Iran Shouldn’t Bet on Trump’s Impeachment
Anwar Altaqi – Esam Aziz
Two points should be discussed when we talk about U.S. President Donald Trump’s political future: 1. The potential impact of the unlikely presidential impeachment by the House of Representatives on the global financial market, 2. The effect of such a decision on the re-imposed U.S.sanctions on Iran.
Due to highly partisan polarization in Washington, the midterm Congressional elections in November this year will largely contribute to the fate of the president.
Though it has become increasingly difficult to predict the results of any political elections in the United States recently, strategists in both parties now consider Democrats likely to gain the 23 seats they need to reclaim a majority in the House of Representatives. That would allow Democrats to roadblock Trump’s legislative agenda, launch oversight investigations, and explore impeachment proceedings. In the House, 435 seats are up for election in the forthcoming midterms. The Republicans in that chamber currently hold 238 seats and the Democrats hold 192.
However, the Senate outlook remains in greater doubt as the parties wage battles in eight states, most of them Trump-friendly. But no one dismisses Democrats’ opportunity to gain the two seats they need for control, which would give them veto power over White House appointments to the cabinet and courts, and would reinforce the call for impeachment proceedings.
Yet, the general mood among American voters is favorable for Trump. The president’s approval rate is 48%, while only 37% do not approve of his presidency. So long as Trump has a high approval rating, Republican chances to win in November remain high. And if Democrats do not win both the House and the Senate, it would be very difficult to start an impeachment process in the House of Representatives.
But if we assume, for argument’s sake, that President Trump is impeached, what would happen in the financial markets, or in the case of sanctions on Iran?
The shortest answer for this question is, nothing. Everything will continue, more or less, along its current course. Vice President Mike Pence is a genuine component in shaping current policies, and he may be even tougher on Iran than President Trump.
Just a few days ago, President Trump said the stock market would plummet if he were to be removed from office. “If I ever got impeached, I think the market would crash. I think everybody would be very poor,” the president said in a Fox Newsinterview. However, the stock market has had little reaction so far to Trump’s renewed legal troubles with two former advisors — one implicating the president directly — now guilty of criminal acts.
On the economic or Iran front, Pence espouses the same approach of Trump. The vice president recently said that the reason for the U.S. economic “revival” is President’s Trump policies. He added that Americans should put in context the disparity between the economic growth seen under the Trump-Pence administration and that of the Obama-Biden and Bush-Cheney eras. “In the last two administrations, the economy grew by less than 2 percent,” Pence said. “In the first 18 months of this administration, we were a little shy of last year, but we’re on track to be at 3 percent or better this year.”
On Iran, Pence has a very hawkish policy. Last October, he gave a speech to commemorate the anniversary of the 1983 bombing of the Marine barracks in Beirut, Lebanon. In that speech, Pence said that Iran supported terrorists and glorified their actions. “Iran praises the attackers and calls them martyrs,” Pence said. The vice president said his government, under President Trump, is resolved to take decisive action and end “Iran’s aggression.”
“The United States of America will no longer tolerate Iran’s support of global terrorism,” Pence said, adding Trump’s administration “will not sit idly by while the Ayatollahs plan more attacks.Iran is very good at pitting communities against each other. It is a hegemonic design and a threat they share with ISIL and al-Qaeda,” Pence added.
Last June, Pence warned Iran in sharper language. “Make no mistake about it, this is their last chance,” he said.
Last July, Pence spoke more harshly about the Ayatollahs. “it’s important to remember, first and foremost, that Iran is the leading state sponsor of terrorism in the world. I mean, not only do they oppress their own people, deny human rights to their own, but they also export terrorism across the region and continue to be an enormously dangerous, destabilizing force. And so to see the people of Iran rising up to demand change in their country should hearten every freedom-loving American and people who cherish freedom around the world.
And I have to tell you that the contrast today between the deafening silence from an American President in 2009, during the Green Revolution in Iran…” the vice president said.
Does Mike Pence sound like a promising choice to relieveIran of the painful DonaldTrump sanctions?