Impeachment Should Become the Left’s Unifying Demand and Litmus Test

Dean Preston
3 min readJan 31, 2017


Allowed to remain in power, Donald Trump and his administration will destroy American democracy. Some are still in denial about this, but fewer after his first week in power, which included rabid spreading of “alternative facts,” an unconstitutional Muslim ban, and the elevation of white supremacist Steve Bannon. This is the beginning of a totalitarian regime. Trump must be ousted from power.

People are coming together in large numbers to stand up to Trump. The massive women’s marches and this weekend’s airport rebellion were inspiring and show clearly that millions of people get it. The question is whether the Left’s elected leaders will listen to the people they represent.

We need to organize explicitly around the following unifying cause: impeaching Trump. We should not “pick our battles.” We cannot “work with him when he is right.” We cannot“give him a chance.” No, every day that goes by, Trump will further consolidate power. It will become more difficult, not less, to remove him as he carries out his hostile takeover of the government.

Some say the courts will save us. They will not. Hopefully, they will try, but they are no match for a totalitarian regime that will stop at nothing. Trump will threaten federal judges, first with public attacks and impeachment threats. Next, Trump and his followers, particularly those of a neo-Nazi variety, will terrorize judges and their families. If all else fails, Trump, with Bannon at his side, will set up their own court system, as Hitler did in the 1930s.

All along the way, Trump will commit impeachable offenses, but we need not wait to begin impeachment. Trump has already committed at least one impeachable offense. From Day 1 of his presidency, Trump has been in violation of the Emoluments clause of the U.S. Constitution, receiving gifts from foreign leaders through his business enterprises. Trump was warned, but refused to divest himself of his business interests.

A bold Congressperson should commence impeachment proceedings immediately. It only takes one Congressperson to commence impeachment proceedings.

This strategy will force Democrats to pick a side. Are they collaborating with this regime or standing with their base? An impeachment vote will answer the question, and even absent a vote, legislators can be lobbied to pledge to support the effort. Impeachment will provide a common rallying cry for those offended by any number of vile aspects of Trump’s rule.

Congressmembers or Senators who will not support impeachment should lose the support of the Left. Activists should make clear that they will face a primary challenge from a Democrat willing to stand up to Trump. The Left should not waste time supporting Democrats that will not support impeachment.

Will we need some Republican Congressmembers and Senators to get on board to successfully impeach Trump? Sure, but that will take more time, and we must not wait to begin the impeachment drive. Trump will act increasingly unhinged, making some GOP representatives, especially those in tight 2018 races, uncomfortable sooner than expected. If and when they come around, it is essential that they see a Democratic party united for impeachment.

This simple and clear demand — impeachment — will resonate with a broad and growing spectrum of Americans, while providing an important litmus test of politicians on both sides of the aisle.

So who in Congress will take the lead by commencing impeachment proceedings against the madman in the Oval Office?