Time Essay: The Proper Grounds for Impeachment

IMPEACHMENT. Rarely has a word stirred such passions or borne such grave implications for the future governance of the U.S. And rarely has a word been given such a latitude of meaning. On the broad side, there is the interpretation offered in 1970 (and since qualified) by Vice President Gerald Ford when he was the leader among 110 Congressmen trying to impeach Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas: "An impeachable offense is whatever a majority of the House of Representatives considers it to be at a given moment in history." On the narrow...

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