The following is an editorial by PoliticusUSA’s editor-in-chief Sarah Jones.
What do you do about a problem like Donald Trump?
Donald Trump has been emboldened by the Mueller report not resulting in his outster. Yes, a report that clearly laid out that his campaign worked with Russia to cheat in the 2016 election made Trump feel more powerful, not less.
Trump and Republicans falsely claimed he was “totally exonerated” by the Mueller report. Then, barely a heartbeat later, Trump was asking Ukraine to interfere in the next election for him. Trump is now openly colluding with a foreign country to cheat in 2020, because he believes he can’t win an election without cheating.
That psychology is important.
It reveals a man, and an entire party, with no compunction to uphold any law pertaining to themselves. It reveals a party led by a man with no patriotism, no duty to country, no loyalty to country.
Naturally, people who see this want to get rid of Donald Trump. It makes them cling to impeachment as the only way, even though they realize impeachment won’t actually get rid of Trump because of his Moscow Mitch shield against his own country.
Some folks actually believe that impeachment will shame Trump and Republicans, and alert the public to his wrong doing. But that is based on how Nixon’s scandal went down, long before our country was this polarized, our media this ridiculous “he said, she said” enabler, and the Republican party became a party gerrymandered into safety in the House and thus even more extreme and less beholden to the people.
Impeachment will not shame Trump or Republicans. Look at them. Even the redacted Mueller report, which the public has access to, has done nothing to move the needle – and it spells out gasp-worthy wrong-doing by this president and his advisers.
It spells out what I would call, for brevity’s sake, treason.
But the public doesn’t care. They’re exhausted by Trump and they just want him gone. They don’t want more drama. Poll after poll shows this.
Of course, polls shouldn’t inform laws or how they are interpreted, nor should election chances. Those who argue against impeachment of Trump often cite the real possibility that it could cost Democrats the House.
But that isn’t a good reason not to impeach Trump, either.
The reason not to impeach Trump is that it will absorb all of the oxygen in the room and it won’t work. The value is in the impeachment investigations that the House is doing, which after this Ukraine admission should center publicly on his treasonous character whims, although it is more likely that one of his many violations of the law and ethics standards will be the legal undoing of Donald Trump. If Democrats are smart, they can raise the public’s awareness of Trump’s treasonous behavior without expending all of their political will on impeachment.
Trump is such a danger to our very democracy, to western democracy, that we can’t fiddle around pretending ordinary mechanisms will take care of this toxin.
As long as Mitch McConnell presides over the Senate, no ordinary mechanism will take care of Donald Trump or the Republican Party’s attack on basic U.S. freedoms like our elections.
Democrats will need to think outside of the box to get rid of Trump. They can’t do anything that relies upon Mitch McConnell or any Republican -other than Michigan’s Justin Amash – to grow a red, white and blue spine.
They’ve come up with the idea of challenging the law that a sitting president can’t be indicted, which is to say challenging the way an OPINION memo is being interpreted as law, when it actually is not law.
That has legs if it can be done via legal methods that don’t involve the Senate. It can easily be sold to the public as “Everyone should be held to the same standard of the law” or “No one is above the law,” whereas impeachment is complicated.
Whereas the only real legs impeachment had was treason from the Mueller report, and we saw how that fizzled out before our eyes as Republicans, including Donald Trump’s Attorney General- a man D.C. insiders assured us all was a person of integrity – lied in his summary of the report, and then walked it back after enough time had passed that the lie solidified as the truth. (If you read conservative media, they are still quoting from Barr’s non-summary summary today.)
There is too much at stake for the public to be clinging to impeachment unicorns. It’s clear that impeachment will do nothing to Donald Trump. Sure, it should still happen because it’s the right legal process, but it won’t save this country.
It won’t even wound him with his own base, and indeed he will run on being “totally exonerated” once McConnell refuses to even bring it up for a vote or acquits without any evidence being made public. Republicans would use that sham trial to bring up their baseless attacks on Joe Biden. That is who they are now.
And the reason they get away with doing that is because big papers and corporate media actually do their bidding, following Trump’s pointed fingers to whatever target he’s set his birther eyes upon and off they go, suggesting that there might be a there there, and oh gee, Biden might have a Ukraine problem.
Biden does not have a Ukraine problem, but the United States has a Republican problem and a media problem that might be the death of our system. It is certainly being tested and so far, no mechanism has held.
Trump deserves to be impeached, but he will not treat it that way. He will wear it as a crown of his invincibility, just as he has done with the Mueller report.
Time and time again, we see good people unable to take on the task of Trump. Bob Mueller humiliated his own value system with a watered down report that refused to indict a man who cheated to get into office.
Think about that. All of this, three years in, for a man who cheated – not just cheated, but cheated with an ENEMY OF THE UNITED STATES in an act of cyber war against this country.
Does our media tell the public this? Oh, they’re very busy chasing after Joe Biden now that Hillary Clinton’s emails are dusty relics of their last failure to inform the public.
Donald Trump will have to be voted out of office. That is the only way to get rid of him. Along with Mitch McConnell. And anyone who tells you otherwise and blames the Democrats for the jaw-dropping malignant narcissism of Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell is only helping them get away with it by depressing morale and thus turnout in 2020.
There is nothing the Speaker can do right now that doesn’t end in Trump declaring victory. Even impeachment. Yes, he did it before. Impeachment is the new Mueller report, and the people have to wise up and arm themselves with the knowledge that they are dealing with psychopaths. This is a new game, it can’t be based on an old game.
The normal mechanisms aren’t working. Donald Trump, Mitch McConnell and the entire Republican Party have shown everyone who they are. Why are people pretending not to see it?
They aren’t ever going to come to the table to do the right thing. They aren’t here to do the right thing. They aren’t here to protect the United States or her people. They are in power for themselves, and that is all they care about. If it takes destroying the United States to stay in power, they are doing it. They are literally doing it right now.
It’s all hands on deck to get this man and his enemies of this country out of office. That is going to require every single person you know voting for a Democrat. There is no other way out, because they have all been rigged by Republicans to get around the law.
Ms. Jones is the editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah has won two Telly Awards and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.