Was Joseph Story facing the hypothetical of a President bragging he could commit murder and get away with it?
Yes, anything that didn’t arise from the disciplinary hearing would be admissible.
If the testimony is gotten thru a sort of Grand jury proc, with the witness forced to testify under limited immunity, then no that cant be used.
Yes, I can see both sides of this issue. On the one hand, it would be easy to paralyze a President by just filing a string of frivolous lawsuits and arrests against him against him, making it impossible for him to perform his job. So granting the President a shield of immunity during his term of office makes sense.
On the other hand, I don’t think anybody sees an advantage in granting the President a right to go on a four year crime spree. Even if you figure he would still face the consequences after leaving office, society still has an interest in preventing the crimes from happening. There’s the example already mentioned of murder; if the President started committing a series of murders, we couldn’t allow him to continue to kill people unchecked for four years.
I don’t see how you can craft a form of immunity that would protect a President from frivolous legal action but still make him subject to legitimate legal action. The distinction between what’s frivolous and what’s legitimate is too subjective.
So I guess the best workable solution is to grant all Presidents a broad shield of immunity during their terms of office - but use impeachment to remove a particular President from office if he abuses that immunity. And on that basis, I would generally prohibit the use of Presidential immunity in a way that interferes which the impeachment process. Immunity should check arrests and lawsuits but impeachment should check immunity.
So 34 Senators can shield a president from murder charges?
Unfortunately, yes. The past few years have underscored that the proper operation of government requires officials to act in good faith. Removing discretion and judgment from officials in an attempt to limit the interference caused by bad faith activity only creates a new system that can be abused. It’s a no-win situation
You disagree that at least one lawyer in a major case would make a potentially questionable argument?
I actually asked a question here a couple hours ago about an acting president without realizing this thread was here (I asked because of a TV show).
But the answers were relevant:
An acting president IS the president. Period. Full stop.
The previous president, when able, submits a petition to resume the office which is automatically accepted unless others object and then a process starts.
But until the previous president submits a formal, “Good to go,” form the acting president IS the president of the United States.
The 25th refers to the Veep in these circumstances as the Acting Presidnet, not the Preident.
And there is no provision under the 25th for anyone other than the Veep to act as prez under the 25th.
If both the Prez and Veep are
Missing or incapacitated, it’s the presidential succession act which governs, and only until such time as the disability is removed or a new Prez us elected.
Err…so Pres and VP are on Air Force One and they do an Amelia Earhart impersonation.
You are saying the 25th is out the window and then the Speaker of the House is a seat warmer till we figure out what is going on?
It would seem to me the 25th should apply no matter how far down the chain of succession you go. If not then what happens?
Look at the key words of the 25th:
It can only be triggered by the Veep, acting with the Cabinet “or such other body”, and it only authorizes the Veep to assume the duties of the office. It doesn’t authorize anyone else to assume the powers and duties as Acting President.
So that means that if both the PRez and Veep are both MIA, the provisions of Article II would govern:
That in turn points to the Presidential Succession Act, which puts the Speaker in on a termorary basis (assuming that provision is itself constitutional, and the Speaker is an “officer” for the purposes of this section.