Expert: There's 'legal basis' for impeaching Trump after Charlottesville comments

The legal case for President Trump’s impeachment just grew stronger.

That’s one lawyer’s take as calls for his impeachment have grown louder after President Trump, in a fiery exchange with reporters, doubled down on his claims “both sides” were to blame for the violence in Charlottesville. On Tuesday Trump said, “I think there's blame on both sides. And I have no doubt about it. And you don't have any doubt about it either."

In an op-ed on Law Newz, lawyer Elura Nanos points out Article II, Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution states a president can be impeached upon the “Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other High Crimes and Misdemeanors.” But what exactly are “high crimes and misdemeanors?”

Click through images of impeach Trump rally:

12 PHOTOS
'Impeach Trump' Rally in Los Angeles on July 2
See Gallery
'Impeach Trump' Rally in Los Angeles on July 2
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 2: People participate in the Impeachment March on July 2, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. Impeachment March protests across the nation are calling for the impeachment of U.S. President Donald Trump. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 2: People participate in the Impeachment March on July 2, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. Impeachment March protests across the nation are calling for the impeachment of U.S. President Donald Trump. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 2: People participate in the Impeachment March on July 2, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. Impeachment March protests across the nation are calling for the impeachment of U.S. President Donald Trump. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 2: Presidential Donald Trump supporters counter protest during the Impeachment March on July 2, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. Impeachment March protests across the nation are calling for the impeachment of Trump. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 2: Presidential Donald Trump supporters argue with a protester during the Impeachment March on July 2, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. Impeachment March protests across the nation are calling for the impeachment of U.S. President Donald Trump. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
Thousands demonstrators hold signs during the Impeachment March to call for Congress to start impeachment hearings against US President Donald Trump, in Los Angeles, California, on July 2, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / RINGO CHIU (Photo credit should read RINGO CHIU/AFP/Getty Images)
Demonstrators hold signs during the Impeachment March to call for Congress to start impeachment hearings against US President Donald Trump, in Los Angeles, California, on July 2, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / RINGO CHIU (Photo credit should read RINGO CHIU/AFP/Getty Images)
A demonstrator shouts during the Impeachment March to call for Congress to start impeachment hearings against US President Donald Trump, in Los Angeles, California, on July 2, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / RINGO CHIU (Photo credit should read RINGO CHIU/AFP/Getty Images)
Demonstrators hold signs during the Impeachment March to call for Congress to start impeachment hearings against US President Donald Trump, in Los Angeles, California, on July 2, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / RINGO CHIU (Photo credit should read RINGO CHIU/AFP/Getty Images)
Trump supporters face counter protests during the Impeachment March to call for Congress to start impeachment hearings against President Donald Trumpp, in Los Angeles, California, on July 2, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / RINGO CHIU (Photo credit should read RINGO CHIU/AFP/Getty Images)
Demonstrators carry signs during the Impeachment March to call for Congress to start impeachment hearings against US President Donald Trump, in Los Angeles, California, on July 2, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / RINGO CHIU (Photo credit should read RINGO CHIU/AFP/Getty Images)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

Citing Harvard Law Professor Noah Feldman, she writes, while Trump’s disastrous press conference isn’t a criminal offense, the historical meaning of “high crimes and misdemeanors” is really any action that “violates the basic principles of government.” She argues under that historical interpretation, Trump’s comments defending the rally qualify as a high crime.

Unconvinced? Professor Feldman found that the initial drafting of the articles of impeachment used the words “maladministration” which basically means doing a bad job.

So as the lawyer concludes, if the House of Representatives has the courage to use Trump’s handling of Charlottesville as a legal basis for “high crimes and misdemeanors” they may have a winning case on their hands. 

As she writes, an election isn’t a sentence we should be forced to endure and an impeachment is more of a performance review.

Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.