Donald Trump’s Final Days
The best outcome would be for Trump to resign to spare the U.S. another impeachment fight says the WSJ editorial board in Donald Trump’s Final Days.
Democratic leaders Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi are demanding that Mr. Trump be removed from office immediately—either by the Cabinet under the 25th Amendment or new articles of impeachment. There’s partisan animus at work here, but Mr. Trump’s actions on Wednesday do raise constitutional questions that aren’t casually dismissed.
In concise summary, on Wednesday the leader of the executive branch incited a crowd to march on the legislative branch. The express goal was to demand that Congress and Vice President Mike Pence reject electors from enough states to deny Mr. Biden an Electoral College victory. When some in the crowd turned violent and occupied the Capitol, the President caviled and declined for far too long to call them off. When he did speak, he hedged his plea with election complaint.
This was an assault on the constitutional process of transferring power after an election. It was also an assault on the legislature from an executive sworn to uphold the laws of the United States. This goes beyond merely refusing to concede defeat. In our view it crosses a constitutional line that Mr. Trump hasn’t previously crossed. It is impeachable.
The related but separate question is whether impeachment or forced removal under the 25th Amendment now is in the country’s best interests. The latter seems unwise unless Mr. Trump threatens some other reckless or unconstitutional act. After Wednesday he has promised to assist an “orderly transition” of power. A Cabinet cabal ousting him would smack of a Beltway coup and give Mr. Trump more cause to play the political victim.
Impeachment has the virtue of being transparent and politically accountable. If there were enough votes to convict in the Senate, it would also seem less partisan. The best case for impeachment is not to punish Mr. Trump. It is to send a message to future Presidents that Congress will protect itself from populists of all ideological stripes willing to stir up a mob and threaten the Capitol or its Members.
We know an act of grace by Mr. Trump isn’t likely. In any case this week has probably finished him as a serious political figure. He has cost Republicans the House, the White House, and now the Senate. Worse, he has betrayed his loyal supporters by lying to them about the election and the ability of Congress and Mr. Pence to overturn it. He has refused to accept the basic bargain of democracy, which is to accept the result, win or lose.
It is best for everyone, himself included, if he goes away quietly.
The WSJ noted Democrats would have more credibility now if they hadn’t abused the process in 2019.
I agree wholeheartedly. Indeed, I spoke against Pelosi's unwise move calling it the Greatest Witch Hunt in American History.
I have defended Trump on many occasions and that was one of them. I defended his first two Supreme Court picks as well.
In case you forgot, please consider Kavanaugh Witch Trial on Thursday, Curious Case of Ms. Keyser vs Ford.
So don't disclose your Trump Cult Syndrome (TCS) by telling me I have TDS.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Removal
The one disadvantage of immediate removal is Pence can pardon Trump.
But that is only for Federal crimes. Trump faces a slew of state crimes including tax evasion.
The major advantage is Trump faces a slew of resignations that could conceivably be a problem should some sort of global crisis arise.
Trump Crossed Constitutional Line
Advantages and disadvantages aside, there is little doubt Trump crossed a Constitutional line.
Senate Majority leader McConnell should demand Trump's resignation or tell the president he will support an impeachment process if he doesn't.