Republicans Are Not Honest Brokers

So Rep. Schiff (D-CA) and Speaker Pelosi (D-CA) agree that they should only impeach President Trump if they have “bipartisan support” for the move.

This is rank nonsense.

Both took an oath to defend the Constitution. We already have ample evidence that Trump does not understand what a constitution is, nor anything at all about our specific Constitution and that he has no intention of learning enough about it to abide by it.

We also know that his Republican colleagues are only too happy to pay lip service to the Constitution while ignoring both the principles it articulates and the historical practices we have developed during more than 200 years of governing the republic under it.

Conditioning impeachment on bipartisan support is a very dumb idea as long as Republicans refuse to act as honest brokers. We know they decided at the inauguration of the last Democratic president to oppose his every initiative just because he was a Democrat. We know that most of the Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee voted against the articles to impeach Richard Nixon.

Barry Goldwater did tell Nixon that the Senate would likely vote to remove him, which is what led Nixon to resign. The impeachment of Nixon was bipartisan in that important sense.

But Goldwater acted only after Nixon released the transcripts of his recorded Oval Office conversations that showed conclusively that he had planned to use the CIA to get the FBI to back off of its investigation into the Democratic Party’s headquarters at the Watergate Hotel.

What matters at the moment is that Mueller and various House committees continue their respective investigations. It was a subpoena from the special prosecutor in the Nixon case, Leon Jaworski, that caused Nixon to release the tapes that proved to be his undoing, after the Supreme Court decided unanimously that Nixon could not refuse to comply with the subpoena on grounds of general “executive privilege.”

The problem remains that making bipartisan agreement a necessary precondition to impeachment still effectively gives Mitch McConnell, a hyper partisan legislator, an effective veto over the decision in the House, which he should not have, since the Constitution gives the House the “sole” power of impeachment.

Impeach the motherfucker.

Written by

Uppity gay, Buddhist, author, historian.

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