I am not a lawyer. Nor do I play one on TV. But I follow Harvard Law professor Laurence Tribe on Twitter and I have read the papers he cited that challenge the assertion that a president can pardon himself. After reading those papers I am convinced that any pardon Donald Trump grants to himself will also fail. I further contend--and this will be controversial--that any pardon he grants to anyone who has helped him become President through an illegal conspiracy will fail.
Jill Stein may have cost Hillary Clinton the election. Ben Schreckinger at Politico explains.
In Michigan, Stein garnered more than 51,000 votes, while Clinton lost by fewer than 11,000. In Wisconsin, Trump’s margin was 23,000 votes while Stein attracted 31,000. And in Pennsylvania she attracted 50,000 votes, while Trump won by 44,000.
The case that Stein played spoiler isn’t nearly as strong as it was for Ralph Nader in 2000, when Bush won Florida by 500 votes while Nader racked up close to 100,000 votes there. And Stein points to national exit polling that shows the majority of her voters would have stayed home rather than vote for Clinton, while others would have sooner voted for Trump.
Dear Congressman Reed,
I am greatly dismayed by President Trump's firing of FBI Director James Comey. This reminds me of Nixon's Saturday Night Massacre. This has the APPEARANCE of Trump trying to cover up treasonous collusion with the Russians to steal the elections. Maybe Trump and his gang are totally innocent, but that is not how it appears.
23 Representatives--all Republicans--voted to keep Donald Trump's taxes secret. Of these 23 Representatives who voted to help Trump with his cover-up, 22 voted to allow YOUR ISP to sell YOUR browsing history. At the very least, those who voted to keep
- How can Republicans who supported 33 Benghazi hearings costing over $7 million call themselves patriots if they oppose even 1 investigation by an independent special prosecutor into whether the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians and whether the Russians control the White House? (Hat tip to Peter Daou for this question)
Donald Trump has given mixed signals as to how far he will go to kill efforts to fight climate change. Trump has a well documented history of calling climate change a hoax invented by the Chinese.
The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 6, 2012
Erich Reimer, a Republican Electoral Colleg Elector from Virginia wrote an article for The Hill arguing that Electors MUST vote in accordance with their states' popular votes, otherwise they invite anarchy. Read his column now before continuing on with my response.
To suddenly so abruptly shock the citizenry by dramatically changing the institution at this juncture would also set a disastrous precedent in the future where peaceful and orderly transitions of power may be seen as more and more challengeable.
Furthermore, such chaos in the Electoral College threatens its existence in the future.
There is a key assumption behind this statement. Indeed, this key assumption forms the foundation for Reimer's entire argument. Take away this assumption and the Reimer's entire argument collapses. I will reveal that assumption in a second. But first I must pose a few questions.
The Role Of The Electoral College As Envisioned By The Founding Fathers
cabal, intrigue, and corruption. These most deadly adversaries of republican government might naturally have been expected to make their approaches from more than one querter, but chiefly from the desire in foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils. How could they better gratify this, than by raising a creature of their own to the chief magistracy of the Union? (emphasis added)
In other words, the Founding Fathers established the Electoral College for the express purpose of ensuring, among other things, that the President wouldn't be a puppet of a foreign government (like say, Russia). Clearly, the Founding Fathers wanted the Electors to be free to follow their consciences and vote against those who posed a threat to our national survival. Unfortunately, thirty states have, in effect, said "screw you" to the Founding Fathers by enacting laws that attempt to force electors to vote for the candidate that won the states' election.
It is not over yet. There are now two prongs of attack currently underway to prevent the coronation of Donald Trump as President. Before discussing these efforts I'd like to remind you of one important fact: Donald Trump does NOT have a mandate. Despite winning the most electors in the Electoral College, Hillary Clinton leads Trump by 1.7 million votes as of this writing. And any mandate Trump might claim despite his loss of the popular vote has been further tainted by the fact that it was at least partially achieved by a wildly successful effort at voter suppression in the key states of Florida, Wisconsin, and North Carolina. Trump's supporters are trying to counter these points by claiming three million votes were cast for Hillary Clinton by illegal aliens. Snopes investigated this claim and could find no evidence to support it.