“The Worm in the Turd:” Impeachment Talk From a Frustrated Republican Congressman

I talked to a senior Republican congressman this morning on my way back from taking the kids to school.

He was calling to express his aggravation. He, like most press reports note, thinks if President Trump were to come out tomorrow in favor of abortion rights, the Democrats would suddenly become the most pro-life party in America (gallows humor)1. If the President comes out for tax reform, he suspects it will not pass Congress. “He’s got no clout now,” says the congressman.

You could hear the frustration in his voice. “He just can’t shut up…. And we go home and everybody blames us for what’s going on. I don’t think the people on TV understand that most people still hate us more than him, but he’s making it even harder. We may be the turd in the field, but he’s the worm in the turd.”

I’ll let you pause to ponder that expression for a minute.

Here’s the big thing though. With all the frustration the congressman says there are no grounds to impeach the President. The consensus, even among senior Democrats, is that impeachment cannot be done just because the President is an idiot or a sympathizer of white supremacists. There must be a crime and right now there is no sign. “I hate to say it, but some of us would really like Mueller to find something we can use,” he said. I asked if he was one of those and all he said was “maybe.”

And this is from a guy who publicly tries to defend the President.

  1. Hard to capture what he said and meant here. No, the press is not saying the Democrats would become pro-life if the President became pro-abortion. What the press is saying is that if President Trump supports something publicly, the odds of that policy passing Congress drop like a rock.
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