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Experience:  licensed attorney in Texas for 29 years
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At what point do a series of misdemeanors such as misfeasance,

Customer Question

At what point do a series of "misdemeanors" such as misfeasance, malfeasance and non-feasance become "high crimes", or must each stand alone?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 3 years ago.
Thanks for your question.Here bribery and treason are among the least ambiguous reasons meriting impeachment, but the ocean of wrongdoing encompassed by the Constitution's stipulation of “high crimes and misdemeanors” is vast. Abuse of power and serious misconduct in office fit this category, but one act that is definitely not grounds for impeachment is partisan discord. Several impeachment cases have confused political animosity with genuine crimes. Since Congress, the vortex of partisanship, is responsible for indicting, trying, and convicting public officials, it is necessary for the legislative branch to temporarily cast aside its factional nature and adopt a judicial role.

Since 1797 the House of Representatives has impeached sixteen federal officials. These include two presidents, a cabinet member, a senator, a justice of the Supreme Court, and eleven federal judges. Of those, the Senate has convicted and removed seven, all of them judges. Not included in this list are the office holders who have resigned rather than face impeachment, most notably, President Nixon..



Edited by RayAnswers on 7/1/2010 at 8:48 PM EST
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 3 years ago.
Note that any federal civil officer can be impeached for "high crimes and misdemeanors"
The President and Vice-president and all civil officers of the United States. This is according to Article II, Section 4, Clause 1 of the US Constitution. The term "civil officers" has been interpreted to include federal judges and justices who have lifetime tenure during good behavior under Article III of the Constitution as well.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
But is it not 'abuse of power' when a bill is (literally) forced thru the congress over massive public objection. Grant that the Republicans are not in a mood to give any leeway, but this Pres. had overwhelming majorities in both houses and still could not do it without smoke and mirrors. I accept all politicians lie, and I accept that parisanship prevails, but is there no way a citizen can have 'standing' to force congress to do our will?
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 3 years ago.
Well the powers of impeachment here are relatively rarely used.I mean 16 times here since 1776.You may feel he is abusing the office but legally this is extremely rare and there must be extraordinary evidence of the high crimes and misdemeanors.
RayAnswers, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 28501
Experience: licensed attorney in Texas for 29 years
RayAnswers and 6 other Criminal Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thanks, it's a tough question and one I've been working on for a while. I suppose we will onl y know when he in fact tries to cancel the election, but then its too late.Good try though.
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 3 years ago.
Well he may not really want to spend the money here to challenge and may be bluffing

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