Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

N&P: Discuss governments, nations, politics and recent related news here.

Moderators: Alyrium Denryle, Edi, K. A. Pital

Post Reply
User avatar
Mr Bean
Lord of Irony
Posts: 22235
Joined: 2002-07-04 08:36am

Re: Der Fuhrer commutes Roger Stone's sentence.

Post by Mr Bean » 2020-07-10 09:55pm

TimothyC wrote:
2020-07-10 09:47pm
Solauren wrote:
2020-07-10 09:15pm
What would it take for the US Senate and Congress to pass an act that retroactively stripped Trump his pardon powers?
They can't. It would have to be a constitutional amendment.
They don't have to because this was a commutation not a pardon and can in theory simply be revoked by the next president as long as it's done before his sentence is finished. Also one could argue it's an invalid use of the President power as he was using his powers for an unjust reason. Both are available options.

"A cult is a religion with no political power." -Tom Wolfe
Pardon me for sounding like a dick, but I'm playing the tiniest violin in the world right now-Dalton

User avatar
FaxModem1
Emperor's Hand
Posts: 7679
Joined: 2002-10-30 06:40pm
Location: In a dark reflection of a better world

Re: Der Fuhrer proposes stripping tax exempt status from Universities in retaliation for Left-wing speech.

Post by FaxModem1 » 2020-07-10 10:10pm

Is this nothing but bluster, or can he actually do this?
Image

User avatar
The Romulan Republic
Emperor's Hand
Posts: 21503
Joined: 2008-10-15 01:37am

Re: Der Fuhrer commutes Roger Stone's sentence.

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2020-07-10 10:34pm

I damn well hope so, because again, the alternatives are "Roger Stone is above the law" or "vigilante justice", and those both are destructive to any semblance of democracy or rule of law.

I'm skeptical the Supreme Court would uphold it being an invalid use though. So I guess the best bet is "Biden wins, revokes commutation", if that's something he can do. I don't know if Joe would do that, though, or if he'd see it as not worth the uproar and being accused of partisan interference in the case himself.

I do think that there should be an amendment stripping the President of the power to pardon or commute. One man should not be able to overturn the entire court system by fiat, especially to help his own cronies. But that'll be a hard thing to pass, because neither party is going to want to give up that power themselves.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver

"The greatest enemy of a good plan is the dream of a perfect plan."-General Von Clauswitz, describing my opinion of Bernie or Busters and third partiers in a nutshell.

I SUPPORT A NATIONAL GENERAL STRIKE TO REMOVE TRUMP FROM OFFICE.

User avatar
The Romulan Republic
Emperor's Hand
Posts: 21503
Joined: 2008-10-15 01:37am

Re: Der Fuhrer proposes stripping tax exempt status from Universities in retaliation for Left-wing speech.

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2020-07-10 10:35pm

Probably it'll be hard for him to carry out, but that doesn't mean it shouldn't be taken seriously. Its yet another example of his clear intent to act as an autocrat and destroy democratic rights, and even making the threat could be seen as undermining free speech, as it may intimidate universities into being less open.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver

"The greatest enemy of a good plan is the dream of a perfect plan."-General Von Clauswitz, describing my opinion of Bernie or Busters and third partiers in a nutshell.

I SUPPORT A NATIONAL GENERAL STRIKE TO REMOVE TRUMP FROM OFFICE.

User avatar
Formless
Sith Marauder
Posts: 3868
Joined: 2008-11-10 08:59pm
Location: the beginning and end of the Present

Re: Der Fuhrer proposes stripping tax exempt status from Universities in retaliation for Left-wing speech.

Post by Formless » 2020-07-10 10:49pm

While the sentiment speaks poorly of the President's character, it also once again speaks poorly of his knowledge of what the President can and cannot do. If he tries this, the Universities will almost certainly fire back a lawsuit claiming that its a bald faced attempt to attack their first amendment rights... and they would almost certainly win that argument. Trump has made a lot of empty threats over the years, and this is likely one of them.

All i have to ask is... why isn't this in the Trump-Dump thread where it belongs?
"Still, I would love to see human beings, and their constituent organ systems, trivialized and commercialized to the same extent as damn iPods and other crappy consumer products. It would be absolutely horrific, yet so wonderful." — Shroom Man 777
"To Err is Human; to Arrr is Pirate." — Skallagrim
“I would suggest "Schmuckulating", which is what Futurists do and, by extension, what they are." — Commenter "Rayneau"
The Magic Eight Ball Conspiracy.

User avatar
mr friendly guy
The Doctor
Posts: 11136
Joined: 2004-12-12 10:55pm
Location: In a 1960s police telephone box somewhere in Australia

Re: Der Fuhrer proposes stripping tax exempt status from Universities in retaliation for Left-wing speech.

Post by mr friendly guy » 2020-07-10 11:27pm

Didn't the government try something similar with anti BDS laws? This prevented journalist Abbie Martin giving a speech at university even though she was invited due to her support of the BDS movement. She naturally sued, but it takes time for things to get to court (I imagine even longer due to the pandemic), so in the interim isn't this type of policy enforced anyway?
Never apologise for being a geek, because they won't apologise to you for being an arsehole. John Barrowman - 22 June 2014 Perth Supernova.

Countries I have been to - 14.
Australia, Canada, China, Colombia, Denmark, Ecuador, Finland, Germany, Malaysia, Netherlands, Norway, Singapore, Sweden, USA.
Always on the lookout for more nice places to visit.

User avatar
Formless
Sith Marauder
Posts: 3868
Joined: 2008-11-10 08:59pm
Location: the beginning and end of the Present

Re: Der Fuhrer proposes stripping tax exempt status from Universities in retaliation for Left-wing speech.

Post by Formless » 2020-07-10 11:38pm

If I understand correctly, when a policy is challenged in court on grounds as serious as First Amendment violations, the courts will put a temporary injunction against enforcing the new policy until the issue has been settled, or an injunction can be requested by the litigant(s). Generally speaking, the First Amendment is treated with extreme deference in US courts (as shown by the very strict standards needed to sue for libel or slander), and the courts don't play the same political games as the POTUS or Senate. They tend to err on the side of caution in these matters, because judges don't have to worry about elections or any of that crap. There is some partisanship in the Supreme court, but not like there is elsewhere. And yes, this would be a matter for the SCOTUS to decide if the POTUS decided to go ahead with it.
"Still, I would love to see human beings, and their constituent organ systems, trivialized and commercialized to the same extent as damn iPods and other crappy consumer products. It would be absolutely horrific, yet so wonderful." — Shroom Man 777
"To Err is Human; to Arrr is Pirate." — Skallagrim
“I would suggest "Schmuckulating", which is what Futurists do and, by extension, what they are." — Commenter "Rayneau"
The Magic Eight Ball Conspiracy.

User avatar
TimothyC
Of Sector 2814
Posts: 3752
Joined: 2005-03-23 05:31pm

Re: Der Fuhrer commutes Roger Stone's sentence.

Post by TimothyC » 2020-07-10 11:57pm

Mr Bean wrote:
2020-07-10 09:55pm
TimothyC wrote:
2020-07-10 09:47pm
Solauren wrote:
2020-07-10 09:15pm
What would it take for the US Senate and Congress to pass an act that retroactively stripped Trump his pardon powers?
They can't. It would have to be a constitutional amendment.
They don't have to because this was a commutation not a pardon and can in theory simply be revoked by the next president as long as it's done before his sentence is finished. Also one could argue it's an invalid use of the President power as he was using his powers for an unjust reason. Both are available options.
I am corrected.
"I believe in the future. It is wonderful because it stands on what has been achieved." - Sergei Korolev

bilateralrope
Sith Marauder
Posts: 4478
Joined: 2005-06-25 06:50pm
Location: New Zealand

Re: Der Fuhrer commutes Roger Stone's sentence.

Post by bilateralrope » 2020-07-11 01:50am

Mr Bean wrote:
2020-07-10 09:55pm
TimothyC wrote:
2020-07-10 09:47pm
Solauren wrote:
2020-07-10 09:15pm
What would it take for the US Senate and Congress to pass an act that retroactively stripped Trump his pardon powers?
They can't. It would have to be a constitutional amendment.
They don't have to because this was a commutation not a pardon and can in theory simply be revoked by the next president as long as it's done before his sentence is finished. Also one could argue it's an invalid use of the President power as he was using his powers for an unjust reason. Both are available options.
Is Stone aware that commutations can be revoked ?

Sure, he does have some time to use to flee the country if he realizes that possibility. If he can find one willing to take:
- People from the US in the midst of their mishandling of the pandemic
- Him specifically.

User avatar
The Romulan Republic
Emperor's Hand
Posts: 21503
Joined: 2008-10-15 01:37am

Re: Der Fuhrer commutes Roger Stone's sentence.

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2020-07-11 02:30am

So Stone boards a plane for a country without an extradition treaty the day after Biden's victory is announced?

Ah, well, I can live with the little slime trail spending the rest of his life overseas, unable to return to the US for fear of arrest.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver

"The greatest enemy of a good plan is the dream of a perfect plan."-General Von Clauswitz, describing my opinion of Bernie or Busters and third partiers in a nutshell.

I SUPPORT A NATIONAL GENERAL STRIKE TO REMOVE TRUMP FROM OFFICE.

bilateralrope
Sith Marauder
Posts: 4478
Joined: 2005-06-25 06:50pm
Location: New Zealand

Re: Der Fuhrer commutes Roger Stone's sentence.

Post by bilateralrope » 2020-07-11 03:39am

Only if he can find a country that is still letting US citizens visit despite how badly the US is handling the pandemic.

User avatar
madd0ct0r
Sith Acolyte
Posts: 6161
Joined: 2008-03-14 07:47am

Re: Der Fuhrer proposes stripping tax exempt status from Universities in retaliation for Left-wing speech.

Post by madd0ct0r » 2020-07-11 06:02am

Why is this bluster not in the trump dump?
"Aid, trade, green technology and peace." - Hans Rosling.
"Welcome to SDN, where we can't see the forest because walking into trees repeatedly feels good, bro." - Mr Coffee

User avatar
Gandalf
SD.net White Wizard
Posts: 15565
Joined: 2002-09-16 11:13pm
Location: A video store in Australia

Re: Der Fuhrer commutes Roger Stone's sentence.

Post by Gandalf » 2020-07-11 07:52am

bilateralrope wrote:
2020-07-11 03:39am
Only if he can find a country that is still letting US citizens visit despite how badly the US is handling the pandemic.
As I recall, Stone isn't poor. So he could probably go to any number of places willing to look the other way.
"Oh no, oh yeah, tell me how can it be so fair
That we dying younger hiding from the police man over there
Just for breathing in the air they wanna leave me in the chair
Electric shocking body rocking beat streeting me to death"

- A.B. Original, Report to the Mist

"I think it’s the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately."
- George Carlin

User avatar
Solauren
Emperor's Hand
Posts: 8509
Joined: 2003-05-11 09:41pm

Re: Der Fuhrer commutes Roger Stone's sentence.

Post by Solauren » 2020-07-11 10:01am

The Romulan Republic wrote:
2020-07-11 02:30am
So Stone boards a plane for a country without an extradition treaty the day after Biden's victory is announced?

Ah, well, I can live with the little slime trail spending the rest of his life overseas, unable to return to the US for fear of arrest.
Stone wouldn't have to flee until just before Biden is sworn it. Lots of time for him to find a place, move assets, or get a 'as he goes out the door' Pardon from Trump.

Hence, why I want to know what it would take to get Trumps pardon powers retroactively revoked on whatever basis was required.
\

User avatar
LadyTevar
White Mage
White Mage
Posts: 20329
Joined: 2003-02-12 10:59pm

Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by LadyTevar » 2020-07-11 10:53am

We have the Trump Dump Threads for a Reason. USE THEM.
Image
Librium Arcana, Where Gamers Play!
Nitram, slightly high on cough syrup: Do you know you're beautiful?
Me: Nope, that's why I have you around to tell me.
Nitram: You -are- beautiful. Anyone tries to tell you otherwise kill them.
"A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP" -- Leonard Nimoy, last Tweet

bilateralrope
Sith Marauder
Posts: 4478
Joined: 2005-06-25 06:50pm
Location: New Zealand

Re: Der Fuhrer commutes Roger Stone's sentence.

Post by bilateralrope » 2020-07-11 04:17pm

Gandalf wrote:
2020-07-11 07:52am
bilateralrope wrote:
2020-07-11 03:39am
Only if he can find a country that is still letting US citizens visit despite how badly the US is handling the pandemic.
As I recall, Stone isn't poor. So he could probably go to any number of places willing to look the other way.
How much time would it take to arrange that ?

Ralin
Sith Devotee
Posts: 3060
Joined: 2008-08-28 04:23am

Re: Der Fuhrer commutes Roger Stone's sentence.

Post by Ralin » 2020-07-11 06:02pm

bilateralrope wrote:
2020-07-11 04:17pm

How much time would it take to arrange that ?
Well, booking plane tickets takes like five minutes. I assume he could work on arranging the 'not having to leave' part after relocating.

bilateralrope
Sith Marauder
Posts: 4478
Joined: 2005-06-25 06:50pm
Location: New Zealand

Re: Der Fuhrer commutes Roger Stone's sentence.

Post by bilateralrope » 2020-07-11 06:57pm

Ralin wrote:
2020-07-11 06:02pm
bilateralrope wrote:
2020-07-11 04:17pm

How much time would it take to arrange that ?
Well, booking plane tickets takes like five minutes. I assume he could work on arranging the 'not having to leave' part after relocating.
Normally, yes. But these are plague times, so getting into a country that's handling the pandemic better than the US is going to be a bigger hurdle.

User avatar
Solauren
Emperor's Hand
Posts: 8509
Joined: 2003-05-11 09:41pm

Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Solauren » 2020-07-11 07:22pm

He doesn't need to get into one that is handling it better then the US.

He needs to buy property, have it cleared out, and simply wait. If Trump loses, he arranges to move, and stay in isolation at his new estate, while supplies are delivered to him. He just needs to find a place without extradition treaties to the United States. At that point, he can start thinking more long term, or if he wants to remain where he moved to.

He has lots of time to set that up in multiple locations. Hell, I just googled 'List of Countries without Extradition treaty to the United States', and found this
https://www.wsfa.com/story/22665099/cou ... y-with-us/

Just buy land in a few places, and then fly to one of those countries, switch to a different plane, and then take off for your destination. Bribe the right people, and it could be years, if ever, before the US finds him.
\

User avatar
Knife
Emperor's Hand
Posts: 15690
Joined: 2002-08-30 02:40pm
Location: Behind the Zion Curtain
Contact:

Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Knife » 2020-07-11 11:06pm

All of this is irrelevant. A new administration can go after him on new charges. If he flee's, he looks over his shoulder the rest of his life.
They say, "the tree of liberty must be watered with the blood of tyrants and patriots." I suppose it never occurred to them that they are the tyrants, not the patriots. Those weapons are not being used to fight some kind of tyranny; they are bringing them to an event where people are getting together to talk. -Mike Wong

But as far as board culture in general, I do think that young male overaggression is a contributing factor to the general atmosphere of hostility. It's not SOS and the Mess throwing hand grenades all over the forum- Red

User avatar
Gandalf
SD.net White Wizard
Posts: 15565
Joined: 2002-09-16 11:13pm
Location: A video store in Australia

Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Gandalf » 2020-07-12 05:08pm

Solauren wrote:
2020-07-11 07:22pm
Just buy land in a few places, and then fly to one of those countries, switch to a different plane, and then take off for your destination. Bribe the right people, and it could be years, if ever, before the US finds him.
It doesn't even need to be that clandestine. Stone is high profile enough that going after him will have a political cost, and a subsequent administration is pretty likely to just say "fuck it" like they did with GWB.
"Oh no, oh yeah, tell me how can it be so fair
That we dying younger hiding from the police man over there
Just for breathing in the air they wanna leave me in the chair
Electric shocking body rocking beat streeting me to death"

- A.B. Original, Report to the Mist

"I think it’s the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately."
- George Carlin

User avatar
Formless
Sith Marauder
Posts: 3868
Joined: 2008-11-10 08:59pm
Location: the beginning and end of the Present

Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by Formless » 2020-07-13 02:06am

By the way, on the university tax exemption thing, it was pointed out to me that the way the law works, Trump cannot take someone's tax exempt status away, period. All he can actually do is request the IRS to do a review of their tax exempt status, and then they can decide whether or not it can be revoked. However, when Congress wrote the law they weren't bloody stupid about it, so the IRS can only revoke that status for very specific reasons, of which political speech is not one of them because the Congress that wrote it wasn't fucking stupid enough to violate the First Amendment in a tax law. Moreover, educational institutions are specifically mentioned in the law in question as being tax exempt, so there really isn't anything Trump can do to take it away from them. And one last reason he cannot do what he threatened to do comes down to basic constitutional law. Taxes are the sole domain of Congress, not the president. He can't do shit to effect someone's tax exempt status through any means not specified in that law, because that would be interfering in a function of Congress. The IRS may be under the Executive branch for administrative purposes, but in practice the tax code is set by Congress and they cannot deviate from it just because a president is unhappy with some university lecturers.

Of course, being that this is Trump we're talking about, its quite likely he doesn't know what he can and cannot do. He just runs his mouth about what he wants to do and pretends that is how the law works. Like his statement that all conversations with him are considered classified. That most certainly is NOT how national security law works, either.
"Still, I would love to see human beings, and their constituent organ systems, trivialized and commercialized to the same extent as damn iPods and other crappy consumer products. It would be absolutely horrific, yet so wonderful." — Shroom Man 777
"To Err is Human; to Arrr is Pirate." — Skallagrim
“I would suggest "Schmuckulating", which is what Futurists do and, by extension, what they are." — Commenter "Rayneau"
The Magic Eight Ball Conspiracy.

User avatar
madd0ct0r
Sith Acolyte
Posts: 6161
Joined: 2008-03-14 07:47am

Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by madd0ct0r » 2020-07-13 02:45am

I don't know about universities in the USA but the UK ones are on their knees anyway - corvid has shafted them twice over. Main one is lucrative foreign students can't come. Second is having to maintain buildings AND deliver lectures/exams online AND most lab research is paused AND a lot of students are grumbling about fees for reduced service.

But I suppose trump is fronting the culture war, just like how Boris Johnson views new council housing as breeding labour voters.
"Aid, trade, green technology and peace." - Hans Rosling.
"Welcome to SDN, where we can't see the forest because walking into trees repeatedly feels good, bro." - Mr Coffee

User avatar
The Romulan Republic
Emperor's Hand
Posts: 21503
Joined: 2008-10-15 01:37am

Re: Der Fuhrer commutes Roger Stone's sentence.

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2020-07-15 07:04am

Solauren wrote:
2020-07-11 10:01am
The Romulan Republic wrote:
2020-07-11 02:30am
So Stone boards a plane for a country without an extradition treaty the day after Biden's victory is announced?

Ah, well, I can live with the little slime trail spending the rest of his life overseas, unable to return to the US for fear of arrest.
Stone wouldn't have to flee until just before Biden is sworn it. Lots of time for him to find a place, move assets, or get a 'as he goes out the door' Pardon from Trump.

Hence, why I want to know what it would take to get Trumps pardon powers retroactively revoked on whatever basis was required.
This may be of interest:

https://theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2 ... ng/614083/
When Roger Stone was sentenced to 40 months in federal prison for obstruction, making false statements, and witness tampering, Judge Amy Berman Jackson concluded, “He was not prosecuted, as some have complained, for standing up for the president. He was prosecuted for covering up for the president.” Stone was scheduled to be incarcerated on July 14, 2020. On July 10, Donald Trump commuted his sentence. Is this particular use of the president’s power constitutional and lawful? Many in the legal establishment maintain that it is, but we disagree.

The power to grant “pardons and reprieves” includes the power to commute, or reduce, sentences after convictions. But this power is constrained by a limit: “except in cases of impeachment.” Traditionally, this exception has been read to mean only that a president cannot use the pardon and reprieve power to prevent or undo an impeachment by the House or an impeachment conviction by the Senate. By this interpretation, only impeachment charges themselves are precluded from presidential pardons. (According to the Constitution, the vice president and “all civil Officers of the United States” are subject to impeachment, which means, for example, that a president cannot pardon a federal judge’s impeachment.)

But there is a strong argument, rooted in the Constitution’s text, history, values, and structure, that in addition to banning the prevention or undoing of an impeachment, this phrase also bans a president from using the pardon and reprieve power to commute the sentences of people directly associated with any impeachment charges against him. This argument is not a partisan one. Whatever rule is applied today would necessarily apply to future presidents, Democrats as well as Republicans.

David Frum: Stone walks free in one of the greatest scandals in American history

The impeachment charges against President Trump focused mainly on his alleged withholding of foreign aid from Ukraine to pressure the Ukrainian president into digging up dirt on Hunter Biden that could support Trump’s reelection campaign, and on his refusal to cooperate with the congressional investigation of this matter. But the articles of impeachment also explicitly invoke his “previous invitations of foreign interference in United States elections” and “previous efforts to undermine United States Government investigations into foreign interference in United States elections.” According to our interpretation of the pardon clause, that would mean he can’t use the pardon and reprieve power to commute the sentences of those charged with crimes related to Russian interference in the 2016 campaign—including Stone, who was convicted of lying to Congress and obstructing its investigation into Russian election interference. This obstruction impeded the ability of Congress to gather information that could have been vital to the impeachment inquiry, benefiting Trump.

Our interpretation stems, in part, from the fact that the Constitution’s Framers were deeply concerned about presidents abusing power to protect co-conspirators. As just one example, regarding treason, the Virginia delegate Edmund Randolph voiced a concern at the Constitutional Convention that “the prerogative of pardon in these cases was too great a trust. The President may himself be guilty. The Traytors may be his own instruments.”

The votes of Randolph’s fellow delegates on the wording of the pardon clause at the convention reflect the overarching concern to curb this power, though their specific intentions are unclear. On August 25, 1787, delegates voted on this matter. As it stood, the president had “the power to grant reprieves & pardon.” Unanimously, the delegates voted to insert “except in cases of impeachment” after the word pardon—the language we are familiar with today. Directly afterward, they rejected the addition of the phrase “but his pardon shall not be pleadable in bar” in a six-to-four vote.

These votes reflect more than merely semantic differences. The language “his pardon shall not be pleadable in bar” was pulled directly from the British; it banned the king from pardoning officials who were being impeached, but did not prevent him from pardoning officials after their impeachment. The traditional interpretation of the meaning of “except in cases of impeachment” is that it simply removed this loophole, preventing presidential pardons both during and after impeachment and conviction. However, the Framers’ rejection of the British phrase after having inserted “except in cases of impeachment” strongly suggests that the American delegates saw the new phrase as having a meaning distinct from the traditional interpretation. If “except in cases of impeachment” already covered both of those limits on presidential pardons, why would the Framers then need to vote on whether to include the British language—language that would have merely imposed the first limit they’d already unanimously approved? Given the unclear record of what the Framers meant to do that day, any interpretation of its meaning based only on the evidence we have about the day the phrase was adopted is speculative at best.

Russell Berman: Trump’s most brazen reprieve yet

So what exactly does “except in cases of impeachment” mean?

James Madison, regarded by many as the father of the Constitution, seemed to agree that the pardon power as adopted was limited—and not merely in the very narrow way that traditionalists believe. At the Virginia Ratifying Convention, the delegate George Mason argued against ratification partly on the grounds that “the President ought not to have the power of pardoning, because he may frequently pardon crimes which were advised by himself.” Here was another example of the ever-present worry of a criminal president abusing power by exonerating his accomplices. But notes taken at the convention show that Madison had a response ready; he believed that the pardon power as written already prevented this abuse: “If the president be connected in any suspicious manner with any persons, and there be grounds to believe he will shelter himself; the house of representatives can impeach him … They can suspend him when suspected, and the power [of pardoning] will devolve on the vice-president … This is a great security.” Although this quote is sometimes read merely to reference the remedy of impeachment and removal, it is clear that the stripping of a president’s power to pardon those “connected in any suspicious manner” to him does not depend on a Senate conviction, after which any restrictions on presidential power would be redundant because he would be removed from office.

Of course, one Madison quote alone does not resolve the question of original meaning. And we are not suggesting, as one might read Madison to be saying, that presidents must be suspended from all duties after being impeached. However, Madison’s quote shows he believed that an impeached president would lose the power to pardon, at least in the midst of his trial in the Senate. Madison is silent about whether the pardon power is reinstated after a Senate acquittal, but the fact that he emphasizes the danger of “suspected” presidents—not convicted ones—is a strong indication that one of our most important Framers would favor a reading of the pardon power that resembles our account of limits on impeached presidents.

Still, traditionalists insist that Madison is wrong. They maintain that “except in cases of impeachment” means only that a president cannot use the pardon to stop an impeachment or undo its effects. This view relies on inconclusive historical evidence. The interpretation comes largely from an 1833 treatise by the Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story, but Story did not have Madison’s notes from the convention—the authoritative source recounting the Framers’ debates—because they were first published in 1840. He even admitted that his interpretation of “except in cases of impeachment” as linked to the British limit on the pardon power was not conclusively supported by the evidence, saying only that it was “probably” accurate.

Jeffrey Crouch: Our founders didn’t intend for pardons to work like this

Some traditionalists have sought to bolster their position by turning to dicta—reasoning not central to the core matter being decided—in the Supreme Court case Ex Parte Wells (1855). But there the Court largely repeated Story’s view and offered no other good evidence that could undermine our favored interpretation. Traditionalists have also pointed to Alexander Hamilton's position in “Federalist No. 69,” in which he wrote, “A President of the Union … though he may even pardon treason, when prosecuted in the ordinary course of law, could shelter no offender, in any degree, from the effects of impeachment and conviction.” Certainly Hamilton may have differed from Madison in his interpretation of the Constitution’s limits on the pardon power, but even this quotation does not offer definitive proof that he felt that “the effects of impeachment and conviction” were limited to an “offender” who is actually the subject of the impeachment proceedings. Finally, traditionalists have pointed out that the Framers voted down a motion to exclude “except in cases of treason” from the pardon power. However, this vote is a separate issue: A blanket ban on pardoning any instance of treason is entirely distinct from restricting the pardon power of a president who has been impeached. None of these oft-cited sources provides a knock-down argument for the traditional view.

Linguistically, the Constitution’s text is capable of supporting either reading. Given this ambiguity and the lack of historical certainty about the Framers’ intent, we should then embrace the meaning that is most consonant with the deepest purposes of the Constitution as a whole and most likely to advance the design and values it reflects. For all who read the Constitution as concerned with restraints on executive power—a worry central to the American Revolution and to many of the Framers—the interpretation advanced here is by far the most sensible. After all, the Constitution requires the president to “faithfully execute the law.” Its thrust is to insist that no one, not even the president, is above the law. It granted the president the power to pardon for acts of mercy, not self-preservation.

As even President Richard Nixon’s Office of Legal Counsel recognized, the Constitution does not allow a president to issue a self-pardon. These values point toward our reading of the pardon power, which limits the supposed prerogative of impeached presidents to pardon co-conspirators connected to their impeachment.

Jeffrey Rosen: Hamilton would not have stood for Trump’s new constitutional theory

Our reading is the one most consistent with the structure of Article II of the Constitution—the article that establishes the presidency. Article II begins with a vesting of executive power that is capacious. The pardon power is the clearest example of discretionary and broad executive power. But because power so necessary in crisis could also be the most dangerous power in the Constitution if misused, the article also emphasizes the limits on the president. It concludes with the duty of the president to “take Care” that the laws be faithfully executed and the caveat that he be subject to impeachment and removal for not doing so. And the oath of office, specified word for word in Article II, emphasizes the duties and limits on the office because it requires the president to pledge to “faithfully execute the office” and “to preserve, protect and defend” the Constitution.

Executive power as great as that vested in a president can be justified as consistent with the republican character of the Constitution only if presidents themselves are accountable to the law. They can be accountable only if they are precluded from thwarting legislative and judicial inquiries into their own potential abuse of power or their failure to take care that the laws and duties of the office be faithfully executed. The Framers granted such powers as the pardon only because they believed that impeachment would be a check on the office if the power was abused. That’s why the pardon and reprieve power itself has to be limited in the rare case in which its abuse subverts the impeachment check.

We realize some will think we are tailoring the evidence to stop this particular president’s abuse of power. But the reading of the pardon power we advocate would limit every future president. And the limits it would impose on President Trump today illustrate how real and not merely theoretical the stakes of this debate are. This president has not been shy about his desire to use his power to shelter loyal soldiers from what he has called a “witch hunt.”

Stone himself also revealed some of the strongest evidence for why this use of the pardon and reprieve power is not constitutionally valid. Shortly before his sentence was commuted, Stone said that Trump “knows I was under enormous pressure to turn on him,” and added, “It would have eased my situation considerably. But I didn’t.” Stone is the co-conspirator the Framers feared. His commutation is not a self-pardon, but it has all the hallmarks of the kind of self-regarding act feared by the Framers and prohibited by the Constitution’s text, values, and structure. Even more concerning, it involves an attempt to subvert a congressional investigation that, unimpeded, may have unearthed even clearer evidence of the president’s impeachable offenses. In the Stone case and others like it, the pardon and reprieve power must be limited because its misuse cuts at the very heart of self-governance in a republic.

This story is part of the project “The Battle for the Constitution,” in partnership with the National Constitution Center.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.

COREY BRETTSCHNEIDER is a professor of political science at Brown University and a visiting law professor at Fordham Law School. He is the author of The Oath and the Office: A Guide to the Constitution for Future Presidents.
JEFFREY K. TULIS is a professor of government at the University of Texas at Austin. He is the author of The Rhetorical Presidency.
As noted in the article, its not the traditional interpretation, and I suspect that the current SCOTUS would uphold the traditionalist view. However, it is an interesting interpretation.
"I know its easy to be defeatist here because nothing has seemingly reigned Trump in so far. But I will say this: every asshole succeeds until finally, they don't. Again, 18 months before he resigned, Nixon had a sky-high approval rating of 67%. Harvey Weinstein was winning Oscars until one day, he definitely wasn't."-John Oliver

"The greatest enemy of a good plan is the dream of a perfect plan."-General Von Clauswitz, describing my opinion of Bernie or Busters and third partiers in a nutshell.

I SUPPORT A NATIONAL GENERAL STRIKE TO REMOVE TRUMP FROM OFFICE.

User avatar
FaxModem1
Emperor's Hand
Posts: 7679
Joined: 2002-10-30 06:40pm
Location: In a dark reflection of a better world

Re: Trump Dump: Internal Policy (Thread I)

Post by FaxModem1 » 2020-07-15 07:31pm

The Hill
Trump shares photo with Goya Foods products after Ivanka faces criticism
BY JUSTIN WISE - 07/15/20 03:22 PM EDT 860
55,469

Just In...
TurboTax, H&R Block used 'unfair and abusive practices' to get more money out of people, state regulator finds
FINANCE
— 17M 56S AGO
American Airlines warns 25,000 employees of potential job cuts amid pandemic
TRANSPORTATION
— 26M 10S AGO
The war on immigration must end
OPINION
— 27M 18S AGO
Conservative radio host fired over video scolding landscape workers for speaking Spanish
MEDIA
— 43M 14S AGO
Pence says GOP considering moving convention outdoors
ADMINISTRATION
— 53M 23S AGO
It's time to allow markets to fight climate change
OPINION
— 57M 18S AGO
South Carolina governor urges schools to open for in-person classes
STATE WATCH
— 1H 2M AGO
Demands for coronavirus testing, hot meals sparked riot at New Mexico jail
STATE WATCH
— 1H 3M AGO
VIEW ALL
Related News
Dr. Ron Paul: "Here's What I Think Is Coming Next for America"
Dr. Ron Paul: "Here's What I Think Is Coming…
Sponsored | Stansberry Research
Trump lashes out at Toomey, Romney after Roger Stone clemency criticism
Trump lashes out at Toomey, Romney after…
Kellyanne Conway on Trump niece's book: 'I believe family matters should be family matters'
Kellyanne Conway on Trump niece's book: 'I…
Trump retweets game show host who said CDC is lying about coronavirus to hurt him politically
Trump retweets game show host who said…
by

President Trump on Wednesday shared a photo on Instagram with several Goya Foods products as the White House doubled down on its public support of the company even as a similar tweet from Ivanka Trump raised concerns about the violation of ethics rules for public officials.

The photo, taken from the Oval Office, was promoted on the president's Instagram account a day after Ivanka Trump, a senior White House adviser, shared a picture of herself with a can of Goya beans. The caption of the tweet read: “If it’s Goya, it has to be good. Si es Goya, tiene que ser bueno.”




View this post on Instagram
A post shared by President Donald J. Trump (@realdonaldtrump) on Jul 15, 2020 at 11:02am PDT

The message appeared to be show of support from Ivanka Trump following the backlash the CEO of Goya Foods, Robert Unanue, faced after publicly praising the president at a White House event last week. But it quickly prompted criticism of its own, as well as accusations that the senior White House aide was violating ethics laws by using her official capacity to endorse a private product.


“You’re about to get dinged for a violation of ethics rules that apply to you as a White House staffer,” tweeted GOP operative Liz Mair.

Walter Shaub, former director of the Office of Government Ethics, also remarked that Ivanka Trump's decision to disclose her title on her personal Twitter account weighed against her when it came to ethics laws.

"If you tout the company's product in an obvious response to the backlash the company is facing for the CEO's remarks about your father-president, you knowingly link your account in people's minds to your official activities; you create the appearance of official sanction," Shaub said in a series of tweets.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) was one of many online who mocked Ivanka Trump's tweet. The first-term congresswoman tweeted in Spanish, "If it's Trump, he has to be corrupt."


The White House strongly pushed back against the criticism Ivanka Trump faced, claiming the media and the “cancel culture movement” was responsible.

“Only the media and the cancel culture movement would criticize Ivanka for showing her personal support for a company that has been unfairly mocked, boycotted and ridiculed for supporting this administration - one that has consistently fought for and delivered for the Hispanic community,” White House specialty media director Carolina Hurley said in a statement.

Ivanka Trump pitches Goya Foods products on Twitter
White House blames 'cancel culture' for criticism of Ivanka Trump's...
“Ivanka is proud of this strong, Hispanic-owned business with deep roots in the U.S. and has every right to express her personal support," she added.

According to the Justice Department, a federal employee's position should not be used "to coerce; to endorse any product, service or enterprise; or to give the appearance of governmental sanction."

Multiple White House officials have faced scrutiny over potential ethics law violations during Trump's presidency. White House counsellor Kellyanne Conway raised questions about a potential violation of the law in 2017 while promoting Ivanka Trump's line of clothing during an appearance on Fox News.
Image

Remember when corruption wasn't so....blatant?
Image

Post Reply