On the need to understand the “rationale” for the impeachment process


Dear Partners in thought,

As we are in the midst of the Trump impeachment process and what looks like a comedy combined with a partisan fight, it is important to see through the sound and the fury and try to understand its rationale, the latter word which is almost a trespasser in the current American climate. 

Many high level witnesses who have played a role in the “Ukrainian story” behind which was launched the impeachment process (I will not restate it so well-known it is) have clearly and unequivocally stressed that there was indeed a “Quid Pro Quo”. The general view that the request to obtain information from a foreign ally on domestic political opponents in the context of a looming presidential election was made against military and financial aid is clear and not even any longer much disputed by the President himself. A few key additional witnesses such as former National Security Adviser John Bolton could confirm the point further and new evidence could also be heard at the trial if made available by the Senators (something 69% of Americans in a recent poll would want, so cross-party voter affiliation). The point of contention is more about the criminal aspect of the “Quid Pro Quo” which would lead to an impeachment (putting aside politics and which party controls the Senate) even if constitutional legal scholars (including the law professor arguing for the Republicans at the House) were clear in stressing that impeachment could be triggered even if no crime per say was committed. Putting fine constitutional legal matters and partisan politics aside, the common sense question should be whether a sitting President should withhold aid to an ally until he gets the information he would need for his reelection. Even if Trump’s “The Art of the Deal” (of which I have a first edition) would not concur, the answer is probably not.

It is clear that the impeachment process has been politically partisan since the beginning. It is clear that the Democrats or some of them among the radical wing of the party have wanted to impeach President Trump since he was in office and more so after the Mueller Report (some of us now forget) came to the fore. It is also clear that the Republicans in both houses have given little thought to the actual matter at hand, not seeing any problem with the “trifle” accusation and wanting to defend the President come what may. It is also clear that the outcome of the trial in the Senate was always  a forgone conclusion, making some wonder why there was any need for the Democrats to bother with such an acrimonious process, all the more near and in a reelection year,  the latter which should provide for a national forum to take a definite view on the President. However and putting omnipresent politics and motivations aside, the common sense question should be whether an impeachment process, however partisan in nature,  should simply be forgone due to its likely outcome while the behaviour of a sitting President has (once more) broken the tradition of the American presidency and put his country’s national security and the world stability at risk? The answer is certainly not.

The impeachment process of President Trump is not about partisanship even if it will be partisan by nature, it is about upholding now and for generations to come the core values that made America, this being said by someone who would have been a Rockefeller Republican had he been born in the once land of the free. 

Warmest regards,