High crimes and misdemeanors: Lois Lerner, Hillary Clinton, and the implication of two American presidents

Again, I’ve said it before—but because the news is just now catching up to things I’ve said years ago, I have to address them, particularly in regard to the destroyed Lois Lerner emails at the IRS, and the same involving Hillary Clinton on her private server destroying classified information hoping to prevent a modern version of Watergate for her presidency which is occurring before she has even been elected. Both women should be in prison for “high crimes and misdemeanors.” They are notoriously criminal, both of them and it is disgraceful that they are both free to roam about unmolested currently without prosecution. They clearly committed crimes and are showing the world that criminals are in charge within the federal government. And you know what they have in common dear reader? Barack Obama was at the center of both their lives directly and if the evidence had not been destroyed it would likely point directly to the President’s office.

High crimes and misdemeanors is a phrase from Section 4 of Article Two of the United States Constitution: “The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.”

“High” in the legal and common parlance of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries of “high crimes” signifies activity by or against those who have special duties acquired by taking an oath of office that are not shared with common persons.[1] A high crime is one that can only be done by someone in a unique position of authority, which is political in character, who does things to circumvent justice. The phrase “high crimes and misdemeanors” when used together was a common phrase at the time the U.S. Constitution was written and did not mean any stringent or difficult criteria for determining guilt. It meant the opposite. The phrase was historically used to cover a very broad range of crimes.

The Judiciary Committee’s 1974 report “The Historical Origins of Impeachment” stated: “‘High Crimes and Misdemeanors’ has traditionally been considered a ‘term of art‘, like such other constitutional phrases as ‘levying war’ and ‘due process.’ The Supreme Court has held that such phrases must be construed, not according to modern usage, but according to what the framers meant when they adopted them. Chief Justice [John] Marshall wrote of another such phrase:

It is a technical term. It is used in a very old statute of that country whose language is our language, and whose laws form the substratum of our laws. It is scarcely conceivable that the term was not employed by the framers of our constitution in the sense which had been affixed to it by those from whom we borrowed it.”[2]

The constitutional convention adopted “high crimes and misdemeanors” with little discussion. Most of the framers knew the phrase well. Since 1386, the English parliament had used the term “high crimes and misdemeanors” to describe one of the grounds to impeach officials of the crown. Officials accused of “high crimes and misdemeanors” were accused of offenses as varied as misappropriating government funds, appointing unfit subordinates, not prosecuting cases, not spending money allocated by Parliament, promoting themselves ahead of more deserving candidates, threatening a grand jury, disobeying an order from Parliament, arresting a man to keep him from running for Parliament, losing a ship by neglecting to moor it, helping “suppress petitions to the King to call a Parliament,” granting warrants without cause, and bribery. Some of these charges were crimes. Others were not. The one common denominator in all these accusations was that the official had somehow abused the power of his office and was unfit to serve.

As can be found in[3] historical references of the period, the phrase in its original meaning is interpreted as “for whatever reason whatsoever”. High indicates a type of very serious crime, and misdemeanors indicates crimes that are minor. Therefore this phrase covers all or any crime that abuses office. Benjamin Franklin asserted that the power of impeachment and removal was necessary for those times when the Executive “rendered himself obnoxious,” and the Constitution should provide for the “regular punishment of the Executive when his conduct should deserve it, and for his honorable acquittal when he should be unjustly accused.” James Madison said, “…impeachment… was indispensable” to defend the community against “the incapacity, negligence or perfidy of the chief Magistrate.” With a single executive, Madison argued, unlike a legislature whose collective nature provided security, “loss of capacity or corruption was more within the compass of probable events, and either of them might be fatal to the Republic.”[4]

According to the Constitutional Rights Foundation, “Prior to the Clinton investigation, the House had begun impeachment proceedings against only 17 officials — one U.S. senator, two presidents, one cabinet member, and 13 federal judges.”[5]

The very difficult case of impeaching someone in the House of Representatives and removing that person in the Senate by a vote of two-thirds majority in the Senate was meant to be the check to balance against efforts to easily remove people from office for minor reasons that could easily be determined by the standard of “high crimes and misdemeanors”. It was George Mason who offered up the term “high crimes and misdemeanors” as one of the criteria to remove public officials who abuse their office. Their original intentions can be gleaned by the phrases and words that were proposed before, such as “high misdemeanor”, “maladministration”, or “other crime”. Edmund Randolf said impeachment should be reserved for those who “misbehave”. Cotesworth Pinkney said, It should be reserved “…for those who behave amiss, or betray their public trust.” As can be seen from all these references to the term “high crimes and misdemeanors”, there is no concrete definition for the term, except to allow people to remove an official for office for subjective reasons entirely.


Proof if it can ever be retrieved will show that Lois Lerner received marching orders from the IRS union rep who met directly with President Obama, to use the IRS to derail the Tea Party movement through audits and other legal harassment. Lerner has showed horrendous behavior toward conservatives in the emails that had been scanned through and released to authorities. Imagine what they destroyed! What’s most troubling is the communication between Lerner and her husband who advocated that he wanted to vote for a “socialist-labor candidate.” Out of all the bad things I have said about these people in the past, I hate being so right about them.

But Hillary, she used a former President in her husband to gain access to secret service and a plausible reason to have a private server to begin with, then used that security to hide acts she committed as Secretary of State under another sitting president in Obama. If that’s not high crimes and misdemeanors, nothing is. Obama is guilty and so are both Clintons, the one who used to be President and the one who wants to be. They are all inconceivably bad, so bad that people can’t even fathom the treachery on display, because we are not accustomed to comprehending it. That is why there are terms for such things so that those trusted with such delicate information can be prosecuted if they violate that trust. And until that happens, our legal system is a joke not worthy of a single tax dollar for further substantiation.

Rich Hoffman


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