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Department of Political Science Presents

Impeachment in the Constitutional Order

9/20/18, 9:00 AM

About this event

No president of the United States has ever been convicted and removed from office as a result of an impeachment proceeding.  Andrew Johnson was impeached by the House of Representatives but escaped conviction by one vote in the Senate.  Richard Nixon resigned before he would have been impeached, and Bill Clinton beat House impeachment charges with substantial support in the Senate and in the country at large. There is discussion now about impeaching Donald Trump. What role does impeachment play, and what role should impeachment play in a political system that has so rarely enacted, and has never completed, this process for punishing a president?  Is impeachment an anachronism in a political order that has no real use for it?  Or is the impeachment process a superfluous organ in the constitutional order, like an appendix in a human being, which may occasionally become inflamed but performs no important function for the health of the body? Professor Jeffrey Tulis of the University of Texas at Austin will try to show how and why the impeachment process, far from politically irrelevant, is a vital attribute of the theoretical architecture of a well-functioning separation of powers regime.  The American pattern of disuse of the impeachment process may thus be a symptom of a serious problem in a constitutional order animated by separation of powers.

Professor Tulis' research focuses on American development, constitutional theory, poltiical philosophy, and the American presidency. The American Politics Colloquium is excited to host him for their first event of the year! Please contact saluc001@umn.edu with any questions about the lecture.
Event Location
  • 1314 Social Science Building
  • 267 19th Ave S, Ste 1314
  • Minneapolis MN
  • USA - United States