President Trump has been impeached a second time. Ten Republican Representatives voted to impeach Trump, along with all 222 Democrats. A trial will now be conducted in the U. S. Senate, but only after the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden on January 20.
The question has been asked: Why bother to impeach Trump since he’s about to leave office? If Trump is impeached, this will prevent him from holding office again, which puts to rest any concerns of Democrats (and plenty of Republicans, too) that Trump will try to re-gain the White House with a 2024 campaign. Democrats don’t want that, I suspect because, prior to the storming of the Capitol on January 6, Trump represented a legitimate threat in 2024. Plenty of Republicans don’t want Trump running in 2024 because they don’t want to have to deal with him, and because if he didn’t win the nomination, he would likely run third party and become a spoiler to their own presidential hopes. A conviction in a Senate trial would destroy any political ambitions Trump still holds. On the other hand, an acquittal by the Senate would prove, in Trump’s mind at least (the man having no shame), a sort of “last hurrah” to his administration and a catalyst for 2024.
I am convinced that what Trump did on January 6 was an impeachable offense. There is no question in my mind that he incited his followers to violent action or, at least in their minds, offered support for their already planned intentions, whether he knew of those plans or not. As well, he failed to call out the National Guard when needed and failed to condemn the attack on the Capitol, instead merely calling for calm and for people to go home, while he told those who had just stormed our nation’s Capitol and put the lives of Congress, Capitol police, and the protesters themselves in danger that he loved them. I don’t know if Trump knew of plans to storm the Capitol Building. He should have known. His staffers should have briefed him. Maybe they did. Reports are coming out now that that FBI knew about a planned assault on the Capitol Building and that they shared that intelligence with the Capitol Police. Did they share it with the President’s staff? The FBI is insisting that they only knew that “First Amendment-protected activity” was planned. Also, according to D.C. Police Chief Robert Contee, “There was no intelligence that suggested there would be a breach of the U.S. Capitol.” This is ridiculous! Either the FBI and Capitol Police knew of the planned storming of the Capitol Building, or they didn’t. If they did, and it seems increasingly likely that they did, or that they should have known, that opens up a can of worms as to why the Capitol Police and the FBI were not better prepared, or why they didn’t take action to make sure it never happened in the first place.
Why should they have known? Because it’s their job to know and because there was information out there. There was plenty of talk on social media about “Operation Occupy the Capitol” on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter (which, ironically enough, have banned Trump) prior to the attack. As well, on the 8kun, message board which, according to some news outlets, has been linked to white supremacy, mass shootings, and child porn, and is popular with QAnon followers, plans to storm the Capitol were spoken of openly. “You can go to Washington on Jan 6 and help storm the Capitol,” one 8kun user wrote prior to January 6, “As many Patriots as can be. We will storm the government buildings, kill cops, kill security guards, kill federal employees and agents, and demand a recount.” The FBI does report that they spoke with some extremists in hopes of dissuading them from going to Washington and they were at least partially successful in those efforts. So, why are they claiming now that they only knew of “First Amendment-protected activity”?
As is their hypocritical and “never let a crisis go to waste” pattern, the Democrats, after having essentially ignored or even praised a summer’s worth of rioting, looting, murder, attacks on federal property and attempts to create autonomous zones in various cities across the country, as well as condemning the use of the National Guard to quell left-wing riots in Washington, are now all about impeaching Trump, bringing out the National Guard, and labeling as white supremacists and domestic terrorists anyone, anyone, who verbalized any support for or came within an arm’s length of Trump over the last four years. Because it’s all about unity.
In any case, I cannot fault the Democrats and those Republicans who joined them for impeaching Trump. I cannot fault those Republicans who want to be rid of him, especially in light of 2024. I agreed with plenty of Trump’s policies and disagreed with others. I am genuinely concerned about a Biden presidency, that the man is an empty suit who will be controlled by the DNC, will be a water boy for China, will be viciously anti-life, will say all the right things about racism while making sure there is no economic progress for minorities, will do everything he can to control the economy and, thus, ruin any chance of a meaningful comeback from the pandemic, will negatively impact our foreign policy, especially our relationship with China and Israel, will adopt an open borders policy, and that the man has all but promised a war against religious liberty. Also, his choice for Vice-President creates an opening for greater influence for the most radically progressive members of his party. A Biden presidency is not good news for the country.
So, where do we go from here? The best thing that could happen is for Trump to go away. That will not happen, impeachment or no impeachment. As such, impeachment is probably the better way to go. It will give the message that a sitting President who incites a crowd to attack their own Capitol will not be allowed to stand. That’s a good thing. It will pre-occupy Congress and the media so that it just might hamper Biden’s plans for his first days in office. That’s another good thing. If he ends up being convicted, it would prevent Trump from running in 2024. That’s another good thing. But, if it ends up in an acquittal, it will only boost Trump and inspire in him and his plans for 2024. That’s a bad thing. Trump can become as much a persona non grata in the minds of the political and media establishment, and even in the minds of most reasonable-thinking Americans, as is possible. That will not stop him or his most ardent supporters from forcing him into the headlines. Unfortunately, the media cannot seem to get enough of him, either. The greatest punishment Trump could suffer is that people stop talking about him, and that his face never graces the cover of another newspaper or magazine. That is not likely to happen anytime soon.
Be Christ for all. Bring Christ to all. See Christ in all.