The First Trump Impeachment
Getting to the truth is difficult when different news sources say different things. How can we tell what to believe?
The accusation has been made that Trump interfered in the affairs of another country (Ukraine) by threatening to withhold a loan unless they were able to dig up some dirt on Biden’s family. It was said that this was an abuse of power meriting impeachment.
Put in such simple terms, it sounds bad, but let’s dive into the details: What precisely was the action that was wrong?
Was it the fact that Trump “interfered” in the affairs of another country by threatening to withhold a loan? It can’t be. No country is entitled to a loan from another and nations use carrot-and-stick tactics in negotiation all the time. It is not only normal and perfectly legal, it is a fundamental part of the president’s job description to do exactly this. He was only doing his job! One might think he was doing it poorly, but that is not an impeachable offense.
Was it the fact that Trump asked for help in securing dirt on a political rival? It can’t be. Politicians, campaigns, and investigative reporters dig up dirt all the time. So long as privacy rights are not violated, and everything reported is true, there is no crime and the voters have a right to know. If the Biden family was doing something illegal, they should be investigated. Not only is this normal and legal, it is the job of the head of the executive branch to do exactly this.
Was it the fact that Trump used his privileged position to do this? Well, if Trump used the power of his station in government (which is supposed to be neutral) to go after a rival in a way that his rival could not also go after him (especially if privacy rights are involved), then there might very well be a problem. Is this what happened?
A careful reading of the original transcript of Trump’s call to the Ukrainian president that started the whole controversy in no way supports the idea that Trump was looking for dirt. Trump simply asked if the president would look into the truth of the claims being made. What claims?
This is why one must consume multiple news sources. Some outlets only covered one side of things, conspicuously leaving out Trump’s stated reasons for investigating Biden’s family. A curious person who loves truth would ask why Trump wanted an investigation. Was there reason to be suspicious that an actual crime had occurred? Was there a reason to believe that Biden might have been compromised and therefore unfit for office in the future? Or was there no other reason than that Trump hoped to find something he could use against him? But how could he find anything if there was nothing to find? Shouldn’t we be more concerned that there might have been something to find?
It turns out that Joe Biden had bragged on camera that he had once used his position as vice president to interfere in the affairs of another country by threatening to withhold a loan – exactly what Trump was then accused of doing. I saw the video myself. Biden spun this as a good thing, claiming he was taking a stand against corruption by demanding that a certain prosecutor be fired. Maybe he was. Who knows? The point is that the voters have a right to know whether any of this actually happened or whether Biden was just bragging about nothing.
Furthermore, it had already come out that this very same prosecutor that Biden allegedly got fired had been at the time investigating the very same gas company that Biden’s son was on the board of. Some people speculated that there was a good reason to investigate, and that this was the real reason Biden interfered. In any case, the voters have a right to know.
Whether Biden is actually innocent of any crime, there is a clear reason for suspicion and a clear justification for Trump to ask Ukraine to look into the truth or falsehood of Biden’s claims. Thus, Trump was only doing his job. He would have been negligent NOT to look into things. Nothing he did was impeachable.
Logic dictates that if Trump did anything wrong by withholding a loan, then so did Biden, since he (allegedly) did essentially the same thing.
Furthermore, logic dictates that if the Democrats in congress did no wrong by investigating Trump for his “misdeeds,” then Trump did no wrong by investigating Biden for his.
Either way, there is no legitimate way to impeach Trump. The impeachment was a sham.
I don’t need to get into the weeds of all the claims and counterclaims made. I don’t need to address the claim that it was never proven that Trump threatened to withhold the loan. It doesn’t matter if he did or didn’t. By looking only at the basic facts that everyone agrees to or that are easily verifiable, I can prove that there is no basis for impeachment. This is how to cut through the media nonsense. Logic.
In politics, we play with the lives of other people. Those we vote for will put in place policies that might make the difference between life and death, imprisonment and freedom, or poverty and riches. Voting without being fully informed is the worst form of negligence. Listen to as many different news sources as you have time for. Seek out contrary opinions. Check your bias. Read history. Read science. Find a trusted analyst to sift the news for you, explain it, and put it in context. Look for errors in their logic. Ask for supporting evidence. Most of all, actually think.
Logic. Love. Liberty.
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Daniel Noe is an author, artist, explorer, and contemplator of subjects large and small.