The Need To Impeach Is Bigger Than Trump
Congress has a job to do, now let's just wait to see if they do it.
While reading the heavily-redacted Mueller report, I kept asking myself, does this really matter? Is impeachment something that should happen even if it can? The thought of Vice President Mike Pence in the Oval is definitely a deterrent when thinking about impeaching Donald Trump.
For the last two years, we’ve been on this ride that is the Mueller investigation. At times it feels like the investigation only feeds into the circus of Trump’s presidency. From rumors of alleged pee tapes to the Cohen hearing with Congressional clapbacks, the last two years of politics have felt more like one of Trump’s reality TV shows than real life. It’s understandable why one would feel apathy around anything related to Trump or his possible impeachment.
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We went from eight years of President Obama who, although leaving us with some disappointment, never had us questioning whether or not his decisions were based on what he believed was best for the country. We know that if Obama was even accused of 1 of the 11 acts of obstruction of law that the Mueller report exposed in a Republican-controlled House, he would have quickly been impeached.
And maybe that's part of what plays into the apathy: Knowing that corruption so often in Washington goes unchecked. It is for this reason that the decision of whether or not to impeach Trump is bigger than just getting him out of office. Instead, it is a declaration as a government body and as a democracy that the role of president is a privilege that can be taken away after evidence of abuse surfaces.
It’s still unclear if the Democrats will have the heart to lead charges of impeachment against Trump, despite the Mueller report providing avenues for them to do so. In an interview with Washington Post prior to the release of the full report, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said that she was not in support of impeachment. However, after the report's release, she tweeted, “The only way to begin restoring public trust in the handling of the Special Counsel’s investigation is for Special Counsel Mueller himself to provide public testimony in the House and Senate as soon as possible.”
The only way to begin restoring public trust in the handling of the Special Counsel’s investigation is for Special Counsel Mueller himself to provide public testimony in the House and Senate as soon as possible.
— Nancy Pelosi (@SpeakerPelosi) April 18, 2019
Other leaders within the Democratic Party, like Representative Maxine Waters, have long supported impeaching Trump. Often Black women are the canaries in the coal mine, flagging signs that go ignored. Her willingness to so bravely stand up to corruption has made her a target from her supports. With bomb threats made against her office in Los Angeles, the congresswoman has maintained the call for an investigation into the Trump administration.
In her statement on the Mueller report, Waters says, "Congress’ failure to impeach would set a dangerous precedent and imperil the nation as it would vest too much power in the Executive Branch and embolden future officeholders to further debase the U.S. presidency, if that’s even possible.”
Being the president of the United States gives one an extreme amount of power. Not just over a governing body, but millions of people, too.
If we're going to have a system that gives an individual that much authority, it is crucial that we hold them accountable throughout their presidency. Each presidency sets another threshold of precedence for the next one who takes office.
Before we elect the next president in 2020, it would be good for them to know that if they do not adhere to the rules set forth by the Constitution, they too can face impeachment.
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