If Democrats do win the House and initiate impeachment proceedings, many strategists think it could backfire, because Trump will paint the whole process as an attempt to undo the will of the voters. The Senate is unlikely to convict, and Trump could emerge stronger than ever. Recall that Bill Clinton received his highest approval ratings — 73 percent — after the House passed articles of impeachment in 1998. The ultimate nightmare for Trump critics is that a failed attempt at impeachment will make it easier for him to win reelection.
So does that mean that Democrats should forget about impeachment and just wait to get rid of Trump in 2020, as former FBI director James B. Comey has suggested? Not if the facts argue otherwise. If there is incontrovertible evidence that the president has committed “high crimes and misdemeanors,” Congress has an obligation to impeach, regardless of what the polls or political strategists say. Democrats don’t need to make impeachment a major campaign issue — but they shouldn’t deny that they may have to act in the near-future.