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Hold on … impeachment is just the beginning

While I cheered Nancy Pelosi’s announcement that the US House of Representatives was finally going to begin an impeachment inquiry against Donald Trump, I worry that it comes much, much too late.

I thought the man was unfit for office even before he was elected, but as his transgressions continued to pile up, Pelosi staunchly refused to act. Now, although the Ukraine incident seems very clear, I fear we are perilously close to the 2020 election. This “attack” on Trump is bound to arouse and unify his supporters, who might otherwise have remained relatively complacent going into the election.

I’m also very concerned that most of what I see in the media mentions impeachment as though it is the end of the process and will remove Trump from office. That’s not the case, but I’m afraid many people don’t understand the process.

Impeachment, if the House votes for it (a simple majority of those present and voting), is only the equivalent of an indictment, a bringing of charges against Trump. The matter then goes to the Senate for, essentially, the trial. Only if two-thirds of the Senate votes to convict would Trump then be removed from office. And Senate Republicans are vowing to quash any impeachment effort.

Even if Trump were removed from office, Pence would immediately take his place. And wouldn’t he be more difficult to defeat in the election? Or would he even run? And if not Pence, who?

On the other hand, the thought of Trump remaining in office and going on to win a second term is the stuff of nightmares. And I want nothing more than the end of the Trump nightmare.



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