Not too long ago I told someone that we live in a three party country right now. There are Democrats. Republicans. And Trump. Wrap your head around that and all the sudden everything makes sense.
Especially the strange metaphorical intersection of Comey, Mueller, and Republican Congresspeople.
It goes without saying that Congressional Democrats have no problem working overtime if they think it will inch them ever closer toward impeachment of President Trump. Never mind that impeachment doesn’t mean Trump would be ejected from office. Or that to date, no Democrat has articulated as much or explained what their goal is in impeaching Trump.
Perhaps Democrats have forgotten that impeachment of Bill Clinton, if anything, turned an otherwise mediocre President into a hero among Democrat party diehards. It is very possible impeachment of Trump would elevate his status among his supporters – and that’s saying something given the level of support Trump voters have for the President.
To be fair, some Democrats are deluded enough to believe that impeachment means Trump would leave office. That’s why Maxine Waters once again slipped up (kind of like when she slipped up and admitted she wanted government to take over the oil industry) and said Vice President Pence ought to be impeached too.
No doubt some Democrats think a Trump-Pence impeachment would somehow put Hillary Clinton and her kooky sidekick Tim Kaine in office.
Among credible Democrats (I use the term credible loosely here) the logic you won’t hear stated outside certain swanky DC watering holes is this: Nancy Pelosi will be President and Chuck Schumer Vice President by 2019.
Democrats expect to sweep the House and Senate in 2018. By that time the Trump-Pence impeachment will be poised to strike. Get Trump and Pence out of the way, so the DC barstool logic goes, and the next two in the line of succession are the Speaker of the House and Senate President Pro Tempore. If Democrats take control of House and Senate in 2018, Pelosi and Schumer would occupy those positions and would thus be number three and four in the line to take over the Presidency and Vice Presidency.
So what’s in it for Republicans?
Exactly the same thing.
Take a moment and realize who the vast majority of congressional Republicans are. These are people that for seven years promised any number of reforms – healthcare, tax policy, etc. – and then when voters gave them the means to deliver, they promptly dithered then went on vacation. These are the same people that are almost as critical of Trump as Democrats are.
Congressional Republicans aren’t synonymous with Donald Trump. They value their barstools at certain DC watering holes way too much. (Go back and look at Boehner’s eyes in pictures from when he was Speaker of the House; those are a drinking man’s eyes and the word is Boehner’s a man that can knock back quite a few). They value their invites to the hip things that the “cultured” types in DC hold as paramount. Washington, DC is a terrific party town (and unlike Maryland and Virginia the bars in DC can stay open until 4am) and no one wants to be the old fuddy-duddy left out of the scene – not even members of Congress.
Republicans in the House and Senate then could grin and bear a Democratic majority in those legislative bodies. Heck, it might make it easier for them to slither back into the role of pretending to be an opposition party – it’s easier to oppose things than it is to have power and actually do things, I suppose. If they don’t lose House and Senate in 2018, that would make Paul Ryan President and Orrin Hatch Vice President if a Trump-Pence impeachment required number three and four assume Executive Branch duties.
Orrin Hatch. He’s a very respectable guy and via his position he’s done a lot of great things. He’s also one of those Senators you normally don’t hear much from. He kind of keeps his head down, does the hard work, and keeps on keeping on. Mostly. In the past two weeks, Hatch has come out in interviews or on social media tepidly challenging President Trump.
There is a train of thought that wonders if true electoral collusion is taking place between Congressional Democrats and Republicans, in an effort to unseat the legally and duly elected President and Vice President and move someone like Orrin Hatch into office. (How Ryan factors into this theory is unclear). Is that what’s going on?
I mean, how hard would it be for Paul Ryan and Orrin Hatch to call a vote to empower a special prosecutor to look into any number of Hillary Clintons, Debbie Wasserman-Schultzes, Loretta Lynches, Susan Rices, Huma Abedins, Bill Clintons, etc, and their highly questionable activities.
It wouldn’t be hard unless the goal was getting the third party out of the White House so that typical two party antics could resume as normal, voters be damned.