Dissecting a failed impeachment

David Harsanyi analyzes at National Review Online congressional Democrats’ losing bid to remove President Trump from office.

The chances of any party’s removing its sitting president without overwhelming evidence that fuels massive voter pressure are negligible. It’s never happened in American history — unless you count the preemptive removal of Richard Nixon — and probably never will. Democrats are demanding the GOP adopt standards that no party has ever lived by.

Perhaps if the public hadn’t been subjected to four years of interminable hysteria over the United States’ imaginary decent into fascism, it might have been less apathetic toward the fate of “vital” Ukrainian aid that most Democrats had voted against when Obama was president.

And perhaps if institutional media hadn’t spent three years pushing a hyperbolically paranoid narrative of Russian collusion — a debunked conspiracy theory incessantly repeated by Democrats during the impeachment trial — the public wouldn’t be anesthetized to another alleged national emergency.

You simply can’t expect a well-adjusted voter to maintain CNN-levels of indignation for years on end.

Beyond the public’s mood, the Democrats’ strategy was a mess. House Dems and their 17 witnesses set impossible-to-meet expectations, declaring that Trump had engaged in the worst wrongdoing ever committed by any president in history. (I’m not exaggerating.) When it comes to Trump criticism, everything is always the worst thing ever.

Even if Trump’s actions had risen to the level of removal, Adam Schiff and Jerrold Nadler were quite possibly the worst possible messengers to make the case. These are not the politicians you tap to persuade jurors; they’re the politicians you pick to rile up your base.

Mitch Kokai / Senior Political Analyst

Mitch Kokai is senior political analyst for the John Locke Foundation. He joined JLF in December 2005 as director of communications. That followed more than four years as chie...

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