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Tags donald trump , Trump administration , Trump controversies

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Old 25th April 2019, 06:56 AM   #521
dasmiller
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
What does "checks and balances" mean? How would you apply checks and balances to the legislature if the other two branches are not allowed to interfere to uphold the constitution?
First, the two houses of congress provide checks on each other. Second, on most matters, the courts can declare legislation unconstitutional and the president can veto bills (subject to congressional override, of course).

But as far as I can tell, there's no constitutional limit to congress' ability to impeach the president, so what checks and balances would be needed to uphold the constitution in such a case?
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Old 25th April 2019, 06:59 AM   #522
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
Can they impeach him for not obstructing justice? What if the reason given is he explicitly did not break the law and it is Congress's wish that he had broken the law, and are punishing him for not breaking it?
As far as I can tell, yes. But you'd need to get both houses to support such a thing.

I assume they'd phrase it differently. "Mismanagement" or some such.
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Old 25th April 2019, 06:59 AM   #523
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
It is a law. It's in article 2 of the US Constitution.
Impeaching the president is not passing a law. SCOTUS can't say it's unconstitutional, especially since, as you point out, IT'S IN THE CONSTITUTION.
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Old 25th April 2019, 07:02 AM   #524
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Originally Posted by dasmiller View Post
As far as I can tell, yes. But you'd need to get both houses to support such a thing.

I assume they'd phrase it differently. "Mismanagement" or some such.
If they didn't phrase it differently?

What if it explicitly states, *this impeachment does not address any high crime or misdemeanor?

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Old 25th April 2019, 07:06 AM   #525
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
It is a law. It's in article 2 of the US Constitution.



I haven't bothered to look up the definition of "high crimes and misdemeanours" but Trump could argue that whatever the House wants to impeach him for doesn't fall under that definition. If he were correct, then his impeachment would be unconstitutional. How else would you stop Congress from doing something unconstitutional other than by getting SCOTUS to rule on it?
It is impossible that the cause for indictment could be outside the definition of high crimes and misdemeanors. The phrase does not appear outside the Constitution. The House that is doing the voting gets to decide what it means.

Please keep in mind, the House voting for impeachment is more like an indictment than anything else. The second part of the process is the trial. The Senate gets to examine the evidence and vote on whether or not he stays in office.
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Old 25th April 2019, 07:18 AM   #526
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Did you guys even read the article? They address the issue of the Supreme Court vs. Congress:

Quote:
Although Trump claimed he would seek the Supreme Court’s help if the House were to impeach him, the Supreme Court ruled unanimously in 1993 that authority for impeachment trials resides in Congress and ”nowhere else.”
They even provide a link:

https://www.senate.gov/artandhistory...ers_upheld.htm

Quote:

What is the meaning of the verb “to try?” In 1992, justices of the U.S. Supreme Court consulted a shelf-full of dictionaries in search of a precise answer. They sought to settle a case initiated by a federal district judge, who in 1989 had been impeached by the House of Representatives and removed from office by the Senate. Imprisoned on a conviction for lying to a grand jury, Judge Walter Nixon disputed the Senate’s interpretation of “try” as it exercised its exclusive constitutional power to “to try all impeachments.”

....
On January 13, 1993, Supreme Court Chief Justice William Rehnquist put his dictionaries away and settled any doubts about all three cases. On behalf of a unanimous court, he ruled that authority over impeachment trials “is reposed in the Senate and nowhere else.”
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Old 25th April 2019, 07:21 AM   #527
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Originally Posted by Crossbow View Post
You should take a closer look at Article 2, because in Section 2 it goes on to say:


Therefore, House of Representatives deals with the impeachment of a President and not the courts.
I'm not arguing against that.

What I am saying is the bit of the constitution that I quoted tells us under what conditions the House can impeach the president. If the House of Representatives decides to impeach the president on the grounds that he wears his tie too long, he might argue that they are behaving unconstitutionally because wearing your tie too long is not treason or bribery or a "high crime or misdemeanour". I don't see why any president shouldn't be allowed to ask for a constitutional ruling on that from the SCOTUS.

Quote:
P.S.: there really is no definition of "high crimes and misdemeanors" because that determination is made by the House of Representatives.
Is it? I don't think it is as clear cut as you make out.

If the legislature can impeach for literally any reason they choose, that opens the possibility that, if both the House and Senate, are controlled by one party they could have the president removed at will. So much for checks and balances.
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Old 25th April 2019, 07:25 AM   #528
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Originally Posted by Horatius View Post
Did you guys even read the article? They address the issue of the Supreme Court vs. Congress:



They even provide a link:

https://www.senate.gov/artandhistory...ers_upheld.htm
Yeah, but that was for a Dem President being impeached for lying about a BJ, at a time when the court was mostly honest. This is completely different, because reasons.
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Old 25th April 2019, 07:26 AM   #529
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Originally Posted by Ladewig View Post
It is impossible that the cause for indictment could be outside the definition of high crimes and misdemeanors. The phrase does not appear outside the Constitution.
Yes it does. Or rather it did in the 18th century. It has a meaning going back to the 14th century.

Quote:
The House that is doing the voting gets to decide what it means.
If that is truly the case, the system is truly ****** up.
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Old 25th April 2019, 07:34 AM   #530
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Originally Posted by The_Animus View Post
Has the GOP called for him to resign? How about a public statement condemning his actions?
Yeah, like the GOP used to always say about Muslims, "Where are the good Republicans to call out the bad Republicans"?
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Old 25th April 2019, 07:34 AM   #531
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Originally Posted by Ladewig View Post
It is impossible that the cause for indictment could be outside the definition of high crimes and misdemeanors. The phrase does not appear outside the Constitution. The House that is doing the voting gets to decide what it means.
I'm not an expert on this but that doesn't sound right. The phrase is described by multiple sources as being in common use in political law prior to it's use in the Constitution. Also the debate surrounding alternate wordings, such as including "maladministration" as a reason for impeachment, suggest the framers really did not mean that House voting gets to decide what it means.

And it's SCOTUS that interprets the Constitution, right?


ETA: Echoing jeremyp I see.
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Old 25th April 2019, 07:34 AM   #532
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
Is it? I don't think it is as clear cut as you make out.

If the legislature can impeach for literally any reason they choose, that opens the possibility that, if both the House and Senate, are controlled by one party they could have the president removed at will. So much for checks and balances.


The check to that would be the electorate. One would hope that such a blatantly partisan action would result in the removal of the offending members of Congress in the next election.

It's not a perfect system, but then nothing is.

But when you consider how few impeachments have actually occurred in the history of the US, this seems like a fairly weak concern.

After all, look at where we are now: We have a report that provides quite a bit of evidence that Trump has obstructed justice, and he continues to commit essentially the same acts even now, but despite that, we still have people in Congress, members of the opposition party no less, who aren't sure if this is something he should be impeached over. I think I'll hold off on worrying about the Tan Suit with off-color shoes impeachment for the time being.
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Old 25th April 2019, 07:41 AM   #533
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
If the legislature can impeach for literally any reason they choose, that opens the possibility that, if both the House and Senate, are controlled by one party they could have the president removed at will. So much for checks and balances.
That party would have to have a 2/3 majority in both houses, and I believe that's never happened. So far, I haven't found a case where one party has had 2/3 of either house, but I'm less confident on that.

ETA: Just a majority in the house, and 2/3 in the senate.

ETA2: My bad. Sufficient majorities did happen in 1935. I'd delete the whole post but for the possibility that someone's already read it and is working on a reply.
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Old 25th April 2019, 07:43 AM   #534
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
If the legislature can impeach for literally any reason they choose, that opens the possibility that, if both the House and Senate, are controlled by one party they could have the president removed at will. So much for checks and balances.
Just switch to a parliamentary system and be done with it.
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Old 25th April 2019, 07:44 AM   #535
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post

If the legislature can impeach for literally any reason they choose, that opens the possibility that, if both the House and Senate, are controlled by one party they could have the president removed at will. So much for checks and balances.
Honestly, I would be more concerned with the situation where the House and Senate are controlled by the same party and are enabling a corrupt president of that same party.
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Old 25th April 2019, 07:58 AM   #536
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
Yes it does. Or rather it did in the 18th century. It has a meaning going back to the 14th century.


If that is truly the case, the system is truly ****** up.
Seems that over the last 2+ years Trump has brought to light exactly how ****** up your political system actually is. And almost half of you think that is ok.
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Old 25th April 2019, 08:08 AM   #537
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
I'm not arguing against that.

What I am saying is the bit of the constitution that I quoted tells us under what conditions the House can impeach the president. If the House of Representatives decides to impeach the president on the grounds that he wears his tie too long, he might argue that they are behaving unconstitutionally because wearing your tie too long is not treason or bribery or a "high crime or misdemeanour". I don't see why any president shouldn't be allowed to ask for a constitutional ruling on that from the SCOTUS.
While it is true that the President is quite at liberty to ask for anything that he wishes, including court rulings. However, even the wishes of sitting President are not automatically granted.


Quote:
Is it? I don't think it is as clear cut as you make out.

If the legislature can impeach for literally any reason they choose, that opens the possibility that, if both the House and Senate, are controlled by one party they could have the president removed at will. So much for checks and balances.
I quite agree, it is not a perfect government. However, there never has been a perfect government and it is quite unlikely that there ever will be a perfect government so we just have to make the best of things in the meantime.
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Old 25th April 2019, 08:09 AM   #538
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Just switch to a parliamentary system and be done with it.
You want Mitch McConnell as prime minister? Parliamentary systems give the parties even more power than the US system.
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Old 25th April 2019, 08:10 AM   #539
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
You want Mitch McConnell as prime minister?
Parliamentary systems have appointed senates, usually, which makes them less partisan. The turtle wouldn't be there.
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Old 25th April 2019, 08:13 AM   #540
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
If the legislature can impeach for literally any reason they choose, that opens the possibility that, if both the House and Senate, are controlled by one party they could have the president removed at will. So much for checks and balances.

Trump made the exact same argument, because he assumes that everyone is as power-hungry, vindictive, and unconcerned with doing their proper job as he is.
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Old 25th April 2019, 08:21 AM   #541
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Parliamentary systems have appointed senates, usually, which makes them less partisan. The turtle wouldn't be there.


And Canada's Senate is not much more than a glorified rubber stamp at this point. No one who is serious about political power looks anywhere other than the House of Commons.

The big benefit of the parliamentary system is that a vote of non-confidence, which is probably the closest we can get to an impeachment as envisaged in the US constitution, requires only a simple majority, which might be easier to get.

We also have the option of the party caucus itself dumping the PM, but I'm not sure that's ever actually happened, even though it's been threatened a few times.
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Old 25th April 2019, 08:24 AM   #542
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
It is a law. It's in article 2 of the US Constitution.



I haven't bothered to look up the definition of "high crimes and misdemeanours" but Trump could argue that whatever the House wants to impeach him for doesn't fall under that definition. If he were correct, then his impeachment would be unconstitutional. How else would you stop Congress from doing something unconstitutional other than by getting SCOTUS to rule on it?
High crimes and misdemeanors was intentionally left vague. OF course an impeachment only removes someone from office it is a political act and really outside the scope of the Supreme court other than for the cheif judge to act as judge in the trial in the senate.
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Old 25th April 2019, 08:26 AM   #543
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Originally Posted by dasmiller View Post
First, the two houses of congress provide checks on each other. Second, on most matters, the courts can declare legislation unconstitutional and the president can veto bills (subject to congressional override, of course).

But as far as I can tell, there's no constitutional limit to congress' ability to impeach the president, so what checks and balances would be needed to uphold the constitution in such a case?
That is called elections. They also don't get to exactly choose who replaced the president.
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Old 25th April 2019, 08:29 AM   #544
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
Yeah, but that was for a Dem President being impeached for lying about a BJ, at a time when the court was mostly honest. This is completely different, because reasons.
Nonsense that was way before the BJ even happened. That was about a democratic president being taken in by a conman in a land scam.(whitewater) You have to keep the investigations that exonerated Clinton straight.
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Old 25th April 2019, 08:31 AM   #545
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Originally Posted by dasmiller View Post
That party would have to have a 2/3 majority in both houses, and I believe that's never happened. So far, I haven't found a case where one party has had 2/3 of either house, but I'm less confident on that.

ETA: Just a majority in the house, and 2/3 in the senate.

ETA2: My bad. Sufficient majorities did happen in 1935. I'd delete the whole post but for the possibility that someone's already read it and is working on a reply.
But they would also have to not have the presidency.
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Old 25th April 2019, 08:35 AM   #546
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
But they would also have to not have the presidency.
That's why having the same party control the Presidency, House, and Senate simultaneously is far more concerning: It seems to be more likely and enables corruption.
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Old 25th April 2019, 09:52 AM   #547
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This just in: North Korea billed US $2M for hospital care of Otto Warmbier.

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North Korea in 2017 reportedly issued a $2 million bill to the U.S. for the hospital care of American Otto Warmbier, who was in a coma when he was returned to the U.S. and died without regaining consciousness.

The Washington Post reported Thursday that North Korea insisted that a U.S. official sign a pledge to pay the bill before returning Warmbier, an Ohio native who was arrested while visited Pyongyang.

Citing two people familiar with the situation, the Post reported that the U.S. envoy who retrieved Warmbier signed the pledge on instructions from President Trump.

The Post says it's unclear if the Trump administration ultimately paid the bill.


Of course, this being Trump, there's no way he paid the bill.

But so much for his vaunted "negotiation" skills. Step 1: promise them whatever they want; Step 2: renege on the promise. Par for the course*, really.






*That being any course Trump plays cheats at golf on.
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Old 25th April 2019, 10:03 AM   #548
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Originally Posted by Horatius View Post
And Canada's Senate is not much more than a glorified rubber stamp at this point.
And baffling scandal generator. Turns out that an entire institution based around patronage is prone to corruption.
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Old 25th April 2019, 10:24 AM   #549
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Parliamentary systems have appointed senates, usually, which makes them less partisan. The turtle wouldn't be there.
I wouldn't say it "makes them less partisan". The fact that they are life-long appointments may make them less prone to rapid changes in the political environment, but if you have one party that is in power for a long period of time, its possible for their appointments to act in a partisan manner. (This happened when Mulroney was in power, and the heavily Liberal-leaning senate blocked his attempt to implement the GST (Goods and Services Tax).

I think the Canadian senate only looks less partisan because it doesn't really have a lot of power. Plus, Canada doesn't have the equivalent of the Tea Party.
Originally Posted by Horatius View Post
And Canada's Senate is not much more than a glorified rubber stamp at this point.
What do you mean "at this point"? the Senate has pretty much ALWAYS been a 'rubber stamp', except for a few rare cases (the GST example mentioned above).
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Old 25th April 2019, 10:33 AM   #550
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Originally Posted by Ladewig View Post
It is impossible that the cause for indictment could be outside the definition of high crimes and misdemeanors. The phrase does not appear outside the Constitution. The House that is doing the voting gets to decide what it means.

Please keep in mind, the House voting for impeachment is more like an indictment than anything else. The second part of the process is the trial. The Senate gets to examine the evidence and vote on whether or not he stays in office.
Funny thing is, you can impeach a president for high crimes, which might not be crimes at all in law books. Crimes the average citizen could be charged with.
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Old 25th April 2019, 11:51 AM   #551
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Impeaching the president is not passing a law.
Nobody said it was. It is however, defined by a law.


SCOTUS can't say it's unconstitutional, especially since, as you point out, IT'S IN THE CONSTITUTION.[/quote]

Of course he can say it's unconstitutional. The question is how do you decide if he is right or not. The constitution lists reasons why the House might impeach the president, one of which is quite poorly defined. That leaves room for interpretation and the place to resolve differences in interpretation is in the courts.
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Old 25th April 2019, 11:57 AM   #552
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
It is a law. It's in article 2 of the US Constitution.

I haven't bothered to look up the definition of "high crimes and misdemeanours" but Trump could argue that whatever the House wants to impeach him for doesn't fall under that definition. If he were correct, then his impeachment would be unconstitutional. How else would you stop Congress from doing something unconstitutional other than by getting SCOTUS to rule on it?
No, it doesn't work that way.
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Old 25th April 2019, 12:04 PM   #553
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
Nonsense that was way before the BJ even happened. That was about a democratic president being taken in by a conman in a land scam.(whitewater) You have to keep the investigations that exonerated Clinton straight.
That's what started Starr's real witch-hunt, but it was the entrapped perjury that was the basis of the impeachment.
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Old 25th April 2019, 12:04 PM   #554
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
Nobody said it was. It is however, defined by a law.


SCOTUS can't say it's unconstitutional, especially since, as you point out, IT'S IN THE CONSTITUTION.

Of course he can say it's unconstitutional. The question is how do you decide if he is right or not. The constitution lists reasons why the House might impeach the president, one of which is quite poorly defined. That leaves room for interpretation and the place to resolve differences in interpretation is in the courts.
I think that it is rather unlikely that the courts would get involved with some sort of political squabble between the Legislative branch of the government and the Executive branch of the government.
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Old 25th April 2019, 12:15 PM   #555
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
Of course he can say it's unconstitutional. The question is how do you decide if he is right or not. The constitution lists reasons why the House might impeach the president, one of which is quite poorly defined. That leaves room for interpretation and the place to resolve differences in interpretation is in the courts.
Again, it's a political process, not a legal one.
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Old 25th April 2019, 12:16 PM   #556
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Old 25th April 2019, 12:22 PM   #557
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
I'm not arguing against that.

What I am saying is the bit of the constitution that I quoted tells us under what conditions the House can impeach the president. If the House of Representatives decides to impeach the president on the grounds that he wears his tie too long, he might argue that they are behaving unconstitutionally because wearing your tie too long is not treason or bribery or a "high crime or misdemeanour". I don't see why any president shouldn't be allowed to ask for a constitutional ruling on that from the SCOTUS.


Is it? I don't think it is as clear cut as you make out.

If the legislature can impeach for literally any reason they choose, that opens the possibility that, if both the House and Senate, are controlled by one party they could have the president removed at will. So much for checks and balances.
This would totally be relevant if the proposed impeachment was about the length of his tie. I hear more talk of obstruction of justice than anything else. Are you seriously suggesting that such obstruction doesn't constitute a high crime or misdemeanor?

It is, of course, no good claiming that the issue is that he didn't really obstruct justice at all. That would be an issue reserved for the Senate to decide, not the Court, far as I can tell.

I'd say the House can impeach him on any charge, regardless of the lack of evidence (they could, if they wanted, impeach him on the grounds that he's not 35 years old and lied about he age when he ran). If the Senate so decides, he would be removed with no recourse to the courts. If I'm mistaken, I'd like to see some references saying so. But on this issue, it seems the Constitution leaves broad discretion to the Congress out of respect for that distinguished and wise body. Sounds a bit out of date, yes, but originalists would surely defer to the intentions of the founders.
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Old 25th April 2019, 12:25 PM   #558
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
Yeah, but that was for a Dem President being impeached for lying about a BJ, at a time when the court was mostly honest. This is completely different, because reasons.
I don't think it had anything to do with Clinton. The ruling was from 1993, long before the issues regarding Clinton's impeachment.

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Old 25th April 2019, 12:50 PM   #559
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
That's what started Starr's real witch-hunt, but it was the entrapped perjury that was the basis of the impeachment.
Not exactly entrapped. The problem is that the political issue and the legal issue involved were different, the question was totally irrelevant and they should have objected to it, of course objecting to it would draw attention and be politically questionable.

This is of course a bit of a political vs legal catch 22, but not exactly strictly entrapment.

Of course that was when the president trying to obstruct justice would not be defended by the attorney general by saying he was angry.
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Old 25th April 2019, 12:53 PM   #560
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Originally Posted by jeremyp View Post
I'm not arguing against that.

What I am saying is the bit of the constitution that I quoted tells us under what conditions the House can impeach the president. If the House of Representatives decides to impeach the president on the grounds that he wears his tie too long, he might argue that they are behaving unconstitutionally because wearing your tie too long is not treason or bribery or a "high crime or misdemeanour". I don't see why any president shouldn't be allowed to ask for a constitutional ruling on that from the SCOTUS.


Is it? I don't think it is as clear cut as you make out.

If the legislature can impeach for literally any reason they choose, that opens the possibility that, if both the House and Senate, are controlled by one party they could have the president removed at will. So much for checks and balances.
It IS 100% clear cut.

The Supreme Court has ZERO, NADA, ZIPPO... NO jurisdiction whatsoever over impeachment of POTUS or any other government or judiciary official. Its ONLY involvement is that the Supreme Court Chief Justice presides over the Senate trial if the House rules to impeach

SCOTUS can have no other involvement.... period!
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