President Donald Trump leaves office in less than a week. What we need in those days, and beyond, is not more drama.
We don’t need more drama from the president.
And we don’t need more drama from House Democrats and their leader.
That’s all a second impeachment accomplishes — more drama centering around Trump.
The House has the right to impeach, and has exercised it. But now a trial must take place in the Senate. It can obviously not be organized and conducted, with due process of law, by Jan. 20. And no matter what evidence is presented, it seems highly unlikely that 17 Republicans — the number needed — would vote with the Democrats to convict. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., has said, “The votes are not there.”
A trial, if done properly, would consume the Senate and effectively delay the start of the Biden administration, when what we really need, and need desperately, is to turn the page — to move on.
There are other options: the 25th Amendment, invocation of a clause in the 14th Amendment that references insurrection and, finally, censure. But none seems likely.
And holding a Senate trial against an ex-president does not make much sense.
President-elect Joe Biden needs to be able to organize his government and focus on fighting the coronavirus.
And Trump needs to leave the stage.