ECLECTIC RANT: 2018 and Trump is still president

Ralph E. Stone
Monday January 01, 2018 - 03:19:00 PM

It is 2018 and I remain as angry, frustrated and embarrassed as anyone that Donald J. Trump continues to be the president of the United States and represents this country to the world. As Tom Engelhardt put it, "Beyond himself, his businesses, and possibly (just possibly) his family, Trump clearly couldn’t give less of a damn about us or, for that matter, what happens to anyone after he departs this planet."  

Yes, there is talk of impeachment and the use of Section 4 of the 25th Amendment to remove Trump because he is mentally disabled. Ain't going to happen. I am now convinced that Trump will serve out his presidency. 

Sure there are calls to impeach him under Article II, section 4 the U.S. Constitution. Even if the Robert Mueller investigation provides overwhelming evidence that Trump obstructed the investigation into Russia's role in the 2016 presidential election or worse, colluded with the Russians in the election, no Republican-controlled House is likely to vote out articles of impeachment against Trump and, even if it did, it would be extremely unlikely that 2/3 of the Senate would vote to convict.  

Ordinarily, impeachment would be so embarrassing that the person would resign. But Trump doesn't embarrass easily and he would probably chalk it up as a witch hunt, and like Bill Clinton before him, finish his term. 

Of course, if the Democrats take control of the House in the midterm elections, impeachment is a likely possibility. But again it is unlikely that 2/3 of the Senators would vote to convict, no matter which party controls the Senate after the midterms. But at least a Democrat-controlled House and/or Senate would provide some check on Trump's power to do further damage. 

After the midterms, our focus should be on defeating Trump in the presidential election. That means the Democrats will have to come up with a winnable candidate -- Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Andrew Cuomo, Michelle Obama, et al. 

I don't read or listen to anything about Hillary Clinton. She's yesterday's news. Time to move on. 

Our focus now should be on electing Democrats in the midterm elections. The midterms will offer the first nationwide referendum on Donald Trump’s presidency. The whole U.S. House of Representatives, a third of the Senate, and most governorships will be at stake, along with hundreds of state legislative seats and local offices around the country. Even with Trump's low poll numbers -- about 40 approve -- the midterms are no slam dunk for the Democrats. The Senate map does not favor the Democrats and the House map is also slanted in Republicans’ favor, due in part to gerrymandering and in part to geography — as are many state legislative districts. 

Onward toward the midterms. Hopefully, the Democrats will not snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.