Democrats argue that Trump can’t stay in office because he’s such a threat to the integrity of our elections. But the portrayal of Trump’s Ukraine scheme as “election interference,” as the Democrats always say, is tendentious and inapt. Trump wasn’t asking the Ukrainians to manufacture dirt on Joe Biden, or to hack the Biden campaign’s email servers. If the Ukrainians had complied with the Trump team’s pressure to publicly announce an investigation of the energy company Burisma, it wouldn’t have changed one vote in 2020, even if the former vice president eventually is the Democratic nominee (obviously not a foregone conclusion).
Trump would have trumpeted such an investigation as proof of Biden corruption, but it’s not clear this would have added anything material to his already fulsome allegations of Biden corruption.
The fact is that impeachment, as my colleague Ramesh Ponnuru points out, is a weak check on the presidency. It requires a supermajority of the country to remove a president and one of the political parties being willing to nullify the choice of its own voters for president and an election he won. Both the Trump and Clinton impeachments show that this is a hateful prospect for the president’s party, and an insuperable obstacle to impeachment and removal unless the president is guilty of misconduct that truly shocks the conscience of the entire country.