It's real that opponents of Donald Trump have been referencing impeachment since even before the president took office.
From the day he became president, the same opponents trumpeted corruption and collusion with the Russians in election interference in 2016. The Russia story was at the heart continuing impeachment talk.
Three years into his presidency, the investigation of said Russian meddling produced no conclusive evidence that Trump was at the heart of any plot regarding the election outcome. The impeachment crowd had to find a new reason.
Enter Trump's phone call to the Ukranian leader in which he requests that Ukraine probe former Vice President Joe Biden's role in that country -- a request anchored in Biden's son's lucrative dealings with a Ukranian oil company.
Swiftly, Democratic leadership increasingly under pressure from liberals in Congress decided to shift course and call for an impeachment inquiry. With scarcely a mention of any of the dozens of other accusations they have leveled against Trump over time, the Democrats led by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi stated they would move ahead with the inquiry based almost exclusively on Trump seeking a prid pro quo, with a foreign power investigating his political rival in return for American military aid.
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Now the president and country are embroiled in an increasingly divisive examination of impeachment through House Democrats seeking information and testimony on a daily basis.
With the 2020 presidential campaign underway in earnest, Democrats express public confidence that the process is the right thing to do though they know impeachment is a political process that will not end with the Republican U.S. Senate voting to oust Trump.
They should have learned from the impeachment of Democratic President Bill Clinton in the 1990s. In a totally partisan process, Republicans pushed ahead with impeachment and a trial in the U.S. Senate, which refused to expel the president. Through it all, Clinton became more popular as a majority of Americans believed that while he lied about a sexual affair, such was not sufficient to oust him from office.
Democrats now are amid an equally partisan process, running the risk that it will backfire on them politically in 2020, when Trump could well be re-elected.
They contend the impeachment "inquiry" is their duty to the Constitution. Yet Pelosi refuses to put the House on the record with a vote on continuing the process. That's because of the risk that Democrats in vulnerable districts could suffer with the same type of backlash for Trump that benefitted Clinton two decades ago.
If impeachment is indeed the right thing to do and not just a politically partisan exercise, let those in favor stand up and be counted. The House should take a vote – now.