The White House employee who carries a broom and sweeps up messy spills deserves a raise. The breakdown of policy on our Kurdish allies, the ignoring of the emoluments clause of the Constitution, and the defense by President Trump that there was no quid pro quo with Ukraine were all in the last week. “Clean up in aisle one, aisle two, and aisle three.”
The most interesting thing about these mishaps is that it was Republicans who pushed back against them. More than a hundred House Republicans voted for a resolution condemning the decision of Trump to abandon the Kurds in Syria. Republicans also pressured him to reverse his decision to hawk his Doral Miami resort as a venue for the Group of Seven summit next year. Somehow, the appearance that Trump traded his presidential seal for a shiny brass hotel employee badge appeared unseemly.
His stalwart defense that there was no quid pro quo with Ukraine was contradicted by his own chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, who sounded like he would been flipped by federal prosecutors, at least until he reverse flipped. Have Republicans had enough? Have they seen the light? No. At this point, everything that Republican leaders in Congress say and do has one single imperative, which is to whip the members of their caucus against impeachment. It is now vital to them that both the process and results look nakedly partisan. This means keeping the number of House Republicans who vote for impeachment to a bare minimum.
Just as important is the direct correlation between Republican votes for impeachment in the House and the Senate. The higher the number of House Republicans who support impeachment, the higher the number of Senate Republicans who will be pressured to support conviction. Republicans must make a House vote against impeachment as easy as possible. But Trump has now made it even harder with his errors.