On September 8, 1787, Constitutional Convention delegates George Mason, James Madison and Edmund Randolph wrestled with the idea of when Congress should act to remove a president. Though the three of them had different views of the Constitution, they did agree “a president should be impeached for abuses of power that subvert the Constitution, the integrity of government, or the rule of law.” The measuring stick for impeaching president’s has rested on Section 4 of Article II of the Constitution which says, “The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.” Only two presidents in U.S. history have ever been impeached; Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton. Richard Nixon and John Tyler both were close to impeachment.
It’s not just presidents that can be impeached. Federal judges, even Supreme Court Justices, can be impeached. Historically, only one Supreme Court Justice has ever been impeached, Salmon P. Chase. In March of 1804, Chase was impeached on eight charges presented by the House of Representatives. One year later, the Senate acquitted Chase insisting the accusations against him did not meet the standard of “high crimes and misdemeanors.”
Impeachment is a serious constitutional action that ought to be carefully considered and judiciously applied. Neil J. Kinkopf, professor at Georgia State College of Law, wrote, “The Framers meant for the phrase ‘high crimes and misdemeanors’ to signify only conduct that seriously harms the public and seriously compromises the officer’s ability to continue. If the phrase is given a less rigorous interpretation, it could allow Congress to influence and control the President and the courts.”
Impeachment for both presidents and judges isn’t supposed to be based on political disagreement. That’s part of our history. It isn’t a part of the Democrat playbook. Twice in the last week, the Democrats have utilized the word “impeachment” as a campaign rally cry and a code word for hate.
On September 17, 2019, the House Judiciary Committee led by Rep Jerrold Nadler, (D-NY) held a hearing to question Corey Lewandowsky, a former Trump campaign manager. The hearing was a ridiculous six-hour circus which was torturous to watch, even on YouTube. The only highlights were the clever and direct jabs of Rep Doug Collins (R-GA) at the Democrat committee members.
There was uncertainty as to whether this hearing was a regular oversight hearing or an impeachment inquiry. The only way an impeachment inquiry can occur is after a House vote to authorize one. That hasn’t happened, but that didn’t deter Nadler and his pompous fellow Democrats.
Michael Conway, former counsel, U.S. House Judiciary Committee, describes the duplicity of Nadler’s committee when he writes, “The resolution to set ground rules for an impeachment inquiry to be voted on in the House Judiciary Committee this week is, at best, a craven public relations gesture to placate both Democrat voters and the majority of House Democrats who have publicly called for an impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.”
Nadler and his crew are not pursuing truth. They are cravenly attempting to placate the radical, rabid left-wing of their party. Many Democrats at the hearing took offense with Lewandowsky when he asserted that maybe Democrats were doing what they were doing because they “hate the president more than they love their country.” Lewandowsky, though, seems to have a point. The monotonous, continuous drumbeat of impeaching Trump comes from a deep well of hate and resentment.
As horrid as the Democrats’ behavior has been regarding impeaching the president, it’s been magnified in the last few days regarding Justice Brett Kavanaugh. Two New York Times reporters have written a book detailing a previously unreported allegation of sexual misconduct against Kavanaugh, which he denied. The Times did a review of the book over the weekend. In a shock to no one who’s been paying attention, the Times left out the inconvenient truth that the woman at the center of it, who'd been a student at the time of the incident, declined to be interviewed. Moreover, her friends said she did not recall the incident. Yet again, another baseless smear against Kavanaugh.
The truth, though, did not stop the Democrats running for president from rolling out the
“impeachment” word. Sen. Kamala Harris, former HUD Secretary Julian Castro, and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, without any evidence and despite the egregious error of the Times, are calling for his impeachment.
Why are they doing this? It all goes back to hate. They hate the fact that Justice Kavanaugh is on the Court. They hate the fact that Roe v. Wade could be overturned. They hate President Trump and they hate all who voted for him. In the most recent debate Mayor Pete said all who voted for the president are “supporting racism.”
The Democrats know their ideas, especially the socialist left-wing craziness, which is celebrated by their base, won’t win in 2020. They’ve resorted to their old playbook. They will try to gin up hate for anything and anyone connected with President Trump. “Impeachment” is simply the latest way to say it.