Republican impeachment inquiry against Biden is a Trump-inspired farce

Editor’s note: The following article is an op-ed, and the views expressed are the author’s own. Read more opinions on theGrio.

The Republican-controlled U.S. House is expected to vote this week on whether to authorize an impeachment inquiry against President Biden, even though there is no evidence he committed an impeachable offense and no chance the Senate will convict him and kick him out of office.

House Republicans have come up empty after launching their impeachment inquiry in September, authorized only by then-Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif. The White House has said the inquiry is unconstitutional without a vote of the full House, prompting Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., to announce last week that he would soon schedule such a vote.

The proposed Biden impeachment inquiry is a farce. Neither the Justice Department (including during the administration of President Donald Trump), the FBI nor the media have ever found any evidence to back up allegations against Biden.

The only “crime” Biden is guilty of is being a Democrat running for reelection. That’s enough to unite most House Republicans behind an effort to smear him with baseless charges that he corruptly profited from the foreign business dealings of his son Hunter and accepted bribes.

The GOP goal in investigating these trumped-up charges is clear: help their 2024 presidential nominee — most likely former President Trump — defeat Biden in the November election. 

Trump was justifiably impeached twice by the House — first on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress for his efforts to pressure Ukraine to investigate Biden before the 2020 election, and next on a charge of inciting the Jan. 6, 2021 riot at the U.S. Capitol in an effort to stop Biden’s election victory from being certified by Congress. 

Thanks to Republican votes, Trump was acquitted in both his impeachment trials by the Senate. A two-thirds vote (67 senators if all 100 voted) is needed for a conviction and removal from office. There is no way Republicans will round up 67 votes in the Democratic-controlled Senate to convict Biden if he is impeached on phony partisan accusations. 

Some 83 House Republicans and 10 Republican senators have endorsed Trump for another term in the White House, and more are sure to follow if he starts winning primaries and locks up the GOP nomination. These Trump worshippers are eager to do his bidding and jockey for his favor, fueling the House effort to impeach Biden on charges as phony as a $3 bill.

Trump has long called for Biden to be impeached. The former president has falsely claimed on the social media platform he owns and elsewhere that Biden is “the most corrupt President in the history of the United States.”

In demanding Biden be impeached and making wild fact-free accusations against him, Trump is relying on the standard playbook he’s been using for decades. Whenever he’s accused of misconduct, he claims his accusers and opponents are actually guilty of the same misconduct and demands they be punished.

For example, when confronted with the fact that he is an authoritarian who refuses to accept the results of any election he loses and threatens American democracy, Trump said earlier this month: “Joe Biden is not the defender of American democracy, Joe Biden is the destroyer of American democracy.” Sure, just like I’m the queen of England.

Trump is facing 91 criminal charges for his efforts to overturn his 2020 reelection defeat, hold onto classified government documents after leaving office, and allegedly falsifying business records to cover up hush money payments to a porn star who claims they had a sexual relationship.

Trump also faces several civil lawsuits, including one alleging fraud by him and his business that is currently on trial in New York City. New York Attorney General Letitia James is seeking $250 million in damages in that case.

Trump has said he is innocent of all charges filed against him.

James and two of the prosecutors in the criminal cases against Trump are Black. Trump has repeatedly called them “animals” and absurdly accused them of being “racist” against white people to explain why they are prosecuting him. Unsurprisingly, we’ve never heard him calling any white prosecutors racists for prosecuting Black defendants. 

But when Trump has been accused of racism, he always denies the charge. “I am the least racist person there is anywhere in the world,” he said in a delusional outburst in 2019. 

Congress is nearly paralyzed today by Republican obstructionism, hyper-partisanship and refusal to compromise on right-wing extremist proposals that GOP members demand become law. 

But instead of working to take up urgently needed legislation that Biden has proposed to deal with issues including aid for Israel and Ukraine, border security, voting rights, climate change, women’s reproductive rights, systemic racism, education, job creation, gun violence and more, Republicans are preparing to waste time and money on a senseless impeachment inquiry.

Joe Biden, America’s oldest sitting president, needs young voters to win again. Will his age matter?

Impeachments are exceedingly rare. Only three presidents in American history have been impeached — Andrew Johnson in 1868, Bill Clinton in 1998, and Trump in 2019 and 2021. None were convicted in their Senate trials.

Republicans will set a dangerous precedent if they open an evidence-free impeachment inquiry against Biden. We could see many more politicized inquiries and impeachments of presidents and other federal officials whenever the House of Representatives is controlled by one party and the White House is controlled by the other.

We don’t elect members of Congress to prioritize partisanship over patriotism, baseless investigations over vital legislation, or blind loyalty to one man with dictatorial ambitions over loyalty to serving our country and the American people.

Democrats will oppose the impeachment inquiry, and I hope enough Republicans show profiles in courage to reject it. The proposed inquiry is based on a foundation as solid as a soap bubble.

Donna Brazile Headshot

Donna Brazile is a veteran political strategist, Senior Advisor at Purple Strategies, New York Times bestselling author, Chair of the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board, and sought-after Emmy- and Peabody-award-winning media contributor to such outlets as ABC News, USA Today and TheGrio. She previously served as interim Chair of the Democratic National Committee and of the DNC’s Voting Rights Institute. Donna was the first Black American to serve as the manager of a major-party presidential campaign, running the campaign of Vice President Al Gore in 2000. She serves as an adjunct professor in the Women and Gender Studies Department at Georgetown University and served as the King Endowed Chair in Public Policy at Howard University and as a fellow at the Institute of Politics at Harvard Kennedy School. She has lectured at nearly 250 colleges and universities on diversity, equity and inclusion; women in leadership; and restoring civility in American politics.

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The Republican-controlled U.S. House is planning to vote on whether to authorize an impeachment inquiry against President Biden, even though there is no evidence of any impeachable offense. The proposed inquiry is based on baseless accusations of corruption that are aimed at influencing the 2024 presidential election. This effort is seen as a way for House Republicans to support former President Trump’s potential candidacy and smear Biden with unfounded charges.

Trump has called for Biden’s impeachment and has made false claims about his corruption. Trump himself has faced multiple criminal charges and civil lawsuits, including fraud and obstruction of justice. The author, Donna Brazile, argues that the impeachment inquiry is a waste of time and resources, and that it sets a dangerous precedent for future politicized impeachments.

Brazile urges Republicans to reject the proposed impeachment inquiry and prioritize vital legislation instead of blindly following Trump’s ambitions. She emphasizes the need for unity, patriotism, and genuine service to the American people over partisan agendas. Impeachments are rare and should not be used as political tools to undermine the presidency.

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