There’s a lot of fantasizing about the impeachment of Donald Trump. Kathleen Parker devoted a full column to this in the Washington Post, predicting that by 2018 the Dems will carry the House and impeach the president. She declared, “Good news. In two years, we’ll have a new president.”
Dream on. Because of gerrymandering the House will be a particularly tough nut to crack, and the Dems have a lot more Senate seats at risk in 2018 than the Republicans do.
Even more, Trump is not providing fodder for impeachment. The best example is the recent executive order story. Terrible, ridiculous, impossibly hurtful orders. And knocked down by the courts so far. Trump has also shamelessly attacked the entire judicial system in his tweets. The one, thing, however, he has not done is to in any way, shape, or form imply he would not obey the court. Fight it, demean it, but also follow its rulings. Think about it. The one glaring example of an act that even Republicans would have to repudiate and impeach would be to literally deny the legitimacy of the court and refuse to comply. And he hasn’t at all come close to that. The reality is, being an asshole is not an impeachable offense. I refer to the current president as EB. An evil buffoon. That’s not impeachable.
Instead, it is going to take an incredible amount of hard, smart, dogged work. But there is lots of good news too. The Democrats are organizing along the lines of the Tea Party, and confronting Republicans at the local level, such as they did recently with Representative Jason Chaffetz in Utah and with others. And this will only grow, and by great margins. The big bout coming up is over the Affordable Care Act. Republicans are in an impossible position. They can’t keep it, after all their rhetoric. If they drop it wholesale they cut healthcare for twenty million Americans, a lot of whom are in their base. If they keep the most popular feature—you can’t be dropped for preexisting conditions—and they let healthy young people drop out, the system will collapse economically, with many insurers pulling out and again millions of Trump supporters dropped from the insurance rolls. Lots of luck with that. This will provide not just some but an avalanche of opportunities for local organizing for the Dems, if they can rise and take advantage of this windfall.
And that’s exactly what is needed. The most important lesson of the 2016 is that geography is now more important than numbers in presidential elections, something the Dems are just catching on to. Look at it this way. If Dems had won another two million votes that year in California and one million more in New York, they still would have lost the election. But a couple of hundred thousand votes different in some counties scattered through non-coastal areas would have changed America. The Dems are starting to organize locally, but need to do a lot more and on a much broader basis.
Finally, the best line I’ve heard on Trump’s executive order on immigrants and all it stands for. This is a modernized version of the famous quote by Pastor Martin Niemöller, how, “First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out….” At a recent march, a sign proclaimed, ““First they came for the Muslims, and we said: not today, motherfucker.”
To the Resistance!