Accountability and unity

Our friend Keith has perfectly echoed my own thoughts, and likely many of yours as well. His words are so very apt … certain members of Congress would do well to listen to Keith … hmmm … perhaps he should run for office! Thanks, Keith!

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Republican Senator Mitt Romney said yesterday, we cannot have unity without accountability. Yet, some Republican Senators are still echoing the planned fraud by the former president on the American people claiming unproven voter fraud. Others are saying the former president should not stand trial in the Senate.

As for those who do not want to hold the former president accountable, here is metaphor who uses a crying toddler example with intent.

-The toddler cried to anyone who would listen he was cheated.

-He took all measures he could to say he was cheated, unable to prove such.

-He bullied other toddlers to go along with him or he would be mean to them.

-He invited the tin soldiers to his room having wound them up for two months.

-He revved them up some more. Then he pointed them at the perceived enemy and sicced them to go do harm.

-Then…

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“This is not an America I recognize” says Republican Chris Krebs

More than a few times over the past year, I have said that this is no longer a country I recognize, no longer one of which I am proud to be a citizen. Turns out, I am not alone. Please take a minute to read Keith’s excellent post about Chris Krebs who is speaking out for our democratic principles. Thanks, Keith!

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In an article by Josh Feldman of Media-ite called “Chris Krebs Pleads With His Fellow Republicans to Push Back on Election Conspiracies: ‘This is Not an America I Recognize,’” Krebs testimony at the Senate Homeland Security hearing led by Chair Ron Johnson (R), his words are telling. Here are a few paragraphs.

Chris Krebs, the former DHS top cyber official who PresidentDonald Trumpfired after he publicly and repeatedly debunked election misinformation, pleaded with his fellow Republicans during Wednesday’s Senate hearing to quit spewing conspiracies.

While more Republicans have started to acknowledgeJoe Bidenwon the election, a significant number of them are still digging in on the president’s baseless claims of widespread voter fraud.

The hearing Wednesday comes in the wake of judge after judge —including ones appointed by the president —completely rejecting the fraud claims brought by the Trump legal team and other allies…

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Get Mad!!!!!!!

Much has been said in the past two days about the fact that Trump seems poised to reject the results of the November election and to plant himself in our government as an autocratic leader, ala Adolf Hitler or more recently Vladimir Putin.  Here’s what he told a reporter in response to a question of whether he will commit to a peaceful transition of power if he loses the election …

trump-caricature“You know that I’ve been complaining very strongly about the ballots and the ballots are a disaster. Get rid of the ballots and you’ll have a very … there won’t be a transfer, frankly. There’ll be a continuation … the ballots are out of control.”

Now, this isn’t really anything new.  Your blood probably reached a boiling point when you heard this, as did mine, but after a while I realized what this all is.  First and foremost, what his little tirade tells me is that he is scared, that he is fairly certain he will lose the election to Joe Biden.  As well he should be.  But he is a bully.  All his life he has gotten his way by being a big playground bully, by lying, cheating, and making inane threats … by instilling fear.

So, what does he hope to accomplish?  He hopes to make those of us who have a desire for a fair and honest election, those of us who believe in the U.S. Constitution, afraid.  He hopes we will panic, for people in a panic tend to act stupidly.  One thing he hopes to achieve is to reduce the number of people who vote, especially those who plan to vote by mail.  He hopes people will assume their votes, their ballots, won’t be counted, so why bother?  Some may fall into that trap, but frankly I like to think that those of us who stand against authoritarianism are smart enough to see through his rhetoric.

To set the record straight, there is no evidence whatsoever of voter fraud either in 2016 or 2018, and there is zero evidence that any is likely to take place in this election.  Trump makes things up.  He lies.  He is a habitual liar who says whatever he thinks will help whatever his cause-of-the-day is and who wouldn’t recognize the truth if it smacked him in the ass.

Second, I was pleased to see even congressional republicans deny that Trump could seize power in denial of the election results …

“The president says crazy stuff. We’ve always had a peaceful transition of power. It’s not going to change.” –  Senator Ben Sasse (Nebraska)

Even ol’ Mitchie had to weigh in on the side of justice this time …

“The winner of the November 3rd election will be inaugurated on January 20th. There will be an orderly transition just as there has been every four years since 1792.” – Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (Kentucky)

“No question that all the people sworn to support the Constitution would assure that there would be a peaceful transition of power.” – Senator Mitt Romney (Utah)

“Well, Republicans believe in the rule of law, we believe in the Constitution, and that’s what dictates what happens.” – Senator John Thune (South Dakota)

“As we have done for over two centuries we will have a legitimate & fair election It may take longer than usual to know the outcome, but it will be a valid one And at noon on Jan 20, 2021 we will peacefully swear in the President.” – Senator Marco Rubio (Florida)

“Throughout America’s history, the peaceful transition of power has been a hallmark of our democracy. This year, both candidates must commit to abiding by the results, no matter the outcome.” – Senator Rob Portman (Ohio)

It should be noted that none actually had the cojones to condemn Trump for his seditious rhetoric.  The question arises … will they find a pair in order to do the right thing in the event that Trump actually attempts to deny the election results?  I don’t know, but frankly folks, we’ve got bigger things to worry about for the next five weeks.  We need to work on making sure every eligible voter either votes absentee or gets off their asses on November 3rd and goes out and votes!

This is the key.  Trump’s approval rating is in the 40% range, and is likely to dip again soon, as the number of coronavirus cases rise and the vaccine that he has been promising either doesn’t materialize or is not approved by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA).  If every person who doesn’t approve of the job Trump has done, who sees the demolition of the nation, who rejects his authoritarian regime, goes out and votes for Joe Biden, there can be no doubt who is the clear winner of the November election.

But if we let his hate speech, his purely delusional rhetoric reduce us to a state of fear and panic, then we will not have the strength left to do what needs to be done.  Forget him!  (I actually wanted to use a different “f-word” there but bit my fingertips – thanks Keith!) Don’t play into his hand!  Laugh at him.  Treat him as he deserves to be treated – like a recalcitrant toddler.  Remember that he is naught but a hired hand, a paid public servant who serves at the pleasure of We the People!  I don’t know about you, but personally I’m ready to fire this bastard (sorry, Keith).

Yes, there is reason to be concerned by this sort of authoritarian talk, but if we let it paralyze us, then all is lost.  Let’s address the situation calmly and rationally, in contrast to Trump’s own demeanor.  Meanwhile, let’s keep our eye on the ball, meaning convincing everyone you know that they simply must vote this time ‘round.  That is the main thing we can do.  The other thing is keep those letters, emails, and phone calls to your members of Congress going, let them know that you expect them to uphold a higher standard and to uphold our right to have our voices heard as per the Constitution.

Briefly, don’t get sad, get mad!  Be angry!  But don’t let it paralyze you, and don’t give up.  Together, we are strong, we can overcome the evil that has overtaken our nation for the past four years.  And if you need something to smile about, picture in your mind the Metro police leading Trump out of the White House in chains on January 20th!trump-prison

Think Trump’s Not Moving Toward Total Autocracy? This International Analyst Knows the Signs Too Well…

Earlier today, I re-blogged a post from Annie of annieasksyou fame, and this evening I am sharing another. Annie has collected a series of observations made by International Analyst Michael McFaul that paint a picture that is … chilling. Please do take a minute to check it out. Thanks again, Annie!

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Michael McFaul, Stanford University

[Note from Annie:I’ve extracted from Twitter a series of observations made by Michael McFaul last week after viewing the Republican National Convention that I think form a compelling picture of the dangers we’ll face if we don’t remove President Trump from office in November.(The emphases are mine.)

McFaul served as Special Assistant to President Obama and Senior Director for Russian and Eurasian Affairs at the National Security Council at the White House from 2009 to 2012, and then as the United States Ambassador to Russia from 2012 to 2014. The author of several books and an academic at Stanford, he cites his research interests as American foreign policy, great power relations, and the relationship between democracy and development.]

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For those of us who study autocracies, including elections in autocracies, there were a lot of familiar messages, symbols, and methods on display this week…

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Trump’s Attack On Democracy

While Donald Trump claims to be the “law and order” president, he has broken the law and breached the U.S. Constitution more than a few times, especially last week in Portland, Oregon. Charles French provides us with a chilling assessment of where this could lead. Thank you, Charles, for this excellent post, and your generous permission to share it with my readers.

charles french words reading and writing

flag of america (Photo by Sharefaith on Pexels.com)

What happened the other night in Portland, Oregon should have all Americans who believe in the Constitution, Freedom, and Democracy outraged and frightened. Please do not divert the subject by speaking about “riots”. That is an issue that is addressed by local and state authorities, not the Federal Government.  The President does not seem to care about the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America.

The Fourth Amendment says, “The right of the people to  be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

Having Federal agents, wearing police insignia without identification of person or office arresting people without warrants and taking…

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Saturday’s Snarky Snippets

nightmareThe weekend is here and one of my readers told me I should ‘relax’.  Relax???  What the heck is that?  I’ve got laundry to do, need to get out and get some Mother’s Day cards, and just because it’s a weekend, the news cycle doesn’t stop … there is still much out there to stir my ire and make me snarky (or perhaps snarky is just my natural personality?).  So, here are a couple of snippets for you to ponder upon …


Last year, various committees of the House of Representatives sought witness testimony from people in the know about Trump’s gross negligence and abuse of power.  They asked people to please come and testify, under oath.  Few did.  They issued subpoenas.  Few were honoured.  Why?  Because Donald Trump ordered them not to testify.  A few found their cojones and testified anyway, but very few.  First, this was an abuse of power, but since he has surrounded himself with ‘yes-men’, he got by with it.  But more to the point, if you have nothing to hide, then why on earth would you stop people from testifying honestly and clearing your name?  Thus, the only conclusion was that Donald Trump was a corrupt, likely criminal person who holds the highest office in the land, despite having lost the election by nearly 3 million votes.

fauciWhy, you ask, am I re-hashing old territory?  Because it’s happening again.  The House Appropriations Committee, looking into the government’s bungled response to the coronavirus, requested testimony by Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.  Dr. Fauci has been a prominent figure, until recently, at Trump’s daily ‘press briefings’ and has been the only one willing to correct Trump’s erroneous statements, the only one willing to tell the public the truth.  But … Trump will not allow Dr. Fauci to testify.  The committee is looking into the government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, the chaos that followed Trump’s obfuscation and lies, the resulting excessive deaths that might not have happened, if the leader of the nation had used halfway good judgment.  For Trump to forbid Dr. Fauci from testifying is yet another example of obstruction of justice and abuse of power, but … that is the norm for this administration.  Are we really willing to, as Mick Mulvaney suggested we should, just “get over it”?  I’m not.

fauci-2From what I’ve seen, Dr. Fauci seems to be a straight shooter who isn’t afraid to tell the truth, who isn’t afraid to correct or contradict Trump.  I would like to think that he will do the right thing and voluntarily testify, despite Trump’s orders.  Will he?  Does he have cojones, or is he just another coward like Don McGahn, Wilbur Ross, and others whose loyalties lie directly to Donald Trump, and not the people of this nation?


White House press secretaries … ho-hum

In past administrations, there have been some very reputable people in the position of White House Press Secretary.  Not so in the Trump administration.  It began with Sean Spicer who was the first in the administration, on inauguration day, to utter an ‘alternative fact’, to be defined as such the next day by the ignominious Kellyanne Conway.  Sean said the crowds for Trump’s inauguration were the biggest ever, or bigger than Obama’s in 2009, or some such nonsense which was so far from the truth as to be laughable.

Then came the hateful Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who defended the indefensible for nearly two years.  If Trump said “Jump!”, she asked, “How high, sir?”  Presumably it took a toll on her and she left in July of 2019.

Next up was Melania’s personal servant, Stephanie Grisham who held the title and received the pay for nine months, but never held the first press briefing, and in fact turned her nose up at reporters and screeched at them like a banshee.  She really doesn’t even count, except that We the People paid her out of our own hard-earned tax dollars.

mcenanyAnd now, we have a new one … rather an idiot, if you ask me.  Her name is Kayleigh McEnany and she held her first press briefing yesterday.  Now, she started out by promising that there would be more press briefings than there have been for the past year.  Um … there have been none for the past 13 months, so she already beat that average.  She also made another ‘promise’ …

“I will never lie to you. You have my word on that.”

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And then she proceeded to tell a lie, that the Mueller investigation had amounted to “the complete and total exoneration of  … Trump.”  And then she told another lie, referring to “salacious, awful and verifiably false allegations that were made against Justice Kavanaugh.”  And another that “not a single American has died for lack of a ventilator.”  After a few more lies and misquotes, she ended with …

“Everyone should watch the Fox News town hall with the president from 7 to 9 p.m. [on Sunday]. It will be can’t-miss television, much like the highly rated President Trump coronavirus task force briefings have been.”

I would rather take a bath in a puddle of pig manure than waste two hours of my life watching that crap!  And “highly rated … briefings”?????  They have been the brunt of jokes and criticisms, for they have not been briefings, but campaign rallies, ego trips for the Oaf in the Oval Office!  Ms. McEnany fits right in with the concept of Trump staff … no concept of the difference between fact and fiction, and a blind loyalty to a ‘man’ who deserves none.  My prediction is that she will be even more obnoxious and disgusting than Sarah Huckabee Sanders was, and that’s a pretty tough act to beat.


Well, folks, it’s Saturday, so I will stop at only two snippets today and leave you with a ‘toon.  Have a happy weekend!toon

YOU’RE FIRED!!!

 

We the People
Sea to Shining Sea
United State

Mr. Donald F. Trump
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, D.C. 20500

29 March 2020

Dear Mr. Trump,

We the People regret to inform you that your services will no longer be needed.  We understood in the beginning, more than three years ago, that you were inexperienced and new to this type of work, and we decided after your first big mistakes that you would need time to grow into the job.  We have given you that time … more than three years of time … but instead of growing into the job, you have become increasingly inept and incompetent.

It would take more than this letter to list all the many mistakes you have made, but let us clarify a few of the worst:

  • Constantly demeaning citizens of this nation who are, technically, your employers. This has included lying about them and name-calling reminiscent of a junior high student.
  • Unprecedented racism and bigotry that is far beneath the dignity of your position and damaging to the continuity of this nation.
  • The terrible things you have allowed to happen to immigrants who came here seeking asylum, seeking to make a better life for their families. You tore their children out of their very arms, threw them in cages, and thus far six of those children have died as a result.  Not only was this in violation of the laws of this country, but it qualifies as international ‘crimes against humanity’.
  • When you were hired, it was made clear to you that you must step away from your own businesses for the duration of your employment with us, but instead, you have used our money to fund your own businesses, with nearly-every-weekend visits to your Florida resort, requiring your staff and Secret Service protection to pay you for the “privilege” of traveling with you.
  • A man is judged by the company he keeps, and to date a number of your companions and associates are in prison, or soon will be. This speaks volumes to us about your character, or rather lack thereof.
  • On at least eight occasions you have directly incited violence, calling on people to attack those who criticized you. In addition, you have made utterly ridiculous videos of yourself that you posted on Twitter … again, something we would expect of a 13-year-old boy, not a public office-holder.
  • One of the most important aspects of your job is honesty and integrity, and you have failed miserably in both. It would take a book to enumerate every instance, but suffice it to say that your employers no longer trust or believe a word you say.
  • Your negligence cost nearly 3,000 lives in Puerto Rico in 2017-2018 after Hurricane Maria. In addition, your bungling and mishandling of the situation with the coronavirus pandemic has already cost thousands of lives and we cannot even begin to estimate what the ultimate death toll will be.  Many of those lives would have been saved if you had not allowed your greed and ego to get in the way of taking appropriate action.
  • Your predecessor implemented some excellent regulations to, along with every other nation on the planet, work toward reversing the damages caused by years of burning carbon-based fossil fuels. Within a matter of weeks after accepting your job, you destroyed almost every one of those regulations and have contributed significantly to the decline of the air we breathe, water we drink, and the safety of the food we eat.  It is almost as if you are willfully attempting to kill your employers.
  • You have acted without dignity or compunction toward our friends and allies, and as a result we no longer have the respect or trust of the very friends who we may someday need to be able to call on for help. Meanwhile, you have cozied up to our enemies and acted without the oversight of Congress, which we mandated when we hired you.

All in all, Mr. Trump, you have been given more than ample time to prove yourself up to the task, and in every single instance, you have failed.  You have abused your power, and devalued the office you hold. As a result of your failures, we are left with a debt of more than $25 trillion and a large number of terrible messes that will take decades to clean up.  Therefore, we are requesting your resignation, effective immediately, to be submitted in writing to We the People in care of The Washington Post.

You will have exactly one week, until Sunday, April 5th, to remove your family and personal belongings from the residence we provided you at the above address.  Your possessions will be closely checked by White House security to ensure that you take only that which belongs to you and your family.  Any damages found after you have left will be billed to you through your attorney.

You will receive one month’s severance pay, but we cannot provide Secret Service protection once you are gone, as we have done for all of your predecessors, as you have bankrupted the country and we simply cannot afford it.

Best wishes for your future endeavours,

We-the-People

Disappointment – letter to a GOP Senator

Our friend Keith has written a letter to his senator that is excellent. I plan to adapt his letter to send to my own senator, and thought some of you might be interested as well. Thanks, Keith!

musingsofanoldfart

Senator Burr, as an independent and former Republican, I have voted for you in the past. I have applauded you when you have gone out of your way to be bipartisan, especially with your and Mark Warner’s handling of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

I did not expect the Senate to remove Donald Trump, even though the testimony I have seen and his actions to block evidence and witnesses indicate someone who is guilty. The why question I want an answer to is why did the White House try to bury the infamous phone call, if it was so perfect? And, frankly, I am troubled that we have a shadow diplomacy going on which keeps our diplomats in the dark. I would say this if the person was Mother Teresa, but Rudy Giuliani is a far cry from her exemplar.

What does trouble me is the insistence that the president…

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You Gotta Do What You Gotta Do

Among my favourite columnists is Eugene Robinson, writing for The Washington Post.  He is a seasoned journalist with over 30 years at The Post, and his opinions are most always thoughtful and well-reasoned.  His column of last Thursday is no exception and summarizes nicely the reason that the impeachment cannot be allowed to fail.  As of this writing, 158 House republicans have said they plan to vote against impeachment, and the 39 who have not yet opined are likely to vote against.  Among democrats in the House, 165 have affirmed that they will vote for impeachment, 19 are sitting on the fence, and 48 have yet to say.  Oh, and let us not forget Representative Jeff Van Drew of New Jersey who has noted that he will be voting against impeaching Trump.  So, the full House vote is as yet uncertain, but I believe that there will be a majority and that Trump will be impeached, despite objections and moronic outcries by the republicans in Congress.  Anyway, I digress … here is what Mr. Robinson has to say on the subject …

The full House has no choice but to impeach Trump

Eugene-RobinsonEugene Robinson

Columnist

Dec. 12, 2019 at 7:37 p.m. EST

You gotta do what you gotta do. The choice that faced the House Judiciary Committee throughout Thursday’s endless debate was a simple one: Either we believe in democracy and the rule of law, or we don’t.

The president’s defenders are correct when they say “abuse of power” and “obstruction of Congress” are not statutory crimes. They are, in fact, worse. The stripped-down impeachment articles against President Trump go to the heart of his blatant misconduct, which poses a direct challenge to the Constitution. I know that sounds grandiose to describe the offenses of such a small man as Trump. But it is true.

One could make the case that many of our presidents have abused their power in one way or another. I believe the framers of the Constitution would be appalled, for example, that since World War II, we have sent so many troops to fight and die in so many conflicts without a formal declaration of war by Congress. I believe they would be outraged that presidents can make so much law, unilaterally, by calling it regulation. But then again, maybe not. Perhaps Madison and Jefferson would approve of the way the presidency has evolved. We really have no way of knowing.

We do know, however, that the founders worried a president might corruptly misuse the powers of his office to keep himself in office. That is a principal reason the impeachment clause was written. And it is precisely what Trump tried to do.

Not just in one phone call but over a period of months, Trump tried to coerce a foreign government into fabricating a scandal that would tarnish former vice president Joe Biden, the potential rival who most threatened Trump’s reelection. Trump conditioned official acts — the release of nearly $400 million in military aid, along with a desperately sought White House meeting — on Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s compliance with his demands.

Incredibly, this was after the conclusion of a two-year investigation into whether Trump and his campaign had solicited the help of another foreign government, that of Russia, to win the 2016 election. The probe by former special counsel Robert S. Mueller III proved that Trump welcomed and encouraged Russian aid but not that he or his campaign participated in a conspiracy. Mueller did turn up reams of evidence, however, that Trump had obstructed justice in trying to shut the investigation down.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) adamantly refused to open an impeachment inquiry after the Mueller probe. “He’s just not worth it,” she said, meaning that holding Trump accountable for the crimes Mueller uncovered was not worth the trauma that impeachment would inevitably put the country through.

When Trump’s Ukraine bribery scheme came to light, however, the opening of an impeachment process went instantly from impossible to inevitable. It was indeed bribery, by the way, both as I believe the founders understood the crime and as the current federal bribery statute defines it. But Pelosi and the House impeachment managers decided to charge Trump instead with abuse of power, because that is a more grievous injury to the Constitution. Trump was elected to be a public servant, and he is acting like an autocrat.

Trump and his defenders have made a lot of noise but have not even produced quasi-plausible Trumpian “alternative facts” to dispute the real ones. Acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney said we should all just “get over it.” Unfortunately for Trump, the Constitution does not allow that option.

The Constitution gives the House the “sole” power of impeachment. Yet Trump, unlike prior presidents who faced impeachment inquiries, has brazenly ordered the White House and the rest of the executive branch to refuse to provide documents and witnesses the House has demanded. Hence the charge of obstruction of Congress, which is another grave offense.

The separation-of-powers framework ensures that the three equal branches of our government will be engaged in a permanent struggle, preventing any one from obtaining primacy. But it does not allow Trump to avoid impeachment and removal from office simply by refusing to give the House access to the information it needs to decide whether to impeach. Any future president who committed “high crimes and misdemeanors” would surely do the same.

The Senate may fail to take the charges seriously, but House members will have done their duty. It is a constitutional imperative that Trump go down in history as one of just three presidents to be impeached.

The Scope Of Impeachment

The big question about Trump’s impeachment is whether the scope should be narrow or broad.  Initially, Nancy Pelosi seemed determined to keep the focus on Trump’s attempts to bribe/blackmail Ukrainian President Zelenskyy for personal gain.  That, in and of itself, is enough for impeachment, but there is so much more … should the House expand the horizon and include Trump’s other violations of his oath of office?  There are mixed feelings about it among the experts and journalists.  Today, I would like to share New York Times columnist David Leonhardt’s view, for it is one with which I largely agree.

The Eight Counts of Impeachment That Trump Deserves

The lessons from Nixon and Clinton.

david-leonhardtBy David Leonhardt

Opinion Columnist

During Watergate, the House Judiciary Committee considered five articles of impeachment against Richard Nixon — and voted down two of them. During the impeachment of Bill Clinton, the House voted on four articles — and rejected two.

That history serves as a reminder that impeachment is not a neat process. It’s a chance for Congress and voters to hear the evidence against a president and decide which rise to the level of an impeachable offense.

My own instincts have leaned toward a targeted, easily understandable case against President Trump, focused on Ukraine. And that may still be the right call. But the House shouldn’t default to it without considering a larger airing of Trump’s crimes against the Constitution. A longer process, with more attention on his misdeeds, seems unlikely to help Trump’s approval rating.

So last week I posed a question to legal experts: If the House were going to forget about political tactics and impeach Trump strictly on the merits, how many articles of impeachment would there be?

I think the answer is eight — eight thematic areas, most of which include more than one violation.

In making the list, I erred on the side of conservatism. I excluded gray areas from the Mueller report, like the Trump campaign’s flirtation with Russian operatives. I also excluded all areas of policy, even the forcible separation of children from their parents, and odious personal behavior, like Trump’s racism, that doesn’t violate the Constitution.

Yet the list is still extensive, which underscores Trump’s thorough unfitness for the presidency. He rejects the basic ideals of American government, and he is damaging the national interest, at home and abroad. Here’s the list:

  1. Obstruction of justice.

Both the Nixon and Clinton articles included the phrase “prevented, obstructed, and impeded the administration of justice,” and Trump’s impeachment should start with his pattern of obstructing investigations.

He has admitted that he fired the F.B.I. director to influence the investigation of his own campaign. He has harassed Justice Department officials who are Russia experts, including Andrew McCabe and Bruce Ohr. Trump also directed his White House counsel to lie about their conversations over whether to fire Robert Mueller. Most recently, the White House tried to hide evidence about Trump’s phone call with Ukraine’s president, by improperly classifying material about it.

  1. Contempt of Congress.

Another article of impeachment against Nixon said that he had “failed without lawful cause” to cooperate with a congressional investigation. Trump has gone much further than Nixon, outright refusing to participate in the constitutionally prescribed impeachment process. As a result, the country still doesn’t know the full truth of the Ukraine scandal.

  1. Abuse of power.

The House will almost certainly adopt a version of this article, impeaching Trump for turning American foreign policy into a grubby opposition-research division of his campaign.

The most haunting part is that if a courageous whistle-blower hadn’t come forward, Trump most likely would have gotten away with it. He would have pressured the Ukrainian government to announce an investigation of the Bidens, and we in the media would have played along, producing the headlines that Trump wanted to see.

  1. Impairing the administration of justice.

That phrase appears in the second impeachment article against Nixon, which detailed his efforts to use the I.R.S., F.B.I. and others to hound his opponents. It’s a version of abuse of power — but distinct from the previous item because it involves using the direct investigatory powers of the federal government.

Trump has repeatedly called for investigations against his political opponents, both in public and in private with aides. For example, as the Mueller report documented, he pressured Jeff Sessions, then the attorney general, to investigate Hillary Clinton: “You’d be a hero,” Trump said. This behavior has violated the constitutional rights of American citizens and undermined the credibility of the judicial system.

  1. Acceptance of emoluments.

The Constitution forbids the president from profiting off the office by accepting “emoluments.” Yet Trump continues to own his hotels, allowing politicians, lobbyists and foreigners to enrich him and curry favor with him by staying there. On Sunday, William Barr, the attorney general, personally paid for a 200-person holiday party at Trump’s hotel in downtown Washington.

The Democratic-controlled House has done an especially poor job of calling attention to this corruption. It hasn’t even conducted good oversight hearings — a failure that, as Bob Bauer, an N.Y.U. law professor and former White House counsel, told me, “is just astonishing.”

  1. Corruption of elections.

Very few campaign-finance violations are impeachable. But $280,000 in undisclosed hush-money payments during a campaign’s final weeks isn’t a normal campaign-finance violation. The 2016 election was close enough — decided by fewer than 80,000 votes across three swing states — that the silence those payments bought may well have flipped the outcome.

  1. Abuse of pardons.

The president has wide latitude to issue pardons. But Trump has done something different: He has encouraged people to break the law (or impede investigations) with a promise of future pardons.

And he didn’t do it only during the Russia investigation. He also reportedly told federal officials to ignore the law and seize private land for his border wall, waving away their worries with pardon promises.

  1. Conduct grossly incompatible with the presidency.

This is the broadest item on the list, and I understand if some people are more comfortable with the narrower ones. But the “grossly incompatible” phrase comes from a 1974 House Judiciary Committee report justifying impeachment. It also captures Trump’s subversion of the presidency.

He lies constantly, eroding the credibility of the office. He tries to undermine any independent information that he does not like, which weakens our system of checks and balances. He once went so far as to say that federal law-enforcement agents and prosecutors regularly fabricated evidence — a claim that damages the credibility of every criminal investigation.

You may have forgotten about that particular violation of his oath of office, because Trump commits so many of them. Which is all the more reason to make an effort to hold him accountable.