On Friday, the House Judiciary Committee used a court filing to initiate a impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump, thus kicking off the impeachment process, albeit in low key fashion. Even as that legal impeachment process plays out in court, the made-for-television portion of impeachment – the part that the public pays attention to – is about to turn a major corner. And it’ll happen very soon.
Before Friday’s impeachment court filing, and before Donald Trump went nuclear with his racism over the weekend, fewer than a hundred House Democrats were publicly in favor of impeachment. But as the weekend unfolded, we saw that number begin to climb in accelerating fashion. Just now, Congresswoman Judy Chu became the 116th House Democrat to come out in favor of impeachment. Why does this matter?
When that number hits 119, the majority of House Democrats will be publicly in favor of Donald Trump’s impeachment. They’ll hit that number tonight or tomorrow. This matters, because it’s the kind of symbolic milestone that prompts the media to jump all over it, and thus causes average Americans at home to sit up and pay attention.
We’ll see who ends up being the 119th House Democrat to put the total over the top. Key people to watch are Adam Schiff, Elijah Cummings, and Jerry Nadler – the chairs of the three committees primarily leading the investigations into Donald Trump’s criminal scandals. If one of them ends up being the 119th, we’ll take that as a sign that this process is being choreographed for maximum media coverage.
Keep in mind that Speaker Nancy Pelosi tacitly signed off on the House Judiciary Committee impeachment inquiry, so she’s not as anti-impeachment as the media has claimed. Donald Trump’s impeachment is a very realistic possibility. That said, the only way House Democrats can take Trump down is to win the court battles over evidence and testimony so they can dismantle Trump on live national television, leaving the GOP Senate in a no-win situation.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report