Donald Trump’s presidency has been what most people assumed it would be — polarizing.
As it stands, eight members of Trump’s campaign team have been arrested and charged during the Mueller probe into Russia’s election interference. This has undoubtedly fanned the flames of those hoping to see a successful impeachment of Trump. Many in opposition of the president are starting to believe it’s a question of when he will get impeached, rather than if he will. I’m hoping they are wrong.
I stand firmly against the majority of Trump’s policies and ideals: the wall, his xenophobic views on Mexico and the Middle East, and his massive tax cuts for the wealthiest of Americans. However, these don’t compare to my concerns about what a Mike Pence presidency could mean for America, and what an impeachment could mean for the Democratic Party.
If he were to become president, Pence’s goals can be succinctly summed up in one word — theocracy. Pence quite literally believes he’s doing God’s work and holds policy beliefs that are far more based in biblical text than in legal text. As Michael D’Antonio, author of “The Shadow President: The Truth About Mike Pence,” said, “He is absolutely certain that his moral view should govern public policy.”
Those moral views are completely based around his conservative Christian faith in a country that is increasingly less evangelical.
It is not, and never will be, Pence’s religion that bothers me, but rather the policies that come along with his intensely religious beliefs, namely three. First, Pence was, and still is, an outspoken supporter of a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Second, he is a supporter of the widely disproven practice of gay conversion therapy, which has been deemed unethical by the American Psychiatric Society and shown to increase suicide risk threefold by those involved. And third, he is a supporter of banning abortion, going as far as referencing people who are in support of the death penalty for those who get an abortion.
While Trump has less-defined goals and more opposition in both political parties, Pence is on a mission to let his religious ideals become the governing law of the country, and that’s scarier than what Trump can accomplish before 2020.
Unrelated to a Pence presidency, impeachment could unintentionally backfire on Democrats in the 2020 election. As described in a December article published by USA Today, New York Rep. Jerry Nadler, who was a Junior Congressman during Bill Clinton’s impeachment and is likely to head the Judiciary Committee overseeing a Trump impeachment, has warned that an impeachment needs to come with enough evidence to convince Trump supporters that he needs to be removed from office. In essence, if Trump supporters and other Americans aren’t convinced that Trump truly deserves to be removed from office, it can cause severe lack of trust in the government, and specifically the Democratic Party spearheading the impeachment. We need not look any further than when Bill Clinton was impeached. In the following midterms, Republicans actually lost seats to Democrats as public opinion turned on the Republicans, who many believed overreached by impeaching Clinton.
Impeaching Trump would surely change the course of the country but also could have a profoundly local impact. As Trump looks to build a wall and cut taxes for the rich, Pence could — and probably would — take aim at gay rights and abortion, and if those things don’t impact you personally, they surely impact someone you know. In addition, for those in support of the Democratic Party, which Pew Research shows includes 59 percent of Millennials and 58 percent of four-year college graduates, a successful election season for Democrats in Michigan could be easily reversed by distrust in the party if Trump is impeached.
With all of this being said, you still don’t have to like Trump or agree with anything he is doing, but please for the sake of America and the Democratic Party, don’t impeach him.