House Speaker Nancy Pelosi flared up in anger last week when asked about whether President Donald Trump should be afforded the right to confront the whistleblower who has accused Trump of improper conduct related to a July 25 phone call with the president of Ukraine.
Sinclair reporter James Rosen noted that impeachment is essentially a political process with legal trappings, according to a YouTube video of his exchange with the California Democrat — an exchange that later left Rosen tweeting his bafflement at Pelosi’s conduct.
“The question I asked @SpeakerPelosi Pelosi as a reporter for @WeAreSinclair was fair and respectful. Her reply descended to personal insult without addressing the substance, and was accordingly beneath her office. I later asked @GOPLeader tough questions. It’s called journalism,” he tweeted.
The question I asked @SpeakerPelosi Pelosi as a reporter for @WeAreSinclair was fair and respectful. Her reply descended to personal insult without addressing the substance, and was accordingly beneath her office. I later asked @GOPLeader tough questions. It’s called journalism.
— James Rosen (@JamesRosenTV) November 14, 2019
Rosen, who was a target of surveillance by the government during the Obama administration while he was a reporter for Fox News, had been called upon by Pelosi during a Thursday media session.
“We hear it said routinely and of course, it’s true, that impeachment is a political process and not a legal one. And yet, as we can all observe many things surrounding the legal process are inherent in this political process.
“We have counsels, depositions, subpoenas, threats of perjury and so forth. This was made slightly clear yesterday by Chairman Schiff, he reminded the minority that he would do everything necessary to ensure the legal rights of the whistleblower to preserve anonymity,” Rosen said.
He then framed his question to Pelosi.
“And so, I wonder if you can explain to the American people why the legal rights of a whistleblower should prevail in this political setting over those of President Trump who should normally enjoy a right to confront his accuser?” Rosen asked.
Pelosi sniped at the reporter in reply.
“Well, let me just say this–I will say to you, Mr. Republican Talking Points, what I said to the president of the United States–when you talk about the whistleblower you are coming into my wheelhouse,” she said.
Pelosi then said she knows more about whistleblower issues than anyone else.
“I have more experience in intelligence than anybody in the Congress, anybody who has ever served. Twenty-five years on the committee as a top Democrat, ex officio, as speaker and leader. I was there when we wrote the whistleblower law,” she said.
Pelosi then put the issue in unmistakably liberal terms.
“The whistleblower is there to speak truth to power,” she said, adding that the whistleblower should “have protection for doing that and any retribution or harm coming to the whistleblower undermines our ability to hear truth about power. So, I will defend the rights of the whistleblower vehemently, vehemently.”
When Pelosi was then asked about Trump’s legal rights, she dismissed the argument.
“Well, the president can come and — if he has a case to make, does he want to come speak? Does he want to consent in writing or speak to the Committee about his what might be uh, uh exculpatory for him? He has that right to do. But nobody, nobody — president — president is not above the law,” she said.