White House Strategist Steven Bannon, who in June said that the midterms would be an "up or down vote on the impeachment of Donald Trump" and that GOP voters should pretend Trump is "on the ballot."
“This is Trump's first [re-election]," Bannon told ABC News Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl. "It's going to be this November.”
"It's very simple, November 6th, up or down vote ... up or down vote on the impeachment of Donald Trump. I'll tell you what, you get to then look at ... the growth of the economy," he said.
Trump's top talking head also said that a Democrat-controlled House would have the votes to move forward with potential articles of impeachment, which have twice been abandoned under the Republican leadership.
This strategy plays out, of course, under the cloud of the Mueller investigation, which Giuliani once again called for an end to earlier Wednesday.
"We believe that the [Mueller] investigation should be brought to a close," Giuliani told reporters. "We think they’re at the end of it. They should render their report."
"We believe that the investigation should be brought to a close. … Put up or shut up, what do you got?" President T… https://t.co/BEsYDyJGNF— CNN (@CNN) 1533153244.0
Giuliani then said Mueller should "put up or shut up."
Giuliani to Mueller: "Put up or shut up" https://t.co/tuePkRn5Qt https://t.co/XLi02jbhQq— The Hill (@The Hill) 1533155283.0
"I mean, I guess if we were playing poker, we'd say 'put up or shut up,'" he said. "What do you got?"
"We have every reason to believe they don’t have anything," Giuliani added. "I don’t think they have any evidence he did anything wrong."
The answer to that question may be coming. Mueller has reportedly been examining Trump's tweets for evidence of obstruction of justice. This includes the president calling on Attorney General Jeff Sessions to "stop the rigged witch hunt" as part of an early-morning Twitter meltdown.
..This is a terrible situation and Attorney General Jeff Sessions should stop this Rigged Witch Hunt right now, bef… https://t.co/dI69iTTQOS— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump) 1533129843.0
Trump's legal team said his tweet is not indicative of a directive to the attorney general, but rather, his opinion.
"The president has issued no order or direction to the Department of Justice on this,” Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow reasoned. Giuliani also opined on the tweet, saying: “it’s very well-established the president uses tweets to express his opinion,” adding that Trump “very carefully used the word ‘should.'”
Mueller's team is also looking to question the president about potential obstruction of justice, leading some legal experts to speculate that Trump may be a "target" of the special counsel's investigation.
"Giuliani dropped this little gem in his unhinged interview" that could indicate Trump has moved from "the subject"… https://t.co/XO5ZKUbBmT— TheBeat w/Ari Melber (@TheBeat w/Ari Melber) 1533162107.0