Only three US presidents were impeached — Andrew Johnson for sacking his war secretary Edwin Stanton, Bill Clinton for lying about sex, and Trump twice.
The first time was for winning an election he was supposed to lose and unorthodox actions in office.
The second coming Wednesday is largely to prevent him from serving in public office again, along with wanting him and supporters vilified for wrong reasons, ignoring justifiable ones.
Legitimate reasons existed to impeach, convict and remove most former US presidents from office — notably for crimes of war and against humanity on invented enemies.
This step was never taken because most elected and appointed US officials would share guilt in the above offenses and others.
Impeachment of US presidents is a politicized affair, for invented offenses, not real ones.
Charges against Andrew Johnson, Bill Clinton, and Trump twice were meritless, the same true for Richard Nixon’s forced resignation.
The Constitution’s Article II, Section 4 is supposed to be used as a check against abuses of power.
It empowers Congress to impeach, convict, and remove an unfit to hold office president or other elected or appointed officials.
It’s supposed to be for “treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.”
The latter phrase is undefined and thus abused.
House members are empowered to impeach by a simple majority.
A Senate two-thirds majority is required to convict.
While unlikely, Trump may become the first sitting or former US president to be convicted by Senate members.
If before his term expires on January 20, he’d be forced from office.
If after his tenure ends, he could be barred from holding public office again by a separate vote.
He could be denied benefits afforded former US presidents under the 1958 Former Presidents Act.
He could lose them by removal pursuant to Article II, Section 4 of the Constitution, according to the law — including his pension and Secret Service protection.
The law states that presidents “whose service in such office shall have terminated other than by” removal from office office are entitled to benefits.
According to Law Professor Josh Blackman,