Some mainstream media outlets have taken issue with a recent comment by one of President Donald Trump's evangelical advisors who warned that a successful effort to impeach the president would likely rip the country apart.
Democrats have stepped up their efforts to force Donald Trump out of office with what Nancy Pelosi has deemed an "impeachment inquiry." The stir erupted after the president tweeted this comment from Dr. Robert Jeffress, made during a Fox News interview last weekend:
Jeffress (on Fox News): "If the Democrats are successful in removing the president from office, I'm afraid it will cause a Civil War-like fracture in this nation from which this country will never heal."
A day or two later, President Trump tweeted Jeffress' words and the mainstream media grabbed hold of the "civil war" reference:
- The tweet itself is "an independent basis for impeachment," Newsweek quoted a Harvard Law professor saying, because "a sitting president [is] threatening civil war if Congress exercises its constitutionally authorized power."
- It was "reckless and threatening," opined one CNN commentator, suggesting that the president's "warning of a looming civil war" is another of his "specific calls for political violence."
Jeffress tells OneNewsNow that Trump quoted him correctly and that he has nothing to apologize for.
"I want to be very clear that I stand by 100 percent what I actually said. I never predicted and certainly never advocated for an actual civil war," the Southern Baptist pastor says. "But what I did say was if the left is able to remove this president from office, I believe there would be a Civil War-like fracture in our country."
Jeffress predicts a groundless impeachment would tear the country apart.
"The Civil War has been over 160 years, but we still feel the lingering effects of that war in our country. This nation has never really completely healed from that," he observes. "And I believe that if a duly elected president is removed from office after 63-million Americans voted for him, there would be a similar-type fracture in the spirit of our country."
A trial in the offing? Not necessarily …
Meanwhile, Senate Major Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) has stated he would have "no choice" but to take up articles of impeachment against Trump should the House of Representatives approve them. But a conservative political scientist and election analyst says that doesn't mean that there's necessarily going to be a trial.
Dr. Charles Dunn, emeritus professor of government at Clemson University, says it must be understood what McConnell meant by saying the Senate would take up articles of impeachment.
"What he's committed to do, as he stated, is to follow the rules of the Senate. [McConnell said] Yes, we're going to take this up – but that does not mean that there's going to be a trial because they could take it up and take no action," he explains. "[Or] they could take it up and decide that they would censure the president.
"There are various other actions or non-actions that could take place. So, it does not mean necessarily that there will be a trial."
Dunn says it's important to watch what McConnell does because the Kentucky lawmaker is "the ultimate legislative craftsman" on Capitol Hill.