Impeachment: The Red Line and the Last Straw
Where is the red line of impeachment?
In theory, a red line might be located somewhere on a list of impeachable offenses – perhaps at the point where a certain number of transgressions is exceeded, or next to a specific instance because of its significance or impact.
In reality, though, that red line exists along a spectrum of “political will.” As Andrew McCarthy explained: “You can have a thousand provable impeachable offenses, but before Congress may remove the president from power, there must be strong popular support – a public will that cuts across partisan and ideological lines.”
Wherever that red line of impeachment is drawn, certainly Obama – with his pen, phone, and pencil – must be drawing nearer to it by the day.
In May, Sen. Ted Cruz issued his fourth edition of “The Legal Limit Report,” which lists 76 instances of Obama’s lawlessness. Last month saw the release of Ben Shapiro’s important new book, The People vs. Barack Obama: The Criminal Case Against the Obama Administration, which argues for prosecution under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act. McCarthy’s powerful book was also released in June: Faithless Execution: Building the Case for Obama’s Impeachment.
Since Cruz’s report and Shapiro’s and McCarthy’s books were written, the list of offenses has grown to include the Bergdahl trade, VA misconduct, additional ObamaCare debacles, and the border meltdown. Old scandals, instead of going away as “old news,” have deepened with new revelations – such as in the IRS targeting and Benghazi investigations.
And if “political will” could be measured, in part, by trends in presidential approval ratings, a majority has expressed its disapproval of Obama’s performance for over a year now.
Last week, Sarah Palin argued that it is “time to impeach.” “The many impeachable offenses of Barack Obama can no longer be ignored,” she asserted. “If after all this he’s not impeachable, then no one is.”
Palin’s announcement was “bad news for the GOP” – according to The Washington Post’s Aaron Blake, and apparently taken as good news by Democrats. As reported by The Hill, the “Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee cited Palin’s comments in a fundraising email,” calling them “ugly attacks on President Obama’s legitimacy.”
But is talk of impeachment really bad news for Republicans?
In a recent discussion with Bill O’Reilly, Charles Krauthammer remarked that he applies his own “reverse tint” to the mainstream media’s “liberal filter.”
Should, then, a “reverse tint” be applied to reporting of the impeachment topic? Apparently not, asserted the WSJ with its subtitle to “The Impeachment Delusion” column: “You know it’s a bad idea when Sarah Palin and MSNBC agree.”
But it’s worth taking a “reverse” look at the media chatter.
How would Democrats fare if forced to defend Obama on the highly visible stage of impeachment? Would the process – rather than letting them “off the hook” (as the WSJ argued), and as opposed to a trial conducted by attorneys in a courtroom (as Boehner is proposing) – put them in the hot seat alongside the same guy, even as he campaigns for them, that they really, really “don’t want to be seen with”?
Democrats, forced to defend Obama’s numerous impeachable offenses, would be placed in the uncomfortable position of defending their own actions (or inaction) and their party’s policies and methods – which would, by extension, also be on trial. (ObamaCare is a perfect example on all counts.)
And while the Democrat-media complex insists that the GOP shouldn’t want impeachment – in reality, neither should the complex, since the process would call attention to its own integrity and validity. Obama is the “media’s president.” They created him, protected him – and they own him. As the song goes, “it’s too late to turn back now.”
The “tipping point,” argued Palin, has been reached with the “last straw” of the border meltdown. We’re beginning to see a flash of worry and recognition on some of the media’s faces, even as they are distracted from the real disaster with fretting over Obama’s “optics.”
On the anniversary of the Tea Act in May, I wondered whether a last straw might soon land on America’s back – one that would “spur citizens to become more actively engaged in our political community, or perhaps even further, to the point of outright defiance.”
The border mess and the “cumulative effect” of other lawless actions may represent the last straw that provokes Americans to rise up and take action – which might include a demand for serious consideration of impeachment.
Politicians and pundits on both sides of the aisle and the media complex will still want to make it all about winning elections. But citizens, like these ones, couldn't care less about politics and parties as they fight to provide for and protect their families – especially when they find themselves in the battlefield, with their own elected officials fighting them.
It is said that tactics win battles, but strategies win wars.
The Democratic Party and its media complex are masters of tactics. They’ll continue to paint conservatives as extremists and racists. Obama will ridicule and taunt his opponents and rile up his fans with speeches. The media will fight to save President Obama’s legacy, and thereby its own reputation. Dems will keep pushing short-term spending and policy solutions that aid their cronies, grow the bureaucracy, and increase the numbers of those dependent on social programs – and thus their base. Progressives never let a good crisis, including one that might have been manufactured, go to waste.
Conservatives must offer the alternative: a strategy to preserve our constitution and restore our economy, national sovereignty, and security. That strategy, should Obama continue to push the envelope, may include the tactic of impeachment, carefully constructed to put on trial not America’s First Black President, but rather lawless progressivism.
“The failure to pursue impeachment,” observed Andrew McCarthy, “is likely to be suicide for the country, which is much more important than the political fate of the Republican Party.”
Although our party needs to win elections in order to execute strategy, ultimately, none of this is just about politics. It’s about winning a war for America.
And so, six months and several scandals later, I’ve revised my conclusion on impeachment, red lines, and last straws:
Until conservatives can successfully convince the people that the office of the presidency is more special than the person who occupies it, and that our constitution is more important than party politics – every single American, not just Republicans in the upcoming elections, will lose. And what is lost, should Obama continue on this destructive path of fundamental transformation, may never be regained.
At some point, a red line in that transformation exists – from which there is no turning back. A future Congress controlled by a majority that proclaims its unwillingness, in advance, to even consider impeachment may find itself unable to deter a president who dares to cross it.