Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Impeachment is Trump's Megaphone

Impeaching Donald Trump won't accomplish much, other that to put him in the national spotlight for a few more weeks.

Donald Trump is looking forward to his impeachment trial.  It is a gift from the Democrats.  We have been treated to silence from the big man (in the literal sense) for a couple of weeks now, and it has been bliss. No longer does his ugly countenance glare at me through my phone every morning.  No longer does the radio blare his latest hateful, belligerent tweet.

But not for long.  I suspect Twitter and Facebook will discover what radio stations found out about Howard Stern ages ago - as obnoxious as Trump is, he is good for business. People are morons, and they watch crap like "reality teevee" and Trump was a star on "The Apprentice" whose ersatz premise was that Trump was a "successful businessman".   The plebes lapped it up and made him President.

So after a period of mourning - two to three weeks, tops, hey, this isn't a school shooting, right? - they will let him back on their "platforms" if nothing else to "let him defend himself" during impeachment.

And the impeachment trial will be a circus - Republicans will make sure it is so.  They will dredge up every false story about "election fraud" and argue that Trump wasn't inciting a riot.  It doesn't matter whether it is true or not - impeachment is a political process not a judicial process and the judicial rules don't apply. What matters isn't the facts, but whether 17 Republicans will vote to convict, and looking at the tabulation right now, it doesn't appear they have more than five.

It isn't quite as stupid as the last impeachment - where Democrats knew going in that the wouldn't even have a simple majority, much less 67 votes.  There is an old saying in the law, you never bring a case you know you are going to lose.  You never put a witness on the witness stand without knowing what they are going to say.  Democrats are flying blind here, and flying right into a trap.

It isn't that Trump isn't going to play the victim card (he is - and the irony will be lost on Conservatives, who claim Liberals are the ones who play the victim game) but that he will use this trial to rebuild his image and position himself as the embattled underdog - and America loves underdogs.  He also will cement the loyalty of his "base" who feels as he does - under attack.

This is not to say he will run in 2024.  Maybe he will, maybe he won't.  If he does, I suspect he may insure four more years of a Democrat in the White House, whether that is Biden or Harris.  But then again, who knows?  Maybe in four years, America will be tired of Kumbaya politics.  And who knows how the economy will be?   A lot of people voted for Trump because of abortion, or tax cuts, or regulation cuts, or because they hate electric cars and LED lightbulbs.  They may dislike Trump personally (not the base, of course) but they will pull the lever based on policies, not personalities.  Perhaps.

If Trump follows through on this threat to form a modern "Bull Moose" party (the"MAGA" Party as he is now calling it, as "Patriot Party" abbreviates to "PP" and you know...the tapes) he could end up splitting the vote and keeping Democrats in power for another four to eight years.  Perhaps. The moral of Teddy Roosevelt was, however, that third parties just don't succeed in America, and I suspect a "MAGA" Party would insure Trump's fade into oblivion.

But of course, he isn't serious about it - it is a threat, a bargaining tool, his "art of the deal" to negotiate with the party.  It is the mutual-assured-destruction pact he wants to make with Mitch McConnell, to get him to pull back from renouncing Trumpism.

Don't get me wrong - he should be impeached, and prohibited from holding office ever again.   But I am not sure that is going to happen in the coming weeks.  Rather, we will have to endure that horrible, whiny voice of his, his orange countenance and bizarre hair.  We thought we were rid of him once and for all, and here the Democrats are giving him a Megaphone to speak with.

The unpleasantness will be back, yet again, if it was in fact, ever over.