So exactly why is broaching impeachment tantamount to booking a vacation in Cloud-Cuckoo-Land? Why would it be “political suicide” to impeach the president even if he engages in behavior everyone acknowledges is impeachable? Rich Lowry, the editor of National Review, recently wondered in a column whether Obama wanted to be impeached. The president’s threatened action on immigration would be so flagrant an abuse of power that it would be sure to provoke a “major reaction” from Republicans.
What sort of reaction would be major? Republicans have been cowed into renouncing their constitutionally provided power of the purse. And the administration seems to have been pretty effective in taking impeachment of the table, too. So what’s left? Raging like King Lear at Goneril and Regan? “I will have such revenges on you . . . That all the world shall – I will do such things / what they are yet I know not, but they shall be / the terrors of the earth.” Toothless bluster, in other words.
Frankly, I prefer the straight talk of folks like Sarah Palin. I know, I know: she is supposed to be beyond the pale, and besides she didn’t attend the right schools and doesn’t wear the same sorts of eyeglasses the swell folks sport. She is not as smooth as David Brooks, as measured as Charles Krauthammer. But maybe, just maybe, she is right. What then?
Krauthammer warns that it would be “political suicide” to impeach Obama, even if he engages in flagrantly impeachable behavior. “Political suicide,” i.e., it would be bad for Republicans. But what if not impeaching him amounted to national suicide? What then?
Andy McCarthy is right: there is no point in impeaching the president unless you can also remove him. The way to remove him is to build the political case that his untamed lawlessness poses a grave danger to the country. That should be front and center in any patriot’s calculation, though I am well aware that establishment Republicans would also eschew the label “patriot” as coming too close to Cloud-Cuckoo-Land and, who knows, maybe even political suicide.