Today, millions of Washington watchers around the world are asking the same question: What happens if the Democrats go ahead and bring articles of impeachment against President Donald J. Trump? The answer is twofold, and just might be the shortest story ever told: At first nothing, and then, everything. The end.
The reason nothing will happen immediately requires no degree in political science to appreciate. Should the Democrats commit the mother of all political screw-ups by voting to impeach Trump, all on the basis of hearsay, gossip and maybe reading tea leaves, the circus moves next door to the Senate, where Republicans hold a majority. This is where House efforts to impeach Trump will inevitably smack into a brick wall and disintegrate.
That much was made clear earlier this week when Minority Leader Chuck Schumer demanded to call current and former White House officials to appear on the witness stand for stage two of the Democratic show trials. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was having none of it.
“I’m not an impartial juror,” McConnell retorted to applause from Senators, many of whom were thwarted in their own efforts to call witnesses and ask questions when the Democrats controlled the hearings. “This is a political process,” he added.
So, if the inevitable prospect of certain defeat in the Senate won’t stop the Democratic impeachment train, then maybe the knowledge that the majority of Americans oppose their plans will make them reconsider, right? Think again. Not even a USA Today/Suffolk University poll, which shows that Americans oppose by 51-45% any effort by the Senate to remove Trump, up from October when the margin was 47-46%, has deterred the Democrats from their witch hunt.
Trump practically thanked the Democrats for the early Christmas gift when he said impeachment is “a very sad thing for our country, but it seems to be very good for me politically.” Indeed it has been. If elections were held today, Trump would likely emerge victorious against any of his Democratic rivals.
With regards to the economy, Wall Street appears to be on steroids, smashing records almost weekly. All of this points to smooth sailing for Trump up to the 2020 presidential elections.
Despite things looking favorably, Trump is not out of the woods just yet. The reason is because the Democrats, due to their chummy relationship with the media, are still able to control the narrative. That much is clear considering how House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff has been dominating the impeachment proceedings without much criticism from the press. The initial impeachment inquiry was held without transparency in the dank basement of Congress, far away from public scrutiny. He also staunchly refused to release the identity of the so-called whistleblower, who is alleged to have heard secondhand information about the now-famous call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
However, since any impeachment trial promises to be a major televised event, the Democrats will not be able to leak to the media their handpicked breadcrumbs of information. Everything will be out in the open and discussed 24/7.
How to explain the Democrat obsession with removing Trump?
First, the Democrats’ chances of removing Trump from office are somewhere between zero and none, and they are certainly aware of that fact. Second, impeachment is proving unpopular with the majority of Americans, and that must be particularly worrisome in a major election season. Finally, the Democrats risk throwing their top presidential contender, Joe Biden, under the bus by their efforts.
Mitch McConnell and his fellow Republicans will certainly investigate how Joe Biden’s son, Hunter, for example, had come to serve on the board of the Ukrainian energy company Burisma Holdings, reportedly being paid up to $50,000 a month despite having no experience in the Ukrainian energy sector. No less interesting is the fact that Joe Biden essentially forced Ukraine to fire its prosecutor general as a precondition for releasing $1 billion dollars in US aid. In the event that Ukrainian officials are called to testify in the Senate during the impeachment trial, it could turn out to be very ugly for the Biden clan.
Considering that the Democrats have absolutely nothing to gain by trying to impeach Trump, another possible motive must be considered, which is that the Democrats are desperately trying to protect themselves. Unknown to many, high-level Democrats, intelligence officers, and former White House officials have been under investigation for many months by Attorney General Will Barr and federal prosecutor John Durham. The reason has little to do with Ukraine, and everything to do with Trump’s promise to “drain the swamp.”
In a nutshell, Barr and Dunham will soon be releasing their highly anticipated attorney general’s report, which will determine whether the FBI had submitted false documents for obtaining a FISA warrant to spy on the Trump administration in 2016. The word ‘treason’ is even being whispered on Capitol Hill. The investigation involves a mind boggling array of top characters who played a role in creating the Steele Dossier (home of the famous pee tape), a largely debunked ‘intelligence’ document that ultimately failed to prove a link between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin.
Last week, after Inspector General Michael Horowitz released a preliminary report that shows the FBI committed numerous mistakes in applying for the FISA warrant, including falsifying a document, former FBI Director James Comey back-pedaled on his earlier claims that the FBI had acted appropriately. “I was wrong. I was overconfident in our procedures. It’s important that a leader be accountable and transparent,” he told Chris Wallace of Fox News.
But that is not the end of the story. Not by a long shot.
Durham, who has had access to foreign governments and US intelligence agencies not available to Horowitz, played down the IG report, suggesting fireworks down the road when he commented “last month we advised the Inspector General that we do not agree with some of the report’s conclusions as to predication and how the FBI case was opened.”
Needless to say, Barr and Durham’s report has got a lot of people in high places very nervous. This could make the impeachment process a top priority in that it provides cover and would look as if Trump were attacking the Democrats simply out of rage if he acts. Clearly, the Democrats, with their groundless Russiagate theories and now an impeachment scandal, are desperately trying to buy time to avoid their own impending doom.
In other words, there is a real civil war taking place behind the scenes in Washington, and Trump’s impeachment is just one small part of the action. What is happening now in Washington DC between the Republicans and Democrats is just mere dress rehearsal for far more disasters down the road.
I just hope the costumes don’t end up being blue and gray, once again.