The Atlantic

Trump’s Trial Should Put the GOP on the Spot

The articles of impeachment focus on Ukraine, but the GOP must pass judgment on the president’s broader willingness to bend U.S. foreign policy toward his own ends.
Source: Doug​ Mills / The New York Times / Redux

As the House of Representatives nears a vote on two articles of impeachment, very few people think President Donald Trump’s conduct was “perfect,” as he claims it was. The partisan divide revolves around whether his wrongdoing rises to the level of an impeachable offense. Democrats believe it does, but Republicans overwhelmingly think it does not. Yes, Trump’s behavior may have been “inappropriate and misguided,” argued Will Hurd, a retiring House member from Texas, but “an impeachable offense should be compelling, overwhelmingly clear, and unambiguous.” For the GOP, this standard has not been met.

If this is the question, then the trial in the Senate must move beyond Ukraine. It should put Trump’s foreign policy on trial. The president’s effort to pressure the Ukrainian government is part of a larger pattern of bending American foreign policy to reflect

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