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Ex-Las Vegas Sun reporter coauthors new book on Trump impeachment

Trump Impeachment
Senate Television via AP, File

FILE - In this image from video, the vote total, 52-48 for not guilty, on the first article of impeachment, abuse of power, is displayed on screen during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Feb. 5, 2020.

Former President Donald Trump was impeached twice, and a new book concludes that out of political fear, neither Republicans nor Democrats held him accountable. 

But if they had, would that have changed anything for this country, for this state? 

The book, "Unchecked: The Untold Story Behind Congress's Botched Impeachments of Donald Trump" was written by Karoun Demirjian, a former Las Vegas Sun reporter who is now a freelance reporter for The Washington Post. Her co-author is Rachel Bade of Politico. 

Demerjian and Bade recently joined  State of Nevada host Joe Schoenmann for more.

Demerjian said while she and Bade worked at The Washington Post covering the impeachments, they knew they had more stones to overturn. 

“If there was this foolish story to tell here, it was in the course of reporting that, and going back to all of our sources, that we started to realize how many people were doing very different things behind the scenes than they were projecting in public, and the punches that were being pulled, and the corners that were being being cut in deference to different political objectives,” Demirjian said. 

Then, Jan. 6 happened, then, another impeachment. They had to start over.

“There's been a lot written about Republican hypocrisy,” Bade said. “Hypocrisy when it comes to Donald Trump and his years in office and sort of putting your scruples aside, but nobody's really reported on Democrats putting politics first.”

She said one of the major themes of the book is how Democrats sidelined investigative threads that could have made a stronger case against Trump.

An example in the book is Speaker Nancy Pelosi. 

“She often would say publicly, ‘No one is above the law when it comes to Donald Trump.’ And she sort of projected this image that she was doing everything she could to hold him accountable. But our reporting indicated that she actually specifically was concerned that impeachment would blow back on her frontline members,” Bade said.

Rep. Mark Amodei of Nevada was one of the first Republicans who told reporters he would support an impeachment inquiry against Trump. 

“And then he gets this angry call from Kevin McCarthy and Amodei, after getting held up, basically puts out a statement saying, ‘I never supported impeachment … the reporters took my words out of context.’ Well, guess what? They didn't take his words out of context at all. He just was getting yelled at, so he pulled back,” Bade said.

Demirjian said there are still ongoing efforts for criminal justice, including the Jan. 6 committee hearings and various court cases “closing in, closer than ever” on Trump.

“But you can still run for president from a jail cell,” she said.

Hear more in the interview above.

Karoun Demirjian and  Rachel Bade, authors, "Unchecked: The Untold Story Behind Congress's Botched Impeachments of Donald Trump"

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Joe Schoenmann joined Nevada Public Radio in 2014. He works with a talented team of producers at State of Nevada who explore the casino industry, sports, politics, public health and everything in between.