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The Constitution is a brilliant document in its way, but the current administration has amply demonstrated one of its weaknesses. For all its careful separation of powers, the Constitution provides no punishment for disobedient executives short of the nuclear option (impeachment). But impeachment is so drastic (and destabilizing for the country) that Congress will always be reluctant to pursue it. And, as any criminologist can tell you, the worst way to regulate bad behavior is through huge punishments that are inconsistently applied. People with poor impulse control can’t be expected to engage in that sort of long-term planning. (I might get caught, I might end up incarcerated for 30 years, I might be impeached, etc.)
When you have a willful child in the Oval Office, bad things will happen. But if Congress wants to motivate the president to obey the laws, threatening to impeach him probably won’t be the ticket. He needs swift, immediate punishments that are manageable enough to be consistently applied. So, for example:More