[Home]  [Headlines]  [Latest Articles]  [Latest Comments]  [Post]  [Mail]  [Sign-in]  [Setup]  [Help]  [Register] 

Trump’s Happy Easter Message (At The End)!

Vermont’s Republican Governor to Sign Bill Abolishing Columbus Day

Group of Armed Mexican Soldiers Disarm, Detain US Soldiers on Texas Side of Border

FBI arrests leader of armed group stopping migrants in New Mexico

EASTER MASSACRE Sri Lanka Easter bombings – Brits among 156 killed and 400 injured in Easter Sunday terror attacks on eight churches and hotels

There's now a version of the Bible that uses only Bitmoji

Mayor Pete Says Americans “Don’t Want the Conservative Agenda”

Why Bernie Sanders Can Defeat Donald Trump in 2020

Trump seethes over Mueller report, Democrat demands impeachment

‘I Am Sickened (Sickening) ’: Romney Blasts Trump in Scathing Reaction to Mueller Report

Kentucky BBQ restaurant slammed for 'LGBTQ' shirts deemed offensive

Two Fox Hosts End Interviews When Guests Bring Up Pattern of Church Fires in France

OFFICIAL HIGH SCHOOL RECORDS SUPPORT CLAIM THAT DEMOCRAT ILHAN OMAR MARRIED HER BROTHER

The End of Cathedral Culture

U.S. Intelligence Institutionally Politicized Toward Democrats(Tell us something we don't know!)

Man with gas cans arrested at St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York

FOIA Request Confirms Zero Standard Capacity Magazines Turned In to NJ State Police

Republicans’ Love of Healthcare Socialism

NASA Creates Movie Parody Posters Featuring Its ISS Expedition Astronauts (No, really.)

16th Amendment As Written: No Tax On Wages Or Salaries

Investigative Reporter Laura Loomer Announces Plans For 2020 Congressional Run

Assange Dumps All Wikileaks Files As Stated During Arrest – Here They Are!

20 Years an Atheist: Why I Turned ("Easier To Be God-Less"; War in the Comments Section Rages)

Bill Weld officially announces he is challenging Trump for GOP nomination in 2020

Robert De Niro Thinks Mocking Trump on SNL is his “Civic Duty”

Buttigieg: ‘Most Americans Don’t Want the Conservative Agenda’

Catholic CT freak Bill Donohue booted off Neil Cavuto show - Notre Dame fire

Cops Promise to Rob or Arrest Citizens Unless They Buy an Arbitrary Sticker

How Many Muslims Won Political Office The Numbers May Surprise You!...................WAKE-UP AMERICA!!

If Trump is So Worried About ‘Fake News’ Why is He Prosecuting WikiLeaks—Who’s Been 100% Right

Alabama Cops Raided Their House, Seized Their Cash, and Ruined Their Lives Over $50 of Marijuana

Sheriff’s Department Definitely Needs a Mine-Resistant Vehicle for All Those Mines in Tennessee

Groupthink and Why They NEED to Censor Us

Pregnant victim randomly attacked ... by group of teen - thug - apers --- speaks out

Pentagon Warns "Next Major Conflict Maybe Won Or Lost In Space"

Can You Believe YouTube Caused the Rise in Flat-Earthers? (*MSM and PTB Institutions Panicking That Truth Is Leaking Like A Sieve On YT*)

There are more Godless Americans than Christians

Mayor Pete Buttigieg is the hottest thing in politics. Can it last?

The Washington Establishment Seems Pretty Happy About Julian Assange's Arrest

High School Suspends 2 Students for Posting Gun Range Photos on Snapchat, ACLU Files Suit

Congress - media have studiously avoided hearing - reading - learning anything ... that might obtrude upon --- their orange-man-bad mindset

Yikes: New 36-count Avenatti indictment alleges embezzlement of disabled client’s settlement [335 years]

NY Post to Omar: “What a way to describe the heinous surprise attack on America that claimed 3,000 lives”

Dog Makes Pizza!

Honk Honk clown drama ends with James Woods posting New Zealand shooting meme

Assange arrested betrayed by Ecuador

Cops Invaded an Innocent Alzheimer’s Patient’s Home, Broke His Neck and Killed Him

Ancestry Websites Giving FBI Access to DNA Data; DHS Rolling Out Rapid DNA Nationwide

Prosecutors Charge Man for Abandoning Pet Fish Before Realizing That Isn't Illegal

DHS Releases Nearly 8,000 Border Crossers, Illegal Aliens in One Week


Status: Not Logged In; Sign In

U.S. Constitution
See other U.S. Constitution Articles

Title: Can the President Legally Break the Law?
Source: Lew Rockwell
URL Source: https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/03 ... esident-legally-break-the-law/
Published: Mar 21, 2019
Author: Andrew P. Napolitano
Post Date: 2019-03-21 05:56:16 by Deckard
Keywords: None
Views: 71
Comments: 5

“When the president does it, that means that it is not illegal.” — Richard M. Nixon (1913-94)

Legal scholars have been fascinated for two centuries about whether an American president can break the law and remain immune from prosecution. During the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln ordered troops to arrest, without warrant, and incarcerate, without due process, many peaceful, law-abiding journalists and newspaper editors — and even a member of Congress — in the Northern states. Wasn’t that kidnapping?

During World War I, Woodrow Wilson ordered federal agents to arrest people who sang German beer hall songs or read aloud from the Declaration of Independence in public. Wasn’t that infringing upon the freedom of speech?

During the Great Depression, Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered banks to confiscate gold from Americans who had purchased and possessed it lawfully. Wasn’t that theft?

In the early 1970s, Richard Nixon used the CIA to spy on Americans and to frustrate the FBI’s efforts to investigate a burglary at the Democratic National Committee’s Watergate headquarters, and then he denied doing any of this. Wasn’t that an invasion of privacy and obstruction of justice and using a federal office for deception? Years after his resignation, Nixon infamously told David Frost in a live interview that no matter what the president does, it is lawful. Where did he get that argument from?

And President Donald Trump has asked Congress for money to condemn real estate and build a border barrier in Texas. Congress said no, yet he plans to spend the money anyway. Doesn’t that violate his oath to uphold the Constitution?

Though there may have been political consequences to each of these presidential acts of lawlessness — there were for Nixon, at least — there were no legal consequences in the form of impeachment or prosecution. The Constitution itself limits impeachment to treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors.

The “high crimes and misdemeanors” language was interpreted by the House Judiciary Committee in 1974 to include material interference with a governmental function and obstruction of justice and the use of a governmental asset to deceive the public — but not any garden-variety crime, such as bank or tax fraud or kidnapping or invasion of privacy or misappropriation of federal funds.

During the presidency of Bill Clinton and afterward, the Department of Justice ordered research about whether a president could be charged with a crime against his will and while still in office. The DOJ now possesses three scholarly legal opinions on the subject. Two of them say he cannot be prosecuted; one of them says he can. All three are based on the same law and history but employ different deference to the presidency.

Two of those opinions say that if there is probable cause of crime by the president and the time during which the law requires a prosecution to commence — the statute of limitations — would expire while the president is in office, he or she should be indicted while in office but the prosecution should be deferred until he or she is no longer president. One of the opinions, incredibly, mimics the Nixonian president-as-prince idea and basically tells the Department of Justice to forgo prosecution.

Clinton was prosecuted while in office for testifying falsely — lying under oath in a civil deposition, a crime rarely prosecuted — but it was with his consent. Presumably, he consented to the quick prosecution and guilty plea in the final days of his presidency to avoid a costly and prison-exposed post-presidential indictment for more serious crimes.

I have recounted this brief history of presidential lawbreaking as a background to a discussion of the political period I suspect we are all about to enter. That period will commence with the expected release of the report of special counsel Robert Mueller. Under the court rules through which he was appointed, however, his report is not for Congress or the president or the public but rather for the attorney general and those engaged by him to analyze it.

There may be parts of the report that could not lawfully be made public. For example, if a grand jury took testimony about the president’s alleged and denied obstruction of justice related to his firing of FBI Director James Comey — i.e., testimony about whether he did so for a venal or unlawful purpose, such as preventing the FBI from discovering other presidential crimes — and the grand jury decided not to indict the president, the existence of that testimony, as well as its substance, must remain secret under the law. The same is the case for all references to a decision not to indict someone.

That is at least the theory of grand jury secrecy; those not indicted should not have their names dragged through the mud.

Now back to Nixon’s the-president-can-commit-no-crime argument and that DOJ opinion basically agreeing with it. This view of the presidency is imperial. Is the president of the United States so integral to the preservation of the Constitution that he cannot be diverted from that job to the rigors of defending himself or herself in a criminal prosecution?

If the answer is yes, how about when he or she is no longer employed in the defense of the Constitution? If the answer to this question is no, who should be trusted with a get-out-of-jail-free-forever card? And where is that in the Constitution?

Trump once boasted that he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue in New York in broad daylight and get away with it or pardon himself. I hope this was Trumpian comedic exaggeration. If not, it is the revelation of a dangerous Nixon-like mentality that the rule of law — which requires that no one be above the law’s commands or beneath its protections — applies to everyone but him.

Can the president legally break the law? If he can, we will soon be back to the Nixon days. And we all know how they ended. (1 image)

Post Comment   Private Reply   Ignore Thread  


TopPage UpFull ThreadPage DownBottom/Latest

#1. To: Deckard (#0)

Yes, the President can legally break the law. The only solution is to impeach him and then prosecute him.

Or, for the cabinet and Congress to invoke Art 25 and remove him.

Otherwise the President is as immune from prosecution as any visiting king, queen or head of state.

Vicomte13  posted on  2019-03-21   6:49:50 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#2. To: Vicomte13 (#1)

Yes, the President can legally break the law. The only solution is to impeach him and then prosecute him.

Or, for the cabinet and Congress to invoke Art 25 and remove him.

Otherwise the President is as immune from prosecution as any visiting king, queen or head of state.

Sort of like Diplomatic Immunity?

Computer Hope

Government is in the last resort the employment of armed men, of policemen, gendarmes, soldiers, prison guards, and hangmen.
The essential feature of government is the enforcement of its decrees by beating, killing, and imprisoning.
Those who are asking for more government interference are asking ultimately for more compulsion and less freedom.

Deckard  posted on  2019-03-21   7:10:10 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#3. To: Deckard (#0)

Can the president legally break the law?

or

Can a president be indicted for crimes committed prior to being sworn in....

Yes, the Constitution Allows Indictment of the President

https://www.lawfareblog.com/yes-constitution-allows-indictment-president

By Laurence H. Tribe

Laurence H. Tribe is the Carl M. Loeb University Professor and Professor of Constitutional Law at Harvard University.

Interesting argument from Mr. Tribe

Jameson  posted on  2019-03-21   7:44:36 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#4. To: Deckard (#0)

And President Donald Trump has asked Congress for money to condemn real estate and build a border barrier in Texas. Congress said no, yet he plans to spend the money anyway. Doesn’t that violate his oath to uphold the Constitution?

Where did he break the law?

Part of the job of the president is to secure the border and if anyone should be prosecuted it would be congress for not doing their job of securing the border and protecting the homeland!!!!!!!

Without a border we are not a nation!

What Nap is saying is if congress says no then president can not. Which is BS on the highest level. Its called a veto!

"Socialism corrupts and Democratic Socialism corrupts Absolutely"!

Justified  posted on  2019-03-21   14:18:36 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#5. To: Jameson (#3)

no obsTrucTion

no collusion

loser ao

If you ... don't use exclamation points --- you should't be typeing ! Commas - semicolons - question marks are for girlie boys !

BorisY  posted on  2019-03-26   3:18:06 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


TopPage UpFull ThreadPage DownBottom/Latest

[Home]  [Headlines]  [Latest Articles]  [Latest Comments]  [Post]  [Mail]  [Sign-in]  [Setup]  [Help]  [Register] 

Please report web page problems, questions and comments to webmaster@libertysflame.com