There is no path to impeachment through the current U.S. Congress.

Like everyone else, I am following all of the news out of the Mueller investigation closely, and I have read quite a bit of really interesting analysis thereof. As such, I feel it is worth stating that there is exactly zero chance that Trump will be impeached without significant changes in Congress.

Yes, there is ample reason to believe that Trump and his campaign/administration actively colluded with the Russian government, and I would bet money that this same bunch has been engaged in ham-handed, incompetent cover-up of a whole host of crimes and malfeasance. Yes, Trump should be impeached, and multiple members of his circle should be prosecuted.

No, none of that is going to happen prior to 2018. If the Republican party maintains control of one or both houses of Congress through the mid-terms, none of that is going to happen after 2018 either.

Here is what will happen: either Trump will fire Mueller, or Mueller will complete his investigation and deliver his report. Either way, the current Republican leadership of the House and Senate will shrug its shoulders and move on.

Oh, you say, but the Republicans have gotten their tax cut! Now they will turn on Trump! No, they will not. After this tax cut, they have a whole list of other stuff to get through: financial deregulation, more tax cuts, privatization of Social Security, more tax cuts, elimination of environmental protection laws, still more tax cuts, voter suppression, outlawing abortion completely, yet more tax cuts. Oh, and some more tax cuts after that.

Beyond their legislative agenda, the GOP is all-in on Trump at this point, and they cannot risk alienating his base voters.

So no, Republicans are not suddenly going to turn on Trump. There is no smoking-gun piece of evidence that will suddenly convince them that he needs to go, that will convince them that the price they will pay in terms of either their legislative agenda agenda or the votes of resentful white people on whom they depend is worth it.

By all means, follow Robert Mueller’s investigation. It is fascinating, and it is super-important. But do not hope that Mueller is going to save us on his own. Democrats need to re-take both the House and the Senate in 2018 for this exercise to be anything more than academic.

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