The Two Simple Reasons Why Impeachment Will Fail
On October 31 of 2019, the United States House of Representatives voted on a resolution to begin a formal impeachment inquiry into Donald J. Trump. The resolution was formed after a whistleblower complaint came forward that Trump had misused the power of his office in relation to a foreign government, namely Ukraine.
In the complaint, the whistleblower explains how Trump aimed to solicit assistance from Ukraine in investigating his chief political rival in the upcoming 2020 United States presidential election.
In response to the complaint, the White House released a summary memorandum of the call. In that call, some of the key quotes that raised alarm were:
Trump: I would like you to do us a favor though because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it. I would like you to find out what happened with this whole situation with Ukraine, they say Crowdstrike ...
Trump: The other thing, There's a lot of. talk about Biden's son,. that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great. Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you ·can look into it ...
These two sections raised many concerns to the Democratic members of Congress as well as those in the intelligence community of the Unites States. Once the complaint became public, it was discovered that Trump's administration had frozen aid that had been approved by Congress prior to his July 25 phone call with the Ukrainian President. On September 11, two days after the inspector general of the intelligence community notifies the House intelligence committee that he received a whistleblower’s complaint related to the issue, that aid was released. It was also one day after Trump pushed out John Bolton as National Security Adviser.
Since Congress announced they were bringing witnesses in to testify about the Ukraine call, a few have established that the withholding of aid was tied to Ukraine opening an investigation into Biden, as well as making that public.
There have also been concerns about Trump's personal lawyer, Rudy Guiliani, and whether his involvement in the ousting of the United States Ambassador to Ukraine as well as business affairs were legal. There is now an ongoing counterintelligence investigation dedicated to these questions.
Do You Think there was Ample Reason for the Impeachment Inquiry into Donald J. Trump?
The First Reason the Impeachment is Doomed
The reason this formal inquiry was undertaken by the Democrats was that it involved action that Donald J. Trump took to use the power of his office to advance his personal interest, namely to gain re-election in the 2020 presidential election. Using Congressional-approved aid as leverage to force a foreign government to have an involvement and provide something of value (a smear of Biden) is at the heart of the issue.
The Republicans, at the behest of the White House, have aimed to make this issue about overturning the result of the 2016 election. But in reality, the chief concern is in the election law that forbids someone from soliciting or accepting anything of value from a foreign national. The founders felt that having such influence in our elections could be detrimental to our national interests.
Why this point of the impeachment will not sway Republicans in the Senate is simple: They do not believe in free or fair elections.
This is a party that believes deeply in gerrymandering and voter suppression. Neither of those policies aims to create free or fair elections. In the 31 states with party registration, 40% are comprised of Democrats, 28% are Republican and 29% are Independent. That is a significant deficit that the GOP in the United States needs to overcome.
If free and fair were their mantra, they would be the minority party in most years. But through an intensive campaign of gerrymandering, they have been very successful in turning their minority numbers into a majority in many state legislatures.
The Second Reason For Impeachment Failure
In order for impeachment to become effective, it must be backed by the public. This will never happen due to the media outreach of the current Republican Party. Fox News has been described as state-run television and Trump is a master of dictating the narrative to his cult-like following. It is this exposure to such an alternate reality that will insulate Trump during the impeachment trial that is sure to be on the horizon.
One prime example of the alternate reality that Trump supporters live within was shown recently when it was discovered that only 40% of Republicans believe Trump asked Ukraine to investigate Biden.
Another is in the fact that Trump has surrounded himself with sycophants and loyalists such as Attorney General Bill Barr. They are skewing the narrative in favor of Trump, such as was done with Barr misrepresenting the findings of the Mueller probe prior to its release and that Barr saw no need to take action when the whistleblower filed their complaint. It's completely apparent to most that Barr is acting as Trump's attorney and not in the interests of the laws of the United States. But to his followers, Barr is seen as an expert.
Polling taken shortly after the formal impeachment inquiry vote shows that 82% of Democrats believe Trump should be removed from office with what is known and 47% of Independents. The figure is only 18% of Republicans as of early November of 2019. While Trump's approval rate among the GOP is down 13% (87-to-74) from July of 2019 to November of 2019, it's going to take more irrefutable information to sway his loyal base of 40%. Right now, he has taken control of the Republican party and that was never more evident than when the formal impeachment inquiry vote garnered zero votes from the GOP.
Between Trump's attacks on members of his own party who have shown disloyalty and the backing of Fox News, the information that gets presented to his most loyal followers will be similar to how the Mueller report was viewed. While 1,023 former federal prosecutors have signed aboard to claim that a conviction for Obstruction of Justice would have been the likely outcome for any other American not shielded by the Office of the Presidency for the actions that Trump took to harm the investigation, his supporters have bought his claim of exoneration. They are in a total break from reality and will follow Trump down whatever rabbit hole he leads them.
Is There Any Chance?
There may be some strategies for the Democrats to protect the republic from Trump and his minions. If they can show an overwhelming amount of evidence to all of Trump's crimes, crimes that to Democrats clearly show obstruction of justice, obstruction of Congress, emoluments clause violations, fraud, campaign finance law violations, and abuse of power, they may be able to sell Trump's base on the corruption that is evident to many.
Trump's strategy is to draw this out by obstructing as much as he can and get to the 2020 election to see if he can make the case that a vote should be the deciding factor in his guilt.
For Democrats, Trump has shown that he will break whatever laws he needs to in order to win. For some Trump supporters, that's something they admire in him. They call it fighting. For many of us, we call that criminality. And that is something we do not want anywhere near the Oval Office now, or in the foreseeable future.