Law Professor: ‘Lowering the Standard for Impeachment…Would Be Dangerous’ for Future Presidents


On Friday, Jonathan Turley, the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University, appeared on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” to discuss his new Washington Post op-ed about his concerns with discussions of impeaching President Donald Trump.

Specifically, he is worried that the standard has been lowered in recent discussions of the topic.

“I mean, it’s become a cottage industry of people who are arguing for impeachment,” he said. “Newsweek said you know, that the president is just six votes away from impeachment. You have impeachment meters and people promising that now we’re almost at that point where we can remove him.”

The Newsweek article in question, while it does not refer directly to the Russian collusion and obstruction of justice investigations, does include a line saying that the premise “assumes that the forces now in motion continue on their same trajectory and result in an impeachment vote.”

Turley, though, reads the climate as being that there is a belief that Trump can be impeached even if there were no crimes to charge him with.

“That’s dangerous because what people are really describing is what you have in Great Britain with a no-confidence vote,” he said. “That is, you can remove a prime minister and his government with a simple vote of no confidence. People don’t have confidence in this president. That standard was rejected by the framers.”

Turley also criticized the Democratic Party as a group, saying that they applied a different standard to President Barack Obama.

“The Democrats spent eight years giving almost unilateral authority and creating this sort of uber-presidency,” he added. “And now many of them want to create a type of temp presidency, that they can remove this president for what one article described as political disagreements.”

What do you think?

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