January 28, 2020

"I will now give you a list of presidents who in our history have been accused of abusing their power, who would be subject to impeachment under the House Manager’s view of the Constitution."

"George Washington, refusal to turn over documents related to the Jay Treaty. John Adams signing and enforcing the alien and sedition laws. Thomas Jefferson purchasing Louisiana without congressional authorization. I’ll go on. John Quincy Adams, Martin Van Bern, John Tyler, arbitrary despotic and corrupt use of the veto power... Abraham Lincoln accused Polk of abusing his power of his office, contemptuously disregarding the constitution, usurping the role of Congress and assuming the role of dictator. He didn’t seek to impeach him. He just sought to defeat him. Abraham Lincoln. Abraham Lincoln was accused of abusing his power for suspending the writ of habeas Corpus during the Civil War. President Grant, Grover Cleveland, William McKinley, Theodore Roosevelt, William Taft, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan... [The Clinton/Gore campaign said] 'George H.W. Bush... and his administration have abused their governmental power for political purposes.' That’s how abuse of power should be used, as campaign rhetoric. It should be in statements issued by one political party against the other. That’s the nature of the term. Abuse of power is a political weapon and it should be leveled against political opponents. Let the public decide.... Barack Obama — the House committee on the judiciary, held an entire hearing entitled Obama Administration’s abuse of power.... It is inconceivable that the framers would have intended so politically loaded and promiscuously deployed a term as abuse of power to be weaponized as a tool of impeachment."

From Alan Dershowitz Defense Argument Transcript: Trump Impeachment Trial January 27.

105 comments:

Annie C. said...

Rats. When I saw your post in the cafe, I thought you were going to write what you thought about his presentation.

readering said...

I read the first impeachment was largely for drunkenness.

Beloved Commenter AReasonableMan said...

Abuse of power can take many forms:

Bill Barr was concerned Trump was doing favors for the leaders of China and Turkey by lifting sanctions on businesses accused of corruption, according to John Bolton's new book

R C Belaire said...

Impressive list and it will help to ensure the final 2/3 yes/no vote, but in the meantime we'll have a week or two of witnesses to plow through. Who knows what will emerge.

Ann Althouse said...

"Rats. When I saw your post in the cafe, I thought you were going to write what you thought about his presentation."

Push me to be useful and I will be even less useful.

Marshall Rose said...

This tume it is different, because

Orange Man Bad......
Reasons....

Shut Up Hater!

Jim Gust said...

How could any sane Democrat vote for impeachment after that presentation?

rhhardin said...

“The trial of all crimes, except in cases of impeachment, shall be by jury.” This demonstrated, according to Curtis, that impeachment requires a crime.

Not true. There would be impeachment without a crime, and impeachment with a crime, and in the latter case it isn't tried by jury. Nothing said about the former.

Penumbras too interpreted.

Laslo Spatula said...

"Push me to be useful and I will be even less useful."

I didn't realize Althouse was a Union worker.

I am Laslo.

Michael K said...

Dershowitz was assuming the Democrats meant what they said about Trump "abusing power." They don't care. It is a pretext. They know they will lose the election.

Annie C. said...

Ann Althouse said...
"Rats. When I saw your post in the cafe, I thought you were going to write what you thought about his presentation."

Push me to be useful and I will be even less useful.

I did not intend to push, only lament.

rhhardin said...

Dershowitz came out against name-callers.

rhhardin said...

"Push me to be useful and I will be even less useful."

The principle of the Chinese finger trap. It's used to teach finesse to children.

rhhardin said...

Dershowitz makes a show of textual authority weighing heavy but his sole argument that stands analysis is that we have to stay away from a parliamentary system. The rest is show. Put the show back in Dershowitz.

Constitutional structure, not weight of authority.

iowan2 said...

The concept raised multiple times in the Presidents defense, is the Parlimentary ,"vote of no Confidence".

To me that defense of the President resonates. Dems are attempting to dirty up the administration with a "vote of no confidence". Ignoring they are not Parliament.

The debate about impeachable acts, is getting very stale. The political exercise is un-moored from the law, and from constitutional direction. This is purely political, only carries political repercussions.
I just wish Republican Senators would shut up until all of the slated impeachment activities take place. Then, All of the Republican Senators, and as many Dems as they can show the light, issue a vote not to call more witnesses, and vote to acquit. The only explanation needed? The House of Representatives have abused their political power of impeachment. The House of Representatives lacked the overwhelming majority support, as laid out by the constitution. The House of Representatives rushed an impeachment inquiry, for purely political motivations.

For all those reasons, The Senate of the United States is sending a message. Impeachable offenses must be identified as such by a large majority of the citizens of the United States. Lacking that, Congress has oversight authority should limit itself to doing that job.


rhhardin said...

Look at Richard Epstein arguing what rule of law is, it's all structural, no weighty authority invoked. Best podcast ever.

https://www.econtalk.org/epstein-on-the-rule-of-law/

Too bad Epstein has gone round the bend on never-Trump or he'd be useful today too.

gilbar said...

Marshall Rose said...
This tume it is different, because


If we don't remove Trump, he'll be reelected

gilbar said...

Jim Gust said...
How could any sane Democrat vote for impeachment after that presentation?


ASSUMES FACTS, NOT IN EVIDENCE

Hagar said...

I think I disagree with Mr. Dershowitz. At least the Lousiana Purchase, the Mexican landgrab of 1846-46, and the suspension of habeas corpus were all gross abuses of power though the questions were rendered moot by congressional support at the time.

rhhardin said...

It's time to buy Greenland.

Howard said...

Why buy the cow when you get the milk for free?

Laslo Spatula said...

"Why buy the cow when you get the milk for free?"

To be able to make others pay for the milk.

I got the only cow in town, bitches.

I am Laslo.

ExplainMeMore said...

A PBS panelist said that Dershowitz was playing with words, I kid you not.

Robert Cook said...

And why shouldn't those previous presidents have been impeached for their abuses of power? The power of impeachment is one way Congress has of reigning in a president who exceeds his constitutional powers.

Marcus Bressler said...

Lazlo's (first) comment wins the thread today. As usual.

THEOLDMAN

Don't dare ask the hostess to offer a legal opinion -- it's her blog and she'll take it home.

rhhardin said...

It's the way Congress can get rid of any President it wants out for any reason. That's the parliamentary system.

AllenS said...

Jim Gust said...
How could any sane Democrat vote for impeachment after that presentation?

Since there is only about a half dozen sane Democrats, you'll never hear from them.

Howard said...

Hardin loves the Constitution except when it's used against his Sacre Vache

Browndog said...

I wasn't going to watch Dershowitz because I've already heard his argument 10 times.

Glad I did. I know it was in the style of a law school lecture, but it was well done, and I learned a few things. Besides, it was good to get that information into the record..again.

Jersey Fled said...

So Cookie, you're saying congress should have impeached Lincoln?

In the middle of the civil war?

Michael K said...

The power of impeachment is one way Congress has of reigning in a president who exceeds his constitutional powers.

Cook wants a Parliamentary system but Comrade Stalin disagreed. Of course, he had the Supreme Soviet but it didn't matter.

Browndog said...

Robert Cook said...

And why shouldn't those previous presidents have been impeached for their abuses of power? The power of impeachment is one way Congress has of reigning in a president who exceeds his constitutional powers.


The President serves at the pleasure of Congress...

Howard said...

You stupid cucks are whinging about hardball politics. Such tough macho specimens.

rehajm said...

You don't need to buy what Dersh and Star are selling but how stupid and shallow do the we need to hear from 'witnesses' arguments sound after this? All that schooling and you can't figure this one out without hearing from Bolton? If Mitt and Susan had any sense they'd be embarrassed...

Howard said...

Trump's motto: I only regret that I have but one Draft to Dodge for my country.

rehajm said...

The President serves at the pleasure of Congress...

Yup. that's the argument against. Too much power to Congress, not enough to voters. Endless cycles of you get then numbers you throw theirs out. This one and the next one and the next one until the election.

traditionalguy said...

Sounds like that Living Constitution thingee is about to die if it stands in the way of the Anti-Trump forces that run DC . Dershowitz is a great teacher. And he knows the USA will stick together if we understand the truth. The Constitution always eases up on the inta-branch wars when we face an outside war or there is a big opportunity at stake. It tightens up again later.

FDR was a great Commander-in-Chief. But his war plans with Churchill were easily an abuse of power if Congress had wanted to raise the issue. Instead we balanced in a fight to the death with Two Empires never once impeached our CIC. Instead the President got term three and term four.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Push me to be useful and I will be even less useful.

LOL. That's a Capricorn thing. I have it too. The Goat.

Seriously, though, when listening to Dershowitz last night, I was wondering what would be Althouse's take on his (I thought) very interesting and illuminating historical commentary on the Constitution and the way the Impeachment articles were written.

Whether it changed or illuminated any minds in the Senate is another story.

Howard said...

If the Senate acquits, then the check was balanced, no?

hombre said...

Trump gave Bolton a break. Bolton blew it and is now unemployable among decent conservative folk. Thank the Lord there is one place where losers, particularly disloyal losers, can always find a place.

Welcome to NeverTrumpLand, John. Bring your pettiness, your shovel, your true colors and your dirt.

Kevin said...

Dershowitz was very convincing.

He even convinced me Clinton should not have been removed.

Amadeus 48 said...

I am boycotting this whole farce. I lost interest when I read the transcript of the call. That was exactly the call that I wanted the President of the United States to make to the new, reform president of Ukraine.

rhhardin said...

With a parliamentary system you can't drain the swamp. The swamp appoints the president.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

Adam Schitt is a corrupt liar. He needs to be removed from office.

Jersey Fled said...

"He even convinced me Clinton should not have been removed."

You mean he was?

Mike (MJB Wolf) said...

Just over eight months until we can correct the Democrat overreach, slapping down their abuse if power with our use of the franchise. Whomever the dimwits nominate will go down like a McGovern rerun and we can clean the Aegean stables of that Nadler stench. For Schiff I prefer hanging for treason. Cuz when I overreach I really go for it.

Ann Althouse said...

For the record, I was not convinced by D's argument and on reflection, I disagree with him. It would take some trouble to explain why, and I may do that later.

M Jordan said...

Ann, I need your assessment. I thought Dershowitz was excellent but I’m not a lawyer nor a law professor. You are. Give him a grade, Professor.

Mike (MJB Wolf) said...

The guy who played the tape of Obama promising Vlad "more flexibility" after his next election did a better job pointing out how the current articles of impeachment fit that situation better than the one Democrats chose to hang their stupid play on. Dersh was overkill.

tcrosse said...

With all due respect, Althouse does not have a vote in the Senate.

Robert Cook said...

"So Cookie, you're saying congress should have impeached Lincoln?

"In the middle of the civil war?"


Why not? It is in wartime (or in preparing for war, or in making excuses for war) that Presidents typically abuse their powers (witness recent and current history).

Or, if not in the midst of war, why not after it had been concluded?

Meade said...

Professor D. lost me at "I voted for Hillary Clinton."

Sebastian said...

BI appreciate Dersh's list.

But strictly speaking, I take it, the accusation is not that Trump abused power, since in fact he did not block aid, did not insist on a quid pro quo, and did not threaten the Ukrainians, but that he wanted to abuse power.

Francisco D said...

Push me to be useful and I will be even less useful.

I have the same attitude. I think the underlying cause is known as retirement.

Francisco D said...

I take it, the accusation is not that Trump abused power, since in fact he did not block aid, did not insist on a quid pro quo, and did not threaten the Ukrainians, but that he wanted to abuse power.

Sebastian nailed it.

It really is that simple.

Bay Area Guy said...

Dershowitz is a national treasure. And does it say about his friend, colleague & rival, Larry Tribe, who is too chickenshit to take his bogus argument to the Floor of the Senate, but would rather tweet and guide Shifty-Schiff from the shadows.

narciso said...

now Stephen McIntyre pointed out that Bolton had received considerable honoraria for various parties including Kuchma son in law, victor pinchuk, son in law of kuchma perhaps there are reasons he didn't want to look into the Pripyat (Ukrainian swamp)

walter said...

readering said...I read the first impeachment was largely for drunkenness.
--
I believe it. Schiff is drunk on power. Abusively so.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

Pelosi and company could have written Article I of the Trump impeachment around bribery and extortion, but they chose instead to write it around abuse of power. Was that a mistake, with Laurence Tribe getting outlawyered by Alan Dershowitz? Or is it a trap, with the goal to get as many Republican politicians and pundits as possible to say on camera that abuse of power is A-OK? That’s going to make for some good political ads next fall.

Republicans are running into the abuse of power trap as though it’s the castle keep with Bolton breaching the walls of the “Trump didn’t do it defense.” I see that the betting odds for Sanders getting elected as our first openly socialist President have risen to 25%. Is this really the moment for the party of limited government to establish a precedent authorizing Presidential abuse of power?

JPS said...

Robert Cook, 8:08, re impeaching Lincoln:

"Or, if not in the midst of war, why not after it had been concluded?"

I think that would have been overkill, don't you?

rehajm said...

Is this really the moment for the party of limited government to establish a precedent authorizing Presidential abuse of power?

Straw man.

gilbar said...

Robert Cook said...
"So Cookie, you're saying congress should have impeached Lincoln?
"In the middle of the civil war?"
Or, if not in the midst of war, why not after it had been concluded?


Why Not? WHY NOT?????

So, Robert Cook; in his INFINITE WISDOM,
thinks the United States SHOULD HAVE impeached Lincoln a month (or TWO) AFTER his assassination

Michael McNeil said...

Push me to be useful and I will be even less useful.

Academics in particular seem to laud and relish the idea of absolutely uselessness as an intellectual ideal. I had a physics professor who expressed pretty much that as his goal for what he hoped to accomplish — and then there's Évariste Galois — the mathematical genius who invented (abstract algebra) group theory, who in so doing explicitly expressed the hope and expectation that he had thereby come up with a body of work which was and would (could) be of no discernible utility to anybody! A forlorn hope as it happens….

rhhardin said...

The point of the Democrat circus is to say that Trump doesn't mean well, which is the criterion women use to decide who to vote for.

rhhardin said...

A straw woman is good for a roll in the hay.

Francisco D said...

Left Bank of the Charles said: Republicans are running into the abuse of power trap as though it’s the castle keep with Bolton breaching the walls of the “Trump didn’t do it defense.”

I am curious, Left Bank. What did Trump actually do?

I am not concerned about what he said. What did he actually do that is in some way objectionable?

iowan2 said...

The President serves at the pleasure of Congress...

No, thats wrong. You are speaking of Parliamentarian structure of government.

A federalist republic, the United States specifically, three co-equal branches. Congress needs high crimes and misdemeanors, substantial enough in nature, 2/3 of the senate agree to the charges against the President. The final check on the power of congress to implement impeachment, is the voters.

The executive branch officers serve at the pleasure of the President. No accusations of wrong doing, required, no concuring opinions needed. In fact, the less said the better.

hombre said...

Ann Althouse said...
“For the record, I was not convinced by D's argument and on reflection, I disagree with him. It would take some trouble to explain why, and I may do that later.”

We may now wait with bated breath for another exposition on why the “living” Constitution doesn’t mean what it says or what the framers intended it to say beginning with, “but what if ....” Old habits die hard, eh, Professor.

Psalms 58:1-2
“Do you indeed decree what is right, you [Democrat] gods?
Do you judge the children of man uprightly?
No, in your hearts you devise wrongs;
your hands deal out violence on earth.”

Violence to the Constitution and the Republic? Meh!

rehajm said...

You all know the quote, Congresswoman Maxine Waters recently put it more succinctly in the context of a presidential impeachment. Here’s what she said. “Impeachment is whatever Congress says it is. There is no law.”

Rule of thumb for Mitt and Susan: do the opposite of what Maxine says and does.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

Here’s how the Pence 24 may play this: We couldn’t vote with Schiff to convict, but we also couldn’t vote with Dershowitz to acquit. Our only option consistent with our oath to do impartial justice was to not vote. The result of the vote is that Mike Pence has become President. We believe he will be a good one.

Howard said...

Careful Left Bank. You're shitting on their circle jerk by injecting realpolitik into the mix. You're like that guy who leaves a high five hanging.

Michael McNeil said...

So, Robert Cook; in his INFINITE WISDOM, thinks the United States SHOULD HAVE impeached Lincoln a month (or TWO) AFTER his assassination

Cook obviously implicitly believes that it makes perfect sense for us to perpetrate institutional incentives, which (in Lincoln's case) could have implicitly encouraged him to prolong the war, delaying its overwhelming Northern victory for (say) 4 more years — until he was safely out of office. What about FDR in World War II? Same diff?

It so totally reminds me of a perceptive comment that George Orwell — a socialist himself, and who thus knew the leftist, socialist mentality very well — made in one of his books: [quoting…]

The underlying motive of many Socialists, I believe, is simply a hypertrophied sense of order. The present state of affairs offends them not because it causes misery, still less because it makes freedom impossible, but because it is untidy; what they desire, basically, is to reduce the world to something resembling a chessboard.

[/unQuote]
____
(George Orwell, The Road to Wigan Pier, 1937)

Howard said...

Robert Cook's point is a version of the "we need to destroy the village to save it" tactic.

hombre said...

As soon as Trump is acquitted Schiff and Fat Jerry will introduce a bill in the House creating a high crime or misdemeanor in Title 18: “Abuse of Power by a Republican.” There will be no text beyond the title. A second offense, “Republican Obstruction of Congress,” will be created following the same format. Footnotes will refer the reader to statements by Maxine Waters and Rashida Tlaib as indicative of legislative intent and to define the elements.

This will aid the Democrats next impeachment of Trump and will free Democrat constitutional “experts” from the need to contort themselves and the English language.

Bob Smith said...

“A straw woman is good for a roll in the hay.”

Tried that once. Got all itchy.

Amadeus 48 said...

Careful, Meade. Someone you know very well voted for HRC. Trump was too weird for her, but HRC wasn’t. It could be a mistake to hold anyone’s 2016 vote against him or her.

Amadeus 48 said...

Howard— if ever there were a mental onanist, it would be someone like you.

Howard said...

Don't worry about Meade, A-48. He's in like Flynn.

Howard said...

I have to look that word up.

Lurker21 said...

A win for Trump is a win for the "living Constitution"? There's much sense it what Dershowitz says. Maybe there is some cunning plan behind his argument.

Standards do change over time. And circumstances change as well. If there had been zealous special prosecutors with broad powers in the past, more of the presidents would have faced impeachment. As would happen if more presidents had supporters of the opposition inside their own administration (or if more presidents had been political rookies without experience in government).

Every president since Reagan has faced impeachment resolutions. Over a comparable period of time, with much turmoil and expansion of presidential powers, no impeachment resolutions were introduced between Grover Cleveland's and Herbert Hoover's administration, and both of those resolutions weren't even considered by the House.

Or to put the point even more starkly: we've had two presidential impeachments (or serious impeachment attempts) in the last twenty years and three in the last fifty, while we only had one in the first 185 years of the republic. So Dershowitz is right about impeachment becoming more and more a political tool, rather than a response to actual crimes.

Today every act of the president is under the microscope, which means more possibilities for impeachment. But we're also more cynical about politics. We see too much politics and know too much about how the game is played. The Democrats are appealing to older notions of acceptable government behavior, but it rings hollow, because it's so transparently political.

Krumhorn said...

You stupid cucks are whinging about hardball politics. Such tough macho specimens.

The problem with your kind of hardball politics is that sooner or later, the other team has to come to the plate. High cheese off the jaw of the lead-off hitter will lead to a bench-clearing brawl that may well make it into the stands. My money is on the cucks over you leftie nancyboys and your snowflake marginalized victim categories who are routinely triggered by the farts of teenaged boys hanging around the Y expressing their toxic masculinity.

When the next Dem rent-seeking community organizer makes it into the White House, there should be real fear of a House run by Republicans. Batter up!!

As we all know, payback is a mf’er

- Krumhorn

Howard said...

Good points Lurker21. I agree. Why more impeachment? I think it is due to the creeping usurpation of congressional power by modern Presidents. The legal theory of unchecked presidential power was developed under Dick Cheney and abused by Obama. Impeachment is a passive aggressive mechanism and IMO a weak gesture to give the appearance of reasserting congressional power.

Howard said...

Krumhorn: so according to your logic, this Trump show trial is justified by Republican hardball against Clinton and Merrick Garland

narciso said...

no that was a reaction to the congressional usurpation of power, a congressional authorization should be more limited in scope, of course the dems out right ignored they had granted the power, around 2007, much the way Fulbright did in 66, the prime casualties are the soldiers sailors and airmen sent to fight,

narciso said...

why did they call it the biden rule, they drink of the waters of lethe,

Tom said...

Hypothetical: A US Secretary of State, while negotiating with China, accepts a huge bribe to turn over state secrets to the Chinese. These secrets get Americans killed overseas and cause irreparable harm to national security. The Secretary of State is investigated and convicted of numerous crimes. The President, long a staunch supporter of China but not implicated in the bribery scandal, pardons the former Secretary of State. There is zero evidence that the president committed any crime or new of the crimes by the Secretary. Can and should Congress impeach, convict, and remove that president for abuse of power?

The pardon power is a plenary constitutional power of the executive. No one is credibly accusing the president of anything illegal or unconstitutional (of course they’re saying all these things but not in a credible, legal sense).

And, yet, what the the president in this case has done is terribly against US interests and, while not legally treason, it sure feels like treason most Americans.

In this scenero, I believe Congress has the power and duty to act. Impeachment is, by its nature, a failsafe mechanism to protect the country. This is the ultimate check on the power of the executive. It’s a very high har and must only be used for the most serious offenses.

In the case of Trump and the Ukraine, I don’t believe the fact pattern is clear enough nor, even if the facts were more clearly damning to the president, do I believe the abuse is serious enough to warrant a conviction in the Senate. I think this is the sort of issue that needs to be sorted out by the electorate.

Tom said...

Sorry for the typos

narciso said...

well the secretary of state, certainly did, (its not really that hypothetical is it) and the president through his pardon power is abetting that offense,

Birkel said...

Robert Cook cheers as more power is consolidated in the federal government.
That power is given by Congress to administrative agencies Robert Cook also cheers.

ALSO, Robert Cook wants Congress to restrain the Executive.

You cannot reason someone out of a position they emotioned themselves into.
Or some such.

JAORE said...

Ha! But tell this, were any of those listed presidents ORANGE?
I rest my case.
- Adam Schiff

/parody

Howard said...

Birkel, your two points contradict each other. The unrestrained Presidents have consolidated Federal power and Congress wishes to constrain it.

You can't emote yourself into a reasonable argument.

Big Mike said...

@Althouse, if you expect me to believe that you would have found any argument by Dershowitz or any other law professor to be convincing after Trump broke precedent by addressing the March for Life then you expect in vain.

Big Mike said...

But please tell me that Dershowitz correctly pronounced the name of our eighth President of the United States, Martin Van Buren.

Charlie Currie said...

"Is this really the moment for the party of limited government to establish a precedent authorizing Presidential abuse of power?"

I thought we already covered that with Obama.

When you're President, all you need is a pen and a phone.

Since nobody seriously objected, these are the new rules.

Birkel said...

As a follow-on:

Howard leaps forward to declare Congress giving power to the Executive through the APA is Executive usurpation. That sort of weapons-grade stupidity/ignorance (realistic/charitable) is impossible to overcome.

Go argue with the stars. Or the wind. The argument with the tides has been tried but what did that old dumb king know?

Seeing Red said...

When the next Dem rent-seeking community organizer makes it into the White House, there should be real fear of a House run by Republicans. Batter up!!

As we all know, payback is a mf’er

- Krumhorn


And odds are the rat actually did something.

Birkel said...

No, Howard. Your motivated illogic leaves you unpantsed. If Althouse's rule against shorts has any meaning, it certainly means walking around intellectually naked is bad, too.

Congress has assumed more power than the Constitution supports, via Commerce Clause and etc.
Once the Congress had the power, it gave itself an out on rule writing with the APA (no political accountability).
In doing so, it ceded authority to the Executive through unaccountable administrative agencies.
That is how the Executive was accreted power.

And it was all Democratics doing that, from the 1930s through the 1970s.
No more pearls, swine.

Robert Cook said...

"I think that would have been overkill, don't you?"

Hahahaha!

Robert Cook said...

"So, Robert Cook; in his INFINITE WISDOM, thinks the United States SHOULD HAVE impeached Lincoln a month (or TWO) AFTER his assassination."

Well, I was speaking rhetorically, of course. Another commenter made your point more succinctly and humorously. I quoted him above.

Robert Cook said...

"Robert Cook wants Congress to restrain the Executive."

That is part of their power and purpose. Each branch is supposed to restrain the other two.

Robert Cook said...

A good article on Truthdig today castigating the Dems for the flawed, superficial, disingenuous, self-serving and self-defeating nature of their impeachment efforts.

Bruce Hayden said...

“You all know the quote, Congresswoman Maxine Waters recently put it more succinctly in the context of a presidential impeachment. Here’s what she said. “Impeachment is whatever Congress says it is. There is no law.””

Essentially, what she is saying is that there are no objective right and wrong, but rather merely the application of raw power. Might makes right. They can define High Crimes and Misdemeanors any way that they want, because there is nothing, short of losing the upcoming election, that anyone can do to them otherwise.

Birkel said...

Robert Cook,
All you have to do is convince Congress to abandon the path they have taken. First they decided to absorb Powers they should not have under the Constitution. That is an 80+ year old project. Then you have to convince not to give that very same power to the Executive. That is a 45+ year old project.

And then you'll convince me. You set yourself the task. I support you. I have advocated a return to Constitutional restrictions on federal power. And I think Congress not taking discredit for what they do they unelected bureaucracy is shameful. Passing power to unelected, unaccountable, union-protected federal workers is unconscionable. So please go forward and reverse this course.

You can drain the swamp, commie. I will even give you credit. I won't need any for myself. You can have it all.

Robert Cook said...

"All you have to do is convince Congress to abandon the path they have taken. First they decided to absorb Powers they should not have under the Constitution."

Such as...?

ken in tx said...

To impeach Trump on this excuse, would be to establish the idea that a president cannot even THINK of his own personal interests while carrying out the public's business. No system can guarantee that the right people will be selected/elected to leadership positions. However, a well designed system will make it advantageous for even the wrong people to do the right thing. With regard to the Ukraine, what Trump did was right. I don't care why he did it or what other thoughts he had about doing it. It was in the US public interest to ask about corruption by US officials there.