Donald Trump’s Impeachment Legacy: Violent Extremism
“The Capital Riot revealed a new force in American politics – not only a mix of right-wing organizations, but a mass mass political movement that has violence at its core and also draws strength from places where Trump supporters are in the minority.” He wrote in The Atlantic.
- Former President Donald J. A trial is being held to decide whether Trump is guilty. Instigate a deadly mob Their supporters when they Stormed the capitol On 6 January, violently violating security measures and sending MPs to hide As they met to authenticate President Biden’s victory.
- House Voted 232 to 197 To approve an article of Accusation, Accusing Mr. Trump of “inciting violence against the United States government”, in his quest to reverse the election results. Ten Republicans joined the Democrats and voted to impeach him.
- to convict Mr. Trump, Senate will need two-thirds majority Compromise This means that at least 17 Republican senators will have to vote with Senate Democrats to convict.
- A conviction is unlikely. Last month, Only five republicans The Senate, along with Democrats, attempted to dismiss allegations of beating a Republican because Mr. Trump is no longer in office. Only 27 senators They are inconclusive About convicting Mr. Trump.
- If the Senate blames Mr. Trump, Convicted of “inciting violence against the government of the United States”, senators may vote on him to withhold future office. That vote requires only a simple majority, and if it comes down to party lines, Democrats will cast a tie-breaking vote with Vice President Kamala Harris.
- If Senate does not blame Mr. Trump, the former president may once again be eligible to run for public office. Opinion polls show that he is the most popular national figure in the Republican Party.
This force shows signs of low support: two weeks ago, Department of Homeland Security Issued a rare terrorism warning Warning that violent extremists were instigated by the attack and “prompted by the president’s transition, as well as other alleged complaints stuck by false narratives.”
There are some indications that such violent acts have support among some Americans, especially within the Republican Party. A survey was done By the American Enterprise Institute This week found that 55 percent of Republicans withdrew use of force as “to prevent the decline of the traditional American way of life”, compared to 35 percent of independents and 22 percent of Democrats.
In defense of his impeachment, Mr. Trump’s lawyers did not focus on the attackers, but the former president argued that he did not intend to provoke the violent attack. Parts of the rhetoric cited by the House impeachment managers were “selectively edited” and manipulated in the video, he said. The Trump team showed video collections of Democrats using the word “fight” – further torturing an already worn piece of political rhetoric. (Of course, none of those politicians, it is worth noting, were trying to incite a riot.)
And he used Mr. Trump’s comments after the events in Charlottesville, Va., In 2017. To say that “there were very good people on both sides” – to argue that his words have been misunderstood for a long time. Former homeland security officials have cited those comments as a defining moment that embraces extremists.
Many Congressional Republicans are likely to seize on this question of intent. Even when Mr. Trump is out of office, crossing the former president would mean stripping a significant portion of his base. Like Texas Senator Ted Cruz, who promoted Mr. Trump’s baseless claims to sabotage at the Capitol, his mind showed no signs of changing. It is very likely that the final number of Republicans who vote for the trust will be well below the required two-thirds majority.
Eventually, the debate over Mr. Trump’s culpability will be left to the history books. What would remain undisputed, however, was the importance of his words. Extremist violence flourished under his watch. And the overthrow would be a far more difficult national undertaking than some long days in the Senate.