Tag: Senate trial

TurleyVision 1999: Impeachment as a Madisonian Device

 

My dear spouse occasionally forwards me the legal theories of Jonathan Turley, who currently argues Trump’s impeachment trial is unconstitutional now that Trump is a former official. Curious as to what Turley had to say about impeachment before Trump, I did some digging and struck a mother lode: Turley’s 146-page 1999 Duke Law Journal article, Senate Trials and Factional Disputes: Impeachment As A Madisonian Device. Turley’s reasons for publishing such a masterwork in 1999 may not have been dispassionate, since he had recently testified at Bill Clinton’s impeachment, but since Trump’s presidency wasn’t even a gleam in the old GOP elephant’s eye back then, Turley’s thoughts on impeachment in 1999 should at least be free of any bias for or against Trump. Those with the patience to read — or at least skim — Impeachment As A Madisonian Device will be rewarded with plenty of information on impeachment’s constitutional function and history that’s interesting in its own right, and a perspective in which the non-juridical, political nature of impeachment transcends mere raw exercise of power.

Impeachment As A Madisonian Device extensively surveys the constitutional history of impeachment. Its thesis is that the impeachment process, declared first in the House, then passed to the Senate for trial, culminates in

Bring On the Witnesses

 

McSally Collins GardnerYes, new witnesses will prolong the process by weeks at a minimum, and voting for witnesses under a Cocaine Mitch-Ted Cruz plan is likely necessary to a Trump and Trump-voter-supporting Congress winning this November. On Friday, there will be a series of votes. It is now more likely than not that there will be 51 votes, including Susan Collins (Republican-Maine), Mitt Romney (Snake-Self Serving), Lamar Alexander (Retiring-Chamber of Commerce), and Lisa Murkowski (Scheming-Big Union and Oil).

Senator Collins faithfully represents her state. She is a woman of honor who will take a tough vote when needed. It is she who reportedly first floated the common-sense proposal that the Senate trial should be run on the same rules as for the President Clinton trial. There was a basic sense of turn-about as fair play in this. She prevailed; these are the rules in the current Senate trial.

Senator McConnell is reportedly maneuvering for a single basket of witnesses vote, no chance for troublemakers and RINOS to actually work with the Democrats to inflict maximum damage on the president and the Republican majority in the Senate. This will work if he also insists on the Cruz control: paired 1-for-1 witness approval. You want the ‘Stashe? You have to vote for Biden’s boy. You want Mick Mulvaney? You have to vote for Eric Ciaramella. “Do ya really wanna jump?” [officially sanctioned clip, so “R” rated]

Yes, Hunter Biden Can Be Forced to Testify

 

“No reporter in Washington knows or understands this.” — Senator Ted Cruz, Verdict with Ted Cruz, Episode 2

In the midst of impassioned posts, swirling social media content, and the never-ending news cycle, Sen. Ted Cruz brought a bit of real insight the other evening. He did so in a new podcast that is burning up the charts. In Episode 2, Sen. Cruz explained that the Senate has the power, in plainly written federal law, to unilaterally grant a witness “transactional immunity,” thereby removing the ability of the witness to refuse to testify on the constitutional basis of the Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate yourself. In plain English, the deal is: “talk, tell us the whole truth, and nothing you say may be used against you by anyone in any criminal procedure, ever.”

Watch Episode 2, from 19:40 to 22:28:

The Senate impeachment trial of President Trump begins in earnest Tuesday. Nobody knows the charges better than Republican Rep. Jim Jordan, who was there for every step of impeachment’s way in the House. The articles of impeachment are actually quite brief, and we go line-by-line through the accusations against the president. Jordan answers them all — he appears to be able to recite key documents by heart — and argues that the Senate should simply dismiss the case before the trial even begins. A preview from a key player in the House.

Republicans: Let’s Get This Show on the Road!

 

We have entered a new year. I, for one, want to start with a fresh outlook, regardless of my tendency to assume the worst when it comes to politics. I think that breaking through the stand-off regarding the impeachment of Donald Trump could start a tidal shift in the power of the Republicans. I’m calling out Mitch McConnell to disregard any demands by the Democrats, rally the Republicans, and get this show on the road!

In a previous post, I explained some of the requirements, or lack of them, for impeachment. The articles of impeachment have essentially been delivered (by public announcement); the trial can proceed whether Pelosi appoints Managers or not; and there do not have to be witnesses. These points make up the crux of the stalemate:

This is not a criminal trial. The Democrats are demanding the processes of a criminal trial, and yet they refused to follow those types of procedures in their own investigation.