Efforts To Impeach Barack Obama
|This article is part of a series about
During Barack Obama‘s tenure as President of the United States from 2009 to 2017, certain Republican members of Congress, as well as Democratic congressman Dennis Kucinich, stated that Obama had engaged in impeachable activity and that he might face attempts to remove him from office. Rationales offered for possible impeachment ranged from Obama allowing people to use bathrooms based on their gender identity, to the 2012 Benghazi attack, to Obama’s enforcement of immigration laws, and false claims that he was born outside the United States.
Multiple surveys of U.S. public opinion found that a near supermajority of Americans rejected the idea of impeaching Obama, though a bit more than a simple majority of Republicans did support such efforts. For example, CNN found in July 2014 that 57% of Republicans supported impeachment, but in general, 65% of American adults, disagreed with impeachment with only 33% supporting such efforts.
Constitutionality Of Senate Trial Of Former President
The question of whether the Senate can hold a trial for and convict a former president is unsettled. Article II, Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution provides:
|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.
|Article II, Section 4, of the U.S. Constitution
Article I, Section 3, of the Constitution, also states the following:
|Judgment in Cases of Impeachment shall not extend further than to removal from Office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any Office of honor, Trust or Profit under the United States: but the Party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to Indictment, Trial, Judgment and Punishment, according to Law.
|Article I, Section 3, Clause 7, of the U.S. Constitution
J. Michael Luttig, who served on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit for 25 years, said that such a trial would be unconstitutional. He interpreted the language of Section 4 to refer to an official in office.
Luttig said, “The very concept of constitutional impeachment presupposes the impeachment, conviction and removal of a president who is, at the time of his impeachment, an incumbent in the office from which he is removed. Indeed, that was the purpose of the impeachment power, to remove from office a president or other ‘civil official’ before he could further harm the nation from the office he then occupies.”
Congressional Opposition To Impeachment
A number of prominent Republicans rejected calls for impeachment, including House SpeakerJohn Boehner, and Sen. John McCain. McCain said impeachment would be a distraction from the 2014 election, and that if “we regain control of the United States Senate we can be far more effective than an effort to impeach the president, which has no chance of succeeding.” Rep. Blake Farenthold said that impeachment would be “an exercise in futility.”
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Congressional Calls For Impeachment
In October 2010, prior to the elections in which Republicans won control of the House, Jonathan Chait published an article in The New Republic called “Scandal TBD” where he predicted that if Republicans were to win control of the House, and Barack Obama were to win re-election in 2012, the Republicans would try to impeach Obama and use any reason possible as pretext.
Pelosi Intends To Appoint A Second Republican To The Jan 6 Committee
- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she intends to name a second Republican critic of Donald Trump, Rep. Adam Kinzinger, to a special committee investigating the Capitol riot.
- Pelosi already put Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., on the select committee.
- Cheney and Kinzinger were among the 10 House Republicans to vote for Trump’s second impeachment and the only two Republicans who voted last month to form the special committee.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Sunday she intends to name a second Republican critic of Donald Trump, Rep. Adam Kinzinger, to a special committee investigating the Capitol riot and she pledged that the Democratic-majority panel will “find the truth.”
With the committee set to hold its first meeting on Tuesday, hearing from police officers who battled the rioters on Jan. 6, House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy has said the GOP will not participate after Pelosi, D-Calif., refused to accept the members he picked.
Pelosi, who already put Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., on the select committee, now says she intends to add Kinzinger, R-Ill. Cheney and Kinzinger were among the 10 House Republicans to vote for Trump’s second impeachment and the only two Republicans who voted last month to form the special committee.
“That would be my plan,” Pelosi said on ABC’s “This Week.”
Pressed on when she would make an announcement, Pelosi said: “Perhaps after I speak with Adam Kinzinger … That is the direction that I would be going on.”
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Backlash Builds: More Lawmakers Call For Schiff To Resign From House Intel Committee
A growing number of Republican lawmakers and national figures called for Rep. Adam Schiff to resign from the House Intelligence Committee Tuesday; citing years of non-stop and baseless allegations regarding President Trump colluding with foreign nationals.
Hes been on every TV show 50 times a day for practically the last two years, promising Americans that this president would either be impeached or indicted, said senior presidential advisor Kellyanne Conway Monday. He has no right, as somebody who has been peddling a lie, day after day after day, unchallenged.
He owes an apology to the American public, added House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.;There is no place in Adam Schiffs world or in Congress that he should be chair of the intel committee.
There is no way he could lead the intel committee and he should step back, McCarthy added.
They should be removed from their chairmanships, said RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel. They owe the American people an apology. They owe this president an apology, and they have work to do to heal this democracy because this is our country we are talking about.
Read the full report at Fox News.
Heres What To Expect From The Republicans On The Jan 6 Committee
After a pilgrimage to Bedminster to get the blessing of the GOPs Apricot Archbishop, House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy announced yesterday that he would after all appoint Republican members to Speaker Nancy Pelosis select committee investigating the January 6 insurrection.
McCarthy had vacillated for weeks on the decision. Politico reported that he considered naming more experienced members to the probe, filling his seats with firebrands, and refusing to tap any members at all.
In the end the invertebrate House minority leader took the most low-risk path he could, appointing a pair of firebrands named Jim to please Daddy T and filling the other committee seats with lesser-known members, including one in his first term. Among McCarthys picks there are two more appointees named Jim than there are women or people of color. Take a look.
McCarthy reportedly had some difficulty finding Republican representatives willing to participate in the committeebut Jim Jordan was undoubtedly eager to join. Everyone knows what to expect from Jordan, the sweaty, jacketless, former wrestling coach who worked alongside a serial sexual assaulter while simultaneously not ever seeming to notice and allegedly telling one of his wrestlers he should help cover it up.;Given this expertise, Trump surely wanted Jordan on the committee.
But since Donalds Kevin appointed them, Im not holding my breath.
House Republicans ‘demand The Release Of The Rules’ On Impeachment
House Republicans are calling for the committee leaders overseeing the impeachment inquiry to release the guidelines and regulations under which depositions and transcriptions of testimony are being conducted.;
We write to demand the release of the rules that are governing the depositions and transcribed interviews being conducted by the joint action of your three committees, nearly 80 GOP lawmakers said in their Friday letter to House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam SchiffCarolyn MaloneyGOP seeks to keep spotlight on Afghanistan as Dems advance Biden’s .5T spending planOvernight Health Care: Democrats plot response to Texas abortion lawHouse Democrats ramp up probe of FDA approval of Alzheimer’s drug MORE
“The secrecy in which these depositions and interviews are being conducted, and the lack of clarity on the rules that govern attendance and access to records, are deeply concerning in the context of such a serious inquiry, the letter read.
GOP members have been vocal in their criticisms of how Democrats have carried out the impeachment process thus far, alleging it is politically motivated and has lacked transparency. The lawmakers highlighted that multiple attempts to gain access to the closed-door impeachment hearings have repeatedly been rebuffed for members who dont sit on any of the three panels.;
The letter was led by House Freedom Caucus Chairman Andy Biggs and signed by 76 GOP lawmakers including Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy
Law Professors Will Testify At Wednesday’s Hearing
From CNN’s Manu Raju
The House Judiciary Committee has announced its list of witnesses for Wednesdays hearing.
Entitled The Impeachment Inquiry into President Donald J. Trump: Constitutional Grounds for Presidential Impeachment,” the hearing will include testimony from law professors from four schools. It starts at 10 a.m. ET.
Here’s a list of witnesses:
- Noah Feldman of Harvard Law School
- Pamela S. Karlan;of;Stanford Law School
- Michael Gerhardt;of the University of North Carolina School of Law
- Jonathan Turley of the George Washington University Law School
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Rep Hakeem Jeffries D
Jeffries,who was a litigator in private practice before he ran for office,;sits on the Judiciary Committee and chairs the House Democratic Caucus, which has helped shape Democrats’ messaging on impeachment.His position in House Democratic leadership makes him the highest-ranking lawmaker in the group;who will prosecute the case against Trump.;
Jeffries said Wednesday that his role was to;”present the truth to the American people.”
Will Trump Be Impeached
As Democrats hold a majority in the House, the vote is likely to pass.
“We have been asked to turn a blind eye to the criminality, corruption and blatant disregard to the rule of law by the tyrant president we have in the White House,” Democratic Representative Ilhan Omar said in the House debate.
“We as a nation can no longer look away.”
At least nine Republicans have voted in favour impeachment, but the majority remain loyal to the president.
“Instead of moving forward as a unifying force, the majority in the House is choosing to divide us further… Let us look forward, not backward. Let us come together, not apart,” Republican Tom Cole told the House.
He was one of 139 Republicans who last week voted against accepting the result of the 2020 election and Mr Trump’s defeat.
Once it has passed in the House of Representatives, the impeachment article will then head for the Senate, where a trial will be held to determine the president’s guilt.
A two-thirds majority would be needed there to convict Mr Trump, meaning at least 17 Republicans would have to vote for conviction. As many as 20 Senate Republicans are open to convicting the president, the New York Times reports.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he had not yet decided whether or not he would vote in favour of impeachment.
The Senate will not reconvene this week and probably not until 19 January, according to Mr McConnell’s spokesman.
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Trump Releases New Video Condemning Capitol Riot But Does Not Mention Impeachment
President Donald Trump released a video Wednesday to offer his most forceful condemnation yet of last week’s riot at the U.S. Capitol.
Trump did not mention his impeachment in the taped message, which was;released on the White House Twitter account after his personal account was suspended.
“I want to be very clear. I unequivocally condemn the violence that we saw last week. Violence and vandalism have absolutely no place in our country and no place in our movement,” Trump said.;
“No true supporter of mine could ever endorse political violence. No true supporter of mine could ever disrespect law enforcement or our great American flag,” he added. “No true supporter of mine could ever threaten or harass their fellow Americans if you do any of these things, you are not supporting our movement, you’re attacking it, and you are attacking our country.”
In the video, Trump also discussed “unprecedented assault on free speech,” referring to his ban from several social media sites.
He closed the remarks by calling on Americans to come together.;;
Republicans Slam Dems As Committee Readies Impeachment Resolution For Floor Vote
House Republicans railed against their Democratic colleagues’ impeachment resolution Wednesday as the Rules Committee readied the measure for a full floor vote, calling it a “fishing expedition” that restricts GOP members’ input and infringes on the due process rights of President Donald Trump.
Republican members introduced a barrage of dead-on-arrival amendments during the committee markup of the measure, each one failing along party lines. The proposed changes attempted in part to restrict the potential scope of the impeachment inquiry as Democrats move toward the public-facing phase of the probe. The committee is comprised of nine Democrats and four Republicans.
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Release Of Deposition Transcripts
On November 4, 2019, two transcripts of the closed-door depositions, those of Ambassadors Yovanovitch and McKinley, were released by the three presiding House committees. The transcripts revealed that Yovanovitch first learned, from Ukrainian officials in November or December 2018, of a campaign by Giuliani and Lutsenko to remove her from her post. Yovanovitch also testified that the U.S. embassy in Ukraine denied a visa application from the former Ukrainian prosecutor Viktor Shokin “to visit family” in the U.S. Although the application was simply denied because of his corrupt dealings in Ukraine, the ambassador later learned he had lied on his application and that the true purpose of the visit was to meet with Giuliani and “provide information about corruption at the embassy, including my corruption”, she told the committees. Giuliani lobbied the assistant secretary for consular affairs, conceding the true purpose of Shokin’s planned visit to the U.S. The State Department meanwhile remained silent while she faced public attacks in an attempt to recall her to the U.S. Yovanovitch had been told by Sondland that showing support for the U.S. president may help prevent her dismissal but she chose not to heed the advice.
Following public release of the transcripts, Trump asserted they had been “doctored” by Schiff and encouraged Republicans to “put out their own transcripts!”
Trump Taps Eight Republicans To Serve On Impeachment Team: Who They Are What To Know
Eight Republican members of the House of Representatives have been tapped to serve on President Donald Trump’s impeachment team during his Senate trial, the White House announced on Monday.
The group of lawmakers is largely made up of conservative firebrandslike Jim Jordan and Mark Meadowswho have been outspoken critics of impeachment and loyal supporters of the president.
The GOP leadership previously sparred over whether to include House members in the president’s impeachment team, as many feared the lawmakers would lack the right temperament for the trial. Senator John Cornyn told reporters earlier this month that the upper chamber wants to avoid the “circus-like atmosphere of the House.”
“So I think it seems obvious to me that if the president picks a team that does not include House members, that we’d be more likely to have the dignified process that the Constitution calls for,” Cornyn said.
Senator Lindsey Graham told the press earlier this month that he also didn’t think it was “wise” to include House GOP members in the process and that “we need to elevate the argument beyond party politics.”
But the White House backed the decision to include the Republican members, saying in a statement that they “have provided guidance to the White House team, which was prohibited from participating in the proceedings concocted by Democrats in the House of Representatives,” and would continue to do so in the Senate.
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Resolution To Begin Public Hearings
On October 29, 2019, Representative Jim McGovern introduced a resolution , referred to House Rules Committee, which set forth the “format of open hearings in the House Intelligence Committee, including staff-led questioning of witnesses, and the public release of deposition transcripts”. It also proposed the procedures for the transfer of evidence to House Judiciary Committee as it considers articles of impeachment. The resolution was debated in Rules Committee the next day and brought to a floor vote on October 31. It was adopted with a vote of 232 to 196, with two Democrats and all Republicans voting against the measure.
Trump Impeachment: Chaos Erupts As Republicans Barge Into Inquiry Hearing
Group chanting Let us in enter closed-door meeting where top Pentagon official who oversees Ukraine policy was to testify
Political tensions over an intensifying impeachment inquiry reached fever pitch on Wednesday as Republicans stormed a closed-door committee hearing on Capitol Hill disrupting a crucial deposition related to the Ukraine controversy a day after devastating testimony from a key diplomat.
A group of Republican members of the House of Representatives, chanting Let us in, barged into a secure office suite in the bowels of the US capitol where Laura Cooper, a top Pentagon official who oversees Ukraine policy, was preparing to testify.
The chaos and confusion temporarily shut down the proceedings before the three House committees leading the impeachment inquiry as Republicans tweeted updates of the disruption from their cellphones, which are not permitted in classified areas. Their presence in the chamber reportedly erupted into yelling matches with committee members.
WATCH: here’s the video of when 2 dozen GOP members, led by entered the secure hearing room to interrupt witness testimony in the #ImpeachmentInquiry as they demand access, despite not being committee members. They’re complaining it’s a “Soviet-style process”.
The invading Republicans remained in the hearing room into the early afternoon and even ordered pizza and fast food.
It was unclear if Republicans would attempt to disrupt future hearings.
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