US founder and famous federalist Alexander Hamilton has been front and center during the impeachment of President Donald Trump. Both supporters and opponents of impeachment are quoting from Hamilton's Federalist Papers 232 years after he published them. The writings were originally distributed to persuade the public to support ratification of the US Constitution, replacing the … Continue reading Alexander Hamilton and the Federalist Papers Are Resurrected During Trump Impeachment
With impeachment in the news, visitors are crowding to the east Tennessee home and museum of President Andrew Johnson, NPR reports. He was temperamentally erratic, vain, vulgar, vindictive, defiant, the first president to be impeached, served as president after Abraham Lincoln's assassination in April 1865 until March 1869 (never winning a popular election). He was … Continue reading In Era of Trump, Renewed Interest in President Andrew Johnson and His 1868 Impeachment
History has a way of clarifying things once personal ambitions and partisan agendas are no longer relevant. Impeachment is an example. None of the presidents who have been impeached -- Andrew Johnson, Richard Nixon, Bill Clinton -- come off well in historical terms. Yet some Republicans now out of office who voted to impeach Clinton … Continue reading On Impeachment, History is Clarifying
In assessing the impeachment and Senate trial of President Trump, many observers mainly remember the impeachment of President Clinton, which backfired politically against Republicans in the short-term. They lost congressional seats in the 1998 midterms. But impeaching Clinton helped them win the extremely close presidential election of 2000, George W. Bush against Clinton's vice president, … Continue reading Does Impeachment History Provide Guide for Future? Yes and No
Surrounded by Enemies, winner of the Sidewise Award for Alternate History, is a disturbing novel by Bryce Zabel, whose day-job is a writer for television. He immersed himself in the topic for a decade. The book and accompanying videos ask what if John F. Kennedy survived an assassination attempt in November 1963. For those of … Continue reading JFK: Surrounded By Enemies. A Prize-winning ‘What If’
Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.): “If Hillary Clinton becomes president, I am going to do everything I can do to make sure four years from now, we still got an opening on the Supreme Court.” https://t.co/EZ479m9qQh https://t.co/5oQ1jesIW9 Fake outrage or hypocrisy from Senator Lindsey Graham https://t.co/yi8RvWngTE via @HuffPostPol Sen. Lindsey Graham: "If an opening comes in … Continue reading What If Hillary Clinton Won in 2016?
Turning the "great man theory" of history on its head, Stephen Carter in The Impeachment of Abraham Lincoln (2012) imagines what if one of America's greatest presidents faced the same seemingly irreconcilable political differences that his successor, Andrew Johnson, faced. Johnson was indeed impeached but survived removal in the US Senate in 1868 by one … Continue reading If Lincoln Lived, Would He Have Been Impeached?
I remember as a teenager going door to door in my county to seek people to sign a petition to Congress to cut off funding for the Vietnam War. The comments I received from neighbors, mostly Democrats, about the Republican President, Richard Nixon, seem quaint by today's standards. "President Nixon is the only President or … Continue reading What If Nixon’s Watergate Scandal Was Avoided?
Here's how history hangs on a thread. Frank Wills, a sharp-eyed night watchman at the Watergate Hotel in June 1972, discovered the break-in at Democratic headquarters by chance. A less vigilant watchman may not have done so, meaning Richard Nixon's cover-up would probably not have been discovered before he left office; and he may not … Continue reading 1972: What If Night Watchman Hadn’t Caught Watergate Burglars? Might Nixon Be Viewed As A Good President? What If Muskie Hadn’t Tripped on Dirty Tricks?
There probably was no way Republicans could have won the 1964 election. The party was deeply divided over civil rights, and Senator Barry Goldwater lost in a landslide. But Democratic President Lyndon Johnson certainly had his vulnerabilities. In the fall of 1963, a team of journalists for Life magazine were preparing an expose on Johnson's financial shenanigans … Continue reading For Want of Rain On One Afternoon, 1963-4 Could Have Turned Out Far Differently