Noah Feldman writes: Using the presidential office to try to shut down the investigation of a senior executive official who was also a major player in the president’s campaign is an obvious and egregious abuse of power. It’s also a gross example of undermining the rule of law.
This act is exactly the kind that the Founding Fathers would have considered a “high crime.”
And it’s a high crime the president could perform only by virtue of holding his office.
Practically, it still seems unlikely that a Republican House would impeach the president, much less that two-thirds of the Senate would vote to convict and remove him from office.
But a Democratic House would have more than enough material now to start the impeachment process — including the revelation of the request to Comey. And the House could choose to impeach even if it calculated that the Senate probably wouldn’t convict.
The act of impeachment would have tremendous symbolic ramifications. And it would include the detailed investigative oversight that so far has been lacking in Washington. [Continue reading…]