Wednesday, November 20, 2019

I've got problems with the impeachment strategy

Republicans aren't disputing the facts. They're telling Democrats where to shove them.

I know it's early in the game, but so far my fears about the current shitshow that is the Democrats' impeachment hearings are coming true. It's not that I'm against impeaching the grifter president. His attempt to use the weapons sale to Ukraine as quid pro quo to get dirt on Joe Biden and his son is a clear criminal act and should be prosecuted. Trump and the Republicans aren't even disputing the facts. They are simply reminding us that POTUS is above the law.

In my mind at least, the hearings, which are taken by most as impeachment itself, fail as a political strategy leading up to the 2020 elections.

I just can't imagine the predictable outcome of a failed impeachment attempt moving the needle much, especially in the battleground states, let alone inspiring millions of young voters in a crusade to win the White House and Congress.

To make matters worse, Nancy Pelosi's messaging about the "dangers" facing us in the upcoming election (even when she is misquoted on Fox News) gives the impression that without the hearings, Trump is bound to win the election.
“The weak response to these hearings has been, ‘Let the election decide.’ That dangerous position only adds to the urgency of our action, because the President is jeopardizing the integrity of the 2020 elections.”-- Nancy Pelosi
Pelosi's pessimism is understandable, especially given the slumping of her favorite candidate, Joe Biden. But I'll leave that for a future post.

The hearings, duller than a Chicago Bears game, have put all the Democrats' eggs in the Ukraine basket. They have nearly pushed all other issues like health care and education to the side, issues that gain traction with key voter blocs. Stories and events that present an even stronger rationale for impeachment or certainly for defeating the Republicans next year now pale in comparison to the Ukraine fiasco.

On the global front, there's Trump's pardoning of convicted war criminals, a move opposed by his own Pentagon brass. Or his putting the final nail in the coffin of a negotiated just peace settlement in Israel/Palestine by sanctioning and encouraging future Israeli settlements in the West Bank. This happened, by the way, with hardly a peep from the Democrats.

I could go on about the U.S. role in sanctioning the right-wing coup in Bolivia; the continued separation of thousands of children from their parents as part of the human rights immigration crisis on the southern border; or Trump's disastrous trade wars. All of these now have a media half-life of about four days because of all the air all being sucked up by Trump's phone call to Zelensky.

I hope I'm wrong and that the hearings inspire a move of swing Trump voters. I just don't see it happening that way.

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