The U.S. House of Representatives impeached President Donald Trump on Wednesday.

It is the second time House Democrats impeached Trump and comes just days before President-elect Joe Biden is inaugurated.

The true drama of the impeachment will play out in the U.S. Senate, including whether Trump might be barred from running for the White House in 2024.

The Trump impeachment is a crossroads for Republicans and Democrats as well as the incoming Biden administration. It is a crossroads for all of us.

We hope the needs of small businesses, restaurants and workers hit hard by COVID-19 pandemic don’t get lost in all this. It certainly felt that way during the months of political gridlock over a new stimulus bill and when $600 was the best Washington could come up with for Americans hit by the pandemic

Republicans will have to decide if they are going to continue to follow Trump and his populist agenda. They will have to deal with the universal condemnations of the storming of the Capitol.

There have always been divisions between Trump and his working class base and more traditional and establishment Republicans who favor free trade, more interventionist foreign policies and business interests.

Republicans are in the minority and Trump will be out of the White House on Jan. 20.

How strong is his base in the wake of the storming of the Capitol, and is there a Republican standard bearer who can offer an alternative?

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is among those seeking that latter position. We hope Hogan also keeps his focus on Maryland’s economy and jobs and protecting nursing home patients from COVID.

For Democrats, the energy is there to get Trump out of office — even if it is an hour before Biden’s inauguration. They also want a Senate impeachment conviction to bar Trump from running again in 2024.

The dust is still very much settling after the Jan. 6 riots. But Democrats are also going to have to figure out when and how to put Trump in the rear-view mirror.

They have the majority and votes to keep pursuing Trump and those who stormed the Capitol.

But they will also have to decide how much energy to put toward that and how much energy to put toward the economy and all the impacts of pandemic.

Democrats will need to get moving on fixing the U.S. Postal Service, where delivery days are hurting residents and small businesses here on the Eastern Shore and across the country.

Being the anti-Trump party was a narrow path for Electoral College success for Democrats in 2020. We hope Democrats look for policies that help workers, small businesses and entrepreneurs. We hope their approaches to policy — as well as rhetoric — are reasoned and reasonable as the emotions of Trump subside.

President-elect Biden is already being pulled in two directions as he prepares to take office.

Many Americans want to see Biden try to build some consensus and try to heal some of the stark divisions in the country and our communities, including here on the Shore.

But there are also ample more aggressive voices (some of them very powerful) who want Biden and the new Democratic majority to seek justice for all of Trump’s wrongs and to silence and punish his supporters.

We have seen some of that on social media with the censoring of conservative voices — beyond Twitter and Facebook banning Trump.

We hope Biden takes the consensus and healing path. We hope he puts a focus on jobs, the economy and issues that are important to the Shore, such as the digital divide and criminal justice reform.

Biden and Congress need to fix the Postal Service and approve $2,000 COVID stimulus checks.

The passion and emotion right now is for political revenge. We hope that eases.

We collectively have to decide not to hate the other side of our vast political divide.

That decision is in our hands. The media and political landscapes are not prone for easing the political strife. But we do have that power at the community and personal levels.

We hope for a more reasoned path for all us.

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