Democrat and Chronicle prints “Chilling to think Trump could run for a federal office again”

Democrat and Chronicle prints “Chilling to think Trump could run for a federal office again”

©Ingram Pinn/Financial Times. From “A Senate trial is not the right answer to Donald Trump,”1/15/20

Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, 1/17/20

Today, in its SPEAKING OUT section, the Democrat and Chronicle printed my letter, “Chilling to think Trump could run for a federal office again.” The letter notes that if not barred from future office, Trump could hold a house or senate seat, as did John Quincy Adams and Andrew Johnson after their presidencies. Trump could even join the Supreme Court as did William Howard Taft after his presidency.

(left) “This early print features Massachusetts Representative John Quincy Adams addressing the House of Representatives in the Hall of the House.” Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives; (right) “William Howard Taft taking the oath of office as chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, 1921.” Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.

Perhaps quite easily, Trump could become the Mayor of Palm Beach, Florida, ruling the roost from his Mar-a-Lago Club.

As an impeachment trial nears, many are concerned a trial could hamper the passage of Biden’s proposed “American Rescue Plan,” legislation that I believe must be enacted as soon as possible.

On the Friday PBS News Hour, Judy Woodruff asked Jonathan Capehart and David Brooks: “Is it a good thing for Joe Biden to begin his presidency, back to impeachment, with an impeachment trial in the Senate competing for attention and for time and everything, for that matter?” Disagreeing with Capehart, Brooks answered:

I completely support impeachment, think this is the right thing to do. I think it’d be a bad thing to have to trial in the Senate.

Joe Biden has to pass that legislation. We just had a horrifying report 10 minutes ago on COVID. That was horrifying. And so we need to solve that problem. We need to pass this piece of legislation; $1.9 trillion is a very complicated piece of legislation.

I think it’s got a lot of things a lot of Republicans can support, a lot of things Joe Manchin of West Virginia can support. And so you can get — I think that bill can be supported, and we can get $1.9 trillion out the door to the American people, but it’s not going to be an easy lift.

And maybe, in — a Senate trial, A, takes up a lot of time. B, it’ll stoke all the flames. The Republican Party will find it very easy just to go in opposition mode. I’d love to think that we can at least have a couple months of action before they go in opposition mode. And I’m afraid the trial will do that. (From Brooks and Capehart on Trump’s impeachment and Biden’s relief plan)

I side with Brooks. An acrimonious trial would hurt any chances that the American Rescue Plan garners bipartisan support and make passage through reconciliation more difficult. Essentially, a trial means that Biden’s honeymoon period will last less than a day — as the trial could begin as early as 1pm on January 20th, one hour after Biden’s inauguration.

Of course, no trial leaves open the possibility of a Congressman, Senator, Governor, Supreme Court Justice or Mayor Donald Trump. He could run in 2022.

A sign locates the house where Andrew Johnson died in Elizabethan, Tenn. Photo Courtesy Tim Massey.

According to the Greeneville (S.C.) Sun, “Remembering Andrew Johnson,” (July 2016), Johnson received a hero’s welcome from southerners when he returned to the Senate. The St. Louis Republican called Johnson’s election, “the most magnificent personal triumph which the history of American politics can show.” Like Johnson, a Senator Trump from Alabama would probably “Thank God for the vindication.”


For you, Talker buys the D & C digital archives. And Noam Chomsky

About The Author

Welcome to Talker of the Town! My name is David Kramer. I have a Ph.D in English and teach at Keuka College. I am a former and still active Fellow at the Nazareth College Center for Public History and a Storyteller in Residence at the SmallMatters Institute. Over the years, I have taught at Monroe Community College, the Rochester Institute of Technology and St. John Fisher College. I have published numerous Guest Essays, Letters, Book Reviews and Opinion pieces in The New York Times, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, the Buffalo News, the Rochester Patriot, the Providence Journal, the Providence Business News, the Brown Alumni Magazine, the New London Day, the Boston Herald, the Messenger Post Newspapers, the Wedge, the Empty Closet, the CITY, Lake Affect Magazine and Brighton Connections. My poetry appears in The Criterion: An International Journal in English and Rundenalia and my academic writing in War, Literature and the Arts and Twentieth Century Literary Criticism. Starting in February 2013, I wrote for three Democratic and Chronicle  blogs, "Make City Schools Better," "Unite Rochester," and the "Editorial Board." When my tenure at the D & C  ended, I wanted to continue conversations first begun there. And start new ones.  So we created this new space, Talker of the Town, where all are invited to join. I don’t like to say these posts are “mine.” Very few of them are the sole product of my sometimes overheated imagination. Instead, I call them partnerships and collaborations. Or as they say in education, “peer group work.” Talker of the Town might better be Talkers of the Town. The blog won’t thrive without your leads, text, pictures, ideas, facebook shares, tweets, comments and criticisms.


  1. George

    It’s helpful to point out the limitations of impeachment, as you did in your letter, and to send a warning of Trump’s potential ambitions outside of the White House. But I don’t think Trump would settle for a position with less prestige, executive privilege, and outright power as the presidency. We have to remember why he ran in the first place and what kept him invested in the position once he got it. It was a full-throttle, unadulterated ego trip. Being a Senator or Governor is not only a demotion in his mind, it is also a giant hassle in terms of doing actual work for the people. The one thing he was stymied most by was checks and balances, and being a Senator is all about succumbing to the reality that you are not in charge. Governorship has executive power but requires day to day leadership, which Trump shuns. If he does not have a chance at being POTUS again, I doubt he will run for public office. It would be a constant reminder of how he lost and the way he was disgraced. But if he is addicted to the game, you can’t rule anything out. Romney is a polar opposite personality who fits that mold.


      I agree fully with your analysis. For Trump, it would be president of bust. A governor does have executive power but more day to day duties than prez, although there been several instances where governors barely governed and left things up to their staff. Hmm, would Trump accept an the ambassadorship to Russia?

  2. George

    Why would an impeached servant of the people be allowed to run for any high office after he/she was convicted? The same citizens who would be endangered by a Trump presidency in 2024, would be put at risk by a Trump Senatorship or Governorship. High crimes and misdemeanors should, one would presume, bar an individual from committing the same crimes in the future. Ex-offenders coming out of incarceration regain many rights of citizenship but not all of them. Is this a glitch in the Constitution? I suppose our discussion speaks to the heart of what federalism is all about and where ultimate authority resides.


      This post-election period has revealed various glitches in the constitution, such as w/pardons and the murkiness of the whole impeachment process. The great flaw found is with the Electoral Count Act which is meant to clarify the 12th amendment. As posited by the ECA, congress can reject electoral votes for any reason however dubious. If the GOP had won the house, in theory congress could have “chosen” Trump. If you think the riots in D.C. were bad, imagine if that ever happened.


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