Over the last weekend, Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) decided to come out publicly for impeachment of Donald Trump. Instead of doing it officially or in a way that makes actual sense, he took to Twitter to lay out a very generalized case that Trump had offended his sensibilities enough to warrant removal from office.

Here are a few of the original tweets transcribed.

Contrary to Barr’s portrayal, Mueller’s report reveals that President Trump engaged in specific actions and a pattern of behavior that meet the threshold for impeachment.

In fact, Mueller’s report identifies multiple examples of conduct satisfying all the elements of obstruction of justice, and undoubtedly any person who is not the president of the United States would be indicted based on such evidence.

Ok, so how about sharing those examples with us Mr. Amash? Also providing some historical precedent for obstruction charges on the grounds you are citing would be helpful.

Impeachment, which is a special form of indictment, does not even require probable cause that a crime (e.g., obstruction of justice) has been committed; it simply requires a finding that an official has engaged in careless, abusive, corrupt, or otherwise dishonorable conduct.

That’s a very broad, ahistorical interpretation of the impeachment statute. While it’s true that Congress can technically impeach a President for essentially anything, there’s still a general standard of actual criminal activity that’s been applied because anything else is far too arbitrary.

You don’t get to remove a President for “abusive” or “dishonorable conduct,” whatever the heck that means. Overriding the electorate on such specious grounds would essentially green light impeachment for all future Presidents and turn our government into even more of a clown show than it already is.

Despite that, Amash decided to double down yesterday on his call for impeachment.

This is a very obtuse argument. What is meant by underlying crime is a crime in which Trump or his associates participated. Citing a bunch of meaningless indictments of Russians is not making Amash’s point. Everything else either pre-dated and was unrelated to the campaign (Manafort) or involved process crimes, which by definition are not underlying.

No one is making that claim. In fact, Bill Barr (who Amash falsely accused of misrepresenting the report) said that obstruction does not require an underlying crime. His determination that no obstruction occurred was based on the lack of overall evidence, not the lack of an underlying crime.

Amash is beating straw men to death at this point.

Actually, there is a constitutional question as far as using executive power in statutory ways. Regardless, the President clearly didn’t use “any means” to end the investigation as Mueller was allowed to complete it and Andrew McCabe testified under oath that Trump never sought to close the investigation. So again, what is Amash talking about?

As I said at the beginning of this write-up, the idea that a President would be removed based on nothing more than the moral judgments of Congressional members is ahistorical and dangerous. Violating the “public trust” has never been the basis for impeachment because it’s a ridiculous standard that could not even be properly tried in the Senate.

Amash’s calls for impeachment are nonsensical. I understand he doesn’t like the President and has been fighting against him since the word go. That’s still not an excuse to abuse the impeachment process and set horrible precedents for the future. We have an election coming up in 2020. That’s the proper way for the electorate to judge Trump.

There’s some serious irony in a supposed hardcore libertarian going to bat this hard for the police state while saying someone should be prosecuted for criticizing those investigating him. Trump makes people do weird things though.

I’ll end by noting the medium in which Amash continues to argue his case. You don’t impeach someone by convincing Twitter. If he’s serious, as I’ve said before, he should put his money where his mouth is. Join Rashida Tlaib or one of the other dozens of Democrats wanting to impeach.

Enough games and flailing from Mr. Amash. Stop bloviating and draw up articles of impeachment. Let’s have this fight.

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