Goodwin: History will not be kind to Nancy Pelosi

One way or another, Nancy Pelosi will go down in history. Let’s hope she doesn’t take America with her.

The speaker’s decision to go all in on impeachment is fraught with danger and could have fateful consequences far beyond Donald Trump’s presidency. With only about a year to go until the 2020 election, Pelosi has thrown her full weight behind the effort to undo the results of 2016.

This is a historic mistake, one that could tear America apart. Based on the evidence the House has made public, impeaching Trump is a meritless, reckless assault on democracy.

Anyone who believes our country is now a polarized tinderbox ain’t seen nothing yet. Trying to remove the president on the flimsy charges that he illegally pressured Ukraine for investigative help would quicken the national crack-up that’s been building for years.

Pelosi’s timing is both cynical and bizarre. A full House vote on an impeachment inquiry, which could come Thursday, probably means she is aiming to consider articles of impeachment this year.

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The rush suggests an acceptance of the reality that there will be nothing in those articles that would sway 20 Senate Republicans needed for conviction and removal, so the aim is to please the radicals in her own party and be done with it as soon as possible. Thus, Pelosi is ready to throw America into chaos simply as a political favor to Democrats’ wing-nuts so they won’t run primaries against her leadership team and committee heads.

Pelosi isn’t leading, she’s following.

Why doesn’t she just step aside and let Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Ilhan Omar run the party? They would probably start by declaring war on Israel.

the gravity of the impeachment provision and makes rank partisanship her sole agenda. Instead of working with the Senate and White House on legislation that might move the nation forward, she chooses to take it backward and risks igniting a violent spasm of tribalism.

In a “Dear Democratic Colleague” letter Monday, she couched her choice as the best way to combat the White House’s refusal to cooperate with the demands for testimony and documents from six different committees. In fact, those committees already are fashioning an impeachment case, much of it in secret, while trying to avoid a formal public vote to protect their vulnerable colleagues in swing districts.

Forced by Trump to take the public vote or fight the authority issue in the courts, Pelosi responded by effectively accusing the president of refusing to cooperate with a lynch mob. Her solution is to give the mob a plastic badge to make it legal.

Her real problem is that she doesn’t have the goods to justify impeachment under any process. And she won’t, no matter how many witnesses emerge from the bureaucracy to say they were unhappy with the Ukraine call or didn’t agree with Trump’s choices. Policy disagreements and murky arguments won’t lead to a public consensus for removing an elected president.

In truth, Pelosi cornered herself in late September. That’s when she unleashed the committee probes and used the I-word, saying Trump was guilty of a “betrayal of his oath” and “must be held accountable.”

The next day, the White House released the transcript of the Ukraine call. While it wasn’t “perfect,” as Trump insists, the call was not even close to a “high crime and misdemeanor” by any reasonable standard.

You can read more here.

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