Never Trump Republicans and their Democratic co-conspirators have another trick up their sleeves. Knowing that they probably do not have the votes to convict and remove the President in the Senate, they are desperately searching for a way to pull it off and they think they’ve found it: A secret vote and/or a generous reading of the two-thirds rule.
Pushed by people like lobbyist Juleanna Glover (formerly of the Bush 43 Administration and Bill Kristol acolyte), Laurence Tribe and former Sen. Jeff Flake, the operating theory is that if Senators were freed from accountability to their voters there would be 30 to 35 Republicans in the Senate ready to vote “yes” on conviction.
The other pipe dream is that the Constitution only demands a two-thirds majority of the Senators present. For every Senator that refuses to attend it brings that two-thirds number lower. But staying away is the same as a yes vote.
Jim Geraghty points out at National Review, “If Trump really is an unconstitutional menace who is abusing the power of the presidency for his personal interests, stopping him ought to be worth losing a Senate seat. And if this action isn’t worth losing a Senate seat over, then it’s hard to see how it is worth removing a president.”
A secret ballot after secret proceedings in the House sounds like a recipe for disaster. How do you think the public would react?