Now That It’s All Over, Sure, We Can Admit That Trump Was Guilty All Along

Sen. Lamar Alexander, profile in courage.Stefani Reynolds/CNP via ZUMA

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

Whether or not you think Donald Trump should be impeached over Ukrainegate, Jonah Goldberg says there’s no question that he’s guilty as charged:

Sens. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Marco Rubio (R- Fla.) were the first out of the block to explain that the president is guilty but shouldn’t be ousted for it….In his statement, [Alexander] said the House managers “have proved [the charges] with what they call a ‘mountain of overwhelming evidence.’” In an interview with NBC’s “Meet the Press,” Alexander dismissed the need for more witnesses. “If you have eight witnesses who say someone left the scene of an accident, why do you need nine? I mean, the question for me was: Do I need more evidence to conclude that the president did what he did? And I concluded no.”

Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) agreed with Alexander’s position, telling reporters that he speaks for “lots and lots of us.” I somehow doubt there will be a torrent of outrage from Trump World at all of these senators (one never knows with Trump himself) who finally brought themselves to admit the emperor was naked all along.

I don’t doubt this. Now that acquittal is a sure thing, it’s become safe to quietly admit that Trump was guilty all along. The modern GOP is just chock full of profiles in courage.

For myself, I would have been satisfied if this had been the party line all along and Mitch McConnell had engineered a vote of, say, 62-38 for impeachment. This would have meant that Republicans could keep their president, but it also would have sent a clear message that this kind of behavior was bad enough that Trump had only barely survived.

But instead Trump demanded, and Republicans delivered, a complete and utter demonstration of fealty, and that meant a complete and utter defense of Trump’s actions. And this in turn has opened the door for future presidents to demand personal favors in return for official actions. When that happens, Republicans will have no one to blame but themselves.

IT'S NOT THAT WE'RE SCREWED WITHOUT TRUMP:

"It's that we're screwed with or without him if we can't show the public that what we do matters for the long term," writes Mother Jones CEO Monika Bauerlein as she kicks off our drive to raise $350,000 in donations from readers by July 17.

This is a big one for us. It's our first time asking for an outpouring of support since screams of FAKE NEWS and so much of what Trump stood for made everything we do so visceral. Like most newsrooms, we face incredibly hard budget realities, and it's unnerving needing to raise big money when traffic is down.

So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

payment methods

IT'S NOT THAT WE'RE SCREWED WITHOUT TRUMP:

"It's that we're screwed with or without him if we can't show the public that what we do matters for the long term," writes Mother Jones CEO Monika Bauerlein as she kicks off our drive to raise $350,000 in donations from readers by July 17.

This is a big one for us. So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate