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Is the Impeachment of Donald Trump Really Coming? Republicans Definitely Think So
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Mellakon
2018-05-13 14:34:47 UTC
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Raw Message
Is the Impeachment of Donald Trump Really Coming? Republicans
Definitely Think So

Republicans’ main midterm strategy is to drive their voters out
with impeachment-dread. How will Democrats respond?
By Heather Digby Parton / Salon May 12, 2018, 12:03 AM GMT


On Thursday night in Indiana, President Trump made another one of
his "jokes" about extending his presidency beyond eight years. He
was talking about how he had wanted to move the U.S. embassy to
Jerusalem and was told that might take 10 years.

It's not the first time he has alluded to staying in office past
2024. (It goes without saying, in his world, that he will be re-
elected in 2020.) Speaking before a group of GOP donors last March
he talked about Chinese president Xi Jinping saying, "He's now
president for life. President for life. No, he's great. And look,
he was able to do that. I think it's great. Maybe we'll give that
a shot someday."

It's always hard to know how to take Trump's "jokes," since he
really doesn't have a sense of humor beyond making fun of others.
So these little quips feel freighted with more meaning than your
average throwaway line. He's not exactly serious, but it reveals
his mindset. He may understand that "extending the presidency"
isn't in the cards but it's pretty obvious he wishes it were.

Don't let big tech control what news you see. Get more stories
like this in your inbox, every day.


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Perhaps it's the usual Trumpish upside-down logic at play, since
he and the Republicans are actually running on the idea that he
may not even finish out his first term if they don't hold their
congressional majority in November. He didn't mention that in
Indiana, but he's made it clear in earlier rallies:

Last month Jonathan Martin of the New York Times reported that
Trump's advisers had finally gotten through to him that the House
was in serious jeopardy of falling into Democratic hands in the
midterms -- and that impeachment was on the table, which would
naturally galvanize him since the only thing that matters to Trump
is Trump. But the strategy is really about motivating Republicans
who have been showing less enthusiasm for the election throughout
the first year of the administration.

The thinking goes that if Trump is threatened the party will rally
to save him, because he's much more popular than the GOP leaders
in Congress. Midterm elections are always seen as a referendum on
the president these days anyway, so Republicans are counting on
their rabid Trump base to come out and support their man.

This exhortation from NRA TV makes the point clearly:

Maybe that "extending the term" thing isn't so fanciful after all.
And to think the NRA used to carry on about the tree of liberty
needing to be watered with the blood of tyrants.

But the problem for the Republicans in November isn't the loyal
Trump cavaliers who are ready to die for their king. If they want
to win legitimately, they need to persuade reluctant Trump voters
who held their noses in 2016 to contemplate two years of
impeachment drama and then come out and vote for him all over
again rather than go through all that.

The argument that we wouldn't want to distract the nation with an
impeachment inquiry rings just a little hollow, however, amid the
24/7 reality show and tweet pageant we're already witnessing.
Those reluctant Trump voters know that's not going to change as
long as he's in office. If anything, the shift of focus to the
Congress might seem like a welcome change of the channel.

NeverTrumper David Frum made an interesting observation in the
Atlantic about this strategy, which sounds plausible to me:

To survive, President Trump needs more than Republican votes, more
than a Republican hold on one chamber or the other. He needs
active Republican complicity in his future efforts to deflect
investigations, whatever they may pursue. As his legal situation
deteriorates, some Republicans from marginal seats may be tempted
to drift away, to let justice take its course — possibly even to
say or do something if justice is obstructed. Trump needs all of
them bolted down, and the surest way to bolt them down is to force
all Congress members to commit themselves early and fully to his
protection.

Removal from office requires 67 votes in the Senate — and a broad
consensus in the country that the president must go. It cannot
effectively be carried out on a party-line basis, as Republicans
painfully discovered during the Clinton presidency. By forcing
Republicans to disavow impeachment now, Trump narrows the risks of
defection later. It’s not just about the midterm results. It’s
about press-ganging every last Republican, down to the most
reluctant, aboard Trump’s voyage of the damned.

But what of the Democrats in all this? It's true that Rep. Maxine
Waters of California, and a few others in the House, are calling
for impeachment. That's not surprising. Recall that during the
early stages of the Whitewater investigation, Rep. Bob Barr, R-
Ga., introduced a resolution directing the House Judiciary
Committee "to undertake an inquiry into whether grounds exist to
impeach William Jefferson Clinton, the President of the United
States." That was months before the Lewinsky affair became public
knowledge. But even when the Lewinsky story was all over the
media, House Republicans were reluctant to back Barr's resolution.
The Washington Post reported in February of 1998:

House Majority Leader Dick Armey (R-Tex.) said "I don't think we
have the kind of evidentiary basis to be talking about impeachment
at this time. I don't really think you should, when it's such an
important matter and it's frankly still in the abstract."

"An impeachment proceeding must be bipartisan in the final
analysis. ... It can't be seen as a purely political, vindictive,
partisan exercise," says House Judiciary Chairman Henry Hyde (R-
Ill.), who opposes Barr's resolution as "premature" until
independent counsel Kenneth Starr comes up with hard evidence.
"There's no need to leap before we know where we're jumping."

A few months later, Hyde was running the impeachment
investigation.

The Democratic leadership is following the same playbook with
Trump. Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., published an op-ed in the New
York Times last weekend that made almost exactly the same points.
By all accounts, very few Democratic candidates in the midterms
are featuring impeachment as a prominent campaign issue. So far,
the only people bringing up the "I word" are Republicans.

Nonetheless, Democrats would be foolish to try to pretend that
Donald Trump's metastasizing scandals don't exist at all. They
have voters too -- who are motivated and energized in opposition
to everything Trump is and everything he does. They've taken to
the streets in massive numbers. They've organized grassroots
groups all over the country. They've run for office. They've and
created and enlarged mass movements around progressive issues.
Indeed, they've done everything citizens can do short of
revolution to oppose this president. The Democrats will have to
respond in some way to this demand that Trump be opposed rather
than appeased.

But they don't need to run on impeachment. They can simply address
the fact that the Republican leadership in Congress is refusing to
exercise its constitutional duty of oversight, and promise that
they will hold public hearings and get to the bottom of what
happened in 2016. In other words, they should promise to do the
job they are signing up for -- and promise to let the chips fall
where they may.

Could this scenario take down Trump?\




https://www.alternet.org/impeachment-donald-trump-really-coming-
republicans-definitely-think-so
Greg Carr
2018-05-13 18:59:26 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Mellakon
Is the Impeachment of Donald Trump Really Coming? Republicans
Definitely Think So
Republicans’ main midterm strategy is to drive their voters out
with impeachment-dread. How will Democrats respond?
By Heather Digby Parton / Salon May 12, 2018, 12:03 AM GMT
On Thursday night in Indiana, President Trump made another one of
his "jokes" about extending his presidency beyond eight years. He
was talking about how he had wanted to move the U.S. embassy to
Jerusalem and was told that might take 10 years.
It's not the first time he has alluded to staying in office past
2024. (It goes without saying, in his world, that he will be re-
elected in 2020.) Speaking before a group of GOP donors last March
he talked about Chinese president Xi Jinping saying, "He's now
president for life. President for life. No, he's great. And look,
he was able to do that. I think it's great. Maybe we'll give that
a shot someday."
It's always hard to know how to take Trump's "jokes," since he
really doesn't have a sense of humor beyond making fun of others.
So these little quips feel freighted with more meaning than your
average throwaway line. He's not exactly serious, but it reveals
his mindset. He may understand that "extending the presidency"
isn't in the cards but it's pretty obvious he wishes it were.
Don't let big tech control what news you see. Get more stories
like this in your inbox, every day.
email address
Subscribe
Perhaps it's the usual Trumpish upside-down logic at play, since
he and the Republicans are actually running on the idea that he
may not even finish out his first term if they don't hold their
congressional majority in November. He didn't mention that in
Last month Jonathan Martin of the New York Times reported that
Trump's advisers had finally gotten through to him that the House
was in serious jeopardy of falling into Democratic hands in the
midterms -- and that impeachment was on the table, which would
naturally galvanize him since the only thing that matters to Trump
is Trump. But the strategy is really about motivating Republicans
who have been showing less enthusiasm for the election throughout
the first year of the administration.
The thinking goes that if Trump is threatened the party will rally
to save him, because he's much more popular than the GOP leaders
in Congress. Midterm elections are always seen as a referendum on
the president these days anyway, so Republicans are counting on
their rabid Trump base to come out and support their man.
Maybe that "extending the term" thing isn't so fanciful after all.
And to think the NRA used to carry on about the tree of liberty
needing to be watered with the blood of tyrants.
But the problem for the Republicans in November isn't the loyal
Trump cavaliers who are ready to die for their king. If they want
to win legitimately, they need to persuade reluctant Trump voters
who held their noses in 2016 to contemplate two years of
impeachment drama and then come out and vote for him all over
again rather than go through all that.
The argument that we wouldn't want to distract the nation with an
impeachment inquiry rings just a little hollow, however, amid the
24/7 reality show and tweet pageant we're already witnessing.
Those reluctant Trump voters know that's not going to change as
long as he's in office. If anything, the shift of focus to the
Congress might seem like a welcome change of the channel.
NeverTrumper David Frum made an interesting observation in the
To survive, President Trump needs more than Republican votes, more
than a Republican hold on one chamber or the other. He needs
active Republican complicity in his future efforts to deflect
investigations, whatever they may pursue. As his legal situation
deteriorates, some Republicans from marginal seats may be tempted
to drift away, to let justice take its course — possibly even to
say or do something if justice is obstructed. Trump needs all of
them bolted down, and the surest way to bolt them down is to force
all Congress members to commit themselves early and fully to his
protection.
Removal from office requires 67 votes in the Senate — and a broad
consensus in the country that the president must go. It cannot
effectively be carried out on a party-line basis, as Republicans
painfully discovered during the Clinton presidency. By forcing
Republicans to disavow impeachment now, Trump narrows the risks of
defection later. It’s not just about the midterm results. It’s
about press-ganging every last Republican, down to the most
reluctant, aboard Trump’s voyage of the damned.
But what of the Democrats in all this? It's true that Rep. Maxine
Waters of California, and a few others in the House, are calling
for impeachment. That's not surprising. Recall that during the
early stages of the Whitewater investigation, Rep. Bob Barr, R-
Ga., introduced a resolution directing the House Judiciary
Committee "to undertake an inquiry into whether grounds exist to
impeach William Jefferson Clinton, the President of the United
States." That was months before the Lewinsky affair became public
knowledge. But even when the Lewinsky story was all over the
media, House Republicans were reluctant to back Barr's resolution.
House Majority Leader Dick Armey (R-Tex.) said "I don't think we
have the kind of evidentiary basis to be talking about impeachment
at this time. I don't really think you should, when it's such an
important matter and it's frankly still in the abstract."
"An impeachment proceeding must be bipartisan in the final
analysis. ... It can't be seen as a purely political, vindictive,
partisan exercise," says House Judiciary Chairman Henry Hyde (R-
Ill.), who opposes Barr's resolution as "premature" until
independent counsel Kenneth Starr comes up with hard evidence.
"There's no need to leap before we know where we're jumping."
A few months later, Hyde was running the impeachment
investigation.
The Democratic leadership is following the same playbook with
Trump. Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., published an op-ed in the New
York Times last weekend that made almost exactly the same points.
By all accounts, very few Democratic candidates in the midterms
are featuring impeachment as a prominent campaign issue. So far,
the only people bringing up the "I word" are Republicans.
Nonetheless, Democrats would be foolish to try to pretend that
Donald Trump's metastasizing scandals don't exist at all. They
have voters too -- who are motivated and energized in opposition
to everything Trump is and everything he does. They've taken to
the streets in massive numbers. They've organized grassroots
groups all over the country. They've run for office. They've and
created and enlarged mass movements around progressive issues.
Indeed, they've done everything citizens can do short of
revolution to oppose this president. The Democrats will have to
respond in some way to this demand that Trump be opposed rather
than appeased.
But they don't need to run on impeachment. They can simply address
the fact that the Republican leadership in Congress is refusing to
exercise its constitutional duty of oversight, and promise that
they will hold public hearings and get to the bottom of what
happened in 2016. In other words, they should promise to do the
job they are signing up for -- and promise to let the chips fall
where they may.
Could this scenario take down Trump?\
https://www.alternet.org/impeachment-donald-trump-really-coming-
republicans-definitely-think-so
So what if he gets impeached Pence will just take over.

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