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Protesters in New York, USA on 1/19/2019 © ImJonCarroll / Shutterstock

Impeach Now, Ask Questions Later

Go boldly where Mueller should have gone, to state clearly and unequivocally that Trump is a crook.

When times are bad, it always seems that bad people win. When times are good, bad people always win. When bad people win, the rest of us almost always lose. Of late, bad people are succeeding at an alarming rate, most often with an amoral message that is devoid of fundamental human decency.

Trump wins by dehumanizing immigrants; Netanyahu wins by dehumanizing Palestinians; Boeing wins by putting profits before safety; drug companies win by praying on desperate people; Facebook wins by tapping into the core of each of us to mine personal information and sell it to any bidder; and the list could go on and on. Think banks, insurance companies, hedge funds, oil companies and the like.

If you can wrap your head around that wisdom, you can easily figure out what is so wrong with today’s America, a morally bankrupt nation led by an amoral cabal spewing its message to its minions within and outside the land. Trump, Netanyahu, Duterte, Assad, Maduro and Mohammad bin Salman all share a vision that depends upon the suffering of others as fuel. It is a constant among this group and their many disciples that “our” success shall be defined by “their” denigration.

This is where humanity has arrived in the spring of 2019. Our journey to this point in time has been marked with both periodic tragedy and periodic advance. In spite of this, humanity has never freed itself from the conflicts that turn purposefully deadly and can spawn horrific atrocity. That so much of this past has been forgotten by so many so frequently is shameful.

But, like it or not, this oft-forgotten past seems increasingly to be the present. I am not sure when human beings first became so self-absorbed and isolated from the community at large that human suffering so easily became an afterthought. However, I am sure that we are now living in one of those times.

In an odd sort of way, the recent heartbreaking fire that ravaged Notre Dame cathedral in Paris reminded many among us of the best that we can be, that the same human race so capable of cruelty and atrocity could design, build and honor that magnificent building. And perhaps most importantly, rebuild it again.

The disease that is Trump, Netanyahu, Assad, Maduro, Mohammad bin Salman, and their ilk, will slowly pass. Each will surely leave behind a fetid legacy of corruption, deceit, and human degradation. But that will not change the next present if their acolytes are the next generation of anointed “leaders.” Further, it may take some time to find out. The people of Israel just had a chance to alter their dynamic, but they pathetically blew it. Next up, perhaps, is the United States of America with Trump actually poised to win re-election in 2020 if he can avoid criminal indictment.

The Mueller Report

Now that there is at least a redacted version of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s final report for all to see, there should be no doubt at all that a candidate for the presidency successfully corrupted the US political system to his advantage and, both during the 2016 election and after, did all he could to cover up his corruption and the corruption of those around him. And all of this only set the stage for a presidency rife with self-dealing, nepotism, institutional subversion, racism, mendacity and just plain old incompetence.

Now, with a hack attorney general leading the way, far too many in America will pander to the willfully ignorant in our midst to ensure that this calamity continues. Most will be found in the cesspool of right-wing sycophants who have turned deceit into a self-delusional artform that somehow seamlessly equates narrow personal interest with the broader public interest.

This phenomenon is sickening enough to watch at all levels, but it is even more so when narrow political self-interest places public servants at the forefront of America’s demise. There can be no one in public office watching the Trump disaster who should continue to stand beside him or silently stand by him. Instead, stand up now Mitch McConnell, Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, Ted Cruz, Corey Gardiner and the 15 more Senate Republicans needed to end this. Stand up for something far more important than yourselves. Stand up for the nation’s future and for those of us who have no Senate vote.

This, of course, will not happen. But it is precisely because it will not happen that the Democrats in the House of Representatives have no choice but to stand up and be counted, one by one. Their singular and collective message is critical to freeing the nation of the Trump plague. If no one says “no,” then the answer will be, “yes he can.”

Furthermore, the Democrats have to act quickly to put impeachment on the House floor for a vote. The Mueller report can serve as the starting point for the articles of impeachment, using the evidence in the report as the initial foundation for each article.

But don’t stop there. Add in each new attempt by Trump to obstruct Congress from carrying out its constitutionally-mandated oversight function and the duty to impeach for “high crimes and misdemeanors.” Then, go boldly where Mueller should have gone, to state clearly and unequivocally that Trump is a crook and that he and many of his acolytes “colluded” with representatives of the Russian government to successfully corrupt America’s electoral process.

If you don’t believe me about collusion, start with the common dictionary definition of “collusion” — “secret agreement or cooperation especially for an illegal or deceitful purpose.” From there, look at the evidence that already exists. Simple common sense says that Trump “colluded” with Russian operatives to manipulate the electorate. The best evidence of that is how hard he has tried to obscure his role as he obsesses about a legitimacy that he never earned. Meanwhile, Republican apologists abound, scheming all the while to abort any suggestion of accountability for them or for Trump.

It is therefore left to the Democrats to act. Don’t wait. Do it now. Send an impeached Trump to the Republican Senate for a trial. By doing so, the Democrats will have placed duty to the nation at the forefront. Then, they must keep it there as they get to work finding the best candidate they can to finally remove Trump from office.

*[A version of this article was also featured on the author’s blog, Hard Left Turn.]

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Fair Observer’s editorial policy.