, 7 tweets, 5 min read Read on Twitter
Thankfully, top Dems have moved past their initial moral and political muddle and are now leaning into seriously debating whether the shocking scale of Trump's corruption and wrongdoing calls for an impeachment inquiry on the merits.

A few points on this.

1) Mueller told us presidents can break obstruction statutes, but declined to prosecute. So:

Only Congress can decide whether Trump will be subject to a process in which he can be held accountable. Thus, not launching an inquiry places him above the law.

2) The idea that Ds must wait until Rs cop to Trump's wrongdoing gives Rs a total veto over even the decision whether to launch an inquiry.

This allows Rs to dictate that the impeachment question isn’t worth a serious effort to answer *at the outset.*

3) Over the long term, this simply won't be tenable.

If Dems hope the pressure to launch an inquiry recedes, while stepping up their own investigations, that means they'll have to tacitly hope their own efforts *don't* strengthen the case against Trump.

4) The politics are unpredictable. Idea that Clinton precedent shows risks of overreach presupposes:

a) Dems can't win this argument over time

b) Public can't distinguish between cases in which an inquiry is or is not merited.

As @julianzelizer says:

@julianzelizer 5) Then there are the very real dangers attendant on doing nothing.

It would suggest Dems are sorely lacking in conviction and, well, guts. It could validate more Trumpian abuses of power -- further endangering the country.

As @brianbeutler points out:

@julianzelizer @brianbeutler 6) All of this will be heavily debated in coming days and weeks. But one thing is now clear: Dems plainly recognize that none of these basic realities embodied in this difficult dilemma can be wished away, and if anything, will only grow more pressing. FIN
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