Recent polls in America has disclosed 51 percent of the country consider Donald Trump is “not fit” for the job. The result of the public soundings comes at the beginning of the trial to impeach him. He is the third. But American political opinion suggests he might not be removed. That exit depends on how his Republican party in the US Senate decide by vote, using their majority. Others calculate that certainty about the numbers game would be unsafe for now because these are early days yet. More, the ultimate backlash for the party—its place in history and how safe would be the seats of the Republican Senators immediately and perhaps Democrats.
At very high political stake is not necessarily the imprimatur of ‘good conscience. Politics can act “father Christmas” but it is always innately self-seeking. Each needs to protect their seat, despite loyalty to the party. The loyalty factor is taken to be immutable; and in this trial especially because its outcome shall affect a lot and reshape things unexpected. This runs from possible though shilly-shally to probable. Theoretically, it confirms the French statesman Alexis de Tocqueville’s that the party Whip negates concerns for who one represents in the chamber, once signed in after elected.
Sensational break out can occur to breach that theorem. We have in our history had that personal conflict burst as demonstrated when P.K.K.Quaidoo a CPP Minister breached it for conscience and led instant singing on the floor of parliament:“Asem yi di ka” [the matter is ought said]. The breach cost him his job and suffered detention. There was another colleague who later blew the “Savundra-scam- alarm”. He was expelled from the party but not spared some indignities. A leading ruling NPP member of Parliament now and again breaks ranks similarly today, out of ‘conscience’, it is said.
Those three are enough to bring home what it feels by the individual member all the time. I guess I am right to state that this is an unconfessed agony which every Representative lives through. However neither squealing nor the rebellion has changed the predicament either appreciably or at all. The classic update was the contortions governing British Conservatives spun themselves over getting “Brexit done” pre-12 December 2019 general election. The poignancy of these instances for the Republicans in the Senate and country at large pigeon-holes the misery into no ending, well after the trial of President Trump in an election year.
The two-points-indictment against Trump are he sought to hire a foreign national chief executive [the Ukrainian President V.Zelensky] to help him to be re-elected and impeding Congress on a lawful enquiry. He denies wrong-doing. The dominoes are that the US is split down the middle though there is discernible lurch towards the Left [Democrats]—a slowly shifting sand as the nitty-gritties are unveiled to a public hitherto not really interested until the revelations of a couple of howlers. The attitude derives from the report on the Russian intrusion into “Ballot 2016” which Trump won against Hillary Clinton and all the odds.
The findings did not incriminate Trump per se. And though that gave him or must have had a kind of carte blanche to feel a false sense like ‘striding the world like a Colossus’, it is not unlikely it bolstered him into global geo-political stumping. Look at his attempts to divert attention up to the suggestion about China-probe and his earlier interferences in British politics such daring to propose trade-off of the last of British “sacred cows”, the NHS—the pride of Labour, particularly Ernest ‘Nye’ Bevin, former Labour but turned Lib-Dem. Mrs Shirley Williams’ Dad.
If he is impeached, the Senators of his party especially would have written an indelible history. As regards the difficulties of the Republicans, there are two: a charge for being treacherous and the loss of power in December. If they do not impeach on the basis of the evidence and truth, the party will have to find a credible and saleable candidate for the presidential ticket. But there is none substantially. It is an event that had not been seriously configured and considering raising campaign funds would be hard to muster. The alternative is for Trump to quit like Richard Nixon did over Watergate. The rump of “skin-heads” Republicans in country will revolt to fight. Trump represents the last of American “White Supremacists”. Whereas those in the Senate won’t dare, except three recently touted, nobody thinks Trump has that ability to do that decent thing though harsh. Vice-President Spence has not made a mark of significance at home or internationally so far.
For the democrats the race is likely to tear them apart as their debates choreograph to date; unless they quickly cobble a compromise candidate, bearing in mind that this is their chance. Time seems to be running out for them and you wonder how they are acting unlike an essentially Leftist party. It becomes a global concern of a kind—the US without a strong and respected leader to retrieve the clout which the US had previously.
The outcome of the trial was widely predicted long before the House of Representatives drew up the indictment. It is that guilty will not depose Trump. It is said or expected the Republican majority will ditch it. The trouble I have with that is it is an assumption and speculative, though most intelligent, arising from history and extant where governments, policies and misconduct survive per the numbers game.
The gravamen in the preceding opinion amplifies the earlier arguments in suppositions—the “ifs”. Or indeed the choice to confront –the honour of the Senate at home and abroad bearing the Clinton precedent, likely to be used as bad as that. Former Republican President Richard Nixon’s [9 Aug.1974 is exceptional because he would have been impeached by an imperious Democrats’ Senate anyway, and the truth having become an obvious. He jumped self-advisedly to scoop some iota of face-saver. Similarly but not for a congruous cause, his Vice, Spiro Agnew simply quit 1973. He pleaded “no Contest” to charge of tax evasion. But Agnew and Nixon had to go as results of scandals. Nixon on “Watergate” Agnew on single felony charge. Agnew was the 39th US Vice-President but the second after John C. Calhoun who left the post in 1832.
I believe the opening statements set two different scenarios to point and either let the stray-off inform a weird diversion but common and the recall of history which explains precisely why the framers of the American Constitution included impeachment as a powerful “Lest” as bears from the charges against an in situ President. It fixes its case on the law. You may admire also the word-skill of impeachment chief prosecutor [Manager] Democrat Schiff. He leaves a scenario of “on your conscience…if…” on the minds of Republican jurors and implicitly to the country by trick of oratory dictum. “We know. It would be just like you. But please think again”.
That is my reading of what Schiff was telling the Republicans, it plays to the political gallery just as the Republicans’ defence submission is premised. Both are typical political tactic game, not uncommon. It counters that the President had done no wrong and that the accusation, if upheld, was tended and would have the effect of nullifying 2016 presidential ballot results and derail the imminent November vote. They all meet at one big irony which confirms that the arc of history always points back.
The Democrats are nailing the Republicans for the view and position they expressed and took respectively with regard to the impeachment of former President Bill Clinton. The crack there is that the Republicans don’t want to be reminded. Everyone coming from a developing country’s background is too familiar with this circus. But whereas it is eerie about one of the oldest democracies, there is really nothing new to be surprised. What again is bothersome is that president and country would have been pilloried if it was from the other side—Africa for example lumped not long ago by Trump as “SHTHLS”. [Please pardon my verbal shorthand because I am a Ghanaian and African, not brought up to be vulgar at all and in public particularly.]
President Trump may get away with it and I have previously stated it is an assumption—that he did no wrong does not address the issue of breaking the law which is his charge. The better lesson for us is upholding the supremacy of the law which places no one above it and not to abuse it too. In terms of abusage which leads to arbitrariness, the oft-accusation of African leaderships, which I should state that it isn’t any longer strange to find replicas outside of the continent today. All about Trump comes down to the same rough shod ride of the constitution.
During his tenure, running out shortly, there have been too many parallels—led by nudging up scam, which he instantly pooh-poohs; and resignations by persons whom the lust of office cannot buy. But the bottom line for all the endeavour by Trump is to get a second term. There is little something in that to draw attention. This provides key to differentiate the Trump unorthodoxy’s classic methodology from third world country leaderships’ propensity to want “Third Term” in office.
It lies in their philosophical approach as against psychological understanding of staying in power which instructs and moves to lead to jerry-build that ambition into success by any crude or subtle means. The developing country’s headship simply finds power is sweet. Trump’s case is a state of fear—what will happen to all that had been covered up under his fiat. I suspect Americans are going to go for fiesta opening the Pandora’s Box. In 1995, one year after Nixon had died, his former Vice, Agnew attended the ceremony at the Capitol in Washington for a dedication of his bust, normal tradition, He made this apt comment to round out this piece:
“I am not blind or deaf to the fact that some people feel that…the Senate by commissioning this bust is giving me an honor I don’t deserve. I would remind these people that…this ceremony has less to do with Spiro Agnew than with the office I held.”
©Prof. nana essilfie-conduah.