Skip to comments.A President Hillary Clinton Could Pardon Herself and Congress Might Be Helpless to Act
Posted on 06/04/2018 12:31:54 PM PDT by cotton1706
Towards the end of April and into early May, several news outlets ran reports (citing anonymous sources) that the FBI investigation into Hillary Clintons use of a private e-mail was expected to be wrapped in the coming weeks. However, a few weeks later, FBI Director James Comey met with reporters and indicated the Bureau had no set timeline for completing the investigation. He even stated that the upcoming political conventions and general election would not factor into when the investigation would be completed.
So, lets take Comey at his word and imagine this scenario:
It is Friday, January 20, 2017 and Hillary Clinton has just been sworn in as the 45th President of the United States after narrowly defeating Donald Trump in November. Republicans managed to hold both the House of Representatives and the Senate. A few weeks after winning the election, however, the Department of Justice handed down a multi-count indictment against Clinton over her handling of classified information and her involvement in an alleged pay for play scandal with the Clinton Foundationduring her time as Secretary of State. It is a scenario that several of our commentators, and twitter followers have asked us to analyze.
(Excerpt) Read more at lawandcrime.com ...
If we are waiting for little Jeff to do anything, we would be better off taking piano lessons.
She’s NOT the President.
She’s the LOSER.
People who represent political threats to the Clintons have a way of getting suicided.
No, Congress would not be helpless to act. If they were convinced it was an act of corruption, they could and should impeach.
As someone else pointed out here, essentially Congress hold all the cards. They can impeach the president or any appointed executive branch member. They can impeach any and all judges of the Federal courts. They can abolish all federal courts except for the Supreme court. Congress can set the number of justices on the supreme court.
Congress can abolish any Federal agency that is not mandated by the constitution, such as DOJ or it’s minor functionary, the FBI. Congress could abolish the CIA. Congress can zero out the budget of an agency they feel is out of control.
And last, Congress can override a presidents veto, and start the process of a constitutional amendment..
So it’s very rare that you can accurately say...”and congress would be helpless to act”.
"Yeah, I shot the guy to death after robbing him of his wallet, but found out later his wallet was empty...so guess that makes me innocent, right?"
Yes, but only if you're a demon'rat.
Not according to the article:
In Clintons case, however, the conduct underlying this hypothetical indictment occurred prior to her taking office. The House of Representatives, as far back as 1873, has determined that a person cannot be impeached based on conduct prior to them holding office. In other words, House precedent says a President Hillary Clinton could not be impeached as president for crimes related to the e-mail server or the Clinton Foundation.
In 1873, the House of Representatives considered impeaching the Vice President for crimes committed before he took office. After considering the matter, the House determined impeachment was only proper for crimes committed while in office.
From this vantage point it certainly appears that most, if not all of the things ailing society can be largely attributed to congress failing to act, or acting in ways inimical to their sworn oath of office.
Judicial impeachment should be fairly routine if not common, for just one example. Yet it almost never happens. They’ve also exempted themselves from the laws and policies that are forced on everyone else. An absolutely huge and all powerful yet unelected bureaucracy, delegated and ceded by congress, often governs our everyday lives, the products we buy, can’t buy, or are forced to buy. Then they want to claim spectator status, all the while hoping you can’t connect the dots.
Since that has never happened in the real world, that is a personal inference without any acceptable persuasive argument.
I never accept premises from functional imbeciles.
Trump has no worries.
If Mueller could get Trump, he would already have presented his case.
Mueller’s only option now is the Martha Stewart approach.
To block that, Trump merely has to invoke the Fifth Amendment, which would be entirely justified because Trump’s memory has been well documented by leftist media outlets to be defective.
The President...shall have Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offences against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.
Article II, Section 2, Clause 1
Note the use of the word “Case” and the term “Cases of Impeachment”.
“The possibility of a President pardoning himself for a crime is not precluded by the explicit language of the Constitution, and, during the summer of 1974, some of President Richard M. Nixon’s lawyers argued that it was constitutionally permissible. But a broader reading of the Constitution and the general principles of the traditions of United States law might lead to the conclusion that a self-pardon is constitutionally impermissible. It would seem to violate the principles that a man should not be a judge in his own case; that the rule of law is supreme and the United States is a nation of laws, not men; and that the President is not above the law.”
“...how many in the MSM actually argue the case that she should be given a pass...”
That’s because all of them were little asswipes that got “participation trophies” just for showing up when they were kids.
The Supreme Court would be the decider.
And the Supreme Court can be depended upon to frown upon abuse of power.
“In Clintons case, however, the conduct underlying this hypothetical indictment occurred prior to her taking office. The House of Representatives, as far back as 1873, has determined that a person cannot be impeached based on conduct prior to them holding office”
Congress could impeach simply for the bad form (misdemeanor) of pardoning oneself. Impeachment can be for bad character or tone of voice - it does not require a crime.
The Constitution expressly forbids the use of a pardon to block impeachment. It blocks nothing else.
Yes, a president can block criminal prosecution. No they cannot block an impeachment.
Why? Well, the idiots on the Left today are explaining that very clearly. Each president would spend their four year term dodging criminal complaints hurled by the other side.
With Clinton, that was called for. Under Trump, it truly isn’t. I don’t think either Bush or Reagan could be classified like Clinton. Carter either for that matter, even if he was dumber than a broom stick handle.
While a President Crooked Hillary could pardon herself, such a pardon wouldn’t affect Congressional ability to impeach. It might protect her from criminal liability for the crimes she committed though.
Congress can literally impeach for anything as the term “High Crimes and Misdemeanors” is not defined.
Pardoning yourself could be deemed a High Crime worthy of impeachment.
The Heritage article gives this reference:
Brian C. Kalt, Pardon Me? The Constitutional Case Against Presidential Self-Pardons, 106 Yale L.J. 779 (1996)
Doesn’t matter. Impeachment is an extremely broad power. It is not a literal trial for crimes. It is a political process. The 1873 decision by the house is not binding on this Congress.
If some Congress decides that a crime committed before, taking office was concealed and they want to remove them, they can. And it is not reviewable by anybody...including the Supreme Court.
Congress is the ultimate check on our entire government.
Well if a pardon can not block impeachment then it means impeachment requires a crime and it’s not just a political process
“The Supreme Court would be the decider.
And the Supreme Court can be depended upon to frown upon abuse of power.”
No, The Supreme Court cannot overturn, or even force a review of a Pardon. The only role the Supremes have in impeachment is that the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court presides over the Senate trial. Beyond that they have zero voice in impeachment proceedings.
Saying that the 1873 House determined it was “not proper” is different than saying they “can not” impeach someone for crimes committed before taking office.
And in either case, that’s the 1873 House, not the 2016 House, so unless the Constitution stipulates that they can not do it for acts prior to taking office (as I don’t think it does), then I doubt any determination based on an 1873 House decision could stop them ... particularly if it was the Democrats, who seem intent on impeaching Trump over anything they can, regardless of when, or even IF, he actually did it.
That being said, offhand I can think of two “rare” circumstances where the Congress would be powerless to act.
1) The States, acting as the second highest power in the land, decided to use Article V of the Constitution to keep an out of control government in check, at which point they could reshape the government any way they wanted, and there would be nothing Congress could do.
2) Armed civilians, acting as the HIGHEST power in the land, thanks to their God given right of armed self defense as affirmed by (not created by) the Second Amendment, could rise up to keep an out of control government in check, at which point ... well, you get the idea.
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