Donald Trump Faces Charges in Senate
Back in August of 2017, 200 days after our current president took office, I wrote my book, Donald Trump: Repeal, Replace, Impeach. I knew then what I know now — to remove a president from office the House of Representatives must first impeach him or her and the Senate must then hold a trial to determine if he or she is guilty. Removal from office then takes places only if the party is found guilty at the Senate trial. It’s a pretty simple process, but a president has never been removed. Why?
The first impeachment of a president was that of Andrew Johnson, who was in a no-win situation. He was on the ticket with Abraham Lincoln right after the Civil War and his main goal was bringing the country together. Johnson was a southern Democrat from Tennessee and Lincoln thought that having a southerner on the ticket in 1864 would be good for the healing that needed to take place after the war.
Republicans took control of Congress when the southern states came back and they were gunning for the Lincoln-Johnson administration. To make matters worse for Johnson, Lincoln was shot at Ford Theater on the night of April 14, 1865. Historians agree that Johnson wanted Lincoln to deal harsh penalties to the “traitors” in the south. That may have been somewhat tempered because Lincoln was killed by a southern radical sympathizer, John Wilkes Booth.
Tensions were high and the southern Republicans wanted to take “their” country back and thwart the freedom of African Americans. When Donald Trump says that what has happened to him is the worst thing that has ever happened to a president, he shows a dire ignorance of historical facts. The 16th President of the United States was murdered, and the guy who took over missed being thrown out of office by one vote.
Some say impeachment is a political process and not a legal process, but that is quite the understatement. Impeachment does take place in the House and is a political process, but once the articles of impeachment are given to the Senate a trial takes place and that is a legal process.
If you read the charges in the case of Bill Clinton and you examine the Ken Starr document detailing what Clinton did wrong, it’s totally amazing that he wasn’t removed from office. He lied under oath. His perjury stained the reputation of the presidency, yet he survived an impeachment and trial. How did he do it? This is what most experts point to when uttering the cliché that impeachment is political.
It’s too bad Richard Nixon had no trial to convict and remove him from office. That would have given solid ground on procedure and process so that we would have less grandstanding and political game playing by members of Congress.
Senate Leader Mitch McConnell belittled the serious nature of the event by saying stupid things before the articles of impeachment were sent over. Mitch might be trying to con the public and the president into believing he’s on the right side of this, but he’s just a smelly tread mark on the pavement of US history. McConnell simply wants to keep his job and do the bidding of his party, not his state or country. He’s diminished the Republican party and the Senate by declaring he’s not an impartial juror, a statement he can never take back. If Kentucky is smart, they will vote him out.
Now it’s official. The Senate will get the articles of impeachment and they will decide whether Donald Trump’s withholding of military aid to Ukraine and his shakedown of the leader of another country is legal. It’s a little like this question. Do you think it’s okay for the President to allow people and companies to increase pollution? If you answer yes, then you would also believe the President should have more power than Congress and you would probably vote to exonerate Donald Trump.
Today was an important day. Yes, the articles of impeachment were delivered to the Senate, but more evidence has been leaked from Guiliani’s clients. Is there more?
America’s strange electoral college system brought us Donald Trump. And while he basks in the glow of that win, the truth is that Hillary Clinton got three million more votes than Trump. We could change that procedure, but we won’t, and we shouldn’t. Maybe we just need someone to run for president who is honest and wins both the electoral college and the popular vote so we can have a clear mandate. Then we would have no doubt who the President is.
Do I want Donald Trump to leave office? Yes, please dear God, yes. And why do I think that? Well you could read my book but I’ll tell you why right here. Trump should be removed from office because he’s a liar. America deserves better. There are cheaters in baseball, swindlers in business and goofballs in government, but can’t we have someone at the top who really cares about the American people enough be straight and tell it like it is? Someone like John McCain, Abraham Lincoln or just about anyone with real guts and genuine smarts to rally all the people. Oh, shit, I am sounding like an optimist. Before we change the way we vote or our Constitution, let’s just change the guy at the top. He’s done nothing but embarrass our country.