Biden has an obvious and easy answer to Republican calls that he stop Trump’s impeachment

Senator Lindsey Graham has previewed the latest Republican effort to distract and deflect:  arguing that, in the name of “unity,” Joe Biden should convince Democrats to dismiss Trump’s impeachment trial. 

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) is urging President-elect Joe Biden to convince congressional Democrats to drop plans to proceed to an impeachment trial against President Trump.

. . . . “It is now time for President-elect Biden to rise to the occasion and instruct his party to call off post-presidential impeachment proceedings,” Graham wrote in the tweets.

I know that the best argument is to forthrightly tell Republicans to stuff it and that Trump deserves this. But given Biden’s tendency to avoid directly engaging down in the dirt, he has an obvious — and correct – answer.

“Trump has been impeached.  So, what you are asking is for me to pardon Trump.  I am not allowed to do that.” 

See Constitution, Art. II, Sec. 2, Cl. 1:

The President … shall have Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for offences against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.

I don’t write this as snark.  You will see growing calls for Biden to intervene, but what Republicans are effectively arguing is that instead of having Trump try to pardon himself, Joe Biden should do the job for him.  

Biden should tell them:  “Sorry, Trump can’t pardon himself, and I can’t pardon him either.”

  • January 14, 2021