Academics, Pundits Urge Democrats To Begin Trump Impeachment Proceedings Amid Ukraine Controversy
Impeachment talk is growing around the nation this week, as a scandal involving President Donald Trump and his conversation with the president of Ukraine, demonstrate a possible abuse of his office in order to benefit directly in a political way.
Trump is being accused of putting pressure on Ukranian President Volodymyr Zelensky. Some have even suggested, through revelations provided by a whistleblower in the intelligence community, that Trump may have withheld military aid to that nation in exchange for a “promise” by Zelensky to investigate Hunter Biden and former Vice President Joe Biden, with hopes that the information dredged up by that investigation could be used to make the latter look bad in a hypothetical presidential matchup in 2020.
On Sunday, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi released a strongly-worded letter to her colleagues, demonstrating her determination that the whistleblower’s complaints be heard straight away.
“If the Administration persists in blocking this whistleblower from disclosing to Congress a serious possible breach of constitutional duties by the President, they will be entering a grave new chapter of lawlessness which will take us into a whole new stage of investigation,” Pelosi said in the letter, per prior reporting from HillReporter.com.
Some believe Pelosi’s rhetoric is the closest to her coming yet to supporting efforts aimed at possibly beginning, in earnest, impeachment proceedings against the president. Harvard Law School professor Laurence Tribe, for instance, called it “the natural next step in her strategy of making sure that the Dems’ call for impeachment, when it comes, doesn’t fall on deaf ears.”
Daniel Drezner, professor of international politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, wrote an op-ed in the Washington Post, published on Monday, urging Democrats to get moving in the wake of this latest controversy.
“For most of 2019, Pelosi had put the brakes on impeachment. The Ukraine business seems to have tipped the scales, however,” Drezner wrote, adding that impeachment could have a positive aspect, too, in distracting Trump from doing more harm for the country.
“[E]very moment Donald Trump thinks about impeachment is a moment he is not thinking about doing even more reckless things, like trying to compromise the independence of the Fed, or launching a larger trade war, or stumbling into a real war,” Drezner wrote.
As long as Democrats do not proceed with impeachment—and perhaps even if they do—Trump has made clear that he will continue his all-out assault on the Constitution. And Republicans will not do anything about it except to cheer him on. My column: https://t.co/zZ5NmEZfIo
— Max Boot (@MaxBoot) September 22, 2019
“Never-Trump” conservative columnist Max Boot agrees with Drezner. “As long as Democrats do not proceed with impeachment — and perhaps even if they do — Trump has made clear that he will continue his all-out assault on the Constitution,” Boot wrote on Twitter.
And Richard Painter, former White House ethics lawyer under George W. Bush, suggested that those who didn’t support impeachment are themselves at fault. “Anyone opposed to impeachment now is complicit or an utter fool,” he said.
It’s clear that talks about impeachment have piqued up again this past week. What has yet to be seen is how Democrats will react to increased chatter on the subject in the coming days.