The classic 1954 movie “The Caine Mutiny” crescendos with a court martial. Charged were crewmembers that had relieved Captain Queeg of command during a storm, citing as their defense their fear that his mental state had impaired his decision-making, and they feared loss of the ship and, possibly, all hands on board. The court martial did not appear to be going well for our mutineers. But then, as the cross examination of Queeg proceeded in earnest, he began rolling steel balls in his hand, and increasingly displayed the subtle cues evidencing a serious mental health problem lying below. The mutineers were not convicted.
In 2008 John McCain sought command of the United States, and the electoral crew relieved him of command before he’d even assumed it. Mutinous were many Republicans of the base who stayed home rather than vote for “John McAmnesty.”
Fast forward to the 2016 election, and the voters, and particularly Republican base voters (many of whom had long-since registered as “Independents”) elected a man whose platform was a rousing repudiation of the results a President McCain would have intended – “build the wall” trumped the lead Gangster of Eight and his stillborn amnesty.
For one who may feel entitled to the office, and robbed of it, and to see his agenda so publicly repudiated, it must feel like … like … like a mutiny against the legitimate leadership. And how to handle the mutineers? Why, a mutiny against their leader to restore the rightful order. And how to do that? Well, how about the political equivalent of a court martial: an impeachment?