It’s not difficult to find criticism of the impeachment inquiry among those with conservative viewpoints. But very few have described the process in these kinds of terms…
In an interview on Fox Business, neoconservative author Lee Smith suggested that those who are participating in the impeachment inquiry are part of a ritualistic “cult,” with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and House Intelligence Committee chair Rep. Adam Schiff as it’s leaders.
“Here’s how I see what we’re calling the impeachment process inquiry,” Smith said. “I see it as a secret ritual conducted by a cult. They’re doing most of this in secret and I think it’s worthwhile thinking of Speaker Pelosi as the high priestess of the cult, and Adam Schiff as a high priest of the cult.”
While the impeachment hearings so far have been conducted behind closed doors, they have not been closed off to Republican lawmakers. Restrictions have been set in place to only allow members of Congress access to the depositions of witnesses if they sit on the committees that are taking part — restrictions that prevent Republicans, as well as Democrats, who aren’t on those committees from attending.
Smith continued on in his rant, making references to the supposed “swamp” in Washington D.C. that President Donald Trump promised to get rid of during his campaign in 2016.
“The purpose of the cult is to protect the ‘swamp’ and what the ‘swamp’ has done,” Lee said. “President Trump was sent by the American voter to drain the ‘swamp.’ And yet it’s the role of Madame Pelosi and Mr. Schiff to protect the swamp. “
Fox Business guest: "Here is how I see what we're calling the impeachment process, inquiry — I see it as a secret ritual conducted by a cult … And I think it's worthwhile thinking of Speaker Pelosi as the high priestess of the cult, and Adam Schiff as a high priest of the cult." pic.twitter.com/g5vhE24qye
— Eric Kleefeld (@EricKleefeld) October 30, 2019
Smith is a senior fellow with the Hudson Institute, a far-right neoconservative organization that has included Robert Bork, Scooter Libby, and others on its board.
Smith himself has expressed many outlandish far-right viewpoints, particularly on issues within the Middle East. He labeled former President Barack Obama, for example, as being anti-Semitic over his attempts to broker a nuclear deal with Iran.
Describing Pelosi as a cult leader for impeachment may be difficult for some to take seriously. Pelosi herself was a reluctant believer in opening an inquiry into impeaching Trump, per reporting from Politico, only agreeing to push the issue forward in September when it appeared that the current commander-in-chief had pressured Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky into opening investigations within his own country that could benefit Trump politically.