On the 16th of July, Donald Trump and Vladimar Putin held a joint press conference in Brussels, both denying charges that Russia interfered in the 2016 election to hand the White House to Trump. Beginning on the 16th of June, a largely new crop of protesters under the name Occup yLafayette Park was outside the White House, calling Trump a traitor for his dealings with Putin and demanding his impeachment. By the third night, growing crowds managed to create a “pitchforks and torches” atmosphere even using only candles.
It appears that many of these protesters are entirely new to street protest and have no prior relationship with any kind of progressive or left-of-center movement. Some may even be Cold War hawks infuritated that Trump would do business with a former KGB officer to take over the White House for himself. Yet on the 17th of July, other more progressive activists also may have been present judgeing by some of the chants. “Trump’s a traitor” alternated with chants such as “Stephen Miller is a Nazi” and chants against Breitbart News.
During the Tuesday, July 17th protest, Just after 9PM someone in Secret Service or the White House decided they’d had enough. Cops started clearing Penn Ave, shining high-powered bike lights into the crowd. As the crowd retreated, chants of “No Trump, no KKK no fascist USA” could be heard. This shows the influence of more experienced anti-Trump campaigners drawn to this new call for impeaching Donald Trump. At the same time the following night the crowd not only held but filled the street in front of the White House.
The politics of this are interesting, On the one hand, the ICE terror raids, the inhuman separation of children from families, the brazen appointment of Nazis like Steve Bannon, Stephen Miller to his staff, and statements supporting the Nazis after Charlottesville are all far more serious offenses than Russiagate. So are the failed efforts by the Dept of Injustice to send hundreds of activists to prison for the rest of their lives in the Standing Rock, J20, and other cases adding up to nearly 1,000 activists. On the other hand, Russiagate seems to infuriate many middle class white Americans who did not take to the streets or turn against any portion of the US government or its capitalist masters until now.
In addition there are the mathmatics of impeachment. An effort to impeach Trump for separating families or bringing open Nazis into his cabinet would fail on a “party discipline,” strict party-line vote unless the Democrats got 2/3ds of both the House and the Senate in the 2018 election. That result would probably force the Democrats to remove Trump from office or themselves be abandoned by their base in 2020. Russiagate on the other hand could lead to all Democrats, plus “national security hawk” and Cold War leftovers in the GOP all voting to impeach Trump. Probably the Dems would still have to control both houses of Congress to even get it on the agenda, but the votes to impeach and convict would be far more easily obtained. Also Russiagate is the only known “high crime and misdemeanor” that could lead to impeachment in which Vice President Michael Pence is also implicated. That means Russiagate is probably the only issue that can remove Trump from office without boosting Christian Dominionist(meaning “Christian ISIS” style theocrat) Michael Pence into the White House.
The scene in front of the White House on the third night of impeachment protests (Wed July 18)
Night three, July 18: This far-right videographer (using his phone) was identified by protesters as a Breitbart operative
Protesters in front of the White House, many seemingly for the first or second time
Bike cop turns light on crowd as cops start clearing Penn Ave
Earlier: Mocking the long GOP campaign to use the Hillery Clinton e-mail scandal to mask much more serious charges against Trump