Impeaching Biden: With his heavily criticized withdrawal from Afghanistan, talk of impeaching President Biden has emerged within parts of the Republican Party. Here’s what both sides are saying. To have stories like this and more delivered directly to your inbox, be sure to sign up for our newsletter. Image Credit: Gage Skidmore (CC 2.0)
Top Story: Impeaching Biden
Exactly one week ago, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy declared that “There will be a day of reckoning” for President Biden following a suicide bombing in Kabul, Afghanistan that killed 13 US service members and dozens of Afghan civilians. In the span of this past week, McCarthy has found himself under rising pressure from his right flank to go even further, according to POLITICO’s Olivia Beavers. “Rank-and-file Republicans want to make a high-stakes call for impeaching Biden over his handling of Afghanistan,” noting that, “Their offices were being bombarded with calls from base voters for a future Biden impeachment or another more forceful response against the administration.” In related reporting from the Wall Street Journal’s Lindsay Wise, “Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said Republican calls for removing President Biden from office over the Afghanistan withdrawal were impractical, urging GOP voters to focus instead on winning back the House and Senate in next year’s midterm elections.” As Beavers points out, “Republicans would have no path to impeaching Biden while still in the House minority, and any GOP-instigated impeachment trial would go nowhere unless the Senate also changed hands in the midterms.” With that said, here’s what both sides are saying about sentiment surrounding the topic of impeachment.
On The Left
Left-leaning outlets and commentators think impeachment calls are unwarranted, both from a constitutional standpoint and from a “Republicans are ridiculous” standpoint.
“Those calls to impeach Biden: As wrong as they were with Trump” Alan Dershowitz, The Hill: “As I predicted when I defended President Trump against being impeached for ‘abuse of power,’ some Republicans are now using this unconstitutional precedent to urge the impeachment of President Biden [including] Sen. Lindsey Graham … Whatever one may think of what Biden did or failed to do, it does not constitute an impeachable offense under the text of the Constitution. … President Biden’s handling of the withdrawal from Afghanistan is likely to be evaluated by the voters in the midterm elections next year, and then in the presidential election of 2024. It is properly subject to criticism by members of Congress, by the media, by academics, and by ordinary citizens. It is not, however, a proper subject for impeachment or legal action, even if the Democrats acted unconstitutionally to impeach President Trump. Two constitutional wrongs do not make a constitutional right.”
“Oh, so now Lindsey Graham wants to impeach a president?” Chris Cillizza, CNN: “South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham said … ‘If we leave thousands of those Afghans who fought along our side behind bravely, Joe Biden deserves to be impeached for a high crime and misdemeanor of dereliction of duty …’ Graham’s newfound interest in impeaching a president is particularly noteworthy given that he didn’t see fit to convict Donald Trump in either of the two impeachment trials that he was involved in over the past 2 years. … Back in 2019 … Graham [said] ‘… Democrats have lost their minds when it comes to President Trump.’ So, the two impeachments of Trump were purely partisan and driven by hatred of Trump, but Graham’s call for Biden to be impeached unless every single Afghan who helped the US over two decades is successfully extricated from the country is totally justified? I mean, come on. None of this is to downplay the strategic disaster that is the Biden administration’s handling of the removal of American troops from Afghanistan. … Nor is it to lessen the humanitarian crisis in the country … But it’s more than a little rich for Graham to suggest impeaching Biden over the Afghanistan situation when he was one of Trump’s staunchest defenders in both of the former president’s impeachment trials.”
“If Biden doesn’t resign — which he won’t — where does GOP rhetoric go from here?” Philip Bump, Washington Post: “The two-thirds requirement in the Senate for convicting Trump meant that there was little chance he would actually be removed from office, and he wasn’t. But there was a warning that accompanied the Republican response to the impeachment: Do it to us, and we’ll do it to you. … The problem Republicans may soon face is … Now what? Where do you go from here? If a terrorist attack in Afghanistan warrants resignation or removal by impeachment or the Cabinet, what might some more significant situation demand? There’s no obvious way to descend from this position, barring an actual resignation, which won’t happen, or Republican views of Biden softening, which also won’t happen. So is this just the temperature at which we’ll operate forever, a political boil that never spills over?”
On The Right
Right-leaning commentators realize it’s a long shot to impeach President Biden. With that said, they use their columns to build the case for removing him from office after what they feel are impeachable offenses.
“Joe Biden’s call to Afghan prez is impeachable” Miranda Devine, New York Post: “Reuters has a bombshell report about a July phone call between Joe Biden and then-Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani, in which the US president promises military aid in return for lies. … ‘Was the president in any way pushing a false narrative in that call?’ a reporter asked White House press secretary Jen Psaki … ‘I am not going to go into the details of a private conversation,’ she replied. Hah! That sure wasn’t the Democrats’ standard when they impeached Donald Trump last year over a leaked phone call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky. … Biden’s call with Ghani was just as self-serving and more harmful to US interests, but don’t expect Congress to pursue it. The president probably thinks the lies will keep working since his presidential campaign was such a triumph of perception over reality. Democrats pretended that he was a candidate of sound mind and good character whose empathy, integrity, and foreign-policy expertise would restore America’s soul. They got away with it only because the media and Big Tech conspired to fool the American people.”
“The case to invoke the 25th Amendment against Biden” Rick Green, Washington Examiner: “As the world crumbles and Mr. Biden sleeps through meetings with world leaders, it’s clear that we may not have a choice, which is why some are calling for Impeachment. … It is the 25th Amendment and not impeachment that presents the proper constitutional mechanism to deal with President Joe Biden … [However,] only Vice-President Harris has the power to begin the process of invoking the 25th Amendment. … Most think it is impossible that Vice-President Harris … would agree to sign on to such an unprecedented vote of no confidence … But these political players tend to live by the polls and be shrewd and often ruthless protectors of their own power. … While the majority of the country has expressed doubts about the Vice-President’s abilities to lead, it’s obvious that our current president’s incapacitation and inabilities are putting America’s national security and the security of our allies at great risk. For the sake of our nation’s future, Vice-President Harris should decide quickly.”
“Biden’s surrender in Afghanistan demands articles of impeachment” Will Ainsworth, Alabama Political Reporter: “Setting aside the fact that since taking office, Biden’s reduced mental faculties have become more evident and frightening by the day, the media’s coverage of the chaotic American surrender in Afghanistan provides solid evidence that he has abdicated his duties as commander-in-chief … In essence, Biden has become the Taliban’s best friend and benefactor. … Had this … occurred under President Trump’s watch, Nancy Pelosi and her Socialist disciples would already have Articles of Impeachment being drafted … But because Biden is a fellow liberal Democrat, Pelosi and her acolytes react with blind eyes and … zipped lips. … Because Biden is obviously either unwilling or too incapacitated to carry out the duties he swore an oath to fulfill, impeachment or the invoking of the 25th Amendment are our only options to rebuild our national security and restore our international prestige.”
Flag This: Impeaching Biden
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey found that 52% of likely US voters believe Biden should resign because of the way the US withdrawal from Afghanistan was handled. Thirty-nine percent (39%) disagree, and nine percent (9%) are not sure. For context, Ad Fontes Media rates Rasmussen Reports in the “skews right” category.
Flag This: As Lindsay Wise notes in the Wall Street Journal, “Under the Constitution, a president can be impeached by the House for high crimes and misdemeanors. The Senate then holds a trial. A two-thirds supermajority is required to convict and remove a president from office.”
Flag Poll: Impeaching Biden
Do you think President Biden should resign because of the way the US withdrawal from Afghanistan was handled? Comment below to share your thoughts.