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Thread: FBI and CIA Independence

  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tennyson View Post
    An obstruction of justice claim will not stick for exercising Article II powers.

    Any type of criminal charge will tied up for violating Article II.
    So you say. But you say lots of things.
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  2. #42
    A Character Tennyson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rasselas View Post
    So you say. But you say lots of things.
    I say lots of things. You also have lots of opportunities to make direct rebuttals based on arguments.
    Last edited by Tennyson; 12th April 2018 at 10:29 AM.

  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rasselas View Post
    No, he can't. That's just incorrect. If he insisted on such a thing, it would be a constitutional crisis. The FBI runs differently than other agencies in the executive branch, particularly when it is investigating the president or those close to him. And he can't fire Mueller, just as Nixon couldn't fire the Watergate prosecutor. He had to go through intermediaries to do it and ended up firing two people before he got to a Bork who would do it for him. And yet all those people serve "at the pleasure of the president."

    No one is above the law. No one can judge his own case. Interfering with an FBI investigation for a self-serving purpose is obstruction of justice, even for the president. See Article 1 of the articles of impeachment served on Nixon.
    Mr. Rasselas,

    The FBI is under the Executive Branch. The President is the head of the Executive Branch. As it stands now, the FBI is not investigating the President.

    I don't know why you brought up Mueller, because the Special Prosecutor has nothing to do with the FBI. Perhaps you knew your position was so weak, you decided a strawman was your best course of action?

  4. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rasselas View Post
    If he insisted on such a thing, it would be a constitutional crisis.
    It may very well be a constitutional crisis, but it can happen, and the law is not construed to avoid such a crisis.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rasselas View Post
    The FBI runs differently than other agencies in the executive branch, particularly when it is investigating the president or those close to him.
    There is no constitutional basis for such separation, though, as the FBI is not statutorily organized a an independent or semi-independent agency.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rasselas View Post
    No one is above the law. No one can judge his own case.
    This is the "constitutional crisis" aspect of the situation. Investigating criminal activity is an executive branch function, and the president is the head of the executive branch ... the only constitutional officer tasked with executing federal law. All the others work for him. In the wake of Watergate, the Ethics in Government Act of 1978 was designed to go around the usual processes when certain officials (including the president) were under investigation, but it was controversial for several reasons. What we need today is something similar, but that simply is not going to happen, as there is insufficient political will for it such that Congress could pass one with a veto-proof majority. Even if Congress swings Democratic later this year, the only real remedy will be the presidential election of 2020.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rasselas View Post
    Interfering with an FBI investigation for a self-serving purpose is obstruction of justice, even for the president. See Article 1 of the articles of impeachment served on Nixon.
    Aside from the fact that no articles of impeachment were served on Nixon (they were adopted by the Judiciary Committee, but he resigned before the House could vote on them), the presence of any item in an article of impeachment does not make law, notwithstanding that impeachment is a political process unreviewable by the judicial branch.

  5. #45
    Spock of Vulcan Ian Jeffrey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chief View Post
    Should the Justice Department and Intelligence organizations, such as the FBI and the CIA have some sort of internal organization that elects its own leaders to better shield these organizations from politics?

    I'm thinking yes, but interested in your thoughts as well.
    I do not think this is a constitutional possibility. The FBI is an executive agency by its nature and cannot be divorced from the executive branch ... certainly not without statutory changes, and possibly not without a constitutional amendment.

    The CIA is part of national defense and is properly under the authority of the president.

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Jeffrey View Post
    I do not think this is a constitutional possibility. The FBI is an executive agency by its nature and cannot be divorced from the executive branch ... certainly not without statutory changes, and possibly not without a constitutional amendment.

    The CIA is part of national defense and is properly under the authority of the president.
    It does seem impossible. What a crazy time, where the President of our country attacks his own intel agencies and justice department.
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  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chief View Post
    It does seem impossible. What a crazy time, where the President of our country attacks his own intel agencies and justice department.
    A good case to peruse is Myers v United States (1925) regarding attacking and ultimately firing.

    Here is how it starts:

    MR. CHIEF JUSTICE TAFT delivered the opinion of the Court.

    This case presents the question whether under the Constitution the President has the exclusive power of removing executive officers of the United States whom he has appointed by and with the advice and consent of the Senate.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tennyson View Post
    A good case to peruse is Myers v United States (1925) regarding attacking and ultimately firing.

    Here is how it starts:

    MR. CHIEF JUSTICE TAFT delivered the opinion of the Court.

    This case presents the question whether under the Constitution the President has the exclusive power of removing executive officers of the United States whom he has appointed by and with the advice and consent of the Senate.

    This is why the special counsel runs afoul of the Article II Appointments clause. Trump should have lawyers write up the reasons why the office of special counsel is unconstitutional, and use that reasoning to remove Mueller.

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chief View Post
    It does seem impossible. What a crazy time, where the President of our country attacks his own intel agencies and justice department.

    Um, yeah, because some of them were conspiring against him, spying on him and his campaign by using a phony dossier to get a FISA warrant.

    Then we have an old fool (ex DCIA Brennan), who lied to Congress, has never been charged, and goes around talking against the President. Not to mention people like Strzok and Page, the "insurance policy" folks.

  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tennyson View Post
    I say lots of things. You also have lots of opportunities to make direct rebuttals based on arguments.
    And I make them, but you ignore what I say, so it's not much use.

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