House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler confirmed in August that his panel is conducting formal impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump. He said that “hopefully by the conclusion of all this… by the end of the year… [we’ll] vote Articles of Impeachment on the House floor.” He and fellow Committee Democrats were on an “impeachment investigation” as they put it.
On Thursday the House Judiciary Committee approved a resolution outlining procedures for moving forward with an impeachment inquiry. The resolution was approved 24-17 in a party line vote.
Post-Mueller report, the calls for impeachment have inevitably pivoted from conspiracy theories about Russian collusion to claims of obstruction and corruption.
Regardless, any such attempts at impeachment will ultimately fail.
If the articles of impeachment are brought to a vote on the House floor, Democrats will need a simple majority to approve it, which could happen in a party-line vote, but there’s no guarantee. The House voted in April to kill the first impeachment measure since Democrats took control by 332-95. The real challenge comes when the Senate has to vote on impeachment, where Democrats will need a 2/3rds vote in the chamber of Congress where Republicans lead 53-47 (with two being Independents).
So by that metric, impeachment would simply be pointless. But the Democrats pushing impeachment are already aware of that. They don’t actually want to see Trump impeached, they want the process of impeachment to unearth the kind of re-election campaign destroying information they hoped the Mueller investigation to find.
A failed impeachment would come at a great cost in terms of Congressional time wasted (though seeing how they spend their time, maybe that isn’t the worst thing in the world), and money.
Few Democrats have spoken openly against impeachment, but 2020 candidate Tulsi Gabbard is one of them, who pointed out that as impeachment proceedings would unfold, political factions would only further strengthen and divide the American public as we take sides between the President and impeachment. As she put it: “I think it’s important for us to think about what is in the best interest of the country and the American people, and continuing to pursue impeachment is something that I think will only further to tear our country apart. Make no bones about it: We need to defeat Donald Trump. But I think it’s important for our country’s sake and our future that the voters in this country are the ones who do that, and I believe that we will.”
Clearly Nadler and his cabal lack such insight, and impeachment could be a bad deal for Democrats too. It’s not inconceivable that impeachment could play right into Trump’s (correct) narrative that the political establishment is out to thwart his every move, and is the only thing preventing him from fully enacting his agenda.
Or as Nadler himself put it in 1998 when it was a Democrat being impeached, Bill Clinton, “This partisan coup d’etat will go down in infamy in the history of our nation.”
Indeed his would.