Seth Abramson @SethAbramson @Newsweek columnist. Analyses @BBC. NYT bestselling author of Proof of Conspiracy (bit.ly/2kP6FkZ). Next: Citizen Journalist (Macmillan). Professor. Attorney. Oct. 01, 2019 2 min read

1/ This is absurd. Whatever Democrats talked about impeaching Trump for that they don't impeach him for they appear to forgive and therefore condone. Trump will crow endlessly and claim exoneration. No reason not to include everything and let each voter latch onto what they wish.

2/ I'll prove it. Support for impeachment didn't suddenly rise by 12 points because Americans suddenly understood the Ukraine scandal, but because Democrats suddenly got so serious about impeachment that the grounds for impeachment was everywhere in the news and voters responded.

3/ Voters hate *loose talk*. If months from now an Article of Impeachment is passed alleging a violation of the Emoluments Clause, voters will take it seriously; frankly, it's not a confusing allegation. The same is true with obstruction. Voters *aren't* as stupid as some think.

4/ It's a grave misunderstanding of the American public to think that they deeply considered every possible ground for impeachment and rejected them all except for Ukraine. No, what happened is that most voters saw impeachment as a fantasy until suddenly they realized it wasn't.

5/ Like Renato, I tried cases. And my understanding of juries differs from his. If the theme of an impeachment is going to be abuse of power, and if undergirding emoluments violations and obstruction is the idea Trump abuses power, more evidence rather than less is what you want.

6/ Ask anyone who knows anything about trial advocacy: prosecutors, like Renato, famously *hate* juries, preferring bench trials; meanwhile, defense attorneys (like me) famously *love* juries and give them far more credit for being intelligent then prosecutors. You see that here.

7/ I have great faith that an abuse of power-themed impeachment with numerous facets will be consistent with what many already think of Trump. Each American will latch onto a different Article that angers them the most, and there's nothing wrong with that. That's how juries work.

8/ I think what certain analysts do is they wait to see how a situation is *likely* to play out, and then, once it's a fait accompli, they write an article saying that's how it *should* play out. A different sort of analyst asks how a situation *should* play out and explains why.

9/ We're playing for *history* now. Our decisions will resonate for *generations*. You don't forgive crimes on the hope that some crazy GOP idiot in the Senate who's never shown a conscience votes with you 6 months from now. You can't control that. You can only do what's *right*.

10/ Finally, I'll say this: it's *fine* for Democrats to highlight one Article over the others in public discourse and public appearances, because they consider it the most egregious. That doesn't mean you have to "disappear" the others, thereby tossing away your principles. /end

PS/ To be clear, no part of this thread is advocating that the Democrats pass any Article of Impeachment that is *not* overwhelmingly proven by the facts (i.e. at least "clear and convincing" proof, to use a legal term that roughly equates to 70% certainty that a thing occurred).

PS2/ The only ones who can with honor say Democrats should only impeach over Ukraine are those who prior to the revelation of the Ukraine scandal felt there were *no* valid grounds for impeachment. Basic ethics (and the Oath lawyers take to the Constitution) make that very clear.


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