The caterwauling is quiet for now. On Wednesday afternoon, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of the people’s republic of San Francisco brought a motion to the floor of the house to table the articles of impeachment effort mounted by Rep. Al Green this week.
In a stunning turn of events, the motion passed and the impeachment effort went down in flames, for now anyway.
The move split Democrats, underscoring the divisions within the party over whether they should use their majority to charge Mr. Trump and try to remove him from office, with 95 signaling their support for at least considering the question further, and 137 moving to stop the current effort in its tracks.
To his credit, President Trump thanked the 137 Democrats who voted with Republicans to kill the impeachment attempt at a campaign rally in North Carolina Wednesday evening.
The reality is that Democrats with political savvy know that an impeachment attempt on the president would backfire like a plugged up cannon and do more damage than not. Pelosi and other people in party leadership want to avoid that at all costs.
The 332-to-95 vote to table the impeachment article drafted by Representative Al Green, Democrat of Texas, constituted the first action by the House since Democrats took control in January on a measure to impeach Mr. Trump, a significant move that Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California and other party leaders have toiled to avoid. By agreeing to table the article, Ms. Pelosi and the Democrats put off — at least for now — a prolonged and divisive debate over whether Mr. Trump’s conduct warrants his expulsion.
The problem Democrats face if they care to admit it is that President Trump, so far, has not committed a crime that would be an impeachable offense. The country also does not want the fiasco an impeachment would garner, either. Doing something so unpopular would deep-six the Democrats for sure.