Donald Trump can boast all he wants about how impeachment is “good” for his re-election chances and for the Republican Party. The truth has to be that in his private moments he is worried to the max.
To be candid, so am I. So should the rest of the country be worried about the course on which this man’s presidency is about to take.
It’s about impeachment, man!
The House of Representatives has taken on this task three times in the nation’s history: Presidents Andrew Johnson, Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton all have traveled down this perilous path.
Johnson and Clinton both were impeached and acquitted in Senate trials; President Johnson survived by a single Senate vote, by the way. Nixon quit the presidency as the House Judiciary Committee submitted articles of impeachment to the full House of Representatives.
Now it well might be Donald Trump’s turn.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi expressed sadness at what she has announced, that the House will launch a full “impeachment inquiry.” Yes, she should be sad. So should the rest of us, even those of us who out here who detest the man who occupies the office we hold so dear.
He has denigrated, defaced and disgraced the office. He has insulted our allies, stood shoulder to shoulder with some of our international opponents, some of whom are dictators/killers/tyrants. His behavior has been reprehensible.
Now we hear reports that he allegedly sought a foreign government’s help in bringing down one of his political foes at home.
Is this the kind of thing that gives anyone joy? Are we supposed to cheer the prospect of the House traipsing down the impeachment path? Hah! No. We aren’t.
We should be sad. We should be worried.
I don’t worry about our system of government. Our nation’s founders crafted a system built to withstand this kind of tumult and turbulence. Indeed, as President Ford told us during his inaugural address moments after being sworn in after President Nixon left the White House for the final time, “Our Constitution works.”
If the House proceeds with impeachment, the burden then falls on the Senate to conduct a trial.
Therein rests what I consider to be where this matter could derail. Republican senators who comprise a Senate majority do not appear at this moment ready to join their Democratic colleagues in convicting the president of “high crimes and misdemeanors.”
This will play out over time. It will get ugly. It will soil and sully our system of government and our politics.
It will sadden all of us as we await an outcome. However, I will argue that we shouldn’t worry about the strength of the government system under which this drama will unfold.