I’m sitting here at my computer at 8 a.m. Jan. 8, and still nothing. I think that settles it. We now have two degraded political parties, each with its own demons. There was an attack on Congress, and an enemy force was inside the building for the first time since the War of 1812. Confederate Battle Flags were marched through the halls – something that never happened during the American Civil War. The proximate cause is clear now and was then: the President of the United Stated whipped a mob into a frenzy and turned then loose. That’s sedition pure and simple. Has the 25th Amendment been employed? No. Has the House of Representatives impeached the President? No. Frankly, this is disgusting.
Of the two remedies, it is really Congress that needs to act, but let’s take a minute to look at the 25th Amendment. It is far and away the easier task to remove a President from power, albeit temporarily.
All that’s needed are the signatures of a majority of the cabinet and the vice president, the last being the long pole in the tent. Pence is simply an unmitigated sycophant or a coward. Neither is particularly flattering. We do know, from four years of observation that he’s unable to take a position that deviates even slightly from that of his boss. There has been nothing degrading enough to stop him from being the President’s lapdog from the first day he agreed to take the job. Apparently, he doesn’t have it in him.
But it was the Capitol that was attacked, so really it falls to the Congress to act.
The House of Representatives is given the power of impeachment for a reason: to check the criminal behavior of the president.
The constitutional grounds are intentionally hazy, but the terms high crimes and misdemeanors certainly includes sedition. No government can function if the president can incite violence against the other branches – especially true for Congress, the Article I branch. So what occurred the night of the 6th and morning of Jan. 7? Both branches met to discuss and vote on specious objections to cut and dry elections, then they adjourned.
This is stunning. After an assault on the institution by a mob blatantly incited by the President and his henchmen, it would have been proper and just to bring an impeachment vote to the floor of the House as the last act of the evening.
But neither happened and the longer this continues the less likely either will. Why is unfortunately obvious.
The GOP, which should be working to purge itself of a pariah, is hiding behind a plethora of nonsense excuses put forth by their propaganda agents in the alt-media. No, it wasn’t Antifa storming the barricades, as numerous photos and videos of the rioters have already documented – yet these “counter-facts” are being both widely distributed and reinforced by even more bizarre arguments. And why is the only remaining party silent and ineffective? I suspect it’s the geriatric nature of the party – run almost entirely by octogenarians – members of a Silent Generation known for going along to get along. It’s never been clearer, younger leadership is needed there, but first, the party needs a spine. I’m not optimistic.
Assuming the worst, here’s a quick synopsis of the next two weeks. Trump will pardon everyone in sight, himself included. He’ll continue to act the victim, and will leave for Mara Lago on Air Force 1. The next day, he’ll start a counter attack on his enemies, and it all begins again.
Horn is a retired engineer living at Smith Mountain Lake.