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"Mr. Trump is willing to deal a major blow to the rule of law — and the American Republic — in order to end an independent investigation into his Russia ties. When would-be dictators rail against democracy, hire violent thugs to do their bidding, vow to destroy the opposition & demand expanded powers or attack independent institutions, their supporters and opponents alike realize that authoritarianism has arrived. This is worrying. The Constitution cannot defend itself. If Congress does not stand up to Mr. Trump because Republicans are afraid of their own base, the president may be able to obstruct the course of justice with impunity. Worse, he may then conclude that he can get away with violating even more basic limits on his power."