Donald Trump’s Impeachment: Is It Worth It?


Getty Images

Trump’s supporters gathered outside The Capitol on Jan. 6.

Maria Cifuentes, Reporter

       On Wednesday, Jan.13, Donald J. Trump became the first American President to be impeached twice. Trump is being charged with incitement of insurrection, due to his alleged role in encouraging the raiding of the Capitol, a day where Americans watched hundreds of pro-Trump supporters attack the national government and bring a dark moment upon our democracy. If the conviction is successful, Trump will not be able to ever hold a position in public office again.

Donald J. Trump was impeached for the first time for taking part in a pressure campaign in Ukraine to incriminate current President and then-candidate Joseph Biden. Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, had led the first process of impeachment for three months, but the case was rejected by all of the Republican members of the House.

However, during the current impeachment trial, some of Trump’s  Republican supporters have chosen not to side with him. 10 members of Trump’s party agreed with the Democrats in the House of Representatives and supported their choice to charge him with incitement of insurrection. This accused Trump of “inciting violence against the government of the United States.” 

Nancy Pelosi said, “He must go. He is a clear and present danger to the nation that we all love.”

Many of the U.S. Representatives and members of Congress share a similar feeling towards Trump. They are angered and fear that he can end up hurting the country more. They believe he is a threat and must be denied the opportunity to ever take part in the national government. 

Representative Kevin McCarthy of California, who is a Republican, delivered a speech full of pain and disappointment of Donald Trump. He said, “The President bears responsibility for Wednesday’s attack on Congress by mob rioters…He should have immediately denounced the mob when he saw what was unfolding.”

Unfortunately, Donald Trump did not take action to stop the rioters. Instead, in the eyes of many,  he encouraged them to continue. His lack of actions forced several members of Congress, including Vice President Pence and lawmakers who were present that day,  to be put in danger and they were forced to run. 

The Democratic Party has decided to move ahead with the impeachment trial;  they believe they must hold Trump accountable for his lack of action and its saddening effects. Although it will be a difficult process and unlikely to be successful,  the Democrats are willing to do whatever it takes to convict Trump or at least send the message that we must hold him accountable. 

Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, who is a Democrat, believes that impeachment is the only proper way to hold former President Donald Trump accountable for his unforgivable actions. He said, “This is much, much more serious than anything we’ve ever seen in our lifetime.”

But the Republican party will also not hold back and are willing to find a way to stop the former president from being found guilty in the impeachment trial.

Republicans argued that the proceeding may not be constitutional, since Donald Trump is no longer President and is a private citizen. Senator Rand Paul requested a procedural vote but his point was shut down since the Democratic and five Republican Senators’  votes that supported the constitutionality of the trial outnumbered those that were against it. Although this was a minor victory for the Democrats, the trial is still unlikely to be successful, it will be “almost impossible for Democrats to get the two-thirds vote they need to convict.” 

The impeachment trial continues and the Democrats are justifying their charge against  Donald Trump’s actions. His decision to rile up and encourage the mob of rioters to commit the crime at the Capitol puts him in a difficult position. This allows the article of impeachment to charge him with the language that he, “willfully made statements that encouraged—and foreseeably resulted in—imminent lawless action at the Capitol.”

The Democrats have also presented evidence of Trump’s comments that he had made during his rally speech on January 6, which occurred before the riot. His comments included: “You’ll never take back our country with weakness” and, “You have to show strength and you have to be strong.” But the most convicting statement he made was, “I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.” This statement was made after he had encouraged his loyal supporters to fight against the voter fraud he believed had been committed. 

However, some lawyers believe that these comments may not be enough evidence to convict him of inciting insurrection. Trump could be protected by the First Amendment of free speech, “The words that have been cited by the President’s opponents are the weakest of weak sauce….Those are the words used by every single politician that has run for any political race in American history.”

Trump’s speech may not also meet the criteria for it to be classified as criminal incitement: “The speaker must have intended to incite the illegal actions, the illegal actions must be likely to occur, and the illegal actions must be imminent.” Many of his loyal Republican allies believe that he did not mean to cause harm, that it was never his intention to cause the grave damages. 

The trial is set to begin on February 2, many of our fellow citizens will be invested in the ongoings and results of the trial. Just like the decision to impeach Donald Trump is divided in the national government, where the majority of the Democrats want to convict him while the majority of Republicans do not, American citizens and those who were affected by the events at the Capitol are also split on their opinions. So is it truly worth it to go through with the trial if there are issues and low probabilities it will succeed? 

I believe that it is worth it. Donald Trump’s actions not only damaged the democracy of our country but also can be deemed as an embarrassment. His involvement in the riots hurt the people who were present and those who were watching on their screens. I believe this event made many lose hope in the principles that our country is built on and caused some to fear what will happen if a certain political party isn’t given what they want. Donald Trump deserves to be convicted and those who are hurt should be given the chance to voice their case. I do agree that  demonstrators have  the right to voice their opinions and protest, but the way the rioters conducted themselves, and the lack of actions to stop them,  does not coincide with America’s laws. If the trial isn’t successful or gone through with, the damaging actions made by our former president will then be justified and deemed as correct. Then it will be used by future politicians as a justifiable reason to commit more harm to our country.