Even before he took the oath of office, President Donald Trump has had talk of impeachment swirling around him almost daily, thanks to the determination of those who are intent on using extraordinary means to overturn the results of the 2016 election.
But according to outgoing Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) in remarks made to One America News Network, the behind-the-scenes machinations of impeachment are far from theoretical, with the incoming House Democrat majority having “already planned impeachment,” and now, “trying to make the case for it.”
Talk of impeachment “unprecedented”
According to Peter Baker of the New York Times, the discussion surrounding possible impeachment of Trump has been “unprecedented” both in its duration and its intensity.
The truth of the matter is that Trump had barely assumed the presidency when the notion of impeachment began to gain real traction on the left as well as in the mainstream media.
Though far-left Democrats such as Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) have made no secret of their commitment to pursuing impeachment of the president, more level-headed observers have pointed out that unless the Mueller investigation produces something noteworthy, the conviction in the Senate is a non-starter.
Still, Issa’s remarks are well-taken and likely contain more than a grain of truth, given the ill-timed verbosity of Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) on an Acela train ride earlier this fall.
Apparently feeling unfettered and free to speak his mind on the New York-to-Washington commute, Nadler conducted a lengthy telephone conversation in which he outlined his grand plan to seek impeachment not just of Donald Trump over unproven Russia collusion, but also of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh for alleged perjury.
Unfortunately for Nadler, his lack of discretion on the train resulted in his entire chat being overheard by an especially vigilant political reporter who was also aboard.
New investigations on the way
Regardless of the actual difficulties of pushing for impeachment and/or securing conviction in the Senate, it seems clear that the incoming Democrat majority in the House of Representatives is set to initiate a full menu of new investigations in January designed to do real damage to the Trump administration.
While the precise scope of these inquiries remains to be seen, most observers assume that Trump’s tax returns, business interests, and alleged ties to Russia will be among the subjects of intense scrutiny.
Pitfalls of partisanship
Though Democrat condemnation of all things Trump often appears universal, it is important to note that there are those on the left that have called for restraint on the topic of impeachment.
There are certainly Democrats who used impeachment talk as a way to drum up support from their base prior to the midterm elections and those who continue to do so in advance of the party’s assumption of majority status in a matter of days.
However, establishment stalwart Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has been rather more cautious in her remarks, suggesting that unless Republicans agree that the Mueller investigation has uncovered impeachable offenses, such a path would not be “unifying,” and such a partisan approach would therefore be undesirable.
No matter how perilous the process of impeachment may be for Democrats bent on pursuing it, Darrell Issa’s assertion that the groundwork has already been laid appears credible indeed. Fortunately, President Trump has repeatedly shown himself to be several moves ahead of his most dogged opponents in the political games they have been playing since day one.