“They’ll never impeach Trump.”
The fallacy in the confident, damn-them-idealists pronouncement that a Republican majority will never impeach the President is the notion that the Republicans are just going to sit on their fat asses till they’ve pushed through their agenda, and nothing can be done about it. This is how they operate, but it’s not how government works in Washington. Pundits love to make predictions no one holds them accountable for. They promote an ideology. They don’t study history. They buy a high-school version of the three-branch system. And that’s why conspiracy theorists sometimes offer better insights than pundits. Conspiracy theorists know that everything we’re being told is an elaborate lie, even when it (sometimes) isn’t. They throw so many darts that they sometimes hit a target. Because although most conspiracy theories are very sad evidence of the very sad state of the brains an all-knowing, all-powerful, totally righteous deity endowed us with, sometimes there really are conspiracies. But pundits are stupid, and made stupid by the tyranny of unquestioned common knowledge, by their allegiance to their sponsors, and by their own stupid need to issue orders to history, democracy, the economy, The People.
If the Republicans are so good at closing ranks and achieving their goals, why can’t they get any of their most basic agenda passed? Why are they entirely at 45’s mercy to issue his disastrous executive orders — a position they can’t relish? (“You, the people, elected us to serve your interests — so we’re gonna back-bite each other, and conceal our process, and run away from town halls, while the President issues fatwas and ukases and edicts.”)
There are other forces than Republican “leadership” out there. The power of minority parties to control or subvert the processes of government should never be underestimated. Direct action by the people, the electorate, can work wonders very quickly, even when only a sizable minority act. (How did the Tea Party take over the Republican Party? Why did 45’s handlers adopt the Bolshevik playbook?)
But more importantly: Above the bipolar madness of the political division of Republocrat and Demican soar the corporate patrons of both parties, and the intel community, who exert pressure on them and shift their agenda all the time — witness what’s happened just since 45 took office. It doesn’t matter how many Republicans don’t want primary challenges. What matters is the orders fossil fuels, Wall Street, arms manufacturers, etc, give our elected representatives — and they’re starting to realize that they’ve miscalculated badly, and that this administration is going to continue to fail them miserably until the next Congress, which will have a shot at undoing at least some of the damage done by this one — which means they lose the long game, and the odds are already pretty bad for them in the long game. (If you were banking on holding out till the seas rise and the economy collapses and people start dying in lines outside hospital ERs and the rate of school shootings quadruples and Russia takes over the UN and women go to prisons for miscarriages . . . you might feel desperate, too.)
What matters is what the intel community has on these Senators, Cabinet members, and Representatives, because sooner or later, those elected officials going to be faced with dumping Trump, Pence, and Ryan, or going down like dominoes, one after another. There are worse things than leaving office voluntarily for someone who can make four times as much as a lobbyist while enjoying a life pension and, of course, an awesome health insurance system.
What matters is when the press smells blood in the water, cause Washington loves nothing so much as a feeding frenzy, and the mob loves it, too, and will turn on their heroes as soon as they see them weakening. This looks a little more like the lead-up to the French Revolution than the lead-up to mid-terms. (No, I’m not saying transformation of society. The French Revolution just demoted the aristocracy for a bit; it didn’t redistribute wealth; capitalism survived just fine; real representative democracy was never a serious possibility. But a whole lot of leaders sure killed each other off, and a new generation arose.)
But maybe that’s all punditry, and pundits really are very, very stupid.