What were they thinking?

Republicans cannot explain to the American people why they are behaving like children and putting party over country in “president” Donald Trump’s impeachment. Perhaps, someday, they will be able to explain to their children and grandchildren, as history promises not to be kind to them. Many have been involved in impeachment before — 27 according to USA Today — and well know how this works, but because it’s Trump, they’re suffering from amnesia.

Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) has also been involved in impeachments before, this being her third. The Hill reports her frustration with the Republicans. Lofgren told the Committee that when Clinton faced impeachment, “Democrats did not see sex as an impeachable offense.” James Sensenbrenner (R-WI) argued that Lofgren was “missing the point” because Clinton lied to a grand jury. Good luck getting Trump under oath. As much as that man lies, the roof would likely blow off the building. Lofgren’s point is that Clinton lied about an affair and that “somehow, lying about a sexual affair is abuse of presidential power, but the misuse of presidential power to get a benefit somehow doesn’t matter.” She further said that they could bring Stormy Daniels before Congress, but “we don’t believe that’s a high crime and misdemeanor.” Yes, they’re splitting hairs, but the point the Republicans are missing is that Clinton’s lie pales in comparison to Trump’s behavior.

USA Today’s Editorial Board breaks this all down for us. They are completely impartial on impeachment, and their piece begins with something they wrote two decades ago: “Put your own narrow interests ahead of the nation’s, flout the law, violate the trust given to you by the American people and recklessly disregard the oath of office, and you risk losing your job.” Though this was written in support of the Clinton impeachment, it easily applies today. USA Today writes what every American who understands the gravity of Trump’s actions feels: “Trump used your tax dollars to shake down a vulnerable foreign government to interfere in a U.S. election for his personal benefit.” Think about that for a moment, and which do you find more egregious, Clinton lying about sex or Trump compromising national security for his personal gain?

The real mystery is why Trump’s supporters and enablers refuse to see the true danger in Trump’s actions. That’s easy: They don’t want to see it. It’s the old “elephant in the room” thing. Though we’ll never fully know or understand “why” they refuse to see it, we can always speculate on the obvious: money and power, at least for the enablers. Why Trump’s supporters, many of whom reside in the reddest and poorest states in the nation, don’t see it also has an easy supposition: hate and racism, both of which they associate with Trump and is what they love about him.

As for the rest of us, we must continue to support Congress’ work. Even if Trump is not removed — and we know he won’t be, especially with McConnell vowing acquittal – this process will still send a message. We can hope that some of these people develop consciences and admit that this is the right thing to do, but we’d be better off hoping to see a unicorn.

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