On Wednesday, January 6th, a large group of Trump supporters stormed the United States Capitol amid a joint session of Congress. At the time, members of Congress were ceremoniously counting the electoral votes of all 50 states. While the highest legislative body in the United States was carrying out their constitutional duty, the Trump mob stormed in, breaking windows, looting offices of members of Congress, sat in the seats of our lawmakers, and pretended to act righteously while committing acts of sedition and treachery.
Our Capitol building, the center of lawmaking, quite literally was attacked by supporters of Trump. Laptops belonging to government officials were stolen, papers and documents containing materials of interest to our national security were exposed, and the entire building became the annex of mob rule.
Meanwhile, President Trump released a video proclaiming the election fraudulent, essentially motivating the mob to continue.
Countless courts of law have found no evidence of any voter fraud, and all fifty states have certified their own election results. Yet, Trump would rather pander to the few extremists who invaded our Capitol than to assure the American public that we live in a democracy.
The Constitution provides a remedy to this madness. Under article two section four “The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.”
In their analysis of what an impeachable offense is, the Legal Information Institute, created by Cornell Law School, writes that the “Use of the word ‘other’ to link ‘high crimes and misdemeanors’ with ‘treason’ and ‘bribery’ is arguably indicative of the types and seriousness of conduct encompassed by ‘high crimes and misdemeanors.’ Similarly, the word ‘high’ apparently carried with it a restrictive meaning.”
They further write that there was actually a provision before the Constitution was adopted that stated the President may “be removable on impeachment & conviction of mal-practice or neglect of duty.” This sheds light onto the intention of the impeachment, and its meaning to the Founders.
All of this to say, the qualifications for impeachment and removal are up to the House of Representatives and Senate to decide. The failure of Trump to accept a free and fair election conducted in the United States can be seen as treasonous. Trump’s use of violence to quell Black Lives Matter protests for a photo-op can be categorized as a gross abuse of power and a malpractice of governing. His incitement of the mob which invaded the Capitol can be seen as sedition since he gold-starred, thumbs upped, and instigated the entire incident.
Mind you, President Trump has also turned away from confronting COVID-19, systemic racism, a cyberattack, bounties placed on American soldiers by Russia, a declining education system, a broken healthcare system, growing inequality, and a plethora of other national security issues. Rather, he has tried to strongarm state election officials to do his bidding, he has sent in military forces to quell protests he did not agree with, he has allowed thousands of children to be separated from their families at the border, and has essentially shunted aside the responsibilities of governing in favor of stroking his ego. He has failed to be any sort of leader in a democracy, let alone the President of the United States.
Formally impeaching and removing him from office is the solution to end this prolonged embarrassment. In doing so, his title of President will be stripped away, removing access to the stipend and benefits that former Presidents receive by law. The title belonging to the leader of the Free World will also be formally disassociated from Trump. Impeachment and removal would bar him from holding any office of public service again. It would tell Americans that there is no room for autocrats in the halls of the White House, or on American soil period. Removal will show that Congress will not tolerate a rogue and inept executive hellbent on retaining power through mobilizing his mob.
Bandwagoning behind him has gone on long enough. Those who still support Trump must ask themselves why. There is nothing redeemable in him at all. He had been given the Presidency in 2016 along with a friendly House and Senate, yet he still chose to ignore issues that Americans face. He could have risen to the occasion, yet he chose to further enrich the already rich, further impoverish the already impoverished, and spread lies from the pulpit of the Presidential podium. A majority of Americans knew he was not up for the job in 2016, and it is time now for Congress to finally act.
History will look back and question why momentary political expediency was put above the continuity of democracy. The Trump campaign’s vision for the United States was nothing but a mirage promising greatness, but predictably delivered disappointment. It is time for bipartisan support of impeachment and removal, and for America to welcome back justice and democracy.
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