When the House Judiciary Committee approved articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump in December, Chairman and Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., declared that it was “a solemn and sad day.”

In retrospect, Nadler could not have been more right — just for all the wrong reasons. The impeachment trial against President Trump was a deeply unsettling spectacle that targeted far more than the current occupant of the White House. It ripped at the very fabric of our country. 

The impeachment against Trump was solemn and sad not because our president was being charged with high crimes and misdemeanors, but because one of America’s major political parties had unashamedly stooped to such a low level. The trial was a clear slap in the face for so many in this country.

As many of us know, the impeachment effort fortunately came to a quick end a couple of weeks ago in the president’s favor. But what has not come to an end is the dangerous political pattern this trial is a part of. The impeachment was the last straw for many in this nation, and Americans have had enough of it. There’s simply no excuse for the Democratic Party’s relentless attacks on our president.    

Since our president first announced his candidacy nearly five years ago, Democrats have unceasingly picked apart everything about Trump, investigating and scrutinizing his every move. They have thrown bombshells into the Oval Office, one after another. They have put his business affairs under a microscope. And, most recently, they have impeached our president and put him on trial for weeks in front of the American people.

Trump isn’t perfect. He’s made some questionable choices that fall outside the boundaries of historical presidential behavior. But an occasional mistake shouldn’t subject the president to a process that has only occurred three other times in U.S. history.

Democrats have truly done everything imaginable to damage our president and bring him down once and for all. They have tried to rip this country apart, literally. (I am referring to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s stunning move at the end of Trump’s State of the Union speech).

While the impeachment trial only ended recently, Democrats began plotting the end of Trump’s political career before it had begun. It all began in 2011, when Fusion GPS was founded in Washington, D.C., by a group of veteran journalists. 

While Fusion did some investigation in the past, it rose to prominence after it was hired to investigate the 2016 presidential candidates, which included Trump. By the time Trump won the election in November of that year, Fusion had hired intelligence expert Christopher Steele to help investigate Trump’s ties to the Russian government. Steele’s research and the firm’s efforts ultimately produced a plethora of alarming allegations against the president, among them that Trump had an extensive record of collusion with Moscow. Once all of these unverified charges against Trump surfaced, Democrats quickly worked to implicate the president by constantly talking about “Trump-Russia collusion,” even though the origins of the allegations and the dossier as a whole are questionable.

As the Trump administration continued to come under unrelenting scrutiny, Special Counsel for the United States Department of Justice Robert Mueller came into the picture, assuming command of the investigation once he was appointed in May 2017. After working for about two years, Mueller’s anticlimactic findings were released in a final report that was clearly disappointing for Democrats. The underwhelming ruling didn’t charge Trump with any crime at all and found the president didn’t engage in any conspiracy with the Russian government.

But the Democratic Party didn’t stop here. Still determined to take the Trump presidency down, they began to explore other ways that they could somehow end this resilient administration. Soon after the conclusion of the Mueller investigation, the Democrats used their broad control over the investigative powers of the House of Representatives to begin an impeachment inquiry into a July 2019 phone call between Trump and Ukranian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

This impeachment inquiry quickly spiraled out of control, collapsing almost immediately. From the start, it was obvious it was a highly partisan effort, with every Republican voting against both articles of impeachment in the House.

Even though the Constitution plainly requires the House to forward the articles to the Senate, Pelosi and Democratic leadership initially resisted because they knew Trump would never be convicted in the Republican-majority Senate. But still, they were eventually passed on and — after weeks of monotonous trial proceedings with few new revelations — Trump was swiftly acquitted with only one Republican siding with Democrats, receiving the vindication he deserved.

That brings us to today. After years of systematic attempts at destroying this legitimate administration, Trump is still the president. And he’s doing better than ever before. Meanwhile, Democrats have been forced to return to the drawing board, and it’s not hard to wonder what they’ll try next. 

But I sincerely hope that before the next allegations surface — before they engineer the next bombshell and before they find another “impeachable” offense — Democrats take a moment and return to reality. While they have been trying to demolish, Trump has worked to reconstruct. Trump may be controversial, but Americans have unequivocally expressed their support for his innovative policies.

recent Gallup poll released in the midst of the polarizing impeachment trial found that 49 percent of Americans approve of the president’s job in office, an all-time high from this pollster. This may not be a majority of the nation, but according to the same poll, only 46 percent of Americans approved of President Obama’s job at the same point in his first term. Moreover, Gallup added in another poll that over 60 percent of Americans feel they’re better off than they were three years ago, while only 45 percent said the same at the same point in the Obama presidency.

In the end, whether Democrats like it or not, Trump has done a lot of good for millions of people across the country. These numbers don’t signal us that we have a rogue president who is blatantly violating American law, as Democrats tell us, but a respected leader who is doing great things. 

More than ever before, it’s time to give our president the respect he deserves and actually let him govern as the leader of the U.S. I’m not asking Trump’s political opponents and haters to vote for him in November. Every American has a right to go to the polls at the end of this year and vote for whichever candidate they believe can best lead our country forward.

But until then, it’s time to part ways with this immature behavior. We may not all support Trump, but we all have a critical duty to be fair to our president and support him in his ultimate mission to uplift all Americans.

Evan Stern can be reached at erstern@umich.edu.

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