When Donald Trump was elected President, I became an emotional wreck. Shock, denial and despair all befell me before settling into a resounding rage. I felt duped by humankind.
And then one morning I woke to a sense of calm. The sun shone, the birds sang and I didn’t feel so jaded anymore. My sudden resolve didn’t stem from my acceptance of Trump as Leader of the Free World. Far from it. I still experienced the same overwhelming nausea whenever he appeared on screen and his incoherent rabble assaulted the small confines of my lounge room.
But I felt okay because I knew that the Trumpian era would be short-lived. Moves towards him being impeached would start within six months.
Now, mid-May my prediction seems if not probable, then at least possible. There’s speculation that the man accused of sexually assaulting twelve women may have finally gone too far.
It began with Trump’s recent, characteristically reckless, sacking of FBI director James Comey. Emblematic of a president immature and egocentric enough to believe himself invincible, and daft enough to think that a decision, as big as that, could float past unnoticed.
Comey doesn’t appear to have committed a crime. He had simply done his job by refusing– despite demands from Trump which were recorded in a memo— to shut down the investigation into the President’s former National Security Adviser, General Michael Flynn. Flynn had been stood down after it was exposed he’d lied about conversations he’d had with Russia’s ambassador in the US. An investigation that would likely come to embroil Trump himself.
This week, the White House attempted to downplay the scandal until Trump, prodigy that he is, defiantly blew his own cover admitting Comey’s dismissal was indeed a result of “this Russia thing.” His childish language, confirming his intent to stymie a crucial national investigation, or more starkly put, his intent to obstruct justice.
Unsurprisingly, the last 24 hours have seen Republicans ducking for cover. Most of them have been unwilling to comment on the latest Trump debacle, seemingly knowing that the jig is up. As CNN’s political analyst Chris Cillizza aptly said, “If you are a Republican in Congress, now is the time to panic.” Because they know, like the rest of us know, that it was only a matter of time before Trump unravelled—his ineptitude too brazen to bypass.
Like a spoilt child, his party has pandered to him, defended him and supported his most reprehensible moves in a bid to keep him in power.
But now, there looks increasingly like there’s no defence. Trump cannot be pulled away from the lorry that charges toward him. The first four months of his presidency has been peppered with lies, deceit and possible collusion with Russia. He has endangered national security, but worse than that, he has no capacity to reflect on his transgressions.
Impeachment proceedings are slow and staggered. No doubt, Trump will do his best to hang in for the ride. But with Republicans offside, approval ratings low and a rigorous US system of checks and balances, the end must surely be nigh.
Donald Trump’s presidency will go down in history as the swiftest impeachment America will ever know. That’s a prediction I’m willing to stand by.