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In two decades at the nation's largest cable network, Fox News analyst Andrew Napolitano has provided an unapologetically libertarian critique of state power, regardless of the party holding control in the nation's capital. In the past several months, he has also emerged as one of President Donald Trump's harshest critics, claiming in May 2019 that the Mueller Report demonstrated that the president had clearly obstructed justice.
Though he has said he thinks recent House hearings provided sufficient grounds for impeachment, the former New Jersey Superior Court judge sees an even bigger problem in how the federal executive continues to arrogate power to itself. "No American president in the post–Woodrow Wilson era has stayed within the confines of the Constitution," Napolitano says. "And each president has more authority than his predecessors, for the simple reason that Democratic Congresses give power to Democratic presidents and Republican Congresses give power to Republican presidents."
Napolitano spoke to Reason's Nick Gillespie shortly before the House of Representatives voted to impeach Trump on two counts in December.
A: We have to start this conversation by underscoring the fact that impeachment is not legal. It is political, right? There's a phrase in the Constitution that says the House of Representatives shall have the sole—that's s-o-l-e—power of impeachment. Another phrase in the Constitution says each house of Congress shall write its own rules. Those rules don't even have to be fair as long as they generate the support of the majority.
Q: Is this just a flex by Congress: "We hate Trump; we've wanted to unseat him from the beginning; all we have to do is get a majority of members"?
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