Impeachment inquiry debated


graphic by mikayla mellis

Faizah Saadmim, Editor-in-chief

On Dec. 13, the House Judiciary Committee voted to approve two articles of impeachment against Trump: abuse of power and obstruction of congress. Subsequently, the House of Representatives held a vote on the articles of impeachment, where both articles were adopted with more than the 216 votes needed. A topical poll by Washington Post found that 48 percent of registered voters believe that President Trump should be impeached and removed from office. A similar poll by CNN shows 46 percent support that same cause.

The American population is split on whether the president should be impeached and removed from office. The students at Dulaney High School echo a similar sentiment of divide about the efficacy of impeachment with 51 percent supporting impeachment and 48 percent opposing impeachment, according to an anonymous online survey of 200 students in English classes.

Senior and future voter, Benjamin Bilo, opposes the impeachment of President Trump as he believes the impeachment inquiry is hindering the country’s well-being because politicians are engaging in in-fighting instead of working towards national unity.

“If people have problems with the President, they should advise him and make their opinions known instead of throwing him out entirely. Much more could be accomplished if bipartisanship efforts were taken and the country was united,” Bilo said.

Senior Andre Gartner is currently working with a Maryland congressman who has first-hand experience with the process millions of Americans are watching on their TV screens. He describes his conclusion from the trial, confirming Trump’s unlawful actions.

“I believe the impeachment process established that Donald Trump did commit impeachable offenses,” Gartner said. “To call this process simply a partisan and unwarranted process is to ignore the findings of the investigations all together.”

With the vote counted on Dec. 18, President Trump became the third president in American history to be impeached. This historical moment is the second impeachment history teacher John Wagner has experienced. Wagner compares the political climate during former President Clinton’s impeachment with that of the current president.

“I think the atmosphere is very similar. It’s a bitterly divided, polarizing partisan issue just like the Clinton impeachment,” Wagner said. “I don’t think it’s very different at all.”

For most students, however, this is the first impeachment in their lifetime, having only read about the infamy of Watergate or Clinton’s scandal. Senior Jaweria Qazi describes her experience watching the impeachment vote.

“I feel that the impeachment of President Trump is shameful, yet monumental. It is terrible that he abused his power, but it is also historic,” Qazi said.

English teacher Maria Hiaasen has followed the impeachment inquiry carefully and is skeptical about the impact it will have in creating change.

“I have certainly paid attention to this whole procedure and actually taken heart in it,” Hiaasen said. “Surely, when people with facts come speak, minds will be changed, but I don’t know.”

Senior Claire McGinnity has noticed future, young voters like herself educating themselves with news about impeachment and being invested in the political events of the country through her project for Advanced Placement Research.

“I think young people are fairly in the know. I have found that a lot of students are actually checking up on the current political news roughly weekly,” McGinnity said.

According to the aforementioned survey, students have actively engaged with the impeachment trial with 64.6 percent of students following the impeachment proceedings through news outlets, social media or live stream.

The major implications this impeachment will have on the 2020 election results remain to be seen. Forty-six percent of students say that Trump’s impeachment will impact their voting decision in 2020, while 54 percent believe it will not impact their vote.

Senior Justin White’s decision to vote for Donald Trump has not changed, although he was disappointed when President Trump asked Ukraine to investigate an opposing candidate, talking in context of the Russian scandal that surrounded Trump’s victory in 2020.

“[Ukraine’s involvement] is the one thing I was kind of disappointed in, especially with all the recent Russia allegations in the last election,” White said. “But I will vote for Trump in the upcoming election as he gives us the best opportunity in becoming a stronger and more successful country.”

For Bilo, who identifies his political affiliation as Independent, the impeachment has greatly impacted how he will vote in the 2020 presidential election.

“Before, I was planning on voting for President Trump. Now, I will likely be voting for an Independent candidate who is not caught up in this [impeachment] rivalry.”