President Donald Trump Impeached For Second Time

U.S. House of Representatives

With the entry of the 217th vote, the House of Representatives have impeached President Donald Trump for a second time. As I have previously stated, my primary objection to this action is the use of a snap impeachment that dispenses with the traditional hearing or inquiry of impeachment. There was no opportunity to debate the language or the implications of the language. Indeed, the House gave the President a threshold challenge based on this process. With the addition of a possible trial after Trump leaves office, the rush to judgment could become a parade of constitutional horribles.  The use of impeachment to “remove” a president who has already left office is ripe for challenge on the Senate floor and even later in the federal courts.

On the merits, I do not fault those who view the President’s words as impeachable. I condemned both his words and his failure to denounce the violence immediately and unequivocally. However, the language of the article is sweeping and raises serious concerns of this standard for future presidents. There is a concern over presidents being removed for reckless rhetoric that leads to violence by supporters.  While I do not view the President’s words as amounting to criminal incitement, I did view them as inciteful, reckless, and wrong.

That is why I am more concerned with the use of a snap impeachment. I am hopeful that no president will ever engage in such inflammatory actions or words again. However, a House majority could use this as precedent for another circumvention of the traditional process in favor of a snap impeachment. This is what snap chat is to conversations. It reduces impeachment to a raw, brief, and partisan expression.

However, make no mistake about it: this ignoble moment was earned by the President.  While I have warned about the implications of impeaching a president for being obnoxious or narcissistic, this was obviously more than either of those character flaws. This was breathtakingly irresponsible conduct that has now resulted in a historic and ignoble distinction.

The question, however, is how costly it will prove for the Constitution. That is why I argued for condemnation by both house and both parties in a resolution of censure. I criticized this speech as it was being given and opposed the challenge to the election from the outset.  However, I remain deeply concerned over the implications of the process and language underlying this impeachment. Indeed, had the Democrats allowed for just a day of hearings to consider such concerns, the language of the article might have been drafted to achieve greater support.

In my view, the Senate should reject the impeachment if on the basis that an impeachment of a former president is unwarranted and likely unconstitutional. That is entirely separate from the use of a snap impeachment and the specific language used by the House.

181 thoughts on “President Donald Trump Impeached For Second Time”

  1. This impeachment is not about one speech on Jan 6. It is about:

    Repeatedly, publicly, and loudly lying about voter fraud for over two months.
    Telling his supporters that the election was stolen from him/them
    Pressuring the various legislatures to overturn the will of their voters and give him the election.
    Pressuring the GA SoS to fraudulently fund votes and declare him the winner.
    Pressuring Pence to unconstitutionally throw out EC votes.
    Telling his supporters to gather in DC on Jan 6 and be wild.
    Along with others, inciting a riot on Jan 6.
    After his supporters entered the Capital, not doing anything to stop it.

    All of this adds up to clearly impeachable conduct.

    1. Anything is impeachable conduct if the House is crazy enough. The point is that the characterization of the conduct is false and the use of impeachment is shortsighted, petty, and stupid.

  2. So, when a political party takes the House, the President of the opposing party gets impeached.

    Standard Operating Procedure.

    Now you know why the American Founders establsihed a restricted-vote republic constrained by a Constitution which provided maximal freedom to individuals and severely restricted government.

    The 1788 election of George Washington had an 11.6% turnout.
    __________________________________________________

    “[We gave you] a republic, if you can keep it.”

    – Ben Franklin
    ___________

    Goodnight, America.

  3. Left-wing political hacks Pelosi, et al. wasting more taxpayer money on petty theatrics. Fact is, Trump supporters don’t care if dems “impeach” him. The effort goes nowhere. I wonder if the people who vote for these screwballs ever expect them to actually do something useful? Did you really send them to Washington to do nothing but engage in a never-ending, useless, non-productive Trump-bashing? These people are beyond obsessed, they’re boarding on crazed.

    1. ‘Trump supporters don’t care if dems “impeach” him. ‘

      Trump supporters will not live forever. History will be the ultimate judge.

      1. God is the ultimate judge. History (asyou use the term) is generally a bunch of self-congratulatory lies written by the bad guys.

  4. If they are foolish enough to have a trial (unconstitutional since President Trump will be an ex-president and a private citizen), then President Trump will be allowed to present all the evidence of the election fraud in all states for which two sets of electors were submitted.

    Responsibility for the Capitol violence rests with those that allowed billions of dollars of damage this past summer (with encouragement), the provocateurs (Antifa, BLM and Proud Boys), the US Supreme Court for not hearing the Texas lawsuit or any challenge timely, and Vice President Pence who could have requested State legislatures (with dueling electors) to confirm their actual electoral slate.

    1. Let me point something else out. Since the Constitution does not provide for “impeachment” of former officials, Trump could argue that the statements of members of Congress are not privileged and may subject them to tort liability.

        1. The legal scholars who say it’s unsettled aren’t ignoring what is written in the Constitution.

  5. Your condemnation of Trump’s actions of inciting riots to storm the Capitol and try to overturn the election for him based on obvious lies seems to be made in a less prominent way than your condemnation of Mayor DiBlasio for dancing with his wife on New Year’s Eve.

    Try to keep things in better perspective.

  6. So here is the risk/reward. If you lose an election, and incite a mob to try to go to the Capitol, maybe they kill some Congressmen, maybe they delay the election certification enough that you could be somehow declared the victor.

    And if it does not succeed, you will be censured by Congress but really you do not even have to apologize for yourself or the mob you incited.

  7. Trump has, up until now, led a rather consequence-free life. It is very frustrating for those of us who find his behavior abhorrent to see that play out over and over again, as everyone in a position to do something about his behavior pulls their punches at the last minute because it would be just too divisive, or he would drag things out in the courts with his army of lawyers and his money, or he would make life difficult for the auditors/prosecutors/etc. who can do something about it.

    A censure would be another example of it. It would not register with Trump at all, as he can just turn to Newsmax or OANN and there are plenty of people who will tell him what he did was the right thing. Why waste Congress’ time with such a meaningless gesture.

      1. Money laundering.
        Paying $750 a year in taxes on purportedly hundreds of million in income.
        Pardoning all his friends, calling for prosecutions of all his enemies.
        The whole Ukraine matter.
        Telling 30,000 lies to the American people.
        Sexual harassment and perhaps rape.
        Selling our foreign policy for his personal business and other interests.

        Stuff like that.

        1. Money laundering.

          Never happened.

          Paying $750 a year in taxes on purportedly hundreds of million in income.

          Evidently you know his tax liability better than does the IRS.

          Pardoning all his friends, calling for prosecutions of all his enemies.

          A number of his friends were subject to political prosecution and a number of his enemies are guilty of malfeasance in office.

          The whole Ukraine matter.

          You mean the Biden family scandal used as an excuse to impeach Trump.

          Telling 30,000 lies to the American people.

          In the imagination of WaPoo ‘fact checkers’ whose real job is political messaging.

          Sexual harassment and perhaps rape.

          E. Jill Carroll cribbed her tall tale off a 2012 Law & Order episode.

          Selling our foreign policy for his personal business and other interests.

          Oh this is rich. How do you think Hunter Biden makes his money?

              1. Yeah, I’m sure Letitia James is exquisitely scrupulous. While we’re at it, how do you commit ‘property tax fraud’?

          1. We’ll find out.

            As soon as he’s out of office, the DOJ will stop arguing that they should take over in fighting Carroll’s defamation lawsuit, and then Trump will finally have to sit for the already-ordered deposition and provide the already-ordered DNA sample to compare with that on her dress.

              1. Forensically usable DNA can last centuries. They solved the Boston Strangler case with 50 y.o. DNA on a blanket. She says that there’s male genetic material on the dress. Trump has been fighting the judge’s order to provide a DNA sample.

      2. I watched a video of the speech and heard Trump saying “be peaceful”. Why isn’t identifying the people arrested been shown? I saw a picture put out of lots of the arrestees asking for identification. The picture was not Trump followers. Were they identified? How about telling us where those identifications went? I watched the walk to the Capitol. It was a slow pace with people talking along the way. When they got to the Capitol they started sitting on steps. Suddenly some people pushed their way in to the crowd and suddenly the Capitol doors were being pounded. I haven’t seen an interview of the Trump people. Give them a chance to respond to the accusations. Watching the infiltrators and how they handled everything I knew they weren’t Trump people. But now Trump is accused of the violence. No one has the guts to talk with attendees. That should be done, or shown, ASAP.

        1. “No one has the guts to talk with attendees. That should be done, or shown, ASAP.”
          ***

          They won’t talk to anyone who will tarnish the lie they are promoting.

        2. You sure he said that in the morning?

          He tweeted “Stay peaceful!” at 2:38 in the afternoon, after they’d already broken into the Capitol and after he tweeted “Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify. USA demands the truth!” while rioters were chanting “Hang Mike Pence” and looking for him.

          The people who’ve been arrested so far have been identified. Other people are being sought, they only have the person’s photo and haven’t yet identified them.

          Here are some of the people who’ve been arrested:
          https://www.cnn.com/2021/01/11/politics/notable-arrests-capitol/index.html
          https://www.thedailybeast.com/two-rocky-mount-virginia-cops-arrested-for-taking-part-in-capitol-insurrection

  8. While I do not view the President’s words as amounting to criminal incitement, I did view them as inciteful, reckless, and wrong.

    However, I remain deeply concerned over the implications of the process and language underlying this impeachment.

    So you consider President Trump’s constitutionally-protected speech to be inciteful, reckless, and wrong, and yet as a constitutional scholar, you don’t consider what the Democrats just did as inciteful, reckless, and wrong? For an ardent defender of the 1st amendment and acknowledged scholar of our constitution, you have denounced the former and spit on the latter. SMH

  9. I wonder if you’d feel the same way, Jonathan, if you’d been there — or if someone in your family had been there.

    1. What I on saw on the news was 99% of the protesters peacefully milling about; along with a few obvious crazies and a small group of mostly young men who actually entered the Capitol building. Some seemed to be having fun, sitting in Pelosi’s chair, carrying her lectern around, and so forth. Some juvenile antics and some actual protestors who were shouting the usual protests. There were two deaths due to medical issues, one cop died by suicide the next day, and a young female Air Force veteran was shot in the face and killed by Capitol Police who are essentially overpaid security guards and who panicked and resorted to deadly force when an unarmed young female climbed through the window. So yes, there were ignoble acts on both sides.

  10. They have effectively created a martyr. Republican party may be irrevocably split.

    God Save the Republic

    1. Irrevocably split between who and who? Trump is not rejected by Republican voters. He’s rejected by word merchants who have little in the way of a real constituency (and are often on retainer by liberal organizations and patrons) and by a few Capitol Hill twits.

  11. “That is why I argued for condemnation by both house and both parties in a resolution of censure.”

    What effect do you think censure would have on Trump? Do you think he will feel duly chastened? I mean, after he was impeached once, he fired and retaliated against all the witnesses against him, and gave key Congressmen on his side medals of freedom. Do you think it would stop him from pardoning all the insurrectionists who have done this on his behalf?

    Maybe a strongly worded letter would get the point across to Trump?

    And we should have hearings with witnesses, when the last time Trump was impeached he just told the entire government to ignore subpoenas and the Senate did not want to hear witnesses anyway?

  12. “Rep McClintock: ‘If We Had Prosecuted BLM And Antifa … With The Same Determination,’ Capitol Riot Might Not Have Happened”

    The congressman urged his Congressional peers to remember the anguish of the Civil War and the words of President Abraham Lincoln, who “appealed to the better angels of our nature. He said, ‘with malice toward none, with charity for all, let us bind up the nation’s wounds.’”

    “I cannot think of a more petty, vindictive and gratuitous act than to impeach an already defeated president a week before he is to leave office,” the congressman said, adding that this “unconstitutional act” makes a “mockery” out of President-elect Joe Biden’s pledge to restore national unity“

    Breitbart

    Lesson here: ANTIFA BLM terrorists can do what they did but conservatives attempting a fraction of ANTIFA terrorism will be exterminated

  13. Impeach. Means charged with offense to be tried by the Senate. Aquitted means not guilty. This thine it will be Not Guilty By Reason if Insanity. A doctor will testify.

  14. Turley: what is there for Congress to “hear”? They were there. They smelled the tear gas. They heard the “hang Pence” chants. They donned gas masks and got down. They were taken to a secure location. They had one member of Congress, a former soldier, recommend that they remove their Congressional pins to avoid being identified as members of Congress in case the insurrectionists got to them. They heard Trump’s endless lying about the election being “stolen” and the call to arms by him, Giuliani and Trump, Jr.. They all have first-hand knowledge of the facts. This isn’t like the Ukrainian call or Russian interference.

    1. So, You admit to the corrupt practices these past four years by the Democrats. Now the Democrats have controlled the narrative and put icing on it by finally finding something that can be possibly wrong. Whereby, the past four years the Democrats lied, manipulated, used law enforcement processes corruptly, made fake whistleblowers, a bogus Impeachment, 45 million dollar fabricated Russian collusion investigations, falsely setting up, arresting, and charging individuals, with Biden chiming in about laws never used to target a 3 Star General who served his country and attempted to do it again, Biden hiding in his basement and answering NO questions as to his integrity (or his violation of his oath of office to enrich his family), etc etc etc. It was non-stop for four years. Last Wednesday was not, as the Democrats control the narrative, anger solely because the President was leaving office, but because of four years of, as you point out, bogus Impeachment’s over a telephone call, Russian conspiracy theories used to disrupt Trump’s Executive work, etc etc. It was built up anger because how 44.2 million Americans were treated. Hillary said it directly, “a basket of deplorables.” Americans had had enough of this corruption, and the school girl Nancy Pelosi, still has the nerve, after all she pulled and INCITED, to Impeach again. She chose a Chinese infiltrated huge Russian conspiracy therorist (liar/leaker/unprofessional/compromised) to lead the charge this time (Swalwell). She is either stupid or vindictive. I say both! But the anger, that this incoming President said he was going to quell, is now even stronger. It is all Democratic lies that they feed the American people to wipe the legacy of the man Trump from history books. You’ll be surprised how that will backfire. They haven’t done anything about the anger of the people, they aren’t trying, they don’t care. That is called political privilege and led to corruption. Many in Congress have had that privilege for decades. They had a chance by being in control to bring this country together. They chose the opposite. It is seven days until this “peaceful transition.” No, it is a transition, that is all.

      1. Yes to every word. And yes Pelosi is an evil despicable person. So are all of them. Gutter trash Democrats. Throw them all out in the next election!

        1. Take OUT the trash…all of the Democrat gutter trash. Pelosi’s idiots have just made impeachment a partisan exercise – which it was never meant to be….Democrats by and large are total trash people. And even trashier politicians. They don’t deserve any respect.

    2. None of that is relevant. In fact it’s embarrassingly stupid. The fact they smelled tear gas etc. is not evidence of Trump’s actions.

    3. Natacha. The best thing about the Capitol attack was that some of those Democrats finally felt the fear that countless Americans across the country experienced when the BLM rioters robbed and burned down their businesses. The rioting, looting, and arson that was seen in some 20 states in the days and weeks following the May 25 police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis has an estimated loss of two billion. A dear friend of mine lost her business in this mayhem. The Democrats ignored the people who suffered and championed the violent protestors calling them peaceful.

      1. Gabby said: “The best thing about the Capitol attack was that some of those Democrats finally felt the fear that countless Americans across the country experienced when the BLM rioters robbed and burned down their businesses.”

        Ah, Gabby’s true colors are shining through.

        There were Republicans there, too, and guess what? Some of them felt fear, as well, presumably. But Gabby is pleased that people ‘felt…fear.’ What a gal.

        10 Republicans voted to impeach Trump. Here’s who they are.

        https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/01/13/trump-impeachment-biden-transition-live-updates/#link-6UDXNZD4IBHW5N3YHOVGHWYKVY

        Oh, yeah, “fake news.” According to some who comment, here.

  15. Constitutionally protected free speech was just criminalized by the House of Representatives in this unconstitutionally impeachment.

    The Constitution is now under direct assault from the DC Democrats.

    1. Incitement is not constitutionally protected speech.

      The Constitution is not under assault. The impeachment process was written into the Constitution to enable Congress to respond to any president they believe to have committed high crimes or misdemeanors.

      1. Incitement is not constitutionally protected speech.

        Irrelevant. He said nothing that meets any standard of ‘incitement’.

          1. Chuckles. The House is filled with Democratic politicians. That aside, you haven’t time for a trial and you won’t persuade four Republican senators to go along with this humbug, much less 17.

            1. McConnell has indicated that he won’t convene the Senate until Biden is inaugurated. Trump will be tried even though he’ll already be out of office.

              10 Republicans voted in favor of impeachment in the House, more than have ever voted for the impeachment of a President from their own party.

          2. “The House disagrees with you” is not a legitimate or logical argument. At best it’s an appeal to deranged, addlepated and extremely biased authority.

            1. LMAO. The Constitution says “The House of Representatives … shall have the sole Power of Impeachment.” Their view matters more than Deco’s or anyone else’s here.

      2. Anonymous wrote, “Incitement is not constitutionally protected speech.”

        No Anonymous, there was no incitement, there was Constitutionally protected speech, claiming that the was incitement is parroting a propaganda lie! Yes Anonymous it’s a LIE!

        Note: The assault is on the 1st Amendment and that was 100% clear in my initial comment.

        1. People clearly disagree about whether there was incitement. Have you read the article of impeachment?

  16. In more important news….. Democrats collude with Chinese military firm that was blacklisted by DoD for human rights violations and ethnic genocide.

    Democrats can’t say no to Chine$e Communi$t$

    It’s a wonder SF Chronicle even covered it

    https://www.sfchronicle.com/politics/article/Biden-to-return-donation-from-ex-California-Sen-15865366.php

    Initially, Boxer said in federal documents she signed last week that she would be “providing strategic consulting services” to the U.S. subsidiary of Hikvision, a Chinese firm that the Trump administration placed on a trade blacklist last year after the Defense Department said the company was controlled by the Chinese military.

    Hikvision is a large manufacturer of video surveillance equipment that human rights advocates say is being used to subjugate Uighurs and other Muslim ethnic groups at forced labor camps in China. Beijing has imprisoned at least 1 million Uighurs in northwestern China since 2017, according to reports.

  17. https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/e2-80-98i-do-hope-they-start-their-own-party-e2-80-99-gop-congressman-supporting-impeachment/ar-BB1cJipW

    For a dose of Capitol Hill self-centeredness, see Adam Kinzinger. Mr. Kinzinger, Trump’s approval ratings among self-identified Republicans were at times north of 90% and equaled those received by Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, and George W Bush. You on Capitol Hill represent the views of Capitol Hill.

    1. Montanaman60, what is even more evil is McConnell’s condemnation of all Trump supporters. He stated the GOP should be exorcised of “Trumpism.” He is inciting half of the country to war with he other half. We will be forcibly oppressed is what they wish. This will not end well.

      1. You know Jon, what I read into your post is that you’re saying the Repubs will engage in frivilous impeachment going forward for anything they can whip their base enough on (and they’ll probably hire you to justify it for them).

        Go figure, inciting a mob with false information to move on the Capitol during session, kill a police officer, rampage, set up gallows to hang the vice president, search out the Speaker for execution, take a s&*t on the floor turns out to be enough to get impeached twice over. Shocking.

        Glad Congress could get out of the weeds enough to do what they absolutely had to do. Trump would’ve used censure as toilet paper.

        Elvis Bug

        1. And their Articles of Impeachment are essentially toilet paper. The “impeachment” will never be approved by the Senate and everybody knows it. So it’s useless political theatrics.

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