When Bill Clinton was impeached for committing perjury and obstructing justice, Democrats didn’t really burn a lot of calories trying to deny he’d done those things, he did. They spent their time insisting those things were not impeachable, that they didn’t matter because they were over “a personal matter.”
As absurd as the idea was – that the President of the United States lying under oath about getting from a young White House intern exactly what Paula Jones said he’d asked for – the Democrats declared it “little more than a personal matter” and, therefore, not impeachable.
Ultimately, he won. They won. The literal crimes of obstruction of justice and perjury were no longer impeachable offenses.
So if lying under oath and encouraging others to do the same is not impeachable, what is? And if lying to the public about your affair with a government employee for months, and using the president’s cabinet members, in their official capacity as government employees heading executive branch departments, to deny it as well (which Bill Clinton did) isn’t impeachable, what could be?
We now have our answer, from the very same people who deemed the above actions completely kosher. Nancy Pelosi, Jerry Nadler, and Maxine Waters all voted against impeaching Clinton for literal felonies, yet all were on stage Tuesday when announcing articles of impeachment against President Trump for “abuse of power” and “obstruction of Congress,” neither of which are real crimes.
Someone can abuse their power in pressuring someone else to commit a crime, or get a foreign prosecutor to stop investigating a company paying their drug abusing kid millions of dollars, things like that; but it’s a tactic, not a felony.
As for “obstruction of Congress,” this one is even more absurd. Congress and the executive branch are co-equal branches of government, Congress is not superior. Congress does have oversight powers, but those powers are not absolute. When Congress sought the testimony of the president’s advisors, they were demanding access to the deliberative process of the president, confidential conversations and advice given to the president in a candid way. The reason those conversations are candid is because they are privileged. Congress has no more right to know what was said than they have a right to know what someone says in a confessional.
The president of the United States has to be able to have candid conversations with advisors, just he needs to be able to have candid conversations with other world leaders. If any president can’t trust that the conversations he has with staff and counterparts will remain private, no one will ever have candid conversations with a president. Nor should they.
For all the whining from Democrats and never-Trump “Republicans” about President Trump “destroying norms” in Washington, the ability of a president to have candid conversations with people is one norm that really matters, one that could damage national security, and they’re destroying it.
The norms being destroyed by President Trump are of decorum – he’s rude, sometimes, back to people who’ve attacked him first. The norms the left are destroying are fundamental to a president’s ability to do their job. They may not care about that when the president’s name is “Trump,” but they will when whatever the name of a future president is if their name is followed by a (D).
They judged President Trump guilty of something, and have been scrambling from the moment he set foot on that escalator to find what it was. But each path they’ve gone down – Russian collusion, bribery, treason, general corruption, emoluments clause violations, getting two scoops of ice cream when everyone else only gets one – ended up being dead ends.
They have nothing, but they also have an election next year. Facing a booming economy, amazingly low unemployment and huge wage growth Democrats swore to us was impossible when they were in charge, they need something. After all, can’t have Democrat voters wondering how the economy, which they were promised would be ruined by a Trump presidency, is doing so well. Their efforts to retroactively credit President Obama were always laughable, but it’s gut-bustingly hilarious when they swore each new move Trump made would only make things worse.
Would you want to have to explain why everything you’ve said would happen didn’t, and why things are better but you want to return us to how things were when they sucked? Neither do they.
The remarkable thing about the impeachment of President Donald Trump is just how unremarkable it is. Everyone knows it’s not going anywhere, the media knows this is being done for the 2020 election. It’s so bad they made up things to accuse him of. So excited, Democrats have prematurely adjudicated; creating an awkward mess by declaring him guilty of things he didn’t do, things that aren’t even crimes. All they can do now is hope they aren’t leaving their voters too unsatisfied that next November their base doesn’t leave them to wipe up the mess alone.