Review | ‘The Case for Impeachment’

A review of Allan J. Lichtman's latest book

The Case for Impeachment is a fantastic read and is my favourite book of 2017.

Distinguished Professor of History at the American University in Washington DC, Allan J. Lichtman has produced my favourite book of 2017. The Case for Impeachment is clearly structured, succinctly written, and enlightening to read. Renowned as the man who predicted Donald Trump’s election to the White House, Lichtman turns his attention to how and why President Trump should be impeached in his latest book. The Case for Impeachment introduces a history of impeachment proceedings in the United States of America, from how proceedings begin to the processes that follow.

Most importantly, the book discusses potential grounds for impeaching President Trump. From Trump’s lies to his previous law-breaking, Lichtman identifies many reasons for removing Trump from the White House. Although stories about Trump’s ties to Russia make the headlines frequently, the book decides to focus attention on over six other grounds for impeachment. ‘Russia-gate’ as some on social media are calling the scandal is still covered by Lichtman in the eighth chapter of his book, so those inquisitive about the consequences the scandal may hold will still find the book enlightening.

The initial two chapters of the book introduce the reader to the inner workings of the impeachment process and examine the proceedings against Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton when they held Presidential office. As someone who was born in the late 90s, I have little to no recollection of Clinton’s Presidency. Neither do I have much knowledge of Nixon’s tenure in office as it occurred well before my existence. Therefore, the introductory chapters provide a wealth of experience of both former Presidents’ scandals and close brushes with impeachment.

Subsequent chapters argue different grounds for impeaching Mr Trump, concluding with reasons as to why he should not be impeached. The vast amount of knowledge provided by Lichtman may shock the reader, with revelations regarding Trump’s history. Revelations such as Trump’s violations of The Fair Housing Act may surprise readers. Especially when readers discover Trump’s company denied people the opportunity to rent property due to their skin colour. Readers may also be shocked at discovering Trump’s exploitation of illegal immigrants in 1980, paying them a below standard wage. Ironically, Trump campaigned against illegal immigration during the 2016 election campaign.

Lichtman has also taken the time to conclude his book with a message for Mr Trump. That message provides Trump with steps to avoid impeachment proceedings. Lichtman however, acknowledges Trump is unlikely to make it that far through the book.

Since the book’s first publication, steps three and seven of Lichtman’s recommendations to avoid impeachment proceedings have already been satisfied. These being the sacking of Steve Bannon and seeking a doctor of psychiatry to prove Trump’s mental health record.

Lichtman’s writing style is easy to understand for a wide variety of readers. His clear use of language and explanation of historical events in Trump’s life helps readers engage further with the themes the book discusses. The Case for Impeachment is a must-read for any fan of American history, politics, current affairs, or law. The prior knowledge the reader has of impeachment or of Mr Trump himself is irrelevant. This is because Lichtman perfectly educates the reader about Trump’s life and the basics of impeachment in the US.

Samuel Marc Evans 4 Articles
LLB Law student and political enthusiast! Likes to rant about politics.

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