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June 19, 2017

How Likely Will President Trump Be Impeached in 2017?

By Frank Li, Phd

With President Trump officially under investigation for obstructing justice (Donald J. Trump on Twitter: "I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director"), it's very likely that he will be impeached in 2017. As a staunch supporter of President Trump, I feel compelled to assess the situation objectively and give him the best advice. Hear me out …

1. Impeachment

Below is an excerpt from Wikipedia - Impeachment.
Impeachment is the process by which a legislative body formally levels charges against a high official of government.
The federal procedure in the United States involves a vote for impeachment in the House of Representatives on a document known as the article of impeachment... The hearing cannot be conducted without a 50% plus one quorum. After the hearing, the deliberations are held in private. Removal requires a two-thirds majority of the Senate.

In short, impeachment is a political process, not a legal one. Furthermore, it is chiefly politics, with the help from President Trump himself, that has led to this investigation, so far.

2. Is there a case for impeachment?


The image below highlights the timeline, with one of Trump’s tweets finally confirming the firing was related to the Russia investigation (Trump’s statements linking Russia investigation to Comey firing could lead to legal problems).

Personally, I do not believe there was any impeachable offense in this Russia thing. However, the cover-up can be worse than the original "crime", if any. In other words, a case of obstructing justice is obvious to anybody, let alone the special council. More on this in Section 5 …

3. Will Congress take on the case?


President Trump does not seem to realize that his most dangerous enemies are the neo-cons in Congress, including most, if not all, of the Chairmen of the various committees! They have led the "witch hunt" hearings so far, and they will jump at their first big opportunity of impeachment, so as to have their man, Mike Pence, installed as the President.

In other words, Donald Trump might have hi-jacked the GOP in the 2016 election, but the GOP establishment wants to hi-jack his Presidency in return, without hesitation.

4. Timing is everything

Ideally, the Democrats may want to see President Trump through the 2018 election, but that would be unacceptable to the Republicans - They want this thing concluded way before that, and the Democrats will surely "compromise" in this case. As a result, it's almost certain that this impeachment thing will conclude, one way or another, in 2017.

5. To be drained by the swamp

Donald Trump vowed to drain the swamp during the last phase of his 2016 campaign. But now it looks increasingly likely that he will be drained by the swamp first.

The reason is very simple: Because both the Democrats and Republicans have the incentive to end the Trump Presidency as soon as possible, the outcome of the special council investigation is almost certain even now: a case against President Trump, with bi-partisan support!

6. History repeats itself

Three relevant examples:

President Clinton: He survived his impeachment trial because he had many friends in Washington D.C. (e.g. all Democrats in Congress). The same thing cannot be said about President Trump. In fact, with about 20 Republicans joining the Democrats in the U.S. Senate, President Trump can be impeached, and, perhaps, even convicted. Watergate scandal: The cover-up was far worse than the original “crime”!

President Kennedy: Although it is still debatable who actually assassinated him, it's not debatable who benefited most from his death: LBJ, and ultimately, the Military-Industrial Complex!

7. Discussion

As a staunch supporter from his 2016 general election (GOP Establishment vs. “We the people”) to this day (Give President Trump a Chance to Govern!), I will be deeply disappointed at a failed Trump Presidency, which seems increasingly likely day by day.

President Trump, please (1) realize that the possibility of an impeachment is high and real and (2) do everything possible to avoid it.

As a starter, please stop tweeting! One simple reason: Miranda rights - “Anything you say may be used against you in a court of law.” Specifically, two examples:

Your tweets have been used against you (e.g. Trump’s tweets were used against him in a court’s travel bad ruling), and will only get worse from now on.

You do not have a case in arguing that “I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt.” Yes, the first official reason for firing Director Comey was the recommendation from the Justice Department. However, you refuted and overruled it by saying you fired him because of the Russia investigation!

I rest my case ...

I have been doing my best to help President Trump succeed. Yes, I have guided him to the waters (Donald Trump 2.0). No, I can’t make him drink!

More broadly, why are we in such a big mess?

It's democracy, stupid!

For a holistic analysis of our political system and the best possible solution, read my book: American Democracy.

8. Closing

Donald Trump won the Presidency via a miracle, thanks to his totally unorthodox campaign and many frustrated American voters. Now, he needs another miracle to survive, at the mercy of his friends in Washington D.C., of whom he does not have enough, unfortunately …

Courtesy of Frank Li, Ph.D, Author of The GOP Bible for 2016 via Econintersect.com

The views and opinions expressed herein are the author's own, and do not necessarily reflect those of EconMatters.

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