Impeachment: What You Want, What You Can Get, What Wins

President Donald Trump.

The Denver Post’s Justin Wingerter has a good write-up today on the views of Colorado Democrats on impeaching President Donald Trump following the release of a redacted version of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report–a report that is considerably worse for Trump after digestion than Attorney General William Barr led the nation to believe.

Despite this, most of the delegation agrees that the moment is not yet ripe to commence impeachment proceedings:

“The Mueller report details many instances in which President Trump actively attempted to interfere with the investigation into his campaign’s potentially treasonous ties with Russia,” said Rep. Diana DeGette, a Denver Democrat. “The president’s actions are clearly beneath the high personal, ethical and legal standards our founders envisioned in the executive branch, and, as such, constitute a prima facie case to trigger an impeachment investigation.”

…When asked if there is enough evidence in the redacted Mueller report to justify impeachment, Rep. Ed Perlmutter paused for seven seconds and sighed before answering. “My guess is, if we could see what’s been redacted, that there would be enough. [Pols emphasis] But I don’t know that because it’s been redacted,” he said, adding that there is “pretty damning” evidence Trump obstructed justice.

Perlmutter, a former critic of [House Speaker Nancy] Pelosi, largely agrees with her on the next steps for House Democrats: Further investigate alleged instances of wrongdoing by Trump and his campaign, such as a June 2016 meeting in Trump Tower, and only act on impeachment if new details come to light that warrant impeachment.

Politically, there are a number of competing factors in play. Democratic grassroots desire to strike a blow against the President via an impeachment proceeding is extremely strong, to the point of harshly condemning Democrats like Speaker Nancy Pelosi who have expressed caution about plunging headlong into impeachment.

At the same time, the threshold of wrongdoing that would be required to induce the GOP-controlled Senate to actually vote to convict the President is simply unknowable. We’re pretty sure it’s not as high as Trump thinks–if he shot someone in the middle of 5th Avenue, we’re inclined to think the Senate would vote to remove him from office. But the GOP’s collective tolerance for Trump’s malfeasance, particularly with regard to this issue, makes the chances of getting even 50 votes–let alone the supermajority needed to remove Trump from office–very unlikely.

If impeachment is unlikely to succeed, the next question for Democrats to resolve is whether proceeding with the attempt has political value ahead of the 2020 elections. There’s a good argument that a failed impeachment attempt will do more to shore up Trump’s base of support than erode it, much like Barr’s initial four-page spin of the Mueller report gave many Republicans the pretext they needed to ignore everything that came out afterward. And the closer we get to the 2020 election cycle, the more straightforward remedy of simply voting Trump out arguably makes impeachment talk a distraction.

For Democrats who are old enough to remember when Republicans impeached Bill Clinton for lying about a blow job, having the patience to forego returning the favor over Trump’s infinitely more serious offenses is a lot to ask.

But in the long run, much like Colorado Republicans wasting time and money on recalls instead of preparing for the next general election, keeping Democratic eyes on the 2020 prize could well be the smart play.

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44 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. PseudonymousPseudonymous says:

    What's right for our democracy?

    • Diogenesdemar says:

      I dunno’ . . .

      . . . A stack of the past couple year’s New York Times . . .

      . . . and a time machine that’s set back to October 2016, maybe???

    • DavieDavie says:

      What's right for our democracy?

      To let *rump continue to drive the GOP into the dirt, so that as many as possible of their followers finally abandon the party and vote them all out of office.

      While there may not be moral victories in politics, that is about as close as it gets.

      Allowing Mr. Trump to lead the Republican Party, filled with sycophants and weak-willed leaders, into the next election is the greater prize. Democrats have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to realign American politics along progressive lines, very much like Ronald Reagan did for Republicans in the 1980s.

      Trumpism equals Republicanism as long as Donald Trump is at the top of the ticket. And a real shift to progressivism in America will be delivered by a devastating rebuke of the president and his party, a rebuke that will return control of the Senate and state houses across the nation. Politics is always a gamble — and this is the best bet we’ve had in a long time.

    • VoyageurVoyageur says:

      "What's right for our Democracy?" ranks with "What do the American people want?" for high-minded vagueness with absolutely no meaning.

    • mamajama55mamajama55 says:

      Following the Constitution – the rule book – is the right thing for our democracy. And we can walk and chew gum at the same time. Impeachment investigations and hearings can take place concurrently with all of the other investigations.

      It is not really an either/or choice.

      As for the argument, "If you try to impeach Trump, it'll rile up his base!", my answer is , "Are you f*ing kidding me?!!!!?" Trump's base is in a permanent state of riled up. Fox News, Lintballs, and all the other right wing radio talkers work hard to keep them in that state.

      We need to keep our own base energized and hopeful, and to hell with second guessing what the liars and cheats will do.

      • VoyageurVoyageur says:

        Ahh, the Constitution.  I guess it means only what the  angriest voice on a blog says it means.

         

      • MADCO says:

        I don't care about Trump's base being riled.
        I care abotu the electoral vote in PA, MI, and WI, or maybe AZ.

        Trump is not going to lose Florida, Georgia, Texas, or "the south," riled or not.

        • VoyageurVoyageur says:

          Don't so sure be, Madco.  Florida just addedmore than a million ex felons as potential voters — a largely black, heavily Democratic group. Florida's fascist regime is trying to keep them from the polls with huge fines critics call a poll tax.  If they fail, Florida could go blue.

          plus lots of Puerto Ricans have moved to florida since t he hurricane.  And a lot lived there already.  Trump's vile anti-PR campaign might drive them to the polls.  If Florida goes Blue, Trump loses.  It's bigger than any of your "blue wall" states, 29 electoral votes vs. 20 in PA, 16 in michigan and 10 in Wisconsin.

  2. RepealAndReplace says:

    Here is the real problem with impeaching him….

    After the House impeaches him, McConnell either finds some way to keep the Senate from having to try Trump, or if he can't do that, he rounds up his 53 member caucus plus Joe Manchin, and Trump is acquitted:  54 to 46.

    Then he goes on a Twitter rampage declaring over and over again that he has been vindicated once again and is the victim of sore losers who cannot process the fact that he won his tremendous victory in 2016.

    And then he raises about $150 million for his 2020 campaign fund off of this.

    • Arvadonian1Arvadonian1 says:

      Yep.  If you come at the King, you best not miss…..

    • Curmudgeon says:

      Even if impeachment fails, it'll be far worse for Trump and the Republicans than that scenario.

      Impeachment will not only bring so much to light that Barr is intentionally misrepresenting; it will force the Republicans to finally stand up and declare whether they just tacitly support him, or openly support him in the face of his crimes. That's not something any of them are looking forward to. Trump's support is maxed out among all but his most rabid followers, so I doubt the process will have the same effect it had for Clinton.  Clinton lied about screwing around with an intern. It cost the Democrats in the long run, even though he got away with it.  But don't get me started on that smarmy SOB. 

      Personally, with the threats of his tax returns, Deutsche Bank cooperating with the NY AG, and the unredacted Mueller report coming to light, I think there's a good chance the spoiled bully will throw a tantrum and resign, claiming it's "for the good of the country".   

  3. Powerful PearPowerful Pear says:

    For my Pol Cat friends who were hoping the Muller Witch Hunt would expose Trump. Look out crooked Hillary, a real Justice Department is at work.

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ZAAKPJEq1Ew&feature=share

    • mamajama55mamajama55 says:

      So Pear, will you play that same video as background music when your beloved $rump's taxes expose that he owes millions to Deutsche Bank, has 17 investigations in 7 different jurisdictions  coming at him, for money laundering and corruption?

      Will your Trumpkin be in "gloom , despair, and agony"? Oh wait, he might already be there. Why else would he respond like this:

      "This is the end of my Presidency. I'm fucked."

      Face it. Your guy is a criminal and a traitor, and this is indeed the beginning of the end of his Presidency. That is whether or not impeachment proceedings are initiated soon.

    • Duke CoxDuke Cox says:

      You are indeed a Pitiful Pear. The Mueller investigation DID expose T***p. 

      There are no more good days for your hero. It is all downhill from here for the worst president in American history.

  4. Powerful PearPowerful Pear says:

    This is what you have been saying for two years. It’s not happening the way you want, it was supposed to be Hillary. Do you really think the Obama IRS would let Trump slide if they had anything on him? The Country is doing great, too bad you can’t take any joy in that fact. I bet even Melissa is doing better.

    • DaftPunkDaftPunk says:

      Did you ever consider that a reasonable president wouldn't use the IRS as a political weapon?

      No, you didn't, and that's not an invitation to bring up Lois Lerner:

      "We found no evidence that any IRS official acted on political, discriminatory, corrupt, or other inappropriate motives that would support a criminal prosecution." to which Jeff Sessions agreed.

      Every accusation is a confession

    • mamajama55mamajama55 says:

      You do realize that your response makes no sense at all.

      a) Hillary got 3 million more votes than #rump.

      b) The "Obama IRS" has been replaced by $rump appointees.

      c) The country is not doing great, it is on the brink of a recession. Ask a farmer.

      d) Melissa probably is doing better, now that minimum wages have gone up in CO.

      • Conserv. Head Banger says:

        MJ wrote: "Hillary got three million more votes than Trump……."

        Actually, if one considers Gary Johnson and Jill Stein as major candidates, which I do, then the anti-Trump votes were nearly NINE million more votes than what Trump got.

        • mamajama55mamajama55 says:

          It looks as though you'll get a chance to vote for Bill Weld in the primary, CHB. Here's hoping that Weld's candidacy gives all Republicans pause to remember what their party used to stand for, and weakens $rump greatly. ….if he hasn't already resigned or been impeached by then.

           

          • Duke CoxDuke Cox says:

            If Welds' candidacy gains any traction it will infuriate Le Infant…

            If his poll numbers drop below 20%, he will bail and blame it on someone else. Or do something stupid, like try to impose martial law..?  that sort of thing. Will he run…or fight? That is an interesting question.

          • MADCO says:

            He's old and his health is a mystery. If the Father calls he will have to answer. RIP

        • MichaelBowmanMichaelBowman says:

          If we didn't count Texas (but everyone else) Hillary won by 5 million-ish.  To which a MAGA family member (who had just informed me that if we didn't count California *rump would have won the popular vote) screams "Why wouldn't we count Texas?!?" 

           

          • Conserv. Head Banger says:

            MJ: Weld has my Republican primary vote if he is on the ballot here in Colorado next year. I'll also go out on a limb and predict that Weld gets 30% of the Republican vote in New Hampshire. 

            • RepealAndReplace says:

              I still think Larry Hogan will run and Weld will step aside. I thought Weld was a excellent governor of Massachusetts in the '90's but he is yet another septuagenarian in the race. indecision

          • VoyageurVoyageur says:

            Just think how big Hillary's margin would have been if we didn't count Puerto Rico.

            Wait! We don't count Puerto Rico.

    • MADCO says:

      2 years?!

      You've been railing about the Clintons for … 20 years.
      Hundreds of hours of testimony – including live questioning him and her, something your guy will not allow – and nothing but a lie about an embarrassing consensual and inappropriate sexual relationship.

      Her emails? Bush.Rove.Cheney destroyed far more email and private servers which is when we found out that private servers were never illegal

      Challenge Gardner or admit you're a coward and shut up.

       

      • DavieDavie says:

        Remember, as a Republican, facts and deficits don't matter to Pitiful Pair.  And of course Hillary's email is just another opportunity to prove what a *rump-class hypocrite he is.  If he actually thought it mattered, he'd acknowledge Daddy's little girl and her hubby shouldn't shouldn't have top secret clearances while using private emails to conduct government business.

        • Diogenesdemar says:

          Remember, as a Republican, facts and deficits don't matter to Pitiful Pair. 

          Nope . . .

          This is what you have been saying for two years. [. . . uh, that, and my ABCs . . .]. The Country is doing great,  . . .

          And, nope . . . 

          When you’re a Pair-o’-pfruit, all that ever matters is what FOX tells you (. . . today). And, “facts” is what Hannity says they are.

    • VoyageurVoyageur says:

      Benedict Arnold and Simon Girty have prepared a nice little condo in Hell for Donald Trump.  But who is going to be their fourth for bridge?  Assange has the right personality but since he's Australian, he really doesn't rank with Trump, Girty and Arnold in the American Traitor's club.

      Maybe Clement Vallandigham will have to do.  He's tanned, rested and stinky.

  5. VoyageurVoyageur says:

    The National Rifle Assn. Is facing a bitter rift between long-time vice president Wayne La Sociopath and President Oliver North.  I guess it is easy to gloat at disarray in right-wing ranks.  But La Sociopath as always seen the NRA as part of a seamless right wing wall.

    North has actually served his country at great personal cost and while devoted to gun rights is not wedded to the skankier elements of the far-right agenda as la sociopath is.

    The NRA board meets Monday.  Uniform of the day includes flack jackets.

    • MADCO says:

      North is out. LaPierre wins.
      The only question now is whether the NRA gets to keep it's non-profit status.

      Former Lt Col, felon, North will go find his fortune elsewhere now.
      Do the Nevilles have enough grift to bring him on?

      • VoyageurVoyageur says:

        North is not a felon — his convictions were overturned in 1992. 

        He'd be a bit pricy for the Nevilles.  They better stick to Jon Caldera, who works cheap and delivers nothing.

        Wouldn't it be great if NRA lost its tax exempt status over la sociopath's misdeeds?

        • RepealAndReplace says:

          All of these machinations and plus Butina being locked up all occurring within 36 hours of each other. Move over General Hospital and All My Children. It's time to tune in to All My Ammosexuals and see who is doing what to whom. 

        • MADCO says:

          felon: a person who has been convicted of a felony.

          Oliver North: convicted in the Iran – Contra crimes of the late 1980's.

          Convicted felon is redundant.
          A felon was convicted of a felony. And he was.
          Later the convictions were vacated and charges dropped.

          Perhaps the grammatically correct way to say it is former felon and Lt Colonel.

           

      • Diogenesdemar says:

        Ollie Ollie FOX it’ll be!! . . . 

        . . . hell, the way he covered up, lied, and took in the his BVDs for CIC Raygun, I be surprised if he didn’t land somewhere high up in Mar a Lago North.

        Where’s Cheetolini’s Haldelman or Erlichman?

  6. RepealAndReplace says:

    I wonder if Negev was at the NRA convention…..

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