The impeachment of President Donald J. Trump (R-New York) is just about the dumbest thing that Democrats could do right now. Unfortunately they’re trying it and there’s a very good chance it might just work.
We’re likely to see Trump’s removal attempted because there is strong support for impeachment in the United States around 47% of Americans favor removal of Trump, a survey by Public Policy Polling. Newsweek noted that the percentage of Americans favoring impeachment exceeded the level of approval for the president (which is hovering at around 40%).
Impeachment Has Already Begun
Some opportunistic politicians have noticed all the support for impeachment and are capitalizing on it. One of them, Representative Brad Sherman (D-California) has begun the impeachment process by introducing legislation for it in the U.S. Congress.
Around 21 Democratic Representatives are supporting a rival bill that would use the 25th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution to remove Trump, Newsweek reported. The 25th Amendment gives Congress and the cabinet the power to remove the President from office; if he is declared unfit or incompetent.
The sponsor of that bill; U.S. Representative Jamie Raskin (D-Maryland), thinks Trump’s tweets prove that he is mentally unstable and unfit to serve as President. Raskin wants to set up a commission that would examine Trump and determine if he is sane.
These efforts will probably go nowhere because Republicans; theoretically Trump’s party, control both houses of Congress. The only way removal would be successful right now is if Republicans turn on Trump; which would take truly outrageous behavior by Trump or hard evidence of wrong doing by the President.
Impeaching Trump is One of the Stupidest Things Democrats could Do
Impeaching Trump is one of the stupidest things Democrats can do because there is strong evidence that Donald is helping them
Democrats have won a majority of the 23 special elections for vacant state legislative positions held since Trump’s election, 538’s Nathiel Rakich noted. Democrats picked up 13 of the open seats and Republicans 11.
There were two elections in Democrats managed to switch red seats blue in New Hampshire and New York, Rakcih pointed out. He thinks this bodes well for Democrats in 2018 particularly on the state level.
Nor is it just on the state level in four separate elections for the U.S. House of Representatives Democrats held in 2017 Democrats managed increase their share of the vote by 9%. The most dramatic of these was in the Sixth District of Georgia where Democrat Jon Ossoff was able to force Republican Karen Handel into a run off.
In the Sixth District of Georgia, Republicans lost 9.8% of their margin of victory between November 2016 and June 2017 a period of just eight months. If this is what happens after just eight months of Trump, what will be the situation be like after nearly two years?
How Trump can help pass the Democratic Agenda
Nor is it just electoral victory Trump can help Democrats with. He might be willing to sign some of their legislation – if they win control of both houses of Congress in 2018.
Donald is an outspoken supporter of single-payer healthcare. He praised Britain’s National Health Service on The Dave Letterman Show, promoted the idea in a book and praised Australia’s Medicare for all system to that country’s prime minister. Since a majority of Congressional Democrats now support single-payer they are likely to pass legislation for it and Trump would probably sign it.
Trump might also emulate his idol; Richard M. Nixon and sign off on a host of radical social legislation; including basic income, a $15 minimum wage and increased Social Security. Since Polls indicate a majority of Americans want single-payer and favor a higher minimum wage and more Social Security, Trump is likely to sign such legislation to bolster his chances of reelection in 2020.
There is also a strong possibility that Trump would be willing to make deals with Democrats on issues like infrastructure, voting rights, civil rights, climate change, entitlements, and foreign policy. Donald is also likely to moderate his policies on immigration, regulation, the environment and taxes to get things done in Congress.
Why Democrats will Vote for Impeachment even if it hurts them
Even though he seems likely to help Democrats, they are likely to vote to impeach the Donald at some point. An impeachment attempt is probable because it is a popular idea with rank and file Democrats
Around 71% of Democratic voters want Trump impeached a Politico/Morning Consult poll from May 31, indicates. Given such numbers Congressional Democrats afraid of losing primaries will vote for impeachment.
Such an action would be stupid because Trump’s replacement would be conservative party loyalist Vice President Mike Pence (R-Indiana). Unlike Trump, Pence is guaranteed to veto any progressive legislation that reaches his desk. Nor would Pence be likely to compromise with Democrats. The result of a Trump impeachment would be total gridlock in government and blood in the streets.
The Most Probable Trump Impeachment Scenario
This brings us to the most probable Trump impeachment scenario. It’s November 2018 and Democrats have just won majorities in both houses of Congress.
President Trump starts signaling that he’s willing to work with them. Republicans; horrified at the prospect of Trump signing off on single payer healthcare and tax increases, move to impeach him.
Remember Trump is a moderate; many Congressional Republicans are far to his right. If they got rid of the Donald they would have Mike Pence; who is one of their own, in the Oval Office with a veto. Ideologically-motivated conservative Republicans are likely to be more comfortable with Pence; who will veto Democratic legislation, than Trump who might sign it.
Impeachment moves forward in the lame duck session of Congress in December 2018 and succeeds. Democrats have no choice; but to go along with the stab in the back because that is what their primary voters want.
Democrats would have another strong incentive to help Republicans betray Trump. They would figure that many Trump supporters would punish the GOP by voting Democrat in 2020. That might make many “safe red” districts and states competitive and grow the Democratic majority.
Riots break out in the streets, Trump supporters march and clash with Trump haters. Trump himself fuels the flames by immediately announcing his candidacy for 2020 and hitting the campaign trail. The resulting conflagration rips the GOP apart; but Establishment Republicans get two more years in the White House to make America safe for the Koch Brothers.
So How Probable is Impeachment?
My take is that impeachment is highly unlikely but I also thought the same thing about Trump’s nomination, Trump’s election and Brexit – all of those extraordinary events occurred. Nothing can be ruled out now because live in extraordinary times.
We live in an era when politicians are doing incredibly stupid things. Democrats nominated Hillary, Republicans nominated Trump and David Cameron signed off on Brexit. More recently Republicans have been pushing a healthcare bill that would hurt some of their most loyal supporters because it would give rich people a few tax cuts.
Given that backdrop the stupidity of impeachment is far more likely than most of us like to think. The outcome of impeachment would be catastrophic; especially for the GOP, and mark a paradigm shift in American politics. American Conservative editor Robert W. Merry even thinks impeachment would usher in an age of what he calls “American socialism”
Even though it would be totally stupid; and completely destructive, impeachment is far more likely than most people think given today’s political climate. Every American needs to be afraid of impeachment and watch for it because it just might happen.