House Speaker Paul Ryan has apparently forgot the dozens of hearings involving Hillary Clinton and Benghazi, suggesting that a Democrat in the current president’s position would not receive the same amount of scrutiny that Donald Trump is getting.
When asked by reporters on Thursday whether a Democratic president under the same circumstances as President Trump would have Republicans whispering about impeachment, Ryan said, “No, I don’t think we would, actually. I don’t think that’s at all the case.”
Ryan also defended Trump’s gaffes, missteps, and other problems as president so far on his inexperience. “The president is new at this,” Ryan explained, adding that it’s understandable for him that Trump lashes out from time to time.
“When the FBI director tells him on three different occasions he is not under investigation, yet the speculation swirls around the political system that he is, that’s frustrating,” he said.
However, before the outcome of last year’s election was determined in Trump’s favor — when speculation was that Hillary Clinton would become president — Paul Ryan hinted that Congress would begin proceedings to investigate her. Ryan promised “aggressive oversight work in the House” on Clinton regarding the FBI reclassifying a single email on her private server.
Indeed, Republicans forced Clinton to testify on Capitol Hill for 11 straight hours regarding the Benghazi investigation, which ultimately yielded no findings of wrongdoing by the former Secretary of State.
Former President Barack Obama also received his fair share of impeachment threats from the GOP. It was suggested, for example, that Obama should have been impeached over his accepting the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009. He received dozens of impeachment threats after that, on a variety of wild accusations by Republicans (most of which didn’t stand on much grounds).
To suggest that a Democratic president wouldn’t receive the same amount, if not more, scrutiny by Republicans under the same conditions that Trump currently sits (including possible collusion with Russia and obstruction of justice) is a misleading and dishonest statement for the Speaker of the House to make.