February 6th, 2020 6:00am
By Deacon, Senior Political Analyst
As our founding fathers contemplated how to form our new country, there is no question they fixed their thoughts on the monarchy they were revolting against and forming a more perfect union going forward. They knew that having lived under a tyrant with unchecked powers, the grand experiment they were desiring to create had to be established on one undeniable tenet, that no one is above the law.
The system they settled on spawned three co-equal branches of government, each having the the duty and obligation to keep the others in check. No one branch was more powerful than the others, no power unchecked, a more perfect union.
For 240 plus years, the system has ebbed and flowed. Each branch, like a teenager tests their parents, pushed the bounds to find out when, and if they would be held accountable. But the system remained intact.
That is until Wednesday, February 5th.
The Senate held an impeachment trial the past two weeks for the 45th President, Donald Trump. For the first time in 17 impeachment trials, there were no witness called, no documents produced. No, it was hardly a trial, just merely a sham orchestrated but Mitch McConnell, to cover up the Presidents legal failings.
The Senate of the United States acquiesced to a President with a third-grade bully mentality and a twitter following. One by one, the Republicans made excuses for their failure to do their duty. The Presidents legal team, a walking and talking conflict of interest at its core, didn’t even attempt to try the case, making not one argument against the actual facts presented. The case by the House Managers was made, proven, even admitted to by staunch Trump supporters like Tennessee’s Lamar Alexander and Florida’s Marco Rubio. Other’s reluctantly concurred, like Nebraska’s Ben Sasse. While other’s tried to soften their agreement by saying in floor speeches that what the President did was wrong, like Maine’s Susan Collins and Alaska’s Lisa Murkowski. But none of those brave souls could muster the moral courage to vote to convict the President of his lawlessness. Only one Republican, Utah’s Mitt Romney, voted with the Democrats to convict Trump on the first Article of Impeachment, Abuse of Power.
Trump will call this complete exoneration tomorrow, just another one of the countless falsehoods he has spewed throughout his tenure (adding mightly to the number at Tuesday
nights State of the Union spectacle).
It isn’t exoneration, by any stretch, it’s a cover-up, and that cover-up will have lasting constitutional consequences.
Up to now, the Trump presidency has been riddled with norm-busting offenses. Some minor, like cursing regularly and lying consistently, to the more serious, like Nepotism (see Ivanka and Jared), Hatch Act violations (too many to list) and Emoluments violations (see Trump DC Hotel for starters). These will all having lasting implications for future Presidents, but relatively lights ones at that.
However, having one branch of our three branch system, completely relieve itself, voluntarily, of its oversight obligation, is not a minor thing. The precedent set by Mitch McConnell’s complete shirking of the Senate’s duty, now lives on as the standard for congressional oversight. When the Senate broke its oath to do impartial justice, the three branch system of our government ceased to exist. The toothpaste was squeezed out of the tube by the Republicans in the Senate that were/are too afraid to stand up to a man that has no actual spine himself, a bully behind a keyboard and nothing more. A man who cares nothing for the American democratic experiment, just himself, and his massive ego.
Its now up to the American electorate to assume the responsibility of checks and balances. The old adage will be put to the test this November. The information that the President and his accomplices hid by not calling for witnesses and documents, will come out. John Bolton’s book will get released and more people will come forward. Sunshine is the best disinfectant. The truth will emerge and those who chose to hide it, or even worse, ignore it, will have history as their final judge, and it is my bet that she will be harsh.
Article written by T3 Senior Political Analyst - Deacon
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