Whether or not you like Donald Trump, he is an interesting figure who I would like to discuss in this opinion piece. Personally, I would not say that I am his biggest fan. As an individual Trump is both fascinating and horrifying to me: he seems delusional at times, which is surprising for a president of the United States, but at the same time the world is heavily impacted by his actions and it does not seem like he can be stopped. Until two weeks ago, that is. Two weeks ago, the Democrats officially started an impeachment inquiry, which means they started the formal process of removing the president from office. The question is: will it succeed, and what are the outcomes?
I predict that by the time this article will be released, it will already be outdated. It seems that if you pay attention to it, every day some new evidence or a claim is released about Trump and his administration. These claims of Trump’s actions and how they are unethical are usually followed by Trump tweeting about it in denial, the customary whataboutisms of Trump’s followers, and some outcries from his opponents how Trump can get away with it. At the end of this process, there is usually another event that has caused outrage of some sort, and the meaningless cycle can continue once more. The fact that there are so many events and controversies happening can mean that some of the lesser ones might get swept under the rug as there are more important and shocking things that the media can focus on. For anyone who has not focused on US politics in a while, here is my take of the most unique incidents that I noticed from the past couple of weeks.
The biggest thing that you might have heard about is the reason the Democrats have started the impeachment process: Trump’s phone call to Ukraine. The international news service Reuters wrote about this. During the summer, Trump has called the Ukrainian President. He asked the president to investigate Joe Biden, one of the frontrunners for the presidential elections in 2020, and his son. The President of Ukraine agreed to help Trump. Previously to this phone call, Trump had cut funding to help Ukraine, but afterwards the funding started again which makes this look suspiciously like a bribe in my opinion. Anyways, you may wonder how we know this information, as it is most likely classified. The only reason we know this is because a whistle-blower knew of this phone call, thought it was unethical and reported it. The result of this, a little simplified, was that a transcript of the phone call was published, and this seems to show that there was a misuse of power by Trump. Trump himself has tweeted that he thinks the conversation was “perfect”.
In the aftermath of this, Trump has publicly asked China to help investigate the Bidens, and tweeted multiple scary things such as that he thinks the whistle-blower is a spy and should be charged for treason, but also that if he were to be impeached he would start a civil war. This last statement is both terrifying and ironic, as some argue that him calling for a civil war is another impeachable event. My fear is that by starting to investigate Trump, the democrats may have lost the 2020 election. The problem is that Trump, even with all his antics and irrational rhetoric, will most likely not be impeached as the votes in the senate are stacked in his favour. The disappointment of the entire impeachment process being ineffective might be enough to sway voters into the arms of Trump, winning him another four years of presidency. The only way Trump could be impeached is if the public outrage is so great that even Trump’s own party will vote against him, of which the chances are slim.
While I might dislike Trump personally, from an international perspective I can take a step back and look at the ridiculousness that is happening overseas. After all, it is not like I have any impact on what happens over there, so observing is the best alternative in my opinion. I can only be happy that I live in the Netherlands, but then again, I may be biased in some way.
Tags: Merijn van der Leeuw