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Democrats and Republicans Share Worries About the White House

Opinion by Connor Hartigan '19, Assistant Op/Ed Editor
Looking at some of the events unfolding in the world of 2017, words truly fail.
Just five years ago, would you ever have imagined that getting the President of the United States to condemn Nazis would be an issue - or that Nazis would even be staging rallies in American cities? Would you have imagined that we would be discussing the hacking of our democracy by Russian oligarchs? Would you have imagined that a candidate could have won the presidency after bragging, on tape for all the world to hear, about committing vile sex crimes?

Heck, even
two years ago, I would have struggled to picture any of this. In October 2015, I would have told you that the “silly season” of the 2016 Presidential Campaign was just wrapping up, that Trump was running as a joke to troll Americans, and that he would drop out in a matter of months, laughing at society for treating him with credulity.

Yet, in October 2017, here we are. Trump’s behavior in 
office has been unforgivably unpresidential. For example, when confronted by Pyongyang with nuclear tests, he opted to spew out an incoherent mess having something to do with “fire and fury.” Subsequently, on September 19, Trump stood before the United Nations General Assembly and screamed that he would “totally destroy” North Korea. As if to rub salt in the wounds of decent people everywhere, he dispensed with any pretense of diplomacy and referred to North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-Un, as “Rocket Man.” On October 17, he made a military widow upset by telling her that her husband “knew what he signed up for” - and by forgetting to even mention the fallen soldier’s name.

A leader with any experience in politics, or a desire to govern responsibly, would never contemplate pulling these stunts. Donald
Trump fits neither of those criteria. Does blaming Puerto Rico’s economic policies for the devastation they have experienced under Hurricane Maria absolve him of his duty to the American citizens of the island? His wails about building a border wall - which congressional Democrats will almost certainly never allow to happen - represent an attempt to leave his mark on North America’s physical and historical landscape. In the case of his aggression toward North Korea, his ego could cost the planet’s existence. Even trying to write about him is wearying, due to his unpredictability. It’s like being assigned an analytical paper on The Scarlet Letter, only to have the facts and events of the book change on every reading.

Even Republicans have grown tired of his inabil
ity to govern coherently. He ran on a promise to make the Mexican government pay for his ill-thought-out wall, only to shift the burden onto American taxpayers once Mexico’s defiance became clear. Former President George W. Bush gave a speech on October 19, decrying the “nationalism distorted into nativism” that Trump has marshaled throughout his political career. Trump’s constant back-and-forth swinging on health care and immigration have left politicians in both parties with whiplash. His modus operandi makes America almost ungovernable on the federal level.

On the subject of impeachment, the Constitution says that “The President...shall
be removed from office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.” The Trump campaign’s alleged collusion with Russia could be construed as treason. Trump’s offers of reappointment to James Comey, contingent on the latter’s dropping the investigation into Russian interference, may well fall within the bounds of bribery.

But on top of all
that, Trump’s flagrant disrespect for the office of the Presidency and his rejection of the norms of leadership count as a misdemeanor. With his uncontrolled outbursts against opposition politicians and the news media, he impugns the honor of his office. With his warmongering against North Korea, he places America and the world in danger. He maliciously neglects millions of American citizens in dire need, from Puerto Rican hurricane victims to Americans everywhere who depend on health care for their survival.

He must go. 
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The Razor's Edge reflects the opinion of 4/5 of the editorial board and will not be signed. The Razor welcomes letters to the editor but reserves the right to decide which letters to publish, and to edit letters for space reasons. Unsigned letters will not be published, but names may be withheld on request. Letters are subject to the same libel laws as articles. The views expressed in letters are not necessarily those of the editorial board.
     
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