Tuesday, January 21, 2020

The Constitutional Question at the Heart of Trump's Impeachment


In other words, Trump’s lawyers argue, his pressure on Ukraine fell within the presidency’s foreign policy-making powers, whether he was doing it to root out corruption, as Trump has claimed, or for political advantage, as Democrats allege. “Abuse of power, even if proved, is not an impeachable offense,” Trump’s lawyer Alan Dershowitz, who will be presenting constitutional arguments at the trial, said Friday on MSNBC.

House Democrats flatly reject this reading of the Constitution. “Abuse of power was a principal concern of the Framers,” according to a Democratic staffer working on impeachment, noting that impeachment articles voted out of the House Judiciary Committee in 1974 against President Richard Nixon charged him with abuse of power. “Abuse of power was no vague or weak notion to the Framers. It had a very specific meaning: the use of official power to obtain an improper personal benefit, while ignoring or injuring the national interest… The President does not need to commit a crime for there to be an impeachable offense.”
 But fortunately for Trump, no Congress in our country’s history ever thought to explicitly outlaw using the power of the presidency to help win re-election. Starting Tuesday, Senators will have to decide whether, in the end, that’s all that matters.

1 comment :

  1. The definition is simple: My guy does it, it's okay. Your guy does it, abuse of power!


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