Democrats and “Swamp First” Republicans are trying to expel Donald Trump and his voters from American political life.
That plan backfired.
And this Fox News host told a lie about impeachment that left Trump speechless.
Forty-four Senate Republicans joined Kentucky Senator Rand Paul in voting to dismiss the House of Representatives’ article of impeachment against Trump on the grounds a Senate trial was unconstitutional due to the fact that Donald Trump was out of office.
“Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace pressed Paul on this point citing the impeachment trial of former Secretary of War William Belknap on charges of corruption even though Belknap resigned before the trial began.
But when questioning how the Founders intended a situation to play out, it’s always helpful to look at what the Founders actually did.
In 1799 the Senate declined to hold an impeachment trial for former Senator William Blount after Blount was found to have participated in a scheme to help Great Britain seize control of the Spanish-held Florida and Louisiana territories.
On January 11, 1799, the Senate voted to dismiss the article of impeachment with a resolution declaring they did not have jurisdiction over Blount since he resigned his Senate seat.
“The court is of opinion that the matter alleged in the plea of the defendant is sufficient in law to show that this court ought not to hold jurisdiction of the said impeachment, and that the said impeachment is dismissed,” the resolution read.
Vice President Thomas Jefferson announced the case was dismissed so there can be no doubt the Founding Fathers never intended impeachment to apply to former elected officials.
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