We are posting a thoughtful response we got about the need for strategic action and the importance of the upcoming Senate Impeachment trial. This engages with a crucial question: How do we in our millions who do not want a fascist America fully repudiate the virulent fascism that the Trump/Pence regime cohered? We encourage others to read this and send in your thoughts to [email protected]
By Mark Claes
The Senate Impeachment Trial & the Need to Refuse Fascism
Eric Seitz, defense attorney, lecturer in Constitutional Law, University of Hawai’i
Jared Yates Sexton, professor, writer, political analyst
Paul Street, historian & journalist; author, The Hollow Resistance: Obama, Trump, and Politics of Appeasement.
Sam Goldman, RefuseFascism.org Editorial Board
Convict Trump in the Senate Impeachment Trial
In the Name of Humanity, We Refuse to Accept a Fascist America
The call to convict Trump in the Senate is a righteous call. The call to expel Sens. Cruz and Hawley is a righteous call. The call to expel the 140-odd Representatives who refused to sign off on the Electoral College vote is a righteous call. To allow any or all of these to continue to go unanswered or unpunished is to invite the inevitable, next fascist power-grab.
The 81 million who voted, ostensibly for democracy, need to be showing their majority – by getting in the streets, strategically, demanding the Senate vote to convict Trump. Right now, with the trial set to begin February 8th, the momentum slips away by the hour, and the needed Republicans votes are already out with the message of downplay and deny. We cannot let them let Trump’s seditious actions stand. Out of office and off of social media are not enough – only a full repudiation can even begin the necessary steps to move forward. But the Republicans do not want to let go of their man. The advancement of fascism will continue unless we can wrest the messaging from them.
I emphasize the need for strategic street actions because we need to focus on specific senators who can be pushed to vote their conscience. People who we know are already planning to not run for re-election, for example – Portman, Toomey for sure, but there are likely others. Bombard their offices with calls from people from their states demanding they vote to convict. Protest outside their offices in their states and get it covered by local media. Regardless of your senator’s known or unknown stance, you can write to your local paper calling on them to publish op-eds demanding conviction. If you know your senators would vote to convict, let them know you support their stance.
Having a Democratic majority in the Senate is not enough to get a conviction vote – 2/3 of the sitting senators are needed – that means finding and swinging enough Republicans (17, if everyone shows up) to get to that magic 2/3 number. I know that actions like calling your senator are not really something Refuse Fascism was getting behind in the past, but the stakes are even higher here. To be clear, if Trump is acquitted again in the Senate, his fascist goons will only be emboldened to further their toxic cause. Additionally, Trump’s conviction almost certainly will mean a vote to ban him from ever seeking high office again – a vote of a simple majority will get that one done. Trump’s fate in this trial is also not the end, as we know, but the fullest repudiation of his actions must be the call that wins the day, to not do all we can to influence that choice is simply leaving valuable cards on the table. Getting involved in any way we can will be the thing that gives us a chance to yet again gain more time to get out of this mess.
I got involved with this organization because I recognized that in 2016 I did not do everything I possibly could to prevent the election of Trump. Despite his 2020 loss, there is still much to be done to shut down and reverse the damages he has done. I hope you recognize the same need right now and will incorporate these necessary actions into your nationwide call to refuse fascism.