It appears as though Trump has not merely forgotten or neglected to act; rather, he has made a considered decision against doing so. Put differently, his chosen course of action is not to act. Viewed this way, the key question is why he has decided against defending the nation. Does he have a comprehensible, legitimate justification relating to foreign policy, domestic governance, or America’s national security? In that case, his only offense may be maladministration. Or are his motives largely or entirely illegitimate?

In our view, it would be appropriate to impeach a president who ignores a nation’s attacks on our democracy because he hopes that nation will help him (or his political party) at the polls or in future business endeavors; or because he fears compromising the legitimacy of his own election; or because that nation has some kind of actual or suspected leverage over him or his family. Trump’s motives for adopting this policy of apparent inaction are therefore worthy of investigation.

Any such investigation should also encompass the other elements of “high Crimes and Misdemeanors.” Many nations engage in intelligence and cyber operations directed at the United States.