‘Breaking news’ sirens sounded over the Twitter webs when Nancy Pelosi announced she is instructing House Democrats to draft articles of impeachment against President Trump. I hope you’re all sitting down. I’m as shocked as you are. Shocked!
Of course, no news is breaking here. Pelosi is doing what anyone with a political pulse knew was inevitable when the Democrats took the House in 2018. It was only ever going to be a question of how and when. The head-scratching part of the ‘when’ is that Pelosi’s announcement comes only a day after the House committee hearings featured a professor at Hogwarts and a woman throwing full-sized cats at Rep. Matt Gaetz. Now, Gaetz can be an insufferable tool for the Trump administration, but that encounter also made the most salient point of Wednesday’s testimonies. So far, not one of the witnesses has attested to a single piece of information in Rep. Adam Schiff’s report.
Pelosi wants this over with. God, don’t we all. She’s instructing her party to draft specific articles of impeachment without hearing from a single witness present at Trump’s questionable phone call with Ukraine’s President Zelensky. Not the famed and anonymous ‘whistleblower’, not his social media and CNN influencer attorney, and not Secretary Pompeo or even John Bolton. That’s a bold strategy, Cotton.
It’s a wake-up call to Chairman Jerry Nadler, who was caught dozing off at his own impeachment hearing. But will it stir the public? One motive for Pelosi to accelerate the process and get to feeding her crocodile base is that the hearings aren’t shifting public opinion in her favor. Transcripts and solemn photoshoots for Vanity Fair just aren’t doing the trick. People simply don’t care.
The case for impeaching Trump isn’t compelling because Americans already know how the story will play out. The Democrats were always going to impeach him, to smear his legacy forever on Wikipedia as revenge for the 2016 election. The GOP-held Senate is always going to acquit him, no matter how many vote-shaming pieces the mainstream and Never-Trump media write, no matter many times Chuck Todd wags his finger at Mitt Romney or Susan Collins.
Pelosi’s gamble is that, no matter whom the Democrats nominate for president next year, the country will refuse to re-elect a president who’s been impeached in his first term. That gamble may or may not pay off, but you can bet Trump will use it to juice up a voting base that sees ‘the swamp’ and the ‘deep state’ still trying to overturn the results of an election.
The impeachment narrative is already written. Have fun, go about your day and get some sun. We’ll see you next November.