Monday, July 24, 2017

Kobil on Trump, Pardoning

Prof. Daniel T. Kobil
At the Columbus Dispatch, Prof. Daniel T. Kobil argues that, "as a practical matter there is virtually no chance that any of Trump’s inner-circle will go to jail, even if they are guilty." Why? Because "the president possesses the ultimate power to pardon any violations of federal law, including treason."

Kobil notes Trump can "stop any potential prosecution in its tracks by issuing presidential pardons" and such "can be taken preemptively, before any indictment is brought." The only "remedy" for such behavior is that "the Constitution provides for the possibility of his impeachment and removal." Indeed, "the impeachment and near-conviction of President Andrew Johnson stemmed in part from congressional disapproval of his lenient pardoning practices."

Kobil reasons, however, that impeachment "seems like a long shot" because "Republicans are firmly in control of both houses of Congress and Trump is so popular with the core Republican base." The GOP establishment "rallied around" Nixon for the better part of two years, as Watergate unfolded. See full editorial here.

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