Biden impeachment inquiry opens a dangerous new door

“I am your retribution,” Donald Trump told his followers earlier this year. And, while the former president technically has no role in the newly launched House impeachment inquiry against his once and probably future election opponent, that action is — make no mistake — all about fulfilling Trump’s malicious vow.

This kangaroo court has been convened not because there’s one molecule of evidence that President Joe Biden has done anything impeachable, but because Trump’s movement demands it of his most zealous followers in the U.S. House and their hostage … er, speaker … Kevin McCarthy.


Though this is potentially the start of the third impeachment process America has seen in the past few years, it’s dangerous new ground.

Unlike the two impeachments during Trump’s term, this inquiry is launched not in response to any actual evidence of wrongdoing, but in hopes of finding some. If that’s the new standard, then every future president whose party doesn’t control the House will govern under impeachment storm clouds.

McCarthy on Tuesday ordered three House committees to begin inquiries based primarily on the shady international business dealings of the president’s son, Hunter Biden, and the so-far baseless allegation that the elder Biden used his vice presidency to help him profit.

They will also explore the claim that the administration pulled strings to get Hunter Biden his now-defunct plea deal with the Justice Department.

Both issues are nonstarters. House Republicans earlier this year investigated for months seeking to tie the president to his son’s sketchy business deals, yet were forced to issue a report in May acknowledging they found nothing.

And the plea deal the Justice Department offered Hunter Biden (before it collapsed) was engineered by a Trump-appointed special prosecutor who Biden kept on the job at the behest of Trump’s supporters.

If that’s a conspiracy, it’s a pretty convoluted one.

None of these facts will matter to Trump’s hardcore partisans, whose argument is simple: Tit, meet tat.

They are also immune to the irony of grasping at these ethical straws regarding Biden, while supporting an ex-president who openly profited from government business at his commercial properties throughout his term, and whose son-in-law leveraged his White House connections to raise billions in investments from the Saudis.

Even the flimsy case against Bill Clinton, impeached for lying about sex, was more solid than the case at hand — because he actually did lie (about sex).

Even those who claimed, straight-faced, that that merited Clinton’s removal from office would have a hard time saying the same about someone guilty of being a weak parent to a wayward son. Which is ultimately all that President Biden is apparently guilty of.

As the conservative commentator David French noted in The New York Times this week, the three previous presidential impeachment inquiries in modern times each began with concrete evidence of wrongdoing: Clinton’s DNA on a blue dress, Trump’s phone call to Ukraine’s president demanding campaign help, and Trump’s direction of a mob toward the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

“[A]t the risk of sounding crass,” French asks, “where is the blue dress” in the current House impeachment case against Biden?

—St. Louis Post-Dispatch/TNS

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