By Alan S. Chartock | February 20, 2021

I never thought that the spineless, degenerate, almost all white Republican Senators would prove their patriotism and vote to convict Donald Trump. Trump, of course, was impeached for inciting the heinous, murderous, sickening riot of January 6th. On that date, the seat of government was desecrated and our Constitution threatened by disciples of a man who seemingly follows the playbook of Adolph Hitler and his like. Most frightening of all, Trump was perilously close to getting away with bringing down our democratic Republic.

That’s right, those thugs were in that Capitol to reverse the peaceful transference of power in this country. That transition of power, based upon the people’s vote, is what true democrats around the world so admire about this country. Our short-lived democracy was threatened by a would-be Fascist dictator who knew exactly what he was doing when he lit the fuse that incited an invasion of folks set on murdering the Vice President. How do we know that? They erected a noose just outside the doors of the Capitol and they yelled that they wanted to find the very Vice President who never wavered in his respect and adulation for the president who, as I have said again and again, has no low.

Stop and think about where Mike Pence is now. As I write this article, Pence has done nothing to strike back at the man who unleashed the mob against him and threatened his life and the lives of his family. Pence was asked to break the law and nullify the presidential election and now has nothing to say. That gives you a pretty good idea of his character. Remember, this is a man who could have been president.

It was not by accident that the House impeachment managers, including the unbelievably persuasive and heroic Jamie Raskin, kept referring to Pence during their statements. They wanted to let the spineless Republican Senators know what was at stake. It didn’t work — they threw their Republican colleague, Pence, overboard. The whole thing left the Republicans in a very bad place.

What was really going on here was evident. This was a last-ditch effort by the former white male majority in this country to preserve their power in the face of growing diversity. They know, as we all do, that the Black, Latino and progressive communities in the United States pulled together and, for the sake of their children and their children’s children, voted for change.

This can all be traced back to the Civil War. Lincoln was assassinated and after that, the emancipated slaves were put into economic and social servitude. Now it would appear that there is a legitimate chance that things are actually changing and that is what is so frightening for those who have held on to power for so long. They were backed by Republican Senators who looked and talked like them. These Senators will be written into the history books as traitors.

So is Donald Trump finished? Hitler wasn’t after he went to jail. I say that he is. After all, a lot of people voted for his conviction, including a handful of courageous Republicans. The impeachment trial of Donald Trump illustrates the same divisions that have always existed in this country, but things are changing. Frankly, there are more people who are insisting on sharing. Let’s just see whether at least some of the Senators who voted with Trump will have put themselves at risk. Look at the two Democratic wins in Georgia. People know what’s right.

Yes, I knew what the outcome of the trial would be, but I am quite sure that we are on the way to a better country. Thank you to the incredible Democratic managers and to all those who agree that things will get better. America, have heart.

Alan Chartock is professor emeritus at the State University of New York, publisher of the Legislative Gazette and president and CEO of the WAMC Northeast Public Radio Network. Readers can email him at [email protected].