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Thursday, May 18, 2017

WHEN WILL DONALD TRUMP BE IMPEACHED?

My faith in the Red, White and Blue shuddered when Donald Trump was elected.  However, the country is so dominantly supreme today that I saw no permanent long-term problem no matter what he did.  More embarrassments, for sure, but nothing much more.

One of my dining mates at 15 Craigside, let me call him Howard, felt adamant a few months ago that Donald Trump would be impeached, and the only question was when.  I pooh-pood his belief as unlikely.  Well, he has been right before on a range of matters, and I'm now inclined to think that he could be prescient again.

In the 240 years of the USA only two presidents have been impeached, Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton.  The House made these decisions, but the Senate later acquitted them.  Richard Nixon was in the process of being impeached, but he resigned before any votes were taken.  Thus, no U. S. President has ever been impeached or otherwise convicted and removed from office.


At the federal levelArticle II of the United States Constitution states in Section 4 that "The PresidentVice President, and all civil Officers of the United States shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and conviction of, TreasonBribery, or other High Crimes and Misdemeanors." The House of Representatives has the sole power of impeaching, while the United States Senate has the sole power to try all impeachments. The removal of impeached officials is automatic upon conviction in the Senate. In Nixon v. United States (1993), the Supreme Court determined that the federal judiciary cannot review such proceedings.

At the Constitutional Convention of 1787 Ben Franklin noted that in the past obnoxious chief executive removals tended to be accomplished by assassination.  (Here, conversing with Alexander Hamilton.)  Thus, a more procedural option called impeachment was created.  As President Trump has distressed so many in his less than four month tenure, this more violent mechanism is a course not to be ignored.  Only four of 45 sitting Presidents have been successfully killed, John F. Kennedy the most recent, 43 years ago.

Sure, high crimes and more serious misdeeds deserve impeachment.  However, note that any misdemeanor can also be applied.  A totally different venue, but Hillary Clinton lost the latest election because of some carelessness with her server.  Big deal!  Bill Clinton was impeached by the House, but a two-thirds vote makes any Senate confirmation dubious anyway.

Further, impeachment must be initiated by some responsible entity, but all of them are currently led by Republicans.  The only way, thus, for the process to begin has to be at the call of Republicans.  In Democrat Bill Clinton's case, both houses were headed by Republicans.  Politics being what they are,   it thus seems unlikely that Republicans would take that step for a President of their party.  However, Congress might well proceed anyway, for Trump has become a loose cannon.  There is growing restiveness among GOP leaders seeking alternatives to undermine Trump as long as there is any kind of sufficient cause, for he has been disturbingly disconcerting, and the 2018 Congressional elections are already being seriously affected.  This could well just be a warning shot, for they can still back off during the deliberations.

But what of the recent sanity in the USA with the appointment of Robert Mueller III (below) as special counsel in the Trump-Russia issue, which has now become a criminal investigation?  Frankly, I'm a bit confused, for apparently Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein (right) made this selection without talking to his boss, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, nor President Donald Trump.


The UK Guardian views this move as a sign that Trump will be impeached.  The UK Independent headlined:  Republicans begin to say Donald Trump could be impeached.  Trump is fighting back, as his latest favorite for FBI Director is a real independent who was a past Democratic VP nominee:  former U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman (left).  But Lieberman is already 75, and the directorship is a ten-year job.  And, he now works for Trump's lawyer, Marc Kasowitz.

Some simple solutions to help President Trump preserve his status:
  • As the Blackberry was taken from President Barack Obama, Trump must quit twitting.
  • Replace his chief of staff Reince Priebus with someone who has the credibility and experience to do the job right with authority.
  • Keep Sean Spicer.  Melissa McCarthy needs the exposure.
  • I have a dozen other recommendations, but this will do for now.
Ah, but life must go on if Trump is forced to leave.  Keep in mind that VP Mike Pence:
Mind you, these are the top two leaders of the United States of America.  So when will Trump be impeached?  Soon, I hope.  

Incidentally, this is interesting.  Next to the USA, Russia today is by far the country most viewing this particular posting.  Very unusual.

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