Historian Jon Meacham: If you raise the bar on what's impeachable, you lower the bar on acceptable behavior
Jon Meacham appears on MSNBC (screen grab)

Historian Jon Meacham warned on Thursday that a Republican effort to "raise the bar" on impeachment is actually "lowering the bar" on acceptable presidential behavior.

"At some point if you continue to raise the bar on what is impeachable, you lower the bar inexorably on the behavior you’re willing to live with," Meacham explained during an appearance on MSNBC. "I dislike what I sometimes think of as the punditry of hypocrisy. What if Obama did this? What if George W. Bush did this?

"In this case it really does matter, because I think what the members of the House have to do and I think what citizens have to do, because politicians are far more often mirrors of who we are than they are molders, what we have to decide is, is this a moment where a higher duty actually should take precedent over the next election?" he said.

Meacham concluded: "So it’s a higher duty question. And the answer may be no, that we want to preserve our positions, we want to be re-elected and we don’t think this rises to that level. I promise you, if a Democrat had done what they’re doing, they would be saying the opposite."

Watch the video below from MSNBC.