In his unhinged letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi yesterday, Donald Trump told the congressional leader, "You have cheapened the importance of the very ugly word, impeachment!" The president went on to suggest via Twitter this morning that he's concerned about impeachment being made "trivial."
He appears to have arrived at these concerns quite recently.
It wasn't long ago, for example, that Trump wanted Pelosi to impeach George W. Bush for having launched the Iraq war. "He got us into the war with lies!" Trump said in 2008.
His attitude toward impeaching Barack Obama was even more cavalier. "Are you allowed to impeach a president for gross incompetence?" Trump wrote on Twitter in June 2014.
Several months later, after Republicans took complete control over both houses of Congress, Trump appeared on Fox & Friends and was asked what he'd like to see the new GOP majorities do. Trump replied that he wanted Republicans to impeach the Democratic president.
"Do you think Obama seriously wants to be impeached and go through what Bill Clinton did? He would be a mess. He would be thinking about nothing but. It would be a horror show for him. It would be an absolute embarrassment. It would go down on his record permanently."
It wasn't altogether clear what it was Obama did that Trump saw as worthy of impeachment; Trump simply seemed to like the idea of trying to rattle Obama on a personal level.
But given today's developments, it's worth pausing to reflect anew on Trump's 2014 on the personal toll impeachment takes on a president:
Here's that quote again: "He would be a mess. He would be thinking about nothing but. It would be a horror show for him. It would be an absolute embarrassment. It would go down on his record permanently."
Does this sound like anyone else you know?
Postscript: As long as we're on the subject, Obama's impeachment is apparently still on the minds of some Republicans. Yesterday, Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-Ala.) introduced an amendment during House Rules Committee proceedings, arguing that Democrats should've endorsed Obama's impeachment before the Democratic president left office. Meanwhile, during a congressional hearing two weeks ago, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) suggested that Congress might still consider impeaching Obama, even though he's now a private citizen.