This past week, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) publicly announced that the House would be moving forward with formal articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, and now, yet another major player has announced their support for the proceedings. The Editorial Board of the Los Angeles Times has published a new piece directly stating support for impeaching Trump over his plot to get Ukraine to produce dirt on the Bidens (and Democrats in general) in exchange for military aid and a summit in D.C. They explained that in their perception, the president’s conduct exactly fits the bill of what’s worthy of impeachment.
After noting their concerns about throwing support behind impeachment because of the already established partisan nature of the proceedings, the paper explained:
‘But those concerns must yield to the overwhelming evidence that Trump perverted U.S. foreign policy for his own political gain. That sort of misconduct is outrageous and corrosive of democracy. It can’t be ignored by the House, and it merits a full trial by the Senate on whether to remove him from office.’
As the paper explains, the scandal driving the impeachment first broke thanks to a whistleblower complaint centering on a phone conversation in which Trump demanded that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky look into conspiracy theories surrounding the Bidens and Democrats in general. He claimed, among other things, that a supposedly Ukrainian cybersecurity company had facilitated the transfer of a hacked Democratic email server to Ukraine, thereby obscuring the true culprits behind the email hack, which according to this scenario, aren’t Russians. However, the cybersecurity company in question isn’t even Ukrainian.
On top of that, the Times notes that a “parade of current and former government officials who testified before the House Intelligence Committee” and “established that Trump’s call was part of a larger effort” to get Ukraine to cough up the dirt on the Dems in exchange for “everything” that they wanted from the U.S., according to diplomat Bill Taylor’s account.
Although Republicans, who the Times notes have largely shied away from even attempting to engage with the substance of the ever growing case against Trump, have claimed that there’s actually nothing to be concerned about because Ukraine eventually got aid, the Times notes:
‘[N]one of that exonerates Trump of abusing his office, apparently to obtain a benefit for himself. And if the president was willing in this case to subvert U.S. foreign policy for personal and political gain, why wouldn’t he feel emboldened to do it again? The president, after all, continues to maintain that his call with Zelensky was “perfect.”’
Although it’s the straw that broke the camel’s back, so to speak, the Ukraine scandal is far from the first legal mess that Trump has gotten himself into. After Special Counsel Robert Mueller started investigating Russian assistance to the Trump campaign in 2016, Trump contorted himself in wild efforts to obstruct that investigation — and the Times says that obstruction should be included in eventual formal articles of impeachment too. If the House formally impeaches Trump, he’ll be only the third president who has been marked with that I-word.