The report is unequivocal in concluding that even if Trump is criminally innocent of obstruction, it is not for lack of trying. The main reason the investigation wasn’t completely thwarted was not that the president didn’t “endeavor” to thwart it — the definition of criminal obstruction — but rather that Trump’s subordinates refused to comply.
Consider, for comparison, that a president who ordered the military to destroy his political enemies would undeniably have committed impeachable offenses, even if the military failed to obey the directive. Add to this Trump’s decision to respond to the report by taking a victory lap rather than protecting our election systems from ongoing attack, and the likelihood that he continues to be compromised by leverage (financial or otherwise) from adversaries, and one sees a president indifferent to the security of the nation he is sworn to lead and to the Constitution he is sworn to uphold. Allowing such a president to remain immune not only from indictment but also from removal would betray Congress’s own responsibility to the public it represents.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren was right when she said that impeachment is now a point of principle and duty. Postponing impeachment — even out of fear that a Republican-led Senate will fail to convict — no longer makes sense. Any such postponement would not only be unprincipled. It would also be politically shortsighted.To quote Brutus, “We must take the current when it serves, or lose our ventures.”