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Impeachment 'off the table'––unconstitutional

By       Message P. A. Triot       (Page 1 of 2 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   1 comment

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Congress is in violation of the United States Constitution by failing to impeach George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, and holding them accountable for their respective and joint “high crimes and misdemeanors.”

The “impeachment card,” a term so many pundits are fond of using, is not merely an option allowed by the Constitution, it is required by that document.

Article II, Section 4, of the Constitution reads in its entirety (with original punctuation): “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.”

The Constitution uses the word shall, not may. The word shall makes impeachment a requirement of congress, as opposed to may, which implies congress has an option.

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Most people, including most Washington pundits, believe that beginning hearings and bringing impeachment charges against the president and vice president unleashes a constitutional crisis.

On the contrary, the nation is in the throes of a constitutional crisis now and the impeachment process is the safety valve the founders provided to solve the crisis.

That is why the Constitution reads shall, not may in regard to the impeachment process.

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The founders intended impeachment authority of congress to be vigorously exercised. It is mentioned no fewer than six times in the Constitution.

For the speaker of the House of Representatives and the majority leader in the Senate to take impeachment “off the table” therefore is unconstitutional.

Both those congressional officers have taken an oath to preserve and defend the Constitution and to uphold its provisions.

For that matter, each and every one of the members of both houses of congress have taken that same oath.

Impeachment of a president and/or vice president does not mean removal from office. It simply means there is probable cause for the U. S. Senate to hold a trial. Removal from office only results if the subject of impeachment is convicted by the U. S. Senate.

It is only fair to accuse Bush and Cheney of “high crimes and misdemeanors.” The both of them have truly proven themselves to be outlaws.

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Those two men, and their henchmen, have ripped the Constitution to shreds––more than any of their predecessors.

The framers of the Constitution insisted on guarding against the possibility of the executive branch grasping so much authority as to virtually evolve the republic into a kingdom.

Their efforts began with sharply limiting presidential authority. The founders of this great nation were revolutionaries who detested kings.

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P. A. Triot is the pen name of a retired journalist.

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