You’re not alone. Many people feel the same way. At the top of many Republicans’ wish lists – at least on this site – would have to be impeaching President Obama.
Is it possible? How would it work? What, exactly, is impeachment and how does it happen? We thought we would put forth some information for those who are most passionate, as a kind of EZ do-it-yourself guide.
- Impeachment in the United States is an expressed power of the legislature that allows for formal charges against a civil officer of government for crimes committed in office. The actual trial on those charges, and subsequent removal of an official on conviction on those charges, is separate from the act of impeachment itself.
- Impeachment is analogous to indictment in regular court proceedings, while trial by the other house is analogous to the trial before judge and jury in regular courts. Typically, the lower house of the legislature will impeach the official and the upper house will conduct the trial.
- At the federal level, Article II of the United States Constitution (Section 4) states that “The President, Vice President, and all civil Officers of the United States shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other High Crimes and Misdemeanors.”
- The House of Representatives has the sole power of impeaching, while the United States Senate has the sole power to try all impeachments. The removal of impeached officials is automatic upon conviction in the Senate. In Nixon v. United States (1993), the Supreme Court determined that the federal judiciary cannot review such proceedings.
- Impeachment can also occur at the state level; state legislatures can impeach state officials, including governors, according to their respective state constitutions. Source: Wikipedia
How impeachment happens:
- Information and allegations are presented to the Speaker of the House of Representatives regarding the wrongdoing of an official.
- The Speaker of the House refers the information to the Rules Committee. The Rules Committee officially examines the information, formalizes procedure, and sends all to Judiciary Committee.
- The Judiciary Committee investigates and examines evidence; the committee holds hearings and votes on whether or not to impeach. If they decide to recommend the whole house impeaches, they render “articles of impeachment” and send these to the floor of the House (floor is general assembly=all 435 meeting together).
- The House of Representatives debates the articles and votes of individual articles of impeachment. A simple majority (50%+1) is needed to impeach. Impeach simply means formally accused by the House of Representatives.
- Senate then holds a trial to determine whether or not official is guilty of article(s) passed by the House. The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court presides over the Senate if the person tried is the president. The Senate must convict with a 2/3s majority vote. Source: http://vashonsd.org/teacherweb/powell/docs/Impeachment_process.pdf
English: Impeachment – Thaddeus Stevens and John A. Bingham before the Senate. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
What to do if you want to impeach a president:
Contact your elected reps again, and again, and again, and again. Here’s a link to everything you need. Get all your friends and family to do it. Make noise. Get attention. Remember – talk is cheap so if you REALLY think this or any president deserves impeachment, then try to force the matter. Even if you and everyone you know believes a president deserves impeachment, he or she deserves and will have a trial.
Let us know how the process is faring for you.
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