The Impeachment: Game Over

Megan Brawner, Copy Editor

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Congratulations America! The silly impeachment trial is coming to an end. What began as an inquiry back in October, spun into a partisan mission to impeach President Donald Trump.

The 51-49 vote on Jan. 31 prevented additional witnesses from testifying. Republican Sens. Mitt Romney and Susan Collins voted with Democrats to introduce new witnesses. The vote signals a smooth path for Mr. Trump’s acquittal.

Leading up to the vote, the decision could have gone either way since there are a lot of Republicans in purple states that did not want to lose their seat over the potential accusation that they were covering for the president if he were to face his former National Security Advisor, John Bolton. Thankfully, most of the senators recognized that the impeachment charges are a sham and should not be entertained any further.

Let us take a stroll down memory lane to see how this whole thing began. Mr. Trump rightly suspected that Ukraine had interfered in the 2016 presidential election. He was deeply concerned as to why former Vice President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, was making $50,000 a month to be on the board of Burisma Holdings, Ukraine’s largest independent natural gas company.

Remember, Hunter was lacking any qualifications to hold such a position, the Wall Street Journal reported. This led to the eventual suspected withholding of aid contingent with Ukraine conducting investigations.

However, the investigations never launched and the aid was delivered on time. News flash: quid pro quo is very common in foreign policy. Requesting aid recipients to investigate corruption isn’t illegal.

Alan Dershowitz, Mr. Trump’s defense attorney, attempted to hammer in on this point. He said in a defense statement, to hypothetically assume that a Democrat president told Israel that foreign aid, authorized by Congress, would not be delivered unless the Israelis stop building settlements. He argued that they could disapprove of such a demand, but that it would not constitute as an abuse of power.

The two articles that the House of Representatives impeached Mr. Trump for were one count of obstruction of Congress and abuse of power. However, if you look at the direct charges, these are not impeachable offenses.

To start, Mr. Trump asking for a corruption investigation is not illegal. In fact, the aid was delivered on time in September. His request may have been reckless, but it is not impeachable. Even if one claims that this is ignoring the national interest, this is still not a corrupt intent-based crime.

The second article of impeachment, abuse of power, is vague and can be interpreted in different ways.

The moral of the story is that the House of Representatives did not have the elements to fulfill legitimate charges. This is precisely why they did not reach bipartisan approval. We may not like his judgement calls, but this is not subject for impeachment.

I also find it ironic how the media is conveniently forgetting about President Barack Obama’s negotiations with Russia in 2012. During this election year, the U.S. and Russia were in the midst of missile defense negotiations. The New York Times reported that Mr. Obama told Russian President Dimitri A. Medvedev that after the election, he would have more flexibility.

This constitutes as a quid pro quo, which Lawyer Eric Herschmann pointed out to the senators last week. Mr. Obama used his powers to ignore the interest of the nation and abused them to advance his own political interests. This is what we call a direct pro quo folks!

Mr. Obama wanted Russian officials to back off until after the election. The American people didn’t take this into account though, and they re-elected Mr. Obama for a second term. The point here is that we don’t have to support everything a president does, but we can voice our opinions at the polls. So why is the media slamming Mr. Trump’s actions as if history has never witnessed such a thing?

From Democrats high-fiving each other after the articles of impeachment were passed, to Nancy Pelosi fist bumping Bill Maher on his show; our elected officials have been far from professional throughout these months. It is a shame that they did not set a higher standard for themselves. Thankfully, this game is almost over.

So my deepest “condolences” to Mrs. Pelosi and the Democrats, you sure did put up a fight. It is too bad you did it for the wrong reasons.