I hope people understand that Democrats didn’t want to impeach President Trump.
Sure, some did. A half-dozen progressive organizations are sending out emails saying, “We did it! Donate here.”
But Democrats have walked away from many chances to impeach the president.
They don’t see Mike Pence as an improvement. This isn’t a parliamentary system where we vote again. Impeachment won’t stop Senators from churning out judicial appointments, border agents from caging children, or Russians from playing havoc with computers of Federal and state agencies.
House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi has kept the Democratic House focused on legislation that makes Democratic values clear. Now over 50 House bills await action in the Senate–bills to lower prescription drug costs and protect Americans with preexisting conditions, to fight government corruption and protect the right to vote; to fight global warming and protect our water and natural resources; and to save net neutrality, stop violence against women, and end our involvement in Saudi attacks on Yemen.
Every Democratic House member facing a 2020 campaign has a voting record showing they’ve worked to preserve and extend values Americans agrees upon.
One up-and-down vote on Trump himself will overshadow all that.
Now that the President has created a crisis and Pelosi has opened a query about impeachment, Democrats are worrying about the President resorting to war to increase his popularity and Republican politicians are sending out polls to beef up their donor lists.
Even the President’s staunchest supporters should understand that his recent actions scream for impeachment.
The Mueller investigation made it clear that foreign intervention in a U.S. election was very, very bad, but not an impeachable offense unless it could be proven that the President had taken part in it–and 272 contacts between Trump campaign staffers and Russians wasn’t absolute proof.
Yet, President Trump claims he didn’t know that asking the newly elected leader of Ukraine to do opposition research for him would cause a problem.
And that’s the politic way of describing it.
First, the President held up $391 million in military aid to the Ukraine. Then, when Ukraine’s new president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, asked about the funds, with plenty of government officials listening, Trump said he had a favor to ask.
Even though the Ukraine had already investigated and found no foul play in Joe Biden’s urging for the firing of prosecutor Viktor Shokin in 2015, if Zelenskiy really wanted his weapons, he could certainly find some proof–as a favor for his new friend Donald Trump.
And, no, having spent lots of money at a Trump hotel would not suffice.
Trump continued to sit on the aid funds for another two months–and released them only after the New York Times reported details of the July 25 phone call.
I don’t know which explanation is harder to believe–that the President doesn’t yet understand that asking for a foreign government to help with his re-election campaign is a crime or that he wanted to force impeachment actions.
Frank Bruni, a Democratic columnist for the New York Times, writes, “President Trump deserves to be impeached. But the prospect terrifies me, and it should terrify you, too.”
“A dangerously polarized and often viciously partisan country [will] grow more so.” Impeachment will crowd out the issues that need attention like infrastructure, health care fixes, and education.
And the worst case scenario? “Trump paints himself a martyr, eludes conviction in the Senate, frames that as exoneration and watches his fans mobilize and turn out as never before.”
Democrats faced a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” situation and chose to uphold our laws.
Note this editorial by Judy Ferro published by Idaho Press – 2019