President Donald Trump said Wednesday that "the market would crash" and "everybody would be very poor" if Democrats were to take control of the House of Representatives after November's midterm elections and then impeach him.
"I guess it says something like high crimes and all — I don't know how you can impeach somebody who has done a great job. I will tell you what, if I ever got impeached, I think the market would crash," Trump told Fox News' "Fox & Friends" in an interview that aired Thursday morning. "I think everybody would be very poor because without this thinking, you would see — you would see numbers that you wouldn't believe, in reverse."
The president sat for the interview as impeachment talk swirled around him in the wake of two nearly simultaneous legal punches: former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort's conviction on eight charges brought by special counsel Robert Mueller and a guilty plea by former Trump attorney Michael Cohen, who told a Manhattan federal court that he broke campaign-finance laws "in coordination and at the direction of a candidate for federal office."
The Cohen plea deal could implicate the president in campaign wrongdoings, and has raised the stakes for possible impeachment proceedings if the Democrats gain a majority in Congress this fall, as many have predicted they will. Trump has maintained that the Mueller investigation is a "witch hunt" and has loudly insisted that his campaign did not collude with the Russian government.
While the president's mounting legal troubles have fueled talk of impeachment, House Democratic leaders have sought to tamp down such discussion, warning rank-and-file members against using the word "impeachment." Instead, Democrats leaders urged their members to paint the Trump administration as corrupt and to suggest that a Democratic House would be a powerful check on the White House.
In his Wednesday interview, Trump said Cohen "flipped" on him and pleaded guilty to get a better deal from prosecutors on charges that the president said were unrelated to him or his campaign. Trump argued that the campaign-finance violations to which Cohen pleaded guilty were not actually crimes because the payments involved, made to two women who claim to have had affairs with the president, did not come from campaign funds.
"In all fairness to [Cohen], most people are going to do that. And I have seen it many times. I have had many friends involved in this stuff. It's called flipping, and it almost ought to be illegal," Trump said of his former lawyer.