Let us assume for the moment that former president Donald Trump deserved his recent impeachment and trial for the rioting at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. This is a debatable point that I will later discuss, but for the moment let’s consider the manner and the people who impeached Trump in the United States House of Representatives. Let us review how they failed to convict him in the recently concluded Senate trial.
Their efforts were flawed from the start. Impeachment is designed for officials still in office. Impeaching a former president or federal official is unconstitutional. And, in the case of an ex-president, impeachment had never been tried before.
Paging Mr. Roberts
This question of legality spooked the chief justice of the United States Supreme Court, John Roberts. He is required under the constitution to preside at the Senate impeachment trial but didn’t this time.
However, Roberts did preside over the first impeachment trial last year. But that trial was legal. It was the trial of a sitting president. And the impeachment trial took place after the House had spent weeks assembling evidence.
This second faux Trump impeachment happened after the House just went through the motions. Its second impeachment was a mockery. Impeachment sponsors didn’t even pretend to present evidence. They impeached Trump in one day and offered no evidence; only overheated rhetoric that Trump was the devil incarnate. Was it any wonder that Roberts wanted no part of this?
This have the Supreme Court Justice in charge is one key element in any lawful impeachment. The founders of this nation, who until recently many Democrats wrongfully railed against as a bunch of dead, racist white men, set it up that way to ensure balance and fairness. Impeachment is basically a battle of the legislative against the executive.
So who should oversee or referee that battle? The founders had an answer: An impartial third party; a representative of the apolitical branch of the U.S. government—the judiciary. But the Democrats, who suddenly claimed to respect the founders and were citing them in their strained arguments, apparently didn’t agree on that point.
I Can Judge and Chew Gum at the Same Time
One of Trump’s opponents in the Senate presided at the trial, Senator Patrick Leahy, who said he was going to vote for impeachment even before the trial started! He ruled on critical points. And he even voted in favor of the Trump impeachment! That gave new meaning to the expression that he was “judge and jury.”
At one point, the Trump trial was comical; actually at several points but here is one. One of the Democratic prosecutors, in the middle of summation in which he argued this point, looked over at the judge, a fellow Democrat, and told everyone to pay no mind that the chief justice wasn’t around.
There’s no way anyone, pro or con, could ignore the politicization of this impeachment; this attempt to destroy the rule of law just as long as your side wins the vote. This was more than about the impeachment of a controversial president.
The Democrats in this failed Trump impeachment have opened the door for impeachment for any ex-federal official. Say the Republicans get control of Congress in two years. They can begin by impeaching former President Clinton for some of his sleazy doings.
And, based on this horrible precedent, there will be no bar to impeaching someone for a second or third time; for ignoring the constitution’s ban on a Bill of Attainder or ex-posto factor justice. The former is a special penalty singling out one person. The founders, aware of what tyrannical kings such as Charles I and Henry VIII had done, said that the Bill of Attainder was forever banned.
But it is the hypocrisy of this latest Trump impeachment process that is distressing.
Many of the leaders of the impeachment, some of whom repeatedly cited the real tragedy of the lawlessness, the death of police officers, were hypocrites.
Why such strong language?
It is because many of the Democrats who complained the loudest about the rioting, said Trump encouraged and never tried to stop, were certainly guilty this past summer of the same crimes they charged Trump had committed.
The people who assaulted the capitol—and I don’t care if I agree with their politics or not—should be charged to the full extent of the law. And why the capitol had so little security should also be investigated by a non-partisan group. Were additional security forces offered and declined in the weeks leading up to January 6? And, if they were offered and declined, there should be consequences for those in charge of Capitol security, the Democratic leader of the House and the Republican leader of the Senate.
Maybe, if they didn’t take reasonable security actions, they should be impeached! Just joking.
But there should be political consequences for them as well. After all, the head of the Capitol police had to resign in disgrace. Supposedly, as January 6 approached, he wanted more help and didn’t get it. Let’s find out.
So ultimately the charges of Democrats, and some Republicans who wanted Trump impeached, are hollow. That’s because many of them also share some blame for what has been happening to this country.
The Long Hot Horrendous Summer
This were riots in hundreds of American cities over the past year or so. Billions of dollars in damage were done. Tens of millions of Americans were terrorized by groups these Democrats never criticized. (Personal aside, in New York, a city and state almost totally run by Democrats, the violence has been so bad that it has changed many lives for the worst. Many of the women in my building in Queens won’t take the subways to Manhattan unless they are accompanied by friends. That is despite the claims of the mayor, a radical Democrat, that the subways are getting “safer and safer.” A lot of people aren’t buying. Tens of thousands of New Yorkers are leaving the city and the state. It is a vote of no confidence in a mayor and a governor).
Many of our Democrats, and yes, some Republicans, have not opposed violence when it served their political causes; their desire to win or retain office. So they have been pouring fuel on the racial fires for some time. Indeed, now vice president Kamala Harris this summer said so in an interview with Stephen Colbert that the rioters would not stop “and shouldn’t stop.” Could she be impeached for incitement to riot?
Harris and other Democrats raised money to bail out these terrorists. They discouraged prosecutors from bringing charges against these rioters. Some of these terrorists didn’t even have to post bail after they were arrested.
That’s because of new laws passed by several Democratic state legislatures. Many of these radical Democrats claim that all bail is racist.
So, those arrested went out and committed more crimes. One young suspect in New York City, over the years, has been arrested over a hundred times.
How many old people will he beat up before the authorities will actually do something? By the way, as I write these words, a horrific double murder crime occurred at the last stop of the A-train in Northern Manhattan. The suspect under arrest had been arrested before and many are asking why he was free.
Almost all of these cities share this: They were and are run by Democrats, allies of these Congressional Democrats who wailed about law and order when they complained about Trump’s actions, or lack of actions, leading up to January 6.
Did Trump egg on the rioters? I don’t think there is any explicit language that would support such a criminal charge. However, I do think there is more than a fair amount of criticism one can make about Trump’s post-election actions.
But let’s discuss this in the next segment of this series as well as the climate of lawlessness that is taking over the nation.
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