A member of the 1A Text Club says: "I am really lucky to have a friend for a husband and an ex-husband. But I know it's really about the work and dedication than the luck."
This is the year of the impeachment book.
Laurence Tribe and Joshua Matz’s To End a Presidency: The Power of Impeachment.
The Constitution Demands It: The Case for the Impeachment of Donald Trump by Ron Fein, John Bonifaz, and Ben Clements.
Allan Lichtman’s The Case For Impeachment, followed by Alan Dershowitz’s The Case Against Impeaching Trump. (The two went head-to-head on our show earlier this year.)
Now, former Rep. Elizabeth Holtzman, D-NY, and former CIA officer David Priess have released their contributions to the genre.
In The Case for Impeaching Trump, Holtzman draws on her time as a member of the House Judiciary Committee during Richard Nixon’s presidency.
For some, impeachment is something toxic to be avoided at all costs. Reining in presidential misconduct can be achieved other ways, they assert. But I see impeachment as the grand and solemn tool that our Founders gave us to address whether a president should be removed from office. When the time is right, they meant for us to use the tool. It was designed to protect our democracy and to preserve the rule of law. I believed the time was right in 1974, and I believe the time is right once again.
Priess says we have a lot to learn from history. In How to Get Rid of a President: History’s Guide to Removing Unpopular, Unable, or Unfit Chief Executives, he explores the Founding Fathers’ system to limit executive power — and how American citizens have resorted to darker paths to do the same.
Looking at how we’ve come to eject presidents across more than two centuries — using means from the partisan to the personal, the institutional to the ad hoc, the fair to the foul — shines a different light on the American political experience. The overwhelming focus politicians, pundits, and scholars put on electing leaders needs to be balanced by attention to the odd mix of elegant and distasteful ways those leaders have left office. Through design or improvisation, presidents have been (or can be) ousted by voters, rejected by their own parties, removed in place by opponents or subordinates, dismissed preemptively, displaced by death, taken out by force, declared unable to serve, or impeached and removed.
There may be abundant pomp and circumstance attending the arrivals of new presidents, but the more lasting lessons about the health and happiness of the body politic can be found in the nature and style of their departures.
Judging by past and present, how plausible is impeachment? And what would it take to get there?
- David Priess Author, "How to Get Rid of a President: History's Guide to Removing Unpopular, Unable, or Unfit Chief Executives"; Former CIA Officer; @DavidPriess
- Elizabeth Holtzman Former Member of the U.S. House of Representatives (D-NY); Author, "The Case for Impeaching Trump"
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