As I finish this commentary, impeachment 2.0 of former President Donald Trump is moving ahead predictably in the Democratically controlled U.S. Senate and will probably continue throughout the weekend. I found it Ironic that 22 years ago today, President Bill Clinton was acquitted on both articles of impeachment in the Senate. Remember his famous line, “I did not have sexual relations with that woman…” – and he later apologized for fibbing.
Two hundred twelve years ago, today Abraham Lincoln was born, which made me wonder how he fare would in today’s government. While history idolizes him, those alive during the tumultuous days of Civil War were less than pleased with him. Northerners apparently had their doubts about his leadership, and even he feared re-election.
As Michael Burlingame, Professor Emeritus of History at Connecticut College says, “As the most activist President in history, Lincoln transformed the President’s role as commander in chief and as chief executive into a powerful new position, making the President supreme over both Congress and the courts. His activism began almost immediately with Fort Sumter when he called out state militias, expanded the army and navy, spent $2 million without congressional appropriation, blockaded Southern ports, closed post offices to treasonable correspondences, suspended the writ of habeas corpus in several locations, ordered the arrest and military detention of suspected traitors, and issued the Emancipation Proclamation on New Year’s Day 1863.”
As Democrats proceed with Donald Trump’s impeachment, the outcome remains certain, as most Senate Republicans believe, like so many legal scholars, that impeachment is limited to current office holders. Interestingly from a historical perspective, no U.S. president has ever successfully been impeached. Richard Nixon resigned before the proceedings began, Andrew Johnson was acquitted by one vote in 1868, and I already talked about Bill Clinton.
Regarding President Clinton, on the first article, 45 Republican senators voted to convict President Clinton, 45 Democrats and 10 Republicans voted to acquit. On the other count, 50 Republicans voted for conviction and five GOP senators joined 45 Democrats for acquittal. Sen. Mitch McConnell and then-Kentucky Republican Sen. Jim Bunning voted Clinton guilty. (For clarification, impeachments begin in the House and two-thirds of the Senate must vote to convict an elected office holder.)
No doubt it appears the Constitution is in the way of the Democrats’ plan. So, a sideshow filled with Constitutional drama is now a prelude to an offensive political strategy by power-hungry Democrats, which includes things like statehood for D.C. and Puerto Rico, more justices on the Supreme Court for a liberal majority and open borders to supply new members for the Democratic Party. In essence, they want to erase Trump’s legacy of any potential future power for conservatives.
These things are evident in the abject reversal of President Trump’s efforts to focus on America. I think it’s obvious. Here’s a surprising example, an essay posted on the World Socialist Web Site by the Trotskyist Socialist Equality Party suggesting the New York Times’ 1619 project as a misrepresentation of history. “Despite the pretense of establishing the United States’ ‘true’ foundation, the 1619 Project is a politically motivated falsification of history. Its aim is to create a historical narrative that legitimizes the effort of the Democratic Party to construct an electoral coalition based on the prioritizing of personal “identities” — i.e., gender, sexual preference, ethnicity, and, above all, race.” Not surprising, both Vice President Kamala Harris Mayor Pete Buttigieg praised the curriculum-based project.
This is the backdrop for destroying Donald Trump’s legacy with a fully prosecuted and successful dismantling of his accomplishments, to rewrite the past four years. The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board recently commented, “Democrats have prospered politically since Mr. Trump was elected, and they’d like to keep him as a foil for as long as they can.” Of course they would! The goal is simply to divide Republicans as a whole, and eventually showcase those who vote to acquit Trump in future elections.
A year from now, U.S. representatives will run again in primary elections nationwide. Democrats have a slim majority in the House, so flipping six or seven seats would mean Republicans would be the ruling party.
Soon this day will be history and we will look back at the political hostility of the times. Perhaps we will believe this era’s efforts to preserve our liberty and maintain the wisdom of 1776 was and is important. Bill Clinton’s popularity went up after impeachment, and you know Abe’s importance.
Greg DeLancey is the 1st District chairman for the Republican Party of Kentucky. He may be reached at email@example.com.
Editor’s Note: Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the editorial opinion of the Murray Ledger & Times.