Impeachment. Who Cares?

December 31, 2019

Mike Wilcox
Mike’s Musings Columnist

So the leader of the free world, President Donald J. Trump was impeached last week. He’s only the third sitting American president to suffer such an embarrassing fate, but quite shockingly Americans could seemingly care less, more concerned about Christmas shopping than the political infighting dominating Washington D.C.

It’s business as usual. The stock market rose to an all time high as the economy chugs along producing record unemployment and job numbers Few in middle America have given a passing thought to impeachment- heck, many don’t even know what it means.

For the record, at this point it means very little. I have seen dozens of social media posts where the uneducated gleefully proclaim Trump has been booted from office. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Protocol dictates that the impeachors, the House of Representatives, must pass their articles of impeachment to the Senate where an actual trial, including the calling of witnesses. There is no chance the President will be found guilty. No chance because the Republicans hold the majority in the Senate, 50-43, and it takes two-thirds of the Senate to convict a president. Supposedly every Republican senator has already proclaimed they will vote “no” on the articles sent by the House.

That is if they are sent. Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who is holding out for what she considers a fairer trial, may not even send the impeachment articles to the Senate. Some pundits would say the Democrats could be embarrassed if a trial would occur and witnesses unfavorable to Pelosi and her impeachment partner, Adam Schiff, were able to testify.

Then too its very possible Republican senators may simply motion to dismiss the articles of impeachment and forego a trial. This would be to the chagrin of President Trump, who is hankering for a trial at which he would expect his name to be cleared and his opponents to be smeared.
So you see there is still a great deal of political jousting to take place. One thing is clear, the President will remain in office. The House majority has known this all along, but apparently they believe an impeachment will help them in the 2020 elections. I’m not so sure that is the case. There are 37 freshmen Democratic congressmen in districts that Trump won in 2016. One can only guess how impeachment will play in those toss-up districts.

What concerns me is that impeachment seems to have become a political tool versus a last ditch high crimes and misdemeanor action to rid the nation of a scoundrel president. I foresee the legislative branch, anytime the House is of a different party than the President, utilizing impeachment to attempt to get their way. God forbid both legislative branches- the House and the Senate are of a different party than the president. That could surely spell the removal of a president for the most trivial of misdemeanors.

No doubt Trump is a divisive character. You either love him or hate him. Because of his party’s majority in the Senate he will live to govern at least another year and maybe five. Impeachment hasn’t and probably won’t hurt him politically. My concern is not Trump, but the future. Impeachment must be reserved for the gravest situations and not used as a political tool for either Republicans or Democrats.

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