Trump warns Democrats against impeachment: "The people would revolt"

"It’s hard to impeach somebody who hasn’t done anything wrong"

By Matthew Rozsa

Staff Writer

Published December 12, 2018 10:30AM (EST)

 (AP/Getty/Photo Montage by Salon)
(AP/Getty/Photo Montage by Salon)

President Donald Trump expressed confidence that he won't get impeached because, if he does, people will "revolt" against the situation.

During an Oval Office interview with Reuters on Tuesday, Trump answered a question about whether he's worried about getting impeached by insisting that "it’s hard to impeach somebody who hasn’t done anything wrong and who’s created the greatest economy in the history of our country."

He continued: "I’m not concerned, no. I think that the people would revolt if that happened."

The reason Trump was asked about impeachment is that federal prosecutors from the Southern District of New York claimed that Trump instructed his lawyer, Michael Cohen, to make six-figure payments to two women so that they would not disclose his alleged affairs with them prior to Election Day 2016. If true, this could constitute a violation of campaign finance laws and theoretically put Trump in danger of being impeached.

Trump brushed off these possibilities during his Tuesday interview with Reuters.

"Michael Cohen is a lawyer. I assume he would know what he’s doing," Trump told Reuters when they asked about what he had discussed with Cohen prior to making the payments.

He added, "Number one, it wasn’t a campaign contribution. If it were, it’s only civil, and even if it’s only civil, there was no violation based on what we did. OK?"

Trump also attempted to pivot away from the accusations against himself to claims that Hillary Clinton paid hush money to cover up unspecified accusations against her husband, former President Bill Clinton.

Trump's comments echoed remarks made by his adviser Roger Stone during an interview with TMZ last year.

"Try to impeach him. Just try it. You will have a spasm of violence in this country, an insurrection like you’ve never seen," Stone told TMZ in an interview on the possibility of Trump being forcibly removed from office, according to Politico.

Stone later attempted to mitigate any potential PR problems from his remark by insisting that he was "not advocating violence" but instead merely "predicting it." Nevertheless, Stone claimed that "both sides are heavily armed, my friend. This is not 1974. People will not stand for impeachment."

He also claimed that any member of Congress who voted to impeach Trump "would be endangering their own life."

Despite Trump's professions of confidence that he won't be impeached, a report by CNN earlier this week described the president as being "increasingly concerned in recent weeks about what his administration is facing come January, when newly empowered Democrats are expected to unleash the full force of their oversight powers on the Trump administration." House Democrats will be empowered to request the president's tax returns, force his Cabinet secretaries to testify and hold him accountable for unpopular, controversial and/or potentially illegal policies.

By Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a staff writer at Salon. He received a Master's Degree in History from Rutgers-Newark in 2012 and was awarded a science journalism fellowship from the Metcalf Institute in 2022.

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