Thursday, September 26, 2019

The Impeachment Variety Show: Always Good For A Laugh

Friends, you can criticize the Democrats on many levels, but no one can say that they're not creative.  They've been beating the impeachment drum based on Russian collusion and obstruction of justice for years now, but along comes a story about Ukraine and -- what do you know -- all of a sudden, before the Democrats even see any of the underlying evidence*, it's the impeachment headliner!  I guess that tells you how thin the evidence was for all the other charges...  To say that the Dems are "desperate" to get Trump would be an insult to desperate people!  Be that as it may, the question arises: how seriously should we take the latest push to impeach the President?  Is he in any danger?

You already know my views on these questions.  There's virtually zero chance that Trump will be removed from office, and, despite the fulminations of Nancy Pelosi, AOC, the New York Times, and the Washington Post, there's very little chance that the full House will ever vote on impeachment, let alone approve it.  I explain it all in my latest article, coming soon to American Greatness:

On Impeachment, the Democrats Are All Talk and No Action

This week we've seen much breathless speculation in the media about how close the Democratic House of Representatives may be to impeaching President Trump. The answer to that question is straightforward: about as close as they were last week, and the week before — that is, not close at all.
How can this be? Didn't Speaker Nancy Pelosi declare in solemn tones that an “impeachment inquiry” is now underway? Don't White House reporters suddenly have a gleam in their eye that wasn't there a week ago? Yes, but... 

In Washington, D.C., nothing is as it seems.

True, the Democrats practically wet themselves in their excitement over the news that, according to a so-called whistleblower, Trump may have “pressured” the Ukrainian government to investigate his potential opponent in the 2020 election, former Vice-President (and one-time Ukrainian policy supremo) Joe Biden. 

Finally, the Democrats seemed to cry out collectively, we caught Trump in the act!
Indeed, they were so giddy that they decided not to wait for any of the underlying evidence to emerge before selecting the nuclear option of impeachment. Strike while the iron is hot, right? Better yet, strike before the iron is even chemically identifiable as iron.

Of course, the facts of the Ukraine matter do not, well, matter to Democrats nearly as much as the perception of wrongdoing that their bellyaching and finger-wagging can generate. By that inexact measure, indeed, Trump's conversations with the President of Ukraine are somewhere on the scale of malevolence between the Nazi terror bombing of Guernica and NBC's cancellation of Star Trek — in other words, really really bad.
Unfortunately for the Democrats, however, their brand of amateur political theater has long since worn thin. The American people are increasingly apt to view all politicians as self-interested and dishonest, including Democrats. Will a plurality of Americans support the impeachment of Donald Trump, therefore? Most assuredly. But a comparable number would probably support the impeachment of Nancy Pelosi or Chuck Schumer — which is merely a reflection of how polarized and embittered voters have become.

The point, though, is that this week's Ukrainian brouhaha changed nothing fundamental about American politics, or about the standing of Donald Trump in the eyes of the electorate. Trump's approval ratings are holding steady, or even ticking upwards. Support for impeachment is significant, but nowhere near a majority. Democrats are still salivating at every opportunity to give Trump a black eye, or worse, but independents and Republicans either like and admire the man, or they think Democrats should take a deep breath and let him get on with his job.

Likewise, Nancy Pelosi's bloviating about impeachment and how “No one is above the law” should be seen for what it is: it gives her seal of approval to yet more investigations of the President, but it does not make inevitable by any means actual impeachment proceedings. Impeachment, were it ever to come to pass, would involve the House Judiciary Committee considering and approving specific articles of impeachment, and the full House then voting on whether or not to approve them. If the House passed any one of those articles, then President Trump effectively would have been indicted by the House, and he would next be (assuming Mitch McConnell's cooperation) tried in the Senate. There is no reason, however, to believe that the Democratic leadership in the House is anywhere close to pulling the trigger on impeachment by bringing it up for a meaningful vote.

This may come as a surprise, when the media is reporting constantly that X number of House members “support” impeachment. What they mean, however, is that many House Democrats “impeachment inquiry,” to borrow a phrase from Ms. Pelosi herself. In other words, Democrats can agree that they dislike Trump, and that they want to subject him to constant scrutiny and abuse, but beyond that any consensus on what should be done to or with the President breaks down. The number of House Democrats who would vote — today, on the basis of what is already known — to impeach the President is small. None of the developments of the last week have changed that simple fact.

President Trump and his supporters, therefore, should breathe a sigh of relief. The talk of impeachment has always been mostly hot air. 

The Democrats will get only one chance to remove Donald Trump from the White House — in November 2020 — and, if they keep up their hyperventilating and their steady drift to the left, they will almost certainly blow that opportunity too.

Dr. Nicholas L. Waddy is an Associate Professor of History at SUNY Alfred and blogs at: He appears weekly on the Newsmaker Show on WLEA 1480.

And here's the American Greatness version: 

*I encourage everyone to read the whistleblower's complaint.  That it was written by a team of anti-Trump lawyers is patently obvious.  That the man who nominally wrote it actually knew nothing of the events he describes -- and offered no evidence to support almost all of his charges -- is also clear.  The best response to this memo would have been to fire the Swamp Monster who wrote it.


  1. So, class today went off the rails and the battle lines have been drawn in American Revolution class over this...quite an interesting talk about this topic today. I am proud to state I stand firm in my beliefs over this. I did get Dr. O. to admit that the likely of an impeachment is extremely unlikely-I guess that is a start. Not that I would ever get him to change his mind, but I would like to see some openness to my ideology. Also, I might add, what might fall into the category of 'other high Crimes and Misdemeanors' was and still remains unclear. Congress and the MSM really need a lesson / refreshers course in our Constitution and even the Federalist Papers. I fully believe when our Founding Fathers wanted to ensure accountability, they did so by elections/electing and to the voters to hold these officials responsible for their actions.

  2. So impeachment is the talk of the town! I'm not surprised. I think we can all admit that the wording of the Constitution is vague. Practically speaking, you can impeach and remove someone for virtually anything. Realistically speaking, it's rarely done, and only in the most extreme cases of malfeasance. Does Trump qualify? There aren't many lefties remaining who would say "no". They hate the man and believe virtually any unflattering claim made about him. And impeachment effort that fails, as this one certainly will, is not a credit to those who launch it. Will cooler heads prevail? I'm pretty sure the Dems won't rush into holding any meaningful votes, but they may be cornered by their own rhetoric in the final analysis. They keep saying Trump is the most lawless President ever. How can you NOT impeach someone, under those circumstances? They also have to worry about a rebellion in the ranks. The AOCs of this world want blood...

  3. Yes, agree. The wording in the Constitution is vague, however, I am a firm believer it is NOT a living and breathing thing--one can change the it at will. It can not be changed at will and nor should it be.

    FOX just reported that Mrs. Pelosi will be pushing a vote BEFORE the inquiry is finished. That sounds familiar; Just pass it before you read it-in reference to Obamacare. Blood is indeed in the water--and I am afraid some of those dems will not come out unscathed.

  4. ** mistake in adding an extra word in there. The wording in the Constitution is vague, however, I am a firm believer it is NOT a living and breathing thing-- that one can change it at will. It can not be changed at will and nor should it be.

  5. Linda, I totally agree that the Constitution doesn't change its meaning based on the whims of liberals. If it did, there would be little point in having a Constitution! Of course, it's debatable whether we truly have one, in the sense that the Supreme Court has already over-interpreted the hallowed document into potential irrelevance. The Tenth Amendment is a great example. It LIMITS federal power, clearly, but for all practical purposes the federal government currently does whatever it likes, especially to the states.

    So Pelosi is planning a vote soon on impeachment? I haven't read that anywhere, and I doubt if it's true. The Dems will watch the polls and act accordingly. I suppose they might vote on supporting the "inquiry," but that would carry little weight.

  6. Well, since I last posted a comment, she has backed away from the impeachment vote--and has since gone on vacation with the rest of the House. However, she is all over the news programs stating falsehoods. This whole thing is such a circus. Paul Ryan is running the 'show' over at FOX so that tells you what is going on, wink. It will soon become Anti Trump.

  7. Oh, I hope not, Linda! Fox has strayed, though, and I think Republicans and conservatives are wise to consider other options for news. As for Nancy and Co., they will follow the polls, to a large extent. Let's hope the American people see through this nonsense.

    1. OAN-One American News, I also have been reading has to get a variety of news sources and I dare say the other side as well like Politico.

  8. Dr. Waddy and Linda: God forbid! We need Fox. It speaks for the real America. But I do not gainsay your concern Linda. If Paul Ryan has a hand in it, then spineless RINOism looms.

    It would be instructive to understand the Founding Generation's definition of "misdemeanor". I mean, I could just see this: "you are indicted of the felony of murder and the misdemeanor of the theft of 15 pounds". What would a "high misdemeanor" be, the theft of 35 pounds? Of course a creditable history of the Constitution would clear this up, had I the energy to access it. Gee, how many Trump haters have thought of that?

    So, Trump is the most lawless President ever ehhh? I would first remark upon the, yes?, cavalier attitude of the left to "the law", both in its establishment, its integrity and in its inviolability short of, yes, legal remedies. This is but dross, dust to the left.Their dominant Critical Legal Studies school of legal thought gives them leave to pursue any fancy should they fleetingly think it "just".That has been PROVEN by their freely enacted conduct. But it can all be summed up in one chant and that should be our tocsin: "Clinton, Clinton, Clinton". The Dems are the party yet captured and permanently stained by that LAWLESS couple. And the party was blithe to be so ensnared.

  9. Linda, yes -- One America News seems to be gaining in popularity. I'll have to give it a whirl. I believe it doesn't require a cable subscription. I personally get a lot of my news from the Fox News website and RealClearPolitics. I agree that it's important to stay plugged into what the other side is saying. Roughly half the country now supports impeachment, and we'll never understand why unless we contemplate the biased news that many of our countrymen are getting.

    Jack, good point about the rule of law. For the Dems, the law has only one purpose: to uplift the righteous and destroy the wicked. All those people in jail who "broke" the law? Victims! All those law-abiding Republicans who dare to disagree with the agenda of the Left? Criminals! What could be more obvious, from the liberal perspective? As you've said, Jack, we needn't bother trying to reason with the true believers, but we also can't stop making our case as best as we're able to the dunderheads in the "middle" -- the "undecideds" and independents -- who, for better or worse, will decide the country's fate in 2020.

  10. Dr. Waddy: DITTO! Linda: I will follow up on One America News.

  11. Dr. Waddy: With respect though, I would add that I think many independents to be careful thinkers. Its very obvious to many of us convinced conservatives that the threat to all Americans is present and profound but many others are not convinced of it yet.

  12. Jack, you're absolutely right -- a lot of independents are patriots and diligent, informed voters. Quite a few of them also reliably vote for one party or the other. I believe in 2016 they narrowly broke for Trump. We need to convince them to do so again.