This Friday, House Democrats have announced the grounds of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress on which they plan to seek the impeachment of President Trump.
The articles claim abusing the power of his office and obstructing Congress.
But what of the articles? Do they meet the standard?
Oddly, the proposed do not seem to meet the constitutional criteria for an impeachment, which are limited to “treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.” Neither article is a high or low crime or misdemeanor. Neither are mentioned within the Constitution.
The abuse here is that it more and more appears to be what Hamilton called in the Federalist Papers the“greatest danger,” that the decision to impeach will be based on the “comparative strength of parties,” rather than on “innocence or guilt.”
This is new ground. It’s the first time in American history impeachment is occurring without having at least some bipartisan support in Congress. And there is really nothing to support it in the words of the Constitution. It seems like a bad re-run of Pee Wee’s playhouse, where the House is making it up the process as they go along.
Without judicial review, the House by-passes its mandated duty which is to support, defend, and apply the Constitution as written, not as it can be stretched to fit the actions of an opposition or controversial president.
“no legislative act, therefore, contrary to the Constitution, can be valid.” – Alexander Hamilton, Federalist Papers.
This does present the Senate with a constitutional dilemma, if and when it will receive a void and invalid impeachment. It will have to decide whether to proceed with a trial of charges that are unconstitutional and therefore are void.