Why Wait? Impeach Trump Now
I am with all those who dream mightily of the day when the Mueller Report is complete and law enforcement officers arrive at the White House to drag the entire Trump family off to jail. In our most fervent dreams, they will all pay dearly for dragging our democracy through the mud. They will all sit in a courtroom, looking somber in their orange jumpsuits, without spray tans and looking like they just want to end it all. Doesn’t that sound great?
There’s just one problem: it’s a fantasy.
I know, I’m usually really “happy-clappy,” as Stephanie Miller would say. My shtick is usually more like, we can do anything as progressives if we do it in a politically astute way. But, just as our fantasy in which Bush and Cheney would be frog-marched to Leavenworth didn’t work out, this one is unlikely to work out, as well. Sorry.
We liberals really have to stop indulging our fantasies. Last week, one pundit suggested that the Mueller report may be “anticlimactic,” and the entire progressive movement lost its shit. This, despite the fact thatsaid pundit was probably correct. We are all fantasizing about seeing the Mueller Report when it comes out and reading about spy stuff worthy of a Tom Clancy novel when we may just get a recitation of facts that reads more like a typical court document. It’s entirely possible Mueller will conclude that Trump was an unwitting dope who Russian intelligence took advantage of. The narrative we have built up in our heads, in which Trump met with Boris and Natasha to set up this elaborate theft of our democracy may not be provable, even if it happened. Moose and Squirrel don’t always get the bad guys. It’s entirely possible (albeit improbable) that everyone AROUND Trump committed serious crimes, but not Trump himself. There is a serious difference between KNOWING someone did something and being able to prove that.
We are all sitting here, waiting with bated breath for the Mueller Report, as if that investigation will bear fruit that will put everyone we hate in jail and will cause the Drumpf family to lose everything. It’s entirely likely there is no way it could ever meet our fantastic dreams. I’m sorry totell the truth, but for Chrissakes, folks; I just read a story this morning from a professional left outlet in which they take the Democrats to task for not taking “campaign finance reform” seriously. I mean, Democrats have run the House for two weeks and there are a few hundred other issues that are MORE important right now. Ten years ago, this same band of geniuses was already ripping Obama and the Democrats new assholes for not repealing everything Bush did for eight years, and Obama hadn’t even taken office yet and there was a depression to prevent.
While I harbor the same fantasies of seeing Trump marched out of the White House in handcuffs, I realize they are just fantasies. The best way to get him the hell out of there is to impeach him. And before the professional and unicorn left naysayers start barking, I know; the Republican Party has a majority in the Senate and it will be difficult to convict and remove Donny, but so the hell what? It’s not impossible. Seriously; you can fantasize about seeing him marched into a van in handcuffs and his whole family sentenced to prison, but you can’t imagine a scenario in which 21 Republican Senators look at the evidence and decide they can’t tolerate him anymore? Come on…
We also cannot wait until Robert Mueller completes his investigation, for two reasons. For one thing, wedon’t know what will be in it, as noted. However, he also is committing impeachable offenses almost daily and we have to set standards for behavior for future presidents. In fact, more important than campaign finance reform is presidential behavior reform, in which we uphold actual standards and make sure a future president doesn’t embarrass us to the extent 45 has. Given the amount of damage this asshole has done on the world stage on our behalf, how can any actual liberal think campaign finance reform, free college andMedicare for All are the most important issues right now? You must be doing mind-altering chemicals, to be that out-of-touch.
We should start the impeachment train now. We have enough on his ass right now to put together a good case that would sell to the public, which is the key to everything. Richard Nixon didn’t resign because of pressure from the Democratic Congress; a year-and-a-half earlier, he had won 49 states in the election, but as they made the case to the public that he was a crook, he transformed into the most hated politician in the country. Constituents were writing to their Republican Senators and enough Republican Senators had turned on him to make a conviction a foregone conclusion.
That can work now, but we have to put aside our childish egos and focus on this effort. Consider what we have already:
- An immigration policy that is completely unhinged and that treats asylum seekers as criminals, rather than victims.
- Thousands of migrant children in our custody being mistreated in makeshift jails, based on some insane “zero-tolerance policy” that makes no sense.
- Hundreds of thousands of government workers furloughed because Trump keeps making agreements and reneging on them regarding immigration and a border wall.
- Trump “canceled” a number of tradedeals without notice and without consideration of those who may be affected.
- Trump’s tariffs have cost the economy hundreds of thousands of good paying jobs, and they have left thousands of farmers without the ability to make a living.
- Trump has refused to put his assets into a blind trust and worse, he and his spawn continue to do Trump Organization business from inside the White House, on the taxpayers’ dime.
The Trump Organization is profiting from his “election” to the presidency which goes well beyond the typical corruption we see all too often in Washington. Bush and Cheney funneled money to their cronies and supporters by handing them contracts related to the wars they started, but even they weren’t as blatant as the Trump Crime Family.
- Nearly every weekend, Trump and the family head to one of his properties to have a break. American taxpayers pay the costs of rooms and meals for their entire entourage to the Trump Organization.
- The Trump Organization owns the lease on the Old Post Office Building, they have transformed into a Trump hotel, and Donny has been booking foreign dignitaries, lobbyists and many others there since the day of his sparsely attended inauguration. That directly violates both the Foreign and Domestic Emoluments Clauses of the Constitution, which prevents public officials from profiting from the work they do on behalf of taxpayers.
- Since the moment he rode down the escalator to announce his candidacy, Trump has primarily been appealing to the worst elements of our society, including white supremacists, xenophobes, misogynists and more. He hired people to monitor the callers to right-wing talk radio, to keep in touch with his “base” and he’s never stopped. At Charlottesville in 2017, he referred to people like this as “good people.”
- It is also clear that Donny doesn’t care to work for anyone who doesn’t love and adore him, which means he only represents the interests of about 20% of the American people, which amounts to rank negligence.
If you want more specific “high crimes,” consider:
- For months he insisted, without evidence, that 3–5 million people voted illegally in the 2016 election, and that they all voted for Hillary Clinton. He even wasted taxpayer money on an investigation, which the GAO later investigated.
- In July 2017, Trump encouraged law enforcement officials to violate the constitutional rights of suspects when he said, “When you see these towns and when you see these thugs being thrown into the back of a paddy wagon, you just see them thrown in, rough, and I said, ‘Please don’t be too nice.’ Like when you guys put somebody in the car and you’re protecting their head, you know, the way you put their hand over, like, don’t hit their head and they’ve just killed somebody, don’t hit their head, I said, ‘You can take the hand away, OK?’”
- Trump has repeatedly undermined the authority of the federal judiciary, making derogatory comments aimed at the many judges who have ruled against him on his half-assed executive orders, such as the Muslim Ban and his many orders regarding the southern border. He once even referred to a Latino judge derogatorily, suggesting that the judge couldn’t be fair duetohisHispanic surname.
- Trump has repeatedly referred to the free press as the “enemy of the people,” thus creating a hostile environment for journalists all over the country.
Those are just the tip of the proverbial iceberg, and little of it has anything to do with Trump and Russia and can be proven without the Mueller report.
Just in the last couple days, Trump has had a temper tantrum over Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s decision to uninvited him from giving a State of the Union campaign speech during the shutdown. He even refused Pelosi the use of a plane to make a foreign trip as part of her job, instead allowing Melania to use the same plane as a ferry to the Trump property at Mar-a-Lago. It has become a security-based tradition to not force the official who is second-in-line to the president to fly commercial, especially for a diplomatic trip,which this was. The trip was also secret and Trump made the decision publicly, on the White House website, thus putting Pelosi at serious physical risk if she went on the trip anyway.
Trump needs to go. It’s time we look at everything we have and lay it out for the public and impeach his sorry ass. I refuse to believe we can’t convict him, but even if we fail at that, everything will be out there and available to the public, which will ruin his minimal chances for a second term. Even that is better than the current trend of pretending the only thing we have is Mueller.
Originally published at The Pragmatic Progressive.