High Crimes And Misdemeanors Flashcards, test questions and answers
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What is High Crimes And Misdemeanors?
High Crimes and Misdemeanors is a legal term used to refer to acts that are considered by the government as serious enough to warrant impeachment. The term was first used in English law in 1386, but has since come to apply more generally to any act that is seen as being a crime against society or the state. In the United States, high crimes and misdemeanors can include bribery, treason, abuse of power, embezzlement of public funds, tax evasion and other acts considered detrimental to the public good. Impeachment proceedings are typically conducted by Congress when there is evidence that a president or other official has committed high crimes or misdemeanors. This process begins with the House of Representatives voting on whether or not there is enough evidence for formal charges. If they do vote in favor of impeachment, then the Senate conducts a trial-like hearing where witnesses may be called and evidence presented before deciding if there is enough cause for conviction. The Constitutional basis for impeachment comes from Article 2 Section 4 which states that The President .. shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of Treason Bribery or other High Crimes and Misdemeanors though it does not explicitly define what those terms mean which can lead to controversy when deciding how broad their scope should be applied when considering potential cases of impeachment. There have been several presidents who were impeached but none were ever convicted due largely because no two-thirds majority could be reached in favor of conviction (required by Section 3). In conclusion, High Crimes and Misdemeanors are serious offenses committed against society or state which can lead to an individual being impeached by Congress if there is sufficient evidence found of their guilt. The exact scope High Crimes and Misdemeanors applies remains somewhat ambiguous though due its wide ranging nature many different types of offenses can fall under its legal umbrella depending on interpretation making it an important concept within American law today.