Don’t expect the centrist-right Pelosi-Schumer wing of the national Democratic Party to be any help on the most pressing issue of our current historical moment, but the fact six United States Representatives have introduced articles of impeachment against Donald Trump is an encouraging sign.
Those six Democratic representatives—Reps. Steve Cohen (Tennessee), Al Green (Texas), Marcia Fudge (Ohio), Adriano Espaillat (New York), Luis Gutiérrez (Illinois) and John Yarmuth (Kentucky)—announced Monday they were filing the impeachment charges. More Democrats are almost certain to join them in support in the coming days and as the Trump regime continues to unravel.
The charges include obstruction of justice, the violation of both the foreign and domestic emoluments clause in the U.S Constitution, and undermining the federal judiciary and freedom of the press. All the charges are based on the most obvious, public evidence, primarily Trump’s actions and his statements surrounding those actions. The facts really aren’t in dispute.
Yet despite the slam-dunk evidence, national Democratic Party leaders have distanced themselves from the impeachment movement in general. House minority leader Nancy Pelosi, for example, has said that impeachment is not “someplace I think we should go.” Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer recently said this about impeachment, “I would say that if you’re a congressman or senator and actually have to vote, you want to wait.” Democratic National Committee Chair Tom Perez won’t even talk about impeachment. “I am not,” Perez tell us, “talking about impeachment.”
The do-nothing official Democratic Party is well defined as the “wait” and the “don’t-talk-about-it” party at this point in its history. Not even Trump and his glaring lies and corruption can get a rouse out of people like Pelosi, Schumer and Perez. What this means essentially is that the country has no unified opposition party to Trump right now.
Cohen, who is leading the impeachment effort, wants the House Judicial Committee to take up the impeachments articles and begin hearings, which is obviously unlikely. Because of the malfeasance of the national Democratic Party leadership, Republicans have majorities in the House and Senate. So those of us who favor starting an impeachment drive get it that for now, anyway, it’s unlikely the impeachment articles would even get considered much less lead to actual impeachment.
Yet that type of caving in to do-nothing defeatism is what defines the Democratic Party at the moment.
Here are four solid reasons to push for impeachment.
(1) It’s the right and just thing to do. Trump represents a clear danger to our democratic institutions.
(2) It rallies the base of the Democratic Party and unifies people with disparate agendas.
(3) It will allow time for legal scholars and lawyers to hone and develop the arguments of the individual impeachment articles.
(4) We will be ready—without the help of the Democratic Party leadership it should be noted—when the time comes for impeachment, whether that comes sooner or later and whether it takes a Democratic majority in Congress or not.
The impeachment articles follow in the wake of the petition effort by California businessman and philanthropist Tom Steyers to try to get impeachment charges brought against Trump. Steyers has invested millions of dollars of his own money for television ads that show exactly why Trump represents a threat to the country. So far, 2 million people have signed the petition, and the number is growing.
Of course, Pelosi and Perez oppose Steyer’s efforts as well.