China Discipline Inspection and Supervision News reported on January 13 that current U.S.
President Trump set a new record: he was impeached twice in one term.
The U.S. House of Representatives announced that it would vote on the draft impeachment draft against Trump as early as January 13.
The current president of the United States is accused of “sedition”.
In response to the possible riots at Biden’s inauguration, Washington, D.C. declared a state of emergency.
Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser called on people not to attend the presidential inauguration ceremony, citing the riots on Capitol Hill and the ongoing epidemic.
Democratic lawmakers formally submit draft impeachment draft articles, and the countdown to the House vote
On January 11th local time, Democratic lawmakers in the United States officially submitted draft impeachment draft articles against Trump.
The House of Representatives officially introduced draft impeachment draft articles reportedly accused Trump of inciting supporters to launch a rebellion and falsely claimed to win the election again.” President Trump has seriously endangered the security of the United States and its government agencies, threatened the integrity of democracy, and interfered with the peaceful transition of power.” The impeachment draft article said, “Trump betrayed public trust in the president.”
The impeachment draft article states that Trump not only seded rebellion, but also called Georgia’s Republican Secretary of State to “find” enough votes for him to win the state after the election.
Just a few days ago, a shocking scene happened in the United States, which claimed to be the beacon of democracy. On January 6, Trump supporters launched a large-scale protest because they were dissatisfied with the election results, which turned into a violent campaign to occupy the U.S. Congress.
Four protesters and one policeman died in the clash, and the ongoing process of confirming Biden’s victory in Congress was forced to be interrupted.
After the riots, many American politicians and entertainment celebrities condemned it, and the calls for Trump’s resignation continued to escalate. Several government officials resigned after the riots in protest.
The first impeachment against Trump took place in December 2019.
At that time, the House of Representatives accused him of abusing power and obstructing Congress and trying to pressure Ukraine to smear its political opponent Biden, but the Senate finally voted to ablict the two charges.
Impeachment and the launch of the 25th Amendment to the Constitution
While many Democrats and even some Republicans claim that Trump should be “remoted” immediately, it is not easy.
There are two ways to push Trump down: one is to launch the 25th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, and the other is to initiate impeachment by the House of Representatives, and impeach his conviction after the Senate hears.
Under the 25th Amendment to the United States Constitution, the Vice President shall act as Acting President immediately when a majority of the Vice President and a majority of the Ministers of the Secretary of State or a majority of other body members of the Congress established by law submit a written declaration that the President is unable to perform his duties.
If the President submits a written statement that his incapacity does not exist, he shall be reinstated as president, unless a majority of the Vice President and the executive ministers or a majority of members of other bodies established by law by Congress submit a written statement against it within four days. In this case, Congress should make a decision on this issue.
Both House of Congress Democratic leaders Pelosi and Schumer have said that the introduction of the 25th Amendment is the “fastest” and “most effective” way to remove President Trump.
Pelosi called on Vice President Pence and cabinet members to remove the president on the grounds of “sedition and other dangers still posed by the president”.
However, on January 11th local time, Democrats, who have a majority of seats in the House of Representatives, were blocked by Republicans when they tried to push the House of Representatives to pass a motion to require Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution to recall Trump.
“The U.S. House of Representatives should never pass a motion to remove a legally elected president without hearings, debates or votes.” Rep. Alex Mooney, a Republican who raised the objection, said.
House Speaker Pelosi said that if Pence does not initiate the 25th Amendment and remove Trump from office, the House will initiate impeachment proceedings.
“The U.S. Constitution specifies several situations of impeachment: the President, the Vice President, and all civilian officials of the United States, who are impeached and convicted for treason, bribery or other felonies and misdemeanors, shall be removed from office.” Yuan Zheng, deputy director of the American Institute of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, introduced.
According to the U.S. Constitution, impeachment takes two steps: first, the House of Representatives initiates impeachment proceedings, and once the draft impeachment is passed by a simple majority in the House of Representatives, the Senate must try and debate the charges.
Under the impeachment process, two-thirds of the senators present in the final ruling must agree to the conviction before impeachment can take effect.
Currently, out of 100 seats in the Senate, Democrats and Republicans each have 50. This means that if all 100 senators are present at the trial, it will take not only 50 Democratic senators to cast a pro-guilty vote, but also up to 17 Republican senators to “mutate” to convict Trump.
“The impeachment process is so complex and rigorous that successful instances of impeachment of federal officials are rare in American history, and no president has been impeached and removed from office yet.” Yuan Zheng said.
Impeachment of Trump is mostly out of political considerations
With only one week left before the inauguration of the new President of the United States, is it too long to launch impeachment or launch the 25th Amendment?
“The threshold for both ways to get Trump out early is high, and the threshold for kicking out the 25th Amendment to the Constitution is higher than impeachment.” Diao Daming, a researcher at the National Institute of Development and Strategy of Renmin University of China, told reporters that if the purpose is to let Trump step down early, it may be too late for both.
According to scholars, the average impeachment trial in the Senate lasts 144 days, and the Senate is not expected to resume until January 19. So even if the House initiates and passes impeachment proceedings in the next few days, it will be difficult for Trump to be impeached before leaving office as long as the Senate is not working.
Why do House Democrats insist on launching impeachment when there are many difficulties?
It is argued that this is a symbolic condemnation intended to warn Trump.” Trump incited supporters to storm Congress and broke the rules, causing great dissatisfaction among many people within the Republican Party and the White House, which can be said to be ‘traitors’.
Diao Daming said impeachment objectively warned Trump from making more out-to-date behaviors before leaving office.
According to the U.S. Constitution, once impeachment succeeds, the Senate can prohibit Trump from taking office again, so impeachment is also a political consideration of the Democratic Party.
In an interview with CBS, Pelosi said that Trump must be impeached so that he can’t run for president again; the Associated Press pointed out that what Democrats have to do now is to completely wipe out Trump’s political influence in case he rises again four years later.
January 20 is not the end. Even if Trump cannot complete impeachment during his term, it will continue after leaving office.
Although there is no precedent for the president to face impeachment trial in the Senate after leaving office, there have been cases in American history that other federal officials have been impeached after resigning.
According to Reuters, if Trump’s charges are found after leaving office, he will lose the treatment of outgoing presidents, including security and pensions, and the Senate may vote on whether to prohibit him from running again.
Impeachment has become a means of party struggle, and the American democracy with capital control has become rigid.
“The original intention of impeachment is to punish the unruly president and restrict the problem of excessive power of the president.
It is itself a tool for power restraint. Now, in the context of further intensification of bipartisan struggles and the Democratic control of the House of Representatives, impeachment has become a means of party struggle.” Li Qingsi, a professor at Renmin University of China and deputy director of the American Research Center, said.
Throughout American history, it can be found that from the establishment of the state, how to prevent the powerful president from abuse of power and arbitrary behavior is an important consideration in system design.
In 1787, the U.S. Constituent Assembly introduced the draft U.S. Constitution, which laid the legal foundation for the American political system. In accordance with the principle of power restriction, the United States has established a political structure of “separation of powers”.
the one hand, the Constituent Assembly should give the President the necessary executive power to establish a strong centralized government and avoid the recurrence of the previous fragmentation of the Confederate system; on the other hand, it should prevent the powerful president from abusing power and arbitrary.
In view of historical experience, the constitutionalists were worried about the excessive expansion of the presidential power, so in addition to regulating the presidency, election and even power, they also deliberately set up an impeachment system.
Impeachment is generally a special power exercised in extreme circumstances. Of the 45 presidents of the United States, including Trump, three have been impeached, but so far no president has been impeached.
“The two impeachments are somewhat accidental. This impeachment is the bitter fruit of Trump’s reckless and irresponsible attempt to change the election results by besieging Capitol Hill.” Li Qingsi told the reporter that there is also an inevitability by chance, which is also a reflection of the further deterioration of the relationship between the two parties in the United States, the willingness of the two sides to compromise and work together is getting smaller and smaller, and by any means for their own interests.
The Party’s fight against different aspects seriously erodes this system of checks and balances.
According to American scholar research, “since the late 1980s, the relationship between symbolic ideology and popular party identity has increased significantly.” During the Cold War, due to external constraints, the willingness of the two parties to seek long-term interests through compromise was relatively strong.
With the decline of external constraints, neither party was willing to restrain, and the struggle became more and more intense.
If you agree, I will oppose it; if you disagree, I agree that the United States is becoming an “internal consumer”. The data shows that the ratio of people who “extremely hate” each other between Democrats and Republicans has increased from 16.5% 25 years ago to more than 80% now.
The impeachment system once created to be wary of abuse of power is now alienated as a tool of attack due to partisan opposition, and the problem has been behind the long-proclaimed superior democracy of the United States.
“The system without strong external challenges and internal stress tests looks superior, but the actual operation is not as good as expected.” Li Qingsi said that for more than 200 years, the system of the United States has not changed too much, and the development has been less externally disturbed.
Therefore, many people attribute their development results to the superiority of the system, but a series of challenges such as the epidemic have punctured this illusion.
The epidemic has fully exposed and continued to worsen the long-standing polarization between rich and poor and racial discrimination in the United States.
Some politicians in the United States have not made efforts to bridge differences instead of protecting the lives and health of the people as their first priority. Instead, they regard the epidemic as an opportunity to seize power and partisan interests, aggravating different levels. Layer confrontation.
Society is increasingly torn apart, politics is becoming more and more disorderly, democracy has become a tool of struggle, and the rigidity of the system has emerged.
In Li Qingsi’s view, American politics is attached to the essence of capital, which makes it lack the courage to self-revolution and cannot reform with the times. Therefore, the quality of the operation of the political system is declining day by day.
Washington states of emergency, impeachment exacerbates social division and security crisis
What is the impact of impeachment on the United States?
According to the latest poll released by Quinnipiac University on January 11, only 21% of voters in the United States currently think democracy is still healthy, and nearly three-quarters of voters believe that democracy is under threat.
American society is deeply involved in the public opinion gap.
Fifty-six percent of voters believe President Trump is responsible for the violent shock to Congress, while 42 percent oppose it; voters are for and 45% for and 45% for whether Trump should be removed or resign.
The poll also found that people have different views on who is the culprit of the division of the United States.
Some people think it is the people who participated in the protest demonstrations, some people think it is a congressional Republican who opposes the certification of Biden’s vote, and some people think that Trump should be held accountable.
But up to 81% of voters agree that extremism has become a huge problem in the United States, and the United States is going to different extremes on the road of differentiation.
Jin Canrong, vice president of the School of International Relations of Renmin University of China, believes that strong mainstream public opinion is an important basic guarantee for democratic politics.” Instead of promoting the formation of mainstream consensus, the two parties put the interests of the party above the interests of the people and promote consensus, exacerbating the degree of social division.
Some analysts believe that impeachment will “add fuel to the fire” and intensify the rebound of Trump supporters, and violence may ensue.
This fear may come true.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) issued an internal announcement warning that a few days before Biden’s inauguration, there was a possibility of “armed protests” in 50 states and Washington, D.C., in the United States.
The White House issued a statement that Trump has approved the state of emergency in Washington, D.C., from January 11 local time until January 24, and also authorized the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency to mobilize the necessary resources to assist in federal and local security before and after the presidential inauguration.
Some right-wing extremist groups also incite online to plan to hold a “million-dollar militia march” on Biden’s inaugural day. There are also civil society organizations planning to hold the “Trump Second Inauguration” on social media Facebook on January 20.
More than 325,000 people are interested in the event so far, of which more than 60,000 said they would definitely participate.
Can the impeachment scandal calm down after Biden takes office? Can a torn America heal?
“At present, the Senate seats in the United States are flat 1:1, and Biden faces a high legislative cost.
As for the racial problem that has not been completely solved so far after the founding of the United States, it is certainly more difficult to deal with now; solving structural contradictions such as economy, class, employment and so on requires a holistic touch of vested interests, and I’m afraid it is not easy.” Diao Daming said.
The old disease has not healed, and a new disease has recured.
Michael Chertoff, the former Secretary of Homeland Security, said that the nature of the security threats facing the United States has changed significantly, and has changed from large-scale terrorist attacks abroad to emotional incitement caused by social media.
“Conspiracy speech and extremism have made the population increasingly tense, and extremist groups also encouraged people to use all means to carry out terrorist acts,” Chertov said. The inauguration is just the beginning, and the United States is facing an ongoing security challenge.”