GOP Group Aired Ad on 'Fox & Friends' Urging Republicans to Speak Out On Obstruction Claims Against Trump

The ad was aired on Fox & Friends on Monday morning ahead of former Nixon White House Counsel John Dean's — who was also a key Watergate witness — testimony at the House Judiciary Committee hearing on special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia report today.

The video, shared with Newsweek hours before it aired, features Republicans on the committee in 1974 refusing to stand idly by as the president obstructs justice, especially one representing their own party.

The nearly minute-long clip opens with a voiceover. "When Nixon was alleged to have obstructed justice, Republicans in the House Judiciary Committee took these allegations seriously," it says amid footage of several GOP lawmakers on the panel calling for the then-president to be held accountable for obstructing justice.

The video then ends with the words: "Republicans stood for the Rule of Law then. They should stand for the Rule of Law now."

In a statement to Newsweek, Chris Truax, a spokesperson and legal adviser for RRL, called the advertisement "a reminder of what patriotism and political bravery can look like" and encouraged GOP members in Congress to publicly speak out about Trump's "abuses of executive power."

"Congressional Republicans are more than happy to admit in private that they are troubled, disappointed, and disturbed by President Trump's abuses of executive power," he said. "When none of their constituents can hear them, they speak frankly about their moral qualms and objections about their roles in undermining the original design of our Constitution. Their constituents — and all Americans — deserve to hear the same in public. When President Nixon was accused of obstructing justice, Republicans showed moral courage."

Truax added: "They were willing to look the truth in the eye and place their duties to the country above their concerns about re-election. They defended the Constitution, one of the greatest political achievements in the history of the world, rather than a politician who will be gone from public life in a few short years. They were leaders."

Amid escalating calls for Trump's impeachment among Democrats, Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) remains the only Republican in Congress to have publicly declared that Trump obstructed justice based on the findings of Mueller's report. In recent weeks, Amash has also repeatedly called for impeachment proceedings to be launched against the president.

RRL has previously aired 45 advertisements during Fox News programs to "encourage speaking up from Republicans" on the issue. The group told Newsweek they prefer advertising on Fox News because of the network's wide-ranging viewer demographics and reach. 2018 Nielsen Media Research figures show that the channel draws more than double the adult viewers ages 35 and up that CNN attracts. Of those, 44 percent of Fox viewers are Republicans, 26 percent Democrats and 30 percent undecided.

Last week, the group ran a separate advertisement on Fox & Friends urging GOP members to hold Trump accountable for the findings in Muller's report after the special counsel spoke publicly for the first time since beginning the Russia probe in 2017. During the press conference, Mueller said that he would have explicitly stated if the evidence collected during his 22-month-long investigation exonerated Trump of criminal wrongdoing, but he didn't.

Watch RRL's latest Fox & Friends advertisement below:

Donald Trump Normandy
US President Donald Trump delivers a speech during a French-US ceremony at the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial in Colleville-sur-Mer, Normandy, northwestern France, on June 6, 2019, as part of D-Day commemorations marking the 75th anniversary of the World War II Allied landings in Normandy. Getty/Ian Langsdon