I usually don’t get book recommendations from my mom, but when I do, they’re pretty good. About a year ago, she told me about a book called The Case for Impeachment. She’d seen the book’s author Allan J. Lichtman interviewed on TV and thought this was a book I needed to read. After a great deal of procrastination I was able to secure a copy through my public library. After leisurely making my way through Lichtman’s book I’m glad my Mom recommended it to me.
In The Case for Impeachment Lichtman (who also predicted Trump’s electoral victory) makes a straight-forward, level-headed argument for the impeachment of Donald Trump. He begins with an explanation of the impeachment process. As stated in the Constitution, the President can be removed from office if both houses of Congress find him guilty of committing “high crimes and misdemeanors.” (According to Lichtman, unfortunately for Trump this includes crimes committed before taking office.) Lichtman also discusses how the impeachment process has played out in history by looking at the past presidencies of Andrew Johnson, Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton. From there, it’s on to the alleged high crimes and misdemeanors of Donald Trump, a laundry list of transgressions including but not limited to: colluding with the Russians during the recent Presidential election (treason), using his office to personally profit from foreign interests (emoluments) and sexual assault and harassment.
If that wasn’t enough, Trump could be charged with abuse of power based on his personal attacks on judges, political opponents and the media. If he’s if perceived as mentally ill (Lichtman thinks based on Trump’s track record he suffers from a narcissistic personality disorder) he could be declared incapacitated and removed from office, as outlined in the 25 Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. Lastly, in a bit of a stretch Lichtman speculates Trump’s withdrawal of the United States from the Paris Agreement on climate change and his adamant refusal to promote measures to lessen America’s carbon emissions could constitute a crime against humanity and thus an impeachable high crime.
The Case for Impeachment reads like an extended article one might find in a magazine like Time, the New Yorker or the Atlantic. And frankly there’s nothing wrong with that. Fortunately, it doesn’t feel like a rush job that Lichtman cranked out just to make a quick buck or two. It’s a quick read and serves up a handy and relatively concise indictment of Trump’s many transgression and failings. Who knows, it might make the perfect birthday gift for that special Trump supporter in your life.