Impeachment is necessary

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Scott Shelton

Staff Writer

Last week, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced the House of Representatives will formally begin an impeachment inquiry into President Donald J. Trump.

The tipping point for Pelosi and House Democrats on impeachment was a phone call in which Trump pressured President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine to pursue an investigation into Democratic rival Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden.

“There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son. That Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that,” Trump said in his phone call with Zelensky. “So, whatever you can do with the attorney general would be great.”

Trump admitted that days before the phone call he withheld $391 million in military aid for Ukraine in its defense against Russia.

The timing of the aid being withheld is more than coincidence. 

It shows the President used his office to bribe a foreign government to benefit him in the upcoming election against one of his biggest political rivals. 

Despite what some conservatives are saying, House Democrats are not trying to impeach the President simply because they don’t like him. They would just be adhering to the Constitution.

Article 2, Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution says the President and all civil officers shall be removed from office by impeachment on conviction of treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors.

Impeachment is a political process that the House has control over. It comes with huge risks that will likely have an effect on the 2020 election. 

Democratic leaders like Pelosi have been stalling on impeachment because they know they have one shot at it. Many of them were in Congress when President Bill Clinton was impeached in 1998. Clinton avoided conviction by the Senate, and his approval ratings went up following his acquittal.

Twenty-one years later, the circumstances are much different. This goes beyond politics.

Leaving Trump in office would set a dangerous precedent that the President is above the law and can do what he pleases and can stay in office as long as he has the votes from his party’s congressmen.

Only two presidents have been impeached in our nation’s history. America never got to see how the impeachment of President Richard Nixon would play out since he resigned in August 1974. 

Nixon said if the president does it, then it’s not illegal. Consequently, Nixon had one of the most transformative presidencies in the modern era, and not for good reason. 

Trump’s presidency draws comparisons to Nixon’s because in both presidencies’ scandals, the cover-up is as bad as the crime itself.

The Watergate scandal could have been better for the Nixon Administration if not for its efforts to obstruct justice and hide any wrongdoing by the President and all his men. 

The same cover-up is happening again in 2019 with the Ukraine scandal.

According to the whistleblower complaint, which led to the impeachment inquiry, White House officials have been moving Trump’s phone call transcripts to a server used for classified information.

On Monday, reports surfaced that in addition to the Ukraine phone call, Trump tried to persuade Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison to help Attorney General Barr investigate the origins of the Mueller investigation.

If Trump’s calls with the Ukrainian president lead to impeachment, one can only imagine what would happen if transcripts of his calls with Vladimir Putin were released, as well.

For the duration of his presidency, Trump has sided with Putin over our own intelligence community on the issue of Russian interference in our elections.

For years, Trump has been preaching the idea of America first, but really, it’s Trump first and everything else is secondary to his wants.

 The framers of the Constitution gave Congress the power to impeach so it can hold the President accountable when he abuses his executive power.

Though impeachment is a political process, it’s imperative for Congress to put politics aside and do what’s best for our country and impeach the President.

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