Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP
On Saturday, the New York Times Editorial Board came to a concise conclusion: “Impeach.” It joined a growing chorus of leading newspapers calling for the president’s impeachment, with tones ranging from restrained (the Los Angeles Times calls itself a “a reluctant convert”) to resolute (USA Today: “The current board has made no secret of our low regard for Trump’s character and conduct…”) And some editorial boards aren’t on board at all: The Wall Street Journal began its anti-impeachment opinion last week with, “So that’s it? That’s all there is?” It concluded, “Honey, we shrunk the impeachment.”
On Wednesday, the House will vote on the two articles of impeachment approved Friday by the House Judiciary Committee: abuse of power and obstruction of congress.
For now, here are some excerpts from the (many) calls for impeachment that caught our eye:
The New York Times: “Impeach.”
To resist the pull of partisanship, Republicans and Democrats alike ought to ask themselves the same question: Would they put up with a Democratic president using the power of the White House this way? Then they should consider the facts, the architecture and aspirations of the Constitution and the call of history. In that light, there can be only one responsible judgment: to cast a vote to impeach, to send a message not only to this president but to future ones.
The Washington Post: “The case for impeachment“
We believe Mr. Trump should receive a full trial in the Senate, and it is our hope that more senior officials will decide or be required to testify during that proceeding, so that senators, and the country, can make a fair and considered judgment about whether Mr. Trump should be removed from office. We have reserved judgment on that question. What is important, for now, is that the House determine whether Mr. Trump’s actions constituted an abuse of power meriting his impeachment and trial.
USA Today: Impeach Donald Trump
The current board has made no secret of our low regard for Trump’s character and conduct. Yet, as fellow passengers on the ship of state, we had hoped the captain would succeed. And, until recently, we believed that impeachment proceedings would be unhealthier for an already polarized nation than simply leaving Trump’s fate up to voters next November.
Los Angeles Times: “We’ve seen enough. Trump should be impeached.”
The Times’ editorial board was a reluctant convert to the impeachment cause. We worried that impeaching Trump on essentially a party-line vote would be divisive. It is also highly likely that Trump would be—will be—acquitted by the Republican-controlled Senate, and that, rightly or wrongly, he would point to that in his reelection campaign as exoneration.
But those concerns must yield to the overwhelming evidence that Trump perverted U.S. foreign policy for his own political gain. That sort of misconduct is outrageous and corrosive of democracy. It can’t be ignored by the House, and it merits a full trial by the Senate on whether to remove him from office.
The Boston Globe: “Impeach the president“
Impeachment does not require a crime. The Constitution entrusts Congress with the impeachment power in order to protect Americans from a president who is betraying their interests. And it is very much in Americans’ interests to maintain checks and balances in the federal government; to have a foreign policy that the world can trust is based on our national interest instead of the president’s personal needs; to control federal spending through their elected representatives; to vote in fair elections untainted by foreign interference. For generations, Americans have enjoyed those privileges. What’s at stake now is whether we will keep them. The facts show that the president has threatened this country’s core values and the integrity of our democracy. Congress now has a duty to future generations to impeach him.
The Philadelphia Inquirer: “Impeach President Donald Trump“
The impeachment investigation has been an attempt to get to the truth about the president’s abuse of power. One career civil servant after another has testified to the same facts confirming the whistle-blower complaint that triggered this investigation. Those facts have not been disputed, even by most of the president’s defenders.
That ensures that the shocking language describing Trump’s actions—“high crimes and misdemeanors,” “threat to national security,” and “clear and present danger”—are not partisan weapons.
And that is why we endorse a vote to impeach the president. While his removal from office is unlikely, his crimes against the country, and the Constitution, warrant that outcome.
The San Francisco Chronicle: “What is the alternative to impeachment?“
It helps, however, to consider what it would mean not to impeach the president—to leave him in the company of the vast majority of presidents who faced no such rebuke. The pernicious effect would be to elevate the conduct memorialized in the articles of impeachment to the status of acceptable presidential behavior.
The president compromised our nation’s best interests for pure political self-profit, as baldly as a Chicago alderman holding up a zoning change for a bribe. Trump has brought impeachment upon himself.
The New York Daily News: “The truth hurts: the House Intelligence Committee presents a coherent and compelling case for impeachment“
There may be no single, smoking gun, but there’s ample acrid black stuff rising from the White House.
The Orlando Sentinel: “The House should vote to impeach Trump, and the Senate should remove him from office“
The question was never if Donald Trump did something wrong.
Of course he did. The president of the United States got on the phone and asked the leader of a foreign power to investigate a domestic political opponent. Only the most cynical partisan would think that’s OK.
The question is whether he ought to be impeached for it, and the answer is yes.
The Tampa Bay Times: “The case for impeachment“
With reluctance, we conclude the U.S. House of Representatives has enough reason to justify the impeachment of President Donald Trump. We harbor no illusions that the president’s impeachment by the House will lead to his removal from office by the Senate. But we hope the impeachment process and a trial in the Senate will give voters a more complete picture of Trump’s conduct, because they will deliver the ultimate judgment on his performance in November.
The Salt Lake Tribune: “Impeachment proceeds as it should“
To paraphrase Mr. Jefferson,
When in the course of human events, it becomes necessary to confront the clear and unrefuted wrongdoing of someone in high political office, and to assume among the powers granted to Congress by the U.S. Constitution the duty to oversee, investigate and, if warranted, impeach and remove the president of the United States, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that the Congress should declare the causes which impel them to the action.