Rep. Justin Amash, R-Mich., center, is joined by, from left, Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., and Rep. Ralph Norman, R-S.C., as he hosts a news conference with a bipartisan group of House and Senate lawmakers who are demanding the U.S. government should be required to seek warrants if it wants to search for information about Americans and insist on reforms to the FISA Amendments Reauthorization Act of 2017 to protect Americans’ rights, at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
The problems confronting the Democrats on impeachment are few but devastating.
The Articles of Impeachment, themselves, are slapdash and the major article that Nancy Pelosi promised, bribery, is nowhere to be found. Impeachment is very unpopular anywhere outside of Democrat strongholds and in the leftist swamps of the internet. The Senate is not predisposed to really go after a president in an election year when that president has the support of 90+% of the GOP. And the House Republicans have done a stellar job of portraying the House process managed by Schiff and Nadler as highly partisan and unfair. This perception will be amplified when no Republicans break ranks and vote for impeachment but some number of Democrats do exactly last.
Right now you can see a series of things in motion to try to change those perceptions. Chuck Schumer has demanded that the GOP follow the same rules followed during the Clinton impeachment (READ: Schumer Sends Letter Including Witness Request List for Senate Trial to Mitch McConnell, Good Luck Chuck). The theme here is that it is imperative that the hearing be fair…not fair to the guy who was railroaded by a bad faith investigation carried out by Robert Mueller but fair to the people trying to turn that travesty into political advantage.
Laurence Tribe has held out a possibility that Nancy Pelosi might refuse to forward approved Articles of Impeachment to the Senate as a protest against what is being portrayed as refusal by the GOP to take this sham proceeding seriously (READ: Laurence Tribe Throws Nancy Pelosi a Lifeline by Giving Her an Off-Ramp From Impeachment).
Now an additional idea is being tried, roping rogue former Republican Justin Amash into being one of the House “impeachment managers” appointed to prosecute the case against President Trump.
The impeachment manager gig is considered to be a very high profile one. Lindsey Graham has, at times, credited his stint as a manager during the Clinton impeachment for launching his career. That the Democrats are falling over themselves to offer such position to someone who isn’t even a Democrat, beyond his recent votes, is a remarkable statement upon the weakness of impeachment.
The idea that the number of Justin Amash fans out there will change the perception of the hearings is laughable. Amash will be damned lucky to avoid being turfed out of his seat this November as he is an anemic fundraiser and this time around will not have the RNC machinery to help him out. Amash is the kind of NeverTrump conservative who has a home over at The Bulwark, sucking up to Charlie Three Wives in an effort to elect a Democrat. In short, he really isn’t welcome in conservative circles. President Trump continues to have the support of over 90% of Republicans and bringing in a Vichy Conservative like Amash, will solidify the impression that this is exclusively a Democrat operation and the only Republican attracted to it is a guy who has already left the GOP (after taking GOP money to get elected and reelected) and who is motivated by bitterness and pique, not principle.