Republican Bill Weld, who is challenging Trump for the 2020 Republican nomination for president, called Trump’s pressure on Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate Joe Biden “treason, pure and simple.” Weld then raised the spectre of the death penalty.
Said the former Massachusetts governor on Morning Joe: “Obviously, canceling primaries undermines democratic institutions and democratic elections, but that’s far from the deepest dive crime that the president has committed here. He’s now acknowledged that in a single phone call right after he suspended $250 million of military aid to Ukraine, he called up the president of Ukraine and pressed him 8 times to investigate Joe Biden who the president thinks is going to be running against him. Talk about pressuring a foreign country to interfere with and control a U.S. election. It couldn’t be clearer. And that’s not just undermining Democratic institutions. That is treason. It’s treason, pure and simple, and the penalty for treason under the U.S. code is death.”
Said Weld, later: “The penalty on the Constitution is removal from office. And that might look like a pretty good alternative to the president if he can work out a plea deal. The grounds for removal of office, impeachment, are treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors. We don’t have to worry about bribery anymore, we don’t have to worry about other high crimes and misdemeanors, although I think he committed many. We have treason and we can go right for the hoop.”
Weld then lashed out at cowardly Republicans for protecting the president: “If they won’t say this is a bridge too far for us, then they really have no chance at the ballot box next year, not just President Trump but those members of the Senate. It’s well past time for this guy, in my opinion, to be carted off to save us all. He’s daring us all to let him be totally lawless. He has no respect for the law, he has no knowledge base under any issues. Why do we want this man as president of the United States? I don’t get it.”