President Donald Trump fired off a Sunday morning tweet in the direction of House impeachment manager Adam Schiff, and critics immediately piled on to accuse him of issuing a direct threat.
“Shifty Adam Schiff is a CORRUPT POLITICIAN, and probably a very sick man. He has not paid the price, yet, for what he has done to our Country!” Trump tweeted.
Shifty Adam Schiff is a CORRUPT POLITICIAN, and probably a very sick man. He has not paid the price, yet, for what he has done to our Country!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 26, 2020
Schiff himself told Chuck Todd on Sunday’s “Meet the Press” that he believed Trump had intended to threaten him when he said, “He has not paid the price, yet, for what he has done to our Country!” (RELATED: ‘Blood Drained From Adam Schiff’s Face’: John Barrasso Says Schiff’s ‘Parody’ Came Back To Haunt Him)
Rep. Schiff tells @MeetThePress that he thinks President Trump’s tweet this morning asserting that Schiff will pay a “price” for his role in the impeachment effort “is intended to be” a threat. https://t.co/lqS0opdvOi
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) January 26, 2020
Others were quick to take up the same argument.
Is this the US President threatening the life of a US Congressman, a leader of the opposition party? Does not matter: fact we are having a legitimate debate about whether or not President is ordering hit on Congressman means we have already lost our way as a republic.
— David Rothschild (@DavMicRot) January 26, 2020
— Andy Ostroy (@AndyOstroy) January 26, 2020
Trump saying today that Adam Schiff has “not paid the price” is a THREAT. Period. It’s like when a mob boss threatens prosecutors. But instead of coming from a mob boss it’s coming from the head of the Republican Party. And the rest of the GOP is silent. #Complicit
— (((DeanObeidallah))) (@DeanObeidallah) January 26, 2020
Every time Donald Trump targets someone there’s an implicit threat of violence. His language is violence, filled with physicality and passing allusions. But he also knows, full and well, he has at his disposal a legion of followers more than willing to threaten and attach. 1/
— Jared Yates Sexton (@JYSexton) January 26, 2020
Among the critics were sitting Democratic Rep. David Cicilline of Rhode Island and Sen. Chris Van Hollen of Maryland. Cicilline called for a ruling from Twitter, while Van Hollen argued that Trump’s attorneys should be admonished by Chief Justice John Roberts, who has been tasked with overseeing Trump’s impeachment trial in the Senate.
— David Cicilline (@davidcicilline) January 26, 2020
Trump’s threats against Schiff are the latest example of his political thuggery, like his witness intimidation. The Chief Justice should issue a warning to Trump’s lawyers and, if the misconduct persists, impose a gag order on Defendant Trump. https://t.co/ph8xfR7XhO
— Senator Chris Van Hollen (@ChrisVanHollen) January 26, 2020
Chris Lu, who served as White House cabinet secretary under former President Barack Obama, argued that the current “threat” against Schiff was simply the continuation of a pattern of behavior.
“Do us a favor”
“Take her out”
“Head on a pike”
“Pay the price”
With each mob-style threat, Trump just provides further proof that he’s very capable of shaking down a foreign leader.
And yet, moderate Rs will feign outrage when these threats are pointed out to them. pic.twitter.com/Cb0Ohea0QG
— Chris Lu (@ChrisLu44) January 26, 2020
The Washington Post even claimed that Trump’s tweet “appears to be veiled threat.”
Schiff “has not paid the price” for impeachment, Trump says in what appears to be veiled threat https://t.co/y4GJwYeqvp
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) January 26, 2020