By now I’m sure you have seen the news and know the House of Representatives has impeached President Trump. This is a pivotal moment for our Democracy. 

Despite the President’s best efforts to undermine the Republic, Democrats have done incredible work to accomplish our goals and promises from the 2018 election.

In 2019, Democrats have passed 400 bills in the House to do things like:

  • Increase access to affordable healthcare
  • Lower the cost of prescription drugs
  • Address the reality of the climate crisis
  • Improve our education system
  • Protect voting rights
  • Fight for Civil Rights

Unfortunately, the overwhelming majority suffer a dim fate in Mitch McConnell’s legislative graveyard.

As Democrats continue to do the important work to better our country, members of Congress must also uphold their constitutional responsibilities in response to the egregious actions of President Trump.

Democrats in Congress have not let impeachment hinder their work towards our goals. Just last week Democrats passed a comprehensive bill to lower prescription drug prices (despite 192 Republicans voting against it). If we want to build on the Democratic momentum of the 2018 and 2019 elections, down-ballot Democrats must do the same.

How to Handle the Impeachment Question

Impeachment is going to come up on the campaign trail for Democrats running at every level of office. How we handle the impeachment question will determine our success.

At the National Democratic Training Committee, our message to candidates on impeachment is this: Do not be afraid of it. Do not apologize for your opinions. Take your stance.

But, do not make it the focal point of your campaign.

Not because it’s not important, but because if you’re running as a Democrat, chances are voters already know where you stand on Trump. It’s not going to change their vote.

Elections at the local level in 2020 will not be decided based on what a candidate says about national politics. Local elections are won by the candidates who show voters how they will change their community. 

If you’re running for school board, you aren’t going to win just because you told voters you want Trump to be impeached. You’re going to win by telling voters how you’ll improve your community’s schools.

Democrats must not let impeachment distract them from leading change on the issues that affect the lives of voters and their communities. If we want to see another Blue Wave in 2020 we must lead on local issues. 

People want real leadership. Not lies or excuses. Now more than ever, Democrats have the opportunity to show we care about the integrity of our country. When that happens, the voters will follow. 

When you’re ready to run for office and make real change in your community, we are here to provide the free Democratic candidate training you need to help you win.

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Kelly Dietrich

Kelly is the Founder and CEO of the National Democratic Training Committee.

He has worked on dozens of campaigns at every level across the country. Kelly's specialty is in new campaign creation, candidate and staff training, and fundraising.

In addition to working for 18+ years in Democratic politics, he teaches a class on political campaigns at DePaul University in Chicago, where he lives with his family and dog, a large hungry blue Weimaraner named Jack Bauer. Kelly started his career in 1998 with Rep. Dennis Moore in KS-03. He's an avid basketball and poker player, though never at the same time. His wife would point out that at no time in this biography was he described as "good" at either hobby. That was a conscious decision.