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Is GOP Escalation on Impeachment Inevitable?

AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

Democrats have a shameful history of disrespect for rules and precedent. One perfect example is the Senate filibuster. In the minority, Democrats abused the filibuster to block President George W. Bush’s judicial nominees. Republicans responded in kind under Barack Obama, until when, in 2013, then-Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid nuked the filibuster, preventing the minority party from blocking legislation and judicial nominations (except for the Supreme Court) the way they had under George W. Bush. It wouldn’t be long before the Democratic Party would regret this course of action. They lost the Senate in 2014 and Donald Trump was elected in 2016. He took office with majorities in both the House and Senate, leaving Democrats powerless to block legislation or court nominees. 

One of Trump’s first priorities was to nominate a successor to the late Justice Antonin Scalia. Democrats were, of course, still licking their wounds from the 2016 election when Mitch McConnell blocked Obama’s pick, Merrick Garland, for the Supreme Court. Chuck Schumer called for a filibuster, and naturally, the GOP responded by getting rid of the filibuster for Supreme Court nominees.

Harry Reid and the Democrats nuking the filibuster in 2013 paved the way for Trump to get a historic number of judges confirmed, along with three justices to the Supreme Court. 

Once your party starts changing the rules, you open the door for the opposition to do the same thing when it’s their turn. 

The Democrats’ politicization of the filibuster was bad enough, but now, here we are in 2021, and Senate procedural rules seem like small beans compared to the way Democrats have abused impeachment in the past couple of years.

As has been heavily documented, Democrats were obsessed with kicking Trump out of office almost immediately after his surprise victory against Hillary Clinton. Impeachment was never on the table until Democrats won back the House in 2018 and, using the weakest of pretexts, impeached him in December 2019 over bogus allegations of a quid pro quo with Ukraine. 

Though conviction in the Senate was doomed to fail, Democrats still fantasized about impeaching Trump again, which, of course, they just did, over bogus accusations that he “incited an insurrection” in the U.S. Capitol. 

A simple reading of the transcript of Trump’s January 6 speech proves Trump did no such thing, and evidence that the riot was pre-planned is further proof that Democrats care more about making Trump the first president to be impeached twice than about the facts. Now there’s talk about whether the Senate trial (still doomed to fail) can be done after Trump’s out of office. 

So, where does this put our country? Impeachment, a constitutional device to remove a sitting president for “high crimes and misdemeanors,” has, in just a couple of years, been reduced to a cheap political tactic of the opposition party. Like the filibuster before it, the GOP now has a choice: to escalate or not.

While it’s unfortunate how the Democrats have abused impeachment, there is now precedent for the GOP to play by the rules that Democrats have written. 

In fact, plans to file articles of impeachment against Joe Biden are already underway. It won’t go anywhere while Democrats are in power, but should the Republican Party win back the House in 2022 (and historically speaking that is a very likely possibility), impeaching Joe Biden should be first on the agenda. Conviction in the U.S. Senate may be unlikely, but it doesn’t matter. 

As the Mandalorian would say: “This is the way.”

The GOP could build a stronger case for impeaching Joe Biden than the Democrats ever did for impeaching Trump. The Democrats will cry foul, and accuse the Republicans of a cheap political stunt, but forcing them to lie in the bed they made is too important. 

Further, should Democrats pursue a Senate trial after Trump is out of office, the impeachment of Barack Obama should quickly follow the impeachment of Joe Biden. While there were two full terms of constitutional abuses and criminal behavior, Barack Obama’s impeachment could easily be justified by the Obamagate scandal alone.

I don’t like escalation. But, unfortunately, this is where we are. We deserved better than to be put through two bogus impeachments of President Trump, and before we can get back to anything resembling normalcy, there must be payback. The Democrats must learn that the Republican Party will not hesitate to use their same tactics against them in order for any discussion of reestablishing a high bar for impeachment is realistic. You need to fight back against a bully to earn his respect. 

Once they retake the House, Republicans must impeach Joe Biden, then impeach Barack Obama. Then they should impeach Joe Biden a second time for good measure. 

I hope they have the cajones to do it.

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Matt Margolis is the author of Airborne: How The Liberal Media Weaponized The Coronavirus Against Donald Trump, and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter, Facebook, Gab, MeWe, Rumble, Parler, and CloutHub.