Investigations: The Silence of Mr. Terrific

Adam Clayton Powell, who has never shown undue deference for the laws of the land, came on last week as a last ditch champion of the Constitution. Fighting for his political life before the House committee investigating his right to a seat in Congress, the Harlem Democrat argued that any inquiry into his defiance of New York State courts, his padded payroll and his expense-paid junkets would violate his rights as a Representative-elect. "You want me," he asked, "to break the Constitution?"

The special committee, named last month after the House voted to delay Powell's swearing-in, wanted no such thing. It...

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