|Trump showed his ignorance of the Constitution yet again when he tweeted that a President can "only be impeached for High Crimes and Misdemeanors, and I haven't committed any crimes!". The phrase is discussed several times in the Federalist Papers and it's clear that it doesn't refer only to actual criminal activity, but also to things like maladministration and usurpation of power - a public official not necessarily committing crimes but violating the public trust.|
Trump also tweeted that if the Dems try to impeach him, he'll go straight to SCOTUS - sorry Donny, SCOTUS has already ruled (1993?) that the Constitution does not allow the Court to get involved in impeachment proceedings. It's strictly up to Congress. I believe that particular decision involved the impeachment of a federal judge, but the decision was clear - impeachment and subsequent removal from office can only be dealt with by Congress.
It is a political process, and like any other political process you have to gauge the potential repercussions. IF the House impeaches, there is no chance the current Senate will convict - the votes are just not there unless the evidence is compelling enough to get over that 67 vote barrier.
In Nixon's case, he was told by Republican Senate leadership that the evidence was so strong that he WOULD be convicted - so he resigned, choosing to jump ratther than being pushed.
The Senate declined to convict Bill Clinton after his impeachment, and his approval rating went UP. That's the danger in impeaching Trump - he gets a bump that can carry him through the 2020 election to another term. In fact, I think he's trying to taunt the Denms into impeaching him, believing that it will work for him the same way it worked for Clinton.
In my opinion, impeachment without possibiity of convicition is a meaningless exercise. I don't see it as an abdication of constitutional reponsibility, but more as an acceptance of the political reality. The House has the option of censuring him for his behavior. That has no legal meaning, but it's another stain on his presidency going into 2020. I think we need the American people to make this decision.