Is there a difference between a conspiracy to collude and just being a total tool?
That’s one question before the American public and Congress now that the Mueller report is out in the open. The long and short of it is that there is a difference, and it’s clear that America has been under a sustained attack for years. There may not be an initial crime committed by the Trump team, as the operation was entirely led by Russian operatives.
There was, however, plenty of effort spent trying to hide it all. There still is. This is much more likely a crime, but more importantly it makes the case for impeachment even stronger. It’s much less about a crime than about getting out the truth about the threats that our nation, and every open democratic society, currently face.
You can listen to the audiobook version yourself and make your own decisions. That’s the way it has to be, and it is. We can’t claim that the information is not out there for everyone to understand – finally.
What’s chilling in this report is not just now the sustained effort to influence the election went down. We knew this all along, at least those of us who read about it as it unfolded in 2016. All of those reports in the media at the time were factually accurate, or at least reasonably so. There are no surprises here.
What’s more surprising is the now documented efforts to cover it all up – obstruct justice in legal terms. That’s not just a lefty opinion, either. Fox News commentator and longtime friend of Trump and all things right-wing Andrew Napolitano called it “unlawful, defenseless and condemnable.”
What will we do about it? The Mueller report is based on an assumption: that a sitting President cannot be charged with a crime. Instead, there is a process outlined in the Constitution, through impeachment, for removing the president and then deciding what if any of the actions taken warrant further punishment. The best explanation I have found for this can be found here:
This means that everything is in the hands of the US House for proper action. That seems perfectly reasonable, given the Constitution. Many of us want something much more immediate, but defending out Constitution is more than an oath sworn by every person in uniform. It’s a sacred duty for all Americans, and that’s the root of what’s at stake here.
Our system is broken in many ways. Russia has been moving to exploit that, and in many ways we can only expect that to happen. We need a general renewal of our nation almost as much as we need to respond to the immediate threat.
Our Constitution has guided us through much worse. Returning to the foundations of law only makes renewal more sustainable and relevant. It may not feel good for us to rely on Congress, given their track record over the last few decades, but it is what we have.
Of course, you can decide for yourself. Is the threat so immediate that more drastic action must be taken? Thoughts like this are what led directly to the collapse of the Roman Republic in the face of terrible inaction and opened the path to Empire and rule by force.
History does not have to repeat. This has a long way to play out yet, but Americans of all political beliefs are stepping up to the challenge. Our nation is under a sustained attack, but we can stop it. We can get through this and be stronger. It just takes some time.
So far, the system is actually working – even if it doesn’t feel like it.