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Thursday
January 23rd, 2020
L&T Opinions Page

earl watt mugL&T Publisher Earl Watt

 

More than three weeks after the partisan vote in the House of Representatives to impeach Donald Trump. Nancy Pelosi has finally committed to sending the articles to the Senate, something that was done 10 minutes after Bill Clinton was impeached in 1998.

The blindness of partisanship continues, and this delay was concrete proof.

The Democrats claimed that the 84-day delay in releasing funds to Ukraine rose to the level of an impeachable offense, so grave and dangerous to America that President Donald Trump must be removed.

The issue was so alarming, claimed the Democrats, that there was no time to ask the courts if key members of Trump’s staff, those who would almost assuredly be granted executive privilege form testifying, should be compelled to provide information.

Without their input, the House, with all but three Democrats voting for impeachment and every Republican and two Democrats voting against it, the House pushed the first-ever fully partisan impeachment in U.S. history.

And yet, this national crisis that was pushed through the House then sat on Pelosi’s desk for three weeks — three weeks — before she finally committed to fulfill her Constitutional obligation of submitting those articles to the Senate.

During those three weeks, Democrats, who gave no equal opportunity to the president or the Republicans in the House, used their allies in the media to try to make a case that the Senate won’t be fair to the Democrats if they do not remove the president.

We all know the president will not be removed. It takes two thirds of the Senate to do so, and it simply won’t happen.

Pelosi knew Trump would never be removed, but for her to keep the Speaker’s gavel in her clutches required her to allow this sham of a process to take place.

Democrats will no doubt use the votes against moderate Republican senators the same way Republicans will use the vote to impeach against moderate Democrats.

Who will win those arguments will be left up to the American people come November.

But what has been highlighted here is the deep divide we see in our nation.

Trump shocked both sides when he released the transcript of his phone call with newly elected Ukrainian president Zelensky.

Trump claimed the call to be “perfect.”

It wasn’t. Very few statements made by Trump would be considered “perfect.”

But his call certainly wasn’t impeachable, either, and questioning whether or not corruption led all the way to Joe Biden through his son is a fair question for anyone to ask.

Conservatives will never agree that Trump did anything wrong while pointing fingers at Hunter Biden’s cushy appointment to the Burisma board as proof of absolute corruption.

Democrats will never agree that Biden did anything wrong while pointing fingers at Trump for trying to get dirt on his political rival.

And neither will even consider that the other side might have somewhat of a point.

This is why Pelosi, for most of 2019, resisted these insane calls for impeachment, especially following the Mueller report that failed to make any connection between Trump and Russian election interference.

But when her job was on the line, she capitulated, putting her own self interests above the national interests with wild claims that “no one is above the law.” She didn’t mention whether or not that applied to just Trump or Biden as well.

Chances are high next election that the American people will be choosing a president from one of these two men, and with the dirt on both of them, governing for the forseeable future will involve one-party moves because there is no way Democrats will ever support Trump, and there is no way Republicans would ever support Biden.

That will be the legacy of this action — less trust in government and of the people serving in it, and less trust for our elected officials who focus more on each other than they do the American people.

What we need more than ever is a reduction in the partisan bickering, but I fear we have just guaranteed four more years of some of the most bitter we will see in our lifetime.

When a crisis of earth-shattering proportion can be delayed three weeks to make political points, the evidence is clear — we have entered a new era in partisanship that may reshape America.

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