Polls now show that more than half of the American public wants to see Donald Trump not only impeached, but removed from office. Trump’s impeachment trial in the Senate appears likely to get underway in January. In a new op-ed, a prolific political columnist attempts to make the case that the charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress contained in the articles of impeachment against the president are not even the most important reasons in favor of Trump’s removal from office.
According to columnist Neil Baron, writing on Saturday for The Hill, the Senate’s failure to remove Trump from office would send a frightening signal to America’s allies that the country’s legislative body is “incapable of removing a president” regardless of how “lawless and destructive” that president may be.
On the other hand, Baron writes, removing Trump would let other countries know that the U.S. Congress “won’t tolerate a president who betrays and imperils America’s allies,” citing Trump’s green light to Turkey for an invasion of Kurdish territory in Syria in October.
Baron also argues that Trump has “diminished the credibility and gravitas” of U.S. diplomatic efforts by his repeated dismissal of ambassadors who displease him, and by involving Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in the effort to strong-arm Ukraine, that led to Trump’s impeachment.
According to a New York Times report, documents released by the State Department last month revealed that Pompeo “enabled” Trump’s effort to leverage military aid in order to force Ukraine into a bogus investigation of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.
Trump’s removal from office is essential, in Baron’s opinion, in order to “regain America’s ability to conduct foreign policy.” But due to the solid support from his base voters, Senate Republicans remain unlikely to vote for Trump’s conviction in the Senate impeachment trial. Baron, therefore, looks at alternative methods for dislodging Trump from the White House.
“It may be easier to convince Trump to resign,” Baron writes in The Hill op-ed, saying that an offer of immunity from “from all charges being investigated” may be enough to induce Trump to step down.
Trump is facing at least 15 current investigations, as compiled by Politico. Some of the investigations could include criminal charges, though others are purely civil. Five of those ongoing probes, by various federal and state-level entities, center on Trump’s inauguration committee. The committee is suspected of misusing funds, as well as accepting illegal foreign donations.
Regardless of how Trump is removed, Baron writes, to do so is essential for America “to show the world that it won’t tolerate a destructive, shameful, lawless and dangerous president.” Baron adds that without Trump’s removal, U.S. allies will be left to wonder “when will it happen again?”