I’m not sure I have much to say on the second impeachment of former President Donald Trump. But this feels like one of those moments in history that we’ll be reliving and coming back to for decades to come. So I feel compelled to set down a few thoughts.Continue reading The Second IMpeachment of Donald Trump
I just wanted the U.S. House of Representatives vote on two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump.
It’s only the third time in history a president has been impeached.
I watched it gathered around the TV with my daughter, watching as the votes came in and waiting for it to hit the magic number (thank goodness for PBS where the vote count was broadcast silently with no blathering commentary).
I wrote about impeachment before, and my view hasn’t really changed. Though I did notice that instead of directly responding to any of the charges and saying he didn’t do it or it’s not wrong or it’s wrong but not impeachable, they made a whole bunch of ridiculous arguments. Perhaps my favorite was that the economy is doing well, so you can’t impeach Trump.
(Look at ’em, Trumping away!)
The Day’s Gonna Come
It’s a dark day for the United States when a president can so brazenly flout the rule of law, and even worse that a political party will blindly allow him to do so. I don’t have much hope that Senate Republicans will do the right thing and remove Trump from office.
They’re going to wish they did, because a reckoning is going to come.
My daughter’s social studies class watched some of the impeachment speeches in the House today, and she came home so incredulous about the ridiculous things all those old, angry, white men were saying (and she’s not wrong on that lack-of-diversity slam). It’s not even like we’ve talked that much about impeachment in our house. She figured this out on her own.
I think voters can figure it out as well.
(Well, I hope they can. I hoped the same thing in 2016 and was proven so horribly wrong.)
So What Now?
- Call your representative and thank them for a ‘yes’ vote or let them know how you feel about a ‘no’ vote (or a ‘present’ vote, ug, Gabbard).
- Call your senator and ask them to vote to remove.
- Find out who’s running in your area, for every level of office, and get involved somewhere, somehow.
I’m sitting here in the first week of the public impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump in the House of Representatives. With so much news and commentary flying around in today’s fast-paced world, it’s hard to capture how we’re actually feeling in a given moment. Rather than adding to the noise, I’m hoping to just capture my thoughts in this moment.
First, it’s hard to come to grips with how momentous this moment really is. Impeachment gets thrown around a lot and it’s been threatened against nearly every president. But it’s usually pretty fringe and not taken very seriously.
So to have an impeachment inquiry supported by a majority in the House and public hearings happening, that’s big. It’s only happened with three presidents before, so—as we might expect—Trump is really in a unique class here. Which is not a good thing.Continue reading The Impeachment of Donald Trump
I’ve tried to stay mostly quiet on national politics of late, because it’s proved so divisive but also from feeling like I’m not adding anything original to the conversation. I’m still not sure if I’m doing that, but sometimes you just need to speak up.
With the summary of the Mueller report, the actual Mueller report, and President Donald Trump’s constant tweets and statements, it’s sometimes easier to just ignore it all.
But I’ve got two main conclusions from all of this:
1. No “Collusion”
The Mueller report did not come up with any evidence that Trump conspired with the Russian government to influence the election.
That’s good. I’m thrilled with that.
As much as I dislike and disagree with Trump, it would be catastrophic for this country to have a president—any president—conspire with a foreign government to win an election. It’s very good news that it does not appear that Trump himself did that.
Trump repeatedly dismisses the entire investigation by saying “no collusion” (let’s just ignore the fact that “collusion” is not a legal term, something Mueller quickly spells out). While Trump is right about this single point, that’s not a justification to dismiss the rest of the investigation.
While this investigation did not find that Trump conspired (which is good), it did find all kinds of wrongdoing (which is bad). Multiple people who were close to Trump (remember that he picks the “best people) have gone to jail.
So this is not a report anyone should dismiss as a witch hunt or a waste of time or resources. Doing so indicates a serious misunderstanding of the nature of the report.
The Mueller report makes it very clear that Russia attacked our election:
“There were multiple, systematic efforts to interfere in our election. And that allegation deserves the attention of every American.”–Robert Mueller, May 29, 2019 statement
Trump has repeatedly denied this fact. Remember Helsinki, when Trump literally took the word of Russian President Vladimir Putin over U.S. intelligence agencies.
Not only did Trump deny Russia’s involvement, but he repeatedly tried to obstruct the investigation. The Mueller report outlines multiple cases of this happening. And that’s a big deal. Again, Muller’s statement:
“When a subject of an investigation obstructs that investigation or lies to investigators, it strikes at the core of their government’s effort to find the truth and hold wrongdoers accountable.”–Robert Mueller, May 29, 2019 statement
So a foreign government interfered with our democratic election, it benefited Trump, he denied any interference happened, and when his administration began an investigation into what happened, he repeatedly tried to obstruct that investigation.
Trump tried to stop us from finding out what Russia did.
In my mind, that’s high crimes and misdemeanors.
Do What’s Right
Of course now we turn to the highly political question of impeachment. I heard House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the Democrat in charge of the House who will ultimately decide whether or not to pursue impeachment, say:
“We want to do what’s right and what gets results.”-Nancy Pelosi (Fox News)
That’s an odd statement, because those two things don’t necessarily go together.
You can do what’s right and not get any results. That’s called integrity. You do what’s right not because it gets you results, but because it’s what is right.
In the current political climate, the U.S. Senate is unlikely to impeach Donald Trump.
If he has obstructed justice, then it is the duty of the U.S. House to impeach him. Let the Senate do what they will, but you still do what’s right.
Many Democrats are arguing about the potential political fallout of a failed impeachment. They’re looking for the maximum political gain, going for the crass political win of what gets results.
I think that’s gross.
If Trump has done wrong, hold him accountable. To hell with the political fallout. (And frankly, I think seeing negative political fallout is a miscalculation, but whatever, that’s not why you do it.)