OPINION – I cannot say that I watched or followed the Clinton impeachment proceedings in 1998. I didn’t pay much attention to politics back then. I was also deeply engrossed at the time, in the early months of what has become 21 years of consecutive employment with my current employer. Anybody who watched television, read the paper even on occasion, or listened to the radio however, knew about Bill Clinton’s relationship with Monica Lewinsky.
I was only one when articles of impeachment were brought forward against Richard Nixon in 1974. Nixon of course would resign before being impeached.
None of us were around for Andrew Johnson in 1868 who along with Clinton and likely Trump, were never removed from office by the Senate leaving Nixon as the only President whose presidency was affected by impeachment proceedings.
As someone who is now much more involved in politics, I couldn’t resist watching these historical proceedings as much as I could this time around. It wasn’t easy. Listening to one side speak for me as it may have been for you, was like cringing at the sound of someone scratching their nails on the chalkboard. Considering time to address the House mostly rotated back and forth between Democrats and Republicans, half of every hour watched (or listened to), was excruciatingly painful. Who is kidding who? It all was.
You may have mostly disagreed with one side, while the other may have spoken to your own ideals of how a country should be led and how its leader should engage with the public both foreign, and domestic.
I am not going to divulged where my vote would have landed on the final ballot. I feel it’s more important that we have a conversation rather than fight over sides because as we saw through debate and votes on both articles of impeachment, the Democrats on the left mostly stuck together (except one who voted with the Dems and crossed the floor completely), and the Republicans on the right remained united as well.
Whether there were others on either side who were torn between voting with their party or for or against impeachment, may remain unknown. Once again however, the party facing impeachment (Republicans) completely voted against, while a few Democrats (albeit less than the numbers Clinton received), also voted against.
You likely have your views as to whether the Democrats have been on a witch hunt for Trump, or whether Trump is guilty on the articles of impeachment or how he has lead the United States of America including the treatment of others, but I find it hard to believe that Democrats (Liberals) and Republicans (Conservatives) look at the same President and see two different people; one they hold in high regard or one they despise.
If we bring religion into the conversation (which I do as an agnostic myself), in general, conservatives are known to be more religious than all political leanings. Evangelical Protestants hold second in the category of Political Ideology by Religious Group by a small margin to the Mormon’s. That is why when the Evangelical publication Christianity Today called for the removal of Trump from office, I was intrigued to read what they had to say on both the Trump and Clinton impeachments.
The full article can be found at:
Here are a couple of quotes that caught my attention from this article:
“We want CT to be a place that welcomes Christians from across the political spectrum, and reminds everyone that politics is not the end and purpose of our being.” ~ Mark Galli, Christianity Today (CT)
“That he should be removed, we believe, is not a matter of partisan loyalties but loyalty to the Creator of the Ten Commandments.” ~ Mark Galli, Christianity Today (CT)
Here are a few quotes from the 1998 article about then President Bill Clinton, The Prodigal Who Didn’t Come Home:
“The President’s failure to tell the truth—even when cornered—rips at the fabric of the nation. This is not a private affair. For above all, social intercourse is built on a presumption of trust: trust that the milk your grocer sells you is wholesome and pure; trust that the money you put in your bank can be taken out of the bank; trust that your babysitter, firefighters, clergy, and ambulance drivers will all do their best. And while politicians are notorious for breaking campaign promises, while in office they have a fundamental obligation to uphold our trust in them and to live by the law.” ~ Editorial,Christianity Today (CT)
“If, as some observers have suggested, Clinton’s life bears the marks of addiction, this lack of remorse is understandable, since addictive personalities are skilled at denial and often refuse to acknowledge their problem even when cornered and confronted.” ~ Christianity Today (CT)
“We learned that he’d been operating several commandments short of a decalogue.” ~ Editorial, Christianity Today (CT) 1998
At some point, the articles of impeachment will face trial in the Senate. All indications with the way the Senate is represented, are that Trump will not be removed from office and impeachment will once again be nothing more than a couple of post-nominal letters next to his name like PhD, CCC, LLM, ImP.
I ask that decision-makers debate not as a Democrat, reason not as a Republican, but do cast yea or nay as a human who believes that those who lead should act in accordance to certain rule, and that everyone has a basic right to be treated with respect and dignity regardless of your personal views. That no person should be judged as you are not yourself perfect. That a leader should be able to brush off the harshest of criticism with humble reflection, or rebut in kindness in the darkest of hours.
Now is not a time to vote in accordance to color, but rather with the vision of how you want the world to see your countries leadership on a moral and guiding compass.
I cannot believe that the left or right are so completely in accordance with political affiliation on matters as critical as this because joint should at least be our belief in basic human demeanor with regards to how our highest positions govern and talk to and about others through their daily social discord.
Remove President Trump from office or don’t, but do find some common belief during the Senate trial of how a country should morally be governed regardless of rules and rights of religion and law; principled in confident humility.
“If civilization is to survive, we must cultivate the science of human relationships – the ability of all peoples, of all kinds, to live together, in the same world at peace.” ~ Franklin D. Roosevelt
“Character is like a tree and reputation like a shadow. The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing.” ~ Abraham Lincoln