The impeachment trial of Donald Trump is underway, and I wanted to offer my predictions of the outcome. I have no crystal ball to make these predictions, but I’d like to think that I have some sense of the relevant actors at play.
First, the outcome. I’m going to say that I expect that Trump will actually be convicted, although I have no idea how long the trial will take (but I don’t actually expect it to be short.) Here is my reasoning on this.
McConnell is a guy who many other senate Republicans will look to in deciding how to vote. McConnell is also guy who loves power, but he’s sharing that power right now with Trump. This leads me to strongly suspect that McConnell would love to see Trump convicted, and never have a chance to run for any public office again. This would, at least for a time, cement McConnell in the position of leading the Republican party.
There’s a problem though: If McConnell appears too eager to convict the Trump supporting base would almost certainly see right through him, along with any other Republican senator who votes to convict. Those senators would almost certainly be at risk of a primary challenge when their next election cycle comes along..
So McConnell is in a bit of a bind. On one hand he likely wants to remove, on the other he can be too obvious about his intent. What does he do? Exactly what he’s doing now: Make the Democrats work hard to prove the guilt of Trump in inciting the January 6th attack, and do nothing to help them. If a compelling case is made I suspect that what will happen in that McConnell will signal that he intends to vote for conviction, and this will lead other Republican senators to join with him. For the old guard, of which I think there are still enough in the Republican party, they have a good reason to convict, and bring the party back from insanity. I full expect that there are a number of senators, like Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz, who are complete write-offs, and will vote to acquit regardless of any evidence presented. I also expect that the end result will be close to the required 67 votes needed for conviction.
In the end, I think the best thing for the future of the Republican party is to convict Donald Trump, and start a purge of Trumpism. If this doesn’t happen expect to see Trump come back for another attempt in 2024, and who knows what will happen then.
What do you think? Do you think I’m totally off base with this prediction? Have a prediction of your own you’d like to share? Let me know in the comments.