In essence, what the analysis by Baker and Grant shows irrefutably, is that Donald Trump, as did Richard Nixon before him, has and continues to demonstrate a chronic misuse of executive power and a blatant disregard for the rule of law.
Donald Trump's increasingly erratic behavior stems, in part and naturally, from his rejection at the polls in the recent midterm elections, and other setbacks in the courts. But it was departing White House counsel's making Trump aware of the significance of Article II, paragraph 5, of the House Judiciary Committee’s 27 July 1974, Articles of Impeachment, to his own situation that has sent Trump hurdling off the rails, as it were.
Article II, paragraph 5, states that President Nixon:
In disregard of the rule of law, . . . knowingly misused the executive power by interfering with agencies of the executive branch, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Criminal Division, and the Office of the Special Prosecution Force of the Department of Justice, and the Central Intelligence Agency, in violation of his duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed.
President Nixon resigned 14 days later on the 9th of August 1974.
And Donald Trump, due to his improper contacts with the Department of Justice in regards to investigations in which he is personally involved, has committed the impeachable offense of obstruction of justice. The same crime for which the road map for drafting articles of impeachment against Nixon was initiated. And, because of the evidence which the current special prosecutor has accumulated, a road map, a chronological list of Trump's crimes is being organized, in earnest. A road map for the House Judiciary Committee to consider drafting articles of impeachment against Donald Trump.
Germane to an understanding of the parallel between the case against Trump and Nixon is laid out in a memorandum the special prosecutor’s office sent to the House Judiciary Committee, on 24 June 1974, listing the - facts, inferences and theories that demonstrate that beginning no later than March 21, 1973, the President joined an ongoing criminal conspiracy to obstruct justice, obstruct a criminal investigation, and commit perjury, which included . . . obtaining information from the Department of Justice to thwart its investigation . . . .
And moreover, in the case of Nixon, and now Trump, both were not merely exercising their powers under Article II of the Constitution to supervise the executive branch, and trying to get the facts necessary to do so; the president of the United States, then and now, was also acting as a criminal co-conspirator trying to obstruct the lawful investigative activities of the Department of Justice, contrary to law, specifically, 18 U.S.C. 1510.
Trump's articles of impeachment will reference 18 U.S.C. 1512(b)(3).
Wisdom, triumphed when Nixon was confronted with the evidence, and he spared the nation the trauma of impeachment and trial. We know from both the written and oral records (the tapes) that Nixon was concerned about the public imagery involved.
And in this regard the contrast to Trump is rather stark, because there is no indication that Trump is wise or that he cares about the public imagery involved or even less the damage that he is doing to American Jurisprudence.
In fact, Trump continues to profess his innocence in relation to the crime of collusion, while there is no crime of collusion. The crime Trump committed was one of collaboration, that is, to solicit and accept something of value from foreign persons and foreign governments to affect the outcome of an election, contrary to law. And, as in the case of Richard Nixon, Trump has added to that illegality the crime of obstructing justice in an attempt to hide his wrong-doings.
Donald Trump, has not suggested that he has not obstructed justice, or that his campaign did not receive something of value from foreign entities to affect the outcome of the 2016 presidential election. To do so, in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary would only increase his already daunting legal jeopardy.
In addition to these awesome problems for Donald Trump, he must also contemplate the involvement of his children and son-in-law. Even the arrogance of Donald Trump, should not permit him to hold on to the presidency, which is at best doubtful, at the price of watching his children and son-in-law be prosecuted in federal and state courts for crimes that he asked them to help him commit. Trump's ability to pardon federal crimes does not extend to prosecutions emanating from the states.
Surely, Donald Trump realizes by now that any thought of a run in 2020 is not rational.
The subpoena Trump dreads is coming, and Trump hopes that when the appeal he will file to not have to honor the special prosecutor's summons reaches the supreme court, Kavanaugh will serve him, rather than the rule of law he swore an oath to uphold, as he hopes Whitaker will. Nixon tried to fire his way to freedom, and Trump will foolishly try the same.
However the outcome for Trump is inevitable, resign or be prosecuted.
Pence has lied so many times in his official capacity that the line of succession is not open to him. Like Agnew, Pence will go before his running mate does, so his remaining time in office is rather limited.
And, that brings us to the pending constitutional crisis, the line of succession. With Trump and Pence gone, the Speaker of the House, who represents the party opposite becomes president. The framers were not concerned with party affiliation, and no American Enterprise Institute or Federalist Society diatribe can change that fact.
Which is the subject of the next section of this article.
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Before delving into the principal subject matter of this segment, i.e., the post-Trump and post-Pence resignations constitutional crisis concerning the line of succession, let us explore the concept, lawfare.
The previous segment of this article was written and published by, members of and contributors to, a blog organisation that is an offshoot of the Brookings Institute named Lawfare. The article reviewed above was written by James (Jim) Baker a former FBI general counsel, and a Harvard law student Sarah Grant.
The term lawfare is a portmanteauof the words law and warfare. The grammatical construction pormanteau can be distinguished from two other closely related tools of grammar the ...