Guest Article by Jacob Hornberger, Libertarian Party Candidate for President
Amidst the impeachment circus in Washington, D.C., it is both amusing and revealing that neither Democrats nor Republicans are calling the abolition of foreign aid itself. That’s because they both want to continue using this crooked and corrupt program to bribe foreign regimes into doing the bidding of U.S. officials.
Trump’s crime, for which he is now being threatened with removal from office, is that he brought this sordid business of foreign aid into the open, ensuring that everyone would see how U.S. officials make the foreign-aid sausage.
Democrats and Republicans, including Trump himself, have run up a federal debt now exceeding $23 trillion. Despite the fact that he promised to slash federal spending when he was running for office, big spender Trump is adding another $1 trillion per year onto that debt, much to the excitement and glee of big-spending Democrats.
Yet, here we have a crooked and corrupt government program — foreign aid — that could easily be abolished and save American taxpayers billions of dollars in federal expenditures, and both Democrats and Republicans are fiercely committed to maintaining its existence.
Was Trump holding up foreign aid to Ukraine as a way to induce Ukrainian officials to initiate an investigation into Joe Biden and his son Hunter? It sure looks that way.
But that’s the essence of the entire foreign-aid program. Its very purpose is to bribe foreign officials into doing the will of U.S. officials. If a foreign regime bucks the U.S. government, you can rest assured that its foreign-aid dole is going to be terminated, suspended, or drastically reduced.
A classic example of this phenomenon is what happened when Yemen voted against the U.S. government’s request for UN authorization to militarily intervene against Iraq after Iraq invaded Kuwait. U.S. officials told Yemeni officials, “That was the most expensive no vote you ever cast,” referring to the more than $70 million of U.S. foreign aid that was now going to be slashed or ended.
It’s worth pointing out that foreign aid is a classic example of a socialist program, one in which the government takes money from hard-pressed American taxpayers and gives it to crooked and corrupt foreign regimes. It’s not surprising that Democrats favor foreign aid, given that they both favor every socialist program that comes down the pike, but it is supremely ironic (and hypocritical) that Trump and his fellow Republicans are decrying the socialism of the Democrats even while supporting the socialism of foreign aid.
I say: Leave Trump’s participation in this long-established crooked and corrupt socialist program to the 2020 presidential election. It doesn’t belong in the impeachment process.
Are there real high crimes and misdemeanors that Trump has committed that merit his removal from office? There are, but, not surprisingly, neither Republicans nor Democrats believe they merit removal from office. They include:
1. Waging war without the constitutionally required congressional declaration of war.
2. Engaging in state-sponsored assassinations that have deprived people of life without due process of law, in contravention of the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution.
3. Spending money from a Pentagon slush fund to build a Berlin Wall along the southern border of the United States after Congress expressly rejected Trump’s request for an authorization to use tax monies to build his wall. That’s classic dictatorial conduct not countenanced by the Constitution.
4. Raising taxes — i.e., tariffs — on the American people without the specific approval of Congress. That’s also classic dictatorial conduct not countenanced by the Constitution.
5. Using monies raised by his tariffs to fund a gigantic welfare program for American farmers who Trump has bankrupted with his destructive trade war against China, without the specific approval of Congress. That’s also classic dictatorial conduct not countenanced by the Constitution.
If Trump is to be removed from office through impeachment, at least do it for the right reasons.
Regardless, abolish foreign aid entirely.