The GOP Must Really Hate Mike Pence

Carl J. Petersen
Nov 27, 2019 · 5 min read
Photo by History in HD on Unsplash

The Invalid ‘Impeachment Inquiry’ Plainly Seeks To Reverse the Election of 2016

- Pat A. Cipollone, Counsel to the President

Rep. Brad Sherman jumped the gun by introducing articles of impeachment just six months into the Trump presidency. Yes, the Commander in Chief’s term was off to a chaotic start. It was also already clear that right-wing racists had been given a seat at the table and he had admitted on national TV to obstructing justice by improperly firing the head of the FBI. Still, impeachment is the ultimate punishment and the nation deserved a substantial reason backed by irrefutable evidence before suggesting the death penalty for the Trump presidency.

A smarter president would have seen the trap that had been set for him and followed the Barack Obama template for how to run an administration that steered clear of any legitimate legal scandals. The 44th president knew that his election had not cured racism and that modern-day Klansman were waiting in the wings at the first sign of scandal. The result was a presidency that was cautious to a fault. His administration was the first in modern history to avoid any indictments during the entire time in office.

Conversely, Trump entered the Oval Office like a bull in a china shop. The vetting process for subordinates was thrown out the window resulting in a revolving door of staffers and the highest turnover of cabinet members in recent history. When even Republican Senators began to question the qualifications of his nominees, Trump started skipping the process altogether when possible by appointing “acting” officials. He publicly cozied up to dictators like Rodrigo Duterte and sworn enemies of the country like Vladimir Putin. White supremacists were called “fine” people and the reputation of the FBI was insulted. And then came the “perfect” phone call with the Ukrainian president.

I have the right to do whatever I want as president.

- Donald Trump

Secretary of State Pompeo says that his boss was “trying to create a situation where [Ukraine] wouldn’t be a corrupt government” but the “transcript” does not contain one mention of the word “corruption.” In fact, he ignored White House national security advisers and did not “raise the broad issue of corruption in” an earlier phone call with the Ukrainian president. Instead, the “transcript” shows that he focused on conspiracy theories that involved presidential candidate Joe Biden.

Photo by Jacob Morch on Unsplash

Given that the “transcript” that Trump provided contains all the information that the Democrats need to impeach him on grounds of abuse of power, the White House lawyers and GOP Congressmen try to distract with legal arguments that are ridiculous. In a letter addressed to Democratic leadership in the House, Counsel to the President, Pat A. Cipollone complains that there is a “lack of any basis for [the] inquiry” when the purpose of an investigation is to determine facts. The impeachment inquiry is repeatedly referred to as “unconstitutional” even though the process of impeachment is clearly spelled out in the Constitution. This process is also ignored as complaints are lodged against violations of “basic due process rights” and “confidentiality” even though the House is explicitly responsible for investigating and making a decision on what is basically an indictment. Should they vote to make Trump the third president to be impeached, he will have “the right to cross-examine witnesses, to call witnesses, to receive transcripts of testimony, to have access to evidence, to have counsel present, and many other basic rights guaranteed to all Americans” during the Senate’s trial.

Most perplexing is the claim that impeachment would somehow “overturn the results of the 2016 election and deprive the American people of the President they have freely chosen.” While a minority of “the American people elected [Trump] to do this job”, he did win the Electoral College. However, the same electorate also voted for the Congressmen who form the legislature that is a co-equal branch of government with the responsibility of overseeing the Executive Branch. These representatives will vote on impeachment using a process that is laid out in the same document that established the Electoral College — the Constitution.

In the unlikely event that the Republican-held Senate actually convicts Trump AND decides to remove him from office, the runner up in the Electoral College will not be the one to replace him. We will still not have our first female president. Instead, in a perfect example of out of the frying pan and into the fire, the replacement will be Vice President Mike Pence. With this potential outcome, why exactly are the Republicans in the House willing to sell their party’s soul, and the future of our Democracy, in defense of Trump’s actions?

________________________________

Carl Petersen is a parent, an advocate for students with special education needs, an elected member of the Northridge East Neighborhood Council and was a Green Party candidate in LAUSD’s District 2 School Board race. During the campaign, he was endorsed by the Network for Public Education (NPE) Action and Dr. Diane Ravitch called him a “strong supporter of public schools.” His past blogs can be found at www.ChangeTheLAUSD.com. Opinions are his own.

Dialogue & Discourse

News and ideas worthy of discourse.

Carl J. Petersen

Written by

Parent, special education advocate and former LAUSD School Board candidate. Still fighting for the children. www.ChangeTheLAUSD.com

Dialogue & Discourse

News and ideas worthy of discourse. Fundamentally informative and intelligently analytical.

Carl J. Petersen

Written by

Parent, special education advocate and former LAUSD School Board candidate. Still fighting for the children. www.ChangeTheLAUSD.com

Dialogue & Discourse

News and ideas worthy of discourse. Fundamentally informative and intelligently analytical.

Medium is an open platform where 170 million readers come to find insightful and dynamic thinking. Here, expert and undiscovered voices alike dive into the heart of any topic and bring new ideas to the surface. Learn more

Follow the writers, publications, and topics that matter to you, and you’ll see them on your homepage and in your inbox. Explore

If you have a story to tell, knowledge to share, or a perspective to offer — welcome home. It’s easy and free to post your thinking on any topic. Write on Medium

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store