Thursday, December 19, 2019

The Impeachment Anticlimax

Friends, it's official: Donald J. Trump is only the third U.S. President to be impeached by the House of Representatives.  It's big news, and yet you could be forgiven for saying: "Ho-hum."  We've all seen this coming for a long time.  The only suspense was in the question of whether swing-district Democrats would stay on-side and vote for impeachment, despite the danger it places them in for the 2020 election.  Almost all of them did.  That doesn't mean that Trump is guilty as sin, of course.  It means those vulnerable Democrats are more afraid of a primary opponent picking them off from the left than they are of losing in the general election in November.  For many of them, a vote for impeachment is therefore simply a vote for self-preservation -- the prime directive of politics, if you will...

There are only three surprises, therefore, in this whole mess.  First, the Democratic Party is shrinking.  New Jersey Congressman Jeff Van Drew, formerly a Democrat, is joining the GOP because of his opposition to the articles of impeachment, and because he knows that an opponent of impeachment is not welcome in today's Democratic Party.  That's excellent news!  Let's hope many free-thinkers and independent-minded centrists and liberals will be similarly disgusted by the campaign of persecution and vilification that Democrats have unleashed against our President.

Second, Tulsi Gabbard, a Democratic Congresswoman from Hawaii and a candidate for President herself, voted "present" on both articles of impeachment.  Her reasoning was straightforward: she doesn't think a partisan impeachment is in the country's best interests.  Naturally, she's right, but consider the courage it takes to buck the impeachment obsession among Democrats.  Gabbard will be, and in fact already has been, viciously attacked by her fellow Democrats for her refusal to endorse impeachment.  The question that will inevitably arise in the wake of her votes is this: if the Democrats thoroughly alienate her, might she make the journey to the GOP -- or might she run as an independent centrist in 2020?  The latter move would be a game-changer -- not because she'd have a prayer of winning, but because anything that splits the Democratic/left-leaning vote will almost certainly help Donald Trump win re-election.  Tulsi's iconoclasm could therefore have world-historical consequences.  Stay tuned.

Lastly, the big news tonight is that Nancy Pelosi isn't guaranteeing that the House will forward the articles of impeachment to the Senate.  Is this mere gamesmanship, or is Pelosi seriously considering dispensing with a Senate trial of President Trump?  It's true that Democrats have little to gain from such a trial, but, if there's to be no trial, then what was the point of impeachment in the first place?

And that, I would argue, will be the question on many a leftist's lips going forward.  Impeachment was a purely symbolic win for the Democrats and for the Left -- and it's a win that may well come back to haunt them in 2020.  Just ask Newt Gingrich how well partisan impeachments tend to work out for the party that engineers them...  This isn't over.  Not even close.


And, for good measure, here's some straight talk about the Democrats' baseless claims of "voter suppression":


  1. If I could send a message to the Madame Speaker,"You might want to read up/brush up on the Constitution."

    Such a disgrace this impeachment has become, Dr. Waddy, not surprising, but so disgraceful. The tone from the left is so condescending.

  2. Dr. Waddy and Linda: Byron York wrote in a column titled "Get Ready for Impeachment Surprises":Charles Schumer will attempt to make of the trial much more than a ritual consideration of the nominal charges. If he can get the votes of four RINOs he can compel the appearance of several potential witnesses, including John Bolton and Mick Mulvaney, for whom the White House has claimed executive privilege. Schumer may hope by doing this to" introduce new testimony . . . that will require new investigation" etc, etc. He effectively argues that Schumer will strive to expand the scope of the trial and implies that the results (perhaps some even unforeseen by Schumer)could redound to the favor of the Democrats' fundamental goal of destroying President Trump.

    Real America, Schumer is New York's shame. This disdainful and hypocritical man, seemingly permanently endowed with a sneer, is unrepresentative of millions of us here in NY but we cannot vote him out.A high light of this trial could come in an eloquent denunciation of him noting his withering public disdain for the impeachment of the execrable Slick Willie.

  3. Dr. Waddy and Linda: Unlike the thoroughly amoral Clinton, there is no shame for President Trump in having been impeached by this House and its recklessly partisan leaders.

  4. Linda, I agree wholeheartedly. The Left's assumption of moral superiority has been on vivid (and execrable) display!

    Jack, I think Byron York must be an optimist (assuming he's a liberal). If Schumer gets his hoped-for witnesses, I doubt they would add much of consequence to the proceedings, and the only way he would get them is as part of a deal that delivered one or more Bidens as well. My guess is they'll be no witnesses -- just an opportunity for both sides to present the best case they can muster. You and I will probably watch, but the country has been done with this circus for a while now. The result, and even the fallout, is baked in. My prediction: no Republicans voting to convict, and a small number of Democrats voting to acquit, as in the House.

  5. IF it ever makes it way over to the Senate...I have a feeling Pelosi will continue to play dirty. I have been reading news accounts--the dems are willing to keep on playing even in 2020.

    My guess is (IF it ever gets to the Senate) -that it will be automatically dismissed and there will be no trial. Unfort. impeachment is a mark on Trumps record.

    Laughable how Schumer is crying for fairness, where was fairness in the House?

  6. Dr. Waddy and Linda: I hope you are both right about either no trial or a pro forma staging. If I were Mitch McConnell I'd use this as an opportunity to severely task Schumer. He is a destructive and divisive force who wouldn't be elected Parking Meter Polisher in most states. Byron York is mostly conservative and I'm not aware of being in the so called neo-con crowd of Trump detractors. I see your point about a Biden tradeoff and hope that Romney can contain his contempt. That this becomes a Dem debacle is devoutly to be wished for.

  7. Linda, Nancy Pelosi's recent antics are extraordinary. It looks bizarre to pass articles of impeachment and then jealously shield them from the Senate's prying eyes, so I imagine in the end she'll be shamed into transmitting them, BUT there is some political wisdom in skipping a Senate trial. Ultimately Pelosi and McConnell may both be okay with that. We shall see. I'm not opposed to summary dismissal either. If McConnell has the votes for that, why not...

    Jack, I guess Byron York must suspect that the RINOs are laying a trap for Trump. I very much doubt it. Other than Romney, they've shown no inclination to stand up to Trump, and most of them would be toast politically if they did. No, Trump is safe and secure at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, in my view.

  8. Linda: Though Byron York is a creditable observer, I think you are right. Its good news. Can the Senate actually summarily dismiss? I didn't know that. That would a thumb in the leftist eye.

    1. Jack, I like York. Yes, the Senate can dismiss-they could take a rollcall and it will voted on. I was just reading something over at Townhall, interesting thoughts about SCOTUS. Hmm, interesting thoughts coming from several democratic professors and law scholars; this "impeachment" isn't exactly a done deal until it reaches the Senate. I tend to lean towards that thought.

  9. I agree, Linda. If the House doesn't transmit the articles, then it was all a sham. It's more akin to censure than impeachment. If I were Mitch McConnell, I wouldn't negotiate with Pelosi one iota. If the Dems want to sit on their articles, let them. The Senate can still hold hearings to effectively clear Trump's name.

    1. I wonder...isn't what Pelosi is asking for-isn't that Quid Pro Quo? Just wondering...we are having this discussion in the Conley house.

  10. Dr. Waddy and Linda: The Dems'options for getting out of this mess that their tantrum since Nov. 8, 2016 has put them in appear to be all of an onerous nature.Why, let them "censure" if only in effect. Their volcanic resentment at having their "due" taken from them by one as guache as Donald Trump has driven them to existential and consuming panic. You are right, McConnell should let them and their limousine liberal leadress in the House stew in their own juices.

    If the articles are kept in the House it will be more obvious than ever that the Dems used this very serious measure for purely partisan reasons. Let them come to the Senate and President Trump will come out smelling like a rose. I think McConnell is ready for Schumer's disdainful thrashing. And Durbin pontificating today about his "open" mind going into a trial and his cynical and disingenuous Dutch Uncle preroration against those whose minds are made up - disgusting and easily read. "Oh please Brer Bear, don' thro me in that briar patch". These Dems have reached the point where they should consider simply keeping their council; whenever they open their mouths they confirm their folly.

    Above all, GOP, you must resolve to go for the Dem political jugular from now all the way through the 2020 election. Don't let up for a minute and lets not hear from you"well, we're not going to sink to their level." !!!! This is your chance to stand for the real America against an existential threat which stands in actual possibility of permanent defeat. Take the gloves off - do what you must. We are ready to stand by you and return Madame Pelosi back to the back benches for good, to reelect this good and faithful President and through him,to secure the Supreme Court for the rule of law, not radical left fiat. Don't let us down; follow up on your advantage, as good fighters do when their cause is right!

  11. Jack, re: 2020, there's been some positive signs in recent polling. Impeachment seems to be uniting Republicans and turning off independents. Pollsters are also starting to notice that, in the states that really count, things are breaking Trump's way.

    Linda: yes, you could interpret what Pelosi is doing as quid pro quo. Honestly, though, you could interpret 99% of politics, and 99% of business too, as quid pro quo. Quid pro quos make the world go 'round, which is what makes the whole debate so senseless.

    Jack: I agree that failure to deliver the articles would be an admission that REAL impeachment and removal of the President was never the Democrats' objective. A vote for impeachment was simply a vote to stick a thumb in Trump's eye.

    Will McConnell negotiate? I'm not sure. He and Schumer are talking, as far as I know. As long as McConnell talks, we can't rule out the possibility that he'll cave, in some form. Unless the White House signs on to any deal, however, it will have no effect. Subpoenas, as we've seen, can be easily ignored.