To Impeach or Not To Impeach?
Updated: May 4
If you’re reading this (and you must be, so thanks for that!), you know the Northville Democratic Club sends out a weekly Calendar of Events. We are also starting up a new monthly Newsletter, which will focus on a single topic or issue, and is intended to be timely and informative. Our first Newsletter examines the case – both for and against – impeaching President Trump.
There is a growing divide within the House Democratic Caucus on whether or not to begin impeachment proceedings. However, this disagreement is not about whether Trump has committed impeachable crimes. Virtually all Democrats believe that he has obstructed justice and committed other crimes. Rather, the debate is about politics.
Those against impeachment worry that it may generate a backlash from Trump’s base and increase his chances for re-election in 2020. Those favoring impeachment are largely driven to “do what is right” by taking on this lawless, corrupt and dangerous president and his administration. They also believe that if they don’t move forward on impeachment, then Trump will take to Twitter to proclaim his innocence and boast that he’s been “exonerated.” Putting politics aside for the moment, perhaps the real and important question Democrats need to ask (and answer) is this: What is the best way to insure that Trump is not President for another term?
Let’s first look at the case For Impeachment. It would be hard to make a more impassioned call for impeachment than Charles Blow, Opinion Columnist for The New York Times, does in challenging Democrats to "Do Your Damned Duty!" Mr. Blow writes:
“I want to be able to believe in equitable justice in this country. I want to believe that no person is above the law. I want to believe that wealth and power will not insulate those who possess them from a justice that would be enacted upon the poor and powerless with ruthless efficiency . . . Democrats have a chance, but more important, an obligation to assert in opposition that on occasion American justice can be blind. I would argue that there is an even more profound opportunity cost to not pursuing impeachment.”
Now, let’s turn to the case Against Impeachment. David Frum of The Atlantic prefers a more cautious approach, saying "The Wisest Remedy Is Not Impeachment":
“And an acquitted (of impeachment in the Senate) Trump will be an immunized Trump. Is it vexing to hear Trump’s team misrepresent Robert Mueller’s report as an “exoneration”? Imagine what they will say and do if they defeat impeachment on a party-line Senate vote. It was all fake news, a plot by the Deep State. As false and wrong as those claims will be, how will Democrats sustain the momentum to hold Trump to account after a trial and acquittal? Won’t they then have to submit to the jeers of Trump henchpersons: This issue was litigated, and it’s time to move on?”
So, what do you think? We’d love to hear from you! Please send a brief e-mail reply to: firstname.lastname@example.org, stating your preference “For Impeachment” or “Against Impeachment,” and we’ll report back to you with the results in our next Newsletter. Also, please let us know if there are other topics or issues you would like us to address in the future. Thank you!