Something I have wondered since the first reports of Russian interference in the 2016 election is this — how much are we not hearing about? No, I’m not trying to start or grasp onto any kind of conspiracy theory. The considerable likelihood, however, is that as much as we hear about disasters that go on behind White House doors, we do not hear about all of them. When Trump finally leaves office, our horror will be renewed.
Much like learning about various close calls from the Cold War years and decades after the fact, we will learn about unbelievable close calls, blunders, and moments of eye-watering frustration during the Trump administration after it ends. And this gets me to the main point of this article — if Biden wins, we cannot let optics dictate his decisions to investigate Trump or any of his administration’s officials for misconduct while they were in office.
The Trump administration will almost certainly try to cover up any improprieties it engaged in, so the next administration doesn’t find them (unless perhaps it’s an administration sympathetic to Trump). The right thing to do for, say, Joe Biden, would be to investigate and hold accountable those who did the American people and system wrong.
Trump stalwarts will have none of it, especially those in the House and Senate. They will call it political persecution and do everything in their power to stop Biden’s search for justice. Senators in particular have it all to play for. Imagine what would happen if Lindsay Graham, for example, were found to have been on some Trump entity’s payroll. That would be the end of his career, and you can bet that he’ll do everything he can to destroy the evidence showing his guilt. Same goes for anybody else similarly situated.
We cannot let the aftershocks of Trump’s presidency catch us by surprise, no matter how unpredictable. Political leaders must be held accountable; much the way police must be held accountable. American decency and lives depend on accountability. The next president to dethrone Trump, and god willing that person be Joe Biden, will certainly have his or her work cut out. Nobody said clearing the swamp would be easy.